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The Paleo Diet Part 1

Unfortunately there is no one size fits all way of eating. The more I’ve thought about how to outline the perfect diet plan the more I realized I can only offer a guideline for the best way to eat. Everyone is different & everyone will require slightly different dietary tweaks. Don’t get me wrong, everyone will benefit from a Paleo diet. This is merely a good starting point, there are things that are “paleo friendly” that I still don’t include in my diet. Don’t worry, once you get in there & start implementing what I recommend it’ll become pretty easy to know what foods you should stay away from. I’ve made so many mistakes in the past couple years pursuing the perfect diet. I continue to learn & explore all the latest in health & nutrition, in turn my diet is always evolving. I believe in a whole/real foods way of eating that is designed around the lowest inflammation foods possible. The standard American diet that most of us are accustomed to is the exact opposite, it’s based on a low fat/high dietary carbohydrate model that has proven to be the cause of most ailments today. Not to mention the ridiculousness of having to eat every 2 to 3 hours. That would drive me crazy!

The basic Paleo model is as follows: High quality non-starchy vegetables, nutrient dense protein, wild caught fish, whole food fats & low fructose fruits. Seems pretty basic huh? Most of us have gotten so used to processed & refined foods that they have become staples in our kitchens. Everything has gotten so cheap, so convenient, so fast. We are slowly starting to wake up & realize we can’t keep fueling this vicious cycle of pharmaceuticals to help deal with the damage our dietary habits are inflicting. We are experiencing the result of this now & the statistics are not pretty.

  • By 2020, 52% of all US adults will have diabetes or prediabetes
  • Health spending associated with diabetes & prediabetes will rise to $500 billion annually
  • Over the next decade, the US may spend $3.4 trillion of diabetes related care

Meanwhile, mainstream medicine & nutrition continues to recommend a low fat diet high in “heart healthy grains.” Crazy huh?

For the skeptics out there, I hear it all the time, “I’m fine, I don’t have any issues with wheat.” To which I reply, “how do you know?” Most people have no idea how good we can feel because we never go long enough with out eating these inflammatory foods. Gluten intolerance can (and does) affect nearly every tissue in the body, including the brain, skin, endocrine system, stomach, liver & even blood vessels. There is not a single tissue or organ system that’s not affected by grain consumption.

Celiac disease is just one possible expression of gluten intolerance, there are many other ways that sensitivity to gluten can manifest in the body. The growing evidence supports the fact that Non celiac gluten sensitivity or what’s now  being referred to as NCGS is associated with an astonishing variety of diseases. Everything from schizophrenia & epilepsy, to Type 1 diabetes & osteoporosis, to dermatitis & psoriasis, to Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism to peripheral neuropathy. I know I left out quite a few conditions but to name a few more…Alzheimer’s, dementia, depression, anxiety, headaches & even seizures.

Most of us are walking around on a daily basis with systemic inflammation & we just except it. We think we are just getting older & that it’s normal to have aches, pains, chronic headaches & even disease. If I hear one more person say, “runs in our family or it’s in our genes” I’m going to go crazy! If this is still what you think then you obviously haven’t read my other blogs. You might want to stop right here, go back & read. If you have read them & are still skeptical then perfect! I challenge you, be a experiment of one. It only takes a matter of days to start feeling the difference

Just to give you something to think about, you want to shoot for at least 50% of your diet coming from healthy fats, 30% from protein & 20% carbs, I tend to prefer more of a 60-30-10 approach. Once you get in there & start experimenting a little you’ll find there are variations of macronutrient ratios. I tend to do everything pretty extreme so I decided to go with a super low carb approach more of what they call a ketogenic diet, Bulletproof intermittent fasting & all. I’m still playing around & trying to find the ideal balance for me, it all kinda depends on what your trying to accomplish. The important thing to remember is to increase your intake of healthy fats & eliminate processed & refined sugars & grains which basically get turned into sugar in our bodies. We want a high healthy fat, moderate protein, low carb/ low sugar diet. Healthy fats coming from things like MCT oil, coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil, avocados, almonds & fish oil to name a few. I’ve talked extensively in previous blogs about why incorporating healthy fats rich in omega-3 and monounsaturated fatty acids is so important. Being on a low fat diet is like telling your body there’s a famine & actually stresses your body out. Sorry vegans but chia & flax are not good sources of fat. Chia & flax seeds have omega 3’s in them but they are the short chain omega 3’s. We are very inefficient at converting them into EPA & DHA which are the longer chain omega 3’s that we need for anti-inflammatory purposes. They also play a key role in brain health & heart health. EPA & DHA provide protection against cancer, Alzheimer’s & depression.  It improves skin conditions like psoriasis & acne, as well as fetal brain development, inflammatory bowel disorders & arthritis to name a few. There’s a good reason 60% of the solid weight of our brain is made from fat.

Feel free to leave questions, comments & ideas. I’m more then willing to help in anyway I can. Keep a look out, I’m going to post a more detailed diet plan shortly.

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