Thinking about going Paleo in the new year, but don’t know where to start? Well, Mark Sisson, the expert on living primal, has all the pro tips. Spoiler alert: He says you’ve gotta play more.
In this video, Sisson shares the keys to living that Paleo life. And at least two out of three of his tips involve activities you won’t have to twist our arms to start doing. Press play to learn about three Paleo habits that will promote a healthier, happier life in 2016.
1. Cut sugars, industrial oils, and processed grains
Time to kick that sugar habit. Whether it’s high-fructose corn syrup or just plain table sugar, too much sweet stuff can hamper the immune system and disrupt hormonal balance, as well as accelerate aging and trigger fat storage and weight gain.
But sugars aren’t the only bad guy in the standard American diet—vegetable oils like canola, soybean, and corn contain hydrogenated and trans fats that can be inflammatory and also cause oxidative damage that leads to premature aging. Instead, choose fats wisely by opting for healthy choices like coconut, avocado, or olive oil.
Grains, whether processed or whole, can convert to sugars rapidly, spiking insulin and blood sugar levels and leading to excess body fat. Some grains also contain antinutrients that have been linked to digestive autoimmune diseases. If your digestion doesn’t feel optimal when eating grains, it’s worth eliminating them from your diet for a while to see if positive effects occur.
2. Sleep more
In Paleolithic times, there was no such thing as a cell phone nightlight. Nope—when the sun went down, it was bed time shortly thereafter. Sisson says we should all get to bed on time, and cut screen time way before our heads hit the pillow to ensure the best sleep ever. Relax with a book—a real one with pages and everything—before bed to help promote melatonin production and keep circadian rhythm in check.
Last but not least, here’s your excuse to be a kid again. Being active in a Paleo lifestyle doesn’t necessarily mean you need to become a regular at the local CrossFit box. All it takes is to do what’s naturally fun—play some pick-up basketball, go kayaking, or just hit the hiking trail. What matters most is that you move more and play hard.
Like our hero Mark Sisson always says, “Stay Primal!”
Produced and Directed by: Liza Glucoft
Director of Photography: Naeem Munaf
Editor: Stephanie Provence