They used to preach the paleo diet - but now the Merrymaker sisters have given it up.

Emma and Carla Papas have given away the strict paleo lifestyle on which they built their brand, admitting they became “way too obsessed” with it.

The self-titled “health and happiness advocates” from Canberra, who run their own healthy lifestyle brand ‘The Merrymaker Sisters’, are household names within the paleo community.

Their blog gets more than 150,000 visits each months. They have sold 10,000 healthy recipe books. They sell subscriptions to their four-week challenge. They have around 90,000 followers on social media. And it’s all off the back of their commitment to a strict paleo lifestyle – the no dairy, no grains, no processed food, no sugar kind, championed by wellness advocates, like Pete Evans.

paleo sisters.
Image via Instagram/themerrymakersisters.

But it turns out even the most committed of paleo people need a break from the gruelling regime.

In a post titled ‘Why We Are Giving Up Paleo’, the sisters say they are expanding their eating beyond paleo’s restrictive boundaries.

“We found when we were strict paleo we got way too obsessed and although we were ‘eating right’ it kind of took us a couple steps backwards,” they wrote.

“We were like ‘OH MY GOSH… I CAN’T EAT THAT SALAD! It has one chickpea in it!’

WHY WE ARE GIVING UP PALEO. We started eating paleo and didn’t look back. It changed our lives in epic ways. It led us to further health study, where we realised that it’s not just food and exercise that makes us healthy (or not healthy). That our thoughts, relationships and what we do/how we spend our days also play a part to health and happiness (a HUGE part). Which led us to following our bliss and quitting the jobs we hated. Right now, we love what we do everyday and it all started with changing our diets to paleo. We’re still advocates of the paleo diet, after all, it changed our lives. But we want to make sure y’all know we’re not ‘just paleo’. In fact we’re probably (definitely) way more passionate about people doing stuff they love and getting happy in their heads. Don’t worry… you’ll still find LOADS of paleo recipes right here… but you’ll also start to see other lifestyles as well as plenty of passion/bliss/biz talk. To be quite frank, we’re totally over the negative flack in the media/within the paleo world/within the whole wide world that paleo receives. We’ve read enough self help books and learned enough to know that surrounding yourself with negativity is never a good thing. Oh… and we also occasionally eat organic corn chips, dairy and sushi and (gasp) wine and cocktails. Because we want to. It’s fun. And it’s all yum. And we feel great. We’ve been meaning to write about this for a while. Huge thanks to our amazing Make Life Merrymakers for giving us the inspiration! Read the whole blog post in our bio. ????????????

A photo posted by THE MERRYMAKER SISTERS® (@themerrymakersisters) on


“Now that we’re more chilled about things like corn chips, a few cheeky drinks here and there (because fun), sushi, chick peas in our salad etc. we are in a way better head space.

“The strict paleo has been part of our journey. But now we are moving forward.”

The sisters say they are still advocates of the paleo diet because it changed their lives, prompting them to change their entire attitudes towards health (and quit their jobs to follow their passion).

“But we want to make sure y’all know we’re not ‘just paleo’. In fact we’re probably (definitely) way more passionate about people doing stuff they love and getting happy in their heads.”

paleo sisters
The sisters say it’s all about being “happy in their heads”. Image via Facebook.

The sisters say they are sick of the flak associated with the paleo diet and want a more relaxed way of eating, so will be focusing on “good” and “real” food.

“It’s about less stress around the food choices we make,” they wrote.

“It’s about filling our whole lives with more joy. Surrounding ourselves with people we love. Doing more stuff we love.”

Amen, sisters.

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