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Messages - paleophil

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Diet and nutrition / Re: Legumes - why not?
« on: July 01, 2013, 06:47:45 PM »
These legumes are edible raw, though the only one I've tried that I find tastes good enough to bother with and is not too expensive or hard to come by is tamarind, and imported fruits tend to be treated with either heat or chemical sprays to kill pests:

- tamarind (legume pod fruit, a favorite food of wild African chimpanzees)
- carob (legume pod fruit)
- honey locust (legume pod fruit; the young pods are edible raw, but be careful not to confuse it with the more toxic Kentucky coffee tree pods)
- jicama (legume tuber; aka Mexican potato)
- silverleaf scurf pea root (legume root; edible raw per
- sugar snap pea pods (legume pod with seeds; preferably consumed when garden-fresh and young)
- African groundnuts and groundnut tubers (aka Bambara groundnuts; legume seed/nut and tuber related to the peanut, but presumably lower in plant toxins)
- South American groundnuts and groundnut tubers (aka "jungle peanuts"; another legume seed/nut and tuber related to the peanut, but presumably lower in plant toxins)
- Lablab Bean (aka hyacinth bean, "tender young pods and fresh inflorescences are eaten either raw or steamed, while the beans are cooked" per
- Fava/Broad Bean (legume seed and pod; unripe seed aka baby bean may be eaten raw per and, but the inner pod flesh is less toxic and tastier per
- bean sprouts (alfalfa, clover, fenugreek, lentil, pea, chickpea, mung bean and soybean; edible raw per

Also, blanched peanuts (briefly boiled) are nearly raw and edible (some people even eat small amounts of dried raw peanuts--that's definitely not for me, though).

Diet and nutrition / Re: The cheat meal/day - yes or no?
« on: June 26, 2013, 07:39:32 PM »
@eanders24 You basically got it. I would try to avoid "cheating" for 30 days, to in part build discipline and get feel what it's like when you're on plan. There will be plenty of time to cheat later. If you start out focused on cheating, you're almost guaranteed to fail. In the early days of "Paleo," lots of folks failed by focusing on trying to create "Paleo" versions of their favorite junk foods instead of giving real whole foods a serious try.

Research / Re: Honey contains antibiotic component
« on: May 11, 2013, 10:01:24 AM »
So it's not basically the same thing as corn syrup, after all.
Yup, honey is not corn syrup or sugar, fruits are not tree candy, and "carbs" are not all the same (and the same goes for "fats"). Nature has been found to be generally far more complex than common reductionist assumptions.

JoeyChang mentioned the antibacterial properties of one of the honeys that Kwakman et al tested--manuka tree honey--some months ago here:

The second article from 2010 points to defensin-1 as the key ingredient (based on Kwakman et al, How honey kills bacteria, Received 2009,, but later research by the same scientists contradicted that, so it's still not clear:

> "The known anti-microbial agents in the two honeys differs considerably. The RS honey is an acidic high sugar compound with hydrogen peroxide, the peptide bee defensin-1, and  methylglycol (MGO). On the other hand, Kwakman et al (2011 [Kwakman PH, Te Velde AA, de Boer L, Vandenbroucke-Grauls CM, & Zaat SA (2011). Two major medicinal honeys have different mechanisms of bactericidal activity. PloS one, 6 (3) PMID: 21394213,]) could not find a detectable amount of bee defensin-1 or peroxide in manuka honey,  but it had 40 fold higher levels of MGO. Itís not particularly surprising that levels of metabolites like MGO would differ among bees that feed on very different vegetation. Bee defensin-1 is found in royal jellies used to nurture larvae and varies between colonies (Kwakman et al, 2011). ...

This study highlights that our knowledge of the antimicrobial activity of honey is still at a very early stage."

> "There are still unknown anti-microbial compounds in honey:  Kwakman et al (2010 [- 2011 Two Major Medicinal Honeys...]) neutralised the MGO activity of the manuka honey and found that it still had a greater anti-microbial activity than an equivalent sugar solution."

