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Trying To Stay Primal When Family Members Are Not

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  • Trying To Stay Primal When Family Members Are Not


    I am having difficulty trying to stay primal, when my new husband and step daughter aren't. To them, a meal is not really a meal without rolls or cornbread or rice. My husband is from Trinidad. The only veggies he will eat are corn, peas, potatoes and greens. He's not rude about it, he just will leave anything else on his plate. He buys chips, cookies, m&ms and other snacks for his 12 year old daughter. Seeing all of that around is difficult. Before we got married in January, he agreed to be more supportive and not have that junk around for me to see. I am insulin resistant (probably full blown diabetic now with my A1c being so high), and he was aware of that. Prior to us getting married I only ate meat, and vegetables and juiced veggies daily. He knew that. He's not mean about it, but it seems like now that we are in one house, everything has been forgotten. To be honest, I thought about moving out. I was so desparate to get back on track with my health (and there are also child behavior issues, but that's for another website). My a1c is rising. Before getting married, my doctor had agreed to take me off my metformin on my next doctor's visit. So much for that. I've gone up 2 dress sizes. I know he's not holding a gun to my head and forcing me to eat junk, it's just difficult seeing it and cooking what they eat. I know ultimately I'm responsible and if I end up with complications with my health, it's my fault. I know he's concerned about my health. He goes with me to my appointments. I guess bad eating habits, or the only ones you ever known are difficult to break. I'm just wondering if anyone else has had a similiar experiance. Thank you kindly for your time.

  • #2
    Is it because you think their food is more delicious than yours?

    What are your 'go-to' primal foods? (for example, we have a microwaved banana, with a piece of dark chocolate and some cream as our dessert, and I'd be happy to have that as my only dessert for the rest of my life)
    Disclaimer: I eat 'meat and vegetables' ala Primal, although I don't agree with the carb curve. I like Perfect Health Diet and WAPF Lactofermentation a lot.

    Griff's cholesterol primer
    5,000 Cal Fat <> 5,000 Cal Carbs
    Winterbike: What I eat every day is what other people eat to treat themselves.
    TQP: I find for me that nutrition is much more important than what I do in the gym.
    bloodorchid is always right


    • #3
      Don't think of eating healthfully or eating Primal as something that declares what you can't eat. Think of it as something that decalres all that you can eat.

      Virtually every creature that walks, swims, or flies is a food source for you. Except for grains and legumes, virtually everything that grows in and under the ground is also food. Duck, goose, pigs, steer, deer, guinea pig, elk, rabbit, liver, tongue, brains - holy poop, just the animals are almost endless.

      You will ultimately make a choice. The pleasure of health, or the pleasure of the few second long taste of unhealthy food. Either choice is fine, but you have to live with the results of either choice.
      "Right is right, even if no one is doing it; wrong is wrong, even if everyone is doing it." - St. Augustine


      Who says back fat is a bad thing? Maybe on a hairy guy at the beach, but not on a crab.


      • #4
        I'm really sorry to hear about your situation. I am in a similar situation with my child (who lives with me) and boyfriend ( who I will soon live with). It sounds like groceries and cooking is a shared responsibility? If you truly love one another there will have to be sacrifices and compromises made. Ask him what foods he and his daughter absolutely can not live with out and you can either deal with those foods only or try to find primal versions of those foods. Maybe y'all can switch from store bought chips to home made baked potato chips? Ice cream to fruit sorbet? Oreos to almond flour chocolate chip cookies? Home made fruit leathers, trail mixes, almond flour pancakes? You get my drift. Be open with him they way you was open with us just now. And ask him to please "go out" for ice cream or fried fish or whatever his SAD craving is. Once you become 200% primal you may notice that when little snacks appear in the pantry you are less phased by them.


        • #5
          And hey look around at some paleo recipes and explore all areas of primal, because there are recipes that can really help you transition your family smoothly. Even if the recipes you make are not hard core 100% primal they are serving the purpose of transitioning you family, and will pay off in the end


          • #6
            Hi Lemon, you are in a tricky situation but your health is very important so you have to work hard to find a solution. As others have said, in time you will not find the junk foods to be at all tempting and even the rice, rolls and cornbread will leave you unfazed.

