Chareva’s gardens are pretty much done for the year, but she harvested these recently:


This bounty came from a small patch of ground, maybe 16 x 8.  Imagine if we’d grown an acre of the things.  These squashes, along with a book I just finished, got me thinking (again) about what the true paleo diet was and wasn’t.

At one time, I believed Paleo Man was first and foremost a hunter who spent most of the year living on a diet of meat, meat and more meat. Then autumn rolled around, and Paleo Man would eat a few squashes, tubers and fruits during the brief harvest season.  Then it was back to the meat or the fish, because plant foods weren’t available.

Let’s just say that belief has been squashed.  With proper care, these squashes will be edible well into the winter.  That was also the case with the sweet potatoes we grew and harvested last year.  So if Paleo Man knew a little about proper food curing and storage – and I believe he did – he could have been eating squashes and tubers for a good chunk of the year.

I commute to Nashville three days per week, which means three to four hours per week in my car, depending on traffic.  I spend the drive time listening to books.  Blood and Thunder, the book I just finished, is about the conquering (or theft, if you prefer) of the American Southwest. The culture of the Indian tribes who lived there is described at length.  Food sources:  sheep, goats, occasional buffalo, deer, elk and other wild game – there’s that meat-meat-meat part of the paleo diet – but also maize, beans, pumpkins and ground tubers.

Granted, these Indians didn’t settle down and build towns around their crops.  In fact, in one stirring speech recounted in the book, an Apache warrior explained to an American soldier why the Apaches didn’t want to become farmers and send their kids to the reservation school:  you white people spend your lives as slaves, working for the sake of your big houses and your crops, he said.  Your schools teach your children how to be good slaves.  We don’t want to live like slaves, and we don’t want your schools to teach our children how to be slaves.  We want to be free.

But while they preferred a nomadic lifestyle, many Indians of the Southwest – the Navajos in particular – were quite adept at growing plant foods.  They planted, moved around at will during the warm months (herding their goats and sheep along with them), then came back in time for the harvest.   In fact, as the book explains, they depended on their maize, beans and pumpkins to get them through the winter.

Unfortunately for them, the U.S. Army figured that out.  An army general assigned Kit Carson the task of finding and destroying the fields where Navajos and other Indians grew their crops.  Carson apparently had little taste for the job – his first wife was an Arapaho, and he didn’t agree with the policy of herding Indians onto reservations – but he followed orders.  With their plant foods destroyed, the Navajos surrendered to avoid starving to death.

If these Indians were typical of paleo people, then tubers and squashes were part of the paleo diet.  Their diet would certainly be low-carb compared to the sugar-laden, wheat-laden diet of the modern western world, but it wasn’t zero-carb or ketogenic by any means.

You could argue that the Indians of the Southwest in the 1800s weren’t typical paleo people because their lifestyle had been transformed by the introduction of horses.  That mobility allowed them to be nomadic much of the year and still return to their maize and pumpkins at harvest time.   So perhaps the Indians east of the Mississippi – who didn’t ride horses – are a better example.

Well, those Indians ate squashes and tubers as well.  One of the plants we’re considering growing next year here on the farm is Apios Americana, otherwise known as the American groundnut.  Here’s some of what Wikipedia has to say about it:

The tubers were a staple food among most Native American groups within the natural range of the plant … In 1749, the travelling Swedish botanist Peter Kalm writes, “Hopniss or Hapniss was the Indian name of a wild plant, which they ate at that time… The roots resemble potatoes, and were boiled by the Indians who ate them instead of bread.”… The early author Rafinesque observed that the Creeks were cultivating the plant for both its tubers and seeds…  In 1910, Parker writes that the Iroquois were consuming significant quantities of groundnuts up until about 30 years before his writing … The author Gilmore records the use of groundnuts by the Caddoan and Siouan tribes of the Missouri river region, and the authors Prescott and Palmer record its use among the Sioux. The Native Americans would prepare the tubers in many different ways. Many tribes peeled them and dried them in the sun, such as the Menomini who built scaffolds of cedar bark covered with mats to dry their tubers for winter use.

Another plant we’re considering growing is Cyperus esculentus, otherwise known as the tiger nut.  Richard Nikoley has written about tiger nuts several times on his blog.  Apparently they were a major food source for early humans, including paleo Indians in North America.  Here’s another quote from Wikipedia:

It has been suggested that the extinct hominin Paranthropus boisei, the “Nutcracker Man,” subsisted on tiger nuts.  Prehistoric tools with traces of C. esculentus tuber starch granules have been recovered from the early Archaic period in North America, from about 9,000 years ago, at the Sandy Hill excavation site at the Mashantucket Pequot Reservation in Mashantucket, Connecticut. The tubers are believed to have been a source of food for those Paleo-Indians.

