What is the Palaeolithic ‘Caveman’ diet you ask? In modern day, it is basically grain free/dairy free eating. Removing the two food groups that came with the evolution of modern agriculture. Unlike the Ketogenic diet, which is extremely high fat and low carb, Paleo lets you have a more balanced profile between carbs, protein, and fats.
What are some reasons to go grain free/dairy free?
- It helps with insulin resistance, Type 2 Diabetes, and lowers cardiovascular risk factors such as high blood pressure and bad LDL cholesterol. The same can be said for the Mediterranean diet which is also well studied. (1)
- Can’t handle the love handles? It is proven effective for weight loss without completely restricting the carbohydrates. Unlike the recently popular ketogenic diet (extremely low carb) which is not for everyone, particularly those with low kidney function. (2)
- An overall decrease in body inflammation. Although studies suggest this is a result of any weight loss! After 2 years the Paleo diet showed decreases in many blood markers of inflammation, including C Reactive Protein (CRP). At the Natural Care Clinic we use it to support methylation pathways, liver detoxification, and genetic malfunctions behind many health issues. This includes MTHFR genetic defects seen in Autism Spectrum Disorder and infertility. (3)
- It can impact mood, especially when you’re cutting out inflammatory carbohydrates such as grains! “Mood and cognitive improvements were more closely related to a higher intake of the modified Paleolithic diet than to exercise and stress management dosage.” (4) Need I say more? Its also correlated with better memory tasks!
- It makes you feel fuller, longer. Maybe its the protein content, maybe its the higher energy density of the foods. Either way it alters the satiety hormones produced in the gut and the brain. No more feeling the need to snack late into the night. (5)
Whether the reason is removing inflammatory foods or adding in more nutrients, the health benefits of Paleo are getting stronger by the year. Simply put, it is home cooked meals with whole foods. Locally sourced is better too. The recipes and resources are endless both online and in a large city like Burlington. Anything that could positively impact your health is worth a three month trial!
Yours in Health,
Dr. Mollie, ND
1. Otten J, Stomby A, Waling M, Isaksson A, Tellström A, Lundin-Olsson L, Brage S, Ryberg M, Svensson M, Olsson T. Benefits of a Paleolithic diet with and without supervised exercise on fat mass, insulin sensitivity, and glycemic control: a randomized controlled trial in individuals with type 2 diabetes. Diabetes Metab Res Rev. 2017 Jan;33(1). doi: 10.1002/dmrr.2828. Epub 2016 Jun 30.
2. Genoni A, Lyons-Wall P, Lo J, Devine A. Cardiovascular, Metabolic Effects and Dietary Composition of Ad-Libitum Paleolithic vs. Australian Guide to Healthy Eating Diets: A 4-Week Randomised Trial. Nutrients. 2016 May 23;8(5). pii: E314. doi: 10.3390/nu8050314.
3. Blomquist C, Alvehus M, Burén J, Ryberg M, Larsson C, Lindahl B, Mellberg C, Söderström I, Chorell E, Olsson T. Attenuated Low-Grade Inflammation Following Long-Term Dietary Intervention in Postmenopausal Women with Obesity. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2017 May;25(5):892-900. doi: 10.1002/oby.21815.
4. Lee JE, Bisht B, Hall MJ, Rubenstein LM, Louison R, Klein DT, Wahls TL. A Multimodal, Nonpharmacologic Intervention Improves Mood and Cognitive Function in People with Multiple Sclerosis. J Am Coll Nutr. 2017 Mar-Apr;36(3):150-168. doi: 10.1080/07315724.2016.1255160. Epub 2017 Apr 10.
5. Bligh HF, Godsland IF, Frost G, Hunter KJ, Murray P, MacAulay K, Hyliands D, Talbot DC, Casey J, Mulder TP, Berry MJ. Plant-rich mixed meals based on Palaeolithic diet principles have a dramatic impact on incretin, peptide YY and satiety response, but show little effect on glucose and insulin homeostasis: an acute-effects randomised study. Br J Nutr. 2015 Feb 28;113(4):574-84. doi: 10.1017/S0007114514004012. Epub 2015 Feb 9.