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15 Foods for Everyone

20 J0000006UTC 2011

Twinkie the Kid

Three days remain in our month-long Paleo experiment, so we’ve been talking about what comes next. Do we (as some Paleo people might think) de-volve to eating grains and beans again? Do we plunge into an abysmal pit of Twinkies and Pop Chips? Or do we fire up the grill, chop up some veggies, and keep going?

You might be interested in my previous post, “Just Tell Me How to Eat,” where I talk about some of the differences between, benefits of, and drawbacks of, the Standard American Diet, the Paleo Diet, and Vegetarianism/Veganism. This came from my nutrition consultant point of view, somewhere in the Bermuda Triangle between the three. Though there are other diets and fads, I found these to be the three that are the most pronounced, prevalent, and accessible to the general public.

Knowing that I already ate the Standard American Diet for the first 30 years of my life, I decided to take on a month of Paleo, and now (though I dearly love bacon, salmon, and chicken), I am contemplating a month of going Vegetarian. This would be mostly out of curiosity and fairness. I figure if I’ve done the other two, I ought to give the third a fair shot. Not that a month is much of a fair shot.

As I wind down Paleo-Month, I begin to contemplate what on earth I will eat in order to get enough protein during Veg-Month. The list is kinda short, a little sad, and strangely does not include any succulent roasts or flaky pink fish. This is okay, as I am feeling rather full, kind of muscular, and my legs feel like pigs-in-a-blanket.

I also think about what foods cross all borders of diet, preference, and eating lifestyle. There are many, or at least should be. Here is my list of 15 common-enough foods that anyone should eat, S.A.D., Paleo, Vegetarian, or otherwise.

1. Acai Berries & Powder

2. Almonds

3. Apples

4. Avocados

5. Blueberries

6. Carrots

7. Chia Seeds

8. Coconut & Coconut Oil (my #1 food)

9. Garlic

10. Hemp Seeds/Hearts

11. Leafy Greens (kale, spinach, lettuce, chard, mustards, bok choy)

12. Pecans

13. Pumpkin Seeds

14. Squash

15. Sweet Potatoes

You’ll note that I did not include any Snickers, grains, beans, dairy, or meat, possibly to the chagrin of the FDA’s beloved food pyramid and plate. This does not mean that I never eat any of those– or that I don’t think anyone else ever should. If you think that’s what I’m saying, you’re not listening very well. What I did say is that these are 15 foods that anyone from any group can safely eat (barring allergy or sensitivity) and be incredibly nourished by. In fact, if you’re ever wondering how to improve your diet, how to incorporate healthy fats, how to attain more vitamins and minerals other than Centrum, or how to “just feel healthier” (something I hear a lot), these 15 foods are a great place to start, a little– or a lot– of each, every day.

Chow!

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