Why is Ghee Paleo Approved if it’s Dairy?

Ghee is a dairy product that has been gaining in popularity!

But why is ghee paleo approved even though it’s dairy? Well, there’s actually a few reasons this is 🙂 But you’ll have to read on to find out!

Ghee has many benefits, including being anti-inflammatory and good for gut health. Despite its benefits, some people still wonder why it is paleo approved.

Let’s take a closer look at ghee and find out why it is a good choice for those following the paleo diet.

What is Paleo?

The Paleo diet is a way of eating that focuses on foods our ancestors could hunt or gather. It eliminates all grains, legumes dairy products salt and refined sugars from the equation in order to mimic what they ate 10 thousand years ago before the agricultural revolution!

Paleo is a diet high in protein, moderate in fat, low to moderate in carbohydrates, high in fiber, low in sodium, and eliminates refined sugars.

The diet is meant to mimic what people ate in the Paleolithic era. The foods back then were meant for human bodies, so they didn’t contain all those chemicals we’re now coated with!

What can you eat and not eat on the paleo diet?

when it comes to Paleo, there is no one true way to eat. It depends on the expert you follow. However, there are a few basic guidelines they can all agree on!

Foods Allowed

  • Lean Meats, like chicken
  • Fish
  • Shellfish
  • Eggs
  • Nuts and Seeds
  • Fruits and Vegetables (low glycemic)
  • Unrefined oils, such as olive and coconut
  • Honey (sparingly)
  • Root Vegetables

Foods Not Allowed

  • White Potatoes (high glycemic)
  • Processed foods
  • Whole grains
  • Cereal
  • Refined grains
  • Sugar (added) and artificial sweeteners
  • Dairy
  • Legumes
  • Alcohol
  • Salt
  • Refined oils, such as canola and vegetable

What is the Definition of Dairy?

Dairy is a broad category of food that contains milk from mammals. It includes items such as cheese, yogurt, butter, and cream. Milk and milk products are staples in the human diet, providing nutrients such as protein, calcium, and vitamin D.

Why is Dairy not Allowed on Paleo?

Because the Paleo diet mimics our early ancestors, no dairy is allowed. They didn’t milk cows or eat milk by products we do today!

Other than the obvious though, we need to understand WHY people may choose to go on the Paleo diet in the first place. There are a number of reasons!

  1. Lose weight
  2. Reverse an autoimmune disease
  3. Improve digestive issues
  4. Decrease inflammation
  5. Control blood sugar

Consumption of dairy has been linked to digestive and inflammatory issues, joint pain, IBS, bloating and gas. The Paleo diet can address all of the above issues and more, by eliminating dairy from the diet!

There are three components of dairy that make it unsuitable for the Paleo diet:

  • Lactose. Alot of people lack the enzyme that is necessary to break lactose down. Many adults are lactose intolerant to some extent.
  • Casein Protein. Some people can have an intolerance or allergies to casein, a protein that is slowly broken down in the body.
  • Whey Protein. Has potential to spike blood sugar if not countered with fats.

So, why is ghee paleo approved even though it’s technically dairy?

What is Ghee?

Ghee is a type of clarified butter that is made from butter from the milk of cows, buffaloes, goats, or sheep. The butter is melted until the milk solids (carbs and proteins) start to brown and you’re left with a golden butter. The browned milk solids are separated. Removing the milk solids increases the smoke point of Ghee, making it a very versatile fat to cook with!

This golden liquid (ghee) is made from removing milk solids. Even though it's dairy, it's paleo approved.

Why is Ghee Paleo Approved Even Though it’s Dairy?

Ghee does not contain milk solids (carbohydrates and proteins). The milk solids is what contains lactose, casein, and whey proteins. Essentially, the part that most people can’t tolerate is taken out of Ghee. So, even though Ghee is technically derived from a milk byproduct, the things that make a product dairy are taken out!

There could be some trace amounts of Ghee left in the final product, so it’s up to each individual how strict they will go on the Paleo diet. But rest assured, ghee is paleo approved!


Is Ghee less Inflammatory?

Yes! One of the health benefits of ghee is that is can help decrease inflammation. Ghee is high in saturated fat, but it also contains short and medium-chain fatty acids, and conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) which are thought to be anti-inflammatory.

Is Ghee AIP friendly?

Ghee is actually recommended to exclude from the elimination phase on the AIP. Even though the milk solids are removed, there are typically trace amounts left in the final product. Another reason is that conventional dairy products contain added hormones, which can lead to hormonal imbalances linked to autoimmunity. If you are on the AIP protocol, either eliminate ghee or opt for grass-fed only to be on the safe side.

What are the disadvantages of ghee?

There aren’t many. One thing to watch out for is how much you consume! Ghee is pure fat, saturated at that. So eat in moderation!

Should you add ghee to a bulletproof coffee?

You should absolutely add ghee to a bulletproof coffee! Even better, that is the perfect combination on the Paleo diet!

So, now do you understand why ghee is paleo approved even though it’s dairy? If you have specific health concerns, I recommend discussing with your doctor first!

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