Eggs & Oysters Salad Meal

OurPlate Score: 10/10          Follow Us on Facebook and Twitter

We might not think of combining eggs and fish in the same meal, but they can be delicious together and one of the healthiest food combinations, especially when we eat the HumanaNatura way and follow HumanaNatura’s OurPlate healthy eating guidelines. Fish is of course high in protein and healthy omega-3 fats, while eggs from naturally-raised hens are packed with fat-soluble vitamins and other micronutrients. Today’s meal shows one way of having your eggs and getting your fish too, in this case using shelled and pre-cooked oysters packed in olive oil. Check out the meal photo and instructions below, and be sure to subscribe to follow our healthy eating and other natural health posts!

Please note that today’s HumanaNatura meal includes shellfish and is proportioned for both ketogenic (very low carb) and OMAD (one meal a day) eating – with about 1800 calories and 70 percent of them from fats. However, options are included in case you are vegetarian, eat non-ketogenically, or have meals more frequently than once a day.

Our sample meal begins by wilting two cups of mixed and shredded cruciferous veggies on medium-low heat in a saute pan, on top of a standard tin’s worth of smoked oysters in olive oil, along with a bit of black pepper and minced or chopped garlic. Once the ingredients are lightly cooked and combined, they are used as the filling for an omelette made with four eggs from pasture-raised hens. As the omelette cooks on medium-high heat and then is allowed to cool in the pan for a minute or two, a generous raw salad is prepared with fresh arugula or another lettuce, a coarsely-diced large avocado, diced cucumber and red bell pepper, and a small scattering of pumpkin and sunflower seeds. When the omelette is done, it is plated as shown, and the whole meal is topped with olive oil and balsamic vinegar, an optional shake or two of nutritional yeast, and black pepper and parsley flakes. This delicious and extra-healthy meal is of course then served promptly.

Options: If you are vegetarian – HumanaNatura supports lacto-ovo but not vegan diets – or have a shellfish allergy, the oysters can be omitted or replaced with cheese. For a non-ketogenic version of the meal, use a small avocado instead and add berries and/or a bit of cooked potato. If you eat more than once a day, the meal easily can be scaled down for fewer total calories. And if you require more calories and nutrients, the meal can be made larger by adding more of the above foods, or by supplementing it with nuts and celery. In all cases, we hope you try and enjoy this healthy and moth-watering meal!

Learn more about creating naturally delicious and optimally nutritious meals like this via OurPlate, HumanaNatura’s simple natural eating guide for designing optimally healthy modern meals. Experience how this science-based and 100% natural approach to our daily meals can change the way you eat, feel, and live. Sharpen your skills at making delicious and naturally healthy Salad Meals via our Salad Meal Overview. And explore the science and key principles of optimal Natural Eating through HumanaNatura’s comprehensive Personal Health Program.

Once you have begun eating the HumanaNatura way, you can explore your many opportunities for new, more natural, and healthier life between meals – via HumanaNatura’s comprehensive four-part system for modern natural life and health. Check out the overview of our free health programs and resources at About HumanaNatura.

Tell others about HumanaNatura…give the gift of modern natural life!

Natural Truth: Optimizing Proteins

Natural Truth Rating: 8/10        Follow Us on Facebook and Twitter

The goal of optimizing dietary proteins is a recurring theme among health-minded people, including professional health practitioners and those involved in athletics at all levels. In this Natural Truth post, we will consider our need to carefully control or optimize proteins in our diet, and summarize what we believe are the most important and certain guidelines for this practice.

Proteins: The Right Amounts & Types Are Fairly Clear But Often Misunderstood

Today, it is hard to avoid advice to reduce, increase, or change the amounts and types of proteins in our diets. As with the other two major macronutrient groups – fats and carbohydrates – the topic of protein optimization is recurring in news pieces and scientific papers, and common in the counsel of physicians, dieticians, coaches, and well-intentioned friends. Indeed, the three topics of optimizing proteins, fats, and carbs naturally are a central dietary focus. Together, they form an interconnected macronutrient triad, notably where changes or assumptions in one area inevitably impact and inform the other two, especially at constant calorie levels.

However, unlike today’s highly contentious scientific, professional, and popular debates about optimal fat and carb consumption, our ideal intake of proteins, at least in amount, is comparatively uncontroversial – though even here, there is ongoing debate and now new suggestions of empirical uncertainty.  By contrast, the optimal types of proteins is an area that is far less clear and certain to many people, even as science in this area is fairly straightforward and easily summarized. But again, there is also new questioning and seeming uncertainty here too, as we will discuss.

Protein Optimization

When we talk about proteins, we of course mean various protein-rich foods, including fish, meats, poultry, eggs, insects, nuts and seeds, most dairy, edible grains and legumes, and other selected foods. More technically, proteins are chain-shaped molecules made of amino acids, each rich in carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, and nitrogen. In general, proteins are broken down into their component amino acids during digestion, and then used in specific ways throughout the body.