One of the common factors among medicinal honeys is that the most medicinal tend to come from trees/bushes, rather than clover, buckwheat, or other sources. Maybe it's partly to do with higher concentrations of anti-insect defense chemicals in trees that are known to provide medicinal benefits like antiseptic action (and are believed to be active ingredients in other products like tea tree oils).

The sad part of this research is that instead of recommending that the trees which produce the most medicinal honeys and honey bees be preserved and people return to eating more traditional foods like these honeys, these scientists and others are instead only trying to find the key active ingredients to use them in manufactured drugs. The importance of honey bees was recently highlighted here:

The Plight of the Honeybee: Billions of dollarsóand a way of lifeóride on saving pollinators.

Caption: "A man uses smoke to harvest honey from a honeycomb. Photograph by Tim Laman, National Geographic"

FWIW, I tried a few manuka honeys, including raw, and found that I actually got better medicinal benefits (especially with scalp, eyebrow and forehead dandruff flaking) from consumption of fermented raw honey. I tried them both internally and externally and found internal consumption of the fermented honey to have the best effect on my dandruff, as well as making my hair feel less greasy, fuller and softer, so that I don't need to wash it as much and it feels more like the hair of my youth. I was quite surprised by these benefits.

Some say that people only eat raw honey because they are addicted to sugar. In my case, it's quite the contrary. I have to remind myself to consume small amounts of fermented honey every couple days or so as a medicinal. The tastiness is a side benefit, but I don't get cravings for it like I used to with soda pop.

Diet and nutrition / Re: Acne and Digestive issues since Paleo
« on: April 23, 2013, 04:32:17 PM »
Maybe I do need a bit more zinc. How much did you supplement with? Or how much should my food contain?
I take varying amounts intermittently, as needed, such as if I overdo it on fruit or friends'/relatives' cooking and get a minor acne breakout. I don't recommend going by my or anyone else's intake, as it depends on the individual's needs and long term excessive chronic intake can have reported side effects. I use the zinc tally test on occasion to help monitor my zinc level, try to get my zinc as much as possible from foods and try to limit the foods that I have found reduce my zinc levels (in my case it's most, though not all, carby foods). Over the years I've gradually needed less and less supplementation as I learn better what to eat and as my body/biome apparently heals and improves.

I've also been experimenting with various fermented and prebiotic foods, as I have a history of gut issues and gluten and carb intolerance that, along with the past chronic cystic and ordinary acne, suggest dysbiosis.

I have not been eating bananas for long and adding them did not cause any more acne.

When I was on a ketogenic diet, my acne and hormone related problems started. Since it caused me so many health issues I am reluctant to go low carb again.
I didn't mean to suggest that you have to go low carb (I eat some berries, certain fruits and fermented honey myself and only occasionally get acne when I overdo it), I only meant that, if you wish, you could test some of the foods you're eating to see if they are acne triggers for you.

You asked what might be causing your acne and you reported fructose malabsorption and eating lots of fruit with significant fructose content Acne is one of the symptoms reported by fructose malabsorbers when eating certain fruits, and it's also a common symptom reported at forums by people who eat lots of fruit (such as So fruit/fructose malabsorption does seem like a possibile issue.

Fructose malabsorption is associated with low zinc levels (Decreased Serum Zinc in Fructose Malabsorbers,, so I suspect that I have fructose malabsorption too, though I haven't been tested for it, and this is another possible clue that you might have a deficiency in zinc or other mineral. It would at least be worth testing, such as with a zinc tally test.

There of course could be hormone dysregulation, and within that context you may find that certain foods tip the balance further into visible breakout symptoms. If instead you find that there's no dietary connection at all, you'll be able to eliminate that potential factor and focus elsewhere.

If you don't want to replace the fructose calories with calories from animal foods for even a few days, then you could try a low-fructose plant food, such as more coconut/olive oil or avocados (though avocados also trigger acne for me, for some reason, FWIW). If you're concerned that you won't get enough vitamin C, you could add lemon or lime juice, though I would minimize the number of new foods you add during a test period.

