29
July
2013

Pros and Cons of the Paleo Diet

The Paleo diet, also known as the caveman diet, Stone Age diet or hunter-gatherer diet is based off of an ancient diet of wild plants and animals eaten during the Paleolithic era, which last about 2.5 millions years. This period ended about 10,00 years ago with the development of grain-based and agriculturally based diets. The idea behind this diet is based on food that is readily available. Loren Cordain, PhD is the founder of the Paleo diet. She states: “food has evolved and changed more rapidly than the human body, which hasn’t adapted enough to adequately digest many modern day foods”. Because of bodies have difficulty digesting this kind of food; we often end up with Cellular inflammation and an increased risk for chronic disease.

This diet focuses on food that can be hunted or gathered: Vegetables, fruit, fungi, roots, nuts, seafood, grass-fed meat, eggs, nuts, seeds, and poultry. There is a more “modern” Paleo diet that allows small amounts of healthy oils to be used for cooking. However, grains, dairy, legumes, potatoes, refined salt and sugar, and processed foods are not permitted on this diet. Do you think you have what it takes to eat like the cavemen did? This diet isn’t for everyone. And even though it sounds like the perfect diet for our bodies, with anything there are pros and cons. First we will explore the upside of this diet.

The Paleo diet is rich in soluble fiber, antioxidant vitamins, phytochemicals, omega-3 fatty acids, monounsaturated fat, and low-glycemic carbohydrates. In addition, this diet it also naturally gluten free and low in added sugars, trans fats, salt, and high-glycemic carbohydrates. The diet is easy since there are no shades of gray, counting calories, or guessing on appropriate portion sizes. Foods that people are more likely to overindulge in, such as sweeties and salty foods are completely off limits. It is likely that, the health benefits, improved energy levels, and overall feeling better may be less associated with this specific diet and could be more the result of cutting out high-calorie processed foods, sugars and salts. But regardless, if it works for you then keep at it.

That all sounds great, doesn’t it? However, despite the emphasis on very healthy foods, the Paleo diet has a few drawbacks or potential areas for misinterpretation. For one, the diet is heavily reliant on meat, and meat today isn’t as lean as it was thousands of years ago. Domesticated animals are sometimes stuffed with food and given little room to move resulting in fatty cuts of meat. In addition, adopting a diet from ancient times, when the average lifespan was in the 20s, seems less than appealing when one considers the average lifespan of today, which is in large part due to the eradication of nutrient-deficiency thanks to fortified foods and dietary supplements. The Paleo diet falls short on some of these micronutrients, namely calcium and vitamin D. This isn’t to stay that supplements cannot be taken to help provide those essential nutrients that may be lacking. It is also important to be aware of the cuts of meat you are purchasing. Make sure you are eating grass-fed, organic meat if you are really serious about this diet. This meat will be leaner, and contain less fat then it’s counterparts.

Categories: Food and Health

5.0/5 rating (1 votes)

Nutrition Facts

29
July
2013

Pros and Cons of the Paleo Diet

The Paleo diet, also known as the caveman diet, Stone Age diet or hunter-gatherer diet is based off of an ancient diet of wild plants and animals eaten during the Paleolithic era, which last about 2.5 millions years. This period ended about 10,00 years ago with the development of grain-based and agriculturally based diets. The idea behind this diet is based on food that is readily available. Loren Cordain, PhD is the founder of the Paleo diet. She states: “food has evolved and changed more rapidly than the human body, which hasn’t adapted enough to adequately digest many modern day foods”. Because of bodies have difficulty digesting this kind of food; we often end up with Cellular inflammation and an increased risk for chronic disease.

This diet focuses on food that can be hunted or gathered: Vegetables, fruit, fungi, roots, nuts, seafood, grass-fed meat, eggs, nuts, seeds, and poultry. There is a more “modern” Paleo diet that allows small amounts of healthy oils to be used for cooking. However, grains, dairy, legumes, potatoes, refined salt and sugar, and processed foods are not permitted on this diet. Do you think you have what it takes to eat like the cavemen did? This diet isn’t for everyone. And even though it sounds like the perfect diet for our bodies, with anything there are pros and cons. First we will explore the upside of this diet.

The Paleo diet is rich in soluble fiber, antioxidant vitamins, phytochemicals, omega-3 fatty acids, monounsaturated fat, and low-glycemic carbohydrates. In addition, this diet it also naturally gluten free and low in added sugars, trans fats, salt, and high-glycemic carbohydrates. The diet is easy since there are no shades of gray, counting calories, or guessing on appropriate portion sizes. Foods that people are more likely to overindulge in, such as sweeties and salty foods are completely off limits. It is likely that, the health benefits, improved energy levels, and overall feeling better may be less associated with this specific diet and could be more the result of cutting out high-calorie processed foods, sugars and salts. But regardless, if it works for you then keep at it.

That all sounds great, doesn’t it? However, despite the emphasis on very healthy foods, the Paleo diet has a few drawbacks or potential areas for misinterpretation. For one, the diet is heavily reliant on meat, and meat today isn’t as lean as it was thousands of years ago. Domesticated animals are sometimes stuffed with food and given little room to move resulting in fatty cuts of meat. In addition, adopting a diet from ancient times, when the average lifespan was in the 20s, seems less than appealing when one considers the average lifespan of today, which is in large part due to the eradication of nutrient-deficiency thanks to fortified foods and dietary supplements. The Paleo diet falls short on some of these micronutrients, namely calcium and vitamin D. This isn’t to stay that supplements cannot be taken to help provide those essential nutrients that may be lacking. It is also important to be aware of the cuts of meat you are purchasing. Make sure you are eating grass-fed, organic meat if you are really serious about this diet. This meat will be leaner, and contain less fat then it’s counterparts.

Categories: Food and Health

5.0/5 rating (1 votes)

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