The Diet

The Perfect Health Diet

Here’s our Perfect Health Diet food plate:

PHD_Apple_plate cropped

NOTE: This is our new food plate, updated 2015. Foreign translations of the original food plate may be found here.

We recommend:

  • About 3 pounds [1.4 kg] of plant foods per day, including:
    • About 1 pound [0.45 kg] of safe starches, such as white rice, potatoes, sweet potatoes, and taro;
    • About 1 pound [0.45 kg] of sugary in-ground vegetables (such as beets or carrots), fruits, and berries;
    • Low-calorie vegetables to taste, including fermented vegetables and green leafy vegetables.
  • One-half to one pound [0.25 to 0.5 kg] per day of meat or fish, which should include organ meats, and should be drawn primarily from:
    • ruminants (beef, lamb, goat);
    • birds (especially duck and wild or naturally raised birds);
    • Shellfish and freshwater and marine fish.
  • Low omega-6 fats and oils from animal or tropical plant sources, to taste. Good sources include:
    • butter, sour cream, beef tallow, duck fat;
    • coconut milk or oil
    • palm oil, palm kernel oil, olive oil, avocado oil, macadamia nut butter, almond butter, cashew butter
  • Acids to taste, especially citric acid (lemon juice, lime juice, orange juice, grapefruit juice), lactic acid from fermented or pickled vegetables, vinegars, tannic acids from wine, and tomatoes.
  • Broths or stocks made from animal bones and joints.
  • Snacks or desserts from our pleasure foods: fruits and berries, nuts, alcohol, chocolate, cream, and fructose-free sweeteners like dextrose or rice syrup.

By weight, the diet works out to about 3/4 plant foods, 1/4 animal foods. By calories, it works out to about 600 carb calories, primarily from starches; around 300 protein calories; and fats supply a majority (50-60%) of daily calories.

In the shadow of the apple are foods forbidden because of their high toxin content. Notably:

  • Do not eat cereal grains — wheat, barley, oats, corn — or foods made from them — bread, pasta, breakfast cereals, oatmeal. The exception is white rice, which we count among our “safe starches.” Rice noodles, rice crackers, and the like are fine, as are gluten-free foods made from a mix of rice flour, potato starch, and tapioca starch.
  • Do not eat calorie-rich legumes. Peas and green beans are fine. Soy and peanuts should be absolutely excluded. Beans might be acceptable with suitable preparation, but we recommend avoiding them.
  • Do not eat foods with added sugar or high-fructose corn syrup. Do not drink anything that contains sugar: healthy drinks are water, tea, and coffee.
  • Polyunsaturated fats should be a small fraction of the diet (~4% of total calories). To achieve this, do not eat seed oils such as soybean oil, corn oil, safflower oil, sunflower oil, canola oil, or the like.

We highly recommend certain foods for their micronutrients. These include liver, kidney, egg yolks, seaweeds, shellfish, fermented vegetables, and bone broths.

We also recommend augmenting the diet with certain supplements. See our Supplement Recommendations page. These nutrients are deficient in modern diets due to removal of minerals from drinking water by treatment, depletion of minerals from soil by agriculture, or modern lifestyles that deprive us of vitamin D by indoor living.

We recommend tweaking the diet for certain diseases. Neurological disorders often benefit from a diet that is ketogenic; other conditions may benefit from lower carb diets. These variations are discussed in the book:

See the “Buy the Book” page for other purchase options.

Leave a comment ?


  1. Hi Paul,
    What is the best vinegar to use?
    I was thinking that white rice vinegar would be best? Is that right?

  2. Hi Paul,
    Is white rice vinegar the best one to use?

  3. Hi Paul,

    I have been following the PHD diet where possible and am starting to feel the positive effects it has on my health. Thank you.

    However I suffer from alopecia areata that comes and goes. I am currently training for a triathlon, exercising an hour 4 times a week and am experiencing a great deal of hair loss. I find it frustrating that this level of fitness can have such a stressful impact on my body.

    I’ve read through a lot of your comments and find no diet suggestions about alopecia and hair loss. Do you have any thoughts/supplementation suggestions.

    Many Thanks again


    • Hi Guy,

      Hair loss suggests low levels of T3 thyroid hormone which is a starvation syndrome. As an athlete you need to eat extra carbs and protein. Make sure you get enough food.

      In general, autoimmune issues like alopecia are due to gut problems and should be addressed by improving immunity through nutrition, getting more collagen, entraining circadian rhythms, and eating fermented foods and suitable forms of fiber.

      • Thank you Paul for your quick and informative response.



      • One question Paul, due to a busy schedule I don’t have the time to make bone broth and ferment vegetables. Is it ok to supplement collagen and buy ready-made fermented vegetables?

        Thank you.

    • Hi Guy, Years ago, my hair started falling out at the backside of my head above my neck, creating a bald spot. I went to a doctor and he said it was alopecia, and was caused by stress. I developed an attitude of not letting things bother me and my hair grew back. Whenever I noticed that area of hair getting thin, I cut back on my stress, and it would grow back. Just a thought for you, I don’t know how many kinds of alopecia there is.

  4. Hi Paul! I was diagnosed with MS a few years ago.
    MRI showed no active lesions but old scar tissue. I was advised by my naturopath to get on a paleo diet minus the sweeteners like honey/maple. I did and my hair started falling out and I lost 20 lbs. Brain fig and dizziness gone, feeling great otherwise. Ditched the naturopath after being on diet for 6 months then got blood work done and it showed low T and TSH was 5.0. My MD WHO DOES PRACTICE NATURAL healing as well as traditional had me take compounded t3 supplement and use testosterone cream. I have added carbs to my diet, rice, sweet potatoes, Kiefer. Still having trouble sleeping . Gained a few needed Lbs. Have way more energy. Just still don’t sleep well. Taking Adrenal supplements as well, it has ashwaganda, Bs, etc…. Help me sleep more then 3-4 hrs. I just lay in bed waiting til 6:00 am.

    • Mari Ann do you monitor your temperatures throughout the day? The most important temperature reading is the one that you take as soon as you wake up. Getting the right amount of thyroid is tricky especially when you are trying to do it with just T3 supplements. If its compounded its probably some kind of “sustained release” formulation. I’ve tried that route and had much better success with Armour Thyroid. Having some sugar at bedtime (not fructose) might help you get to sleep, you may have elevated cortisol levels and elevated estrogen levels that can be measured with some inexpensive saliva tests. Progesterone cream can help.

