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The Paleo Diet and such


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What do you think of "The Paleo Diet" and other such dietary approaches, that are (at least supposedly) based on research and evolutionary biology? According to proponents of such diets, research shows that the diets of our ancestors consisted of mostly meat (about 68%), so, since we have been eating like that for about 99% of our evolution, we're adapted to such diets much better than to high-carb/low-fat/moderate-protein diets that are commonly recommended by most authorities in the field of human nutrition today. Our ancestors ate lots of meat, wild berries, veggies, fruits and nuts, which provided them with rather large amounts of protein, antioxidants, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats (n-6:n-3 balance of about 1:1), other beneficial phytochemicals, etc. They were also highly active and lean, didn't smoke (obviously), didn't consume much (if any) alcohol and were free of most of the degenerative diseases that our modern societies face (although they did suffer from other diseases that are easily preventable nowadays). Are there any implications of these findings for veganism? Share your thoughts.

 

NOTE: It think it would be best if you read the excerpts posted below first (if you haven't before)

 

Here's a couple excerpts from various studies:

 

The paradoxical nature of hunter-gatherer diets: meat-based, yet non-atherogenic

 

Eur J Clin Nutr. 2002 Mar;56 Suppl 1:S42-52.

 

The paradoxical nature of hunter-gatherer diets: meat-based, yet non-atherogenic.

 

Department of Health and Exercise Science, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado, USA. [email protected]

 

OBJECTIVE: Field studies of twentieth century hunter-gathers (HG) showed them to be generally free of the signs and symptoms of cardiovascular disease (CVD). Consequently, the characterization of HG diets may have important implications in designing therapeutic diets that reduce the risk for CVD in Westernized societies. Based upon limited ethnographic data (n=58 HG societies) and a single quantitative dietary study, it has been commonly inferred that gathered plant foods provided the dominant energy source in HG diets. METHOD AND RESULTS: In this review we have analyzed the 13 known quantitative dietary studies of HG and demonstrate that animal food actually provided the dominant (65%) energy source, while gathered plant foods comprised the remainder (35%). This data is consistent with a more recent, comprehensive review of the entire ethnographic data (n=229 HG societies) that showed the mean subsistence dependence upon gathered plant foods was 32%, whereas it was 68% for animal foods. Other evidence, including isotopic analyses of Paleolithic hominid collagen tissue, reductions in hominid gut size, low activity levels of certain enzymes, and optimal foraging data all point toward a long history of meat-based diets in our species. Because increasing meat consumption in Western diets is frequently associated with increased risk for CVD mortality, it is seemingly paradoxical that HG societies, who consume the majority of their energy from animal food, have been shown to be relatively free of the signs and symptoms of CVD. CONCLUSION: The high reliance upon animal-based foods would not have necessarily elicited unfavorable blood lipid profiles because of the hypolipidemic effects of high dietary protein (19-35% energy) and the relatively low level of dietary carbohydrate (22-40% energy). Although fat intake (28-58% energy) would have been similar to or higher than that found in Western diets, it is likely that important qualitative differences in fat intake, including relatively high levels of MUFA and PUFA and a lower omega-6/omega-3 fatty acid ratio, would have served to inhibit the development of CVD. Other dietary characteristics including high intakes of antioxidants, fiber, vitamins and phytochemicals along with a low salt intake may have operated synergistically with lifestyle characteristics (more exercise, less stress and no smoking) to further deter the development of CVD.

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Cardiovascular disease resulting from a diet and lifestyle at odds with our Paleolithic genome: how to become a 21st-century hunter-gatherer

 

Mayo Clin Proc. 2004 Jan;79(1):101-8.

 

Cardiovascular disease resulting from a diet and lifestyle at odds with our Paleolithic genome: how to become a 21st-century hunter-gatherer.

 

O'Keefe JH Jr, Cordain L.

