Nell Stephenson is the author of "Paleoista." She collaborated on The Paleo Diet Cookbook with Loren Cordain, Ph.D., and Lorrie Cordain. Stephenson is a private fitness trainer and Paleo Lifestyle Coach who also runs a global custom Paleo nutritional counseling business on her website, www.paleoista.com. She lives in Los Angeles and New York City with her husband, Chris, and their two dogs, Graham and Daisy, all of whom are also, of course, Paleo athletes.
Living in Los Angeles certainly provides an opportunity to easily live like a Paleoista, a woman who's fit, fabulous and fantastic and follows the Paleo diet to a tee. Paleo focuses on eating foods we were born to eat, like grass-fed meats, free-range poultry, wild fish, fresh vegetables, fruit, and natural fats like avocado, coconut and olive oil. Paleo diets avoid of overly processed "fake foods" that have become modern-day mainstays, like grains, legumes, dairy products, salt, refined sugar, and processed oils. With an abundance of fresh produce year round and a large presence of local, sustainable, ethically minded farmers and ranchers supplying many restaurants, living the Paleo life in Los Angeles is as easy as it gets!
To read more about Stephenson's Paleoista lifestyle, click here.
Coast at Shutters On the Beach
One Pico Blvd.
Santa Monica, CA 90405
Start the day with a healthy meal and an equally delicious view at Coast. The restaurant is tucked into Santa Monica's Shutters On The Beach hotel; it's mere steps from the beach. Opt for the Steak & Eggs, a six-ounce skirt steak, vine ripe tomatoes and eggs (order soft boiled).
Add a side of asparagus and you've hit the perfect Paleo balance to start your day.
925 Montana Avenue
Santa Monica, CA 90403
A black espresso on occasion is absolutely acceptable on Paleo. Caffe Luxxe utilizes a drip bar for its coffee, with a classic pour-over method – all made to order. The baristas at Luxxe pour such decadent ristretto shots (a bolder, "short" shot of espresso), you won't miss milk or sugar in the least.
For a salad 'to go'
15317 Antioch Street
Pacific Palisades, CA 90272
Café Vida combines healthy California-style recipes with Latin flavor. The food is always fresh, and free of heavy sauces and oils. Choose the Organic Leafy Green Salad and add a Shelton Farms turkey burger. Ask for no croutons or sweet potato fries and olive oil on the side. Whatever you pick, Café Vida always provides a fresh, crisp lunch for those days when you're in a hurry and need a quick take away option.
For a sit-down lunch
Fig at The Fairmont
101 Wilshire Boulevard
Santa Monica, CA 90401
With an emphasis on local growers, dining at Fig proves to be a lovely experience beyond simply enjoying your meal; you're supporting farmers from your own backyard!
Go for The Market Salad, filled with seasonal vegetables from the Farmers' Market. A plus: the salad rotates with the seasons, ensuring variety whenever you order. Ask to add a grilled, free-range chicken breast with some avocado for a heartier lunch.
The Old Place
29982 Mulholland Highway
Agoura Hills, CA 91301
Located in a historic building that once housed a post office, The Old Place is a charmingly tiny restaurant with small storage spaces and, therefor, always fresh meals. You're in for an exotic treat if you go for the Special Chef's Selection. Exotic meats like venison, wild boar, elk and any other proteins worth cooking up are often offered. The accompanying veggies are consistently wonderful too; the Brussels sprouts roasted in olive oil are an absolute must try.
For your own kitchen
Santa Monica Wednesday Downtown Farmers Market
Arizona Ave at 2nd Street
Wednesdays, 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
The largest grower-only Certified Farmers Market in Southern California, and a favorite for local chefs, Santa Monica's farmers market is one of the best places to source all your produce and proteins. It's also a great opportunity to speak to the growers themselves and learn preparation tips and interesting facts about what they're selling!
Nell Stephenson is the author of "Paleoista."
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