  5. Hey Paul,

    I’ve noticed that I seem to have an odd reaction to eating fruits- most notably bananas, but most fruits to varying degrees. Even the lower sugar berries. I get extremely tired after eating them. I’m pretty sure I don’t have a fructose intolerance as I seem to do fine with honey, and never have a problem with fructose bearing vegetables. Any ideas? I do love fruits and they offer such a host of nutritional benefits, it would be a shame to cut then out of my diet. I just can’t seem to eat them when I need mental or physical stamina of any kind.

    Thank you,


    • Hi Rob,

      Fruits have specific forms of fiber and it looks like you have some bad bacteria which like fruit fiber. Try getting more vitamin A from liver and better circadian rhythm entrainment, along with the other gut healing steps I usually recommend.

  6. Hi Paul, My first ever post on a website. I am from the UK. I have PCOS so insulin resistant and have hypothyroidism, possibly Hashimotos as very up and down we are running some tests at the moment. I have been on a VLC diet with lots of protein and fat. I feel terrible and have high blood sugar. I am now thinking the diet is fuelling the problem. I am ver confused about diet, I do not think I should eat white rice or potatoes but really think I do need some low GL carbs. Can you recommend what to eat. I am going to lower my protein for sure and I eat lots of healthy fats. Kate

    • Hi Kate,

      It’s OK to eat rice and potatoes as part of a balanced meal. Here’s why you don’t need to worry about glycemic index/load of individual components of a meal:

      Our recommendations for what to eat are in our book. PHD is good for PCOS and hypothyroidism. Yes, being too low carb will raise fasting blood glucose and impair response to a glucose challenge.

      You have to heal your gut. Keys to that include eating liver, green leafy vegetables, getting sunshine and optimizing vitamin D, getting vitamin C and collagen from bone and joint soups and stews, getting regular iodine and adequate zinc, circadian rhythm entrainment, exercise, fermented foods.

      Best, Paul

  7. Just a quick observation almost 3 months into the PHD. The other day I broke down and ate a Snickers bar just to see if I was missing anything. Yech! Pure tasteless sugar! I couldn’t even taste the chocolate in it because now I’m used to and prefer eating only the 85% kind. So THANKS PHD for RUINING my taste for all the crappy “foods” I used to eat! Now, I have to have good, tasty, properly cooked whole foods whereas before all I ate came from a box, a drive-up, or a wrapper of some kind. Now, if there’s a smidge of vegetable oil in anything unlabeled (hey, not everything they sell in the health food stores are healthy!) I can taste it and it tastes rancid to me. I actually prefer my own salad dressings and mayo and my home cooked soups and meats over takeouts. So thanks PHD. You’ve ruined me! In a good way. As of yet, I’m still not up to 100% compliance (my first bone broth tasted nasty so I dumped it) but I’m headed that way.

    Also, I’ve been off Prevacid for almost 2 months now and my stomach feels better and better as time goes on. At first I had rebound hyperacidity. The first two weeks were the worst. But now heartburn is no longer a daily occurrence, and when it does happen it’s much less painful and shorter in duration. Food no longer stays undigested in my stomach for hours like before while on it. Being off of Prevacid helps me control myself and resist foods that will trigger heartburn. Nowadays, if I do feel a twinge, I will skip the next meal and that helps greatly! Before, when I had the “safety net” of that pill (a dangerous pill that NO doctor should ever prescribe) I used that as my excuse to be lazy, careless, and irresponsible with my diet.

    • Thanks Ginny! I’m planning a GERD/acid reflux post soon so maybe we can speed up your healing. Glad you are better and enjoying better food!

      • One more thing to report. I no longer have that “old age” joint pain! You know, the pain you get in your hips and knees after sitting for a while? And when you get up, you stand there for few seconds until the pain lessens, then you limp off? That’s gone now! YAY! Wonder what caused it?

  8. I am 63, 200 lbs. Started with asthma 3 years ago and started Prednisone. Gained weight then diabetes. I have no sense of smell or taste I have tube in my ears and they say COPD. I take hands full of Meds twice a day and use 3 inhalers. Help!!! I am dieing! Where do I start? On disability now so can’t pay a dietician or personal trainer. Seem to be drowning in mucus.

    • Hi Barbara,

      All the advice in our book is a good place to start. Some keys:
      – Balanced diet of natural whole foods, roughly equal amounts of (a) meat/fish/eggs, (b) starch, (c) fruit, (d) vegetables, (e) sauces and broths from bones/joints, acids, healthy fats, fermented stuff.
      – Circadian rhythm entrainment
      – Supplemental foods (liver, egg yolks, spinach, bones and joints, seafood)
      – Selected supplements (see our supplement recommendations page)
      – Intermittent fasting

      Try to reduce the drugs, they often do more harm than good. N-acetylcysteine may help with the mucus, also liver for vitamin A and vitamin D.

  9. Hi – I find it really difficult to eat 3 egg yolks per day. Really don’t like them. Is there anything else I can eat to substitute for eggs, or can I put the yolks raw into some sort of milkshake (i.e. coconut milk) where I can’t taste them? I don’t mind eggs once in a while but everyday is really hard since I don’t like the taste. thank you!

  10. Hi Paul: Sorted out the egg yolk question. Can’t stand the taste cooked, so I’m adding them to a smoothie with coconut milk and blueberries. My query is, and I couldn’t find this anywhere in your book, is how much raw coconut meat can I eat daily? I love it but don’t want to go over board with eating it. I live in Australia and coconuts are really easy to access and inexpensive. Love the coconut water fresh from the shell as well.

    Have been following the diet for about 3 weeks or so now and my previous stomach/gastro problems have completely resolved…and this is after years of chronic problems.Thanks SO much.

    • Hi Sarah,

      Congratulations on the gut resolution!

      Raw coconut meat is a PHD-approved food. It is very fiber-rich however, which means that it can have complex interactions with gut bacteria. It is not known to be as healthful as some other forms of fiber, like resistant starch. Some people are sensitive to it and have bad reactions to coconut flour. So I would say it is fine to eat it in moderation, but every once in a while I would remove it from your diet for a few days to a week and then eat a lot and see if you feel worse.

      Best, Paul

  11. I’m reading your book with great interest. I have quite a health history. Briefly Hodgkin in 1981, now I have underactive thyroid due to radiation to my neck. I tried paelo and yes loose weight, slowly, but after while crave sugar. What advice would you give to lose weight and keep it off. I sometime feel down and low mood also. Feeling confused about correct diet at moment. Your advice would cheer me up. Thanks.

