Health & Nutrition

64.6% of adults living in Thailand are insufficient in Vitamin D.

 

According to a recent poll (data linked in the footer), it's estimated that around 64.6% of adults in Bangkok face an insufficiency in Vitamin D.

 

Vitamin D deficiency is caused due to a lack of exposure to the sun, which is not that surprising considering we Bangkokians love to be inside our air-conditioned rooms.

Going outside to face the sun is not our favorite past time, but as a result we get less sun exposure than we should.

 

Not receiving enough Vitamin D can lead to weaker bones and immune system and increases the chance of diabetes, high blood pressure and weakened muscles.

 

In the next 2 minutes you'll learn:

 

  • Why your body needs vitamin D and how long you need to stay in the Bangkok sun

  • How to get enough vitamin D every day for FREE in Thailand

  • The best foods to get your daily dose of Vitamin D

  • 8 signs your body is not getting enough vitamin D

 

If you do not have 2 minutes to spare right now we suggest bookmarking this article for later reading.

The importance of Vitamin D for health

Depending on your age, Vitamin D can help you in a number of ways; from providing growing children with strong bones to ensuring you have a healthy immune system and minimizing the risks of cancer and diabetes:

(Source)

 

Infants, children and adults need various levels of vitamin D. The amount needed is measured in internal units (IU) and is as follows:

3800 IU's per day for an adult may seem like a lot, but experts believe you can get that in just 10 minutes.

 

"When the sun's UV-B rays hit the skin, a reaction takes place that enables skin cells to manufacture vitamin D. If you're fair skinned, experts say going outside for 10 minutes in the midday sun—in shorts and a tank top with no sunscreen—will give you enough radiation to produce about 10,000 international units of the vitamin" - Source

 

Keep in mind that if you have a darker skin tone your body produces less vitamin D and you may need to spend a few additional minutes under the sun.

 

How to get enough vitamin D every day for FREE in Thailand

Answer: Go outside in the sun.

The best place to get your daily dose of vitamin D is from the sun.

If you're light skinned and worried about burning or getting too much of a tan from being in the sun each day in the Bangkok, we recommend getting your sun exposure during morning hours (6am-10am) or the late evening (4pm-6:30pm).

 

The sun's UV rays are at their highest between 10am and 4pm and spending too much time in direct sunlight may cause your skin to burn or tan.

                                                                                                     

Getting your vitamin D in the morning upon waking up is best as this sends your body’s hormones and cells a signal that it's time to get to work.

 

During the Paleo caveman days, humans woke up each morning at dawn, when the sunlight hit their eyes. Our bodies have been programmed over the years to use sunlight as a trigger to wake up and regulate our body.

 

You cannot get vitamin D from being inside as glass absorbs around 97% of the UVB rays which are needed to produce vitamin D.

 

Staying in the shade also reduces your body's absorption of rays; thereby impacting how much Vitamin D your body can produce. For best results you must be in direct contact with sunlight.

 

Finally, using sunblock reduces the amount of vitamin D your body can produce.

 

Best foods to get your daily dose of Vitamin D

The best way to get your daily dose of vitamin D is the sun.

 

However, if this option is not available for you (or you’re more of a night person), you can get vitamin D from foods such as:

 

  • Fatty fish such as Sardines, Wild Salmon, Herring (600IU per serve).*

  • Egg Yolk (41 IU per yolk)

  • Lard and Bacon (500 IU per teaspoon of lard)*

  • Shiitake mushrooms (1660 IU per 100g)

 

*Foods that are organically grown and free of hormones and chemicals typically provide higher levels of IU than their counterparts. Only Free-range pigs who go outside in the sun have vitamin D. Factory pigs have nearly none. Farmed salmon has less than 25% of wild-caught salmon while eggs can have up to 3x more.

Everything we sell at the Paleo Grocery is free of antibiotics, growth hormones, additives, GMO or flavorings. Click here to see how you can try our grocery today (free delivery in Bangkok).

8 signs your body is not receiving enough vitamin D in Thailand

If you're unsure whether you get enough vitamin D each day, here are the most common symptoms of vitamin D deficiency:

 

  • Excessive sweating

  • A feeling of physical weakness

  • Chronic joint pain

  • Down-in-the-dumps mood

  • Poor sleep

  • Prone to stress fractures

  • Erectile dysfunction (men)

  • Weak immune system (you often catch colds and the flu)

 

If you have one or more of these symptoms, it may be due to a lack of vitamin D.

Summary

Are you always avoiding the sun by grabbing a taxi or waiting till sundown to go outside? If so it may be impacting your health.

 

There are many ways you can get vitamin D into your body. Simply being in direct sunlight while sitting on your balcony for 10-25 minutes each morning is enough for most people.

 

If you know a friend or family member who isn't getting enough vitamin D, feel free to share this article with them.

 

Souce: Nation

The importance of Grass-fed Beef

Beef is a staple in the Paleo diet, but not just any beef. Grass-fed beef specifically is an incredible source of nutrition.

Grass-fed beef provides value for money since you're getting more nutritional bang for your buck.

At Paleo Robbie we try to make the best  grass fed meat  accessible and affordable to everyone in Thailand.

All our meat items are imported directly from New Zealand, are completely natural i.e. grass-fed (fed on natural pasture), antibiotic-free, hormone-free and are farmed ethically and sustainable.
 

What does Grass-Fed mean?

It means exactly what it sounds like: cows eat grass as well as other grass like things that you would naturally find in a field that a cow would naturally eat.

But don't all cows eat grass? 

Yes, and no.

Most cows are fed grass at the early stages of their lives. When it comes time to fatten them up, they’re moved to feedlots where they live in confined spaces and eat mostly grains, corn and other 'food' that's not part of their natural diet. 

So while all cows usually start out on grass, only exclusively grass-fed cows live out their entire lives on grassland.  

