The paleo diet runs on the same foods our hunter-gather ancestors supposedly ate: fruits, vegetables, meats, seafood, and nuts. "By following these nutritional guidelines, we put our diet more in line with the evolutionary pressures that shaped our current genetics, which in turn positively influences health and well being," says Loren Cordain, PhD, professor of health and exercise science at Colorado State University and author of The Paleo Diet. He says the diet lessens the body's glycemic load, has a healthy ratio of saturated-to-unsaturated fatty acids, increases vitamin and nutrient consumption, and contains an optimal balance of protein, fat, and carbohydrates.
The Paleolithic or “Paleo” diet seeks to address 21st century ills by revisiting the way humans ate during the Paleolithic era more than 2 million years ago. Paleo proponents state that because our genetics and anatomy have changed very little since the Stone Age, we should eat foods available during that time to promote good health. Our predecessors used simple stone tools that were not advanced enough to grow and cultivate plants, so they hunted, fished, and gathered wild plants for food. If they lived long enough, they were believed to experience less modern-day diseases like diabetes, cancer, and heart disease because of a consistent diet of lean meats and plant foods along with a high level of physical activity from intensive hunting. However, the life expectancy of our predecessors was only a fraction of that of people today.

Physicians, biochemists, nutritionists, and other researchers are starting to come around to the benefits of ancestral nutrition, and people who adopt a Paleo-like approach to eating are reporting significant improvements in their general health, body composition, and energy levels. Most importantly, there’s evidence that folks who eat this way are reducing their risks of numerous diseases and disorders that are associated with the Standard American Diet (S.A.D.).
Salsa is generally something that you can have on Paleo, you’ll just want to check the ingredients list to make sure that they haven’t added anything that’s not allowed. If you buy organic salsa you should be fine. In this recipe they’ve gone with fire roasted tomatoes, which will pack a bit of heat with them. They’re also using hot green chiles which will get your attention, and which might make this a no-go for those that don’t like their salsa too spicy. Try the No-Ritos recipe above for the perfect chip to dip into this spicy and hearty salsa.
The Hiwi gather and hunt a diverse group of plants and animals from the savannas, forests, rivers and swamps. Their main sources of meat are capybara, collared peccary, deer, anteater, armadillo, and feral cattle, numerous species of fish, and at least some turtle species. Less commonly consumed animals include iguanas and savanna lizards, wild rabbits, and many birds. Not exactly the kind of meat Paleo dieters and others in urban areas can easily obtain.

Here’s an interesting take on hummus, which is necessary because traditional hummus is not something you can have on Paleo. They’ve replaced the garbanzo beans (aka chickpeas) with a combination of zucchini and avocado, and the result is something that looks a lot like hummus, and tastes really good too. All of the other ingredients in hummus are present, like garlic, tahini, lemon juice, and cumin, so as long as you’re not a hummus snob you should be pleasantly surprised by this concoction.


As our dietary recommendations tend to eliminate many of the staples typically consumed on a Vegan or Vegetarian diet (such as grains, legumes, soy, most vegetable oils and/or conventional dairy) your protein choices may be significantly limited to strictly pastured sources of dairy products and eggs and you may likely require more supplementation to compensate for those food sources (including meat) which we eliminate in the program. Also, since a vegetarian diet is typically very rich in antigenic foods (endemic to a post-agricultural diet), sensitivities to some foods may unfortunately be more common. We strongly encourage openness to incorporating high quality, healthfully, humanely and sustainably raised animal source foods and seafood over time. 

Alcohol is a no-no if you are strict paleo. Beer is made from grains, and liquor also contains traces of gluten. But, good news for cider-lovers: most hard ciders are gluten-free, so they are allowed. Check the label to be sure. Red wine is more accepted in the paleo community because it contains the antioxidant resveratrol, but sorry chardonnay lovers, white wine is technically not allowed.

I think granola bars are pretty healthy so my kids and I eat them for snacks all the time. They aren’t just for breakfast anymore. These granola bars come together quickly and are so easy to make. Chopping the nuts is the most time-consuming part and you probably know that isn’t very hard. You can use whatever nuts you like or have on hand. You can forget the chocolate if you’d like.
Fat and Cholesterol are Good for You by Uffe Ravnskov is a new book which includes updated and simplified sections from his previous one (The Cholesterol Myths). Ravnskov also presents his own idea about the cause of heart disease, an idea that explains all the findings that do not fit with the present view. It is a powerful book. Also see his web site. The Amazon.com reviews average to 5 stars. Published January 26, 2009.
Surprised there are chocolate chip waffles on this list? Once you glance at the ingredients, you won’t be—Know Better is a paleo-friendly brand that makes grain-free, gluten-free, and protein-packed baked goods with coconut flour, chia seeds, and egg whites for added protein. These chocolate chip waffles also contain no added sugars; the chocolate chips are made from cacao and allulose. Enjoy them topped with almond butter for a seriously satisfying snack.
Your Vitality.  Even healthy individuals (without disease or in their later stages of life) have shown benefits from following a Paleo template. A study of 14 healthy volunteers (Österdahl et al, 2008) found that all participants experienced enhanced blood sugar regulation, an increase in vitamin and mineral status, decreased inflammation and weight, and lowered blood pressure.  