 

Mid America Heart Institute, Cardiovascular Consultants, Kansas City, MO 64111, USA. [email protected]

 

Our genetic make-up, shaped through millions of years of evolution, determines our nutritional and activity needs. Although the human genome has remained primarily unchanged since the agricultural revolution 10,000 years ago, our diet and lifestyle have become progressively more divergent from those of our ancient ancestors. Accumulating evidence suggests that this mismatch between our modern diet and lifestyle and our Paleolithic genome is playing a substantial role in the ongoing epidemics of obesity, hypertension, diabetes, and atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease. Until 500 generations ago, all humans consumed only wild and unprocessed food foraged and hunted from their environment. These circumstances provided a diet high in lean protein, polyunsaturated fats (especially omega-3 [omega-3] fatty acids), monounsaturated fats, fiber, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and other beneficial phytochemicals. Historical and anthropological studies show hunter-gatherers generally to be healthy, fit, and largely free of the degenerative cardiovascular diseases common in modern societies. This review outlines the essence of our hunter-gatherer genetic legacy and suggests practical steps to re-align our modern milieu with our ancient genome in an effort to improve cardiovascular health.

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Dietary lean red meat and human evolution

 

Eur J Nutr. 2000 Apr;39(2):71-9.

 

Dietary lean red meat and human evolution.

 

Mann N.

 

Department of Food Science, RMIT University, Melbourne, VIC, Australia. [email protected]

 

Scientific evidence is accumulating that meat itself is not a risk factor for Western lifestyle diseases such as cardiovascular disease, but rather the risk stems from the excessive fat and particularly saturated fat associated with the meat of modern domesticated animals. In our own studies, we have shown evidence that diets high in lean red meat can actually lower plasma cholesterol, contribute significantly to tissue omega-3 fatty acid and provide a good source of iron, zinc and vitamin B12. A study of human and pre-human diet history shows that for a period of at least 2 million years the human ancestral line had been consuming increasing quantities of meat. During that time, evolutionary selection was in action, adapting our genetic make up and hence our physiological features to a diet high in lean meat. This meat was wild game meat, low in total and saturated fat and relatively rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA). The evidence presented in this review looks at various lines of study which indicate the reliance on meat intake as a major energy source by pre-agricultural humans. The distinct fields briefly reviewed include: fossil isotope studies, human gut morphology, human encephalisation and energy requirements, optimal foraging theory, insulin resistance and studies on hunter-gatherer societies. In conclusion, lean meat is a healthy and beneficial component of any well-balanced diet as long as it is fat trimmed and consumed as part of a varied diet.

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As Zack said, those dudes did not live long at all. And those still living the hunter-gatherer life does not live long. Many people make the mistake (both when promoting paleo/high-fat/protein diets and veganism) of giving an example of a large group (country or tribe) following "their" diet and saying stuff like "they have no cancer or CVD" which sounds awesome but when you look how long these people acctually live the whole lack of cancer and CVD is simply explained by their short life.

 

The whole "starch sucks"-thing going on with Paleo people is stupid, the one difference between our saliva and a monkeys saliva is amylase. We also produce amylase in our stomach and small intestine. Why would evolution give us amylase production if we weren't supposed to eat starch? I do not think grains are awesome or anything but fact is that almost all long living groups in the world base their diet on starches, it simply can't be as bad (or even close) as they are saying.

 

How much we hunted I do not know. A lot of evidence show that hunting was done mostly as a ritual more than acctually a way of getting food. A lot of evidence seems to point that we ate a lot of seafood like clams and such which is more likely since the energy spent is not much. Hunting animals simply seems very demanding calorie wise and some parts of the animals is acctually toxic to us (like the liver). Also if the women are pregnant they simply won't be able to hunt at all for a couple of months which would be even less effective enrgy wise since the dude would have to catch twice (or maybe more) the amount of animals.

 

Now I've rambled enough really but I just wanna say that the paleo diet is a lot better than most diets out there. If they are getting 35% of their energy from veggies that are unrefined that is a whole lot. Fruits (including berries) and vegetables are probably the most healthy thing you can eat and simply by increasing consumption of these will be an improvment of your diet. Not eating processed meats and less red meat is also great, like Zack said, wild meat (and grass fed) is a whole lot healthier than the shit we see today. Not consuming dairy is also great.

 

The thing I find very funny in the abstract you posted is things like this

protein (19-35% energy)...carbohydrate (22-40% energy)...fat intake (28-58% energy)

It shows that we have very little clue to what humans acctually ate and how much etc. It does show that we are probably able to adjust a whole lot to our current enviroment, which is typical for omnivores.

