Monthly Archives: March 2016

KOMATSUNA (JAPANESE MUSTARD SPINACH) FLAT BREAD

Yes, I do occasionally share from non-Islamic sites, and this recipe looked delicious and well worth sharing, especially as I love Japanese style food and wish I could get the time to try my hand at cooking more often.

Taken form www.foreign2food.com – http://foreign2food.com/2016/03/09/komatsuna-japanese-mustard-spinach-flat-bread/

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Being a father of 2 children. I am always concerned about what my kids are eating. And in today’s day and age we have so many artificial this and high sugar that advertised at kids. It’s always a a relief when you are able to make some that not only tastes great, but is also healthier tan what they would get from the shops.  Here is my recipe for Japanese mustard spinach ( 小松菜 ) flat bread.

Makes around 10 medium size flat breads.

Ingredients:

  • Half a bunch of Japanese mustard spinach (or regular spinach if you can’t find the Japanese version).
  • 2 cloves of crushed garlic
  • 200 ml of water
  • 3 cups of strong white flour
  • 2 tsp of baking powder
  •  1 tsp of salt
  • 3 tsp of dried Oregano
  • a few twists of cracked black pepper

Method:

1.Take your spinach and garlic and quickly sweat them off in a dry pan, until the Spinach starts to wilt and there is a nice smell of garlic in the air.wp-1457406942926.jpeg

2. Addthe spinach, garlic and water into a blender and give it a whiz until you get a nice smooth liquid.

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wp-1457406962116.jpeg3. In a big bowl add in your flour, salt, dried oregano, baking powder and black pepper. Then slowly add in your spinach liquid and mix until you start to form a ball and it begins to come away from the edges. If you run out of liquid before this happens, don’t fret, just add in small amounts of water until you get the correct consistency. Alternatively  if you have left over spinach liquid, that’s okay too. Just pop it in a container and throw into the fridge or freezer and you can use it as part of a sauce , stew or another dish in the future.

 

4. Lightly flour your bench and turn the dough out. knead the dough until it has becomes more elastic. Then make a long sausage shape with the dough by rolling it out with two hands. Once your dough is roughly 40 cm in length, mark out 10 equal size pieces using a sharp knife.

 

5. Place a large frying pan on a medium low heat on your stove top and let it heat up a little. whilst this is happening cut your dough into ten equal size balls.

6. After you have cut out your 10 equal size pieces of dough, grab yourself a rolling pin and roll each one out, making sure to spin the dough consistently so you get a nice even shape and it doesn’t stick to your board. If you see this starting to happen add a little extra flour to your work surface and/or rolling pin.

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7. Place each rolled out flat bread into the pan (Please make sure it is a dray pan, no oil or butter needed). cook on both sides for 30 seconds to a minute. Keep an eye on your first flat bread. If it is browning quickly then lower the heat a little. You want each side to have slight dark spots, but still have a malleable texture, so you can use them for making wraps!

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8. Once you have cooked off each flat bread, let them cool completely on a rack and then you can store them in zip lock bags in the cupboard for a couple of days, or place them in the freezer and then just thaw them when you want to use them. They should keep for up to a week in the freezer.

You can then use them for wraps or cut them into slices and toast them off a little more to use as a snack with dips or cheeses.

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If you liked this recipe or any others, don’t forget to like this post and be sure to follow my blog to stay up to date with what’s happening in the world of Foreign 2 Food!

http://foreign2food.com/2016/03/09/komatsuna-japanese-mustard-spinach-flat-bread/

ANTI-MUSLIM GRAFFITI IN DUBLIN

dublin graffiti

This is how they deal with anti-Muslim graffiti in Ireland, a land which has known it’s own fair share of difficulties with racism and religious based prejudice in the recent past and it’s good to see that in some parts of the British Isles a culture of tolerance and respect can still exist.

