7 years + 3 different pairs: my overall EarthRunners review with style comparisons

If you’re already a barefooter or minimalist shoe wearer you’ll appreciate the importance of finding the right one, or various few, barefoot-style shoes that not only feel comfy but also last. If you’re totally new to the concept, here you’ll find an honest review of one of the longest running (pun intended!) barefoot shoes on the market and possibly some inspiration to venture into barefoot movement.

When I first transitioned from regular joggers to a more minimalist style of shoe there were hardly any brands to choose from. Now… there are loads! Brands, styles, colours, for a huge variety of uses. From sandals to snow boots and everything in between.

My first flat sole shoe was the good ol’ Dunlop Volleys! They had a reasonably wide toe box, a flat sole, were a bit bendy and definitely good quality. I wore them on long walks and while exercising, for a fair few months, which allowed my body to get used to far less padding and cushioning.

I then spent a lot more time walking and moving barefoot (at home, at parks, even at the shops sometimes) to get my feet and body stronger and more stable, and to toughen my feet up. I even started barefoot bushwalks with gravel and rock surfaces to really allow my feet to adapt to a large variety of natural surfaces and become more comfortable.

But, as I mention in my last two blog posts about going barefoot, there are situations and environments that going barefoot just isn’t do-able and I had to find a ‘barefoot’ shoe option. I chose to try EarthRunners sandals way back 7 years ago, and have been a fan ever since!

I’ve tried the three different soles they offer and different laces over those years so I want to share my honest experiences and recommendations.

In the last barefoot blog I posted with a review I had tried one thickness of sole with 100% leather laces and since then have tried two other soles, and nylon laces.

My first pair has the Circadian sole with full leather laces (which no longer exist), and multiple copper discs in the sole. The second pair had the Elemental sole style without the moisture-wicking cotton on top, with nylon laces. My current pair are the Alpha sole style and leather conductive laces. The company stopped adding multiple copper discs at one point, and realised one was enough, with conductive stitching on the laces. So the second and third pairs just had one copper disc underneath each sole, and conductive laces as opposed to 100% leather.


3 x Style Reviews

Circadian Review

Positives:

  • The sole thickness suited me well, I liked minimal material between my foot and the ground, especially for rock-hopping, balancing etc, I need my feet to grip to the surfaces as much as possible.
  • The original all-leather laces were so comfy, I loved them!
  • The moisture wicking layer underfoot was great and helped prevent my feet slipping and sliding around inside the sandal when wet

Negatives:

  • The moisture wicking wore off before the soles wore through, which made them a little slippery at that point, when wearing in wet conditions
Thickness of sole

Elemental Review

Positives:

  • The same sole thickness as the Circadian

Negatives:

  • All-nylon laces were definitely not as comfortable as the leather – they didn’t squish up and soften enough between my big and second toes and never felt quite as comfortable over the few years I wore them
  • Not having the moisture-wicking material was a downside, as I felt it provided more grip and comfort with my previous pair of sandals
Similar thickness to the first pair

Alpha Review

Positives:

  • The thicker sole may last longer than the other two pairs and not need replacing as soon (why I chose them this time around)
  • The moisture wicking fabric
  • I paid extra to get the new style of leather laces which has conductive stitching on top but leather touching the skin and I’m glad I did because, while not as mouldable and comfy as the original all-leather version, they’re much more comfortable than the completely nylon option

Negatives:

  • The sole is too thick for me. When I first started walking in them I actually felt higher up in them, I could really feel the height difference compared to the thinner soles! I’m used to that now, but when walking on rocks, balancing etc they don’t mould to my feet quite enough or allow for enough ‘feeling’ to what’s under my feet. I miss being able to feel more texture underfoot for sure
Much thicker sole

My overall verdict + style recommendation

I prefer the thinner soles, and even though the Alpha soles may last longer, it’s not worth it to me. Especially seeing as the thinner soles lasted me many years each, while wearing them MOST days and mostly on bitumen and rough natural surfaces! I believe Alpha is a good ‘beginner’ sole because it provides more cushioning. But for someone who needs to feel more and grip better with the surfaces they’re moving on and who’s feet are reasonably used to ‘barefoot’, the Circadian and Elemental are more suitable.

I suggest spending a few extra $ for the leather laces too, they are far more comfortable between the toes and even on the skin on the other parts of the foot. They do stretch a little when wet but the clip is so easy to adjust that that’s not a problem. The leather also look a little ‘nicer’ than the nylon laces, maybe not as a relaxed look about them, so fashion-wise leather could be a better option for those conscious of that!

Each pair moulds easily to the shape of the feet and lets them move quite freely but Alpha definitely don’t mould as much as fast. I can see that with their thickness and how I use them they’ll wear and thin out in certain spots underneath while the rest will stay pretty thick.

They take the shape of the foot which is how it should be

All styles are quick to get on and off. The clips, made of plastic, can break, especially if you’re adjusting the laces a lot (but the makers will send you a replacement pair pretty quickly). I generally keep mine done-up at the same spot all the time and just slip them on and off my feet, only opening the clips for when the laces get wet, a little loose, I have to tighten them slightly to be secure enough for what I’m doing, and then I need to loosen them off a bit when they dry. Other than that I don’t touch the clips.

