The Paleo Diet

Estimated Reading Time: 2 Minutes

In the 1970s a gastroenterologist (a medical practitioner qualified to diagnose and treat disorders of the stomach and intestines) by the name of Walter Voegtlin made a claim that if modern-day humans ate like our ancestors in the paleolithic era, we would be lead a far healthier life. Thus the paleo diet was born. So what are some of the reasons/positive outcomes of following this diet? One of the beliefs that are speculated by a variety of nutritionists, doctors, and Voegtilin himself is that this diet greatly reduces the chances/instances of Crohn’s disease, diabetes, and obesity.

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The picture above details all the essential body parts associated with Crohn’s Disease

There is one basic principle behind following the paleo diet: avoid processed foods at all costs. Consumers want to eat like their ancestors did in prehistoric times. In order to do this one must eat only what is available naturally (chicken, spinach, corn,etc.) Below is a complete list of the best foods to AVOID while on the paleo diet.

  • Sugar and high-fructose corn syrup:
  • Grains
  • Legumes
  • Dairy 
  • Some vegetable oils
  • Trans fat
  • Artificial sweeteners
  • Highly processed foods
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Protein itself plays a very important role in the human diet. It also plays an enormous role in the human body in general as it is an essential component of every cell in the human body.  They serve as catalysts to approximately all cellular reactions, and also control nearly all cellular functions. Protein is a macronutrient, meaning the body requires a lot of it. However, unlike other macronutrients (fat, carbohydrates), the body does not store protein for later use. Protein is formed from building blocks known as amino acids. Our bodies produce amino acids in two different ways. It either produces it itself or modifies existing ones in nature. 9 of the following amino acids must come from food: histidine, isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan, and valine. Amino acids, in general, have a high degree of chemical versatility. The chemical makeup of theses acids determines its biological activity.

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The above pictures give examples of all 20 amino acids.

While the paleo diet does produce effective weight loss results, some nutritionists are skeptical of the foundation on which the paleo diet lies. The paleo diet emphasizes proteins such as chicken, fish, and other lean meats, however, scientists are beginning to question the role that these proteins played on the diets of prehistoric men. For example, cavemen/neanderthals wouldn’t have access to fish/chicken and would have to rely mostly on nuts, seeds, and other sources of nutrition. On the other hand, people in colder climates ate only meat and ignored the production aspect of their diet entirely.

-Yash Banga

Author at STEMTalksNC


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2 thoughts on “The Paleo Diet

    1. For sure, I completely agree. I personally don’t follow the Paleo Diet, but I always like to know the different types of diets out there


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