Monday, March 30, 2015

Is Ghee Paleo?

Many are making the switch to a Paleo diet in order to change their lifestyles and eating habits for good in an effort to achieve all-over body health through consuming foods that come from as close to the earth as possible. Some call it the hunter-gatherer or caveman diet because the goal is to reconnect with nutrients that are meant for our bodies and lifestyle when we lived more naturally. Many of today’s western societies have been taught that dairy is something our bodies need daily. This may not necessarily be the case for everyone, and many only realize the digestive problems associated with dairy after removing and re-introducing it. Most paleo diets do not allow butter on the menu, but what about organic ghee from grass-fed cows?
Casein, a protein found in all dairy products, ignites an inflammatory response in a large portion of the population, causing adverse effects on digestion, among other things. Fortunately, there are ways to enjoy the benefits of the nutrients found in milk while forgoing casein. Ghee is a form of purified butter that societies in India have produced and consumed since as early as 1500 BC. It is simply butter from grass-fed, pastured cows that has been heated and separated with the water, casein & sugars removed. So while ghee is, in fact, dairy, it has had all of the “non-Paleo” compounds removed.

Researchers believe that milk and lactose first worked its way into our regular diets in Northern Europe some 7,500 years ago. At that time, societies in that region struggled with long, hard winters, and dairy provided vitamin D when the sun did not, as well as an additional food supply to help sustain them through the months of unpredictable scarcities. In today’s society, lack of nutrients are more commonly caused by consuming unnatural foods. The majority of dairy products on grocery store shelves are full of antibiotics and don’t contain much in the way of vitamins and minerals, unless choosing those from grass-fed, all-natural animals, as they have an entirely different fat profile compared to corn-fed and factory-farmed choices.

Bottom line: Since ghee does come from dairy, it is not officially considered Paleo, but it is undoubtedly primal and a great source of many vitamins, minerals and an abundance of healthy fats. The Whole30 paleo program recommends Pure Indian Foods Organic Grass Fed Ghee as their first paleo-approved ghee, chosen for its superior quality and rich flavor. Give it a try for yourself, and enjoy the wonderful flavours of butter while forgoing the health implications and maintaining a healthy paleo lifestyle.

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