The Paleo Diet.Eating the way we were meant to eat.

How to lose Fat. Part 1.

Posted in Diet, Health by eatingpaleo on September 11, 2009

This is the no.1 question people will ask me: “What do I have to do to lose fat?”.question-mark

The answer is simple and complicated at the same time. First of all I have to ask you the weight, height, the medical condition, what about your family, any history of diabetes, cancer etc.. There are somewhere between 15-20 questions..

After hearing their eating patterns, favorite food and whatnot, I am  almost capable of giving some sort of indications, following the mimic of his/hers face as they listen to it – uncertain? scared? confused? happy?

At the first meeting the ground-rules are established. There are two aspects when it goes to weight-loss: diet and sport

DIET

1. Set your calorie deficit.

2. Choose your nutrients wisely: Proteins come first, veggies, fats, carbs only after your workout.

Don’t forget water!

SPORT

Move!

I’ve written this post as an introduction for what it will happen next. Basically, I’m going to divide this in parts ( I like keeping my stuff organized), so it will be easier to understand, to follow and when you’ll need information about proteins, for example, you won’t have to go through the whole post to get it.

Coming up: Setting the deficit

Tagged with: ,

Supplements..

Posted in Health, Real Food by eatingpaleo on September 1, 2009

I have to be frank with you.. I was a real supplements fan.. I knew every product on every brand.. Thankfully I’m not pillslike that anymore. I started reading, experimenting and finally made my decision.. Before I share it with you, here’s a quote from Food Politics about supplements:

Supplement makers do not need to demonstrate that their products are safe and effective before selling them. [..] Although the supplement industry has always couched its political efforts in terms of health benefits or “freedom to choose”, its more immediate rationale was and is economic.

The FDA was not to demand scientific proof of statements of nutritional support as long as they were “truthful and not misleading” and did not use such words as diagnose, treat, prevent, cure or mitigate.

Bottom line, the FDA and FTC will deal with dietary supplements only after people start reporting problems with their use.  So.. you’re safe.. don’t worry.. they got it all taken care of.. NOT

This is, though, just a small piece of the puzzle. Supplements could help, but most of they are not vital. The way I see it, the biggest help they give is a mental one.. aka placebo. You know you’re taking your weight loss pills, you wouldn’t want to ruin their effect by eating too much, or by not exercising (it claims it gives energy right?).. Or even worse, you eat more, thinking that the pill will take care of everything..

The only kind of supplements that I suggest are vitamins and minerals, overrated as they might be, it’s the best choice if you have some money to spend on your health. Don’t expect them to do miracles, to treat diseases, or bad eating habits. You’ll have to take care of yourself, that’s the way it goes, there is no such thing as wonder pill, don’t trust advertising, don’t trust claims you read on packages..

Real Food is your pill,  your vitamin,  your mineral,  your cure.

Tagged with:

Apologies..

Posted in Health, My Program by eatingpaleo on September 1, 2009

Sorry for not posting recently.. I was away at the mountains.. for some fresh air and well.. just to take my mind of things and simply relax a little..

Here are some pics..

It was really hard getting there, but worth every second …

bike

The tents..

campingThe camping fire..

fireYou can imagine how fun it was being there.. I truly recommend a break like this.. 3 days that felt like 3 months..

Cheers`

Wine

Posted in Health by eatingpaleo on August 26, 2009

What can I say. This is probably the best (health-wise) alcoholic drink that you can consume. There are numerous studies regarding wine, both pro and contra. On the one hand it reduces signs of aging, better immunity, and it is rich in resveratrol, a vital antioxidant. On the other hand, though, drinking alcohol decreases brain size. wine

That’s all there is to it. It’s better than beer, but it’s worse than a normal cup of tea. It has some benefits, but you can’t really point them out: “I’m drinking wine to get some antioxidants”, not even a four-year-old will believe you. Eat some real food, there’s your antioxidants.

Here’s a tip: I don’t know if you are aware of the term spritz, it’s basically wine with sparkling water.  It’s about half water, half wine; or 1/3 water and 2/3 wine. See how you like it best. It’s a good trick if you want to give the illusion that you drink more.

Grok never drank wine, if anything, he ate grapes (which I advise you to do). All in all, wine is probably the best choice when it comes to alcohol. The key word here is moderation. Keep repeating it every time you want to drink alcohol.

Psst… Next week I’ll go at the country side to pick some grapes and make some wine. Tell no one.

Tagged with: ,

Dairy and the Paleo Diet

Posted in Health, Real Food by eatingpaleo on August 24, 2009

Dairy has always been a big thing in dieting. Is it good, is it bad? Low fat or low carb. What about the calcium and the lactose intolerance? I’m going to try and answer all of these questions, but.. like most things in life.. there is no straight answer.cheese

Lactose = milk sugarcarbohydrate.