    • Hi Shaz and Paul,
      Shaz, you could have been talking about me… Hodgkins back in ’93, now low Thyroid and on L-thyrox, went primal/low carb a few years back and still continue with it, but after a while of feeling much better, I have had a return of gut issues, and ever increasing chronic inflammation issues in virtually all major joints. Low energy is also a theme, as well as all the typical low Thyroid symptoms. Just had my Thyroid dose upped again (pretty much against the radiologists will) which helped a bit but not with the joint pain. As a generally active person who loves hiking and skiing, this is really affecting my quality of life. So I’d be interested in hearing any tips from Paul to you/me.

      • Hi Melissa, I don’t hear about many people who have had Hodgkins. My main issue is weight, I just can’t seem to find the key to keeping it off. Paelo only works short term then it creeps up again. Cos of my chemotherapy I went thru menopause early at 30, before doctors told me I wouldn’t have any more children. I had two more then the menopause, so I’ve been lucky. Just want to be my slim self again. Any hints would be gladly received.

  12. Hi Paul,
    Thank you for sharing your marvelous diet with us here in the UK. I have been reading your book since December and have started implementing changes for the family. Both my daughters 8 and 2.5 have been on a GAPS diet for over 2 years with some success. However as improvements had long stopped I decided to implement some of the changes from your advice, mostly in adding safe starches to their diet. I have a question re my 8 year old who has had a history of chemotherapy due to eye cancer. I would be eternally grateful if you could shed any lights as our GAPS practitioner has given up on us. Having healed many of her gut ailments (bloating, aches, exertion when passing stool and even recurring cystitis), the following problems persist. From your knowledge do they show any particular pattern of chronic infection in any particular part of the gut or brain? Getting meaningful tests in the UK is quite difficult.
    • Night terrors -occur for a few nights in a row and then ceases for a period. For instant got particularly worse for a few days / weeks after starting GAPS, after starting coconut oil, a couple of weeks after adding rice, certain homeopathic remedies etc…
    • Allergies (severe nut allergy except nuts), mosquito bites, pollen etc.
    • Eczema ongoing but improved from severate to moderate
    • Spells of feeling unwell in the chest which appears suddenly and lasts a few minutes to an hour at a time. This has reduced in frequency but still happens a few times a week.
    She appears quite healthy and robust otherwise and is generally a bright child.
    So far, we have added about half a cup of rice in evenings and a banana a day. I minimise fructose – after reading on your blog that it may aggravate certain gut bacteria – by giving no more than a teaspoon of honey on a typical day. She may have one piece of fruit in addition. Joint stock, sauerkraut, probiotic supplementation, coconut oil, vitamin D 1250IU, 1g Vit C supplementation are currently ongoing. I have not been able to extrapolate what other supplementation may be useful for this age range however I have stopped her 1g starflower oil supplementation recently with no significant change to eczema.
    Apologies in advance for taking up so much of your valuable time in reading this long account. I would be happy to pay for your time or referral to any practitioner in the UK that is familiar with PhD.
    Best regards,

    • Hi Mary’s
      Where in uk do you live. I know an amazing holistic healer I’ve known for 20 years if you’re interested.
      Best wishes, shaz

  13. Hi maryam, you’re welcome. My holistic healer is in Denham Buckinghamshire. I’d be happy to supply her details if you think it’s a journey you could make. She is very good and has helped me and my children for many years.
    Best wishes, Shaz

    • Hi Shaz, That is quite close to us. Does she have a website. Or if you give me her name I am sure I can look her up. Many thanks

    • HI Shaz,
      The flour mentions maize in the mix which is not PHD compliant. I suppose it depends how much is in the mix and how often you use it.
      Another great flour to use is Almond flour – essentially crushed almonds. Let me know if you need a sponge recipe for this.

      • Yes I did wonder about maize. I would love your recipe, I have just bought almond flour.

        • I have used this as my really easy sponge recipe from Elanas Pantry.

          Over time I have added a bit of coconut oil or ghee to the flour so that it is more moist and does not stick to the casing / mold so much. I also use duck eggs instead of chicken eggs which seems to make it more spongy. Also best not use the Agave as it is overprocessed. I use honey instead. I use 3 tablespoons to one cup if there are other kids eating as 2 tablespoons makes it barely sweet.I am not a big cook but need to keep the kids happy.
          For a soft icing I like using this recipe. The chocolate is delicious.

          You can use other flavours instead of cocoa. A favourite in our household is with freezedried raspberry powder which makes it nicely sweet and sour and everyone really likes it.
          Hope this helps.

        • I have used this as my really easy sponge recipe from Elanas Pantry.

          Over time I have added a bit of coconut oil or ghee to the flour so that it is more moist and does not stick to the casing / mold so much. I also use duck eggs instead of chicken eggs which seems to make it more spongy. Also best not use the Agave as it is overprocessed. I use honey instead. I use 3 tablespoons to one cup if there are other kids eating as 2 tablespoons makes it barely sweet.I am not a big cook but need to keep the kids happy.
          For a soft icing I like using this recipe. The chocolate is delicious.

          You can use other flavours instead of cocoa. A favourite in our household is with freeze dried raspberry powder which makes it nicely sweet and sour and everyone really likes it.
          Hope this helps.

  14. HI maryam

    She doesn’t have web site. If you email me at I can let you have her name and phone number. She likes to talk to people and explain what she does. She is a super lady.
    SHAZ X

  15. Hello Paul,

    Is there any fruit that is prohibited and not be eaten during the diet?



  16. Hello from Korea,

    I just finished reading your book and greatly enjoyed it. Learned a lot of new things about nutrition and diet, and it was quite enjoyable.

    Thankfully after having moved to Korea, I am already doing some of the things encouraged in the book – eating lots of fermented vegetables (Kimchi), eating seaweed soups, and eating fish and shellfish more than before.

    Am just starting to think through how to implement everything I have learned and have a question about practically working out the macronutrient ratios in the diet. Sorry if this has already been covered.

    It seems obvious on how to get the correct amount of protein and carbohydrates, just stick with 1/2 pound to 1 pound of meat and 3 pounds of plant foods.

    But how do you make sure you are getting the right amount of fats? How do you make sure you are getting that 50-60% of your calories from fat? You say “to taste” so does that mean there is no need to measure or…?