These shoes can take a lot of beating up! I’ve put them through their paces on bushwalks (on and off tracks) with really rough surfaces, in cold conditions, in water (fresh and salt), while playing and being really active outdoors, for many days in a row while camping, walking on sharp seed pods and, of course, mostly wear them on rough bitumen roads!

I love that I’m getting the benefits of earthing while wearing shoes and protecting my feet against prickles, broken glass and any other hazards at the same time!

After 7 years and three pairs, I’m still a massive fan of EarthRunner sandals and am definitely a forever customer!

I highly recommend them to anyone who wants to become more of a barefooter or current barefooters who want a sandal that allows for grounding while being worn.

If you’re new to being barefoot, keep in mind your toe box will widen so when choosing a size ensure you account for that in terms of the width of the sandal.

View products here

If you decide to grab a pair please use our affiliate link, it provides us with a small referral fee and lets the manufacturers know where you came to them from ๐Ÿ™‚

Aimee

Natural Fitness + Lifestyle Coaching | Visit our website: Primal Influence | Follow us on socials: Facebook + Instagram

Disclaimer:

This disclaimer governs your use of Under the Primal Influence Blog. By using this website, you accept this disclaimer in full. If you disagree with any part of this disclaimer, do not use Under the Primal Influence Blog or any affiliated websites, properties, or companies. We reserve the right to modify these terms at any time. You should therefore check back periodically for changes. By using this website after we post any changes, you agree to accept those changes, whether or not you have reviewed them.

All information and resources found on Under the Primal Influence Blog are based on the opinions of the author unless otherwise noted. All information is intended to motivate readers to make their own nutrition and health decisions after consulting with their health care provider. I am not a doctor, lawyer, psychiatrist, therapist, or your mother, and I donโ€™t play one on the internet.

The author of this site encourages you to consult a doctor before making any health changes, especially any changes related to a specific diagnosis or condition. No information on this site should be relied upon to determine diet, make a medical diagnosis, or determine treatment for a medical condition. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice.

NO information on this site should be used to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure any disease or condition.

None of the posts and articles on Under the Primal Influence Blog may be re-printed without express written permission of the author. Primal Influence will respond to written requests to re-print parts of posts and excerpts/quotes (10% or less) may be reprinted with attribution as long as all links are left intact.

๐—Ÿ๐—ฒ๐˜’๐˜€ ๐˜๐—ฎ๐—น๐—ธ ๐—ด๐—ฟ๐—ฎ๐—ถ๐—ป๐˜€ + ๐˜„๐—ต๐—ฎ๐˜ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ๐˜† ๐—ฑ๐—ผ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ฏ๐—ผ๐—ฑ๐˜†

A grain-based diet contributed largely to my severe poor health and chronic pain for many years. Eventually, I transitioned off of them and made it sustainable, so I’m here to help you and your family firstly understand how the staple grain foods in your kitchen are affecting your health and secondly, how to move away from them and feel better.

Wheat, corn, rice, pasta, cereals, cooking grains (barley, millet, rye, oats, etc. + pseudo grains like quinoa), and all products made with them such as bread, pasta, crackers, snack foods, cookies, cakes, lollies and many other types of processed, packaged, frozen, and fresh-baked goods.

All forms of consumed carbs are converted into glucose in the bloodstream. While whole grains and other complex carbs may burn slower than sugars, they still contribute the same, gram for gram, to total insulin production over time.

Just as a quick sugar spike is pro-inflammatory and compromises immune function, a steady insulin trip from regular meals high in complex carbohydrates is also stressful and impacts our health.

Lectins, phytates and gluten are some of the natural defences in grains that the human body does not like at all.

“๐™„ ๐™˜๐™ค๐™ช๐™ก๐™™ ๐™ฃ๐™š๐™ซ๐™š๐™ง ๐™œ๐™ž๐™ซ๐™š ๐™ช๐™ฅ ๐™—๐™ง๐™š๐™–๐™™!” do you know who said that? Clint, back before we were Paleo, in about 2010, when he ate 6-8 slices of white bread daily. But guess what? He did get off bread! It sucked at first but it got easy quickly.

Same for me with oats for brekkie. And lunch. And snacks. I was addicted to muesli and porridge. But I transitioned out of them and over a decade later am doing MUCH better without ’em!

Check out my short video on my experience with grains and how they contributed to me living for a long time in agonising pain and always being exhausted and sick.