75% of adult humans are lactose intolerant. Introducing lactase, this is the enzyme needed to digest lactose. This enzyme, reaches its highest level in the small intestine after birth and then begins a slow decline unless milk is consumed regularly. I guess Mother Nature knew her business. As a general rule, the longer a cheese is aged, the less lactase it will have.

Let’s talk about the fermentation process. When raw milk is left standing for a while, it turns “sour”. This is the result of fermentation, where lactic acid  bacteria ferment the lactose inside the milk into lactic acid. So, the bacteria will partly/fully digest the lactose (think about lactose intolerance), it will also partially digest casein (protein in milk, difficult to digest for some people). And last but not least, the lower PH of fermented milk makes its minerals more bioavailable. It reintroduces lactic-acid bacteria, along with their digestive enzymes, and all in all contributes to intestinal health.

These being said… When it comes to the paleo diet technically you shouldn’t eat dairy.. Animal milk is first known to have been used as human food at the beginning of animal domestication and as far as I know.. Grok didn’t raise cows next to his cave.

Now..If you really really really want to have it :), pick the one that is full fat, raw, organic, from a grass-fed cow/sheep etc, fermented, aged.

Don’t think about it too much, just keep in the the back of your head. Grok didn’t eat dairy, this means it’s not essential, you can live without it. No one will cut your throat if you eat it, just enjoy it sparingly and not for their protein content.

Paleo Diet vs. Low Carb Diet

Posted in Health, Real Food by eatingpaleo on August 21, 2009

Basically… this is what Paleo means right? Low Carb…. Steak

Hmm.. yes and no..

Loren Cordain in The Paleo Diet has an entire chapter dedicated to low carb.. to be more precise.. Why Paleo isn’t just another Low-Carb Diet. After so many years of low-carb, I was a bit angry at first, since he considers it to be just a faze and it is all part of this diet craze.

These would be, after Cordain, the main difference between the two diets:

Modern low-carbohydrate weight-loss diets are really high-fat diets that contain moderate levels of protein. They don’t have the high levels of protein that our ancestors ate – the levels found in the Paleo Diet. Actually, compared with what our ancestors ate, the carbohydrate content of these modern weight-loss diets is far too low. Even worse, almost all of these low-carbohydrate diets permit unlimited consumption of fatty, salty meats (such as bacon, sausage, fatty ribs, and lamb chops) and dairy products(cheeses, cream and butter) while restricting the consumption of frutis and vegetables. Cancer fighting fruits and vegetables! This dietary pattern is drastically different from that of our ancestors.

DietThe way I see it, low carb has done wonders for me, and it continues to do so. The fat intake depends on each one following this diet. I have seen low-carbers with a pretty low fat intake and they were fine also. The protein intake is the same thing, you just try and see what works best for you (keep in mind we’re not talking about the keto diet)

Indeed.. it’s a different thing. Low-carb is more permisive, you are “allowed” to eat a bigger variety of foods and not everyone will choose the healthier ones. Paleo on the other hand holds that as natural as possible ideea, which brings an advantage, you can’t eat paleo and chew gum, even if it has no sugar.

The biggest difference is the fruit and cheese issue. I’ll eat a little amount of cheese from time to time. For example,  if a sauce requires 1cup of sour cream, I won’t hesitate on using it. Here’s a tip though, consume mostly the fermented dairy: feta, cheddar cheese, parmesan etc.

Just stop and ask yourself: What would Grok eat?

What have I been eating lately..

Posted in Diet, Health, Real Food by eatingpaleo on August 19, 2009

Since I don’t have time to post everyday my meals, I’ll do this every once in a while just to assure you that I’m doing fine, from all points of view.

I usually have eggs in the morning: boiled, fried, scrambled etc, for breakfast:

omelette

After that it’s either some leftovers, or, I`ll cook something. Yesterday was beef soup

Beef, vegies, water, condiments.... deliciousness

Beef, veggies, water, condiments.... deliciousness

Cooking doesn’t have to be something hard, complicated and boring. I rarely prepare my ingredients in advance, I just throw in there whatever comes to my mind and just see where it takes me.

Is it good? Perfect than, let’s try something else.

Is it bad? No problem, we’re going to try it again and again until it suites our taste.

I search for other recipes but rarely make them 100% “correct” . Trust me, the kitchen is a fun place to be, as long as you’re cooking for pleasure.

So? What’s on today’s menu?

Six Rules for eating wisely

Posted in Health, Real Food by eatingpaleo on August 16, 2009

After finishing The Omnivore’s Dilemma I fell in love with Michael  Pollan’s work, so..

I started looking after more of his

Fodd is fun. Enjoy :)

Food is fun. Enjoy 🙂

books and articles. Naturally, I stumbled upon his web site and found a history of all his articles published in different magazines/newspapers. One of them was called:

Six rules for eating wisely, I want to share this one with you.

