What is the Paleo Diet all About?

paleo diet foods

The Paleo Diet History

There are so many healthy lifestyle diet choices available today that it is easy to get confused about what all the different diets are. There are vegan diets, vegetarian diets, flexitarian diets and paleolithic diets, just to name a few.

This article will cover the basics of the paleolithic diet also known as the Paleo Diet, or the Caveman Diet. A Paleo diet is a diet based on the types of foods presumed to have been eaten by early humans. This consists mainly of meat, fish, vegetables, and fruit. The Paleo Diet also excludes dairy or grain products and processed food (which should be a no-brainer for any healthy diet).

The idea of a paleolithic diet was developed first in the 1970s by gastroenterologist Walter Voegtlin. The paleolithic idea was later developed by Stanley Boyd Eaton and Melvin Konner, and popularized by Loren Cordain in his book called The Paleo Diet.

Get this cookbook with over 470 recipes and a 10-week meal plan!

We have been experimenting with the Bulletproof diet which is basically a paleolithic diet with a coffee kicker. The results have been interesting. I have felt stronger a bit more energetic and more focused that normal.

How to Start a Paleo Diet

The easiest way to start any diet is to know what it is about, what you can and can’t eat and the philosophy behind it.

Eat This

Basically a paleolithic diet is high in fats, moderate in protein from animals and moderate to low in carbs. High quality saturated fats like butter from grass-fed cows and coconut oil are a big part of this diet as are high protein and high quality meats like grass-fed beef, pastured pork, quality poultry, eggs and organ meats as well as fish and shellfish.

An equally important part of this diet is the generous amount of raw and cooked vegetables either fresh or frozen that can be consumed. A smaller amount of fruits and nuts is recommended as well.

Don’t Eat This

Cereal grains such as wheat, barley, corn, rye, oats and brown rice are not part of the diet and legumes such as soy, kidney beans, pinto beans, navy beans,  peanuts and black eyed peas are forbidden. Most oils are not allowed in this diet with the exception of olive oil and avocado oil.

Added sugar like that found in soft drinks, candy and juices are to be avoided as well as most dairy products other than healthy butter.

Paleo Behavior

Another part of a successful diet is the adaptation of the lifestyle that the diet is based on. The paleo diet has some lifestyle guidelines that you should really incorporate if you want to succeed with this diet.

The behaviors for this diet are pretty straightforward.

  • Eat when you are hungry
  • Avoid stress
  • Get plenty of sleep
  • Exercise, but not too much
  • Play in the sun

Overall this is a very healthy, balanced way to eat and live. Probably the hardest thing to get used to on this diet if you are switching from being a SAD (standard American diet) eater, is the elimination of grains. We love our wheat! I found that reading the book Wheat Belly by Dr. William Davis was very motivational in my pursuit of eliminating wheat from my diet. Fascinating read!

If you like guidance with your lifestyle changes and decide that the Paleo Diet is for you then the Paleo Grubs Book is a great way to go.

 

Bulletproof Coffee Experiment

bulletproof coffee

New Experiment With Bulletproof Coffee

I just read the Bulletproof Diet by Dave Asprey  and learned a ton about nutrition and some of the food myths that we have been told for years. Basically this diet is about eating lots of good fat which used to be thought of as bad fats, add in some protein and a few carbs. Butter, red meat and lots of veggies and of course coffee.

The drink that Dave Asprey developed is called Bulletproof Coffee and is a combination of coffee, butter from grass-fed cows and either coconut oil or a coconut extract called MCT which stands for medium-chain triglycerides.

This isn’t any ordinary coffee. Much of the big commercial coffee has mold and toxins in it and this can cause a drop in energy and mental clarity after the initial caffeine boost. Bulletproof coffee is a high quality lab-tested product that has no mold and therefore is not inflammatory and doesn’t give you that crash feeling after a couple of hours.

I have never been a fan of cream in my coffee but I was pleasantly surprised to find that this combination of coffee, grass-fed butter and coconut oil tasted really good. I end up adding some cocoa powder to my drink because I like the chocolate flavor.