Conventional grain-fed cattle are packed into feedlots that are unhygienic and where disease can quickly spread.

This is one of many reasons why they’re hooked up to a range of antibiotics. 

Compare this to the stress-free lush pastures that grass-fed cows enjoy their entire lives on and you'll quickly see why grass-fed cows are ethically superior.

So if cows get sick in a feedlot, why not leave them out on pasture?

  • It’s more profitable for the farmer: 
    By feeding the cow grains, which is more-calorie dense than grass, the farmer saves a lot of time to get them to the right weight.
    A grass-fed cow takes 2 years, but a feedlot cow just 16 months. 

  • It’s low in cost for the consumer: 
    By saving the farmer time and thus money, they're able to pass down some of the cost savings to you. 

  • There’s consumer demand for grain-fed meat: 
    Many consumers actually prefer grain-fed beef as it's typically quite fatty (marbled) and generally has a mild/bland taste to it.
    Grass-fed beef tends to be leaner and tastes more like beef.

     

Grass-Fed vs. Organic

“Grass-fed” is not the same thing as “organic.”

The USDA standards for organic beef specify that the animals cannot be treated with hormones or antibiotics; and that they must be given access to the outdoors, and organic, vegetarian feed.

Organic meat can still come from grain-fed cows that spend time in a feedlot, as long as the grain was organic and some access to outdoors was provided.

While some beef is both organic and grass-fed, that's mostly not the case and they are definitely not the same. 
 

Why Grass-Fed?

Paleo is big on grass-fed meat, and for good reason: 

Grass-Fed beef is significantly more nutritious 

  • Grass-fed beef contains a significant amount of conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), which has great health attributes, such as aiding in the prevention of cancer, heart disease, osteoporosis, high blood pressure and inflammation.

  • The amount of Vitamin K2 in factory-farmed meat is much lower than the amount in grass-fed meat.
    The greatest quantities of Activator X were found in the butter, milk, and meat of cows that grazed on lush green pastures in the spring.
    Vitamin K2 is important for heart health and bone health as it helps get calcium into your bones (where it belongs) and not into your arteries (where it causes plaque and heart attacks).

  • Grass-fed beef contains higher levels of heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids.

  • Grass-fed beef has more heart disease-fighting antioxidant vitamins, like vitamin E.

 

Grass-fed cows are raised ethically

The happier the cow, the healthier the cow. 

Sadly, that is not the mindset that most meat industries have.

A cow that is grain-fed lives in concentrated Animal feeding operations (CAFOs), which is usually overcrowded and unsanitary.

CAFO cows often stand up knee high in their own manure.

Ever heard of mad cow disease or E. Coli?

These are all results of modern day industrial cattle farming. This is unlikely to occur in pasture-fed cows.

New Zealand is a country where cows are almost exclusively grass-fed and consequently never had any of these outbreaks. 

CAFO cows are fed a concentrated mix of corn, soy, grains, and other supplements. A feedlot cow can grow to full weight up to a year faster than a cow fed only forage, grass, and hay.

The problem is that cows aren't made to eat grains; they are made to only eat grasses and herbs.

This is another reason cows in feedlots can get sick, which is why they're given antibiotics.

Currently the agricultural industry uses most of the worlds antibiotics, which is a big issue.

Pasture-fed cows rarely receive antibiotics.

Less than 1 in 1,000 will ever need any. And even when they do it's temporary. This is because pasture-fed cows tend to be perfectly healthy. 

Big industrial farms also feed cows more than just grain or corn.

They supplement the food with animal by-products, which is dangerous and unhealthy.

They do this simply because it fattens a CAFO cow up even faster and it saves cost. They also add HGP (hormone growth promoter) to make them grow even faster.

All of these by-products, hormones and antibiotics end up in the meat to some degree. 

In Michael Pollan's 2002 article "Power Steer" , he describes the exact life of the CAFO cow. It's a long read, but very insightful if you want to know more about the industry and why it matters where your meat comes from. 

Summing it Up

If you made it this far you might be thinking: Grass-fed beef is much more expensive than grain-fed. Why bother when I can save a couple baht?

Grass-fed beef is important. 

Yet it doesn't have to be much more expensive.

The pasture-fed beef steaks we import from New Zealand are actually cheaper than most grain-fed beef you'll find in Bangkok. 

It’s also nutritionally superior, it’s environmentally sustainable, it doesn’t breed antibiotic-resistant bacteria and it doesn’t involve stomach-turning amounts of cruelty to animals.

All these horror stories you see in recent popular documentaries are about CAFO cows, not grass-fed cows.

At Paleo Robbie, we offer 100% Grass-fed beef imported directly from New Zealand's lush farms at an affordable price. 

 

PEN

The Unconquerable Dave

About 5 years ago before I started PaleoRobbie, I was often reading posts on marksdailyapple.com, and Mark Sisson (a 60+ year old with a six-pack and one of the most successful health blogs in the world) posted the below Success Story.

Till today this is my favorite success story, and it's proof of how anyone can transform their life and get healthy again. Be inspired and read the below story (reading time: 4min). The original post can be found here.

