The Caveman Diet, Paleolithic Diet, Neanderthal Diet, Hunter-Gather Diet, whatever DIET you wish to call it, I'm going to talk to you about my favourite way of eating as far as nutrition for a lean and healthy body goes. I get it all the time: Should I eat carbs? Is fat bad? What kind of foods should I eat? Am I getting enough protein in my diet? While all of these are very valid questions, I'd take to eliminate a lot of confusion and talk about why eating like a caveman will yield stellar results for your body, high energy levels, and is overall just a healthy way of living.
Processed Foods Have Sadly Become the Foundation of the American Diet
Many of today's commercial foods are loaded with sodium, hydrogenated oils, processed sugars, and preservatives. Let's face it, America's diet is not the healthiest. When over two-thirds of the country is overweight, don't you think we should take a step back and figure out where we've gone wrong? Look at the average American's pantry. It's probably full. Not good. Weird euphemism? Well, it makes sense. You see, if I ate like the average American, I would be in big trouble because I don't have nearly enough cupboards to hold all of those boxed-up preservative-filled “food products.”
Here's what I'm getting at: Back when cavemen roamed the earth, they didn't have Nabisco or the Keebler Elf to feed them. They couldn't go to the store and pick up a box of Trix cereal. And because of this, I can say with confidence that they also carried a lean athletic physique… the kind of physique you're reading my articles for! No, they lived off of meat, veggies, fruit, nuts, and anything else edible they could find that came from nature. That, in my opinion, is the way we as humans are supposed to eat. The more unprocessed and natural food comes, the better off you're going to be eating it. Remember… YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT. If you want to look like a doughnut, by all means, eat doughnuts. But I eat Paleo as much as possible, and largely credit my leanness to this way of eating.
Foods to Eat on Paleo
Again, anything that could be found in nature and is unprocessed. It's actually very simple. Here are the staples of the diet:
I know, the food list isn't too extensive, but you'd be surprised how many great tasting recipes you can make using just these ingredients. Your taste buds might need some time to get used to this way of eating, but your body will appreciate the change, and you will become leaner, more energetic, and become a healthier you… Not a bad deal!
Foods To Avoid
* Processed foods (anything that comes in a box)
* Refined sugars
* Starches (bread, pasta, flour, wheat, rice, corn)
I recommend you take this model of eating and lay it as your Nutritional Foundation. As I've said before, nobody eats perfect 100% of the time. It wouldn't be human if we did. We all love ice cream and we all love pizza, so please enjoy your favourite foods! Just not all day, everyday.
Paleo Alternatives to Common Processed Foods
God and Mother Nature actually created real foods that you can use to substitute other not-so-healthy foods. You can easily Google how to prepare all of these, and should be able to find them at the grocery store:
* Instead of noodles… get spaghetti squash (delicious, I use it all the time!)
* Instead of rice… get cauliflower and make “cauliflower rice”
* Instead of sugary laden desserts… get fresh berries and enjoy them for dessert
What to expect from switching to Paleo
By eating this way, you will naturally lower your carb intake by removing all the starches and sugars. Most people eat way more carbs than they need, and much of it gets stored as body fat. You will get sufficient protein from your meat, eggs, and nuts. You will get your micronutrients such as vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants from your fruits and veggies. You will tend to not overeat. You will feel more energetic and feel better! The bottom line is that this is a great way of eating and one that I use myself and highly recommend!