1. Eat Plants and Animals:
Primal principles recommend that we eat as our ancestors would have done, so think foraging hunting and gathering, of course, that may not be possible in today's society but the point is discernment - moving away from instant availability and industrial processing in favor of quality and nutrient-dense foods - & treating your body with respect by loving what you are fuelling it with.
For me, a truly holistic and healthy approach to food is one that gets as close to the source, (nature) as possible. Choices that we can all make are to select foods that are local, organic, seasonal, and whole when it comes to eating in a Paleolithic way.
Enjoy meat, poultry, eggs, and fish as healthy sources of protein, try cooking with butter or extra virgin coconut oil as these fats are very good for you, eat your fruit and vegetables as fresh as possible to benefit from all of their nutrients, and sprinkle seeds on your meals for extra nutritional value.
2. Avoid Poisonous Things:
For me, a healthy approach to eating is to see your diet as abundant, to love what you eat & eat what you love, and to think about it in terms of what you are adding - so a richer variety of fruit and vegetables or good quality, organic meats.
However, going a little Konmari in your kitchen is essential as its crucial to also know what you should be eliminating from your diet as well. Think foods that were entirely absent prior to civilization, which includes all refined sugar, sugary beverages, all processed food, refined grains such as pasta and breakfast cereals, and industrial/chemically altered oils (canola, sunflower). The Primal Principles also recommend limiting the consumption of alcohol ( as a French lady from Bordeaux, the world's red wine capital, I do admit drinking an occasional glass or red wine with my dad and feel absolutely happy about that! ).
3. Move Frequently:
We know we are not meant to be sedentary creatures, with numerous health implications associated with spending too much time seated or inactive.
You may not be able to help to have an office job, which requires a fairly sedentary lifestyle but there are so many helpful ways that you can stop it having a negative impact on your health, wellbeing, and fitness levels.
Start the day with some yoga, a morning workout, or a short bike ride (even if to the shops or to run errands) before you set yourself up for work. Break your day up with lunchtime activity perhaps a brisk walk to ensure you are getting your heart pumping, your blood circulating and a break from your computer screen.
Studies have found many mental health benefits for a 30-minute walking lunch, such as an increase in enthusiasm, a greater ability to relax, improvements to physical fitness, and other measures of health.
4. Lift Heavy Things:
This law harks back to the days when our Paleolithic ancestors, in their tribes, would have carried the wood for fires, large stones which were used as tools or heavy buffalo and bison that would have been hunted.
The modern equivalent might be to incorporate some functional bodyweight training into your routine - essential movements that humans were designed to be able to do, such as lifting your own body weight, push-ups, pull-ups, squats, and planks.
With so many, free online body-weight and Calthinestic workouts available online at the moment, this primal law can be done from the comfort (and isolation!) of your own home.
Weight training isn't just about building muscles, its benefits include improved posture, better sleep, gaining bone density, maintaining weight loss, boosting metabolism, lowering inflammation, and staving off chronic disease.
5. Sprint Once in a While:
This law also nods to our ancestors' hunter-gatherer lifestyles and the short bursts of cardio required to chase and hunt their food.
A great way to replicate this way of living in modern routine is with Tabata or HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) work outs. Trainers everywhere love HIIT because they re usually fast always efficient, can be adjusted to just about any level of expertise, and can be done from your living room. Short bursts of cardio are also a great way to burn maximum calories in a minimal time.
6. Get Plenty of Sleep:
In the Paleolithic era, our ancestors started and ended their days in alignment with the sun and nature s circadian rhythm illuminating sleep disorders and mid-afternoon slumps. -I certainly saw these benefits and more when living by the sun s ritualistic simplicity during my time living with monks in an authentic Indian Ashram, Govardhan Eco Village, north of Mumbai.
While I am a huge advocate of living my life by nature s circadian rhythm I know that waking at sunrise and winding down as the sun sets isn't possible for everyone However we can all create regular sleep habits and even relaxing bedtime rituals - like going to bed at night and waking up in the morning around the same times (including on weekends), and aiming for around 8 to 9 hours sleep a night to help reduce stress, inflammation and depression, while improving your memory, keeps you more alert and may help you lose weight.