September of 2009…

March 19, 2010…

HI MARK
JUST GOT YOUR BLUEPRINT AND AM AWAITING THE COOK BOOK. WHICH I INTEND TO TRY TO ADD TOO!
AFTER 25 YEARS OF  RAISING A FAMILY AND NOT DOING  THE “GROK” ANY MORE IT SHOWED BIG TIME….
TALK ABOUT “THE LIVING DEAD”…
I’M A SUPER COOK AND BAKER AND JUST ABOUT SLAYED US ALL….LOL
IT’S BEEN ABOUT 3-4 MONTHS OF EATING AND THINKING MORE PALEO… IF I CAN’T KILL IT- FIND IT-OR GATHER IT… I DON’T EAT IT…. SO IT’S REAL EASY TO EAT WELL. JUST THINK ABOUT GROK AND WHAT YOU’RE ACTUALLY LOOKING AT. SIMPLE!… AND THE WIFE AND KIDS STILL AROUND ARE IMPRESSED WITH MY NEW ATTITUDE AND LOOK.
HAVE LOST AT LEAST 20 POUNDS OFF A HEAVY BONED HUGE BEAR FRAME…
6′-1” AND HEADED FOR  THE LOWER 200’S. I HAVE 18 “ARMS AND THICK CHEST AND THE ABDOMEN AND CORE ARE COMING RIGHT ALONG…!!!
LEGS ARE FEELING STRONG AGAIN. ASS IS TIGHTENING UP AND I’M INTO A 38 JEAN.
YOUR BODY  TELLS YOU WHAT IT WANTS, AND IT WANTS REAL AND STRONG AND ABLE.
WHICH = SMART!!… HEAD AND BODY ARE TUNING IN WELL…
TIME TO BUY NEW CLOTHES…ALMOST!

LATER BROTHER
STAY IN THE LIGHT
GROK RULES!
DAVE PARSONS

April 22nd…

40 LBS LIGHTER IN 6 MONTHS…no problem and lovin’ it!
53 Y.O.

6’1″-240LBS AS OF 4-20-10
AND STILL SHEDDING THE EXTRAS….36 JEANS…AIMING FOR 34’S.
and a solid 220 of all muscle!!!!

YOU are ONe…of MY Two INspirations!!!!

Thanks Mark…
and if you don’t get enough hugs brother…
davegrok sends hug to Mark!!!

Illumination……..so much fun to re-learn again….still…always….
Grok on

July 18th…

HI FOLKS-
OCTOBER 1ST 2009 TO JULY 10TH 2010.
FROM 280 LBS DOWN TO 210 LBS.
JUST FROM THE PALEO DIET AND MILD EXERCISE.
ROCKIN’ THE HOUSE!!!!!!
ALL LEAN MUSCLE MASS AND NEVER LOOKIN’ BACK….THANKS SO MUCH FOR THE INSPIRATION-GUIDANCE-AND ONGOING WAY OF LIFE.
DAVE

September 9th…

IT HAS BEEN AN EXCITING AND COMPLETELY DIFFERENT YEAR NOW.
I HAVE GOTTEN IN WAY BETTER HEALTH. LOST 80 POUNDS. CAN RUN AND CLIMB AGAIN. AND AM GOING ON 54 YEARS OLD. LIFE HAS THROWN THE CURVE BALLS. THE UPS. THE DOWNS. ALL THE WORK AND LIFE RELATED “FOR BETTER- OR FOR WORSE” ISSUES…YOU GET IT. BUT THE DAILY APPLE AND THE PRIMAL LIFE GOES ON…EVERYDAY. IN ALL THE CONFUSION…IT REMAINS A SOLID PLATFORM TO WORK WITH AND ON. I READ THE APPLE….EAT THE APPLE AND EVERYDAY YOU JUST MAKE IT OKAY TO BE WHO I AM…AND BE A MEMBER OF THE PRIMAL LIFE CLAN….
NO MATTER WHAT COMES ALONG…
I KNOW SOMEONE OUT THERE IS MY FRIEND AND WE THINK ABOUT THE SAME STUFF.
THANKS MARK
THANKS BEES
THANKS TO MARK’S WIFE FOR BEING ABLE TO HANDLE THIS!
YOU HAVE NO IDEA …….OF WHAT YOU HAVE DONE FOR ME.
I SALUTE YOU ALL
DAVE

December 10th…

MERRY CHRISTMAS TO YOU AND ALL THE CREW!!
Santa got a lot thinner!…hohohohoho!
Dave

January 3rd…

primal work outs…. your approach (WAY BETTER) and actually more of a primal way than a gym gorilla.  I have my Paleo gym of trees and rocks and stuff….

check it out…54 in a month and 6 ft and 205 lbs.
a 404 lb dead lift…kickButt!!!!
Thanks Mark

January 26th…

DEAR MARK AND ALL THE PRIMAL PEOPLE OUT THERE,
I’M NOT GOOD WITH SPEECHES SO I FIGURE IF A PIC IS WORTH A 1000 WORDS.
I WILL BE 54 THIS FEB. 8TH.
TALK ABOUT PRIMAL. THAT’S ABOUT 300…DOWN TO 200…RIGHT THERE TODAY JANUARY 19TH…AND THERE AIN’T MUCH LEFT TO LOSE…..SIZE 44 TO SIZE 34.
I REMEMBER THIS….I WAS THIS SIZE WHEN I WAS 18 YEARS OLD….I THINK I MAY BE STRONGER NOW!
GROK ON AND THANK YOU FOR THE ILLUMINATION!
DAVE PARSONS

To steal words from Walt Whitman…

“I too am not a bit tamed, I too am untranslatable,
I sound my barbaric YAWP over the roofs of the world.”

A transformed man, arms to the sky, wearing flip flops in the snow. If ever there was an image of the verve and indomitable spirit of going Primal, this is it. Dave, today half a million people heard your YAWP. May it echo to half a million more. Grok on, brother. GROK ON!

 

Unscrambling egg labels

Unscrambling egg labels

Today the term free-range and organic has become an empty term, you can label eggs as free-range if chickens have 2sq feet of space or more per chicken:
 

You might aso be wondering why you never see pasture-fed chicken eggs at supermarkets, that's because you cannot industrially farm pasture-fed chickens in large quantities.

As well as a bigger space, pasture-fed chickens also need natural grasses and a foraging diet:

While they are a little more expensive to look after and feed, pasture-fed eggs provide you with more nutritional benefits than free-range and caged eggs:


At Paleo Robbie we sell two types of eggs, they are:

Pasture-fed (105b) - you can find pasture-fed duck and chicken eggs at our grocery.

