Celiac Disease, Food Additives and the Benefits of a Gluten-Free Diet

November 13th, 2017
0
Matt Poteet, Pharm.D.

Celiac Disease Food Additives and Benefits of Gluten-Free Diet - Dietary Rehab

Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder in which the body’s immune system mistakenly reacts to gluten. Glutens are proteins found in wheat, rye, barley and triticale.

Put simply, celiac sufferers cannot properly digest gluten. Instead, the body starts to destroy part of the small intestine, making it difficult to absorb vital nutrients. If you or a loved one has celiac disease, or you simply want to be your healthiest self, consider a gluten-free diet.

About Celiac Disease and Gluten

Celiac disease affects everyone differently, and can be difficult to diagnose. There are more than 200 known symptoms of this disease, including:

  • Nausea
  • Fatigue
  • Joint pain
  • Malnutrition
  • Depression
  • Vomiting
  • Chronic diarrhea
  • Abdominal bloating and pain

Symptoms can affect the entire body, and can appear in children and adults. Celiac disease is hereditary, and affects as many as 3 million Americans. About 97 percent of celiac disease cases go undiagnosed.

The only treatment for celiac disease is to follow a gluten-free diet. Gluten acts as “glue” that holds foods together, and exists in many products. It’s what gives bread a chewy and elastic texture, and is an important ingredient in making baked goods.

Beer, cereal, bread, pasta and many other foods contain gluten. Gluten is a completely indigestible protein that can slip through the lining of the intestines and cause inflammation in people with celiac disease.

Normally, the small intestine has villi that line the inside to help the body absorb nutrients. If one has celiac disease, ingesting gluten irritates this lining and causes the immune system to attack the villi.

Over time, this can lead to damage or destruction of the villi, and the inability to absorb important nutrients. This can cause malnutrition and a variety of related health problems. Adhering to a gluten-free diet can stop the symptoms of celiac disease, and allow the body to function normally.

Food Additives as Hidden Sources of Gluten

The number of hidden sources of gluten that exist in everyday products may surprise you. Identifying the more latent sources of glutinous material found in processed foods can be challenging, especially early on during your diet change.

Many people overlook one very significant source of gluten: food additives. Food additives for protein, texture, flavor or color may very well contain a source of gluten that causes a flare-up.

Companies may add ingredients to products to improve some element of it, such as the look or taste. Unfortunately, these additives can render the product inedible to people with celiac disease or gluten intolerances.

Always check labels for additives before consuming a product. Take a smartphone with you while you shop, and look up additives you aren’t familiar with. When in doubt, call the company to see if the product is gluten-free.

Percentage of Americans on Gluten-Free Diet Without Celiac Disease Chart - Dietary Rehab

Celiac Disease Foods to Avoid

If you’re new to a gluten allergy or celiac disease, you’re probably wondering what foods you can and cannot eat on your new gluten-free diet. Luckily, scientists have increased their understanding of gluten intolerances in the past few years, leading to a trend of gluten-free food production. Nowadays, it’s relatively easy to find gluten-free alternatives to your favorite dishes.

The list of foods to avoid is long, but common foods that contain gluten include:

  • Barley
  • Beer
  • Bleached bread, cake, graham or granary flour
  • Couscous
  • Malt
  • Pasta
  • Rye
  • Soy and teriyaki sauce
  • Wheat
  • Edible starch
  • Filler

Gluten-containing additives include:

  • Wheat protein
  • Textured vegetable protein
  • Flour
  • Food starch
  • Dextrin
  • Caramel color
  • Anything with the word “wheat”

Avoid vague descriptions such as “artificial flavoring,” “spices” or “natural flavor.” It’s unclear where these ingredients came from, and they could have a source that contains gluten.

The list of foods and additives that may contain gluten is even longer: Dried fruit, flavored coffee, ice cream, candy and many other food items can potentially contain gluten. Get in the habit of reading ingredients labels carefully if you’re adhering to a strict no-gluten diet.

What You Can Eat

Going gluten-free isn’t just about what you can’t eat. People with celiac disease can still eat some grains that are naturally gluten-free, including brown rice, wild rice, and quinoa.

Other naturally gluten-free foods include:

  • Unprocessed beans and nuts
  • Fresh eggs
  • Fresh meat and poultry
  • Fresh fish
  • Fruits and vegetables
  • Most dairy products

Safe grains and starches include (as long as they aren’t processed with additives that contain gluten):

  • Buckwheat
  • Flax
  • Corn
  • Cornmeal
  • Sorghum

The Benefits of a Gluten-Free Diet

Receiving a celiac disease diagnosis isn’t the only reason to consider going gluten-free. There are many other medical conditions that eating gluten can exacerbate. For example, eating gluten-free can ease the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

Removing gluten from your diet can solve many mysterious issues you have with digestion, energy levels and other issues. You may have a non-celiac gluten intolerance, or gluten sensitivity if you can’t seem to figure out what’s wrong.

Going gluten-free can result in benefits such as:

  • Better digestive health
  • Increased energy
  • Improved cholesterol
  • Weight loss from cutting out processed and unhealthy foods
  • Improved cardiovascular health
  • Less bloating and gas
  • Reduced risk of diabetes
  • Improved conditions such as IBS and arthritis

Note that if you don’t need a gluten-free diet for medical reasons, eliminating gluten completely may actually do more harm than good. You could miss out on a healthy, well-balanced diet and beneficial whole grains if you go gluten-free by choice.

Work with a dietician for a meal plan that’s suited to your individual needs, whether or not you have celiac disease. Visit your doctor for more information about celiac disease and gluten-free diets.

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What Is Coffee Flour: The Newest Paleo Grain?

September 15th, 2017
0
Matt Poteet, Pharm.D.

What Is Coffee Flour The Newest Paleo Grain - Dietary RehabIf you bake, you probably know there are many different types of flour. Nut flours like almond and hazelnut offer many of the nutritional benefits found in whole nuts. Oat flour has extra fiber and is gluten-free. Coconut flour is often substituted for white flour in paleo recipes.

Coffee flour is new on the scene, and it offers amazing health benefits.

Coffee Flour Improves Health and the Environment

With coffee four being touted as not only good for you, but also good for the environment, we had to dive deeper into this mysterious new ingredient. We wanted to find out for ourselves what the benefits and potential uses for coffee flour are all about.

What Is Coffee Flour?

