Paleolithic diet

This hunter-gatherer diet of the Paleolithic humans, our ancestors who inhabited Earth some 40,000 years ago, has been carried on in many tribal cultures. NowaDay s, however, it is essentially an extinct species of humankind that continues to hunt wild game and gather their foods such as fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds as available on a seasonal basis.

Recent archeological findings suggest that these ancient ancestors of ours were a healthy bunch, tall, strong bones, and body structures like modern-Day athletes—they appear to be most similar to ours in regard to stature, and as long as they survived accidents, infections, and childbirth, their longevity was similar to ours, but with much less chronic degenerative disease.

Flesh foods provided their proteins; seeds and nuts their oils; fruits and berries were available for quick energy; and some starchy vegetable tubers provided more complex carbohydrate fuel.

The theory behind the health benefits of this hunter-gatherer diet, is that our modern diet should be adapted more to that of our ancestors than to the current one commonly consumed. The grains, eggs, and dairy foods, though wholesome in many ways, are the most common allergenic ones, and create both evident and hidden problems in many people. A big reason for much of the chronic disease in our culture involves the large amounts of fats, especially saturated fats, which were nearly nonexistent in ancient times (free-running animals had a much lower fat level, and most of the fats were of the polyunsaturated variety). The high intake of refined foods and grains in general also may be problematic in modern humans. The Paleolithic Prescription suggests an avoidance of refined foods and recommends that the main animal foods be closer to the wild game of ancient times.

It includes fish and free-range poultry, obviously with low chemical application to the raising, cultivating, and preparation of these foods.

The Paleolithic diet was estimated to be roughly 60 percent carbohydrate, 20 percent protein, and 20 percent fats with a calcium intake often over 1000 mg. daily, and that is without milk products.

The diet is based on avoiding not just modern processed foods, but also the foods that humans began eating after the Neolithic Revolution.

-Vegetables, fruits, nuts, roots, meat, and organ meats;
-Vegetables (including root vegetables), fruit (including fruit oils, e.g.,olive oil, coconut oil, and palmoil), nuts, fish, meat, and eggs, and it excluded dairy, grain-based foods, legumes, extra sugar, and nutritional products of industry (including refined fats and refined carbohydrates); and
-Avoids processed foods, and emphasizes eating vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds, eggs, and lean meats.
-Some suggestions for eating this more natural diet will blend together Paleolithic nutrition with some more modern foods. This will clearly reduce fat intake and reduce the incidences of many of our “diseases of civilization.
-We should bake, roast, and steam our foods instead of frying or sautéing them.
-We need to reduce the fatty meats and all processed meats as well as most of the whole milk products.
-Eating more raw, organic foods is helpful.

Pros:

The paleo diet encourages you to eat less processed food and more fruit and vegetables. Reducing your consumption of high-calorie foods will reduce your calorie intake and help you lose weight. The diet is simple and doesn’t involve calorie counting. Some plans go by the “80/20” rule, where you’ll get 99% of the benefits of the paleo diet if you adhere to it 80% of the time. This flexibility can make the diet easier to stick to, so you are more likely to be successful.

Paleo diet: pros

The paleo diet encourages you to eat less processed food and more fruit and vegetables. Reducing your consumption of high-calorie foods will reduce your calorie intake and help you lose weight. The diet is simple and doesn’t involve calorie counting. Some plans go by the “80/20” rule, where you’ll get 99% of the benefits of the paleo diet if you adhere to it 80% of the time. This flexibility can make the diet easier to stick to, so you are more likely to be successful.

Paleo diet: cons

There are no accurate records of the diet of our Stone Age ancestors, so the paleo diet is largely based on an educated guess, and its health claims lack scientific evidence. Most versions of the diet encourage large amounts of meat, which runs counter to current health advice on meat consumption. Many versions ban dairy products and wholegrains, which form part of a healthy, balanced diet. Like all high-protein diets, the paleo can be expensive, depending on your choice of meat cuts.

End verdict:

Most versions of the paleo diet exclude key food groups, raising the potential for nutritional deficiencies unless careful substitutions are made, and dietary supplements may be necessary. The diet has some positive aspects, so an adapted version that doesn’t ban any food groups – such as wholegrains, dairy and legumes – would be a better choice.