What should I eat over the holidays?

I've been getting this question a lot in my mailbox the last few days so I thought I would post something on nutrition.  For most of you guys, the Paleo Diet is the way to go.  It's pretty easy to do, no weighing and measuring and it works really well to keep you lean.  The following is from Robb Wolf's nutrition blog

"OK – What Do I Eat?

LEANing Challenge Guide to Eating

  • All of the lean meat, fish, seafood, eggs you can eat
  • All of the non starchy vegetables you can eat
  • Plenty of fruit
  • Moderate healthy fats
  • Moderate nuts and seeds
  • No grains or cereals at all
  • No legumes
  • No dairy products (eggs are meat)
  • No processed foods – make it yourself!
  • No sugars.  Agave, organic honey, molasses, pure spun golden sunshine….it doesn’t matter.  They are all equally bad for you.
  • No artificial sweeteners.  These are not food!  Creepy laboratory products with sketchy safety records, artificial sweeteners have been shown to produce an insulin response.

“In order to get enough protein and calories you should eat animal food at almost every meal” (Cordain, Page 101)
Many different kinds of meat will work well for you.  Here are some guidelines:

-       Animals, including fish, raised in commercial farms are not healthy so try to get
§  Grass fed beef
§  USDA certified organic meat
§  Wild fish
§  Locally raised animals

-       If unable to do any of the above, then eat the leanest cuts you can and trim visible fat.
-       Eating the fat of healthy fish, birds and animals is good for you.  Eating the fat of unhealthy creatures is not.
-       Eggs are good.  Eggs from birds allowed to forage and run around are better.
-       Buffalo, elk, venison and other types of wild game are excellent choices if you can get them.
Time to get creative.  Non starchy vegetables should be a big part of each meal.  Virtually all vegetables offer excellent nutritional value.

-       When possible choose organic, locally grown vegetables that are in season. Each of these factors will improve nutritional value.
-       Experiment with sautéing, roasting and grilling your veggies.  Try different recipes and different ethnic foods.  Learn to use herbs and spices.  This stuff should taste good!
-       Peppers, squashes, eggplant, garlic, leeks, onions broccoli, cauliflower, avocado, carrots, green, cabbage, celery, kale, dandelion (yes! dandelion) spinach, tomatoes, radish, parsnips, mushrooms….
-       Avoid starchy vegetable – potatoes, etc.  If you must eat starch (it happens) try yams and sweet potatoes.
-       Avoid legumes. Peanuts, beans, peas, lentils and soybeans should be avoided.
A paleo diet allows and encourages lots of fruit consumption.  There are a few issues with fruit consumption though.  We need to consider how the fruit was grown as well as the type of fruit to evaluate nutritional value.  We also need to consider pesticide exposure.

-       If you can grow your own fruit or pick wild fruit – go for it!
-       Scavenge the local farmers market for fresh local seasonal fruit.  Organic is best.
-       Try to avoid fruit from far away. Flying in kiwis from New Zealand is not really helping our health.
-       Avoid GMO (genetically modified organism) fruit.  Period.
-       A little fruit juice occasionally can be okay but, fruit juice is really candy.
-       Wash fruit and vegetables thoroughly to minimize pesticides.
-       Some fruits like bananas have a high glycemic load and should be avoided if you are trying to loose fat.

Berries!  Eat lots of berries!
Filling and nutritious.  Nuts and seeds are packed with protein, fatty acids, enzymes, antioxidants and lots of vitamins and minerals, especially potassium and magnesium.  It is possible to screw up your fat profile with nuts though.  Lots of nuts have an unacceptably high omega 6 / omega 3 ratio.  Here are the best choices:
Macadamia nuts
Nuts in moderation are very healthy but overeating them can stall weight loss.  Cashews especially are delicious but surprisingly high in carbohydrate and contain too much omega 6.
Peanuts are not nuts. Do not eat peanuts or peanut butter.  Peanuts contain lectins and other anti-nutrients which can cause some real health problems.
Note:  Lots of packaged, shelled nuts are covered in trans fats!  Read the label!  Best to buy raw, unsalted nuts and spice them at home.  When in doubt, buy walnuts and/or macadamia nuts.
Fat is good for you.  Fat is essential to your well being and happiness.  (This is not hyperbolic writing. Having the proper fat profile makes a huge difference to your mental outlook and moods).  Fat is a great source of energy.  Fat triggers our sense of being full. Fat is an essential part of many of your cellular and hormonal processes.  We sicken and die fairly quickly without adequate intake of essential fats.
However….there are many bad fats in our food supply.
Fat from healthy animals is good for you! Chicken, duck, goose, lamb, beef and pork fat can all be eaten and is an excellent choice for cooking because of heat stability.  Lard is internal fat from around the kidneys.  Lard from naturally (not grain) fed pork and beef is a very good choice.  Lard from grass fed animals is hard to find though, so butter can be used instead.

Making butter better! 
Melt butter in a sauce pan over low heat. Remove butter from heat and let stand for a few minutes, allowing the milk solids to settle to the bottom.  Skim the clear yellow liquid from the top and strain into a container.  You have just made Ghee!  Ghee stores well frozen.
Coconut oil 
Olive oil 
Flaxseed oil 
Fats to Avoid:
Trans Fats 
Hydrogenated and/or partially hydrogenated oils. Terrible!  Reread the last paragraph.
Peanut, cottonseed, soybean and wheat germ oils…Not good!"

P.S.  Just a reminder, don't drink energy drinks ever, they are horrible for you.  I would say say the sugar free kinds are only marginally better for you than doing a line of cocaine and the kind with sugar are worse.  Coffee on the other hand... A miracle drug that should be consumed whenever possible!  New studies published today in the journal of internal medicine and the american journal of medicine show that coffee reduces the incidence of type 2 diabetes, prostate cancer and help regulate insulin levels as well as the fact that caffeine allows increased muscle contraction which means you can work harder.

No comments:

Post a Comment