Paleo diet pegan vegan 2-min

Paleo is old news, it’s all about the Pegan diet now…

Have you heard of Pegan? It’s what you get when you combine Paleo, with Vegan. So…. How does that work?

Well, as we know, Paleo is eating natural, whole, unprocessed foods: meat, fish, eggs, vegetables, nuts, seeds and fruit. Vegan is a whole step further than vegetarian and doesn’t involve any food that comes from an animal. So no meat (obviously), but also no eggs and no dairy. Vegans would typically turn to grains for energy and legumes (like soy) for protein.

Paleo diet pegan vegan 2-min

When Paleo + Vegan = Pegan, we’re left with just vegetables, nuts, seeds and fruit. There’s no grains, no legumes, no meat, no fish, no eggs and no dairy. The food would be GMO-free, ideally organic and free of chemicals and preservatives.

On a Pegan approach cooking is harder, as vegan friendly oils like vegetable, soybean, canolia, sunflower oil or margarine aren’t allowed as they aren’t paleo. Paleo friendly oils like animal fats (tallow, lard, bacon grease etc) butter and ghee aren’t allowed because they’re not vegan. This leave good old coconut oil, olive oil, and perhaps other nut oils like macadamia and avocado oil to cook with.

To make a Pegan diet work, you’d need to really focus on fats and proteins and would need to rely on foods like avocado, coconut and nuts for fat consumption – whilst at the same time making sure not to over eat nuts, and upset your omega 3/ 6 ratio. Protein would have to be sought from seeds, vegetables and nuts. The bulk of your diet would need to be plant food, with lots of leafy green vegetables.

My verdict on the Pegan Diet

I can’t help but see the Pegan diet as just too restrictive. I think it would be almost impossible to obtain sufficient B-vitamins from this diet alone, without supplementing. But I do think we can take a few things from this Paleo-Vegan approach.

Instead of focusing on having meat & fish in our diet, I think we should focus on the quality of that meat and fish. Where we can, we should be eating organic, ethical meat. Fish should be wild, line caught and we should consider mercury content. I think eggs are a great food to eat – but again, quality is everything. And where eggs aren’t stamped, we need to be even more careful to make sure we know where our eggs are from. I think a vegan diet places more emphasis on vegetables than paleo sometimes does – and it’s a good reminder that we should make sure we’re eating a wide variety of differently coloured veggies.

Would you go Pegan? Or is It a step too far?

six ways to stick to paleo diet hard to stick to paleo network-min

6 ways to make sure your paleo diet is not hard to stick to

A common response to the idea of eating a paleo diet, is that surely it must be so difficult to stick to. All the changes, all the cooking – it seems impossible to keep up, long term, right?

Well, I think once you’ve established a few habits and patterns, it would be harder not to stick to it.

Here’s six ways to make sure it’s not hard to stick to a paleo diet, but becomes an easy part of your life

six ways to stick to paleo diet hard to stick to paleo network-min

1.       Know why it makes sense

If you’ve researched and read about paleo and why it works, it becomes so much easier to stick to

2.       Try it, properly

If you can stick to a strict version of a paleo diet religiously, for 30 days you’ll have the chance to see what difference it makes to you. You’ll observe how differently you feel in terms of energy, skin, sleep, mood and specific health issues. Knowing that eating paleo can significantly improve your health will make it much, much harder to go back to your old way of eating.

3.       Support

Support can make the world of difference. Paleo has got so popular, you’ll hopefully have someone in your life following it too. But as time goes by and people see the changes in you, they’re more likely to give it a try too. If you don’t have any real life support, check out meetups in your area, you’ll find local support and encouragement will make all the difference to your sticking power.

4.       Organisation

A lot of people waiver from their paleo diet due to lack of organisation. You overslept and missed breakfast, or got home too late to cook. One non-paleo meal becomes two, then before you know it you’re more 20/80, than 80/20. I find batch cooking at the weekend helps a lot with this, making sure my freezer is stocked with paleo meals that just need to be reheated. A paleo emergency stash at work (of nuts, jerky and even tinned fish) can ensure you’re not caught hungry with no options. If you know you’re going to a social function that’s likely to have poor food choices, plan in advance and either take something along, or even eat before you go – this way it won't be hard to stick to paleo.

