Nutrition Seminar by Garett Renon

In case you missed it here are my notes from last Saturday’s nutrition talk.

The purpose of this talk is to help you change your relationship with FOOD.

My journey down the nutrition rabbit-hole began about 4-years ago. While this may sound selfish my motivation was to find the foods that would allow me to be able to perform my best, look my best, and feel as good as possible. No ulterior motivates, no emotions, just results!!! My mission is to be able to reach my full-human athletic potential and be as healthy as possible.

Why is food important? Up to 80% of our body composition is determine by the food we eat. This means you can’t out work a bad diet. Do you work out all the time but can’t seem to lose those last 15-lbs? Healthy food is also nature’s medicine.

What is Primal/Paleo? – The mocked answer is to “eat like a caveman”. But the reality is that the human body has evolved over millions of years and most of those years we have lived in hunter/gather societies. This means, our ancestors ate only what they could hunt and gather. Remember “heart healthy” cheerios don’t grow wild. Please don’t believe the argument that Cavemen lived horrible lives and they didn’t live past 30. That is false but that is another topic.

We are no longer cavemen – True and I am glad. I am not anti-technology (well at least until the machines become self -aware and try to take over) or evenanti-new food (supplements) but we need to beware of what is healthy and what is unhealthy and looking to our ancestral past gives us great insight.

Americans, even the entire world, but especially Americans have never been fatter, or sicker. Diabetes and heart disease are now common. Childhood obesity is nearly an epidemic and children now are becoming diabetic before they even become teenagers so obviously we are doing something wrong.

Jared Diamond “He might illustrate the results of his digs by a 24-hour clock on which one hour represents 100,000 years of real past time. If the history of the human race began at midnight, then we would now be almost at the end of our first day. We lived as hunter-gatherers for nearly the whole of that day, from midnight through dawn, noon, and sunset. Finally, at 11:54 p. m. we adopted agriculture”

My personal successes from a Primal diet:

  • More energy – much more aware of my surrounding, no more food coma
  • No more allergies – I had horrible allergies for my entire life!
  • Never get sick – Removing wheat/grains from your diet also reduces the amount of inflammation in your body.
  • No more be hangry (hungry + angry) – Now if I miss a meal I know longer get irritable, shaky, and light headed.
  • Reduced bodyfat – Went from around 12% body fat to 8% – 10%.
  • Best part of the Primal diet is that it is not restrictive – Bacon smells awesome for a reason. Or what about when someone fires up the grill during a summer evening, makes you crave steak and chicken. Medium rare grass-fed ribeye, with grilled asparagus does not sound like a bad meal.

What about choosing you diet based on Ethics? – The only way to be “ethical” about food is to eat locally for sustainable “farms” period!!! Being a vegetarian or vegan does not mean you are more ethical. Just read an article about how quinoa (a vegan staple) has now driven the price up so that the local South American people can no longer afford their own staple crop! Locally grown animals and crops are the most ethical way to eat!

Stop eating:

Wheat (yes even whole wheat) and Grains:

  • All breads, pasta, cookies, cakes, cereal, etc
  • Grains – Oatmeal, barley, etc
  • Beer – I know L but as far as alcohol is concerned beer is the worst offender


  • HFCS (Al Hemmen’s Favorite)
  • Dextrose
  • Corn sugar
  • Fructose (yes I know fruit contains fructose but that is why we eat the “whole” fruit to include the natural fiber
  • Agave Nectar – This is worse than Al’s HFCS
  • Sugar alcohols
  • Stevia – good sugar alternative but we still want to reduce our sugar cravings so reduce the amount of consumption
  • At the end of the day sugar in the most natural form is your best bet – Raw sugar, Raw Honey
  • Vegetable oils – Canola oil, corn oil, sunflower oil, Margarine


  • Please stop believing this is a healthy dessert. READ THIS!

What to eat:


Meat, veggies, tubers, fruit and nuts:

  • Beef, Chicken, Pork, Fish
  • Grass-fed beef, open range pork and chicken, and wild caught fish
  • Central Market, Trader Joes, and Whole Foods are great stores, expensive, but great. Pay for food now or Medications later
  • Farmers Markets are awesome especially in this part of the country!
  • Oils – Cook with Coconut oil (unrefined) and grass-fed butter (Kerry Gold).


  • Dark Chocolate – 70% to 85%
  • Alcohol in moderation
  • Clear liquor
  • Potato Vodka is the best
  • Dark liquor
  • Wine
  • While I am not advocating ice cream – real ice cream with minimal ingredients is much better than “junk” ice cream or frozen yogurt.

Suggested Reading:

  • The Primal Blueprint by Mark Sisson – This is the first book I read about the primal/paleo diet and it changed my life and it literally changed my life!
  • Omnivore’s Dilemma – A fascinating book about corn, mega mono-crop farms/feedlots, the importance of eating local, and food quality! This is the book that inspired Food INC!
  • The Vegetarian Myth – Quick warning this book has almost as many bad reviews (1-star) on amazon as it does good reviews (5-star). So that means you will probably either love it or hate it. Either way it will make you think about food, especially from the sustainability/ethical argument.
  • Jared Diamond, “The Worst Mistake in the History of the Human Race,” Discover Magazine, May 1987, pp. 64-66.

Suggested Documentaries:

  • Food INC – Probably the most popular “food” documentary ever. Based on the book Omnivore’s Dilemma.
  • King of Corn – In my opinion this documentary was more shocking and even more impressive than Food INC! You will never look at food/politics the same way!
  • Fat Head – Yes it starts out a little cheesy and it is definitely a low budget film but the “carbs are the enemy” message is outstanding!

Great Websites: – great podcast as well! As I am sure Jessica (she tells everyone) has probably told you, I put butter in my coffee and it is awesome!!!


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