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Body Composition Update After Plant Paleo Weight Loss

Body Composition Update After Plant Paleo Weight Loss
Angelo Coppola

Until now, it’s been about two years since I’ve posted any body composition pictures on the blog. There are a couple of main reasons for this.

1) I always feel awkward having pictures taken of myself. For nearly all of my life I’ve been overweight or obese, and most folks who have been there can probably relate to not being overly fond of cameras. Hopefully this is changing now, but it applies pretty consistently for my generation and up.

Plus, are you supposed to smile in body-comp pictures? Who knows. I think they tend to look silly either way.

2) There just hasn’t been a heck of a lot of change in my body composition since 2013. I’ve been mostly happy with where I was, hovering around a BMI of about 25, zigzagging above and below, back and forth between being technically “normal” and technically “overweight.”

The reason why I’m posting this article now is that I’ve been talking about my current dietary approach, Plant Paleo, on my podcast, Latest in Paleo. Follow that first link for details on the diet, but quickly: it’s an omnivorous diet that calls for far more plant-based food than animal-based food. I’ve started a series of articles that will explain the Paleolithic underpinnings. Here’s Part 1, if you’re interested.

Back to body composition. Here, let me explain the story in pictures starting in late 2008.

Body Comp

Nov 1, 2008 – the fat Buddha version of me.

Above, the smile was genuine, but my weight was a constant source of displeasure. For one thing, I really didn’t like the way I looked in the mirror. And for another thing, my weight was affecting the quality of my life. My health was starting to suffer. Physically, I was incapable of anything that required much endurance at all.

Body Comp

Jan 4, 2009 – God, I miss that little girl!

Seeing the picture above now, I look swollen. And in fact, I was. It’s not like we carry around more fat cells when we’re overweight, they’re just fatter.

I can tell that I didn’t enjoy taking that picture, and it’s a shame, because the little girl next to me, my daughter Ayla, loved me just the same, stuffed fat cells and all. She’s 11 now and bugging me to take her skating on Friday night with her boyfriend. Ugggh. It’ll be Saturday day, thank you very much.

Body Comp

Jul 4, 2009 – hey what’s over there? Maybe you should point the camera in that direction…

Still growing. In the picture above, I must weigh close to my maximum weight. I stopped weighing myself months earlier when the scale indifferently reported 245 lbs. I estimate that I hovered between there and 250 lbs before reaching the point where I decided to seriously do something about it. Maybe a tad over 250.

By the way, I’m 6 feet tall, so my BMI was between 33.2 and 33.9.

Body Comp 4

Jun 4, 2010 – being active in hot & muggy Maui.

The picture above is one of my favorites. It’s not that I think I look good in it (although Amy is gorgeous as always!). I was probably around the 200-lb mark here. So, the picture was taken at a time when I had lost a considerable amount of weight, most of it at this point via counting calories and walking. There was a couple of months of jogging, too, until I injured my knee.

What I like most about the picture is that I’m being active and loving it! This was as transformative as anything else you’ll see in this article. I’m being a good example for my family, and surely the improvements I had made—during the time between this picture and the last one—meant that I would have more time with them. Also, this was around the time I started Paleo, and I felt great.

Body Comp

Aug 28, 2010 – toe shoes, Paleo, CrossFit! This is probably one of the best picture ever taken of me.

Above, just a few months later, I was at 190 lbs or so. I had done some CrossFit at a local box, and then started doing it on my own in a makeshift, hobo backyard ‘gym.’ I like this picture a lot: Vibrams, homemade plyo boxes, genuinely happy inside and out. What you see is the result of fat loss combined with building some new muscle.

I still hadn’t achieved the level of leanness that I wanted, but I knew I was on my way. I was eating low-carb Paleo, and Paleo brownies were hardly even a thing yet. As it turned out, years would pass before I would lean out much further. But I was more than OK with that, considering where I had come from. I was, however, still a little worried about regaining the weight, just like I had every other time I’d lost weight in my life.

