I returned from Europe about a week ago, and I had an amazing time! Here are my top 10 takeaways from the trip:
1. Restaurant service in America is incredible (as compared to London/Paris).
2. Dairy and meat quality in Europe (at least London and Paris) is phenomenal, and most food was very fresh.
3. London is expensive!
4. But visit the Borough Market in London anyways 🙂
5. Paris is beautiful!
6. French food is rich, simple, and delicious.
7. Don’t eat French food if you need to compulsively use Sriracha (or insert other hot sauce) on everything.
8. While, the service in Paris is mostly crappy (compared to the states), most Parisians seem to be ok with it. Maybe it’s because they aren’t always in such a hurry like Americans. 🙂
9. It’s hard to stay Paleo in Paris and avoid baguettes, croissants, macaroons, and crepes 🙂
10. Biking around in Paris was one of the most adventurous things I have ever done in my life!
Overall, it was very, very difficult to stay Paleo, especially because of #9. All the gluten, grains, and alcohol I drank definitely had a negative impact on how I felt physically and mentally. I also did not have the best quality of sleep because of it. However, since I have returned, I have a renewed passion for the Paleo lifestyle. And I feel great!
On to some changes! As I mentioned in my last post, I am excited to start sharing different material on the blog and just expanding in general. One change is that I have a Facebook account exclusively for this blog, yay! So please like Cutting the Cheese on Facebook! I also made a new twitter account to really focus on primal/paleo/real food nutrition and lifestyle. My new handle is @cuttingthecheez, so please follow me there 🙂
That is all…for now!
Well I did my abbreviated version of a Whole30 with success. It’s been almost a year since I did my first (and only) Whole30, and I forgot (and was reminded) of some things.
1. Eating out. One lesson I was reminded of was how hard it is to eat out! Regardless of the quality of meat restaurants use, one thing that really gets me is the oils they are probably using. I’m usually too skittish to ask, but I’m guessing most restaurants don’t use Organic Extra Virgin Cold-Pressed Coconut Oil. I guess that might seem like I am really snobby, however, I feel that I have good reason to be picky about this. Also, it is very likely that there might be hidden sugars in food. The best bet is to order a salad, dressing on the side (or request olive oil and balsamic). On many instances, I did eat prior to eating out since I knew I might be limited. I learned that even though I’m afraid, I do need to ask questions when eating out.
2. I love sugar! I really do, well maybe just my brain does (same thing?). The first couple days were pretty challenging in this regard, however, after that it wasn’t too difficult. Fruit provided a perfect sugar fix that didn’t make me feel like total crap afterwards.
3. Variety exists! When I started this journey last year, it was difficult for me to think about variety. In the past year, I have experimented with different types of meat and seasonings, and variety is much more common for me. I have experimented with vegetables like chard, bok choy, kale, etc instead of sticking to lettuce and spinach. I experimented with lamb and pork, which I was very frightened of last year.
4. I feel great. That is a given. I knew I’d feel fabulous when I did this, even though it was only 7 days. My stomach felt at ease, I slept well, my sinus problems reduced, and I didn’t wake up feeling fat 🙂 The funny thing is that even though I can afford to lose a few more pounds, it wasn’t my main goal. It was an added benefit, but I’m so glad I am less focused on this aspect. As one of my favorite podcasters Jason Seib from the Everyday Paleo Lifestyle & Fitness podcast says “Healthy by choice, hot by accident” 🙂
This goes to show that doing something like this, even for a short time, really proves that changes in diet can impact health and happiness. If I did this longer, it would have made even more of a difference!
I do want to do a Whole30 again before the end of the year. I’m thinking I will do it the month of my birthday (September), so stay tuned 🙂
As I mentioned in my previous post, the husband and I went to a delicious deli while we were in Wisconsin called Brick Street Market. We were looking for a good lunch spot that was somewhat healthy and original. I found Brick Street Market on Yelp, and I was instantly sold. It boasted about their artisan cheese (clearly I wasn’t cutting the cheese this weekend, hehe), delicious sandwiches and salads, friendly service, and wonderful environment. Plus, it’s family owned and seemed to be quite a local gem. Off we went!
The second we walked in, we were enamored with the ambience. Everything from the setup of the tables, the delicious looking cheese in the window, the decor, and the warm smile behind the counter made us feel at home. Immediately, we were introduced to Laura who heads up the shop. She had the sweetest demeanor and showed us a menu. They also had some specials for salad, soup, and sandwich. Additionally, they had cheese flights (so evil, yet wonderful). Seeing as we were there for lunch, and it was only the two of us, we sadly declined.
We got their pita chips and melted cheese to start and a Greek salad which was on special to share. While the ingredients in the salad were pretty standard for a Greek salad, there was something special about this particular one. I think the dressing had the perfect zing to differentiate it from others. My husband got The Dane sandwich which was served on rye slices with WI Havarti with dill cheese, fresh sliced tomatoes, and red leaf lettuce. I got their chicken salad sandwich which was on special which came on ciabatta (one of my faves!). Both sandwiches came with pita chips and the cutest, most perfectly cut cubes of watermelon! Needless to say, the sandwiches were amazing. It was clear that everything was made patiently, carefully, and with love.
They also sold some other delicious local goodies which included unique salsas, various sauces, jams, crackers, wines, salad dressing, and books. We actually bought gifts from here for all our family! I loved the setup, and they had a really cool bank vault which housed some of their wines and other gifts!
Overall it was a great experience, and we ended up returning the next day! We brought some friends and got their cheese flight. Of course, we were all so eager to eat it that I didn’t get any pictures, but I assure you that it was divine 🙂
Overall, we had an amazing experience here, and I can’t wait to see another concert at Alpine Valley just so we can come again! While this was a transgression from Whole30, it was completely worth it.
What types of restaurants/foods/events make it worth it for your to veer off from your diets?