I ordered one bag of tiger nuts from Amazon and liked them enough to order several more bags.  They’ve replaced almonds as my watching-football snack.  I enjoy the taste very much –like coconut with a hint of raisin — but it takes awhile to chew them because they’re very high in fiber and resistant starch.  (If you have a constipation problem, I can almost guarantee tiger nuts will fix it.)  I like the idea of growing tiger nuts because they’re apparently quite prolific – some strains are so prolific they’re considered an invasive species.  That tells me they’re not difficult to grow.

It’s clear from the historical evidence that our paleo ancestors ate squashes and tubers.  That being said, I’m not quite as enthusiastic as Richard Nikoley when it comes to white potatoes.  Yes, if you cook and cool them, you get some resistant starch.  That helps to reduce the glucose spike.

But like many other foods we buy today, modern potatoes were bred to be more palatable than their ancient counterparts – which means less fiber and more starch in the case of tubers, or less fiber and more fructose in the case of fruit.  I still believe diabetics and people with genetically low levels of amylase need to be careful not to over-eat those foods.

Tiger nuts are tubers, but they’re not exactly the metabolic equivalent of a baked Russet potato.  White potatoes are low in fiber and fat.  Tiger nuts are high in fiber and fat, both of which help to slow the release of glucose into the bloodstream.  Putting numbers to the comparison, if I eat a small baked potato that provides 120 calories, I get 30 carbs of which 3.5 grams are fiber (26.5 net carbs), and 4 calories from fat.  If I eat an ounce of raw tiger nuts that provides 120 calories, I get 19 carbs of which 10 grams are fiber (nine net carbs) and 63 calories from fat.

Think about that fiber content for a second.  I don’t know how big Nutcracker Man was or what his daily calorie needs were, but if I ate 2,400 calories of tiger nuts to get through the day, I’d end up consuming 200 grams of fiber.  I hope Nutcracker Man subscribed to a good magazine.

So yes, Nutcracker Man subsisted on a tuber, but his diet was way high in fiber and more than 50% fat by calories.  Richard listed tiger nuts as 42% carbohydrate, but if I go with the net carbs (the fiber would be converted to short-chain fatty acids in the colon), I get 30%.

So what was the true paleo diet?  It would, of course, vary by region.  But based on what we know about paleo people discovered in modern times (like the Indians in North America) and the foods other paleo people ate, I think Paul Jaminet got it right in the Perfect Health Diet book:  more than 50% fat by calories, with the carb calories in a range of 15% to 30%, mostly from tubers and squashes.  Not meat-meat-meat, not VLC and not ketogenic, but still roughly twice the fat and half the carbohydrate recommended by our national diet dictocrats.

I’ll take meat-meat-meat over the USDA diet any ol’ time  But I don’t have to choose from those two options, so I’ll take meat-meat-meat with a side of squash and some greens.

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70 Responses to “My Previous View Of The Paleo Diet Got Squashed”
  1. Nads says:

    My diet has evolved this way too, as I’ve gone from first fructose free, then seed oil free, then low carb, ketogenic and now what makes me feel best, cycling lowish and occasionally moderate carbs, high fat, not excessive protein. It is actually what keeps my appetite under control, and my mental happiness and energy levels best. For someone with a 35 year history of binge eating (although no weight needing to be lost), this means everything to me. I still keep the fructose really really minimal though as it can start me on a cycle that is hard to stop. I’m ok if I have high fructose fruit one day, as long as I don’t back it up the next day.

    Good luck to everyone finding out what works for them.

    • Tom Naughton says:

      Cycling seems to work best for me too. I still end up eating nothing but meat, eggs and green vegetables on some days because that’s what sounds good to me.

  2. Tatertot says:

    Tom, Tom, Tom…all this talk of Native American foods and not one mention of corn?

    Companion planting was invented by Native Americans planting the ‘three sisters’ (corn, squash and beans).

    For a taste of what corn should be, buy some non-GMO Masa Harina (Bob’s Red Mill sells), and learn to make tortillas…you’ll be a convert to corn! Lots of seed manufacturers sell heirloom corn bred for corn meal.