5.       Work out alternatives

You’re not going to be eating bread, or pasta on your paleo diet. But if you can come up with alternatives and substitutions, you’ll be ready to deal with situations where you’d have eaten those foods. Used to take sandwiches to work? Try taking wraps instead (made with lettuce, or nori). Used to have spaghetti Bolognese every Friday? Try it with zucchini noodles instead. Not so hard to stick to anymore!

6.       Be realistic

It’s important to avoid being too “all or nothing”. It’s easy to slip and have one small non-paleo thing, then tell yourself it’s all ruined, you might as well write the day/ week off. Instead, take a more flexible approach. Maybe agree with yourself to be 80/20 paleo. That is 80% of your diet is paleo, and you’re ok with up to 20% “not paleo”. If you strive for 100%, but achieve 80% you won’t be disappointed with yourself.

How easy do you find it to stick to paleo? What tips would you give to others finding it hard to stick to a paleo diet?

borderline paleo food paleo network-min

Borderline paleo food

Eating a strict paleo diet is simple; meat, veggies, eggs, nuts, seeds and a little fruit. Right? What about all those borderline foods? Are they paleo, or not?

borderline paleo food paleo network-min


Dairy is a huge grey area for a lot of people following a paleo diet. Strictly speaking, a paleo diet omits all dairy, since it contains lactose and casin, which a lot of people can’t tolerate and other components, such as IGF-1 which may be harmful. Of course, dairy encompasses a huge wealth of foods, some better than others. Fermented dairy, such as kefir and traditional yoghurt, is going to be a lot better than highly processed dairy, such as skim milk. The key is to try it for yourself and find out what works for you.


Yes, the fruit we’re encouraged to eat every day is a food I would consider borderline paleo. Fruit, being carbohydrate, is packed full of sugar. Yes, it contains vitmains and is natural – but the sugar can’t be ignored. Of course, not all fruit is equal, and whilst I’d avoid high sugar fruit like apples and melons, berries are great as they are far lower in sugar.

Safe starches

There’s been a lot of talk lately about safe starches.  A safe starch is a carbohydrate that is low in anti-nutrients, such as phytates, for example sweet potatoes, plantain, yucca, tapioca, white potatoes and white rice. To slow down the glucose release, and lessen the insulin response from the carbs, they are best eaten with fat and protein. Why are these borderline? Clearly rice is a grain – and white potatoes are a nightshade. Whilst paleo is not, by definition, low carb, many people do take a low carb approach and should therefore take a considered approach with safe starches.

Non-paleo “Vegetables”

Corn on the cob and green beans might sit nicely on the plate masquerading as vegetables, but they’re not. Sweetcorn is a grain and the green beans legumes; both food groups which are excluded on a paleo diet.

Paleo sweeteners

Whilst honey and stevia might seem like far more natural options than table sugar, the fact is, in your blood stream they’re all the same. Whilst some sweeteners may more natural than others, they’re best off avoided.

Paleo baked goods

The more popular paleo becomes, the more popular paleo breads, paleo cookies and paleo cakes become. They might be made with almond meal and coconut flour, and use dates as a natural sweetener – but take care with these. They often still have a lot of sugar and are best kept as an occasional treat.

Pseudo grains

We know how bad gluten is – wheat is a grain strictly avoided on paleo. There are a lot of other pseudo grains that don’t contain gluten, that are become popular, especially amaranth, buckwheat, and quinoa. Whilst a lot better than conventional grains, it’s worth bearing in mind that gluten-free and paleo aren’t the same thing!

