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Friday, March 30, 2012

High Fat Low Carb Diet is the same as a Paleo Diet!

It's true!  HFLC (High Fat Low Carb), or LCHF (Low Carb High Fat) are the same exact thing!

But did you also know that the  Paleo Diet is also the same as High Fat Low Carb or Low Carb High Fat??


How's that for a formula?

Anyway, here is some LCHF, HFLC, or PD info:
This video will explain just about ALL you need to know-

Do you want to eat real food (as much as you like) and improve your health and weight? It may sound too good to be true, but LCHF is a method that has been used for 150 years. Now modern science proves that it works.

There is no weighing your food, no counting, no bizarre “meal replacements”, no pills. There is just real food and common sense. And by the way, all the advice here is 100 percent free.


Dietary advice
Tips and recipes
Cook books and more

LCHF (Low Carb, High Fat) means you eat less carbohydrates with a higher proportion of fat. The most important point is to minimize your intake of sugar and starches. That way you can eat other delicious foods until you are satisfied – and still lose weight.

A number of recent high quality scientific studies show that LCHF makes it easier to lose weight and control your blood sugar. And that may just be the beginning.

The basics
Eat: meat, fish, eggs, vegetables growing above ground and natural fats (like butter).
Avoid: sugar and starchy foods (like bread, pasta, rice and potatoes).
Eat when you’re hungry until you are satisfied. It’s that simple. You do not need to count calories or weigh your food. And just forget about industrially produced low fat products.

Real food. Add some good fat (like butter).

There are good scientific reasons why LCHF works. When you avoid sugar and starches your blood sugar stabilizes and the levels of the fat storing hormone insulin drops. This increases your fat burning and make you feel more satiated.

Note for diabetics
Avoiding the carbohydrates that raise your blood sugar decreases your need for medication to lower it. Taking the same dose of insulin as before might result in hypoglycemia (low blood sugar). You will need to test your blood sugar frequently in the beginning and adapt (lower) your medication. This should ideally be done with the assistance of a knowledgeable physician. If you are healthy or a diabetic treated by diet alone or just with Metformin there is no risk of hypoglycemia.

Dietary advice
Eat all you like
Meat: Any type. Beef, pork, game meat, chicken. The fat on the meat is good as well as skin on the chicken. Try to choose organic or grass fed meat if you can.
Fish and shellfish: All kinds. Fatty fish such as salmon, mackerel or herring are great. Avoid breading.
Eggs: All kinds. Boiled, fried, omelettes. Preferably organic eggs.
Natural fat, fat sauces: Using butter and cream when you cook can make your food taste better and make you more satiated. Béarnaise, Hollandaise, read on the packages or make it yourself. Coconut fat, olive oil and canola oil are also good options.
Vegetables growing above ground: All kinds of cabbage, such as cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, Brussels sprouts. Asparagus, zucchini, eggplant, olives, spinach, mushrooms, cucumber, lettuce, avocado, onions, peppers, tomatoes and more.
Dairy products: Always select high fat options. Real butter, cream (40% fat), sour cream, fat cheese. Turkish yogurt. Be careful with regular milk and skim milk as it contains a lot of milk sugar. Avoid flavored, sugary and low fat products.
Nuts: Good to eat instead of candy in front of the television (preferably in moderation).
Berries: Okay in moderation, if you are not a super strict /-sensitive. Good with whipped cream.
Maximum 5 grams of carbohydrate (excluding fiber) per 100 g of food is a basic tip for beginners.

Avoid if you can
Sugar: The worst. Soft drinks, candy, juice, sports drinks, chocolate, cakes, buns, pastries, ice cream, breakfast cereals. Preferably avoid sweeteners as well.
Starch: Bread, pasta, rice, potatoes, french fries, potato chips, porridge, muesli and so on. »Wholemeal products” are just less bad. Moderate amounts of root vegetables may be OK if you’re not too strict with the carbohydrates.
Margarine: Industrially imitated butter with unnaturally high content of omega-6 fat. Has no health benefits, tastes bad. Statistically linked to asthma, allergies and other inflammatory diseases.
Beer: Liquid bread. Full of malt sugar, unfortunately.
Fruit: Very sweet, plenty of sugar. Eat once in a while, treat it as a natural form of candy.
Once in a while
You decide when the time is right. Your weight loss may slow down a bit

Alcohol: Dry wine (regular red wine or dry white), whisky, brandy, vodka, drinks without sugar.
Dark chocolate: Above 70 % cocoa, preferably just a little.
Drink most days
Coffee: Try it with full fat cream

The theory of LCHF
What are you designed to eat?
Humans evolved during millions of years as hunter-gatherers, without large amounts of carbohydrate. We ate the food that is available to us in nature by hunting, fishing and gathering all edible foods we could find. That did not include pure starch in the form of bread, pasta, rice or potatoes. We have only eaten such food for 5 – 10 000 years, since the beginning of agriculture. Just a limited adaptation of our genes can take place in such a relatively short time.

With the industrial revolution, 100 – 200 years ago, we got factories that could manufacture large amounts of pure sugar and white flour. Rapidly digested pure carbohydrates. There has been no time to genetically adapt to that food.

In the 80s the fear of fat gripped the western world. The low fat products appeared everywhere. If you eat less fat you need to eat more carbohydrates to feel full. At this time the worst epidemic of obesity and diabetes in history started. The most fatphobic country in the world, the USA, has been hit the hardest and is now the fattest major country in the world.