The coffee you drink every morning comes from the Coffea plant. Coffee growers raise the plants for their fruit – little red cherries that each contain one or two seeds. These farmers harvest, dry and grind the seeds to make America’s favorite morning beverage.

Until now, growers had no use for the rest of the plant; they threw away the cherry pulp. Recently, a former coffee house employee invented a process to dry discarded cherry pulp and grind it into flour.

What Makes Coffee Flour Unique?

Coffee flour doesn’t taste like coffee. It has a smooth flavor that’s more like tea or molasses. Some blends contain light citrus notes, and others are slightly bitter.

Coffee flour works well in:

  • Muffins
  • Granola bars
  • Other baked goods

But you don’t have to worry about the afternoon jitters if you use coffee flour in your favorite recipes: There’s only around 62 milligrams of caffeine per one tablespoon serving – about the same amount contained in a serving of dark chocolate.

Health Benefits of Coffee Flour

Health Benefits of Coffee Flour Gluten-Free Kosher Paleo Vegan - Dietary RehabCoffee flour only has 34 calories per serving, but it packs a powerful nutritional punch. Here are some of its health benefits:

It contains 1.8 grams of soluble fiber and 3.4 grams of insoluble fiber per serving, making it a high-fiber flour.

Fiber helps your body digest food, absorb nutrients and balance blood sugar. It also helps you stay full longer. It’s low fat, too: While almond flour contains 3.5 grams of fat per tablespoon and coconut flour has 1 gram for the same amount, coffee flour only has 0.056 grams.

It’s also an excellent source of potassium, which reduces blood pressure and preserves both bone mass and lean muscle. It contains 310 milligrams of potassium per serving, almost as much as a whole banana.

Coffee Flour Uses

Coffee flour can be incorporated into most recipes. Just use it in place of 30 percent of the flour your recipe calls for. If you are worried about a different taste in your favorite food, try mixing coffee flours with other kinds of flours. Coffee flour also thickens smoothies, soups and sauces.

Coffee Flour’s Role in the Environment and Jobs

While we are all concerned with healthy eating, we also want to ensure our farming is done with the health of the planet in mind. Therefore, it’s comforting to know coffee flour has socioeconomic and environmental benefits. Instead of dumping waste in rivers or rotting in landfills, farmers turn this coffee byproduct into a sustainable source of income.

Since the plant pulp that is used was once thrown away or used for fertilizer, this new use is much better for the environment. It’s also a boon to many poor economies, too.

Coffee is grown in some of the world’s poorest countries. This new industry creates jobs, as workers are needed to harvest, dry, mill and package the pulp. A whole new industry from coffee flour is currently improving agricultural communities on three continents.

Coffee Flour in Paleo Recipes

Coffee flour is non-GMO, vegan and gluten-free. It’s the perfect ingredient in many sweet and savory paleo recipes. Try it as part of your favorite paleo recipes to boost both flavor and nutrition.

Dietary Rehab helps people understand nutrition to overcome obesity and chronic disease. We help people enjoy healthy eating and feel good while doing it.

Browse through our recipes and feel free to substitute coffee flour for an extra-healthy boost to an already nutritious and tasty recipe.

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Mediterranean Diet: Truth or Consequences Help Shape Personal Lifestyles

July 10th, 2017
0
Matt Poteet, Pharm.D.

Mediterranean Diet Truth or Consequences Help Shape Personal Lifestyles - Dietary RehabFinding healthier, easier ways to eat with enjoyment is a favorite American pastime. One of the premier diets getting a whole lot of attention is the Mediterranean diet.

In actuality, the diet itself isn’t new. In fact, it’s been in existence for centuries. Its origin comes from the name, Mediterranean, mimicking the eating patterns of people from that region of the world.

And while this eating plan may be many years old, how we view its merits brings something new to the nutrition industry. In truth, the Mediterranean diet sheds light on a term widely misused: the word diet.

Moderation Is the Meme of Mediterranean Diet Truth

People generally defer to a specific diet seeking weight loss, preferably quick weight loss. But the results, like the diet itself, are temporary. One of the many key differentiators in the Mediterranean diet is that it isn’t a diet, in the traditional sense of the word, but in truth – a lifestyle.

You may have had a friend or family member, even yourself, give the Mediterranean diet a try in the past. It isn’t just about what you eat. It’s about adding the element of moderation to your world. Moderation implies reasonable serving sizes and balance in other lifestyle choices, such as exercise, whom you spend time with and how often.

How a Mediterranean Diet Improves Health for Life

How a Mediterranean Diet Improves Health for LifeAs the Mediterranean diet, followed in its entirety, creates a big picture mapping out a person’s day-to-day behaviors, committing to this program engages a more holistic lifestyle shift. Other diets, due to their temporary nature, do not support long-term use by the participant, setting up a recipe for failure.

The Mediterranean diet provides life choices that promote happiness and socialization while increasing heart health and other benefits that extend longevity. Because the transition into “living Mediterranean” is somewhat seamless, the sense of self-sacrifice in not being able to eat many of the foods one loves, common during dieting, is near nonexistent.

Instead, these dieters have a greater sense of well-being and a feeling that, with this life plan, personal goals are achievable and likely permanent.

Eat Mediterranean Like You Were Born There

It isn’t difficult to adopt a Mediterranean lifestyle. What you eat is hearty, robust and full of texture and color. The choices are vitamin-rich and full of nutrients. Try to focus on what you can eat and not what you need to do without, and the experience will be that much more rewarding.

Limit your intake of red meat and processed foods including sugars, complex carbohydrates (white rice and foods made with white flour), unhealthy fats, or preservatives. Key words to remember are fresh, whole and of the earth.