Body Comp

Aug 11, 2013 – the thinner Dr. Andrew Weil version of me. And since I’ve had a few questions about this: the gray hair is not a result of diet or weight loss, but rather I stopped coloring and trimming my beard (for a while) after exiting the corporate lifestyle. Plus, I have four daughters! And early graying runs in my family, too.

Fast forward three years to the picture above. I was a bit leaner as you can probably tell. I was even more into walking, hiking, and also cycling at this point, and I think my body was really adapting to those activities.

Also, after 3 years of exploring so many ideas about health (and life in general) on Latest in Paleo, I had made many changes and was on the verge of making many more.

No, not just the beard! But that’s a pretty fancy beard, you have to admit. 🙂

By this time I had started eating more in line with the Perfect Health Diet. I found Paul & Shou-Ching’s work convincing with regards to starch in ancestral diets. My weight dropped from 190-195 lbs to about 180-185 lbs (likely including more water weight due to the extra carbs).

Interestingly, a trend was starting here. The more whole-food carbohydrates (including starchy rice and potatoes) that I added to my diet, the more lean I would become and the more energetic I would feel.

I don’t remember with certainty, but I bet that picture was taken after a nice long bike ride. I started riding as a result of the excess energy. Back in 2009, I had purchased a street cruiser bicycle from a department store, and I could barely make it a block. I turned around and walked it home on its maiden voyage. At the time this pictures was taken, I was going for 20-mile rides no problem, whipping them out in 90 minutes or less.

But I had also decided to make some other changes in my life. We were preparing to move from the Southwest to the Northwest, selling nearly everything we owned. Although my income was going to be reduced substantially, we were confident it would be well worth the risk—and it has been! Our lives are more simple and basic…and that’s always worked out well for us. Most importantly, I have more time to spend with my family and much more time to devote to Latest in Paleo and my health.

Ok. Fast-forward now to the present.

Below, you’ll find a series of pictures taken a few days ago. There are some details in the captions, and more rambling follows the photos.

Angelo Coppola 2015 - Plant Paleo

Much thinner now.

 

Body Comp

Leaner, too. And the photo bombing buffalo seems to find all of this rather amusing…

 

Recent Body Comp

Bathroom lighting tends to be ‘friendly.’ So here I am outside squinting at the sun. Or maybe it’s the hole in my moccasin.

 

Angelo Coppola 2015 - Plant Paleo

The most common questions I’m getting now are, “Where do you get your protein?” and “Are you losing muscle mass?” Well, 97% of Americans get sufficient protein. I think we can relax about this. Interestingly enough, though, 97% of Americans eat diets that are deficient in fiber. I didn’t take measurements before and after, so I don’t know with certainty if I’ve lost muscle mass. But I do know I feel fantastic, am happy with how I look, and I have more endurance than ever. I also feel like my body has taken on the appropriate size and shape for the activities that I do. According to many formulas, I am now at my ideal body weight.

 

Angelo Coppola 2015 - Plant Paleo

Rolled up the shorts a bit to get a picture of the lower-body comp. This must be the Rochette version of me. My primary physical activities are walking and hiking, and my body is really starting to fit the part, as bodies pretty much always tend to do.

 

What can I say? I have a face and body for radio, so I’ll keep my day job. I think self-depricating humor is how I deal with posting semi-clothed pictures of myself. 🙂

During the latter part of 2014, I started really increasing the amount of plant-food in my diet. I did this to increase the nutrient density and because I wanted to get more fiber, too. Dr. S. Boyd Eaton tells us that Paleolithic hunter-gatherers were eating 100-150 g of fiber every day (PDF). Jeff Leach over at the Human Food Project tells us (YouTube) that the Hadza, from the age of 6 months and up, are easily eating 100 g of fiber per day, or more.

When I started adding more plant food to my diet, I simply cut back on the meat to make room. I started making plant-based entrees. Sometimes I skipped the meat altogether, or I would just add a few strips of beef, fowl, or an egg. Or as a side dish. I still consumed high-quality, grass-fed liver weekly, too. But I did cut back considerably overall.

