Matthews McGarry, Fitness Advisor says: In the early 21st century it is highly unlikely that there is anything that is more on people’s minds than the question of how to obtain the ultimate figure. Because this is such a hot topic, it is a concern to even some of the brightest people alive. Most of the experts in the field of nutrition came to a somewhat surprising solution: in order to gain optimal results, the solution is not in looking forwards into the future, but in uncovering the past of our species. This is how the Paleo (or the Paleolithic) diet was born.
What is the Paleo diet?
The answer to this question is a simple one. The Paleo diet is a cutting edge discovery in the field of nutrition and it is based on assuming what foods our ancient ancestors might likely have eaten. There are three basic components to this diet, meat (of course), nuts and fruit. One additional difference between the Paleo and other diets is the fact that in the spirit of prehistoric cuisine, all the food the caveman was unfamiliar with is off the menu. This means no dairy whatsoever. You are allowed to eat only things our ancestors could hunt down, or pick up.
Not like other diets
Even though it is, after all, a diet, Paleo is unlike any diet you have ever seen and this may be the cause to some problems people face. First of all, Paleo lacks numerous nutrients that our organism is accustomed to, like fat, carbs or salt. All of these nutrients are present in Paleo but not to the degree we are used to. As yet another advantage of the Paleo diet we can now also name the fact that it reveals how addicted we are to some (not as essential) nutrients.
Another problem might be the fact that seeds and nuts (on which this diet heavily relies) have a bad fatty-acid profile. Still, this problem might be only temporary and therefore easily solved. If you experience any kind of issues which might be due to our nut consumption, simply stop eating nuts for a while and wait until you are completely recuperated. Once your body is healed, start with the full diet again and wait and see whether the symptoms return.
Adding more fruit
As we have already said, fruit is one of the cornerstones of the Paleo diet and you should practice eating more and more of it. One of the great ideas is resorting to blueberries which bring countless benefits to your health in general. First of all, as most fruits, these berries are extremely low caloric and highly nutritious at the same time. This is what could truly be called a win-win scenario. Add to the mix the fact that blueberries also have some anti-inflammatory properties that they successfully fight urinary tract infections, as well as the fact that they work as a great anti-oxidant.
Still, as anything else in life, nothing is completely good or completely bad. Surprisingly, the same goes for fruit as well. Fructose found in fruit can be highly toxic when consumed in large amounts. This is why you simply must demonstrate some restraint. A few pieces or a moderate amount of fruit can be extremely beneficial, but be very careful not to go too far.
Not a weight loss diet
Even though it is possible to lose weight with this diet, it is not its main concern. The primary goal of the Paleo diet is not to make you skinny, but to make you healthier, more agile and all in all stronger. Additionally, even though through this diet you are more likely to gain mass than lose it, you will mostly be gaining muscle and losing fat. Either way, this exchange is just perfect for your organism as well as for your figure.
According to a systematic review conducted this year, test subjects adhering to the Paleo diet showed a vast improvement in their triglycerides and blood pressure levels. There are even some results that show how Paleo can help fight inflammatory bowel disease. The only thing that can perhaps put all of this under some amount of doubt is the fact that according to David L. Katz and Stephanie Meller there is a comparatively limited amount of evidence to support all of this. The preliminary results however are quite promising.
In the end, we can see that many times in history, when met with an impassable obstacle, we have turned to our elders for guidance. This is exactly what the Paleo diet tries to do all along: ask our long forgotten ancestors to reveal to us the secret of our bodies. Once again, we are in the debt of these mysterious ancient people.
About the Author
Mathews McGarry is passionate about many forms of strength training, and spent years lifting, dragging and flipping all manner of heavy objects. After graduating from the Faculty of Health Sciences, he started writing about his experiences, and sharing tips for better life. Follow him on Twitter.