According to author Loren Cordain, modern health and diet problems didn’t start with the advent of packaged snack food, but much earlier–back at the dawn of the agricultural age many thousands of years ago. As humans became less nomadic and more dependent on high-carbohydrate diets, we left behind the diet we had evolved with, which is based on low-fat proteins and plenty of fruits and vegetables. Sugars, fats, and carbs were rare, if they were present at all, and survival required a steady, if low-key, level of activity.
Cordain’s book The Paleo Diet blends medical research with a healthy sprinkle of individual anecdotes, practical tips, and recipes designed to make his suggestions into a sustainable lifestyle, rather than a simple month-long diet; he even includes cooking recommendations and nationwide sources for wild game.
Claims of improving diseases from diabetes to acne to polycystic ovary disease may be a little overstated, but in general the advice seems sound. Can any of us really go wrong by adding lots more vegetables and fruits to our daily regimen? One recommendation on safe tanning with a gradual reduction in sunscreen is surprising and not much detail is provided for safety issues that can accompany increased sun exposure. Still, Cordain’s assertions have helped many people, and could provide exactly the changes you’ve been looking for to improve your health. –Jill Lightner
User Ratings and Reviews
5 Stars Excellent way to eat…
I am very successful with this eating plan. I do not miss salt, dairy or breads. Love all the fruits and vegetables. Give it a try. You will be much healthier with more energy.
5 Stars IT WORKS!
There’s Only “ONE” Diet That Works,
And Is “Healthy” For You At The Same Time,
“The Paleo Diet”…
Don’t Believe Me,
Do Your Homework Then..
Web Search “Paleo Or Paleolithic Diet”,
“Cave Man Or Hunter Gatherer Diet”…
This Will Be The Last Diet You’ll Ever Need…
Yes IT WORKS,
And It’s The Healthiest Diet There Is…
TRY IT For 2 Weeks Then Tell Us How You Feel..
You Won’t Loose 30 Pounds In 3 Days With This Diet!!
(That’s Not Healthy Even If You Could)…
The Weight Loss Is Gradual,
But The Energy Surge And Relief Of Many Ailments Are Almost Immediate!!
This Book Is Loaded With Info And “Great Food Recipes”..
1 Star So, where did the Paleolithic get their flaxseed oil from?
This one little detail completely invalidates this specific book. I believe in the paleolithic diet as being extremely healthy, BUT the recommendation on fats is just bizarre, if one is buying the premise of paleolithic man’s diet as being the most healthy and therefore the one we should follow. Where did the Paleolithic farm their flax? Where did they extract the oil from? Where were their orchards of olive trees?
Additionally, there is the little detail that heating flaxseed oil is a big no-no, something I thought everyone knew. Oops.
3 Stars Could be more convincing
I recently joined a fitness movement called CrossFit, and most of the people I’ve met via the group subscribe to the Paleo Diet as a way of life.
Since I’ve been hearing so many positive things about how people feel after adopting this way of eating, I wanted to know more about it from a practical standpoint.
Unfortunately, this book did nothing to convince me to completely cut out grains, legumes and dairy from my diet. Cordain makes huge claims based on “studies” but seldom gives enough information to follow up on his claims. There is a bibliography at the end of the book, but nothing is footnoted, forcing the reader to search for whichever study title seems like it might be appropriate.
While it seems logical to limit consumption of these things, as well as sugar, I’d like more real evidence that this will make everything in my life better on a long term basis. A few anecdotal stories are not convincing enough.
The other huge problem I have with Cordain’s claims is two-fold. First, his claim that exercise doesn’t really have much bearing on weight loss — He indicates that regular exercise simply keeps the weight off, but that diet is the real effective cause of loss of weight. Logic would indicate that the two together are important both in initial loss and in maintainence. The second is his section on skin cancer. Cordain is not a medical doctor, yet he states that a tan protects you from UV rays and that after you build this base, you can reduce your level of sunscreen usage. We are continually informed from the medical profession that any and all sun exposure is damaging, and while we need the vitamin D from the sun, we must protect ourselves.
In all, like most of the diet and fitness books out there, there are pearls of wisdom here, but there are also unfounded claims. Like everything else in life, Cordain’s statements should be taken in moderation.
4 Stars Paleo Diet
This book has changed our way of eating. My husband has lost 20 lbs. I refer to it all the time.