A Partially Paleo Thanksgiving

Kelsey Bonilla Health Guide
  • As Thanksgiving approached, I reviewed dozens of recipes for possible inclusion in our holiday meal.  It was only the four of us, so we could modify the plans however we wanted.  My big obstacle was getting my husband to go for the paleo (no grain, refined sugars, or dairy) options for some of our traditional dishes.  In the end, the only major modification was making stuffing without any bread.  Also, I made a paleo pumpkin pie with a crust of ground pecans and hazelnuts.  Yum!


    So, for me, I just skipped the mashed potatoes and white rolls and was able to eat a mostly paleo meal for Thanksgiving.  (Confession, I did put real whipped cream (homemade with organic cream) on my pumpkin pie.  It was the best cheat treat I could imagine!)

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    The thing about Thanksgiving food is that it’s very rich and involves a lot of butter.   So, as we ate our way through several days of leftovers, a common pattern repeated itself.  My blood sugar would be fairly good in the first hour or so after eating (from all the fat delaying the blood sugar spike), and then would creep up for several hours afterwards.  Blood sugars in the high 200s and low 300s popped up on my meter much too frequently.  These are the instances when a pump is invaluable for the use of a square-wave bolus!


    What an interesting experience to maintain a partially “paleo” diet and still face the repercussions of high fat, somewhat processed foods (cream, butter, and small amounts of sugar).   I was giving myself large boluses of insulin (compared to the 1 unit that would cover most of my strict paleo meals) and still not budging some of the stubborn highs.   It occurred to me that this type of eating, while tasty, really isn’t worth the slightly upset stomach and high blood sugars. 


    With Christmas just around the corner, I’m going to try to take a more balanced approach to indulging in seasonal treats (say, make one serving of a paleo pie instead of an entire pie that I then feel obliged to consume all by myself over the next few days)!

Published On: November 27, 2012