Today it is clear that the fear of real food with natural fat contents has been a mistake.

The problem of sugar and starch
All digestible carbohydrates are broken down to simple sugars in the intestines. The sugar is absorbed into the blood, raising the blood glucose. This increases the production of the hormone insulin. And insulin is our fat storing hormone.

Insulin is produced in the pancreas (pictured to the right). In large amounts insulin prevents fat burning and stores surplus nutrients in the fat cells. After some time (a few hours or less) this may result in a shortage of nutrients in the blood, creating feelings of hunger and cravings for something sweet. Usually at that point people eat some more. That starts the process again, a vicious cycle leading to weight gain.

A low intake of carbohydrates gives you a lower and more stable blood glucose, and lower amounts of insulin. This increases the release of fat from your fat stores and increases the fat burning. This usually gives fat loss, especially around the tummy in abdominally obese individuals.

Weight loss without hunger
LCHF makes it easier for the body to use its fat stores, as their release is no longer blocked by high insulin levels. This may be a reason why intake of fat gives a longer feeling of satiety than carbohydrates. Caloric intake usually drops in studies when the participants eat all they want on a low carb diet.

So, no counting or weighing of the food is required. You can forget about the calories and trust your feelings of hunger and satiety. Most people don’t need to count or weigh their food any more than they need to count their breathing. If you don´t believe it, just try a couple of weeks and see for yourself.

Health as a bonus
No animals in nature need the assistance of nutritional expertise or calorie charts to eat. And still, as long as they eat the food they are designed to eat they stay at a normal weight and they avoid caries, diabetes and heart disease. Why would humans be an exception? Why would you be an exception?

In scientific studies not only is the weight improved on a low carb diet – the blood pressure, blood sugar and cholesterol profile (HDL, triglycerides) is also improved. A calm stomach and less cravings for sweet food is also common experiences.

Initial side effects
If you stop eating sugar and starch cold turkey (recommended) you may experience some side effects as your body gets used to it. For most people it is relatively mild and just lasts a few days. Also there are ways to minimize it.

Common during the first week:

Heart palpitations
The side effects rapidly subside as your body adapts and your fat burning increases. They can be minimized by drinking some extra fluid and temporarily increasing your salt intake somewhat. A good way can be some broth every few hours. Alternatively drink a few extra glasses of water and put some more salt on your food.

The reason is that carbohydrate rich foods may increase the water retention in your body. When you stop eating that food you will lose excess water through your kidneys. That may give dehydration and lack of salt in the first week before the body has had time to adapt.

Some prefer to decrease the intake of carbohydrates slowly, over a few weeks, to minimize side effects. But for most it is wise to take away most sugar and starch right away. A few extra pounds of fluids lost on the scale in the first days is great for the motivation.

How low to go?
The less carbohydrate you eat the more pronounced the effect on your weight and blood sugar will be. I recommend following the dietary advice as strict as you can. When you are happy with your weight and health you may gradually try eating more liberally (if you want to).

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Eighty Percent Paleo?

Ok, let's say you are 80% paleo...
Does this mean that the above is just fine??

I don't think so; but it appears to me that this is just exactly what is done by a lot of paleo, or as Mark Sisson dubs it, primal folks!  I mean, maybe I'm exaggerating, but it is really easy to cheat, and say:

"Hey- I've been really good today- I had eggs and fruit for breakfast, a salad with salmon for lunch, and now some friends are visiting, and I wouldn't want them to feel deprived, and so I'll join them in a nice little dessert, and maybe some bread with dinner, because I wouldn't want them to feel deprived..."

I'm sure this is not what Mark Sisson, or any other Paleo person has in mind when they say to "just eat 80% paleo, that's OK!"  Even a little gluten, say a cookie, will seriously irritate (think: punch holes in!) your gut lining!  Does that sound like a minor thing?  It opens you up to all of the ills of modern civilization, including autoimmune disease!  Also, if you are just getting started in the paleo way of life, and you "cheat" with a slice of bread here, a cookie there, and justify it with the thought that "Well, I ate that way for 20-30 years, and I'm OK", just remember, the damage is cumulative, meaning that eventually it will catch up with you!  If not diabetes, or skin problems, obesity or heart disease... something will sooner or later come to get you...

I think the worst of this 80/20 mindset is that you never really get a good benchmark of just how good you can look and feel!  You have to go pretty much all out paleo for 30 days or so to even get an idea.
Then, and only then, you can "tinker" with the concept; experimenting with dairy (many people have NO trouble with kefir and cheese), trying a little white rice, etcetera...

You will have also reached the point where, if you do introduce something like the 20% Twinkie idea above, you will feel so crappy that you will have learned a valuable lesson!  But, if you don't have that 30 day benchmark, all you know is how crappy you've been feeling for years- you don't really have anything to benchmark against it.

I think a good way to conceptualize the Paleo Diet is to think of eating the best, most nutritious foods you possibly can, every day, for every single bite. ( A paleo smoothie just makes it that much easier). This is what our bodies really want, need, and require- 0% empty calories!  If we keep this in mind, if every single thing we feed our starving bodies (this is the state of bodies eating a Standard American Diet) is nutrient dense, then eventually we will find there is no room left for "fake" or bad foods, i.e. grains, sugars, and other drug/foods that our brain-washed minds may crave, but that gradually poison our bodies.

“The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts.”
― Marcus Aurelius

"The happiness of your body depends upon the quality of your food."