Eat Mediterranean Like You Were Born There - Salmon Nuts Oil Avocado

Find excitement in what you CAN eat:

  • Legumes
    • Nuts (1 oz. daily)
    • Beans, peas, lentils, hummus (1/2 cup serving, cooked, 2 times a week or more)
  • Whole grains
    • Brown or wild rice, bread or pasta made with whole-wheat flour, oatmeal, popcorn and quinoa (4 small portions per day and ALWAYS eat with protein and healthy fats)
  • Fresh fish or seafood (4 oz., 2-3 times a week)
    • Grilled, baked, poached or steamed
  • Eggs (2-3 times a week)
    • Cooked in olive oil, poached or hard-boiled
  • Vegetables (5-10 servings a day, ½ cooked/1 cup raw)
    • Fresh or lightly cooked to stay slightly crunchy
  • Fruits (4-6 servings a day, ½ cup per serving)
    • Fresh or lightly cooked
  • Healthy fats (4-6 servings a day)
    • Extra virgin olive oil (1 tbsp.) or 5 olives
    • Avocado (1/8 of an avocado) or avocado oil
  • Dairy (moderate consumption), low-fat or skim (1-3 servings daily)
    • Fresh curd cheeses (1 oz.)
    • Yogurt (1 cup)
    • Kefir (1 cup)
    • Milk (1 cup)
  • Beverages
    • Water
    • Tea
    • Coffee
    • Red Wine (5 oz. per day for women; 10 oz. per day for men)

Mediterranean Diet Truth or Consequences You Can Live With

Mediterranean Diet Increases Odds Of Aging Healthfully - Dietary RehabThe benefits of living a Mediterranean lifestyle are backed by science. Those who practice this diet regularly realize healthy weight loss while minimizing their risk of heart attack, type 2 diabetes, stroke and early death. In addition, the risk for certain cancers, such as head, neck, prostate and colon, is reduced.

There is also evidence that Mediterranean diet followers are less likely to develop Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s disease.

Before trying this diet plan, make sure that your body can digest raw fruits and vegetables well. If you have certain health conditions such as IBS, this diet could be cumbersome to maintain.

Ask us, the nutritionists at Dietary Rehab, if this is the right program for you.

Live Mediterranean Now

Live Mediterranean Now Working Wake Up Peach Smoothie - Dietary RehabTo get a taste of how the Mediterranean diet can make a difference in how you feel, try this:

Working Wake Up!

½ cup, ripe peaches chopped, skin removed
½ cup skim milk (1% is fine too)
6 ice cubes
½ cup low-fat plain or vanilla yogurt
Sprinkling of cinnamon (optional)

Blend until all ingredients come together to a thick and frothy consistency. Pour into a to-go cup. Add a straw for fun. Start your day!

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Nutrient Timing Healthy or Harmful? Let’s Examine

May 22nd, 2017
0
Matt Poteet, Pharm.D.

Nutrient Timing Healthy or Harmful Let’s Examine

There’s been a lot of buzz about how food is meant to be for nutritional benefit. Some even refer to food as medicine. When eating food that is rich in nutrients, the body receives what it needs to work optimally and help generate a sense of well-being.

About 15 years ago, the media caught wind of what professional athletes already knew: that eating the right food at the right time could enhance fitness, increase physical performance and maximize weight loss. Once this information trickled down to the masses, the diet and nutrition industry took hold and applied it to mainstream America.

Let’s assume the intentions were for the greater good, but the healthful benefits of nutrient timing may not apply to the general population.

What Is Nutrient Timing?

The premise of nutrient timing is simple. A person eats:

  • Specific foods
  • In specified amounts
  • In specified combinations
  • At specified times

Usually, small meals take place five to six times a day to include varied selections of whole grains, vegetables, fruit, healthy fats and proteins that together are no larger than the size of a person’s fist.

Depending on a person’s reasons or goals for using nutrient timing, the amount of foods may shift. For example, a person training for a marathon will use nutrient timing to help maintain lean muscle mass.

Comparatively speaking, someone looking to shed fat or maintain current weight may use the nutrient timing system as a means to ward off hunger throughout a workout regimen. Much of the difference – and potential risk – comes down to the intake of protein.

Excess Protein Is too Much too Soon

There is a link between protein intake and lean muscle mass. With protein, the body can maintain or build greater muscle mass. But without enough protein, muscle is lost.

Many diet programs have beefed up protein intake to help force the body to shed fat instead of lean muscle. However, there is some backlash about excess protein and what it can do to the body’s internal systems.

Although the recommended daily allowance of protein intake seems high, it’s easy to see how quickly a person can get the necessary amount.

Physical Activity, Associated Weight and Recommended Protein Intake

How the Body Uses Protein

Protein, unlike other nutritional components, cannot be sourced within the body, meaning that once a person has depleted their existing level of protein, there is no other internal supply. Although proper protein intake is vital, it does not supersede the importance of carbohydrates. With nutrient timing, a healthy balance is more readily achieved by design.

With an increased protein intake, metabolism converts to what’s known as a state of ketosis. Instead of using carbohydrates to generate fuel or energy, the body will process or burn its fat. During ketosis, one can feel less hungry and the need to release excess water.

Sounds good, right? Not so fast.

In order to break down protein effectively, the body generates ammonia – seriously. The body can only handle so much ammonia. To release higher levels of ammonia, the body needs to sweat it out.

An imbalanced nutrition regimen with higher levels of protein can increase ammonia levels, which can somewhat be compensated through more strenuous exercises or athletic conditioning. What about average Joe? What about plain Jane? Should they even think about nutrient timing?

If It Ain’t Broke, Don’t Fix It

Nutritional balance is everything. Using food as a method to maintain or alter physical shape, and to keep or increase internal health, is wise. What’s even more amazing is that it doesn’t have to be complicated. Sustenance and fitness are not fixed but flexible, just as nutrient timing was meant to be.

When Your Body Talks, Listen

The right nutrition differs per the individual. Many contributing factors help dictate which foods to eat and what time to consume them.

Daily Protein Intake for Individuals Over 18 Years OldExamine the following when considering entering into a nutrient timing eating plan:

  • Genetics
  • Metabolism
  • Environment
  • Lifestyle or Schedule
  • Level of Physical Activity

Realistic expectations also play a big role in the planning and success of nutrient timing for healthy living. Take a moment to think back: Have you ever been on a diet or nutrition program, due to the testimonials of other people, believing you would achieve the same or similar results? More than likely, you didn’t.

Every nutrition plan works differently for each person. Nutrient timing, like any other sustenance program, is a lifestyle model that can be adjusted to fit your needs. Take into account the goals, the duration required to get there and, throughout the process, how the body reacts and how you feel.

Signs that Healthy Intake Is Off

The purpose of nutrient timing is to use healthy food as the catalyst to better body functionality and, in some cases, appearance.

There are also contraindications that suggest a change in the plan is needed:

  • Perspiration has ammonia odor
  • Dehydration
  • Tiredness
  • Nausea
  • Diminished performance

The Healthy Advantages of Nutrient Timing Outweigh the Risks

By using nutrient timing as a tool to ensure a balanced, healthy diet in easy-to-digest portion sizes can provide long-lasting benefits to all people. When physical activity changes, so too should the amount of food and/or the frequency of the nutrient timing.