Now I may be biased as I’m of Irish decent, but I can say that with only a few exceptions, the response from the Irish people when they see people like myself on Dawah stalls or just walking in the street is one of comradeship, telling us that they know what is is like to be subject to oppression and suspicion whilst living in the UK as well as their own history of several centuries of English / British occupation.

Though there are always going to be some complaints of small minded prejudice in every society, it was also nice to see that whilst the rest of Europe has been having difficulties with far right marches and demonstrations, the Irish have found their own solution in dealing with such people as seen in the video below from the attempt to hold a PEDIGA demonstration in Dublin earlier this year.

May Allaah guide the Irish people for all their efforts in fighting facism to learn the truth about Islam, may Allaah guide them and keep them firm upon his path, may He raise them up as a people firm in justice and upon the Haqq, ameen

MUHAMMAD TIM HUMBLE – LOOKING FOR LOVE : THE RIGHT WAY TO FIND A SPOUSE

Golden advise taken from the Quran and Sunnah and the opinions of the scholars by Ustadh Muhammad Tim Humble, may Allaah reward him for his balanced approach to the deen, ameen.

Every person looking for marriage now or in the future or has an offspring facing the same needs to watch this video.

He also covers many of the serious problems that new Muslims face when looking for marriage.

MOTHER OF ‘COOKER BOMB’ 4 YEAR OLD ‘EXTREMIST’ IN HER OWN WORDS

Original article from Muslim Mamas Facebook page, where the sister shared her initial concerns, sought help and was put in touch with some of the people who aided her in her difficulties.

I must admit, when this first story first came to light I assumed at first it was some sort of parady, a joke over how ridiculous Channel and Prevent activities had become but it was sadly entirely serious.

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Assalamu’alaikum,

Some of you may have heard about the four year old boy, whose nursery wanted to send him to a deradicalisation programme for mispronouncing ‘cucumber’. Well, that was my son. I’ve been a member of Muslim Mamas for a while now and wanted to share my story with you all.

“He told us it was a cooker bomb”

One afternoon back in January 2016, when I dropped my little boy to nursery, the nursery manager and deputy manager called me into a side room and presented me with a document, together with some drawings that my son had drawn. I recognised the drawing straight away, as it was a recent one. It was of a man with a knife. My son had told me it was ‘daddy cutting a cucumber’ so I told the school managers this straight away. They were unconvinced.

“Well, that’s not what he said to us. He told us it was a cooker bomb,” the nursery manager replied.

I was blindsided by this. My son has never talked about bombs at home. I was so confused and upset. At that point, I didn’t immediately associate his pronunciation of cucumber as “cukkabum” with a “cooker bomb”. I’d never even heard of such a thing.

cucumber-bomb-640x384

The school then showed me two other scribbles by my son. They said he talked about “pulling a string in Africa.” I explained that my neighbour’s cat used to visit our home frequently and my children often played with the cat by pulling a string. Sadly, the poor cat got run over and, not wanting upset them by telling them that he had died, I told the kids that the cat had gone to Africa to be with his family.

“Prove yourself innocent”

Again, the nursery manager dismissed my explanation and told me that they were referring me to Channel. I had no idea what Channel was, but assumed it was social services. I asked the manager if this was the case and she told me that yes, they did work together and that they would help me raise my children in the ‘right’ way. By this time I was in tears and pleaded with her not to refer me. But her reply did little to console me.

“Your kids might not be taken off you. You can prove yourself innocent,” she said.

I was distraught! I continued to plead with her. She asked me what he was watching on television and I told her that he liked his superheroes, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Power Rangers, but I would put a stop to this immediately if it would help (and I actually did go home and do this!). I even banned their Disney movies, as the nursery manager described one of my son’s drawings as that of a train blowing up. Incidentally, this is the opening scene in Toy Story 3.