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As Zack said, those dudes did not live long at all. And those still living the hunter-gatherer life does not live long. Many people make the mistake (both when promoting paleo/high-fat/protein diets and veganism) of giving an example of a large group (country or tribe) following "their" diet and saying stuff like "they have no cancer or CVD" which sounds awesome but when you look how long these people acctually live the whole lack of cancer and CVD is simply explained by their short life.

 

Can it be the case that, as I've mentioned in my first post, they died so early mostly due to "natural" causes (such as predators) and/or diseases that are easily preventable now, which would make the paleo-like approach to diet that much healthier? Just a thought. I mean, eating roughly the same amount of calories from protein (mostly lean sources), carbs (mostly from wild veggies, fruits and berries) and fats (mostly unsaturated, with a good balance of n-6:n-3) sounds pretty good to me... which, of course, does NOT mean that such a diet is ideal for everyone and in every situation - there's just too many variables that have to be considered.

 

This is from the FAQ section of the www.thepaleodiet.com website:

 

Since hunter-gatherers lived a "nasty, short, and brutal life," how can we know if their diets were healthful or not? Don't their short life spans suggest a poor diet?

 

It is certainly true that hunter-gatherers studied during modern times did not have as great an average lifespan as those values found in fully westernized, industrial nations. However, most deaths in hunter-gatherer societies were related to the accidents and trauma of a life spent living outdoors without modern medical care, as opposed to the chronic degenerative diseases that afflict modern societies. In most hunter-gatherer populations today, approximately 10-20% of the population is 60 years of age or older. These elderly people have been shown to be generally free of the signs and symptoms of chronic disease (obesity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels) that universally afflict the elderly in western societies. When these people adopt western diets, their health declines and they begin to exhibit signs and symptoms of "diseases of civilization."

 

The whole "starch sucks"-thing going on with Paleo people is stupid, the one difference between our saliva and a monkeys saliva is amylase. We also produce amylase in our stomach and small intestine. Why would evolution give us amylase production if we weren't supposed to eat starch? I do not think grains are awesome or anything but fact is that almost all long living groups in the world base their diet on starches, it simply can't be as bad (or even close) as they are saying.

 

Can you give some examples? That's not to say you're wrong, I'm just interested.

 

How much we hunted I do not know. A lot of evidence show that hunting was done mostly as a ritual more than acctually a way of getting food. A lot of evidence seems to point that we ate a lot of seafood like clams and such which is more likely since the energy spent is not much. Hunting animals simply seems very demanding calorie wise and some parts of the animals is acctually toxic to us (like the liver). Also if the women are pregnant they simply won't be able to hunt at all for a couple of months which would be even less effective enrgy wise since the dude would have to catch twice (or maybe more) the amount of animals.

 

That makes sense. I remember reading somewhere on the net about new research being done, which is showing that humans were more of a prey for other (bigger, stronger and faster) animals than predators themselves. And that pretty much disspels the long-held view that our ancestors were these powerful, noble, wild beast-slaying masters of the animal kingdom. I don't remember where I read it and have no idea whether there's any truth in that, though.

 

Now I've rambled enough really but I just wanna say that the paleo diet is a lot better than most diets out there. If they are getting 35% of their energy from veggies that are unrefined that is a whole lot. Fruits (including berries) and vegetables are probably the most healthy thing you can eat and simply by increasing consumption of these will be an improvment of your diet. Not eating processed meats and less red meat is also great, like Zack said, wild meat (and grass fed) is a whole lot healthier than the shit we see today. Not consuming dairy is also great.

 

True. Meat from grass-fed animals contains significantly more omega-3s, less saturated fat, more conjugated linoleic acid, etc.

 

The thing I find very funny in the abstract you posted is things like this
protein (19-35% energy)...carbohydrate (22-40% energy)...fat intake (28-58% energy)

It shows that we have very little clue to what humans acctually ate and how much etc. It does show that we are probably able to adjust a whole lot to our current enviroment, which is typical for omnivores.

 

Yeah, that IS rather funny It also makes the elusive quest for THE diet much more complicated, approaching impossible.

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Can it be the case that, as I've mentioned in my first post, they died so early mostly due to "natural" causes

 

Yes that could be the case but we do not know. The thing about this discussion is that it has so many aspects that it's hard to keep focus, even harder over internet. Since the paleo diet is said to be based on our evolution I would like to mention that reproduction is what "generates" evolution and humans (read women) isn't even fertile after 50-60 years of age. To live beyond 75 (when the last kid is grown up) seems pointless from an evolutionary point of view. Of course we can discuss the importance of grandparents as a "safety net" to raise the kid but it will lead nowhere.

