What a flipping joke. US News ranked the Paleo Diet dead last in every category that included overall, weight loss, diabetes, heart healthy and commercial. Do they have any idea what the paleo diet is? Obviously not. They said the paleo diet was low carb. It’s NOT low carb! Not by a long shot! Are many people eating low carb who also eat a paleo diet? Yes. However, that means nothing. I eat a paleo diet but I don’t eat low carb. This is true with thousands of others. Was the panel made up of experts? It does not seem so. If they are then they deserve a toad slap.
Read the full article now if you have not already: US News Best Diets
On this page they have a series of 10 questions plus an overview. Sadly, most of the information on this page is flat out wrong. It is safe to say that I know a hell of a lot more about a paleo diet, or as I like to put it, a primal/paleo lifestyle, compared to everyone that ranked the diets. I’ll answer the questions truthfully. You will know the truth about this kick ass lifestyle. A lifestyle that is SAVING lives. A lifestyle that us human beings lived for 2.5 million years. A lifestyle that millions of people live in millions of different ways.
Let’s get to it shall we?
May include weight loss and maintenance, and prevention or control of many “diseases of civilization,” like type 2 diabetes and heart disease.
You’ll lead a healthier, fitter, disease-free life.
Our highly processed, carb-obsessed eating pattern is the culprit behind many of our biggest health ills, so why not go back—way back—to the Paleolithic period of more than 10,000 years ago, when our diet wasn’t full of junk food and pasta? Paleo advocates say we should eat the way we ate when we were hunting and gathering: animal protein and plants.
They got most of this right. Where they are wrong is saying it’s low carb. It’s not. You can eat 300 grams of carbohydrates a day and still be eating a paleo diet. I never would but you could. If I was eating 5,000 calories a day then I easily would. Also, it does NOT resemble the Atkins diet. Not by a long shot.
How does the Paleo Diet work?
Paleo diets are based on a simple premise—if the cavemen didn’t eat it, you shouldn’t either. So long to refined sugar, dairy, legumes, and grains (this is pre-agricultural revolution); hello to meat, fish, poultry, fruits, and veggies. What you eat and how much depend on your goals or the specific program you’re on, if you choose to follow one.
You can find most of what you need to know online, but a book makes a handy reference. The Paleo Diet, for example, outlines basic Paleo principles and offers three “levels” that allow for different degrees of cheating—three “open meals” per week on the “entry level” plan, two on “maintenance,” and just one on “maximal.” Depending on the level, you might also get “transitional” condiments (low-fat dressing and salsa) and drinks (coffee, beer, or wine in moderation) to wash down the meat and plants. You can use the levels as you like. Start with the first and move gradually to the more restrictive—or just stay put. For more dramatic changes, head right to the third.
The general guideline that they stated in paragraph one is correct. If you want to make it simple then go by that rule. However, their is a lot more to it. It should not be that simple. One should experiment once they dive in and see what works for them. I eat green beans, sugar snap peas and peas. All are legumes and thus all are not technically paleo. Bananas are a new food but it’s a fruit. Many apples are new foods too. Some eat potatoes and some don’t. Some even include beans here and there. We like to use the 80/20 rule which allows anyone in the world to eat this way. Some even include white rice. It’s all a personal choice. I say dive in for 30-60 days and be strict. Then add back certain foods. If you eat a slice of whole wheat bread after that 30 days prepare to feel like shit.
As far as books go on the subject… well… there are hundreds. Literally. The best 2 are The Primal Blueprint and The Paleo Solution. Read one or read both. You then won’t want to stop educating yourself with this lifestyle! The newest bang that is going to be huge for this movement is Wheat Belly. I can not wait to get my hands on it!
Will you lose weight?
No way to tell. Paleo diets haven’t yet drawn the attention of many researchers. One tiny study that looked at weight loss found that 14 participants lost an average of about 5 pounds after three weeks on a Paleo regimen. (But even the researchers called their study “underpowered.”) Still, if you build a “calorie deficit” into your Paleo plan—eating fewer calories than your daily recommended max, or burning off extra by exercising—you should shed some pounds. How quickly and whether you keep them off is up to you.
Bull shit. You don’t need large studies to believe. Just take a look at all the real life transformations on MDA. Seriously. Do it. Now! It has 12 long ass pages so it might take you a while. My favorite success story is The Unconquerable Dave. There are thousands of other primal/paleo success stories all over the web. I even have some. Just click here.
You will lose weight if that is your goal. You will keep it off too. There is a massive support system within this lifestyle. If you stick with it, ask questions and never give up then you can’t fail. I hate that word but it works here!
Does it have cardiovascular benefits?
Unknown. While some studies have linked Paleo diets with reducing blood pressure, bad “LDL” cholesterol, and triglycerides (a fatty substance that can raise heart disease risk), there have been few, small, and short. And all that fat would worry most experts.
