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SAVE TIME & EAT HEALTHY TOO

describe the imageThree Meal Planning Tips for the Busy Family

As an aware and health-conscious person, you’re already doing a lot to protect your health by enjoying more nutrient-dense foods and avoiding the added sugar, fake fats and harmful chemicals found in most processed foods. You and your family might even follow specific dietary regimen that works best for you.

Unfortunately, despite our best intentions, it can still be a big challenge to consistently follow a weekly meal plan – and that goes for even the most organized home cook. With jobs, kids, travel and life’s other demands, it is all too easy to deviate from a weekly meal plan, or fail to make one in the first place.

The result?  We succumb to the temptation of unhealthy convenience foods. Or we rely on the same boring go-to meals, week after week. But it doesn’t have to be this way.

With a little forethought, you can prevent dietary pitfalls, while cooking exciting new recipes and getting more diversity in your diet.

Here are three easy-to-follow tips to help you create a flexible, healthy meal plan – without adding a lot of time to your already busy schedule.

Meal Plan Tip #1: Cook Once, Eat Three Unique Meals

We often we think of leftovers as a carbon copy of the meal we ate the day before. But it doesn’t have to be. You can completely transform your previous meal into something entirely new. The key is to choose large cuts of meat and use simple spices that will lend themselves to a variety of cuisines.

Here are a few quick ideas:

•    Pork Sirloin/Shoulder Roast: Roast pork sirloin or shoulder with a simple marinade of salt, pepper, garlic, lemon juice and avocado oil. The first meal can be traditional Pork Roast, served with a side of sweet potatoes and greens. The next several nights can include Pork Carnitas (break cooked pork into chunks and sauté in duck fat)… a Green Coconut Curry with Pork… or a Southern-Style Pork Barbecue with fresh cabbage slaw and Paleo “Cornbread”.

•    Whole Chicken: Using the same simple marinade from above, cook a whole chicken in a pressure cooker or slow cooker. From there, the possibilities are endless. Cobb Salad with pulled or chopped Chicken, Quick Chicken Soup with Zucchini Noodles, Chicken and Mushroom Sauté, Chicken Lettuce Wraps with Asian Dipping Sauce.  

•    Grass-Fed Beef Roast: Choose your favorite grass-fed roast – Eye of Round, Chuck Roast or Bottom Round – and prepare simply. Transform your leftovers into Thai Beef Salad, Chinese Beef & Broccoli or Paleo Tacos.

Meal Plan Tip #2: Have Go-To Meals at the Ready

Life can be unpredictable. Some days you arrive home later than usual, with hungry mouths to feed and nothing at the ready. Worse yet, the family chef may come down with the flu leaving the non-cooking parent at a loss for what to make.

In these cases, having meals fully prepared for your family in advance can save time and stress.

Make some of your favorite freezer-friendly meals in larger quantities for cases like these. And to prevent “freezer forgetfulness” (what IS in there anyway?), keep a running tally of your pre-prepared meals with their dates posted on the fridge or in a kitchen drawer.
Soups, stews and slow-cooked or pressure-cooked meats with their broths make great ready-meals. Also be sure to try US Wellness Meats pre-prepared foods like BBQ Shortribs, Shredded Beef, Pot Roast and Gravy, Sugar-Free Beef Franks and Italian Beef Sausage.

Having these healthy and delicious quick fixes on hand will help the cook in the family rest easy – no matter what life throws in the way!

Meal Plan Tip #3: Prep Ahead and Cook in Bulk

Enjoying a hot Paleo breakfast doesn’t have to mean pulling out the cast-iron skillet every morning. Prepare your staples in advance for the week ahead for a fuss-free pre-work (or school) breakfast.

Cook a batch of Sugar-Free Pork Bacon and Sausage and boil eggs to your desired temperature.   Then simply warm the meat in the toaster oven and serve with pre-cooked eggs for a hot meal in minutes.

When it comes to meal plans, there are many benefits. Not only will you save money and time, but you’ll enjoy more variety in your meals and a greater diversity of nutrients to boot.

I would love to hear from you in the comments below. Have you found a meal planning strategy that works for you? Or do you prefer to “wing” it? If the perfect “done-for-you” meal planning program existed, what features would you most like to see? What benefits would be the most helpful?

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EDITOR'S NOTE – Kelley Herring is the author of the brand new book Better Breads – which includes information you need to know about why it is so important to avoid wheat and grains in your diet, plus how to use healthy replacements for these foods to create all the breads you love… without the gluten, carbs and health-harming effects. Click here to learn more about Better Breads…

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5 Delicious Probiotic Foods You Can Make at Home (in 20 Minutes!)

In our bacteria-averse culture of hand sanitizers, chlorinated water,describe the image irradiated and pasteurized foods, research continues to prove that bacteria play an important role in improving our health, our mood… and even our risk of disease.

In fact, studies show that many seemingly unrelated conditions – including Alzheimer’s, autism, migraines, food allergies, depression, insomnia and autoimmune illnesses – can all be improved by supporting the health of the bacterial colonies that reside in your gut (called gut flora or the microbiome).

Microbial Diversity: A Balanced Microbiome for Lifelong Health

You may have heard that the best way to improve your gut flora is to boost the “good” bacteria, like the well-known Lactobacillus and Bifidus.  

This is certainly important. But what may be even more important is to foster the diversity and balance of the specific strains of bacteria within your digestive system.

In his new book, Brain Maker: The Power of Gut Microbes to Heal and Protect Your Brain for Life, Dr. David Perlmutter, MD says:

“It is now firmly established that the gut community of lean people resembles a rainforest filled with many species and that of obese people is much less diverse.”

And while probiotic pills can be beneficial, probiotic foods are much more effective at cultivating a diverse and well balanced internal ecosystem, thanks to a broader range and higher concentrations of bacteria.

So, let’s delve into a few of the delicious probiotic foods you should be consuming to support diversity and balance in your microbiome. The great news is that you can enjoy these health-promoting foods for mere pennies per serving.

5 Do-it-Yourself Probiotic Foods

Sauerkraut: Made with nothing more than cabbage, salt, water and time, sauerkraut is a great place for the first-time home fermenter to begin. The website, Mark’s Daily Apple, has a great step-by-step overview here. The preparation takes just about five minutes. And within a week, you’ll have a delicious, probiotic-rich German condiment to enjoy with all of your favorite Paleo foods (including grass-fed beef franks, of course).
 