Our chickens and ducks roam around free each day and their diet includes foliage, ants, insects and worms.

They are pasture-fed and go beyond all the requirements shown in the images above. 

Our chicken sanctuary contains a huge termite hill which gives chickens access to food 24/7. 

Free-range (99b) - our free-range chickens are sourced from Koi Korat and they also wonder around in open fields all day, while they do pick a few worms and eat larvae their diet isn't as rich as their pasture-fed brothers.

Due to their upbringing, we don't force our chickens to lay extra eggs. We have a limited quantity per week and you may see our eggs listed as out of stock as from time-to-time.

Not only our eggs better and tastier for you, our chickens also get to be happy and healthy chickens. 

Corn Fed Vs. Grass Fed beef

 

If you regularly read our emails or Facebook posts, you'll notice that we'll almost always refer to our beef as grass-fed or pasture-fed, but what does it really mean?

There are typically two types of beef you can find in supermarkets. They are:

Grain/corn fed - Conventionally raised cows that live in 'feedlots' for intensive animal farming. They live on confined spaces and don't get to move around. They are often given drugs and hormones to grow faster, as well as antibiotics to survive the unsanitary living conditions. Their diet consists primarily of grains or corn. We do not sell corn/grain-fed meat at Paleo Robbie.

Grass-fed
- Live and feed on pasture (big open spaces with lots of grass), are not fed industrial feed, grains or corn and are not injected with steroids to increase their weight. Grass-fed cows live longer as their growth is not accelerated using hormones or steroids. We only sell grass-fed beef at the Paleo Grocery.

Is Grass-fed beef really better? 


Taste is subjective but we believe that grass-fed meat tastes more beefy and is juicer and leaner. From a health perspective, grass-fed beef is superior as each cut contains more omega 3, B6, B12, CLA and beta-carotene. 

To tell the difference between pasture-fed and corn-fed cuts of beef, pasture-fed tends to have less marbling (fat) throughout each cut, with the fat being a light yellow color opposed to a distinct white with corn-fed:

Unlike popular belief grass-fed does not have to be more expensive than grain-fed. New Zealand has a lot of clean pasture farmland and is perfect to raise healthy cows. 

Some supermarkets sell beef as grass-fed, because all beef eats grass at the start, but in reality are feedlot cows. 

We source all our grass-fed meat directly from New Zealand where all cows are grass-fed by default.

They have strict rules for antibiotics and growth hormones and provide the cleanest healthiest beef you'll find. We source our beef from Silver Fern farms to provide you a direct pasture to plate experience. (click here to learn more about Silver Fern Farms). 

The next time you visit our online grocery, competitor or a local restaurant, try a cut of grass-fed beef and see if you can taste and spot the difference.

You can find dozens of cuts of grass-fed beef from New Zealand at our online grocery:

 

5 Thai Foods That You Think Are Healthy, But They’re Not

Whether you're a working professional, digital nomad, a caring parent or a health conscious individual who's trying to live a healthy and well-balanced life in Bangkok, with food options on every corner, you'd think finding great tasting, healthy food would be easy... right?

However,  if you look a little closer at what's actually on your plate, you may be in for quite a shock.  Recent studies reveal that while not a big problem yet, obesity is on the rise in Thailand:

        

( source)

There's a number of reasons for increasing obesity rates, but the main culprit is always going to be diet.

 

If you're an avid eater of Thai food, here's 5 Thai dishes/ingredients you'll find in food which you probably thought were healthy, but are actually bad really bad for your body.

 

1. Fruit shakes

Fruit shakes are bad, how's that possible?

Well, the fruit or vegetable part of the shake is relatively fine, it's everything else they put inside that's the problem.

 

Most fruit shake vendors will add a ladle or seven of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) which is what you'll find in carbonated sodas. HFCS is commonly used because it's cheaper to buy, but unfortunately also much worse for the body.

Ever feel tired or sleepy after drinking a fruit shake? That's the effect  HFCS has on your body.

 

  • Paleo tip : The next time you order your fruit shake, ask the vendor not to add any sugar syrup or evaporated milk. It may not taste as sweet, but it'll be a lot more healthier. Also please note that fruit shakes contain a lot of sugar naturally. Just because it's natural doesn't mean the sugar is suddenly OK. Try to keep your shakes to a bare minimum.

 

2. Stir-fried morning glory

What? Morning glory is bad for you too? Yes.. but only when it's fried and drenched in white sugar, re-used vegetable oil and excessive amount of sodium.

 

Morning glory itself is very rich in nutriments such as fibre and great for pregnant women as its contains tons of iron. However, as any expat who's been living in Thailand for any length of time already knows, Thais love to put sugar in everything!

As well as the few heaped tablespoons of white sugar,  morning glory is typically fried with low quality vegetable oil and dowsed with iodine salt. The oil they used is actually extremely unhealthy (discussed later), and frying vegetables kills some of their nutritional content.

 

  • Paleo Tip : Ask the vendor to leave out the sugar and to use as little oil as possible in your next serving. If you can handle it, try eating it raw, just be sure to wash the vegetable thoroughly with clean water first.

 

3. Most curry dishes contain MSG

Do you love your Penang and massaman curries?

 

If your local Thai curries have a savoury/umami taste you just can't put your finger on, it's probably the Monosodium glutamate (better known as MSG). MSG is added flavouring which is used in most dishes as it's much cheaper to use than actual herbs and spices.

While MSG doesn't affect everyone, typical side-effects people have after eating an MSG infested meal is:

  • Headaches
  • upset stomach
  • Skin reaction, hives
  • Feeling weak and sleepy

 

Many  expats bloggers have complained about MSG in food.

  • Paleo Tip : You can ask the vendor or restaurant not to add any MSG to your meals by saying:

"Mai sai poong choo rot"

Which translates to "don't add any MSG". Be warned though, just because you asked and they nodded their heads doesn't mean they won't add it anyway.

