Saturday, April 10, 2010

Paleo: So Easy A Caveman Did It.

Ok, so maybe Paleo isn't that easy, especially with all the refined "food" product advertisements that are thrown in our faces day after day after day. It takes a strong person to commit to any diet, especially the Paleo, or Caveman diet.
The biggest and most difficult part of going paleo is the removal of grains from our diet. Why? Its crap, absolute rubbish. A good point to be made is that grains and soy are not edible until they are processed, broken down and
refined, so its safe to assume that we haven't eaten them for millions of years. Keep in mind, we only started eating grains about 10,000 years ago, which, in the timeline of evolution is a miniscule amount of time. We have been evolving for millions of years, that's millions of years without grains. And look at us, we turned out fine.

Now, due to the dilemma of contradiction law, two people can be completely at odds over the value of grains. Im on the side of grains are killing us, not just grains, but refined sugars, large amounts of hormone packed dairy milk, and copious amounts of salt. You may be saying to yourself, "Cameron, my doctor says grains are good, and he has a Ph. d, what do you have?" Well, I admit, I am no scientific authority on the matter, but hundreds of people
who are have clearly stated time and time again that grains are the enemy. Loren Cordain, a professor out of Colorado State University is the leading man in the paleo movement with published research that grains, refined sugars, and dairy can cause acne, diabetes, obesity, depression, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, the list goes on and on. He also has published two books, The Paleo Diet, and The Paleo Diet for Athletes.

Now, what about the boatloads of research that shows grains are good for you, and the food guide pyramid that says we should have grains as the bulk of our diet? Oh, you must be talking about all the company backed research
where the results, if unfavorable to the company backing the research, could cause said company to fail? Or you must mean the food guide pyramid, which was created by the USDA, a government agency with a profit driven agenda? Right? Companies like the USDA, Corn Refiners Association and the Food and Agricultural Organization pay big bucks to have the researchers discover only the good about grains. Sadly, this is a case where the bad outweighs the good. People who actually care about the welfare of Americans and don't have an agenda, back research that shows grains, refined sugars etc are bad for humans.

Your next question may be, "Well, what the hell can I eat now?" My answer: Keep it simple. Caveman simple. Lean meats, seafood, fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds should be your diet. How boring right? Wrong. Spices are
your best friend. Thyme, garlic, onions, chili powder, oregano, basil and other spices should be used every day in your meals. The right amount of these spices can enhance your meal more than you may think. Google "paleo
diet recipes" and you'll get an idea of what I mean.

The first three to five days on this diet are rough, especially if you have a partner who doesn't want to join you on this crazy quest to find your inner caveman. It takes a lot of self control and willpower to turn down bread, cereal, milk, yogurt, cheese, sugar etc. Stick it out, you'll feel better after 5 days. What can you expect to feel? More energy, no more being tired after lunch, better skin quality, increased state of well being, and decrease in digestive issues that may have arose from eating grains.

One question a lot of people have is, "where does the energy to live come from?" Well, fact is, we don't need carbs in the way we think of them to live and perform. A shocker I know, but face the facts, Cavemen did not carbo-load the evening before a big hunt, they did not binge on pasta and garlic bread before trekking 20 plus miles to take down their prey. They worked with what they had, performed and lived. We can credit humanity's survival to this. Your new energy source will come from an increase it fats. But whoa, hold the phone, fats will make us FAT! With 9 calories per gram, fat does pack a huge does of energy in a small source. I'm talking about the healthy fats. The fats found in almonds, walnuts, olives, olive oil, avocados, fish and coconut oil. These fats should make up about 28-47 % of your daily intake of calories. Less if you want to lose weight, more if you want increased performance. Carbs should be about 22-40% and 19-35% should be protein. Over time, your body will re-wire itself to perform optimally with the given foods, and the cravings for luxury foods like breads and sugars will diminish. Over time, you'll see a decrease in body fat percentage and an increase in lean muscle mass. That's the thing though folks, it takes TIME. Something not a lot of people have in our society. Women need to be ready for their sister's wedding in 2 weeks and men need to
get a six pack in a month. Fact is, this shit doesn't happen overnight. It's a SAFE and EFFECTIVE progression that will be noticed in about three to six months. With ample dedication and willpower, it can happen.

One thing I hear from a lot of people is, "I eat grains all the time, I was an All-star (insert sport here) player in high school." Good for you, your body has adapted, but I guarantee an increase in performance levels once you
switch to the paleo diet. Plain and simple, it's the way we were meant to eat.

What about vices? Alcohol, Captain crunch, candy? Can I have these ever again? Yes, you can, but very rarely. As much as I hate what the agricultural industry is doing to humanity, I do indulge in the occasional beer, grilled cheese or reese's peanut butter cup. Call me a hypocrite, that's fine, but I don't expect anyone to follow this regimen with 100
percent accuracy, ever. It's crazy to think that anyone could in today's world. I'll warn you though, as time goes on, you'll realize you cheat less and less because your body will literally punish your indulgent behavior. Either with a sense of depression or an upset stomach.

I have been on Paleo for about 6 months heavy, I have seen fat loss, increased performance, happier demeanor, and increase in skin quality. I rarely cheat, maybe once a month I go all out and get a burger. The results don't lie, as thousands of people have seen the same results.

Where do you start? Start small or big, depending on your personality. Can you quit cold turkey, or do you have slowly cut them out and transition more vegetables into your diet. Whatever works for you, execute the plan. Go at
it with 100 percent willingness to make a change for the better in your health and lifestyle. If anyone has any questions, comments or concerns please post in comments or on my facebook page. If not, now is the right
time to "go against the grain" and go paleo.


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