Sunday, August 5, 2012

Day 12 of 40 - Be Thou Not Exalted

I was having a conversation with a friend the other day about this phenomenon that has appeared in the Paleo/Primal/ancestral diet community. It's this idea that food itself or eating habits in general are somehow moral issues, or directly tied to our worth as individuals. Paleo purists have become the Paleo Police. They troll other people's blogs and leave nasty comments when the blogger admits to having enjoyed a white potato, or a Paleo pancake, or (Heaven forbid!) some rice! Even Dallas and Melissa themselves have faced criticism for eating something non-Whole30-approved! (And let's not forget about how the Paleo Parents considered shutting down their blog, in part because Stacy was getting flack for "still being fat" despite eating a Paleo diet! That is nobody's business!)

They seem to have gotten this weird idea that food is somehow more than just fuel for our bodies - they think it's a road to some sort of salvation. As Alexis put it, "They have turned food into some sort of idol". I couldn't agree more! This idea that our diets define us is wacko. Even though my husband and I have agreed that we would like to continue feeding our family a Primal-style diet, we don't say, "we're primal". We don't identify ourselves by our dietary choices. It is not our religion - we already have one, thankyouverymuch, and it's about Jesus - not grass-fed beef.

So food is not religion, and people who eat a "perfect" Paleo diet are not deities. Not even a little. Sure, if you have found a way to eat that makes you feel better, lose weight, improve your bloodwork results and even clear up some nagging health conditions, then go ahead and share that news with people! Just don't cram it down their throats. Even the lovable Food Nazi keeps it real! She likes yummy things like dark chocolate and Paleo-ish treats, and even the occasional off-road treat. No Paleo preaching there!

Anyway, I'm in a ranting mood. I'll stop now. For a slightly more articulate take on this subject, go here.

Breakfast: Three eggs scrambled with kale and some sausage-seasoned ground pork. Two cups of half-decaf with coconut milk.
Lunch: The LAST hamburger patty with the LAST of the coconut curry cabbage. I guess I'll actually have to think about lunch tomorrow.
Supper: A roasted chicken leg, a pile of green beans (steamed then tossed with a little ghee and salt) and cherry tomatoes (red, orange and yellow) with fresh basil, garlic, olive oil and sea salt.
Snacks: Three or four dates (is it bad that I can't remember?) and a small handful of macadamia nuts. A few cherries before bed.


  1. Jaclyn, Thanks for the shout out! I hope you continue to relish the gift of wisdom and discernment that God has given you. I see this whole Paleo thing as a gift from the Lord...that he has shown me how to nourish my body properly, and to instill those values in my children. I see Melissa Hartwig's original post (from back in 09 when her blogspot was called "Byers Gets Diesel") almost like a silencing of all the food noise of our culture. It just spoke such clarity into this issue.
    Best wishes, and remember to always be thankful that HE is showing you how to take care of your body. Leigh G.

  2. It's a sort of petit bourgeoisie approach to life (don't ask me to define that); plus, something needs to be God, even if it's only food. Yesterday's Gospel rings true: You seek me not because of the signs but because you ate the bread and were full.

  3. I am so with you on not enjoying the whole Paleo police thing. Why is it that 99.9% of movements/groups/actions end up with loud people at the front trying to make themselves look good by making others look bad? It drives me crazy. It's why I rarely use the labels - at all. I know I'm not going to measure up to some people's ideal of what "primal/paleo" means. At this point, I don't care. The only person I am doing this for is me and to set a health example for my kids. Which, by the way, I don't think is achieved by becoming a food dictator either. Of course, if allergies or obvious health implications are involved, I understand taking the whole thing much more militantly. But for me, I use what I am learning and leaning towards as a framework from which to base my decisions.


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