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raw paleo, raw meat, anyone?  RSS feed

 
pollinator
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Diet discussions can (and do) get as heated as religious debates.  People believe in their way of eating passionately, believe it is the best and only way for humanity to thrive, and are eager to convert others!

I have run through just about every diet out there, trying to find the magic fix for my chronic health problems, and for many years, trying to lose weight.  I was a vegetarian for more than 10 years, vegan for a few years, and a complete raw fruitarian for a time.  I read all I could about raw vegetarian nutrition, and I felt the science was strong.  I was a believer!  But I still felt terrible, I was still morbidly obese, I still had all the same problems, and many of them got worse. But that was me, my body, my genetics.  If you feel good as a raw vegan or vegetarian, awesome and go with that.

I lost the weight when I came to Africa. I can't explain the "why", except maybe the lack of processed foods.  I did not diet.  I did not deliberately exercise.  (Where as previously I was something of an exercise fanatic).  I ate everything that was put in front of me, and within a year I was a normal weight, for the first time in my life.  And I maintained that weight, without any deliberate effort for five years and two pregnancies (after 10 years of infertility).  But after the second baby, I started to not feel so well again, and the weight started to creep up.  My blood sugars were out of control again.  So it was back to the drawing board, doing research, trying to find a dietary solution.  And experimentation.  Wheat makes me feel terrible and sick.  I'm a baker, so that was not a pleasant discovery.  Eliminating processed sugar was a no brainer.  Its been much harder to let go of fruits and starchy vegetables, which are staples of our African diet.  But I can't deny, the fewer the carbs, the better I feel, and the better I function.  Again, I know its not for everyone, but my body, and my genetics seem carb intolerant.  So I have spent the last year trying to convert our farm from mainly vegetable production to more animal production.  Fat and meat are considered luxuries of the rich in this culture.  But its also estimated that more than 60% of people here are full blown diabetics.  đŸ˜ź
 
pollinator
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Maureen, I agree with you. People get very invested in their diet. The discussions typically focus on health benefits and/or what we were meant to eat. Food is so much more than that to me. It's about nurturing and traditions, and taste, let's not forget about taste.

I have family members who can and do eat the same thing everyday, at least for one meal. I get bored, quickly. When meal planning, I generally alternate everything - protein types, ethnic type, and starch type. So we have seafood, beef, pork and chicken once a week, with some other things occasionally thrown in, like lamb or duck. Only meat or only vegetarian would get very boring for me. But I do realize not everyone loves food as much as I do.
 
Maureen Atsali
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I agree with you 100% Stacy, and I have to say that the lack of variety and taste has been a stumbling block for me in following the lower carb diet.  I live in rural Africa, so my culinary options are already limited.  The nearest supermarket being 2 hours away, and ridiculously expensive.  So most of the time I am stuck eating what we grow or raise or what can be purchased at the local market.  Take all the carbs out of that picture, and I am stuck with a very boring almost mono-diet that centers around eggs, native leafy greens and cabbage... With some other meats thrown in if I can afford them or we butcher an animal.  Its BORING and not much fun.  Some days I would rather not eat than eat another egg!  When people ask me what I miss the most about the USA, aside from my family and friends, it is definitely FOOD.  My favorite ethnic restaurants.  Chinese! Mexican! Indian! Japanese!  Good dairy products.  Of course all that good food was probably keeping me fat and sick, but I still pine for it!  I am a foodie at heart!

But we are wandering off the topic... Which was raw meat...
 
pollinator
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We people are just lost about what to eat, and also have too much choice. Before, or nowadays in rural areas, it was or still is just "EAT WHAT THERE IS"!
All you are missing Maureen, is about the luxury standing on unsustainability, though it is very enjoyable... You can have food from all over the world and all over climate and all seasons all year long.
 
Posts: 244
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Xisca Nicolas wrote:We people are just lost about what to eat, and also have too much choice. Before, or nowadays in rural areas, it was or still is just "EAT WHAT THERE IS"!
All you are missing Maureen, is about the luxury standing on unsustainability, though it is very enjoyable... You can have food from all over the world and all over climate and all seasons all year long.



I'm so with you on that one, Xisca. What we pine for is convenience: Before Europeans brought back the lowly potato from the New World, the winters were spent wondering how to present cabbage to their family in yet another way, because that was pretty much all there was. So they would put cabbages in root cellars, make a huge variety of soups with a cabbage base, boiled dinners, sauerkraut, coleslaw etc. Carrots would be buried in containers full of damp sand and given the same cold storage in a root cellar. And I have no idea how boring that must have been, but they survived and thrived on cabbage and root veggies such as carrots, parsnips, turnips, winter radishes... I'm sure I'm forgetting a few. I remember mom enlisting me to wrap apples in newspapers to make them "last longer". Eggs without refrigeration were buried in the finest flour and would go to the cold storage. [Yes, they keep just fine this way, for months on end: It is only with the advent of washing the eggs so they be "presentable" for sale that eggs became unsafe to eat unless refrigerated]. As a matter of fact, the "Chandeleur" or Candlemas, [Feb. 14th for many] with its feast of crepes of pancakes was celebrated as a time when they could use the last of last year's eggs.  As all / most roosters had ended in a stew pot, the few eggs saved for the following Candlemas were rarely fertile, so they were safer. They had to crack them in a different vessel to examine them, and one by one add them to the batter.
One of the biggest problems is the advent of the supermarket and transportation from faraway places. The farmers had to get financially squeezed to make this happen, so that the middleman could make a living. Retail stores make very little on produce, and farmers even less. Packager is another middleman that is not really thriving, and they all have to go big or go home. This is not a normal state of affairs and we all suffer from the dramatic changes in food distribution, the organic farmer most of all, because he is at the beginning of the process and we now have to squeeze the livelihood of all these other "parasites" to our food chain...
 