Proteins and the amino acids they contain form much of the structure of our bodies, support our physiology and metabolism, and can be used as a fuel source (though sometimes deleteriously, and signalling either excessive protein or inadequate fats or carbs in our diet). Like carbs, but unlike more energy-dense fats and oils, proteins contain 4 calories per gram.

Though hundreds of natural amino acids have been cataloged by scientists, only nine have been demonstrated as essential in our diets, since our bodies naturally and normally can synthesize other required amino acids. Notably, when a dietary protein source contains all nine required amino acids, it is commonly termed a complete protein. Animal-derived foods are broadly protein-rich and normally contain complete proteins. By contrast, plant foods can be relatively protein-poor and frequently do not contain complete proteins in themselves (though their combination can create complete proteins and thus provide all nine essential amino acids).

As highlighted before, our needed minimum amount of daily protein and optimal mix of dietary amino acids are each well understood and uncontroversial in our time. That said, it is important to again emphasize that there exists both ongoing and new questioning of other protein standards, including ideal protein amounts and sources. Notably, much of this effort is led by health scientists and practitioners encouraging ketogenic and/or plant-free diets. Here, it is proposed that elevated proteins and/or fats may be highly desirable, especially when accompanying and enabling reduced or even eliminated carb-rich foods (see the links immediately above to explore this debate – which remains primarily supported by anecdotal data and hypothesis, and is not yet well-researched or empirically decided).

Reflecting broad international consensus across established public health institutions, governmental recommendations for protein intake (see here and here for examples) generally align and frequently cluster today around a daily standard of 0.7-0.8 grams of complete protein per kilogram of body weight (or roughly half this amount for body weight measured in pounds). Additionally, these guidelines typically recommend increased protein intake for active people, including athletes, and reduced protein consumption for those of us who are more sedentary or have selected pathologies or allergies.

Importantly, we want to highlight that many people in the developed world eat well in excess of this recommended amount of protein, whether daily or regularly. Sometimes, this is deliberate and seemingly produces beneficial results, again as in intentional low-carb, low-fiber ketogenic and carnivore eating. Though a safe upper-limit for personal protein consumption is not well-established and even has been hard to approximate, there are a number of potential disadvantages associated with a chronically high protein intake. In addition to potentially increasing food costs, these include risks of high physiological ammonia and urea, liver and kidney stress, increased risks of kidney stones, and the potential for elevated blood pressure and cardiovascular impairment. However, where increased protein is combined with significant carbohydrate reduction, this has been shown in some studies to be effective at reducing excess body weight, blood sugars, circulating insulin, and inflammation markers, all with potential positive benefits (though perhaps less so or less beneficially than increasing dietary fats instead).

By contrast, protein deficiency is a well-understood and recognized form of harmful malnutrition, and a near-certain path to reduced personal health. Key effects include decreased body weight and development, musculoskeletal impairment, mental retardation, emotional disaffection, inactivity and behavioral passivity, altered fat metabolism, increased eating and obesity, increased stress sensitivity, reduced fertility, cardiovascular impairment, and premature death.

Across all of the considerations above, we can see a strong and clear case for consuming sufficient protein, a critical one to avoid insufficient protein intake, and a more uncertain or contentious case for avoiding high protein consumption. Once again, these ideas reflect the relatively high scientific consensus on the minimum amount of complete proteins and range of amino acids we should eat each day, as well as new and now quite strident debate about the optimal mix of proteins, fats, and carbs overall within our natural macronutrient triad.

Looking past these issues to some extent, there is also less institutional, practitioner, and popular consensus on the optimal forms of protein we should eat in any case. This is especially true when the environmental and not only personal health impacts from different forms of protein consumption are considered, and more so still when animal welfare considerations are added to the discussion. As suggested, this latter set of controversies is unfortunate and largely needless, since the environmental and animal welfare effects of different forms of protein foods are quite clear, as summarized below:

> Naturally-raised land animals – protein foods in this category involve land-habitating animals of all kinds raised entirely or substantially in a historically natural manner. Examples include pasture-raised and 100% grass-fed beef and dairy, and forest-raised and foraging poultry and egg production. Overall, these protein and sometimes fat-rich foods appear personally healthy, especially amid a low-carbohydrate and high-fiber diet, though high consumption of red and especially processed meats may be less desirable. Environmentally, this method of generally perennial and polycultural food production is readily made fully sustainable, pesticide and fertilizer-free, carbon-sequestering, soil and groundwater-preserving, native ecosystem-leveraging, and local economy-supporting. While the approach can produce significant methane, a greenhouse gas, this amount is normally no more than natural background or pre-industrial levels – or ones these ecosystems would produce if abandoned – when production is conducted naturally and in a sustainable manner. From an animal rights standpoint, food animals in this mode of production would live a largely natural life and have a roughly natural average expected lifespan – though one achieved via reduced predation and overall mortality at and after birth, in conjunction with intentionally limited longevity and natural senescence.

> Unnaturally-raised land animals – crucially, nearly all the points in the previous section are reversed in this form of food production, which can be defined simply as the raising food animals in wholly or substantially unnatural conditions from a historical standpoint. Often, this will take the form of animals raised in close confines, rely on unnatural and relatively inefficient diets high in unsustainable annual plants grown in erosive monoculture (such as corn and soy), increase natural methane levels and reduce carbon sequestration as a result, employ widespread use of hormones and and feed supplements, require use of antibiotics as a consequence of unnatural animal confinement, and lead to the pooling and unnatural decomposition of animal wastes. The full result of this can be inferior food and health outcomes for people, greatly reduced long-term food supply sustainability, immediate environmental harm on multiple fronts, and unnatural and stressed living conditions for food animals.

> Naturally-raised fish – as you may know or have guessed, most or all of the above points regarding natural land animal production apply to the natural production or harvesting of fish, which we will define similarly as aquatic animals of all kinds raised entirely or substantially in a historically natural manner (including the provision of natural diets and freedom from modern pollutants). Broadly, these foods are extremely healthy personally (often even more so than land animals), are often readily producible in sustainable ways, are apt to have similar ecological impacts as abandoned or fallow natural fisheries, and tend to foster highly naturalized animal living conditions (once again, often with reduced senescence overall, whether wild caught or farmed, though with the potential for different population and average age dynamics in each case).

> Unnaturally-raised fish – once again, nearly all the above points are reversed when we consider the case of unnaturally produced fish, which we will define as aquatic animals raised in substantially denaturalized settings and fed unnatural diets (in practice, again often including soy and other unsustainably-produced monoculture foods). As before, this can produce lower quality food for us, significant environmental harm and reduced food supply sustainability, and a poorer quality of life for food animals.

> Perennial/polyculture plants – remembering that proteins, complete and not, can come from vegetable sources, it is important to consider these protein sources as well, which we will do here in two broad categories. The first category again is perennial or enduring plants, such as seed plants and nut trees, especially when they are grown in polyculture or diverse natural groups or guilds with other plants and/animals. Overall, these protein sources are quite healthy at a personal level, though their often elevated fat levels may or may not fit with your goals for fat consumption, and their routinely high phytate, oxalate, and fiber levels may limit the amount of these foods that you can eat healthfully on a regular basis. Ecologically, foods grown in this manner usually can be done so on a highly sustainable and even regenerative basis, are often naturally resilient and self-feeding and require no pesticides or fertilizers, are naturally water and soil conserving, and in general offer an ecological footprint similar to wild natural conditions. While there may be no immediate animal welfare issues here, we would point out that this form of food production can often synergistically create naturalistic habitat and shelter for both wild and domestic animals. Importantly, where perennial plants are grown monolithically or in monoculture, rather than in more natural polyculture, we should expect reduced ecological benefits, and overall performance somewhere between this and our next and final category of protein food production.

> Annual/monoculture plants – as before, almost all the points just raised find their opposite expression when we consider our second category and the other extreme in plant food production, that of unnaturally raising annual plants, or perennial plants grown as annuals, in large single-species or monoculture plots, a practice that is also called monocropping. While this practice readly lends itself to mechanised production, it also contains significant disadvantages. At a personal health level, annual monoculture typically produces protein foods that are high in carbohydrates as well, which may or may not align with our overall nutritional goals. These grain and legume foods are also often high glutens, lectins, phytates, and other allergens and inflammatories, which may result in chronically reduced health when eaten in significant volumes. More importantly, as with and often underlying unnatural animal food production, this form of farming is enormously destructive to the environment overall and to most local ecosystems – exposing and impairing soils and promoting erosion and desertification, often undermining local aquifers via high water use, requiring external pest control and fertilization because of the unnatural lack of plant diversity and progressive soil degradation, promoting carbon and nitrogen release into the atmosphere, and broadly displacing local plants and animals. But as before, where annual crops are instead grown in natural polyculture, this still uncommon practice can be expected to reduce these negative impacts and produce ecological results closer to the perennial polyculture food systems described in the previous, third, and first sections.

For many readers, and reflecting our often unsustainable modern food systems and societal norms, some of these ideas may be new and unfamiliar, even as they are all strongly supported by now longstanding and well-tested scientific research. You can explore the overall pattern of findings via the links above or via our summary articles here and here. In any case, we would urge you to consider all of the ideas we have presented, as you think about optimal protein consumption for yourself, your family, and your community.

Protein Guidelines

With this full discussion in mind, we would offer the following guidelines for optimizing protein consumption. As you will see, all are based on current scientific understanding, and most will hold true regardless of how a variety of controversies in modern nutritional science are ultimately resolved:

> Use government total protein guidance for your age, gender, and lifestyle

> Adjust levels if instructed to therapeutically by a physician or professional dietician

> Understand risks from both excess and inadequate protein consumption

> Consider new proposals for higher proteins and fats, and especially reduced carbs

> Select protein sources that align with your overall fat and carbohydrate intake goals

> Limit proteins high in lectins, glutens, and other allergens and inflammatories

> Consider ecological impacts and sustainability when selecting proteins

As you can see, these guidelines are relatively simple and easy to follow, reflecting the fairly high scientific consensus regarding many aspects of protein consumption, and its personal and ecological effects. The guidelines do require you to have clear goals for your fat and carbohydrate intake – the other two macronutrients in our nutritional triad. But we would recommend this as part of your overall nutritional planning, and view it as at least as important as considering needed protein levels and sources. Our Personal Health Program can provide assistance in this and many other areas of natural health promotion.

