pa­leo

CUT DOWN ON CARBS AND BRING ON THE HEALTHY FAT WITH A NAT­U­RAL DIET THAT MIR­RORS OUR AN­CES­TORS’ EAT­ING HABITS

Good Health Choices - - Your 32-page Guide -

What ex­actly is this ‘cave­man diet’?

The pa­leo diet is based on the types of foods pre­sumed to have been eaten by early hu­mans 2.5 mil­lion years ago, con­sist­ing chiefly of meat, fish, veg­eta­bles and fruit, and ex­clud­ing dairy, ce­real prod­ucts and all pro­cessed food. The the­ory is that cave dwellers weren’t fat and didn’t have di­a­betes. Nu­tri­tion­ist Lowri Turner says, “In this sense it is like the Atkins, but it’s much health­ier be­cause it in­cludes plenty of veg­eta­bles and some fruit. The pa­leo diet is also good be­cause carb foods are the ones we tend to overeat

– that big bowl of pasta or the sec­ond slice of toast – so re­mov­ing grains pre­vents this. They are also the foods that trig­ger crav­ings in some peo­ple, so re­mov­ing them com­pletely re­duces temp­ta­tion.”

What’s in a meal?

Fruit and eggs for break­fast, packed sal­ads like kale and veg­eta­bles for lunch (you can also add pro­tein) and grilled fish, meat or chicken and veg­eta­bles for din­ner. So oo­dles of pro­tein – steak, chicken or fish – along with plen­ti­ful veges. But take note: these foods can be ex­pen­sive, es­pe­cially if you go for or­ganic and best-qual­ity meat, so this isn’t the most bud­get-friendly diet.

Why does it work?

In re­cent weight-loss stud­ies at Har­vard Med­i­cal School in the US, it was the low-carb di­ets that brought about more long-term weight loss than the low-fat diet plans. Turner says, “I think this is a very ef­fec­tive diet for weight loss in that it mas­sively re­duces the su­gar that most peo­ple eat. I don’t just mean sweets and choco­lates, but all car­bo­hy­drates (bread, pasta, rice etc), as these all break down into su­gar in the body. It is su­gar that stim­u­lates the re­lease of the hor­mone in­sulin, which causes fat to be stored on the body. So less in­sulin means fat burn­ing not fat stor­ing.”

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