In only the past 100 years we have seen the advent of processed food, refined sugar, bigger meal sizes and the daily consumption of meat. The Paleo Diet stems from the belief that the human body has not adapted to these changes and will thrive by eating the way our ancestors did. To be precise, our neolithic caveman ancestors. This lifestyle diet has been around since the 70s with health experts promoting the benefits of eating in a more natural way. Around two years ago it again became popular in the mainstream media with celebrities and experts enjoying not only the health benefits but the ability to lose weight too.
The principle feature of the Paleo Diet is: returning to the way our ancestors ate. Our ancestors were hunters and gatherers, they didn’t know when or where they would find their next meal so our bodies evolved to store fat in order to survive, this combined with an overabundance of food has made the obesity rates skyrocket in this modern age. The Paleo Diet combats this by eliminating sugar and processed foods which are difficult for the liver to process. Grains, legumes, starchy vegetables, dairy, vegetable oils and alcohol are also removed as they have a high glycemic index and only provide short increases in energy. This means you need to eat more of them to get the energy you need to function each day. Back in the Paleolithic era, these foods were not readily available as they would have been hard to find or inedible. In the modern day, people are eating large amounts of these foods which only provide a short burst of energy so they need to consume even more to continue feeling energised. This is what leads to weight gain.
Now foods that cavemen did eat are:
- Lean meats, like tenderloin cuts and mince.
- Poultry, like skinless chicken or turkey.
- Seafood, like prawns, white fish and sashimi.
- Nuts and Seeds, like almonds, hazelnuts, cashews, macadamia.
- Fruit, especially berries and low sugar fruits.
- Most Vegetables, mainly leafy greens and root vegetables.
These foods were all readily available for hunter and gatherers to find. Cavemen would have a handful of berries while they stalked the prey they were hunting for dinner. However luckily for us modern day people, we can find the foods that fuel our bodies easily and don’t have to hunt for our own meals.
As the foods you can eat on Paleo are high in nutrients, enzymes, vitamins and minerals, your body will get enough sustenance and energy to live off of with smaller amounts of food. This works perfectly for those who are wanting to lose weight as they will still be feeling full while eating less food. Eating a nutrient rich diet like the Paleo Diet also has many other benefits other than weight loss. By feeding your body the right things you will find your metabolism speeding up, your liver and kidneys working more efficiently as they have less waste to process and your, your skin will glow, showing the signs of a healthy lifestyle.
Eating a Paleo Diet is relatively simple and easy to do. By sticking to foods that you know a caveman would be likely to have found you can create an amazing variety of meals. There is now a huge industry supporting the Paleo Diet and hundreds of cookbooks to help on your journey to a healthier life. This natural way of eating helps reset your body to its natural state and assists in taking away some of the stresses on the body’s digestion system. This combined with daily exercise, water and rest results in weight loss, better skin, more energy and a happier life.