There is a growing and valuable recognition that whole foods (unprocessed, as close to natural state as possible) are the best choice for optimum energy and health. For example, eating an organic apple from your local market beats an apple & nut muffin from the supermarket.
I love Luke and Scott's recipes - including smoothies, snacks, salads, dinners and sweet treats. It's a great reference for healthy, basic meals that are great for one or for the whole family. Luke and Scott are both qualified personal trainers in the fitness business too so they know food has to fuel an active, fit lifestyle.
I was really lucky to have Scott and Luke talk to me about their book and their paleo lifestyle. If you loved them on My Kitchen Rules, or even if you didn't catch it (like me!), here they are. Please note, these are OPINIONS on diet and health, not facts. What works for your body is different to your neighbour and your friend.
I love Luke Hines' approach to lifestyle. "My mantra that I live by is Train Smart, Eat Clean and Feel Good. We must have synergy between how we move our body, what we consume and the way we think about life. It is about achieving balance, through mindfulness," he says.
Has your diet always been health-based or was there an event or issue that lead you to this focus?
I have always tried to eat healthy to the best of my knowledge at the time, looking back I can now see flaws from a health perspective in many foods I used to eat but I guess that is all part of the journey. There have been a few events that have shaped what types of food I consume, one is particular was an injury I sustained in my back - my focus then became sourcing a diet that wasn't pro-inflammatory - hence the Paleo diet.
Dairy is a great source of calcium. How do you ensure adequate calcium in the Paleo diet?
Dairy may have calcium but it also contains many proteins and hormones which are designed for a growing calf, these compounds cause gut irritation and inflammation. Cruciferous veggies such as broccoli provide an abundant source of calcium as does fish, shellfish, offal and meat.
A highly active and fit body usually requires adequate carbohydrate. Does it take time for the body to adjust to new sources of energy? What are the side effects?
If you are training at high intensity I believe you should be consuming some extra carbs, but generally minimal carbs is the way forward. There is a transition between fuels sources which can leave you feeling unable to perform maximally and can leave you feeling fatigued but the body is quick to adapt. Push through the transition period and then the body will acclimatise.
Beyond diet, what other approaches to exercise lifestyle and wellbeing do you recommend and live by?
I believe we should move our body everyday, whether its a gym session, walk, salsa, pilates or swim. The session should be hard enough to work up a sweat and evoke a feeling of satisfaction or accomplishment on completion. I think its paramount that we "switch off" from the modern world of social media, email and texts - this is vital for positive (real) communication. Its certainly an area that I personally need to work on but I'm making in-roads
I have survived a deadly eating disorder and I am concerned by restrictive or extreme approaches to diet as I feel vulnerable people can vastly restrict their food intake under the guise of a healthy regime. Do you accept that there is a need to educate on paleo but not to demonise whole food groups?
Absolutely, knowledge is power ...and once you have knowledge you'll have the power to make informed choices around your health and lifestyle. Its important to not demonize certain food groups but knowing why we eat some and not others is the key.
What's a great paleo lunch for someone without A lot of time to prepare but wants energy throughout the afternoon and before a 5.30pm workout?
Healthy food or paleo food often gets branded with the notion it takes time to prepare but it can be as simple as a fritatta, poached eggs with sweet potato fritter, lamb chops with broccolini, leftovers from the night before.
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Clean Living Paleo Basics by Luke Hines and Scott Gooding, published by Hachette Australia ($17.99)