Monday, March 26, 2012

Hungry For Change!

I would like ALL of you to watch this movie!  It is FREE to watch for 5 more days, until March 31, 2012!

After that, you'll have to buy it...

If you are a "dyed in the wool" Paleo Quick Start aficionado, you will know most of this stuff- but, it is especially great for those friends and family who are not so enlightened!  Pass it on to them!

If this doesn't change the way they eat... there is no hope for them!  Buy them cigarettes for Christmas....


High Fat, Low Carb Diet!

Here is a F.A.Q. from Peter Attiia of War on Insulin!

He was an excellent guest on Jimmy Moore's podcast- Jimmy Moore's Livin La Vida Low Carb!
Check it out!

Oh- here is what he actually eats; I think you'll find that it is exactly what I eat myself...

even his breakfast "fat shake" is similar (but far less all-inclusive) to the Paleo Smoothie-

Breakfast: “Fat shake” (In a blender: 8 oz heavy whipping cream, 8 oz sugar-free almond milk; 25 gm sugar-free hydrolyzed whey protein, 2-3 frozen strawberries)

Foods I typically eat
I enjoyed his FAQ so much, I put it right here:

  1. How important is exercise to losing weight?
  2. How important is exercise to being healthy?
  3. Do we need carbohydrates for energy?
  4. If exercise isn’t important to losing weight, why then are all the contestants on The Biggest Loser losing so much weight?
  5. Does eating fat make us fat? Is eating fat unhealthy?
  6. How important is counting calories to losing weight or maintaining a healthy weight?
  7. Why do most health “experts” today advocate a low fat diet?
  8. What is insulin resistance?
  9. Are obese people overweight because they are too lazy to exercise and eat too much?
  10. How does cancer figure into what we eat?
  11. Why are the obese likely to get diabetes?
  12. What role does sugar play on obesity and on overall health?
  13. Can you build muscle by eating fat?
  14. How do you make that ice cream you keep talking about?

