What Does Every Paleo Diet Book Forget?
The Paleo diet has it wrong: Cavemen did eat carbs?
The low-carbohydrate Paleo diet has attracted star advocates, including professional golfer Phil Mickelson, actor Matthew McConaughey, and Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush. But experts are now debating whether or not people in the Paleolithic Era did actually eat carbs.
A University of Chicago study published in August suggests that carbohydrate consumption, especially in the form of starch found in plant root tubers, like those found on potatoes, was vital for the acceleration of brain growth over the last 3 million years. And some nutritionists say this is more evidence that a modern low-carbohydrate version of the Paleo Diet may not be the healthiest alternative, even if it does help people lose weight.
The goal of the Paleo diet is to consume the same food groups as our hunter-gatherer ancestors, whose nutritional practices between 2.6 million and 10,000 years ago helped form our modern genetic makeup. These foods include fruits, vegetables, grass-fed meats, fish, seafood, free-range eggs, nuts and seeds. The diet discourages frequent consumption of dairy, starch and processed foods.
Despite the modern diet’s effectiveness at helping some people lose weight, the findings from the study suggest that these may not be the only foods our long-ago ancestors ate.