Click here to watch

You wanna know something cool? ๐™’๐™๐™š๐™ฃ ๐™ฎ๐™ค๐™ช ๐™ง๐™š๐™–๐™ก๐™ž๐™จ๐™š ๐™ฉ๐™๐™–๐™ฉ ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ๐™š๐™จ๐™ฉ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ ๐™œ๐™ง๐™–๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™จ ๐™ข๐™–๐™ ๐™š๐™จ ๐™ฎ๐™ค๐™ช ๐™˜๐™ง๐™–๐™ซ๐™š ๐™œ๐™ง๐™–๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™จ, ๐™–๐™ฃ๐™™ ๐™ฉ๐™๐™–๐™ฉ ๐™ฎ๐™ค๐™ช ๐™˜๐™–๐™ฃ ๐™—๐™ง๐™š๐™–๐™  ๐™ฉ๐™๐™–๐™ฉ ๐™˜๐™ฎ๐™˜๐™ก๐™š, ๐™ž๐™ฉ’๐™จ ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™˜๐™ง๐™š๐™™๐™ž๐™—๐™ก๐™ฎ ๐™š๐™ข๐™ฅ๐™ค๐™ฌ๐™š๐™ง๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ!

๐—›๐—ผ๐˜„ ๐—ฐ๐—ฎ๐—ป ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ๐˜† ๐—ฏ๐—ฒ ‘๐—ฏ๐—ฎ๐—ฑ’ ๐—ณ๐—ผ๐—ฟ ๐˜‚๐˜€ ๐˜„๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ป ๐˜„๐—ฒ ๐—ธ๐—ฒ๐—ฒ๐—ฝ ๐—ด๐—ฒ๐˜๐˜๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐˜๐—ผ๐—น๐—ฑ ๐—ฏ๐˜† ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—บ๐—ฒ๐—ฑ๐—ถ๐—ฎ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ๐˜†’๐—ฟ๐—ฒ ๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—น๐˜๐—ต๐˜†?!

Grains are a cheap and easy to grow ‘food’ source. They have almost no nutritional value (none that are bioavailable anyway), create excess insulin production, contain anti-nutrients that muck around with our digestive and immune function, create systemic inflammation and prevent the absorption of vitamins and minerals in the gut.

Grains have been a part of the human diet for as far back as proof exists of what humans ever ate, but grains back then were not the same as today.

Modern ‘altered’ corn
How corn used to look

Most of what we consume today is GMO (new unnatural versions), produced using chemicals and are highly processed. Ancient cultures foraged for and grew original grains native to their region and had intensive processing methods to remove most toxins. Even so, grains were never a staple, plants in general were short-term food sources in between animal kills. They complimented the main foods, not were the main foods.

The companies who make the products promoted as ‘healthy’ are the same companies who finance the nutritional advice we’re fed (pun intended!). There is plenty of scientific evidence and sound nutritional advice proving modern grains are no good for us.

Today we basically live on grains and it’s having a hugely negative impact on our health. The protein in modern grains is addictive, the other ingredients added to make ‘food’ products are also addictive and harmful, and it can be hard at first to even think about going without, let alone actually weaning off and existing without them.

๐—š๐—ฟ๐—ฎ๐—ถ๐—ป๐˜€ ๐—ฑ๐—ผ๐—ป’๐˜ ๐—ต๐—ฎ๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ ๐—น๐—ฒ๐—ด๐˜€ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐˜‚๐˜€๐—ฒ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐—ฟ๐˜‚๐—ป ๐—ฎ๐˜„๐—ฎ๐˜† ๐—ณ๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐—บ ๐—ฝ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฑ๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐˜€

But what they do have is built-in natural defences. Toxins unsafe for humans and many other animals to consume.

๐—”๐—ก๐—ง๐—œ-๐—ก๐—จ๐—ง๐—ฅ๐—œ๐—˜๐—ก๐—ง๐—ฆ >> Agents present in grains that compromises nutritional health instead of supporting it. The 4 main anti-nutrients in regards to grains are:

Lectins
Gluten
Phytates

๐—Ÿ๐—ฒ๐—ฐ๐˜๐—ถ๐—ป๐˜€ are natural plant toxins that damage the delicate lining of the small intestine, letting undigested foreign protein particles enter the bloodstream and cause an autoimmune response – commonly known as “leaky gut syndrome”.

๐—š๐—น๐˜‚๐˜๐—ฒ๐—ป, found mainly in wheat, is a highly allergenic type of lectin. Ingestion causes a mild to severe inflammatory response in the body, compromising digestive and immune function. Many functional medical practitioners believe we can all do better off gluten.

๐—ฃ๐—ต๐˜†๐˜๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ฒ๐˜€ bind with nutrients in the digestive tract similar to how fibre does. Excess consumption can easily lead to nutrient deficiency. This is common when on a grain-based diet.

Image source: unknown

๐— ๐—ผ๐˜ƒ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฎ๐˜„๐—ฎ๐˜† ๐—ณ๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐—บ ๐—ด๐—ฟ๐—ฎ๐—ถ๐—ป๐˜€ ๐˜€๐—ฒ๐—ฒ๐—บ๐˜€ ๐˜€๐—ฐ๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐˜† ๐—ฎ๐˜ ๐—ณ๐—ถ๐—ฟ๐˜€๐˜ ๐—ฏ๐˜‚๐˜ ๐—ถ๐˜’๐˜€ ๐—ฑ๐—ฒ๐—ณ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ถ๐˜๐—ฒ๐—น๐˜† ๐—ฑ๐—ผ-๐—ฎ๐—ฏ๐—น๐—ฒ!