Kombucha: If you love the fizzy goodness of kombucha, but not the hefty price at the store, you will be pleased to know just how easy it is to make at home. You’ll need a large glass vessel, some organic tea (I like oolong), organic sugar, organic white vinegar or pre-made kombucha and a SCOBY (symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast). You can buy a live SCOBY or dehydrated SCOBY at various online purveyors. Here is a simple method for making great kombucha. Like all fermented foods, the longer the ferment, the higher levels of beneficial bacteria. Also, in the case of kombucha, a longer fermentation process produces a finished product that is lower in sugar, as the sugar will be consumed by the bacteria over time.

One note of caution: Do not use a glass container with a metal spigot. The acidity of the brew can react with the metal and taint the kombucha with a metallic taste. Metal is also generally detrimental to the SCOBY. Stainless steel may be an exception, and some brewers have success using stainless steel vessels, but it is not recommended.

Ginger Beer: This fermented beverage hails from Ireland. Making this effervescent probiotic drink requires a Ginger Beer Plant (GBT) and about two weeks of fermenting. Here is a guide to making probiotic ginger beer.

Yogurt: Using just two ingredients – organic milk and starter culture – you can make fresh, additive-free yogurt in about 10 minutes active time and 10 hours culture time in a slow cooker or a yogurt machine. Cultures for Health is a great resource for making yogurt (and more!).

Corned Beef: Surprise, meats can be probiotics too! Large cuts of meat (like a grass-fed beef roast) will take about two weeks to ferment. Brisket will be “corned” in just under a week. Check out Alton Brown’s Corned Beef recipe, or save yourself the time and buy a delicious grass-fed corned beef from US Wellness Meats.

Supporting Your Flora

Along with consuming a diverse array of delicious, healthy probiotic foods, there are several other simple things you can do to cultivate the diverse, disease-preventive microbiome of our ancestors:

Avoid chlorinated water, antibiotics, hand sanitizers and other common disinfectants (ie- bleach)

Don’t be a “clean freak” – excessive washing, especially with anti-bacterial soap is unnecessary and can deplete your microbiome

Feed your flora – eat prebiotic foods such as garlic, onions and jicama. These foods contain inulin – a prebiotic fiber that acts as food for your flora.

Exercise – along with the array of established benefits, studies show that exercise also improves microbial diversity

Avoid sugar and high-carbohydrate foods. These promote a higher ratio of bacteria, called Firmicutes, which are associated with obesity. It can also encourage gut-harming Candida and increase the risk of a leaky gut

Indulge wisely. Coffee, red wine and dark chocolate have been shown to have beneficial effects on gut bacteria

Do you make your own cultured foods? If so, what are your favorite fermented foods and methods? We would love to hear from you below.

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EDITOR'S NOTE – Kelley Herring is the author of the brand new book Better Breads – which includes information you need to know about why it is so important to avoid wheat and grains in your diet, plus how to use healthy replacements for these foods to create all the breads you love… without the gluten, carbs and health-harming effects. Click here to learn more about Better Breads…

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REFERENCES
1.    Perlmutter, David. Brain Maker: The Power of Gut Microbes to Heal and Protect Your Brain for Life. Little, Brown and Company; 1 edition (April 28, 2015)

2.    Clarke SF, Murphy EF, O'Sullivan O, et al. Exercise and associated dietary extremes impact on gut microbial diversity.Gut. 2014 Dec;63(12):1913-20.

The Health-Harming Trifecta in “Paleo-Friendly” Foods

If you follow an ancestral diet, you’ve probably given up the consumption of grains. And that’s a good thing. Not only are grain-based foods unnecessary from a nutritional perspective, they also promote inflammation, contain anti-nutrients and contribute to a leaky gut.

pseudograins
But what about the pseudograins, including quinoa buckwheat and amaranth? While these foods bear a resemblance to grains in their taste and texture, they are actually the seeds of broadleaf plants and are biologically unrelated to grains. They are often touted as a safe alternative.

Unfortunately, however, despite their despite their genetic differences and “healthy” reputation, pseudograins can have many of the same health-harming effects as their grain-based counterparts.

In fact, three of the compounds known to cause digestive and immune problems found in grains are also found in pseudograins.

The Health-Harming Trifecta in “Paleo-Friendly” Pseudograins

These compounds, including lectins, saponins, and protease inhibitors are designed to protect the plant from being consumed. They do this by causing digestive irritation to the animal (or person) eating them. But the damage these little compounds can create does not end with a benign “belly ache”.


Take a look at the research on how these compounds – just like true grains – can also damage the gut, promote inflammation and contribute to immune dysfunction:

Lectins are a type of protein that acts as a component of the plant’s natural defense mechanism. Lectins can strongly interact with the proteins in gut cell membranes, increasing intestinal permeability. Once this occurs, lectins are able to pass through the “leaky gut” into the bloodstream. This contributes to systemic inflammation and increases the risk of autoimmune illness. While many foods contain lectins, those that are heat-stable (like the ones found in grains, pseudograins and legumes) appear to have the most harmful effects.

Saponins have a molecular structure similar to detergents. These compounds can interact and combine with cholesterol molecules in the cell membranes. This process also creates micro-tears in the gut, allowing a variety of harmful substances to leak into the bloodstream. Saponins can also damage the membrane of red blood cells, causing these cells to break down. What’s more, they act as adjuvants – triggers that can cause a cascading inflammatory and immune response. Small doses of saponins are found in fruits and vegetables and may actually be beneficial, helping to enhance nutrient absorption. However, the large doses found in pseudograins have been shown to compromise the integrity of the human gut.
 
Protease inhibitors are compounds found in pseudograins (as well as grains and legumes) which inhibit the digestion of proteins. But the protease inhibitors don’t just prevent proteins in the seed from being degraded – they also prevent your body from breaking down other proteins consumed at that time. In response, the pancreas secretes more digestive enzymes to facilitate protein digestion. However, because the protein-dissolving enzyme, protease, is being inhibited, the result is an excess of trypsin. While trypsin is essential, an excess in the small intestine can weaken the connections between gut cells. This too can create a leaky gut and set the stage for inflammation and autoimmune illness.

Protect Your Gut, Protect Your Health

Maintaining – or regaining – a healthy gut is essential to prevent a multitude of chronic illnesses, including autoimmune diseases, food allergies, cognitive decline, mood disorders and more.

Eliminating grains, pseudograins and legumes, while enjoying a diet rich in organic vegetables, healthy fats, grass-fed meats, and nutrient-dense bone broth provides a template for the healthy gut diet on which our ancestors thrived.

Have you eliminated pseudograins from your diet? What was your experience? Share your comments below.