7. Play More:
We know from studying cave drawings that the Paleolithic tribes spent around 6 hours a day playing, creating, and making art, and under the idea of play is the importance of human connection, exploration, intimacy, and sex.
The number of adults dealing with stress and depression is increasing all the time with work pressures regularly cited as a reason so we know that we should be striving for a better work/life balance, and making more time for things we love.
Carving out time to play, make love, and be creative boosts endorphins, improves cognitive function, and reminds us that intimacy is a sacred part of our lives. I believe that we should make time every day for love, laughter and playfulness - perceiving playtime as a quality time where you return to your inner child with your own children, spending time with friends in activities that do not involve screens (think tribe-Esque sister circles), enjoying your partner - and even playing with a pet.
For anyone in lockdown with a partner or lover, there is never a better time to embrace elements of a Tantric lifestyle, which I offer as part of my Holistic Coaching Service, whereby intimacy, connection, and sex are considered sacred and pleasure considered a birthright!
8. Get Plenty of Sunlight:
Primal law waxes lyrical about the benefits of spending time outside as our ancestors would have done.
Getting outside every day, even if just for a walk or run and a dose of vitamin D, produced naturally in your body when directly exposed to sunlight. Vitamin D fights disease, reduces depression, and boosts weight loss.
For me, time outside in nature is an essential part of my wellbeing, and in fact, my approach to holistic health coaching is centered on the five elements (to read more on this refer to the Elements of my Coaching).
9. Avoid silly/common sense Mistakes:
This may sound an obvious one, but in the primal sense this law applies to not doing too many things at once - in essence, being present in the daily.
Today's society is anesthetized to modern environmental dangers by distraction and overstimulation We all do it: texting while driving, sending emails during meetings, chatting on the phone while eating dinner.
Taking time to do just one thing at a time seems downright luxurious, even wasteful but research shows that it's not nearly as efficient as we like to believe and can even be harmful to our health.
Doing too much can be harmful to your relationships cause you to overeat as you haven t processed what you've eaten that day stifles creativity is dangerous & causes stress.
Make time to be present in your routine, fitting in both the things you need to do and the things you want to do.
10. Be creative and engage your cognitive abilities:
As Osho said: "To be creative means to be in love with life. You can be creative only if you love life enough that you want to enhance its beauty..."
Not only does creativity infuse life with a different sort of depth and richness; creativity allows self-discovery, the opportunity to share a hidden side of ourselves, promotes thinking and problem-solving, and reduces stress and anxiety.
I know from my time as a London Litigator that using your brain does not (and should not) mean in the intellectual sense only when it comes to fulfillment and a healthy, functioning mind; so make time to do something you love, which stimulates you creatively, every day. It can be art, singing, making something, a hobby, or a passion project.
A simple and truly beautiful way to integrate this law into our modern life is to start journaling and set some time aside to write every day. With practice, negative thoughts can be replaced with positive ones using tools such as daily gratitude, simply writing a list of five things I am grateful for every morning to set myself up for the day.
With time and dedication to these practices, you can replace negative thinking patterns with thoughts that actually help. This can make a huge difference in your day-to-day happiness and comfort.
Founded by Mark Sisson the Primal Health blueprint is a scientifically validated wellness plan that mimics Paleolithic living and supports our genetic evolutionary blueprint with real-food, low-carb eating, inspired movement and play, and stress-reduction and balance in all aspects of life.
Based on our ancestral roots of the paleolithic tribes & an underlying mantra that, when it comes to modern-day well-being, Primal is Progressive, I expertly & lovingly guide clients in helping them to understand how the Primal Laws can be easily incorporated into modern living; supporting them on their individual personal, physical, emotional, psychological, and spiritual journeys.
This Primal Blueprint It is the foundation of my coaching programs and I have set out below the 10 "laws" upon which Primal Health is founded: