Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Soluble Synergy


Mmmm...delicious globules of fatty FAT!

I've been studying, experimenting and evolving my attitudes and beliefs about diet for a long, long time now. Low carb this, paleo that, caloric restrictions or going vegan... focusing on the diet and lifestyle proscriptions in total, I believe they all miss the most important aspect of any diet: KNOW YOUR FATS.

Eating as much healthy fats in your diet as you can is the key to your health and well being. Fats lead to satiety, nutrient absorption and most importantly of all, protection.

The healthy fats will make you thrive. They will protect you from the worst effects of other junk food, alcohol consumption and other poisons you may ingest. The healthy fats protect your liver and give your body the best material to work with when it has to manufacture the hormones, neuro-transmitters, and other substances vital for healthy living. More specifically, the healthy fats give you the most overlooked class of nutrients: Fat Soluble Vitamins. Vitamins A, D, and K. And these vitamins work in synergy - in other words the combination of those vitamins are vital for your body to digest protein, absorb minerals and nutrients, build your bones and teeth, and support the good gut flora that is the foundation of your immune system. More specifically these are the fats you should be eating on a regular basis - especially if you're pregnant. 

Bone Marrow and Rendered Ruminant Fat - best if sourced from free range, pastured animals that have access to their natural diet and plenty of sunshine. The best way to get this is to make Bone Broth. There's a reason the old wives tales suggest chicken noodle soup for a cold. That's because before the days of canned soup full of additives and having all the fat removed, chicken noodle soup was made with the boiled carcass of roast chicken. All of the marrow, tendons, skin and cartilage would be rendered into the broth's liquid. The fat globules you see floating on the surface of the broth? That's the MAGIC.

Next time your sick, go buy some soup bones, or a whole chicken (from grass fed/free range animals would be optimal). Boil it with some sea salt and a bit of raw apple cider vinegar. That deliciously fatty broth is a rich source of vitamins and minerals rendered from the boiling of bones. If $$ or availability is really an issue, than forget it, it's better to make it with typical grocery store meat even if they were from a feedlot animal.

The fat, tendons, cartilage and marrow are still great medicine for whatever ails you. I recently caught a mild flu from some friends. They missed work for a whole week, and barley left their house, coughing, running noses, soar throats and fevers for five days straight.

As soon as I felt the symptoms, I went to a local Pho restaurant and ordered up a bowl of Vietnamese bone broth soup, in which they boil the shin bones of cow for over 24 hours to make the soup base. I ate the entire bowl, then ordered one for takeout to eat first thing the next day. My throat was mildly irritated, I had a slight cough, and a very low grade fever. It was completely gone in 24 hours. I truly believe a large part of my immune systems strength and why I was able to shake off the flu so quickly and with minimal effects was the immunity boosting effect of the bone broth's Fat soluble vitamins

Your gut bacteria is the engine of your immune system. Bone broth us rich in vitamins, minerals, collagen, can heal damaged guts and boost your immune system.


Butter and Dairy Foods from Grass Fed Ruminants - In most places in the USA, you can find KerryGold Irish butter from Ireland. It cost double what butter from US factory style dairy. It's worth every penny. Use this butter as one of your base cooking oils. It makes everything taste better. Better yet, put that butter on any and all your steamed veggies like broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, asparagus, brussel sprouts, squash, etc. Or sautee your veggies in it. That butter is rich in the fat soluble vitamins AND it also helps your digestive system absorb the nutrients from the foods your eating with it.

Extra Virgin Olive Oil - Speaking of fats helping you absorb vitamins, minerals and nutrients, this is where the idea of salad dressing came from. Except now most salad dressing people eat are commercially made, "low fat" and made with vegetable oil crap and have sweeteners and other garbage in the ingredients. Use Extra Virgin Olive Oil and some good quality vinegar and you're also good to go. Everyone knows EVOO is good for  you....but most don't know that it's very susceptible to heat and you should never really cook with it. At best, add it to your stir fry or dish right at the end of your cooking so it's not heated up too much and for too long.

 Extra Virgin Coconut Oil - Other than rendered bone broth and grass fed cow butter...EVCO is the holy grail of cooking fats. From Coconut Oil for Optimum Health:

Coconut oil is the most saturated of all fats. Saturated fat has three subcategories: short chain, medium chain and long chain. Coconut oil contains approximately 65% medium chain fatty acids (MCFA). Although recognized for its health benefits many centuries ago, it wasn’t until 40 years ago that modern medicine found the source to be MCFA. Remarkably, mother’s milk contains the same healing powers of coconut oil. [5]

The saturated medium chain lipid lauric acid, which comprises more than 50 percent of coconut oil, is the anti-bacterial, anti-viral fatty acid found in mother’s milk. [6] The body converts lauric acid into the fatty acid derivative monolaurin, which is the substance that protects adults as well as infants from viral, bacterial or protozoal infections. This was recognized and reported as early as 1966. [7]

Since the first half of the 19th century, infection has been implicated as a cause of cardiovascular disease (CVD). [8] Researchers have been studying what causes the changes in the arterial wall. Professors Russell Ross and John Glomset formulated a hypothesis in 1973 about what causes CVD, concluding that CVD occurs in response to localized injury to the lining of the artery wall, which has been brought about by a number of things including viruses. [9, 10] The injury, in turn causes inflammation/infection. The plaque that develops is a result of the body trying to heal itself. It has been very well established that pathogens play an integral role in cardiovascular disease.

What is interesting about the role of viruses that have been found to initiate cardiovascular disease is they can be inhibited by the medium chain fatty acids in coconut oil. One could say that consuming coconut oil decreases one’s risk of cardiovascular disease.

And it's not just good for your heart...it's great for your liver, too.



Like Frost over at Freedom Twenty Five, I'm basically become a "paleolithic alcoholic." By eating nutrient dense foods and a lot of healthy saturated fats, I've found that my tolerance for alcohol has skyrocketed.

I HAVE to drink on an empty stomach to experience an alcoholic buzz. Which is precisely why I like to have a couple of high alcohol content, micro-brewed IPA's after a day of fasted exertion (aka my routine of blue collar work without a lunch break).

But increased tolerance is only one aspect of it. The other is this: I cannot remember the last time I had a hangover. Well, I can.....but that was a long time ago. I'm talking over 2 years. No lie. I can easily put down 9 drinks (typically 4-5 beers, 4 drams of whiskey or tequila) in an evening, and then wake up at the crack of dawn and immediately start doing something physically strenuous. No headache. No nausea or queasiness. Zero. As in I feel like I never even had a drink the night before.

I'm a veteran imbiber. I was a binge drinker throughout my entire youth. I've now settled into a routine of 3-4 drinks a night, 4-5 nights a week, with the sole purpose to attain a pleasant, moderate buzz. I never drink for the purpose of getting drunk anymore, but if I'm at a social event and I'm not bothering to keep track of how much I'm drinking, I find it scary at the amount I can drink now without getting absolutely trashed, and even more surprised at the lack of consequences I experience the following day.

Now, don't get me wrong. I've had more than my share of hangovers. I've had hangovers that lasted 3 days. I've said many a prayer at the altar of the porcelain god. But ever since "going paleo" going on 6 years now, I've noticed a great diminishing in the frequency and intensity of my hangovers. Part of that is also probably attributed to the fact that I only drink high quality alcohol - micro-brewed "living" beers, non-blended whiskey, 100% agave tequila's, etc., and I never imbibe sugary mixed drinks...but still, I've gotten hungover from the over consumption of even high quality alcoholic beverages.

But when I began cooking nearly every meal with coconut oil, it seems like I've developed a steel liver.


Thanks to this product, I now cook with coconut oil at almost every single meal.


With the disappearance of my hangovers, I began to suspect that the increase in coconut oil consumption was most likely the factor. So I googled and found some PubMed abstracts that confirmed my suspiscions.

Check out these excerpts from this PubMed abstract:

OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study was to determine the effects of saturated fatty acid (SFA) and unsaturated fatty acid (UFA) diets on ethanol pharmacokinetics.

METHODS: Sprague-Dawley male rats were fed modified AIN76 diets containing 10% coconut oil (SFA) or corn oil (UFA) for 120 days. A single dose (3 g/kg bw) of ethanol (13% solution) was orally administered using a gastric canula on day 30, 90, 105 and 120. Tail vein blood samples were collected at various intervals following ethanol dose and were analyzed for blood-ethanol concentration (BEC).

RESULTS: Compared to the UFA group (corn oil fed), the SFA group (coconut oil fed) exhibited significantly higher BEC, larger area under the curve, longer half-life of ethanol, and lower rates of ethanol elimination.

CONCLUSION: Dietary SFA protects liver from alcohol injury by retarding ethanol metabolism, and carnitine may be involved.

So my increased coconut oil consumption appears to be my alcoholism enabler.

Check out this PubMed Abstract too:

CONCLUSION: A diet enriched in saturated but not unsaturated fatty acids reversed alcoholic liver injury. 

 Coconut oil is the ultimate cooking oil, heart and liver protector and also a great natural skin protector and restorer from potential sun damage to your skin. Do you need anymore reasons to eat more saturated fat?



Here's the summaries of 10 more reasons you should eat plenty of saturated fats from the article I found while googling about coconut oil protecting the liver:

1. They lower Lp(a), a substance in the blood that is said to indicate proneness to heart disease.

2. They protect the liver from alcohol and other toxins like Tylenol (acetaminophen).

3. They ideally constitute at least 50 percent of our cell membranes, which gives our cells integrity.

4. They play a vital role in the health of our bones.

5. They enhance the immune system.

6. They are needed for proper utilization of essential fatty acids, like omega-3.

7. Stearic acid and palmitic acid, both saturated fats, are the preferred energy source of the heart.

8. They help protect us from harmful microorganisms.

9. They will help you lose body fat.

10. They are the best fats to cook with, including repeat frying.


In summation, I'll add an 11th reason: they simply taste better than regular fats that are a part of the industrialized, Standard American Diet. Butter tastes better than margarine. Boiled bone broth tastes better than "low-fat/low-sodium canned broth," and frying in coconut oil tastes a hell of a lot better than the typical rancid crap of most restaurant food fried in soybean, corn, canola or any other "vegetable" oil. 

Another aspect of understanding the benefits of healthy saturated fats is eating as best you can under a limited budget. I've seen many folks complain about the cost of eating pastured, grass fed meats as prohibitive and a reason why they just can't stick with the paleo/primal diet. Don't let perfect be the enemy of the good. If all you can afford is factory farmed meat, you can at least trim the fat and than cook it in some healthy fats to compensate for the nutritional inferiority of the feedlot meat! When my budget gets tight, that's exactly what I do...I buy the discount meat at the grocery store, trim the excess fat off it and then cook it in a combination of butter and coconut oil.

I buy grass fed meat and bones as much as possible. It's just not always possible. But when it comes to food choices at restaurants and eateries and cooking food for my family, the one thing I always pay most attention to is the kind of fats used in preparation. I may occasionally eat something not "paleo," following the 80/20 principle, but even then, when it comes to bad fats, it's more like 99/1 I avoid things like hydrogenated oils.


Once you accept the concept of how important saturated fats are to your diet and health (and how bad most of the unsaturated fats are), you also come to another important realization: yes, you CAN eat food that tastes great and is still good for you.
 

29 comments:

lynch said...

Raw, unrefined organic virgin coconut oil is also awesome for dry skin, even on the face. Has helped me out tremendously. Wife and kids use it in their hair when then get dryness. Amazing stuff!

mmaier2112 said...

Trader Joe's carries an amazing-tasting Extra-Virgin Coconut oil. I made asparagus with it the last two nights and it's just too delicious.

Brian said...

This post is money. Never would have given bone broth or EVCO a thought, but I will have to try them.

Anonymous said...

Keoni. I'm a freelance journalist doing a story on the link between the paleo diet and libertarianism. Working with Sisson, Wolf and others. Would love to chat. Email me at dorsey dot kindler at gmail if interested.

TGR White said...

Keoni, do you ever drink when in ketosis? That might make it easier to get buzzed.

TempestTcup said...

This is the diet I keep coming back to - I will try different things like intermittent fasting (not a fan) the potato diet (wrecked me for months), etc but I feel best when I eat fat instead of carbs.

I call my diet the Drinkers Diet:


*Save all your carbs for beer.
*Lubricate your hangovers with saturated animal fats (organic & grass-fed if possible – whatever).
*Eat your meat (organic & grass-fed if possible – whatever).
*Veggies are for flavor. Don’t worry about eating a ton of them, but they can be delicious.

I also try to eat as many bone-in meats like rotisserie or roasted chicken, ribs, etc. & then I boil up those bones for broth. I also eat as many organ meats as possible for the added nutrients.

Stingray said...

You can also make the bone broth in the crockpot. It's even better when you make the chicken in there first.