 

These elderly people have been shown to be generally free of the signs and symptoms of chronic disease (obesity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels) that universally afflict the elderly in western societies.

 

This does not suprise me much. As I said earlier the paleo diet isn't that bad compared to other diets and it's very good compared to the standard western diet. But the metabolic syndrome isn't only controlled by diet, it also has a lot to do with lifestyle like stress and physical activity which plays a big role when we talk about these kinds of people.

 

Can you give some examples? That's not to say you're wrong, I'm just interested.

 

I wish I had my books here but I'm far away from home atm. Check out "healthy at 100" by John Robbins. He writes about Abkhasia (spelling?) in the Caucasus (it's like south of russia), Okinawa (which you've probably heard about, BBC did a documentary about it), Vilcabamba in South America and some weird place I don't remember the name of in central Asia.

 

True. Meat from grass-fed animals contains significantly more omega-3s, less saturated fat, more conjugated linoleic acid, etc.

 

CLA isn't very healthy as you may think. It bugs me a lot that people acctually by this as a supplement, it's trans-fat and not very cool. There are some old animal studies showing benefits of this but when researchers tried to copy the results they failed and discovered negative results instead.

 

CLA and body weight regulation in humans

 

CLA comprises a group of unsaturated FA isomers with a variety of biological effects in experimental animals. CLA reduces body fat accumulation in animal models and has been suggested to have significant effects on lipid and glucose metabolism, e.g., antidiabetic effects in obese Zucker rats. It has been proposed that the trans10-cis12 isomer is the active isomer associated with the antiobesity and insulin-sensitizing properties of CLA. The metabolic effects in humans in general, and isomer-specific effects specifically, are not well characterized. In a series of controlled studies in humans, we investigated the effects of CLA (given as the commercially available mixture of isomers and as the purified trans10-cis12 CLA isomer) on anthropometry, lipid and glucose metabolism, and markers of lipid peroxidation. Preliminary results indicate that CLA may slightly decrease body fat in humans also, particularly abdominal fat, but there is no effect on body weight or body mass index. There is no simultaneous improvement in lipid or glucose metabolism. Rather, the trans10-cis12 CLA isomer unexpectedly caused significant impairment of the peripheral insulin sensitivity as well as of blood glucose and serum lipid levels. In addition, CLA markedly elevated lipid peroxidation. Thus, the metabolic effects of CLA in humans seem complex; further studies, especially of isomer-specific effects and for longer time periods, are warranted.

 

Supplementation with conjugated linoleic acid causes isomer-dependent oxidative stress and elevated C-reactive protein: a potential link to fatty acid-induced insulin resistance

 

BACKGROUND: Conjugated linoleic acids (CLAs), a group of fatty acids shown to have beneficial effects in animals, are also used as weight loss supplements. Recently, we reported that the t10c12 CLA-isomer caused insulin resistance in abdominally obese men via unknown mechanisms. The aim of the present study was to examine whether CLA has isomer-specific effects on oxidative stress or inflammatory biomarkers and to investigate the relationship between these factors and induced insulin resistance. METHODS AND RESULTS: In a double-blind placebo-controlled trial, 60 men with metabolic syndrome were randomized to one of 3 groups receiving t10c12 CLA, a CLA mixture, or placebo for 12 weeks. Insulin sensitivity (euglycemic clamp), serum lipids, in vivo lipid peroxidation (determined as urinary 8-iso-PGF(2alpha) [F2-isoprostanes]), 15-ketodihydro PGF(2alpha), plasma vitamin E, plasma C-reactive protein, tumor necrosis factor-alpha, and interleukin-6 were assessed before and after treatment. Supplementation with t10c12 CLA markedly increased 8-iso-PGF(2alpha) (578%) and C-reactive protein (110%) compared with placebo (P<0.0001 and P<0.01, respectively) and independent of changes in hyperglycemia or dyslipidemia. The increases in 8-iso-PGF(2alpha), but not in C-reactive protein, were significantly and independently related to aggravated insulin resistance. Oxidative stress was related to increased vitamin E levels, suggesting a compensatory mechanism. CONCLUSIONS: t10c12 CLA supplementation increases oxidative stress and inflammatory biomarkers in obese men. The oxidative stress seems closely related to induced insulin resistance, suggesting a link between the fatty acid-induced lipid peroxidation seen in the present study and insulin resistance. These unfavorable effects of t10c12 CLA might be of clinical importance with regard to cardiovascular disease, in consideration of the widespread use of dietary supplements containing this fatty acid.

