Paleo Primer


For the Uninitiated

Maybe you’re here by mistake or stumbled in somehow. Or perhaps you’re new to all this Paleo/Primal stuff and have no idea what I’m talking about, but you know that it offends everything you’ve ever been told about nutrition and you kinda like it. Or maybe you’re a raw vegan advocate who is here to give me a what-for in the comments about how I’m going to die of high cholesterol and meat is murder.

However you’ve gotten here, welcome!

Operators are standing by to answer your questions.

As a writer, I necessarily have to assume that my audience knows what I’m talking about, otherwise it’ll start sounding like Mother Goose Goes Paleo in here. I’m writing for an educated Paleo/Primal audience, but I’m glad you’re here and I don’t want to lose you. I hardly know you, but I love you already.

People come to this lifestyle for many different reasons. Some are trying to lose weight. Others are here to heal their bodies from various ills such as diabetes, high blood pressure, acne, allergies etc. Some are crazy weightlifter types trying to get from 8% body fat down to 6%. More power to us all.

Across the board, people seem genuinely interested in the latest research while also sharing a healthy skepticism for the information out there. Those who live this lifestyle have seen the effects first-hand and need no more proof than that. I can go on and on, but you should just check out the success stories at Mark’s Daily Apple.

The low-fat movement in our country has been devastating to our waistlines and our health. Paleo lifestyles seek to change this trend by returning to the foods we evolved to eat: meat, vegetables, fruit, and nuts. No grains, no sugar, no processed foods. We aim for the best quality we can find and afford: organic, grass-fed, pastured, local, foraged, or hunted. In addition, many seek out functional exercise that moves our bodies the way they were meant to move. We believe this leads to a life more in balance physically and mentally, and we hope it leads to long-term health free from many of the diseases that plague our modern society.

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11 Responses to “Paleo Primer”

  1. Karen – wow! I am impressed! Never heard of this Paleo life…thanks for educating me. Great site! Love this: “Come for the bacon and dark chocolate-covered macadamia nuts, stay for the lean physique and healthy life.”

  2. This one’s going to be a permanent link on my blog.

    Good luck in good health,

    David

    • Thanks, David! Looks like you’re making great progress and it’s so awesome you’re keeping a record as you go. Be sure and take lots of photos along the way, something I didn’t do and wish I had.

  3. as a vegetarian looks like one has no way of being on the paleo diet and since its difficult to get good quality meat and poultry in india i am not happy about giving it to my daughter either, so what do i do except eat eggs which are full of all kinds of thing tat commercial hens feed on.
    harman

  4. The best book I found was Dr. Wolfgang Lutz’s Life Without Bread. Explains the science perfectly. He didn’t call it Paleo

  5. (continued)
    Sorry I was interrupted. He didn’t call it Paleo but he made it so sensible.

  6. “The main gist of it all is that carbohydrates (and no, not just refined carbs, but the whole grains and legumes too) cause a flood of insulin in our bodies that, over time, causes insulin resistance. Weight gain follows, which in turn leads to the cascade of metabolic syndrome: high blood pressure, obesity, cardiac issues, diabetes, kidney disease, liver disease, and increased risk of stroke and heart attack. The low-fat movement in our country has been devastating to our waistlines and our health. Paleo/Primal lifestyles seek to change this trend by returning to the foods we evolved to eat: meat, vegetables, fruit, and nuts. No grains, no sugar, no processed foods.”

    Love it….so succinct and yet informative

  7. Karen, I am so excited you messaged me and told me about this. I am so eager to get the books I ordered based on your suggestions, and I am already motivated to make a change based on what you have already shared. Can’t wait to really get started and share my story too.

  8. What I don’t understand in all this is why no grains?

    They are natural and have been around for 1000s of years. Do has bread for that matter.

    Thanks,

    Mike

    • I’m not sure we know yet. As far as the human timeline goes, grains are quite new, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re problematic. What is known is that many traditional cultures that used them did so sparingly, they didn’t form the foundation of any diet until the advent of agriculture. Without industrial measures, they are difficult to procure, process, store, and prepare. It is only due to our modern circumstances that they are consumable in the large scale we see today. Grains are environmentally damaging under our new systems: monocrops, synthetic fertilizers, insecticides, fungicides, etc. And they fail to provide the nutrients other natural foods can. They displace those nutrient-dense options in our lives. It can’t be argued that anyone benefits from a pile of rice instead of more veggies like broccoli, peppers, and onions.

      There is evidence to suggest that what we are seeing today is indeed novel. There are many possible culprits. I think the research into our microbiome and the effect of antibiotics is going to be fascinating, I’m looking forward to that as it unfolds. There also seems to be a difference between natural carbohydrates like sweet potatoes and “acellular” carbohydrates like white flour, and how they react in our bodies. But no matter how you feel about grains, we can probably agree that there is a big difference between tubers and roots we’ve been eating for time immemorial and a processed, sugar-laden powdered donut.

      Hope that helps.

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