Paleo Diet Review

The Paleo Diet a good diet to help you lose weight without feeling hungry all the time

I have always been keen on learning as much as I can about weight loss and dieting. From a practical standpoint losing weight should be fairly simple. The whole principle of weight loss is burning more calories in one day than you consume. Sound easy enough, right?  Unfortunately, for many people weight loss is hard, many diets restrict many of the foods you enjoy which result in you feeling hungry all of the time. The Paleo diet is a little different in that it only restricts unhealthily processed and starchy foods.

Paleo Diet Food

What is the Paleo Diet?

The Paleo diet was introduced and developed by Dr. Loren Cordain. Dr. Cordain did several studies in the 1970’s, his studies claim that the paleo diet was the way humans were genetically designed to eat.

The Paleo diet is known as the caveman diet, the principle of this diet is that you only eat foods that are fished or hunted. In theory, it sticks to the guidelines of our ancestors who we believe ate a lot of red meat and fish.

Other foods allowed in the diet are foods that can be gathered such as fruits, nuts, seeds eggs, vegetables etc. Once again this is based on our ancestors as being hunters and gatherers which were on the earth long before the development of agriculture over 10,000 years ago.

Foods allowed:

  • Fresh fruits
  • Fish
  • Lean turkey, beef, pork, chicken, and buffalo
  • Nonstarchy vegetables such as asparagus, lettuce, green beans, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, cabbage, and spinach.
  • seeds such as sunflower and pumpkin
  • Nuts including Pistachios, Brazil nuts, pecans, pine nuts, chestnuts macadamia, cashews, and almonds
  • Eggs
  • Healthy oils such as walnut, coconut, and olive oil

Foods Not Recommended:

  • Legumes or beans like peanuts, any kind of beans, tofu or soy-based products
  • Grains including barley, rice, wheat, oats, this includes no bread, pasta, and crackers
  • No processed foods containing trans fats such as fish and chips, donuts (most fast foods)
  • Dairy products so, no milk, yogurt, ice cream or cheese
  • No processed meats including bologna, pepperoni, hot dogs, ground meat
  • No processed sugars, so, no sodas, cookies, candy syrups or jams
  • No salty foods like chips, pretzels, soy sauce or any other processed foods containing sodium

The Paleo Diet a Healthy Long-Term Diet Eating Plan

Many advocates of this diet claim the Paleo Diet is a long-term diet plan that will not only help you lose weight it can also prevent diabetes, lower your risk of heart disease and certain types of cancer. If you do further research on the Paleo diet you will find that there have been few studies done on this diets long-term effects.

A two-year study done in 2014 compared the Paleo Diet with a low-fat diet, what the study shows is both subjects lost a similar amount of weight, the difference being those on the Paleo diet had lower triglyceride levels. This could be a positive thing because high triglycerides can lead to certain types of heart disease.

No diet is perfect but there are many things that have made this diet overwhelmingly popular over the last decade, let’s take a look at the pros and cons.

Pros

The biggest benefit of the Paleo diet is that it promotes healthy eating, this diet eliminates processed foods from your diet and promotes eating more healthy fruits and vegetables. This makes perfect sense because most processed foods tend to be high in calories, avoiding them will help you lose weight.

The only rule of the paleo diet is the  80/20 rule, meaning you get 99% percent of the benefits from the paleo diet if you stick with it 80% of the time. This makes it easier to stick with the diet over the long term.

Cons

The biggest con from nutrition experts is that the Paleo diet lacks essential foods such as whole grains, dairy, and legumes. This could lead to nutritional deficiencies. These could easily be remedied by taking a nutritional supplement. The Paleo diet does lack variety, so some people might get bored with it quickly. Athletes might not like this diet due to the lack of carbohydrates which are needed for energy.

The Paleo diet does not specify portions of food which may lead to eating more of some foods than others, meaning some people might eat fewer green vegetables and overindulge in meat or nuts.

Why this Diet is Good

Overall the Paleo diet is not bad, the simple fact that you are eliminating processed foods and foods with hydrogenated oils is a good thing, this diet will force you to eat clean.  The bottom line is that this diet, for the most part, is very healthy and if you stick to the basic guidelines you should be able to lose weight and maintain a healthy waistline. The foods allowed in the diet are filling and you will find that unlike other restrictive diets you will not feel hungry all of the time.

References:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4216932/pdf/emss-60632.pdf

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