How important is exercise to losing weight?
It seems intuitively obvious that it should be important, but experimental trials of diet vs. diet plus exercise invariably show that the exercise makes effectively no difference on weight loss.
The world is full of overweight and obese people who work at physically demanding jobs — hard-working laborers, for instance, who exercise regularly and are even devoted to it and remain just as obese or overweight as ever.  I know, personally, many folks (including myself) who have gained significant weight, despite hours of rigorous daily exercise.
This isn’t controversial, by the way.  It’s this research that led the American College of Sports Medicine and the American Heart Association in their last physical activity guidelines (2007) to make this statement: “It is reasonable to assume that persons with relatively high daily energy expenditures would be less likely to gain weight over time, compared with those who have low energy expenditures. So far, data to support this hypothesis are not particularly compelling.” (And one of the co-authors of this ACSM/AHA report is an exercise physiologist who described himself as “short, fat and bald” when he started running 30 years ago, and since then has run 85,000 miles, or the equivalent of more than three times around the globe at the Equator, while only becoming “short, fatter and balder,” in his own words.)
How important is exercise to being healthy?
No one doubts that healthy people tend to be physically active people. The question is whether or not you can take unhealthy people and make them healthy merely by exercising them and without any meaningful change in diet. The answer is probably not.
Exercise is important for a number of reasons, but weight management and controlling disease risk are not on the list, at least according to the best available evidence.
Exercise “matters” for at least 5 reasons in my humble opinion: endorphin production (you “feel” better), social interactions, improving competitive skills, increasing endurance and strength, and (perhaps) injury prevention as we age. (Although exercise, of course, also causes injuries if not done correctly.)
Do we need carbohydrates for energy?
This is actually the wrong question.  If the question is, “Do we need to eat carbohydrates for energy?” the answer is, no.  The conventional wisdom is that we need a minimum of 120 to 130 grams of carbohydrates (glucose) per day to fuel our brains, and we need copious glycogen (the storage form of carbohydrates) for endurance activities. This is just a misconception of what is not controversial science.  Our body can fuel both our brains and hours and hours of endurance activities from protein and the breakdown products of fats. If you’re really interested in understanding this, you may find the fourth installment of my personal journey interesting.
If exercise isn’t important to losing weight, why are all the contestants on The Biggest Loser losing so much weight?
They’re forcing themselves to endure a condition – extreme starvation caused by both diet and exercise–that is physiologically impossible to endure for more than a short period of time.  Anyone can lose weight by starving themselves (even thin people, obviously); the problem with this is, how do you stop the weight from coming back when the starvation can no longer be endured?
Their extreme starvation is also carbohydrate starvation, so they are consuming far less carbohydrates than previously and the draconian exercise routine is increasing the effect of this carb-restriction.
The relevant questions are (1) How sustainable is this weight loss? (The answer is, it’s just not.), (2) How does it impact overall health (e.g., disease prevention)?, (3) Most important, is it possible that these contestants would have lost just as much weight by going on a very carb-restricted diet but without the starvation and exercise?  Stay tuned on this one.
Does eating fat make us fat? Is eating fat unhealthy?
Again, it seems obvious and this has been the conventional wisdom for fifty years. But experiments over the last decade have demonstrated that people who eat as much as they want of fatty-foods, even foods rich in saturated fat like butter and lard and eggs, lose weight and improve their heart disease risk factors. And this happens even when the comparison group is people eating American Heart Association calorie-restricted, low fat diets.
How important is counting calories to losing weight or maintaining a healthy weight?
In the short-term, anyone can create a huge calorie deficit (i.e., starve themselves) and lose weight. That’s obvious. One fundamental assumption of virtually every successful diet book is that there is some magical mix of nutrients in a diet that allow you to eat more, or even as much as ever, and still lose weight.  The conventional wisdom is this is quackery.
The question is (or should be), “How important is calorie counting for long-term, sustainable, weight loss?”  The answer to this question is: not important at all.  In fact, it’s easy to demonstrate (using 8th grade mathematics) that in order to gain 40 pounds in 20 years – to go from lean in your 20′s to obese in your 40′s, as many people do – all you have to do is stick 18 extra calories a day in your fat tissue that you don’t burn. That’s the equivalent of a single bite of food too many over the course of a day and you’ll become obese.
In fact, long-term weight management is not driven by calorie counting, but rather by changing the way our body treats the food we eat (i.e., burning fat versus storing fat).  As you’ll hear me say often, obesity is a disorder of inappropriately accumulating fat, not a disorder of eating too many calories.
Why do most health “experts” today advocate a low fat diet?
It’s one of the great tragedies of the modern era and it speaks to the pitfalls of policy makers having little understanding of science.  I don’t know the stats today, but in early 2010, before the last midterm election cycle, only 6 or 7 members of Congress (100 Senators and 435 members of the House) had a background in science.  Whether this is any better today I don’t know, but the fact remains, policy makers are not trained to slog through the morass of information and misinformation out there on this topic.  That said, we are slowly witnessing a change, at least among certain authorities.  Leading health authorities no longer advocate a low-fat diet (as was evidenced by a recent editorial in the New England Journal of Medicine by Walter Willett and David Ludwig of Harvard challenging the science base of the U.S.D.A. Dietary Guidelines). What’s still conventional wisdom, however, is the idea that we should moderate our saturated fat intake. In the past year alone, three recent reviews by unbiased researchers have concluded that the evidence against saturated fats is simply not sufficient to support a recommendation that we eat less of them.
As John Tierney of the New York Times has explained, most health “experts” today advocate a low fat diet or a low saturated fat diet because that’s the conventional wisdom — what everyone else advises — and they never bothered to look into the evidence themselves to see (1) How we came to believe that this might be beneficial, and (2) What the evidence really shows.
What is insulin resistance?
Effectively, insulin resistance (IR) is a progressive condition whereby the body’s cells become more and more resistant to the hormone insulin. As a result, the pancreas has to secrete more and more insulin just to keep blood sugar within a normal range. Insulin resistance is now considered the condition that leads to type 2 diabetes (the kind we get as we get older and fatter), as well as obesity, heart disease and now cancer and perhaps Alzheimer’s disease as well.
Are obese people overweight because they are too lazy to exercise and eat too much?
No, though we are certainly taught this in every aspect of our lives (from so-called “conventional wisdom” to medical education).
People are obese because their fat tissue is wired hormonally to accumulate too much fat.  This is not the same as “overeating” or “under moving.”
Overweight people eat too much relative to how much they move (i.e., expend calories) because of constantly elevated insulin levels.
The cause and effect is no different than explaining why pregnant women gain weight or why children grow.
How does cancer figure into what we eat?
The conventional wisdom of the past half dozen years is that the cancer process is driven by elevated levels of two hormones in particular – insulin and insulin-like growth factor. This is evidenced by a whole host of studies showing an increased risk of cancer in obese and diabetic patients and patients who are only insulin resistant but not yet obese and/or diabetic.  Furthermore, most major drug companies have drugs in various stages of their pipelines targeting insulin-like growth factor as a treatment for cancer.
Because our insulin levels rise with insulin resistance, as we’ve discussed, the question then becomes what causes insulin resistance. The conventional wisdom there, once again, is that insulin resistance is caused by eating too much (especially too much fat) and sedentary behavior. The unconventional wisdom is that insulin resistance is caused by the nutrient composition of our diet – in other words, the amount of carbohydrates, the kinds of carbohydrates and maybe the fat content as well.
Why are the obese likely to get diabetes?
Both obesity and type-2 diabetes are disorders of insulin resistance. And as we get resistant to insulin we have to pump out more insulin from our pancreas to manage our blood sugar levels. Eventually, the pancreas can’t keep up with the demand and the result is excessively high blood sugar and the diagnosis of type-2 diabetes.  So the obese are likely to get diabetes because they’re like to be insulin resistant.
What role does sugar play on obesity and on overall health?
The conventional wisdom is that sugar is no more harmful, calorie per calorie, than any other nutrient in the diet. And yet virtually every diet, even low-fat diets, restrict sugar consumption considerably. (And by sugar, I mean both the white powdered stuff, sucrose, that we put in our coffee and tea, and the ubiquitous high fructose corn syrup in all juices and processed foods.)
Fifty years of biochemistry, though, suggests that sugar is the ultimate cause of insulin resistance (because of the metabolic load it puts on the liver) and so perhaps the ultimate cause of obesity, diabetes and the diseases that associate with them, including cancer and Alzheimer’s disease.
Can you build muscle by eating fat?
Provided you consume a normal amount of protein, yes, you can build muscle by eating fat.  Even the Inuit (who consumed more than 90% of their calories from fat) still consumed enough protein to maintain muscle mass necessary for a physically demanding lifestyle.
As a general rule, consuming 1 to 1.5 grams of protein per kg of body weight is more than adequate to build muscle.
How do you make that ice cream you keep talking about?
We’re still working on the nuances, but the current version is composed of 3.5 cups of whole fat (i.e., heavy, 35% fat) cream, 1 cup of zero sugar almond milk, 1 tbsp vanilla extract, 2 tbsp almond extract, 3 tbsp ground espresso powder, and 2 tbsp xylitol. This makes enough to feed about 8 normal people, or me in one sitting.
You’ll need an ice cream maker, obviously, to mix it at freezing temperatures.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Paleo diet and Dental Health

And skin, and hair health as well!  It is strange, but true, that the overall health of your teeth and gums, along with other "ancillary" markers of health, are all related to diet.