 

4 . Foods cooked using excessive amounts of oil

When you typically cook food using oil, you'll throw the oil away after usage, because not only is it gross to re-use it, but there are health risks associated with it. Most Thai dishes are cooked in GMO soybean oil (very cheap to buy) which is considered one of the  most harmful ingredients you'll find in all processed foods.

 

Some vendors will even  reuse oil several times over which can increase your chances of getting cancer (cancer is the  leading cause of death in Thailand too).

 

However, it could be worse, in China they use gutter oil:

 

 

 

  • Paleo Tip : Avoid deep fried foods all together.

 

5. White rice

White rice will can be found at every Thai restaurant, will usually be the cheapest item on the menu and cover at least 50% of your plate, usually more.

  rice-601254_640

Eating excessive amounts of white rice has been linked to  type 2 diabetes in Asia and is generally regarded by most as 'filler food'.

 

Filler food : low cost food of which the main purpose is to fill you up. Filler foods such as rice and bread contain low nutritional value. Rice is great for getting 'full' but doesn't give your body the vitamins and minerals it craves.

  •   Paleo tip: Start becoming conscious of what's on your plate and the benefits it provides your body. While a bowl of nice or noodles may fill you up, it doesn't provide your body with the nutriments it needs to perform at its best.

So you're telling all Thai food is bad?

No, most Thai food is healthy and good for you.

 

The issue with the food you eat in Thai/western restaurants and street stalls is the  quality of produce  and  cooking procedures .  This is why most of the food available to you is unhealthy and makes you feel sluggish and feeling bad.

 

Street food  - if you're paying 40 baht for a plate of green curry or stir fried rice, for that price you cannot expect restaurants to use high quality ingredients or coconut oil for frying. Nor can they use organic spices and herbs and is why they resort to 12 Baht seasoning packets of MSG.

 

Restaurants  - targeting expats and middle-class Thais could easily choose to use higher quality produce, better oils and throw away the MSG packets for real ingredients, but they won't.

They're already charging you x4-6 the cost of the meal ingredients itself, and they have no incentive to make your food healthier, because it only cuts into their profits or they just don't know any better.

 

At Paleo Robbie our mission is to fill the gap in the market for people who want to eat great tasting, healthy and nutritiously dense food without spending a fortune.

 

A single meal from our Meal Plan can weigh as much as 1KG with sides and contains no MSG or harmful toxins, while our online Grocery is stocked with wild-caught salmon and pastured meats, organic produce and ingredients that are full of minerals, vitamins and healthy fats that will help your immune system.

 

Summary

Finding great tasting healthy food in Bangkok is a lot harder than you think if you really take a close look at what's being served.

 

While there are restaurants on every corner, there are no official guidelines a vendor must follow to setup a restaurant and start serving food. Often all they need is a trolley, a gas tank and a month's rent paid in advance.

 

If you found this article helpful or have a friend living in Thailand who may find this of use, please click any of the share icons below.

Happy eating!

8 Foods That Should Be In Every Bangkok Kitchen

At Paleo Robbie we are all about healthy living, and want all our followers to stick with their health and fitness goals all the way through 2016.

 

To help you on your pilgrimage, we've come up with a list of 8 essential foods everyone living in Bangkok must have in their kitchen.

 

How many of these are in your kitchen right now? Leave a comment in our Facebook post letting us know.

 

1. Coconut water

How many times a week do you run into your apartment after spending any amount of time outside in the heat, and the first thing you do is turn on your air-con unit and head to the fridge for a refreshing drink?

 

While a bottle of cold water is a superb choice, there's something better for Bangkok expats... organic coconut water.

 

    

Not having coconut water in your kitchen when living in Bangkok should be a sin.

 

Coconut water contains electrolytes, calcium, magnesium and salts which replenish your body's lost nutriments after spending hours sweating in the Bangkok heat. While chopping up a fresh coconut is the best, it's always useful to have a bottle of raw coconut water for a quick drink.

  • Paleo tip: Make sure you go for 100% organic coconut water and not coconut water with added sugar, water or preservatives. Just spend a few seconds reading the label to see if there are any other added ingredients.


2. Organic watermelons

Ever wondered why watermelons in Thailand taste so great? It's usually because they are injected with sugar, additives and other colourings.

Watermelons in Thailand are one of our favorite fruits to snack on, but you need to know where it came from and what's really inside.

 

 

Watermelons are a wonderful addition to Thai kitchen because they are, just like coconuts, full of electrolytes which will help you prevent dehydration in the Bangkok heat. They are also cheap, full of vitamin A, B6, C and packed with lycopene, antioxidants and amino acids.

  • Paleo tipAdams Organic is a great place to get yourself organic, non-injected watermelons you can trust.


3. Wild-caught salmon (or any wild-caught fish)

Not a month goes by without allegations of the Thai fishing trade and what really goes on at sea.

 

Most nutrient dense fish such as salmon and tuna cannot be sourced from the shores of Thailand and as a result is usually imported or farmed locally.

 

Which is better?

 

Without boring you with a few paragraphs on which is better and why, here's an awesome infographic showing you the difference between farm- and wild-caught salmon:

    

(source)

You should aim to eat at least 2 pieces of wild-caught fish per week, they are high in protein, and the good fats we don't get enough of like omega 3, which is good for your immune system and helps against heart disease.

 

4. Free-Range Pastured eggs

Free-range eggs cost more than their sad caged brothers, but what does free-range really mean and is it worth it?

 

There are 3 types of eggs you can typically buy in Bangkok, they are:

 

 

(Source)

All eggs sold at Paleo Robbie are pasture-raised and 100% of their diet comes from natural foraging. We do not feed our chickens corn and when we say they are organic, we really mean it.


Don't be mislead by the term 'free-range' as these chickens are anything by free.

