The conversion temptation

One of the first things I wanted to do when I went Paleo was to find a way to eat some of my favorite foods in a “Paleo” way, and this desire is rampant in the Paleo community.  Think of one of your favorite dishes and put the word “Paleo” in front of it and Google it.  Dozens of “Paleo” versions of it will appear.  You will be amazed and excited and you’ll run right out and buy all the stuff it takes to make it.  Selective blindness will allow you to overlook the fact that one or more of the ingredients it takes to make this “Paleo” dish aren’t, in fact, Paleo at all.  But hey, it’s just a couple of things, right?  They’re not going to matter that much.  You go to a great deal of time and expense for this because it’s a special treat.  You are smart enough to know that it’s not something you should eat very often because of the fact that it’s not legit.  But hey, you WANT it.  And being Paleo 24/7 is tough especially when you’re so new to it all. 

So you’ve rationalized your way into making this upgraded dish and are feeling a little proud of yourself.  You’re being creative.  You’re thinking outside the box.  You’re finding ways to make Paleo work for  you. 

You’re also deluding yourself.

I know this because I’ve been there.  OH, have I been there.  I thought, “Wow!  I can make anything I want as long as I find a recipe that has the word “Paleo” in it.”  And I’ve tried a lot of them.  I can’t tell you how much time and money I’ve spent on these “conversion” attempts.  And here’s the list of reasons why they don’t work:

1.  It’s not the same.
2.  It’s seldom edible.
3.  It’s time-consuming.
4.  It’s costly.
5.  It’s a sure way to sabotage your efforts to reach whatever goal you are trying to reach.

I’ve made the pumpkin pie, the paleo pancakes (several versions), and the paleo muffins, and all I ended up doing was more searches for more “Paleo” versions of stuff I loved.  You can find paleo brownies, paleo cookies, even paleo Almond Joys.  If I didn’t spend so much time analyzing my own actions I may not have seen what I was doing. 

If you are going Paleo in an effort to lose weight, recover from disease, or just perform better as an athlete you are truly setting yourself up for failure if you give in to the “conversion” temptation.  From a beginner’s standpoint it is far too easy to take this one small rationalization and turn it into a series of big ones.  Don’t fall for it.  In the end, it just isn’t worth it.

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2 responses

  1. Yay, glad to see your site is up and running (I had read your story @ Robb Wolf). I’ve been going a little buckwild with “paleo treats” myself, and have put on a few lbs 😦 Definitely something I need to watch out for!

    November 23, 2010 at 3:00 pm

  2. Yeah, I could tell I was getting carried away too! None of my Paleo “treats” ever turned out right so I just kept looking for alternatives. I finally realized that “cleaned up” junk food is still junk food and just cut it out altogether. I still troll the net looking for Paleo dishes, but it’s good whole foods rather than scaled versions of desserts. I’m not saying not to ever have any, of course, but for me they need to remain special occasion/holiday treats as opposed to day-ends-in-y treats. 😀

    November 23, 2010 at 5:37 pm

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