Additionally, consuming carbohydrates and protein together within 45 minutes before or after a strenuous workout can provide the bones and muscles what they need to boost performance and build strength. As the metabolism kicks into high gear during and for up to 90 minutes after a workout, nutrient timing then supports the caloric intake and the training session, diminishing the risk for unhealthy weight gain.

Nutrient timing can complement the immeasurable value in daily nutrition for the short and long term.

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Paleo Style Christmas Cookie Recipes

December 5th, 2016
0
Matt Poteet, Pharm.D.

Paleo Style Christmas Cookie Recipes

Don’t you just love the wonderful smells of cinnamon and vanilla wafting through the house at Christmas time? Afraid you can’t have the same smells in your house unless it’s from a candle? These Paleo recipes should help change your mind. From Gingerbread men to peppermint cookies, a variety of tastes awaits the intrepid baker!

Paleo Gingerbread Recipe

Paleo Gingerbread Men Recipe

My favorite Christmas cookie has always been gingerbread men, but with Paleo, it’s been difficult to find a good recipe, since most will let the dough spread and the point is to have men, not blobs. I found this one that works.

For the Dough:

1 ½ cups almond flour

¾ cup tapioca starch

¾ teaspoon ground ginger*

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/8 teaspoon ground cloves

¼ teaspoon salt

3 tablespoon coconut oil

2 ½ tablespoon pure maple syrup

3 tablespoon molasses

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper
  • In a mixing bowl, add all dry ingredients and mix well
  • Add the wet ingredients and beat until well blended and a thick dough forms
  • Place the dough between two sheets of parchment and roll out to ¼ ” thickness. Place in refrigerator for 30 minutes
  • Peel off the upper parchment paper and cut out your gingerbread men using a cookie cutter. Place on baking sheet about 1” apart and bake for 10-12 minutes. Let cool and place in airtight container.
  • Decorate with the desired icing, etc and enjoy! Makes approximately 12-15 gingerbread men.

*Now, I’ve always liked a bit of ginger in my gingerbread men, so I upped the ginger to 2 full teaspoons and also added 1 teaspoon nutmeg. But you can add whatever spices you like, play with the spice amounts until you have your very own gingerbread man recipe.

Paleo Holiday Recipes

Paleo Snowball Dessert Recipe

No Bake Pecan Snowballs

This recipe is a variation on the Mexican wedding cookies or snowball cookies of Christmas traditions. My favorite was the pfeffernuss cookies, which this recipe can easily be adapted for.

For the Dough: *

1 cup pecan halves

½ cup shredded unsweetened coconut

1 cup medjool dates, pitted (approx 10)

1 tablespoon coconut oil

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

½ cup arrowroot or tapioca starch

Extra Arrowroot for dusting or coconut sugar**

Instructions:

  • Place pecans and shredded coconut into a food processor with an “S” blade and process until pecans are crumbly.
  • Add in the rest of the ingredients and process further until a sticky dough forms (it should stick together when pressed between two fingers)
  • Scoop the dough by the rounded tablespoons and roll between your hands, forming balls. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet and put in the freezer for 1-2 hours . For the “snowball” look, roll in a bit of arrowroot powder or tapioca starch. Not a lot is needed as it doesn’t add to the flavor.
  • Store in airtight container in the refrigerator for best texture. Unless eaten up before, they will last up to two weeks. Makes about 12 balls

** If a sweeter snowball is desired, use coconut sugar or shredded coconut to roll the balls in. This should be done before putting into the freezer to help the coating stick to the balls better.

*For pfeffernuss cookies just add the following spices to the pecans and shredded coconut before adding the rest of the ingredients:

½ tablespoon white pepper

½ tablespoon cinnamon

½ teaspoon cloves

½ teaspoon nutmeg

½ teaspoon ginger

With the coconut sugar coating, these are delicious with a bit of zing!

Paleo Holiday Recipes

Paleo Thin Mint Cookie Recipe

Paleo Thin Mint Cookies

What is Christmas without peppermint and who doesn’t love Girl Scout Thin Mints?  This recipe is a Paleo approved version of their cookie and it tastes very close to the original, but they are cheaper and healthier for you. And you can make them anytime!

For the Dough:

½ cup sifted coconut flour

1 ¼ cups almond flour

¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder

2 tablespoon arrowroot starch

¼ teaspoon salt

1 egg

½ cup pure maple syrup

½ teaspoon peppermint extract

¼ cup coconut oil, melted

For the Coating:

¼ cup chopped dark chocolate

2 oz unsweetened dark chocolate

½ teaspoon peppermint extract

Instructions:

  • Place dry ingredients in a medium bowl and mix until well blended.
  • Add wet ingredients, except coconut oil and mix with hand mixer.
  • With the mixer on low, slowly add coconut oil until mixed thoroughly.
  • Place the dough onto a sheet of plastic wrap and using it as a guide, shape the dough into a 1 ¾” diameter log. Wrap tightly and place in freezer until firm (approx 2 hours)
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Remove dough from freezer and cut the log into ¼” thick rounds.
  • Place rounds on two parchment paper lined baking sheets. Bake 14-16 minutes or until the middle is firm to the touch.
  • Remove from oven and place on wire rack to cool.
  • Meanwhile, melt the coating ingredients in a double boiler until mixture is smooth all the way through.
  • Using two forks, dip each cookie into the coating mixture, returning them to the parchment and refrigerate until chocolate sets. (approx 30 minutes)
  • Enjoy! Makes approx 12-15 mint cookies

Paleo Holiday Recipes

If you would like something a little simpler, try this peppermint cookie recipe:

Paleo Chocolate Peppermint Swirl Cookies Recipe

Paleo Chocolate Peppermint Swirl Cookies

These are easier to make and they are a wonderful soft “sugar” cookie. You can bring them to a neighbor’s house or to a cookie exchange Christmas party.