 Manufactured meat

So we know meat is paleo, but it becomes a lot more borderline when we look at things like bacon, sausages, hamburgers and cured meats. If you’ve not made them yourself, you need to know how they’ve been made, as many processes will use sugar, soy and chemicals that most definitely aren’t paleo

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This month’s weird google searches

I’ve written before about the bizarre google searches that lead to people finding my blog. So I thought it was time I shared some new ones – and of course answered them, just in case they’re still looking for their answer.

  • what to feed a maltese dog that has allergies and is sick of eating kangaroo mince???

That age old problem when your dog is fed up of kangaroo meat eh….  Another person googled…

  • my staffy won’t eat anything else except cooked chicken

So it looks like there is a global problem with dogs being fussy or selective eaters. My advice, as a non-current-dog-owner is not to give in to your dog’s picky or selective tendencies and just feed it whatever you choose.

Weird paleo google searches paleo network-min

Despite the magic protective powers of the paleo diet, it looks like some people have still been getting colds – and even the flu! Surely there must be a mistake?

  • why do i have a cold on a paleo diet
  • what is this flu that's going around melbourne
  • virus going around canberra
  • bad flu going around Sydney

If you’re going out and about in Melbourne, Canberra or Sydney – look out for germs!

  • how do I get more oil in my diet but not fat?

Hmmm, I hate to break it to you – but oil is fat. Coconut oil, olive oil, peanut oil – they’re all fat….

  • paleo replacement for peanut butter and jelly sandwich

Well this is a difficult one. The classic PBJ is made of bread – not paleo; peanut butter, not paleo; and jelly/ jam – not paleo. How about if we substitute the bread for celery, swap the peanut butter for almond butter and use real strawberries as an alternative for the jelly? Not quite doing it for you?

  • started paleo and my wife says I smell different

Perhaps you’ve spilt bone broth down your shirt?

  • what animal parts make mince
  • what part of the cow is mincemeat

I wish I could say the rump, but in reality the whole point on mince/ ground meat is to make use of parts of the animal that would otherwise be wasted. So your answer is likely to be mainly the offcuts.

  • coconut oil for suffocating insect

Er, how about no? Maybe you could let it outside if it’s bothering you?

  • paleo alternative for lasagne can be penne pasta

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but it’s not the shape of the pasta that makes it not paleo. Spaghetti, Fusilli, Vermicelli, Fettuccine, Tagliatelle, Macaroni or Farfalle – it doesn’t matter – they’re not paleo.

  • margarine substitute paleo

This is an easy one – how about coconut oil or butter (if you do dairy)

  • paleo substitute for soy turkey

Gosh, I must be missing something here. Instead of eating synthetic soy turkey, what could you possibly have that is paleo instead? Hmmmmm…. How about TURKEY?!

  • should  I eat genetically modified crops?

Probably best to avoid those GMO’s

  • kangaroo versus ostrich fillets which is better?

Decisions, decisions…. Kangaroo or Ostrich. It can be hard living in Australia sometimes. Having never tried Ostrich, I don’t feel qualified to comment – if you have, perhaps you could help this person out by leaving your preference in the  comments?

  •  will I still have weight loss on paleo if everything isn’t organic

Whilst in an ideal world everything we’d eat would be organic (local, seasonal and unprocessed), in the real world it’s not always so easy. Fortunately this shouldn’t impact on your weight loss efforts.

  • what kind of knives do they use on my kitchen rules

Good question! And one that seems hard to find the answer too. Master Chef use Global Knives, and judging by the amount of blue band aids the contestants have – they’re clearly very sharp!

  • is buying a restaurant in a food court a good idea

Well, I might be biased, but I’d say probably not if it’s a fast food restaurant, I don’t think they’re doing so well these days. But a real food restaurant – now we’re talking!

  • paleo crocodile recipe

Unfortunately I’m all out of paleo crocodile recipes at the moment, but as soon as I’ve experimented with snake recipes, I’ll move straight onto crocodile recipe  development!

  • is the teflon coating on paleo

No, definitely not. Don’t eat it – and if it starts to come off, it’s time to throw your pan away!

  • what counts as two dress sizes

Er, is this a trick question? Maybe going from a size 14 to a size 10?