Millions of years ago during the Paleolithic Era, the human diet largely consisted of foods that can easily be gathered from plants and trees and those that can be hunted. Because agricultural and cooking techniques have yet to be developed, the diet of cavemen is limited to these edibles. They have not yet discovered that certain foods like potatoes and legumes can become edible when cooked. As a result of such a simple fare, it has been genetically programmed into the digestive system of man the capability of breaking down these particular foods.
However, because of the development of agriculture and cooking, foods like grains, dairy products, and processed foods were introduced into the diet. Unfortunately, these foods are in reality detrimental to our health.
The Paleo Diet advocates the eating of “cavemen food” because these are the most suited for our bodies’ metabolism. Such foods include lean meats (chicken, pork, and beef), eggs, fish and shellfish, fresh fruits and vegetables, nuts, and a few root vegetables (with the notable exception of potatoes). Also prohibited is the consumption of processed foods as well as salt, vinegar, and sugar. Such restricted intake means that you will only be eating foods that your body can readily metabolize.
Lean meats and organ meats provide the much needed protein by our body. For those who are concerned about the fat content, proponents of the Paleo Diet advise that all fats be trimmed away from the meat. The program also allows for the intake of 6 eggs every week. It is because of the high protein content of the Paleo Diet that it has become very popular among muscle builders and athletes.
Fruits and vegetables are a great source of complex carbohydrates. They also contain the essential vitamins, minerals and other micronutrients, as well as fiber.
Nuts (with the notable exception of peanuts which are legumes) are rich in monosaturated fats which aid in lowering the cholesterol levels of the blood. It also contains substances that can prevent the development of heart disease as well as some cancers. Eating more nuts like in the Paleo Diet can also increase your metabolic rate, so that you can burn off fats faster.
Other health benefits that have been noted with the Paleo Diet include a lowered risk of developing diabetes and allergies. For those who exercise regularly, they have observed higher energy levels after switching to the diet, so that they are able to work out harder and for a longer duration of time.
To ensure that you are indeed following the Paleo Diet plan, you must remove from your diet all grains, legumes, potatoes, dairy products, salt, vinegar and sugar. Also included here are foods that are derived from grains such as bread, pancakes, flour, and pasta. Salt and vinegar are replaced by healthier alternatives such as dried celery (which has a high sodium content) and lemon juice, respectively.
Learn about other benefits that you can gain from switching to Paleo Dieting!