Morning Brew

Coffee 2I first fell in love with coffee when I was 15 and sort-of attending an alternative highschool.

It was one of those self-paced storefront places for square pegs & hoodlums.

I was both.Morning brew

There was always cheap ground coffee & lots of coffee-mate powder, so we’d show up, brew coffee & drink multiple pots of it until we were so disregulated that we could hardly walk.

Then we’d lie around on the floor laughing hysterically.

The teachers at that school were saints.

Later, I cut out all caffeine because I was pregnant. Or breastfeeding. For most of my twenties.

I love coffee. But there’s been this pattern:

I drink coffee. Work and life are stressful. I drink more coffee. It causes anxiety. My stress levels get out of control and then I quit.

For a while.

Then it starts again. My co-workers know this pattern well.

But I think I’m getting the hang of this whole moderation thing. I’ve been coffee-free for most of the past year. I started drinking green tea last July when I did my first 30 days on the Autoimmune Protocol (AIP). Previously I’d been sure I was not mature enough to drink green tea, but it turns out I actually am.

But when I got into MCT oil a month or so ago, I put coffee back in.

Coffee 3Around the same time I found a source for additive-free tinned coconut milk so I could also make AIP-friendly whipped coconut cream for my coffee.

And then I bought some vanilla powder because I wanted to experiment with its purported health benefits in my ongoing quest for accessing peak experience through nutrition.

And then, since MCT oil & unsalted pastured butter in coffee is a total thing, I thought I’d better try that, too. Even though I’ve been dairy-free for way longer than I’ve been paleo.

And an eye of newt.

But not really.

I got a mini (regular old coffee cup size) press. Some really good coffee. And now I have a cup of coffee every morning, with 2 kinds of MCT oil & vanilla coconut cream. Sometimes with unsalted pastured butter.

I’m not convinced about the butter.

Having been a lactating mammal myself, I can really only get behind the notion of lactation on an impermanent basis.

But I’m going to give the butter a fair trial. And it the meantime it doesn’t hurt that I’ve found a source of pastured butter for my vegetarian teenager to put on her popcorn.

bulletproof coffee

Bulletproof coffee: coffee, MCT oil & pastured unsalted butter

But I haven’t yet noticed that adding the butter to my coffee optimizes my day or my health in any way. The MCT oil is amazing, for sure. And I think I’m keen on the effects of the vanilla powder, too. The whipped coconut cream is primarily just fun, but I’m okay with that. Plus it’s a great vehicle for the vanilla.

My morning brew. June 2014 version.

Just to be totally clear, I didn’t make this stuff up. You can read all about bulletproof coffee here.

Whipped Vanilla Coconut Cream (AIP & WahlsPaleo+)

  • Difficulty: So easy!
  • Print
 from petra8paleo


A paleo classic

  • 1 tin full-fat coconut milk, refrigerated
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla powder

If you are on the Autoimmune Protocol or avoiding food additives, use an additive-free brand of coconut milk. The only one I know of is Natural Value. Other brands contain guar gum.

Scoop out the hard, white coconut cream from the top of the refrigerated tin into a bowl. (Use the remaining coconut water in a smoothie or pour it in your stock pot, if you’ve got bone broth going.)

Add the vanilla powder to the coconut cream.

Whip with an electric mixer until creamy.

Store in the refrigerator.

Wonderful on frozen blackberries. In smoothies. And in coffee! (If you’re on the Autoimmune Protocol, stick with the berries & smoothies.)

blackberries & coconut cream

16 thoughts on “Morning Brew

  1. Great post filled with so many great nuggets! I came across bulletproof coffee last year but similarly, didn’t read in depth since I’ve been going (mostly) coffee-free. I will give it another read now.

  2. Hi, I love your blog and have been on the AIP diet for 4 months. I have psoriatic arthritis and although I feel a better sense of well being, I am still flaring on this protocol. I purchased Dr. Wahl’s book and am trying to read it as fast as I can. I truly believe that it could be the missing link. What are your thoughts on also trying to adhere to the blood type diet? I’m type O and no coconut is allowed! That alone feels really cruel! Thanks for your time!