[h2] For the Dough:

2 cups almond flour

½ cup coconut flour

½ teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon baking soda

¼ teaspoon salt

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 tablespoon coconut oil

1/3 cup honey

3 tablespoon cocoa powder*

½  teaspoon peppermint extract

Instructions:

  • Add all ingredients into a food processor except the cocoa powder and the peppermint extract.
  • Process until a smooth dough forms. Remove from processor. Divide dough in half.
  • Replace one-half back into the food processor with the peppermint extract. Mix well. Remove and set aside.
  • Place the other half into the processor with the cocoa powder. Mix well. Remove
  • Place each ball of dough between two sheets of wax paper and roll out to 1/4 “ thickness.
  • Remove the top layer of wax paper and turn one of the sheets of dough on top of the other sheet of dough.
  • Peel the top layer of wax paper and lightly press the two layers of dough together.
  • Roll the dough into a log lengthwise. Chill dough for about 30 minutes in the refrigerator.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. prepare a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • With a sharp knife, cut the dough into ½” rounds and place on the sheet at least 1” apart.
  • Bake for 8-10 minutes and remove from oven. Let cool on the baking sheet.
  • Store in air tight container. Makes approx 18 cookies.

*Personally, I add more cocoa and honey to the dough; of course you have to add a bit more almond flour as well, to keep the consistency the same. I love chocolate. And Paleo allows dark chocolate, so I say: “Go for it!”

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Cauliflower And Its Versatility Within The Paleo Diet

November 22nd, 2016
0
Matt Poteet, Pharm.D.

Cauliflower And Its Versatility Within The Paleo DietThere are chefs and cooks everywhere that have taken the much-maligned cauliflower out from underneath the cheese sauce and given it new life, new recipes and a whole new image!  Cauliflower rice, a wonderful alternative to regular rice for the Paleo Diet, as well as cauliflower pizza crust, (yes, you read that right!) for Paleo pizza lovers everywhere!  You can roast, bake, boil, mash, stew or even turn it into a hearty soup. Cauliflower is extremely versatile and takes on the flavors of whatever spice or sauce it is around. So many things you can do with it, where do I begin?

Cauliflower Pizza Crust

Since I have already whetted your appetites with pizza, here is the easiest and most delicious way to make pizza dough without any grains and plenty of taste!

For the dough:

1 head of cauliflower, stalk removed

1l/2 cup shredded mozzarella

¼ cup grated Parmesan

½ teaspoon dried oregano

½ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon garlic powder

2 eggs, lightly beaten

Instructions:

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper
  • Break the cauliflower into florets and pulse in a food processor until fine.
  • Steam in a steamer basket and drain well (I like to put on a towel to get all the moisture out) Let cool.
  • In a bowl, combine the cauliflower with the remaining ingredients until well mixed.
  • Transfer to the center of the baking sheet and spread into a circle, resembling a pizza crust.
  • Bake for 20 minutes. Add desired toppings and bake for an additional 10 minutesDividers and borders

Curried Cauliflower Soup

I do recall mentioning soup. And this one is a curried soup. I love curry. Give me a good curry and I will follow you anywhere. This one is mild. But it doesn’t have to be….

Ingredients:

1 large head of cauliflower, cut into florets

2 tablespoon olive oil (yes, it’s Paleo)

1 medium to large onion, chopped

3 cups chicken stock, low sodium

½ teaspoon coriander

½ teaspoon turmeric

1 ½ teaspoon cumin

1 cup full fat coconut milk

¼ cup roasted cashews

2Tbln parsley, finely chopped

Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Spread cauliflower and onion in a single layer on a baking sheet.
  • Drizzle with olive oil and add salt and pepper to taste. Roast for 15-20 minutes, until golden brown, stirring once.
  • Place the cauliflower and onions into a large pot, add the chicken stock and the spices with a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil and let boil for 5 minutes. Remove from heat.
  • With an immersion blender, puree the ingredients in the pot until smooth. If you have no immersion blender, carefully transfer to a stand-up blender to puree.
  • Stir in the coconut milk and return to the stove to warm soup. Adjust the seasonings to taste. Serve with roasted cashews and parsley as garnish.

This recipe can be made into your own by adding other vegetables, such as sweet potatoes or carrots. Even parsnips or any other interesting root vegetable. This is a great soup for a cold winter evening!Dividers and borders

Roasted Cauliflower with Dates and Pine Nuts

This is an excellent side dish, or stand alone snack or light lunch. It complements any meat dish, even meatloaf!

Ingredients:

1 large head of cauliflower, broken into small florets

4 tablespoon coconut oil

1/3 cup pine nuts

1 clove garlic, minced

½ cup Medjool dates, pitted and coarsely chopped

Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Evenly spread cauliflower on a parchment covered baking sheet and season with salt and pepper.
  • Bake for 20 minutes, tossing once after 10 minutes to assure even baking. The cauliflower should have golden brown edges.
  • Add coconut oil to small skillet, add the pine nuts, stirring frequently, until they are light golden brown, about 5 minutes.
  • Add garlic and dates, cook for another 2-3 minutes until they are softened. Add salt to taste.
  • Transfer hot cauliflower to a serving bowl and drizzle the pine nut and date mixture over the top and toss to combine. Adjust the seasoning, if necessary. Can be served warm or at room temperature.

Of course, you know me; I can’t leave any recipe alone. I like to add nutmeg, or allspice for a more Mediterranean taste, or Chinese five spice or oyster sauce for an Asian twist. Ginger is good as well. Play with it and see what kinds of variations you can come up with.Dividers and borders

Healthy Cauliflower Rice

This is a great alternative to regular rice, it not being specifically on the Paleo Diet*. Use it for your stir-fry dishes, as a side dish to broccoli beef or as a potato alternative, to add a bit of variety to your meal.

Ingredients:

1 large head of cauliflower, separated into 1” florets

3 tablespoon coconut oil

1 medium onion, finely diced

1 teaspoon salt

For the Garnish:

2 tablespoon freshly chopped parsley

Juice of ½ lemon

Instructions:

  • Trim as much of the stem as possible off the florets
  • In the food processor break up the florets until they resemble couscous. You may have to do up to three batches.
  • Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions and stir to coat. Continue cooking, stirring frequently until onions are golden brown and soft. Approx 8 minutes.
  • Add the cauliflower and stir to combine. Add the salt and continue cooking until the cauliflower has softened, approx 3-5 minutes. Remove from heat.
  • Spoon cauliflower into a serving bowl, add parsley, sprinkle with lemon juice and add salt to taste**. Serve warm.

