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Why Buy Grass Fed Beef?

Why does the Paleo Diet Work?

The Paleolithic Diet is based on a very simple, logical principal. All creatures, humans included, are designed to eat the foods they were designed to catch.

A small bird can’t hunt and kill wild animals, and a wolf can’t feed itself by gathering berries and grass seeds. Even once you domesticate the two animals and take the actual hunting and gathering out of the equation, the animals are still specialized to take maximum advantage of their particular diets. You couldn’t give your dog a sack of birdseed and your canary a chunk of ground beef and expect them to survive, at least not without some very serious health problems. Both of those foods are capable of supporting life, but only in a creature with a body and a digestive system designed to break it down properly, absorb all of its nutrients, cope with its excesses, and make up for its limitations.

With a great deal of micro-managing, an exceptional understanding of biochemistry, and access to enough healthy, high quality replacement foods, you may be able to create an effective substitute diet. But science is a long way away from even identifying everything our bodies need to function properly, let alone understanding how they interact, how we absorb them, and how much of them we need. This is one of the reasons why most ‘trend’ diets are eventually proven to be bad for yourself in some way. Even if we had a perfect understanding of the human diet, few of us have the time or the energy to chart out the dozens of fats, carbohydrates, amino acids, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and phytochemicals we need to consume to maintain optimum health. And the producers of the processed junk foods that take up the bulk of the average American diet certainly aren’t falling over themselves to help. Many of them have been dancing the fine line between addictive, affordable junk and outright poison since World War II. Factory farms and food processing plants continue to produce food contaminated with neuro-toxins to kill pests, arsenic to add color to chicken meat, and filled with artificial preservatives, flavorings, sweeteners, and dyes the human body was never meant to process. We’ve managed to scrape by on our chemical and intensive agricultural diet, but the cost has been high, with epidemic rates of cancer, heart disease of every kind, and other chronic diseases¹.

This has led several scientists to conclude that until the future finally arrives with flying cars and age-curing super-foods available in pill form, there really is no substitute for the original diet. So the question becomes, what are humans designed to eat?

After twenty years of studying biological anthropology, researching the eating habits of our ancestors and of the traditional hunter-gatherer societies around the world, Dr. Loren Cordain finally came up with the answer; the Paleo Diet.

The diet consists primarily of three ingredients

Lots and lots of lean, natural proteins like wild-caught seafood, grass-fed meats, organic chicken and eggs.

A wide variety of organic vegetables, as many as you can eat.

A collection of organic fruits, berries, nuts and seeds, with some moderation to avoid consuming too much sugar or fat.

The program removes all the most recent additions to our diet, including the first manufactured foods; dairy products and grains.

Dark green vegetables add calcium to your diet. 

Dairy products were not available before the domestication of herd animals, and our bodies are only just learning not to reject these products out of hand. In fact, the idea that lactose intolerance is a disease or disorder is an extremely Western one. In most non-European countries, rates of lactose intolerance range from 90-99 percent². Cattle-dependent societies only developed the ability to drink milk as adults in order to gain another last resort food in times of poverty or famine, they are not necessary to our health and come with their own long-term consequences.

Some people may be concerned that without dairy products they won’t have enough calcium in their diet. The seafood and leafy greens that make up the foundation of the Paleo Diet do contain calcium; admittedly less than dairy products, but it’s also important to keep in mind that some foods deplete calcium, as well as provide it.

Every food that we eat creates a waste product with a pH; in other words, it becomes either an acid or a base. Grains, meats, sodium, and dairy products produce acids, fruits and veggies produce bases. Acids and bases can cancel each other out, but if one is higher than the other, it becomes corrosive and can start to do damage. The American diet is very high on meats, grains and dairy, and low on fruits and vegetables, so to protect our digestive tracts from getting way to acidic, our bodies have to produce their own base to cancel it out. And the primary ingredient for this base is calcium, which gets taken from the deposits in our bones and flushed away.

Grains are another newcomer to the human diet, since they’re almost completely indigestible without first being cooked . It seems contrary to popular belief and expert opinion to say that you shouldn’t eat whole grains. And if it’s a choice between whole grains and the refined, processed grains that make up the average American diet, we are not saying that at all! The basic amount of dietary fiber, vitamins and minerals available in whole grains are amazing compared to absolutely no nutrients whatsoever. But fresh vegetables, supported by even a few servings of lean meats and seafood, are drastically superior.

The Whole Grains Council, a non-profit organization focused on educating people on the benefits of whole grains, lists fourteen nutrients which whole grains provide³. Eight of these are at least twice as common in an average serving of fruits and vegetables4:

•     Dietary fiber (2-3 times as common) ,

•     iron (6 times),

•     magnesium (3 times) ,

•     copper (2 times),

•     B1 thiamin (2 times),

•     B2 riboflavin (6 times),

•     B6 pyrodoxine (5 times),

•     B9 folic acid (19 times as common in fruits and vegetables)

Whole grains may be a good source of the other six, but that doesn’t mean that you’ll be deprived on a Paleo Diet:

•     Protein (obviously, with a foundation of lean meats, and seafood, you won’t find yourself short on this)

•     B3 niacin (4 times as common in seafood/lean meat),

•     Phosphorus (you only need 2 servings of beef or seafood to reach the RDA),

•     Zinc (2 servings of beef or other meat),

•     Manganese (2 servings pineapple, spinach, or nuts),

•     Selenium (one serving of fish, particularly tuna),

We cannot speak for the people in charge of the Whole Grain Council or other groups who are campaigning to get consumers to choose whole grain products when a diet based on proteins, fruits and vegetables is so much more nutritious, but our best guess is that this is a compromise. The best source of B vitamins is the one that you actually eat. After decades of health experts trying in vain to get us to eat our vegetables, convincing us all to switch to whole grain versions of our favorite junk foods is a better investment of time and effort, even if it isn’t ideal.

However, if don’t want to compromise when it comes to your health, we recommend that you move towards the original, nutritional Paleo diet. Even if you can’t see yourself fully committing, consider adding just a serving more of fruits and vegetables to your day, and looking into leaner and more nutrient rich grass-fed meats and wild-caught seafood. Every little bit helps.

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