In this week’s episode of The Whole Circle Podcast we talk about all things healthy living with Pete Evans.
Way back when in the early days of this podcast show we dreamed of how we would have loved to get Pete Evans on the show. We thought it was never going to be possible and yet here we are!
We’re big fans of Pete’s. We understand that not everyone agrees with his views and that’s ok. It would be a pretty boring world if we all agreed with each other. We’re all entitled to our opinions, but we believe he does do a lot of good in the world, especially when it comes to clean, wholefood, additive and preservative-free living. We believe it’s important to hear all the information so that we can then make our own informed choices.
How did Pete come to live this very clean lifestyle?
His life was very much shaped by his parents and the way they lived their lives and their beliefs. However, through all that he still had to find his own way in life and his own journey, and it took him time to evolve into the person he is today.
He basically lives in a way that is a homage to our evolutionary history of the hunter and gatherer. In fact, 99.5% of our evolutionary history is made up of hunting and gathering and this is what his lifestyle is. Going back to basics and living in a way that takes all the additives and extras out that modern society has added in.
For example, water supplies were sourced and drunk directly from flowing streams. They weren’t consumed with chlorine or fluoride, so why are they now? Who is it benefiting? Pete likes to ask questions such as these instead of just accepting the status quo.
Curious by nature
Pete is a very existential thinker, a very deep thinker and one who challenges the norm. Not because he wants to be difficult, but because he wants to broaden his mind and because life and all its nuances and eccentricities are truly fascinating to him. He seems to be at his most animated and happiest when he’s getting people to really think about who they are or who they want to be, not just what society has driven them to be or their parents have imprinted them to be, but to truly understand what makes each and every one of us tick.
For us (Jo and Tracey), his brain and way of thinking is truly thought-provoking and fascinating.
Pete’s new book Heal is such a departure from his cookbooks. What made him write Heal?
Pete’s been a Chef for 30 years now, but he’s always been curious about how we think and who we are as individuals and as a collective for the last 30 years as well. Over that time, he has had probably 1000 therapy sessions of some type or another, whether it’s spiritual, physical, emotional or energetic just to broaden his understanding of who we are as humans.
Over those years he has delved into many different modalities and philosophies of thought, so Heal is a very basic introduction into some of those ideas.
Pete has noticed that unless you are a speed reader it can be very time consuming to finish a book, which a lot of people simply don’t have the time to do in today’s fast-paced world.
So, he wanted to create a book that would plant the seeds of curiosity with bite-sized pieces of information which are easily digestible and without being too deep and meaningful. The intention is to give enough of a viewpoint on the topics so that if anything resonates with someone at least the seed is planted so if they want to water that seed more, they can research it further.
The book is broken into chapters, being:
The book is a way to be able to present something outside of just cooking and recipes that have the potential to spark curiosity and the thirst for more in someone.
It’s a hot topic that Pete has copped a lot of flak over in the media. Let’s be honest, Pete has copped a lot of flak over a number of things in the media and been taken out of context over a whole bunch of things.
But let’s talk something that Pete is very passionate about and for very good reason as we’re about to learn … Cannabis.
Cannabis has been around for centuries and had been used for all sorts of things, one of them being as a medicinal herb. In fact, not many people know that prior to its prohibition 80 years ago Doctor’s in America prescribed cannabis as one of their tools for good health.
It’s one of the most, if not the most, controversial plants in the world.
It is becoming legalised in certain places around the world. In Canada, it is fully legal for recreational use. You can go into a store and buy cannabis, take it home and either smoke it, eat it, rub it onto your skin in a balm, take it via a suppository or pessary or via an oil inserted either anally or vaginally where it is used for people that have Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Crohn’s Disease or other similar conditions.
Because cannabis is an enhancer it does come down to the different cannabis strains you use, of which there are 100s and 1000s. In each of those, there are hybridised versions, grown to have certain characteristics. Some are very high in THC which is what gives you the high, but then there are some that are high in CBD which has no THC (no high).
Cannabis is an extraordinary plant which has so many different strains which all do something different. Unfortunately, we know so little about it because we haven’t been able to research it given it has been illegal for the last 80 years. Thankfully this is all starting to change, we are seeing some amazing research coming out of Israel which is leading the world in cannabis research, on how these strains are reacting with our bodies.
They’ve discovered that we have an endocannabinoid system within our bodies and within that system, they have discovered that a lot of people have deficiencies. So that is why people are experiencing amazing results when they are using cannabis because it is boosting their endocannabinoid systems.
Our bodies are intelligent enough to know what to do with the cannabinoids and to get the benefits from them.
