What’s The Caveman Diet

A Diet Thats Not A Diet

Nutrition 101: The Paleo Diet

The Paleo diet is also the first time a set of diet principles has been compiled using modern scientific health and nutrition research. While the initial insight leading to the Paleo diet was gleaned from studies of Paleolithic man and both modern and historically-studied hunter-gatherers, the core support for this way of eating comes from contemporary biology, physiology, and biochemistry. There are thousands of scientific studies that each evaluate how components in foods interact with the human body to promote or undermine health. These are the studies used to form the basic tenets of the Paleo diet, which you can read about in detail in Paleo Principles, the most comprehensive Paleo guidebook every created.

There are no hard and fast rules about when to eat, how much protein versus fat versus carbohydrates to eat , and thereâs even some foods which some people choose to include in their diets whereas others do not. This means thatâs thereâs room to experiment so you can figure out not just what makes you healthiest but also what makes you happiest and fits into your schedule and budget.

Best of all, the Paleo diet is not a diet in the sense of some hard thing that you do that requires a great deal of willpower and self-deprivation until you reach some goal. Itâs a way of life. Because the focus is long-termgood health, the Paleo diet allows for imperfection but educates you so that you can make the best choices possible.

Is The Caveman Diet Healthy

Overall, the caveman diet can be considered healthy, especially when you are substituting lean meats, fruits and vegetables for refined carbohydrates and processed foods.

When paring this diet with exercise and a calculated daily calorie plan, the Caveman Diet can be a great way to stay healthy and lose fat.

However, there are always pros and cons when starting a new diet. It must be said that the Caveman Diet does cut out certain foods like dairy and grains.

So weigh these pros and cons carefully and if needed, consult with your doctor before trying any new diet to see if there are any risks for you to do so.

What Are The Different Types Of Paleo Diets

While there is technically only one Paleo diet, there are plenty of ways people have made adjustments to the plan to fit their lifestyles. For example, some may eat to follow the autoimmune protocol, which may mean they have further restrictions. Since Paleo technically isnt low carb, there are some who make adjustments to what they eat to mimic the keto diet while eating Paleo-approved foods.

Recommended Reading: Good Diet For Bulking Up

Pros And Cons Of The Caveman Diet Eating Plan

The main foods that are part of this diet are fruits, vegetables, nuts, roots, fish and meat. These are the foods that were eaten by our ancestors and followed and now known as the caveman diet. In this diet, you need to strictly avoid farm items like dairy, grains, legumes, sugar and processed oils.

What Was A Real Paleolithic Diet

What

The paleolithic era stretches from about 2.5 million to 10,000 years ago. Much of what we know about the period is based on studies of skeletal remains, human artefacts and modern hunter-gatherers.

Theres not much information, says Mark Thomas, Professor of Genetics at University College London. Its reasonable to say the human metabolism could be best suited to the types of diet humans have eaten for the longest period of time. The trouble with that is we dont know a great deal about ancestral diets, and paleolithic diets were likely to be extremely variable across different regions and time periods.

Research indicates there have been evolutionary changes since the paleolithic era, which could counter the pro-paleo argument that humans are better suited to an ancient diet. One example is the development of a gene that aids the digestion of lactose, the sugar found in milk. This gene has evolved over the last six to eight thousand years, in areas where humans started dairy farming. It is found in Europeans, and in many Middle Eastern, African and southern Asian populations, says Professor Thomas. However, this gene is not as prevelant in areas where dairy farming was, and is still not, common place, such as East Asia, suggesting its evolution is directly influenced by the introduction of dairy.

Read Also: Hot Water Diet Plan For Weight Loss

A Paleo Diet Meal Plan

There is no one right way to eat for everyone and paleolithic humans thrived on a variety of diets, depending on what was available at the time and where in the world they lived.

Some ate a low-carb diet high in animal foods, while others followed a high-carb diet with lots of plants.

Consider this as a general guideline, not something written in stone. You can adapt all of this to your own personal needs and preferences.

Here are the basics:

Eat: Meat, fish, eggs, vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, herbs, spices, healthy fats and oils.

