Ok, so I’m checking out Pinterest. The verdict is still out. I’m not sure how I feel about it yet. I’m going to give it a few more tries. I pretty much ignored it until today because most of the people I saw using it were organizing things like crafts, decorating ideas, and fashion/beauty products. These are things I spend little time looking at, so I figured Pinterest wasn’t for me. Then a friend of mine told me that she used it to organize paleo recipes, so I’m investigating.
Upon first perusal, I found something interesting/bothersome/annoying. In 15 minutes of looking at paleo “pins” on Pinterest, the VAST majority of the pins I saw were for recipes such as “paleo” brownies, waffles, cakes, pancakes, bread, muffins, pies, and cookies. These things are not paleo. People who follow a paleo/cave man/ hunter-gatherer lifestyle eat REAL FOOD. Real food consists primarily of meat and vegetables accompanied by good fat.
Am I completely against these alternate recipes for brownies, waffles, cakes, pancakes, bread, muffins, pie, and cookies? No. Of course not. I have made my share of all of these. However, they are not what I consider “paleo foods.” These are special treats that we eat for special occasions. I made some muffins to take as a classroom snack just a few weeks ago. Sometimes we make “pancakes” as a special treat for Saturday morning. It was husband’s birthday on Sunday, so I made a gluten-free cake with about 1/2″ of dark chocolate frosting on it. Here’s the thing though, I call none of these things paleo. These are “tasty treats” or cheats. They are not real food. They are not a part of our regular lifestyle. They do not nourish or feed our bodies.
I’ve previously referred to these things as “paleo”, but I’m dropping it. I think it’s misleading. These things are not paleo. They are not real, nourishing foods. They are foods we choose to eat when we intentionally go off of our typical lifestyle choices to celebrate. That’s ok, but I’m calling it what it is. It’s eating sub par and less healthy food because there is a societal standard of fun food being associated with celebrations. Do we eat them, yes? Do we eat them regularly, no. People truly wanting to make a lifestyle change toward paleo/primal/hunter-gatherer way of life do not need to reinvent these foods and slap a paleo label on them. Putting shiny new packages on these old foods does not help with the lifestyle change to make nutrient-dense food choices. People who “convert” or “diet” on paleo and fill their meals with these sorts of foods will not be successful. Eating these foods regularly will never lead to an optimal eating lifestyle. Sugar addictions will never be broken eating these foods. You’ve simply put a new wrapper on slightly healthier foods. Replace those with real, nutrient-dense foods instead and save these things for special events and occasions AFTER you’ve broken your addictions to sugar.
Even if I don’t find myself super crazy about Pinterest, perhaps I’ll stick around to balance out the pictures that come up under the “paleo” search.