The Paleo Plan - A Little History and Science | Lake County Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
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Bryan Stewart reviewed Lake County Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
5
via Facebook

My 5&1/2 year old daughter and I have been taking classes at Lake County BJJ for a little over six months now. Carlos is a fantastic teacher and coach. His classes are well organized, responsibly run, fun and very effective. Every student I've met and worked with has been friendly and helpful. Before coming here I almost gave up on learning BJJ due to some bad experiences at other schools. If you want a truly family oriented school that teaches safely and effectively without all of the big egos and "tough guy" bull, Lake County BJJ is for you!

Jose R Hernandez reviewed Lake County Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
5
via Facebook

Lake County BJJ is a great place to get in shape and learn Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Coach Carlos and Coach Patty are great instructors with adults/kids and happy to answer any questions you may have. My kids and I love training 3-4 times a week and have seen a great increase in flexibility, strength and cardio. BJJ teaches my kids confidence, discipline and respect for others, while at the same time sticking up for themselves and others. So if you ever wanted to try BJJ come to Lake County BJJ and see the difference.

Erviena Jane Pahilan reviewed Lake County Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
5
via Facebook

Our son has come really far with jiu jitsu & he loves going, especially sparring. Carlos and Patty are incredible and our son really looks up to them - they really make a difference in those kids' lives. It's like a one really big family in there. We don't regret signing him up for jiu jitsu at all. Thanks, you two!

Liz Collins reviewed Lake County Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
5
via Facebook

My daughter was having so much fun, I got jealous and signed up myself. Awesome instructors with crazy good deals on their website. Can't wait for my next class.

Stephen Wheeler reviewed Lake County Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
5
via Facebook

I have been attending classes at LCBJJ for about one year now. Coming from zero previous fighting and martial arts experience, jumping into a martial art definitely had me nervous at first. All of my nervousness was dispelled within the first week of class and I was hooked. Walking in, the atmosphere at LCBJJ is friendly and rewarding. Coach Carlos and Coach Patty are incredibly knowledgeable and friendly people who work hard with you to help you succeed. Their fundamentals class is great for people who are new to Jiu Jitsu and for older students who work hard on mastering the many basics of BJJ. Their advanced class is full of seasoned students who do not hesitate to share their vast knowledge with others and help to promote a friendly, fulfilling environment. The variety of morning and night classes help to fit class into your schedule even if you are a very busy person. All of this for me makes this review on LCBJJ an easy 5 star rating.

Vic Diaz reviewed Lake County Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
5
via Facebook

I started at LCBJJ in October of last year and have held off on writing a review until I had some time training first. I’ve been into fitness for years, but wanted to do something different. I have friends that train at other schools so I had a vague idea of what Brazilian Jiu Jitsu was and really wanted to try it. I started looking for a place to train close to home, but what made me choose Lake County BJJ (despite the 30-40 minute drive) was the convenient schedule. There really aren’t any other schools that offer daytime classes. I am a business owner and mornings are ideal, for me, to get some training in. I like the option of training mornings or evenings, once in a while both!

About the classes and gym – The training is great. I thought I was in decent shape, but have never had a workout as intense as the training at Lake County BJJ. Classes are an hour long consisting of a short warm up, technique demonstration plus drilling, and finally a few rounds of live sparring. Since starting I have lost 20 pounds and gained a higher level of endurance that I haven’t been able to achieve working out on my own. The gym itself is a good size, kept very clean and has plenty of parking.

So now onto what’s kept me going back and will keep me going to Lake County BJJ. Coach Carlos and Coach Patty are great instructors and very knowledgeable. As a 38 year old it’s a little intimidating starting something new that requires your body to move a certain way, but both Coach Carlos and Patty are always extremely patient. They take extra time to break techniques down, step-by-step, in a way that’s easy to follow. Aside from the great instruction the students are all extremely helpful. There is always someone around to answer a question or review a technique. The camaraderie is great and I always look forward to training. There are all kinds of students here, casual practitioners who come for fitness, some who train for self-defense and others who like to compete. Highly recommend going in to check the place out if you’re interested in training Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.

Emile Perez reviewed Lake County Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
5
via Facebook

I travel a lot for work and have seen my fair share of academies. Lake County is extremely clean (so important), incredibly warm and welcoming, and also had some very high class BJJ. I highly recommend this academy and will be back!!

Sean Kaulike Baumann reviewed Lake County Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
5
via Facebook

I've been going to Lake County Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu for over a year now. I couldn't have found better mats to step onto to learn and train jiu-jitsu. Coach Carlos and Patty are amazing at teaching jiu-jitsu. However it's not just that which makes them great. They build a better community around them. The support they share with you off the mat as well as on the mat is invaluable. Everyone around them is better because of them and it shows through the students that are in the gym. I really enjoy jiu-jitsu but I don't think I would love it as much as I do if it was not for Carlos and Patty.