    Modern day sweet corn is garbage. Go for the old types and nixtamalize it.

    Did you see my pictures of the tiger nuts I grew in AK this summer? It’s a great crop if you have loose, sandy soil. Eaten fresh they are awesome! They get sweeter as they dry.

    Welcome back!

    • Tom Naughton says:

      Our soil is rocky — the state’s theme is “Rocky Top” for good reason — but from what I’ve read online, I think they’d grow just fine here.

      I may try some heritage breed of corn someday, but I don’t like corn enough to make it a priority.

  3. Melissa Cline says:

    Those squashes look great!
    We’re temporarily in an apartment as part of a move, but I can’t wait to be able to garden again and love benefitting from the research y’all have done. Those tiger nuts sound really interesting.

  4. Dewey says:

    Are the green ones summer or winter squash?

  5. Konner and Eaton in 2010 estimated that the typical ancestral diet provided over 70 grams/day of fiber. Most Americans today are probably in the 15-20 gram range.

    -Steve

  6. Troy Wynn says:

    Here’s an easy experiment for you Tom. Eat 2400 calories from Tiger nuts and see what happens to your body. You can be a paleo nut man for a day or two. Just kidding…. Don’t think I’d want to experience 200 grams of fiber in one day.

  7. Mark says:

    But Tom, the USDA recommends all your fibre comes from bread and blah blah blah saturated fat blah blah blah heart disease blah blah blah plant based diet blah blah blah studies show. In summary, you’re wrong about paleo so you should stop trying to help people. Heh, always wanted to have one ‘those’ rants on your blog. By the way, I have to say thanks for highlighting this issue; I was one of those people who felt lousy on very very low carb. Some potato a couple of times a week (chips fried in tallow with salt) have made me feel a little bit more normal.

    • Tom Naughton says:

      That’s really what it’s all about for me: finding what works, which will of course vary from person to person.

      • JillOz says:

        IN Australia now there is a range of low carb potatoes, about half that of normal potatoes, I gather

        I haven’t tried them yet but thought it was a great idea.
        What do you think?

  8. Debi says:

    I’m thinking about growing tiger nuts also, but in our area this is invasive so I need to figure out a way to contain them. So far I’ve read mixed reviews on planting them in pots. I’ll be looking forward to hearing how these work out for you if you do decide to try growing them.

    • Tom Naughton says:

      I’ll be sure to report the results … unless I end up creating a tiger-nut invasion that ruins the Tennessee agriculture industry, in which case I’ll deny everything.

    • Duck Dodgers says:

      If you know anyone who works at the USDA, forward them this paper and help make tiger nuts legal to grow in the US:

      Chufa (Cyperus esculentus, Cyperaceae): A Weedy Cultivar or a Cultivated Weed? (Free Registration)

      The paper explains why the sativas variety (the Valencian “Chufa” kind) are perfectly fine to grow and should be made legal by the USDA. Incidentally it’s easy to find that variety, as that’s the only variety they grow in Valencia, and if you buy Valencian tiger nuts (most commonly sold) you can literally take them out of the bag and use them as seeds.

      The Ancient Egyptians are the ones who created the sativas variety currently grown in Valencia. Its tubers grow down instead of out to the sides, so it’s not weedy. However, the weedy varieties are winter proof and the cultivated sativas variety prefers warm weather and a particular kind of soil—which is why the sativas variety is really only grown in Valencia.

      Anyway, buy a bag of Valencian tiger nuts and plant a few of the tubers from the bag in a row. They are just as manageable as the ones grown in Valencia. Don’t plant wild weedy varieties of tiger nuts, as a single tuber will spread like wildfire. 🙂

  9. GrannyM says:

    Nice article! I never thought paleo peoples only ate meat but the tubers etc that they ate were quite different from what we have now so it was probably relatively low carb compared to what people eat today. Corn & winter squashes have been bread to be much sweeter. Plus they had meat/fish drying methods pretty far back in history, including making things like pemmican which would have a high fat content too. So they still had protein & fat during winter months maybe just not quite as much. Also it would be nice if we could get the kind of maize/corn that native tribes used as they would be much higher in fiber and much much lower in sugar/carbs. Being from Massachusetts I’m familiar with some of the ancient cultural traditions and I’ve always been nuts for pumpkins & cranberries! I’m going to try the tiger nuts-thanks for the tip! They seem like a really good ancient food that is good for the gut too. I won’t be able to get them very often but it’s good to know I can treat myself to them occasionally.

