Paleo Bread Makers, Meatless Chicken Strips and Diet Ice Cream

Kinda all fit in the same boat, if you ask me. When I was vegan, I avoided all animal products, including honey, and wearing wool or leather.  Yet for some reason, I wanted to eat things that looked and tasted like them, so I’d eat Tofurky on Thanksgiving and  was thrilled when I found a place in Chinatown that served faux shrimp fried rice. And it’s long been a trend in the diet industry to recreate lower calories versions of many a ‘treat’ like ice cream to a ‘snack’ like crackers with the sheer focus being number of calories and indirectly grams of carbs or fat. And along comes Paleo. True Paleo recommends mimicking the foods our ancestors ate with foods readily available to us in our grocery stores, farmer’s markets and our own back yards. Go crazy with veg, add some wild protein and douse it with some healthy fat, and you’re golden! But wait….somehow along the way we took this honest, real-food approach and began to taint it.   At first, it was  benign and I whole heartedly am still a fan of making the occasional (again- occasional!) treat for a special day like my signature truffles on an anniversary or perhaps a homemade, real fruit sorbet for a child’s summer party. But now, the Paleo craze, involving many, many things that are so far from Paleo, they’re basically just slightly less offensive versions of the SAD, has taken a hold, and portrays these ‘treats’ that were meant to be eaten very rarely as though they’re something we’re meant to include in our daily regime. I thought all bases had been covered with cookbooks, websites and blogs as well as food products themselves that are more Faux Paleo than not, but today, I saw what I believe to be the debut of Paleo into a new frontier- kitchen equipment, in particular, a “Paleo Bread Maker”. It came in the form of someone sending me an email, asking me to endorse it. No, thanks. I’m sure we’ll be seeing it everywhere, given the popularity of things adding the word ‘Paleo’ as a marketing tool, regardless of whether or not it actually is. Let’s just hope that this, the idea that everyone and anyone can jump on the Paleo bandwagon is the component of Paleo that’s a trend and that it doesn’t skew the judgement of too many people so that the real message never gets out. If you’re going to eat bread, eat it, but don’t pretend it’s Paleo, even if it is gluten-free. Same with ice cream. And same with eating any food that’s not really the real thing that you want, and is made with a wide range of odd ingredients which may, or will, make you feel ill, and result in the whole experience being unsatisfactory all the way around without even enjoying that thing you wanted in the first place. It makes no sense, it’s not healthy, and it’s not Paleo. Just eat food. And move.