What’s right and wrong with the Paleo diet?
The Paleo Diet is popular and trendy. But what are the benefits and why?
Paleo is meant to be getting back to the diet of “Mother Nature”…whatever that may be.
Ancestral diets were typically healthier than modern diet, due to the absence of processed foods. Soils back then had more nutrients. The environment was less toxic.
But really, the hunter-gatherer diet of earlier times is not possible today. Our meat is not wild game, and our fruits and vegetables are not “gathered”, but rather “farmed”.
With that being said, Paleo does endorse foods that are close to nature. A typical Paleo meal plan might include eggs and steak for breakfast, soup or salad (preferably including meat or fish) for lunch and roast meat and vegetables for dinner. Paleo recipes include stews, stir-fried vegetables and egg dishes such as frittatas and omelettes.
Here is a general list of Paleo foods:
Lean meat, game and organs such as liver and tongue are encouraged
Eggs (some diets recommend at least six a week)
Fruit (but not in vast quantities)
Vegetables (although some don’t encourage potatoes)
Nuts and seeds (in moderation)
Seafood and shellfish (all types)
Olive, coconut, avocado, walnut, flaxseed and canola oil in moderation
This all sounds healthy, except I would not be eating organ meats these days, since the organs are the storage sites for toxins. I would also avoid shell fish for the same reasons, and would be very careful about fish, most of which contains mercury.
Canola oil? Not good at all. I would replace it with olive oil.
This type of diet makes an ideal weight loss diet, with high protein and low carbs. The absence of processed food and sugar is excellent.
But does the Paleo diet suit all?
I recently met someone who had tried Paleo as part of a natural cancer therapy. He had previously been following a mostly vegetarian diet, majoring on raw salads, and legumes, nuts and seeds for protein. When he changed to Paleo and introduced the red meat, his health took a serious plummet. Blood test results were catastrophic.
Now back on the raw vegetable and plant protein diet his health and energy levels are improving.
Before embarking on any diet, think about whether this is the right diet for you. Remember the healing properties of plant foods, especially raw, and take into account that high proportions of red meat in the diet may throw us into an acidic state. To avoid cancer we need to be in an alkaline state. Cancer cannot thrive in an alkaline body system. Raw vegetables, especially greens are nutritious and alkalizing. But getting enough protein is important too. So if you don’t have cancer, some red meat in the diet is OK. Organic chicken is a good choice. Other protein sources are eggs, dairy products (should be organic), nuts, seeds and legumes. Remember the good fats. Butter and coconut oil are excellent.