...and did you feel any different than when you were less strict? These are the three horses of the SAD apocolypse, hence singling them out.
I haven't gone more than a week or so uber-strict, because of the odd dark chocolate, Chipotle oiled-up-meat, conventional salad dressing, or all out "cheat". Might be time to go for the gold. There's something to be said for discipline. I don't know what it is exactly, but there's something.
I had to laugh at this post. Chocolate, Chipotle, and all out cheats = my triangle of doom as well.
I can probably go two weeks. The house is clean and tight except for a box of flaked quinoa (which I have no problem with but I know the thought of ingesting such a poison makes some paleos stroke out.) I happen to live in a land of foodies and am one and when I go out to a fabulous restaurant I eat what I like whether gluten, sugar and anything else the chef wants to throw into my pot of death. Food equals happiness to me and I fought that long enough to now know it's not a fight worth fighting to me. I don't aspire to 100% compliance. I wouldn't be happy and I really doubt I'd be that much healthier. I'm 90/10 and that suits me just fine. Good enough is good enough for me.
I very much admire people who are 100% compliant and live this like religion. I agree that there is something to be said for discipline...just as there is something to be said for mastering the art of compromise.
If I do Kamal's cheats first:
dark chocolate - Never was much of a chocolate lover. I don't think I ate a pound (454 grams) in my whole life.
Chipotle oiled-up-meat - ? and then Wiki saved. Never had that.
Conventional salad dressing - Salad is fo' suckerz :D I avoid pretty much all "pre-packed"/unknown ingredients foods so...
all out "cheat" - I actually can't remember a single thing that I like better than a sip of cold heavy cream so I "cheat" with that ;)
As for riders of the storm
Vegetable oil - In the last year I ate about two spoons of steak tartare (I do some tasting/testing for a family member who makes them) which was left in vegetable oil for a few days. If a stake is soaked in vegetable oil, it's a no go for me.
Gluten - February 2009- Donuts self-filled with Nuttella (chocolate cream). I though I was going to die. Literally. 6 months without beer.
Added sugar - When I got sick last month I "cheated" with honey so I would say 6 months or so. Again honey is also one of the foods I never loved so no sweet tooth here.
That being said, I don't eat out so if I'm joining my friends, I fast.
I presume all comes down to "Why do you "cheat" (potential question if we hadn't had it before ?) and how do you reach health wise to the horsemen. Other factors also might be social/peer pressure, general availability of "cheats" and emotional attachment to them.
No grains or veg oils for three years, and comfortable saying I'll never knowingly eat them again. Plant-free for one of those years, aside from a little garlic and onion with liver a couple times a month. Since then I gradually reintroduced some fruit and non-starchy veg, with random occasional paleo starches mostly timed around workouts. Things like low-sugar homemade cheesecake (1 tablespoon of honey in the whole thing, plus berries) I save for special events once or twice a year.
Dairy consumption fluctuated quite a bit throughout all this, but now I mostly stick to lots of pastured butter and a little raw goat milk. I don't totally avoid pasteurized things like plain unadulterated full-fat yogurt or sour cream, but they're infrequent and in much smaller amounts than before.
I bet I have only gone 24+ hours when I've fasted. ;)
I am not a super strict Paleo. I would guess though, that it's not even 2% of what I eat every day that's affected. I may lick the spoon when I'm cooking or take a sip of my daughter's chocolate milk. I have 90% dark chocolate most nights.
I have seen major improvements with the changes that I have made in my diet. I am very happy where I'm at and don't want to get TOO obsessive. Some would say I'm already there, but I know in comparison to many in the Paleosphere I am not.
My husband an I did 30 days. We cooked all our own meals that month so we knew exactly what was going into our bodies. I HIGHLY recommend it. It takes planning, packing your lunch, and turning down SOME social events (I knew happy hour with friends would leave me helpless). We felt amazing and looked good too. :) my husband actually prefers eating that way but I'm more of a social butterfly, but as you know when going out food is always questionable...
I did the Whole30 successfully last year. That's 30 days of "no cheating".
I don't use veg oils except olive oil which is ok.
No Grains, legumes during the last 2 years. Don't miss them.
Sometimes I take a tiny amount (a quarter of a teaspoon) of white sugar (sucrose) in my espresso. My "cheat stuff" is espresso, alcohol and dark chocolate (actually drugs, not food).
It is not discipline but simple knowledge about food quality and agriculture practices. Why should I stuff myself with nutrition poor low quality junk? If I have cravings (cortisol, lack of sleep etc) and tend to overeat at least I should treat myself respectful and do it with high quality real food.
For me it's about self respect and respect for nature. It's about supporting good farming practices instead of Food Inc. It's not about asceticism or health fanatism. I am too hedonistic for this.
The longer you go, the easier it is. I would say the tipping point for me is about 2 months. After that, the only cheats are convenience based. I broke a 6 month no cheat run when home at my inlaws for christmas. I seriously considered fasting for 2 weeks, but I got hungry... kind of hard in a house where "veggies" are corn, lima beans, and black eyed peas...
What is the least harmful way to cheat? 17 Answers
Why inflammation in chest/back area? 2 Answers