5 Questions with Paleo Parents, authors of Eat Like a Dinosaur

Diane Sanfilippo Books, Events, & Programs, Five Questions With 139 Comments

There’s a new kid on the block in the Paleo cookbook world! Check out this interview with The Paleo Parents, author of Eat Like a Dinosaur: Recipe & guide book for gluten-free kids, available for pre-orders on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

And… The Paleo Parents have GENEROUSLY offered up a softcover copy of Eat Like a Dinosaur to one lucky reader here! See details to enter to win at the end of this post!

1. How has going paleo changed your family?

How hasn't it?! When Stacy first started Paleo, our combined weight was greater than 570 pounds. That's more than a quarter ton! We we're feeling lethargic, depressed and suffered from a thousand tiny health pinpricks that most people just accept as a matter of course. Matt had pretty crippling ADHD, seasonal and pet allergies and early high cholesterol. Stacy had had her gallbladder out and suffered IBS-like symptoms and had an unexplained extremely high white blood cell count. Also, having just had our third baby, we were expecting another extended bout of postpartum depression.

Meanwhile, we had three kids who were on their way to obese adulthood as well. Cole, five years old at the time, was already in the obese range of the BMI chart and Finian, two years old at the time, was quickly moving to join him. In addition, Cole had such a deficit in self-control that our liberal co-op preschool was threatening to expel him. Finn was also showing signs of ADHD and self-control issues even at his young age. Not only that, but Cole had to use a daily inhaler for his asthma and they both suffered from eczema and digestive issues.

Once we went Paleo, the first thing we saw was an increase in energy, vigor and happiness; first in Stacy, then in Matt after he joined in. Then we quickly started shrinking before our very eyes. The weight was melting off with no effort at all. Matt's allergies stopped and he stopped medicating for them and he found his ADHD much easier to control. Stacy's digestive issues and heartburn almost immediately resolved themselves. Four months in at our next check ups, we saw our cholesterol improve, blood pressure go down and the serious white blood cell count issue Stacy had disappeared (we now suspect this was an indicator of Celiac disease).

The boys' weights stayed steady as they started growing up and not out. Cole went from being the “problem child” on the verge of expulsion to being the best behaved child in his Kindergarten class. Finn started being able to pay attention in his preschool and everyone was just filled with exuberance and a now has a renewed joy for life!

2. What's the biggest misconception parents have about raising paleo kids?

That it's impossible. The amount of justifications we hear on our site and facebook page are insane. Yes, it's hard. Yes, you'll need to reshape your children's thinking, palate and come up with a transition plan. But our kids now beg us for kale, black olives and meat – they want to be healthy and strong, they just need you to show them how.

We also get a lot of questions about specific nutrients, often because that's the concern their doctors bring up. Where do you get your calcium? Where do you get your fiber? Don't you need carbs? We're not nutritionists or pediatricians, but there's great information out there from Robb Wolf, Chris Kresser and you about how paleo offers a more nutrient dense diet that is easily absorbed than the recommended standard diet. We have no issues with calcium, fiber, or any other micronutrient. And we have plenty of carbs to eat for our active kids! Just ask Wesley, as he reaches for another sweet potato!

3. What's been your greatest reward in removing grains, legumes and dairy from your family's diet?

The best thing Paleo has done for us, though, is bring us closer as a family. We now are always playing together, bonding together, cooking together. With our renewed energy, we want to do these things and have fun, playful, outdoor  adventures. We've saved ourselves from not enjoying these precious childhood years that never come back. That's what we're most thankful for. Not to mention, who knows how many years we've added to our lives by losing over 200lbs and saving our health. I look forward to one day playing with my great-grand-children!

4. Why did you want to write Eat Like a Dinosaur for families?

Cole was definitely our inspiration! In fact, he's kind of the main character in the illustrated story inside the book. Once Cole started bringing in his own snacks and lunches to school, we realized how different he must look to his teachers and friends. He started feeling a little self-conscious about his food and what others might think. We used our site and book to teach the techniques we use, the tips & tricks, to make eating differently a positive thing – fun and exciting, rather than exclusionary and sad.

We thought it was important for parents to realize the changes they can effect in the lives of their children, and for children to realize that it's okay. In fact, eating like a dinosaur is cool! Especially for children with allergies and intolerances, the road can be bumpy. Eat Like a Dinosaur will be a tool for families to use not only the 100 recipes and projects together, but will hopefully also teach them how to approach a real foods lifestyle in a positive way.

