Why Aren’t the Presidential Candidates Talking About Food?

Why Aren't the Presidential Candidates Talking About Food?

by Steve Holt for Thrive Market

No matter what your political affiliation, we can all agree the 2016 race for the White House has been equal parts fascinating, wacky, unprecedented, and intense. While this crazy campaign has often delved into the realm of the unbelievable, it has occasionally focused on actual issues affecting Americans—from healthcare, to taxes, to war, to job creation.

There’s one policy issue, though, that impacts all 319 million Americans that the candidates for president (on both sides) have barely addressed: food policy.


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That’s right—the complicated web of legislation, regulation, and corporate influence that gets food from farms to our plates—has not been central to any candidate’s stump speech. In fact, it has barely come up. Even in the months leading up to the January caucuses in Iowa—perhaps the nation’s quintessential agricultural state—food and farm policy positions were a non-factor in the outcome. In fact, Ted Cruz, who won the Republican caucuses, fiercely and vocally opposes federal subsidies for corn to make ethanol fuel—a beloved program in Iowa.

Even now, you have to do quite a bit of digging to find anything remotely resembling candidate positions on issues like genetic modification, federal nutrition benefits such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly food stamps), or the industrialization of our food supply.

Huffington Post wanted to get the candidates on the record on some of these issues, so it sent each candidate a questionnaire asking about food and agriculture policy positions. Prominent food nonprofit Food Tank did the same. The results? Crickets. Neither received a completed survey from even one of the candidates on food policy.

In fairness, two candidates have previously published some of their views on agriculture and the “rural economy,” but they almost never talk about those views in debates or at rallies.

What gives? The food system is, perhaps, the most vital industry we have as a nation. It nourishes us. It sustains families. It regenerates (or, in some cases, harms) our ecology. It drives economies. Few would argue the fact that as farms and food corporations have grown in size, the food we eat has become less nutritious, less localized, and more consolidated. Chemical use in agriculture is harming not only the land and the workers who farm it, but the population as well.

According to a new survey by Johns Hopkins University, American voters overwhelmingly—92 percent!—want a food system that utilizes sustainable practices and are more than half are willing to take their food values into the voting both. And Food Policy Action (which last year launched its “Plate of the Union” campaign to bring food back to the campaign trail) has conducted a series of polls revealing that American voters are concerned about an array of food policy issues, from childhood nutrition to worker rights. As we’ve seen on issues like GMOs, voter opinions can sway policy-makers and corporations to enact change.

There’s no question that given the increased interest in food and food policy among average Americans, the subject is destined to become a talking point in future campaigns. We can’t wait for future campaigns, however—the challenges (from pesticides to diet-related disease) are too great.

Do you want the candidates for President to make food policy a bigger part of their campaigns? Let them know!

Shrimps Gone Wild…(Scampi)

Eat like a caveman?  Are you out of your #@^&!&g mind? I’m Italian, this Paleo thing isn’t for me”….Trust me when I say that is the “G” rated version of my scampiimmediate reaction when I first looked into the paleo diet.  I mean really how could I possibly survive without eating pasta, pizza, veal parmigiano and everything else that I was weened on?  Well, to my pleasant surprise this Shrimp Scampi recipe doesn’t taste like anything “diet” and is a dish that I have served to my relatives with rave compliments!  So enjoy and mangia!


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Shrimps Gone Wild (Scampi)
Serves 2
Bella Shrimp Scampi Italiano...cooked Paleo.
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  1. 1/2 small spaghetti squash
  2. 1 lb. wild jumbo shrimp, shell-on
  3. ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  4. 12 cloves garlic (or more!), smashed
  5. ¼ cup dry white wine
  6. 1 small lemon, juiced
  7. ¼ cup freshly chopped parsley
  8. Freshly ground pepper, to taste
  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
  2. Halve squash, scrape seeds out with fork and discard. Place squash, cut side down, in glass baking dish with one inch of water. Cook roughly 40 minutes, checking half way through. (Squash is done when skin is easily pierced with fork.) Remove from oven and let cool on wire rack, cut side up.
  3. Heat oil in skillet over medium low heat. Using kitchen shears, cut legs off shrimp and cut slit down back, but leave shell on.
  4. Add garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned. Add wine and lemon juice. Cover and let cook over low a few more minutes.
  5. Scrape out squash with fork and divide into two portions, in two bowls.
  6. Add shrimp to oil and garlic mixture and cook 2 to 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  7. Add half of the shrimp to each bowl of spaghetti squash. Top with parsley, fresh pepper to taste and oil from the pan.
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Healthy Happy Meal Chicken Nuggets!