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EDITOR'S NOTE – Kelley Herring is the author of the brand new book Better Breads – which includes information you need to know about why it is so important to avoid wheat and grains in your diet, plus how to use healthy replacements for these foods to create all the breads you love… without the gluten, carbs and health-harming effects. Click here to learn more about Better Breads…

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 REFERENCES
1.    Tommy Jönsson,Stefan Olsson, Bo Ahrén, Thorkild C Bøg-Hansen, Anita Dole, and Staffan Lindeberg. Agrarian diet and diseases of affluence – Do evolutionary novel dietary lectins cause leptin resistance?BMC Endocr Disord. 2005; 5:10.
2.    Gee JM, et al. Effects of saponins and glycoalkaloids on the permeability and viability of mammalian intestinal cells and on the integrity of tissue preparations in vitro. Toxicol In Vitro. 1996 Apr;10(2):117-28.
3.    The Paleo Mom. How Do Grains, Legumes and Dairy Cause a Leaky Gut? Part 2: Saponins and Protease Inhibitors
4.    Van Damme JME. Handbook of plant lectins : properties and biomedical applications. Chichester, John Wiley; 1998. p. xiv, 452p : ill ; 26cm. [Ref list]
5.    Freed DLJ. Lectins in food: Their importance in health and disease. Journal of Nutritional Medicine. 1991;2:45–65. [Ref list]
6.    Freed DL. Do dietary lectins cause disease? Bmj. 1999;318:1023–1024.
7.    Johnson IT, Gee JM, Price K, Curl C, Fenwick GR. Influence of saponins on gut permeability and active nutrient transport in vitro. J Nutr. 1986 Nov;116(11):2270-7.

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Paleo Takeout + US Wellness Meats Giveaway!

 Hello real foodies! 

***Don't miss an exclusive recipe and giveaway at the end of this post.***

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We've known home chef, blogger, and cookbook author Russ Crandall (aka- The Domestic Man) for many years. Like us, Russ believes in an ancestral, whole foods way of eating. We are so thrilled to share the release of his second cookbook, Paleo Takeout. Available today, June 23rd!

Before we get to the giveaway, Russ has generously agreed to let us share a NEW recipe that can only be found in Paleo Takeout. It's one of our favorites, and we're sure you'll love it too!

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SWEET AND SOUR CHICKEN

1IM8vQwcDJG8maMqWrMsah56juF8Mv0nILWJzesdueE resized 600SAUCE:

  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 3 tbsp honey
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste 
  • 1 tbsp tamari
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp white pepper

NUGGETS:

  • 2 tbsp expeller-pressed coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup tapioca or arrowroot starch
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp white pepper
  • 2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized chunks
  • 2 large eggs, beaten

SLURRY:

  • 1 tbsp arrowroot starch
  • 1 tbsp cold water
  • 1/2 tsp sesame seeds, to garnish
  • 2 green onions, sliced, to garnish

- In a saucepan, combine the sauce ingredients. Bring to a simmer over medium-low heat, then reduce the heat to low to gently simmer as you prepare the rest of the meal; stir occasionally.

- Preheat your oven to 250°F. In a wok or skillet, warm the coconut oil over medium heat. Combine the tapioca starch, salt, and pepper, then toss the chicken pieces with the starch mixture. With your fingers, dip a starchy chicken piece in the beaten eggs, shake off the excess egg, and then add to the oil. Repeat until you have filled your skillet, being careful not to overcrowd the chicken pieces. Fry the chicken until cooked through, flipping every 2 minutes, about 6 to 8 minutes per batch. As you finish each batch, place the cooked pieces on a plate lined with paper towels; put them in the oven to stay warm. You should be able to cook the chicken pieces in 3 or 4 batches, depending on the size of your skillet.

- Once the chicken is cooked through, finish the sauce. Taste the sauce and add more salt or pepper if needed. If the sauce is too dark and strong tasting, add a little chicken broth to thin it out. At this point, the sauce should be about as thick as tomato soup and should have a sharp but not overwhelming flavor.

- In a small bowl, stir together the arrowroot starch and cold water to create a slurry. Raise the sauce temperature to medium; once bubbling, add half of the slurry and stir until thickened, adding more slurry if needed. Remove from the heat.

Toss the chicken pieces with the sauce, then garnish with sesame seeds and green onions. Serve over Basic Steamed Rice (page 286) or Cauliflower Rice (page 288).

* Consider adding chunks of onion, bell pepper, or even pineapple to enhance the flavor of this dish. These ingredients should be added with the starch slurry in step 4.

* This dish is equally delicious made with sliced pork loin or shrimp.

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HERE'S YOUR CHANCE TO WIN!

We're pairing Paleo Takeout with a $150 US Wellness Meats gift certificate to give to one of our loyal followers. 

Enter via the widget below: 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thanks for participating!

FLAVOR YOUR MEALS WITH THESE LOW-CARB PALEO SAUCES

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If you’ve been eating a Paleo diet for some time, you may find that your usual meal rotations of meat and vegetables can become… well, a little boring.

But there’s a fast and easy way to dress up all of your favorite meals without much extra effort: Sauces.

As you probably know, most store-bought sauces and dressings should be avoided. These usually contain corn syrup or other hidden sugars, as well as unhealthy fats and oils (ie. Corn, soybean, vegetable oils, etc.). Of course, many folks shy away from making sauces at home. They think sauce-making is complicated, time-consuming and best left to classically-trained chefs.

But the truth is there are many simple sauces you can whip up in less than five minutes that will add extraordinary flavor, healthy fats and nutrients to all of your favorite standbys.

Today I’m going to share five Paleo-friendly, low-glycemic, no-cook sauces that will transform your everyday meals into restaurant-quality creations:

Paleo Sauce #1 – Pesto and Pistou

Originating from Genoa, this classic sauce is traditionally made with fresh basil, garlic, pine nuts and either Parmigiano-Reggiano (Parmesan cheese) or hard sheep’s cheese. These ingredients are usually blended with olive oil. The French version (pistou) is made with olive oil, basil, and garlic only.

You can create your own favorite version of pesto (or pistou) using different nuts (Brazil nuts are delicious in pesto and provide a superior source of selenium) and hard cheeses (if tolerated). Fresh pesto is the perfect complement to grilled wild salmon or halibut, shrimp and pastured chicken.

Paleo Sauce #2 – Chermoula

This spice-infused North African herb sauce is a staple of Moroccan cuisine. It is traditionally made with cilantro, garlic, coriander, smoked paprika, chili paste, lemon and olive oil. Chermoula has powerful detoxifying properties thanks to cilantro, which binds to heavy metals and carries them out of the body.  Use chermoula as a marinade or spoon liberally over wild fish, grass-fed steaks, grilled lamb and roasted chicken. (Need a recipe? Check out David Lebovitz’s Chermoula.)

