Over the last few years the Paleo Diet has become increasingly popular amongst people who not only want to lose weight, but also those who are concerned about the vast amount of chemicals and additives that are found in the foods that are available today.
Sometimes the Paleo diet is referred to as the caveman diet. This reference dates back to the Paleolithic era. Humans during this time were hunters and gathers. With man on a lower end of the food chain, man did not spend time in the open harvesting crops. People ate wild game. They did not raise animals on a farm. Plants and nuts came from the surroundings and were main part of the daily consumption.
No one was milking animals or consuming grains. This means no dairy or pasta. With so much variety pulling for attention on the grocery store shelves, why would anyone choose to eat like the caveman? The Paleo diet has the potential to benefit today’s consumers at the very least by normalizing insulin levels. Just by eliminating grains alone an individual’s blood sugar is lowered.
There may be the misconception that individuals will not have enough energy without grains. The way the Paleo diet works is to eat more natural foods that work with the body. This provides an increase of energy, because the body knows what to do with fuel or foods that are being taken in. It can process them more efficiently. An additional bonus is that by making better food choices there is more of an assurance a balance of minerals and vitamins will be included in the food.
These foods include healthy fats such as olive oils, coconut butter, or avocados. Oils play an important factor in the Omega-6 (fat linoleic) to Omerga-3 (alpha-linoleic) ratio. Both acids are valuable polyunsaturated fats that the body needs to balance the metabolism. Yet, in a culture that loves to cook everything in rich oils and so the ratio has risen to 15:1. This has had profound medical ramifications with increases in cancer, arthritis, and cardio vascular disease. This makes the milder use of natural oils an obvious benefit of the Paleo lifestyle.
In addition, Paleo purists avoid sugary and processed foods. Chips and soda are already being left in the past with fast food juggernauts, as families are taking a look at their eating habits. They are looking for better food choices. Aspects of the Paleo diet are becoming more common. Fish with plenty of vegetables and fruits are the hallmarks of this diet. These are what families are eating. Slowly, people are starting to realize that grass fed animals make all the difference with the meats. This is another important understanding in the Paleo diet.
This diet is really a lifestyle. Anyone can do it. It comes down to making healthy eating decisions. These are decisions that can be made by the entire family, which make it easier for the changes to become a long lasting commitment to health and fitness.
Here is a quick list:
- Lean meat, game and organs such as liver and tongue are encouraged
- Eggs (some diets recommend at least six a week)
- Fruit (but not in vast quantities)
- Vegetables (although some don’t encourage potatoes)
- Nuts and seeds (in moderation)
- Seafood and shellfish (all types)
- Olive, coconut, avocado, walnut, flaxseed and canola oil in moderation
Why not try paleo when you are out next or cook tonight?
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