Does the Paelo Diet really work?
We are inundated with new diets and eating plans every week promising the world in regards to weight loss, but do they actually work, particularly long term? Earlier, we looked at fad diets, how to spot them and why they unfortunately do not work for long-term weight loss. But what about the popular ones we hear so much about? They have been around for so long so that doesn’t make them fad diet’s right? Here we explore some of the most popular diets, their pros and cons and if they work for weight loss in the longer term.
The Paleo diet is based on what early humans (or cavemen) ate in the Paleolithic era, over 10,000 years go. It believes we should get our food from nature and includes lots of vegetables, fruit, meat, fish, eggs, nuts and seeds, while eliminating grains, dairy, legumes, processed foods and refined sugars.
The main benefit this diet, is eliminating processed foods and refined sugars. Our body does not need these foods as they contain minimal to no nutritional value.
The drawback is the diet is likely not sustainable and we don’t know how good it is for your body long term.
Yes, there are many studies showing its benefits for weight loss and other factors such as cholesterol levels and blood glucose control in the short term, but what about 5 years down the track?
The modern Paleo diet usually has very high amounts of protein and we don’t know what the effect on kidney and liver function will be long term. Eliminating whole grains, legumes and diary may also have a few drawbacks. Grain and cereal products contain fibre and are fortified with valuable nutrients we are commonly deficient in. There are few sources of calcium as good as diary (salmon and sardines are good only if you eat the bones), so there’s no knowing if our bones will suffer, and we need them right into old age—far longer than any caveman lived!
This one doesn’t get our vote especially for the lifestyles we lead today. Caveman food does not work for a modern lifestyle.