Meet Our Resident Food Nerd (Ryan)

As hard as it is for me to believe at 37, I’m the strongest I’ve ever been in my lifetime. It wasn’t that long ago I was watching my body slowly disintegrate. Years of stressful work, poor food choices, and (perhaps more than) a little overindulgence in alcohol was taking its toll. At 5’6, I was well over 200lbs and gaining, had severe bouts of acid reflux, increasingly worsening seasonal colds and allergies, and an ever sensing feeling of hopelessness that I couldn’t do anything about it.

In late 2011 I stumbled upon Mark Sisson’s Primal Blueprint. I was taken aback by his approach of low carbohydrate, high fat, natural foods approach, and decided to give it a try. Slowly but surely I consistently lost about a pound per week. A little over a year later I found myself 60lbs lighter, 8 inches off my waistline, and my shirt size dropped from XL to M. What was astonishing to me was that I did it without starving myself, or counting a single calorie. I did it by eating delicious food until I was full.

For those not in the know, The Primal Blueprint is part of the larger Paleo Diet/Movement which eschews certain types of foods such as grains, legumes, and processed foods to emulate as much as possible how earlier humans ate. I found this approach and concept incredibly fascinating and I absorbed as much information as I could about how and why it works.

To make a long story short, over the last couple of years, I’ve learned a lot from many different dietary approaches, and while I think all of them have some elements that are unappealing and worth rejecting, most have something positive to contribute to the overall picture of what is required to eat healthy.  The ones that appear to be the most successful have a common thread: Eating food as close to nature as possible. No artificial additives/preservatives, low in heavily industrialized, refined sugars and fats.

To me the answer is as simple and yet hard as it sounds. Everyone has different challenges and preferences that need to be respected to aid them on their journey to healthful, conscious eating. No one way is 100% correct for 100% of people. But the way to succeed is through real, natural food. It’s easy, and yet it’s not easy, but it is absolutely possible for anyone to do.

I think it’s important to note that I am not a nutritionist.  I am not certified or licensed in any capacity as a professional.  I’m simply an amateur enthusist (Food Nerd) who has navigated through the stormy waters of dietary advice and developed his own opinion and perspective.

Breakthrough has given me the opportunity to share with you a bit of my journey, and hopefully an opportunity for you to start your own. It’s not always a straight path and can sometimes be easy to get lost on. My hope is that my experiences may help you find your way as much as others have helped guide me.

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Cincinnati’s premier source for intelligent fitness.

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