Nothing was going to help me that day. She told me I’d already been referred and I had to “sign the referral form”, which I declined to do. I couldn’t – it just felt wrong to sign a document I did not agree with. My son, according to the nursery’s own description is a very ‘gentle’ child. I couldn’t accept the things that they were now suggesting about him.

I left the meeting and went home. My husband was away, so I telephoned him and explained the situation. He told me not to worry and reminded me that our boy always says “cukkabum” when he means “cucumber,” so obviously they’d misheard him. It then became clear to me what had happened.

“Cucumber, not cooker bomb”

I called the nursery manager immediately, with a renewed sense of hope and told her about his mispronunciation of the word “cucumber”. My son was still at the nursery and I told her to go and show him a cucumber so that it all becomes clear. However, the nursery manager was not willing to discuss things any further and told me that my son had already been “referred” and it was out of her hands. She then asked me again about signing the document and I once again refused. She informed me that she would “have to put down a reason”.

I felt really pressured but I’d spoken to my husband and my sister and they both advised me against signing something I am not comfortable with. So I held my ground and I told her firmly I wasn’t going to sign it as I didn’t agree with it. I hung up at the point and felt really worried about how I was going to find someone who could help me. I felt bullied and was ready to ask the police for help. I didn’t realise then what I realise now: this is state supported bullying.

I frantically called people who might be able to help me. I knew the school was wrong. Had I not been a Muslim Asian, I wouldn’t be in this position. I even messaged Tell Mama and was ignored.

Teachers now legally obliged to report concerns around terrorism

In Luton, where we live, you’d think it was easy to find help but there is no local organisation to help our community in situations like this. It’s actually more like the opposite. People don’t want to get involved, even though they know it’s wrong. They’re scared of the repercussions.

Eventually, I was put in touch with Rehana Faisal, who is a local Muslim community activist. She came round to see me and I went through everything with her. She asked me if I knew what Channel was. I told her I didn’t. It was Rehana who told me that Channel was a de-radicalisation programme and that teachers are now legally obliged to report concerns around terrorism. Apparently, this is called the “PREVENT duty”. I was horrified. She called a local solicitor, Attiq Malik of Liberty Law Solicitors, for some advice and the two of us then went to the nursery together for another meeting.

Rehana talked the nursery manager through what had happened and tried to encourage her to apply some common sense and recognise that the referral was misguided. The nursery manager again stated that the referral was a done deal. Rehana asked the manager if there was something else that had triggered this referral because it seemed ridiculous that they had taken such drastic action over a child’s mispronunciation. Did they have any other concerns about the parents? You see, I wasn’t new at this nursery. I had a seven year relationship with them. Thus far, it had always been a positive one. In November 2015, there was a parent-teacher evening and I was told not to bother coming in because my son was so lovely and gentle.

Questioning children appropriately

The manager told Rehana there was nothing else of concern apart from this one picture, to which my son couldn’t mispronounced “cucumber”. To be clear, my son never said the word “bomb”. This whole incident was never about what my child said or drew. It was about their perception of what he said. My son did not say the word bomb, they did. And they repeated it to him in their questioning. As Rehana pointed out to them, had the staff member he was speaking to questioned him appropriately, without leading questions, they would have realised what he was actually saying. In fact, he, according to their own records told them that a ‘cukkabum’ was something you cut!

“Did Jimmy Saville look like a paedophile?”

At this point in our meeting, the nursery manager repeatedly asserted her position that the referral toChannel had already been made. I was really upset at this point and was crying. I asked her, “Do I look like a terrorist to you?!”

The manager, looking directly at me replied, “Well, did Jimmy Saville look like a paedophile?”

I was shocked. Rehana witnessed this exchange and couldn’t believe how unprofessional the nursery manager was. Rehana informed the manager that we had sought legal advice before attending the meeting and if the nursery chose to pursue this, then so would we. We would go to the press if necessary. We then walked out of the meeting.