The Paleo diet is based upon everyday, modern foods that mimic the food groups of our pre-agricultural, hunter-gatherer ancestors. Though there are numerous benefits eating a hunter-gatherer diet, there are seven fundamental characteristics of hunter-gatherer diets that help to optimize your health, minimize your risk of chronic disease, and to lose weight and keep it off.

Evolutionary biologist Marlene Zuk writes that the idea that our genetic makeup today matches that of our ancestors is misconceived, and that in debate Cordain was "taken aback" when told that 10,000 years was "plenty of time" for an evolutionary change in human digestive abilities to have taken place.[4]:114 On this basis Zuk dismisses Cordain's claim that the paleo diet is "the one and only diet that fits our genetic makeup".[4]
Our bodies need much more protein than the average person consumes. In fact, protein accounts for only 15 percent of the average person’s daily calories, while 19 to 35 percent of the average hunter-gatherer diet was comprised of protein. This was due to the high consumption of meat, seafood, and other animal products prevalent in contemporary approaches to Paleo eating.

“I think there are a lot of positives about it,” Holley says. “It cuts out a lot of processed foods just naturally, like processed grains or added sugar through soft drinks or juice.” And because the diet promotes eating anti-inflammatory foods — like fruits, vegetables, and unsaturated fats in nuts and certain oils — your health could benefit, Holley explains. Cutting out processed foods and sugar will also help lower your risk of certain diseases, like type 2 diabetes and certain cancers, she says. (6)
One way to avoid eating potatoes as a snack is to replace a popular snack like potato chips with a healthier version. Using zucchini in place of the potatoes is a great idea, and gives you added nutrition. Zucchini makes a great choice to make into a chip because all it requires is some slicing and you have nice round pieces ready to be made into chips. They are easy to make, and the recipe is versatile in how it lets you dust them with whatever seasonings you like. This means you could make them BBQ Zucchini chips, or Ranch Zucchini chips, just by adding different seasonings. Just be sure to check the label on the seasoning packet to see if it’s Paleo.
Banana peppers are really great because they give you a bit of spice but not so much as to be overpowering. When you stuff them with salami you are pretty much getting equal parts meat and vegetable, making this very Paleo. But they didn’t stop there, they stuffed the salami with avocado, so you’re getting a huge nutrition boost as well as a third texture to make this really nice on the palate. The avocado will provide you with a good dose of potassium, as well as fiber to help with digestion. A fine snack choice that will easily get you to your next meal.
I have 9 Paleo snack recipes when you’re on the go so you can stay on track with minimal effort. These are good ideas for work, snacks at home, children’s snacks, and vacations. Sometimes eating on the Paleo diet can be kind of hard. Especially when you are traveling or always on the go. And extra EXTRA hard if you are traveling with kids AND doing the paleo diet. Whew! I’m tired just thinking of it.
We can think of no better principles than The Paleo Way for individuals with Crohn’s disease. In an acute state of Crohn’s disease it’s likely you may have specific foods included or excluded to get the inflammation down as efficiently as possible. Of course it is necessary and we strongly recommend you seek trusted health professional advice and support both before and during any dietary change and healing processes to monitor your progress and to help tailor any elements to be particularly suitable for your individual needs. With your trusted health professional you should address underlying immune dysfunction involved with Crohn’s disease. You should also have any medication use monitored by your medical professional.
PaleoHacks is an online paleo diet community that promotes a healthy lifestyles through primal methods. PaleoHacks started as a way for people share recipes, ideas and general opinions about the Paleolithic lifestyle. Now, whether it be the paleo diet, physical fitness or overall wellness, PaleoHacks has evolved into an online resource for healthy living. check us out on Facebook.
At it’s core, the Paleo diet is a plant-based diet, with two thirds or more of every Paleo meal consisting of plant foods and only one third of every plate taken up by animal foods.  Of course, meat consumption is enthusiastically endorsed as well because it provides vital nutrients not obtainable from plant sources.  Sourcing the highest quality food you can is encouraged, meaning choosing grass-fed or pasture-raised meat, wild-caught seafood, and local organic fruits and vegetables whenever possible. See The Diet We’re Meant to Eat, Part 3: How Much Meat versus Veggies? and The Importance of Vegetables.
The following links tend towards news reports of scientific studies that point out some positive aspect of the paleo diet. If you are looking for current news reports, I suggest signing up for Google Alerts for the Type: News. I have three set up, for: "caveman diet," "paleo diet," and "paleolithic diet." You can also set them up for blogs and/or websites.
The paleo diet (also nicknamed the caveman diet, primal diet, Stone Age diet, and hunter-gatherer diet) is hugely popular these days, and goes by one simple question: What would a caveman eat? Here, we explain what the paleo diet involves, its pros and cons, and, ultimately, what a modern person needs to know to decide whether or not to take the paleo diet plunge.
Cordain argues that chimpanzees and horses avoid meat, and they have big bellies that we would have if we didn’t ditch plants for meat. He also says meat increased human brain size, and decreased stomach size so we can have the six-pack abs that chimps can’t. But I looked at his endnotes with citations to research and couldn’t find the source for these theories. I also couldn’t find research showing that legumes and grains were invented by humans.
Fresh fruits, fresh vegetables, fresh meat—the paleo diet is all about eating foods straight from the Earth just as our ancestors did. Those ancestors didn't have livestock or crops to call their own, so Cordain advises to go with grass-fed and organic varieties whenever possible to limit exposure to pesticides, antibiotics, and other chemicals that didn't exist back then. Research from Emory University suggests that Paleolithic people obtained about 35% of their calories from fats, 35% from carbohydrates, and 30% from protein.
The Paleo diet reduces inflammation and supports normal functioning of the immune system.  Foods that are inherently inflammatory are avoided, removing this unnecessary stimulus for increased inflammation. By providing the essential nutrients that the immune system requires to regulate itself, an overactive immune system can be modulated.  By providing the essential nutrients that the immune system needs to function optimally, a suppressed immune system can recover.
Eggplants are Paleo friendly for most, but store-bought baba ghanoush can still contain loads of hidden mayo—and that can mean unwanted vegetable oils. Go for a simple, mayo-free recipe with lots of garlic and a squeeze of lemon juice for a fresher take that won’t weigh you down. Try pairing this dip with some Paleo-friendly homemade rosemary sesame crackers.