Some people also report that acidic foods like lemon/lime juice or raw vinegars like apple cider vinegar or coconut vinegar or Swedish bitters early in a meal helps them digest better, though I haven't noticed that particularly myself (I sometimes drink lemon-juice-water anyway, simply because I like lemon juice and I don't notice any harm from it). Acidic foods can also help predigest foods as marinades.

I never heard of fats preventing your blood sugar from spiking either.
OK, did you mean by "No Veggies (I added Olive oil to fruit to avoid spiking my blood sugar)" that the olive oil calories enable you to limite the fruit intake to a level that doesn't spike your BG or does it help in some other way? If fruit is spiking your BG, then that's another reason to test it, as higher glycemic load foods that spike some people's BG have also been connected to acne,

Interestingly, some non-diabetic people report being able to consume huge amounts of fruits without spiking their BG, when they keep their fat intake low, and some of them recommend not eating fat such as here: (I don't recommend that), and some of them recommend not eating lots of sweet fruit and fat in the same meal or on the same day. Do you have a BG monitor? I find it to be a helpful tool.

Diet and nutrition / Re: Acne and Digestive issues since Paleo
« on: April 21, 2013, 06:56:39 PM »
"Banana 3-6
Lemon 1/2
Orange 1"

"8 Bananas with olive oil
1 Apple with olive oil
10 grapes"

FWIW, That much bananas and fruit would give me major cystic acne and including olive oil or other fats doesn't keep me from getting acne when I eat that amount of those fruits and certain other carby fruits or veg, nor does including fat keep my blood glucose from spiking. Of course, only you can figure out for sure which foods trigger your acne.

Unfortunately, if it turns out that bananas are an acne trigger for you too and if a ketogenic diet and starchy veggies also don't work for you, that wouldn't leave a lot. Maybe start by trying cutting out the bananas to see if it reduces the acne and track your results in a diary for say 3 days to a week. If you need to keep your calories up over even a short period like that, then you'd need to replace them with a food you feel sure doesn't trigger your acne. Carbs are a common trigger, so I would replace them with something low carb for the test period.

If that doesn't help, I would test other foods one at a time. Once you've identified the acne-triggering foods, then you could figure out how to make the resulting diet work (maybe ketogenic with intermittently enough carbs to go out of ketosis for a day or two a week and avoid problems from chronic ketosis, or trying different fats other than butter, such as tallow, marrow, lard, or coconut oil, in case it was the butter rather than the ketosis, and so on).

I have found some fruits, such as berries, don't trigger acne as easily for me as others. Unfortunately, the ones that don't tend to be more expensive. Root veggies and greens also don't trigger my acne. If you have trouble digesting those, you could try fermented versions like sauerkraut (though even that was difficult for me to digest at first, but my digestion of it improved with time and the probiotics in it are supposed to help with digesting veg) and chopping them finely.

In my case it helped to learn that a zinc supplement reduced my acne, suggesting that zinc deficiency was at least a partial cause of it. I later confirmed this with a zinc tally test (Chris Kresser shared a study that found they are accurate), which I bought on As a result, I try to eat some zinc-rich foods like red meat, liver, shellfish, dark poultry meat, eggs, nuts, and garlic.

Diet and nutrition / Re: MCT Oil Vs. Extra Virgin Coconut Oil or both?
« on: April 21, 2013, 04:57:06 PM »
Some folks recommended centrifuged coconut oil to me and I was surprised by how superior it was in taste and effects to EVCO. I didn't get any of the nausea from centrifuged CO that I got from even small amounts of EVCO, even after trying to gradually adapt to EVCO for months, following the advice of its proponents. I haven't tried MCT oil.

Diet and nutrition / Re: Soft Foods for a broken jaw, help!
« on: April 07, 2013, 06:26:18 AM »
Wow, celticcavegirl I misread your first post thinking you were talking about a past issue. Sorry to hear that. What an unfortunate coincidence. Hope you both recover soon and well.

Did lying on the couch cause further damage?