Eating this way gave me a new appreciation for whole foods. And a new appreciation for plants, too. Funnily enough, Dave Asprey’s Bulletproof Coffee got me to start thinking about added fats (you know, oil, butter, etc.) as the processed foods that they are. And I realized that just 3 to 7 tablespoons in recipes, used for frying, added to soups and salads, etc. added up to a whopping 360 to 840 calories per day from processed food.

And that’s Paleo?

So around Christmas time, I ordered some non-stick pans and a great big indoor grill. (I prefer ceramic over teflon). This enabled me to start cooking without oil. I learned how to adjust recipes and make delicious food without oil, too. The fat in my diet now comes from whole foods, just like everything else. I eat nuts and seeds just about daily, and I’ll enjoy the occasional avocado, too (because I’m picky about avocados). These are great sources of extra fat when I feel like I need/want them.

Bottom line.

This morning I weighed in at 163 lbs (BMI: 22.1). I’m pretty sure I’d have to go all the way back to grade school to find another time in my life when I weighed 163. I feel great. My palate has fully adjusted to my truly whole-food diet, and my food is both exciting and delicious. I say ‘truly’ whole-food diet, because before it just wasn’t. Three-hundred-sixty to 840 calories a day from quickly absorbed, processed, refined fat is a whole lot but not whole food. Even olive oil. Even coconut oil.

I plan on sharing a lot more with you folks, and if I do it right, it should be interesting whether you decide to give Plant Paleo a try or not. The (minimum) 4-part series will cover a lot of information, including my take on the ancestral clues about grains, legumes and fiber. I’ll also write about the pros and cons of the diet. One of the pros, by the way, is that our grocery bill has become leaner, too. And this makes obtaining high quality, ethically raised meats far more affordable. I’ll provide some details soon.

Notes: 1) Photos have not been altered, except for cropping and resizing. 2) I absolutely do not think meat or fat is bad for you, especially in small amounts, which is why they are both in my diet. I eat less of them to make room for more plants; that’s all. But this does bring Plant Paleo in line with most of the research community. See the diet for details. 4) BMI is unimportant at the individual level; I’m just providing the information for reference. 5) Calories are not the end-all and be-all of a proper diet, but they are an important part of the picture. And finally, 6) one of my main goals is to create a diet that is in harmony with the ancestral clues and the scientific evidence, without requiring supplementation for complete nutrition—please feel free to chime in, if you see a deficiency.

Update, 15 Sep 2015: Plant Paleo Body Composition Update at 42 Years Old

  • Johan Pretorius

    That is really amazing. You are an inspiration. I am on a similar journey. Down from 110kg at me heaviest and 96.8Kg this morning after breakfast. We are on Paleo as a family, with myself a bit more low carb. I know we are eating to much meat and should up the plant intake. Not always easy and my teenagers sometimes find it hard seeing their friends with the junk they eat. Anyway, thank you for sharing your story with the world. Truly inspirational stuff.

    • That is fantastic, Johan—congratulations on your weight loss. I agree it is not too easy to up the plant content of our diets. I was at a bit of a loss at first. But at the very least, try adding more greens to soups, bigger veggie “side” dishes, snacking on carrots or your favorite raw vegetables, and at least one fairly heft salad a day. Then, if you like, you can strategically cut back a bit on the oils, too, ensuring that you’ll remain in caloric balance or deficit. Thanks for the comment!

      • Johan Pretorius

        Thanks for the kind words Angelo. I will be investigating the whole fat issue. I lost a large portion of my weight on a High Fat/Moderate Protein/Extremely Low Carb diet. I also expect that our bodies change all the time so what works now may not work later. Yes we are increasing plant intake. Just had pumpkin soup made with bone broth. Kids lunches for school I find the most challenging. And with two teenagers in the house it is a challenge not to go broke. Salads are great. We use cauliflower rice and cauliflower mashes all the time. Have been eating no potato and some sweet potato. Potato is easy to grow, so I will look in to that as well.(why potato is not recommended) Have a great day and thanks for sharing your journey
        .