  10. John Myers says:

    Pumpkins are awesome. It’s a great vitamin A bomb. Carotenoids! And the seeds? 4 oz. of pepitas are loaded with magnesium. Goes good on top of most anything. Squash, leafy greens. Great.
    My question is what did the wild ones look like 20,000 years ago? Do the wild pumpkins grow as big as a VW bug? Were they even the size of an apple? What’s the flesh like? I’m guessing it’s a big wad of un-chewable fiber like a lot of wild counterparts.
    Selective breeding has been great for the human diet. I just doubt that the wild tubers/squashes are remotely similar, so imagining that our prehistoric counterparts dined well on them is a stretch.
    We’re coming to the end of Free Zucchini Season in the Pacific Northwest – I have a freezer that is crowded with the spiralized squash. I’m pro veggies. I’m thinking we can’t do much extrapolation based on what we have access to now.

    • Tom Naughton says:

      That’s the difficult part of determining what the true paleo diet was. We don’t have access to their exact plants, although petrified-poop samples indicate the diet was very high in fiber.

      • Kristin says:

        That was one thing I did have to agree with Christina Warrinner’s Ted Talk on debunking the Paleo diet. I had a lot of beefs with her tunnel vision viewpoint but it certainly is the case that no, we certainly are NOT eating the same foods that our Paleo ancestors did. Especially in the really ancient time she speaks of.

        In the more modern times of the Anasazi of the Southwest we do know that their diet was much closer to what we would recognize. The strains of corn and squash would have been different but not by that much. I think drawing a parallel with those people is a valid one for us. Especially since like us they were very urbane.

        • Tom Naughton says:

          I agreed with the same part of her speech: we can’t eat the foods people ate 100,000 years ago, because those foods are gone. But we can try to mimic the nutrient content.

      • Mike says:

        It seems to me like when it comes to diet, a lot of stuff labeled paleolithic is really neolithic. The natives that Kit Carson encountered were presumably growing crops that had been selectively bred for thousands of years.

    • jake3_14 says:

      Humans are, in general, terrible at converting plant nutrients into bio-available form. For example, Vit. A contains three separate carotenoids: alpha-carotene, beta-carotene, and beta-crypoxanthan. They’re all present in pumpkin, but the conversion efficiency is somewhere between 2 and 5%. In addition, 1/2 C of pepitas contains 14,286 mg. of omega-6 fats, which is at least one days’ worth in a few bites and requires you to get a huge amount of omega-3 fats that day, too, to prevent lipid peroxidation.

      The main value of squashes is their starch.

  11. Linda Duffy says:

    Tiger nuts (aka Chufa) grow really well in my area (Colorado near Colorado Springs). You end up with about 12-24 nuts for every one planted. They are a pain to clean though, but the taste is really great.

    • Tom Naughton says:

      I imagine anything you pull out of the ground takes some serious cleaning.

      • Linda Duffy says:

        I grow them as part of a pond system in perlite and vermiculite. Much easier to clean than those grown in dirt. Plus, I need to revise my yield estimate. Turns out the fist plant I pulled up was a skimpy one. It’s more like 24-48 nuts per each one planted.

  12. Nick S says:

    Tiger nuts seem tremendously expensive on Amazon – where can they be found affordably?

  13. johnny says:

    Tom, how much RS per ounce of tiger nuts?

    Thanks!

    • Tom Naughton says:

      I haven’t seen a figure for that one. Just several mentions that they’re high in RS.

    • Bret says:

      Tough info to track down, Johnny. But here is my best stab:

      In this paper (linked originally by Richard at Free The Animal), 37 grams of starch were extracted from 100 grams of tiger nuts (a.k.a. Cyperus esculentus). In other words, starch accounts for 37% by mass of the tiger nut. Further breakdown of the starch indicated a 11.5:88.5 ratio of amylose (resistant starch) to amylopectin (digestible starch). Now, there might have been some other starch content, but assuming that 37 grams consisted only of amylose and amylopectin, we are left to assume that 11.5% of the starch in a given number of tiger nuts is resistant starch. In other words, 4.255% of a given serving of tiger nuts consists of resistant starch, by weight.

      Google tells me that one ounce equals 28.349 grams. In such a serving size, if my assumptions are correct, you could expect 1.2 grams of resistant starch.

      Then again, TigerNutsUSA.com com says there are 1.8 grams of starch in a 14-gram serving, which converts to 3.6 grams of starch in one ounce of nuts. If the 11.5% ratio is correct, that would amount to 0.155 grams of resistant starch.