Our Natural Truth Rating

Given our discussion, HumanaNatura rates the idea that careful control of proteins is essential to our long-term health an 8/10 (Strong Evidence) in our Natural Truth rating system.

We base our rating on the above referenced research, which broadly recommends care with proteins, and supports the dietary guidelines we have introduced. However, our rating is less than a perfect score because the optimal amount and mix of proteins in our diet is not yet precisely known, and also because understanding of the ecological impact of different protein food production methods is in flux today, though perhaps more so ideologically or conventionally than scientifically.

However, even with these caveats, the guidelines we have presented should help most people successfully consider and progressively optimize their protein consumption, and their diet overall, for superior personal health and fitness. For a more complete view of our overall Natural Eating guidelines, see The Twenty, HumanaNatura’s OurPlate healthy eating guide, and our comprehensive Personal Health Program.

You can also click the following link to learn more about our Natural Truth health information campaign and evidence-based 1-10 rating system. And we always welcome your comments and input on this or any other HumanaNatura Natural Truth review.

Tell others about HumanaNatura…give the gift of modern natural life!

Avocado & Lamb Salad Meal

OurPlate Score: 10/10          Follow Us on Facebook and Twitter

An advantage of reducing red meats, and emphasizing potentially healthier fish and eggs for protein, is that when we do have meat, it can be an extra-special treat. This is especially true when we eat the HumanaNatura way and follow HumanaNatura’s OurPlate healthy eating guidelines, and today’s showcase meal, brimming with healthy foods and nutrients, is a delicious case in point. Check out the sample meal photo and instructions below to learn more, and be sure to subscribe to follow our healthy nutrition and other natural health posts!

Please note that today’s HumanaNatura meal iis proportioned for both ketogenic (very low carb) and OMAD (one meal a day) eating – with about 2000 calories and over 70 percent of them from fats. However, options are included in case you eat non-ketogenically and/or more frequently than once a day.

Our meal begins by gently sautéing several cubes of grass-fed lamb on medium-high heat with a tablespoon of butter, a bit of minced garlic, and a dash of black pepper. When the lamb is nearly done, a generous handful of shredded cruciferous vegetables (available as a prepared mix at our local market) is tossed in and allowed to cook for a couple of minutes, and then the cooked portion of the meal is allowed to cool slightly. As the lamb and veggies cook, a generous raw salad is prepared to one side of a plate with fresh arugula, a large cubed avocado, coarsely diced cucumber, and sliced red and green bell pepper. When ready, the cooked foods are plated to the side of the salad, and the whole meal is topped with olive oil and white wine vinegar, raw sunflower seeds, raw pumpkin seeds, raw pecan halves, an optional shake of nutritional yeast, black pepper, and parsley flakes. This naturally rich, abundant, and compelling meal is then served promptly.

Options: For a non-ketogenic version of the meal, eliminate the butter, reduce the avocado and/or seeds and nuts by half, and replace them with with berries and/or a bit of cooked sweet potato. If you eat more than once a day, the meal of course easily can be scaled down for fewer total calories. And if you require more calories, the meal can be made larger by adding more vegetables, and more calorie-rch by adding extra avocado or lamb, or some grass-fed cheese. In all cases, we hope you enjoy this beautiful, healthy, and inspiring meal!

Learn more about creating naturally delicious and optimally nutritious meals like this via OurPlate, HumanaNatura’s simple natural eating guide for designing optimally healthy modern meals. Experience how this science-based and 100% natural approach to our daily meals can change the way you eat, feel, and live. Sharpen your skills at making delicious and naturally healthy Salad Meals via our Salad Meal Overview. And explore the science and key principles of optimal Natural Eating through HumanaNatura’s comprehensive Personal Health Program.

Once you have begun eating the HumanaNatura way, you can explore your many opportunities for new, more natural, and healthier life between meals – via HumanaNatura’s comprehensive four-part system for modern natural life and health. Check out the overview of our free health programs and resources at About HumanaNatura.

Tell others about HumanaNatura…give the gift of modern natural life!

Monocrop-Free Eating

Visit HumanaNatura          Follow Us on Facebook and Twitter

By Mark Lundegren

mark-2

I have a fairly simple but far-reaching proposal for you – to stop eating monocrop foods, entirely and for good.

Today, this is plainly possible, if with one caveat. And although, or rather because, the move is countercultural and sweeping on many fronts, it arguably is the single most important step we can take to improve the ecological and personal health of the way we eat, now and forever.

