Last night I had the greatest pleasure to present a Paleo/primal nutrition seminar to the folks from Inner West CrossFIT in Sydney. They are currently doing the 30day Paleo challenge and wanted somebody “sciency” to talk to them about the benefits of primal nutrition.
The 6pm WOD was cancelled (I don’t know how they survived without it), it was pouring rain outside and I had some good looking fit people sitting on wooden boxes and ab mats in front of me.
What we discussed:
1. Low levels of Western disease in traditional populations
2. Western countries and the epidemic of chronic diseases in spite of the achievements of modern medicine.
3. (Very) brief nutritional history of humans
- from 2 million years ago till today
- the birth of diet-heart hypothesis 50 years ago and how it changed the way we eat forever
4. Paleo nutrition is not a re-enactment. We briefly touched on The Framework of Common Sense and how to use it.
5. Neolithic agents of disease
- industrial seed oils
- unfermented soy
6. Balanced food choices, including safe starches to last through their WODs and a few treats like dark chocolate and fruit
7. Dairy: why I believe that diary has a place in primal nutrition
8. Relying on hunger signals: when they are helpful and when they are not.
9. Meal frequency and how to unlearn the snacking habit.
The discussion got pretty lively: “healthy” fruit juices, how many eggs, is quinoa ok, which soy products were safe, managing the energy slump in the first 2 weeks and even gluten-free beer.
I finished up with a plea not to get too obsessive about little things. Food should still be enjoyable and fun.
After finishing the presentation in 70 minutes (I consider this an achievement) we chatted about Paleo, crossfit, women’s health and fueling the crossfit body.
It was great to see a group of people so passionate about health and fitness. I hope they have learned something new from our talk. My other secret hope is that at the end of their 30 day Paleo challenge some will decide that they want to continue and reap the benefits of the new lifestyle. Good luck to you all!