I know this is not what we've been taught, and led to believe by the authority figures in our lives since we were little children-

"Just keep you teeth clean!  Brush and floss, brush and floss, and all will be well!"

Well, I'm here to tell you-  "It just ain't so!"

Weston A. Price, back in the 1930's, traveled the world, and found examples of the healthiest teeth and actual jaw formations he had ever seen... among primitive tribespeople who had never even heard of a toothbrush.  (His organization is still alive and well- Weston A. Price foundation )

You can have the cleanest, most debris-free mouth and teeth in the world, and if your diet is lacking in vital nutrients, you will have horrible teeth.  And, in addition, even if you wash your face and hair religiously, both your hair and your skin, given a bad, nutrient poor diet, will be unhealthy and unattractive as well.  BUT- given a nutrient dense diet, your body can actually remineralize bones and teeth!  And rejuvenate your hair and skin- it works both ways.

The reason for this is common sense, from your bodies point of view:  It has a whole body, vital processes and all, to run!  It also needs to "rebuild" parts that are broken down, but overall it just needs to keep the whole thing going- this is the human organisms ultimate job- to keep on keeping' on!

If you are eating a S.A.D American diet of say, cereal with skimmed milk and banana for breakfast (sugar, with sugar and more sugar from the bodies point of view), have a sandwich from a fast food place and fries and a soft drink for lunch (more sugar, trans fats, industrial seed oils and chemicals) not to mention the anti-nutrients from the cereal and bread that are busy punching holes in your gut lining),  and wrap it all up with a nice big pizza (more grains/anti-nutrients that supply your starving body with more sugar, along with tiny little bits of quasi-meat and vegetables), well-

You are starving your body of the vital nutrients it needs !  Your body goes into "survival mode"-

Pull minerals from the teeth and bones, from the skin, and from the hair!  
Nice to have, but who cares about looking good when actual survival is at stake??

It's kind of a natural triage decision:  Save the vital processes, save life itself!  Throw the "pretty baubles" overboard, and save the ship!!

The moral of the story?  Rule #1- eat a nutrient rich, paleo type diet!
                                       Rule #2- don't eat non-foods, like grains, sugars, and industrial seed oils

#1 ensures that you will have all the nutrients your body needs to protect all of itself.

#2 saves your gut lining so it can actually really digest these great foods well, and extract all of their crucial nutrients to use!

So, the next time you fire up your Vitamix, and make your Paleo Smoothie loaded with the most nutrient-dense super foods you can find

Look in a mirror as you drink it!

Your teeth, skin, and hair will all thank you!

"Thank you, thank you, thank you"!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Spirulina powder- the latest super-food addition to the Paleo Smoothie!

Just when you thought you'd seen everything that could be crammed into a Vitamix blender, well... you haven't!  Trust me, I don't make "changes for the sake of change". Only when I find something that is a real improvement to the Paleo Smoothie, (which I think is a lynchpin in the foundation of a truly Paleo-esque, nutrition packed lifestyle); only then to I change the "formula"!

Here is the latest addition to the Paleo Smoothie- about 1 Tablespoon per canister of spirulina powder.

See how happy I am about spirulina??

You will be too; just read a bit: spirulina super food (a Blog devoted entirely to... spirulina.

More to read, if you'd like: spirulina- just the basics, ma'am!

Suffice it to say, this blue/green algae called spirulina is not the same ingredient we use called Kelp.  Both are great additions; but kelp is a seaweed, and while loaded with micro-nutrients, it is a significant source of iodine.  A strict paleo diet can sometimes be lacking here, so I think including kelp is an excellent strategy!

Spirulina is, again, an algae, and has a different nutrient profile than kelp.  Both are great, but spirulina has the advantage of being a big helper in weight loss, and is also a super protein supplement- it is a complete protein, (like eggs or meat) which is very unusual in a plant source.

In other words, spirulina somehow manages to be "plant-animal-fresh-water seafood", all in one!

Here is an interesting tidbit:

Some scientists speculate that the "manna" of the wandering Israelites, which appeared miraculously on rocks following a devastating dry spell and was described as tasting "like wafers made with hone " may have been a form of dried, dormant Spirulina.

So, if it could keep the Israelites alive in their wanderings, just think what Spirulina can do for you!

"But Jay" I hear you shouting "Just where can I GET this miracle food??)

I get mine from the same place that I get my last Paleo Smoothie "addition" Coconut Milk Powder from: spirulina link

To save on shipping, order them both at the same time- they have $5.00 shipping on orders of $75 or more.   I have no affiliation with bulk, but find they have great products, at a great price.
(You don't have to buy their other bulk foods, like the various candies and flours- definitely not PaleoJay approved!)   Caveat emptor! (let the buyer beware)


Friday, March 16, 2012

Bone Broth!

