Why Would Anyone Follow The ‘Paleo Diet’?

Cavewoman with laptopWhen I first started writing for Blisstree a few months ago, my boyfriend suggested I post about the ‘Paleo diet,’ which he had a few friends following. I thanked him for the suggestion, but dismissed it—a couple of weirdos eating bunches of meat did not a trend make. Since then, however, I’ve seen references to the Paleo diet—also called the caveman or Stone Age diet—cropping up in the media more and more. And everyone I’ve talked to seems to know someone on it. So, all right, all right—I’ll bite (no pun intended): What’s up with the Paleo diet, and could it really help you lose weight or stay healthy?

The Paleo diet’s closest mainstream counterpart is the Atkins diet. Like Atkins adherents, Paleo eaters shun refined starches and sugars and processed foods, instead emphasizing protein (meat, fish, eggs, nuts) and fresh fruits and vegetables. So far so good, right? But the Paleo diet also recommends eliminating all grains, beans and dairy products, since those weren’t found in paleolithic diets (the guiding principle, more or less, is “What Would Cavepeople Do?”).

Advocates say that returning to the hunter-gatherer diet of our Stone Age ancestors could save us from the ailments that plague more modern eaters, like obesity, diabetes and heart disease. If the needs of the human body haven’t changed all that much since caveman days, why should our diets differ drastically? Arthur De Vany, a 74-year-old former economics professor and author of the 2010 book The New Evolution Diet: What Our Paleolithic Ancestors Can Teach Us about Weight Loss, Fitness, and Aging, explains it like this: ”We began getting heavier and developing new diseases once we ceased to be hunter-gatherers and instead became farmers — or more specifically, once we started eating the food we grow rather than gathering food.”

It doesn’t take much historical knowledge to know, however, that a lot of other lifestyle changes accompanied our transition from a hunter-gatherer society to an agrarian one, and even more between our agrarian and industrial days. Picking and choosing one element of that is just silly. Loren Cordain, a professor of health and exercise science at Colorado State University who credits himself with bringing the Paleo diet from “an obscure idea” to something “known worldwide,” told the Associated Press that peer-reviewed research has shown the Paleo diet is better than the Mediterranean diet or US dietary guidelines at promoting weight-loss and overall health. But in U.S. News and World Report diet rankings published earlier this year, the Paleo diet came in absolute last.

Experts took issue with the Paleo diet on every measure. Regardless of what a dieter’s goal is—weight loss, heart health, or finding a diet that’s easy to follow—most experts concluded he or she is better off looking elsewhere. In one expert’s words: “A true Paleo diet might be a great option: very lean, pure meats, lots of wild plants. The modern approximations … are far from it

[...] By shunning dairy and grains, you’re at risk of missing out on a lot of nutrients. Also, if you’re not careful about making lean meat choices, you’ll quickly ratchet up your risk for heart problems.

Nutrition guru Marion Nestle noted that the life expectancy of Stone Age man was around 25 years “suggesting that the Paleolithic diet, among other life conditions, must have been considerably less than ideal.” And other academics have taken issue with both the evolutionary logic of the diet (“peoples have not been shown to have special genetic adaptations that suit them for such diets”) and the idea that today’s meat is the same as that of yore:

The take-home message seems to be that if we emulated such hunter-gatherers and derived more of our energy from animal foods, we might be able to avoid some of the “diseases of civilization” (eg, obesity, coronary heart disease, and type 2 diabetes). Such a suggestion, however well intentioned, seems ill advised given the high fat content of domesticated livestock relative to that of wild prey.

Obviously, cutting back on processed foods and refined carbs is a good dietary idea. There are ways to do that, however, that don’t cut out perfectly good grains, like quinoa and couscous  (as people have been pointing out, couscous is a *grain product,* not a grain itself, so let’s say rice or barley or millet instead) or rely on becoming a ravenous carnivore. People love diet plans that tell them to eat more meat, though—and The Sensible, Balanced Diet Plan just doesn’t sell books like a kooky fad angle can. I expect we’re going to be hearing a lot more about the Paleo diet in the months to come …

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    • chuck

      yes, you will continue to hear about paleo in the future. it is extremely effective at improving and sustaining health. levels of meat and carb heavy fruits and veggies will flutcuate based on the person.

