For hundreds of thousands of years, mankind has lived off a hunter gatherer diet. We call this diet the caveman diet. Other names for this include the paleo diet or stone age diet. In the last 5000 years, due to the advent of farming and refining of food, the nature of our diet has changed considerably. In particular in the last 50 to 100 years our diets have changed even more so due to modern industrial methods of refining and preserving food. The caveman diet involves eating foods which are more akin to that of our hunter gatherer ancestors.
The logic behind this is that from an evolutionary point of view you would expect a species to adapt to tolerate and thrive on foods which are readily available from the immediate surroundings. For example cows have lived off grass for a long time and as such have a digestive system which is capable of extracting all of the proper nutrients from grass and a metabolic system which thrives on the nutrients available from grass.
In the same way our bodies have developed in an environment where the foods available to us included what we could pull out of the ground or off a tree or what we could hunt, cook and eat or fish from the local waterways. Although evolution helps any species to adapt to changes in food sources the process is generally slow. However farming and refining of food has been a dramatic and rapid change which evolution has not had a chance to catch up with. As a result our modern diet of refined wheat, low fat, high carbohydrate and processed foods is a major cause of obesity, ill health, diabetes and many inflammatory diseases.
There is increasing evidence that switching to a diet that mimics that of our caveman ancestors will help a person to lose weight, improve fitness and avoid many chronic diseases.
The paleo caveman diet involves modifying our diet and lifestyle to that of our hunter gatherer ancestors. this means making changes not only to your diet but also to your exercise, sleep and stress levels. From the point of view of diet, that means eating lots of lean meat and fresh fish, lots of root vegetables and fruits, and seeds and nuts. It also means avoiding refined sugars and wheat products wherever possible. The paleolithic diet is full of tasty satisfying foods and those who choose to try it experience weight loss, improved energy levels and overall good health.
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