Most nutritionists, doctors and fitness enthusiasts preach that you should only eat food that’s natural and free from chemicals if you want to lose weight. In fact, most will tell you that if you want to increase your overall health, lose weight and increase your energy you shouldn’t eat anything that’s been manufactured. And that is basically what the Paleo diet is about. The strategy behind the diet is simple and the diet is very effective and helpful for fat loss and increased overall health.
Proteins and Fatty Acids
Animal meat contains every single one of the essential fatty acids and amino acids that our bodies require to properly function and grow. Research has shown that there are higher qualities of amino acids and fatty acids contained in animal meat, and that they are in better proportions and ratios than in grains and vegetables.
This is behind why animal proteins have always been considered of better and higher quality than the protein we can get from grains or vegetables.
After all, if humans weren’t meant to eat animal meat, our bodies wouldn’t need these nutrients for hormonal and metabolic functioning. That’s why these fatty acids and amino acids are referred to as “essential”.
Although the vegetarian diet is quite healthy because of the large amounts of fruits and vegetables, many vegetarians consume too much sugar and processed flour as a means to feel full.
This in conjunction with the missing animal meat can cause many vegetarians to have a diet that may be harmful for their metabolic functioning, ie inadequate protein intake, imbalance in essential fatty acids and incomplete amino acids profiles. This is because some of the essential nutrients are only found in animal products.
Paleo Diet Reduces Sugar
Intake One of the big no-no’s on the Paleo diet is sugar, so if you adopt the Paleo diet your sugar intake will drop to nearly zero. A leading cause of obesity in today’s society is that sugar is everywhere – from convenience meals to processed foods and treats.
In fact, you would lose weight just by cutting the high fructose corn syrup and sugar out of your diet – you wouldn’t even have to diet. Many nutritionists believe that sugar is the worst thing in many modern diets and can even be toxic to our health and well-being.
Nutritionists agree that fructose sugar is the cause of many of our health problems because it’s preferentially metabolized to fat in our liver. It can impair our glucose tolerance and cause high insulin levels or insulin resistance and hypertension among others.
Paleo Diet Doesn’t Have Trans-fats
Competing with fructose for “Worst Modern Food” is trans-fats. In essence, trans-fats are unnatural, mutated fats, they will increase your bad cholesterol (LDL) and lower your good cholesterol (HDL).
Trans-fats are a major cause of coronary artery disease because they also increase the C-reactive protein in our bodies. Trans-fats share several things with sugar – inducing abdominal obesity, inhibiting glucose disposal and promoting insulin resistance.
If you’re looking to get healthy and lose fat – lose sugar and trans-fats from your diet.
Paleo Diet Increases
Our bodies best range for the omega-6 : omega-3 ratios is between 1:1 and 4:1. Before the modern era of processed food when the majority of dietary fats came from wild animal meats and fish, this was what we had.
The food available in today’s society contains a prevalence of processed vegetable oils which have changed our ratios for the worst – the ratios have reached unnatural levels of between 10/15:1 or even higher.
This unnaturally high ratio can cause a multitude of health problems, including diabetes, inflammation, autoimmune diseases, and risks for certain forms of cancer and heart disease.
The Paleo eating plan contains all the fish and wild meats to give us the omega-3 we need. In modern diets, many of these foods have been omitted or replaced with processed foods and vegetable oils, which have more omega-6. The health benefits of omega-3 include anti-inflammatory properties, improves our body’s sensitivity to insulin, reduce blood triglycerides and prevents overall disease risk factors.