Many nutritional fads come and go, but the paleo diet has maintained a consistent and reliable following over the past several years. CrossFitters and other exercise enthusiasts have turned toward the paleo diet plan for lean muscle growth, fewer carbohydrates including sugars and some processed food and an overall healthier guide to food. As far as diets go, this one is actually quite simple and straightforward. Rather than count calories or obsess over specifics, the goal of the paleo diet is to adopt a simple and nutritious way of eating. The paleo diet include basic types of food such as vegetables and fruits, grass-fed meat and wild-caught fish along with nuts and seeds in moderation.
What is the paleo diet?
The goal of the paleo diet is to eat like the cavemen once did. The diet revolves around eating anything that the cavemen could hunt or find. This typically means plenty of greens, veggies, fruits, seeds, nuts, and meat. Cavemen didn’t have access to pasta or candy, which means that you won’t either when following a paleo diet. While the types of foods you’ll eat are basic, you can cook them in a variety of ways, such as stir frying or baking a dish.
If you detest counting calories, you’ll appreciate the overall simplicity of the paleo diet. While you’re welcome to count calories if you want to, it’s generally not encouraged with this type of diet. You can also forget about restrictive portion control. Instead of focusing on calories or portion sizes, the goal is to adopt a diet that’s high in fat (the good kind), moderate in animal protein, and relatively low to moderate in carbohydrates.
In today’s society, we’ve grown accustomed to avoiding fats like the plague. The paleo diet actually encourages eating fats — as long as you’re consuming the right kind. You’ll want to fill your plate with healthy fats, such as avocados, macadamias, cashews, and almonds. If you’re eating a salad, go ahead and top it with olive oil or an olive oil based dressing. Cook in coconut oil. The paleo diet also encourages consuming a reasonable amount of animal fat, such as bacon fat and lard.
Sugar and refined foods
When you’re following the paleo diet, you’ll need to avoid grains (which can promote systemic inflammation) along with any type of added sugar. Fruits are a source of fructose as well, which is why many paleo dieters limit themselves to just one or two pieces of fruit per day. If you’d rather avoid sugar altogether, eat non-starchy vegetables in place of fruits.
Some paleo dieters simply can’t go without their dairy products. Following the belief that dairy can actually promote an inflammatory response and cause an increase in insulin levels, most dairy products are eliminated from the paleo diet. However, you can still get your dairy fix by periodically consuming full-fat dairy products such as Greek yogurt or unsweetened whipped cream.
A great number of nutrition and fitness experts have turned to the paleo diet for increased health and lean muscle growth. With the simplicity of the diet, this simple guide can help you refine your food intake and aid in the development of a lean strong body.