Maureen Atsali
pollinator
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Well that's pretty much how we live here.  We eat what's in season and what is available... Almost 100% from our own farm.  Many locals (not us) live on a mono diet of maize.  Maize porridge, fried dried maize (corn nuts), ugali (like polenta), roasted maize.  Boiled maize.  Deep fried maize flour nuggets.  Fermented maize.  Ugh.  I shouldn't complain, we get a lot of variety compared to our monocropping neighbors.  But I'm not going to kid you... When you are eating sweet potatoes for the fifth day in a row, you start dreaming about that grinder from your favorite deli...or some general Tao's chicken from that take out place... Being self sufficient is great... But not nearly as romantic as we idealize.
 
Stacy Witscher
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Variety doesn't have to be unsustainable. Just because I like to mix things up, doesn't mean I don't eat what's available seasonally, locally and according to what I can grow. Like you said Cecile, Europeans did all kinds of different things with cabbage, to add some taste variety. I'll use that same cabbage in a chow mein, or a slaw for tacos, or braised in cream along side some braised meat. I can cook almost anything I like better than a restaurant. So, for me, it's not about convenience, it's about taste. I'm not going to spend two hours today making egg rolls because of convenience.
 
CĂ©cile Stelzer Johnson
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Stacy Witscher wrote:Variety doesn't have to be unsustainable. Just because I like to mix things up, doesn't mean I don't eat what's available seasonally, locally and according to what I can grow. Like you said Cecile, Europeans did all kinds of different things with cabbage, to add some taste variety. I'll use that same cabbage in a chow mein, or a slaw for tacos, or braised in cream along side some braised meat. I can cook almost anything I like better than a restaurant. So, for me, it's not about convenience, it's about taste. I'm not going to spend two hours today making egg rolls because of convenience.



You are so right. In fact, many of the very tasty dishes our ancestors created show real imagination. Had they *not* had to vanquish adversity, they might not have created "paté en croûte", foie gras, boudin rouge, boudin blanc, rillettes, and so many others. It is *because* we are pushed to make something tasty that we may make our own egg rolls. In 1848, pushed by famine, a restaurateur in Paris even managed to get and elephant trunk from the zoo to serve to his customers. Shame on him, but hats off to his creativity! Hats off to you to for making tasty egg rolls yourself.
You know, as a side show to this whole discussion on food distribution, convenience is also the reason why folks get lazy and just buy anything in a plastic wrap that can be nuked. That is a real pity. Spending time creating tasty dishes has unfortunately fallen by the wayside and slogans such as :"You deserve a break today at McDonald" has taken  hold. Quality family time has taken a beating as a direct result of this unhealthy "convenience".
Bon appétit, Stacy!
 
Xisca Nicolas
pollinator
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Il y a longtemps que je n'ai pas mangé de foie gras ni de rillettes! Not very raw paleo.... But my raw guinea pig in orange juice in a mason jar for a few hours was a success! The problem is that I sacrificed the skin this time.
Obligations are the key to real creativity!
Artists even know this, that is why they also invented poetry, you need more creativity than prose.

Those days I feast on bananas, they all ripen and I still have a few kilos... Maureen I understand your dreams, we have them because we moved from a culture to another, and memory is strong, especially taste!
 
CĂ©cile Stelzer Johnson
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Xisca Nicolas wrote:Il y a longtemps que je n'ai pas mangé de foie gras ni de rillettes! Not very raw paleo.... But my raw guinea pig in orange juice in a mason jar for a few hours was a success! The problem is that I sacrificed the skin this time.
Obligations are the key to real creativity!
Artists even know this, that is why they also invented poetry, you need more creativity than prose.

Those days I feast on bananas, they all ripen and I still have a few kilos... Maureen I understand your dreams, we have them because we moved from a culture to another, and memory is strong, especially taste!



