Paleo Diets
Primal Nutrition

Paleo diets and primal nutrition is the best diet for chronic illness and inflammation.  What is considered Paleo Diets? It is understood that when practicing the paleo/primal lifestyle, one mimics the diet of previous generations known as Paleolithic that ate only those foods that they could hunt and gather prior to agriculture.

This isn't exactly easy in today's busy world and unless you eat grubs and are fortunate enough to hunt or have a source for wild game, your choices are limited to that of a grocer or local farmer.

Remember, you don't need to emulate the "caveman" rather take the information below and try to do the best you can based on access, economic status and time. 

Too frequently I see others acting as the Paleo Police only to frustrate the newcomer making them feel as if though their approach will fail them. 

Remember, this is your journey.........

Paleo Diets consist of a combination of lean meats, eggs, seafood, vegetables, fruits, and nuts.

Professor Loren Cordain of The Paleo Diet states:

"By eating the foods that we are genetically adapted to eat, followers of the Paleo Diet are naturally lean, have acne-free skin, improved athletic performance, and are experiencing relief from numerous metabolic-related and autoimmune diseases."

I have experienced great success following this style of eating myself as well, prescribing it to my clients suffering from a variety of ailments and auto-immune disease.

It is restrictive, but it works and it is do-able even in social situations or restaurant outings.

So many might say "I can't be that restrictive!" But you can. Why? Because the noticeable health changes are so dramatic that you can't imagine eating any other way.

You really grasp the concept "Eat to Live" rather than "Live to Eat".

If looking at before and after stories and photos drives motivation for you as it does me, you might really enjoy The Paleo Miracle, 50 Real Stories of Health Transformation where you will also be able to see my personal story. When I began my journey 85 pounds ago, I remember spending hours and hours just reading and viewing stories and photos of real people who had some of the very issues, challenges and addictions to over come that I had suffered for most of my life. At that point, I knew I wasn't alone in this journey.

Some benefits that so many of my clients have experienced include:

  • Increased Energy & Performance
  • Relief from Bloating and Stomach Pain
  • Normalized Bowels
  • Blood Sugar Regulation
  • Insulin Normalization
  • Improved Lipid Panels
  • Clearer Skin
  • Muscle Gains
  • Freedom from Inflammation
  • Reduced symptoms of Parkinson's Disease
  • Reduced symptoms of ADHD
  • Reduced symptoms of Allergies
  • Reversal of IBS
  • Anti-Aging

The Paleo Diet is actually quite close to my Restricted Phase I plan but it is a bit more liberal so if you find Phase I too restrictive, try Paleo/Primal instead!

Those that are currently promoting this way of eating even go so far as to say that it can and will prevent diabetes, cancer, heart disease, auto-immune disease and a myriad of other inflammatory responses. Dr. Kim Mulvihill of CBS San Francisco is a well respected reporter in my area and has put together the following well cited 5 part series.

As a nutrition educator, I am frequently recommending this diet as an anti-inflammatory disease reversing diet.

For me, one of the most noticeable changes in some of my clients has been the leaning out effect after a diet plateau.

This interview conducted by Robert Crayhon MS best describes the positive benefits and aspects of the paleo diet in a nut shell. (pun intended!)

What is the difference between Paleo diets and Primal? Many Paleo followers generally exclude night shade vegetables and dairy while Primal followers usually eat these two food groups.

If you suffer from an auto-immune disease, night shades should really be discontinued as they can be highly inflammatory.

Night shade vegetables include:

  • Eggplant
  • Peppers (including paprika & hot sauces)
  • Tomatoes
  • Potatoes

Raw and cultured dairy sources will always be your best Primal Diet choice and I never promote pasteurized milk. It is very high in sugar and any beneficial immune properties and enzymes have been destroyed by pasteurization.

There are hard core Paleo followers who hunt their own game and exclude eggs as well as cured foods such as bacon. Don't be too dogmatic in your new lifestyle rather experiment and figure out what works for your biochemical individuality, lifestyle and personal taste.

No one dictates your menu but you and no one lives in your body but you

I frequently tell others when asked about my diet, "I have taken a little of this and a little of that and put them into my dietary basket". I consider myself a bit more primal than paleo due to my consumption of heavy whipping cream, a bit of yogurt and eggs.

I refer to my dietary choices as lower carbohydrate Contemporary Paleo Diet.

The rules are simple. Eat only the foods on the list, obtain them from clean, sustainable sources focusing on the following:

  • Grass Fed Beef
  • (This is the lean meat reference as grass fed beef is leaner than that of conventional)
  • Organic Pastured Pork, Turkey & Chicken
  • Wild Caught Fish and Shell Fish
  • Organic Fresh Vegetables
  • Organic Fresh Fruits
  • Raw Nuts
  • Traditional Fats and Oils

There are varying degrees of belief regarding saturated fat and many who promote paleo/primal agree that saturated fat from traditional and tropical sources is benign and even necessary for good health.

These fats & oils include:

  • Butter from Grass Fed Sources
  • Ghee
  • Coconut Oil
  • Olive Oil
  • Bacon Drippings (Lard)
  • Tallow
  • Duck Fat

You can eat meat and most vegetables until satisfied. The fruit and nuts on the other hand should be used as necessary in smaller quantities. Fruit is sugar and sugar promotes insulin which in excess can promote fat storage so you want to be careful with your fruit choices. Fructose is metabolized in the liver so this is another reason to choose the frequency wisely. Berries for example are the lowest in sugar and high in fiber. Nuts are heavy in omega 6 and as I've written here, an abundance of omega 6 in the diet is inflammatory. Think of nuts as condiments and you will garner greater success.

I have been practicing and advising for many years and I have watched the Paleo community become quite dependent on their honey, dates and maple syrups all of which can promote addiction so don't fall into that trap. 

If you're trying to lean out, drop the fruit and nuts and consume more olives, avocado and coconut flakes if you find the need to fill in for those lost choices.

If the grass fed/organic aspect is out of reach for you budget, begin with conventional and be mindful of your future purchases striving to purchase the cleanest and most humanely raised food as possible. Be sure you are supplementing with Omega 3 fatty acids in the form of fish oil because this is the imbalance that also contributes to inflammation.

If you are consuming all grass fed, wild caught and pastured animal proteins with the avoidance of vegetable oils, your need to supplement with Omega 3 marine oils is probably un-necessary. Congratulations! That is Paleo!

I can honestly say that conventionally raised animal proteins are still by far healthier than grains and legumes as your protein sources. Toxins are stored in the adipose tissue of the animal so if you are consuming conventional, consider trimming the fat prior to consumption to avoid these toxic compounds.

If you suffer from an auto-immune disease, you might consider eliminating eggs, night shades and any dairy.

Don't have time to cook? Normally I would not recommend pre-made food diets. However, this is an exception due to the quality standards employed by this company. You can have Paleo Brands Gourmet Meals delivered right to your door! No thinking, no shopping, no prepping!

Steve's Original

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