Several months ago, I embarked on a journey to transition to a Paleo diet. It seemed simple – stop eating carbs and dairy to help with making healthier food choices. However, I ever-so-slowly realized that this primal diet wasn’t quite as easy for me as I thought it would be.
Don’t get me wrong, primal eating is simple, and there are so many resources out there to help with going Paleo thanks to the power of the Internet. But it’s a difficult diet to follow if you’re lacking one major resource – money. There are a plethora of substitutes that can be used to replace carbs and dairy in your diet, but those replacements aren’t exactly cost-friendly. As someone who was unemployed and living entirely off the graciousness of my parents, I wasn’t in a position to be purchasing costly natural, gluten-free and dairy-free products.
So I struggled for a while, searching for snacks that wouldn’t cost me big bucks. I was often mildly hungry, but it was okay because I didn’t have to stay focused all day long the way you do when you’re working. Then I got a job! I was thanking God and the universe for removing me from my misery. But that also meant I needed to eat filling, balanced meals so I could be alert and ready to work. Because I was still struggling with money and there wasn’t anything else to eat, I resorted to cheating on the primal lifestyle. It wasn’t so much that I wanted to cheat, it was that I had to eat what was available. And fancy flour wasn’t it. I loved being paleo, and I’m excited for a time when I’ll be able to afford posh substitutes and shop entirely at Whole Foods if I so choose. But for now, I’m back to a regular diet filled with carbs and cheese.