When I make rice, I use chicken bouillon to add flavor. Here you can use a bit of chicken or beef bouillon instead of the coconut oil to give it a heartier flavor. Just use less oil, because it will only be for the onions and replace the rest of the oil with the bouillon. Again, play with it to make it your own.Dividers and borders

Tips For Cooking Cauliflower For Paleo Diets

*White rice is allowed in the Paleo diet if you need more carbohydrates. But there are no nutrients in the white rice, unless added later. Brown rice, because the hull is left in place, is considered a grain because the hull has toxins in it just like the other grains.

**If you are using the cauliflower rice for an Asian dish, leave out the parsley and lemon juice, as they will detract from the meat and sauce.

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Resistance Training, Endurance Athletes, And A High Protein Diet

November 9th, 2016
0
Matt Poteet, Pharm.D.

Resistance Training, Endurance Athletes, And A High Protein DietHaving recently looked into a study on high protein diets for athletes doing resistance training, it quickly became apparent that certain exercise types — such as resistance training and endurance training — have unique dietary needs to be completely effective.  There was no significant change in body composition for anyone in the study, but other studies regarding a high protein diet all agree with this one thing: that the high protein diet burns fat mass — and the fear that it would raise cholesterol have been debunked.

A high protein diet can actually lower cholesterol and there is no chance of renal failure or significant changes to blood lipids or hepatic functions. Also, high protein diets may reduce fat mass by inhibiting lipogenesis in the liver. And if, however, you do a periodic resistance training schedule along with other sports training, a high protein diet can significantly change your body composition. Endurance athletes’ dietary needs are better met with significantly higher amounts of protein.

Most endurance athletes require more dietary protein intake for 3 reasons:

  1. Insufficient carbohydrate calories to meet energy expense
  2. Insufficient protein calories to meet energy expense
  3. Exercise training expenditure increases 10-fold above resting state

Why A Paleo Diet Is Beneficial To Athletes

The Paleo Diet is not necessarily a high protein diet, more of a low empty-carbohydrate diet. That being said, it reduces the number of sugars as well as grains. You get your sugars naturally from fruit and your carbohydrates from them as well as vegetables like carrots, cauliflower, and yams or sweet potatoes. It doesn’t make you feel deprived, it’s versatile and allows you to eat when you want, as much as you want. Most high protein diets still allow grain carbohydrates and a significantly higher sugar intake than the Paleo Diet. This diet just asks: “What would a caveman eat?”

When training for any event or have a significant workout, nutrition is very important.  The Paleo Diet can be modified to fit the athlete’s needs. If you have a significant game or a marathon to run, eating a small, balanced (500-1000 calories) meal 3-4 hours beforehand is recommended. For the caveman, it will include potatoes, sweet potatoes or yams, a variety of green vegetables and a regular portion of meat. This meal should be lower in fat, as fat takes longer to digest. If the meal is closer to the event, it should be smaller still. Be sure to include plenty of water with this meal and during the pre-event time.

The after event meal is slightly more important and should include carbohydrates, protein, and fat. This meal should also be consumed within 30 minutes after the event, to make optimum use of the nutrients. This is when protein synthesis is at its best and the carbohydrates can help replenish the diminished glycogen stores and enhances muscle growth. If you do not feel you can eat, a protein shake is recommended with milk, almond or coconut milk. (So many options!) Add whey or soy protein, some fruit if desired or vegetables for a complete “meal”. If you are an endurance athlete, this is actually the meal when you want to add more protein to your intake. A four to one ratio of protein to carbohydrates is recommended.

Protein Needs For Athletes

The amount of protein needed for an athlete depends on the amount of exercise that is done. This is where the high protein diet comes into its best effect.

1-1.5 hours of exercise requires 1.2 grams per kilogram of weight per day

2-4 hours of exercise requires 1.4 grams per kilogram of weight per day

5 or more hours requires 1.7 grams per kilogram of weight to replace the amino acids that have been cannibalized during the extreme exercise

After all this, any athlete may need extra carbohydrates to help fuel all the exercise output. Paleo is not a diet you have to absolutely stick to. It is a guideline and can be modified to meet your needs. Let me repeat that. The Paleo Diet can be modified to meet your needs. This is very important to remember. If you need more carbs and the sweet potato fries aren’t cutting it, add another baked potato. Put butter and sour cream on it, if you like. Whatever hits your fancy. Eat whatever your body needs, as long as you’re eating enough carbohydrates to meet your performance goals.

Fats are also an important part of the athletic diet. The Paleo Diet includes fats as a part of the complete nutritional picture. Having fats in your diet is as important as having the right amount of protein or carbohydrates to fuel your performance.

Calorie counting on the Paleo Diet is not necessary unless you need more calories to keep up your performance goals. If you jog for an hour or two a day and have nothing else strenuous going on, you will still need at least 2500 calories to maintain your weight and performance levels, more if you are trying to gain muscle.  You want to make sure you have enough food, this also means fat, in your daily intake. So, forget about the skinless chicken breasts; instead have bacon, pork shoulder, avocados, and eggs – WITH the yolk.

Now, remember, this is for the endurance athlete and the ones who exercise rigorously twice a day or more. The rest of us can get by on the usual fare; basically, there is no need to have those before and after event meals. (But we can still have an extra potato if the need or want arises.) The Paleo Diet is wonderful and not really a diet at all. Especially not a low-carb or low-fat diet. More a life guideline, if you choose to do it. Do not let yourself get run down or exhausted, especially if you have been working out. That includes walking (or jogging) the dog…..Have another potato or more bacon!

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The Paleo Diet As A Lifestyle Choice

November 1st, 2016
0
Matt Poteet, Pharm.D.

Paleo Diet Lifestyle Choice

Our caveman ancestors were hunter-gatherers and were in shape. Eating what they could hunt or find, and doing a lot of walking in the process, kept them lean and muscular, athletic and versatile. That was their lifestyle. Although they did not choose it, we can choose it for ourselves today.

Paleo Diet For Nutrition and Healthy Lifestyle

I know a woman who started the Paleo Diet because she wanted to lose a bit of weight she had gained. It was difficult at first, not having any desserts or other sweets, but she stuck to it, even started jogging. After a few months of the new “diet”, she felt ambitious enough to enter a 5 km run nearby. That was three years ago.  She now runs many different marathons of 20 to 50 km and some even on mountainous terrain. And won a few! She has kept up the Paleo Diet, modifying it for her and her family’s needs and it has become their lifestyle.

