Today’s post is brought to you as a collaboration with my friend Kristin Jekielek. She recently launched a totally unique Paleo diet tracking site – Paleo Trail. This post is a Q&A so we can learn about Kristin and her new site.
Kristin is definitely a Paleo eater extraordinaire! She’s been eating Paleo since July 2009 and loved it so much that she’s been committed to better health through clean eating ever since. She’s also very passionate about helping others make the switch. Previously, she created a couple other tools to help the average person go Paleo and stick with it. PaleoGoGo is an app that provides specific meal suggestions at over 300+ national chain restaurants in the US. Also, she’s no longer a part of it, but she was an original co-creator of FastPaleo, a recipe sharing website that allows anyone to upload and share recipes.
So without any further hesitation, let's get cracking. On with the questions.
Caveman: So what makes Paleo Trail so different from other diet trackers?
Paleo Trail doesn’t do any calorie counting or exact portion sizing like all the other online trackers. Instead, Paleo Trail has you rate the health-promoting quality of every meal. You do that by using the Quality Rating System:
Did you eat only health-promoting foods and ingredients? Then select the Supreme rating. Was it a cheat meal? Or did your meal fall somewhere in between? It’s all about focusing on making good choices.
Caveman: That’s pretty cool. What motivated you to build Paleo Trail?
I’m going to share some of my background to answer this one. I haven’t shared this with many people before, but I’ve struggled with an eating disorder for a long time. Paleo helped me realize that my symptoms were a result of food addictions to grains and sugar. This is simply the most powerful reason I have to continue eating Paleo – it drastically helped me resolve my eating disorder. Having a strong support system was also crucial for me, but eating strict Paleo is an essential piece of my recovery.
I also experienced some serious health issues in the past couple of years. From an iodine deficiency to hypothyroidism and Hashimoto’s thyroiditis to adrenal fatigue, I worked with several alternative practitioners to address the root causes of my symptoms. One thing they all had in common was they all asked me to track my meals. It helped them understand if my diet was contributing to my symptoms in any way.
I was initially very nervous about tracking my diet because of my 14 year history with an eating disorder. I could handle writing down which foods I ate and when, but I simply couldn’t handle the calorie counting required by online sites. The solution was clearly to use a hand-written food journal, but I found that very inconvenient. It was also very difficult to review the overall quality of my diet over time. I created Paleo Trail as the diet tracker I wished I had during those months of detailed diet tracking and recovery.
Caveman: I don’t diet track because of my eating disorder past. How do you deal with that?
It all comes down to self-experimentation and what’s important to you. I would never pressure anyone with an eating disorder to try diet tracking just for the sake of it. It’s an extremely sensitive and personal issue, and each person will need to deal with it differently. That being said, I have recovered to a point where I want to focus on clean eating and am able to review past food choices without guilt. In fact, I enjoy tracking my diet with Paleo Trail. I can view how my eating habits have changed over time all the way back to the beginning of September! I find it fascinating, insightful, and very helpful. If you personally aren’t there, there’s zero shame in that because it’s all about following your own path.
Caveman: Who can benefit most from using Paleo Trail?
Paleo Trail is specifically for those who know what to eat and not to eat on a Paleo Diet, which is pretty simple at its core. Eat meat, veg, healthy fats, some fruit and nuts, and avoid the rest. Paleo Trail will be most useful for those who have an intimate understanding of their own optimal diet. They have the freedom to determine their own definition for each of the ratings. Whether or not you do dairy, shun nightshades, or eat low carb, your diet will always fit within the framework of the Quality Rating System.
Caveman: What are the most exciting benefits of using Paleo Trail?
The Paleo Trail Calendar is definitely the best reason to use Paleo Trail. It lets you see at-a-glance just how clean you’ve really been eating over the past month. Here’s a sample:
This feature is available whether you sign up for the Free or Complete membership because I feel that it’s important for everyone to be able to track the choices they made.
Caveman: We have an exciting giveaway for all you awesome readers!
Kristin is offering a free 1-year subscription to Paleo Trail Complete for the ultimate in diet tracking. The Complete membership includes detailed Reports and Analytics that help you improve your eating habits. See if you’re really eating 80/20, 90/10, or 100/0 and get actionable stats on your habits, and see insights into your cheating habits that will help you clean up your diet. Even before we announce the winner, go ahead and sign up for a Paleo Trail Free membership now to begin tracking your diet today!
Here’s how to enter for the giveaway:
1. Head on over and like my Facebook page HERE
2. Head on over and like Paleo Trail on Facebook HERE
3. Leave a comment on this post and that's it
- After this contest ends, I may take up to 48 hours to verify that all steps were legitimately completed before selecting and announcing a winner. If you don’t follow all of the steps, you WILL NOT be selected as a winner.
- NO PURCHASE OR PAYMENT IS NECESSARY TO ENTER THIS GIVEAWAY
- This contest will run until time runs out on 2 January 2013 at 1700 PST.
- A winner will be selected at random
- Once notified, the winner will have 24 hours to respond to collect the prize before another winner is chosen
- At no point was I coerced or convinced to give a positive review of any of this product or sponsor a giveaway with it, all my actions in this giveaway are of my own free will
- This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook