A lot of my friends are famous these days. They write cookbooks that make best-seller lists and their Facebook fans rival the population of Montana and other million-strong states. I love being with them in the kitchen. They elevate me from thrifty, boring, apathetic consumer to rabid foodie. It’s awesome. Famous chefs are pretty neat people to have in your friend pocket.
But here’s the thing: the paleo world is full of incredible chefs. Some blog. Some don’t. Some take photos. Some don’t. Some have millions of followers, other share with small groups of friends. There’s an astounding diversity of recipes and tastes out there for us to cherish — all we need is a method and a madness to make that happen.
In steps Chowstalker.
Chowstalker is an online community collaboration that brings paleo recipes in and disperses them on a hugely bountiful and high quality basis, with recipes from bigwigs like Russ Crandall The Domestic Man and Melissa Joulwan and George Bryant small wigs like… like me!.
Plus they have specific Whole 30 recipes, autoimmune recipes, 21 Day Sugar Detox recipes… that number in the – this is not a joke – thousands.
Chowstalker brings together an incredible group of people, and the joy and life and love that leaps out of the webpage and into kitchen’s all over the world is truly astounding.
Here are some screenshots I took of the Chowstalker homepage this afternoon:
So anyway. Chowstalker put together a cookbook for Paleo Plan’s 2014 Primal Life Kit (read more about this ridiculous offer HERE) and I am having the food porn time of my life flipping through the pages.
The first thing I notice about the cookbook is the way it’s organized.
It goes like this:
What is Paleo?
Things that graze
Things that oink
Things with wings
Things that swim
Things that hatch
Things in bowls
Things without faces
Which I just find so damn cute.
The second thing I notice is that each section has a few dozen recipes.
The third is that the ebook is 250 pages long!
Which is a whole hell of a lot of food porn.
And help in the kitchen.
The fourth is that each recipe comes with a lot of cool stuff:
1) a list of its dietary compliance (gluten-free, paleo, primal, 21 DSD, Whole 30, vegetarian, ketogenic, egg-free, dairy-free, etc).
2) an introduction to the dish by the author
3) a “Did you know?” Section teaching you about the cooking skills or techniques related to the dish
4) an “about the author” section
5) further resources for getting in touch with each author
6) “pro tips” from the authors
Sooooooooooooo basically what we have here is a cookbook by 92 different contributors, ways to find more recipes by them, and more than 100 unique and diverse paleo recipes.
This is my kind of cookbook.!
Here are some photos if you’re interested in the layout of the book or in whetting your appetite a wee bit:
That’s the whole she-bang of the layout for recipes… what follows are as many snippets I thought I could get away with.
So anyway. Chowstalker is one of my new all time paleo loves and discoveries and I’m ashamed of myself for not finding and falling in love with them sooner. I had heard the name, but I so rarely engage the cooking clan that I just let it pass by.
Not anymore! Because of Chowstalker I have an enormous bank of paleo foodies at my fingertips, and tons of beautiful and exciting recipes to boot.
Thank you, Chowstalker and stalkers.
If you want to check out this so fun and incredible resource, you can read more about it and purchase it as a part of the Paleo Plan sale going on this week… this totally ohmigod are these deals real sale.
53 ebooks, including this cookbook and twenty others, for the price of two. (That is, $39.)
Read all about the whole thing in my introductory post @ http://paleoforwomen.com/paleo-plan-2014,
or just go to the site to read all about it @ http://paleoplan2014.com.
Sale ends Monday 4.28, so get it while the getting is good, if you’re into that sort of thing.
Overcome neck pain and tension with this surprising gem of a physical therapy guide, The Sitting Solution
I always forget that this happens. Then every time I purchase an ebook bundle or participate in a sale I get knocked in the head with it. I chuckle. I get happy. I say, “yes, of course.”
Which is a part of what I love so much about these sales.
What happens? My expectations get flipped completely on their heads. There’s always a darkhorse candidate, one I didn’t even know existed, that takes me completely by surprise and ends up being my favorite resource in the entire bundle.
Once, it was “dog yoga.” Another time, a cookbook devoted specifically to cooking kale.
This time, it’s Sitting Solution, The Paleo Secret’s guide to overcoming back and neck pain.
It’s by two doctor’s of physical therapy, Brenda and Chad Walding. It’s beautiful. It’s simple. And it just may be another one of those stumbled-upon gems that saves my life.
I haven’t suffered from chronic pain in my neck and back, per se. But I have been a long, long-time sufferer of tension headaches. Tension headaches are arguably the most common kind of headaches around (tension headaches and migraine headaches can account for almost all head pain in one way or another). In fact, I happen to be a bit of an expert on headaches, even though I don’t talk about it on the blog much.
I am an expert because the first twenty or so years of my life included headaches perhaps 50 % of the days. That’s not a number to sneeze at. In college, I almost dropped out sophomore year because I had a migraine headache that lasted an entire month.
Over time, I figured out what was going on. To this day I almost always know the exact cause of my headache and what I need to do to overcome it.
One of my most common causes is neck, shoulder, and back strain. This comes from having poor posture or being stressed out.
I’ve learned how to avoid these problems in one way or another. Or at least I can feel them coming. Then I do some stretches that really help.
But what if there are stretches I can do on a regular basis to alleviate my tension and my propensity for headaches?
So I went through this simple guide. It’s got
-an introduction that tells us all about how widespread this problem is — somewhere in the neighborhood of 70-80 percent of Americans experience neck or back pain
-a detailed diagram and description of “Upper Crossed Syndrome” (this is a new one for me), which explains why neck pain can be a product of poor posture and other modern stressors, and
-Six simple daily exercises and stretches in detailed photo and video form
And “Wall Angels”:
There’s a boatload more — lots of revolution in this quick, simple guide — and the vidoes are particularly helpful.
More than anything, there’s an elongated feeling in my neck, which I like very much.
So you can check this out! It’s another one of those kickass resources I stumbled upon when I dug into Paleo Plan’s Primal Life Kit over the weekend.
Read more about the book, the authors, and the other several dozen ebooks available in this ridiculous sale (53 ebooks and 14 discount codes for about 73 cents a piece) at the bundle sale site, http://paleoplan2014.com.
The sale ends on Sunday, so if you want to get, get now while the getting is good.
Or something! Grab one of those links or click below to read more and purchase.
Sarah Ballantyne is one of the more amazing – literally amazing — human beings I have ever met.
Now, I might like her so much and be so impressed by her because we simply have a lot in common, but, well, that’s sort of how human beings work, and there’s no getting around it.
And she deserves all the love and admiration, to boot. Of course she’s amazing for her kick ass blog and recipes and motherhood and entrepreneurialism and expertise on autoimmunity, but she is equally kind, funny, warm, easy-going, kind, and and excellent friend, and did I say kind?
So anyway. There you have it. My friend crush in four sentences. The best part is that I met Sarah in person finally at this year’s PFX. I told her all the gossipy, dark, dramatic secrets about my life in the paleo world (yes, your ears would burn). And now she is bound to me in a web of trust! A conniving genius cackle may be appropriate at this point.
So ANYWAY. And for real this time. I’m gushing about Sarah because I just came across yet another one of her incredible resources on autoimmunity. It’s the PDF starters guide to the autoimmune protocol (AIP). The AIP is the incredibly detailed, thorough, and informative guide that Sarah has now used to help several dozen if not a hundred thousand people overcome their autoimmune conditions. It’s out in full form in The Paleo Approach, which I have reviewed here. For those of us who haven’t got the book yet, it’s available as a entry level what’s what and how-to as The Paleo Approach Quick Start Guide.
I have said that if you are autoimmune you need Sarah Ballantyne, and I mean it. I refer every single one of my autoimmune inquiries and cases to her. She is not just a but possibly the autoimmunity and nutrition expert in America. This is not a joke. It’s real.
Sarah has a PhD in this stuff. She’s been a research scientist at the top universities in Canada. She conducted research that forever altered the way certain radiation therapies are conducted. This is definitely real cred we’re working with here.
And if I haven’t made it obvious yet this is an excellent guide.
This is what you get:
-The skinny on WHAT autoimmuity is and WHAT the AIP is
-An incredibly detailed foods to eat list and foods to avoid list
-Sarah’s thoughts on the highest quality foods and how to get them (the best protein? Organs! And… crickets! And other stuff.
(Seriously. I learned at PFX that Sarah imports cricket flour from Thailand for personal use.)
-How to stock an AIP panty
-Foods that can be reintroduced, the order of reintroduction, and how to reintroduce safely
-And how to get more support on AIP
As made clear in the super cute Table of Contents:
And here are some the chapter headings just to give you a bit more of a taste:
And one full size – look at all those links!!
If you are interested in autoimmune protocols and A) want to enact one without all the technical mumbo jumbo, B) think you might want to try healing your gut in this way but want to know what you’re in for, or C) just think Sarah’s brain is full of really nifty knowledge (that’s me!), then this is an excellent resource for you.
You might be able to grab this somewhere on Sarah’s website – I’m not positive, though I think perhaps not. What I do know is that I acquired it when I purchased Paleo Plan’s Primal Life Kit Bundle of 53 paleo ebooks for the price of two (the whole package is a mere $39). If you’re thinking about jumping on this incredible sale bandwagon (like me!), you’re in for a treat.
If you want to read more about this book, Sarah, or any of the other incredible resources available in this kickass sale… like Birth Control Unlocked, ahem, ahem, or THE THREE OTHER EBOOKS ON AUTOIMMUNITY AND INFLAMMATION in it, you can read more &/or purchase the bundle at http://paleoplan2014.com.
Once you go check it out, then you’ll know why I am so in love with this whole damn thing.
The other three autoimmune ebooks are
-The Autoimmune Paleo Breakthrough by Anne Angelone
-The 21-Day Paleo Cleanse ebook by Neely Quinn and
-Inflammation-free Zone: 30 Day Online Protocol by Amy Hager
The sale, BTW, is this week (of 4.21) only!
One thing that has become quite, if even excessively, common in the health sphere over the last several years is the “bundle sale.” If you’re new to this whole troubleshooting-health-on-the-web thing, a bundle sale is when several e-book authors come together and sell all their books at once, often for an insane discount.
& it would in fact be irritating …
If it weren’t for the fact that sometimes these bundles are seriously, heart-stoppingly, f’ing good deals.
That’s where I come in.
There are countless bundles and ebooks all over the web. The world is becoming more saturated with them day in and day out, and the quality of author, book, and bundle varies vastly over the span of space and time.
It even varies in the alternative, naturopathic, and paleo health scenes. There are dozens of paleo-related bundles every year. Some good. Some less so.
I participate in very few of these sales. This is because I choose to emphasize quality over quantity, and to only ever share with you resources that I think are at least worth a deeper look, if not an immediate investment, because holy crap.
There are two bundle groups I trust with my life, or at least my website, which I really do suppose are one and the same thing, and they are the Harvest Your Health group put together by Todd Dosenberry (we did that here about 6 months ago), and The Paleo Plan Bundle, put together by Neely Quinn.
So of course today I am BEYOND EXCITED to share with you the fact that The Paleo Plan’s 2014 Bundle has arrived and is more beautiful and exciting and new and cost effective and delicious than ever.
Read more about it all & purchase if you like @ it’s site, http://paleoplan2014.com.
What’s unique about this bundle, and what incredible shtuff is in store for you once you download it?
Oh. Let me count the ways.
1) 21 cookbooks! Twenty one. That’s a whole hell of a lot of food porn. By rockstar authors such as George Bryant, Melissa Joulwan, Abel James, Caitlin Weeks, Todd Dosenberry, James Gregory, our own PfW favorite lady Camille Macres, and many, many more.
With books focusing on:
-how to cook with gelatin (an incredible, vastly under-utilized, and, my favorite, CHEAP! source of paleo minerals)
-how to make a kickass paleo salad replete with dressings and protein
-how to make paleo snacks
-how to make paleo desserts in under 30 minutes
-how to make a variety of primal smoothies
-and award books for the best recipes found in the paleosphere in 2013 and 2014
2) 75 $ worth of informational ebooks…
-including my very own BIRTH CONTROL UNLOCKED!! (Which, imho, is the coolest resource for helping you navigate birth control options and management around…)
-a step-by-step paleo guide, how to eat paleo on a budget, addiction recovery, how-to paleo, and more!
3) Four autoimmune and inflammation ebooks (a super dense & informative 139$ value!)
…including Sarah Ballantyne’s introduction to autoimmne disease and the autoimmune protocol that is, literally, healing hundreds of thousands of people as we speak.
And three others which are of course also amazing, such as the 21 day inflammation cleanse and 30 day autoimmune protocol.
And did I mention Sarah’s intro guide?
4) 3 paleo research papers by Dr Loren Cordain
Okay, this is pretty astounding. You know research papers in academic journals normally sell for around 60$ a pop?
Here available is real, hard science on
-the role of egg whites in autoimmune disease, and
-the documented health differences between grain and grass fed beef.
I’ve never seen this in a bundle before!
5) 2 compilations of paleo success stories for motivation
6) 2 instructional guides on raising kids paleo (one by my paleo bestie Stacy Toth)
7) 3 distinct and unique fitness programs
-Sarah Fragoso’s huge success – the Everyday Paleo program, a book on sitting, and a book on circuit training
8) 2 paleo challenges
9) 2 meal plans (Nell Stephenson and Mark Sisson!)
10) 2 3-month paleo magazine subscriptions including the infamous paleo magazine (!)
11) one year in an online cooking club
12) one video of Abel James and Jonathan Bailor introducing their fat loss methods
and 13) FOURTEEN discount codes…
primal life organics skincare, squatty pottys, paleo protein bars, butter and ghee, and paleo on the go shipped paleo meals…. and obviously since we are all awesome at math, 2x as many more!
So it’s not a bad deal, eh?
Inflammation, autoimmunity, family, fitness, meal plans, birth control unlocked, and cookbooks to last you a whole year of cooking unique recipes, if not more.
Read more about it, see the books and authors, and check out the deals @ the site: http://paleoplan2014.com.
As a woman who has never made more than $12,000 / year, it’s not very easy for me to get my hands on grass fed beef. In recent months that limitation has been further complicated by the fact that I’ve been living in Detroit, Michigan, and just about no one here eats grass fed animals, not even people who shop at Whole Foods.
There is one farmer’s market downtown every Sunday, and I believe they have one or two grass fed stands.
In any case, this means it was an enormous (enormous!) delight, benefit, and pleasure, to be contacted by the incredibly gracious Tx Organics in early March and asked to participate in a grass fed taste test.
Hell yes, I said.
So a dry-ice packed box arrived for me overnight, shipped from California (!). Two sirloins and two packs of ground beef. Talk about service. (!)
The true intention of the taste test (which is being conducted by some other paleo advocates) is to test grass fed beef from the Pacific Northwest – directly from the Tx Organics farm – against grass fed beef from around other parts of the country. Since I told Tx I hadn’t been able to get my hands on a grass fed animal in quite some time, they were eight million kinds of gracious and sent the animals along anyway, saying I could just compare the grass to the grain fed.
Since I am a n00b, and all.
I knew paleo fx was coming, so I hurried up and cooked the selections ASAP. First up was the ground beef taste test. In the morning I made conventional ground beef, and in the evening I made the good stuff.