Now, I am not saying we all need to run marathons to keep the Paleo lifestyle for us. But doing Paleo will make us feel better, gives us more energy, helps us lose weight and definitely helps build muscle.  You can start walking the dog more often, rather than the dog walking you or just sitting there, forlorn. You will have the energy to keep up with your kids or your grand kids and might even be able to surprise them a time or two. Maybe the exercise regimen you have now can be upgraded or done more often! The possibilities are endless!  A few tips to remember:

  • In order for any “diet” to work, it must be a lifestyle choice. In other words, we need to change our way of thinking and do the “diet” for the rest of our lives. Many diets do not work well this way. The Paleo Diet does.
  • NO PROCESSED FOODS! NO DAIRY! NO SUGAR! Fresh fruits and veggies, good (grass fed, properly raised ) meats, eggs, fish, fowl – anything with wings, oils – coconut, avocado, olive, nuts (yes, peanut butter – no sugar added!!), sweet potatoes and yams (no potatoes!)
  • Use common sense. A moderate portion of meat and lots of veggies for dinner with sweet potato fries. Omelets with lots of veggies and apples dipped in almond or peanut butter. You can also go out to eat. Just substitute sweet potato fries for regular fries or potatoes, and if you’re craving a hamburger, just get it “Caveman Style”. The options are out there.
  • Remember where I said my friend had modified the diet to meet her needs? She loves cheese. She used to eat cheese on a daily basis. Now she eats it once a week. Oh, and chocolate? Dark chocolate is allowed on the Paleo Diet! It’s better for you anyways than milk chocolate. Once you have gotten used to eating Paleo; that is, much less carbohydrates, you can start modifying it to fit your needs. Or you can ease into Paleo by eating less and less carbs until you are doing pure Paleo.
  • With the Paleo Diet, the thing to remember is to eat when you’re hungry, stop when you’re full and not eat when you’re not hungry. You get your carbohydrates through your nutrient dense vegetables and fruits, as well as getting natural sugars (also carbs). The Paleo Diet is stress-free eating. You can eat a big breakfast, a couple of snacks and then a big dinner; eat a small breakfast and a lunch and snacks for dinner and a late pick-me-up. As long as you are eating Paleo, you can eat when you want and as much as you want. No counting calories!

The Paleo Diet is not for everyone. But those of us who could lose a few pounds or more, or are stuck in a rut or stressed out from yo-yo diet fads, or just want to feel healthier; this might be something to look into. Our bodies were never really meant to eat all those breads, cereals and sugar.

We were hunter-gatherers for 140,000 years and only in the last 10,000 have we had agriculture which has given us all those grains. Our bodies haven’t gotten used to all those fancy things. Maybe it’s time to go back to our roots and eat what we were meant to eat.  There are many websites and articles you can look up to learn more about the Paleo Diet. Do your research and get the facts. One of the better sites for finding out more is http://www.marksdailyapple.com/

The leading expert on the Paleo Diet is Dr. Loren Cordain. His page is at http://thepaleodiet.com/  I believe the best way to figure out if the Paleo Diet is for you is to try it for 30 days and see if you feel any better, have more energy, or lost any weight. To start you off, here is a recipe for Paleo Spaghetti:

Paleo Spaghetti

For the “Spaghetti”:

1 Spaghetti Squash, halved and seeds scooped out

¼ cup olive oil

Salt, pepper

For the Sauce:

1 lb fresh ground turkey

1 small onion, chopped

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon coconut oil

1 tomato, chopped

1/2 jar tomato sauce

½ teaspoon Italian seasoning

Salt, pepper to taste

Sprigs of basil for garnish

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Rub the olive oil on both halves, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Put in a rimmed baking dish cut side up and roast the squash for 40-45 minutes or until a fork can easily poke it. Remove from oven and let cool until you can handle it. Using fork, scrape inside of squash shredding the inside into strands.

While the squash is roasting, melt coconut oil in a pan, add minced garlic and chopped onion and cook for 4-5 minutes, until onion is glassy. Add the ground turkey and brown, stirring occasionally. Add the chopped tomato and tomato sauce, season to taste with salt and pepper. Add the Italian seasoning. Simmer on low, stirring occasionally until the spaghetti squash is done roasting.

Once the squash is shredded, place on plates, add sauce, garnish with the basil. Bon Apetit!

There are so many variations you can do with this recipe! Since the spaghetti squash can be a pasta substitute, use a pesto sauce instead! Or make your own homemade spaghetti sauce. Use Beef or ground chicken instead of turkey.  As long as the ingredients are Paleo, the sky’s the limit! And if you’re not quite ready to go Paleo all the way, you can still use Alfredo sauce or add a bit of Parmesan on top!

Bottom line is: at least do some homework on the Paleo Diet and try it for 30 days. The only thing you have to lose is weight!

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Delicious Paleo Diet Recipes For The Holidays

October 20th, 2016
0
Matt Poteet, Pharm.D.

Holiday Baking – Paleo Diet Style

Holiday Baking – Paleo Diet Style

Ah, the Holidays! Wonderful, sweet memories of baking pumpkin pies and gingerbread men with your grandmother.  Now that you’re on the Paleo Diet, you have to give up all those goodies, right? Guess again!  Here are a few yummy recipes to try. And don’t forget: modifying the recipes for your taste or preferences is definitely allowed!!

Paleo Pumpkin Pie Bars

With Thanksgiving coming just around the corner, I thought this would be a tasty alternative to the traditional pumpkin pie. You can play around with the spice amounts and make this recipe your own.

For the Crust:

  • 6 dates, pits removed
  • 1 cup almond butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • Pinch of salt

For the Filling:

  • 1 can (14oz) pumpkin puree
  • ½ cup canned coconut milk
  • ¼ cup coconut cream concentrate or homemade coconut butter*, melted just to soften
  • 3 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon allspice
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/16 teaspoon cloves (don’t bother measuring, just shake)
  • Pinch of salt

For the Topping:

  • ½ cup pecans roughly chopped
  • 2 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 2 tablespoon maple syrup
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • Pinch of salt

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. First the crust: add pitted dates and almond butter into food processor. Pulse until it breaks down together.
  2. Add the rest of the ingredients for the crust and puree until smooth.
  3. Grease an 8×8 pan with coconut oil and pour your mixture in, smoothing and leveling it out. Place in oven for 12-15 minutes or until firm and toothpick comes out clean. Let cool.
  4. While crust is baking, mix your filling ingredients into the food processer until pureed, incorporating the coconut concentrate/butter. It shouldn’t be chunky.
  5. When the crust is cooled, add your pumpkin puree on top, smoothing and leveling again
  6. Now your topping: add the coconut oil to a pan to heat under medium heat. Add your chopped pecans stirring constantly as they will burn easily. Add the remaining ingredients while stirring to prevent burning the pecans. Roast for about 3-4 minutes.
  7. Pour pecan mixture onto the puree and smooth out. Put into freezer for 20+ minutes
  8. Cut and serve. Keep refrigerated or in freezer to keep intact and from melting

*To make your own coconut butter, just get a bag of coconut flakes and put in the food processor. Process for about 8-10 minutes, scraping the sides occasionally. Done.