  1. Don’t eat anything your great-great-great grandmother wouldn’t recognize as food. Eat food, not food products.
  2. Avoid foods containing high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS). It’s not just in cereals and soft drinks but also in ketchup and bologna, baked goods, soups and salad dressings.
  3. Spend more, eat less.All this “cheap food” is making us fat and sick. It’s also bad for the health of the environment. The higher the quality of the food you eat, the more nutritious it is and the less of it you’ll need to feel satisfied.
  4. Pay no heed to nutritional science or the health claims on packages.Consider that the healthiest foods in the supermarket–the fresh produce–are the ones that don’t make FDA-approved health claims.
  5. Shop at the farmers’ market.You’ll begin to eat foods in season, when they are at the peak of their nutritional value and flavor, and you’ll cook, because you won’t find anything processed or microwavable.
  6. How you eat is as important as what you eat.Americans are fixated on nutrients, good and bad, while the French and Italians focus on the whole eating experience.So, relax. Eat Food. And savor it.

This is it. Pretty easy huh ? Try to follow these rules as much as possible, and you’re already doing more than any diet would.

Tagged with: ,

Fish and mercury contamination

Posted in Health, Real Food by eatingpaleo on August 14, 2009

If I were to make a top 3 healthy foods, fish (and seafood) would definitely be in it.

I love fish, the fattier, the better. I’m sure you all know about the health benefits, but just to make sure, just to name a few: reduces the LDL(the evil) while simultaneously increases the HDL, lowers the risk of heart attacks, stroke, type 2 diabetes, all those delicious omega3`s and so on.

As any other thing that looks too good to be true, we have the same situation here. You see.. there’s a downside, and the fish isn’t the one to blame, it’s the environment.

You have to admit it looks kind of creepy

You have to admit it looks kind of creepy

Fish and seafood are often contaminated with heavy metals, particularly mercury, by polychlorinated biphenyls, and by pesticides (Wo-Ho!!) It’s not the companies who dump their waste into oceans, rivers, lakes fault.. the fish (which just happens to live there) was in their way.. damn fish..

Seriously now, it’s a serious problem, but the good news is that most of the time, the amount of mercury we get from fish is quite small. This fact still stands though! It worries me to see that we live in a polluted world and most of us are exposed to a host of toxic compounds.

Now… here are a few ways you can minimize your risk of eating contaminated fish:

  • Avoid fish taken from lakes and rivers, especially those close to the city;
  • Choose fish that comes from cleaner waters, like Alaska
  • Smaller fish, who are not predators, are better.

(The big fish eats the smaller fish who eats the smallest fish, chances are higher for the big fish to be contaminated. And, they live longer, which gives them more time to accumulate more mercury)

  • Bigger fish, eat them sparingly (eg. tuna, shark..)

Please don’t use this as an excuse for not eating your fish. They’re one of the best things you could ever eat, enjoy!

Grilling and the PAH emissions

Posted in Health, Real Food by eatingpaleo on August 12, 2009

I was at a picnic the other today, it was nothing planned really, but definitely  worth while.

I don’t know exactly how much I ate, but at the end of the day it’s irrelevant,  it was real food, to be more precise, it was pork meat bought from the market, that piece of meat was cut right in front of me. Marinated in pepper, vinegar, oil and all sort of condiments tossed in together.

Pork ribs

Pork ribs

And now that we are at the grilling subject. You know when they always say to eat grilled chicken breast, or grilled fish or whatever. This is technically the way you should eat, right?

Fraid` not

Besides the fact that I don’t agree with the “no fat” part that is promoted again and again and again (and again and again and again), the grill has always been looked at as a Godsent and that’s simply wrong. Have you ever heard of the emission of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons ?

Here’s the catch: you know that delicious, crunchy little crust that is formed on top of the meat? (mmm…) well that’s carcinogenic.

The first study ever made regarding this subject was carried out by Lijunsky and Ross (1967). Yheir results showed that the levels of PAH in charcoal-grilled meat was dependent on the fat content and the closeness of the meat to the heat source.

They explained their findings by the theory that melted fat from the heated meat drips onto the coals and is pyrolyzed, giving rise to the formation of PAH, which were deposited on the meat surface as the smoke rises.

There you have it folks. Grilling isn’t as good as anybody will say it is. If you just have a barbecue once in a while, that’s fine, but don’t turn it into a everyday, or even every week habit ..

Here are 2 things that you can do:

  1. You can grill the meat into a vertical grill, this way the fat won’t drip onto the charcoal.
  2. (common sense really) Remove the burnt part as much as possible. This applies to everything grilled and fried. The burnt part is a no-no.

Consider these things the next time you’ll go at a barbecue.

References:

Bonny K. Larsson, Greger P.Sahlberg, Anders T.Eriksson, and Leif A. Busk