Avoid: Processed foods, sugar, soft drinks, grains, most dairy products, legumes, artificial sweeteners, vegetable oils, margarine and trans fats.

Summary Paleolithic humans diets varied depending on availability and location. The basic concept of the paleo diet is to eat whole foods and avoid processed foods.

Caveman Diet Pros And Cons

PROS

  • Rigid plan with little wiggle room
  • Could cause nutrient gap
  • Food source concerns

In 2015, the government issued the new 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for the updated SAD, or Western Appetite diet . The goal of the updated guidelines is to improve overall health and reduce chronic illness, focusing on disease prevention.

Recommended Reading: Does Diet Soda Cause Bloating

The Standard American Diet

We have been conditioned that a Standard American Diet is what we need to eat, because most everyone does and they usually do without question. It might work for some, but others may be looking for more out of their food and to go back to basics.

A standard American diet pyramid represent recommended foods by the USDA.

After all, if it was good for cavemen, couldnt it be good for us?

Why Is Paleo Bad For You

Milton Mills: Whats Wrong with the Paleo Diet?

Some experts believe a strict Paleo diet lacks nutritional balance, falling short in essential nutrients like calcium and vitamin D. Critics say eliminating entire food groups like grains and dairy is problematic.

My biggest issue is excludes things like beans that have well-established health benefits like fiber, Marisa Moore, a registered dietitian and nutritionist, told NBC News.

Many people also find it too restrictive, which can make it hard to stick with long term.

There’s no scientific evidence that the Paleo diet helps prevent disease.

Recommended Reading: Is Atkins Diet Gluten Free

Paleo Man Wasnt Any Healthier Than We Are Today

Followers of the Primal Blueprint, another Paleo-eating template, speak of Groka hypothetical Stone Age hunter-gatherer who, due to his weaning on Paleo nutrition, is the model of good health and vitality we should strive to emulate today. Grok, they say, was lean, muscular, and knew nothing of the chronic health conditions plaguing people around the world today.

Of course, Groks life expectancy was low, but only because he lived in a world with saber-toothed tigers and lacked medical care and four walls and a roof to sleep behind. Paleo eaters say, looking at the effects of his diet alone, Grok would have been healthy enough to live longer than humans do today.

Mohr chuckles at this and says that, the truth is, we have no way of knowing how long Grok might have lived. How do we know how healthy these Paleo people were when their lifespans were so short? To say they lived low-stress, disease-free lives is just conjecturethere arent records that hold up to scientific scrutiny to prove it.

Medical Definition Of Paleolithic Diet

Reviewed on 3/29/2021

Paleolithic diet: The Paleolithic diet is a weight loss plan based upon the premise of consuming only those foods available during the Paleolithic era . People at this time were hunter-gatherers, meaning that all animals were hunted and plants were gathered from nature. There was no domestication of animals or planting of crops for food. Milk products were also not consumed, except during the breastfeeding of infants. Although the diet of people in the Paleolithic Era varied by geographic region and availability of foods, most Paleolithic diets would have contained mostly meats, fruits, nuts, and vegetables with very little cereals, grains, or milk products.

Recommended Reading: Fish And Brown Rice Diet

Food To Avoid On The Paleo Diet

Food to avoid on the Paleo diet includes anything that is processed. This includes:

  • Processed foods
  • Refined vegetable oils
  • Dairy all processed foods made with any dairy products including butter, cheese, cream, yogurt and milk
  • Fatty meats bacon, ribs, chicken legs/thighs/wings/skin, pork/lamb chops, etc
  • Grains and cereals Bread, pasta, rice, oats, barley, rye, spelt, wheat, maize, etc
  • Legumes beans, chickpeas, peas, lentils, peanuts, soybean products etc
  • Refined sugars Chocolate, sweets, fizzy drinks, fruit juice, ice cream, etc
  • Starchy veg potatoes and all potato products, cassava root, tapioca pudding, yams
  • Overly salty food salad dressings, condiments, ham, olives, processed meats, sausages, smoked/dried/salted meat, canned meats and fish, chips, pickled foods
  • Sunflower oil, soybean oil, grapeseed oil, etc
  • Fruit juice

Can You Drink Coffee On Paleo

What

Coffee isnt permitted on a Paleo diet, but one of the biggest advantages of this diet is that you balance out your blood sugar by providing protein and fat-rich meals, so you may find that you dont need coffee. Coffee is often a byproduct of people not having stable blood sugar, therefore having low energy.