            But for now, it really would help to keep them literally out of your sight. Can you arrange a cupboard, shelf or box, perhaps even in another room, for those non primal items that do make their way into your house. If you spy anything you know is not good for you, immediately shunt it to the hidden cache and turn your mind from it, forget about it and disregard it as food for you.

            As for cooking, I suggest that you make the most delicious primal meals you can, dish yourself an extra helping for next day's lunch and hide in the fridge. Then serve the family, adding the rice etc to their plates at the last minute. Actually a small serving of rice or potatoes will probably not completely derail you but you certainly want to keep away from the pasta and grains. Substitute extra veges for you if necessary and possibly even keep putting a little bit on their plates just in case you may one day win them over. Otherwise, all the more asparagus and mushrooms for you

            It's up to them to eat what you cook, I wouldn't want to fall into the trap of making completely separate meals.

            You will need to be a little bit strong, but you can do it and it will be worth it for your health's sake. If you nourish your body properly and can train your mind to think that the things they eat are not really food, then it will be alot easier for you to stay on track. Best wishes.
            Annie Ups the Ante


            • #7
              Wow. I'm so thankful I stumbled upon this website. Well actually, I obtained it from Mark's book. I'm currently reading it now.
              Thank you kindly for your helpful responses.

              Annieh- I will take your advice and try to make the most delish primal dishes I can. That could be the problem. I really don't know many recipes that are completely primal aside from salads and just a piece of baked chicken, or any other meat with a side of veggies. That's all I lived on prior to getting married. I kept it simple. To keep from getting sicker, bored and feeling deprived, I'm going to have to try and find more primal recipes (especially with healthcare costs going up in this country). Thank you.

              Lifting- I plan to take your suggestion and look around for some good some primal recipes. I think that's where my problem lies. I took your advice and spoke with my husband again. Last night we moved all the naughty food, and put it in another cabinet. That will be helpful. I loveeeeeeeeee the banana recipe! I'm going to try that when I start feeling deprived! Thanks so much for sharing it!

              Joaniel- I like your way of thinking. Seems like this way of eating calls for a shift in thinking. I did just fine with that living alone. Now, I will have to try and be stronger and focus on my health and growing pant size. I need to finish Mark's book, and find more primal cookbooks and recipes. If you know of any good ones, please let me know.

              Have a blessed day


              • #8
                LemonMarie, there's a whole host of fabulous and delicious recipes on MDA (under Resources on the main site). Primal Blueprint Recipes | Mark&#039;s Daily Apple Also, the forum has a recipes section where people have posted some really good ideas for tasty things to cook. Primal food can be really, really good.


                • #9
                  Have you checked out It's a fabulous site run by Melissa Joulwan, the author of 'Well Fed' and now 'Well Fed 2' and has loads of fabulous paleo/primal recipe ideas. I love her ideas, she's funny, down-to-earth and inspirational! I live with a husband, son and stepson who are definitely NOT primal, but once they started to see the difference living primally was making to me both mentally and physically, the sarcastic comments magically seemed to disappear. Still working on their conversions!


                  • #10

                    I have to say, I am in a similar situation- my husband and two girls are not on the paleo/primal way of eating and the reason I began eating this way 3 and a half weeks ago was because I was diagnosed as pre-insulin resistant. Devastation. It is super frustrating at first. There are a few things that I have done at home that minimize the frustration though.

                    1. There are always fresh vegetables, fruits and meat available for me. I keep that steadily supplied as I do the grocery shopping. This way, I always have something that I can eat, even if they are not eating what I am.

                    2. Dinners are always primal- lunch and breakfast we all do what we want, but when it comes to dinner, they are primal period. If they don't want to eat it, it's not my problem- they can have a sandwich or something instead, but this way we don't end up making two dinners every night. If something non-primal is made, my husband has to make it. I won't torture myself with things I can't eat, and I don't sit at the table when everyone else is eating them. I haven't gotten to the point where I can do that.

                    3. Everything that is not primal is somewhere where it is either out of sight or really hard to reach. Most of the time, I am too lazy to go get the stool out to fetch the Hershey Bars or cereal or whatever. And if I find I am willing to go through that effort, before I do it I reassess what I have eaten that day to see if I am super low on my carbs or fat or something. It's pretty easy to find a reasonable substitute if you plan for it. Chocolate whey protein shakes have become a weekly indulgence for me and it keeps my dessert cravings in check.