As per my video, grains contributed to my many years of experiencing terrible health and incredibly bad gut problems. Going GF absolutely did not fix my problems or make me any better because I then relied on gluten-free grain foods.

Going Paleo was what helped me overcome my health problems and chronic pain. Healing the body, feeding it bio-available nutrient-rich foods and living more naturally.

Paleo: Nutrition Experts Weigh In - Dance Informa Magazine

If you and your family is pretty addicted to and reliant upon grain foods and can’t imagine going cold turkey off of them then a good first step would be a gentle transition.

๐—ง๐—ต๐—ถ๐˜€ ๐—ฐ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—น๐—ฑ ๐—น๐—ผ๐—ผ๐—ธ ๐—น๐—ถ๐—ธ๐—ฒ:

  • Swapping to GF breads and cereals to at least get away from gluten
  • Soaking, activating, fermenting some grains / buying soaked, activated, fermented products
  • Swapping some grain bars and snack food products to fresh fruit, GF ham, cold chicken wings, homemade gelatin lollies and hard-boiled eggs
  • Reducing the qty of grain foods each meal to smaller amounts and adding more eggs, meat and veggies to the plate (see previous posts about what grain foods actually are)
  • Using gluten-free flours and products
  • Adding in some healing and nutrient-dense foods to reduce inflammation

This could be done over the period of a couple of months with the aim of moving totally away from grains all-together. ๐™„๐™ฉ’๐™จ ๐™™๐™ค-๐™–๐™—๐™ก๐™š ๐™–๐™ฃ๐™™ ๐™จ๐™ช๐™จ๐™ฉ๐™–๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™–๐™—๐™ก๐™š, ๐™„ ๐™ ๐™ฃ๐™ค๐™ฌ, ๐™„’๐™ซ๐™š ๐™™๐™ค๐™ฃ๐™š ๐™ž๐™ฉ!

Try my recipe using Green Banana Flour
Soaking nuts can remove a lot of the toxins. Image source: Tampa Rejuvenation

The next step would be a 21-day total grain detox/primal reset and learning how to go Paleo with some initial easy transition options and then eventually consuming mostly just the optimal foods.

I wish you well on your less-grains or grain-free journey and am here if you need help or have any questions!

Aimee

Natural Fitness + Lifestyle Coaching | Visit our website: Primal Influence | Follow us on socials: Facebook + Instagram

Disclaimer:

This disclaimer governs your use of Under the Primal Influence Blog. By using this website, you accept this disclaimer in full. If you disagree with any part of this disclaimer, do not use Under the Primal Influence Blog or any affiliated websites, properties, or companies. We reserve the right to modify these terms at any time. You should therefore check back periodically for changes. By using this website after we post any changes, you agree to accept those changes, whether or not you have reviewed them.

All information and resources found on Under the Primal Influence Blog are based on the opinions of the author unless otherwise noted. All information is intended to motivate readers to make their own nutrition and health decisions after consulting with their health care provider. I am not a doctor, lawyer, psychiatrist, therapist, or your mother, and I donโ€™t play one on the internet.

The author of this site encourages you to consult a doctor before making any health changes, especially any changes related to a specific diagnosis or condition. No information on this site should be relied upon to determine diet, make a medical diagnosis, or determine treatment for a medical condition. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice.

NO information on this site should be used to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure any disease or condition.

None of the posts and articles on Under the Primal Influence Blog may be re-printed without express written permission of the author. Primal Influence will respond to written requests to re-print parts of posts and excerpts/quotes (10% or less) may be reprinted with attribution as long as all links are left intact.

Beef Fat for Better Health: Part 4

The final post in our special 4-part series!

What’s one of our favourite ways to utilise beef fat?

Rendering it to become tallow and using the tallow to make MOISTURISER!

As mentioned in the previous blog, tallow is incredibly good for human skin. But in it’s pure form it doesn’t make for a practical moisturiser because it’s so firm and hard to spread.

If you ever get tallow on your hands while making it from suet/other fat, or while cooking with it, and you rub it into your skin you’ll realise how nice it feels and you’ll probably notice it doesn’t leave your skin feeling greasy afterwards. Compared to how coconut oil feels on the skin, there’s a big – and welcome – difference!

To make it more use-able it’s recommended to add 1-2 other ingredients in, and whipping it up with some air in there also makes it easier to achieve good coverage with.

It’s actually really easy to make a soft, silky, whipped tallow cream for the body. It’s also incredibly economical because it goes a long way and lasts a surprisingly long time. Especially if it’s applied while skin is still slightly damp after having a shower or bath. Applying it to warm damp-ish skin helps it spread further, so you can really use the ‘less is more’ principle with it which is a bonus!

Keen to try making your own whipped tallow body cream?

Here’s a quick video tutorial!

But what about the smell? Won’t it be too ‘beefy’?

To change the aroma you can add a good quality pure essential oil in during the hand-mixing, toward the end. Quantity will depend on the scent in particular and your preference as to how strong you’d like it to smell.

We usually add a subtle variety such as sweet orange, lemon, or lime. The essential oil can help reduce the ‘tallow-y’ smell the cream gives off initially. But we find that smell goes away pretty quickly anyway, once the cream has been rubbed into the skin.