Diet and nutrition / Re: Soft Foods for a broken jaw, help!
« on: April 06, 2013, 06:17:27 AM »
and raw eggs (I have been eating them for years myself), home-made bone/veggie broths/gelatin, bone marrow, mashed or blended fruits like bananas, teas, (dairy foods for those that eat them), Green Pastures cod liver oil (or CLO/butter oil combo), ...

Diet and nutrition / Re: The cheat meal/day - yes or no?
« on: April 03, 2013, 09:09:39 AM »
For me, raw fermented honey is my medicine, rather than a cheat. It's one of the most beneficial foods for me that I've tried, as long as I don't eat more than a small amount at a time (as my blood glucose spikes more easily than most, though I haven't been diagnosed with any metabolic disorder). It clears up my scalp, eyebrow and forehead skin flakes, which I had for decades, whereas no dandruff shampoo or skin lotion/cream worked--and I tried them all.

Every hunter gatherer society I've seen reports on has treated honey hive contents as a staple food, rather than a cheat or treat. The main difference being that it's seasonal, rather than available year round.

Diet and nutrition / Re: Why isnt raw honey paleo?
« on: March 30, 2013, 08:37:16 AM »
Here is some more info I came across at on hunter-gatherer peoples that seasonally eat raw wild honey (and bee larvae and other hive contents) as a food in its own right, rather than just a sweetener to add to other foods:

"Gathering honey is an important subsistence activity for Efe men, second only to hunting. While the men spend an average of 11.1% of their time in the forest actively looking for hives, they are frequently seen looking up during other activities, such as hunting"

"One of the main foods that the Mbuti gather is honey. During the honey season, honey can account for up to 80% of their caloric intake (Hewlett and Walker 1990). Although honey is a valued food product, it is only available during a few certain months a year."

Honey has been known as a prized food since long time ago. One of the oldest evidences of
honey collecting dates away back to the Paleolithic era. A cave drawing from Arana in Spain
gives a vivid picture of honey collecting by a paleolithic man (Bodenheimer, 1951). It can be
well understood from this picture how in1portant honey was at such an old time.

The importance of honey as food lies primarily in its nutritive value. Honey produces 280330
Cal per 100 g eaten (Bodenheimer, 1951), and is easily absorbed in the human body. It is
an excellent food for the production of working enrergy. Moreover, when eaten with maggots
and pollen which supply various vitamins and Ininerals as well as rich fat and protein, honey
is classified as well-balanced food. It is also one of a few concentrated sweets which seldom
exist in the wild state and is always highly valued by the people who have no manufactured
sugar. ...

The foodstuffs eaten at Mamokwali camp during 12 days were listed in Table 4. From this
table it is concluded that the Mbuti depended on honey as much as 70%of their diet in weight
or 80%in calories.


80% of calories during a twelve-day period? Granted, there are the natural limits of seasonality and poor honey years, but we're not talking a teaspoon of honey now and then. That's rather substantial and more than even I would have guessed.

In a survey, 33% of "Paleo dieters" reported eating honey:

As for stings, the Mbuti, like some other traditional peoples, are reportedly not bothered by the stings of even aggressive African honeybees:
Many traditional beekeepers in Africa collect honey at night owing to this aggressiveness of African honeybees (Brokensha and Riley, 1971, Crosse-Upcott, 1956). But the Mbuti do not seem to suffer so much from sting and they collect honey in the daytime. (Ichikawa, 1981)

Diet and nutrition / Re: The cheat meal/day - yes or no?
« on: March 27, 2013, 04:20:49 AM »
One way to handle "cheat meals," if you want them, is to require that they be outside the home. In other words, don't keep "cheat" foods in your home so they aren't around to tempt you at non-cheat times. Plus, you can use this to promote other behaviors you desire to encourage, such as getting out of the house into the outdoors, exercise, socializing or general self-discipline.