    • David

      I wish someone on the outside would write another original article about the Paleo Diet. This, like its predecessors, is a regurgitation of the same article that has been floating around for at least year.

      Right down to the quotes used and the misinformation given.

    • Cassandra

      I think everyone has a right to choose the diet that works for them. That being said, I have been on a perpetual high carb/low-fat (even vegetarian at times) diet for the past seven years. 9 weeks ago, I decided I needed a drastic change because I had no energy and was ravenous all the time. Since then, compared to my old diet, I have lost more weight and inches, have more energy and general well-being that in all those years of low-fat dieting.

      After reading this article, I have a few comments. One, if you read that US news article in total, you might be able to see that it is quite biased. If I am not mistaken, Robb Wolf, who is prominent in the Paleo world, wrote rebuttal on article, which was quite good. The second is, yes our stone-age relatives may not have lived as long, but they had a much riskier lifestyle. I don’t think it is fair to comment on their lifespan until you research common causes of death at that time…early death in this scenario is more correlative than causative with respect to diet. Third, Paleo/Primal eaters do take into account that factory meat is not the same as free-roaming meat, and strive to eat barn-roaming/free-range meat.

      I hope this comment fleshes out more information on this diet, because I would not want to dissuade anyone from trying something that I have found to greatly improve my health and MAY work for them as well.

    • Rich

      I don’t care what the experts say. These same experts that would have everyone on statins and blood pressure med cocktails don’t mean a thing to me.

      Me? I know firsthand that when I cut out grains, sugars, sugar alcohols, artificial sweeteners, legumes and other modern crap, I lose weight, I feel much better, my red skin clears up, and my mood improves.

      I get all my nutrients from clean, healthy red meats, fresh green, red and yellow vegetables, and even some carbs from tubers like sweet potatoes. Cooked in healthy fats like butter, ghee, and coconut oil.

      By the way, those “experts” are all the same ones that told us for decades to use “heart-healthy margarine” instead of “artery-clogging butter.” Look how well that turned out. Hello, trans-fats! Now common wisdom is for everyone to use unstable seed and vegetable oils which cause extreme damage while they tear through your body. No, thank you.

      • Rich

        And by the way, I’m commenting as a former vegetarian and on-again/off-again vegan. I was puffy, gained weight, felt bloated, flaky, tired and irritable. We’ve been lied to.

    • Melissa

      Paleo adherents aren’t encouraged to eat limitless amounts of conventionally raised meats. One of Paleo’s main premises is eating animals that are ALSO eating the foods THEY are supposed to eat, ie: grass, NOT corn/grain. The obvious and painful differences between these two options is exactly what Paleo preaches. Nobody should be eating conventionally raised animals if you want to achieve any level of optimal health.

      Also, there is not a SINGLE nutrient derived from grains and dairy that you can’t get from eating meat, vegetables, and fruit. Also, Paleo is not about mostly meat and maybe add some veggies and fruit- it’s essentially half meat, half vegetables. Consider also the number of people who suffer from grain and dairy troubles. Humans are VERY rarely allergic or intolerant of meat and vegetables (shellfish- yes; chicken and beef- notsomuch).

      I could go on and on. Do some more research and write another, more accurate article:)

    • Brock

      “Nutrition guru Marion Nestle noted that the life expectancy of Stone Age man was around 25 years “suggesting that the Paleolithic diet, among other life conditions, must have been considerably less than ideal.”” – this is the “average” life expectancy taking into consideration infant mortality. If they passed childhood they would have expected to live a long life.

