A Beginner Guide to the Paleo Diet

If you’re looking for a beginner’s paleo diet guide, look no further. Below you’ll find the basics: what to eat, what not to eat and even a weekly paleo menu plan.

What is the Paleo Diet?

This popular diet was created to emulate what our hunter-gatherer ancestors would have eaten. Why? They were practically the same as us in terms of genetics, yet they rarely ever suffered from health problems that are unfortunately way too common today: diabetes, obesity, heart disease and more. When you combine the paleo diet with garcinia, you can quickly see some pretty amazing results.

They didn’t dine on processed foods that are so abundantly available today. Instead, they ate whole foods almost directly from nature. Studies have shown that eating a diet like this can help you lose a substantial amount of weight with no need for calorie counting. Overall health seems to improve, too.

What Does a Paleo Meal Plan Look Like?

There’s no single perfect answer here that will be best-suited for everyone. Our ancestors didn’t attempt to eat certain things. Their diet varied, according to what was available at any given time in their area.

In one area, they may have ate a diet high in protein and animal foods, which of course would be low-carb. But in another area, they may have eaten a higher-carb diet consisting of mostly plants. So keeping that in mind, you can adapt your diet in a number of ways depending on your preferences or specific dietary needs.

Some Basics to Remember

Here are some things that you should definitely include, unless you have health reasons not to:

  • Fish & Seafood – Shrimp, salmon, trout, shellfish, etc… Wild-caught is the best
  • Meat – Beef, turkey, chicken, etc…
  • Eggs – Free-range is best, pastured or those enriched with Omega-3 are next best
  • Seeds & Nuts – Walnuts, almonds, sunflower seeds, etc…
  • Fruits – Apples, blueberries, strawberries, oranges, avocado, etc…
  • Vegetables – Kale, watercress, broccoli, asparagus, carrots, onions, etc…
  • Herbs – Garlic, rosemary, etc…
  • Healthy Fats & Oils – Olive oil, avocado oil, coconut oil, etc…

no-sugar-paleoAnd here are some things you need to try to avoid:

  • Sugar & artificial sweeteners – This includes sugary drinks like fruit juices and soft drinks. Of course, it obviously includes pastries, candy, ice cream, etc… Even diet or low fat ones. Find naturally sweetened versions instead
  • Grains – This includes bread, pasta, wheat, barley, etc…
  • Dairy – Avoid most dairy, including the low-fat versions
  • Legumes – This includes beans and lentils, etc…
  • Processed foods – You can almost bet that anything “lowfat” or “diet” are highly processed
  • Margarine and vegetable oil – Includes those labeled hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated
  • Trans-fats

Always read the label on anything that you buy and if it looks or sounds like it came from a factory, avoid it.

Above are most of the general guidelines of the traditional paleo diet. However, it has transformed into different variations over recent years. Some versions of the diet allow foods that have been shown to be healthy, but weren’t allowed before. Examples would be gluten-free grains and bacon that comes strictly from pasture raised pigs.

Lots of people consider the paleo diet a starting point and a general outline of what to start with vs. set in stone rules as to what they can and cannot eat.

Treat Yourself Sensibly

Everyone deserves a treat from time to time. The following a few indulgences, that when consumed sparingly, are perfectly fine…

  • Wine – Go ahead and enjoy a glass of high quality red wine. It will provide a nice amount of antioxidants and other nutrients that can contribute to your health.
  • Dark Chocolate – Ah, chocolate. Yep, that’s right. Dark chocolate with 70 percent or more cocoa can actually be very healthy as long as you don’t overdo it.

As for Drinks…

Not surprisingly, water should be your go-to source for hydration. While not particularly paleo diet, many people following the diet also include these other drinks:

  • Coffee – There are many benefits that coffee provide, as long as it isn’t drowned in creamer and other additions. It provides a nice amount antioxidants.
  • Tea – Green tea is considered the best, but most teas also provide antioxidants and provide health benefits.