Also, a commenter at my blog told me that, if you have a pressure cooker you can get the same effect of 24 hours of boiling in about 3-4 hours (though I am not exactly sure on that time).

Stingray said...

Keoni,

May I ask what was wrong with the comment I left? Problem with the links?

Keoni Galt said...

@ Stingray - I believe Google spam filters will always put multi-link posts in the suspected spam folder. Thanks for the links, and yes, we make our broth in a crockpot overnight.

@ TGR - Doubt I've been in ketosis for the past 4 years. When I first went paleo, I was low carbing and no doubt was in ketosis for awhile, but it's been years since was on a low carb diet.

Stingray said...

Keoni,

Understood. I was confused as it seemed to appear in the comments section and then was gone. For future reference, I just wanted to be sure. Thanks for the explanation.

Question, have you ever tried the bones from your boars? My husband hunts and I wanted to try this with the bones from the next deer he brings home.

Anonymous said...


Can you recommend several good coconut oils? I bought the LuAnna (?) at the store, but don't think that's the good stuff... our local grocery store doesn't sell any other brands.

I live in the middle of nowhere with the closest walmart over an hour away.

Amy said...

KG,

I kept getting on and falling off the Paleo Pony - suffered from to much information and was always moving in a new direction every other week. Like TempestTCup said above, this is the template to which I return.

My third is now 6 months old. It's time to stop fiddling and just do it. I went low-carb *mostly* Paleo (peanuts are OK by me, as are many dairy products). I always kept lots of good fats in the house for cooking but that damned bread would get me every time.

This time I also went 100% gluten-free. No more cheating with sourdough because it's "traditional" or rice/potatoes because they are "safe starches" - and I'll let that debate continue without comment, it doesn't apply to me because any time I eat bananas, potatoes sweet or white, rice, or gluten-free goodies, I go nuts and eat and eat and eat. No starch is OK for me right now, too many rooms in my house to get in order first.

One thing I have noticed that is tremendously beneficial is the mentally therapeutic effect of the GF/High Fat diet. I am not a big drinker but I would crave alcohol, or rather, the sedative/altering effects of it. It was a scary feeling, and sugar was the answer. Clearly something addiction-like was going on. Since high-fat/GF I'm like a different person. Focused, less anxious, more productive, more confident. This gives me tremendous pause to wonder how many mental illnesses could be the consequence of an insidious diet. Apparently there is ample evidence that gluten and O-6 PUFAs are not only hell on our hearts, but on our brains as well.

Diseases of civilization, indeed. One wonders if we could keep the modern tech and finally have some peace if we just gave up the likely culprit of all of our psychological, territorial, and economic problems - wheat. I recognize how trifling and simple that sounds. Just a thought.

Anonymous said...

middle of nowhere guy here reporting what I found on buying coconut oil online.

Nutiva, or Tropical Traditions are recommended on Mark's Daily Apple. Nature's Way is #1 seller on Amazon, but Nutiva is also up there.

I'll probably end up buying from Amazon.

Keoni, thanks again for all your stuff.

Daniel Horton said...

Just wondering if bacon grease works. I've been cooking just about everything in left over bacon grease, since it's basically free as I cook bacon a few times a week. Should I switch to coconut oil?

Keoni Galt said...

Daniel, I use both, often at the same time.

For one, I have a future post coming up about cooking with cast iron...which involves seasoning your pan with oil, and maintaining that seasoning. I use coconut oil for that, so everytime I cook, it's a combination of coconut oil and whatever other oils I use, be it butter, bacon grease, etc.

Hearth said...

Bone broth is the boss. Whenever we are sick, DH and I run over to the local Thai place and get some Tom Yum. The combination of good brothy soup and spice and garlic - amazing. It really helps. (Plus it gets the sinuses nice and sparkly).

I've found that having a deep freeze is invaluable for getting good meat. Buying organic meat at the store is prohibitive, however I've gotten a cow off of craigslist (I know, crazypants, but hey) and right now we're eating meat from DH's coworker's daughter, who raised a cow for 4H last year. (I know 4h tends to be corn fed, but it also tends to be given a good life and isn't CAFO, so it's a nice compromise).

Phedre said...

Stingray, this past year I made bone broth from the deer my fiance shot. The flavour was excellent, but definitely venison-y, so I was only able to use it for venison stews, chills, etc. Still worth making, without a doubt.