      Check out some stats for the rest of humanity… http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Life_expectancy

    • Barb

      Well, the commenters seem to be speaking!!! I agree… I lose the grain, legumes, sugars and processed foods AND get more active (all basics of the paleo/primal lifestyle and I lose weight, feel great, have tons of energy and stop aching. You can’t argue with results!!!
      And, as some other posters have noted, it is these so-called ‘experts’ and their big pharma/agriculture subsidized advice that are the cause of so much illness and maliase.

      May I suggest… get a copy of either “The Paleo Solution” (Wolf), or “The Primal Blueprint” (Sisson). Take the 30 Day Challenge. Then, sit down and write us another article. I’ll be looking foreword to seeing what you think then.

    • Jason

      Your thought that the lifespan of Paleolithic humans is only 25 years is pretty narrow-minded – think of all the other factors that effect mortality for a caveman – animal attack, illness (there was no medicine), famine due to weather, death to due to injury or complications form injury – there’s a lot of factors.

      Secondly – the US News study – Paleo Diet did come in last. This study is pretty problematic, though. Every diet that they have ranked in the top 18 has a failure rate of over 70%, except Weight Watchers. Atkins and Paleo, ranked 19 and 20 respectively, have surveyed failure rates of just 34% and 3%. This is further backed up by user reviews – if you look at the “did this work for you? section, 16 out of 20 have very high failure rates. There’s a lot of questions about how they actually ranked these diets and it doesn’t seem to have much to do with the people actually trying to follow them.

      Finally, couscous is not a grain. It’s a preparation of wheat, like pasta. Small details like this make it clear that you haven’t really researched this.

    • Dan

      “Nutrition guru Marion Nestle noted that the life expectancy of Stone Age man was around 25 years “suggesting that the Paleolithic diet, among other life conditions, must have been considerably less than ideal.”

      Ridiculous! This is called casual causality – its like arguing that because there were a lot of people wearing raincoats on the day it rained it must be that raincoats cause rain! Its Bad Science! Expert indeed! Hardly!

    • ld

      Why is Paleo trashed by the media? Because Paleo doesn’t pay the bills. It’s Big Agra, Big Pharma, big diet companies (Weight Watchers, Nutrisystem, etc). that provide the advertising and lobby our elected officials to continue with conventional wisdom and the Standard American Diet of crap “food.” Paleo works but corporations don’t want that fact known because then the profits from the statins, metformins, doctors, hospitals, diet companies, and processed foods companies will diminish greatly.

    • Lillian

      According to the table in that wikipedia article of life span through the ages, it shows early 20th century at age 31. Now it’s twice that. So,,, I question all these life span ages these tables show. No doubt 10thousand years ago there were some people who made it to 100 and same for those in the early 20th century. Same now. My point is those tables don’t tell me anything about how their diet affected their life span

    • Mindy

      I would rather go with a peer-reviewed study than some “experts”. I see a common excuse to not go Paleo/Primal because it is not sustainable…. I am married with 3 young boys, very busy mom…going primal over year ago has given me more energy to keep up…..plus all the wonderful benefits of pounds/inches lost, strength gained, arthritis gone, digestion issues greatly helped, hormone disorders regulated….need I go on? Please, for your own health and education, do some thorough research into this, talk to your boyfriend’s friends and even try it yourself…..It is definitely healthy and sustainable.

    • In2Life

      How ’bout this….rather than making ridiculous assumptions on this way of eating – how ’bout taking 3-4 weeks to cut out those “perfectly good grains” and eating the way we were intended to eat. Ater that month, it would be great to see what you write about. I have no doubt you’ll notice improved health, energy levels and any ailments you may be dealing with. As a writer, it seems that the best way to write about something is to get completely informed on the subject matter.

    • Jules

      I’ll echo everything else that has been said (by the other commenters, not the author) and add that couscous isn’t a grain; it is a processed product, lol. Way to research, Ms. Brown! Way to research!

