Loren Cordain wrote the Paleo Diet based on his research about the probable diet of our human ancestors.
The concept of the Paleo approach to eating is that humans were evolving for millions of years prior to the Neolithic period, which is when agricultural practices changed our diet considerably.Cordain affirms that grains were not a part of the prehistoric human diet and were only introduced at the time of the agricultural revolution 10000 years ago.
In the past 200 years the industrial revolution has changed our diet to an even greater degree with the introduction of processed and artificial foods as well as an increase in the amount of food that is available to us due to our ability to store foods for a long time.
Cordain claims that these changes have created a detrimental effect on our health and declares that they are responsible for the diseases of modern civilization including obesity, diabetes, heart disease and cancer.
The Paleo Diet Basics
Cordain states that the genetics of humans is best adapted to the diet of our human ancestors prior to the introduction of agriculture. As such the Paleo diet is based on eating foods that would be available to humans in the absence of all technology so as to mimic the diet of hunter-gatherer societies as much as possible.
Eat Like a Caveman
Many foods are restricted on this diet for the reason that that they were not available to our prehistoric ancestors. These include all processed foods, sugar, salt, grains, legumes, dairy products, coffee and alcohol.
Potatoes are also restricted because the varieties available now are genetically and nutritionally altered and are much higher in carbohydrates in comparison to those available in Stone Age period.
While eliminating grains and refined carbohydrates does make this a relatively low carbohydrate diet, it is less restrictive than other diet plans of this nature such as ‘Atkins‘ and ‘Protein Power’ because most fruit and vegetables are allowed in unlimited portions.
The Paleo Answer is the latest book by Loren Cordain.
It expands on the principles outlined in Cordain’s earlier books, highlighting the benefits of eating like our caveman ancestors.
Cordain explains that this program is “about adopting a modern healthy diet and lifestyle consistent with our genetic heritage as hunter-gatherers”.
Primarily the book focuses on how to eat like our Stone Age ancestors by consuming the same food groups they did.
Cordain applies the latest research to topics including:
- The Truth About Saturated Fat
- Meal Timing and Intermittent Fasting
- Calorie Restriction
- The Pitfalls of Vegetarianism
- Negative Health Effects of Grains, Legumes, Potatoes and Dairy Products
- The Food-Autoimmune Disease Connection
The Paleo Answer 7-Day Diet Plan
The meal plan includes suggestions for three meals and two snacks daily. Recipes are not provided but readers are referred to “The Paleo Diet Cookbook”.
If you are strict with the diet 85 percent of the time you can realize significant improvements in your health. The other 15 percent – which equates to about three meals a week – can include foods not normally allowed.
Also provided in the seven-day plan are health tips and specific recommendations for exercise and relaxation.
Turkey, shrimp, crab, halibut, salmon, lamb, lean beef, omega 3 eggs, pecans, almonds, walnuts, avocado, spinach, tomato, cauliflower, broccoli, lettuce, berries, apples, pineapple, peaches, olive oil, wine, herb tea, mineral water..
Honey, dried fruit and natural oils are permitted in very small portions.
Sample Diet Plan
Omelet with spinach and mushroom
Baked walnut cinnamon apples
Costs and Expenses
The Paleo Diet book retails at $14.95.
Click Here to purchase the book at a discounted price.
The Paleo Answer retails for $25.95
Click here to purchase Cordain’s newest book at a discounted price.
There may be an increase in grocery expenses due to the requirement to purchase more fresh produce, seafood and lean meat.
Loren Cordain Video
- Higher intakes of protein reduce appetite and increase metabolism. High protein also prevents loss of lean muscle.
- Emphasizes fruit and vegetables.
- Intake of essential fatty acids will be high on this diet.
- May be beneficial for dieters who have difficulty with carbohydrate cravings and blood glucose imbalances.
- Will improve and reduce the risk of developing many diseases and disorders such as diabetes, heart disease and cancer.
- Produces a net alkaline load on the kidneys, which helps to reduce the loss of calcium and preserve bone tissue, which may reduce the risk of osteoporosis.
- Provides six weeks of sample menus.
- Does not require counting or measuring.
- Highly restrictive and will require a great deal of commitment from the dieter. Eliminates many favorite foods such as pasta, bread, potatoes and desserts.
- May be socially disruptive. Difficult to eat out or at social occasions.
- May be an initial withdrawal period when dieters commence the diet due to eliminating coffee, sugar, alcohol and refined carbohydrates.
- Diet is based on speculation to some degree, as it is impossible to be certain what exactly our Paleolithic ancestors ate.
- Recommends diet soda, which is contradictory to the philosophy of the diet.
- Will require careful planning to ensure that calcium is adequately supplied due to the absence of dairy products.
- Not suitable for vegans or vegetarians.
Could Be Difficult to Follow for Some
If dieters commit to The Paleo Diet it or the Paleo Answer can certainly be very effective for weight loss and will reduce the risk of diseases that are associated with obesity and the modern western diet.
However it may be difficult to follow especially in the initial stages and many people will experience unpleasant reactions such as fatigue, headaches and cravings. Usually these disappear after several weeks and from that point on The Paleo Diet is generally very easy for the majority of dieters to adhere to.