Paleo Sauce #3 – Remoulade

Remoulade is a classic French mayonnaise-based condiment that is used worldwide in a variety of cuisines. Similar to tartar sauce, remoulade is often flavored with curry, mustard, horseradish, paprika, capers, diced pickles or shallots, depending on the origin. Create your own version using simple homemade Paleo mayonnaise (made with avocado oil) or Mark Sisson’s newest creation Primal Kitchen Mayo, and whisk in your favorite flavor combinations. For wild salmon and other seafood, I like minced shallot, capers, horseradish and lemon. For grass-fed meats and pastured lamb, try robust-flavored smoked paprika and cayenne.

Paleo Sauce #4 – Harissa

Another North African sauce, harissa is spicy, garlic-infused chile paste that can be used to enliven just about any meat or vegetable. Be sure to opt for organic chile peppers, as this is a crop that is heavily sprayed with pesticides. (Here’s a great harissa recipe from Saveur)

Paleo Sauce #5 - Romesco

Last but not least is the nut and red pepper-based Spanish sauce, romesco, made with roasted red peppers, raw nuts (almonds or hazelnut are traditional), roasted garlic and olive oil. Historically used to accompany fish, romesco is also delicious on pastured chicken and lamb. To make a quick superfood version at home, puree organic roasted red peppers (try Mediterranean Organic, sold in glass jars already roasted) and Brazil nuts with high quality olive or avocado oil and roasted garlic.

Pack more flavor, antioxidants and interest into your Paleo meals with these simple, healthy sauces. They’re quick to whip up, require only a few basic kitchen tools, and will keep for several days in the refrigerator.

Do you have a favorite Paleo sauce recipe? We’d love for you to share it here!

ED NOTE: Kelley Herring is the author of Better Breads – which includes information you need to know about why it is so important to avoid wheat and grains in your diet, plus how to use healthy replacements for these foods to create all the breads you love… without the gluten, carbs and health harming effects. Click here to learn more about Better Breads…

REFERENCES
1.    Pesto Genovese: an Ageless Benchmark of Great Italian Cuisine.
2.    “Chermoula”. David Lebovitz.com. Web. May 4, 2015.
3.    Prosper Montagné (1961). Charlotte Snyder Turgeon & Nina Froud, ed. Larousse gastronomique: the encyclopedia of food, wine & cookery. Crown Publishers. p. 861. ISBN 0-517-50333-6..
4.    Aga M, Iwaki K, Ueda Y, Ushio S, Masaki N, Fukuda S, Kimoto T, Ikeda M, Kurimoto M. Preventive effect of Coriandrum sativum (Chinese parsley) on localized lead deposition in ICR mice. J Ethnopharmacol. 2001 Oct;77(2-3):203-8.
5.    Omura Y, Beckman SL. Role of mercury (Hg) in resistant infections & effective treatment of Chlamydia trachomatis and Herpes family viral infections (and potential treatment for cancer) by removing localized Hg deposits with Chinese parsley and delivering effective antibiotics using various drug uptake enhancement methods. Acupunct Electrother Res. 1995 Aug-Dec;20(3-4):195-229.
6.    Karunasagar D, Krishna MV, Rao SV, Arunachalam J. Removal and preconcentration of inorganic and methyl mercury from aqueous media using a sorbent prepared from the plant Coriandrum sativum. J Hazard Mater. 2005 Feb 14;118(1-3):133-9.

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The Paleo Ketogenic Diet: The Most Effective Way to Lose Weight

By: Kelley Herring, Healing Gourmet                                                       kelleyherring

Are you following a “paleo” diet… and yet still find that you haven’t lost all the weight you’d like to? If so, you're not alone.

While following an ancestral diet is a powerful way to provide your body with more disease-fighting nutrients and eliminate many of the inflammatory compounds in common foods, many people find the Paleo diet alone can’t provide the metabolic shift required to melt excess fat.

The reason? Many Paleo diets include high carbohydrate foods like sweet potatoes, rutabagas, tapioca, arrowroot, fruits and many more. And while these foods are fine in moderation, especially for those who are active, they can keep blood sugar and insulin levels high… and fat cells pleasantly plump.

Enter the Paleo Ketogenic Diet.

By maintaining the beneficial framework of the Paleo diet, while strictly limiting dietary carbohydrates, your body can enter a state of nutritional ketosis, where fat burning dramatically accelerates.

So how does it work?

The Effects of Ketosis on the Body

As you reduce daily carbohydrates to less than 50 grams, the body has very little glucose available for use as an energy source. As a matter of survival, your metabolism shifts to utilize fat as your primary source of energy.

It is this shift – from sugar burner to fat burner – that makes the ketogenic diet so powerfully effective.  

As the availability of glucose dwindles, the body begins turning dietary and body fat into compounds called ketones. Ketones a very clean source of fuel. Their transformation into energy does not produce damaging metabolic byproducts. They also act as cellular detoxifiers, actually helping to remove toxins and damaged proteins that impair cellular function.

Eating More Fat and Losing Weight

It may seem counterintuitive that a diet predicated on consuming high amounts of dietary fat can actually increase your body’s ability to burn fat.

How does this happen?

Contrary to conventional wisdom, all calories aren’t created equal. The source of calories provides information about how they should be used by the body. For example, when your blood sugar levels rise (as a result of consuming carbohydrate-rich foods), the body secretes insulin to reduce glucose in the bloodstream. Without insulin, we would die from an overload of blood sugar – even from a relatively small intake of dietary carbohydrate. But insulin also has a dark side. High insulin levels promote the storage and accumulation of body fat, primarily in the most dangerous place: The belly.

Belly fat – technically known as visceral fat – doesn’t just look ugly. It has been associated with nearly every chronic disease including diabetes, heart disease, Alzheimer’s, PCOS, and many more. 

By strictly limiting carbohydrates with a ketogenic diet, we greatly reduce insulin levels. Our body shifts from burning carbohydrates and storing the excess as fat… to primarily burning fat for fuel – even without exercise.

A ketogenic diet has also been found to reduce hunger, boost energy levels, increase antioxidant capacity of the blood and reduce the risk of chronic disease!

The Evidence: Reprogramming Your Metabolism to Torch Fat, Reduce Heart Disease and Stop Diabetes

A meta-analysis recently published in the British Journal of Nutrition evaluated thirteen studies for the effects of a ketogenic diet for long term weight loss. This very low carbohydrate diet was compared to the results of a low fat diet. In addition achieving significantly greater and more sustainable weight loss, the researchers found that those on the ketogenic diet experienced improvements in three of the most important risk factors related to heart disease:

  • Decreased triglycerides
  • Reduced blood pressure
  • Increased HDL cholesterol

Another study, published in the journal Nutrition, evaluated 363 overweight and obese participants over 24 weeks. More than a hundred of these subjects were also diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. The participants followed either a low-calorie diet (LCD) or a low-carbohydrate ketogenic diet (LCKD). The researchers evaluated the subjects’ weight, BMI, waist circumference, blood sugar levels, A1C, cholesterol, triglycerides, as well as uric acid, urea and creatinine secretion.

