If you doubted that the Paleolithic diet has emerged from the cave, you might want to take a look at what happened in Austin last weekend. A Paleo conference that attracted experts and their followers from around the world took place. And one of the leading Paleo diet experts, Russ Crandall, told us about his experience in an exclusive interview. Russ is the author of "The Ancestral Table: Traditional Recipes for a Paleo Lifestyle" (click for details).
Why choose to attend Paleo f(x)?
"Paleo f(x) is focused on the practical application of ancestral principles; it’s a great opportunity to meet and spend time with dozens of leading researchers, bloggers, cookbook authors, and athletes. It’s like a big party, with people coming together to both celebrate the movement and share their knowledge," explained Russ.
For Russ, whose superb cookbook celebrates Paleo and Primal cooking at its finest, the conference also offered "a great excuse to visit Austin, one of the most Paleo-minded cities in the United States. Austin is home to a huge number of restaurants and food trucks that offer delicious and unique meals, often made with whole and sustainably-sourced ingredients."
His own presentation was well-received, attracting attention with its clever title: "Our Great-Grandparents were Totally Paleo: Six Ways to Improve Paleo Cuisine." In it, Russ explained how "implementing traditional and gourmet culinary practices will help the Paleo movement to create more delicious meals within a healthy template."
Among the presenters and demonstrations that Russ found particularly beneficial and enlightening:
- Mickey Trescott, who demonstrated her Curried Chicken Salad. She's the author of "The Autoimmune Paleo Cookbook: An Allergen-Free Approach to Managing Chronic Illness" (click for details).
- Michelle Tam’s Lazy Deviled Eggs demo. She's the author of the delightful cookbook and Paleo guide: "Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans" (click for more information).
- Melissa Joulwan’s Crispy Chicken Livers, who authored the fun and flavorful "Well Fed 2: More Paleo Recipes for People Who Love to Eat."
Diane Sanfilippo’s presentation, “Reintroducing Non-Paleo Foods: When, Why (or Why Not), and How,” was one of Russ' favorite sessions. She's the author of "The 21-Day Sugar Detox: Bust Sugar & Carb Cravings Naturally" and "Practical Paleo: A Customized Approach to Health and a Whole-Foods Lifestyle" (click for details).
What rocked about this cavewoman guru?
"In her talk, Diane provided compelling reasons both for and against certain foods, like dairy, potatoes, white rice, and legumes. I loved the fact that people are better understanding that everyone’s digestive systems are a little different; just because 50% of the world has trouble digesting dairy doesn’t mean that the other 50% cannot touch dairy. This recent movement away from dietary dogma was both encouraging and exciting, and Diane’s presentation wasn't the only one that mentioned that the Paleo diet is a template that should be tweaked for individual preference and performance," said Russ.
And for most inspiring speaker, Russ named Chris Kresser, author of one of our own favorite Paleo books: "Your Personal Paleo Code: The 3-Step Plan to Lose Weight, Reverse Disease, and Stay Fit and Healthy for Life" (click for details).
"Chris Kresser’s presentation, “How to Win an Argument with a Paleo Critic” was both pragmatic and evidenced-based. Chris’ approach to the Paleo diet is inspiring because he presents a diet that is both doable and unassuming. I think voices like his will be crucial in the coming years, as the Paleo diet becomes more popular and breaks into mainstream attention," predicted Russ.
Russ also deserves credit for being one of those who dare to customize their own approach to Paleo diets. He follows the Perfect Health Diet interpretation of Paleo, which includes selected starches and dairy, based on the book "Perfect Health Diet: Regain Health and Lose Weight by Eating the Way You Were Meant to Eat."