One of the best things, nutritionally, that you can do for yourself and your family is to make bone broth.
This is where you take a chicken, fish, or beef carcass or bones and just... simmer them, taking the numerous, incredibly nutritious nutrients out of the bones and connective tissues, and getting them into the broth!  

From the broth, it goes into your soups and stews, and then...into you!

There is almost nothing in your body that does not benefit from bone broth:  your digestive lining, long insulted and destroyed from years of grain eating and S.A.D.  Standard American Diet, will be able to regenerate with all of the minerals, collagen, and calcium and magnesium (among other unidentified nutrients!) that the bone broth provides.

"But Jay" I hear you asking, "Just HOW do I make it?  I'm not a chef, and as a creature of the present, a veritable zoo animal, I don't know how to do any of the basic things our forebears knew as a matter of course! (But, I do have a stilted, old-fashioned way of talking...)"

Well, here is how:

Traditional Bone Broth in Modern Health and Disease
by Dr. Allison Siebecker
Bone Broth letter

Broth, made from the bones of animals, has been consumed as a source of nourishment for humankind throughout the ages. It is a traditional remedy across cultures for the sick and weak. A classic folk treatment for colds and flu, it has also been used historically for ailments that affect connective tissues such as the gastrointestinal tract, the joints, the skin, the lungs, the muscles and the blood. Broth has fallen out of favor in most households today, probably due to the increased pace of life that has reduced home cooking in general. Far from being old-fashioned, broth (or stock) continues to be a staple in professional and gourmet cuisine, due to its unsurpassed flavor and body. It serves as the base for many recipes including soup, sauces and gravy. Broth is a valuable food and a valuable medicine, much too valuable to be forgotten or discounted in our modern times with our busy ways and jaded attitudes.

In general, broth is a liquid made by boiling meat, bones, or vegetables. There are many types of broths, based on what is being cooked. For example, Bieler Broth, a vegetable broth made with green beans, zucchini, and celery is a supportive remedy used in detoxification or cleansing protocols. Consommé, a rich broth made from meat, is another example. It is prepared by reducing, or prolonged simmering. Stock is another word used synonymously with broth, though some chefs denote stock as being made from bones whereas broth is made from meat. In this paper the two names are used interchangeably. Soup is a similar term referring to simmered vegetables, meat, and seasonings, and is defined by Random House Webster's Dictionary as a liquid food.1 The difference is that soup contains solids such as meat, beans, grains or vegetables (sometimes disguised by a purée) while a broth is the liquid in which solids have been simmered and then discarded. Soup is what we think of as having for a meal. Broth is a starting ingredient for soup, and must be prepared separately beforehand.

The ingredients are as follows: bones from an animal, with or without meat and skin, enough water to just cover the bones, a splash of vinegar, and optional assorted vegetables or their scraps. Making broth requires almost no work, just put the bones in a pot, add water and vinegar, bring it to a simmer and walk away. No chopping or tending is needed.

Why then, don't people make it? Stock needs to be prepared in advance to mealtime. It needs to boil for hours, and the longer it simmers, the better it gets. An easy solution is to routinely put meat scraps into a pot, instead of the garbage can. Broth can just as easily be extracted from a single chicken breast bone as it can from a whole chicken, and it need not be raw. Broth can be allowed to simmer on lowest heat for a day or two. The greatest amount of work is at the end, when it must be strained, cooled, and put into containers, still not very troublesome. It can be kept in the refrigerator for about five days, or frozen for months.2 With stock on hand, homemade soup can be ready for dinner within 20 minutes. 

So, there you go!  Just save up all of your bones and carcasses (like chicken breast bones and fish carcasses, stripped of meat, and beef (soup) bones, and simmer them.

Really, really easy.  And the health results are WAY better than what you will get from the latest trendy, pricey, groovy supplement you can but for big bucks!

It's like training, naturally, in your living room or yard... not only far easier, convenient and cheap:



Thursday, March 15, 2012

Golf is the perfect Paleo Sport!

Paleo Golf strikes quite the nerve!  They almost seem the the Ying and Yang- Paleo OR Golf!!

Nothing could be further from the truth!

I think the problem is that people who are drawn to Paleo eating/living are drawn from strength and fitness orientation.  Your typical Paleo "peep" has been a weightlifter for years, has experimented endlessly with diet, and finally found Nirvana in the Paleo Diet and lifestyle!

The lifestyle part seems rooted too much in...  weightlifting!  Not that there is anything wrong, per se, in weightlifting.  It's just that lifting weights, in and of itself, is NOT necessary for total health!

Wow!  Did I just commit Paleo heresy?  Maybe, but if I hear any more about the importance of "Olympic  Lifting" and "Powerlifting" rituals, I will laugh out loud!

Not that I am down on strength training- far from it!  

Training for strength is the "Holy Grail" of fitness, in my humble opinion.

But formal weight lifting, is in reality, just like marathon running, and synchronized swimming, a....


Weight lifting is not the ideal- strength training is the ideal- this can be accomplished rather easily with "Visualized Resistance" training, where you self resist by imagining you are working against a heavy weight.  

No trauma- no injury- no nerve (via a heavy bar on your neck!) injury, just strength and body composition stimulus-- what a concept!

Running marathons is sport/recreation.  
Lifting weights is sport/recreation...