More bull shit. It is known. Look at thousands of individuals who have tried this “diet” (I hate this word with a passion but it gets me traffic). If you want to find out if it has cardiovascular benefits then try it. Eat paleo for 30 days. Get your numbers checked before you start and then get them checked on day 31. When you do this come back to me. Oh, and I want to see the numbers for the different particle sizes for LDL. It’s not about the total number but rather how many of the large and small particles you have. You want the large size. You do not want the small ones.
I’ll bet anyone in the world a million dollars that, if someone with poor health lives the primal lifestyle how I want them to live it, then they will turn around their health. They will no longer be at risk for anything. The amount of time would vary. This lifestyle will fix anyone folks. I realize we are all different and I would thus have the individual experiment. Their is no one size fits all. But the general guidelines will fit all.
Can it control or prevent diabetes?
Prevention: Being overweight is one of the biggest risk factors for type 2 diabetes. If reverting back to the Paleo era helps you lose weight and keep it off, you’ll stand a better chance of staving off the disease.
Control: One small study comparing a Paleo and a traditional diabetes diet in 13 type 2 diabetics showed the Paleo diet resulted in lower levels of hemoglobin A1C, a measure of blood sugar over time. The approach needs to be studied more before strong conclusions can be drawn, but most diabetes experts recommend a diet that includes whole grains and dairy products.
More bull shit. It does reverse diabetes and most definitely prevents it. No question about it! That’s a given for this way of life! Carbohydrates are the main culprit. Unless you are very active then you should not eat a lot of carbs. I am not going to say that everyone should be eating less than 100 or even less than 150. Most should unless you are very active. But, again, we are all different. Experiment folks!
This is again claiming that just because their have not been large studies that it’s unknown. This is complete idiocy. Do the people who took part in this article want to save lives? Have they been involved with primal living? I want to save lives. Primal/paleo eating and living does this. This article may have gotten in my way but I sure hope this response changes some minds. I sure hope this gets one million likes on facebook and one million tweets. You can help me make it happen!
Are there health risks?
Possibly. By shunning dairy and grains, you’re at risk of missing out on a lot of nutrients. Also, if you’re not careful about making lean meat choices, you’ll quickly ratchet up your risk for heart problems.
While there are no specific dieter restrictions, you’ll want to consider talking with your doctor before making changes to your meal plans.
No health risks. No side effects exist. Some people get the “low carb flu.” Their is a way around this. Don’t go from eating 300+ carbs a day to less than 50 carbs a day. Take baby steps if you don’t want to feel sick right away. If you want a shot at having severe side effects then take drugs.
Sure, you are shunning dairy and grains. But what do you replace those food groups with? Meat, veggies, fruits. Eat organ meats too. You are not missing out on a single nutrient. Lean meats? Sorry but that is not part of the protocol. Eat lean meats. Eat fatty meats too. Bacon anyone? Or how about grass fed ground beef? Not all dairy is out. Many primal/paleo folks who handle dairy well eat full fat dairy from grass-fed, pasture raised cows. I eat butter and ghee. I don’t do any other dairy because I am lactose and casein intolerant as far as I know. Most are lactose intolerant which means not consuming dairy will do wonders for an individuals health.
How well does it conform to accepted dietary guidelines?
Fat. At about 39 percent of daily calories from fat, a sample Paleo menu exceeds the government’s 35 percent cap by a bit.
Protein. The government recommends 10 to 35 percent of daily calories come from protein; the Paleo diet clocks in around 38 percent.
Carbohydrates. At 23 percent of daily calories from carbs, it’s far below the government’s 45 to 65 percent recommendation.
Salt. The majority of Americans eat too much salt. The recommended daily maximum is 2,300 milligrams, but if you’re 51 or older, African-American, or have hypertension, diabetes, or chronic kidney disease, that limit is 1,500 mg. You won’t have trouble staying under either goal; cavemen didn’t have table salt and high-sodium processed foods, and fresh produce is virtually sodium-free.
Other key nutrients. The 2010 Dietary Guidelines call these “nutrients of concern” because many Americans get too little of one or more of them:
- Fiber. Getting the recommended daily amount of 22 to 34 grams for adults helps you feel full and promotes good digestion. With such a heavy emphasis on fruits and veggies, you’ll exceed your target.
- Potassium. A sufficient amount of this important nutrient, according to the 2010 Dietary Guidelines, counters salt’s ability to raise blood pressure, decreases bone loss, and reduces the risk of developing kidney stones. It’s not that easy to get the recommended daily 4,700 mg. from food. (Bananas are high in potassium, yet you’d have to eat 11 a day.) The majority of Americans take in far too little. A sample Paleo diet was nearly double the government’s suggested goal—one of few diets that manages to do it.
- Calcium. It’s essential not only to build and maintain bones but to make blood vessels and muscles function properly. Many Americans don’t get enough. Women and anyone older than 50 should try especially hard to meet the government’s recommendation of 1,000 to 1,300 mg. Because you’re not allowed dairy or fortified cereals, you’ll likely only get about 700 mg. from a Paleo menu.