 

Ulf Riserus, who did both these studies, and I talked about CLA after a lecture he held for my class and he said that there might be benefits of CLA consumption but there sure are risks. He is a lipid expert and I kind of trust him.

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I think the researchers are basing a lot of their work on sociology and anthropology which are pretty biased since they seem to work off of myths such as meat eating as the foundation of society. It's not that easy to kill game with a sharpened stick. Gathering and later on agriculture is much easier. Animals like bear are pretty fatty so just take that into account especially in today's paradigm of low fat. I think exercise level is probably the most important aspect of health. Of course that probably can't make up for consuming lots of HFCs and sugar and saturated fats, etc.

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Many years ago the author of a copycat book "Neander Thin" started trolling alt.food.vegan. His slogan for his low carb/organic lean/wild meat diet was that people shouldn't eat anything they couldn't kill with a pointed stick.

 

 

Uh huh, I could use a pointed stick to dig up a potato.

 

Never hand a man a gun unless you know where he is going to point it.........

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Yes that could be the case but we do not know. The thing about this discussion is that it has so many aspects that it's hard to keep focus, even harder over internet. Since the paleo diet is said to be based on our evolution I would like to mention that reproduction is what "generates" evolution and humans (read women) isn't even fertile after 50-60 years of age. To live beyond 75 (when the last kid is grown up) seems pointless from an evolutionary point of view. Of course we can discuss the importance of grandparents as a "safety net" to raise the kid but it will lead nowhere.

 

So, what you're saying is that it's pretty much impossible to live beyond 75 years without medical intervention? If so, how about folks from those hunter-gatherer tribes (eg. the ones you mentioned below) that are known for their life-long health and longevity? If not, sorry for misinterpreting you.

 

This does not suprise me much. As I said earlier the paleo diet isn't that bad compared to other diets and it's very good compared to the standard western diet. But the metabolic syndrome isn't only controlled by diet, it also has a lot to do with lifestyle like stress and physical activity which plays a big role when we talk about these kinds of people.

 

Sure, but, then, is it even possible to isolate just diet (for research purposes)?

 

I wish I had my books here but I'm far away from home atm. Check out "healthy at 100" by John Robbins. He writes about Abkhasia (spelling?) in the Caucasus (it's like south of russia), Okinawa (which you've probably heard about, BBC did a documentary about it), Vilcabamba in South America and some weird place I don't remember the name of in central Asia.

 

Thanks, I'll see what I can find on those.

 

CLA isn't very healthy as you may think. It bugs me a lot that people acctually by this as a supplement, it's trans-fat and not very cool. There are some old animal studies showing benefits of this but when researchers tried to copy the results they failed and discovered negative results instead.

 

Can be, I haven't looked at it in detail. I'm currently reading Jonny Bowden's "The 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth" (which is pretty OK, imo) and CLA was mentioned as one the possible benefits of meat from grass-fed animals, so I thought I would mention it.

 

I think the researchers are basing a lot of their work on sociology and anthropology which are pretty biased since they seem to work off of myths such as meat eating as the foundation of society.

 

Don't want to de-rail this thread, but how do you know? How do you know sociologists and anthropologists are biased? I mean, we're all biased to some degree and there are plenty of disingenuous scientists in most every field, but are sociologists and anthropologists somehow more overweighted than others?

 

It's not that easy to kill game with a sharpened stick.

 

Yes, but spears, axes and other tools were invented later on which made it a bit easier, no?

 

Gathering and later on agriculture is much easier.

 

True, but I'm wondering about whether we properly adapted to eating grains in such a short window of time, since we've been eating nothing but wild animals and plants for about 99,9% of our evolution, or so it seems.

 

I think exercise level is probably the most important aspect of health. Of course that probably can't make up for consuming lots of HFCs and sugar and saturated fats, etc.