Just make sure you're exposing the marrow to get all that fatty goodness out :)

Gerard said...

That's interesting you chose KerryGold as the best butter. I live in the UK and have tried all the quality british, french, new zealand butters commonly sold in supermarkets, but determined without a doubt that the Irish-made KerryGold is easily tops.

Anonymous said...

Paul Elam of A Voice for Men- the biggest conjob in the MRA and disinfo agent

http://www.crimesagainstfathers.com/australia/Forums/tabid/82/forumid/107/postid/4658/scope/posts/Default.aspx

Anonymous said...

Paul Elam, A Voice for Men- the biggest conjob in the MRA and disinfo agent

http://www.crimesagainstfathers.com/australia/Forums/tabid/82/forumid/107/postid/4658/scope/posts/Default.aspx

A short commentary on MRA leaders
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2ElZzB4P2D4

The so called "Leaders" of the MRA area are lying to you all. They are telling you that governments make legislation that you HAVE to obey and that they can FORCE you to obey using the police FORCE. This is a lie. They know it is a lie. And they are telling you lies that they know are lies.

The TRUTH is that legislation is NOT LAW and you do not have to obey ANY legislation. Here are links to videos that go into this in detail. This is not a new idea. Many people KNOW that legislation is not law and have been telling you so for a long time.

The excuse offered is usually "well the guvment can hurt you if you do not obey" is just that. An excuse. The only reason that guvments do hurt men who do not obey is because men have TOLERATED these crimes and not formed new courts to put criminals in guvment on trial. Men only have themselves to blame.

Eric said...

Anon1101:
Your name wouldn't happen to be Peter Nolan, would it?

Anonymous said...

Same view that spawed in me intuitively when I was faceing the FOC for "parenting time" issues with my ex. These semi-zombified agents of the System lacked all legitimacy in the truest sense of the world. But there I was, to submit, lest I be punished for contempt ( which I have) or worse killed for resisting LE aggression.

Eric said...

Anon914:
I'm not doubting that most so-called 'social workers' and minions of the Divorce Industry wouldn't be better suited for working in the Gestapo; nor do I doubt that Paul Elam is anything but a complete idiot. But I'm very dubious about these 'tribunals' advocated by certain elements within the MRM.

I don't think that a Star Chamber with Peter Andrew Nolan, Timmy Tech, and the Fifth Fraudsman sitting as judges would be much of an improvement, IOW.

Anonymous said...

Keoni,

Is there harm in making bone broth with bones from regular supermarket meat (beef, pork, chicken, etc)?

Thanks.

Eric

Keoni Galt said...

Nope.

Don't let Perfect be the enemy of the Good.

Grass fed animal bones are best, but even factory farm feedlot beef bones have beneficial nutrition.

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Keoni. It's so simple to boil leftover bones I would have thrown out otherwise. I normally get sick 1-3 times a year. I look forward to finding out whether the broth will help.

Eric

Mollie Reidland said...

Your science doesn't make sense when it comes to the alcohol tolerance.

The higher blood concentration of alcohol in the sat fat rat group would mean they were more easily intoxicated, not less.

I think the general high fat, high protein content of your diet could explain the way you can only get a buzz when consuming alcohol on an empty stomach, but I would have to look into it more.

Very interesting ideas.

Anonymous said...

Hey, Keoni, what do you know about soy lecithins? The coconut oil spray has it. Seems like everything else does too. Hopefully the effects are not like soy protein.

Bill C said...

I would like to politely suggest everyone read Cain and Abel's story (Genesis in the bible) again, or at least for the first time. Even if atheist or pagan.
Why?
Because Cain was a FARMER... Abel was a shepherd. It's the clash of civilizations writ large, or small - depends on your view.
But the evil farmers always want MORE MONEY for their work... And will kill to keep their profits. (Note that sin as a real possibility becomes possible when there is a "civilization," which de facto requires agriculture. It's kind of hard to hoard (greed) animals - they need constant care, space to move, space to defecate, care against disease and injury. But grains and plants can be dried, kept over the winter with minimal issue, and reconstituted, ground for flour and cooked, or prepared other ways, and only require some land, seeds, and regular water - which still comes from the sky most places... )
I'm deciding we need to be pro-active, and treat the farmers (human cattle) as any other animal. (Minus eating them - but they'll make good fertilizer.)