They say that low-fat weight-loss diets have proved in clinical trials and real life to be dismal failures, and that on top of it all, the percentage of fat in the American diet has been decreasing for two decades. Our cholesterol levels have been declining, and we have been smoking less, and yet the incidence of heart disease has not declined as would be expected. ”That is very disconcerting,” Willett says. ”It suggests that something else bad is happening.”


We also believe there are benefits in putting an extra emphasis on organ meats, bone broths, Antarctic krill oil supplementation (due to very high EPA and DHA demands on fetal brain development —potentially draining mom’s stores) and 100% organic/fully pastured/wild caught sources of meats, seafood, eggs vegetables and greens. As mother’s milk is an extremely critical source of medium chain triglycerides meant for the rapid growth of the baby’s brain and nervous system, we believe using a little more coconut oil in the diet could be helpful, too. Quality has never mattered as much as it does during this time. Also, in our opinion there has never been a more important and utterly critical time to avoid highly antigenic foods such as gluten, grains and dairy products (except for possibly camel’s milk, which is expensive and a bit hard to come by, but is generally safe from an immune reactive standpoint. It’s nearly identical in its total composition to human milk, and as such may prove useful where supplementing regular breast-feeding might be necessary, as well as a non-immune reactive dairy alternative).

Fruits are not only delicious, but they’re also great for you. That said, fruits (even paleo-approved ones) contain large amounts of fructose which, while much better than HFCS (high-fructose corn syrup), is still sugar. If you’re looking to lose weight on the paleo diet, you’ll want to cut back on your fruit intake and focus more on the vegetables allowed on the paleo diet. However, feel free to have one to three servings of fruit a day. Check out this list of paleo diet fruits and see if you’re not hungry by the end! (We’ll admit, we’re partial to blackberries!)

