A few months ago, I attempted to go on the very trendy paleo diet, which meant that I was supposed to avoid eating carbs and any food not in it’s natural state – the caveman diet, it’s called. Shocking to no one, it sucks.
My decision to embark on this Spartan journey was fairly impulsive:
Friend: “Hey Gen. Do you want to go on the paleo diet for Lent? Maybe after 40 days we’ll be so skinny that we can stop selling ads and become supermodels.”
It went something like that. Two of my friends from work and I embarked on a 40 day diet of deprivation, misery, and the hope of looking like we perpetually had food poisoning. #Protip: you should always go on a beach vacation after you have food poisoning because there is really no other time you will ever look that jacked. When life makes you poop incessantly, you should immediately put on a bikini.
Without carbs, time moved slowly. You will come to realize just how slowly as I recount every single interaction I had with food over my brief 1 day period of paleo hell.
Lunch, Day 1. Me: extremely overzealous, excited at the prospect of being a supermodel, talking to our chef at work: “Hi Lance, can I eat kale chips? Are kale chips paleo? For the love of God, give me some kale chips! Hmm, this seaweed salad looks fantastic. I guess I’ll just have this and some grilled chicken.” My famous last words: “This isn’t so bad.”
Snack, Day 1. 3 o’clock rolled around. Me: “Snacktime! Shit. shit. shit. I can’t eat CHEESE?!!!” A panic attack quickly set in, and I considered putting my head between my knees and then maybe hyperventilating into a small paper bag.
Dinner, Day 1. I slammed my glass of water onto the kitchen table, spilling it everywhere. “Oh hell no. No. NO. I can’t have dumplings? WTF.” Those cavemen must have been depressed, and were surely not Asian. My conclusion: “The paleo diet was created by racists.” It was a low point for me.
Night time, Day 1. That night, I guest starred in my own dream. The dream version of me jumped into a large bathtub filled with pasta from Flour and Water, and then ate her way through a door shaped pizza to a room filled with MORE PASTA. It was majestic, and I was thrilled about it.
The next morning, I woke up and I swear to God my jaw was sore (you sickos, I know what you’re thinking) from all of the fake chewing I had been doing that night.
Breakfast, Day 2. Determined to not completely suck at life, I pounded a very paleo breakfast of hard-boiled eggs and fruit, and then proceeded to whimper quietly at my desk.
Lunch, Day 2. Was paleo and therefore sad and unmemorable.
Snack, Day 2. By 2:45pm, I couldn’t handle it. I sneakily escaped to the 8th floor refrigerator and grabbed two (yes, two) string cheeses. I took massive bites out of both – there was nothing stringy about the way I ate it – I just chomped on that cheese like I was a coyote and the cheese was a poor little bunny rabbit in the woods. I. destroyed. the. cheese.
Epilogue. In the end, I’ve decided to forgo the idea of giving up entire food groups. It’s great for some, but my extreme FOMO tendencies leave me powerless to cheese, chocolate, and anything with a high percentage of carbohydrates. I also learned that I don’t really care if I ever achieve a 6 pack. I’m fine just the way I am, and there’s a reason Spanx and sweatpants were created. #SpanxAndFoodPoisoningFTW