                    4. On a regular basis, I expose them to foods I now eat because I am primal- most of the time, they like it too. They have started asking me for tons of things I thought I would have all to myself. It's a good thing.

                    5. I have primal equivalents on hand for the things I really don't think I would be happy without- primal pizza dough recipes, dessert recipes, etc. In the beginning it was more difficult for me just thinking about all the things I couldn't have anymore. For this to be a lifestyle change, I had to be able to mostly eat what I felt like eating within reason. So, I sought out equivalents and have been much happier ever since. Instead of ice cream I do Greek Yogurt sweetened with a little bit of honey and maybe some fresh fruit chopped up in it- it satisfies the cool creamy texture I want with the sweetness. I have found primal style cakes, pies, you name it- they aren't something to eat all the time, mind you, but when you just want chocolate cake and nothing else will do, you will have a way to have it without completely swerving off course.

                    Hopefully that helps! It is REALLY hard, but in the end I think it will be worth it. A lot of it is just wrapping your mind around what this way of eating really means, at least that's what it was for me. I had to get over the negativity (and extreme jealousy of the people around me eating things I no longer could) and start re-framing things more positively. In the end, we CAN eat so many things, that if you focus on those, the world becomes a happier place. Also, having those things around you will help, because that will be what you see, not the other stuff. You'll get there, even if you have to do some reorganization. Good luck! I am rooting for you
                    "The only person you are destined to become is the person you decide to be."- Ralph Waldo Emerson


                    • #11
                      Again thanks so much for the kindness and the helpful responses.

                      TQD-- thank you for directing me to the resources on the main page. I've just been checking out the many, many pages on the recipe forum. It will help me to be able to find specific recipes that I am interested in the resource section. I never thought to check there for recipes.

                      Quirkydreamweaver- It's nice that you mentioned Melissa Joulwan. I just ordered her book last night. I'm excited to see what recipes she has in there! Thank you for the encouraging words. It helps to know that there are other families out there like me, with one person in the household ONLY eating primal. I will try to think about that when I am at home eating with my family from now on.

                      Sra1984- I appreciate the tips you've shared. I will try to incorporate those. I can see where substitutions for your favorite foods would be helpful. I need to find a primal pizza dough recipe and a whey protein drink that is primal too! Pizza and desserts are my favorite, especially when my family orders pizza. I want to be able to eat with them. I spoke with my husband about what he can do to help me while eating primal. Like your husband, he has agreed to cook the stuff that I am no longer eating. I'm happy about that. I don't want to deal with it or see it for a few weeks. Once I'm stronger and feeling better, I think my iron clad will power will return. LOL When we met we went to a Mexican restaurant. I told him I didn't eat taco shells, or corn chips. I was fine back then, and I think I will be again with help, new recipes, and a new mindset. Thank you for letting me know that my family isn't the only one with one person eating primal.
                      I hope yall have a pleasant weekend.


                      • #12
                        Lemon - I too have this problem, and am now after over a year, starting to feel comfortable with the situation.
                        I agree with Annie, make a huge leftover for the next day. Another thing that I do.........actually here's a wee list
                        . Boil eggs first thing in the morning, as a go to snack through the day
                        . Get a mixture of raw nuts and bake for an hour at about 120C, cashews, pistachio, almonds, walnuts etc.....(only a small handful per day thou!)
                        . Bake or grill some chicken, chops, steak, once cool slice thinly and once again, a go to snack.
                        . If you eat cheese, fill up celery sticks with cheese of your choice, cut into snack able lengths,
                        . Always have fruit, carrots, avocados on hand
                        . My own meals often involve salad/coleslaw, kumara and meat.........easy
                        Good luck, and google some recipes
                        G x
                        "never let the truth get in the way of a good story "

                        ...small steps....


                        • #13
                          So glad to help! 😃


                          • #14
                            Thank you NZ Primal Gwamma I'm trying to soak up all the recipes and suggestions I can get! I like the baked nut idea! I plan to do that soon. I will be making extra chicken and roasts and stuff too. I'll have to look out however. My husband is not primal, but he is a big meat and potato eater! I plan to make enough for both of us though. Thank you for the encouragement. I never get tired of finding out that there are people like me (the only primal eater in a house full of others)! Small steps!


                            • #15
                              If he eats enough meat and potatoes then he will be almost primal without even trying. That will be a good thing for him, but I hope he doesn't take your share
                              Annie Ups the Ante