EAT LIKE A CAVEMAN, LOOK LIKE A REAL MAN: PALEO DIET
If you notice our ancestors from the Paleolithic Era or Stone Ages, you might be quite surprised of how they survived. Feasting on raw meats and whatever vegetables nature had to offer, and yet be free from any diseases found in today’s era such as obesity, heart disease, and diabetes to start with. Ever wonder why there are no stone paintings of fat cave man? Because there were none.
Human beings around that era had a diet full of low-fat protein and vegetables that burst healthy vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Unlike, our sedentary lifestyles and modern diets, which are loaded with sugar, fat, and processed foods.
The solution if you ask? Cut modern foods from the diet and return to the natural hunter-gatherer ancestors’ way. That’ Paleo Diet for you. But since our immunity has dropped down throughout the timeline, you’re allowed to cook your raw meats.
A Paleo Diet is a dietary plan based on foods similar to what we might have been eaten during the Paleolithic Era, which includes lean meats, fish, fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds. And since we were yet to discover dairy products, legumes, and grains during this time, these are completely ignored, by which the flaws of them are completely eliminated.
Now, this diet may seem out of the box and outrageous, but remember, this is exactly how our ancestors thrived to evolve, and we’re the evidence of their success.
This diet is especially for those who are looking for drastic weight loss, maintaining a healthy weight, and planning meals throughout the day. Plus, the diet is so simple that you don’t have to even count calories.
HEREʼS WHAT YOU EAT
- Lean meats, especially grass-fed animals, or wild game
- Any fruits and vegetables
- Nuts and seeds
- Fish, especially those rich in omega-3 fatty acids such as salmon, mackerel, and albacore tuna
- Oils from fruits and nuts, such as olive oil and walnut oil
HEREʼS WHAT YOU AVOID
- Grains such as wheat, oats and barley
- Dairy products
- Refined sugar
- Highly processed foods in general
- Legumes such as beans, lentils, peanuts, and peas
- Bakery items
While the modern diets recommend us to get plenty of whole grain bread and “hearthealthy” cereals, Paleo proves that these diets are precisely the things that make us fat. Trading pastas, breads, and junk food for things that come straight from nature: vegetables, meats, seeds, eggs, fruit, and maybe some full-fat dairy will fix a serious disease like Type II Diabetes.
If fixing diabetes doesn’t bring a smile to your face, there is more to the Paleo. Being strict to this diet will help us produce the hormones that give us a robust sex drive, make us emotionally stable and happy, help us build muscle, enable us to fend off illness, and maintain a fired-up metabolism. Hence, we’d be a leaner, healthier, and less dependent on prescription meds and Photoshop.
Sadly, the down side is that the Paleo is inadequate for body builders, iron lifters, strength seekers, and athletes.
As the exercise is intense and tough, the physique goals require more than what’s allowed on Paleo. Meaning more carbs, advanced workout nutrition and fast-digesting protein. Our body requires more when we are working out through the week at the gym. More to recover, more to build muscle, and more to sustain. Therefore, the paleo diet just doesn’t seem to fit in the athletes’ lifestyle.
The recovery won’t be as quick while following Paleo guidelines as you would when using workout nutrition designed specifically for workout time. Intense workout needs more carbs to execute. Since, strict paleo diet requires staying off of legumes, potatoes, and even wheat-free grains keeping the fast digesting carbs, your race will be against a rabbit with you being the tortoise.
Hence, it is best to avoid this diet if you have much higher physical goals than the average guy. The average person doesn’t hit the gym 6 days a week, working 3 hours a day in preparation to get on stage, compete in a sport, hit a new PR, or walk around with veins on their biceps.
WORDS BY Nishant M. Pradhan