That evening, Rehana and Attiq came to see me show their support. Attiq then introduced me to someone from an organisation called PREVENTwatch and discussed what could be done next. They helped me draft a very detailed letter, which I gave to the nursery. They also told me to unblock the kiddy channels and assured me it was normal for kids to be into Power Rangers and the like!

The nursery manager on numerous occasions tried to speak to me alone over the next few days but I just didn’t trust her or anyone at the nursery anymore. Speaking to them was the last thing I wanted to do after being treated this way.

Backtracking

Soon after, I was given a letter by the nursery manager that said they had never made a referral but that everything they had said to me was according to government guidelines. This was a blatant lie. I know this because they had, possibly accidentally, given me a document which clearly states that my four year old has been referred. They had clearly backtracked and I strongly believe this was because they realised, I now had support and backing.

The last few weeks have been a steep learning curve for me. I didn’t know much about Channel or Prevent but I do now. Channel is supposed to be a ‘consensual’ programme but my son’s nursery tried to bully me into it. That’s not right. The whole policy isn’t right. It is not only flawed, it is also deeply discriminatory.

Don’t Take It Lying Down

I decided to talk about what happened to me in the hope that it will help others who find themselves in such a position. I want people to know that they must not put up with it. I originally spoke to the BBC Asian network and the story was then picked up by other news outlets. After that I was on the morning program on BBC 3 Counties Radio and Inspire fm. I also gave an interview to Luton on Sunday and the Guardian and was on ITV news Anglia.

I hope that this helps people to understand how flawed PREVENT is. It is a policy which is supposed to be making us safer, but it is hardly doing that. I felt scared, intimidated and discriminated against. It cannot carry on. I hope by speaking up myself, I will encourage others to also speak up.

My son is still at this nursery. Some of you might think that it’s a strange decision to leave him there. To say I feel awkward is an understatement. Everyday, I drop my son off to people that I no longer trust. However, my son loves nursery, his friends and his keyworker, who wasn’t present in any of the meetings that the nursery managers had with me. I’m not sure who flagged my son as a ‘radical’. His keyworker is so lovely and always has pleasant things to say to me. I’ve decided I don’t want to disrupt my sons life due to the incompetence of some prejudiced staff members.

Teachers as Spies

While I’m upset at the way the teachers in my son’s school dealt with this matter, I feel sympathy for the teachers who have been forced to act as “security services” in schools. They are given 1-2 hours training and are expected to spot the very complex signs of “radicalisation”. Unfortunately, too many of these “signs” focus on the Muslim Community.

So that’s my story. I’m still struggling to come to terms with what has happened but I want to keep talking about it, and I pray that this helps others.  I never dreamed I could be treated this way, in my own country, as a British Muslim.

If any of you find yourself in this position – GET HELP. PREVENTwatch is a national organisation who can help. If you are in Luton, you can look up Rehana Faisal and Attiq Malik. Speak to them.

As a community, we all need to speak up. Our “community leaders” and elected representatives need to speak up. Let our teachers teach rather than behave like the police or like spies!

I want to end by expressing gratitude for the help and support I’ve received from family and friends, through this horrid ordeal! As for the nursery, I am yet to receive an apology from them.

POLICE ARREST MAN OVER ‘A MEALY MOUTHED REPLY’

The Officer said whether I had anything to say in my defense, I said “no comment.” a mealy mouthed reply.

Just to prove that trolling idiots on the internet can actually be a productive use of a person’s time, it has now been revealed that the racist, Islamophobic muppet Matthew P Doyle has been arrested by the Metropolitan Police for ‘suspicion of incited to racial hatred.’

Here is the original tweet from the Muppet in question.

a mealy mouthed reply original

Here are some of the many hundreds of replies…

a mealy mouthed reply replies

As we can see he was widely mocked and parodied on twitter and online until Matthew ended up deleting his tweet. However not before spending hours defending himself, then attempting to backtrack and claiming it was a joke, before going full in  there racist hulk mode and calling Muslims ‘towel heads’ and asking people to vote UKIP.

a mealy mouthed reply towelhead

The Croydon Advertiser, the local newspaper had this  to say:

A MAN who posted on Twitter that he had “confronted” a Muslim woman in Croydon about the terror attacks in Brussels has been arrested on suspicion of inciting racial hatred.