Your One-Week Paleo Menu Example

Remember that this is just an example that includes a nice balance of paleo-approved foods. Don’t be afraid to adjust it to your own needs and preferences. Please read it in its entirety, as you’ll notice we’re often saving money by making a little extra to have for leftovers.


Breakfast: A combination of veggies and eggs that you fry in coconut oil, along with your choice of one piece of fruit
Lunch: A chicken salad topped with some nuts and olive oil
Dinner: Burger with a side of veggies and salsa. Remember we’re staying away from bread here, so no bun. Add some salsa to give it a little kick.


Breakfast: Your choice of fruit with eggs and bacon
Lunch: Enjoy the leftovers of the burger meal you had last night
Dinner: Salmon and a side of your choice of veggies


Breakfast: Salmon and veggies from last night
Lunch: Your choice of meat and veggies wrapped up as sandwich in lettuce leaves
Dinner: A stir-fry with ground beef and veggies and a side of berries


Breakfast: Your choice of fruit and some eggs
Lunch: Some stir-fry from last night, with your choice of nuts (about a handful)
Dinner: Your choice of veggies and fried pork


Breakfast: Your choice of veggies fried up with some eggs in coconut oil
Lunch: A chicken salad topped with olive oil and nuts
Dinner: Steak with a side of your choice of veggies and sweet potatoes


Breakfast: Your choice of fruit with eggs and bacon
Lunch: Steak and veggies from last night
Dinner: Your choice of veggies with baked salmon and avocado


Breakfast: Baked salmon and veggies from last night
Lunch: Your choice of meat and veggies wrapped up as sandwich in lettuce leaves
Dinner: Your choice of veggies with some salsa and grilled chicken wings

You rarely need to worry about counting calories on the paleo diet. If you’re trying to jumpstart weight loss though, then you might want to track the amounts carbs you eat. You’ll want to reduce and restrict how many carbs, potatoes and nuts that you eat.

Sticking to a Paleo While Diet Dining Out

Unlike many other diets, sticking to a paleo diet at a restaurant isn’t difficult. Here are some guidelines and examples of just how easy it is…

  • Make sure your meal’s main focus is meat or fish
  • Skip the rice or bread and opt for an extra serving of veggies instead
  • Ask if it’s possible to have your food cooked in coconut oil or olive oil

Easy Paleo Friendly Snacks

Some diets require that you eat every couple hours. The paleo diet isn’t like that. But if you do find that you’re getting hungry between meals, here are some easy snacks that are perfectly fine…

  • Boiled eggs
  • Nuts (don’t go crazy, a handful is plenty)
  • Small cup of baby carrots
  • Any leftovers from your paleo-friendly meals
  • Berries and coconut cream

An Example Shopping List for the Paleo Diet

As mentioned before, the paleo diet has a large variety of foods to choose from. So don’t take this as a list written in stone, but a general guideline to start with…

  • Meats and Poultry: Beef, pork, lamb, salmon, shrimp, trout, etc…
  • Fish: Mackerel, salmon, trout, shrimp, etc…
  • Eggs
  • Fresh Veggies: Lettuce, carrots, peppers, greens, etc…
  • Fresh Fruits: Avocado, apples, pears, etc…
  • Fresh Berries: Blueberries, strawberries, etc…
  • Nuts: Macadamia nuts, almonds, walnuts, etc…
  • Extras to include: Almond butter, olive oil, coconut oil
  • Condiments: Garlic, parsley, tumeric, sea salt, pepper, etc…

Before you even head to the grocery store though, it’s a good idea to do a kitchen cupboard makeover. Get rid of cookies, bread, crackers, soda, etc… That way you have more room for the good stuff and you won’t be tempted when you start looking for a snack.

There are tons of sites that offer paleo recipes, guides and information. Just search online and you’ll find everything you need. But to get you started here are a few of my favorite ones:

Primal Palate
Amazing Paleo