  • Tim Steele

    I love it! The best of what vegans and paleo preach without getting wrapped in the dogma of either. I like that you concede we need meat to thrive, but probably not the 1 pound per day of PHD or 2-3 pounds of Paleo Diet Ancestral Body Builders. I must admit I have been chasing protein numbers for years, even chugging whey protein when I didn’t get all the beef I thought I needed.

    Gonna give this a good try!
    Tim

    • Awesome, Tim. I look forward to hearing any updates and/or suggestions you might have for improvements.

      Re: meat
      It’s an easy point to concede. 🙂 No hunter-gatherer society has survived on a Vegan diet. And most Vegans must supplement Vitamin B12 at the very least to do well. Even Dr. Dean Ornish recommends fish oil. I’d rather eat the whole fish.

      Adding animal-based broths (in addition to vegetable broths) to the diet provides another level of nourishment and perhaps life extension (do a search for glycine on this article, if you haven’t already seen it: http://rawfoodsos.com/2014/03/09/new-animal-protein-study/).

  • Thanks, Joe. I know this isn’t exactly a popular message in Paleo circles. And certainly not in low carb circles. But we know Paleolithic people and modern hunter gatherers didn’t all eat like they lived in the Arctic, next door to igloos. So, it only makes sense that we ought to be candid about the fact that human beings thrive on many different whole-food diets. Especially those diets with plentiful plant matter. The Inuit diet is an outlier now and during the Paleolithic era—just as their climate and circadian rhythms are extreme and unique.

    The truth is the easiest diet in the world to sell is the all-you-can-eat bacon, eggs, and steak diet—now with almond brownies and coconut cake. And that’s fine. But there’s a heck of a lot more to it! 🙂

    Cheers!

  • Deb

    Yay Angelo. You are looking great. I have been slowly coming around to your way of thinking. Ever since I listened to your podcast featuring Mark Hyman and the “pegan diet” and learning about the Wahl’s Protocol to be exact. The weight is not coming off quicklyt but I can tell the difference in the way I feel to be sure and my arthritis is resolved and digestion is much better. I hope you get that book written because more people need to hear about this. I think the world is ready for this message. Paleo has been dominated by bacon for too long. Still into bone broth though but thinking about it really, did the paleolithic people really have access to that much meat every day?! Probably not.

    • Thanks, Deb! I think I’m starting to find the right words to describe what has happened with the mainstream-ification of Paleo: the Inuit Paleo diet has come to represent all Paleolithic diets. And that just doesn’t make sense. The Inuit have always been outliers. But if you want to sell a diet, it’s very helpful to start with all you can eat bacon, eggs, steak, butter, etc. — as far as book and product sales are concerned.

      It’s hard to say how much access to meat Paleolithic people had, since there were so many different Paleolithic people in so many different areas of the world. But, I would guess that for the most part those who ate the most meat were generally those with access to the fewest plants.

      In case you missed this article I wrote, it has a table that shows the dietary plant-to-animal ratios in various hunter-gatherer diets: http://www.humansarenotbroken.com/plant-paleo-part-1-the-gatherer-hunter-diet/

  • Jack Yee

    Dude, you are ripped! Keep up the great work!

    Jack

      • Jack Yee

        Haha! Thanks for the plug! And I’m really proud of you! You and I are looking more like our hero Bruce Lee! LOL!

        PS – you watching “Better Call Saul?” I love it!

        • Better Call Saul rocks! I’ve only been able to catch the first 3 episodes, but I can’t wait to watch the rest. After all, we humans thrive on good storytelling. 🙂

  • Kathleen

    Thank you so much, Angelo. We really appreciate all you’re doing! You are very inspirational! Thanks again:)
    -Kathleen and James W.

