måndag 25 januari 2010

If you were a caveman.... what would you eat?

Woolly mammoth, nuts, berries, some water perhaps? And how would this differ from the things that "normal" monkeys eat? Homo sapiens as a species has had about 10 000 years (since the last interglacial period) to become what we are today. And still we are so much like our ancestors. Only with an addition of antibiotics, dietary supplements, more sterile living and city dust.

Anyway, there is (apparently) a community found online that came some time ago to the conclusion that maybe we should be eating in accordance with how our ancestors did, 10 000 or so years ago. When a diet made up of mostly fats, proteins and only some sugars were "the" diet of choice.

Query: If man hasn't changed physiologically very much in 10 000 years... then why are we eating as if we really have?
This online community of people decided that "this won't do", and promptly went "paleo" (from the word "paleolitic"). If you check out Wikipedia for "paleolitic", you'll find that

"The Paleolithic (from Greek: (paleo-) "old" + (lithos) "stone") Age, Era, or Period,
is a prehistoric era distinguished by the development of the first stone tools, and covers roughly 99% of human technological history. 
It extends from the introduction of stone tools by hominids such as Homo habilis 2.5 million years ago, to the introduction of agriculture and the end of the Pleistocene around 12,000 BP. or 2.6
During the Paleolithic, humans grouped together in small societies such as bands,
and subsisted by gathering plants and hunting or scavenging wild animals"

"Paleo"-people eat a diet high in fats and proteins, only eat some carbs, strike all additives and "non-natural" preservatives from their diet, and eat food they've made from scratch. Some of them think it's okay to eat dairy-products, and some don't. So, the "pure" paleo-diet contains no grains, no dairy, no potato, no beans, and no sugar. The people that include dairy argue for it by saying that it's a sure way to get the required amount of calcium.

So, why am I bringing this up?

My dearly beloved boyfriend Micke, he has these ideas from time to time. All men do (it's a fact of life). He decided to try out CrossFit, and by that route read about paleo. Now, before November 2009, we ate what I cooked. And my type of cooking can be described as "from scratch, as much organic food as we have money for, lots of fruit, and NONE of the things my food allergies react to". So, when he said one day out of the blue in October 2009 "I think I'm gonna go paleo in November", I had to read up. Because he knew his skills in the kitchen were... not so optimal as to be able to plan ahead on this diet.

So, November came and went, and some of the dishes and comments can be read on Micke's blog. And although I at first missed a lot of carbohydrate-rich things like potato and bread, it wasn't so bad. (Seriously girls, it wasn't). And I went down from 61 kg  to a very stable 57 kg. For me - 168 cm with a normal bone structure - it's an ideal weight even if 60 kg would be better. The thing that went away though, were the fat deposits on my calves and butt. And my stomach and bowels actually felt better. Better enough that, when Micke asked if we should continue with this, I said yes. So, with the exception of Christmas dinner and the times we've wanted to eat out (you can always leave the bread and the fries!), the times Micke has had his "manly" cravings for pizza, and Sally's and J's birthday cake and cookies, we've managed to keep to the diet.

So, I read a newspaper article some days ago about a doctor named Annika Dahlqvist (Hbl 21.10.2010), promoting a diet called  LCHF (Low Carb, High Fat). She absolutely thought that she had had everything to gain from switching to LCHF from a "normal" diet. Most obvious benefit, she said, was that her bowels got back to "normal".  She had been suffering until then from both over-weight, gastroenteritis (sv. tarmkatarr) and fibromyalgia (sv. fibromyalgi), but with the change of diet these things "went away" too. [I've shortened her article severely, and used words that are more figures of speech. Check out the article instead]
Apparently, this means that other people and not just those in communities online, are finally starting to question what we ARE actually eating (insert E-code here...), and what we perhaps SHOULD be eating instead.

I'll leave you with a few pictures of the paleo food we've eaten :)

Polenta patty with some topping.
Slight mishap, since maize is as carbohydrate rich as potatoes.

French fish soup with carrots instead of potatoes.

Beef, carrots and a tomato salad.

Me being so tired, and beef + mashed carrots.
Wine isn't paleo, but it's one of them "shush" things :P
That day was so horrid, I needed a glass.

Filled zucchinis.

Minced meat-sauce and salad.

A salad with lots of topping.

Some paleo cupcakes going into the oven,
made with freeze dried strawberries and nut flour.
We ate the whole plate the same evening.

4 kommentarer:

Waenthoronien sa...

All the way through your text I thought "Annika Dahlqvist!", and then you mentioned her :) My dad read her book and has totally converted to LCHF. From all I've heard and read about her ideas I'm convinced that it's the best way to eat, but personally I don't want to eat meat, so I eat a lot of fish instead (as much as I can afford, that is), and make sure to eat high fat dairy products. As for carbohydrates, I do eat bread and sugar but less than I did before, and I definitely skip pasta. My favourite is mashed cauliflower instead of mashed potatoes: a head of cauliflower cooked in 2 dl cream and then mashed with a mixer and perhaps seasoned with black pepper and salt...

Huh, this became an essay, but I guess I'm just happy to see that someone else has come across these things :D

Linnea "Ea" Grönstrand sa...

T., if you thought your reply was an essay, then what I wrote was a whole novel.... :P

Glad to see that it's not only me and my boyfriend that's "converted". People tent to look at you in a funny way when you say "last time I ate bread was... last year, I guess". And I must definitely check out Mrs Dahlqvist's book. Maybe the library has it?
*here's to hoping*
But, I do eat bread, if you could call it that. I think "bread from nut-flour and eggs" would be more appropriate. I slightly modified the recipe I found on paleofood.com, and mostly use peanut-flour when I bake it. Tastes DIVINE with goat cheese.

[My recipe is:
[Oven on 175 degrees C
[Mix together: 1 banana, 2 eggs, ~3-4 dl of
[nut-flour, [1 dl of warm water with 2 spoons
[of honey, some cinnamon and berries if you
[want it more "pastry"-like.
[Spread evenly on baking parchment paper, bake
[until brown and yummy. Eat!

My personal new favorite is definitely carrot. It doesn't feel that weird to exchange potatoes for them, and since they have a really nice color they're usually make food more appealing.

Oh, and I too skip pasta. And last time I ate rice was for Christmas porridge. It feels slightly odd to see it written like that, though. :)

Saga sa...

Det måste vara nånting i generna som gör att vi Grönstrandbarn tar kort på vår mat. Allt ser ljuvligt gott ut, Linnea. Food porn!

Linnea "Ea" Grönstrand sa...

Herreguuu Saga - skrev du just ordet "food porn" :P


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