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The Paleo Plan – A Little History and Science

A LITTLE HISTORY

We started evolving as tool-using, human-like apes about 2.5 million years ago, which was the beginning of the Paleolithic era. The Paleolithic transitioned into the Neolithic era around 10,000 years ago, when we started settling down and raising animals and growing crops for food instead of solely hunting and gathering.

Up until we started farming and raising animals, higher-protein crop foods like grains and beans were eaten infrequently, since gathering that many seeds and cooking them up properly was time-consuming and inefficient. Archaeological evidence points to most of our ancestors eating a diet rich in meat, with plant foods (fruits, veggies, root veggies, herbs) filling in the gaps when they were available.

While settling down and having a fairly stable source of food was paramount in our social evolution (it allowed us to develop written language and gave us time to philosophize about religion and academics), some of the foods we developed have definitely contributed to the slow demise of our health.

You probably thought that our barbaric, cave-dwelling ancestors lived brutal, short lives wherein they dragged their mates around by their long, tousled hair.

Short, brutal lives that could only have been made better by modern amenities like McDonald’s, TV dinners, and microwaves. Let’s put an end to this life-span myth right now. The average lifespan of a Paleolithic person, judging by carbon dating of bones, etc., was about 33 years. However, after people reached the age of 15 and had escaped the high child mortality rates of the period, life expectancy was 54. Today, the world average lifespan is 67 years. We now have medications to ward off infectious diseases, which are mostly what our Paleo ancestors were dying of. Either that or just plain old age.

What they were not typically dying of was heart disease, cancer, or diabetes, which are among the leading causes of death in the United States and other Western countries. Over the last two hundred years, a lot of studies have been done on hunter-gatherer people who live a lot like we imagine our Paleolithic ancestors lived. It’s been found that traditional, primitive societies like the Inuit, the Kitavans, the Maasai of Africa, the San Bushmen of Namibia, the Mbuti Pygmies of the Congo, and the Aboriginal Australians are much healthier than Westerners are. They’re physically fit, have good blood markers for health, and have much less mental illness among them.

In fact, a one-hundred-year-old member of the primitive Kitavan tribe in Papua New Guinea stated that he’d never seen any person die suddenly, as if from a heart attack or stroke. When people die in the Kitavan society, they either fall out of a coconut tree or they just stop working one day, go into their huts to rest, and are gone within days. Their health is generally very good until the end. This peaceful, easy death is quite the opposite of the thousands of Western elderly people with chronic illnesses in nursing homes who need an army of nurses and an arsenal of pharmaceuticals just to stay alive.

So what’s the magic potion? What almost all these groups have in common is that they aren’t eating copious amounts of grains or legumes, refined sugar, vegetable oils, or pasteurized dairy. And they’re definitely not eating preprocessed foods and additives that come in a box and are heated in the microwave. The Paleo diet is founded on the belief that the lack of those foods is why primitive groups weren’t fat and sick, and the overabundance of those foods is why Western people are.

 

A LITTLE SCIENCE

What is so wrong with all of those delicious foods, you might be asking? Let’s delve briefly into the reasons that grains, legumes, refined sugar, vegetable oils, dairy, and additives might not be so good for us.

Grains

Grains include anything made from wheat (white flour, wheat flour, all-purpose flour) rice, rye, barley, corn, millet, oats, buckwheat, kamut, teff, spelt, and amaranth. So that includes bread, cereal, pasta, pastries, cookies, beer, grain alcohols, crackers, bagels, tortillas, oatmeal, and corn chips, to name a few. A lot of foods, like some soups, use flour as a thickener, as do a lot of other prepackaged foods you find in a normal grocery store. Those foods make up at least 50 percent of most people’s diets, though, so we better have a good reason to tell you not to eat them.

Gluten

The first good reason is gluten. Gluten is a protein found in wheat, spelt, barley, rye, and oats (but only because oats are usually contaminated with gluten during processing). Because it’s found in wheat, gluten is in most baked goods in the United States. White flour is just refined wheat flour, so when the ingredient list on a package says just “flour,” that means wheat. It’s also added to foods in the form of hydrolyzed protein, starch, modified starch, malt, natural flavorings, and binders.

Gluten is becoming a household word because so many people have a hard time digesting it. It can cause digestive problems like diarrhea, constipation, bloating, acid reflux, and cramping. Your immune and endocrine systems can also get involved, causing symptoms like fatigue, skin inflammation, joint pain, infertility, and abnormal menstrual symptoms. It’s thought that between 30–80 percent of people in the United States have some sort of intolerance or immune sensitivity to gluten.