Paleo Chicken Nuggets Recipe
Paleo Chicken Nuggets Recipe
Photo credit: Paul Delmont
by Merce Muse for Thrive Market
What part of the chicken does a “nugget” come from, anyway? When you order the drive-thru version, you can never be sure what’s inside those little patties. Try making this healthified take on the classic Happy Meal treat at home for a lunch that kiddos (and their health-conscious parents) will love. 

Paleo Chicken Nuggets

Yield: 20 nuggets
Active Time:


1/2 cup coconut flour, divided
2 tablespoon ground flaxseed
1 1/4 teaspoon sea salt, divided
1 pound ground chicken
1 large egg, beaten
1 teaspoon onion powder
3/4 teaspoon minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup melted ghee or olive oil



Preheat oven to 375 degrees and line baking sheet with parchment paper.

Stir together 1/4 cup coconut flour, ground flaxseed, and 1/4 teaspoon sea salt on medium-sized plate. Set aside.

Place ground chicken, egg, remaining 1/4 cup coconut flour, remaining 1 teaspoon sea salt, onion powder, minced garlic, and black pepper together in a large bowl and mix to combine, taking care not to over-mix.

Scoop out 1 1/2 tablespoon-sized balls and place on baking sheet. Flatten each ball into a small patty, the shape of a chicken nugget. Dip each nugget into the coconut flour mixture, coating each side, and place back on baking sheet.

Bake in oven 15 minutes. Brush each nugget with melted ghee or olive oil and bake for 5 more minutes. Serve warm.

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Fantastic Fungi

I’m certain that there are still some of you who remember the commercial that challenged you to at just one potato chip….well here we go again however, this time with Paleo oven Roasted Mushrooms sprinkled with balsamic vinaigrette.  True confession, and not the least bit ashamed, the first time I made these gems I devoured the entire pan myself!  So go ahead, I bet you can’t eat just one.


Fantastic Fungi
Serves 4
A fantastic side dish that just might be the star attraction!
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
25 min
Total Time
40 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
25 min
Total Time
40 min
  1. 1 lb mushrooms (I used button mushrooms)
  2. 2 Tbsp + 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  3. 1 Tbsp finely minced garlic
  4. 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
  5. 2 Tbsp fresh thyme leaves, chopped
  6. 1 Tbsp fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped (optional, just for garnish)
  7. Salt and pepper to taste
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Wash mushrooms and pull out stems.
  3. Cut mushrooms into halves (or quarters, if the mushrooms are large.)
  4. Put mushrooms and stems into a medium bowl and toss with 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, salt and fresh ground black pepper.
  5. On a baking pan lined with aluminum foil, arrange mushrooms on the pan in a single layer.
  6. Roast mushrooms 15 minutes.
  7. While mushrooms cook, finely chop fresh thyme, then mix with minced garlic, balsamic vinegar and the rest of the olive oil.
  8. After 15 minutes, remove mushrooms from baking pan into the bowl, draining off any liquid that has accumulated while baking.
  9. Toss hot mushrooms with the garlic-thyme mixture.
  10. Arrange back on roasting pan and cook about 10 minutes more.
  11. Serve hot, sprinkled with chopped fresh parsley i(optional, not required).
Adapted from Be Mindful Be Human
Adapted from Be Mindful Be Human
My Healthy Paleo https://myhealthypaleo.com/

 Thanks for making us the fastest growing Paleo health site on the internet! We couldn’t have done it without YOU!


Damn, who knew?


There’s a reason why everyone—and we mean everyone—is talking about coconut oil these days. From raw foodies, to vegan chefs, to Paleo eaters, the internet is ablaze with rave reviews about this trending ingredient. Even if you’re not a fan of the flavor, we know at least nine other ways to use it. The beauty benefits alone will earn it a new spot in your medicine cabinet.

