Paleo is short for Paleolithic, which refers to a prehistoric era defined by the development of the first stone tools. The modern day paleo diet refers to eating like our hunter-gatherer ancestors who lived in communal groups and fed off of the land.
Obviously our forefathers didn’t eat processed foods, and they weren’t sitting stooped over computers all day either. No, they were roaming up to 19km per day hunting and picking their food as animals do. With this in mind, the paleo diet attempts to replicate the traditional human diet which historically was naturally aligned with Mother Nature and certainly didn’t cause obesity problems.
Paleo isn’t so much a diet, more of a way of living that replicates – in a modern way – the diet for which the human body was designed to follow. The paleo community believes that the agricultural revolution is directly responsible for increased ill health across the world, and medical reports globally show they aren’t wrong. Heart attacks, obesity, diabetes, hypertension and cancer are all linked directly with excessive consumption of factory farmed meats, preservatives, processed sugars and high salt intake.
Paleo excludes dairy and grains, both of which were not part of our ancestors’ diet. This makes logical sense considering that approximately 25% of the US population is lactose intolerant (1994/NIDDK), and more than 2-million people suffer from celiac disease, with as many as 1 in 22 people thought to be undiagnosed. These statistics are compelling and proof that although we may think the body has adapted to an alternative diet the figures suggest otherwise.
Visit the Paleo Cookbook for great Paleo Diet recipes.
The paleo diet is becoming increasingly popular due to its natural ability to produce sustainable weight loss, increase energy, reduce ailments and sickness and promote better sleep. People have also reported fewer headaches, stomach aches and joint pains. The diet comprises all the nutrients and vitamins a person needs daily and draws its staple ingredients from specific meats, fish, nuts, seeds, fruits and vegetables. As a preference fresh, organic ingredients are used for cooking.
At first this may sound a little boring, but you will be surprised. The paleo diet includes sweet items derived from natural sources such as coconuts and almonds. There are even recipes for natural chocolate. The paleo diet doesn’t expect you to go out on the kill for a wildebeest or scavenge for berries, but what it does ask is that you simply avoid foods that are proven to have a negative effect on the body.
How often do you see an image of a fat caveman? Never is the answer. And that is because being overweight is a modern day problem. But we shouldn’t need diet fads, pills and extreme weight loss programs to maintain a healthy weight, we should just eat properly. This is where paleo comes into its element. It is a natural, effortless and achievable way to live a healthy existence that the body is already programmed to follow.