What is the Paleo diet?

By Dr Harold Gunatillake - Health Writer

Previously I spoke about the popular keto diet and its essentials. Let’s discuss today another popular diet for slimming- Paleo Diet. What is Paleo diet? It was the diet of the ‘caveman’ which humans during the Paleo-lithic era, about 2.6 million years ago enjoyed.

A paleo diet typically includes lean meats, fish, fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds — foods that in the past could be obtained by hunting and gathering. A paleo diet limits foods that became common when farming emerged about 10,000 years ago. These foods include dairy products, legumes and grains. Other names for a paleo diet include Palaeolithic diet, Stone Age diet, hunter-gatherer diet and caveman diet.”

Paleo diet includes veggies, fruits, animal proteins, healthy fats, nuts and seeds This diet avoids processed foods, grains, legumes, refined sugars and chemically altered fats and oils.  You can eat meat and fish ad lib, they should be fresh and not refrigerated, not canned and frozen.

Plenty of eggs are included in this diet.
Coconut oil was used for cooking as done today in Asians cuisines.

What to avoid
Grains, such as wheat, rice, oats and barley
Legumes, such as beans, lentils, peanuts and peas
Dairy products
Refined sugar
Highly processed foods in general

All carbs are unprocessed, and you eat fresh fruits- nonGMO products.

This diet is composed of what our ancestors ate from hunting for water snakes, bird eggs, worms, maggots, fish, grass-fed beef and other animals and avoided foods that weren’t common until farming began. These are natural foods found in nature. Farming was unheard of during this period.

The meat and fish you eat should be fresh straight from the butcher and fresh fish stalls. Foods that are refrigerated are not included like the frozen meat, fish, veggies or canned foods.

They ate fresh eggs, fruits like avocado olives and a few root veggies like sweet potatoes.

You need to drink lot of water and try to be active like the hunting caveman who walked miles in search of food. They ate natural food and not processed foods that lead to obesity, diabetes and heart diseases. The idea is to go for simple food like the hunters and avoid the present day processed fried, oily foods.

Patronizing pizza huts, KFC’s, MacDonald’s are completely off.

There is no meal plan like most other slimming diets. You stick to foods like organic, non-GMO products like fruits, veggies, nuts and seeds, fish and grass-fed beef.
Rice and bread are not included though other carbs like veggies and fruits are included.

As a result, it is a low carb diet like the keto diet. Unlike the keto diet much foods with fibre are included such as nuts, fruits and veggies, including root veggies that are high in nutrients like sweet potatoes.

Caveman went in search of honey and that is included. Dairy products like cheese, wheat products like bread and oats are not included. No salt was included other than cavemen who lived close to the coastal regions. It is a natural good diet to avoid heart disease and stroke, diabetes type 2, cancer and other chronic diseases.

Walking in the jungle keeps them fit and thin, and there were no obese cavemen.

You get plenty of vitamins in the diet and need not supplement with synthetic ones. If you wish to lose pounds in weight, this is a most physiological diet than the keto. The type of food you eat are fresh, unprocessed, non-GMO and high fibre diets without planned uninteresting regimes, and you could follow for a long time.

The only problem for Sri Lankans being rice, dhal, and bread eaters may feel uncomfortable. No added salt is included in the diet plan, and that would bring your blood pressure low and will protect your heart, too. Those who eat processed foods are linked to heart disease.

Paleo diet will prevent you from getting diabetes, beneficial to those having diabetes, as only natural carbs in veggies are mostly recommended and not wheat and rice products. This diet will improve insulin sensitivity and reduce insulin resistance. Paleo diet does not include dairy. Such restrictions may lead to calcium and vitamin D deficiencies and affect bone health.

Being allowed to eat plenty of fresh fatty fish like tuna, mackerel, salmon and fresh meat, you may get enough vitamins to look after your bone strength. Eggs too have enough vitamin D.

A few words about the keto diet.
The keto diet is a type of diet that significantly restricts carbohydrate intake. Ordinarily, the body breaks down carbohydrates into the sugar glucose, which it uses for energy. When there are not enough carbs in the body, it goes into a stage called ketosis.

Keto diets allow for a moderate amount of proteins. Some people may not go into ketosis on this diet because in most situations the body can break down excess proteins into amino acids and convert them to types of sugar.

Sometimes, you may not lose weight on the keto diet. This is because you have not achieved ketosis. Or as mentioned earlier proteins may be converted to sugar.
What is your choice? The best diet to slim and be healthy would be cutting down on your highly dense rich tasty foods which includes carbs, fats, and walk 10,000 steps a day.

That would be my choice. Click here to enjoy this video.

Copyright © 2002 ~ 2019 Harold Gunatillake