Showing posts with label Ask The Paleo Model. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Ask The Paleo Model. Show all posts

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Please note that these are my personal opinions and not advice. Click links for more information:

1. Is quinoa Paleo? 


2. Which is healthier, fresh farmed fish or canned wild-caught fish?

3. Honey or Agave?

4. Organic corn-fed beef or non-organic pastured beef?


5. Carbs pre or post workout?

6. If you were to use a protein powder supplement, which is better out of whey, soy, hemp, pea, casein, egg albumin, etc?


7. Which is more important, exercise or sleep?


8. Do you cook with olive oil?


9. Do you cook with coconut oil?


10. Do you cook with butter or ghee?


11. What is your alcohol of choice?

12. Most important supplement?


13. What’s more important on food packaging, ingredient list or nutrition information?


14. Which food you are most strict on avoiding?


15. Do you actively try to minimize your salt intake?


16. Is it true you use coconut oil as moisturizer?


17. Is it better to eat carbs in the morning or evening?

18. Best take away cuisine for Paleo?


19. Second best take away cuisine for Paleo?


20. Which grain is less problematic, rice or corn? 


21. Brown rice or white rice?

22. Favorite gluten-free beer?

23. Healthiest fruit?


24. Healthiest nut?


25. Best vitamin-D supplement?


26. Best sweetener for coffee?


27. Best resource for Paleo beginners

Thanks for reading folks! Feel free to send your questions, concerns, stories or testimonials to [email protected] 


Wednesday, April 30, 2014

I do not consider the Paleo diet to be a weight-loss diet. In fact, as I've mentioned several times I don't consider Paleo to be a diet at all. The word 'diet' is too strongly tied to ideas of short term 'restriction' or 'reduction' - negative associations that almost certainly doom those attempting it to fail. 

This is why I view Paleo as a habitual way of eating that is healthy, sustainable and enjoyable. Paleo is a lifestyle that one forges through smart, positive, empowering choices. 

Having said this, Paleo is extremely effective at achieving short term weight loss goals, particularly for those trying it for the first time and coming from a standard Western diet of processed food. 

The following is a Facebook conversation I had with a very good friend of mine, Cam, who was weeks away from his wedding and wanting to lose a substantial amount of (fat) weight in a short period of time. I gave him the most simple, straight-up Paleo advice that I thought would be the easies to adhere to. 

Please note that Cameron was not in terrible shape to begin with, is very disciplined and exercises regularly and at intensity. 

Cameron, 28 - Melbourne:

Hey mate! 

[As the wedding rapidly approaches] I have 10 weeks to drop 8 kg (18lb). Any tips for some rapid weight loss?

The Paleo Model:

Mate that's awesome. I sure hope I'm back in Australia for your bucks!

Ok tubby. If you're serious about rapid weight-loss here's what you have to do: go very low carb and cut out insulin-spiking food such as sugar and dairy. You can still eat as much as you want ASIDE from this:

1. No beer
2. No grains or faux grains (including all wheat, rye, sorghum, corn, maize, polenta, rice, cereal, pasta, bread, cous cous, quinoa, etc)
3. Cut out all dairy except butter
4. No white potatoes including fries, chips, mash, etc
5. Not too much fruit (less than 3 serves a day)
6. Avoid processed foods (packaged goods including dips, biscuits, processed meat, snacks, peanut butter, fish fingers, salad dressing, protein bars, chips, cordial, sports drinks, soda, frozen meals, desserts, etc)

Eat as much as you want of:
Meat (doesn't have to be lean), chicken, fish, eggs, bacon, avocado, butter, olive oil, raw nuts (not peanuts), coconut cream/milk/oil, all vegetables except for white potatoes, including sweet potato. 

If you want to drink alcohol have white wine, champagne, or clear spirits either straight up or with soda water - no mixers. 

The main thing is to limit refined carbs including all grains and potato and also give up dairy for 8 weeks. Unsweetened black coffee only. 

Make sure you're eating enough. Hit the weights hard once or twice a week and you'll just drop the weight. 

You need to be 100%, even when you're drinking or hungover. 

The less alcohol you drink the easier it'll be. 

In Godspeed son! Any questions?


