Monday, January 2, 2012

Favorite Challenging Paleosphere Posts from 2011

2011 featured a huge explosion of blogging in the paleosphere. There were many posts that I read that made me challenge previously dearly held notions! I think that it is good to seek and think through different takes, because it keeps us accountable and because it keeps us on our toes, prevents us from relying on half-baked justifications of nutritional concepts. Also, sometimes, reading up on ideas and evidence contrary to our own beliefs actually does change our minds on topics.

Here are just a few of the 2011 posts that I enjoyed because they took on popular ideas.

By Denise Minger of Raw Food SOS:
If you've never read Denise Minger's blog, you're missing out. This is one smart lady, and she isn't afraid to take down sacred cows, no matter their provenance. Vegan myth, paleo myth, mainstream myth - no theory is safe! She is diligent about going through data sets and presenting the statistically significant patterns, making data geeks everywhere go squeeeeeeee!

By Karen of Paleo Periodical:

Some ambitious folks manage to transition to paleo overnight. Karen says that, for the rest of us, a slow entry may be just the ticket.

By Lea of Paleo Spirit:
The paleo community has a strong emphasis on evolutionary principles, but Lea argues that you do not need to agree with some or all of those principles to benefit from a nutritious diet that doesn't rely on grains or sugar. She embraces the "as God intended us to eat" aspect. A must-read if you're a Christian who has been interested in the paleo diet but hesitant because of the evolution angle.

By Jimmy Moore (of Livin La Vida Low Carb) and contributors:

This one was convicting to me. The paleo zeitgeist in late 2011 was drifting heavily toward consumption of safe starches like peeled white potatoes and rice. While I think that the metabolically healthy (say, my husband and girls) can handle these just fine, I often strayed from my usual low carb routine, hoping that I could, too - and it seemed I was wrong! Maybe after reaching a goal weight and becoming more used to regular exercise I could indulge more, but for now, I err on the side of caution and stick to modest quantities of lower-GI carbs right around workouts.

Kresser reminds us to be diligent in sourcing our coconut milk due to concerns of bisphenol-A (BPA, an endocrine disruptor) lining canned products.

By Krista Scott-Dixon of Stumptuous:
"An irreverent, foul-mouthed, yet surprisingly useful guide to what to put in your eating hole. Guaranteed to offend, surprise, and delight."

I love the no nonsense / common sense approach in this free PDF. I also adore Krista Scott-Dixon's special compassion for the practical and social/cultural challenges that women face in fitness and healthy eating.

By Dallas and Melissa Hartwig of Whole9:
...a good reminder that, as much as I love bacon, it probably shouldn't be a core source of calories. ;-p

Err...This one had me thinking twice! I think that there are some paleo treats that are super delicious and very worthwhile in their own right, but I have also personally experienced trying to replicate non-paleo delights to end up with a C- version that's technically paleo-legal, and also leaves me only wishing for the real thing due to the paleofied version's taste inadequacy and blood-sugar-bumping honey or maple syrup content. While I don't advocate the idea of foods as inherently "good" or "bad", "sinful" or "guilt-free", I do think that in the spirit of being honest with oneself in light of personal health, weight, and fitness goals, each person has to figure out where their vulnerabilities lie and whether the paleofied version of an old favorite will only increase pining or even searching for the real version of the old favorite.

By Melissa Joulwan of The Clothes Make the Girl:
This classic (that I saw for the first time when reposted) explores the sometimes fraught balance between having fun (the short term) and being happy (the long term).

By Stacy of Paleo Parents:
To me, this post goes against conventional attitudes because it shows how the scale doesn't have you destroy your day, or your week, or your month. Stacy's already lost a super-wow-inspiring 135 pounds in her paleo journey, so by now she's honed a maturity and can-tackle attitude that doesn't let the tiniest uptick on a scale stop her positive outlook or momentum in the least. Check out how she, her husband, and her three young boys have done paleo in their blog!

By Amanda of A Slim Winter:
Amanda and her family are mythbusters of the canard that doing a natural, nourishing whole foods lifestyle inherently means destroying one's budget. While it may take more thoughtful budgeting, Amanda has admirably and impressively steered her family through a tough season of unemployment with many shrewd budgeting tactics, including making bone broth with low-cost chicken feet, and relying on inexpensive and natural liquid castille soap for cleaning purposes. Check out this blog to glean more tips from real-life experience.

What posts from the paleo blogosphere did you enjoy for their mythbusting or thought-provoking value?

1 comment:

  1. This is a great list. I have been a fan of Denise and Chris for some time. But you had a couple folks that I had been missing out on.


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