You may have been wanting to improve your health and fitness or lose weight and stumbled across the "paleo diet." So what, exactly, is the paleo diet? Good question and I hope I can give you a good introductory overview in a few hundred words.
Let me start by saying that the scientific evidence supporting this diet for health and weightloss is substantial. This is NOT some fad diet that was dreamed up as a gimmick to sell a book. From what I have been able to ascertain, the rational behind this method of nutrition is very sound.
- Lean meats
- vegetables (non-starch variety)
The paleo diet does not allow for any legumes (beans, peanuts, green beans, lentils, etc) or starches (potatoes, rice, etc) or grains (bread, wheat, oats, etc). That may sound like a dramatic departure from mainstream dietary recommendations and I would agree. However, Dr Loren Corain proposes several arguments for this that seem very well researched. I won't go into the details now (that will be the topic of future posts) but these foods have toxins & irritants that affect our bodies adversely.
The quantities you may eat of these foods is unlimited. Think about that. You can eat to your heart's desires within those foods. The arguement is that if you are eating high quality foods, you will be full far sooner than you'll take in too many calories. All of the foods on the paleo diet are more nutrient dense and less calorie dense than the foods that are 'banned' and this prevents excessive caloric intake. Plus, you get all the nutrients you need. He goes into some detail in his books about the acid-base balance that certain foods promote which have a number of physiologic consequences (such as calcium excretion).
There is evidence that sticking to the paleo diet could decrease the risk of numerous diseases to include, but not limited to, cancer, heart disease, strokes, hyperlipidemia, diabetes, obesity, Crohn's disease, and many more.
Dr David Rahm, author of "The Wellness Prescription" and noted nutrition expert, is a fan of the paleo diet due to its positive health implications. The Crossfit guys are also big advocates. In the fuis dture, I will cover more information on why I believe this diet is so beneficial for health AND weight control. I highly recommend this diet to anyone and everyone. It can be a big change BUT if you want to maximize your health and body habitus, you should strongly consider the Paleo Diet!