Eating "Paleo" and exercising with Visualized Resistance and body-weight exercise is PHYSICAL CULTURE in it's original meaning:  HEALTH!

It is so easy to get diverted down various "Rabbit Holes" of fitness and health- I mean, if you run longer and more, aren't you healthier??  And if you lift more weight and even MORE, aren't you healthier yet??

Well, no.  You just want to do enough to stimulate improvement: in body composition, overall strength and fitness, and HEALTH.  After that, you'd be better off working on your nutrition (which is WAY more important than exercise anyway!), and your GOLF GAME, which is kind of like "Western Meditation" in my book.

Most Paleo adherents work out too frequently, too hard, and TOO LONG!

It seems that ALL, virtually ALL exercise strategies fall into this camp:

Too much, too hard, and too long!  ( and without the idea of PLAYING/FUN!)

My advice?  

Work out intensely, and Virtually ( don't use weights- imagine the resistance, or use manual resistance (one arm resisting another on a curl, say).... and use body- weight exercise, aka sit-ups and push-ups and hindu squats...and isometrics!  

Do it briefly, and intensely, and frequently (this is key: with weights it needs to be infrequently- using natural methods of resistance if can (and should!) be almost daily!


Really, all of the above are excellent Paleo Health Strategies!

If you think about it, health and life are really simple:

Eat really well!  (Eliminate grains, industrial seed oils, and sugar- Eat grass fed beef, seafood, good fats, and fermented foods as well! )
Live really well! (Exercise hard, briefly, intensely, and without causing harm- "no chronic cardio or chronic weight training for sport") 
Get lots of SLEEP! (enough said- 8 hours minimum in total blackness!)
Lots of slow, social, movement oriented "sport" movement that mimics tribal interactions that our ancestors dealt with and enjoyed for millennia, aka GOLF!

The more I think about it... 



Sunday, March 11, 2012

Paleo ice cream!

Here is how, if someone in your household insists on a sweet treat, you cope with that demand in a sane, and healthy manner!

You load up the Vitamix blender with 1 cup of whipping cream, 1/2 cup of stevia (I used Truvia brand), 4 cups of ice cubes, and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract (I forgot, but it tasted great anyway!)...

It takes a grand total of about 30 seconds blending time, and another 10 rounding up the ingredients.

I don't think I'll ever buy sugar-loaded ice cream again!

Why would I, really?  As Barney Fife, Renaisance man put it:

"Carbohydrates and Glucose!"

THAT is what is destroying our health! 

It's not fat, it's not red meat, it's not bacon and coconut oil....

It's carbohydrates and glucose!!!

Thanks Barn.


Saturday, March 10, 2012

Paleo Golf!

Actually, golfing is a wonderful, paleo-esque activity!  Really!

Think about it: long, leisurely hikes (like through the savannah), similar to tracking game...  lots of "slow-twitch" muscle fiber actions (chipping and putting), and just a few drives-(fast twitch power moves- like throwing a spear!)

A few interactions with hostile tribesmen (Judge Smails aka Ted Knight),

 and also a lot of interactions with characters such as Rodney Dangerfield (aka Al Czervik),

 and witch- doctor Ty Webb (Chevy Chase)... you get the idea!  Bushwood Country Club is a Paleo landscape!

Carl (Bill Murray) is a caveman, right on the country club scene!

And then, after a long, arduous (sort of) game of golf, you go to the clubhouse for  a big feast of prime rib or it's equivalent!

Talk about hunt-effort-reward!

So, why is there no mention of golf in Paleo discussions??

I think it is because Paleo/Primal folks are so strength training dominant.  Not that there is anything, per se wrong with that at all- training for strength is key in body composition and overall health, but there is also a huge role for the long, slow movement, punctuated by sudden bursts of high intensity effort that typified the lives of our primeval ancestors!  And, plaid pants and white belts aside:

Golf is IDEAL for this!!

I almost feel a bit like Martin Luther, saying this to the Catholic church hierarchy... but, it's true:

Golf is Paleo!!

There, I said it.  But, before you imagine me playing loud "Caddyshack" music from my golf bag, ala Rodney Dangerfield, and buying a plethora of "Naked Lady tee's", let me stress that I have some definite golf training ideas that Rodney, not to mention Judge Smails would not agree with!!  

(Carl might...)

OK, you have a normal golf "swing", right?  

Well, you also need a "left" golf swing (if you are right handed!)

The normal, "Transformetric" "Visualized resistance", Maxalding or "Dynamic tension"; whatever you call it-these exercises will dramatically increase your strength... and your overall golf game!!

Getting stronger, NATURALLY, will not only help your health, but will REVITALIZE your GOLF GAME!!

There is going to be a lot of that information in my "in-process" eBook :

Perfectly Paleo Exercise! 

This Book is coming SOON!

But for now, let me tell you one, invaluable golf tip:

Just swing from the other side!

Yup, if you are right-handed, practice swinging from the left side!

And, left-handed: do the reverse.  Right side swinging...

BUT, do it slowly, VISUALIZED, with resistance being generated from within, TENSING the muscles of the swing as you go!

Do it maybe 10 times, slowly...

Then, do it the right way, using your dominant (either right or left side depending), and also use the visualized resistance; making it hard, and flexing the working muscles intentionally.

This self resistance is going to build strength a lot, and doing it in reverse will balance out your development, and save your spine.  (The curse of golfers from swinging from one side forever!)

This exercise will only take you a few minutes per day...