  • Darcie Gurley

    Angelo, how much fiber do you think you’re getting daily now? And if you’ll save me from trying to read the ancestral diet PDF on my phone, do you know how much of the 100+ g/day was soluble vs insoluble? I have spinach, chia, and almonds in my morning smoothie and a large salad with a wide variety of veggies as part of lunch and dinner and some starchy tubers, but I think I usually max out around 40 g/day. Thanks!

    • Even with the changes I’ve made, I doubt I hit 100 grams. I’m going to go ahead and track my food intake at some point soon, so I can share all of the numbers. Some people have concerns about protein levels, too, which I seriously doubt is an issue at all.

      I’ll have to get back with you on the PHD question. It’s a good question, but I don’t remember off-hand.

  • abbykadi

    Angelo – those pics are truly amazing! What a transformation! I’m curious – do your wife and daughters follow the same template as you? How have their results been? The pictures of your meals on the other post are beautiful and look very satisfying.

    I used to be a BP coffee drinker too. I loved the taste and the ritual of it, but my body did not. In the back of my head, I kept thinking “how can this be healthy for me?” I have completely messed up my gut and my LDL- particle numbers went through the roof. Needless to say, no more added fats. I echo everything that you have written about BP/Upgraded Self, etc.- I fell for it hard.

    • Thanks for posting this, abbykadi. Promoters of fad diets and elixirs like Bulletproof Diet / Coffee / Upgraded Everything have a stronger interest in showing us the success stories. They may not even hear of the cases like yours…and I would certainly think they are easier to ignore. But stories like this are a critical part of the picture.

      As to the ladies…they are doing very well. We all eat a differently, though. I’ll give you the 50,000-ft picture:

      My wife, Amy, does eat Plant Paleo. She eats a bit more meat than I do, and more avocados, too. She has been losing weight although not quite as rapidly as I did. She has now dropped down to the weight she was prior to having Lucy 3 1/2 years ago. She tells me she loves the changes so far, although going oil-free was a challenge in the beginning. She continues to lose weight…probably 1-2 lbs a week.

      The kids all eat a bit differently. The older ones eat more junk (since they can buy their own). However, my oldest has lost 45 lbs since moving back home with us last summer and eating a lot more like we do. She eats a Plant Paleo diet + junk. Not sure how to classify it.

      The other adult daughter eats pretty good at home, but eats out a lot, too. Also eats more junk food than the rest. I’m not sure if she’d want me to talk about her weight. I have been thinking about inviting my older girls to talk to me on the show about these things though.

      The two younger kids are doing well. Lucy, our 3 1/2 year old, is not a fan of vegetables, so we are creative about how we give them to her. She eats a lot of eggs and rice (prepared with bone broth), egg & meat burritos, bananas, strawberries. Oh, and she loves salmon nigiri. 🙂 She’s very healthy, but still on the very small side (she was born 2 months early).

      • abbykadi

        Thanks for the reply, Angelo. I would enjoy hearing your adult daughters perspective on your show – if you/they ever decide to do it. I would have my daughter listen in too! Your little one, Lucy is so vibrant. The fact that she is so healthy despite arriving 2 mos early is a testament to your lifestyle.

        I had posted my blood markers on Bulletproof’s forum and on his FB page. The responses I received fell into 2 camps “wait it out and everything will adjust” (I did – for a full year and blood markers got worse) and “everyone is going to die from something.” Okie dokie – I’m only 45 and have a 9 year old I want to keep up with so these responses were just not enough. I ran my 23andme report and I have several homozygous genes for hyperlipidemia/heart disease so adding fats (especially saturated ones and high omega 6) in the amounts recommended by Dave was a time bomb for me. Just further proof that one diet does not fit all.

        Thanks again for posting all this great info, Angelo. In my case, it has been incredibly helpful and really pointed me in the right direction.

  • Angelo,

    Inspiring photos! I’ve enjoyed hearing about the evolution of your diet and where you currently are makes a lot of sense to me. I love that you mention that mainstream paleo is essentially modeled on an outlier. I had never thought of it that way but it certainly seems to be the case.

