Is Following Paleo Healthy or Just Another Gimmick?
Those who know me know that I don’t follow fads of any kind. I believe in following the research and the scientific proof that backs it up. I have followed the typical “clean eating” diet for over a decade and have done well on it until the last 4 years it is then that I started looking for a better way of eating.
I was tired of being tired all the time even though I was refueling my body every 3 hours with a source of lean protein, complex carb (starch), and a fruit or vegetable. I had mood swings as it got close to that 3rd hour, and I didn’t have the kind of energy that I felt I should with working out 5-6 days a week, eating clean, and sleeping 7-8 hours a night. There had to be more!!
Enter The Paleo Diet! The short answer is YES it is extremely healthy and anyone can follow it. It takes a little patience in the beginning as you change your way of thinking about food. Our ancestors ate this way during the Paleolithic Age over 10,000 years ago and they were some of the healthiest people on the planet. Research shows that they didn’t suffer from the massive dental cavities and other issues we face. Obesity and weight issues were none existent; their diet consisted of what was naturally grown or available through hunting and gathering including:
- Nuts and Seeds
There were no hydrogenated oils (Trans Fats), or added sugars, preservatives, or carbs (starches). I know many of you are questioning the animal protein part since we have been convinced that saturated fat is bad for us. Trust me, I understand I believed it myself for years. However, science has caught up with us and has proven that saturated fat is not bad for us it is the hydrogenated oils that cause the heart disease. I will caution you though to know where you meat comes from; don’t buy the cheapest grain fed cuts, aim for grass fed, organic, no hormones added meats.
By eliminating the carbohydrates such as flour, oats, rice, grains, etc you are eliminating some of the most harmful ingredients in the Standard American Diet (aka the SAD diet) sugar, processed oils, and gluten. This also promotes good blood sugar control and increases insulin sensitivity and reserves insulin resistance; HDL (good cholesterol) increases and LDL (Bad cholesterol) decreases, and weight decreases.
Need more proof- what do you get from eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables? High amounts of micronutrients, vitamins, antioxidants, and lots of fiber which all contributes to a healthy digestive system. You remove all the preservatives and you have a healthier liver. By adding healthy fats into your diet you are balancing out the Omega 3-6 ratio. Most Americans are too heavy in Omega 6 fatty acid, which creates inflammation and contributes to heart disease.
So you see living a Paleo lifestyle is not only healthy but it provides optimal wellness. You’re not missing anything by changing the way you eat, unless you want to count the extra fat around your waist line, the gluten that your body cannot process, or the toxins you are eating daily from all the added preservatives.
But hey don’t take my word for it—check out these books and some of my favorite websites for more information.
- http://www.primal-palate.com/2010/12/banana-bread.html for the best recipes
- The Primal Blueprint by Mark Sisson
- The Paleo Solution by Robb Wolff