“Paleo Approved” Fat Gluttony is Still Gluttony

 This popped up in my Twitter feed last evening, by Angelo Coppola.

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Then, I see “That Dead Paleo Guy” do a wisdom add deal on it, beginning right here.

The behaviour we are seeing with people drinking fat shows who is mostly to blame for the diet advice of the last 30 years. We have railed against and blamed the dietary guidelines for “force feeding” us carbs and starving us of fat…

When you look at the recent literature that suggests SFA (in the context of real food) is not the bogieman we thought, no where in that literature does this translate into drink large amounts of SFA. That is the doing of opportunists and the ignorant and gullible looking to lock onto the next quick fix. Who shall we blame in the future if that comes back to bite?

In NZ, the DG’s for fat have been one-third of total energy intake. This is nothing like the 97-99% fat-free rubbish. paleo “dietary guidelines” – eat real food, consisting of unprocessed plants and animals….translated by most popular sites – have your coconut sugar/maple syrup brownies, chocolate chip quinoa cookies…but just be careful with your date, coconut sugar, and carrot cake – because carrots have a high GI and lots of carbs.

Amen. Here’s what he said in his signoff post from That paleo Guy.

And when it comes to where Payleo™ is currently sitting, it is a case of “it isn’t me, it is you.”*

*The current paleofication of everything from chocolate fudge sundaes to celebrity chefs drives me completely mental.

Yep. But more than that for me is what I see as plain old gluttony. The meme is: if it’s “paleo Approved,” eat as much of it as you like; no, in fact, show off by pigging out and most especially, with fat. Or, don’t touch that potato or those legumes. They’ll make you fat, give you diabetes and kill you. Here, buy these glutenfreealmondflourlowcarbpaleo BROWNIES instead!

Here’s my bottom lines.

  1. Eat real food that you source and prepare yourself most of the time.
  2. Tend toward macronutrient agnosticism and mix things up.
  3. Eat foods primarily in whole and not isolated & added form. So, easy on the isolated, added fat (like butter, cream, coconut oil, olive oil), added protein (like whey), and added carbohydrate (like sugar & syrups)

For me, just eating more mindfully that way and especially, cutting out most added fat other than dribbles here & there has made a tremendous difference. More on that later.

So, Jamie Scott has a new blog, Re|Evolutionary.

“Paleo” then was a nice simple heuristic – a shorthand if you like – for expediting the understanding of why that sugar-coated cereal with all its ticks, stars, and promises, is something you should perhaps best avoid. Or why the fat in eggs and avocados won’t likely kill you. Or why InstaTwitFace doesn’t count as socialisation. Or why 400km on a bicycle per week, bent into the shape of a question mark, and fueled by syrups, is probably not healthy movement – especially if you are already pulling 40 hours per week at work positioned and fueled in much the same position.

Couched in these terms, many people had that ‘ah ha’ moment where the cogs suddenly clicked into place and they were able to exact some very big lifestyle changes, on many fronts, and make them stick in the long term. I know this as both one of those people whose clogs clicked, and as someone who has catalysed the similar clunking of cogs in my role as a nutritionist and exercise professional.

I’d encourage you to read that whole first post. Hopefully, you won’t expect of yourself that you have to agree with every single thing in order to reap value from it. At a minimum it should make you think.

I always thought paleo was rather bulletproof in terms of corruption and by virtue of its evolutionary foundation, had built-in self correction.

I think Jamie has persuaded me that I was wrong about that.

Richard Nikoley

I'm Richard Nikoley. Free The Animal began in 2003 and as of 2021, contains 5,000 posts. I blog what I wish...from health, diet, and food to travel and lifestyle; to politics, social antagonism, expat-living location and time independent—while you sleep—income. I celebrate the audacity and hubris to live by your own exclusive authority and take your own chances. Read More


  1. Julianne on December 23, 2014 at 14:43

    Oh and anyone of you is invited downunder to the first international Ancestral Health Conference in New Zealand in beautiful Queenstown next year in October (our spring) The venue is mind-blowing

  2. Julianne on December 23, 2014 at 12:51

    I whole-heartedly agree with Jamie and his disappointment in where Paleo has gone. My health has never been better eating a plant food based paleo diet with a little protein (about a palm size) at every meal, and a little if any added fat to each meal.
    I am of the view that a paleo diet should be high nutrient – i.e. maximise all nutrients by choosing foods from a large base – colour and greens, starch and fibre in fruit and veg, minerals and omega 3 from seafood and sea vegetables, and a variety of proteins, and nutrients from eating nose to tail animal foods. Whole food fats like nuts supplying minerals, essential fats and anti-oxdants.
    By the way – I will give anyone my PDF paleo guide based on these principals (65 pages) with a paypal donation (any amount, on my blog)

    • Richard Nikoley on December 23, 2014 at 16:13

      Heh, ever feel like you’re in a Virginia Slimms commercial, Julianne?

      Hey, cool way to be compensated for your book. Reminds me of the restaurant experiments where customers pay what they want.

    • Julianne on December 23, 2014 at 16:23

      I had to look that one up 🙂
      I’m not exactly rolling in money from the book – and it is still evolving.