Certain Lectins

Most foods—and living things, for that matter—contain lectins. They’re proteins that help protect animals and plants from diseases or invaders (like humans). For instance, wheat contains a lectin called wheat germ agglutinin (WGA), and other grains, beans, and even nuts and seeds contain lectins similar to it. Lectins are sticky little buggers. The WGA goes into your small intestine and gloms onto its lining. It then tricks your body into taking it across the border of your intestine intact, where it is seen as a foreign invader by your immune system. Antibodies are created in response to the lectins, and unfortunately lectins often look a lot like other parts of your body. They may look like cells in your brain, pancreas, etc., so the same antibodies that were created to attack the lectin will actually go launch attacks on your own body. This is where autoimmune issues arise, like type 1 diabetes, celiac disease, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, and multiple sclerosis.

Phytic Acid

Phytic acid is present in grains, beans, nuts, and seeds, and we lack the enzyme phytase to digest it. Phytic acid actually binds to the magnesium, calcium, zinc, and iron in your intestines and takes them out of your body. Even if you’re eating foods containing those nutrients, you’re not necessarily absorbing the nutrients if you’re eating grains, legumes, nuts, or seeds. Some believe that this alone is greatly contributing to the worldwide epidemic of iron-deficiency anemia.

Legumes

While legumes, or beans (lentils, black beans, soy, peanuts, etc.), aren’t as bad as grains, which contain gluten and other harmful substances, they should be avoided. They absolutely must be cooked for long periods of time, sprouted, and preferably fermented to remove, at best, most of the lectins and phytic acid. But this proper processing and cooking of legumes has all but been forgotten. Legumes are a mediocre source of protein, a huge source of carbohydrates, and therefore produce a big glycemic response. Soy, a legume, isn’t processed well enough in this country to remove most of those toxins (it should be fermented),  and it’s a major source of plant-based estrogens, which can wreak havoc on men’s and women’s hormonal balance. Soy is also one of the biggest genetically modified (GM) crops out there, and studies proving GM’s health detriments are mounting. Moreover, beans give most people gas. We think they’re sort of a waste of calories.

Nuts and Seeds?

You may be wondering why you’re told to eat seeds and nuts on the Paleo diet when they, too, house these vicious little molecules of phytic acid and lectins. The truth is that it’s always better to soak or sprout your nuts and seeds. Soaking and sprouting helps to get rid of the phytic acid and lectins, and makes them more digestible. Here’s a video on how to soak and dry nuts and seeds. You should really eat them in moderation—no more than a couple ounces a day. Think about it: our ancestors probably didn’t have access to a whole bunch of nuts and seeds every day, much less almond butter and other goodies that take a whole lot of nuts and seeds to produce. Eating Paleo is way more about eating meat, fish, eggs, vegetables, and fruits than adding a bunch of nuts. They’re the least nutrient-dense food of all of those, and for that reason alone they should be eaten in moderation. The meal plan in this book reflects this guideline.

Refined Sugars

Refined sugars are sweet, simple carbohydrates that are made from things like beets, sugar cane, honey, maple syrup, and corn. They’re white sugar, cane sugar, corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup, refined maple syrup, refined honey (as opposed to raw honey), dextrose, maltodextrin, and many others. As you know, white sugar and corn syrup are in everything from soft drinks to candy bars to marinara sauce. Honestly, they wouldn’t be such a big issue if we didn’t eat so much of the devilish stuff. When you eat sugary foods that spike your blood glucose, it stresses your body out. Too much sugar in your blood is toxic and your body releases the hormone insulin to cope with the glucose. The insulin acts like a key to your cells, and it allows the glucose to enter your cells for use and storage. Glucose gets stored as glycogen, which you can use as energy, and if that’s not used up, it turns into fat. The faster your blood sugar spikes, the faster it plummets as the glucose is taken up into your cells. So while you may feel energized after that donut for a while, you might feel tired and sluggish as quickly as an hour afterward (or less).

That’s about the time when you reach for the coffee or other caffeinated drink, which shocks your body into releasing cortisol and adrenaline (or epinephrine) from your adrenal glands. Cortisol stimulates stored glucose to be injected into your blood stream to give you energy, and adrenaline makes you feel more awake by making your body think it’s in a super stressful situation—just like you’d be shocked awake by a car crash or a vicious dog.