Brownie Eggnog Pumpkin Pie

If you would prefer a more traditional pie, but still want to do Paleo, never fear! There are lots of wonderful Paleo recipes for pumpkin pie, like this one:

For the Filling:

  • 1 can (14oz) pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup coconut or almond milk eggnog
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup coconut sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice*
  • Pinch of salt

For the Brownies:

  • 15 dates, pitted
  • ¼ cup coconut oil, melted
  • ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3 eggs, whisked
  • 2 tablespoon coconut flour
  • 2 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • Pinch of salt

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Grease a pie plate with coconut oil
  2. Place all filling ingredients in a food processor and blend till smooth. Pour into a bowl and set aside. Wipe out food processer (doesn’t have to be super clean).
  3. Add dates to food processor and pulse until a clumpy paste forms
  4. Add coconut oil and cocoa powder, puree until well mixed and it has become smoother
  5. Finally add remaining ingredients and blend until smooth, about two minutes
  6. Spread half the brownie mixture into the bottom of the pie pan, smoothing it out to the sides.
  7. Pour pumpkin mixture on top.
  8. Lastly, add the remaining brownie mixture by the spoonfuls on top and swirl around with a knife. The brownie mixture will be sticky and not swirl easily.
  9. Place pie on baking sheet in oven and bake for 1 hour
  10. Let rest for about 20 minutes and then place in refrigerator for 2 hours before serving.

*If you have all the regular spices, you can use those instead in the traditional amounts or use the amounts from the pumpkin pie bars recipe above. And if you are using the pumpkin pie spice this recipe calls for, I recommend using a bit more than they ask for.

I added this one in, because we all love chocolate chip cookies and who doesn’t love bacon?

Paleo Chocolate Chip Bacon Cookies

Yes, you read that right! Paleo allows dark chocolate and of course, BACON!! Now we can put two of our favorite foods together and have the king of all comfort foods! I realize it is not a traditional holiday cookie, however, bacon! We require:

For the Dough:

  • 3 cups almond flour
  • 2/3 cups tapioca flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup maple syrup
  • 1 ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ bag of dark chocolate chips
  • [h2] For the bacon:
  • 5 slices thick bacon
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Prepare the bacon: put the bacon into a bowl and coat with the maple syrup, using fingers is probably best. Place on a baking sheet and put into oven. Bake for 5 minutes. Turn the bacon over and give it another 5 minutes. Take out, let cool on baking sheet and lower the oven temperature to 375 degrees F. The bacon will crisp up as it cools and add a delightful crunch to the cookies!
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, mix together the dry ingredients. In a smaller bowl, mix together the wet ingredients until fully mixed. When done, add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix well.
  3. Once the bacon has cooled, cut into chocolate chip sized pieces and add to the mixture along with the chocolate chips.
  4. Roll your dough into 1 inch balls and place on a lined baking sheet. Flatten slightly with the back of a spoon. Bake for 10-12 minutes. Makes about 18 cookies.

You could replace the maple syrup with agave syrup, but it will change the flavor a bit. If coconut flour is less expensive in your area, try using that instead. These cookies are well worth a try and are a great addition to the holidays! Any holidays. Birthdays. Late night snack. Whatever. Mmmmmm, bacon.

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4 Reasons Why Athletes Should Use The Paleo Diet

August 28th, 2015
0
Matt Poteet, Pharm.D.

If you are an athlete, you may be wondering whether the Paleo Diet is the best eating plan for you. Our distant ancestors were definitely in good physical shape; their very survival depended on being able to respond quickly to physical threats. We may not be living in caves any longer, but if you are leading an active lifestyle, you’ll want to make sure you are eating right so that you have the resources necessary to push yourself to new limits. The Paleo Diet contains elements that can help you perform at your best, no matter what sport you choose.

4 Reasons Why Athletes Should Use The Paleo Diet-DietaryRehabilitation

Reasons Why Athletes Should Use The Paleo Diet

The following are a few beneficial reasons why athletes should eat Paleo.

1. Carbs For Energy

This low-carb diet is chock full of fruits and vegetables, which means you won’t be putting on the pounds. Instead, you will have the energy you need during a workout, a practice or on game day – exactly when you need it.

If you have ever had the feeling of being weighed down, it was likely because you were eating foods that contained the wrong kinds of carbs. After only seven days on the Paleo Diet, you should be able to notice a real difference in how you feel and the way you will be able to perform on and off the court, field or track.

2. Protein To Build Muscle

We now know from updated sport nutrition info that going fully low carb only isn’t the best way to eat for athletes. The Paleo Diet is a high-protein eating plan which will give you ample opportunity to build lean muscle in order to improve your skill at your chosen sport. It is an excellent eating plan, since it can be adapted to the needs of each athlete. If you need to slim down, you can. In a case where you need to put on muscle, you can and due to the high amount of protein, it will be easier for your body to build new muscle.

3. Fiber To Maintain A Healthy Weight

With the amount of fiber you’ll be eating, it will be easier to maintain a healthy weight. Eating Paleo also helps you stay regular, which helps with bloating, energy and overall health. You’ll want to make sure that your fiber intake is kept up so that your digestive system is running at an optimum level. If it slows down, it will affect your athletic performance and as well as other areas of your life.

4. Healthy Fats Are Built In To The Diet

You need a certain amount of fat in your diet to stay healthy, and eating Paleo satisfies this requirement. They help you shed pounds, if you need to, and keep you feeling full and able to focus between meals. Being able to stay alert mentally while keeping energy levels up is definitely a benefit you want to get from your diet.

The fat you get from foods like almonds, olive oil and avocados are included in the Paleo Diet. You can also include saturated fats from macadamia nuts and coconut oil.

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