Day 52: Confessions of a Paleo Newbie

So I have been doing this Paleo challenge for a little over 2 weeks, and I have a few confessions to make. For example, it took me several days of going about my normal routine of dousing everything in Sriracha to finally decide to take the time and read the label. And guess what the 2nd ingredient is. Sugar! Well crap. Because I really, really love Sriracha. And even though it’s only 1 gram of sugar per teaspoon (yeah OK that is kind of a lot), how much Sriracha does one person really use at any given time? Probably less than a teaspoon. But still.

But let’s talk about some less obvious things. Like vanilla extract, for example. Vanilla extract has 4g of natural sugar per ounce, which is really not that much, and it’s natural sugar like fruit has. But the bits of it that aren’t vanilla are grain alcohol. Which I think we can assume Paleolithic cavemen didn’t have access to. But, can I still count it as a spice? I mean I’m not taking shots of it or anything, I just think that this delicious blueberry pumpkin protein smoothie would be a lot better with a few drops of vanilla in it. And what about honey? I think it’s pretty safe to assume that cavemen knew what honey was, and ate it when they could find it. Yet message boards across the internet bash it for being high in sugar content. Well, that’s not really the point, is it? (To be honest, I am really asking both of these questions because if I can have just one person tell me that it’s OK to use vanilla and/or honey, I am going to make this amazing looking strawberry cake that is grain-free, gluten-free, and refined sugar-free… So close to being Paleo, yet so far!)

Also, to be honest, I have a super hard time stomaching Progenex. It is SO sweet. Everyone says that protein powder is the one big cheat that most CrossFit folks allow, and they aren’t messing around. I feel like I might as well be drinking condensed milk. And then there’s fish oil. I can’t stand it. It makes my burps taste like fish and I’m not really convinced it’s actually doing anything for me, even though I am taking a ridiculous amount of it every day in the form of I-know-this-is-the-cheap-stuff-but-it-was-on-sale gel caps.

Last but definitely not least, last week at our Paleo sushi dinner, despite having spent a lot of time and effort to come up with rice alternatives, plus having spent probably 20 minutes in the sauce aisle at Whole Foods trying to find a soy sauce alternative that didn’t have soy, guess what we served as an appetizer… Edamame! Aka soy beans. I didn’t even realize it until halfway through someone asked me, “Why can we have soybeans but not soy?” And I said, “We can’t have soybeans!” And she said, “Well, isn’t that what edamame is?” And I proceeded to feel super dumb. Which is always the best feeling.

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