    Following your progress on the podcast definitely inspired me to increase my vegetable intake and examine my processed fat intake. It’s been a positive change for me though it requires a bit more creativity and planning when it comes to meal preparation at times. I’m at the point now where the default is a lot of vegetables with some meat/fish, fruit, nuts, etc. Some days include little to no meat/fish while others include a lot of meat/fish (basically how I was eating before).

    Thanks again for sharing!

    Rob

    • That sounds great, Rob. And not to mention, varying it up like that is a lot like what we see in modern hunter-gatherers. Although they don’t have access to the choicest land anymore, it’s not hard to imagine ancient hunter-gatherers following a similar pattern in some parts of the world.

      At the end of the day, if we stick with whole foods, get plenty of plant foods in our diet, and stay active…we’re a good 90% there, assuming we aren’t clinically sick.

      The question of oil is still very intriguing. I think the first thing I’ve acknowledged is that it’s a processed food. And this is something that’s never talked about in Paleo circles. The other thing I’m very interested to learn more about is how it relates to endothelial health and whether it contributes to coronary events, like heart attacks.

      Cheers!

      • benjamin cipriano

        Thanks for all your efforts in sharing your journey with us!
        I’m still going with a pretty high fat approach in my diet and my blood work continues to good. I will definitely continue to monitor these numbers.
        I get my supply of tallow from making bone broth. It seems to me that the tallow is no more processed than the bone broth, but you’re currently happy with one and eliminating the other due to it (in part) being “processed.” Can you help me understand your thinking in this distinction between the broth and fat as they are both end products from the same process?
        Thanks!!

  • Whitney Gates

    Thank you for the information and update. May I ask abou how many servings of meat do you think you have a week?

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  • jasmine johend

    I was reading Tim’s blog where some commenters said you look too thin so I came over to have a look. I disagree as I think you look great; an athlete’s body. I stay low carb as I was pre-diabetic with family history of T2. My BS readings are still too high however. Recently I’ve discovered that I eat too much protein and this was culprit affecting my BS and really didnt seem to give me satiety. I’ve cut down on meats and added fats and my hunger has decreased, but you are correct re all the unnecessary calories in the fats. I look forward to adopting a similar way of eating adding plants albeit cautiously (I have serious case of carbphobia).

    • Thanks, Jasmine. With 70% of our population overweight, I wonder if we’ve lost touch with what “too thin” looks like. I feel fantastic, and every part of my physical life has improved.

      In the latest episode of Latest in Paleo (#133), I read & responded to a letter from a listener who also suffers from carbophobia. I’ve been there, too…and in my case, I gradually increased carbs over the course of several years. I was never fully convinced by the low-carb narrative, which probably made it easier for me.

      I was actually pretty hesitant to reintroduce legumes into my diet, though, with all of the Paleo gurus talking about the toxicity and antinutrients in beans. I’m glad I overcame it, though…I’m loving beans, and I find The Blue Zones and epidemiological evidence that supports legume consumption far more convincing than the mainstream Paleo reasons to avoid them.

      Best of luck on your journey!

      • jasmine johend

        Quite frankly, in my neck of the world your 2nd and 3rd before pictures are the norm. This is what a normal Australian man looks like in my town ..very few Crocodile Dundees around. Best pic is the one in the hat, was kind of getting you confused with Anthony Colpo when I was searching haha.

        I went through a bean stage, forced to eat some endmame beans at a restaurant, and expecting high post prand BS found instead they were low! I started to incorporate them along with fava beans making sure I ate them on their own to minimise the carbs, but then I was scared off reading that too much soy is bad. Also I guess because I’ve been LC for soooo long that I’m hesitant to add carbs in case of weight regain, I don’t need to lose weight just to maintain a massive weight loss which is hard..the body wants its fat back. Thank you for the inspiration.

