A few years ago, Paleo diets were all the rave. Though they have declined in popularity, many people still live by a paleo diet as they believe it is a way to help their bodies feel their best every day.
But, is a paleo diet really good for you?
Our following blog seeks to examine this and discover what the benefits are of consuming a paleo diet.
But first, we need to uncover what a paleo diet is
By definition, a paleo diet focuses on eating the same foods our ancestors would have eaten during the Paleolithic Era. This includes foods like fruits, vegetables, lean meats, fish, eggs, nuts and seeds. The paleo diet does not include foods that became popular during the modern farming era. These include grains, legumes and dairy products. Therefore, it focuses more on hunter-gatherer-type edibles.
The idea behind this diet is that the body cannot break down and process foods that are processed or that came about after early humans did. It aims to avoid intolerances in the body which are typically caused by farmed foods, such as milk. It is believed that consuming a paleo diet can lower the chances of diabetes, heart disease and obesity.
So, is a Paleo Diet Healthy?
Like all diets and fads, the paleo diet comes with benefits, some of these were listed above. However, the paleo diet is not for everyone. It does omit some important food groups, which are essential to a healthy lifestyle. These include grains, dairy and legumes.
It has been cited that a paleo diet can see reductions in cholesterol and fat as the body is only consuming easy-to-digest foods. However, when it is the only source of food, it can have many short-term and long-term effects.
We will dig into these further. But before we do, we would like to say that no diet or fad will be 100% perfect. If living paleo works for you, then that's great. However, studies show that specific food groups, or conscious alternatives to these groups, are essential to feeling your best. An example of this would be substituting tofu for meat in a plant-based diet to ensure you still receive adequate iron.
At Jomeis Fine Foods, we always recommend listening to your body, so you can uncover which foods and food groups work best for you.
The short-term effects of a paleo diet
In just the first few days of a paleo diet, you may find that your energy levels begin to waver. Your body, which was once used to a rich, carb-heavy diet, will need to find other sources of energy. This can lead to disruptions to your mood. So, it's more important than ever that you always think before you speak.
On a positive note, you will find that your body quickly loses excessive fat. On average, within the first three weeks, people claim they lose about 2.5 kgs, followed by a 0.5cm reduction in their waist circumference. These people also record a decrease in systolic blood pressure, reduced risk for cardiovascular disease and reduced cholesterol.
The long-term effects of a paleo diet
While the short-term results are excellent, the long-term ones are where the paleo diet becomes controversial. Due to nutritional deficiencies from the paleo diet, there is no guarantee that you will be able to keep the weight off in the long term. In fact, after two years, the body may begin the reverse the process due to its need for healthy fats and carbs.
Red meat, which is an element of the paleo diet, is also incredibly high in saturated fat. So, too much of the wrong red meat can contribute to weight gain rather than loss. In fact, even small pieces of red meat can blow your calorie deficit out of whack, which will contribute to weight gain.
What are our thoughts?
Every diet and fad has its advantages and disadvantages. If Paleo works for you, we recommend sticking with it. However, if you are considering moving to a paleo diet, we would recommend you focus on doing it for the short term, in bursts of 6 months. This can help you regulate your weight and get in control of your health without experiencing significant repercussions.
Chat with us to find out how the Jomeis Fine Foods range can help you achieve a paleo diet.