Day Two – Lenten Fasting for the Orthodox Paleophile


Fasting is good for you!  You’ve seen the science on intermittent fasting, building willpower muscles, and the like.  You also recognize that it is an important part of The Orthodox Way to all things good.  Maybe you are like me and you have decided to augment the standard Orthodox fasting regimen with one that avoids GMO’s, gluten, high frucctose corn syrup, and the like.  I know some of you have embraced the “paleo” diet, combining intermittent fasting with a concern for real food and a preference for good fats and avoidance of all but the best of carbs.  This works great during “normal” weeks, but it can get tricky (unless you want to do the ultra-low calorie diet that supposedly works miracles… no thank you!).

So what is an Orthodox Paleophile to do during the longer fasts?   

Here are my staples:

  • Red Mill Coconut flakes (works great as cereal; I like it with TJ’s Unsweetened Coconut Milk).  Even better when topped with good nuts.
  • Macadamia Nuts.  These things are awesome.  High in good fat, they are the most satisfying lenten paleo fasting food I have found.  I buy organic ones in five pound bags from Amazon.
  • MCT Oil in pretty much everything; on salads, in coffee (with coconut manna), you name it.  Like the Macadamia Nuts, MCT Oil (and regular coconut oil satisfy the fat craving pretty well).
  • White rice.  No, it’s not great, but it’s not awful either.
  • TJ’s rice cakes, covered with hummus, coconut manna, or whatever (watch out for peanut butter – peanuts aren’t a real nut!).
  • Stir fried vegetables, heavy on the sweet potatoes.  I have this a lot over rice.  
  • Sweet potatoes.  Man, I love those things.  Stir fried, baked, even raw.  I hear they are really good for you, too.
  • Dark or unsweetened chocolate.  Maybe it’s an acquired taste, but I love baker’s chocolate.  Plus it’s a super-food.
  • Cheat foods:  I’ll lose my macho-man paleo frood card for admitting this, but I occasional jones hard for some soy.  Whether it is fermented tofu or your basic TJ soy sausages, this is what I do when even the macadamias can’t scratch that itch.
  • Indian food.  Really spicy Indian food.  Yes, there are quasi-paleo Asian dishes (and I love them), but is there anything better than curry fire during a fast?  I don’t think so.

Just a short list; hopefully it’s enough to keep you on the real ancestral food bandwagon through Advent (and all the other fasts).  I’m sure you have your own favorites: don’t keep them to yourselves!