What is the Paleo Diet?
Whether you call it the paleo diet harkens to the Paleolithic era when humans had to hunt if they wanted to eat. Advocates for the paleo diet argue our modern isn’t what our bodies evolved to consume. Instead, during this formative time for humanity, most people lived off leans meats, fish, fruit, vegetables, and seeds.
The Paleo Diet and its advocates claim to help modern dietary ailments like obesity, heart disease, and type 2 diabetes. Our modern diet has been poisoned with chemical sugars, fats created in a lab, and food processed in giant dystopian factories.
This diet counters this dynamic by restricting high-fat processed foods that are just empty calories. Instead, adherents to the paleo diet focus on nutrient-rich fruits and vegetables loaded with healthy vitamins, minerals, and fiber.
Philosophy of the Paleo Diet
By restricting unhealthy foods and focusing on the foods our ancient ancestors hunted and gathered for, the paleo diets helps you lose weight by restricting an entire food group to lower your calorie count. By supplementing this diet with a healthy exercise routine, you’ll burn more calories than you take in, thereby forcing your body to burn your fat reserves.
What Scientists Think
A 2015 study conducted by The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, researchers concluded that “Paleolithic diet resulted in greater short-term improvements in metabolic syndrome components than did guideline-based control diets.” The metabolic syndrome reference alludes to a group of 5 risk factors such as blood pressure and cholesterol. There isn’t enough scientific research to say the Paleo Diet is good for everyone--we need more studies to examine the broader population and develop more metrics for evaluation.
Exercise is Vital for the Paleo Diet
Diet plays a major role in the journey to shedding fat, but you won’t cross the finish line without a regimented exercise routine. You don’t need to be slinging weights around like a roid-head either; if you feel the need, consult a doctor before starting any new rigorous exercise plan.
What You Should Eat on the Paleo Diet
Lean meats, especially grass-fed animals or wild game such as beef, lamb, chicken, turkey, pork, and elk
Fruits such as apples, bananas, oranges, pears, avocados, strawberries, and blueberries
Nuts and seeds such as almonds, macadamia nuts, walnuts, hazelnuts, sunflower seeds, and pumpkin seeds
Fish, especially those rich in omega-3 fatty acids, such as salmon, trout, shrimp, and shellfish
Oils from fruits and nuts, such as olive oil or walnut oil
Salts and spices such as sea salt, rosemary, garlic, turmeric, and so on.
What to Avoid on the Paleo Diet
Grains, such as wheat, oats, and barley
Legumes, such as beans, lentils, peanuts and peas
Refined sugar and high-fructose corn syrup that you find in soft drinks, fruit juices, table sugar, candy, pastries, ice cream, and so on.
Potatoes, sweet potatoes, yams, and turnips
Highly processed foods in general; a good rule of thumb is to avoid anything with the title of diet or low-fat, as well as meal replacements. Just keep an eye on anything made in a factory--avoid words like hydrogenated, as well as oils like soybean oil and sunflower oil.
What a Normal Day Looks Like on the Paleo Diet
Breakfast. Broiled salmon and cantaloupe.
Lunch. Broiled lean pork loin and salad (romaine, carrot, cucumber, tomatoes, walnuts, and lemon juice dressing).
Dinner. Lean beef sirloin tip roast, steamed broccoli, salad (mixed greens, tomatoes, avocado, onions, almonds, and lemon juice dressing), and strawberries for dessert.
Snacks. An orange, carrot sticks or celery sticks.