    • Melissa

      One of the things our society needs to fix is this obsession with fad “diets” or diets in general and just change our habits. There is no magic solution to weight loss and general well-being. It can’t be found in one food source or in a magic pill. The solution is exercise, as well as being active, and a good, smart, healthy diet. Which is what the paleo lifestyle promotes.

      You should eat fresh, non processed foods, which means lots of veggies and fruit and grass-fed, free range, antibiotic free meats and fish. We’d have less obese children and less cases of diabetes and heart disease if people would make those changes and tell the big corporations and our government that we want and expect better standards and stop raising our kids on fast food and sugary sodas and junk!

      Ok, I will get off my soap box now…..

      • D.

        You forgot to add eggs and raw dairy to the list of things we should be eating. Until and unless most people actually do the research and study the subject of cholesterol and the role it plays in our bodies, no one will truly understand nutrition in its purest form. To me proper nutrition includes grassfed beef, grassfed/milkfed pork, pastured chickens and chicken eggs (and duck eggs if you can get them), fresh locally grown fruits and vegetables, lots of homemade dairy products from raw dairy (cow and goat) such as yogurt, kefir, cottage cheese, cream cheese and whey, creme fraiche, butter, buttermilk, etc., and several varieties of nuts and seeds daily. Drink filtered water and your favorite types of tea, and even an occasional cup of coffee from a good source (Fair Trade and all!) . Sweetners should be Grade B Maple Syrup, raw cane sugar in moderation, honey, molasses, rapadura, sucanat, turbinado.

        Pushing oneself away from the table the minute you feel full is also important. A moderate exercise program such as walking or water walking works for young people as well as older folks to help them stay fit and healthy. No need to overdo exercise, but it’s a point no one seems to “get”.

        The main message? Nothing out of a box, no fast food, limited sugar. Staying on a particular “diet program” never works because we all have family and business functions to attend, etc., so another key is to be flexible with your choices sometimes. Stress over not doing every little thing correctly can be just as bad as eating a horrid diet.

    • Karen P.

      As a writer, I am completely offended at how biased and unresearched this article is. Does no one think for themselves anymore? Is it really so hard to Google something? Didn’t we learn the importance of a counter-argument in grade school essay writing?

      I would love a follow-up to this that proves what exactly I would gain by eating grains. I would happily put my daily diet against the author’s into a nutrient tracker to see who’s coming out ahead.

      I guess we Paleo/Primal folks just have to be satisfied with our managed weight, muscly physiques, delicious food, cured diabetes, clear skin, and overall health. Everyone else can have their grains. Enjoy.

      • Vanessa G.

        Amen! :)

    • Steven

      Isnt it wonderful that the first amendment allows for anyone to spout off a bunch of garbage without doing any research, and people actually pay attention.
      There is no sense in arguing, I will just tell you if you have no anthropology background, you have no business spouting off things like “Paleolithic man only lived to 25..”… quite the contrary, research suggests that their lifespan was well into the 50′s or 60′s. How about ancient Rome, where the life expectancy was about 25?
      In short, don’t bash it unless you research it, if you don’t like it, keep it to yourself, its no ones business how I eat anyway. So many people in the Ancestral Health community are just trying to help others, and you don’t want to be helped. (you are probably members of the flat earth society too…..) Paleo diets have been shown to CURE Autism, Diabetes, Epilepsy, and many other diseases of civilization – but – its just a fad because you cant get it in a pill.

      We are laughing all the way cause we will live happier, healthier (and longer) lives than the rest of you!

    • Paula B

      Why would anyone follow a paleo diet? Simple. It works.
      If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get the results you’ve always gotten. A lifetime of the Standard American Diet brought me obesity, borderline diabetes, allergies, belly fat and more. The Paleo Solution challenged me to try something different for 30 days. 8 months paleo/primal now and 44 lbs weight loss, off allergy meds for the first time in 40 or 50 years, acid reflux gone, blood sugar normalized. I don’t eat any more meat than I ever did, but lots more vegetables, less sugar of any kind, fewer processed foods.