No fancy sauces. Just the beef, salt, pepper, and my frying pan.
The good stuff:
What’s the taste difference?
More than I can possibly say!
In the Tx Organics ground beef, I noticed right away a certain buttery flavor. I don’t know how to describe it better than that. It’s rich and tastes to me what I think a cow should taste like… literally. It tastes like a cow looks.
This is compared to my typical grain fed stuff, which is a little coppery in that bloody kind of way–and I like that, don’t get me wrong–but which lacks pretty much any kind of other natural flavoring. There’s no complexity, and none of that cow-ness that I just don’t have the words for. Sweet, buttery, cow-ness.
The textures were quite different, too. The Tx Organics was soft and sort of melted in my mouth, and the grain fed is rough and dry. The grain was in the grey color spectrum, whereas the grassfed had a richer red-orange-brown color to it. Note that my cooking methods were the same for both and both selections of ground beef were between 85 and 92 percent lean, I’d guess.
So that was it for the ground beef. But the sirloins?
I rested a grain fed and a grass fed cut of meat with some simple salt and pepper.
I threw them in the pan. I got from them the exact same taste differences as I did with the ground beef: something coppery and delightful about my grain fed cow–it is still a cow, after all–but something complex and rich and buttery in the grass fed.
Moreover, the color of the Organics steak was vibrantly red and alive, the fat a buttery yellow color rather than pasty white (which means the steak is higher in vitamin A), the steak was thick and dense, the fat made an incredibly rich and sweet au jus, and the steak eight million kinds of softer than the floppy, dull looking grain fed.
Was all the difference I interpreted a placebo? Did I convince myself the grass fed was better because I wanted it to be?
Well, it’s possible. I guess next time I’ll have to do it with blindfolds. But I don’t think so.
Why might I have been subject to a placebo effect?
Because the other difference between grain and grass fed beef is enormous. It’s for your (and others’!) health.
Here are the benefits of grass fed over grain fed cows:
-So far as we can tell, all beef contains the same amount of omega 6 fat, more or less, but grass fed cows contain more omega 3. Depending on the breed of cow, grass-fed beef contains between 2 and 5 times more omega-3s than grain-fed beef. Says this study, the average ratio of n-6:n-3 in grass fed beef is 1.53:1. In grain fed beef, this ratio jumps all up to 7.65:1. So, that’s a pretty hefty difference. On the other hand, this really isn’t an awesome source of omega 3s regardless, so don’t solely rely on it for healthy omega balance.
-Grass fed beef contains more stearic acid (the healthiest kind of saturated fat that is more or less proved to not raise blood cholesterol levels) than grain fed beef.
-CLA – conjugated linoleic acid – is an incredibly healthy fat that is 2-3 times more concentrated in grass fed than grain fed cows. CLA might be protective against heart disease and cancer and is a potent anti-oxidant that can boost brain function and weight loss. Grass fed beef is arguably the best source of CLA.
-Grass fed beef has a lot of antioxidants, including vitamin A and E, and also glutathione, which is critical for your body’s detox abilities.
-Zinc, iron, phosphorous, and other electrolytes like calcium, magnesium, sodium, and potassium, are all more naturally concentrated in grass fed beef.
So there you have it. Better tasting. Better for you. Better for the animals. Better for the planet (more on which in another post).
And an enormous thank you to Tx Bar Organics for making this possible — both in my own kitchen as well as out in the world at large. It hasn’t been easy getting the grass-fed movement up and running — these heroic ranchers are fighting a steeply uphill battle — so I have nothing but world’s of gratitude and respect for them and am going to start digging deep into my pockets to vote for health with my dollar.
Head over to Tx to check out their shipping programs — you can get a big discount if you order in bulk! Amazing!
Click here for the farm, and to see some beautiful photos and videos of cows and cuts in pasture, like the few featured below!
Thank you Tx Organics!!!