  17. Have you run across the idea that we might do a bit better, longevity wise, with perhaps a bit less protein? I saw a book called “Primal Body Primal Mind” I think it was that recommended around 4-6 oz of meat/animal protein per day to keep insulin down and also something called “mTOR” low to keep unnecessary cellular proliferation low.

    • Yes, we discuss that in our book. I think the PHD recommendations are optimal for longevity, they are not high in protein, you need some protein to protect against stress, infections, and toxins.

  18. why is rice a safe starch and not considered a grain?

  19. Hopefully i have not asked you this one before Paul, i don’t think i have,

    do you have any diet tweaks or tips to keep histamine levels under control or reduce them.

    i tested with high blood histamine levels a while back (have not re-tested lately).
    i have always had a lot of saliva and sinus/nasal fluids (excessive) & still do. & after doing some reading, this would seem to ‘gel’ with me having high histamine levels as well.

    i have never had a ‘dry mouth’ in my life, which i see some people mention. looking on the bright side, the excess saliva has looked after my teeth.
    But i would be happy to reduce a bit & reduce the excessive nasal/sinus fluids as well.

    kind rgds, Darrin

    • High histamine values often result from some form of allegics or some kind of toxic situation in your fat layer. There are other sources but since fat tissue is one of your biggest endocrinic organs producing histamine and other immune stimulating substances when the fat is in ‘trouble’ you can easily test if and what helps and what to avoid.

      Just check if when you scratch your skin (dont hurt it just use a wooden or plastic stick that does not scratch your skin) and move it a bit(!) forcefull over your under arm skin (bottom side where your palm is) and check if and how long and when the skin turns red.

      If you have high histamine values in the fat you have high histamine values in the skin as well and it will turn quickly red and stay red for a long periode (my stayed for 2 hours+ when I started to reduce it).

      In my condition it turned out that I have suffered Urinic acid toxic conditions that is bound to my psoriasis. This is driven by adding potatoes, flesh from pork cow or other grain feed animals, grains, shellfish (highly allergic), excess sugar, alcohol etc. Also includes a allergic condition for certain polls and the green leafs of other things. Also I am bad at pepper and other things.

      But this is my condition.

      What you can also do to test is using a rubber band (or hair rubber band) and put it around your wrist. Once the rubber preasures your skin for some minutes you will notice the redness and also your skin to sweat a bit. Also it will take a lot of time for your skin to regain the full thickness so you can not see those marks anymore.

      I took a mineral sublement and used basic baths (only take two per week for 20minutes please) to remove the excess urinic acid from my system (I got 6times the level that is normal in the blood) and I changed my diet to leave out everything that I am allergic to.

      The urinic acid came from my guts producing a lot of mucus and related stuff and this was transformed into urin acid by some bacterias and my body. (at least that is what I figgured but it was not sientific proofed.:))

      Anyway. Today my histamine values are very low, I can run around at zero degree with no shirt on for more than one hour without feeling cold myself and I dont get ill. Also my psoriasi vanished and alongside lots of other conditions.

      So if you have histamine problems its highly related to your fatty tissue (you can check this by taking your skin between your two fingers and squeeze you should feel a strong pain when you squash your fatty skin layer beneath your skin).

      If your histamine level comes from something else your gut would be my next bet. Usually you need a body wide inflamation and skin or at least the fat is the prime reason second by the gut. The rest wouldnt drive histamine to such a high level unless you develop fever and other symptoma of a allergic rush.

      Since I am not a doctor there might be additional conditions I am not aware of but having suffered from this myself I would like to direct you to allergics linked to food you eat.

      Remember having Urinic acid inside your fatty tissue would assemble to ‘chronic’ fat inflamation and high histamine production and this can be stored in a vast amount. I had 105kg lately and dropped to 80kg within one and a half month when started to add minerals and do the sodium baths. But take your time if urin acid is really your problem (blood test should show higher values for urinic acid).

      Remember you might have allergies that show up only after two days when the food hit the right parts of your guts to enter your body or even having bactery producing some trouble making products.

      So try to think if you might have the same condition. Do a blood test (it should be free) and do a scratch test (dont hurt your skin just make it red by putting it under preasure stress).

      • Thanks for the comprehensive info Martin,

        a couple of queries…
        When you say “you can check this by taking your skin between your two fingers and squeeze you should feel a strong pain when you squash your fatty skin layer beneath your skin”
        I was unclear on this point…what does feeling a strong pain indicate?

        & Also, when you say “So try to think if you might have the same condition. Do a blood test”
        What blood test do you suggest (not sure if you meant Histamine, Urinic acid, or something else?


    Has anyone in UK tried these bread products and are they PHD friendly?

    • HI Shaz,
      Hello fellow Brit. Here’s my 2p worth of response :-).
      Had a quick look at their first bread. The ingredients are:
      Potato Starch, Water, Vegetable Oil, Rice Flour, Yeast, Egg White Powder, Stabilisers: E464, Xanthan Gum, Cellulose Gum; Sugar, Vegetable Fibre (Psyllium), Humectant: Vegetable Glycerine; Concentrated Fruit Juice, Rice Starch, Emulsifiers: E471, E481; Salt, Sugar Beet Fibre, Natural Flavouring, Preservative: Calcium Propionate (added to inhibit mould growth)
      Things like vegetable oil, sugar, vegetable fibre, concentrated fruit jiuce etc. are not ideal. Plus you would have to look up the E numbers. In the end this looks quite processed. Best to stick to the unprocessed rice, potato, banana for the main part. I think if you really miss bread then baking with the gluten free Doves flour you posted would be better than this type of over processed product. Also could look up Elana’s website or the Nourished Kitchen for other bread and baking ideas. Hope this helps.

    • Hi maryam, thanks for your two p ‘s worth. I don’t really miss bread, just once in a while. I’m looking for rice cakes this weekend.I’ll be baking a cake also using the recipe from elana s pantry.

      Thanks again, shaz

  21. Hi

    I am Brazilian. I am new to this diet. I wonder if you have any suggestion in terms of diet and supplements for thyroid nodules, short of surgery.

