There has been a lot of buzz about Paleo diets and caveman diets.
If you want to get the best information about how eating this way can help you lose weight, look better, get a deeper sleep, and feel incredible every day…
…then Robb Wolf is your guide.
Robb is the New York Times best-selling author of The Paleo Solution.
He's here to teach you what foods and drinks you should avoid – including a few items you likely have in your cupboard right now.
Let's dive in.
Step 1: Gut the pantry.
The first step in eating like a caveman is eliminating common pantry foods such as rice, pasta, cookies, crackers, and beer. These foods are filled with sugar and carbohydrates which were rarities in the environment we evolved in. Removing these foods from your home will help reduce the temptation to cheat as you begin a Paleo diet.
Step 2: Load up on protein at the grocery store, particularly any meat that was grass-fed.
Look for pastured chicken, beef, pork, lamb, and more. However, it's important that these meats are not injected with hormones and loaded up on factory-farm feed. When the animals are allowed to develop in a natural pasture, they will provide the natural nutrition your body needs. Did you know that some meat packing facilities will even add sugar to steak? Take a look at the ingredient list and you'll be surprised what you can find in some things. Make sure you're only buying high-quality grass-fed meats.
Step 3: Buy fruits and vegetables in every color you can find.
Fruits, vegetables, and lean cuts of meat form the core of the Paleo diet. However, you need to limit carb-dense fruits like bananas, mangoes and papaya. Our caveman ancestors would not recognize the modern verities of these domesticated plants. Today's bananas have been designed to be high in sugar through selective breading.
Also, modern shipping processes give us a year-round supply of a fruit that was only available for a short time. Instead, you should eat with the seasons and avoid these carb-dense fruits. Look for native plants like the Candy Roaster squash which have become rare in modern markets.
Step 4: Cook with good natural fats such as olive oil and coconut oil.
Olive oil and coconut oil are easy to produces without expensive machinery. Other oils need to be extracted from seeds or through advanced processing methods. Our ancestors did not have access to these oils and our bodies did not evolve to properly digest them. Stick with the natural fats we have had access to for centuries.
Step 5: Change the flavor of your meals by using different herbs and spices.
Learn to cook with herbs and spices such as ginger, garlic, curries, black pepper, basil, and thyme, just to name a few. Using fresh herbs and spices will provide much more of their nutritional value. It's important to avoid prepackaged spice mixes at all costs. These are often filled with old and low-quality spices that care commonly cut with salt.
The higher nutritional value of fresh herbs and spices more than makes up for the increased cost. Also, many of the most commonly used herbs are easily grown in container gardens – so there's no excuse not to use fresh ingredients.
Step 6: Ditch the pro-inflammatory, sugar-laden sodas, fruit juices, and Red Bull for water, coffee, and tea.
Everyone knows sodas are bad for them. However, some people think diet drinks are a good substitute. It doesn't matter if it's processed sugar, natural sugar, or sugar substitute – your body is not designed to process large quantities of these substances. You should even limit orange juice and other citrus juices which are all high in natural sugars.
If you drink alcohol, you should stick with tequila or any clear liquor. These drinks have had more of their sugar converted into alcohol. If you're drinking wine, stick to dry varieties which also have lower sugar content.
Step 7: Eat yams like sweet potatoes. But do NOT eat normal potatoes.
Just like the bananas describe above, today's white potatoes have been designed to be high in sugar and carbohydrates. At the time when this was happening, carbohydrates were difficult to find. As modern agriculture allowed our ancestors to cultivate carbohydrates in plants through selective breeding, we've created an environment with abundant carbohydrates. Stick with less modified verities of potatoes like sweet potatoes or yams.
Step 8: Try the Paleo diet for a month.
Check blood work before you start and once you’ve give your body a chance to get used to it. These lab tests are a small price to pay for long-term health. See if the Paleo diet works for you and, if it doesn’t, don’t be afraid to try other things.
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I'd love to hear from you. Have you tried a Paleo or caveman diet? What worked for you? What didn't? I want to hear what you have to say. Share your challenges and successes in the comments below.