Editor’s Comment: The following post is a guest post from Dre Brown (firstname.lastname@example.org;@Dre_Cooks). Its contents have only been edited for syntax and flow. As with all guest posts, the views reflected herein do not necessarily reflect the views of editors or the owner of NotCinderella.com.
Remember The Flinstones? That show was pretty dope, right? I mean, it was kind of my favorite show as a child; and I never really understood why. Wilma’s hair was kinda cute — but nope, that wasn’t it. And, though the fact that they never changed clothes mildly intrigued me, I can’t say that was what magnetically drew me to sit dangerously close to my family’s floor model television on Saturday mornings and pretend I was a member of this “modern Stone Age family”.
I knew that something in this animated series spoke to me; and now nearly 30 years later, I finally get it … I’m totally a cavewoman!
Ok, so I’m sure you’re confused. No, I’m not saying I’m a 2016 Betty Rubble. But, I AM a cavewoman. I have made a conscious choice to eat as my Stone Age sistren did, falling in absolute lust with the Paleo Diet. Yep, that diet designed based on the eating habits of paleolithic era humans (aka, cave people!).
2 years ago, upon discovering I have a severe aversion to wheat, my doctor advised that the key to ending years of chronic illness and inflammation was literally on the tip of my tongue. I was skeptical to say the least, but was tired of feeling like my body was attacking me, so I figured “what’s the worst that could happen?”
I’d heard a little bit about this “Paleo” thing from friends previously, and ruled it out immediately because my former self (southern-raised on “smothered” everything, homemade rolls, and peach cobbler) couldn’t conceive of a grain-free existence. The promises many Paleo authorities claimed about reducing inflammation, lowering disease risk, and increasing overall vitality sounded sexy, but I just wasn’t ready to say bye-bye to my beloved bread. But, at this turning point, with a couple emergency room visits under my belt, major weight challenges, hairloss, and what felt like a cold that never went away, I was open to anything.
30 days after eliminating wheat and grains from my diet, I couldn’t deny it! I could have “yabba dabba doo”-d like my homie Fred. I felt great. And, the journey that followed would show me just how much better I could feel, look, and live by choosing to eat foods that support my body’s primal design.
So, I went hard! Read many a book, recipe searched like a mad woman, and stalked every Paleo blogger on the web. And, as I discovered cool tips like making pizza dough out of yucca root and rice out of cauliflower, I also noticed not many of my fellow online cave people looked like me. Sure, they were pumping out motivating nuggets and YouTube tutorials for every craving threatening a non-paleo relapse. But, hey?! Where were the brown folks?
“If you build it, they will come,” says some old adage. And, so I did. I decided to chronicle my paleo journey via pictures of plates made with a little cave-girl soul on Instagram (@Dre_Cooks). Aside from paleo-fying some of my soul food favorites, I also wanted to challenge my sisters and brothers to tap into their own paleo possibilities by seeing how it’s working for me. With studies showing how paleo eating can help ease symptoms of autoimmune diseases and chronic conditions popular amongst people of color (i.e. thyroid disease, lupus, etc.), I see my social voice as a means of helping to liberate my people from cycles of pharmaceutical dependency and diet-related disease.
Photos from @Dre_Cooks of my paleo creations. Follow me for ideas and recipes!
Sure, nothing in the world is sure to work for everyone, but Fred and Wilma may have been on to something. With over 60 pounds lost, and a significant reduction in my personal autoimmune symptoms caused by Hashimoto’s disease, I must say cutting the grains, dairy, and processed junk, while embracing healthy fats, clean proteins, and vegetables is definitely one of the best decisions I ever made.