My 30-day commitment to a paleo autoimmune diet is complete. And although I haven’t seen dramatic health benefits, I’ve learned a few lessons, lost enough weight to have made it worth my while, and tried some interesting foods.
One lesson learned is that I don’t need to rely on high-fat nuts for between-meal snacks. My dehydrator banana cookies are a satisfying take-along energy boost. Another lesson is that I don’t NEED a daily cup of coffee. I discovered alternative hot drinks I like: yerba matè tea, which has a little caffeine, and roasted chicory root, which is rich and dark like coffee and that tastes a little like hot cocoa with a pour of coconut cream. A third, overarching lesson is that I can change my eating habits; it just takes perseverance to come up with alternatives I like.
Now that I’ve made the effort to adapt and find enjoyable foods, I’m considering staying with the plan a few more weeks to see if I can achieve my health goals.
One new standby recipe I’ve liked is a “no-mato” spaghetti sauce that’s full of vegetables and red like tomato sauce but without potentially inflammatory tomatoes. Ladle it over spaghetti squash for a nutrition-packed Italian dinner.
|Tomatoless Italian Sauce With Meat|| |
- 9 carrots (about 1 1/2 pounds), peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces (about 4 cups)
- 2 small to 1 medium red beet (about 8 ounces), peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces (about 1 1/2 cups)
- 3 celery stalks, cut into 1-inch pieces (about 1 cup)
- 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
- 1 bay leaf (remember to remove it before pureeing)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup beef broth or water
- 1/2 tablespoon plus 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 pound ground beef or lamb
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil (optional)
- Place in a large soup pot carrots, beets, celery, Italian seasoning, bay leaf, salt, and broth or water. Stir gently to combine. Bring to a boil over medium high heat. Lower heat to just high enough to maintain a boil and cook, covered, until vegetables are soft, about 1 hour.
- Meanwhile, in a skillet over medium heat, warm 1 tablespoon oil and add the garlic. Heat just until garlic is fragrant. Add ground beef or lamb, and cook and stir until well-browned.
- When vegetables are soft, remove bay leaf and add 1/4 cup oil. Puree until smooth in batches in a blender, or use an immersion blender. Then stir in ground beef and optional chopped basil. Serve over noodles or spaghetti squash. Leftovers can be frozen.