Your bodies reaction to cannabis all depends on the strain you have used. Some strains can make you lethargic and give the feeling of hunger, whereas other strains can enhance whatever you are doing ie. watching a movie and enhancing sounds, colours and being more present in the moment.
It’s particularly important to note that cannabis is not the same for everyone. Two people could smoke the same strain but react very differently to it.
It’s a very interesting topic and there is no one answer to what it will do for each and every one of us. But from a medicinal perspective, we’re seeing a lot of benefit for people. Dr Charlie Teo is currently conducting a clinical study which 84 people are participating in and which Pete is going to be covering in his cannabis documentary. They’re seeing wonderful results for use of cannabis with children with severe Epilepsy, cannabis assisted psychotherapy is having wonderful results for people with PTSD, Depression, Anxiety and Mental Illness. Juicing cannabis is working wonders for people with gut disorders. It’s also being trialled and working well for people with ASD, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and Dementia.
At the same time, all the medical professionals that Pete interviews in the documentary say the same thing and that’s cannabis is a very powerful plant that needs to be respected and you need to form a relationship with it because it’s not for everyone.
As we already know, there are certain people who shouldn’t drink alcohol because it can exacerbate major problems for that person. There are people out there who shouldn’t be eating sugar because they have an addictive nature to it, we also know there are people out there who shouldn’t be taking cannabis because they have an underlying issue that needs resolving before they even consider taking it, and maybe they should never take cannabis because it’s not the right thing for them.
Again, it needs to be treated with the utmost respect. It’s not something that you just light up a joint and go for it, even though a lot of people do that and take pleasure from it.
Pete always says get to know what you’re getting involved in, whether it’s alcohol, bad diet or relationship etc.
Why is cannabis demonised?
It should be noted that anyone over 18 can go down to their local liquor store and buy a bottle or multiple bottles of alcohol and take that/them home, drink them all and it can have the potential to kill them. You could get a prescription for sleeping pills, take them all and overdose. You can buy over the counter paracetamol and overdose on them, yet to Pete’s knowledge, no one has ever overdosed on cannabis.
Can you say that no one has ever died from an overdose of sleeping pills or pharmaceutical prescription opiates or alcohol or food?
But with cannabis, why are we demonising something that you cannot overdose on?
Sure, there are people out there who can abuse any of those things, including cannabis but does that mean we don’t have our own personal responsibility to look after our own health? Pete firmly believes that we should all have the right to grow cannabis in our homes and to use it either as food or medicine or don’t use it at all, just grow it and enjoy it as a plant. It has wonderful aromatherapy benefits simply being grown in the garden as a plant.
Pete is all for the complete legalisation of cannabis and he is all for personal responsibility for it too, just like we have with alcohol.
Legalisation of Cannabis
Pete wouldn’t be surprised if cannabis becomes legalised in Australia within the next 12 months. There are currently 2000 (approximately) registered users of cannabis who have prescriptions to use it medicinally, but it is so expensive for those people, with it costing upwards of $50,000 – $100,000 per year. Most of these people who need it most can’t afford. Whereas on the black market they can get it for a fraction of the cost and if they grew at home it would be even cheaper.
Pete has heard estimates that there are 100,000 to 1 million people using black market cannabis just for medicinal purpose. At the moment the government and the pharmaceutical companies have got a stranglehold on this. What are they going to do? Are they going to arrest 100,000 – 1 million people who are accessing their cannabis for personal medicinal use from the black market?
That’s where Pete thinks we need to be able to grow and harvest it ourselves for personal use at home or wherever we can get it from so that it is a lot cheaper than what it is now so that it is affordable. It also needs to be regulated so that people know where it comes from and they know the quality of it because a lot of what is available now is synthetic and just plain terrible.
Because the black market supplies a lot of it now, we do not know where it comes from, whether it’s organic, we don’t even know what’s been sprayed on it.
Going forward when it’s legalised Pete wants to see that the plants/products have full traceability as they do in other countries which will detail:
- Where it was grown
- How it was grown
- Whether any pesticides, herbicides or fungicides were sprayed on it
- What strain it is
- What you can expect from that experience based on the THC, CBD and terpene profile of it
- What is the best way for your body to absorb it ie. eating, juicing, inhaling, smoking, balm, suppository, pessary
All of these factors need to be researched before an individual uses cannabis, given that we all react differently to cannabis.
It’s about what works for you which involves, trial and error, research and speaking to people. There are also some wonderful forums out there which you can go on and look into such as Leafly which details different strains with lots of community engagement and personal experience with different strains.
Where can you find Pete?
The Paleo Way: https://thepaleoway.com/
We got so much out of this episode. Pete was very kind, down to earth and generous with his time and information, we were super impressed and loved every minute of it.
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Don’t forget that our book is available for purchase. Check it out and grab a copy HERE.