 

  • Paleo tip: Even with all the sunlight we're exposed to, many expats in Bangkok have a vitamin D deficiency. Pasture-fed eggs are a good source of vitamin D and a great solution if you don't spend enough time in the baking heat.

 

PS: We are currently having a special offer all our -fed eggs until January 10th.  Click here to find out more.


5. Coconut cooking oil

Chances are you're using either coconut oil or olive oil for all your frying. If you're using canola, vegetable, or any other kind of oil, please stop for the sake of your own health... it's really not good for you.


Coconut Oil and Olive Oil both have the same amount of calories, although coconut oil does have more saturated fat... but don't freak out, saturated fat is not bad for you.

 

While we love olive oil, being in Thailand you should try to make use of the wonderful local coconuts. Coconut Oil might even be better for frying as it has a higher smoking point.

What is a smoking point?

In a nutshell, the smoking point is the level of heat needed for a blueish smoke to appear from the oil. At this point oxidation takes place and the oil is no longer good to cook with.

 

The smoking point shows the temperature limit at which the oil can be used. The smoking point for virgin olive oil is 160-190°C where coconut oil has a smoke point of 207°C.

 

Not a huge difference we know, but it can make a difference. Virgin coconut oil can also be used in coffee  and other drinks to improve cognitive function.


6. Avocados

Avocado is the all purpose fruit.

 

You can eat them straight out of the shell, spread it on food, blend it in a shake or turn into mash and enjoy it alongside some wild-caught salmon.

 

There are a few varieties of avocados you can get from Thailand. There's local Thai avocados, Burmese avocados and imported Avanza Avocados which we use in our Meal Plan.

 

 

Avocados contain more potassium than bananas are loaded with vitamin B5, B6, C, E K and folate. Avocados are also great if you're on a low carb diet as they are a great source of healthy fats.

  • Paleo tip: the seed of an avocado contains 70% of all the antioxidants found inside. Instead of throwing them away, cut them into small pieces and add them to your next homemade fruit shake.


7. Grass-fed beef

We have some more bad news for you, it's not only watermelons that are injected with sugar, beef is too!

 

Glucose (simple sugar) is often added to different cuts of beef to make them taste sweeter.  The only problem is that if they are directly injecting sugar into the meat, who knows what else they adding!

When choosing between grain and or grass-fed beef, here's the difference between the two:

(Source)

All our grass-fed beef is free of any injections and is 100% pure beef!

 

8. Leafy Greens (kale and spinach)

 

Buying kale or spinach back home may cost you an arm and a leg depending on where you shop, but in Thailand you can high-quality greens for a fraction of the price.

 

You can use both to make healthy salads, green smoothies or eat them raw.

 

Kale has a little more protein and calcium, while spinach is packed full of iron and magnesium:

kale-spinach-A
(source)

Both are great sources of food and packed full of goodness. Are they in your fridge?


Summary

We easily could have added another 10, 20 or even an 100 food items to this list as Thailand is a country with lots of amazing produce, but for a balanced diet we feel the 8 power foods above are a must in every Bangkok kitchen.

 

If you plan on getting yourself into shape this year, here’s 8 items you must place on your grocery list.

Which must have health foods do you have in your kitchen? Leave a comment on our Facebook post letting us know.

 

5 Foods to keep you hydrated in Bangkok

April and May are Bangkok’s hottest months with dehydration creeping up on all of us. Expect to see the heat reach 38c this week which will feel much closer to 37c>  when you add the humidity and pollution.

 

You won’t be able to go outside for more than a few minutes before your clothes are soaked in sweat, wishing that you would have stayed in your room next to your air-con unit.

Expats who move to Thailand don’t realize the importance of staying hydrated in Thailand. If you just woke up or spent your last few hours outside then there’s a good chance you’re dehydrated right now.

 

Many expats who move to Thailand suffer from constant fatigue, migraines, constipation and fogginess for years without exactly knowing why.

 

Asides from a poor diet, the biggest concerning factor to the symptoms above is dehydration.

 

Do you think consciously about being hydrated in Bangkok? In today's article we're going to reveal how to know if you're dehydrated and the best foods to remedy the situation.

 

Signs of dehydration in Bangkok

Many people believe that if your body is becoming dehydrated you become thirsty, however this is not always the case.

 

There are five key signs you should look out for to spot dehydration in the tropics, they are:

  • Dark yellow urine
  • Headaches
  • Sleepiness
  • Feelings of nausea or fatigue
  • Irritability

Have you ever wondered why your pee in the morning is dark yellow?

 

It's because you didn't drink any water during your sleep and your body is in need of water.

 

If you don’t take the necessary steps each morning to correctly hydrate yourself, your interactions at work, the gym or your daily wanderings around Bangkok will feel extremely tiresome and difficult.

 

Okay then, so what foods and drinks should you consume along with water?

 

Rehydration is more than just drinking water, your body needs to replenish electrolytes and minerals which are lost through perspiration.

 

1. Watermelon (that do not contain added sugar)

Fruits are a great source of water, with watermelon ranking as one of the best sources due to its high water (92%) and mineral content:

 

(Source)

Every bite of watermelon contains potassium, magnesium and phosphorus which are key minerals to hydrating and balancing your body’s internal system.

 

Just remember to choose your Thai watermelon from a trusted source, as many are injected with sugar which can increase dehydration!

2. Cucumbers

Cucumbers are on average around 96.7% water, contain vitamins A, B and C and acts as a catalyst to help flush toxins out of your body.

 

Cucumbers in Thailand are inexpensive and can be found in almost all supermarkets in Bangkok.

3. Broth Soup

Broth is made from simmering bones in water over a prolonged period of time, this process extracts minerals from the bones into the water (and tastes great too!)

 

Eating broth soup is arguably the tastiest way to stay hydrated in Thailand.

 

When your body is dehydrated it requires sodium (salt) to replenish what has been depleted, broth soups do a wonderful job of that.