You May Like: Does One Cheat Day Ruin Your Diet

Does It Allow For Dietary Restrictions Or Preferences

Vegetarian or vegan: This diet emphasizes meat and fish, and Cordain says it’s impossible to follow a Paleo Diet without eating meat, seafood, or eggs. Excellent vegetarian sources of protein, such as beans and other legumes, are not allowed.

Low-salt diet: The diet doesn’t allow salt, so it may help you cut down on sodium. If you do eat any foods that come from a can or a box, you would still need to check the sodium on food labels.

Potential Pros Of Following The Paleo Diet: Its Nutritious And Easy To Follow And It Involves Exercise

There are a handful of benefits you’ll potentially reap from following the paleo diet.

First, by eating fruits and vegetables, youll get many of the essential vitamins and minerals you need.

Also, the diet is simple. You eat the foods that are acceptable and avoid those that are not theres no prepacked meal plan or diet cycle to stick to.

Also Check: Whole Food Plant Based Diet Pyramid

Caveman Diets: The Pros And Cons

In recent years, you might have heard about the Caveman diet eating plan from your friends or family members. However, if you dont have any idea, you are not alone. The Caveman diet eating plan is popularly known as the Paleo diet or Stone Age diet it is a kind of diet in which you should not take any sugar-based or processed foods. While following this diet you tend to eat only the foods which are eaten by ancient people. This caveman diet has both pros and cons. However, it can offer more benefits to your body.

The Caveman Diet Final Thoughts

Paleo vs Keto: What’s the Difference?

Modeling a diet after that of our hunter-gatherer ancestors who only subsisted on whole foods can serve as a great starting point for healthy eating. However, following a strict Paleo Diet, with all its exclusions, has not been found to actually produce the benefits claimed. In fact, some of the excluded foods offer their own health benefits and little to zero risk for health issues, as long as you follow a well-balanced diet.

The Caveman Diet can be easily modified to also include whole grains, legumes, and dairy without compromising the invaluable advantages of eating more whole foods. Whenever possible, choose organic, free-range/pasture-raised, grass-fed, and/or wild-caught products or the least-processed foods. Avoid any food products that have been heavily processed and contain artificial ingredients.

When you follow the Paleo Diet, you dont have to keep track of your calorie and carb intake you also do not have to follow a strict eating schedule. As long as you stick to the approved foods, even with a modified Paleo Diet, you can stay fit and healthy or lose weight.

Also Check: Should You Eat Rice On A Diet

Foods You Can Eat On The Paleo Diet

In short, if your ancestors could hunt or gather it, it is allowed on the paleo diet. This includes:

  • Grass-fed meat:choosing grass-fed is healthier for you, the environment and closer to what our ancestors ate.
  • Fish and seafood: choose wild-caught
  • Fresh fruits and veggies
  • Cod
  • Turkey

Grass-fed meat is recommended on the paleo diet because it is leaner than meat from grain-fed animals and has more omega-3 fatty acids, the healthy fats that reduce inflammation in the body and protect your heart. A typical American diet is high in saturated and trans fats and lower in healthy poly- and monounsaturated fats, hence the paleo diet’s emphasis on grass-fed meats.

Look for chicken raised without antibiotics and try to source your meat from a local farm to learn more about how it was raised.

Choosing wild seafood over farm-caught may help boost your omega-3 intake too. That’s not always the case, but look for wild salmon and other sustainably-caught seafood when you’re eating paleo.

Benefits Of The Caveman Diet:

There are lots of benefits in subscribing to the caveman diet. The main is that it helps to maintain ones body balance. Its also beneficial in keeping glucose in the blood at the appropriate levels. The caveman diet provides sufficient energy to those religiously following it and, since its composed fully of natural herbs and spices, it is free from harmful side-effects unlike other diet plans. It also aids towards proper function of the immune system.

