What is the Paleo Diet?

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what is the paleo diet

It’s almost springtime.  Have you started any of your 2016 resolutions?  Some people have vowed to start running and lose weight. While others have promised to stay away from their vices like cigarettes, a pack of beer or extra-large pepperoni pizza, some people decided to change their food intake – and one of the most popular diets is the Paleo Diet.

But what is it?

This is one of the healthiest ways to eat.  The program works with your natural genetic makeup to stay healthy.  Scientific research has shown that it is today’s modern diet that causes degenerative diseases such as cancer, heart disease, obesity, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, depression and even infertility.

How to Have a Healthy Paleo Diet

1. Lean Proteins

Lean protein is such a huge part of a Paleo diet.  It supports and builds strong muscles and bones.  It also boosts our immune system.  Protein also keeps you full in between meals.

2. Fruits and Veggies

Fruits and vegetables are always good for you.  They are packed with antioxidants.  They are rich in vitamins and minerals.  They are full of phytonutrients which help decrease the risk of developing degenerative diseases like diabetes, cancer, and neurological illnesses.

3. Healthy Fats

You can get this from nuts, seeds, olive oil, and avocados.  You can also get them from fish oil and grass-fed meat. Scientific studies show that diets rich in monounsaturated and Omega-3 fats would reduce the risk of developing cancer, obesity, heart disease, diabetes and neurological decline.

We’ve all been warned against saturated fats.  Health authorities have warned us repeatedly.  So, what is the current recommendation for saturated fat intake?  How much should you eat?

Prof. Loren Cordain, an American scientist who specializes in nutrition, studied the amount of saturated fats in ancestral diet and compared them with today’s contemporary intake.

He discovered that one of the biggest differences between these two kinds of diet was the amount and type of fats found in meat.  He compared the amount of fats between modern-grain feed animals and grass-fed or wild animals, including fish and fowl.

What he observed is that wild or grass-fed animal meat is considerably leaner.  It also contains a significantly lower amount of saturated fats, but it can provide substantial amounts of nutrients like omega-3 fats.

Prof. Cordain analyzed the fatty acid profile of free-range or wild animals like deer.  He discovered that free range meat is far healthier than grain-feed animal meat.

What are the Health Benefits of a Paleo Diet?

This diet offers countless benefits, but the fact that it provides the best result is enough for many advocates.  However, some individuals wouldn't try something just because someone recommends it.  They need to be informed first why they have to try the diet in the first place.

Some of the benefits include weight loss, strong immune system, reduced pain, improved lipids.  This diet has stood the test of time.  It has also passed scientific and health scrutiny.  When you shift to the Paleo diet, you effectively remove foods that are bad for your health.  You also increase your vitamins and minerals.

The Paleo Diet may have been around for a long time, but the concept is new to a lot of people.  Not surprisingly, they have a lot of questions about it.  It is important for a person to educate himself on the topic before he actually adopts it for himself.

Experience is a remarkable teacher.  It can cut through any confusion surrounding any issue.  In your research, you would come across counter arguments, and it is an excellent idea to weigh the pros and cons before you start this diet.

Does It Help With the Symptoms of Diabetes and CAD?

A recent study compared the Paleo diet and Mediterranean diet in people suffering from Type 2 Diabetes.  The study showed that people who are on the Paleo diet showed significant improvement.  The diet reversed the symptoms of Type 2 diabetes.  On the other hand, the Mediterranean diet showed little or no improvement. Curiously, this is the diet that the government is holding up as the best diet.

Cardiovascular disease (CAD) is the number one cause of death in the country.  Interestingly, studies show that this wasn’t a problem by our Paleolithic ancestors.  They did not suffer from heart ailments or stroke.

Paleo Diet Guidelines

 


  • Stick with a diet that is high in fat, moderate in protein, and low to moderate in carbs.
  • Consume large amounts of saturated fats, but only if they come from healthy animals like beef or lamb tallow.
  • Eat animal protein (red meat, poultry, pork, eggs, wild-caught fish)
  • Consume a large amount of frozen or fresh vegetables.
  • Eat a moderate amount of fruits and nuts.
  • Avoid eating cereal grains and legumes.
  • Do not eat hydrogenated vegetable oils.
  • Avoid added sugars.
  • Eliminate dairy products except for butter.
  • Supplement with vitamin D and probiotics.

 

Image Credit:
Paleo Foods via steadystrength.com
Stone age cavemen diet via fitwirr.com
Paleo Diet 2.0? via mensfitness.com

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