 

Yes, BUT. There's some research (I can try to find it on PudMed if you want) to suggest that high saturated fat intake doesn't really have any noticeable negative impact on endurance athletes (yes, I know, it's debatable whether that can be extrapolated to sedentary people or non-endurance athletes) who are in energy balance. Nothing groundbreaking, but interesting nonetheless.

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So, what you're saying is that it's pretty much impossible to live beyond 75 years without medical intervention? If so, how about folks from those hunter-gatherer tribes (eg. the ones you mentioned below) that are known for their life-long health and longevity? If not, sorry for misinterpreting you.

 

Sorry for being unclear (it often happens when I ramble). What I am saying is that we have no function in evolutinary terms after a certain age and if evolution gave us a certain diet to survive it has no meaning to get us beyond a certain age. Does that clear things up? I really suck at explaining stuff like this. It's just my own theories. To live beyond 75 without medical intervention is very rare but certainly possible.

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Sorry for being unclear (it often happens when I ramble). What I am saying is that we have no function in evolutinary terms after a certain age and if evolution gave us a certain diet to survive it has no meaning to get us beyond a certain age. Does that clear things up? I really suck at explaining stuff like this. It's just my own theories. To live beyond 75 without medical intervention is very rare but certainly possible.

 

Yeah, I think I get it now. Makes sense to me.

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All elements of the human form point away from eating meat. As a vegan you probably recognize that this is irrelevant to whether or not we should eat meat, but this page is worth having a look at. We match herbivores in every feature, including our teeth.

 

http://michaelbluejay.com/veg/natural.html

 

Good article. Although I disagree that meat - even in moderation - is poisonous for humans.

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Found this on PubMed:

 

Wien Klin Wochenschr. 2009;121(5-6):173-87

 

[Human nutrition in the context of evolutionary medicine]

 

[Article in German]

 

Ströhle A, Wolters M, Hahn A.

 

Abteilung Ernährungsphysiologie und Humanernährung, Institut für Lebensmittelwissenschaft und Okotrophologie, Leibniz Universität Hannover, Germany. [email protected]

 

Evolutionary medicine has gained increasing attention in recent years by implying that a food selection similar to that of the Paleolithic may prevent diseases. This article is an attempt to characterize the food selection during hominid evolution based on current paleontologic research. Hominid evolution can be divided into multiple phases; and the nutrition ecology of the plio-pleistocene hominids can be tentatively characterized. According to new results of isotope analysis, the Australopithecines did ingest small amounts of animal food already 4.5-2.5 million years ago, while consuming a mainly plant based abrasive diet, which was similar to that of recent chimpanzees. Compared to the Australopithecines, the first representatives of Homo such as H. erectus and H. habilis (2.5-1.5 million years before today) were likely to consume a diet providing more energy and nutrients, which might also have been related to the more gracile dentition. Like H. sapiens the members of this species also consumed an omnivore diet. Assumptions about the nutrition ecology of the archaic and the modern H. sapiens are often concluded by analogies based on the living of historic and recent foragers (hunter-gatherers). As the few detailed ethnographic data show, the diet composition of the individual hunter-gatherer groups varied considerably and ranged from a nearly pure animal-based diet to a diet dominated by plants. All in all the eating behaviour of prehistoric humans was, like that of their pleistocene ancestors, very flexible. Except for focussing on an energy and nutrient-rich diet there was neither specialization in certain foods, nor a typical plant-animal ratio nor a defined macronutrient distribution. Correspondingly, it is impossible to justify details given by representatives of evolutionary medicine on "the Paleolithic diet" empirically.

 

Then there's also this one: Metabolic and physiologic improvements from consuming a paleolithic, hunter-gatherer type diet, which shows that people who switch to a paleolithic-like diet experience various health benefits. But it isn't specified what kind of diet they were on before switching to the "paleo" diet. Not to even mention the fact that equating a "paleo" diet with a diet heavy on meat is problematic.