You May Like: Low Starch Diet Food List

Is Paleo Good Long Term

Paleo Diet Health Effects: What to Expect in the Short and Long Term. The paleo diet can help with weight loss, lowering blood pressure, and controlling blood sugar in the short term, but experts caution that in the long run, this eating approach may lead to nutrient deficiencies and other possible health risks.

The Idea Behind The Paleo Or Caveman Diet

What is the paleo diet

The main idea of the diet is to eat like a caveman, which means more meat from wild and/or grass-fed animals and wild fruits and vegetables. It eliminates carbohydrate-rich, agriculturally produced and processed foods from this type of hunter-gatherer diet. Evolution as we know it takes time, and the evolution of our diet for the past years was sped up by agriculture and processing of food. But this evolution has proven too fast for our bodys natural components to cope with. However, this belief is also a topic of discussion amongst weight loss and low-carb diet experts, with some believing that the human body has successfully adapted to the change in the diet.

The Paleo diet includes more meat than any other diet known. This is because our cavemen ancestors hunted wild beasts, fowls, and fishes more than they foraged for edible plants. The plants that were included in the stone age diet were gathered when the chances of a hunt being successful were reduced. The food enjoyed by our ancestors was packed full of protein, healthy fats, natural antioxidants, fiber, vitamins, and other nutrients.

Recommended Reading: How To Make A Macro Diet Plan

Caveman Diets Were More Diverse

Hunter-gatherers in the Stone Age didnt have the luxury to be pickythey ate whatever was available to them. And what was available differed by geography.

To say that Paleo Man was limited to the foods that the Paleo crowd calls for is a mistake because it depends on what part of the world the people youre talking about were from, says Chris Mohr, Ph.D., R.D., a nutrition spokesman and consultant to celebrities and athletes. Foods common to southeast Asia would have been completely absent in northern Europe at the time, so its logical to assume that Paleo people in different parts of the world evolved to thrive on different nutritional profiles.

Some of them ate mosswhatever they could get their hands on. There was no one-size-fits-all approach.

What Is The Paleo Diet

The premise behind “eating paleo” is that the current Western diet is contributing to the rise of chronic diseases such as obesity, heart disease and cancer. Paleo diet proponents claim, eating this way can reduce inflammation, improve workouts, increase energy, help with weight loss, stabilize blood sugar and even reduce the risk of chronic diseases.

The pros of paleo are that it focuses on increasing intake of whole foods, fruits and vegetables, healthy proteins and healthy fats and decreasing consumption of processed foods, sugar and salt. For those looking to eat a more well-rounded diet, these “guidelines” sound familiar and altogether healthy.

However, the paleo diet also advocates cutting out grains, dairy and legumes, and this has caused controversy among scientists. These foods, despite what paleo advocates claim, are healthful and can be good sources of fiber, vitamins and minerals.

Get Inspired:Healthy Paleo Recipes

Recommended Reading: Parineeti Chopra Weight Loss Diet

Is A Paleo Diet Good For Weight Loss

There are no weight-loss guarantees on a paleo diet, though some small studies show it can be effective for short-term weight reduction. If you eliminate a food source and dont replace it with the same number of calories, you may of course lose weight. On the other hand, if you replace legumes, grains and dairy with higher-calorie sources, you may gain weight.

A paleo diet may help you to lose weight, but on the whole it is not well balanced, says Medlin. Diets to promote weight loss can still include pulses, dairy and some wholegrains. Medlin adds that the best weight-loss diet is one you can stick to, so if you are overweight and the paleo diet works for you, it could be worth a try. But be aware that research suggests it isnt easy to follow.

A study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition followed 250 overweight people for a year as they dieted with minimal professional support, allowing them to opt into a Mediterranean food plan, intermittent fasting, or a paleo plan including some dairy, legumes and grains . After one year, the paleo plan had the lowest retention rate, with just over a third sticking to it.

Stay in Touch

To follow the best weight loss journeys, success stories and inspirational interviews with the industry's top coaches and specialists. Start changing your life today!

Related Articles