The low-calorie diet (LCD) and the low-carb ketogenic diet (LCKD) both benefited all of the parameters evaluated. However, those on the ketogenic diet enjoyed greater improvements. In fact, the LCKD was so effective at reducing blood sugar that the diabetic participants were able to reduce or eliminate their diabetic medication early in the trial!

In another study published in Nutrition, researchers state: 

 “Dietary carbohydrate restriction reliably reduces high blood glucose, does not require weight loss (although is still best for weight loss), and leads to the reduction or elimination of medication. It has never shown side effects comparable with those seen in many drugs.”

Similarly, the Journal of Nutrition recently found that a low carbohydrate diet reduced both visceral fat (belly fat) and intramuscular fat while boosting insulin sensitivity in people with diabetes.

Is the Ketogenic Diet Dangerous?

Some of the arguments against a ketogenic diet are focused on potentially negative health effects that may occur as a result of ketosis.

But the truth is, most people following a ketogenic diet are more likely to experience improved overall health without any short term or long term negative effects from this dietary plan.

According to Dr. Michael S Duchowny, MD who evaluated the ketogenic diet:

“Most complications of the ketogenic diet are transient and can be managed easily with various conservative treatments.”

As always, major dietary modifications should be discussed with your health care provider – especially for those with diabetes or other chronic disease, and those on medications.

The Ketogenic Diet: The Ancestral Plan for Effortless Weight Loss and Disease Prevention

Following a ketogenic diet has been shown to be an effective way to reduce body fat, improve waist-to- hip ratio, as well as improve insulin sensitivity, control blood sugar, reduce blood pressure and improve cholesterol ratios – all key factors associated with diabetes and heart disease.

And while the ketogenic diet has gained considerable press lately, it is not a “new” diet. In fact, our ancestors were naturally in and of out of ketosis as they hunted and gathered, fasted intermittently, and typically had limited access to carbohydrate-rich foods.

By following this truly ancestral way of eating, we can not only sculpt a leaner, healthier physique, but also help to reduce chronic illnesses and improve quality of life.

Have you tried a ketogenic diet? If so, what did you experience?  

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Do you want to follow a ketogenic diet? But are you worried that won’t be able to completely cut out those tasty treats that you enjoy? Over on the Healing Gourmet website, Kelley has a recipe for Keto Paleo Dinner Rolls that are grain free, low in carbohydrates, and just perfect for sopping up the last few bites of your evening meal.

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REFERENCES:

Antonio Paoli. Ketogenic Diet for Obesity: Friend or Foe? Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2014 Feb; 11(2): 2092–2107.  Published online 2014 Feb 19.  doi:  10.3390/ijerph110202092

Hussain TA1, Mathew TC, Dashti AA, Asfar S, Al-Zaid N, Dashti HM. Effect of low-calorie versus low-carbohydrate ketogenic diet in type 2 diabetes. Nutrition. 2012 Oct;28(10):1016-21. doi: 10.1016/j.nut.2012.01.016. Epub 2012 Jun 5

Bueno NB1, de Melo IS, de Oliveira SL, da Rocha Ataide T. Very-low-carbohydrate ketogenic diet v. low-fat diet for long-term weight loss: a meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials. Br J Nutr. 2013 Oct;110(7):1178-87. doi: 10.1017/S0007114513000548. Epub 2013 May 7.

Gower BA1, Goss AM2. A lower-carbohydrate, higher-fat diet reduces abdominal and intermuscular fat and increases insulin sensitivity in adults at risk of type 2 diabetes. J Nutr. 2015 Jan;145(1):177S-83S. doi: 10.3945/jn.114.195065. Epub 2014 Dec 3.

Alexandra M Johnstone, Graham W Horgan,  Sandra D Murison,  David M Bremner, and  Gerald E Lobley. Effects of a high-protein ketogenic diet on hunger, appetite, and weight loss in obese men feeding ad libitum 1,2,3. Am J Clin Nutr January 2008   vol. 87  no. 1  44-55

Gibson AA1, Seimon RV, Lee CM, Ayre J, Franklin J, Markovic TP, Caterson ID, Sainsbury A. Do ketogenic diets really suppress appetite? A systematic review and meta-analysis. Obes Rev. 2015 Jan;16(1):64-76. doi: 10.1111/obr.12230. Epub 2014 Nov 17.

Sumithran P1, Prendergast LA, Delbridge E, Purcell K, Shulkes A, Kriketos A, Proietto J. Ketosis and appetite-mediating nutrients and hormones after weight loss. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2013 Jul;67(7):759-64. doi: 10.1038/ejcn.2013.90. Epub 2013 May 1

Rhyu HS1, Cho SY2, Roh HT3. The effects of ketogenic diet on oxidative stress and antioxidative capacity markers of Taekwondo athletes. J Exerc Rehabil. 2014 Dec 31;10(6):362-6. doi: 10.12965/jer.140178. eCollection 20

Paoli A1, Canato M, Toniolo L, Bargossi AM, Neri M, Mediati M, Alesso D, Sanna G, Grimaldi KA, Fazzari AL, Bianco A. [The ketogenic diet: an underappreciated therapeutic option?]. Clin Ter. 2011;162(5):e145-53.

Feinman RD1, Pogozelski WK2, Astrup A3, Bernstein RK4, Fine EJ5, Westman EC6, Accurso A7, Frassetto L8, Gower BA9, McFarlane SI10, Nielsen JV11, Krarup T12, Saslow L13, Roth KS14, Vernon MC15, Volek JS16, Wilshire GB17, Dahlqvist A18, Sundberg R19, Childers A20, Morrison K21, Manninen AH22, Dashti HM23, Wood RJ24, Wortman J25, Worm N26. Dietary carbohydrate restriction as the first approach in diabetes management: critical review and evidence base. Nutrition. 2015 Jan;31(1):1-13. doi: 10.1016/j.nut.2014.06.011. Epub 2014 Jul 16.

Emily Deans, M.D .Your Brain On Ketones. How a high-fat diet can help the brain work better. Published on April 18, 2011. Evolutionary Psychiatry.

Patrick F. Finn, J. Fred Dice. Ketone Bodies Stimulate Chaperone-mediated Autophagy. July 8, 2005 The Journal of Biological Chemistry, 280, 25864-25870.