- Vitamin B-12. Adults should shoot for 2.4 micrograms of this nutrient, which is critical for proper cell metabolism. You’ll have no trouble meeting the recommendation—fish and meat are B-12 powerhouses.
- Vitamin D. You’ll get very little or none, so you’ll either have to supplement (the non-caveman way) or just make sure you spend enough time in the sun to get the 15 micrograms recommended. Some experts suggest five to 30 minutes of sun between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m., twice a week and without sunscreen, to meet the recommendation, according to the National Institutes of Health.
Supplement recommended? Up to you, but The Paleo Diet recommends vitamin D supplements if you don’t get a decent dose of sun regularly. Fish oil capsules are suggested if you don’t like fish or shellfish. Some sources also suggest a calcium supplement.
Government recommendations? Are we really suppose to let the government tell us what to eat? Their recommendations for fat, protein and carbs for a normal individual are way out of whack. Don’t listen to the government folks! The US Guidelines are created by the USDA. That stands for the United States Department of Agriculture. Of course they are going to recommend grains! Of course they are going to recommend carbs! Don’t you see the “crime” here? It’s sad but it’s all about money. Corn, a grain, is subsidized. It’s super cheap. Companies that make processed foods like Kraft use tons of corn. They also use a lot of wheat and soy. Both are subsidized and thus very cheap.
Kraft makes a lot of money at the cost of YOUR HEALTH.
You get all the necessary nutrients from a primal or paleo diet. Easily. By a landslide. No concern here.
How easy is it to follow?
Can you get used to the idea of breadless sandwiches? Or having your milk and cookies without either milk or cookies? Diets that restrict entire food groups are difficult to follow. On the flip side, you can determine how primal you want to be, working in some cheat meals if you want.
Recipe sites and cookbooks are abundant, but you can also incorporate eating out into your Paleo plan. Alcohol is discouraged but OK in moderation. You’ll have lots of sites and books for support.
Nutrition experts emphasize the importance of satiety, the satisfied feeling that you’ve had enough. You shouldn’t feel hungry on this diet—protein and fiber are filling, and you’ll get plenty of both. One small study of 29 participants published in Nutrition and Metabolism in 2010 found Paleo dieters felt just as full but consumed fewer calories than their Mediterranean counterparts.
You’re making everything, so if something doesn’t taste good, you know who to blame.
This diet is easy to follow. It’s not a diet which bugs me. But hey… it may get me some traffic! I like how they said cheat meals. This is a personal choice. If you want to include a few cheat meals or cheat foods then do it. It’s all up to the individual. This is not some religion that you have to follow. They are right in that you will feel full. I now wonder why they believe it won’t help you lose weight?!?! The 2 don’t add up! And yes, the food is muy delicious!
How much does it cost?
It may be pricey—the produce section and meat counter are among the priciest corners of the grocery store.
Wrong! It’s not pricey unless you make it be. Buy a whole cow and share it with others. Get a membership at Costco. Eat a fair amount of potatoes and bananas. Eat a good helping of ghee and coconut oil. Forget steak. You don’t need it. Buy local and in season. Only eat organic when you can afford it. Eat organ meats. Barter. Cook all of your own food. Create awesome smoothies.
Does the diet allow for restrictions and preferences?
Not everyone can follow this approach—choose your preference for more information.
More nonsense. Everyone can follow this approach. Even vegetarians. I will never recommend a vegetarian diet to anyone but it’s still possible. Eat some legumes, supplement your protein intake and eat eggs if you are willing. It’s not difficult. More than likely you will be adding meat to your diet in no time. Most vegetarians fall off that wagon and end up eating meat. Most do it for health reasons.
What is the role of exercise?
Recommended. Although they didn’t think of it as “exercise,” hunter-gatherers of the Paleolithic were always on the move.
If you’re following the basic Paleo approach, try to get at least 2½ hours of moderate-intensity activity (like brisk walking) each week, along with a couple days of muscle-strengthening activities. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offers tips to get you started.
The Paleo Diet suggests a similar approach, and offers tips to sneak in exercise throughout the day (i.e., getting off the subway a stop early) while reminding you exercise can be fun—if you’re doing something you like.
It’s simple. Move. The more you move the better. Quit sitting all day. Stand and sit instead. Do some push-ups or squats every 30 minutes in your office. If you get fired then it’s a sign that it was not the best job anyways. Some of you may not be able to do this but MOST of you can. You are just too afraid. Do intense workout sessions. Play. Have fun. Don’t follow a strict program. I personally go out by the beach and just move in the moment. I mix it up and never follow the same workout. I have a blast this way and look forward to every single workout. Not kidding. If you don’t look forward to exercising then you should take a step back and think about how you approach it. I have a blast and you should too.
The primal/paleo lifestyle also emphasizes sunlight, sleep and more. I choose to live more minimally and many others are following. Spend time outside. Educate yourself. Quit following conventional wisdom.
What are your thoughts on the US News Diet Report? On my response? How accurate do you think the results are? They seem way off to me.