    • They can go away on their own so it is good to try to heal naturally, but it can take time (~1 year). Circadian rhythm entrainment is very important. Eat ruminant meats and seafood for adequate selenium. Iodine — any high dose of iodine may make you hyperthyroid so you may have to avoid it for a while. When you can, introduce a very small dose and try to maintain it daily. E.g. take a 225 mcg tablet and cut it into eighths with a razor, take one eighth per day. A day’s thyroid hormone requires maybe 40-50 mcg and so that is a dose that may trigger hyperthyroid symptoms. Still, having iodine available helps cells shift away from the nodular hyperthyroid state, so you want that shift in gene expression. Do intermittent fasting but if you get adrenal stress, eat something. Otherwise regular PHD advice is good.

  22. Paul, my partner has left veganism after 16 years for the PHD, and I wanted to see whether you had any recommendation for someone in her condition.

    She has oligoovulation and blood-sugar issues (pre-diabetic), which may point to PCOS (poly-cystic ovarian syndrome).

    What would you tell someone who still relies on sweet potatoes for most of their calories and has trouble eating more than a can of sardines a day? Would the Perfect Health Diet help correct the hormonal imbalances she is showing?

  23. Other than eggs, I’m baffled as to what a person is supposed to eat for breakfast (my favorite meal). Also, I’ve had an acid reflux problem for years and am also gluten intolerant. A lot of what you recommend is counter-intuitive. Can I eat gluten-free bread, oatmeal, etc? Also, where does yogurt fit into your diet? And what is a person who is at a workplace with traditional delis and sandwich shops nearby supposed to eat for lunch? There aren’t many places that sell sweet potatoes or green leafy vegetables.

    • For breakfast (if you want to skip dinner), here are some ideas:

      protein: sausage, bacon, eggs, leftover meat
      starch: potatoes, sweet potatoes
      veggies: spinach, mushrooms, onions

      Eggs, potatoes and bacon/sausage is the quintessential breakfast (and PHD if you can find lamb/goat/beef bacon).

      Gluten isn’t the only toxin in grains like oatmeal and wheat, but there are safe flours like potato starch. Yogurt once or twice a week is acceptable for people without an allergy. Whatever you get in a deli will be made with vegetable oils and sugars. Sweet potatoes can be baked in aluminum foil (best way to make them, actually) and put straight in a lunch-box; my go-to out and about food is a good cobb salad, still a compromise but less of one.

      Learn to love the bag lunch! It’s not hard, it’s just a new habit.

    • You can eat a million different things for breakfast. Anything you’d eat at other times of day.

      I typically eat homemade yogurt with coconut milk and coconut added, or whatever fruit sounds good. Then a couple eggs and a starch (boiled potato, sweet potato, or rice). Rice is like oatmeal, you can add whatever sounds good and make it taste different. I like to add butter and honey and cinnamon. I know honey isn’t PHD, but it’s just a little bit.

      Either kind of potatoes is tolerable as cold leftovers for lunch.

      For protein, any meat or fish. Sometimes I put a couple strips of turkey bacon in a skillet and, after turning them, fry a couple eggs in between them. Canned sardines are easy, and you can mix them with different things — sauteed vegetables, for example. Sardines are good portable food for lunch out, too.

      If you keep greens and cut-up peppers and mushrooms handy, those can be sauteed quickly for breakfast. I get up early, turn on a small crockpot with a couple of sweet potatoes or potatoes, and let them cook while I do other things. Then add cheese or sour cream or butter/cinnamon, or whatever.

      If I’ve got leftover soup, I might even eat that for breakfast. It’s comfort food.

      Once a week I make a sort of quiche that has canned salmon and cottage cheese and spinach added. Leftover quiche is perfect. Great with tomatoes.

    • Hi Michele

      I too, for a long time, found breakfast to be really challenging. In the end, I found my ideal breakfast which is pretty much the same every day: 1 cup white rice, 2 eggs cooked slowly in butter, some tamari sauce for flavour, and that’s it! Sometimes I’ll also add a little organic tofu (about 8 cm x 2 cm), or a little streaky bacon (about the same length as the tofu). Two eggs do it for me for a good chunk of the morning, but honestly it depends how much time I have to get myself ready.

      Like you, I work in an area where lunch is primarily delis, cafes, some restaurants, salad bars. I have a few Thai restaurants around so I eat lunch in those places(rice with beef or chicken + vegs) I make sure that the rice is about 1 cup worth and a little more if it’s too delicious to give up 🙂

      However lately I’m taking lunch from home and I imitate the asian style meals (rice, vegetables and beef or chicken + spices and herbs). Interestingly, if I take my lunch from home for a few days I find that I start to lean out – must be because I cook in sat fats and the local thai places cook in pufas – my theory anyway.

      I have some little snacks too – one before lunch might be a slice of tasty cheese, 1 rice cake and 1 bar of dark chocolate (70%) 😆 and in the afternoon, I sneak in a creamy biscuit 😯 because the habit is very hard to break. All with coffee & full cream milk or tea & full cream milk. Yummo!!

      Sorry to ramble, but I was in the same situation about breakfasts – hope that helps a little?


    • Following the 16 hour fasting window, I do not eat breakfast. (I find that I am not hungry in the morning) Around lunch time, I usually have full fat organic yogurt, some raw almonds, raw pumpkin seeds, a banana, a few squares 85% dark chocolate and green tea. I have a fridge at work to keep the yogurt. I’m definitely not hungry until dinner.
      I would experiment to find what time the 8 hour eating window works for you.

  24. I understand the reasons to avoid regular soda – but what about diet soda with aspartame? Also forbidden?

  25. What is considered “normal weight”?
    I’m 64 years old, 5’3″, small bone, and 134lbs. But feel more comfortable 10 lbs less.

  26. Hi Paul,

    I just listened to a very informative discussion among you and two others on a SuperHuman Radio podcast. You mentioned that you were able to heal ET. As one who suffers from this, can you explain how you did this?

    • Hi Mary,

      I think there must be some confusion. If ET is essential thrombocythemia, I didn’t have it and didn’t cure it.

    • Ah, now I realize you meant essential tremor. . Yes, it runs in my family, my father, sister, and I all have it. Mine was very severe when I was ill but over the last 6 years or so it has returned to more or less normal – people do notice my hands shaking or voice breaking from time to time, but I think if you listen to my podcasts, you’d basically say I was normal.

      How did I do it? I adopted the diet/nutrition/lifestyle program described in our book.

      I’m afraid I can’t be more specific than that. I don’t know what the critical factors are — the strategy of PHD is to optimize everything, and that seemed to work. Gene-environment interactions are very complex and which dietary/lifestyle environments cause essential tremor to manifest, and which don’t, is a difficult question. Much more difficult than finding a cure.

