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The pre-agricultural Paleo diet: Could you live on it?

You’ve probably heard of the benefits of the paleo diet, but let us break it down for you

brunch Updated: May 06, 2017 20:43 IST
Paleo diet,nutritionally-correct diet,pre-agricultural
The Paleo diet is the latest to catch the interest of the trendsetters (istock)

The latest diet to catch the interest of trendsetters is actually the oldest diet known to humankind – the Paleo diet. This is based on the assumption that humans ate the perfect, nutritionally-correct diet before agriculture began, like natural foods consisting of grass-eating animals, fresh fruit off the trees and chemical-free vegetables. But, many people don’t understand what the Paleo diet means exactly, so here’s a brief look...

Foods allowed

 Grass-fed meats.

 River fish and seafoods (uncontaminated with chemicals and not created using artificial breeding methods).

 Fresh fruits (all fruits, even high glycemic kinds).

 All natural organic nuts and oil seeds, including almonds, pine nuts, hazelnuts, pistachios, and so on.

 All organic vegetables.

Foods NOT allowed

 All grains, including wheat, rice, barley etc.

 All legumes, such as rajmah, dals, peanuts etc.

 Dairy products like cheese, paneer, milk, curd.

 All refined, processed and packaged foods.

 All white sugar and foods containing high fructose corn syrup, such as packaged juices etc.

 All breads and bakery products.

 All refined oils and processed fats like butter, ghee and processed cheeses.

Paleo diet pros

 Since it is based on natural, chemical-free foods, it improves symptoms of allergies that come from refined and processed foods.

 It is helpful for weight loss initially as all processed sugar and sugary juices are off limits.

 It helps people with wheat and gluten allergies because it doesn’t allow gluten-rich foods.

Paleo diet cons

 Organic food is not easy on the pocket.

 It is hard to follow if you travel a lot, because the necessary foods are not easily available.

 It is hard to eat out, because grass-fed meat and natural beverages without flavour, sugar and preservatives are hard to find. A grain-free diet is socially inconvenient too.

 Any weight loss stops after a point because the Paleo diet allows carbohydrates in fruits and potatoes, and sugary fruits like bananas and grapes.

From HT Brunch, May 7, 2017

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First Published: May 06, 2017 20:43 IST