Eat Your Fat

I have been told for years by all the nutrition experts that I should limit my intake of fats, especially saturated fats like the ones found in butter if I want to be healthy. Saturated fats are supposed to be a key factor in causing heart disease so you can imagine my surprise when I read this book and was told that the main ingredient in the Bulletproof diet is saturated fat.

It turns out that saturated fat is a necessary element in producing hormones, stimulating the production of bile and building your cell walls. Seems like a pretty important part of a diet to me.

The Joys of Butter

I have always liked the taste of butter but I now know that all butter is not the same. Just like any animal product, the quality of butter depends on the health and wellness of the cow that it comes from. It seems obvious that if you eat butter from a sick cow the butter will have elements of the illness in it. This is why you should only eat butter and any animal product from healthy animals.

Cows only eat grass. If they eat anything else like grains or gummy bears they get sick. Grains and gummy bears are cheaper feed for the cattle and get them nice and fat so that has become the industry standard for cattle feed. Cattle ranchers will give the sick cattle antibiotics to keep them alive and of course the antibiotics are passed into the milk and respectively into the yummy dairy products like cream, butter and yogurt. This is why it is important to only consume grass-fed cow products.

Toxins in Our Food

One of the main concepts of this diet is that many of the foods that are commercially available today have molds and toxins in them. These toxins cause inflammation in our bodies which make our immune systems overworked and keep us tired and ineffective. The toxins also get into our brains and slow down the brain functions so you get a foggy feeling.

When you clear your diet of moldy and toxin filled foods you get a huge boost of energy and mental clarity as well as a boost in fat burning. This is the main reason that I am experimenting with the Bulletproof Diet. I would love to feel clear and have more energy every day.

There is much more to this diet than I can cover in a single article and the book has a lot of great information on the science of food and the way your body reacts to what is put in it.

I would love to hear what you think about the Bulletproof Diet and will keep you up to date on my progress.

Happy Earth Day 2015!

earth day 2015

Today is Earth Day 2015

The Google told me about earth day this morning. My first reaction was “why isn’t everyday earth day?”. I wanted to see what my environmental impact is so I used the Earth Day Footprint Calculator and became very depressed. I thought I was environmentally friendly but apparently not. I drive a hyrbid car, I recycle (mostly), I buy local when I can, I eat little meat and live in a small home but that is still not enough.

Where did Earth Day come from?

Earth day was established in 1970 when the health of the environment was just starting to become a concern for our well-being. Earth day coincided with the passage of environmental laws and really started the push toward a clean environment in the US.

The Earth Day network has been responsible for promoting environmental economic policies, education and some great parties!

Solar Power

I have been learning a lot about solar power lately and I am encouraged by what I have found. We live in New York State and the government here is positioning themselves as a leader in sustainable energy usage for the masses by implementing the REV initiative.

REV stands for Reforming the Energy Vision and the goal is to reform New York State’s energy industry and regulatory practices. A big part of this initiative is to make residential solar power highly accessible to the average home owner without putting the utility companies out of business.

The US government provides subsidies to companies like Sun Edison and Solar City which allow them to offer free residential solar installations in New York and some other states. Unfortunately some states like Arizona are making the transition to solar very unappealing for homeowners by charging solar users more for distribution.

What More Can I Do?

It’s great to see what the Earth Network, solar companies and the government is doing for the environment what can can I do?

My earth day resolution is to buy more local food, use less energy and promote more sustainable energy practices like solar and wind power.

What are you doing? Let us know.

 

 

 

 

Gluten Free Oatmeal Coconut Pancakes

Oatmeal Coconut Pancakes

Go Gluten Free With These Amazing Pancakes

These scrumptious gluten free oatmeal coconut pancakes are great for that craving you have for pancakes when you have cut wheat out of your lifestyle!

These oatmeal coconut pancakes are so easy and nothing special goes into them. You need a blender to make the oats and coconut into a flour consistency, that way you aren’t buying the expensive gluten free flours on the market today.

