As you may know, my 30th birthday was a few weeks ago. We wrapped up the celebration with a trip to Jamaica! There were 4 of us on the trip and we stayed at Couples Negril. I would highly highly recommend this beautiful all-inclusive resort.
We spent for 4 relaxing days laying by the beach, swimming, boating on the ocean, and even doing a little yoga. I also had the pleasure of reading The Paleo Diet Cookbook while beach side.
While there, I also made a solid attempt to remain Paleo. My photos below show some of the delicious meals I ate while there.
- callaloo (we couldn't get enough of this stuff!)
- coconut water straight from the coconut
- fabulous fresh fish
- locally sourced beef
- jamaican jerk chicken
- lots of veggies
- beet and tomato juice
Let's be honest, it was vacation so I definitely ate some non-Paleo treats, but I did remain gluten and legume free. Most importantly, I enjoyed myself guilt-free and chose non-Paleo foods that I know I can safely eat.
- ice cream (my weakness)
- jamaican blue mountain coffee with cream
Here in the States I have become more and more well versed in the right questions to ask when dining at restaurants. Such as, "Does this dish contain flour, breading, or soy sauce?" or "Can you please confirm with the chef that this dish doesn't have any gluten in it?" But, I figured the rules are a little different in a foreign country so I played it low key. I wasn't even sure if the average Jamaican knows what "gluten" is. So, for most of the trip I tried to stick with safe choices and ask very few questions. But, during our last dinner I got a little more bold as the menu looked really great! I started asking about flour and the server jumped right in saying, "Oh! You're gluten free. No problem, I'll check with the chef." He was really kind and helpful.
There were, however, a few times that I felt like I was missing out - mainly surrounding dessert. At home, I don't usually run into this issue as I make most of my food and always have that option waiting for me at home even if I am out. In Jamaica, the only dessert I could safely enjoy was ice cream/gelato/sorbet. Now, I'm not trying to say, "boo-hoo, woe is me," but I'm human and most of us want to indulge on vacation, so I was a little bummed to miss out on the regular desserts. Anyhow, 3 days after our return, my Thanksgiving chiffon pumpkin pie more than made up for any desserts I missed out on during the trip.
One last item of note... You will often read about how the key to keeping Paleo is planning ahead. I've previously discussed foods that travel well, and I have a few more for you here. Before the trip I headed to the market and stocked up on a few items to have on hand during the flight and in the room.
- nuts - macadamias, cashews, and almonds
- 80% cacao dark chocolate with espresso beans
- plantain chips