Paleo DietCategory Archives

My First “CSA” Box

My first box arrived from Farm Fresh To You.  It’s a service that delivers organic produce right to your door.  I ordered a Veggies Only box since we tend not to eat many fruits.  This week’s box included butternut squash, green cabbage, baby Romanesco, bacon avocado (appears to be a Florida variety), broccoli, leeks, fennel bulb, nantes carrots, lacinato (dino kale), and a large head of green leaf lettuce.  The broccoli is clearly for me since hubby won’t eat it.  I’m a little concerned about the Romanesco.  It may be too close to broccoli for hubby, but it is also considered a type of cauliflower.  Since he’ll eat cauliflower, that’s what I’ll tell him it is.  He isn’t too keen on carrots, either, but I can generally get small amounts of it into recipes without complaint.

Romanesco

So the hunt is on for Paleo-friendly recipes for the Romanesco.  Many recipes are basic, consisting of Romanesco with oil and salt added.  I’m fairly certain that won’t fly with hubby, so onward!  I found a recipe for Romanesco Tarte with Bacon that looked good.  Without the shell, it would be at least Primal-friendly.  Another option would be Romanesco with Spicy Italian Sausage.  Mario Batali’s Romanesco alla Diavola recipe could work, too, though it appears to be rather upscale and may need some modification for the budget-conscious.

Dr. Cate Shanahan on diet and brain health

I’ve been listening to the Paleo Summit with Sean Croxton.  Today, I listened to the author of Deep Nutrition, Dr. Cate Shanahan, MD, talking about how important proper dietary fat is to the brain. Brains are primarily made of fat and cholesterol. She says that kids with ADD or ADHD are actually exhibiting signs of poor nutrition that could lead to more serious mental illnesses later such as schizophrenia if the nutrition is not corrected. The crux of Dr. Cate’s talk today was that most pharmaceutical use can be eliminated with proper diet. She recommends Paleo and traditional diets. These tend to be lower carb, higher fat diets.

References:
Shanahan MD, Catherine (2011-04-22). Deep Nutrition: Why Your Genes Need Traditional Food (p. 287). Big Box Books.
Dr. Shanahan’s site: http://drcate.com/

Why meat must be part of our diet

Prehistoric Hunters
Prehistoric Hunters in a Cave Painting

Vegetarians and vegans like to tell us that we should eat a largely carbohydrate diet. I disagree. They like to say that our diet should resemble that of gorillas and chimpanzees since they are supposedly our nearest evolutionary relatives. But our digestive systems are very different from theirs. Barry Groves explores those differences at length in an article on his site. Our digestive system resembles that of carnivores more than it does that of herbivores.

Dense carbohydrates are a very recent addition to the human diet. Agriculture did not occur until about 10,000 years ago; and in some areas such as northernEurope, agriculture did not arrive until about 5,000 years ago. Prior to that, humans were hunter/gatherers. Modern day hunter/gatherer diets tend to be largely meat-based with a preference for the fattiest portions. It is clear from the bone piles found at sites where prehistoric human remains have been found that the prehistoric diet included a lot of meat as well. Their cave paintings depict hunting, not agriculture. And the bones of those prehistoric humans showed that they were much healthier than us. They were taller, and they did not suffer from degenerative diseases such as arthritis. Those in the northern climates particularly would have been eating a meat diet because the ice age would not have allowed much vegetation to grow.

On the other hand, arthritis, obesity, and heart disease are apparent in Egyptian mummies, a society where grains predominated.

References:
Barry Groves. Should all animals eat a high-fat, low-carb diet? (This article compares our digestive system with herbivores and carnivores.)

More reasons not to eat whole grains

I’ve known for some time that grains don’t work well for me. I was reading a Paleo Diet newsletter today and discovered another reason not to eat them. Apparently, they are associated with deficiency diseases.

Whole Grain Cereals and Vitamin D Metabolism

Nutritional scientists have known forever and a day that excessive consumption of whole grain cereals severely impairs vitamin D metabolism and can lead to the bone disease, rickets[16]. In fact, as far back as 1918, before vitamin D was discovered, a scientist in England by the name of Mellanby routinely induced experimental rickets in puppies by feeding them an oat diet[17]. Epidemiological studies of human populations consuming high levels of unleavened whole grain breads show vitamin D deficiency and rickets to be widespread[18-20]. A study of radio-labeled vitamin D in humans consuming 60g of wheat bran daily for 30 days clearly demonstrated an enhanced elimination of vitamin D in the intestines[21].

16. Cordain L. Cereal grains: humanity’s double edged sword. World Rev Nutr Diet 1999; 84:19-73.
17. Mellanby E. The part played by an “accessory factor” in the production of experimental rickets. J Physiol (London) 1918;52:11-14.
18. Gibson RS, Bindra GS, Nizan P, Draper HH: The vitamin D status of east Indian Punjabi immigrants to Canada. Brit J Nutr 1987; 58:23-29.
19. Brooke OG, Brown IRF, Cleeve HJW: Observations of the vitamin D state of pregnant Asian women in London. Brit J Obstet Gynaecol 1981;88:18-26.
20. Hunt SP, O’Riordan JLH, Windo J, Truswell AS: Vitamin D status in different subgroups of British Asians. Br Med J 1976;2:1351-54.
21. Batchelor AJ, Compston JE: Reduced plasma half-life of radio-labeled 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 in subjects receiving a high fiber diet. Brit J Nutr 1983;49:213-16.