The Paleo Diet, as its cofounder Loren Cordain defined it, is being debased by marketers. It really disturbs me when I see so many people struggle to adapt to The Real Diet of Man only to be led astray by the many marketers of Paleo recipes. These recipes usually replicate traditional common dishes with different ingredients. Yet when one analyzes the ingredients, the "new" dishes are still nutritional disasters.
My first pet peeve is with the meat selections in all too many of these diets. Many of the authors of these diets do not emphasize only 100% grass-fed meats. That alone is ridiculous. Many suggest "lean meats" in general. That is wrong no matter what. Lean grain-fed meats are nutritionally deficient and they still have high Omega-6 loads versus small quantifies of Omega-3. They are the problem, not the solution. On the other hand, when it comes to 100% grass-fed meats, we WANT fatty meats. The fats have the most favorable Essential Fatty Acid (EFAs) ratios!
This is why we sell so many knuckle and straight marrow bones. People are focused on the fat inside these bones. We also sell fat (external fat) and suet (internal body fat). Many of our customers want these fats for soups and broths plus to render down for cooking fats. If we want optimal nutrition, lean is not preferred. The problem we have is that too often our 100% grass-fed meats are too lean.
My exasperation with some of the Paleo diet suggestions does not end with the meat choices. Look at these ingredients I found with a brief search of just a few recipes.
- almond meal/flour - huge Omega-6 source, low in nutrition
- eggs - no mention of the Omega-6 to Omega-3 ratios
- honey - worse than sugar, high glycemic
- coconut sugar - similar to sugar, high glycemic
- tapioca flour/powder - very high glycemic index, low in nutrition
- coconut flour - Omega-6 source very low in nutrition
- pecans - huge Omega-6 source, low in nutrition
- almond butter - huge Omega-6 source, low in nutrition
- maple syrup - worse than sugar, high glycemic
- skinless chicken breasts - no mention of the Omega-6 to Omega-3 ratios
- coconut oil - Omega-6 source very low in nutrition
- coconut milk - Omega-6 source very low in nutrition
- avocado - not a good EFA source
- sunflower seed butter - huge Omega-6 source, low in nutrition
- shredded coconut - Omega-6 source very low in nutrition
- mini chocolate chips - just more sugar
- dried dates - very high glycemic and low in nutrition
- lean meats - this term has no meaning in nutrition circle
Another aspect of popular Paleo is cheating. In some cases, one high glycemic desert or drink can have negative fungal repercussions that last for up to nine days. If one does this once a week, they will never be healed! Folks that cheat like that then claim the diet doesn't work. Most Paleo sites recommend extremely high Omega-6 foods (nuts, grain-fed meats including chicken, and even some fruits and veggies). Therefore they never address the Omega-3 deficiency, in fact they make it worse. That destroys the immune system and brain function. Without balancing the Omega-6 and Omega-3 fats within your body, one is not addressing what may well be the most important aspect of the diet!
A lot of the recipe advice is based on getting people hooked on the idea that change is a simple swap of some food items for others that all end up tasting and appearing to be the same. Unfortunately the new food choices do not change the underlying chemistry away from the traditional foods. This marketing approach is based on satisfying the majority and not on really addressing what's required for optimizing one's health. People do not like to change. But they will take a pill or undergo an operation if they think that solves the problem. They will stop using sugar as long as they can use honey, real maple syrup, or fruit for sweets. They will cook with nut flour if it can taste like wheat flour. Changes such as those either do not address the underlying problem and are often actually worse than what they were doing.
To avoid being deceived I encourage everyone to download the Food Analysis tables. With that information you'll know the key points in proper food selection. The foods required for optimizing body and brain function must cover all three of the critically important "A, B, C" parameters or else don't eat them.
- A. Eat low glycemic foods. High glycemic foods are foreign to body function and cause fungal issues that negatively impact the body.
- B. Eat foods that are low in Omega-6s and high in Omega-3s, seeking a 1:1 ratio. This 1:1 balance between Omega-6s and Omega-3s is critical for a strong immune system.
- C. Eat nutrient dense foods, especially those that provide 100% of the nutrients needed for optimal body function. Why eat foods that do not significantly contribute to the needs of the body?
The most basic, most fundamental thing everyone must know is that the green plant must be at the bottom of their food chain. Nuts, seeds, grain, fruit, and even some vegetables do not belong in The Real Diet of Man.
If our goal is optimal health, we must not be lead astray by the traditions of the thundering herd. The thundering herd is plagued with chronic diseases and nearly every chronic health problem they have is due to the foods they eat. I do not want to join their plight.
If you want more low down on the advantages of grass-fed meats read Grass-Fed Beef In A Nutshell.
Wednesday, September 11, 2013