The Metropolitan Police said: “A 46-year-old man was this evening arrested at his home in Croydon on suspicion of inciting racial hatred on social media.

“He has been taken to a south London police station and enquiries continue.”

Shortly before 8am this morning a post appeared on the Twitter account of Matthew Doyle which said: “I confronted a Muslim women [sic] yesterday in Croydon. I asked her to explain Brussels. She said “nothing to do with me”. A mealy mouthed reply,”

Thank you Matthew P Doyle and the Met Police for cheering up our day.

 

ISLAMIC RULING ON AN ONLINE BUSINESS CALLED TRAFFIC MONSOON

Taken from Islam21C – http://www.islam21c.com/special/web-posts/islamic-ruling-on-an-online-business-called-traffic-monsoon/

TRAFFIC MONSOON

In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

باسم الله والحمد لله والصلاة والسلام على رسول الله وعلى آله وأصحابه ومن والاه

Question:

What is the ruling on participating in any of these transactions or in this business? And can one make promotional material for the company, for example website, applications, or tutorial videos about Traffic Monsoon?

If there is any transaction that is impermissible, what should the Muslim who participated ignorantly do with the money he has earned through it?

Please explain the reasoning behind any impermissible transaction, and if there is any way to make it compliant with Islamic law.

Jazakum Allahu Khairan.

Answer:

Text of the Fatwa: 

Written by Shaykh, Dr. Ahmad ibn Rashid Ar-Ruhaily, a member of the teaching faculty at the Islamic University in Madinah, a member of the Center of Da’wah and Irshaad (Calling and guiding to Islam), and a member of the center for Guidance and Counseling (At-Tawjeeh wal Irshaad) in the Noble Prophet’s Masjid, holding a PhD in Fiqh from the Islamic University in Madinah, with a dissertation in modern financial transactions.

 All praise is due to Allah, and may His praise and peace be upon His Messenger, and upon his family, companions, and those who follow his guidance. To proceed:

It is not permissible to take part in this company called Traffic Monsoon, because it involves usury, gambling, deceit and fraud.

As for usury, then he is paying fifty, and receiving fifty-five. This is usury (ribaa).

As for the product or service, then it is superficial and unintended. The reality of the transaction is money for money, with an increase and a delay. It is from the transactions that are considered schemes to usury, and in such transactions, the product or service is ignored, and the transaction is essentially money for money.

Allah – the Most High – has prohibited usury in His Noble Qur’an; Allah, the Most Mighty and Exalted, said: “O you who have believed, do not consume usury, doubled and multiplied, but fear Allah that you may be successful.” [Surat Ali-Imran, 130]. And He – the Most High – said, “Allah removes any blessing from usury.” [Al-Baqarah, 276].

The second matter: It involves gambling, and this is because a person goes in with the hope of earning. Gambling is when a person pays something, and perhaps he may profit, and perhaps he may lose. So, he is either one who wins or one who loses.

And Allah – the Most High – has prohibited gambling in His Book. He the – the Most High – said, “O you who have believed, indeed, intoxicants, gambling, [sacrificing on] stone alters [to other than Allah], and divining arrows are but defilement from the work of Satan, so avoid it that you may be successful. Satan only wants to cause between you animosity and hatred through intoxicants and gambling and to avert you from the remembrance of Allah and from prayer. So will you not desist?” [Surat al-Ma’idah, 90-91].

In addition, this company involves deceit and trickery. This company deceives people; it gives those who joined first their profits, and then the loss is upon those who join last.