 

Oatmeal Coconut Pancakes Gluten Free
 
Delicious gluten free pancakes.
Author:
Recipe type: Breakfast
Cuisine: Gluten Free
Serves: 6-10
Ingredients
  • 1 cup gluten free oatmeal
  • ½ cup unsweetened coconut
  • 2 table spoons honey or a sugar substitute you like
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 egg
  • ¾ cup milk ( I love cashew milk in these)
  • 2 tablespoons vinegar (white or apple)
  • 2 tablespoons melted coconut oil
Instructions
  1. Place oatmeal and coconut into a blender or food processor and blend till flour like. Place your milk In a bowl and add 2 tablespoons of vinegar let stand 5 minutes. Mix flour (oats & coconut) baking powder,baking soda ,salt in a separate bowl. Add to milk mixture egg, melted coconut oil, honey whisk together. Fold the dry ingredients into wet and stir till blended -do not over stir. Heat your griddle to medium and poor ¼ cup of badder or desired amount for pancake size you like. Wait for bubbles to form before flipping. Enjoy with maple syrup and fresh fruit.
Notes
Depending on size pancake you make this recipe makes 6-10 pancakes. It feeds me and my boyfriend very well and sustains us well into the afternoon!

[foogallery id=”2234″]

 

Side Effects of Body Cleansing

cleansing side effects

Cleansing is generally agreed upon to be a good thing in the natural health world. There are several types of cleanses. Internal cleanses usually consists of activities such as fasting, juicing, limiting your diet (only fruits and veggies) and specific organ cleansing (liver, intestines, gall bladder). External cleansing can be skin treatments like salt or sugar scrubs, salt baths or dry skin brushing.

However there can be side effects. We do regular cleanses and every time I experience some side effects. When I first started doing cleansing I used some natural products that help with the cleansing process and now I mostly do juice cleansing because that works well for me. The side effects from cleansing are more mild as you do it more often.

Our friend Cindy gave us some great feedback with this comment on our Facebook page.

I have been doing a lot of the cleanses you have posted about. You should let people know that if they break out in a skin rash after doing a cleanse, it is probably not any kind of allergic reaction, but an outlet for toxins. I have had an ear infection come out through my mouth after doing the coconut mouth cleanse, which I have continued daily. When first started the body brushing and using your scrubs, I got a rash on my back that lasted for about a week. I spoke with my doctor about it, and he believes that these rashes ARE caused from the detoxing and it’s the poison’s releasing through my skin. He told me to keep it up and let him know how it goes, he may start recommending some of your ideas to his patients. I just want to say thanks! Your website has really opened my eyes!

Comment paraphrased for length see the full comment here.

Post by Cynthia Freeman.

Cindy make some great points. These are some things everyone should know before they do a cleanse. Cleansing removes toxins from your body, this can happen in a number of ways. It can appear as a rash like it did with Cindy. I get headaches for the first day or two. The releasing of toxins is not usually a pleasant experience but the result is worth it. It’s like exercising; you get good results but it can be painful at first.

Here are some common side effects of cleansing:

  • Skin rashes
  • Unusual perspiring
  • Sinus drainage
  • Headaches
  • Excessive ear wax
  • White tongue coating
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea
  • Loose stools

Everyone’s body is different. Some people experience no side effects and some experience many. The degree to how many side effects that you experience is usually based on how toxic your body is. If your lifestyle consists of generally unhealthy foods and little exercise then you will likely experience many of these symptoms. When you live a healthy lifestyle your body is cleansing itself on a more regular basis. When you exercise, you sweat which helps to cleanse toxins from your body.

Some side effects will be different depending on what type of cleanse you do. Cindy found that the coconut pulling cleanse pulled toxins from her sinuses and release through her mouth. Skin cleansing with salt scrubs showed up as rashes. Body cleansing results in headaches for me.

One of the best ways to minimize the effects of the toxic waste leaving your body is to drink plenty of water. Always keep a container of water nearby. You can set an alarm on your phone or computer to remind you to take a drink. I forget to drink water when I am working and this is the last thing you want to forget about while doing a cleanse. Adding cucumber, lemon or mint to your water makes drinking water more enjoyable and can help to replenish some nutrients easily. Other activities that help are walking, salt baths, saunas (be sure to drink more water) and mild exercise.

If you have never done a cleanse before it would be wise to consult your doctor before starting one.

We would love to hear your experiences with body cleansing. Please leave your comments below or join the conversation on Facebook.