  27. Dear Paul,
    Since a couple of weeks my wife and myself are focussing on Perfect Health Diet and we are feeling great. This after quite some time on a lowcarb diet, but your diet applying starches as carbs is very effective move. I lost five kg in four weeks, whereas my wife with the same food lost only a couple of ounces. Can you give a possible reason for such difference reaction on similar food? Second: white rice is recommended in the diet, but what is the background of avoiding whole rice or unpolished rice?
    Thank you very much for your great work.

    • Hi Henny,

      Individual responses can be quite variable in the first weeks. Sometimes coming from low-carb there can be an initial weight gain, but this usually reverses by about 3-4 weeks.

      Obesity is a complex condition and generally speaking, the better your health, the easier it will be to lose weight with dietary improvements. Also, women often have a tougher time than men losing weight. Obesity is usually an inflammatory condition and the response to adding starches will depend on the nature of the gut flora and how they respond to starches — some people have inflammatory reactions to starch, some don’t.

      Whole rice includes the bran which has some toxins.

  28. Hi H Riksen,

    Hopefully Paul will get back to you. Meanwhile, regarding your white rice query pls refer to Paul’s post to Sheridan on 30 Dec, @948pm.

  29. Hi … what is a cobb lunch?

  30. Hello Paul,

    I have done really well with fasting, minus one thing. I use a tablespoon of heavy cream in my coffee when I wake up. Is this small amount a deal breaker within the fast? I’ve tried coconut cream and the like…but I’m just a coffee/cream traditionalist and look forward to it. After I have it, I usually do not eat for another 2 hours. I keep my fast at 16 hours. But if my cream is included it’s more like a 12 hour fast.

    Am I blowing my fast with this cream in my coffee!!!!


    • Hi Pat,

      Try bulletproof coffee. You will honestly not miss the cream, well, at least I don’t!

      12 ounces of hot organic coffee
      1 or 2 Tablespoons Coconut Oil (Virgin)
      1 or 2 Tablespoons Grass-fed Butter

      Melt the oils into the hot coffee. Blend this in a blender until frothy. It changes color and looks like you added cream, and it tastes very rich. I believe (correct me if I am wrong) that you can drink this on your fast.

      • Hi Ginny,

        Thanks for your response. As butter is just more dense than heavy cream, I could consider that. But then I guess I’m back to my original question. I realize it is ketogenic, but even a small amount, does that break a fast?

        Thanks so much for your idea though! I will try it!


        • Hi again Pat,

          I’m sorry, I meant to say this before but got all wrapped up in the other recipe. I can’t say for certain, but I believe cream may be allowed on the fast, but not sure. I know for certain that coconut oil IS allowed on the fast.


  31. Hi Paul,

    Would you please advise about drinking water or post a link? Conventional wisdom is 8 glasses of water per day. Is that still optimal? I’ve heard 8 ounces per 20 pounds body weight. But I want to know specifics like: tap vs bottled, filtered vs unfiltered, drinking water vs distilled, and when to drink (Chris Kresser says to not drink water with meals because it dilutes stomach acids). Dr. Robert Colbert recommends drinking water no later than 30 minutes before a meal and at least 2 hours after a meal is finished in order to not dilute your stomach acids. What do you recommend? Thanks!


    • I forgot to add a question.

      Water gives me heartburn, nearly always, which is why I drink very little.


    • Hi Ginny,

      Drink to thirst is the best advise. The actual amount you need depends on what you eat. Fats generate water when burned so high-fat diets need the least. Natural whole foods diets are water rich and reduce the need to drink. Flour-based products like crackers or pizza dough are dehydrated and need extra water. Diuretics like tea or coffee or alcohol may increase water needs. There is no one amount of water that’s right for everyone.

      You need an acid bath to digest protein so you need some water. You should absolutely drink water with flour based products as you need the water to digest their proteins. Use drinking water not distilled, both tap and bottled are fine, filtered is better.

  32. Hi Paul,
    The PHD method of eating has reduced my appetite substantially. Being low carb for many years was an effort but the transition to starches surprised me as better sleep and focus were almost immediate. The perpetual longing for junk food is still there but as time goes by it is less and less. Question: I love white potatoes. Is it OK to eat them in the raw state, peeled of course.

  33. Hi Paul,

    Can green lentils being considered as legumes with toxins ?
    A Naturopath praktiker recommends me eating them for their iron content, saying ruminants meat does not contain the same assimilable amount of iron for women, and that green lentils contains less toxins than beans ? What’s your opinion on that ? Thanks Paul !!


    • Do you hear the Woo Woo sirens yet?

      Iron? Liver.

      Find a practitioner grounded in actual science.

      Sorry, but I do not suffer ignorance gladly. Or, in any other manner.

    • Hi Ingrid,

      Please pardon pzo’s rudeness, but he is right. Liver, other organ meats, beef, lamb, and seafood especially shellfish and seaweed are good sources of iron. You don’t need to eat lentils for iron.

  34. Thanks both of you ! I’m ok with this,and that’s what I reply to this practitioner… but doubtful I was anyway, I prefered to ask Paul’s advice.
    It’s done ! Thanks again !

  35. Hi Paul,

    Just curious… I’m a small female, only 4’10”. Would my protein needs be less than .5 lb/day? Also…would 3 eggs a day still be optimal, or would 2 be best? And if I choose to eat the whole egg, not just the yolk, how much less meat should I eat? I’m worried about over-consuming protein (and I love it, so it wouldn’t be too hard!)

    Thank you!!

  36. I stopped eating white rice for nearly 30 years, and feel uncomfortable introducing white rice back into my meals. What about black rice or wild rice?

  37. Hey Paul,

    Your book is awesome. My favorite yet. Just a couple of questions that popped up. I noticed in your book that you recommend eating a pound of oily fish a week. You recommend reaching this level by eliminating omega 6 oils and including oily fish once a week. Are you suggesting to eat a pound of salmon in one meal? That’s 160z of meat in one meal. Would it not have to be spread over 2-4 meals depending on protein intake? I’m also wondering why berries and bananas are considered a pleasure food and beets and carrots are not? Lastly, would it be fine to have a glass of wine with the evening meal if I had oily fish with the lunch meal (assuming intermittent fasting) since the fish had about 8hrs to digest before consuming the wine?

