Category Archives: Paleo Diet

Every caveman must get stoned


Just like the last time I gave up booze for the sake of the paleo diet, I’ve been finding it annoying to forsake the hooch. Merely denying oneself a pleasure for the sake of a grander plan can be a drag. Meanwhile, being around drunk people while you’re sober is universally understood to be aggravating, and that has happened a few times.

However, it’s not challenging from a willpower point of view. I hope my mom is reading: I’m not addicted or emotionally dependent on alcohol. It’s not as if I’m being tortured by visions of dancing whisky bottles or anything. The other thing making this easier is the fact that I allowed myself to have drinks when it was necessary for work, which has come up a handful of times. So I’ve not been completely dry.

Which is a good thing, because as a guy who writes about drinks for a living, temptation surrounds me. I have roughly 180 to 200 bottles of booze in my place at any given time, and I’m continually sent new ones to sample and review. Continue reading

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Cave condiments


Paleo dieting can be dreary if you don’t take care to season your food with some extra flavour. Hunter-gatherers don’t, or so I gather, but they don’t grow up with Heinz the way we did.

So while I’m sticking pretty closely to the Stone Age in my eating habits this month, I couldn’t resist Kozlik’s horseradish for this bison steak and an eensy smear of Jamie Oliver’s Walnut and Red Pepper Pesto for my tuna and avocado salad. After all, I’m a big lover of toppings and sauces; someone once called my fridge “the condiment castle.” Old habits, et cetera.

The problem: Ordinary, store-bought condiments are typically laden with paleo no-nos: dairy, added sugar and salt, unpronounceable ingredients. I knew this when I gave myself permission to eat an occasional glob of condiments to make paleo food more interesting.

However, there are options and resources out there for paleo types who want even their fixings to fit the program.

• Nell “Paleoista” Stephenson offers some simple, commonsense workarounds to jazz up one’s meals without breaking the law of the cave-land (some I’ve also done, like substituting citrus juice for vinegar)

• Paleo Diet Lifestyle has links to several recipes, including paleo versions of ketchup, relish and horseradish

• And for inspiration, check out this Pinterest board festooned with fixings of the primal persuasion. It all looks pretty tasty.

That settles it. I’m going to make some paleo condiments for myself. Stone Age sriracha, here I come.

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The 10 Paleo foods I rely on most

cave meal_SM

Korean pork belly and roasted pike, kimchi, and a daikon, carrot and cilantro salad with dressing of coconut oil, lime juice and honey

When I first tried the paleo diet for a month in 2010, I soon found that I became dependent on certain go-to foods — things I would eat over and over again, for the most part because they were foods that conformed to the diet, were tasty enough to feel like a treat, and (perhaps most important for a busy caveman) were simple to prepare.

A week after resolving to eat paleo this time around, I’m back to gorging on the old favourites. I’m curious what other paleo and primal folks would put in the same category.

Here are my Top 10 go-to paleo foods, in no particular order:


Smoked, baked or barbecued. Wild Pacific salmon, ideally from Alaska, for sustainability reasons Continue reading

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Typical meal

729714_10152398997460156_552401113_oTwo days into paleo eating according to my own rules, it’s a case of so far, so good. I’m not frustrated or tempted so far, despite not really having had a chance to stock up on lots of caveman treats (oysters, for example) that would make the experience more pleasurable.

This meal above is typical: Frozen baby shrimp (from Ikea!) with avocado and a makeshift dressing of lime juice, buckwheat honey and coconut oil, plus a tiny touch of Thai curry paste (a small cheat). Salad is carrot, daikon, cilantro/coriander and roasted unsalted sunflower seeds. Dessert, not shown, was blueberries.

I show you my dinner to dispel possible myths: People imagine a so-called caveman diet as little more than slabs of meat, but in reality it’s a colourful and diverse way to eat. The only problem is that you really have to plan ahead; a 21st-century city offers little food on the go for a cave person.

More about this pesky meat business

So wait — are we supposed to eat piles of meat or not?

That’s the question I’m asking myself four weeks into eating a modified version of the paleo diet. Because here we’ve been reading for years that the diet-heart hypothesis was essentially bullshit (take this 2007 article from Men’s Health, for example). Many a paleo eating journey was launched (or at least partially pushed aloft) by that line of research.

Meats ahoy! Right everybody?

But then, well … shit. Along came a recent study by researchers at the Harvard Medical School has been getting a lot of attention for stating that: “a higher intake of red meat was associated with a significantly elevated risk of total, cardiovascular disease, and cancer mortality.” Continue reading

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Red meat bad?


According to the BBC:

A diet high in red meat can shorten life expectancy, according to researchers at Harvard Medical School. The study of more than 120,000 people suggested red meat increased the risk of death from cancer and heart problems. …The British Heart Foundation said red meat could still be eaten as part of a balanced diet. The researchers analysed data from 37,698 men between 1986 and 2008 and 83,644 women between 1980 and 2008.

Surely bad news for cave-folk, if the research holds up under scrutiny.

Photo: Oven cooked pork side ribs with a dry rub, with side of sauteed yu choi.

The real caveman diet: What did people eat in prehistoric times? – Slate Magazine

Slate (my favourite online magazine — and what a nice, caveman-friendly name) has a piece that partially answers a question I get asked all the time: Does the Paleo Diet really reflect the paleo diet? Are Paleo Dieters eating what cave people ate?

Specifically, this post deals with the ancient nature of many of the fruits we eat, and the not-so-ancient nature of the vegetables. Interesting …

LINK: The real caveman diet: What did people eat in prehistoric times? -Slate Magazine.

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