Ohhhh Paleo, just saying the word seems to ruffle the feathers of some and yet excite the ears of others. But what is it about the ever so elusive “paleo diet” that brings about so much controversy? I received some requests to do an article on paleo, so this is going to be an attempt at my most unbiased opinion on the subject. I’m really not an expert on the subject of paleo, but nor is anyone else unless you have a gnarly beard, live in a cave, and carry club to impress all the other hairy Neanderthal babes, so here is what I really think about paleo.
If you haven’t heard of paleo by now then you probably have been living under a rock for the past few years; but I guess if you live under a rock then you are most likely following the paleo diet anyway. So for that reason I’ll keep the background behind the paleo diet short and sweet; also because I don’t want to explain anything wrong since I am not an evolutionary biologist by any means. The paleo diet is basically a type of diet that has people eating foods that would mimic the foods eaten by our ancestral paleolithic man. This would be of the time when we were primarily hunters and gatherers, had lots of hair, smelled pretty gnarly, rocked some pretty large noses and most likely lived in caves. The diet consists of mountains of vegetables, plentiful meat, eggs, some fruit, a few starches, and some nuts and seeds. There are no grains, no dairy, and no processed shit that lines all of the supermarket shelves. Sounds ridiculous doesn’t it! (Don’t mind the sarcasm there) Here’s a link to all the details about the paleo diet. And here’s another one.
The thing that confuses me the most about the paleo diet is all of the controversy that comes along with it. The second someone says they are going to follow the paleo diet, half the population immediately associates them with some barbaric meat eating savage that kills birds in the front yard for an afternoon snack, or as some lethargic loony that is gnawing at a carrot and celery. But in reality, it’s not radical at all. Why is it crazy that a person is going to eat lots of vegetables with some meat and nuts and some fruit??? I don’t understand the controversy behind it. I for one know plenty of people that would cook up a big beef stew with some carrots, celery, and onions for dinner, but would cringe at the thought of going paleo. But guess what, that whole damn stew meal was paleo, SURPRISE! Anytime someone is trying to eat healthy and they happen to make a meal that is some cooked veggies with chicken is also eating a paleo meal without even knowing it.
One of the common arguments about the paleo diet is the argument of carbohydrates. This topic may get beat to death but it is important nonetheless. The argument is that the paleo diet does not provide enough carbohydrates. I do believe that by nature the paleo diet is lower in carbohydrates. This has a lot to do with the fact that it cuts out all of the processed shit that we really shouldn’t be eating anyways. Look at the back of a bag of potato chips or a bag of candy, after you get past all of the gobbly-gook about the b-vitamins that it has and how it is low-fat, look at the nutrition facts where it shows that it has a nice bolus of carbohydrates. Then look at the nutrition facts on a chicken breast, or a bell pepper ; definitely not as many carbs. But this doesn’t mean that the paleo diet is a low carb diet. Hell, you can eat sweet potatoes on the paleo diet and last time I checked there is a poop-load of carbs in that little orange sweetheart. There’s also a lot of fruit with the diet which is yet again, a solid carbohydrate. So paleo doesn’t mean low-carb, it just simply means that you better damn well find healthier sources of carbs than a bag of ass (oops I meant chips). Or here’s the kicker… we don’t need so many carbs!
The other side of paleo that I believe gives people the wrong impression is the so called “paleo lifestyle” or as many would consider, “the primal lifestyle”. This is a tiny bit more radical but is still not as crazy as the negative hype would have us believe. This goes a little more into the entire lifestyle and past just the dietary guidelines. It goes a lot more into sleep, and workouts and stuff like that. This is already getting to be quite long so I’m not going to cross that bridge right now, but I am a firm believer that one must incorporate a diet into their lifestyle is they want it to work. I do think that some of the lifestyle recommendations are a little far-fetched and impractical but most of them are just common sense. I don’t think anyone would disagree that we need to get outside more, sleep better and eat cleaner.
Paleo always seems to get a bad rap for reasons that really aren’t clear to me. Sure this is just my personal opinion but honestly, it comes down to eating plants and animals; which last time I checked, humans are omnivores sooo….. maybe it’s not that crazy. People following the paleo diet just simply don’t eat all of the processed shit that we shouldn’t be eating anyways. And as for the whole paleo for athletes controversy, if you’re an athlete eat more sweet potatoes and nuts or avocados; and if you’re not then eat less. It’s not that hard. I wish there was some controversial voodoo shit about the paleo diet that I could look into some research or something, but it’s literally just following a eating pattern with lots of foods that our bodies were hard wired to run off of and there isn’t anything crazy about that.