1. “Every day, your body has to receive 60 essential nutrients, the building blocks of healthy cells. These are the nutrients that the body CANNOT make but must be obtained from your diet and supplements. If you do not receive these nutrients daily, your health and your mind will decline rapidly to premature aging.” – Michael Colgan, PhD, CCN, Biochemist, Nutritionist, Olympic Trainer
2. These essential nutrients include 21 minerals, 13 vitamins, 11 amino acids (proteins), 2 essential fatty acids, 7 enzymes and 6 probiotics.
3. The essential amino acids are: histidine, isoleucine, lysine, methionine, phylalanine, threonine, tryptophan, valine.
4. The daily requirement for the essential amino acids, as measured in mg per kg of body weight, are: histidine (10), isoleucine (20), lysine (30), methionine (10.4), phylalanine (5), threonine (15), tryptophan (4), valine (26).
5. Although proteins from plant sources tend to have a relatively low biological value, in comparison to protein from eggs or milk, they are nevertheless “complete” in that they contain at least trace amounts of all of the amino acids that are essential in human nutrition. McDougall J. Plant foods have a complete amino acid composition. Circulation. 2002;105(25):e197
6. If one of the nonessential proteins is less than needed for an individual the utilization of other amino acids will be hindered and thus protein synthesis will be less than what it usually is, even in the presence of adequate total nitrogen intake. Dietary Reference Intakes: The Essential Guide to Nutrient Requirements, published by the Institute of Medicine’s Food and Nutrition Board, currently available online at http://fnic.nal.usda.gov/dietary-guidance/dietary-reference-intakes/dri-reports
7. Protein deficiency has been shown to affect all of the body’s organs and many of its systems, including the brain and brain function of infants and young children; the immune system, thus elevating risk of infection; gut mucosal function and permeability, which affects absorption and vulnerability to systemic disease; and kidney function. Dietary Reference Intakes: The Essential Guide to Nutrient Requirements, published by the Institute of Medicine’s Food and Nutrition Board, currently available online at http://fnic.nal.usda.gov/dietary-guidance/dietary-reference-intakes/dri-reports
8. “As you will learn in the section on Paleolithic Planning, we believe that going on a hunter-gatherer eating plan will provide the optimum chance for extending lifespan…. Made up of substances called amino acids, twenty-two of which are considered vital for your health, proteins are essential to the building, maintenance and repair of your body tissue, such as skin, internal organs and muscles. THEY ARE ALSO MAJOR COMPONENTS OF YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM AND HORMONES. Your body can make fourteen of these amino acids, but the other eight, known as essential amino acids, must be obtained from what you eat. Proteins are found in all types of food, but only meat, eggs, cheese and other foods from animal sources contain complete proteins, meaning they provide the eight essential amino acids…. Now then, your average steak is about 25 percent protein. If you need 70 grams of protein a day, a 10-oz steak will take care of this. The fact is that anyone who eats meat, poultry, or fish on a daily basis is probably getting enough protein, when you add all of the other sources, of which there are many. However, if you were to rely solely on spinach, which is fairly high in protein for a vegetable, you would need to eat 13 cups to get your 70-gram requirement – and we are talking boiled spinach, not raw…. We suggest that for optimum longevity, and if you are over forty, you convert to a Paleolithic diet. Why? Our good friend David Kekich, the founder of the Maximum Life Foundation, sums it up well:
“For millions of years, we subsisted on a hunter/gatherer diet. That means we are what we could find and kill…. From 5,000 to 10,000 years ago, we entered the Agricultural Age. We started growing crops and domesticating animals. That’s when we started eating grains and dairy products, and we were not adapted to them. We are not adapted now, either, because 5,000 to 10,000 years is nothing on the human evolutionary scale. We are still adapted to the hunter/gatherer diet….By eliminating ALL grains and dairy products from your diet and by being physically active, you may be able to avoid most of the aging-related diseases….Harmful foods that cause these diseases include modern staples such as grains, legumes, dairy, refined fats, sugar and salt. These were rarely available to hunter-gatherers, from whom we have inherited our genes, but they now provide the bulk of calories in most countries. Grains and legumes destroy us in a number of ways. Plants contain toxic carbohydrate binding proteins called plant lectins that are designed to protect the plants against plant-eating animals. They poison predators to discourage them from eating the plants. The highest concentrations are found in grains, beans, potatoes and peanuts. Plant lectins are thought to be a major contributor to most modern diseases such as heart disease and cancer….Grains and beans also contain protease inhibitors which INHIBIT PROTEIN-DEGRADING ENZYMES IN THE DIGESTIVE TRACT. Phytic acid is found in grains and beans as well. It binds to minerals and trace metals and passes them through the digestive tract AND KEEPS THEM FROM BEING ABSORBED…..” –The Immortality Edge by Micahel Fossel, MD, PhD; Greta Blackburn and Dave Woynarowski, MD
The following is from the book, Practical Paleo by Diane Sanfilippo, BS, NC
9. What are anti-nutrients? They are primarily plant-based defense mechanisms that are concentrated around the reproductive force in a seed or grain. Consider this: every living thing has a defense mechanism. Plants can’t run away when they’re under attack, so to ensure that they continue to thrive and grow, they have internal defenses to fight against predators. TO THE PLANT, AND MORE SPECIFICALLY THE SEED OR GRAIN OF A PLANT (ITS REPRODUCTIVE FORCE) YOUR DIGESTIVE SYSTEM IS JUST SUCH A PREDATOR. These defense mechanisms in the plant fight against your digestion, blocking your ability to fully break the food down into harmless amino acids that are easily absorbed into your cells. In other words, anti-nutrients are elements within a food that either prevent or disrupt the proper digestion and absorption of the nutrients contained in the food.