  • Lori Underwood

    Have you made up any kind of sample diet plan?

  • Dreki

    I came here to look at the pretty pictures because I had hear that Angelo looked sickly in his newest images. I can hardly agree with that statement.

    Yes there is a marked difference between his picture from 2013 and the images from 2015, but if you notice he’s simply trimmed down and toned up. He still looks quite healthy, not stringy like many vegans and vegetarians get. His skin is tone, not lose and discolored. Frankly, his body composition looks its best yet.

    I’m glad these adjustments to his diet are working well for him, and I hope those that mimic it find similar results. I am always fascinated by what new self experiment Angelo is doing, quite the Dr. Jekyll. Stay healthy!

  • Nice job, buddy. Didn’t check out the comments but have to wonder if there’s jabs that you no longer carry meaningless lean mass that’s really not necessary so long as you can function normally.

    In just about 2 weeks time I’m headed off to Mexico for an extended period. My diet will shift to mainly fruit and beans, and some fish here & there (the locals are going to tech me spear fishing). Very little red meat. We’ll see how it goes.

    • Thanks, Richard. You’re right, the only jabs so far have been about possible loss of lean body mass, but the overall response has been overwhelmingly positive; especially amongst those who have been following along the longest and have more context.

      If anything I’ve underplayed how good I feel. And as far as functioning normally…the boost in energy, endurance, agility, and even strength have been so fun to experience—I hope this is the new ‘normal’ for me. I can’t say it’ll last forever, but so far so good. I’m still feeling great and weighed in at 163 this morning, so it looks like this is where I’ll be settling in for a while.

      Sounds like you’ll have a good food environment in Mexico and you’ll be enjoying some natural physical activity (spear fishing!) with plenty of sunshine to boot. Looking forward to hearing more about how it goes.

  • Andreas

    Hi Angelo,

    Since moving toward Plant Paleo, I know you’ve been eating more beans and legumes although I haven’t heard, at least yet, of preparation of your beans and legumes. Do you still follow the suggestions of WAPF and do your prolonged soaking in acidic solution?

    • Hi, Andreas. We almost always soak and sprout our legumes, although not in an acidic solution; just warm water, typically overnight. Then, we drain the beans and rinse every few hours until they sprout. In addition to increasing mineral absorption / lowering phytate content — the beans seem to cook quicker and more evenly when they’re soaked.

      We will occasionally eat canned beans or cook dried beans without soaking and sprouting.

      • Andreas

        Thanks for the tip. Any reasons for why soaking with an acidic solution (such as liquid whey, apple cider vinigar, lemon juice, etc.) is avoided?

        • No, we don’t really avoid it…we just don’t take the extra step. Many cultures do not. However, I wouldn’t mind giving it a try the next time we have some whey.

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  • Jeff Borden

    Looking great, Angelo!

  • Nancy Hower

    Love this so much! I have been leaning towards this myself and am constantly on the lookout for oil free plant paleo recipes. Are you going to do a cookbook and or can you suggest some places to find good recipes?

    • Hi, Nancy! I’ll be working on making more information about the diet available to all who are interested, including my favorite recipes. In the meantime, an *excellent* source of recipes is the Forks Over Knives website (http://www.forksoverknives.com/recipes) and cookbook (http://amzn.to/1M8ggr0).

      The Forks Over Knives diet is a whole-food, plant-based (vegan) variant, but the recipes are very easy to use within an omnivorous Plant Paleo framework. Most of the recipes are fine as is, but they can also be served with an egg on top. Some of the dishes work well with a bit of meat added, too. For example, this Green Chile Rice with Black beans dish can be made with chicken or beef stock & I think a small amount of diced chicken would be easy (and tasty!) to add. http://www.forksoverknives.com/recipes/green-chile-rice-recipe-black-beans/

      Hope this helps!

      • Nancy Hower

        Thanks Angelo! Again I love your podcasts and think you are the smartest guy out there when it comes to nutrition. Keep up the good work!
        Excited to see your recipes!

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