So it’s up to you if you want to include essential oils in your cream or not.

Are you going to give making tallow moisturiser a go? We’d love to hear how you go with it!

Clint + Aimee

Natural Fitness + Lifestyle Coaches

Primal Influence

Disclaimer:

This disclaimer governs your use of Under the Primal Influence Blog. By using this website, you accept this disclaimer in full. If you disagree with any part of this disclaimer, do not use Under the Primal Influence Blog or any affiliated websites, properties, or companies. We reserve the right to modify these terms at any time. You should therefore check back periodically for changes. By using this website after we post any changes, you agree to accept those changes, whether or not you have reviewed them.

All information and resources found on Under the Primal Influence Blog are based on the opinions of the author unless otherwise noted. All information is intended to motivate readers to make their own nutrition and health decisions after consulting with their health care provider. I am not a doctor, lawyer, psychiatrist, therapist, or your mother, and I donโ€™t play one on the internet.

The author of this site encourages you to consult a doctor before making any health changes, especially any changes related to a specific diagnosis or condition. No information on this site should be relied upon to determine diet, make a medical diagnosis, or determine treatment for a medical condition. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice.

NO information on this site should be used to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure any disease or condition.

None of the posts and articles on Under the Primal Influence Blog may be re-printed without express written permission of the author. Primal Influence will respond to written requests to re-print parts of posts and excerpts/quotes (10% or less) may be reprinted with attribution as long as all links are left intact.

Beef Fat for Better Health: Part 3

From making tallow to cook with to moisturiserslet’s look at the best ways to utilise this healthy wholefood.

How we utilise beef fat as food

There are 2 ways we like to use beef fat:

  1. Raw mince suet sprinkled on some of our meat meals – usually on our mince and eggs or mince/liver/kidney and eggs for brekkie, with some pink salt. Or topped on a piece of rump steak.
Suet sitting between a juicy rump and fried pastured eggs

The fat melts on the just-off-the-fry-pan food and has quite a nice taste and texture.

If eaten totally raw and still a bit firm it can be quite chewy and stick to your teeth. Some carnivore-diet followers enjoy this texture but we don’t. You might, so give it a go!

As mentioned in previous posts (Part 1, and Part 2), beef fat in it’s raw state is said to be more nutrient-dense and bio-available than cooked fat (tallow) so it’s a good idea to add it to meals when possible to boost good calories, create satiety and increase energy levels.

2. Tallow to consume as is and to cook with.

We always have a jar of homemade tallow beside the stove to use on our two permanently-placed cast iron pans and to use on food we’re roasting or to dollop on our cooked meals.

Photo source: http://www.Instructables.com

Cast iron is a super healthy cooking surface and requires almost no cleaning (less washing up, always a nice thing when you don’t own a dishwasher and cook all meals from scratch!) and tallow with it’s high smoke point and high nutrients / low anti-nutrients makes a great seasoning and cooking fat.

You only need to add a very thin layer of tallow to cast iron pans to keep them seasoned and for cooking, so tallow goes a really long way and lasts a really long time.

Essential healthy cooking tools

How we utilise beef fat on our skin

By making and using tallow moisturiser!

Why is grass-fed tallow good for our skin?

Tallow closely mimics the fats and oils we have naturally in our skin.

This includes the fatty acids and cholesterol in the cell membranes of all our skin cells as well as those that sit in between skin cells, forming the protective barrier function of our skin.

Strong, healthy cell membranes help keep skin cells plump and well hydrated. It helps protect skin from moisture loss and leaves skin looking soft and hydrated. It will also help replenish any missing components in our skinโ€™s barrier function.

Grass-fed tallow also contains fatty acids that closely copy the oils that we produce naturally as sebum.

As we get older, our skin slows down on the production of these oils that keep our skin soft, supple and youthful looking.

So, grass-fed tallow helps put back what time takes away.
Rejuvenating the appearance of skin, as well as smoothing out the look of fine lines and wrinkles.

Good quality tallow also contain essential vitamins such as fat soluble vitamins A, D, E and K which are all really important for healthy glowing skin.

The other bonus is it’s high in essential Omega-3 and 6 fatty acids, with a ratio of 1:1, to help protect the skin and boost immune function.

Tallow moisturiser is super easy to make and an affordable natural skincare product, or you can simply lather on some pure tallow if you like, it feels so nice on the skin!

How else do we use tallow on our skin?

By making tallow soap (or a combination of coconut oil and tallow)!

Making natural soap is so good for our health and the environment, and is a great way to utilise healthy tallow. Especially with any tallow that went a little too far in the rendering process and ended up slightly over ‘done’. We like to label these containers “for soap” and keep in the fridge until it’s time to make a batch of about 24 bars.

Have you made natural soap before? It’s so rewarding and so so so cheap!

To get started with these you’ll need to buy yourself some grass-fed tallow or make it from scratch. Making tallow is definitely the less expensive option and the one we always choose.

Here’s a video on how to do just that!

Let us know how you go making your own tallow then stay tuned for the next post…

The next blog will include:

  • How to make tallow moisturiser

Until then, please let us know if you have any questions or comments, we’d love to hear from you!

