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Chapter 3: Sweet Breads

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Great banana bread is a valuable staple recipe because it can be a perfect gift, a satisfying snack, and an energy-packed way to start the day. Bananas contain potassium, which can help regulate blood pressure and help muscles to contract properly without cramping up. The warm spices in this recipe also have health benefits such as regulating healthy glucose levels in the blood and lowering blood pressure.

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

2. In a large bowl, sift together the flours, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and spices.

3. In a small bowl, whisk together the eggs, maple syrup, coconut oil, and vanilla until well combined. Whisk the banana and shredded coconut into the wet ingredients.

4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir together until just combined. Do not overmix the batter or the bread will be too dense.

5. Lightly grease a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan and dust it with the almond flour.

6. Spoon the batter in the loaf pan, and bake for about 55 minutes, until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.

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Chapter 9: 10 Tips for Living Paleo

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Just as with any change, adjusting to the Paleo diet will take you some time. After all, you’re not only changing your diet, you’re changing the way you think about food. Ingredients that you’ve known and loved for most of your life are now strictly off-limits. If you’re allowing yourself to have caffeine (which many Paleo dieters do not), then it’s probably the only part of your morning meal that will remain the same.

Now you’re going to be eating plenty of fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins, so you shouldn’t ever be hungry. If you are, just eat something! You’re not going to be counting calories, but you still need to be cautious about what you eat because, just as in most diets, all Paleo-approved foods are not equal. You’re going to hit some rough spots, too, so here are some tips to get you through.

If you’re serious about changing your lifestyle and want to be successful with your transition, submerge yourself in it completely. Clear all of the non-Paleo foods from your pantry and your refrigerator, and head to the grocery store. Don’t buy anything that isn’t on your list, and don’t stop for a “final burger” on your way home.

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Chapter 6: The Benefits of Paleo

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Many people turn to the Paleo diet because of the weight-loss benefits, but that’s not where the idea originated. If you remember, the diet was created by a gastroenterologist to help his patients with various disorders. Of course, weight loss is a wonderful side effect that has its own set of healthy benefits.

When you add in the myriad other perks, going caveman is almost a no-brainer. Let’s take a quick peek at some of the biggest health benefits of following a Paleo diet.

Because this is one of the primary reasons many people decide to switch to a Paleo diet, we’ll start here. Because you’re eliminating empty carbs and adding in lots of healthful plant fiber and lean protein, losing weight will be much easier. A few other factors that contribute to healthy weight loss include:

The bottom line is you will be consuming foods that help your body function the way that it’s supposed to, and one of the natural side effects of that is weight loss.

The theory behind the Paleo diet is that eating grains, dairy, and other foods on the excluded list can cause digestive upset, inflammation, and discomfort because our bodies aren’t adapted to eating them. Also, your digestive tract needs fiber to help it sweep food through your system, otherwise it builds up and causes problems. Some of the conditions that may be improved by going caveman include:

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Chapter 7: The Trouble with Gluten

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We’ve discussed many of the health benefits of switching to a Paleo diet, but one of the main benefits is that the foods enjoyed in the Paleo diet don’t have gluten in them. For millions of people worldwide, eating caveman-style is a relatively simple way to avoid digestive upset and even the cancers that are caused by an allergy to gluten.

Latin for “glue,” gluten is a protein found in wheat and grains that gives ground flours elasticity and helps them to rise. It’s also the binding component that gives bread its chewy texture and keeps it from crumbling apart after baking. Gluten can be removed from flour because it is insoluble in water. Typically when you remove the gluten, you also lose all of the good properties that make breads and cakes what they are.

Without gluten, your baked goods won’t rise and they’ll have a grainy, crumbly texture. They won’t taste anything like their gluten-laden cousins, and you probably won’t want to eat more than the first bite. Because of an increasing demand for gluten-free products, food corporations have dedicated a tremendous amount of time and money into creating tasty, effective, gluten-free products. Unfortunately, most commercially prepared gluten-free recipe mixes still fall short.

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Chapter 2: Savory Breads

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Some Paleo enthusiasts are adamantly against using yeast in recipes. However, the active yeast used in baking is closely related to the beneficial yeast found in fermented foods, so it can be included without guilt or adverse health reactions. When making this lovely bread, take care because yeast can be a finicky ingredient that needs a very specific temperature to rise. If your water is below 100 degrees F, a leaking amino acid creates a sticky dough, and if the water heats to over 130 degrees F, the yeast will die. This bread is lovely for sandwiches or when toasted with a dab of almond butter.

1. Pour the warm water into a large bowl and sprinkle the yeast on top. Let sit for about 5–10 minutes until the yeast starts to foam.

2. Add the eggs, coconut oil, apple cider vinegar, and honey to the yeast mixture, and stir to combine. Let mixture sit for about 3 minutes.

3. In a medium bowl, stir together the dry ingredients.

4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix, by hand if you have to, until well incorporated.

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