Let me briefly explain the what, why, and how of moving to a monocrop-free diet, so you can consider if the change is right in principle, and right for you.

As you likely know, monocrop agriculture is one of the core features and indeed prides of human civilization to date, and was at the foundation of our Agrarian Revolution roughly 10,000 years ago. This development of course eventually made possible advanced civilization, science, and now modern life, even as it ironically and continually threatens each of these things.

In monocrop agriculture, and as the name indicates, single plant species – such as the staple crops wheat, corn, or soy – are grown monolithically and typically at scale. This can be done repeatedly with a single crop species, or via a series of revolving and chemically complementary crops. In monoculture farming, or monocropping, the agricultural plants used are normally fast-growing and repeatedly-planted annuals, or perennials grown as annuals.

Overall, the benefits of the approach are increased planting and harvesting efficiency, and greater edible plant density under cultivation. Owing to this, early and now modern monocrop farming tremendously increased agricultural yields, is the mainstay of the way people have eaten for centuries, and is the basis of most of the foods you will encounter in your local supermarket. This includes most plant foods, nearly all processed foods, and even many animal products, since most are now substantially raised on monocrop diets.

However, monocrop agriculture is not all benefits or upside, and free of costs or downside. As you may understand or just noticed, it is a practice unlike and even antithetical to natural plant ecology and larger natural ecosystems, and thus natural human food systems too. In wild nature, diverse mixtures of plants, animals, and microorganisms normally grow and evolve together in polyculture, and usually in persistent and synergistic guilds or interdependent systems, importantly with soils sheltered and left undisturbed. This ecological diversity of course is naturally selected and thus changes over time, but at any point normally aids the health or resilience of each participating species, as well as the soil fertility (or water fertility in marine ecology) upon which all species naturally depend, including our own.

Lacking these essential qualities of natural ecosystems, traditional and modern monocrop food systems have a number of unfortunate but foreseeable drawbacks. Foremost, they tend to assault and quickly diminish soil health, and in turn reduce natural soil fertility. This necessitates costly soil replenishment from either inorganic or organic sources, broadly impairs the nutritional quality of foods, and releases soil-sequestered carbon into the atmosphere. Related to this, monocrop systems also greatly increase soil vulnerability to wind and water erosion, and also ultraviolet radiation, in all cases promoting soil loss and desertification. In fact, many once fertile areas in the pre-modern world are now deserts, owing to the effects of earlier monocrop and other ecologically damaging forms of human agriculture. And today, vast areas of the world, and the societies they feed, are now threatened by unnatural or impermanent agriculture, and these practices are likely to prove unsustainable without a basic change in our approach.

Importantly, while reduced soil health and its ensuing effects are the most important adverse consequence of monocrop agriculture, and therefore monocrop eating, they are not the only ones. Monocrop plants are naturally more exposed and susceptible to pests, requiring the use of pesticides and other mitigation strategies, and today incentivizing the use of more pest-resistant, but ecologically and health uncertain, genetically modified organisms (GMOs). And beyond increasing pest populations and introducing pesticides and their greenhouse gasses into the general environment, monocrop agriculture is also harmful to natural ecological systems on other notable fronts. These effects include displacing natural plants and animals, introducing new species to local areas, imbalancing natural ecosystems, increasing water runoff and reducing groundwater recharging, and depleting or corrupting remaining water resources.

Lastly, and closer to home, monocrop farming not only can result in poorer nutritional quality in the foods we raise and eat, via soil impairment and reduced plant vitality, it can and in fact already has unhealthfully shifted our diets in favor of foods more readily grown in monocrop systems. This includes our elevated use of historically novel or unnatural, carbohydrate-rich, metabolically and hormonally-distorting, inflammatory, and antinutrient-abundant staple crops, along with increased reliance on processed and animal foods derived from these crops.

Of course, not all human food production is based on monocrop agriculture. In a number of crucial and instructive areas, our food supply is polycultural, guild-based and synergistic, natural or naturally-modeled, naturally fertile and productive, soil and water protecting, pesticide-free, carbon-sequestering, and potentially fully sustainable in perpetuity. Key examples of these natural human food systems include: 1) the world’s wild and wild-farmed fisheries, 2) human grassland and pastoral agriculture in its many forms, 3) perennial silviculture or tree-based agriculture, especially in combination with complementary plant and animal guilds, and 4) other polyculture food systems, notably including food forests and sea plant harvesting. Crucially, these and other non-monocrop food systems offer a natural and resilient model for human agriculture and economics, today and for the future, and a path forward to superior human health and sustainability.

As I said at the start of my proposal, the move to monocrop-free eating (MFE) and monocrop-free agriculture (MFA) is not only desirable today, it is entirely possible and even quite easy. To achieve this goal, we need only migrate our diet to foods from the polycultural and sustainable food systems listed above, immediately producing a diet that is personally healthier and far sounder ecologically than is the case with typical modern diets, again with one qualifier or caveat.