Clint + Aimee

Natural Fitness + Lifestyle Coaches

Primal Influence

Disclaimer:

This disclaimer governs your use of Under the Primal Influence Blog. By using this website, you accept this disclaimer in full. If you disagree with any part of this disclaimer, do not use Under the Primal Influence Blog or any affiliated websites, properties, or companies. We reserve the right to modify these terms at any time. You should therefore check back periodically for changes. By using this website after we post any changes, you agree to accept those changes, whether or not you have reviewed them.

All information and resources found on Under the Primal Influence Blog are based on the opinions of the author unless otherwise noted. All information is intended to motivate readers to make their own nutrition and health decisions after consulting with their health care provider. I am not a doctor, lawyer, psychiatrist, therapist, or your mother, and I donโ€™t play one on the internet.

The author of this site encourages you to consult a doctor before making any health changes, especially any changes related to a specific diagnosis or condition. No information on this site should be relied upon to determine diet, make a medical diagnosis, or determine treatment for a medical condition. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice.

NO information on this site should be used to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure any disease or condition.

None of the posts and articles on Under the Primal Influence Blog may be re-printed without express written permission of the author. Primal Influence will respond to written requests to re-print parts of posts and excerpts/quotes (10% or less) may be reprinted with attribution as long as all links are left intact.

Beef Fat for Better Health: Part 2

A deeper look into this hugely underrated nourishing wholefood + comparing it to plant fat products

Which is better + why?

Why animal fats are better than plant fats

Plant oils are a staple in most pantries. Olive oil, canola, sunflower. Plus a lot of fridges these days have a tub of plant oil margarine on the shelf. Many of these products are touted as “good for lowering cholesterol”, being “heart-healthy” and healthy because they’re low in saturated fat.

If you asked everyone you know “Hey do you think olive oil is healthier than beef fat?” most likely at least 99% of them would say yes. That’s the sad reality of sneaky marketing and BS health advice… it teaches the majority of the population the wrong thing!

One of the main reasons these oils and products are classed as “heart-healthy” is because they contain Phytosterols.

Science shows they can lower cholesterol but there’s a couple main problems with this…

  1. We actually NEED cholesterol for basic cell function, to prevent depression and more.
  2. We’re consuming Phytosterols in larger then recommended quantities due to the inclusion of grains and legumes in the diet.

High ‘bad’ cholesterol is often misdiagnosed as most conventional practitioners don’t fully understand it or the levels we need to have to be ‘healthy’. Dr Chris Kresser has some great info on this and busts a few common myths around cholesterol. Read more here.

Another issue with Phytosterols is they may actually contribute to heart disease, not prevent it. Read more here.

Also, plants contain toxins. How they function in the human body is not how they function when tested in a lab. They contain more anti-nutrients than nutrients. Animal meat and fats don’t.

And how often have you picked an olive from a tree and squeezed out oil to use on your meal or in cooking? Never! Because to extract oil from olives the olives have to go through rigorous processing including high-temp heating. That’s never healthy!

Meat and fat from animals contain almost no anti-nutrients and lots of essential nutrients that are bio-available for the human body. Meaning we can process and use them efficiently without negative effects. This is ideal when eating food. Traditionally, plants were used more for survival situations, to get humans by between animal kills. Dr Paul Saladino talks a lot about this in his podcast interviews and on his website. We highly recommend his book The Carnivore Code too!

And… saturated fat is healthy, in particular, long-chain saturated fats from ruminant animals. Vegetable oils are higher in poly-unsaturated fats which cause insulin resistance. Dr Paul Saladino talks about this in this Facebook video.

The environment impacts

Mono-cropping is a major problem to the environment and it’s the method used for the production of most plant oils. Unless regenerative agriculture practices are used, farming large-scale crops extracts nutrients from the soil. Regenerative agriculture does exactly what the name suggests… it regenerates the land and improves the eco-system!

Rapeseed flour field

Sure, factory farming of cattle is bad. And this goes back to the point in the last blog post of why choosing grass-fed animal products from quality producers using healthy farming techniques is so important.

Diana Rogers – Sustainable Dish uses the message “it’s not the cow, it’s the how” and has some amazing information on the environmental impacts of unhealthy animal farming vs healthy methods, and also the problems with mono-crop production. Her book and doco Sacred Cow are out soon and we’re so excited!

Healthy pasture and environment = healthy cattle

We’ve experienced first hand the benefits of regen ag for both the health of the environment and ourselves. We work part-time on a biodynamic beef and egg farm run by a former bio-chemist (aka scientist!), have hosted educational farm tours there, and have learnt all about the farming practices used and eaten the food produced there. When you understand the full cycle from how an animal is raised to how it can nourish the planet and us, you appreciate the importance of consuming good quality animal products!

Another environmental factor to consider, particularly with consuming the fat, is how much waste is reduced. Apart from eating note-to-tail being a natural and traditional thing for humans to do, from a modern-day viewpoint with how much waste, landfill and pollution we’re tackling we need to incorporate ways to reduce these. If a butcher is including the suet and other fat from an animal in his product range that means less food he’s throwing out. It means we’re making the most of the animal that died for our benefit, and we’re putting less waste into landfill.

