After an analysis of 229 hunter-gatherer societies, researchers found that the greater part of their diet consisted of animal products. This in addition to foods that were readily available through foraging such as berries, tubers (sweet potatoes, parsnips), fruits, and vegetables make up what is known as the ‘Paleo Diet’.
As with any successful diet, there are any number of spinoffs that have followed. Low carb, Atkins, and many other diets are all close relatives. While consuming far fewer carbohydrate than what Americans are used to eating is a major part of the diet, there’s much more to it than just that. Consuming more saturated fats from healthy sources such as eggs, bacon, coconut oil, and other animal fats is also a big part of the diet. And while consuming MORE fat may seem counter-intuitive to everything we’ve been taught, fat is an essential part helping our body’s maintain proper health
Another important part of the paleo diet is omitting things like grains, legumes, and vegetable fats such as canola oil. On an evolutionary scale, grains didn’t become a part of our diet until very recently. In fact, the earliest know consumption of grain as a major source of daily calories didn’t occur until about 14,000 years ago. And while that may sound like an extremely long time, in evolutionary terms it’s actually quite short. Additionally, some cultures didn’t start eating grains until the last 100 years or so. As result, our bodies have not developed the necessary processes to digest and absorb nutrients from these sources of food. What grains do have going for them is that they are cheap, and can easily produced and stored in abundance.
One of the biggest challenges for those adopting the paleo diet is to find replacement foods for all of the grains that they would’ve normally eaten. For this reason there are literally thousands of recipes online for common food items such as paleo granola, caveman cookies, primal meatloaf, and other dietary staples. The wordplay off of paleo actually gets pretty clever at times, with any number of recipes and blogs named after the paleolithic time on which the diet is based.
Not to be overlooked, these blogs can be an incredible resource for information on the diet, inspiration, success stories, and of course recipes. There is no limit to the creativity of these bloggers in coming up with recipes that look, taste, and feel like their non-paleo counterparts. A great place to start reading is Mark’s Daily Apple. At MDA they refer to it as the Primal diet, but for the most part it is the same as paelo.
MDA is updated every day with new information, studies, success stories, and recipes. Nowhere else is there as much information available in one place on the paleo diet and lifestyle. And the information is presented in a way that makes it very interesting and inspiring to read.
So if you’re interested in the paleo diet and what it can do for you, go to MDA, or just search ‘paleo diet’ from your favorite search engine.