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The problem with the Paleo diet crowd is that they theorise what humans eat hundreds of thousands of years ago and try and say this is what we should be eatting today. No one knows what people were eatting 100,000 years ago. We'd be better off looking at what has worked recently and what the trends are with various cultures. Over and over again the healthiest cultures eat a diet of no processed foods, very high percentage plant foods and overall pretty low in total fat(sub 25 percent)

 

I've also experimented with every diet out there and all sorts of macro ratios and one things that is for sure is athletics/ muscle building and low carb diets don't mix at all. Even when the total calories are there i feel bad and perform worse. maybe not the case for everyone, but for me it sure is

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Actually I do know sociologists and anthropologists and they rely on theories not science. I don't really care if what they say is incorrect or correct, but the problem is that they are people who tend to believe most things that other people believe such as the human evolution through meat type things. I did just run into a vegan sociologist though so they probably don't buy into this theory, but it is a prevailing theory.

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Actually I do know sociologists and anthropologists and they rely on theories not science. I don't really care if what they say is incorrect or correct, but the problem is that they are people who tend to believe most things that other people believe such as the human evolution through meat type things. I did just run into a vegan sociologist though so they probably don't buy into this theory, but it is a prevailing theory.

 

Yep, The problem with the theory that we're meat eaters is you'd think that are anatomy would've charged from the beginning of man like a shorter digestive system ect. If i had to guess I'd say that humans have always eat alot of plants with some animal products because in times of food shortage animal products are very calorie dense. most likely AP had no benefit except to kept people going in ruff times. Then it become a cultual thing pasted down from generation to generation so there was allways some animal products in everyones diet

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If i had to guess I'd say that humans have always eat alot of plants with some animal products because in times of food shortage animal products are very calorie dense. most likely AP had no benefit except to kept people going in ruff times. Then it become a cultual thing pasted down from generation to generation so there was allways some animal products in everyones diet

 

My thoughts exactly. It seems that we've been eating a plant-based diet for millions of years and started eating meat only a couple hundred thousand years ago, possibly because of lack of plant foods during rough times or because animal foods are somewhat more calorie-dense, thus more advantageous when it's cold, etc. Yet, those couple hundred thousand years are a relatively short period of time in our evolution and the anatomy of humans kinda proves it - we're mostly herbivores (not even real omnivores)... with the ability to digest animal foods, which is cool survival-wise.

 

In any case, I think the whole idea of a paleolithic-like diet is quite nonsensical, if only because food intakes of various peoples vary drastically - from meat-based to almost vegan diets, so claiming that a paleolithic-like diet must include a lot of meat is simply disingenuous. And then there's the fact that most of the longest-living cultures consume plant-based diets of slightly differing parameters.

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People like to point to the fact that humans have been eatting animal products and then they say will we're omnivores. Just becasue one can chew something up and get rid of it doesn't mean that's what we function best on. You can give a cow a diet of all beef and it will live for many years, but at a much lower quality of living like a human eatting a paleo diet

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This is an interesting topic. Here are some points I would like to make:

 

1) What ever early man's diet was, it does not mean it was optimal.

 

Early man only had to live to 25 or 30 years of age to be successful. He likely had kids at puberty and then his kids would need about a dozen years of adult supervision and teaching , after that the 25-30 years of age adults were expendable as far as the tribes success.

 

Even under a bad diet, people would live that long. Therefore, early man could eat pretty much anything and be successful as a species. Therefore, exact diet (early man could eat whatever he could get) was irrelevant to his success and it is therefore a fallacy to declare early man's diet, what ever it was, as optimal as that Paleo Diet tries to do.

 

2) If you wonder what early man's diet why not look at similar species now.

 

We are great apes. So I would find the actual diet of other great apes that can be observed to be more relevant than hypothesis of what hunter-gathers did or did not eat. Great apes are vegetarian for the most part (Chimps eat the most meat but even then it is a small part of their diet and they tend to do it more ritualistic than for dietary purposes - example, they tend to kill enemy chimps, monkeys, and other small animals in trees and then show off by eating it in front of their tribe or in courting rituals.)

 

3) The amount of work and time between hunts would make a meat center diet inefficient.

 

I have always doubted that meat was large part of year-round hunter-gathers' diets. It does seem to make sense on the work that would be needed and what you get from that work. What I mean by that is that gaining meat was likely a hard job. First, since man lacked the physical attributes to catch small game (man was certainly not quick and agile enough to catch them, and he lacked claws or sharp teeth to grasp them even if he were quick enough), until traps or precise range weapons were developed, I imagine most of their kills were rather large animals which were slower or less intimidated by man so those animals did not run away as often. But since the animals were large, it likely took a large hunting party to kill them and based on the early crude weapons of man, it probably was a fairly long fight of at least several minutes and possibly longer, so many of the hunters were probably injured to one degree or another. All this (large ordeal, attrition of hunters being hurt and not being able to hunt again right away ) likely meant there were many days between hunts. I.e hunts were likely more weekly events versus daily events.

