So, what are humans designed to eat??

Posted: 2013-09-09

We all know that there is a link between diet and health, but with obesity rate rising faster than ever, where have we gone wrong? There are so many ‘diet’, ‘low fat’ and ‘low sugar’ products on the market, why are we not getting healthier?

Many of our health problems are the direct result of what we do, and don’t, eat. The average British diet includes ‘substances’ that may look like food to us, but in our bodies, they are unknown and cause more harm than good.
When you go back in time to the beginning of the human species, our diet was a lot different. This is the diet we are designed to eat. It fits in with our genetic make up, so normalizes weight and improves health.

The Agricultural Revolution began just 10,000 years ago, which is just a drop in the ocean compared to the 2.5million years that human beings have lived on Earth. Until that time, everyone on the planet ate lean meats, fresh fruits and vegetables. Evidence shows that our DNA has changed very little in 40,000 years. This loss of humanity’s original way of life matters a great deal. Our Palaeolithic ancestors were lean, fit, healthy and generally free from heart disease and other ailments that plague western countries. The medical evidence shows that their body fat, aerobic fitness, blood cholesterol, blood pressure and insulin metabolism were always superior to those of the average modern couch potato. In most cases, these values were the equivalent to those of modern-day, healthy, trained athletes.

So what do we have to eat to go back to our hunter gatherer ways? Well, to start off with, whole natural foods! NO processed products which includes meats, sweets, ready meals etc. Some of the main guidelines to follow are-

• No dairy foods- imagine how difficult it would be to catch and milk a wild animal!

• Very limited cereal grains- these were seen as starvation foods for most ancient people.

• No added salt

• The only refined sugar Palaeolithic people ate was honey, when they could find it.

• Wild, lean animal foods dominated Palaeolithic diets, so protein intake was quite high by modern standards, while carbohydrate intake was much lower.

• Virtually all carbohydrates came from non starchy wild fruits and vegetables. Because of this, carbohydrate intake was much lower, and fibre intake much higher than those obtained by eating the typical modern diet.

• The main fats were healthy monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. Not trans fats and certain saturated fats that are dominant in the modern diet.

• Our traditional diet consisted of 19-35% protein, 22-40% carbohydrate, 28-47% fat. Our modern diets consist of 15.5% protein, 49% carbohydrates, 34% fats.

There are many benefits from going back to the diet we are designed to eat-

• Fat loss

• Increases metabolism and slows appetite

• Helps to lower total and LDL cholesterol, and triglycerides while increasing good HDL cholesterol

• Helps reduce and possibly prevent metabolic syndrome diseases (type 2 diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, dyslipidaemia, obesity, PCOS, acne and breast, prostate and colon cancers).
• Helps reduce and possibly prevent diseases of acid-base balance and excessive sodium (osteoporosis, high blood pressure, stroke, kidney stones, asthma, insomnia, etc).

• Digestive diseases (constipation, haemorrhoids, heart burn, crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, IBS etc)

• Autoimmune diseases (rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, type 1 diabetes etc).

• Psychological disorders

• Vitamin deficiency diseases

• Dental cavities

So, what are you waiting for?

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