Good stuff mate! I will be following this religiously for the next 10 weeks! I am planning a paleo beef casserole for tomorrow night.. Is beef stock paleo?

The Paleo Model:

Beef stock should be fine, especially if it's gluten free. 

If you want to understand some of the science behind why the aforementioned works so well for weight-loss you'll have to check out my blog. Particularly these posts:


Will have a good read today mate! Today it has started! I weigh 82kg (the heaviest I have ever been). Target is 72kg. Had a paleo breakfast this morning of eggs, avocado, tomato, mushrooms and bacon! Paleo casserole tonight!!

The Paleo Model: 

Awesome man. Just stick to it. 8 weeks of your life. You'll feel shit for about 4-7 days, then amazing. Let me know if you need any support or answers. If you have food cravings eat some 85% cacao dark chocolate.


Cam lost over 5kg (11lb) in the first 21 days and easily made his target of 8kg (18lb) in time for the big day. 


If you liked this post please share it with your friends and family. Spread the #PaleoLove!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

In this Ask The Paleo Model post I answer the questions of my mate Ross in Australia and Will in London, both of whom are relatively new to Paleo.

Ross, 30 - Melbourne

Hey man, how's everything in the US? I was reading your blog the other day and am pretty interested in bulletproof coffee. Do you know if I can get all the ingredients in Melbourne? Or are they hard to source?

The Paleo Model

Hey mate. Yes all good in the US and A! How's Melbs?

Dave Asprey, owner of Bulletproof Coffee may vehemently disagree with me but I reckon you can use any high quality coffee for bulletproof. Dave's trademark low-toxin specialty Bulletproof Coffee may give you slightly better results but it is very expensive and I like to try different coffees and buy small batches regularly so I don't use his brand. 

However I would agree with Asprey that the quality of the coffee is paramount. I'd recommend buying the best single origin coffee beans you can afford - preferably organic but not necessarily. Generally speaking, coffee from higher mountainous regions that use use non-chemical processing (with water) is the best. Roasting does not kill the mycotoxins (mould) in the coffee so freshness and also time at sea (distance travelled) affects the toxin level. 

If possible buy small amounts of coffee frequently and grind it yourself, or use it very soon after grinding. 

To make your coffee bulletproof you just add grass-fed butter and MCT oil. I think the Woolworths' home brand
butter is grass-fed so that's the cheapest. Make sure you buy UNSALTED! 

The MCT is going to be the hardest thing to find in Australia. I'd Google it. 1Lt should last you a couple of months and shouldn't cost more than $25. I personally use Now Foods MCT oil which I buy online for about $13 a liter, shipped to my New York apartment.

I use a plunger (French Press) for the coffee. About three heaped teaspoons of fairly coarsely ground coffee is my sweet spot. Add about 20g of butter (1/10th of a 200g stick) and start with one teaspoon of MCT, then titrate up slowly over two weeks up to about 4 teaspoons or 1-1.5 tablespoons of MCT. Decant your hot coffee into a blender or beaker, add the butter and MCT and then blend well for about 10-15 seconds. I use a stick blender. 

I recommend having bulletproof coffee in the morning as a breakfast substitute. I think it's good to take two days off a week from BPC and eat breakfast instead if you feel like it. 

Make sure you go easy on the MCT oil to begin with. You'll know pretty darn quickly if you've overdone it as you'll be running for the bathroom immediately. The MCT induced diarrhea, if you get it, usually sorts itself out after a couple of weeks. It's a fantastic laxative though if you overdose! 

Thanks for your question and I hope you enjoy your turbocharged mornings. Here's a full post on Bulletproof Coffee if you're interested:

William, 31 - London

Hey mate, I know it's been a really long time. I follow you on Instagram (and read a couple of blogs from Facebook) and the lifestyle you maintain is pretty impressive.

I've just made the move to London for a couple of years and lost 6kgs in 6 weeks (now 80kgs), just exercising. 

Chewing your ear off about Paleo would be great, but next best thing would be to know: can I go Paleo and cheat a little bit? A beer here, a burger there... or is it 100% or nothing?

Either way, really impressed with how you go about your lifestyle mate. I hope it doesn't sound weird to say it's a little inspiring.

All the best, Will.

