What’s Really Up with Paleo Recipes and Our Health?


It’s all over Facebook and Pinterest right now; the Paleo diet. What is it, and why do you keep seeing Pinterest boards titled, “Paleo Recipes,” and “Paleo Lifestyle,” all over the place? It’s a good question, and it’s got a very simple answer. The Paleo diet is one of the latest trends in dieting and losing weight. We’ve said it before, and we will say it again; we don’t have a problem with dieting, but we love the idea of losing weight with good old-fashioned exercise and a healthy diet. Extremes are, well, extreme. It’s difficult to keep up with a fad diet that cuts out an entire portion of food from your life, especially if you love food. It’s much easier to eat healthier foods, smaller portions and in moderation while occasionally allowing yourself to have what you love most.

However, the Paleo diet is one with recipes that are gaining popularity all over the world. Some of these recipes are fine and out of the entire world of fad diets, the Paleo diet is not the most offensive or even the worst one. We’ve decided to break down some facts and information and provide you with the benefits of this diet and its recipes so that you can understand exactly what it is you’re eating when you decide one of those millions of Paleo recipes online looks amazing.

It’s a Neanderthal Diet

It sounds harsh, but it’s true. The Paleo diet is the one that the caveman from millions of years ago ate. Think about it; they did not have a Publix or Gelson’s down the street they could run over to and pick up processed foods from any aisle of their choosing. They had two options; eat what grows naturally and kill things that live on the planet and eat them. Since so many people still hunt and meat is always a popular main dish, we’re assuming that most of us all have an inner caveman to feed.

This diet is essentially the caveman diet. To explain it in a way that’s very simple; if a caveman couldn’t eat it 100 million years ago, you can’t eat it to be on this diet. Sorry Oreos and Starbucks.

It Gives You Energy

The truth of the matter is that this diet can give you more natural energy that you don’t find from things like your coffee or other caffeine. It’s a natural high and natural energy that lasts you all day long. Feel exhausted and ready for a nap by mid-afternoon? Welcome to the world of all of us, and say goodbye to that with this diet. With the Paleo diet and the many recipes that it entails, you can wean yourself off of refined sugars and carbs. This will give you more natural energy. You’ll be more energetic all day, and you won’t find it necessary to pour another cup of coffee in the afternoon.

It Might Help with Digestive Issues

Many people believe that they have an improvement with their digestive system once they are eating mostly recipes that are Paleo-inspired. Perhaps it’s the lack of grains and dairy that makes this possible, but it’s still up for debate. Some dieticians and Paleo-professionals feel this to be true, and others feel that it warrants more research. However, ask anyone who uses these types of recipes and you’ll likely find out that they’ve experienced less bloat, less gassiness and a much simpler time with their digestive tract than before they lived this lifestyle.

It’s Not a Diet

Okay, so all those times above (and below, I’m just predicting here) that I referred to Paleo recipes as a diet are a bit of a stretch. Health professionals call it a lifestyle. It’s not a diet. They say that this is a lifestyle because it’s not something you stop. This is not a juice cleanse or a diet that has you eating a certain way for a while and then allows you to eat like you did before once again. This is a lifestyle change that requires a constant change. That’s not to say people always stick to it 100 percent (might we mention Starbucks again?) but those who do make this lifestyle change often find that they are happy with sticking with this lifestyle change most of the time.

It’s Controversial

Some people swear by this lifestyle change, and others find it questionable. Many people refer to it as a diabetic diet that cuts out certain foods and gets people eating things that are more ‘from the land,’ and others believe that the way the world is now, eating meat is not necessarily as healthy as it might be. Some people believe that with all the pollution in the world right now that animals are consuming things that aren’t healthy and we have no idea what they’re eating, and what we are eating as a result. This is a big controversy for many, and it’s something that a lot of people fail to consider when they take this diet into consideration.

In a nutshell (something the cavemen consumed, apparently) Paleo is a way of life for some and not for others. You’ll never convince people who aren’t interested to eat this way. Personally, I feel that while the concept is a good one, there’s a much better way to go about it. Instead of eating things that cavemen ate and forgoing the good stuff, why not just eat healthier as a whole? How about eating more vegetables and smaller portions of meat? How about forgoing soda and tea and juice and just drink water all day long (I’m not forgoing my evening red, however)? How about eating one cookie at a party instead of 5 of them, and how about skipping drive thrus and going home and cooking healthy meals with fresh ingredients?

Oh, and let’s all use a smaller plate, and then go for a walk. You can eat all the diet foods, make all the diet recipes and jump on board all the latest fad trains, but moderation, movement and a healthy lifestyle change is really the best advice. Ask any medical professional.

Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images


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