Because coconut oil is ultra-moisturizing, it’s perfect for everything from DIY body scrubs to hair masks. Rub a dollop of it on your skin to see what we mean. It’ll leave you feeling baby-soft, and it’s all-natural, unlike a lot of lotions out there. If loving coconut oil is wrong, we don’t want to be right. Check out a few of the ways we’ve incorporated it into our daily routines. We guarantee you’ll be crushing on it, too.

  • In a stir fry or quick sauté
  • As a butter substitute in baking
  • To make raw chocolate bars
  • In a supercharged smoothie
  • In bulletproof coffee
  • Spread on toast
  • In oil pulling
  • As a moisturizer
  • As a leave-in conditioner
  • As lip balm
  • To soothe itchy skin or bug bites
  • As a natural treatment for lice
  • To relieve the pain of a sore throat
  • In a DIY body butter
  • As a makeup remover

Before you run out to the store to grab a jar, make sure you’re getting only the good stuff. Specifically, you want to make sure coconut oil is organic, ethically sourced, and virgin—like Nutiva’s. The online shopping is offering a FREE jar of high-quality organic virgin coconut oil. Claim your FREE gift today before they’re gone!

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Kickin’ Carrots…Moroccan Spiced Carrots

Time to wake-up those drab and boring carrots with this spicy side, which is sure to steal the show—honey, cinnamon, and ginger bring out the natural sweetness of the carrots, while cumin adds a welcome kick. As the dish slowly simmers on the stove, the sauce reduces into a shiny, flavorful glaze.
Moroccan Spiced CarrotsPhoto credit: Paul Delmont

Moroccan Spiced Carrots

Yield: 2 servings
Active Time:


4 large carrots, peeled and cut into batons
1 heaping tablespoon ghee
2 teaspoons raw honey
Large pinch salt
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon


Place carrots in medium-sized saucepan and cover with water. Add rest of ingredients and bring to a boil over medium heat, uncovered. Turn heat down to low and let simmer until all the water has evaporated and carrots are coated in glaze.


Free…did you say FREE???


Whether you cook with coconut oil yet or not, you’ve probably heard of it. This pure white oil has become a household name for the health-conscious, and it’s popping up in everything from stir-fry recipes to vegan fudge. Coconut oil is the “it” ingredient of the moment.

A lot of the buzz around coconut oil comes from its medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs). This type of fat is rapidly metabolized in the liver so it’s immediately available as an energy source; it’s also easier to burn off and harder to store as fat. Some MCTs, like lauric acid, work to keep you healthy by eliminating disease-causing microbes and lowering inflammation. Don’t listen to the conventional wisdom advocating a low fat diet—just opt for high quality, healthy fats, like MCTs.

Of course, not all coconut oil is created equal—you’ll want to shop for organic, fair trade, and virgin options. Why? First, virgin coconut oil is the most minimally processed product you can buy. While refined oil comes from dried coconut meat that is bleached and chemically processed, virgin oil is extracted from fresh coconuts. Going organic also ensures the finished product won’t be contaminated by any pesticides or harmful additives. Finally, choose fair trade to ensure all the local farm workers were fairly compensated and ethically treated.

An easy way to make sure you’re getting only the highest quality coconut oil on the market? Try Nutiva’s version! For a limited time, Thrive Market is giving all a FREE jar of Nutiva Organic Virgin Coconut Oil. Claim your FREE gift today before they’re gone!


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And this week’s totally irrelevant question is….NUTS over HANDS!

Please, Express Yourself….


Welcome to the most prestigious and influential (yeah, right) Paleo Polling Place on the internet!  Each week we will present a deep and thought provoking (oh, Madonna Mia) question that you can respond to in a completely anonymous manner.  It doesn’t cost anything so please feel free to cast your vote.

And this week’s totally irrelevant question is…NUTS over HANDS!

We have diligently striven to remain politically neutral and have stayed above the fray with regard to the juvenile mud slinging among the candidates for the President of the USA!  With that said however, there is one candidate(??) who through his narcissistic and maniacal proclamations has caused us to rethink out position and reach out to our community to inquire….do the size of one’s hands indicate the size of ….um…his manhood?  






 Thanks for making us the fastest growing Paleo health site on the internet! We couldn’t have done it without you!