    Thanks again for your help Paul,


    • Hi William,

      No, a pound of salmon is a day’s meat and we would spread that over 2-3 meals. Usually half at dinner when it is cooked and then the other half as leftovers for lunch in the following days.

      Berries and bananas can be treated the same as beets and carrots, and can accompany meals. That is sort of an artifact of our desire to balance the yinyang apple, it has two sides and starches, sweet plants, and meats would make three parts. Also we’ve evolved toward being more positive toward sweet plants since the apple was devised.

      Yes, it’s fine to have a glass of wine at dinner after salmon for lunch.

      • LOL! I’m so glad the apple has been “devised”. It’s one of my favorites foods and I eat one almost every day. It feels like I’m cheating even though I’m not!

  38. I can’t understand why you’d lump in carbs from legumes, beans, etc with processed oils which are high in saturated fats.

  39. I’m not sure who you are responding to, Owen, but “processed oils” are most certainly NOT high in saturated fats. In fact, darned low. All the industrial seed oils, except for canola, are very high in polyunsaturated fatty acids. Canola is the only one high in monounsaturated fatty acids.

    The only common plant oil high in saturated fats is coconut oil. Eat those saturated fats, get your high density “good” cholesterol up!

    The saturated fat scare is over, but the stories about it still abound.

  40. How do you measure a pound of starch or vegetables. Is it in its raw form before cooking?

  41. I have started following PHD just this week but I have a question about using Meta-mucil. I typically use the Orange Smooth Single packets in about 16 oz of water. Is this product safe for PHD?

  42. Hello, I have just ordered your perfect health diet book as I have been doing Paleo for a couple of years and felt the benefit, but upon reading about the health benefits of resistant starches feel that your PHD could be the way forward, so I’m eager to try it.

    I have a question on resistant starches. I have been roasting potatos and cooking wild rice, then cooling them for at least 16 hours to activate the RS3 starches, but I would like to know if I can heat the potato and rice up again, and will this affect the integrety of the starch. If it is possible to reheat, to what extent.

    Thank you. Roberto

  43. Hi Paul,

    I have been combing your site, and I love what you write. And I really apologize if this is the wrong place to ask for feedback…or if I overlooked an article that already addresses my concern. But I would LOVE some opinions, even just some more links toward further information.

    Basically: I would love to hear about healing severe “mood disorders” using diet and supplements, so I can understand whether the changes I’m implementing are going in the right direction…and what I might possibly expect to experience along the way (and how to know when I’m going wrong). I’ve spent many years trying things to help myself, and have been unsuccessful in finding a Professional to help, and consider myself a fairly strong person – but I am so tired of trying to be a good mother and a loving wife and an even marginally engaged member-of-society while feeling like my head is stuck in a vice grip of anxiety, depression, and dread! Not to be melodramatic, and I’m not ALWAYS feeling terrible. It’s just that I’m pretty sure the proportion of terrible feelings to good ones is just NOT optimal in my case.

    Long ago, most people I know gave me tired looks, and said, “Sarabeth, medications DO work for some people, you know!” …and of course, I would love relief from the particular hell that is my extremely vascillating moods. But I am convinced that food can help me! And that psychoanalysis, besides being completely out of my price range, will not be my most effective healing modality. But I don’t want to convince myself to stick with something (i.e. new dietary changes) that might be damaging things further, which is what I think I did for a long time.

    Quick history: I was vegetarian from birth to age 30, with several years of veganism as a teen. My “hormones” were always a problem, after adolescence – increasing PMS mood swings, horrible cramps (worse than childbirth, which I’ve done three times!), and what I now realize was worsening hypoglycemia (needed to eat constantly, or I’d get cranky and starving). Vegetarianism was my religion, and my dogmatic approach to diet (I was a vegetarian chef and nutrition educator) helped obscure some of the symptoms that I now believe were partly caused or exacerbated by my soy-, whole-wheat-, and vegetable-oil-heavy diet.)

    Fast-forward to age 30, four years ago, when my son was six. He had never thrived, and at this point he was sinking into a bizarre haze of ASD and anorexic symptoms. I learned about the GAPS diet, and overnight gave up my vegetarian religion while dealing with the horrible tantrums of a child who literally ate three foods at that point, and who no-way-no-how wanted to eat meat or anything else.

    It took about three years to stabilize our son – and meanwhile, I experienced many improvements while eating “GAPS” – a gut-healing protocol that includes (in our case) tons of fermented foods, fatty meats, cooked vegetables, broths, and limited nuts/fruit/sweets. My mood, despite the craziness that was our son’s symptoms, improved markedly. I slept better. I didn’t need to snack anymore! I had more energy, my periods got better (shorter, less heavy, much less cramping, less “PMS” mood stuff), and my basal body temperature increased by about a degree (from 96 to 97).

    Then things slowly started to get worse. Reading your website, I am pretty sure that I hit a low-carb wall without ever meaning to. My son was sensitive to so many foods for so long, and it was so much easier to have the whole family eating only what he could eat, that we included very little in the way of fruit or sweet vegetables, and definitely no starchy ones. By year two of GAPS, when I got pregnant with our third child, I started getting panic attacks, severe anxiety and OCD symptoms, and many, many other “subclinical” symptoms, including within-range-but-low TSH, extremely high cholesterol (skyrocketing HDL – somewhere in the 600s), high RT3, etc. etc.

    I didn’t know what was going on, and still don’t, exactly…except that what you write about dietary intakes makes a whole lot of sense. I staggered along for the past two years, birthing my baby and pumping my milk to feed her (she was unable to nurse due to severe feeding issues, and I pumped to feed her exclusively breastmilk for a year) and attempting to continue my son’s healing while making tons and tons of food and ferments and broths. I learned a whole lot of coping skills to deal with my moods. I kept telling myself, “It takes time to heal! Maybe my body is just detoxifying, and it will take a long time to stabilize, and I’ll feel better soon.”

    And then this past fall, it was all getting worse and worse and worse, and finally I decided that nearly-four-years on this style of eating was long enough to show me that my moods were NOT stabilizing. Two days after New Years, I was unable to get off the floor because of the horrible black fog in my head, and I felt so so dreadfully sad that my children are growing up, and I’m doing so much to try to help them be healthy, and I can barely enjoy the time I have with them!

    This is when I started digging into “Free The Animal,” and your website, and the idea that maybe resistant starch and absorbable starch are ideas whose time has come, in our household (and that maybe it would have been good for ME years ago…which is so hard to think about, except I know that I’ve been doing the best I could, all along, with the knowledge I’ve been able to glean and the significant handicap of simultaneously trying to nourish my now-ten-year-old “baby” who has a super-sensitive gut).

