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Allow Me To Clarify…

bacon and coconut oil

So this won’t be a super-long post, but it’s something that I need to say here because I’m tired of having the same arguments with people about the paleo way of life.  This is something that people seem to not be able to grasp, and I’m not sure why this is such a difficult concept, BUT:

PALEO NUTRITION IS MOST CERTAINLY NOT ABOUT EATING THE EXACT SAME FOODS AS OUR PALEOLITHIC ANCESTORS.

Shocking, right?  If this IS shocking to you, then you’ve missed the point of this completely.  Let me explain what’s going on here, and why we do what we do.

First off, eating “paleo” is not a one-way, carved in stone type of eating.  There is no single “Paleo Diet”.  There are many general things that you can say about paleo, such as “no grains”, or “eat meat”, but there are many gray areas, and those gray areas depend a lot on who you are, and what your goals are.  We’ll leave those for now, but I may address them in another post.

Eating “paleo” simply means that we are using the diet of our ancestors as a template to generate hypotheses to figure out what we should be eating now.  We are using the fact that they were almost always healthy, lean, fit, disease-free, strong people to help us make the same healthy choices.  I’m not going to even address the  shoddy arguments of “but they only lived like 20 years , so it’s not helpful”, but if you want, read THIS.  The plain and simple fact is that if the goal was to literally mirror what our ancestors ate, we would fail on the first day.  None of the animals or plants that we lived on 15,000 years ago exist anymore, or at least don’t exist in the same form that they once did.  The basis of paleo nutrition is Lascaux-hunterscompletely founded in science.  Most people miss this fact.  We don’t avoid grains just because we didn’t have them around.  We didn’t have olive oil either, if you must know.  But when we look at the effects of grains on our system, specifically the gut, we know that they are toxic and contain a lot of anti-nutrients that have many negative effects on us.  We know this from study after study.  Most of us also know this from personal experience.  Remove the grains, and suddenly we don’t feel bloated anymore.  We lose weight instantly.  We figured all this out because we followed a scientific method.  We used our ancestors to generate a hypothesis.  We tested it and tested it again and again.  The results were the same every time.  Coming back to olive oil, we did the same thing, and it turns out that we do process olive oil in a favorable way.

I’m not trying to convince anyone here of switching to a paleo way of life.  Well, I am in general, but not with this specific post.  I mostly just wanted to have a page that I could reference my non-believers to, without having to type this argument again and again.  If you’re going to argue against this way of life, FINE, but at least understand what you’re arguing against in the first place.  And if you ARE going to argue that grains are GOOD for us, then at least do your research and tell me how gluten and lectins are having a positive effect on us.

Thanks, and now back to your regularly scheduled programming.

 

 

6 Responses so far.

  1. Marina says:

    Love this post! I get so naseous when people start annoying me with “omg, you’re paleo?? but you’re eating with your fork” all i want to say is STFU! people love to be haters because the way they eat is crappy and same person who said it is super sick every 2 weeks and is overweight….

  2. rcwellington says:

    SUCH a good post. I am bookmarking this for easy reference, so I don’t have to keep making the same stupid tired argument. Sometimes I think having the “caveman diet” label attached to paleo is some really unfortunate branding/messaging.

  3. Dianna says:

    The internet is so not paleo, dude. (plagiarizing Rob Wolff)

  4. jaret says:

    I like the recipes on this site.

    http://www.thefoodee.com/tag/whole30/

    The final product may not be completely Paleo when im done making my version of it, but it sure is good eatin :)

  5. […] to figure out what to eat today. That’s a distinction without a real difference because the assumptions upon which the Paleo Diet are based (e.g., that atherosclerosis didn’t exist in hunter-gatherers and that […]