What is the Paleo Diet?
I try to keep my food really simple. The Paleo diet is eating the foods that our ancestors ate. This means we are eating the foods that we are genetically adapted to and that we have evolved to eat over millions of years.
This means eating high quality meat, fish and eggs, fruits, vegetable, nuts and seeds. A strict Paleo diet sometimes limits starchy foods such as rice and potatoes or dairy products such as milk, yoghurt or cheese. However, the Paleo diet is a starting point and if you can tolerate these foods then of course it is fine to do so. In my real life I also include things like coffee even though Palaeolithic woman definitely didn’t sit around the campfire swigging a latte.
This leads me to the point that following a Paleo lifestyle is not about trying to emulate Paleolithic times although you are welcome to try! It is about taking the best information we have about the foods we have adapted to in the past and blending that with current science to develop a highly nutritious diet.
There is a range within this of how ‘Paleo’ you would like to be. There are some highly motivated people out there who follow a rigorous approach. Even in Scotland I have seen people sprinting literally barefoot in the park. Then there are the less energetic pragmatics like myself. For me, this is about enjoying all the benefits of a Paleo lifestyle but not when it might stop me enjoying the modern world. This means I will cook Paleo food for myself and my family but when I am with friends or in restaurants and cafes I am happy to eat the foods that are part of that occasion. I will also eat non paleo food for festivals and traditions – so yes, this means on Burn’s Night I do eat the non paleo food that is haggis!
The main aim of this blog is to provide simple information on living a paleo lifestyle taking one simple step at a time. As you may already have seen, there is a lot of excellent information out there on the Paleo diet but there is also a lot of poor information too. If you can ignore the tabloid press hysteria, and the sometimes knee jerk elements of mainstream culture, you will see that there is growing solid scientific evidence out there for eating in a Paleolithic way. When you break it down, it is eating natural, fresh unprocessed foods that suit your body. Ultimately though, I believe that everybody is unique and there is not one diet or approach that fits all. Trying it out and then seeing how you feel is the best ‘evidence’ to rely upon.