The caveat is that three important and related food types are missing from the above lists. These are leafy greens, vegetable fruits, and other green vegetables – all non-staple or secondary foods that are natural and health-essential sources of dietary fiber and micronutrients for us. While these foods can be replaced with new and existing polycultural alternatives, today this requires considerable effort on the part of both consumers and farmers – though, as such, it is clearly a critical new opportunity for food system innovation that should be strongly encouraged and pursued.

In the short-term, and as we await widespread alternatives, continued use of these three monocrop plant types seems unavoidable for most of us. However, since these are secondary or supporting foods in our diets, the use of annual vegetable crops is readily done on a fully sustainable basis, by recycling food wastes and replenishing impinged soils with rich composts from a primarily polycultural, and thus principally natural, modern diet.

I would encourage you to consider these important, upending, renaturalizing, perhaps strange, and also likely civilization-saving ideas – and welcome your comments and questions.

Health & best wishes,

Mark

Mark Lundegren is the founder of HumanaNatura.

Tell others about HumanaNatura…give the gift of modern natural life!

World’s Healthiest Omelette!

OurPlate Score: 10/10          Follow Us on Facebook and Twitter

This is our entry for the world’s healthiest omelette, whether you eat ketogenically or not, and we would welcome links to alternatives in the comments below. As with all approaches to meal preparation, ours comes with a set of ideas about both optimal taste and nutritional qualities. In the latter case, our omelette is made the HumanaNatura way and following HumanaNatura’s OurPlate healthy eating guidelines. Check out our healthiest omelette photo and details below, and be sure to subscribe to follow our healthy nutrition and other natural health posts!

Our world’s healthiest omelette has just five main ingredients: 1) four organic eggs from pasture-raised hens, 2) one hundred grams (3.5 ounces) of cooked and coarsely chopped wild-caught fish, 3) sixty grams (2 ounces) of organic shredded cabbage (shredded baby organic spinach or kale, or chopped organic cilantro are alternatives), 4) fifteen grams (0.5 ounces) of thinly sliced onion or shallot (crushed and chopped garlic is an alternative), and 5) a tablespoon of organic grass-fed butter. As you can discover for yourself, these simple ingredients combine to create an omelette that is mouth-wateringly good, while being high in quality proteins, healthy omega-3 fats, essential vitamins and minerals, and plant fiber. And when combined with the raw vegetable salad as shown and described here, our omelette makes for a perhaps nutritionally perfect meal.

To make our world’s healthiest omelette, start by sauteing the onion in the butter for about two minutes on medium-high heat in a medium-sized saute pan, and then wilt the cabbage on top (to increase flavor and break down the cabbage’s indigestible sugar, raffinose, which can cause bloating). As the vegetables cook, whisk the eggs in a bowl and fold in the fish, along with your favorite seasonings – we have used a bit of ground black pepper, red pepper, and turmeric. Pour the egg and chopped fish mixture over the cooked veggies and cook until done, turning or flipping the omelette when cooked nearly through. Quarter or divide the cooked omelette and plate as shown, garnish with black pepper and parsley flakes, and serve promptly!

This recipe or formula for the world’s healthiest omelette of course can be varied – for example, by making the omelette and accompanying salad larger or smaller, omitting or substituting the fish, adding other vegetables or a bit of pasture-raised cheese, or including carbohydrate-rich fruit or starch in the salad. As shown, our omelette and salad meal – along with a side of cheese, nuts, and celery – has about 2000 calories and is very low in carbs, making the overall meal ideal for people eating both ketogenically and one-meal-a-day (OMAD). The specific ingredients and macronutrient breakdown of the combined meal, taken from an earlier HumanaNatura post, are listed below (click to enlarge):

Learn more about creating naturally delicious and optimally nutritious meals like this via OurPlate, HumanaNatura’s simple natural eating guide for designing optimally healthy modern meals. Experience how this science-based and 100% natural approach to our daily meals can change the way you eat, feel, and live. Sharpen your skills at making delicious and naturally healthy Salad Meals via our Salad Meal Overview. And consider the science and key principles of optimal Natural Eating through HumanaNatura’s comprehensive Personal Health Program.

Once you have begun eating the HumanaNatura way, you can explore your many opportunities for new, more natural, and healthier life between meals – via HumanaNatura’s comprehensive four-part system for modern natural life and health. Check out the overview of our free health programs and resources at About HumanaNatura.

Tell others about HumanaNatura…give the gift of modern natural life!

HN’s April Health Challenge!

Visit HumanaNatura          Follow Us on Facebook and Twitter

It’s April, and whether this means spring or fall where you are, it’s a great time of the year to begin new things and challenge yourself to be happier, healthier, and more fulfilled in the weeks and months ahead.

If you are ready for a challenge that will help you to achieve all these things, and maybe more, HumanaNatura’s April Health Challenge and HN-100 Natural Fitness Program may be just right for you. HN-100 is a free, step-by-step health program that gets results and introduces you to all four of our lifelong natural health techniques.

