I live in Sydney and have always found it very easy to follow my Paleo Diet. In fact, I don’t really have to think about it, eating Paleo just naturally happens. Even when I have to find lunch in the city. Great quality food and ingredients are everywhere. Similarly I find Melbourne fantastic for good Paleo friendly food options.
I'm often not organised enough to bring my lunch in from home, but in Sydney, it isn't a problem. I'm spoilt for choice with a huge range of lunch options. The other thing I love about lunch in Sydney is that, even in a food court, it’s generally freshly prepared as you order it. Every food court seems to have some great create-your-own salad options and a roast dinner option when you can choose your meat and have it with your choice of fresh vegetables.
This is a very easy lunch to find in Sydney; Roast meat and vegetables. Simple.
Eating dinner out in Sydney is even easier, with almost every restaurant offering meals that are fairly Paleo, but the flexibility to tweak the menu slightly, making sure you get exactly what you want.
So spoilt have I been by the food options I'm used to, that now I am working in another city for a few days a week, I'm surprised by how much harder it is to stick to my Paleo diet.
A lot of this is due to not having the local knowledge about the best places to go, but having explored the CBD, I'm fairly convinced that Brisbane just does not have the range of healthy options I find in Sydney. I have found a couple of food courts which offer a roast dinner – but sadly the “vegetable” sides are all beige. Processed potato croquettes, potato wedges or hot chips. Not quite what I had in mind. I have found some restaurants which offer meals that are more suitable, but these are far too substantial for lunchtime.
Breakfast at my hotel looks great on paper, but the colour and taste of the bacon and eggs makes it clear that these are very poor quality. Definitely not organic and probably not even free-range eggs. For the $29 they charge for breakfast, I could cook something amazing with incredible ingredients – which makes the hotel breakfast even harder to swallow.
I'm sure there are lots of great restaurants I should be making use of in the evenings, so I will have to make sure I research this better.
Fortunately I've managed to find somewhere new to stay for the coming weeks, that will hopefully help solve some of these difficulties. I've found a serviced apartment that is the same price as the hotel, but offers a kitchen! This means I’ll be able to buy my own, good quality, ingredients and cook my own Paleo meals. I’ll also be able to take my lunch in (or perhaps even pop back to eat, as it is so close).
My other observation is that overall, people in the CBD look a lot less healthy than they do in Sydney. Is this because it is harder to eat good food; or is there no good food because people don’t want it? I generally find the hotter it is the easier it is to eat well – it’s hotter here, so I'm surprised how many junk food outlets there are?
Don’t get me wrong – I absolutely love Brisbane (I’ll be up for the Brisbane leg of the Low Carb Down Under Seminar Series), I just wish there were more Paleo friendly food options!
Have you noticed following a Paleo diet is harder in certain places? Do you have any tips and tricks for staying Paleo whilst working away? And if anyone has any Brisbane specific Paleo tips, I would LOVE to hear them!