      Read Crazy Makers, Wheat Belly, Against the Grain, Gluten Nation, numerous blogs by folks who are celiac or gluten intolerant or who have seen major improvement in their (and/or their children’s health) such as Elana’s Pantry and Spunky Coconut..then start reading about sugar, corn syrup, candida, genetically modified foods, Roundup Ready alfalfa….start to put the pieces together. I agree with Barb–Read the Paleo Solution, take the challenge, then write another article. What do you have to lose?

    • Andrew Badenoch

      I get that the author doesn’t care much for actual research, but… “Modal ages of adult death… under traditional conditions seems to be just after age 70 years” – Population and Development Review

    • Ali

      I am also primal/ paleo and agree with what was in previous comments. I would love for the writer, Ms. Brown, to either comment or write a follow-up.

    • Freddie

      Good thing you guys don’t come off as a bunch of cultists or cranks.

    • Ken Leebow

      From Vegan to Paleo (and everyone in-between): Take Michael Moore’s words to heart:

      We all have more in common than not.

      One caveat: I would not recommend following Michael Moore’s diet.

    • Alyssa

      Wow… I can only say that research proves the exact opposite of what the paleo diet claims. Whether you are thin or not, meat consumption causes rampant heart disease due to the cholesterol contained in it as well as other animal products (cholesterol which is not found in fruits, vegetables, grains, legumes, etc.). It is also shown that cancer cells thrive on animal protein, and areas in which meat and dairy was absent from the populations diet, heart disease, diabetes and cancer was virtually non-existent. (i.e. the China Study)

      I have been eating a plant based diet for some time now because my highly carnivorous family is largely overweight and has horrible rates of heart disease. Three out of four of my grandparents have had multiple bypass heart surgeries, my maternal grandfather died after 2 multiple bypass surgeries and a third heart attack, my paternal grandfather recently suffered a stroke, my father has hypertension and high cholesterol and is on several heart medications, my uncle has hypertension, high cholesterol and nearly died of an aortic aneurysm… the list goes on. I want a better healthier life for myself and my future family. Since switching to a vegan diet and cutting out processed foods, I have not only felt better, but lost some weight! I am now an incredibly healthy 113 pounds at 5 feet 3 inches with a BMI of 20.

      Heart disease… hypertension, atherosclerosis… is caused by the consumption of dietary cholesterol (only found in animal products) and the damage that cholesterol and fat does to your arteries. Say what you want, but Atkins himself followed his diet and died of cardiomyopathy meaning “heart muscle disease”.

      If you want some information based on solid evidence and research, check out Forks Over Knives. Great movie/documentary. Please check this out. It’s even available on Netflix. http://forksoverknives.com/

      • Rich

        lol, I stopped reading at “China Study.” Good day to you, madam!

      • Tyler

        Uh… dietary cholesterol has absolutely NO link to heart disease, for one.

        What causes heart disease is twofold: inflammation and LDL Type B. That’s all.

        What causes inflammation? Grains, particularly gluten in wheat, are the most offensive. Next would be seed oils high in omega-6 fatty acids. Meat is nowhere to be found on this list, though.

        And what causes LDL Type B production? Well, it absolutely is NOT animal meat and fat, for one. Excess carbohydrates, such as those derived from sugars, grains, and other dense sources, do, however.

        So, regarding heart disease, meat is not an offender. At all.

        If you want to exchange Netflix documentaries, Fat Head would be a good place to start: http://www.fathead-movie.com/

      • Lisa
      • Lisa

        For the real facts read Denise Minger’s review … Seriously, Enough said.

        http://rawfoodsos.com/2011/09/22/forks-over-knives-is-the-science-legit-a-review-and-critique/

    • AJ
    • John Brim

      This article is wrong in so many ways, i dont even know how to begin to correct it. Lizzy, you need to get hold of some real research that looks at the actual premise of the paleo diet and not a conventional western mash up of it. It’s embarrassing as a sports nutritionist to see such close minded approach to nutrition as you have displayed here. Everyone is allowed their opinion, no doubt, but please use some definitive data when attempting to deconstruct human biology, as you have done so loosely in this article. Props to Melissa for her comment, defining the proper parameters of the paleo diet.

