THE PALEO RECIPE BOOK INTRODUCTION People in the developed world today have the safest, most consistent food supply in human history. We only know about famines from history textbooks, and we barely remember diseases of malnutrition like scurvy, pellagra, and rickets.So why is our food making us fatter and sicker with every passing year?From a Paleo perspective, the answer lies in evolution. For the 2.6 million years of the Paleolithic Era, humans were steadily evolving to eat animals (including their fat, organs, bones, skin, and eggs), wildgrowing plants when they were in season, and small amounts of other foods like nuts and seeds, when we could get them. That was the original “Paleo diet.” Relatively recently, the Agricultural Revolution brought a drastic shift to a diet based on grains and legumes. The sudden increase in reliably available food gave rise to a population and technology explosion that brought us the Roman Empire, then the Enlightenment, the Industrial Revolution, and all the technological, cultural, and scientific advances of modern civilization.
But all this progress came at a cost. From fossil evidence, we know that human health took a sharp downturn with the advent of agriculture. We found ways to minimize the damage by preparing our grains in certain ways, but we still didn’t regain our preAgricultural health.
Over the past 100 years, we’ve gone from bad to worse, forgetting even those traditional preparations in favor of refined grains, industrially processed seed oil, labcreated fats, and increasingly rapid advances in plant breeding like the genetic changes that brought our unsuspecting guts an entirely new species of wheat in the 1960s.
Then came the low-fat dogma: whole foods that have nourished healthy societies for generations are stigmatized, but all kinds of processed corn, wheat, and soy products get the stamp of approval. Never mind that traditional cultures around the globe eat plenty of saturated fat and cholesterol, without a hint of heart disease. Never mind that
those foods are some of the most nutrient-dense choices around. Egg yolks are out; bran flakes are in.
Under this barrage of nutrient-poor junk food, our bodies have simply started to break. Obesity rates have soared, and “lifestyle diseases” like diabetes and heart disease are now the rule, not the exception. But there is a way out.
The basic principle of Paleo nutrition is to figure out which of these dietary changes have been harmless (like potatoes, in most cases) and which have been deadly (like the switch to vegetable oils). This isn’t about imitating cavemen. New foods aren’t automatically bad, but evolution gives us a useful framework for tying it all together and making sense of the scientific data. Using our evolutionary history as a guide, we can reclaim our bodies, our health, and our lives.
Paleo Meal Plain
It can be hard to always come up with original meal ideas or not to slip off the Paleo wagon from time to time from lack of options or a pantry that still contains some not so good food choices.
I believe in making easy for people not only to understand what foods are healthy and what foods are not and why, but also to grasp what it entails to be eating Paleo on a day to day, consistent basis.
The best way to represent a typical paleo eating plan is to give out a sample of a week or two worth of food.
Remember that you can skip a meal whenever you feel like it and the paleo diet is really not about eating three square meals per day, quite the contrary. If you decide to fast for a day, that’s perfectly fine as well, but I’ve included three meals and a snack every day just to give you enough options to play around with it.
Where applicable, I’ve included a link for the recipe as well. To be perfectly honest, a meal plan like that can easily be stretched to four or even five weeks, because there will be leftovers to about every dinner as well as some of the lunches that you can use whenever you want during the rest of the week or freeze for a later time. This will also save you from having to prepare food for every single meal. Some of the meals require quite a bit of preparation time, but most can be prepared a day in advance to make it easier. Some, like soups, stews and roasts, take time to cook, but not much active preparation time.
The Paleo food pie For general day to day meal construction, here is a pie chart representing ratios (by volume of food) you should strive for. Of course, this can be tweaked to your particular needs and preferences, but it can give you an idea of where you stand, especially if you don’t feel as good as in the beginning and wonder why. Often it’s just a matter of a food group like nuts and seeds or fruits slowly creeping up and replacing healthier meat, fish or vegetable choices. There is about as many ways to eat a paleo diet that there is people though so feel free to more or less of everything, especially if you’re experienced enough to know your needs and to listen to your body.
P.S. Have a look at the Paleo Recipe Book. It's a cookbook we've created to help you cook the best Paleo food. It contains more than 350 recipes and covers everything you'll need.
Also, Your Guide to Paleo, a beautiful Guide for everything you need to know about Paleo. The Guide will help you avoid the most common pitfalls and reach your goals much faster.