Beef is one of the most highly produced and consumed foods in Australia and the supermarkets stock mostly lean cuts or the cuts with minimal fat included, you never see tubs of the fat for sale, so imagine how much goes to waste that isn’t being used in products. Beef fat is actually quite hard to get a hold of, when it should be easy to access because it’s so easy to utilise and so healthy! This has to change!

So there are some good reasons there to do some more research on the benefits of animal fat vs plant fat and make the switch.

Do we consume any plant fats?

Yes, but very rarely now and only good quality. We buy organic olive oil and organic macadamia oil that we really only use for raw purposes and not even on a weekly basis. We used to make paleo ‘mayo’ regularly with olive oil but since going mostly carnivore created an animal-fat alternative… ghee-daise! Using grass-fed ghee to make a sort of hollandaise! Find the recipe here

Creamy homemade ghee-daise

The next post will include:

  • How we utilise beef fat (as food and on our skin)
  • How to make tallow

Until then, please let us know if you have any questions or comments, we’d love to hear from you!

Clint + Aimee

Natural Fitness + Lifestyle Coaches

Primal Influence

Disclaimer:

This disclaimer governs your use of Under the Primal Influence Blog. By using this website, you accept this disclaimer in full. If you disagree with any part of this disclaimer, do not use Under the Primal Influence Blog or any affiliated websites, properties, or companies. We reserve the right to modify these terms at any time. You should therefore check back periodically for changes. By using this website after we post any changes, you agree to accept those changes, whether or not you have reviewed them.

All information and resources found on Under the Primal Influence Blog are based on the opinions of the author unless otherwise noted. All information is intended to motivate readers to make their own nutrition and health decisions after consulting with their health care provider. I am not a doctor, lawyer, psychiatrist, therapist, or your mother, and I donโ€™t play one on the internet.

The author of this site encourages you to consult a doctor before making any health changes, especially any changes related to a specific diagnosis or condition. No information on this site should be relied upon to determine diet, make a medical diagnosis, or determine treatment for a medical condition. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice.

NO information on this site should be used to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure any disease or condition.

None of the posts and articles on Under the Primal Influence Blog may be re-printed without express written permission of the author. Primal Influence will respond to written requests to re-print parts of posts and excerpts/quotes (10% or less) may be reprinted with attribution as long as all links are left intact.

Beef Fat for Better Health: Part 1

An intro to beef fat + why itโ€™s important to consume

We’ve really upped our beef fat intake since we went mostly carnivore in 2019 and enjoying continually learning about why it’s such a smart move. It’s an incredibly health fat to consume (and use topically which we’ll get into in later posts) but so feared because of the stigma still attached to it in regards to ‘fat being bad’ and ‘saturated fat is harmful’.

Us humans need to be rid of that old outdated and just plain WRONG way of thinking once and for all, do our health a favour and get on the good fat train!

We’re creating a 4-part blog series covering the benefits of beef fat for our health inside and out, how to consume and use it including how to make natural skin products!

This first post is all about why beef fat is so healthy.

The health benefits of good quality beef fat

Beef fat from good quality sources (i.e. grass-fed, organic, bio-dynamic farms) contains essential nutrients the human body needs to functional optimally and it’s thought that raw beef fat in particular contains more ‘bioavailable’ forms of nutrients, then say cooked/rendered fat (e.g. tallow).

What does “bioavailable” mean?

The term โ€œbioavailabilityโ€ means biological availability and it describes the proportion of a mineral or vitamin in a food, which is available for absorption and utilization in the body. In nutritional science, the bioavailability of vitamins and minerals depends on your nutritional and physiological status. This means that a high nutritional status of a specific vitamin or mineral limits the absorption in the gut and vice versa. The bioavailability of vitamins and minerals is defined as the part of the substance that is absorbed and ready to use. (Sourced from NJORD Nutrition)

Beef fat, raw or rendered, has been proven to contain bioavailable nutrients but we’ve heard a few carnivore diet experts (including doctors) theorise that bioavailability is better in its raw state.

We’ll go into more detail in later posts but there are basically three types of beef fat:

  1. Raw suet – the fat from around the organs such as the kidneys
  2. Raw fat – the fat from other areas of the body
  3. Tallow – any fat that has been rendered

Tip: tallow should be yellow in colour. That’s a sign it’s from grass-fed cattle.

Raw organic minced beef suet
Rendered grass-fed beef tallow

Now that you have a basic understanding of the types of beef fat let’s talk about specific nutrients their benefits to our health.