There are several problems with this constant cycle of eating sugar, having a blood sugar spike, and then a blood sugar plummet due to insulin. First of all, your cells become less and less receptive to insulin, so it takes more and more insulin to get the glucose into your cells. After a while, you can become insulin resistant, and eventually diabetic. That’s why many diabetics need to be on insulin, since their own insulin isn’t enough to handle all that sugar. The other problem is the chronic cortisol secretion, which is a major player in your immune system and endocrine system. As you’ll learn below, it can all but shut down your immune system and reproductive system, and perpetuate chronic inflammation of all kinds.

The answer is simply to stop eating the foods that spike your blood sugar in the first place. In other words, eat Paleo. It’s fine to have a little fun with sugar on occasion, but when you’re spiking glucose, insulin and cortisol levels over and over every day with cookies, cereals, granola bars, sodas, juices, pastries, caffeine, and even white bread, you’re just promoting weight gain, insulin resistance, diabetes, chronic inflammation, a sick immune system, fatigue, and moodiness. Not to mention rotten teeth.

“Vegetable” Oils

The oils we know as “vegetable” oils are not actually made from vegetables. They’re typically made from seeds, from which oil is very difficult to extract. The most commonly used oils in the Western diet are canola oil, corn oil, soybean oil, safflower oil, sunflower oil, cottonseed oil, peanut oil, and some sort of conglomeration of those in margarine form. They’re often hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated, which creates heart disease-inducing trans fats. And they’re almost always highly heated during processing, chemically refined, and deodorized. In other words, they’re usually on their way to becoming rancid by the time they hit the shelves. Why? Because all those oils (except canola) are high in polyunsaturated fatty acids, which are highly susceptible to becoming oxidized, or rancid, by heat, air, and light. Oxidized fats create inflammation and contribute to heart disease and all other chronic inflammatory conditions.

It was thought that these oils were better for heart health, but it turns out they’re very high in omega 6 fatty acids, which are highly inflammatory. Instead of these vegetable oils, you should eat healthier fats and oils that don’t contribute to inflammation or heart disease, like coconut oil, palm oil, lard, tallow, and olive oil. Yep, we said that lard is good for your health, and we meant it.

Pasteurized and Homogenized Dairy

The consumption of dairy is a highly contentious and often debated topic in the Paleo world. Our basic philosophy is that not everyone can digest it well, and if you can, you should eat certain kinds of dairy. Some people may have better luck with dairy than others, but we think that all people should avoid eating pasteurized and homogenized dairy. The heat during the pasteurization process destroys enzymes that are used for digestion and assimilation of the nutrients in the milk. The homogenization process not only heats the milk further, but it wrecks the fat globules. Many people have an immune response of some kind to the protein casein in milk. And when milk is homogenized, the fat globules end up having protein, including casein, stuck in and around them, increasing the allergenic potential of all homogenized milk products.

Most people are at least somewhat lactose intolerant, meaning they lack enough of the enzyme lactase that digests the lactose in milk. As we said, the pasteurization process gets rid of that helpful lactase already present in milk. And fermenting the milk—making yogurt, buttermilk, kefir, and other foods— helps to get rid of that lactose that’s so difficult to digest, too. That’s why eating fermented dairy is best. Casein has been shown to increase the rate of cancer growth, but the conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) in the fat in milk has been shown to be cancer fighting. That’s why full-fat milk is a much better choice than non-fat or low fat. That CLA is found in way higher concentrations in milk from grass-fed cows than milk from conventional, factory-farmed cows. Due to the way factory-farmed dairy cows are treated and what they eat, they secrete an abnormal amount of estrogen into their milk. There’s always estrogen and other hormones in milk—even human breast milk—and infants can use those hormones. But grown adults don’t need any hormones other than the ones they are producing on their own. That’s one reason that even unpasteurized, homogenized milk isn’t good for everyone.

The jury is still out on whether or not dairy is good for everyone—even raw, grass-fed, fermented, whole-fat milk products. You have to figure it out for yourself. For the duration of this challenge, though, we suggest you not eat dairy so you can see for yourself whether or not it’s affecting you.

Unnecessary Additives

It’s excessive to drink sports drinks with fourteen teaspoons of sugar in them, but there’s absolutely no reason whatsoever to make those sugary drinks fluorescent yellow. Yellow 5 and other synthetic food colorings fall into this “unnecessary additives” category. There are entire diets now based solely on removing additives from people to improve their health. And there are plenty of published articles about the reasons they’re so bad for us. Aspartame and other synthetic sweeteners, nitrates and nitrites, potassium sorbate, and BHA are among the preservatives and sweeteners that have been shown to have either cancerous effects or negative impacts on nervous system health. Keep away fromingredients you can’t pronounce, and read this book, A Consumer’s Dictionary of Food Additives, if you’re interested in knowing more. And here’s a website that has a great rundown of some of the most common harmful additives.