 

You should be able to find broth soup at every street vendor cart that sells noodles, but chances are they are loaded with high amounts of MSG and too much added sodium that may end up having a negative effect on your body (bloat, tiredness, fatigue).

 

We always advise making your own broth when possible so you can control the amount of sodium that goes into each soup.

 

The best is always to make your own broth at home the way you like it, but if you don't have the time to make your own broth, you can find chicken and veal broth at our Paleo Grocery that is packed with hearty goodness.

 

4. Bananas

While they don't look like they contain much water, bananas are in fact  74% water and native to Southeast Asia making them plentiful and cheap.

 

(Source)

 

Bananas are one of your best options for replacing lost electrolytes as they are high in potassium, magnesium and manganese which your body excretes in Thailand’s unforgiving heat.

5. Coconut water

Don’t be fooled by the Gatorade bottles claiming they are the perfect sports drink or that they will hydrate you.

 

The mass majority of sports drink you find at the are high in HFCS (processed high fructose corn syrup, bad sugar):

 

(Source)

Coconut water on the hand is lower in sugar (unprocessed) and rich in calcium, magnesium, phosphorous, potassium and sodium which are all in their natural form.

 

If you can, drinking directly from the coconut is best and tastiest. If you’d like a more convenient way to drink coconut water, you can find organic coconut water from Maprao for as little as 40b per bottle at our Paleo Grocery.

 

Foods that increase dehydration

How do you avoid getting dehydrated in the first place aside from spending time in the sun? Reduce your intake of the following:

 

Coffee - We've all heard that caffeine in coffee acts as a diuretic and can result in dehydration, while this is true the effect it has is quite minimal unless you're drinking more than one coffee per day, or are drinking them with little water (espressos).

 

Limit your coffee intake to 1 cup per day.

 

Fried Foods - Most fried foods are processed and extremely high in salt, if you're eating fried food daily you can quickly go over your daily allowance of salt in a single meal and trip your body into dehydration directly after eating.

 

All dishes used in our Meal Plan are a great alternative to fried foods.

 

Soy sauce - A story published not so long ago told a story about a teenager who consumed too much soy sauce and ended up in a coma which almost killed him.

 

 

Doctors believed the excess salt he consumed from the sauce resulted in a condition called hypernatremia due to the excessive salt intake.

 

Be watchful of the condiments you use for your foods, many are high in sugars and salts which combined with the tropical heat of Thailand can quickly dehydrate your body.

Are electrolytes sachets worth buying?

If you’ve stayed in Bangkok for any prolonged period of time you will know someone who swears by the use of electrolyte sachets you can find at the 7-Eleven and almost all pharmacies.

 

They cost around 7-13b and they are meant to be consumed when dehydrated or after exercise, but are they really effective?  

 

In most cases no, they are merely a cheaper version of a sugary sports drinks that is condensed into powder form.

Unless you’re suffering from severe dehydration, you will be fine sticking to the 5 items listed above.

Summary

Do not underestimate the seriousness of dehydration, the effects of eating the wrong foods or not consuming enough water is compounded several times over in Thailand due to the excessive heat.

 

One study found that 75% of all Americans are dehydrated and we strongly suspect the number in Thailand to be something similar if not higher due to the tropical climate.

 

If you've had headaches for months or often feel lethargic or tired - are you drinking enough water in Thailand?

 

To keep up to-date with all our Thailand health related blog posts, be sure to pop your email address below so you never miss an article!

 

Think this article will be useful for your friends? Then share it on Facebook to raise awareness.
 

 

8 Gyms to try in Bangkok

Leading a healthy lifestyle in Bangkok isn't just about eating right and avoiding junk food.  

 

A bit of exercise every week increases your body's immune system, makes you feel better physically, mentally and keeps you motivated to lead a healthier lifestyle.   With so many gyms in Bangkok to choose from, we've listed a few of our personal favourites including details of what they offer, prices and interactive Google maps to find them.m  

1. BASE

BASE is open 7 days a week and located right next to Thong Lor BTS. BASE is not your regular free weights gym, they runs several daily group classes and private sessions.  Classes range from HIIT, strength training to group classes that are suitable for all levels.

 

5 Thai Foods You Have To Stop Eating On A Daily Basis

Thailand is one of the best places in the world to eat cheap and delicious food. But if you’re eating any of the 5 items listed in this article on a daily basis, you're seriously compromising your health and well-being.

Here are 5 foods that most expats living in Thailand eat everyday but don't know the health risk they are running.

 

1. Fried foods

Paleo Robbie cooks all Meal Plan dishes in organic coconut oil, tallow or clarified grass-fed butter, nothing else.  

After we finish cooking all the meals the chefs at Paleo Robbie throw away the butter and oil, because not only does reusing oil increase your chances of getting cancer, but also because all the nutrients are lost and what you're left with you simply don’t want to use anymore.
 


( Source)

5 Super Foods In Thailand You Aren’t Eating But Should

 

A few weeks ago we listed 5 potentially harmful foods that could seriously damage your health if you ate them on a daily basis.

 

In this article we’re doing the exact opposite and reveal 5 Thai super foods you can find almost anywhere in Thailand that you never eat, but should.

 

1. Seaweed

Seaweed has been dubbed a ‘superfood‘ by many and as of late become very popular in western countries.
 
seaweed
 
( Source)
 
Seaweed is packed with vitamin B12, fiber and iodine.
 

Studies reveal that around 40% of the world’s population are at risk of iodine deficiency, which can lead to future health problems in young children ( dried seaweed from the 7-Eleven doesn’t count).

5 Sugary Drinks in Thailand to Avoid (And What to Replace Them With)

 

Thailand loves sugar and it is in just about everything… including your favourite drinks!

 

And they don’t just put in a little to add to the taste, often you can find as much as 20-70g of sugar or high fructose corn syrup (HFSC) per serving as you’re about to find out.