The Paleo Model

Hey mate, 

Great to hear from you and thanks so much for your positive feedback. Sounds like you're enjoying London? I had to battle pretty hard in London not to turn into a fat, pasty blob! But rest assured - it is totally possible - especially with a great gym membership, some healthy shopping at Waitrose and quarterly vitamin-D getaways to Ibiza, the Greek Islands or Portugal!

That's fantastic that you've lost some weight. Exercise is a great way to lose weight initially but once you plateau you really have to keep bumping up the volume and/or intensity to maintain the weight loss, which can make exercise an unsustainable path to weight-loss in my opinion. That's why I preach that nutrition is key! 

As I keep saying Paleo is a lifestyle not really a diet, which means it's something you chip away at as a basic mantra but you definitely don't have to be 100% all the time. Life is for living!

I think the biggest thing to be strict on is gluten though if you really want to see the best improvement. I'd definitely try at least 30 days strict as your first buy-in with zero gluten (including beer) and zero dairy if you want to see what it actually feels like to be 100% Paleo. After the initial 30 day buy-in then I think having a beer once in a while is ok if you don't react badly to it.

I had a couple of Guinnesses the other night, for example, when I was in London visiting mates. I've probably only had about for Guinnesses in the last 18 months, it's not a regular thing.

"Non Paleo" foods you can be more lax on are non-gluten grains like corn, rice and oats, sugar and dairy... but don't let them become staples. Some yoghurt here or there or corn chips once in a while shouldn't throw you off track if you're good most of the time. 

The 30 day buy-in is the ideal way to get started on Paleo but if that is completely impossible then you can gently wade into the Paleo lifestyle step by step. Even if it takes a year until you are at the point where you don't miss lattes, sandwiches and beer then it is totally worth it. 

And trust me, once you experience how good it feels to have boundless energy, stable body composition and no bloating or puffiness; and how shit you feel after eating a bunch of gluten then you'll find it even easier to permanently avoid those junky foods. 

Once Paleo do you have to be 100% strict, 100% of the time? Hell no! While I don't believe in a "cheat day" I think it's absolutely fine to eat a "non Paleo" meal once in a while. 

Dare I say that Paleo + beer is still a lot better than no Paleo + beer. 

Eventually I guess you have to find what works for you. Hopefully it is 90% Paleo or better. 

Now, I personally think wheat (and for the most part beer) are worth completely avoiding - although Corona for example has zero gluten so that's probably not too bad in the scheme of things if you're going to drink beer.

So if you're Paleo most of the time and avoiding things like wheat, industrial seed oils and most grains then I don't think you need to stress about having ice cream once in a while or a burger on a gluten-free bun or even a gluten-free pizza. I also go through phases of eating a fair amount of cheese, typically from goat or sheep milk.

Funnily I'm actually writing this from Bordeaux in France so I've definitely been more like 80/20 in the last few days on holiday. I even had some bread today which I haven't had for over a year. 

Anyway, glad you're giving Paleo a crack and let me know if you have any other questions. 

I think staying off the beer is a massive challenge in London but would definitely help the cause if you're trying to get lean. Maybe white wine, rose, vodka-soda or tequila would be the way forward... 

Here's a post on what to drink and why:



OK, that's the best lifestyle advice I've ever received in under 10mins!

I suppose the biggest thing to overcome is moving away from the 'staples' and wheat/beer, as you say, given the lifestyle in London. 

Thanks again, mate. Really appreciate the thoughts. Good to know it's something the layman can also achieve.

All the best. Will.

The Paleo Model

It's easily done mate. Just lay off the wheat (sandwiches, pasta, beer, kebabs, pizza) and instead go for salads, meat and veg, wine and spirits, kebab plate (no bread). Even bangers [sausages] and mash or curry and rice or sushi is better than pasta or bread when you're out. 

And when you're at home eat more veggies, eggs, fish, meat, nuts, fruit and lay off the cereals, sugar and grains. Easy! It's worth it.

Keep an eye out for the next Ask The Paleo Model installment to learn how my friend followed some simple advice to lose 8kg for his wedding in just 10 weeks. 