Micheal R. Eades. MD. Ketosis cleans our cells.

Michael S Duchowny, MD. Food for Thought: The Ketogenic Diet and Adverse Effects in Children. Epilepsy Curr. 2005 Jul; 5(4): 152–154.

Volek JS1, Westman EC. Very-low-carbohydrate weight-loss diets revisited. Cleve Clin J Med. 2002 Nov;69(11):849, 853, 856-8 passim.

JS Volek,corresponding author1 MJ Sharman,1 AL Gómez,1 DA Judelson,1 MR Rubin,1 G Watson,1 B Sokmen,1 R Silvestre,1 DN French,1 and WJ Kraemer1. Comparison of energy-restricted very low-carbohydrate and low-fat diets on weight loss and body composition in overweight men and women. Nutr Metab (Lond). 2004; 1: 13.

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12 Quick & Delicious Paleo Breakfast Ideas


By: Kelley Herring, Healing Gourmet                                    

If you’re following the paleo diet, your breakfast of choice may be the classic meal of pastured bacon and free-range eggs. And while this certainly fits the bill when it comes to healthy fats and high-quality protein, it doesn’t take long for this morning meal to become a bit ho-hum.

When it comes to making a lifelong change in your diet and getting a broad range of health-promoting nutrients, meal variation is the key to success. So, today I’ll show you twelve boredom-beating breakfasts that will provide you all-day energy and an assortment of age-defying nutrients to boot!

Paleo Breakfast Ideas That Beat Boredom and Boost Nutrition

  1. Organic Kale, Sausage & Egg Bake: The perfect breakfast when company is over, this nutritional powerhouse can be made ahead and enjoyed through the week. Simply crumble and brown 1lb. of sugar-free pork breakfast sausage in a large skillet. Drain the fat, then add 2 cups chopped kale and sauté 2-3 minutes.  Whisk 10 eggs until frothy and season to taste. Add the kale and sausage mixture to a greased 9 x 13 baking dish. Pour the eggs over the top and bake at 350 F for 30 minutes or until eggs are just set. You can also make this same recipe in a well-greased muffin tin for individual, on-the-run breakfasts.
  2. Breakfast Sliders in Lettuce Wraps: Beef breakfast sliders are a delicious way to start your day. They a superior source of protein and also rich in CLA (the healthy fat that’s known to promote a lean physique and cellular health). Tuck cooked breakfast sliders into a lettuce wrap and top with avocado (and maybe a dollop of Paleo mayo or salsa) for a hearty hand-held meal.  
  3. Bacon-Wrapped Egg Cups: Use sugar-free pork bacon as a nest for a perfectly cooked egg. Partially cook the bacon in the oven or skillet. Then place bacon strips in a well-greased muffin tin, making a “nest” inside each individual muffin cup. Add an egg (whole or scrambled) to each nest and then bake at 400F for 15 minutes or to desired temperature. Serve with fresh organic berries.
  4. Paleo Berry Muffins + Chicken Apple Sausage Links: Here’s a great grab-and-go duo. Simply cook up a batch of chicken apple sausages and bake a dozen Paleo muffins made with coconut flour for a breakfast with zero prep time on busy mornings.
  5. Canadian Bacon + Paleo Pancakes: More like ham than bacon, Canadian bacon is lean and flavorful and makes a perfect addition to grain-free pancakes topped with a fresh apple compote.
  6. Superfood Whey Protein Smoothie:  Use grass-fed whey protein, coconut milk, your favorite organic berries and greens to make an immune-boosting, protein-rich breakfast that you can take along with you.
  7. Poached Eggs with Wild Salmon: Looking for a way to sneak more omega-3 rich wild salmon into your diet?  Try poached eggs topped with flaked Vital Choice wild salmon (from a can or pouch). Add a grain-free English muffin and homemade hollandaise to make it a Paleo Benedict, as time permits.
  8. Steak and Eggs: This classic breakfast combination can be made in a hurry using grass-fed steak leftovers. Another option? Cut a teres major steak into breakfast portions and cook for the week ahead. Serve your steak and eggs Paleo breakfast with sautéed asparagus, organic greens or mushrooms.
  9. Paleo Breakfast Salad: Looking for an easy way to get more veggies? A breakfast salad made with your favorite leafy greens and crowned with poached eggs and crisp bacon is a great way to get the classic breakfast flavor… with more veggies to boot.
  10. Bone Broth Breakfast Soup: While uncommon in the U.S., many cultures start the day with a nutrient-rich bowl of soup made with a nourishing bone broth, veggies and assorted meat or fish.  Try a breakfast of bone broth or chicken gelatin with some cooked pastured chicken, organic greens, ginger and lemongrass for an Asian-inspired start to your day.
  11. Primal Frittata: Raw grass-fed cheese, eggs, green veggies, salsa and your meat of choice make for a delicious meal, any time of the day.
  12. Pemmican and Nuts: This super-fast, fat-rich breakfast is perfect when you’re in a rush or traveling. Keeping healthy shelf-stable breakfast options on hand can prevent the dietary disasters that so often occur with limited healthy options on the road.

What’s your favorite breakfast meal? Do you make your breakfasts for the week ahead? We want to hear from you!

ED NOTE –  For more healthy breakfast ideas, check out Kelley’s newest book, Better Breads, including more than two dozen low-carb, grain-free and Paleo breads, biscuits, pancakes, muffins and more! Click here to learn more about Better Breads…

REFERENCES

  1. Bourre JM. Dietary omega-3 fatty acids for women.Biomed Pharmacother. 2007 Jan 2.
  2. Siddiqui RA, Shaikh SR, Sech LA, Yount HR, Stillwell W, Zaloga GP. Omega 3-fatty acids: health benefits and cellular mechanisms of action. Mini Rev Med Chem. 2004 Oct;4(8):859-71

An Avocado a Day May Help Keep Bad Cholesterol at Bay

Eating one avocado a day as part of a heart healthy, cholesterol-lowering moderate-fat diet can help improve bad cholesterol levels in overweight and obese individuals, according to new research published in the Journal of the American Heart Association.

Researchers evaluated the effect avocados had on traditional and novel cardiovascular risk factors by replacing saturated fatty acids from an average American diet with unsaturated fatty acids from avocados.                                                               science article 150326

Forty-five healthy, overweight or obese patients between the ages of 21 and 70 were put on three different cholesterol-lowering diets. Participants consumed an average American diet (consisting of 34 percent of calories from fat, 51 percent carbohydrates, and 16 percent protein) for two weeks prior to starting one of the following cholesterol lowering diets: lower fat diet without avocado, moderate-fat diet without avocado, and moderate-fat diet with one avocado per day. The two moderate fat diets both provided 34 percent of calories as fat (17 percent of calories from monounsaturated fatty acids/MUFAs), whereas the lower fat diet provided 24 percent of calories as fat (11 percent from MUFAs). Each participant consumed each of the three test diet for five weeks. Participants were randomly sequenced through each of the three diets.