      Conflicting and overall incomplete information, which unfortunately is what we can expect of such a little known and thus unpopular food. It may be a good while before reliable information like this is available for search.

      • Tom Naughton says:

        I appreciate the detective work. I couldn’t find a definitive answer when I went looking either.

        • Bret says:

          No prob — I was interested in that answer myself, so win-win.

          I screwed up the math in the second to last paragraph. 11.5% of 3.6 grams of starch (really 3.644 and change) is 0.4 grams, not 0.155.

          I had fried my brain doing all that research, and applied the wrong percentage. 🙂

  14. Walter Bushell says:

    Ah, with all that fibre I won’t be eating tiger’s nuts. Much too laxative for me by far. Thanks for the warning.

  15. Debra Graff says:

    Congratulations on your harvest! They look wonderful. And I’ll definitely check out the tiger nuts, as I can’t eat fruit or nuts for snacks (health issues).

    My sister and I harvested 42 butternut squash (100 lbs) from a 50-square-foot garden bed (grown on trellises). And we usually harvest close to 100 pounds of sweet potatoes from the same size area. Home-grown food is so good that I now hate eating store-bought, so I’ve been focusing on improving our yields so we can grow more of our own food from a small area.

    October doesn’t need to be the end of the gardening season. There are a lot of great vegetables that you can harvest fresh all winter, given just a little protection. You don’t need a heated greenhouse to do it. Check out my website if you’d like to learn more about eating year-round from a small garden.

  16. Kristin says:

    Like so many things related to human experience it is just not simple. Weston Price showed that there was a wide diversity in really healthy diets. I come from New Mexico and was heartbroken at having to give up tortillas and tamales for my diet. Three years later and resistant starch now in my awareness I make tortillas from Bob’s Red Mill masa harina occasionally and plan tamales soon. Except I really want to do my own nixtamal now (and off she goes again.) I’ve purchased a hand masa grinder and I’m lucky enough to have Mother Ship Bob’s Red Mill in my own back yard where they sell organic non-GMO dent corn. I love tamales the indigenous Mexican way that is very thin and delicate with plenty of lard rather than the dry cakey modern version. So I’m slowly incorporating properly prepared corn back to my diet.

    Boy was that a long-winded way to say that I really enjoyed this post!

  17. Linda says:

    Hi Tom,

    Very glad to see you back! Those pics of your winter squash brought to mind my last experiment, since potato RS didn’t work for me. I bought a large butternut squash (sadly, from the grocery,) brought it home, peeled it with great effort, cut it into about 1 1/2 inch cubes into a stainless bowl. Then sprinkled coconut oil liberally all over it, salted with Kosher salt, and a lot of fresh ground pepper, tossed to cover with the oil and roasted on a cookie sheet in a 400 degree oven till the edges were just turning brown and it was fork tender. That was so good, that I’ve decided to go back and subject myself to the pain of peeling them again! And….no blood glucose shoot-up after eating! Maybe that’s my resistant starch! Growing up, my grandmother used to half them, take out the seeds and roast with butter and brown sugar- as a result I never knew the absolutely delectable flavor of the actual vegetable until now. Give the roasting a try- you’ll not regret it!

  18. js290 says:

    Perennials… Annuals
    Less processed… more processed
    More health… less health

    The indigenous people probably cycled various annuals rather than the mono cropping that’s done today.

    “Name one ecosystem that is better off for having agriculture moved into it?” Toby Hemenway

    Redesigning Civilization with Permaculture – Toby Hemenway – Clash of cultures HG vs agriculture

  19. Cindy C says:

    Has anyone experimented with jars of baby food such as sweet potatoes, or some mixed with zucchini?. If someone is just starting out, I have seem some in 2 to 4 oz jars, and they are just the veggie and water. For me, seems like a good snack at night to keep blood sugar under control, is a jar of sweet potatoes/chicken, or rice/turkey. You could always add a little sea salt, butter, spices when warming up. I have seem cans of traditional refried beans that have lard in them.

    Meal smoothie;

    boil 1/2 to 2/3 cup water, then pour into blender. and add

    1/2 ripe/semi ripe avocado, or some green plantain

    one or 2 eggs

    1 or 2 tbs butter

    1-3 tsp coconut oil(if desired, and you are used to that amount)

    1/2 tsp sea salt

    2 or 4 oz baby food jar sweet potato

    Your favorite spice

    blend until smooth.

