Supposedly inspired by our ancestors, here's all you need to know before starting this Stone Age-inspired diet!
Going back to the roots and traditional eating patterns is the latest buzz among many fitness enthusiasts. One such diet is the Paleo way of eating, which is inspired by our ancestors who existed during the Paleolithic times aka the Old Stone Age. So, this meal plan excludes all the edibles that emerged after humans began farming and owning cattle.
"A paleo diet is mostly low on carbohydrates and consists of wholefoods believed to have been eaten by our Paleolithic ancestors. This predominantly consists of meat, fish, eggs, nuts, vegetables/fruit, and excluding dairy, grains, and processed foods. If possible, it is always best to purchase organic, free-range or wild-caught to reduce the toxicity load," says Renee Grandi, Nutritionist and Naturopath at Chiva-Som, Thailand.
How does it work?
"Paleo diet can help with weight management because avoiding processed foods, grains and high carbohydrate intakes can significantly improve insulin responses (how we respond to our blood sugars), weight-management/loss, digestion and diabetes. It has been shown to improve gut health and restore a healthy gut microbiome vital for a quick metabolism and weight-loss. The Paleolithic diet is higher in healthy fats and proteins ultimately improving satiety and reducing snacking," says Renee.
Paleo diet's effect on your body
"Maintaining a paleo diet increases your consumption of nutrient-dense foods, enhancing nutrient absorption and utilization to promote healthy biological mechanisms. Every single biochemical reaction in our body requires an abundance of micro and macro-nutrients, many of these must be acquired externally through foods. The paleo diet allows the body to reset, detoxify and go back to the wholefood basics to which our bodies thrive on," she says.
However, you may have to go without your regular sources of fibre and vitamins such as whole grains and legumes as well as dairy products, which are good sources of protein and calcium.
A comprehensive Paleo meal plan
"Contrary to popular belief, you really can eat a delicious diet while following this meal plan. There are endless recipes and they all taste pretty amazing. Here are a few of my suggestions:
Breakfast: Super Smoothie – a handful of greens, nuts/nut butter of choice, frozen cucumber, avocado, coconut milk, ice and water. You might like to add in a superfood such as spirulina, cacao, maca root or collagen.
Lunch: A healthy vegetable salad with extra-virgin and balsamic dressing: rocket, watercress, green beans, pine nuts, almonds and steamed cauliflower or broccoli – drizzled with an organic dressing and ½ of an avocado on the side.
Snack: A cup of homemade organic chicken broth with fresh herbs
Dinner: Baked wild-caught Atlantic Mackerel with garlic lightly baked vegetables (zucchini, kale, onions, garlic, broccolini) and topped with a lemon vinaigrette to help the breakdown of fats."
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