How Healthy is the Paleo Diet?

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How Healthy is the Paleo Diet | Real Food RN

In the last couple of years, the Paleo diet has been gaining popularity and getting more press. Many people ask me how healthy is the paleo diet? People wonder if it’s really healthy or if it is just some new fad diet that will come and go with few health benefits left in its wake. I mean seriously, just check out the number of books dedicated to this diet! I believe the Paleo diet has outstanding health benefits, and this based on scientific proof, as well as anecdotal evidence and my own personal experience with it. To set the record straight for my loyal readers, here are the facts that you need to know about how the Paleo diet can help you live a longer, healthier life. I’m also going to share my secret weapon for making Paleo eating easier, so read on!

What is the Paleo Diet? In a nutshell, the Paleo diet is based on the foods our Paleolithic ancestors used to eat, using the logic that our bodies adjusted evolutionally to the food staples that were available to them, and therefore, work best when fueled with those foods. This means, among other things, eating real, whole foods instead of processed ones.

Though there are a variety of beliefs about what a true Paleo diet consists of, it typically includes the recommendation to avoid grains, legumes, gluten, corn, rice, soy, sugar, and certain types of dairy and oils. The Paleo diet encourages the enjoyment of real, organic foods such as grass-fed meat like cattle, bison and lamb, along with pasteurized chicken, eggs and pork, and wild-caught fish and seafood. As you can imagine, there is also a focus on eating a wide variety of locally-grown, organic vegetables and fruits, especially in-season fruits.

This diet utilizes the body’s ancient wisdom to heal itself and thrive.

How Healthy is the Paleo Diet? | Real Food RN

Ask the scientific community “How Healthy is the Paleo Diet?”

Scientific Research-Based Health Benefits of the Paleo Diet:

➜ Improves sleep

➜ Encourages weight-loss

➜ Heightens energy levels

➜ Stabilizes blood sugars

➜ Protects against food allergies

➜ Improves skin, hair and teeth

➜ Lessens insulin sensitivity

➜ Improves mood

➜ Aids in gut health

➜ Lowers autoimmune disease symptoms

In one study, within just 5 weeks, trial participants lowered their fasting blood sugar, total cholesterol, triglycerides and blood pressure. They also lost an average of 9.9 pounds and reduced their liver fat by 49%.

Another scientific study found a substance decrease in insulin sensitivity and better glycemic control. This finding is excellent news for many in our Western culture who suffer from pre-diabetes, diabetes or metabolic disease. Imagine being able to control insulin levels through diet rather than pills and shots!

Now, the big questions: Isn’t eating Paleo a pain? Where do I find the “weird” ingredients it recommends? How am I going to cook with this weird stuff? How much is this going to cost me? My food budget is too small for specialty food items. Sound familiar?

To that, I say, yeah, I know. I had all of those questions in the beginning too. As the cook and nurturer of a spouse and three children, I hear ya! All I can do is tell you that living at full capacity and feeling great is worth it to me! I’d rather spend more on groceries and really nourish my family, than feed my family medications that could have been avoided by eating better. I’d rather come up with clever recipes that they all love than veg out in front of the boob-tube in the evenings.

And when it comes to shopping for Paleo-friendly foods, I just go to Thrive Market, they have a special “Paleo” option for shopping that makes finding all the right ingredients easy and in all one place. It’s kind of like the easy button for Paleo shopping! There I can buy all the Paleo foods I need at up to 50% savings (believe me, I price compared Amazon and Costco!), plus get free shipping on orders over $49. Oh, yeah, and I can shop in my P.J.’s from the comforts of my couch!

Go ahead, hit that easy button to find out for yourself

How Healthy is the Paleo Diet? | Real Food RN

I just may never leave the house again, except to go for a run. Why should I have to brave the stores with three kids in tow when I can find it for a better price online and have it delivered! I don’t think you should either. Spend your time doing things you really enjoy!

What are some of my favorite items that I regularly get at Thrive? Glad you asked!

  • Coconut Aminos — a healthy soy sauce alternative
  • Coconut Oil — because I use that stuff in everything!
  • Canned Wild Salmon — to bring to work for salads
  • Beef Jerky of all different kinds (I have never seen so many different kinds of beef jerky)
  • Paleo Wraps — to make paleo wraps and burritos
  • Tallow — because who knew you could buy this online!
  • Spices — because they are organic and non-irradiated
  • Cacao Nibs — energy, chocolate, heaven
  • Goji Berries — one of the healthiest foods on the planet
  • Maple Syrup — best price around
  • Avocado Oil — best price in town
  • Gluten Free Flours: almond, coconut, tapioca, hazelnut
  • …and so many more goodies!

Now when someone asks you “How Healthy is the Paleo Diet?” you can simply open up your fridge or cupboard and show them!

If you want to search Thrive’s Paleo page, you can check it out HERE. You can really find out how healthy is the Paleo diet when looking through all of the goodies they carry! 

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How Healthy is the Paleo Diet? | Real Food RN

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Resources:

  • https://paleomagonline.com/paleo-diet-101/ and
  • https://authoritynutrition.com/5-studies-on-the-paleo-diet/
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17583796
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17522610
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19604407
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3110415/
  • https://thepaleodiet.com/paleo-lifestyle-protects-food-allergies/

5 Replies to “How Healthy is the Paleo Diet?”

  1. Well, that does sound interesting. But why isn’t there a Neolithic diet? I’m sure people lived longer during that time compared to even their ancient ancestors.

    1. Hi Mark, good question. I guess Paleo is so popular because people do very well on a gluten free and grain free diet. The Neolithic people discovered agriculture and introduced grains into the diet. That’s the main difference. I think that our modern day grains are much more damaging than the ancient grains the Neolithic people were consuming.

  2. First off- great description of Paleo! I have been eating Paleo for a year and a half now and it has changed my life! Second, any recommendation for a coffee type brand off of thrive market? I’m looking to switch but am a bit of a coffee snob and wanted to get something tasty!

    1. Thank you Olivia! Well, I actually don’t get my coffee from Thrive. I tend to be very sensitive to caffeine so there is one coffee that I tolerate best, because it has adaptogenic mushrooms in it to modulate the stress response. You can learn more about it here: https://realfoodrn.com/alphay/. We LOVE it!

  3. Maybe it’s a typo , but Anecdotal evidence is not “antidotal” evidence . We travelled to Scotland this past summer and there’s evidence that a type of barley was grown by the people who lived in the Outer Hebrides to supplement their diet ; these were early Picts and Norse “Hardy” folks, who ate mostly fish , hunted birds and used plants in many ways , as that is what they had .

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