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Rant: Most difficult part of paleo?

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created November 23, 2012 at 5:43 AM

For me it was this Thanksgiving. My family is pretty traditionally Chinese so we didn't have turkey or stuffing. But my mom loves to make me chinese desserts which is usually made from rice or soy. This year it was sticky mochi with sweet bean filling rolled in brown sugar and crushed peanuts (basically everything that I'm not suppose to eat lol). She made it especially for me so I caved and ate like 3.. or 4 (they're the size of donut holes).

My mom is also mad at me for doing the paleo diet and insists that you can't live without rice because people have survived centuries off rice without any problems. She also thinks I'll get sick from doing this diet. Also, one thing she has a point about is:

A CTM doctor recommended beans for her health so for almost 2 years she's ate a bowl or two of slow cooked beans a day and she completely cured herself of her seasonal allergies and lost 10lbs without changing anything else. She's pretty healthy to start with.

She cooks everything with vegetable oils so it's really difficult to eat paleo at home without eating separate meals from my parents. Thing is, I am graduating from college soon and will be living at home for a bit. I don't think I can keep this up. Esp if she keeps making my favorite things like fresh soymilk, homemade tofu, mochi, custard bread, and rice/rice noodles. (OMG the custard bread, it's warm vanilla creamy custard center with soft chewy bread. D: ) Yea, these things might not be appetizing to some people, but I love them all cuz I grew up eating them. Also don't wanna make mom mad.

Sorry for the rant but this is the first time I've fallen off my diet and I'm almost done with the first month too... feel free to rant as well and tell me how you guys deal with temptations.

Also what's the deal with rice and soy? Japanese people eat them daily and they are considered the most healthy race.

C7ea816d1a6a5bfedc96a6d2ea50ccf7

(25)

on November 24, 2012
at 07:11 AM

My mom has pretty severe GERD and most foods trigger it. Fatty food being one of them (also spicy, salty, sweet, sour...basically everything). She eats very very bland food herself and part of the reason she enjoys beans is because it doesn't trigger her acid reflux. I want to convince her that ppl cured their GERD with paleo but she's completely rejected the concept entirely. I like your idea of cooking for the family. If I can learn to cook paleo foods my parents will eat, it will give my mom more leisure time. Now if only I can get her our of the kitchen..

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6 Answers

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6
1da74185531d6d4c7182fb9ee417f97f

on November 23, 2012
at 07:43 AM

Lots of people who say they eat paleo eat rice. See "perfect health diet" by Paul Jaminet. Also, I would argue that real high grade fermented tamari soy sauce isn't that bad if we're talking a couple times a week on veggies; especially in the presence of lots of iodine from sea vegetables and fish head broths. I don't "do" rice because I'm concerned with the arsenic and I find it is a food I have a hard time stopping once I start but I do eat peeled boiled potatoes and sweet potatoes.

I say you should decide how well you tolerate it. If rice isn't a binge food and doesn't hinder your health goals, then it's probably OK in small amounts. Especially if you source a non-chinese organic brand that tests low for arsenic and make sure it's white, not brown. I'm with Robb wolf and most of the paleo gurus on the beans subject but some people do ok with rice as a starch source.

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4
3bc294cb7745a5e99612ff886ca00101

(1186)

on November 23, 2012
at 04:20 PM

If your mom is concerned about your diet, and you think you will be living with your parents for awhile, perhaps make a compromise. If you discuss with her that you will adapt to eat rice and rice noodles (small portions not daily) and maybe some amount of beans and ask her to switch to coconut oil or animal fat and not touch veggie oil. Or heaven forbid, margarine. And I'm sure you can agree that sugary desserts are not a good idea-- save for very special occasions only.

Speaking of rice, I find that Vietnamese-style rice paper wraps can be filled with a lot of 'paleo' approved things and dipped in nut butter (almond) dipping sauce... lime juice, fish sauce, etc. Same with Nori, which is even better as it is seaweed not a grain. Soy-- I sometimes eat fermented non-gmo soy in miso soup, or tamari. Not very much though. I think it is a way over-used legume (speaking as someone who was a tofu-eating soymilk drinker for a long time)

Anyway, eating some of those things is not ideal, but perhaps adopt a mindset that it is the good things you eat which are important... keep up with the powerful foods, bone broth, organ meats, seafood, seaweed an array of good veggies... and don't cry! It is nice to have a mom who is a good cook who wants to feed you! :p

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2
Ac1be7d044a82c85cee039f3435a550f

(150)

on November 24, 2012
at 01:47 AM

Similar problems here... I totally understand your pain. Just had an argument with my mum yesterday about me not eating "normal" food and never being able to sit down and have a "proper" meal with them (they usually eat out). Explanations and data gets countered by "you are not a doctor" and "we are Chinese"...

