Here we go again re paleo and cheating, this time over at Paleoista:
[W]hat on earth are people eating on their ‘diets’ that makes them need to even conceive of the idea of ‘cheating’? Who are they cheating? No one other than themselves.
One of the virtues of Paleo, when done properly, in its inherent, balanced fashion, is that the meals are so deletable [sic] and all made with things we are truly meant to be eating, that one wouldn’t want to cheat.
I don’t personally agree with the idea of ‘having one cheat meal each week’; doing so implies that there’s something to be missed if one adheres to Paleo, and that’s simply not the case. Plus, if we recognize how detrimental dairy, grains and legumes are, why would we want to eat them at all?
Why do people smoke? Cigarettes will kill them eventually. Why do people text when they drive? ‘Cause they think they can. Why do people drink too much? Maybe because one drink messes up their ability to stop at one.
The simple answer is that some of us (not apparently Paleoista) find these non-paleo foods appealing or desireable, at least in the moment we consume them.
Coping mechanism. I had a great conversation at AHS12 with Lynda Frassetto on the link between diet compliance and stress response (turns out she was co-author on a paper about rewiring the stress response a while back).
I wrote a post over a year ago about emotional eating, and I think much of that holds true. I think emotional eating is largely physiological. And like I said recently in paleo not a panacea 2, I agree with Chris Kresser that you’ve got to do the work to get to a good place re eating. And I definitely agree that an ancestral approach to diet is a good one.
But sometimes knowing it’s the right approach and doing it 24×7 is a challenge. I wish folks like Paleoista really understood the struggle more. Really, if it was just that easy, why wouldn’t we all be doing it?