    • The Humane Hominid

      I don’t know why people complain so much about the invention of agriculture. It was a huge boon to the relative fitness of our species. We ought to be a little more circumspect in our condemnation, as it’s likely that without agriculture’s invention, even none of these Cro-Moderns would be around to bitch about it at all.

    • Robert Day

      where to begin with this piece. badly researched, selective quotes from “experts” but in the wrong fields, blinkered, biased and no counter point of view.

      I was waiting for the writer to say that she after being so against the diet she did what most people who want to know more about it and actually tried it for a month. obviously that would make to much sense so she just carried on putting it down.

      heres an idea lizzy, try something out first before writing so negatively about it.

      • ScoDal

        “I was waiting for the writer to say that she after being so against the diet she did what most people who want to know more about it and actually tried it for a month.” … haha me too

    • Amanda

      The best way to write about something is through personal experience. The rest would also be relevant but to truly understand something would be to see it from the inside out, not from the outside in.

    • Low Carb Ken

      Why would anyone follow a paleo diet? It worked for me….
      Calorie In – calorie Out (the mantra of sports nutritionists) is lying in tatters. Failed diets and gym membership continued my obesity, pre-diabetes, belly fat, high blood pressure, high triglycerides and high cholesterol. Low carb was my last hope! 3 months low carb now and 68 lbs weight loss, cholesterol to 3.7 from 6.5, blood sugar normal, Triglycerides normal, blood pressure normal. I don’t eat any more meat but lots more vegetables, less sugar and flour of any kind, no processed foods or canned food.
      The problem is the diet ‘experts’ who have made a decent living off folk like me have been found out and they don’t like to admit they were wrong.
      Trying to justify their position on flimsy reports – Ones written by the low carb nay-sayers no doubt – Is very disappointing…

    • Quiet

      I am not strictly paleo because I allow dairy but no fruit. Here’s my two cents. I’ve battled acne since I was 14. I’ve gone to almost a dozen different dermatologists, took a panoply of antibiotics, chemical peels, a round of accutane (which may have cause lasting effects a decade later in terms of my health but not in terms of my skin). I was never by medical standards unhealthy. I’ve always had healthy blood pressure, better than perfect cholesterol. I wasn’t overweight or close to it by medical standards. My hormones were perfect. But I had persistent acne.

      In grad school I put on some weight that though left me still in the healthy range of eating made me uncomfy. So I stumbled into paleo-like eating because I was trying to do south beach but was way too lazy to differentiate between good and bad carbs and grains and I don’t count calories and didn’t want to start.

      I did lose the weight I had put on and then some, but something else weirdly happened. My skin cleared up. Completely. I stopped breaking out even right before my period.

      A year after this I went to the dermatologist to deal with some of the acne scarring and she wanted to make sure I was no longer breaking out b/c you can’t deal with scars when the skin is still breaking out. I told her I no longer broke out and she wanted to know how. I hesitated before telling her and finally caved. “Interesting” she said. It turns out that a decade of derms telling me diet played no role in acne was false and based on a flawed study. In about fifty percent of people if you switch them to a low GI diet their acne completely disappears. That’s right I put myself at risk for permanent muscle pain, IBS, and Chrons that is accutane when if I’d just switched to Atkins at 16 or something else low-carb/low-GI my acne problems would have cleared up.

      Further, there’s a LARGE body of research that shows that individual and ethnic genetics plays a huge role in health. This article points out that two people of the same race eating the same food break it down in their systems in two different ways:

      We DO NOT NEED grains. Full stop. There is NOTHING you can get nutritionally from a grain that you can’t get from other sources. Leafy green veggies etc.