    • Psoriatic Arthritis is tricky. Everyone has their own experience, but after almost 6-months, my husband Matthew who also has psoriatic arthritis, is currently down to 2 ‘tylenol-arthritis’ a day, compared to 6-8 Tramadol or Dilaudid a day when he started, though some of his non-psoriatic symptoms have been harder to shift. As an ‘A’ blood type, I’m supposed to be eating soy, grains and vegetables according to the blood type diet, so obviously I’m not an adherent. But I was for awhile. At one time, the blood type diet reinforced my belief that I should be vegetarian, should eat lots of whole grains and shouldn’t exercise too much, which resulted in this ‘before’ picture: & these health issues: It takes awhile to adjust to getting most of your calories from coconut oil, so if you decide to try it, just remember to start slow. Let me know how it goes!

  3. I’m slowly but surely adopting the Wahls protocol. I’ve started by making sure I get all my veggies in…and I bought beef liver! (I was a vegetarian from age 13 to 39. I was diagnosed with PSA at 35. I just turned 40.) I’m also adding in the cans of coconut milk. I haven’t gotten farther than that. This diet requires a bit of organization and planning!

    • Congratulations on the beef liver purchase! Though I was pretty adept at purchasing offal long before I brought myself to cook & eat it! Eating this way does require organization & planning until it become routine. Now I’m actually enjoying not planning my meals in advance for the first time since going paleo. I just make sure I have ample vegetables in all 3 categories & the desired varieties of meats & my few favorite pantry items & I’m ready! It sounds like you are approaching this change in a sustainable way, by doing it gradually…

  4. Hi Petra, I suspect I have MS and I have been on the Wahls paeo plus diet for about a month. I have had significant improvement since. Dr Wahls recommends limiting coffee to two cups only in the morning and though it significantly reduces my fatigue and malaise as well as improving my mental energy and focus I require 4 – 5 cups daily with high fat coconut milk throughout the day and evening.
    Why does Dr Wahls recommend limiting coffee and what risks am I taking by exceeding the limit? Thank you for your help, Glen. Hollywood, Fl

  5. I read Kesser’s interview. It was helpful. Thank you. He said coffee is a gray area. I’ve always been skeptical of one size fits all. Ironically I did not drink caffeinated drinks for years before I got on the Wahls paleo plus diet because it irritated my prostate. However I developed severe fatigue along with other symptoms. The diet greatly relieved almost all my other symptoms but not my fatigue and malaise. I passed out while driving and had a serious car accident. I started drinking coffee and it greatly relieved my fatigue and malaise although they are still my most serious symptoms. I can drive safely but I have to be careful when I drive. If my prostate is irritated I stop the coffee for 12 to 24 hours. However my symptoms become more severe until I resume the coffee.
    Coffee doesn’t make me nervous or jittery and it doesn’t keep me awake even if I drink it at bedtime. I have a high tolerance for caffeine. It does make me more alert and energized. It sometimes causes mild burning in my stomach but it passes quickly. I think the benefits far outweigh the negatives for me. What do you think? Did I miss anything? Glen

    • Hi Glen, for myself, I go off coffee for extended periods and then put it back in and see how I respond. Gradually I have learned more about what works for me. And what works for me is not always static. There are times when i can tolerate it almost daily and times when i need to take it out.each of us has to weigh the risks and benefits of anything and make a personal decision. It sounds like that is what you are doing!

  6. Hi Petra, I have trouble getting to the 6 oz minimum for meat on the Wahls diet, I was on a plant dominant diet before and ate very little meat. Now I’m eating 3 to 4 oz daily. Also I only eat liver about every 4 days. Is this a problem? What can I do? Glen

    • I can’t say whether it is a problem for you, but it sounds like you are being very conscientious in your efforts. Eating liver every 4 days is great! It reminds me that I’ve slipped somewhat in the liver department lately~.

  7. Hi again Petra, I read that a ketogenic diet can be bad for your heart because your body uses muscle – including the heart – for energy. Do you know anything about that and how to avoid it. Glen

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