    I use the smaller amounts mostly because, I am small The sweet potato and sea salt makes it taste a little sweet to me. Please share smoothie recipes.

  20. NoGluten says:

    http://www.amazon.com/The-Compleat-Squash-Amy-Goldman/dp/1579652514

    I’ve overwintered kale here in Mid TN, just kept taking a few leaves.

    Bass Boat shop and other hunting place have chufa in large pails. Hunters feed deer and turkeys with them, I think. They are much harder than the Amazon ones. But I was using them to make Spanish horchata as a dairy substitute. I’ve also ground them up to various degrees of fineness as a gluten free flour or meal. Nice flavor.

    I don’t know how to “peel” them. I think they must be stone washed or something!

    Very interested in the ground nut.

  21. Erica says:

    When I was in Ireland, my host had brussels sprouts and rutabagas that had been overwintered. I was picking them out of the garden in March, April, and May. The winters in the north of Ireland are really cold. I think they had one week at 20 below.

    This post has me wanting to create a container garden in front of my little loft apartment. I went hunting for information on the ground nut and found this:

    http://groundnutgardens.com/index.php

    • Tom Naughton says:

      Yep, that notion that paleo man could only eat plant foods for a brief period in the autumn doesn’t really hold up.

  22. Really No one should have ditched tubers with a “paleo diet” the evidence from prehistory and ethnography is right there for the reading. I came at the paleo diet from my archaeological researches and have been continually shocked by the claims made by modern food bloggers and writers. We had a bumper squash harvest this year too and though they got frosted it looks like they’ll store.

    The literature is not hard to get hold of and is quite accessible to lay persons. I can’t remember the name of the documentary but there was a tribe in the North West who went back to a Native diet but refused to eat wild vegetables. Certainly in Europe wild tubers are pretty hard going and most hunter gatherers eat tubers when there is nothing else to eat “a staple fall back food”.

    Paleopathology at the origin of agriculture has lots of detail on native Americans. Though I don’t really think Native Americans make good analogues for old world paleolithic cultures.

    • Tom Naughton says:

      You’re probably thinking of the documentary “My Big Fat Diet.” Many in that tribe had type 2 diabetes, so starchy wild vegetables might not be a good idea for them.

      • Hi, yes that’s the one. I think the decision was from the people and was based on taste. It is not that unusual for hunter gatherers to trade meat or honey for agricultural produce especially starchy foods.

        • Galina L. says:

          It looks like there are more opportunities to accumulate stash of relatively nonperishable plant food in a temperate climate than in a warm climate. I live in Florida now, it is very hard to grow something here because of insects infestation . My mother-in-law spent with us almost three years, her hobby in life was gardening, and she was complitely taken back by our aggressive pests above-ground and nematode problem underground. Never before did she saw warms in cucumbers, squashes and watermelons. Many plants didn’t do well because at night temperature didn’t drop low enough. Blueberries, figs, pomegranates, citruses are doing well, especially citruses – squirrels think citronella is a poison, but vegetables are hard to grow.
          Native people in our are used to live mostly on food they got from estuaries, there are still sizable hills around North Florida made from oyster shells castoffs.
          I even went to a special trip with a person educated in the local eatable plants subject – and was disappointed with the information – Florida offered much less than the forest area in Russia I used to collect all sort of wild plants. Here we have eatable mushrooms during very short season, 6 first inches of growing vines during season, berries are available during two weeks in a year, mostly got eaten by a wildlife. A palm has an eatable core. In my are paleo life-style was based on animal foods.

  23. NoGluten says:

    apparently there’s a lot of nutrition in the peel: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24996301

  24. Desmond says:

    Thanks for the post about tiger nuts. I bought some, and find them quite tasty.

    I told a coworker about them, and at first he thought a few male bengals are now singing soprano… until I explained tiger nuts are tubers.

  25. Peter says:

    Hi Tom,

    I started eating Tiger Nuts and like them a lot, but I noticed the husks are very rough. I’m worried for that reason they may be an irritant to the gut, just as Paul Jaminet says brown rice is?

    Has anyone heard of that being a risk for Tiger Nuts?

    Thanks!

    • Tom Naughton says:

      Dr. William “Wheat Belly” Davis told me during an interview that the fibers in grains aren’t the same as the fibers in other plant foods. A portion of the fiber in grains is an irritant. If tiger nut fibers are an irritant, I certainly haven’t noticed.

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