What is The Paleo Diet?
It’s a really common sense, natural way of eating.
If you were to eat lots of fresh vegetables, fruits, lean meats and pastured poultry, wild fish and natural, unprocessed fats in order to nourish your body with natural, whole foods, you probably wouldn’t be all that surprised that this might be a healthy approach to eating.
In addition, the idea of cutting out sugar, salt and refined carbohydrates in order to make healthier food choices probably wouldn’t be too much of a shocker.
Unfortunately, all too often, the media makes it out to be some radical, unsustainable, trendy ‘diet’. Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t think that sounds extreme, radical or crazy diet at all.
In fact, I don’t even like to refer to it as a diet. It truly is a lifestyle, in the truest sense of the word.
Dr. Cordain, PhD, the person behind the “Paleo Movement”, has said that the Paleo diet is based on what our ancestors ate, with the idea being to mimic the food groups they ate with modern day foods that are readily available to us in our farmer’s markets, grocery stores and our own backyards.
If we eat what naturally grows in the part of the world in which we live, in season and in balance, along with naturally raised or wild protein sources, we will simply be much healthier than we would be otherwise.
The Nuts & Bolts
Basically, we humans are not meant to be eating grains, legumes (this includes soy and peanuts) or dairy (unless you’re an infant and you’re ingesting dairy…from the same species).
If you think in terms of what people ate during the Paleolithic era, it would have been food that could either have been picked or foraged, and eaten as it was, or an animal that either ran across the land or swam in the sea.
Both grains and legumes contain anti nutrient properties. While growing from the ground, these very components serve to protect them from pesticides and predators, but when we ingest them, they work against us by adhering to many of the vitamins and minerals in our food, preventing us from properly absorbing them and causing microscopic tearing in the intestines, thus increasing intestinal permeability.
Over time, ‘leaky gut’ syndrome ensues, whereby proteins are able to leak into the blood stream causing inflammation, infection and subsequently a whole host of maladies throughout the body, not just in the GI tract but also in the body as a whole.
This helps set the stage for acne, joint pain, exacerbation of auto immune disease, chronic fatigue, IBS, colitis, Crohn’s disease, cancers and so on and so on and so on.
As far as dairy products are concerned, they’re the most acidic items we can consume. Dairy products create an acidic pH in the body and in attempt to buffer the pH back to alkalinity, the body leaches calcium from the bones. Over time, this can lead to osteopenia and osteoporosis. The most important thing to look at here is actually calcium balance, rather than calcium intake. You’re actually better off eating a cup of alkaline spinach with 220mg of calcium than a 250 mg cup of milk!
There is also a high correlation between dairy and acne, diabetes and insulin resistance and it’s also cross-reactive with gluten, making it a poor choice for anyone with gluten sensitivity.
You’ll see articles, research papers and websites stating things such as ‘dairy can be part of a Paleo regime if one can tolerate it’ or ‘by sprouting legumes, we can add some beans to our Paleo regime’ to ‘eat as much fat as you want’…none of which are accurate.
This is not to say that it’s got to be all or nothing; 100% or bust.
Certainly, eating more Paleo than one might be currently is a step in the right direction, but the key, I believe, it to give yourself the true test and follow it for one month to the best of your ability, at complete compliance.
Your body will have enough time to ‘detox’, for lack of a better word, and then, if you so desire you can opt to test different foods, one at a time and see how they suit you. If, for example, you test Greek Yogurt, something you currently eat often, after one month of avoiding dairy and realize that it causes bloating, a breakout on your face and a migraine headache, you then have the best possible information to make an educated choice next time. Is it worth it?
So… why not try Paleo?
Even if you’re a skeptic to the extreme, the fact that you’re visiting this site in the first place suggests you’re at least intrigued.
Our society has reached a state of health, or lack thereof, in which people are approaching their healthcare as a ‘fix-it’ rather than ‘prevent it’.
Even then, the fix tends not to be nutrition-based, until the other venues are exhausted.
I believe we need to look at what we are putting into our bodies first in order to figure out what is ‘wrong’ or why we don’t feel our best.
Hippocrates said it best, “Our food should be our medicine. Our medicine should be our food”!
The journey starts with the first bite!
If Paleo foods make up the diet, the body is being supplied with every macro nutrient, vitamin, mineral and fluid it needs to function optimally. You’ll feel great, too!
It’s a term I coined, trademarked and used in the title of my first solo book which comes from a hybrid of two words: Paleo and fashionista.
Paleo + Fashionista = Paleoista!
All too often, we see stick figure drawings of cavemen eating raw hunks of meat and this, unfortunately, does a great job at misrepresenting what is really is.
Fashionista brings a sense of style a feel for modern day and helps to incorporate this simple approach to eating real food into the daily regime of many people who might otherwise have been deterred by the idea of being a caveman.
Who ever said that eating real food and moving had to be exclusive of being fashion forward, modern and cool?
My career mission is a grand one, indeed; I want to change the way America eats
At the very least, my goal is to reach people and help educate on how important it is to do our best to make the healthiest choices we can, in order to empower ourselves to get healthy.
If you’re ready to experience living to your healthiest potential, you’ve come to the right place to learn how! Get ready to really feel great!