But will turn you from a Judge Smails wannabe to..

A Ty Webb(Chevy Chase) golfing guru!!

Even Carl will be impressed!!

Monday, March 5, 2012

The BEST way to get COCONUT MILK into your smoothie!

Perfect form of coconut milk??  Coconut milk powder:
Coconut Milk Powder   1 pound

For a long time, I believed in adding a can of coconut milk to my Paleo Smoothie each morning...
But now, for awhile now, I have substituted a few hefty scoops of coconut milk powder!

I just put the scoops of coconut milk powder into my 1 cup of so of green tea, add my spices of turmeric, ginger, kelp and cinnamon- and I have my smoothie "base"!  Good fats, anti-oxidants, and the liquid are all there to incorporate the fruits and veggies with their phytonutrients, not to mention the macronutrients that even mainstream medicine  admits are essential to human life, not to mention health.

"But PaleoJay", I hear you asking, "Where oh where can I get such a convenient, inexpensive, and just-plain-wonderful adjunct to my Paleo Quick Start Smoothie??"

Glad you asked, Grasshopper: bulk foods coconut milk powder!

Click above, order in bulk (wholesale!) and say goodbye to coconut milk in cans, full of water and Bisphenol A (BPA) and guar gum (legume based).

I now use my old flour canister to hold my coconut milk powder- talk about a positive repurposing of an erstwhile harmful part of my kitchen...

Enjoy this improvement to your Paleo Smoothie!  It may have been a "Quick Start", but it is ever-incrementally improving!  As I discover things, I will pass them on here, so check back often- I am rather obsessive about health and fitness.


Sunday, March 4, 2012

Perfectly Paleo Exercise as Play, with Visualized Resistance!

Here is a photo of Maxick- a strongman from early in the last century.  He trained almost exclusively with muscle control exercises, which is another form of saying visualized resistance.  He lifted weights, not to develop his muscles, but to exhibit the strength he had developed!
This is an extreme example of Visualized Resistance Training, "muscle control", or "Dynamic Tension"-whatever you choose to call it!
In the photo above, taken for a beer company ad, he pressed the heavyweight boxing champion of England over his head with one arm...16 times, without spilling a drop of the glass of beer held in his other hand!  The English champion weighed 205, Maxick a mere 147 pounds!  Real world strength indeed!    His system of training was called 'Maxalding"... more later.  Let's get training!

Paleo workouts as “play”!
It may seem strange to think of workouts, which we have come to think of as something grueling, something to dread... as “PLAY”!  And yet, that is exactly how I’d like for you to start thinking of your training- play time!  
How can this be?   
Well, when I first awaken in the morning (quite early, I might add!), the first thing I do is to do a little sequence of awakening exercises.  This little sequence literally takes less that two minutes, and is not taxing at all- but, taking your joints and limbs into just such an untaxing warmup and “lubrication” before anything else, and it sets the tone mentally for your entire day!  Not to mention, it gently wakes you up in a natural and pleasant way:

Simple as that looks, it is critical for your physical well-being to begin your day in such a manner!

After I’ve made my Paleo Quick Start Smoothie for the day, and a thermos of green or white tea along with a cup of coffee for later, I go from kitchen to living room, carrying a mug of steaming tea...I feel great; warmed up physically and mentally, fully awake, well rested (I always try to get at least 8 hours of good, quality sleep in a totally lightless bedroom).  
I am ready to train- but, this doesn’t mean I’m not ready to also have some fun!  So, I turn on my television, and usually turn on streaming NETFLIX as well, since using Netflix I can “pick up where I left off” in whatever movie I was watching, just as if I was marking the place in a book with a bookmark... but, watch what you will, or don’t if you please.  Just get ready to have some fun!  Because gradually and naturally exploring your own musculature, and gently testing your limits, is actually a rejuvenating and renewing process- one that just plain feels good!  That’s why animals do it, and that’s why we should do it too!  
Here again is the link to the Transformetrics exercise demonstration icons!
All of the exercises you need to fully develop your physique naturally, safely, and aesthetically are here- really!  You can add other physical training, and you probably will as your vastly improved, nutrient dense, Paleo or Ancestral Diet begins remaking the cells in your body into healthy ones!  Soon, your body will start to divest itself of inflammation, that endless state of chronic stress put into our modern bodies by the vast amounts of genetically altered grains, industrial seed oils, and vast amounts of sugar in all it’s various forms- corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup, low fat dairy- all of those things that spike our insulin levels and irritate our gut linings...
This double whammy puts us into stress, elevating our cortisol (stress hormone), while at the same time starving us of the very nutrients our bodies need to fight off this stress, along with the further stress of “anti-nutrients” invading our damaged gut linings, and setting us up for a vast array of autoimmune diseases!    So, the moral of the story is this:
FIRST get your diet in order!  Paleo Diet, with a big green morning smoothie is the easiest, most effective way to do this!
SLEEP!  Lots!
EXERCISE- Here we are!  Start with your daily warmup, followed by Visualized Resistance, as shown in the link above.

Maxalding was the name of the Visualized Exercise system sold by Maxick for decades..  
Here is a link to his old books- some excellent reading is here!
Just so you know that this form of training has a long, very repectable tradition behind it-
But, like the long tradition behind our Ancestral Diets, that information has been largely forgotten in our new, low-fat, high carb, S.A.D. Standard American Diet of the past 50 years.  
It is time to relearn BOTH traditions!