  3. Darcie on December 23, 2014 at 16:48

    Any particular beefs (har) with whey protein powder, aside from its being processed?

    • Richard Nikoley on December 23, 2014 at 17:06

      Of course, it depends on goals. If you’re a pro athlete, especially a body builder, probably can’t get around it to be competitive. At least in terms of body composition, high protein is a million times superior to high fat.

      …J Stanton told me Sunday as we parted: TL;DR the body builders are right again.

      But for vast majority of people, there’s never a need to use much of anything isolated and concentrated, fat, protein or carbs. Is a tsp of sugar in your coffee or iced tea going to hurt, provided you don’t drink either all day long? No. Thing is, I can’t actually think of any important justification to isolate and concentrate protein and drink it unless your competitiveness depends on it for goals or livelihood.

    • Dr. Curmudgeon Gee on December 24, 2014 at 15:18

      but but but a lot of people here go nuts about PS which is isolated carb.
      (i just don’t see the point of using PS as supplements for most healthy people; it’s better to get RS from food)

    • Richard Nikoley on December 24, 2014 at 17:22

      You have a blind spot.

      We know how to feed the animal, not quite sure yet how to feed the animals. Tim tried to do it all from food and it’s really tough to do.

      For better or worse, they are there and they control our immune system with a majority share.

    • cathy on December 25, 2014 at 16:34

      What is “TL;DR? Love this post& loved reading all jamie’s post.

    • Richard Nikoley on December 25, 2014 at 16:52

      You seriously don’t know how to Google?

    • Brad on December 28, 2014 at 16:53

      What do you think is the advantage of whey over other less isolated forms of protein like raw milk, kefir, free range eggs, meat, etc? Yes it digests faster but I don’t think that matters given muscle protein synthesis is rate limited. A slow digesting protein is probably better. Certainly better to get more nutrients with your protein.

  4. Michael44 on December 23, 2014 at 19:07

    Body-For-Life had some amazing physique transformations back in the late 90’s early 2000’s.

    This Jeffrey Life is definitely one I remember:-

    He did start supplementing with hormones 6 yrs after transforming his body, but, I remember the “after” photos that were taken about 4-5 months after that picture of him in the boat, and they were amazing in their own right.

    He still doesn’t seem to think that animal fat is a good thing?? (I may have to check on his current view), and I’m wondering if that was a partial reason for his deterioration after the first 6 years.

    • Richard Nikoley on December 23, 2014 at 19:42

      I’ve blogged about this before but way back.

      One guy I aways keep tabs on is Scott Miller. we exchanged emails just a few days ago. He’s a life extension guy, rich so far as I can tell, and so can do whatever he wants. But he’s very evolution-based-diet friendly and he changes his mind (he used be into supps he’s not, anymore).

      Thing is, and bottom line: if you can afford to inject bioidentical hormone supplements as though you’re still in your 20s, you are bound to have one helluva mastrurbatory honeymoon! Especially if you’re 50+.

      Men are absolutely as vain as women.

      Did he deteriorate? I hadn’t been watching.

  5. Fit+Journal on December 24, 2014 at 06:13

    Fat gluttony seems to be far more forgiving than sugar gluttony when it comes to the bathroom scale. That said, gluttony is gluttony. I’d rather keep the beans, rice, potato (and occasional gluten free brownie) and exercise portion/self control. I cringe at the days I would eat copious amounts of fatty meat because it was “zero carb” and LCHF approved. All the while experiencing terrible health problems including never before seen glucose problems if I ate so much as a fresh summer peach.

  6. Sdiguana on December 24, 2014 at 11:56

    I have been seeing increasing “I don’t do/get paleo”
    And it’s not till reading this post I really put 2&2 together. Pale super Belgian pancakes with coconut ice cream and gluten free brownies… Very paleo indeed lol.

  7. Michael44 on December 25, 2014 at 00:26

    Dr Life says he was going great guns for 6 years after his physique transformation, but then he says he began to go down hill, but reversed this by supping with hormones.

    As far as I know, he is stll going strong.

  8. John on December 27, 2014 at 07:31

    This point was driven home in my mind when I was reading Stephan’s blog (food reward friday post) a while ago. He had a post displaying a 10,000 calorie bacon cheeseburger, with a normal bun on it. The first comment was “I’ll have one of those without the bun please :)”

    • Richard Nikoley on December 27, 2014 at 09:55

      Thanks for reminding me. As well, hadn’t checked out his blog in a couple of months so was unaware of his “Is Meat Unhealthy” series. I’m through part 2 and the comments are to die for. Go get a laf at the guys who insists ruminants require B12 supplementation.

  9. ChocoTaco369 on December 28, 2014 at 07:53

    I’m a little late to this party, but this is great. Best thing I’ve read in awhile. This is one of the only mostly honest “paleo blogs” left. And I say “mostly honest” because no one is completely honest. If you say otherwise, you’re a liar.

  10. Richard Nikoley on December 28, 2014 at 07:55

    “because no one is completely honest”

    That is correct. The best you can do it struggle to be a little more honest every day—both to yourself and others around you.

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