Should you eat like a caveman?

The Paleo – short for Paleolithic – diet is also commonly known at the hunter-gatherer diet, caveman diet and Stone Age diet. While there are various versions, the strictest of strict proponents of the diet avoid any foods our ancestors supposedly did not eat in their era – such as grains, legumes, processed oils and sugars, and dairy. The argument is that we haven’t evolved since the introduction of agriculture – around 10,000 years ago – to digest the foods that followed and which now have become a significant chunk of our diet.

A typical Paleo menu for the day may look similar to the following:

Breakfast: three free-range eggs, scrambled in olive oil, with sautéed spinach. Plus a serve of fresh fruit (such as berries) and some herbal tea

Snack: a handful of raw nuts and seeds

Lunch: a chicken salad with plenty of salad green (olive oil and lemon dressing), herbal tea

Snack: chia seed pudding, using nut milk

Dinner: Grilled or pan-fried meat with steamed vegetables (e.g. carrots and broccoli) and a green, leafy salad. Fresh fruit for dessert.

It looks healthy, doesn’t it? Without the refined sugar and empty, processed calories of the modern-day food on the supermarket shelves, the diet, from this perspective, makes sense to many health professionals. Their main concern, however, is that there is little scientific basis for eliminating entire healthy food groups, such as whole grains, dairy and legumes. For one, there isn’t any certainty as to what exactly our Stone Age ancestors ate, given that they would have had to adapt to diverse range of habitats, being forced to change their diets.

Nevertheless, under the guidance of an accredited health professional, the Paleo diet can prove useful for losing weight in the short-term, especially if there’s a dire, weight-related health concern – e.g. type 2 diabetes and heart disease – and in helping to manage food intolerances in the form of an elimination diet.

What about you? Would you eat like a caveman? Have you? If so, did you notice a difference to your health?

Read more at The Washington Post.

YourLifeChoices Writers
YourLifeChoices Writers
YourLifeChoices' team of writers specialise in content that helps Australian over-50s make better decisions about wealth, health, travel and life. It's all in the name. For 22 years, we've been helping older Australians live their best lives.
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