The Paleolithic era began many years ago, when man began to adopt systems of intensive agriculture and farming. Then at the end of the Paleolithic era, man starts its transition from eating hunted animals and feeding on the fruits available, with the recruitment of cereals (from crops), and meat and milk derived from animals they reared.
From here on, this manifested into heart disease, obesity, type 2 diabetes, cancer and other inflammatory diseases that became part of our society.
The goal of the Paleo diet is to bring us back in touch with our true roots and with nature. Moreover, there are now numerous case studies documenting the stories of patients who, through the Paleo diet, have regained their weight, gained muscle tone and more energy, less inflammation at all levels, improvements of the skin, and generally feeling more youthful.
In many cases, chronic digestive problems are gone, allergies and asthma are vanished, and people with diabetes symptoms regress to eliminate any drugs (including insulin).
What the Paleo diet is in detail:
- The Paleo diet should be composed mainly of saturated and unsaturated fat. The rest of the diet should be composed moderately of animal proteins and carbohydrates. It’s important to control the distribution of macro-nutrients, but without paying much attention to the calorie count or the portions.
- Consume almost unlimited amounts of coconut oil and ghee (clarified butter). Even lard, duck fat and other animal fats are a viable alternative, but only if they come from healthy animals raised on pasture and are grass-fed (not grain). In addition, olive oil , avocado oil, palm oil, red and macadamia nut oils are another source of good fats, however, only good when raw (salads, for example), but not for cooking. This is with the exception of red palm oil (if you find it, and of good quality), being composed mainly of saturated fat, can be used for cooking at high temperatures without oxidizing.
- Eat generous amounts of animal protein (meat or fish). These include red meat, poultry, pork, eggs, organ meats (liver, kidneys, heart …), wild fish and shellfish (always prefer fish-caught than those that are farm raised).
- Eat fruits and raw or cooked vegetables with good fats (in addition to ensuring that valuable nutrients help to give a special flavor to your dishes).
- Take moderate amounts of fruits, seeds, and nuts. Choose fruits with a low glycemic index that are rich in antioxidants (such as blueberries, blackberries and raspberries) and seeds with the best ratio between omega-3 and omega-6. The best choice is the macadamia nut. In the case of auto-immune system or digestive problems, consider the possibility of avoiding fruits and seeds, and even rely on a good nutritional doctor.
- Whenever possible, choose meat raised on pastures that are fed grass from local farmers (who have a good sense of judgment). When this is not possible, it’s better to fall back on lean meats (it’s in the fat of animals that accumulate the most harmful substances, and if you cannot help it, avoid eating fatty meat) cooked in plenty of high quality grease (coconut oil, ghee) and game. For fruits and vegetables, favor seasonal foods, preferably from local growers, or through a membership in some Fair Trade group where you can buy quality, cheap products.
- Eliminate all cereals and legumes from the diet (no exceptions). By way of example: wheat, rye, barley, oats, corn, rice, soybeans, peanuts, peas, and beans (white, red, and black beans, and anything else belonging to the bean family).
- Eliminate all vegetable oils and hydrogenated derivatives such as margarine, soybean oil, corn oil, peanut oil, rapeseed oil (canola), safflower oil (safflower), and sunflower seed oil.
- Eliminate sugar, fresh drinks, packaged juices (fruit or not). As a rule, if it is packaged or stored in a carton or bottle (no matter how good looking it is), do not buy it. But above all, do not drink it; even products that swear they have no added sugar (100% natural ingredients is not a good indicator).
- Eliminate dairy products except butter (or clarified butter, ghee). There is a big discussion in the Paleo world on this subject. Purists do not allow any kind of dairy product. Others allow long-fermented dairy products (in order to eliminate much of the lactose), and from pasture-raised animals.
- Paleolithic era wasn’t taking three meals a day. When there was food available, you would eat it, otherwise you waited for the right moment to gather or hunt for food. In short, we ate when we could, and real hunger was the only real sign that it was time to put something in our mouth. Today we have the luxury (and misfortune) to have access to any type of food at any time of day or night. The routine, schedules, and boredom do the rest. In short, eat when you are really hungry. Skipping a few meals does not create any problem. Listen to your body.
- Do not go overboard with physical training. To achieve maximum genetic expression, a few, short, intense workouts are best. No long and grueling sessions of cardio fitness.