Yes, dark chocolate can be Paleo, and yes, many Paleo experts actually recommend dark chocolate in moderation when it comes to healthy snacks. (Dark chocolate is even included in our 50 best healthy eating tips of all time because it’s packed with antioxidants and has been proven to boost brain health and curb cravings.) But not all dark chocolate meets Paleo snack standards. Look for unsweetened dark chocolate or baking chocolate with 80 percent or more cocoa. EatingEvolved and Primal Kitchen both make dairy-free and certified organic Paleo dark chocolate bars.
Sweet potatoes are used instead of corn in this version of corn chips, since corn is a definite no-go on the Paleo diet. The use of sweet potatoes is a popular one, and they typically act as a stand in for ordinary potatoes. Here they do a good job of providing a crunchy and hearty experience, like the kind you get from corn chips. The accompanying spices and seasonings all work well together, and these are great for dipping into all sorts of things, like the hummus or salsa recipes found above.
My blog, cookbooks, cooking app, and podcast, are intended to help you translate the “rules of the road” into delicious, easy-to-prepare meals for you and your family. Here, you’ll see the way I eat on an everyday basis, and my recipes, too. In case you’re wondering, I cook entirely gluten- and soy-free, and steer clear of legumes and refined vegetable and seed oils.

There are no hard and fast rules about when to eat, how much protein versus fat versus carbohydrates to eat (Paleo is not a low-carb diet, see Carbs Vs. Protein Vs. Fat: Insight from Hunter-Gatherers), and there’s even some foods (like high quality dairy, white rice and potatoes) which some people choose to include in their diets whereas others do not. This means that’s there’s room to experiment so you can figure out not just what makes you healthiest but also what makes you happiest and fits into your schedule and budget.


The paleo diet is meant to mimic what our preagricultural, hunter-gatherer ancestors ate. The premise is that the current Western diet is contributing to the rise of chronic diseases such as obesity, heart disease and cancer. This diet, paleo proponents claim, can reduce inflammation, improve workouts, increase energy, help with weight loss, stabilize blood sugar and even reduce the risk of chronic diseases.
The NY Times had a blog article on Good News on Saturated Fat which is reporting on Gary Taubes's interpretation of the new report in The New England Journal of Medicine on a two-year diet experiment in Israel. A followup is the post The Fat Fight Goes On where Gary rebuts the arguments against the study. And here's a good interview with Taubes (and includes a good summary): Gary Taubes on Cold Fusion, Good Nutrition and What Makes Bad (and Good) Science.
"Snacks can seem like a challenge," when you go paleo, admits registered dietitian Sonya Angelone, a spokeswoman for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. That's why you should keep the ingredients for these quick and easy paleo snacks on hand. Because TBH, even if cavemen didn't eat snacks, well, they also wielded clubs on the regular, so things are just different now.
These sweet potato chips do a great job of filling in for regular potato chips. They have the same texture you’re looking for, both as you pick them up and once you put them in your mouth. The sea salt ensures that they’re salty enough to satisfy, and the rosemary gives them a distinct flavor that really plays well with the sweet potato. And of course sweet potatoes bring a lot more to the table in regards to nutrients and fiber, so you’re actually helping yourself along with these rather than with potato chips that will only set you back.
Almonds are paleo-approved, but it can sometimes be hard to just stop at a handful. While almonds are packed with protein, healthy fats, and an amino acid L-arginine that can help you burn more fat during workouts, they are also calorie dense—if you’re not careful, you can end up downing hundreds of calories worth of almonds in one sitting. That’s why we love these 100 calorie packs. They’re perfectly portioned and contain only whole natural almonds without sketchy ingredients or additives.

Paleo is an ancestral approach that prioritizes eating real, whole, nutrient-dense foods. At its core, Paleo is about trying to eat real, naturally occurring ingredients that are healthful rather than harmful. Biologically, our bodies respond best to real, whole, nutrient-dense foods like plants, meat, and seafood—all of them packed with the nutrients our bodies evolved to thrive on. It was only after industrialized food production and lab-engineered edibles took over our diets that the ”diseases of civilization“ exploded. Today, wheat, soy, sugar, and highly processed foods continue to drive up rates of autoimmune disorders, cardiovascular disease, type-2 diabetes, and obesity. But by getting back to eating real food, we can stay healthier and happier.


Don’t settle for buying Fruit Roll-Ups when you can make your own version at home, without all of the chemicals and preservatives. These leathery lookalikes deliver all the flavor you could ask from a fruit snack, because they’re really made from fruit. Apples and strawberries to be exact, and there’s even a grapefruit added for good measure. The recipe ends up making 10 strips, which should be enough to get you through the week. It’s a bit of a novelty, and a delicious way to get some vitamins and nutrients into your body.