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Matt - Melbourne: 

Handsome Dave, how are you? Following you on just about most of your happenings and getting a lot from it all! Whats your view/thoughts on colloidal silver, astaxanthin & juicing vegetables - beets, carrot, celery, ginger, parsley - to ingest as the first thing upon waking in the morning daily?

The Paleo Model: 

Hey mate,

Interesting questions!

Firstly, I'd never heard much about colloidal silver but after a bit of a browse on the interwebs it seems the stuff is a bit of a scam.

Colloidal silver is a mineral - basically little flakes of silver suspended in liquid, which you take orally as a supplement. (Grandiose) health claims include immune support, anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties and even as a treatment for herpes, leprosy, HIV/AIDS and cancer. Wow! Where do I sign up? Does this mean I can throw away my snake oil?

Jokes aside a couple of the Paleo big-wigs have written about colloidal silver. Not only does it sound like the claimed health benefits have absolutely zero science backing them, there even appears to be some potential risks associated with taking it.

Silver is a mineral and, like iron, in excess in the body it will accumulate and form deposits in organs and tissues where it clearly doesn't belong. But unlike iron, silver is neither an essential mineral nor is it normally found in the body, so any amount of silver is "excessive". Accumulated silver can form a permanent bluish discolouration to the skin and gums. Nasty.

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) ruled the stuff not be safe or effective back in 1997... so you know it's bad.

From a logical perspective, considering that silver isn't essential for human health I'm pretty sure ingesting it is neither beneficial nor a good idea!
 Silver Tequila on the other hand...

Astaxanthin is a carotenoid (organic pigment) naturally found in algae. It is what gives salmon it's pink colour. Astaxanthin is a great antioxidant, but do you need to supplement it? Personally, I doubt it. Just eat some wild salmon once in a while and a good quality fish oil supplement and you should be sweet.

When it comes to supplementation I think you should only jump on the stuff that is proven solid by science and gives you the best bang for your buck.

Things like magnesium, fish oil and vitamin D (if deficient) are tried and tested supplements with little to no downside. They have a large benefit to cost ratio.

Other supplements, such as specific amino acid like L-arginine may sound great but if the benefits aren't well documented, you don't feel any better on them and the cost is relatively high then there is the potential for just making your urine really expensive! If in doubt, don't take it.

Ahhh Juicing... Contentious issue. I'm not a huge fan of juicing and don't personally drink juice. I'll have a green smoothie once in a while for a treat.

I don't think vegetable juice is inherently harmful or anything. You'll certainly get a fair whack of nutrients out of it. Many people in the health community swear by their green juices and green smoothies. Not all juice is created equal though. Juicing is different to blending (smoothies) and depending what vegetables (and if you use fruit) the final product can vary from 'quite healthy' to 'maybe a Coke would have been a healthier choice' [Joke].

My beef with juice is that it tends to spike insulin and blood sugar, which is definitely not what you want to do to your body first thing in the morning. When you take the fiber out of a fruit or vegetable you increase the glycemic load and the speed of digestion.

Beets are pretty high in fructose and carrots can be high glycemic when juiced due to their glucose content. I eat a lot of carrots but I'd never juice a whole bag of them. Might as well drink simple syrup! (OK not that bad but still not good).

If I were you I'd blend the veggies rather than juice them if possible. This way you get all the fiber and nutrients from the skin and pulp.

Also if you add a bit of fat this will help mitigate the insulin spike and also make the nutrients more readily absorbed.

You could try celery, spinach/kale, parsley, ginger, half an apple or some berries and a dash of coconut/MCT oil or coconut cream. You need a pretty epic blender to make it smooth! 
If you are really set on juice I'd go easy on the carrots and beets and focus on the greens. 

Thanks for the support.

"Eat Paleo. Train. Live Life."

[Image source: www.someecards.com]


Monday, September 9, 2013

Sarah - 33, Melbourne, Paleo since Feb 2013:

Hi Dave! Long time! Hope NYC is treating you well! I have been paleo since Feb but I eat some natural yoghurt... Where else can you get all the stuff thats good for your gut that is in yoghurt!? Also, how the hell did you break the habit of having milk in coffee? I have almond milk when possible, and am guilty of soy or dairy (both bad so I don't even know which one to consider worse) when almond milk isn't available.