  • Beta-carotene: a natural form of Vitamin A – an essential nutrient – which the body can convert to Vitamin A as needed. Beta-carotene is also an antioxidant, important for protecting the body against free-radicals. Grass contains beta-carotene, grain does not. So grass-fed beef fat is where it’s at!
  • Vitamin A: the human body converts beta-carotene to Vitamin A as it requires and is the safest form of this Vitamin because supplements can actually cause more harm than good.
  • Vitamin D: helps the intestine absorb nutrients, prevents osteomalacia and rickets, regulates blood pressure, and assists in the absorption of calcium in the body, that prevents osteoporosis or arthritis. The best form of this is from direct sunlight daily, but foods can help boost our levels safely, as opposed to supplements.
  • Vitamin E: a group of eight compounds called tocopherols and tocotrienols which reduces cholesterol and the risk of developing diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, and cancer
  • Vitamin K: good for the heart, immune-boosting, bone density, cognitive function, dental health, quicker healing, reducing PMS symptoms and more.
  • Selenium: a powerful antioxidant, may help prevent some cancers, can help prevent heart disease, important for mental health, thyroid health, immune-boosting, and can help reduce the severity of Asthma.
  • CLA: Tallow is rich in conjugated linoleic acid, a fatty acid which, according to some studies, can help burn fat.
  • Omega-3: helps fight depression and anxiety, improves eye health, promotes brain health during pregnancy and in early life, can improve risk factors for heart disease, can reduce symptoms of ADHD in children, reduces inflammation, may help prevent cancer and many more diseases and symptoms. Beef fat does also contain Omega-6 which is often suggested as something to avoid. It’s all about getting a good ratio of both Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids, which is easier to do when the beef and fat is from grass-fed cattle, as grain-fed meat and fat is extremely high in Omega-6.

The nutrients in beef fat help improve the immune system.

Beef fat is also an excellent form of energy for the human body to use, as opposed to sugar, caffeine and empty carbohydrates

Lean vs fatty cuts of meat

With the importance of balancing out Omega-3’s and 6’s it’s ideal to consume fatty cuts of meat only from good quality sources (farmers using organic and grass-fed/finished methods) but when you can’t access grass-fed beef then that’s when you should opt for the leaner cuts and try to add good quality grass-fed FAT to your meal to make up the fat content.

Keep some grass-fed tallow or suet handy to cook in and top your cooked meats with. We always have minced raw organic suet in the freezer and a jar of rendered grass-fed tallow beside the stove.

The other element to consider when choosing which cuts of meat to buy is the gelatin-factor. This could easily be a post on it’s own as there’s quite a lot of detail with this but basically, we need gelatin with our meat when we consume it and we need to include offal because over a long time if we’re only consuming muscle meat (lean or fatty) such as chicken breasts, thighs off the bone, rump, backstrap etc we can easily get high homasistine levels in the blood which contributes to making us more susceptible to the big diseases such as Diabetes, Heart Disease etc.

This is due to the lack of glycine – a crucial amino acid needed when consuming protein.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is chicken-meat.jpg

It’s found in the collagen and cartilage which is not available with muscle meat alone. The liver produces a small amount but not enough to sustain us, we need it mostly from our food.

An easy way to add it in is to use pure collagen and gelatin powders from grass-fed beef. Collagen powders dissolve without needing to be mixed with hot liquids, you can place a spoonful in cold water and it’ll dissolve perfectly. Gelatin that gels is for making other foods such as fruit gummies or even egg-noodles.

Watch our gelatin video series for all the info you need about gelatin and collagen.

We have a few gelatin recipes on our website you’re welcome to use.

Egg-oodles made with gelatin

Bone broth contains all the nutrients required to break down meat properly to it’s a good idea to drink some with a muscle meat meal. It contains collagen, gelatin and a stack of essential vitamins and minerals that all work together.

Make your own (ideal) or buy organic bone broth from health food stores, online, local markets etc.

Homemade nourishing bone broth

So the bottom line here is we can become pretty darn healthy from eating good quality meat, fat, and collagen daily. But not on their own – they work best in the body when consumed all together.

The next post will include:

  • Animal vs plant protein/fat
  • How to source good quality animal fats
  • Environmental benefits of using animal fats

Until then, please let us know if you have any questions or comments, we’d love to hear from you!

Clint + Aimee

Natural Fitness + Lifestyle Coaches

Primal Influence

Disclaimer:

This disclaimer governs your use of Under the Primal Influence Blog. By using this website, you accept this disclaimer in full. If you disagree with any part of this disclaimer, do not use Under the Primal Influence Blog or any affiliated websites, properties, or companies. We reserve the right to modify these terms at any time. You should therefore check back periodically for changes. By using this website after we post any changes, you agree to accept those changes, whether or not you have reviewed them.

All information and resources found on Under the Primal Influence Blog are based on the opinions of the author unless otherwise noted. All information is intended to motivate readers to make their own nutrition and health decisions after consulting with their health care provider. I am not a doctor, lawyer, psychiatrist, therapist, or your mother, and I donโ€™t play one on the internet.

The author of this site encourages you to consult a doctor before making any health changes, especially any changes related to a specific diagnosis or condition. No information on this site should be relied upon to determine diet, make a medical diagnosis, or determine treatment for a medical condition. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice.

NO information on this site should be used to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure any disease or condition.

None of the posts and articles on Under the Primal Influence Blog may be re-printed without express written permission of the author. Primal Influence will respond to written requests to re-print parts of posts and excerpts/quotes (10% or less) may be reprinted with attribution as long as all links are left intact.