WHAT IS THE PALEO DIET?

Source: The Paleo Diet

DIET OVERVIEW:

The Paleo Diet is based upon eating wholesome, contemporary foods from the food groups our hunter-gatherer ancestors would have thrived on during the Paleolithic era, the time period from about 2.6 million years ago to the beginning of the agricultural revolution, about 10,000 years ago.

Decades of research by Dr. Loren Cordain and his scientific colleagues demonstrate that hunter-gatherers typically were free from the chronic illnesses and diseases that are epidemic in Western populations.

Foods on the Paleo Diet include fresh meats (preferably grass-produced or free-ranging beef, pork, lamb, poultry, and game meat, if you can get it), fish, seafood, fresh fruits, vegetables, seeds, nuts, and healthful oils (olive, coconut, avocado, macadamia, walnut and flaxseed). Dairy products, cereal grains, legumes, refined sugars and processed foods were not part of our ancestral menu.

DIET PREMISES:

  • Higher protein intake – Protein comprises 15 % of the calories in the average western diet, which is considerably lower than the average values of 19-35 % found in hunter-gatherer diets.
  • Lower carbohydrate intake and lower glycemic index – Fresh fruits and vegetables represent the main carbohydrate source and will provide for 35-45 % of your daily calories. Most of these foods have low glycemic indices and therefore, won’t spike blood sugar levels.
  • Higher fiber intake – Dietary fiber is essential for good health, and despite what we’re told, whole grains aren’t the place to find it. Vegetables are a healthier source of fiber.
  • Moderate to higher fat intake dominated by monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats with balanced Omega-3 and Omega-6 fats – It is not the total amount of fat in your diet that raises your blood cholesterol levels and increases your risk for heart disease, cancer, and type 2 diabetes, but rather the type of fat. Cut the trans fats and the Omega-6 polyunsaturated fats in your diet.
  • Higher potassium and lower sodium intake – Today, the average American consumes about twice as much sodium as potassium because we eat so much processed food. Cut processed foods from your diet and raise your potassium level to where it should be.
  • Net dietary alkaline load that balances dietary acid – Eat foods that promote proper acid/alkaline balance so that you have optimal digestion.

QUICK LIST OF WHAT TO EAT:

  • Grass-produced meats
  • Fish/seafood
  • Fresh fruits and veggies
  • Eggs
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Healthful oils (Olive, walnut, flaxseed, macadamia, avocado, coconut)

WHAT NOT TO EAT:

  • Cereal grains
  • Legumes (including peanuts)
  • Dairy
  • Refined sugar
  • Potatoes
  • Processed foods
  • Salt
  • Refined vegetable oils

If you’re looking for some recipes, check out my Paleo Recipes Pinterest Board:

Here are some other good websites/blogs for additional information and recipes:

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