 

In this article we list sugary Thai drinks you should avoid and what to replace them with instead (don’t worry, our alternatives taste just as good or even better).

1. Fruit shakes

Your average fruit shake from a street vendor contains approximately 40-70g of sugar.

How To Avoid Getting Bitten By Mosquitos In Thailand

 

Reading Time: 4 minutes.

While rainy season is officially over, getting dengue fever in Thailand is still a potential risk. This year alone more than 42,000 people have been infected by the virus and has resulted in more than 35 deaths in Thailand alone.

 

The dengue fever virus is transmitted by mosquitoes and can lead to vomiting, high fever, headaches, fatigue, and several other nasty symptoms which can last for several weeks and sometimes even lead to death.

 

In today’s article, you will learn:

  1. Why Thailand mosquitoes are attracted to certain people
  2. Why pregnant women are at greater risk to mosquito bites
  3. Which parts of the body they bite the most and why
  4. Why you should never use DEET spray
  5. How to make a homemade mosquito trap in under 1 minute.

1. Why Thailand mosquitoes love to bite you

If you’ve spent any amount of time in a tropical country you’ll know that mosquitoes like certain people more than others.

Cooking with the real thing

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Coconut oil is fantastic, and  olive oil  richly deserves all its good press. But they’re not the only Paleo fat choices around! In fact, some of the best Paleo-friendly fats might be right under your nose: animal fats.

Animal fat, of course, has a terrible reputation, but like all the rest of the low-fat myth, it’s completely undeserved. Fat, including saturated fat, from healthy pastured animals  does not cause heart disease, cancer, high cholesterol, obesity or anything else.  Chalk up one more point for traditional wisdom: the fats our grandparents and great-grandparents cooked with are good for us after all.

Why choose animal fat?

When you have jars of olive or coconut oil available in every store, why would you want to go for something “weird” like tallow or lard?

  • It’s usually cheaper. Many farmers will literally give it away, because nobody wants it. With the rest of the world still terrified that looking sideways at a spoon of lard will give them heart disease, mass quantities of animal fat are yours for the taking.

  • It’s delicious. Soybean and canola oil aren’t just unhealthy; they’re also a crime against taste buds everywhere. The right fat will do wonders for your cooking, and make even ordinary dishes taste like amazing indulgences. There’s a reason why duck fat French fries are so legendary.

  • It has health benefits. For example,  here’s one paper  where beef tallow increased the power of conjugated linoleic acid in fighting mammary tumors.  This study  is extremely interesting. A 10% beef tallow diet was carcinogenic, but when 1%  conjugated linoleic acid was added, the diet became anti-carcinogenic. This may suggest that pasture-raised tallow (which naturally contains conjugated linoleic acid) is significantly more healthful than factory-farmed tallow.

In  this study , beef tallow helped subjects absorb Vitamin A better than sunflower oil. In  this study , feeding either lard or tallow to alcoholic rats reduced liver damage dramatically compared to corn oil.

It’s hard to find studies in human subjects, or studies where animal fats were given without massive doses of soy or corn oil alongside, but the data we do have is encouraging.

Lard

Lard is the fat from a pig; both the raw and the rendered fat are called lard.

Raw fat: will be white to pale pink. It may have scraps of meat, connective tissue, or skin clinging to it (hey, you’re buying a part of something that was once alive; it’s not going to look 100% perfect all the time).

Rendered fat: should be pure white to very pale warm cream color. It’s solid at room temperature, but soft – around the consistency of butter.

How to cook it: lard is irresistible melted on top of a baked sweet potato (as a replacement for butter), or use it to cook any pork dish for extra flavor.

Fat composition:

Saturated

39%

Monounsaturated

45%

Polyunsaturated

11%
 

Suet or Tallow

Suet or tallow is the fat from a cow. Suet is the raw fat; tallow is the rendered fat.

Raw fat: will be white to pale yellow, crumbly, and very light for its size. It may have scraps of meat, connective tissue, or skin clinging to it.

Rendered fat: should be white to cream-colored. Because it’s highly saturated, it’s hard and brittle at room temperature. You can’t scoop it, and to cut it you’ll need a sharp knife. If this is a pain in the neck, you can pour your rendered tallow into an ice cube mold while it’s still hot and liquid; it will solidify in the cubes and you can pop them out to cook with one at a time.

How to cook it: tallow is one of the most stable cooking fats this side of coconut oil. Because it has a relatively high amount of saturated and a relatively low amount of polyunsaturated fat, it’s ideal for high-heat cooking. It has a very mild beef flavor, and it’s tasty with almost any kind of vegetables or eggs.

Fat composition:

Saturated

50%

Monounsaturated

42%

Polyunsaturated

4%
 

Duck fat

Both the raw and the rendered fat are simply called “duck fat,” although rendered is much more common to find in stores.

Raw fat: typically comes attached to a duck. Should be white to pale yellow or pink. Feels soft and slightly greasy.

Rendered fat: solid but soft at room temperature, around the consistency of butter. Should be a creamy white.

How to cook it: Duck fat is the Cadillac of animal fats – it’s so decadent you almost want to eat it straight from the spoon. Try roasting parsnips or other starchy root vegetables in it for a delicious treat. Alternately, try a  confit .

Fat composition:

Saturated

33%

Monounsaturated

49%

Polyunsaturated

13%

Summing it Up

Animal fat is healthy, delicious, and economical. It just doesn’t make sense to butcher a cow, throw out huge chunks of perfectly good fat, and then buy more cooking fat to brown your meat with! And animal fat is also delicious in a way “vegetable oil” just can’t match – try it once, and you’ll never go back to tasteless junk fat again.

Look in the fats section of our online grocery store for lard from free-range pigs and tallow(un-rendered) from pasture-fed cows.

Article originally from paleoleap.com by Sebastian Noel