      To the person who said meat = heart disease has obviously never heard of the Inuit Paradox: http://discovermagazine.com/2004/oct/inuit-paradox

      Finally, I eat Dairy because I like it but really I shouldn’t eat it because I’m mildly lactose intolerant. MOST of the world is lactose intolerant. Whenever I hear a nutritionist go on and on about people “Should” eat dairy I know right then to walk away. Lactose digestion is a small subset of people (mostly northern european though not exclusively ) who have historically lived close with cattle and had little to no other source of animal protein.

      Also the “experts’ are the same people who haven’t been able to put together a comprehensive diet that promotes health. If you eat by USDA health standards you gain weight even if you live within portion sizes and you’re always hungry. We know what the absolute worst diet is – one filled with processed foods – but we don’t know what the healthiest diet is. That is because there are many paths to health.

    • Quiet

      P.S. I tried introducing Quinoa into my diet because it’s a perfect grain and discovered – guess what – I don’t digest it. And I’ve tried three different forms – red, the traditional white, and black. I shit it out undigested.

      Funny how bodies are different!

    • nikki

      i was skeptical…but gave it 30 days. And guess what!? my vitamin and nutrient levels were all GREAT! I’d lost 7 lbs. My skin looked great!

      Just want to point out one differenc ein Atkins vs. Paleo— Paleo really emphasizes, grass-fed, wild-caught game meats…which means you are eating leaner meats, and higher in those omega-3s.

      If you’re skeptical, but curious…I saw give it a try….what will 30 days do? Most doctors will provide nutrient and vitamin testing along with cholesterol and blood pressure. You’ll see it’s not just a fad!

    • J

      I haven’t been doing exactly the Paleo diet, but I have been doing something largely based on it. I can’t STAND the name of the Paleo diet and the general premise–eat like a cave person. Because cave people were so much healthier than we are…?! I find that part of it almost unbearably stupid. However, I do like the emphasis on trying to cut out processed foods. With the plan I am following, I can eat grains–just not any wheat/gluten, but no dairy. This part of it makes it really good for people with allergies/sensitivities or potential allergies/sensitivities. Sure, there are many nutrients in dairy, but there are a lot of lactose intolerant people that seem to get along fine, no? If you feel less like you are dying on a daily basis without dairy, I’d say it’s worth trying to get the nutrients somewhere else.

    • Sara

      Why would anyone NOT follow the paleo diet?! In 3 months I lost 40lbs, my acne of 24 years cleared up completely, I have light periods with NO cramping what so ever, my blood tests have shown all my numbers have improved, my body wakes up on it’s own between 6:30-7:30am every morning fully energized, I never feel hungry, I am hardly ever tired during the day, and I eat as much as I want yet continue to lose weight. So you tell me why in the world anyone shouldn’t try the paelo diet.

    • Wendy D.

      For all of you who poo poo the paleo diet and low carbing due to health reasons, enjoy your heart attacks. Seriously. My husband and I religiously followed a low fat high grain diet for many years, his blood pressure was normal and he had a cholesterol level of 185. He was very active, played sports, we gardened and walked regularly. The last person who anyone would expect to be in poor health. However, in Feb of this year, at 48 years old, my husband had a heart attack and due to problems resuscitating received an anoxic brain injury which is he still working to recover from 8 months later.
      After watching the movie, “Fathead” which was suggested to us by a friend, it’s changed our lives! I had been tired for 20 years and had been a borderline vegetarian since I was teenager, that fatigue was gone in less than 7 days!! One week! And has not returned since!
      A low fat diet it turns out, will lower your cholesterol, your GOOD cholesterol! Which is what caused my husband’s heart attack, oxidized plague caused by a high carbohydrate and a low fat diet. I know what we’ve all been fed as the truth for all these last 30 years, but it’s not true! Has no one noticed that people are suffering from heart disease at an earlier and earlier age??? Heart disease used to be an old person’s problem!
      Btw, while my husband was home recovering from his heart attack, a gentleman I worked with, who was only 46, died from a heart attack! Go on, keep listening to the low fat high grain lie, go ahead. I dare you. Enjoy your health problems! Mine have all but disappeared and that’s more grass fed meat for me!!!!!