NL HN 100 Snapshot

Our challenge? It’s for you (and maybe a friend) to begin HN-100 this month and see the program through to the end. As the name suggests, HumanaNatura’s HN-100 Program is a 100-day fitness plan that familiarizes you with our overall natural health system in a structured and incremental way. You may find that HN-100 strikes a perfect balance of essential fitness guidance and gradual exploration of your unique long-term health potential.

If you take our April Health Challenge, by July you will understand the HumanaNatura approach firsthand and in practical terms, possibly be in the best health and fitness of your life, and be equipped to maintain and progressively increase your natural fitness and well-being across your life.

In the HN-100 Program, there are 15 weekly focus areas, spanning the 100 days of the program:

  • Week 1 – The Foundation: Natural Eating
  • Week 2 – Explore Natural Exercise & Begin Walking
  • Week 3 – More Natural Exercise: Adding Calisthenics
  • Week 4 – Explore Natural Living: The Ten Dimensions
  • Week 5 – Explore Natural Living: Natural Life Planning
  • Week 6 –  Explore Natural Living: First Self-Assessment
  • Week 7 – Halfway Point: Transitioning To Natural Living
  • Week 8 – Draft Your First Natural Life Plan
  • Week 9 – Advanced Exercise &  Life Plan Refinement
  • Week 10 – Implement Your Natural Life Plan
  • Week 11 – Advanced Exercise & Plan Implementation
  • Week 12 – 100% Natural Eating & Explore Community
  • Week 13 – Complete 30-Day Actions & Explore Community
  • Week 14 – Assess Your Initial Natural Living Actions
  • Week 15 – Learn & Prepare For Ongoing Progressive Life

If you are ready to take our challenge, or want to learn more about HN-100 and HumanaNatura, click-through to our HN-100 Overview Page for detailed instructions on using HumanaNatura’s HN-100 program. And feel free to contact us anytime with your questions – online coaching in the use of our natural health programs is an important part of the HumanaNatura system, and is always confidential and without cost.

Again, it’s April, and maybe you are ready for a new challenge. We hope so, and that our HN-100 natural fitness challenge will prove to be a breakthrough change for you – leading you to new health, fitness, and quality of life, now and throughout your life.

Tell others about HumanaNatura…give the gift of modern natural life!

One Year Of Green Keto Eating!

Visit HumanaNatura          Follow Us on Facebook and Twitter

By Mark Lundegren

mark-2

I am fast approaching my one-year anniversary on a ketogenic diet, after years of Green Paleolithic eating, and wanted to do a summary of my results and lessons so far.

When I went keto, my diet lost none of its greenness, or paleolithic-ness, but it did change substantially. Carbohydrate sugars moved from about 40% of my daily calories to less than 10%, and fats from a similar level to more than 70% of my calories. Out went sweet fruits and starches, and in came more low-carb vegetable fruits and of course added plant and animal fats – especially fish, eggs, avocado, nuts, seeds, olive oil, and butter.

Notably, the protein portion of my diet stayed about the same, at slightly below 20% of calories, though my total daily calorie intake (and therefore total protein) have declined by about 30% in the past year, primarily via reduced meal frequency and thus more efficient food use. As I mentioned, also unchanged was the high amount of greens and vegetables, along with small portions of cheese, that I have eaten for most of my adult life.

My Typical Daily Meal – Easy, Natural & Perhaps Optimally Healthy

In my case, giving up sugar-rich grains, legumes, processed foods, and sweets was not an issue, since I have long avoided these non-Paleo foods for personal and ecological health reasons. I also was not a regular drinker, but quickly found that keto and alcohol do not mix well for me, and stopped using alcoholic beverages entirely. Lastly, my red meat intake has steadily declined in the last year as well. I now rarely eat meat and have wild caught or naturally-raised fish almost every day.

Like me, you probably see many news articles suggesting ketogenic eating is hard to sustain, radical or unnatural, and unhealthy. I’d like to briefly take on each of these claims, while describing my experience on what I will call a Green Paleo Keto diet.

First, I have found ketogenic eating remarkably easy to follow, and even stupidly so – with a bit of commitment and once you make the transition to new eating patterns. This is primarily because hunger is greatly reduced when we are in ketosis, giving us new freedom to choose what and when we eat. When I began keto, my appetite was noticeably lowered within a few days, old food cravings stopped entirely after about a week, and at the end of the first month, I thought I might eat this way, and easily so, for the rest of my life. Now, it is nearly a year later, and I never go off keto eating or depart from a healthy plant and fish-rich diet.

In practice, the foods I eat are enjoyable, delicious, and satisfying. For months, I have been entirely free of the food longings and temptations that plagued me most of my life, even while eating a whole-food Paleo diet, and I never feel deprived. In fact, since I no longer have urgent hunger and am freer to choose and optimize my eating patterns, I now usually eat only once or twice a day – consuming one big meal, or a small and medium meal 1-4 hours apart. I also mostly eat the same foods most days, and again, I am perfectly happy with my ketogenic diet.