 

Many hunter gathers lived in warmer climates, so meat would not last but a few days, so even though a single large animal produced a lot of meat for small tribes, it did not last but a few meals or diseases would have been rampant had they kept eating it.

 

So if my assumptions are right and hunts were more weekly than daily events and meat did not last long, what did they do the other days, not eat? Evidently plant food played a large role in their diet and was larger than meat as far as total calories on weekly basis during much of the year. During winter when less plants grew and meat would last much longer, meat was probably a higher percentage of the diet.

 

4) Agriculture caused a major shift from hunter-gather to domesticated man.

 

I might be wrong but I think anthropology is fairly certain that the progress from hunter-gathers to a domesticated people was largely based on farming. The hypothesis is that man noticed plants he ate growing from his feces (he ate fruit and the seeds passed through his bowels and grew out of his waste) and from that he was able to learn what seeds did and then he expanded on that insight by developing seed cultivating, and later farming. If seed cultivating and farming lead to man domesticated himself, then I would assume plants were central to his diet or why else would he make such a profound change (from hunter-gather to agriculture)? In other words, if man's central diet was meat, would tribes had likely decided to make a major change to their way of life based on plants?

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They say our ancestors were eating 68% animal food and 32% plant-based food, but is this an average of different times, climates and different countries? Because in tropical areas it was the opposite, they discovered the diet consisted of up to 75% plant-based foods like fruits, vegetables, crushed seeds, nuts and roots. i'm pretty sure it happened often that hunters leave for a few days, weeks if not more only to come back hands and stomachs empty to the 'village' and eat the fruits that female gatherers have been eating while the men were fasting out there.

Scientists wonder why eat provided good health to our ancestors but now that people eat so much meat they are all sick. That's because they eat also chips and cakes, and eat fatty meat instead of lean meat, non-organic, irradiated, processed, cooked, pesticides and antibiotics-laden meat, etc.

I noticed in one of the texts that it is scientifically proved that lean red meat is healthy, but I've heard, from a recent serious study, that cooked red meat is highly carcinogenic.

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They say our ancestors were eating 68% animal food and 32% plant-based food, but is this an average of different times, climates and different countries? Because in tropical areas it was the opposite, they discovered the diet consisted of up to 75% plant-based foods like fruits, vegetables, crushed seeds, nuts and roots. i'm pretty sure it happened often that hunters leave for a few days, weeks if not more only to come back hands and stomachs empty to the 'village' and eat the fruits that female gatherers have been eating while the men were fasting out there.

Scientists wonder why eat provided good health to our ancestors but now that people eat so much meat they are all sick. That's because they eat also chips and cakes, and eat fatty meat instead of lean meat, non-organic, irradiated, processed, cooked, pesticides and antibiotics-laden meat, etc.

I noticed in one of the texts that it is scientifically proved that lean red meat is healthy, but I've heard, from a recent serious study, that cooked red meat is highly carcinogenic.

 

You can find a study that says anyone is good. I'm sure Organic lean wild meat is far from the worst thing one could eat, but that doesn't mean it's what we thrive on. IMO the most important thing as far as health is concerned it weither a diet is processed or not and then from there it matters what makes up that diet and the macro/ micro ratios and such.

 

Another thing to keep in mind is there's alot of propaganda from the meat and dairy industy so much so that people think that you can't live without them. ALot of studies are founded by them. Someone can be on a diet of all fast food and they say "arn't you worried you might miss a nutrient?" "where do you get your protein?" If something is repeated enough times the masses will take it for fact.

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This is sponsored by meat companies.

 

I can eat like "paleo" using nuts and fruits,like gorilla,our ancestor.

 

Nuts and sprouts have a lot of proteins.

 

The problems are infiammations eating too much nuts,but eating only meat I have intoxications.

 

We are weaks anche we must have a big part of boiled foods

(like beans) or starch. I can wrong,I like eat much raw food as I can but is not much for me...

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