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The Paleo Diet: Pros and Cons

Paleo Food

The Paleo-Diet focuses on good things from the Stone Age: A diet as in primeval times can help you to lose excess pounds! We have summarized the most important facts about the Paleo-Diet for you!

Paleo is the scientific term for everything that has to do with the Stone Age. The Stone Age diet is therefore about using only foods and methods of preparation that were already known at that time. The idea behind it is that the human body is not biologically made to digest highly processed foods. That is why white flour, refined sugar, many types of grain, meat from factory farming, and finished products are taboo in paleo food. Instead, organically produced meat products, vegetables, and fruit, nuts, and eggs are put on the table. In this way, the Paleo diet is not only intended to prevent diet-related illnesses, but also to reduce overweight.

The nutrition and weight loss trend “Paleo” is based on nothing else but the diet of our ancestors from the Stone Age. Ever heard of overweight Stone Age people? No? Neither have we… On the menu are products such as fresh, high-quality meat, fish, nuts, fruit, and vegetables. Cereals and dairy products are completely avoided – this source of nutrients was only available to people after they settled down.

“Modern” ingredients are also taboo. Only foods that are naturally available are eaten. This means no refined sugar, no flavor enhancers, and no ready-made mixtures. But is Stone Age nutrition really as healthy as it sounds?

How does the Paleo diet work?

Paleo is the abbreviation for the Palaeolithic. Although Paleo is based on the diet of that time, it has adapted to the modern, available foods. The main focus is mainly on the high quality of the food used and an ideal supply of nutrients for the body. Unprocessed, fresh, nutrient-rich foods are on the menu, while cereals, pulses, coffee, alcohol and dairy products, sugar, refined vegetable oils, and additives are absolutely taboo.

NO HUNGER WITH THIS DIET

Many of us have been on dozens of diets, most of them with no visible results. One reason for this is that it is often not easy to stick to these diets. On the other hand, many diets simply do not have the effect we expect. With the Paleo diet, it is different, because it is more about a permanent change of diet than about a diet.

The great thing is that you do not have to go hungry. There are lots of delicious vegetables, proteins, and healthy fats on the table. You can eat as much as you want. Your body gets everything it needs to stay healthy and fit. The balanced combination of these foods will keep you full for a long time and give you lots of energy. Milk and cereal products are mainly avoided.

PALEO MEANS DELICIOUS MEALS WITH HEALTHY INGREDIENTS

Hardly anyone can doubt the positive effect of a healthy diet based on vegetables, fruit, and healthy fats.

Paleo dishes are very tasty and nutritious. Only high-quality food is used for meals. You can taste the difference. Often food such as white flour is exchanged for coconut flour, which gives Paleo dishes a special touch.

Advantages of the paleo diet:
  • Digestive system is ideally adapted to the Paolo diet
  • No refined sugar
  • Balanced nutrient combination
  • Lots of fresh fruit and vegetables
  • Gluten- and lactose-free
  • Studies show better sleep quality
  • Improved skin appearance
  • Losing weight without counting calories
Disadvantages of the paleo diet:
  • Not always feasible in everyday life
  • Meat and fish from kind-fair attitude are expensive
  • A meat-heavy diet favors climate change
  • Sporting activities are easier with carbohydrates
  • Too high meat consumption impairs the health
Advantages of the paleo diet:

You lose weight, eat a healthy and balanced diet, and feel full: Without a doubt, the Paleo food method has many advantages. It dispenses with refined sugar, gluten, dairy products, and ready meals. Even legumes disappear from your diet. From now on, it will impress you with fruit, crunchy vegetables, meat, fish, eggs, nuts, fresh herbs, and sweet potatoes.

This should relieve your organism and you should feel fitter and more powerful, as your body is no longer just busy digesting. Studies show that paleo food leads to sustained weight loss, makes you more resistant to insomnia and depression, and provides cleaner skin.

Disadvantages of the paleo diet:

As great as the Paleo diet sounds, there are of course also disadvantages that this extreme trend brings with it.

Especially in everyday life, Paleo food cannot always be implemented one hundred percent. Because meat from grazing animals and sustainable fish is not feasible for every purse. It also becomes difficult with restaurant visits. Not everyone cooks according to the Paleo principle. In addition, many, especially the sporty among us, will not be able to completely do without carbohydrates. But if you want to pay attention to your diet in general, you can be inspired by Paleo food in many ways.

Before you change your diet completely according to the Paleo-principle, you should ask yourself if this form of nutrition is the right one for you. One person cannot tolerate dairy products, the other cannot tolerate gluten – so there may be advantages to leaving this out. But you have to remember that we have different needs and these have to be considered. If you are unsure, simply discuss these points with your family doctor or a nutrition expert.

In addition, the Paleo diet is characterized by high meat content. Excessive, unreflective consumption of meat (meat at every meal every day of the week) can lead to health problems. This high protein requirement was unasked for in the Stone Age, essential for the survival of the constantly active cavemen, but nowadays we move much less than in the past. The consequences can be kidney stones and gout. In addition, science has not yet agreed on the exact diet of Stone Age people. Caution is therefore also required with this form of nutrition.

WHAT DOES SCIENCE SAY ABOUT THE PALEO-DIET?

Opinions in science on the Paleo-Diet differ. While some researchers are of the opinion that this method can have some advantages for your health, because due to the fresh and unprocessed ingredients fewer additives burden your body, others criticize the high meat consumption, which can lead to chronic diseases and thus rather harm your health. The high meat consumption is also criticized because of ethical concerns and sustainability aspects.