Second, what is radical and unnatural? Keto is very different from the way most people eat today. But is modern or traditional agricultural-age eating the standard by which we should judge natural nutrition? Overall, as its name implies, a Green Paleo Keto diet is similar in many ways to how humans and pre-humans ate in wild nature for millions of years. Then, eating required foraging, was often intermittent and low in carbs, and therefore engendered ketosis – though this varied by locale, season, custom, and food availability. But reflecting this natural legacy, I would point out that modern people often easily enter and function during ketogenic metabolism.

In any case, there was no refined sugar, no processed food, no agricultural crops, and no convenience food in earlier life. Food, as a whole, was whole, moving or quickly eaten by other species, and otherwise required substantial work. Food therefore was fairly inconvenient, often leading people to eat less and less frequently than is common today, again promoting ketosis. And while natural perils were much greater and lifespans shorter in primitive life, there appears to have been far less nutritionally-related disease at comparable age levels. So, which diet is radical and unnatural?

Third, as with many diet innovations today, the healthiness of sustained ketogenic eating is an open scientific question. Owing to the newness of intentional ketosis, it will take years of longitudinal study to understand its health effects and limitations. But based on current nutritional science recommending whole and green eating above all, it is possible that the healthiness of keto will depend on the wholeness and greenness, or cleanness, of the foods eaten, rather than the proportion of carbs and fats. Again, this is an open question. As such, anyone claiming keto is categorically unhealthy – including the meal in the photo above and detailed in the chart below – is speculating, or simply parroting current nutritional orthodoxy.

In my experience, moving from Green Paleo eating to a Green Paleo Keto diet provided a number of apparent benefits. It caused me to quickly lose almost ten kilograms (20 pounds) of body weight and move from roughly 18% to 8% body fat. Importantly, however, I have regained about a third of this weight in the last year, but primarily in the form of muscle mass rather than body fat. I am now at about 10% body fat, but can quickly lower this amount by either eating less or fasting (yes, I’ve done this as an experiment).

As I mentioned, I now have low hunger overall, usually eat only once or twice a day, and thus intermittently fast between 20 and 23 hours per day. I also periodically and easily do multi-day fasts as a health practice. Again, despite these seeming limitations or deprivations, I never deviate, or feel tempted to deviate, from my Green Paleo Keto eating pattern, and mostly eat the same core foods (listed below) every day. And as I approach sixty, I can say that I have no medical complaints or symptoms, take no medicines, have boundless energy, exercise regularly and strenuously, and feel fantastic – morning, noon, and night!

A Green Ketogenic Diet – Built From Essential Foundations of Nutritional Science

The chart above summarizes my normal roughly 2000-calorie daily eating plan, which is down from nearly 3000 calories before switching to keto and reducing my meal frequency. I eat these foods 6-7 days per week, varying my selection but not proportions of veggies and fish, in either one sitting or two as I mentioned (in the latter case, with the “side” as a brunch and everything else as my main afternoon meal). Importantly, I sometimes eat less than this full amount – especially when I am less active, the weather is warm, or otherwise simply feel full or less hungry.

Perhaps helpfully, let me add that I often eat before social engagements, and then either do not eat or have a light salad at the event. This is a great way to stay both in control of our diet and well-nourished. And if healthy foods are not available, wherever I am, I simply fast or perhaps have a coffee, and wait for better fare. Again, and crucially, fasting or delaying eating is always a waiting, easy, and untroubling option when we are in ketosis, or are naturally keto-adapted, and can tap our body fat for energy.

As you can see in the photo and chart, the way I eat is neither draconian nor indulgent. I like to think of it as naturally luxuriant. Overall, this flexible framework meets all of my nutritional needs – macronutrients and micronutrients – and contains no novel or unusual foods. And notably, there are no processed foods or plainly unhealthy ones as well, personally or ecologically, my unorthodox or controversial proportioning of foods notwithstanding

Importantly, along with healthfully lowering calories through keto, I also have been able to reduce my daily food costs by about a third – by eating less, eating more simply, eating out less, and eating less when out. And my move to mostly one-meal-a-day (OMAD) eating and more regular meal patterns has added about an hour of free time to my days, allowing me to do fun and impactful new things (like writing this post).

Given my very positive ketogenic experience at the one-year mark, I would encourage you to consider both greener and ketogenic eating, especially if you have health complaints, are overweight, feel you lack control of your diet or life, or otherwise are experiencing reduced physical or cognitive vitality.

HumanaNatura’s OurPlate healthy eating model and Twenty Guidelines offer a good general overview of key considerations and practices for optimizing our modern diets. And the innovative HumanaNatura Personal Health Program provides detailed information on health-maximizing Natural Eating and other essential natural health practices.

To celebrate my first anniversary on keto, I plan to continue my new way of eating uninterrupted, and as I do, would welcome your comments and questions!

Health & best wishes,

Mark

Mark Lundegren is the founder of HumanaNatura.

Tell others about HumanaNatura…give the gift of modern natural life!