Before attempting any diet plan some research should be in order. Take the info about the diet you are interested in to your primary care physician and ask if they think it might be a good way to loose weight, control your carb intake, etc.
A Little History
In 1985, Melvin Konner, PhD and Stanley Eaton M.D, published a paper . Both were associated with Emory University in Atlanta at the time.
The title of the paper was ‘Paleolithic Nutrition: A Consideration of it’s Nature and Current Implications’. It was a ground breaking assessment of the foods that were consumed ‘back then’ and all of the foods that we eat today. It also opened up numerous lines of conversation as to the many ‘diseases’ associated with the way most of the world eats today.
As far as an actual diet goes, most of the credit is reserved for Dr. Loren Cordain, who is the Professor Emeritus from Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colorado. He’s the first to write books on Paleolithic diets and is credited with founding the plan most used today ‘The Paleo Diet’, the ‘Paleo Diet Cookbook’, ‘The Paleo Answer’ and ‘The Real Paleo Diet Cookbook’ are all still in print and can be found thru your favorite search engine.
What’s It All About
The Paleo (pay-lee-oh) diet takes us back to prehistoric days. Proponents of the diet feel that going back to the basics, what was gathered and hunted way back when, is more healthy and life sustaining versus what lines the shelves in grocery stores today. There are many ‘forms’ of the Paleo that allow you to eat some things while other forms of the plan are of a more strict nature.
Before The Agricultural Revolution
When the caveman got hungry, gathering nuts, berries, grasses and leaves, were a main source of food and nutrition, so it was a daily chore to walk and climb around to find enough food for the families. Back then, there just wasn’t much variety and everything was in limited quantities, as even the animals were eating the same things as the early humans
They also used their primitive weapons to hunt the animals that lived in the area. All of those animals were ‘grass fed’ or ‘free range’ as we call them today, so the meats provided were all lean and produced without any drugs or other toxins in their systems.
Fresh fish were also a staple of the early folks if there happened to be a water source in the area, such as a stream or a lake. Fish will be a large part of any Paleo plan you run across today. It’s a lean meat filled with fatty 3 Omega acids, high in protein and contains many essential vitamins.
One can see that it should be easy to lose a little weight eating only what is suggested in these plans, but is it right for you. Again, your research and a chat with a physician should be the first step. Cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, etc. are all now cosidered ‘diseases of civilization’, meaning that most folks get them from their lifestyle, and mainly the foods and drinks they consume. One’s diet can go a long way to stemming, eliminating the chance to contract many of them.
There seems to be plenty missing from a paleo diet and the list of things is a lot larger than what you can eat. Start off eliminating dairy products from your diet, all dairy products, except butter and heavy cream. Milks, cheeses, especially the heavily processed kinds, are definitely taboo in most plans, while some of the ‘heavier’ milk with the cream still in tact can be used. Same with butter and non processed cheese. Those cheese slices that are individually wrapped are heavily processed.
Grains are also to be avoided, such as wheat, barley, rice and almost all forms of breads and pastas. Legumes, such as beans, lentels, peas, etc. are also to be avoided. Sugars and corn syrup, along with all processed products with those sugars, such as soft drinks, ice cream(ouch), candies, fruit juices, on and on. Hydrogenated and/or partially hydrogenated oils, or trans fats, most of the time found in margarine and numerous other processed foods.
Then there’s anything not yet mentioned and put into the category of ‘processed foods’. Cakes and pastries, vegetables in a tin, a lot of luncheon meat, almost all breakfast cereals. Just about anything, and there are a lot of things, that have been ‘flavored’. As mentioned, the list for what you shouldn’t eat is way longer than what you can have.
Plenty of Meal Plans to Choose From
Cooking on the Paleo diet can be a challenge, not only the somewhat limited foods they recommend but they are usually on the more expensive side. You should normally try and buy fresh frozen varieties of vegetables versus the canned.
Eat plenty of fish when you can find the ‘wild’, not farm raised to fatten them up. Same way with beef, pork and chicken. Always look for the grass fed or free range meats. Again, a bit more expensive, but still sticking to keeping a more wholesome food entering the system.
Leafy veggies, spinach, kale and such are also a great choice. Broccoli(I know), peppers, avacados, zucchini, mushrooms, asparagus, all can be eaten having a low carb and high fiber part of a balanced diet. Green beans, cauliflower, garlic, just as fresh as you can find, all help round it out.
Again, consult with your physician when planning a drastic change in your diet. They might even suggest what they feel the ‘right’ diet for you is if you have a condition they want you to correct. Most all diets profess ‘moderation’ of helpings, plenty of exercise and of course, drink water as often as you can. That last item will cure a lot of what ails you, if you don’t put any ‘sweeteners’ in it.