    Anyway. This is what I’m doing: since New Years, I’ve begun taking resistant starch daily, and am additionally eating your recommended ~600 starch calories per day, mostly from white rice or potato or plantain or taro or sweet potato. (My son can’t tolerate sweet potato, but he seems okay with rice – we’ll see…) I’ve been intermittent fasting 16/8. I’ve started supplementing with very low doses of iodine, and I’ve been eating a ton of coconut oil.

    Preliminary results were hugely amazing: I had the best three weeks of Good Mood, better than I’ve had in ten years. I was happy for no reason!! So extremely so that I was enjoying my kids and my amazing spouse and didn’t even mind washing dishes so much… I was counting the moments of every day, grateful to be alive, so amazed to be so happy! And then, I ovulated. I could feel the black cloud descending like the horrible-ness that it always has been, only this time there was this added huge contrast between how happy I’d just been, and this terrible, uncontrollable blackness.

    I’m encouraged, because I had such post-menstrual Good Moods. And now that I’m nearly a week into the Horrible Luteal Phase Mood Awfulness, I am grasping to understand what is going on when my moods do this, and to find some hope that I’m still on the right track, that if I can just drag myself through the next few weeks or months or years, then I might find a way to exist with less of this terrible anxiety and depression. I’d love to know if others changed their intakes to be in line with your guidelines…and found relief from depression. And I’d love to know how long it took them to feel basically stable!

    I’m sorry to write this novel in your comments! I am so hoping for answers, and your ideas give me great hope. I just need a little more hope right now, if anyone can give it to me, in the form of Suggestions or Success Stories or Moral Support.


    • Hey Sarabeth,

      Really interesting to read your story, it sounds like you have been through the mill but are now on a really good track.

      I myself suffered from depression and chronic fatigue during my 20s, doctors were no help, people kept telling me it was all in my head. What I did is struggle on and I figured out the whole thing out on my own. In an era where the internet was very basic, there wasn’t the knowledge base we have now. I realised that good diet and lifestyle was the key to my health and I persevered. This has brought me to here..

      My life now is much better, I have been Paleo for two years and now am introducing the resistant starches, I’m sure that this will be of great benefit. My depression and chronic fatigue are long gone, although I’m still working on my mild hypothyroidism and lowish basal temperature.

      My message to you, would be to keep doing what your doing, I’m sure you will reach your goal of happy and healthy body and mind in the not to distant future,.

      Best of luck!
      Roberto Lora

      • Hi Roberto,

        Thanks for your reply – I appreciate it, and am so glad to hear that your depression is better, and I hope to report back the same in maybe a few months…though I’m prepared to keep trying as long as it takes, if I can make it that long!

        Was anything particularly instrumental in your healing, or was it one of those incremental-changes-producing-incremental-results types of things?


        • Hello Sarabeth

          Yes perserverance is essential, don’t ever give up and I know sometimes it all can feel too much to handle, but being strong is vital.

          In answer to your question about what was key in my own struggle. My main problem apart from how I felt, was that nobody at the time believed I had a problem, it was all in my head, apparently. I believed in myself, in my own intuition, and it told me lifestyle was at the heart of this regardless of what had triggered it. The more I looked after my lifestyle, what I ate, my exercise, my social interactions, learning and growing, the more I improved, though it was a slow process. Eventually I discovered that candida had been at root of my problem all along, but by then I had already done many things to improve and many things that help candida, because they are part of a healthy lifestyle. Armed with additional knowledge I was able to go even further though.

          So in a nutshell I would say key factors are perseverance, healthy habits/lifestyle and knowledge (research and keep expanding your understanding).

          I come to realise that even though I’ve had this debilitating problem for years, now I am armed with an approach to life that will allow me to be much happier and healthier for the rest of my years, had I not suffered from depression I wouldn’t be so healthy in mind, body & spirit now.

          I have been listening to the “Latest in Paleo” podcast recently on iTunes or really recommend Angelo’s programme. Recently though he pointed listeners to this TED talk on depression:

          A lot of what this researcher talks about resonates with me. He talks about how a particular modern day tribe has virtually no depression, and I myself found this when travelling in Nepal, obviously a very poor country, that it was extremely rare there too. What protects these people from depression? Well it’s their lifestyle. Think you might find it interesting..

          Best of luck

  44. Hi Paul (or anyone who could advise me),

    I am on the PHD for 4 months now and keep gaining weight, I am a bit concerned about it, what could I do? reduced the safe starches?
    I tried to eat less in volume, reduce saturated fat but still keep gaining weight.
    I was for years on a Paleo Low Carbs diet and despite I was having craving very often (falling for sweets, ice creams or cakes) but as soon I was back to my low carbs diet, I was back to my normal weight. Does it mean that PHD may not be for me?
    On the other hand, my body seems happier than before as I have NO CRAVINGS ANYMORE which is a HUGE improvement.
    I might have been malnourished before and should may be accept the price to pay to be well nourished?
    Anyone has any idea about this gaining weight issue? I read somewhere on the forum that it shouldn’t last more than 4 weeks, it is 4 months now…….. Marie

  45. Paul,

    I have been eating Paleo for a number of years. This diet has helped with some health issues, along with a small colon problem that will flair up now and then.

    Reading your book, I am use to eating 1.5-2lbs of protein a day with mainly green fibrous vegetables. In the Paleo world eating a large amount of carbs that you recommend supposedly with cause you to gain body fat, which I am trying to lose around 5%. Please explain how a person will not gain body fat eating 600g of carbs a day.
    Thank you!

    • Hi Dave,

      I have the same problem and concern than you.
      Something came accross my mind today:
      I am not a chemist but may be the fact to add acidic things (vinegar, lemon or fermented vegetables) + fat as advised on the PHD, facilitate the carbs absortion. Marie

  46. I see soy is a no go, but was wondering about fermented products such as doenjang and gochujang-Are they acceptable?

  47. Hello,

    I have Ankyclosing Spondylitis and I am interested in trying this diet to see if it will help. Should I be tweaking it at all, or follow as stated above?


  48. Hi
    I am flying from Salt Lake City to Holland. And then back ten days later. Any thoughts on what to pack for airplane food. My options for buying food in Holland for trip back will be limited Thanks, Terry

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