Living in the 21st century, the discovery of the newest and most hip diet craze is just a normal everyday occurance. From juice cleances, to going gluten free, there are many different outlandish diets you hear about in todays world. One diet that is making its way to be a new craze is the paleo diet. Paleo is short for Paleolithic, referring to the prehistoric era called the stone age. The reason why this diet is called this is because it includes food which can only be hunted or gathered (basically what the cavemen ate). The diet alters the levels of certain food groups you eat. For example, you consume high amounts of proteins and low amounts of carbs. Also, you cut out all prossessed foods. This means things like sugar and refined grains, which have been linked to cause significant health issues, have been totally eliminated from your diet.
Sounds good right? A healthy natural diet with no processed foods that could block your arteries, and no fake sugars that could turn your liver white. So I ask, is the paleo diet worth a try? I read many articles about this mystical diet (here and here) trying to figure out whether if it is a safe and beneficial way of eating. So first, let me lay out the positives and negatives to decipher if this diet is worth a try.
So first, the positives. This diet cuts out all processed and manufactured foods. For example, the elimination of sugars and refined grains, which have been shown to lead to obesity and diabetes. This is very important because of all the chemicals and preservatives manufactures put in their food in todays world could lead to things like heart diesease. This diet also encourage the consumption of a verity of fruits and vegetables, leading the obtaining a multitude of different vitamins.
Now the negatives of this diet. Because the Paleo diet mostly consist of organic, whole some foods, which can be very expensive. This also possesses a challenge to obtain the food, making it hard to always have the specific foods needed on this diet. Also, with the high amounts of animal protein consumed with this diet, this could lead to the intake of fats and leading to cholesterol levels to rise. As well as cutting certain whole grains out of your diet like beans and sweet potatoes, which can be very beneficial to your health.
So the take away? Is it worth a shot? Well the answer is yes, and no. This diet is a great way to kick start weight loss and try new things, but in the long run this diet is not sustainable. The reason it is not sustainable because of the amounts of animal protein consumed in meals and the inconvenience for many 21st century people. Suggestions for those who do want to pursue this way of eating, is to not include animal protein in every single meal and snack you. As well as try not to limit yourself to only three meals a day, which can ultimately have bad effects on your metabolism.