I don't desire or feel I need entire "cheat meals," "cheat days," or planned cheats, but at times I'll have limited amounts of "cheat foods," by which I mean foods that I don't find are optimal for me but can tolerate limited amounts of on occasion, such as at times when no better foods are available. I found it necessary to be more strict in the early months of Paleo and it makes sense to try to avoid off-plan foods for at least the first month to six months or so before experimenting with them, to get a healthy baseline to work from.

Diet and nutrition / Re: Breakfast
« on: March 25, 2013, 02:42:54 PM »
The yolk is the best part of an egg by far. If you're going to discard something, discard a white--it makes the omelet tastier and I recently saw a chef recommend this, though I rarely discard anything myself.

Miscellaneous / Re: Paleofantasy
« on: March 19, 2013, 06:55:59 PM »
Heck Phil, I only used the word "witch"  to avoid using the other "itch" word....................... ;)
I know it's standard fare for the Internet and hope I didn't come across as tut-tutting. It just occured to me that by not commenting on it I might leave the impression that I was condoning it.

Sort of.  His bottom line is that paleofantasies are good, since that's all paleoanthropology really is at the moment, and that's still kind of the opposite of the bottom line of the book.
Good point. Has anyone read Hawks' review?


Based on what I've seen so far, it is at least theoretically possible that Zuk thinks she's helping ancestral dieters by trying to aim us in the right direction, however misguidedly. I haven't read the book, so I'm leaving open the possibility that there could be more positive stuff in it than what's in her articles, interviews, reviews of her book, etc. Plus, her raising of the rapid evolution issue generated some interesting refutations from Paul Jaminet, Kevin Holbrook and Richard Nikoley and all publicity is good publicity, so the book is probably a net plus for spreading and understanding of the ancestral health concept.

Miscellaneous / Re: Paleofantasy
« on: March 18, 2013, 05:17:22 PM »
Precisely! Not only that, the brains of Neanderthals and Cro Magnon Homo sapiens were larger, on average, than those of modern humans.

I should mention that the "witch" comment was over-the-top and also reinforces the negative "caveman" stereotype of Paleo/ancestral nutrition, especially since we don't have a lot of input on what the book actually contains. John Hawks claims her book is good, so I'll at least leave open that possibility, however remote. Who knows, maybe it has some positive stuff in it, and Zuk did say this:

"As an evolutionary biologist, I was filled with enthusiasm at first over the idea of a modern mismatch between everyday life and our evolutionary past."

If she learns more about the varieties of Paleo/primal/ancestral/traditional that include dairy and plenty of plant foods, maybe she'll even come round to supporting that aspect of the movement. Stranger things have happened (not holding my breath, though).

The agenda remark is fair, because she herself has said that she has a feminist agenda, though she portrays it as a counterbalance to existing male bias. That still strikes me as more of a political stance than a scientific one. What do you think? Is that a proper mindset for a scientist?

I've never heard of a scientific book (certainly not one described as taking us to "the cutting edge of biology") quoting excerpts from an Internet forum of nonscientists. Is this considered scientific nowadays? 

Zuk's book will only further publicize the Paleo/ancestral movement, and it's good to question some of the dogmas that get bandied about. So if she intended to undermine it, she will fail miserably.

Miscellaneous / Re: Paleofantasy
« on: March 17, 2013, 07:13:19 PM »
Thanks Tinknal, I did allow for that in my post, using the word "many" instead of "all." And thanks for motivating me to check my post to make sure I did that, because I noticed that one of the links was wrong. The first one should have been

Unfortunately, the "caveman" image is also widely caricatured (holding a ridiculously thick club, dragging women by the hair to rape them, looking and acting stupid, and so forth). Interestingly, though, the portrayal of Neanderthals and archaic H. sapiens sapiens have been improving as more and more evidence is found about their larger average brain size vs. today's averages and their cultural artifacts.

So who knows, maybe cavemen will eventually be widely perceived as more egalitarian and less brutal toward women than they generally are now. Of course, we'll never know all the details of what they were like, but it might help people not jump to conclusions about Paleo diet advocates and followers having some sort of male chauvinist or misogynist "paleofantasy," and it also might help Paleo dieters to not adopt such notions.

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