10. The foods richest in anti-nutrients are: whole grains, whole grain products, grain-like seeds and legumes that include, but is not limited to wheat, barley, rye, oats, spelt, brown rice, corn, quinoa, lentils, red beans, black beans, pinto beans and navy beans….While your system is fully-equipped to handle animal proteins that don’t carry these anti-nutrients, eating large quantities of digestion-resistant foods day after day can wreak havoc….When undigested food particles get into your bloodstream on a regular basis, however, the attention of your immune system is drawn to your digestive process, leaving minimal immune response available to handle other problems as they arise. Since anywhere from 60-80% of your immune system is located in your gut, if your system is constantly bombarded with foods you don’t tolerate or digest well, your ABILITY TO FIGHT INFECTIONS, ALLERGIES, CANCER, DIABETES HEART DISEASE AND MORE WILL BE IMPAIRED. This means that when a cold is going around the office or the pollen count skyrockets, your body may only have the ability to use about 20-40% of your potential immune response to fight it off. The rest of your immune capabilities are busy responding to the irritation from food particles in your digestive system. That leads us to chronic inflammation in the body’s systems, which is like being in a constant state of low-grade infection.
11. Phytates. Also known as phytic acid, phytate is an indigestible mineral-binding compound that is located in the hulls of grains, legumes, nuts and seeds. Phytates bind to minerals in foods, including calcium, magnesium, iron and zinc, and this process prevents their absorption in our bodies. This means we are unable to actually use the minerals we eat when they’re blocked by the phytates we also eat in those foods. Just how important are these minerals that are blocked by phytates? Minerals have a role in every cellular function in your body. Minerals also serve as antioxidant to help you better fight cancer, and they protect against heart disease . . . Proper mineral reserves are also necessary to regulate hormones for fertility and stress management…. Know this: You can absorb more of the minerals you take in (from foods like leafy green vegetables) including calcium, magnesium, iron, and zinc simply by removing grains from your diet and not overdoing it with nuts and seeds.
12. Saponins – Bitter tasting, soap-like molecules with the ability to puncture or create pores in cell membranes, saponins are often used as carriers for vaccines due to their ability to infiltrate cells. Saponins are the main anti-nutrient in quinoa. They have the ability to stimulate an immune response from within your cells and can up-regulate antibody production. When you create more antibodies, your body gets revved up and ready to launch at the first sign of an offending undigested food particle in your blood stream….
13. Insulin and glucagon are counter-regulatory hormones. While insulin’s job is to keep putting nutrients away, glucagon’s job is to pull nutrients from their storage sites in your body when they’re needed for fuel. WHEN GLUCAGON IS THE DOMINANT HORMONE IN YOUR BLOODSTREAM, IT CAN SIGNAL BOTH GLUCOSE AND FAT TO MOVE FROM STORAGE INTO YOUR BLOOD FOR USE AS FUEL. In other words, the dominant hormone dictates whether nutrients are stored or released for use….Glucagon dominance is what you want because it allows you to burn stored nutrients for fuel rather than store them away. How do you create glucagon dominance?….A dense source of protein is one that generally comes from an animal source and is not buried in insulin-demanding carbohydrates. Steak, for example, contains large a large amount of protein and no carbohydrates at all. While protein does elicit some insulin response, the glucagon response is much stronger and allows glucagon to be dominant. By contrast, trying to get a glucagon response from beans doesn’t work because insulin responds to the dense carbohydrates in the beans, overpowering glucagon’s efforts.
THIS IS WHY MANY PEOPLE WHO SEEK PROTEIN FROM STRICTLY VEGETARIAN SOURCES HAVE TROUBLE LOSING BODY FAT: THEY NEVER RELEASE GLUCAGON WHILE EATING CARB-DENSE PROTEIN SOURCES!!!!!