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    freds4's Avatar
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    New guy questions

    Primal Fuel
    I have recently discovered the Paleo way of eating and have a few questions.
    * Beer is bad because it is made with grains? How bad? (I really like beer)
    * Are gluten-free products OK even if they are made with wheat, rice, barley, etc?
    * What is a quick, simple explanation for why legumes are bad?

    I happened upon the Paleo way of eating from a co-worker that is into Crossfit. I was looking for a way to naturally lower my cholesterol so I had blood labs done before I changed the way I eat. I have been on a strict Paleo diet for almost 6 weeks now and the results have been nothing short of amazing. Although I was hoping to only lower my cholesterol I have already noticed that I FEEL So much better. I have lost 10 pounds and am within BMI standards for the first time since 1985. I have more energy, I need less sleep, the highs and lows of blood sugar are gone and I just feel happy.
    Thank you in advance for any info.

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    Dr. Bork Bork's Avatar
    Dr. Bork Bork is offline Senior Member
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    best not to tempt yourself with gluten free goodies

    and legumes are avoided b/c they tend to be a bit harder to digest. Think about when you have chili and go to the bathroom a day or two later. Sometimes you see the remnants of the kidney beans you ate (undigestable)
    Why make your system work harder than it has to?

    can't really help you on beer (I don't drink alcohol), but there's a reason why it's called beer belly (read the book Wheat Belly)
    --Trish (Bork)
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    Dialit's Avatar
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    Number one - there is no such thing as a gluten free product that contains wheat, barley or rye. If you see one, run away!

    Number two - beer is really bad. If you absolutely cannot live without the occasional beer "cheat" go with a gluten free beer. These are typically brewed with sourghum. Easiest to find is Redbridge by Budweiser. Best choice is to learn to do without, or consume wine or hard spirits in moderation. BTW, the reason hard spirits (frequently made with grains) are OK and beer is not is that distilling breaks apart the grain proteins, but fermenting doesn't.

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    Seriously, the less you try to get around the ideas in Primal, the better off you'll be. The marginal stuff seems to have more effect on you early on, so just keep it clean and avoid the questionable stuff, at least for now.

    Sure, now I can actually have a little gluten or sugar or whatever, but early on it was pretty awful. You're in the very beginnings of what might maybe be some hard core damage repair, so let your body fix itself before you try to sneak stuff in.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dialit View Post
    Number one - there is no such thing as a gluten free product that contains wheat, barley or rye. If you see one, run away!

    Wow, I was in a store yesterday that had an entire aisle of "gluten free" products on display. Lots of crackers, snacks, etc. I looked at the ingredients of a few and they all had rice, corn wheat listed on them. I was immediately suspicious and so didn't buy any, as it seemed too good to be true.

    Thank you everyone for the help.

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    Dialit's Avatar
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    Rice and corn are considered "gluten free" by celiac definition (specific protein chains). Oats are usually contaminated during processing. However, all grains contain anti nutrients, phytates, and other things that cause blood sugar spikes and inflammation. Here's what I can tell you from my own experience. I went GF 6 months ago (read switched out my wheat, rye, barley, oats foods for GF replacement foods) and I had very little change in my symptoms. Now I'm not celiac, so I imagine a celiac would see much more improvement than I did, but still. When I went PB and gave up processed foods in general and all grains, within a few weeks I had 100% relief from my neurological complaints (for which I've taken meds for over 5 years, but no longer need now) and significant improvement of digestive issues.

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    As long as it's white rice and not brown rice it should be Gluten Free too.

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    Place me in the category of “a life without beer is a life not worth living”.

    That is an exaggeration for sure, but it is important to me. I’m not kidding myself though: I know it is bad. It is my compromise of choice and it will always be so. The way I make up for it is near perfection in every other way. And for me personally, I think it helps my discipline…it is my only cheat of any regularity. I watch my total carbs and keep in way under what most people call low-carb even with my beer.

    There will be a flood of people who will say that you can’t have beer and lose weight. Well, I lost 100 pounds and never gave up beer. Now, some days I don’t have any beer. Many days I will only have one. I drink Guinness with regularity now because it keeps the carb content down (one of the few world class beers that this is true of). The rest of my beer is limited and I only drink beers that I love. All those gluten free and other more healthy options just aren’t good enough to justify the compromise for me personally.

    Like everything else, you have to know what is genuinely important to you and make it fit your life.

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    I liked beer. Really really liked it. I just don't have a taste for it much anymore. I really enjoy wine, and a finger or two of whiskey, but beer doesn't do it for me anymore. I'll have one every now and then, but I find I enjoy them less and less, especially if I try to have a second one.

    Gluten-free beers tend to be terrible, but one of my favorite breweries has one that is less sucky than most, I think: Lakefront New Grist.

    Gluten-free products are grain-based, processed edible products. There's not any benefit to them, and a number of problems that may arise, depending on your body and how much you consume: blood sugar/insulin spikes, gluten contamination, weight loss stall, high sugar content, etc.

    Legumes are a gray area item, fine in moderation. Mark wrote a post about them:Beans and Legumes | Mark's Daily Apple

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    freds4's Avatar
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    Primal Blueprint Expert Certification
    Thanks for all the comments everyone, I am really liking it here.
    I have a great deal of discipline and so have been very strict, at least for the 6 weeks I have been eating this way, and my results so far have absolutely amazed me. During this period I have stuck to my usual beer consumption, which is only a beer a week with a meal. I find beer delicious and there are so many excellent micro-brews available to me here in San Diego County, I think I will make this my one "cheat". I drink it for the taste, not the alcohol, so replacing it with wine or hard liquor is not an option.

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