Is the Paleo diet right for me?

IT DOES NOT NECESSARILY HAVE TO BE THE STRICT PRIMEVAL DIET

When you look at the advantages and disadvantages of the Paleo principle, you should ask yourself if you want to embark on the adventure of “eating like cavemen”. The fact is that avoiding finished products and refined sugar is good for your body in any case and relieves it. Paleo can help you lose weight quickly and sustainably and is beneficial to your health.

Paleo has many advantages, but also some disadvantages that must be considered. So how about a mixed form that you balance and adjust to your own needs? Paleo food is definitely suitable for the first time when drawing up a new diet plan.

Paleo diet as a vegetarian?

It is often said that the Paleo principle and vegetarianism are mutually exclusive. And those who have paid attention while reading will certainly come to the same conclusion.

If you follow the Paleo Principle, then you get the main part of the essential proteins from the consumption of high-quality meat and fish. For this reason, paleo and vegetarianism are considered completely opposite and incompatible. But is this really so? If you look at the different vegetarian lifestyles, you will quickly realize that there are true overlaps and that even as a vegetarian you can definitely eat in the sense of the paleo food idea.

PESCETARIANS CAN TRY PALEO

While only meat is not on the menu of Pesco vegetarians, they usually eat any other food that includes the Paleo Method, so there are hardly any reasons for Pesco vegetarians to decide against this diet.

These vegetarians have the greatest interface with classic Paleo, as many recipes of classic Paleo work and fish is a very high-quality source of protein. Nevertheless, pescetarians should break with classic Paleo from time to time and taste legumes for a full-fledged diet.

EGGS AS A SOURCE OF ANIMAL PROTEIN

“Ovo-lacto vegetarianism” is the form of nutrition known to us as classic vegetarianism. Although meat and fish are not included, eggs and dairy products provide important proteins. With these forms of nutrition, everything usually revolves around the question of where you get your protein from. Meat and fish are eliminated due to vegetarianism and dairy products because of Paleo. So what is going on here? The answer: eggs, nuts, nut milk, and high-quality oils. Nevertheless, vegetarians should integrate milk into their diet from time to time so that the diet remains balanced.

DOES PALEO ALSO WORK FOR VEGANS?

For vegans, who as a matter of principle abstain from all animal products, the implementation of the classic Paleo principle is extremely difficult, because you do not get enough protein from nuts, nut milk, high-quality fats, and oils. This makes the use of legumes indispensable.

Tempeh, miso, and natto, actually taboo as products of the soybean, must also be on the menu. Advantage of the products: The fermentation process makes them more digestible for humans. Nevertheless, overconsumption is not advisable, because soy is an allergen and is not suitable as a staple food due to its high isoflavone content. This so-called phytohormone uses the same receptors in the body as the female sex hormone estrogen.

Whatever diet you combine, make sure you always keep a balance. High quality and fresh food provide additional nutrients to keep you fit and healthy every day!

Paleo for kids? Better not!

Vegan, Low Carb, Clean Eating, and now Paleo food – in this day and age we have many opportunities to experiment with our diet and find out which diet is the healthiest for our body. All well and good – but no matter how highly these food trends are hyped, they are at least as strongly criticized. Every adult can form his or her own opinion about them. Children usually cannot.

In all the new dietary trends, certain foods are somehow avoided, but children, in particular, need a healthy and balanced diet for their development. Many newly-born mothers would like to continue their conviction of the Paleo-trend also with their newborns. The American company “Serenity Kids” now even offers paleo food for babies. But there are some risks you should know about.

THE PALEO-DIET IS NOT SUITABLE FOR CHILDREN!

No sugar – that is perfect for newborns! This is probably the only advantage of paleo food for your baby. Children need a lot of calcium for their growth spurt. Of course, they can also get it from broccoli or leaf spinach, but in order to achieve the necessary amount for healthy development, the intake of dairy products is almost essential. Moreover, the healthier way with yogurt, milk, and cheese is also much easier to implement, especially for stressed parents.

Another risk is not to eat cereals, which is an important point in the Paleo diet. Cereals of all kinds have a high proportion of dietary fiber, which can lower cholesterol levels and make an important contribution to the prevention of heart disease. Cereals can also prevent constipation, which often afflicts children in younger years.

In general, parents should therefore bear in mind that their child is not a “mini-adult”. Babies need much more nutrients and a balanced diet to develop healthily. Dear mommies, you can participate in any food trend, but for the sake of your little ones, you should keep your babies out of nutritional experiments. However, integrating one or the other paleo food into your baby’s diet is definitely beneficial at times due to the low sugar content.

Conclusion on the paleo diet

Eating like in the stone age, that sounds not very appealing at first. But the Paleo diet consistently avoids artificial ingredients, processed cereals, milk, and convenience products. This means that many allergens and incompatible substances are avoided at the same time. The approach to use fresh and high-quality ingredients brings, on the one hand, a healthy, vitamin- and nutrient-rich food on the table, on the other hand, it is also at the expense of the purse and is not easy to keep up in everyday life (e.g. restaurant visits). Paleo tempts to increased consumption of meat, this should be avoided absolutely, in order not to suffer health disadvantages.

Those who consistently follow the Paleo food idea will quickly lose a few kilos. But also those who only understand Paleo as a basis and eat one or the other “modern” ingredient can profit from the positive effects. While there is no danger of malnutrition for adults if the Paleo diet plan is strictly adhered to, children should never eat a Stone Age diet.

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