As for promoting this company, then this is impermissible, because this involves aiding them in prohibition. This company’s [transactions] are prohibited, and advertising for them is also prohibited, because the means to a prohibited act is also prohibited. Allah – the Most High – says, “And cooperate in righteousness and piety, and do not cooperate in sin and aggression ” [Surat al-Ma’idah, 2]

As for the one who took part in this company while not knowing its ruling, and has gained some profit, then: if he already withdrew this profit before knowing it is prohibited, then there is nothing upon him, because Allah – the Most High – says regarding money gained from usury, “So whoever has received an admonition from his Lord and desists may have what is past, and his affair rests with Allah.” [Surat al-Baqarah: 275].

However, if he did not withdraw anything before knowing that it is prohibited, then he can take the original capital that he invested, and he cannot take any of the profits. This is because Allah – the Most High – says, “O you have believed, fear Allah and give up what remains [due to you] of interest, if you should be believers. And if you do not, then be informed of a war [against you] from Allah and His Messenger. But if you repent, you may have your capital investments- [thus] you do no wrong, nor are you wronged” [Surat Al-Baqarah: 278-279].

And in the case that he has taken any of the profits after knowing of its prohibition, then he must get rid of this prohibited money, and he cannot benefit from it whatsoever. Thus, he should give it to fulfill the debt of his Muslim brother, for example, or he can give it to the general benefit of the Muslims, such as giving it towards building roads, buildings, and so forth, with the intention of getting rid of prohibited money, and not with the intention of drawing closer to Allah with this spending. This is because Allah is pure, and only accepts that which is pure. Thus, one cannot have the intention of giving it in charity, because it is prohibited wealth. The authentic hadeeth states, “Indeed, Allah is pure, and only accepts that which is pure.”

And Allah – the Most High – knows best.

Published by Sheikh Sajid Umar, visit for Arabic translation and more information on Traffic Monsoon

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BUTTHURT MUREEDS OF THE WEST

History today

‘You remember those butt hurt mureeds who work themselves up into an apoplexy every time someone points out the blindingly obvious flaws of their beloved Sheikh?

Well, that’s you that is.’

First someone says something about the Sheikh, or forwards a video, writes an article etc.

Usually it’s not anything which is that shocking, just a valid criticism or at the very least something which if these mureeds were genuine they’d find it easily justifiable based upon the evidences available but then reason goes out the window and all hell breaks lose…

We’ve all seen it again and again from certain groups and almost cult like followers of certain sects and Sheikhs but how much are we afflicted with this same phenomenon ourselves or see it in those around us?

Nowadays we see brothers and sisters you think are good in their deen, because they are some what similar ish, sort of the same as ourselves in aqeedah and manhaj but still act out like butt-hurt mureeds because they see something or hear something or read something disagreeable about their Sheikh.

Last few days I’ve seen many go into overdrive producing witty comments and memes, lol’ing at others attempts at ad hominem attacks on social media, but not actually engaging with the discussion or even listening to the points being put by the other side or trying to understand them and their point of view.

Either engage in the debate, listen to both sides and then respond or else stay out of the debate!

It’s entirely this superficial, 140 character, hizbi (partisan) take upon the deen we need to move away from and which seems particular to so many of the Muslims I meet here in Britain.

May Allaah subhanahu wa ta’ala guide us all to a true appreciation of this deen,  the level of commitment required to understand it even to a basic level and attach our hearts to the truth, not personalities who can and do change, ameen.

 

THE PALEO-DIET

steak

In an anthropology class years ago, my professor began by stating that paleo-humans (the people living 10,000+ years ago) were the healthiest in human history.  That small fact intrigued me and stayed with me, pushing me to re-imagine our ancient ancestors and the reality of our modern world.  Thus, when recently I heard about the Paleo diet, I just had to find out more about this radical and sometimes controversial diet and lifestyle.