Anyway, my solution to that is to do my own cooking. I'm lucky my mum hardly cooks these days, but I recognize that it may be tough wrestling the kitchen from her, it's her domain and kingdom! It can be daunting if you don't usually cook, but you can start on easier things like steaming/boiling, slow-cooking, etc. Bone broths (or soups in general) and stews may be less Asian in flavour that your mum is used to, but I'm sure she can appreciate the ingredients and cooking style as recognizably healthy. If you're ambitious and can get away with it, try rendering your own lard for cooking. The steps are only a Google away and a single batch can probably last you for months, and it's something traditionally used in Chinese cooking too. Clarifying your own butter is another choice, the flavour may make it an issue though (mine complains that she doesn't like the taste).

Another option... Fish sauce instead of soya sauce. Red Boat Fish Sauce seems to get pretty good taste reviews, and it's only made from anchovies and salt. If you can get any other brands that don't contain sugar/wheat, it may be a good idea to try them out (or get those only with sugar and use very sparingly).

Good luck!

C7ea816d1a6a5bfedc96a6d2ea50ccf7

(25)

on November 24, 2012
at 07:11 AM

My mom has pretty severe GERD and most foods trigger it. Fatty food being one of them (also spicy, salty, sweet, sour...basically everything). She eats very very bland food herself and part of the reason she enjoys beans is because it doesn't trigger her acid reflux. I want to convince her that ppl cured their GERD with paleo but she's completely rejected the concept entirely. I like your idea of cooking for the family. If I can learn to cook paleo foods my parents will eat, it will give my mom more leisure time. Now if only I can get her our of the kitchen..

2
0f88641fb8088d0cdd1b5ef810b2d0a4

on November 23, 2012
at 04:58 PM

I'm Asian too so the food you listed sounds amazing to me!! I completely understand what you're going through. My parents aren't exactly supportive of the paleo diet either. What you can do, though:

  1. Recognise that white rice is fine!

  2. Compromise, but don't use it as an excuse to go wild and binge. I treasure spending time with my family before I go off to college in a few years. If this means sharing Chinese dishes with them, sure. I bear in mind that after I become financially independent, I'll have access to any nutrition sources (like grass-fed meat) that I want, so for now I'll start with small steps.

  3. Don't stress about this. Stress is counterproductive!

  4. Provide alternatives. You never know, your parents might be fine with that. For example, you could place a bottle of liquid aminos in the kitchen and tell your mom it's soy sauce, just slightly healthier/tastier. (Edit: I just thought of this) You can even try making cauliflower rice, and sell it to your parents as an interesting new recipe/dish.

From a paleo perspective, beans are not recommended but do have benefits. A bowl or two is a lot - they might also have made your mom feel more satiated throughout the day, allowing her to unconsciously cut down on the desserts and such.

As for Japanese people and soy sauce: soy sauce does have benefits in addition to its downsides. I suppose it should be fine as a topping. I think the reason why Japanese people are healthy is because their diet is generally rice, fresh seafood, meats with high fat content (like sukiyaki) and vegetables. Even buckwheat (in soba) is fine, if not optimal. It's worthwhile noting that as the Japanese move towards a more Westernised diet, with its high fructose corn syrup and gluten and etc, they are getting more unhealthy than ever.

All the best!

1
089dd41b18fbb95ebb5347cded708d98

(5635)

on November 24, 2012
at 01:34 AM

i live at home and cook all of my meals separate from my family. they know i am following paleo and even if they don't like it, they still would never force me to eat what they are eating. it's your body and if you want to eat custard bread, you will, but will it help with your overall goal of health?

0
44348571d9bc70c02ac2975cc500f154

(5853)

on September 07, 2013
at 12:44 AM

How about good authentic pho? Its cooked with real stock from bones, usually includes organ meats like tripe, oxtail and tendons. Som good medicinal mushrooms etc.

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