Researchers found:

  • Compared to the baseline average American diet, low-density lipoprotein (LDL) -- the so called 'bad cholesterol' -- was 13.5 mg/dL lower after consuming the moderate fat diet that included an avocado. LDL was also lower on the moderate fat diet without the avocado (8.3 mg/dL lower) and the lower fat diet (7.4 mg/dL lower), though the results were not as striking as the avocado diet.
  • Several additional blood measurements were also more favorable after the avocado diet versus the other two cholesterol-lowering diets as well: total cholesterol, triglycerides, small dense LDL, non-HDL cholesterol, and others.

These measurements are all considered to be cardio-metabolic risk factors in ways that are independent of the heart-healthy fatty acid effects, said Penny M. Kris-Etherton, Ph.D., R.D., senior study author and Chair of the American Heart Association's Nutrition Committee and Distinguished Professor of Nutrition at Pennsylvania State University, in University Park, Pennsylvania.

"This was a controlled feeding study, but that is not the real-world -- so it is a proof-of-concept investigation. We need to focus on getting people to eat a heart-healthy diet that includes avocados and other nutrient-rich food sources of better fats," Kris-Etherton said.

"In the United States avocados are not a mainstream food yet, and they can be expensive, especially at certain times of the year. Also, most people do not really know how to incorporate them in their diet except for making guacamole. But guacamole is typically eaten with corn chips, which are high in calories and sodium. Avocados, however, can also be eaten with salads, vegetables, sandwiches, lean protein foods (like chicken or fish) or even whole."

For the study researchers used Hass avocados, the ones with bumpy green skin. In addition to MUFAs, avocados also provided other bioactive components that could have contributed to the findings such as fiber, phytosterols, and other compounds.

According to researchers, many heart-healthy diets recommend replacing saturated fatty acids with MUFAs or polyunsaturated fatty acids to reduce the risk of heart disease. This is because saturated fats can increase bad cholesterol levels and raise the risk of cardiovascular disease.

The Mediterranean diet, includes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, fatty fish, and foods rich in monounsaturated fatty acids--like extra-virgin olive oil and nuts. Like avocados, some research indicates that these not only contain better fats but also certain micronutrients and bioactive components that may play an important role in reducing risk of heart disease.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Heart Association

Journal Reference:

  1. Li Wang, Peter L. Bordi, Jennifer A. Fleming, Alison M. Hill, and Penny M. Kris‐etherton. Effect of a Moderate Fat Diet With and Without Avocados on Lipoprotein Particle Number, Size and Subclasses in Overweight and Obese Adults: A Randomized, Controlled Trial. Journal of the American Heart Association, January 2015 DOI: 10.1161/JAHA.114.001355

 

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Starve Cancer with This Controversial “Old” Diet

By: Kelley Herring, Healing Gourmet
                                                                                                 
A recent report from the World Health Organization states that the number of cancer cases worldwide is expected to surge by 57 percent over the next twenty years.

For many, this will mean painful, expensive (and potentially deadly) treatments with chemotherapy and radiation. On the other hand, many others will choose a more natural approach to treat and prevent cancer… one that is meant to boost the immune system, curtail the proliferation of cancerous cells, and starve those cells of the very fuel they need to grow.

And one of the most effective natural approaches for doing this is the ketogenic diet. It is certainly not the only thing that should be included in a cancer-fighting protocol, but science has proven that it can be a very important part of one.

The Ketogenic Diet: Natural, Effective “Metabolic Therapy” for Cancer

The ketogenic diet is a very low carb diet that is moderate in protein and high in fat. It is well known that the cells in your body are normally fueled by glucose (the form of sugar present in the blood). But when glucose is not available, cells derive their energy from ketones – a byproduct of fat breakdown.

And if you are concerned about cancer this is a very good thing…

You see, cancer cells work differently than normal cells. And while they thrive on glucose, they are unable to make the switch to ketones. Without glucose as a source of fuel, cancer cells begin to die off. Over time, tumors shrink and the diagnosis of “cancer” can disappear.

Dr. Dominic D'Agostino, metabolic therapy researcher at the University of South Florida says:

"Your normal cells have the metabolic flexibility to adapt from using glucose to using ketone bodies. But cancer cells lack this metabolic flexibility. So we can exploit that."

In fact, preliminary studies have shown the ketogenic diet to be so effective at resolving a number of different types of cancers (including some in the advanced stages) that it is being called “metabolic therapy.”

Researchers at the University of South Florida found that removing carbohydrates from lab mice with aggressive cancer increased their recovery. The ketogenic diet was also shown to work better than traditional chemotherapy (and, of course, without the horrible side effects).

Another study at Johns Hopkins found that people with brain tumors have a significantly lower survival rate when they have higher blood sugar levels. This provides additional support for the role of a ketogenic diet in the prevention and treatment of cancer.

Tips for Following a Ketogenic Diet
 
With cancer on the rise, the ketogenic diet is providing a safe, natural means of prevention and recovery for many people. And while each one of us is unique, with regards to the macronutrient ratios required to reach ketosis, a general guideline is to keep your carbohydrate consumption limited to 50 grams per day. The majority of calories should come from healthy fats and moderate amounts of protein.

Here are some quick meal ideas for a ketogenic diet:

•    Breakfast: Pastured eggs cooked in grass-fed butter, pastured pork sausage and avocado. You could also supplement with a tablespoon of coconut oil, avocado oil, fish oil or MCT oil for an added boost of healthy fats.

•    Lunch: Wild salmon over a large organic green salad with Kalamata olives and extra virgin olive oil vinaigrette. Pastured lamb burgers with mint gremolata, olives and greens (with oil or duck fat) might be another option.
 
•    Snack: Grass-fed pemmican, Brazil nuts, macadamia nuts or canned mackerel… plus another tablespoon of your favorite healthy fat.

•    Dinner: Free-range roasted duck legs over mashed cauliflower with grass fed butter and a green salad with olive or avocado oil. Another option: grass-fed ribeye steak with a generous helping of basil pesto and steamed broccoli. Another tablespoon of your favorite healthy fat before bed.
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As research continues to mount that cancer is largely a disease of the metabolism, we have more opportunities to treat it with the safe, natural diet enjoyed by our ancestors.