When most of us try to imagine the lives of the first people, back before the Iron Age or the Bronze Age, back before the agricultural revolution when most people were semi-nomadic hunter-gatherers, we tend to evoke a rather bleak image of those people’s lives: hunting giant beasts with rudimentary weapons, collecting a few roots and berries and barely surviving through winter and famine to perpetuate the existence of the species.  Contrary to popular belief, however, anthropologists are increasingly arguing that, based on accumulating evidence such as bones and dental records, Paleo Man was actually more robust and healthy than the average person today and for a variety of reasons, including their diet.

The Paleo diet and lifestyle is based on the idea of eating in a way that is similar to our paleo-ancestors, which works well within a modern context.  It is argued that such a diet best serves the needs of our bodies and leads to optimal health because it provides the right balance of organic foods which we are genetically wired to process, use and store in the most efficient manner. Humans are naturally omnivores; we are able to eat from a wide range of food sources, including many plants and animals and even some fungi. Therefore, the Paleo diet draws not only on anthropology, but on modern research in epigenetics and human development to argue for a diet that is rich in protein, fruits and vegetables and low in grains (carbohydrates) and sugar.

eggs organicPaleo is often considered to be a variety of the low-carb diet, similar to the Atkins diet in that it stresses a reduction in the consumption of carbohydrates.  However, unlike Atkins, it lays more stress on the health and environmental importance of eating free-range and organic meat and eggs and also advocates not eating vegetable oils.

Allah has commanded us, in multiple places in the Qur’an, to eat not only what is halal, but also what is tayyib, which can be understood as what is good, wholesome and pure.  In modern terminology, that could translate as organic, meaning free of poisonous pesticides, hormones, antibiotics and artificial additives. In the case of our meat, animals should have space to roam, be well treated and fed a diet which is consistent with their natural disposition (i.e., not fed the products of other animals or synthetic mixes designed to make them fat). Eating what is tayyib is the heart and soul of the Paleo diet and lifestyle.

spinachDon’t be fooled by the critics’ (and some zealous proponents’) over-emphasis of meat consumption.  In fact, a well balanced Paleo diet will include lots and lots of fresh fruit and veggies.  While the Paleo diet is also by no means vegetarian, the important thing to remember is that, when it comes to meat, quality (organic, free range) is far more important than quantity.

It is for this reason that the Paleo diet tends to demonise grains (which are our primary source of carbohydrates), and particularly processed grain products like flour and its many by-products.  What most people today do not realise is that what we consider to be an average Western diet is actually significantly more carb-dense than the human diet has been for most of history.  Furthermore, once something has been processed to the point that it becomes pure white powder, it has become a nutritional desert and should be avoided (fun fact: the term “empty calories” was actually created to describe breakfast cereal). Some evidence suggests that our paleo-ancestors did eat a variety of starches, particularly from roots, maize and other varieties of grain. Their sources were significantly more nutrient-rich than most modern varieties of corn and wheat and they still did not eat nearly as much of it as the average person today. This diet places an emphasis on freshness, nutrients and minimising the consumption of highly processed foods rather than eliminating grains and starches from our diets altogether.

What also impressed me about this diet is the general lack of branded “Paleo” products.  Unlike many famous diets, it has not spawned legions of extremely profitable bars, shakes, membership fees, etc.  The only people who profit from promoting the Paleo diet, besides a handful of Paleo diet book authors, are small scale organic farms and farmers’ markets.  It’s not being made into a big business because that would be inherently antithetical to the Paleo lifestyle.

The Paleo diet does not argue for us to all go back to being hunter-gatherers, which would be neither desirable nor really possible at this point.  However, the grain (or bone marrow) of wisdom in this diet and lifestyle is that we need a return to purity in our diets; to eat the good of this earth in all its many natural sources.

Tara Alomari is a freelance writer, wife and mum currently residing in Wales.  She has a passion for learning about genetics, anthropology, nutrition and a wide range of other sciences and tries her best to implement the knowledge she gains in her daily life.