5. What's the best advice you have to families who are just learning to make changes?

Be understanding of what your kids are going through. You are asking a lot of them, switching over their food so drastically. They will resist; they may even conspire to “spoil” their diet behind your back. And that's because it's what you taught them for the entirety of their life so far. It'll take time and effort to change that. And the best thing you can do is be a role model so that they feel a part of a team.

You are telling them that they no longer eat cake or candy or ice cream or cookies or ice cream when all their friends do it right in front of them. That's hard, especially for a kid whose whole world is based on fitting in with their peers. You will have an easier time if you take time out to explain to them, reason with them, even make concessions with them, than to unilaterally decide what they shall eat. Help them understand, give them a little bit of control over choices they can make, keep only unprocessed, healthy foods in the home, point out when their body reacts positively and negatively to foods they've eaten, and eventually they'll happily walk down the right path with you!

Click here to download a FREE PDF preview of three great recipes from the book pictured within the post above!

Check out this video preview of Eat Like a Dinosaur:


Do the following, then come back here and add a comment letting me know which you did!
NOTE: Only one comment per person will count as an entry. Posting more than one comment will disqualify you from the contest, so please just post once! Thanks!! 

1. Like the Paleo Parents and Balanced Bites Facebook pages.
2. Follow Paleo Parents (@paleoparents) and Balanced Bites on Twitter.
3. Subscribe via email to the Balanced Bites newsletter/blog updates.

Then add a comment below about which you completed! That’s it! No purchase necessary.

Note: This contest will be open through midnight Eastern time on Wednesday, March 7, 2012 and ONE WINNER will be selected using random.org and announced here on the blog, via Facebook and on Twitter. If you do not email me to claim your prize within 48 hours of the announcement, a new winner will be selected in your place.

Comments 139

  1. I love the Paleo movement and to start off the kids, with a book to encourage them, to follow the paleo way of fitness, is just fantastic.

  2. Can’t wait for the book to come out. . my son really took to the kid-recipes in Paleo Pals, and we came across this through that on Amazon. It’s tough out there for a little dino when surrounded by SAD at school, parties, life etc. . .so a real printed book makes it seem like other people are in on it with him.

    Good Luck!

  3. I subsribed, and liked both balanced bites and paleo parents on Facebook 🙂
    thanks for all the useful info on this new lifestyle of mine!

  4. I like you both on FB and follow you (and just started following @paleoparents) on twitter, and I have already subbed to your newsletter.

  5. I liked the pages! My husband and I have tried to stick to a paleo diet for a few years now, and it is challenging with our four year old son. We’ve already taken the gluten out of his everyday diet, but I am excited to transition him to 100% paleo. Thank you for writing this book, it will definitely help him out.

  6. I would love a copy of this book! My kids are quasi-Paleo but find it hard to be so different from their friends.

  7. SOOOO “liked” you!! This would be a fantastic help getting my kids to eat more healthy. Thank you so much!!

  8. My 1st little one is due in August and even if they’ll be on BM for a while I’d love to get a head start on being a Paleo Parent!

    Liked and Followed Paleo Parents. I had already Liked and am signed up for your newsletter. (I don’t really use twittter…)

  9. I liked both FB pages and am getting the newsletter! I would love this book. I am working on getting my girls to be Paleo with me and my DH. This would be a great addition to our household! Thanks!

  10. I am grateful for people like yourselves who offer your recipes, tips and advice which makes the transition to a healthier and more active life easier. I am changing our way of eating due to so many food intolerances and am opening my familys eyes as well. I fooled my 8 year old daughter with a “chocolate pie” it was actually made with avocados! Thanks again keep doing what you are doing your helping many people!! Thanks

  11. I like both on FB – Suzanne Hill.

    I’m following both on twitter – DucktorWho82.

    I subscribed to your email.

  12. I would love to win a copy of the book, I have an 11 year old who just loves to cook!
    I liked you both on f/b, followed you on twitter and subscribed!

  13. I liked both Paleo Parents and Balanced Bites on Facebook.. love everything you guys do! Can’t wait to get a copy of this amazing book for my own little “dinosaur” 🙂

  14. I did #1!!! I am so excited to get this book (whether I win it or have to buy it) I’m new to Paleo and anything that helps the kids transition into this lifestyle change is awesome!