When following the Paleo diet, you will cut the trans fats and the omega-6 polyunsaturated fats in your diet and increase the healthful monounsaturated and omega-3 fats that were the mainstays of our ancestors. Recent large population studies, known as meta analyses, show that saturated fats have little or no adverse effects upon cardiovascular disease risk.
Eat Like a Dinosaur: Recipe & Guidebook for Gluten-free Kids by Paleo Parents. The Book is a colorful children's story describing the paleo diet, chock-full of recipes without grains, dairy, soy or refined sugar. For those with food allergies, the top 8 allergens have been visually marked on each recipe for children to self-identify recipes that may contain eggs, nuts, fish, or shellfish. Published March 20, 2012.

The Garden of Eating: A Produce-Dominated Diet & Cookbook by Rachel Albert-Matesz and Don Matesz presents evidence for a diet of vegetables, fruits, and pasture-fed animal products. Provides a practical plan and 250 delicious, family-friendly, grain- and dairy-free recipes. Buy from the author's page The Garden of Eating. Rachel's blog The Healthy Cooking Coach. The cookbook maintains a perfect rating at Amazon.

If you’re craving toast or bread, you probably need more nitrogen. You can get that from high protein meats and fish. Don’t think of meat as a “snack”? Make some jerky. Even if you don’t have a dehydrator you can still make jerky. All you need to make jerky is a bit of time, some mild heat, and a dry environment. If you’ve been buying jerky, save yourself some loads of cash and make it yourself!
^ Hou JK, Lee D, Lewis J (October 2014). "Diet and inflammatory bowel disease: review of patient-targeted recommendations". Clin. Gastroenterol. Hepatol. (Review). 12 (10): 1592–600. doi:10.1016/j.cgh.2013.09.063. PMC 4021001. PMID 24107394. Even less evidence exists for the efficacy of the SCD, FODMAP, or Paleo diets. Furthermore, the practicality of maintaining these interventions over long periods of time is doubtful.
The Paleo diet is also not just a diet.  Most people refer to it as the Paleo lifestyle or Paleo template to emphasize that this is a way of living, not a diet that you go on for a few months to lose some weight for a wedding, and that it incorporates equal focus on lifestyle factors (like sleep, stress management, activity and community; read more here), sustainability, regenerative farming practices, and environmental protection.
The New Evolution Diet: What Our Paleolithic Ancestors Can Teach Us about Weight Loss, Fitness, and Aging by Arthur De Vany. Art is the grandfather of the "Paleo Lifestyle" movement. The plan is built on three principles: (1) eat three meals a day made up of nonstarchy vegetables, fruits, and lean proteins; (2) skip meals occasionally to promote a low fasting blood insulin level; and (3) exercise less, not more, in shorter, high-intensity bursts. Note that the book is anti-fat. All oils are to be avoided, though canola is considered okay for higher temperatures. Egg yolks are to be skipped now and then. Published December 21, 2010.
These wings will really hit the spot if you’ve been craving chicken wings, and are too far from your next meal to hold out. The pecan flavor comes from the smoking process, not from actual pecans. That way you’ll get a hint of pecan in every bite, without having to worry about crunchy pieces stuck to the chicken. The cool thing about this recipe is that it makes everything from scratch, so you don’t have to resort to getting things out of a bottle. Our suggestion is to make a big batch and store the rest since this isn’t exactly fast food.

Banana peppers are really great because they give you a bit of spice but not so much as to be overpowering. When you stuff them with salami you are pretty much getting equal parts meat and vegetable, making this very Paleo. But they didn’t stop there, they stuffed the salami with avocado, so you’re getting a huge nutrition boost as well as a third texture to make this really nice on the palate. The avocado will provide you with a good dose of potassium, as well as fiber to help with digestion. A fine snack choice that will easily get you to your next meal.
Meet Grok. According to his online profile, he is a tall, lean, ripped and agile 30-year-old. By every measure, Grok is in superb health: low blood pressure; no inflammation; ideal levels of insulin, glucose, cholesterol and triglycerides. He and his family eat really healthy, too. They gather wild seeds, grasses, and nuts; seasonal vegetables; roots and berries. They hunt and fish their own meat. Between foraging, building sturdy shelters from natural materials, collecting firewood and fending off dangerous predators far larger than himself, Grok's life is strenuous, perilous and physically demanding. Yet, somehow, he is a stress-free dude who always manages to get enough sleep and finds the time to enjoy moments of tranquility beside gurgling creeks. He is perfectly suited to his environment in every way. He is totally Zen.
They say that low-fat weight-loss diets have proved in clinical trials and real life to be dismal failures, and that on top of it all, the percentage of fat in the American diet has been decreasing for two decades. Our cholesterol levels have been declining, and we have been smoking less, and yet the incidence of heart disease has not declined as would be expected. ”That is very disconcerting,” Willett says. ”It suggests that something else bad is happening.” 
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