Non, je suis d'accord: Pas trĂšs raw palĂ©o. Mais: "La variĂ©tĂ© est le piment de la vie". Moi aussi, çà fait des annĂ©es que je n'en ai pas mangĂ©. Je suis une ex-pat. au centre du Wisconsin, alors le foie gras et les rillettes, il y a longtemps que j'en ai fait mon deuil. Yet, every once in a while, I long for a really good boudin rouge, fried in apple sauce. Yum. I must say you are more adventurous than I am, trying raw guinea pig in orange juice. Was did it taste like? I eat raw horse meat in a steak tartare  [but then again, central Wisconsin is not conducive...]
We eat deer meat, and especially the heart does not need much cooking. Only the toughest cuts get cooked through. I prefer the rest raw or near raw. All our friend know this and when they get a deer or butcher a cow, they know it will be a real treat to me if they let me have the heart: Score it on both sides, deep, then fry in a little butter at high heat, just to brown the outside a bit, not enough to burn the butter. It must still bleed when placed on the plate. I give them a pint of honey in thanks. Every one is happy.
 
Xisca Nicolas
pollinator
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CĂ©cile Stelzer Johnson wrote:Yum. I must say you are more adventurous than I am, trying raw guinea pig in orange juice. Was did it taste like?  


Well, it just happen that I raise guinea pigs and that I grow oranges! La dieta se llama "Lo que hay" lol Lokehay is a good name for a sustainable diet!

It taste sweet and not strong, even less than cooked. I got the idea because I was having steak tartare when I received the daily mail about this thread.... And then, I guinea pig died. That is when I am adventurous, or that I calculate well about my weight and the less than a kilo guinea pig! I knew that I might have left some euphorbia peplus in the bunch of weeds coming from weeding my oignons... As they do not eat what they do not like, I still do not understand why they eat this poisonous weed... I still have no idea how it kills and what is left in what part of the meat or nothing...
 
garden master
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Mastering fire and cooking our food seems to be what made us human, evolutionarily.  I can't imagine not cooking meat.  Well cooked meat just tastes soooo much better to me.  The maillard reaction is pure magic!  Now a days with supermarkets and cheap carbs, unleashing calories with cooking isn't as critical as it once was for feeding our hungry large brains, but cooking is still so wonderful.
 
Xisca Nicolas
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David Livingston wrote:Not for me , firstly I would be afraid of botulism or other similar nasty secondly since I tend to eat the cheaper cuts of meat these are less tender and I suspect take some chewing if uncooked

David


Common thought! I can tell you that raw meat is more tender! I buy the sort of meat that you need to boil for hours, and yet... it is TENDER! I have tried to cook it, and at the first boil they shrink and become hard. So then you need 3 more hours to get the job done....

Botulism I think, comes from preserving and not pasteurizing well. It is different than raw meat.
 
Xisca Nicolas
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Greg Martin wrote:Mastering fire and cooking our food seems to be what made us human, evolutionarily.  I can't imagine not cooking meat.


I have thought about this too....
Conclusion if I imagine... Raw meat is much much tender and tasty when eaten alone, so I am sure men have been eating raw meat a lot.
So why cooking?
Well, to get the last bits near the bones for example! Then, did fire started to be used for cooking? No, I guess for the smoke and avoid FLIES. Then they certainly noticed that the fire and the smoke would keep things safe for a few more days, from flies and other predators. Then the meat would eventually dry and could be kept....

...And we still eat RAW dry and smoked ham! And fish too. Smoked mackerel hmmmm!

Then cooking became useful to eat non edible raw foods, that other animals were not able to eat!
 
master pollinator
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Cooking meat, especially the exposed surface area of any cut, exposes the only area on freshly cut meat that could be compromised. Meat will go bad from the outside in, because that's where the bacteria get it.

I don't think there's anything evolutionarily sacred about cooking our meats. I think it had more impact on the softening of hard root vegetables that otherwise stored well but were inedible, perhaps softening hand-harvested grain into edible mash, and to make meat harvested in the heat a long way from camp or home safer to eat.

Personally, give me a well-prepared steak tartare any day.

-CK
 
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Sandra Peake wrote:
Pork and chicken are defined as omnivores, which means animal protein can comprise significant parts of their diet. Although certain ads tout 100% grain fed and vegetarian meats, it's a fact those species are not normally vegetarian. And those are two meats I much prefer to be fully cooked. As an inlander, I never ate much ocean fish, and precious little freshwater fish, but seeing the beautiful art produced by a master sushi chef makes me regret not trying raw fish. However, there's a reason for  sushi to be made from fish frozen for a specified period of time.



I believe sushi needs to be frozen in an industrial grade freezer to kill all parasites (home freezers don't get cold enough). If the fish wasn't already frozen most grocery store meat departments will freeze it for a few days if asked.

And yeah all omnivores and carnivores can carry roundworm (aka trichinosis). I think even if they were kept on a strict vegetarian diet they can carry it because it is often passed from the mother to the fetus in utero. Virtually all puppies are born with roundworms and get wormed at 3-4 weeks old (and if they are wormed later it results in piles of "spaghetti" all over the yard.

For ages virtually all commercial pork carried a risk of trichinosis AND pseudorabies (which is fatal to cats/dogs but not pigs, and humans are immune to it). These days I believe both have been wiped out of the big commercial farms, I have heard chef's say you don't need to cook pork through if it comes from a large reputable producer, but small homesteads/farms may still carry it. I would never ever feed dogs raw pork because of the risk, imo even if it is a tiny risk it is unacceptable because if they get exposed they will be dead within a few days.
 
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