  15. I followed you both on twitter, and subscribed to the newsletter. I already like you on FB! Thanks for the giveaway, I’d really love to have this for my children!

  16. I completed all the steps! Love that Paleo books are being released for kids! My 3 year old loves to help in the kitchen, this would be perfect for her!

  17. Liked balanced bites and Paleo parents on FB.. would love this! my family is GF and I love trying new recipes and getting the kids involved in cooking and understanding the benefits of paleo/grain free diet, and thinking about the nutritional value of what they eat.

  18. I did all three. I have a 16 month old and am always looking for good healthy Paleo food options that he will eat

  19. I liked paleo parents some time ago, and Love what they do. I have now liked balanced bites. Im a nutritionist/naturopath and I just love these resources!

  20. Yay, I liked and followed everyone! I love The Paleo Parents – normal, everyday parents who have made real changes for the health of their family. I also love how they are excited about the weight loss, but that the real joy for them is the closeness of their family that they’ve experienced through better health. That is what it’s all about, people!

  21. Like balanced bites on fb and got on the emailing list! Looking forward to sharing the book with my family!

  22. I am done! I am just awaiting the confirmation email for the Balanced Bites e-newsletter. I hope it will arrive soon. Thanks for the contest!

  23. Liked both Paleo Parents and BB for a while now but did it again! My 3 little ones sure could use some yummy recipes!

  24. Just entered…did all but the twitter because i don’t have an account…hopefully I will win…I am very excited about this book…want a copy but can’t afford one unless i win it… Thanks for the opportunity…

  25. I just completed the steps!! I would love to win this book. I have 3 daughters, have allergies to gluten and lactose, and would love to transform my entire family’s eating habits!!

  26. I’m so excited for the release of this book! I’ve “liked” you both on facebook and signed up for your newsletter. Hope to win!! 🙂

  27. I did all of these except for the twitter since I do not use twitter. That book looks awesome though and will be a great book for teaching my toddler about primal food.

  28. I liked the Paleo Parents and Balanced Bites Facebook pages.
    I followed Paleo Parents (@paleoparents) and Balanced Bites on Twitter.
    and I subscribed via email to the Balanced Bites newsletter/blog updates.
    Thanks for offering this book as a giveaway.

  29. Already liked you both on FB and subscribed to Balanced Bites — went and followed Paleo Parents on Twitter, where I was already following Balanced Bites. Pick me, Pick me! 😀

  30. I did everything but twitter because I don’t have twitter account.
    Already followed paleo parents on FB. Liked balanced bites & subscribed.
    My sons have allergies, eczema, and the youngest is the worst! We are excited to try something new! My aunt has been paleo for past 2 years and has been an inspiration. Can’t wait to read Eat Like A Dinosaur with my boys !!!!

  31. Thanks for this opportunity! My sister is pregnant and paleo and I would love to share this book with her to support her through raising her wee one!
    I’ve liked both pages on FB and subscribed to the BB newsletter!
    Thanks for the opportunity!

  32. I did all the steps – was already following you and Paleo Parents but signed up for both Twitters and your newsletter! I just started Paleo 2 months ago and am getting stricter by the day – I have 4 year old (almost 5!) triplets and would love to get them on board with me – this is just the thing I need to help with that! Thanks for the opportunity!

  33. I liked(well already did like) both of these fantastic pages! I am 7 months pregnant with my first child and I know i need this book in my kitchen 🙂

    1. I liked both pages on Facebook, I’m not on Twitter. I also subscribed via email. I have a 3 year old son who loves dinosaurs and I would love to share this book with him!

  34. Hi! I liked Paleo Parents and Balanced Bites on Facebook. We are new to being gluten-free and seem to be easing into the transition. It’s helpful having sites and books like this. I would love to have this new book for my family.

  35. I saw this a day late for the contest, but that’s okay. This is a book I will buy anyway. It sounds like it’s good for adults by themselves, and as I am trying to streamline the diet lifestyle for myself and for my family (all teens to adult), I think this book will be most beneficial.

  36. Pingback: Diane Sanfilippo | New York Times bestselling author of "Practical Paleo" and "The 21-Day Sugar Detox" | Home of the Balanced Bites Podcast

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *