The previous Great NEWS post discussed the Paleo Principles and Primal Lifestyle and today we follow up with Fat and Food: Facts, Fads and Fiction. Many family and friends have been a bit surprised to learn about me adopting and writing about the primal lifestyle which embraces the behaviors of our primal gather and hunter ancestors. After reading, researching, personal experimenting and soul searching my gradual shift from my paleo youth to mostly raw and vegetarian style has shifted again to a mostly plant based high raw plus paleo light lifestyle. Sound confusing? Read further to understand my journey better and maybe uncover your own new distinctions. Today we focus on many Fat and Food: Facts, Fads and Fiction that impact our choices and life.
The paleo ancestral way of living refers to how our ancient ancestors lived before the shift to fixed communities, settlements and town centered within agriculture and farming sites. Primal living does not mean you live the life of a caveman eating massive amounts of berries, fish, fruits, green plants, herbs, meat, nuts, reptiles, roots and wild plants. However, many peoples in numerous areas of the world eat this way today and enjoy excellent happiness, health and holistic harmony in their life.
Before you close your ears, emotions and eyes to the concept of paleo eating and primal lifestyle, consider the state of the world today. Many areas and countries are struggling with death, destruction of the environment, disability, disease and disasters due to the evolution of mechanical madness and modern methods regarding food consumption, farming and production. Many of our agriculture practices evolved for providing a stable source of food for current consumption and enough surpluses for storage. In spite of all the modern advances, best intentions and technology we seem to be loosing the race to feed the world and stay healthy.
Unfortunately billions of people are malnourished and even starving today from a lack of the quality and quantity of foods needed. More importantly the nutrient dense organic whole foods needed for health and vitality are being replaced with fake foods, fast foods and junk foods with long shelf life’s that are short changing our health and well being.
To understand the major challenges in our world today let’s look at the Fat and Food: Facts, Fads and Fiction to better understand where we missed the turn and created this multi car pile up train wreck leading us to our current environmental, financial and healthcare disaster.
Our ancestors were gathers and hunters that lived by observing and understanding the natural cycles and seasons of animals, plants and weather. They knew how to utilize the various resources available to feed, fuel, protect and shelter them.
Humans have evolved with the ability to eat a wide variety of animals, grasses, insects, nuts, plants, reptiles, sea foods and seeds. Our ancestors learned by trial and error how to live off the bounty of the land and waters. They ate local foods harvested fresh and in season. They also understood how to capitalize on peak availability of certain foods and use methods to preserve and stockpile foods to sustain them through harsher dry or winter seasons. Every geographical area had unique factors which had to be dealt with in order to survive and thrive.
Over the centuries people began to gather wild animals, plants and seeds for domestication. They began to create natural hybrids of animals and plants that produced a favorable food benefit. The foods where also irrigated, migrated or transported to new regions to expand their availability.
Over time they also learned to domesticate and raise chickens (eggs), cows (butter & milk), fish, goats, guinea hens, hogs, pigeons, rabbits, sheep and turkeys. This provided easier access to the variety of animal products they needed all year long. Please understand that this post is not suggesting everyone to start eating meat three times a day like some body builders and cavemen types recommend. Our planet cannot provide this amount of animal products for everyone because animals and fish are less efficient that plants at utilizing energy for growth. However it may make sense to consider some animal and fish products one meal a day for most days.
Due to cultural, financial, political, religious and social reasons certain groups of people began to dictate, dominate and manipulate the foods and food growing regions for control, ego, power and wealth. Fast forward to today and you have big agriculture conglomerates, biotechnology companies, fossil fuel companies, food producers, governments and politicians, medical providers and pharmaceutical companies dictating what we can or cannot consume and should or should not have access to. Over the last one hundred years there has been a massive distortion and manipulation of information regarding what is most ecologically friendly, healthy and sustainable.
Fat and Food False Facts Fads and Fiction
Here are some of the most common false and misleading statements made by the power brokers in the food, health and regulatory organizations which influence our decisions and lives.
Cutting back on saturated fats will reduce your cholesterol and improve your overall health. False. Animal and plant based saturated fat reduction may or may not improve your health. There are many factors such as overall diet, environment, exercise, lifestyle, and stress that determine health. Many people on low fat diets and cholesterol medications are now sicker than before they changed.
Butter, coconut oil and palm oils are bad for you because they are saturated fats. False. These are very efficient sources of dietary fats. Our body, brain, cells, digestion, glands, hormones, metabolism and muscles all depend on saturated fats for health and vitality.
Low fat diets are healthier than a moderate or high fat diet. False. Low fat diets usually evolve into high carbohydrate diets which usually results in disease, obesity and sickness.
GMO foods are basically the same as normal foods. False. GMO canola, corn and soy do not occur naturally and are a form of genetic roulette where humans and biotechnology has artificially modified the DNA material in a way that would not occur naturally. There are numerous consequences and risks coming to light that warn us to avoid these Frankenfoods.
GMO foods are more cost effective and efficient to grow than organic foods. False. When you factor in the total costs, environmental impact, liabilities and risks of GMO mono-crops they are less beneficial than organic crops. Consider the huge economic and environmental cost associated with: biodiversity reduction, depleted soil nutrients, fossil fuel use, health issues, increased resistant pests, loss of land and rainforest, pollution, reduced food nutritional value, synthetic fertilizers, fungicides, herbicides, insecticides and pesticides, super weeds, top soil erosion, toxic exposure, transportation costs, water contamination and depletion.
Human are herbivores and are meant to eat only plants. False. We are neither a carnivore (meat eater) nor herbivore (plant eater). Humans are a mixture of carnivore and herbivore referred to as an omnivore. That means depending on climate, geographical location and season we can consume a wide variety of animal and plant foods and remain healthy.
Animals and fish fed with antibiotics, artificial foods, GMO crops and raised in Confined Animal Feeding Operations (CAFO) are comparable to free range and wild foods and safe to consume. False. CAFOs are harmful to the animals, environment and humans. We are best served by eating free range, humane raised, organic products that are grown and prepared with tender loving care (TLC).
Heated and treated fats and oils are the same as raw fats and oils. False. The majority of heated and treated fats and oils are harmful and toxic. Raw fats and oils are normally the best. The better the quality the unsaturated oil or fat the quicker it breaks down with heat. Saturated fats and oils can remain stable with a little more heat and will still break down with excessive heat like high temperature frying.
Artificial sugars and sweeteners are safe. False. All artificial products have risks and side effects. They are not processed by the body the same as natural products.
Foods that are highly processed and refined and last a long time on shelves are just as nutritious as fresh foods. False. Fresh is best. The more heating, processing, refining and treating that takes place the more foods are denatured and destroyed.
All fish is good for you. False. First there is a big difference between farm raised and wild fish. Farmed fish is not natural and not healthy. Even wild fish has a wide difference in benefits and quality. The smaller the wild fish generally the better it is for you and conversely the larger the fish the worse it is. This is due to the accumulation of mercury and heavy metals in larger fish. Many large fish are recommended to be limited to one serving a month due to mercury.
A grain fed chicken egg is as good as an organic, free range chicken egg. False. Most grain fed chickens are treated with antibiotics eat GMO corn, soy or unnatural foods which are not healthy. Look for organic, free range vegetarian chicken eggs that are free of antibiotics.
Plant based fats and oils are equally as good as animal and fish fats and oils. False. While plant fats like almonds, avocado, Brazil nuts, cacao, coconut, flax seed, grapeseed, olive, sesame and walnuts are fantastic they cannot provide all the same benefits as animal and fish fats. Fats and oils are directly correlated to the climate from which they come and in the more northern and southern temperate and the artic climates the main source of healthy fat and oil is from animal and fish sources. Fish and krill oil for example have more health properties than plant based fats. Krill oil has one of the highest antioxidant ratings of any food. Most people in colder climates require fats from animal or fish sources to deal with the cold and energy demands of winter. There it is especially true to eat local.
You should have 7 to 11 servings of breads, cereals, grains, rice and starches a day. You need lots of carbohydrates for energy and health. Carb loading is great for long term endurance. These are all false! Following the 7 to 11 recommendation is almost a guaranteed prescription for heath issues like Candida, diabetes, fat storage, health issues, high blood sugar, immune problems, inflammation, obesity, sickness and weight gain. Too many carbohydrates and not enough good fats and proteins are some of the main reasons for the health issues we face today.
As you can clearly see the paleo eating and primal lifestyle fits very well with the concept of eat local and in season. The animals and fish are at the optimal size and body fat content in the late summer and fall for harvest and surplus storage. In the northern regions you have salmon. This is key to help people survive and thrive during the colder and harsh winter months when most other foods are not readily available. In more temperate zones you have anchovies, herring, mackerel and sardines. Coconuts and less fatty fish are perfect for tropical zones. Eating local and in season makes perfect logical sense.
Therefore following a paelo diet appears to be a near perfect regimen to follow. The paleo diet and primal lifestyle makes good sense when foods are fresh, healthy, local, natural, organic, seasonal and sustainable. Different fresh vegetables grow year round and chickens, eggs, meat and milk can be harvested as needed.
For most people our modern system of fossil fuel dependent mono-crops and highly processed and refined fake foods are not meeting our current needs for health and nutrition. It is also too expensive and not sustainable. Even as people are trying to be compassionate about factory farms, eco conscious and eat healthier they find themselves gaining weight, loosing their energy and vitality while also suffering more chronic degeneration and disease.
Maybe it is time to give the Paleo principles a try for a while to see how your body feels, looks and responds. If you would rather not consume animals consider animal products and saturated fats like raw butter, dairy, eggs, fish, krill and squid. Cut back on the bagels, biscuits, bread, cereal, chips, crackers, juices, rice, pancakes, pasta, pizza, potatoes, processed oils, GMO soy, sugar, tacos, tofu, tortillas and wraps to reduce your carbohydrate consumption. This can lead to a reduction in calories and reduce the diabetes, obesity and weight challenges for many tens of millions.
An ideal eating plan might be 40 – 70% raw or slightly warmed foods. Enjoy berries, fruits, green leafy plants, fermented foods, mushrooms, roots, vegetables, sprouts and sea vegetables. Maybe 10 – 20% of this including amaranth, black and red cargo rice, chia, oats, quiona and sourdough or sprouted grains like millet, oats and rye and also properly prepared beans and legumes. An additional 20% is from raw fats, nuts, oils (coconut, grapeseed, olive and sesame) and seeds. Then consider about 10% organic eggs, grass fed meat, cold processed whole whey and wild fish (anchovies, herring, mackerel, salmon, and sardines).
Our Plaeo ancestors were gathers and hunters. A Primal lifestyle involves switching to the activities and diet of our ancestors which consumed berries, eggs, flowers, fruits, greens, herbs, insects, mushrooms, nuts, roots, seeds, sea veggies, tubers, vegetables and fair quantities of meat, fish and fowl. This also means avoiding fast food, junk foods and processed foods. The focus is on whole foods from a wide variety of sources. Most fake foods, grains, processed products, refined foods and sugars are avoided.
Many people following this lifestyle notice rapid results and have lost weight and eased the symptoms caused by chronic diseases. Other benefits include better digestion, energy, mental clarity, skin, sleep and vitality.
A Paleo diet and primal lifestyle may be the perfect program and mastery action plan to help you be healthy, get fit and save money. Even if you are a bit skeptical and not ready to embrace this lifestyle fully at least remain open to the possibilities. To feed the global tribe and be healthy we must depend on a primarily plant based diet supplemented with small amounts of animal and fish products. Therefore we must protect our planet and resources by focusing on the most effective and efficient green, organic and sustainable system possible.
Thee is much to be said for living a cleaner, cooperative, eco conscious, environmentally friendly, greener, natural, primal, simpler, sustainable and uncomplicated life based on the benefits of a primal lifestyle.
This Great NEWS post shared the Fat and Food: Facts, Fads and Fiction to help influence more people to eat healthy and natural foods. This information may be a real eye opener for you after doing the research and learning by trial and error through personal experience. My outcome is to share my life lessons learned the hard way so you can educate, empower and energize yourself with information to see what works best for you. The Fat and Food: Facts, Fads and Fiction is offered to help you seek the truth and wisdom that will guide you toward your higher happiness and health.
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Mastery Action Plan (MAP)
Read additional articles by: Dr. Mercola at www.Mercola.com, Mark Sisson at www.marksdailyapple.com and Weston Price Foundation at http://www.westonaprice.org.
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Next week the Great NEWS blog will share:
Simple Steps to Cutting Carbs