The Paleo diet consists of eating foods similar to the ones prehistoric humans ate during the Paleolithic era, which took place about 2.5 million to 10,000 years ago. This diet has gained much more popularity in recent years, which may be due to the growing numbers of diabetic and pre-diabetic people worldwide.
According to the Mayo Clinic, a Paleo diet includes foods such as fish, lean meats, nuts, seeds, fruits, and vegetables. Essentially, the type of food that could be found by hunting and gathering during prehistoric eras outline the fundamentals of the Paleo diet. This nutrition plan is also often called the Stone Age diet, caveman diet, or the hunter-gatherer diet.
The Paleo diet limits the type of products that are manufactured due to farming, which began approximately 10,000 years ago. Therefore, food such as grains, legumes, and dairy products are limited within this nutrition plan.
Essentially, people following this diet are discouraged from eating carbs and refined sugars. This ties directly back to diabetes patients looking to follow the correct nutrition plan to keep their insulin levels steady. The Paleo diet is beneficial for people with pre-diabetes or diabetes because they need to avoid carbs and sugars.
The reasoning behind this nutrition plan is related to returning us back to what early humans ate. Essentially, the idea behind it is that the human body is not matched well to the modern diet that came about due to farming processes. Farming brought dairy, legumes, and grains into the human diet. However, the rapid change in people's diet outpaced the human body's capability to align. It is thought that this change in the modern diet is the reason for the growth in diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular disease.
You'll find that you can either lose weight or maintain a healthy weight on the Stone Age diet. While some guidelines for the Paleo diet may be more strict, the general diet plan include the following foods.
The type of foods that need to be avoided on the Stone Age diet include: refined sugar, dairy products, legumes such as beans, lentils, peanuts, and peas, grains including wheat, oats, and barley, salt, potatoes, and highly processed foods.
According to the publication Healthline, this diet avoids foods such as artificial sweeteners, soft drinks, vegetables oils, margarine, high-fructose corn syrup, and trans fats. You'll want to limit fruit juices, candy, pastries, ice cream, and cakes or pies. Breads and pastas need to be avoided as well as most dairy. However, some versions of the Paleo diet include full-fat butter and cheeses.
Essentially, if the food looks like it was made in a factory, avoid it. Read the ingredients list when shopping to make sure you're sticking to this diet. You'll definitely need to avoid all processed foods.
The standard menu on the Paleo diet may include a breakfast of cantaloupe and broiled salmon, according to the Mayo Clinic. Lunch may have lean pork or beef with a salad of romaine lettuce, tomatoes, carrots, cucumbers, walnuts, and lemon juice. Dinner may include a beef roast, steamed broccoli, a salad of mixed greens, avocado, onions, almonds, and tomatoes, as well as strawberries for dessert.
Some typical snacks on the caveman's diet include oranges, carrots sticks, and celery. You'll also want to drink plenty of water on this diet and exercise regularly to stay healthy.
When compared to diets such as the Mediterranean diet, the Paleo nutrition plan had some better results, according to some clinical trials. These benefits include better glucose tolerance, more weight loss, improved blood pressure control, enhanced appetite management, and lower triglycerides.
There may be other beneficial health effects of this diet, but larger, long-term clinical clinical trials will be needed to determine the benefits and risks of the Stone Age diet.
"Eliminating carbohydrates and processed foods may not be a bad idea — especially in the case of processed carbs — and may result in weight loss, since the bulk of the American diet comes from carbs," Adrienne Youdim, MD, an associate clinical professor of medicine at the University of California David Geffen School of Medicine in Los Angeles, told Everyday Health.
Along with losing weight, this diet plan leads to improvements in blood pressure management among people with symptoms of metabolic syndrome. Essentially, this means the caveman diet can reduce the risk of stroke, heart disease, and death.
Research also shows that this diet can help people better manage type 2 diabetes. A 2015 study published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that people with type 2 diabetes who followed this diet for two weeks saw better results for their blood sugar, lipid profiles, and insulin sensitivity.
Essentially, you'll find that this diet has numerous benefits for your health and doesn't require as much time counting calories or measuring your portions. With this nutrition plan, you should be able to lose weight and maintain better health.