ED NOTE: Do you want to follow a ketogenic diet? But are you worried that won’t be able to completely cut out those tasty treats that you enjoy? Over on the Healing Gourmet website, Kelley has a recipe for Keto Paleo Dinner Rolls that are grain free, low in carbohydrates, and just perfect for sopping up the last few bites of your evening meal.

References
1.    WHO: Imminent global cancer 'disaster' reflects aging, lifestyle factors. Tim Hume and Jen Christensen, CNN. February 4, 2014
2.    A.M. Poff, C. Ari, T.N. Seyfried and D.P. D'Agostino The Ketogenic Diet and Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Act Synergistically to Prolong Survival in Mice with Systemic Metastatic Cancer. PLOS ONE, June 5, 2013
3.    McGirt MJ, Chaichana KL, Gathinji M, Attenello F, Than K, Ruiz AJ, Olivi A, Quiñones-Hinojosa A. Persistent outpatient hyperglycemia is independently associated with decreased survival after primary resection of malignant brain astrocytomas. Neurosurgery. 2008 Aug;63(2):286-91; discussion 291.
4.    Thomas N. Seyfried, Michael A. Kiebish, Jeremy Marsh, et al. Metabolic management of brain cancer. Biochimica et Biophysica Acta (BBA) – Bioenergetics. Volume 1807, Issue 6, June 2011, Pages 577–594
5.    Thomas N Seyfried Laura M Shelton. Cancer as a metabolic disease.  Nutr Metab (Lond). 2010; 7: 7.

12 Make-Ahead & Take-Along Superfood Paleo Snacks

By: Kelley Herring, Healing GourmetDeviled Eggs

If you’ve recently transitioned to a Paleo diet, you may feel that finding suitable snack foods is one of the biggest challenges about this way of eating.

And while conventional snack like chips, crackers and trail mix are certainly “off the menu,” it would seem that many widely-available foods (like nut mixes or dried fruit) would fit the Paleo template. Unfortunately, many of these contain unwanted ingredients like added sugars, vegetable oil and soy.

But today I’m going to share with you a dozen healthy Paleo snacks that you can make ahead and take along. Not only will these great snacks satisfy cravings between meals – they’ll also provide your body with a powerful source of age-defying, muscle-building nutrients, and are kid-friendly to boot.

Power Up Your Nutrition with Superfood Paleo Snacks

1.    Meatballs & Sliders:  Packed with protein and freezer-friendly, meatballs and sliders made with ground grass-fed beef, bison or turkey are a great way to satisfy a craving fast and keep you full until meal time. You can make them plain, add your toppings of choice later, or even include some ethnic seasonings for more interest. For Thai-style, add coconut aminos, lemongrass and ginger. For Mediterranean, try thyme, oregano and basil.

2.    Paleo Muffins: Great for breakfast, after a workout or as an afternoon snack with a smear of Kerrygold butter, paleo muffins made with coconut flour and almond flour are a great way to scratch the itch for bread… without derailing your diet on grains. Add organic pumpkin, chia and blueberries for more nutrients and great flavor.

3.    Rumaki: Looking for a great way to sneak more superfood liver in your diet? The mock-Polynesian recipe of rumaki - chicken livers and water chestnuts wrapped in bacon is a great way. Opt for coconut aminos in place of the soy sauce.

4.    Boiled or Deviled Eggs:  Keeping your fridge stocked with soft or hard boiled eggs is a great way to have quick nutrient-rich Paleo snacks on hand. For a more culinary-inspired treat, mix the yolks with mashed avocado or Paleo mayo for tasty and satiating Paleo Deviled Eggs.

5.    Wild Shrimp Cocktail: Three ounces of shrimp provides 18 grams of thermogenic protein plus 48% of the daily value for the antioxidant micronutrient selenium. Dip in homemade cocktail sauce spiked with cayenne or smoked paprika for a light snack that will fill you up.

6.    Baked Egg Cups: Not just for breakfast, muffin-tin egg cups make a great protein-packed snack any time of day. Simply add 8 organic pastured eggs to a large bowl and whisk in your cooked meat and toppings of choice. Pour the mixture into a well-greased muffin tin (liners may work even better) and bake about 20 minutes at 350 F. Some of my favorite mix-ins include: spicy bison chorizo or pork sausage, salsa, grilled veggies and raw cheddar cheese.

7.    Pastured Chicken Drumsticks: Filling, portable and protein rich, marinate drumsticks in your favorite seasonings and grill or bake for a delicious between-meal snack.

8.    Multi-Mineral Snack Mix: Make your own shelf-stable Paleo trail mix in batches and keep on hand for quick grab and go snacks. Add selenium-rich Brazil nuts, zinc-rich pumpkin seeds, almonds, walnuts, cashews (all soaked and dehydrated, preferably), and some organic mulberries, goji berries or raisins.

9.    Jerky & Pemmican: Loved by athletes for a power-packed source of fuel, grass-fed beef and bison jerky and pemmican make great Paleo snacks that are mess-free and easy to take along.

10.    Pork Rinds: Pastured pork rinds are a great way to get a carb-free crunch fix while providing your body with zero glycemic impact cell-building protein. In fact, a 1-ounce serving of pork rinds contains zero carbohydrates, 17 grams of protein and 9 grams fat. That's nine times the protein and less fat than you'll find in a serving of carb-rich potato chips.

11.    Canned Sardines, Mackerel & Salmon:  Power-packed sources of essential omaga-3 fatty acids, enjoying a serving of canned wild fish as a snack is a great way to optimize your intake of these vital fats. Enjoy them straight out of the can or mix with Paleo mayo and spread on grain-free crackers for a tasty, healthy treat.

12.    Superfood Smoothies: Made with organic, non-denatured whey protein, organic berries and greens (try kale, spinach and parsley), a protein-packed smoothie is a great way to get more nutrition into your day and can be especially helpful for picky eaters.

Sticking With It: How Paleo Snacks Keep You on Track

Having plenty of healthy snacks on hand doesn’t just make for more convenience. It can also help you stay on track and avoid temptations that can derail your healthy progress while ensuring that you get the most nutrient bang per bite.

What are some of your favorite Paleo snacks? We want to hear from you!

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ED NOTE: Kelley Herring is the author of the brand new book Better Breads – which includes information you need to know about why it is so important to avoid wheat and grains in your diet, plus how to use healthy replacements for these foods to create all the breads you love… without the gluten, carbs and health-harming effects. Click here to learn more about Better Breads…Click here to learn more about Better Breads…

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REFERENCES
1.    USDA Nutrient Data Lab, National Nutrient Database
2.    EatWild: The Health Benefits of Grass-Fed Products

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