There’s a lot of mystery surrounding the paleo diet amongst the health-conscious people around us. What is the paleo diet and what does “paleo problem” mean? What are the paleo diet risks? What are the pros of paleo diet? You won’t believe how many people seek answers to these questions—and they don’t always get satisfactory answers.
So, today, we have decided to answer all your queries about the paleo diet in this article. Without further ado, let’s dig right in!
What is the paleo diet?
‘Paleo diet’ or ‘palaeolithic diet’, developed by Colorado State University researcher Loren Cordain, aims to take people back to the diets “they were genetically designed to eat”. There is a small list of foods approved to be consumed in a paleo diet because, of course, our prehistoric ancestors did not have a lot of food options to choose from.
But there is some controversy surrounding this diet because researches have found numerous health benefits from foods that are not included in the paleo diet—this is how the famous phrase “paleo problem” took birth.
What are the foods that you can eat if you’re on the paleo diet?
Paleo diet does not necessarily specify the portions of food that you must eat. This can be seen as one of the paleo diet health risks. You might consume too much of proteins since the quantities are not mentioned in any meal plan if you’re following paleo diet. This diet is high on proteins while it goes easy on carbs—this can be a problem for athletes since they need energy from the carbs for their intensive training sessions.
Here’s a list of some of the foods you can have while you’re on the paleo diet:
- Lean meat like chicken, turkey, pork etc.
- Fresh fruits like berries, apples, papaya etc.
- Nuts including walnuts, almonds, cashews etc.
- Non-starchy green vegetables like lettuce and asparagus
- Plant-based oils like sunflower oil, mustard oil, etc.
Now that we have given you a rough idea about the paleo diet, we’ll dig deeper and explain its pros and also the paleo diet risks.
But before that, here are some tips about the paleo diet that you need to check out:
- If the food looks like it’s artificially processed, then you shouldn’t have it
- Plan your meals —have an idea about you should and shouldn’t eat while you’re on the paleo diet
- To ensure proper hydration levels, include homemade drinks to your diet plan
- Slow cook your food
- Use technology to your advantage—try some apps that let you stay on track with your paleo diet plan
Let us now take a look at the pros of the paleo diet:
Paleo diet is very sustainable and environment-friendly
Nowadays, everybody wants to do their part in climate change and lead a sustainable lifestyle. If that’s your primary goal, then paleo diet should be on the top of your list. It’s all about learning how to eat clean.
You avoid processed food, so the meals you eat generate a lot less plastic wastes compared to some other modern diet routines. Since the main thing about a paleo diet is to revert to the olden days and eat like our ancestors, so our foods are less processed, eco-friendly and in this way, we can do our part in helping the environment.
Paleo diet lets you have lots of fruits and veggies
Paleo is based on mostly a caveman-like diet where you can have lots of raw, fresh fruit and green veggies. Fruits are rich in fibers and also, they can supply you with vitamins and minerals. Green vegetables help you get important nutrients while also helping you lose weight since they’re rich in anti-oxidants. So, you see, the paleo diet is not just about meat and eggs, but it also provides you with a balanced diet with fruits, veggies, nuts etc.
Lots and lots of healthy recipes!
You might think, since the paleo diet tells you to eat like cavemen, you cannot have too many options while eating the foods prescribed in this diet. But no, you would be amazed to find the countless recipes that are available on the internet which you can cook right at your home for presenting a perfectly sumptuous paleo brunch!
Break junk food addiction
This is one of the best pros of the paleo diet! It helps you cut down the calories that you consume by removing any sort of junk food or processed food from your meal plan. This diet is solely focused on eating healthy, least-processed, environment-friendly stuff—so, in a way, you’d be eating clean food once you switch to the paleo diet.
Now, we’ll come to the cons of paleo diet:
Paleo diet can be a bit too pricey for you
In other words, a paleo diet isn’t very cost-effective. It focuses on eating lots of chicken, fish, seafood, turkey—and none of these come at a very low cost. So, if you’re switching to paleo, you need to be aware of the number one paleo problem: it’ll cost you a good few bucks to follow this diet strictly.
As we mentioned earlier, the paleo diet gives you a very limited list of foods that are permitted for you. So, this means it also strikes out some food that provides you with essential nutrients like calcium and vitamin D. Paleo diet does not permit any milk-based intake—this explains the nutritional deficiencies. This can be seen as one of the paleo diet health risks, especially for women who need more calcium and Vit. D to prevent higher risks of osteoporosis compared to men.
This is a major drawback in the list of cons of the paleo diet. This protein-rich diet tells you to consume lots of lean meat, eggs and does not let you have milk, other dairy-based product and even a lot of vegetables.
So, if you’re vegan, this diet would probably be impossible for you to follow since it already provides you with limited options of food and you cannot have any meat too.
Not for the athletes
Yes, if you’re an athlete, you need to be on a high-protein and high-energy diet. Even though paleo lets you consume enough proteins, it goes too easy on the carbs. This is a huge paleo problem for the players. So, if you think that you need lots of energy for your training sessions, practice sessions and workout routines, then this diet is not for you.
Thus, you have a complete guide for the paleo diet. This article should help you with the answers to all your questions about this diet that tells you to go back to the pre-historic diets that our ancestors were used to. You now know about the paleo problem; the paleo diet risks and also the pros of the paleo diet.
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