Paleo Challenge RulesHere are some strict paleo challenge rules:
- Do not eat dairy! This includes butter, cheese (hard and soft), yogurt (even Greek) and milk (including cream in your coffee or tea).
- Do not eat grains! This includes bread, rice, pasta, cereal, oatmeal, corn and all of those gluten-free pseudo-grains like quinoa and sprouted grains.
- Do not eat legumes! This includes beans of all kinds (soy, black, kidney, etc.), peas, lentils, and peanuts. (No peanut butter, kids.)
- Do not eat or add sugar! Of any kind, real or artificial. No maple syrup, honey, agave nectar, Splenda, Equal, Nutrasweet, xylitol, stevia, etc.
- Do not eat processed foods! This includes protein shakes, processed bars (like Zone bars), dairy-free creamers, etc.
- Do not drink alcohol, in any form!
- Do not eat white potatoes! Sweet potatoes and yams are a more nutrient-dense option, so go for those instead.
- Lean Meats – Chicken, Fish, sea food, buffalo and venison.
- Vegetables -vary the type of veggies
- Fruit – preferably Low Sugar fruits.
- Nuts. Walnuts, cashews, almonds.
- Oils. Olive, Canolia, and coconut oil.
Food in Moderation:
- Processed Meat. On occasion, we are okay with organic chicken sausage (these are nitrate, dairy, gluten and casein-free), and high quality bacon, deli meat, and jerky.
- Dried Fruit. In general, careful with the fruit. Use dried fruit and Larabars in serious moderation, and only if it doesn’t send you running for the nearest candy dish.
- Non-”Paleo” Vegetables. We’re fine with green beans, sugar snap peas and snow peas. While they’re technically a legume, they’re far more “pod” than “bean”, and we want you to eat your veggies.
- Coffee and black tea. We’re okay with coffee (black, or with a little coconut milk) in moderation, and only if it doesn’t interfere with sleep. Usually, that means none after noon. If you really want to go hardcore and reset your body’s sensitivity to caffeine, skip the coffee/tee for the 30 day period as well.
- Vinegar. While it’s technically not “Paleo”, we’re fine with using it in small quantities as a salad dressing or in salsa.
- Salt. While some “approved” foods like olives or bacon will have some salt in them, go easy when adding salt to your food.
Some experts urge that a slightly less strict, slightly more modest form of the Paleodiet should be followed for optimal health. It is up to you as an individual to choose first if you should – and then how to – implement the Paleo diet / Paleo Challenge in your own life. Complete paleo diet food list.