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Thread: What is the 20% page

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    MarCar's Avatar
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    What is the 20%

    Primal Fuel
    I have read before on previous posts (and I think it was in the book too) about eating 80/20. Eating primal 80% of the time. What does that mean really?

    Does it mean 20% of the time we can have the sweat potato's, brown/wild rice, fruit (which I am really missing a lot...I want to eat everyday), Cheese, Yogurt, or Cream?

    Or does it mean that 20% of the time you do not eat primal and you can have grain or beans?

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    There is absolutely nothing wrong with eating sweet potatoes and fruit, they are not part of the "20%"

    The 20 % is non primal junk that you can eat if you cant carry out a full primal diet, mind you, ice-cream and doughnuts would not be something good to put in the 20%

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    MarCar's Avatar
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    Wait...I thought I could only have fruit sparingly other than berries. So I can have a fruit every day that is not a berry i.e.an apple, pear, banana, pineapple...? Would I be allowed to have a banana for a snack and sweet potato (or rice) for dinner every day?

    Not missing the ice-cream and doughnuts all that much. Never had much of a sweet tooth, but I am missing a nice whole grain turkey sandwich once in a while.

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    Mark's 80/20 rule is meant to accommodate primal living in a modern world. We have lots of temptations and etiquette-induced things that Grok certainly did not have.

    I'm 95-100% primal most of the time... the non-primal things I'll eat are: alcohol (red wine & whiskey, mostly), dark chocolate, restaurants (I live in NYC, it's kind of a way of life here) - sometimes not-good oils or added sugars, or ??? are in the food, friends' homemade food (1 bite if it's not something I LOVE), something I'm craving, food specialties of a locale I'm visiting (when in Rome...), etc.
    I'm definitely not going out of my way to get my 20% in...

    for me, part of primal is not feeling GUILT if I want to eat out, or take a bite of SO's homemade liverwurst sandwich or dessert on my birthday, or... whatever - I just know these things should be moderated, and never be more than 20% of my diet.

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    it means booze! eat your damn fruit and sweet potatoes ferchrissakes.

  6. #6
    samiamm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MarCar View Post
    Wait...I thought I could only have fruit sparingly other than berries. So I can have a fruit every day that is not a berry i.e.an apple, pear, banana, pineapple...? Would I be allowed to have a banana for a snack and sweet potato (or rice) for dinner every day?

    Not missing the ice-cream and doughnuts all that much. Never had much of a sweet tooth, but I am missing a nice whole grain turkey sandwich once in a while.
    Yes, fruits are perfectly fine, so are sweet potatoes


    In my opinion rice would be in the 20 %
    and of course, any bread would be in the 20%

    Fruits and Sweet potatoes are safe though, as long as you exercise

  7. #7
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    Mark states in the book, that the 20% rule is to "Strive for perfection," but realize that perfection is impossible. If you are in a situation where being Primal isn't allowable always easy to pull off, don't beat yourself up over it.

    I believe he stated there was a problem once you fall below 80%, unless situations are happening that kinda necessitate it.

  8. #8
    MarCar's Avatar
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    Thank you so much for this clarification. This is very helpful. And for weight loss by eating the 80/20...without measuring...it is still successful?

  9. #9
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    I fell off the primal wagon since going primal back in early August. I had a cup of peanut butter chocolate ice cream (OMFG) last night with the family. I'm not beating myself up since this is the first time I've eaten non-primal in almost 3 months (intentionally). Back in my SAD day I would've had 3 to 5 times that amount.

    I'm down to 191 from 208 and following Mark's PBF 2x a week. I guess this is my reward for dropping 17 pounds in less than 3 months.
    Last edited by amerikian; 10-19-2012 at 12:47 PM. Reason: editing
    SW (207lbs) 8/1/2012
    CW (188lbs)
    Primal Since 8/1/2102

    Bike commute to work 20 miles/day ~ rain, shine, or snow.

  10. #10
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    Definitely eat the fruit. I eat a lot of fruit. Yesterday for example I had two bananas and five pomegranates. Oh and also a glass of blackberry smoothie.

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