    • Ruth

      I did pretty well on the Paleo Diet- I lost some weight (before platauing at 40 lbs overweight), had a reduction in fibromyalgia symptoms, had more stable blood sugar, and overall had a lot more energy. It was a vast improvement over the
      Standard American Diet”, even one based on whole foods.

      However, I’m doing even better on Blood Type Diet (I’m type O) than I ever did on Paleo. I lost more weight, have more energy and less pain.

    • Konrad

      My godness, you must be such a bitch in real life.

      First you say your boyfriend’s friends are weirdos, then you don’t do your homework and write a lot of factually wrong things about paleo.

    • jack

      Well I’ll tell you what….I’ll look at vegetarians who eat tons of grains and then compare then to people who follow a real paleo/primal diet. The proof is in the visual pudding. Healthier hair and skin, excellent lean body tone, and glowing skin. I rarely see that on vegans and vegetarians, just very skinny people. Skinny does not equal healthy.

      • Lawrence Farnsworth

        Paleo-tinted glasses, methinks…

        A disproportionate number of the best-looking models, actresses and singers are vegan. Paleo women, generally speaking, are no prize.

      • Paleo jealous

        Would you really want to compare yourselves to models and actresses who starve themselves and have horrible drug habits, who rarely have normal female cycles and have spray tans to ‘look’ healthy? Sorry no, I would want to know that from the inside out I am healthy…that my skin glows from natural ingestion of foods I stead of fake colors or injected substances.

        So do you think that Megan Fox, Eva La Rue, Jessica Biel and Uma Thurman are no prize?! They all follow the Paleo diet and I think they’re gorgeous!

        Paleo encourages the consumption of grass-fed meats, locally sourced foods which are free of pesticides or harmful preservatives…it advocates that natural is best, as close to the source is a better choice.

        Do you think that eating foods which people can hardly pronounce let alone digest properly are what’s best for you?

      • Lawrence Farnsworth

        You are a fine example of what the ‘Paleo’ diet does to the female body….

      • Wilma

        And your post clearly identifies you as a fine example of what poor taste and lack of thinking does to any man. :)

    • Paleo

      Major problem with the “healthy grains” argument is there simply
      isnt many. The amount of preservatives pumped into these foods had been shown to be detrimental to health. Also if you get into GMO foods most are processed foods and grain products. Your article hasn’t named or pointed to any studies while many studies on the negative effects of preservatives are well known and studies can easily be found. Another point to consider is from the time you compare Atkins to peleo on you lost all credibility. The two diets are nothing alike, on Atkins the goal is to not eat carbs of any kind, wheat, vegetable doesn’t matter. Paleo does not tell you to not eat carbs, it says to choose fresh fruit and vegetables. Also atkins does not care about fat content in meet, where as paleo followers are supposed to eat lean organic meat. Huge difference.

    • Liz

      The Paleo “Diet” is less about eliminating certain foods simply because Cavemen might not have eaten them and more about eliminating foods based on their physiological effect on the human body.
      If you’re legitimately going to research this and develop an opinion that isn’t based on the mainstream, lose-weight-now approach, I recommend you look at the science.
      Dallas & Melissa Hartwig wrote a book titled It Starts With Food. It’s extremely technical but outlines how food can contribute to and, in some cases, be solely responsible for a myriad of ailments:
      Diabetes
      High Cholesterol
      Acne
      IBS
      Celiac Disease
      Arthritis
      Fibromyalgia
      Hypothyroidism
      ADHD
      And so on and so on and so on

      http://whole9life.com/itstartswithfood/