For years, the Paleolithic diet, also known as the “caveman diet,” has become a common way to lose weight. The only reason is that it works! And, unlike many fad diets that do “work” for weight loss, the paleo diet still follows important nutritional values and has a relatively long-term future. Article: Foods to Eat and Avoid on the Paleo Diet in 2021
Due to its simple principles and whole foods approach to eating, it’s pretty easy to report which foods fit into a paleo hotel plan and which ones don’t. Below is our complete list of paleo-friendly foods to incorporate into your diet and also which foods to avoid.
What is Paleo?
The Paleo diet follows the essential principle of “eating foods that a caveman would have access to.” Or rather, “eat whole foods”. This can include lots of healthy fats, proteins, and produce, but excludes grains, dairy, and processed foods. This diet also emphasizes grass-fed, sustainably caught, and free-range options, almost like the kind of protein options a caveman would need to hunt or gather on his own.
The theory behind this type of diet comes from the idea that the composition of our DNA has changed little or nothing since Paleolithic times, but our diets have changed dramatically. And proponents of paleo argue that we’ve become vulnerable to numerous diet-related illnesses due to our modern diet (1).
While the research behind this theory is inconclusive, a well-executed paleo diet is one method of specializing in nutrient-dense foods and could be a sustainable approach to weight loss and better health for some.
The Benefits Of A Paleo Diet
Perhaps one of the most important benefits of a paleo diet, nutritionally speaking, is that it is a balanced way of eating. This sets the majority of the participants in an excellent framework not only for losing weight but also for eating a healthier diet.
Growing research continues to suggest that eating a diet consisting primarily of whole foods is linked to greater weight loss (2, 3, 4). Not to mention, highly processed foods tend to be higher in added sugar, sodium, and trans fat, which research suggests can contribute to increased inflammation and truly counteract your weight loss efforts (5 ).
Is Paleo Gluten Free?
Paleo diets are naturally gluten-free and they exclude all grains, including wheat, rye, and barley. Paleo alternatives are also a good bet for those who choose to stop gluten.
How a Paleo Diet Helps With Weight Loss
An additional advantage of the paleo diet is the simplicity of it. The rule of “eat foods that a caveman would have access to” makes it easy to shop, plan, and stick with your diet.
Even when eating out or ordering food, it is still relatively easy to differentiate between processed foods and whole foods that “a caveman would have access to.”
Due to the simplicity of a paleo diet, it doesn’t require participants to try to overthink. While calories in vs. calories out are the most important ground rule for weight loss, a paleo diet requires a lot of diet thinking. As long as you eat nutritious whole foods, you will likely find that weight loss will follow naturally, mainly because this type of diet automatically reduces calories.
And while this is certainly not a “one size fits all” diet approach, most people will find that if they are filling their body with natural, whole, nutrient-dense foods, it will have a considerable impact on their overall weight and body composition versus processed foods.
One study even suggested that your body can burn twice the calories by digesting less processed foods (2).
A Comprehensive Paleo Diet Food List
Paleo foods consist mostly of plant-based fats, sustainably caught grass-fed proteins, and almost all fruits and vegetables. All of the foods that are considered “paleo” are mentioned below.
Protein can be a staple of the caveman’s diet, specifically, options that are grass-fed, sustainably caught, or organically, as these options often come from animals raised in environments that encourage the behavior. natural. And since our ancestors not only lived on chicken and beef but hunted a good kind of meat, the more variety you increase in your proteins, the better!
The best paleo proteins include:
- Cow meat
- I raised
- Wild pig
- I raised
Sustainably Caught Seafood
- River crab
- Eggs without cage
Paleo diets are naturally poor in carbohydrates due to the elimination of all grains. However, if you want to have more carbohydrates in your hotel meal menu, these are some of the best paleo-friendly starchy foods:
- Sweet potatoes
- Acorn squash
- Butternut squash
Many plant-based fats, such as nuts and seeds, as well as less processed oils, fit into a paleo diet. However, it is important to note that fat is also a simple source of calories and if you are looking to cut them down on a paleo diet, you will want to limit your portion sizes for these foods:
Nuts and Seeds
- Almond butter (no added sugar)
- Cashew nuts
- Cashew butter (no added sugar)
- Macadamia nuts
- Chia seeds
- Flax seeds
- Sunflower seeds
- Sesame seeds
- Pumpkin seeds
Oils and Butters
- Coconut oil
- Coconut butter
- Olive oil
- Avocado oil
- grated coconut
About any edible fruit or fruit (that hasn’t been sugared) can be used with your paleo hotel menu. Look for low-carb alternatives like these:
Like fruits, almost all vegetables work on a paleo diet. And non-starchy vegetables like the following tend to be low in calories and high in nutrients, which means you should aim to encourage an honest amount of the following in your diet:
- Broccoli rabe
- Bok choy
- Mustard leaves
- White mushrooms
- Portobello mushroom
- Bamboo shoots
- Shiitake mushrooms
- Green beans (cooked only)
- Brussels sprouts
- Thistle mushrooms
- Swedish turnip
While most of the added sugar is not paleo-friendly, some natural sweeteners are often used in moderation on this diet:
- Maple syrup
- Coconut sugar
- Date paste
Look for simple drink options, made without artificial sweeteners or an excessive amount of added sugar, such as the following:
- Coffee (no cream or sugar)
- Unsweetened teas
- Coconut water
- Bone broth
- Water that sparkles (no added sugar or artificial sweetener)
Non-Paleo Foods To Avoid
Although a paleo diet encourages a “whole foods” approach to nutrition, certain conventional nutritious foods, such as beef, legumes, and whole grains, are not considered paleo because they were not widely eaten by our forefathers.
A more controversial argument for why common legumes and cereals are avoided is due to their high content of phytic acid, which is supposed to reduce the absorption of certain nutrients like iron, zinc, and calcium (6). However, phytic acid is also found in many paleo-approved foods (such as almonds and hazelnuts) and is linked to some health benefits, such as kidney stone protective benefits, antioxidant properties, and a suggested link for a lower risk of carcinoma. (7.8, 9). Simply put, there really isn’t any evidence-based reason to avoid these foods due to phytic acid.
And when it comes to dairy, the research on whether dairy is bad for you isn’t very conclusive either.
Some people have digestive problems when eating beans, legumes, cereals, and dairy products, for a number of health reasons. And if any of those foods are not working together with your body, these are probably the simplest excuses to avoid it.
Due to the conversation about these foods, there is a lot of confusion, and some people will choose a more modified paleo diet that also includes some dairy or legumes. But a real paleo diet does not include any of the following:
Beans and Legumes
- Green peas
- Snow peas
- Peanut butter
- Cow milk
- Goat milk
- Sheep’s milk
- Cottage cheese
- Ancient Grains
- Cereal grains
- Regular Potatoes
Processed Cooking Oils
- Vegetable oil
- Canola oil
- Corn oil
- Peanut oil
- Palm oil
Other Processed Foods and Ingredients
- Aspartame, neotame, saccharin, sucralose, xylitol, and erythritol are examples of artificial sweeteners.
- Refined sugars: sugar, table sugar, agave, syrup
- Processed meats: hot dogs, spam
- Packaged foods and snacks
- Fruit juice
- Potato chips
Tips For Shopping Paleo
If you’re new to eating paleo, this could seem like a huge change in your life. Ablation grains, processed foods, dairy, and a host of other relatively common items can seem overwhelming.
Here are some tips we have to simplify the method and ease your worries.
Plan Your Meals
If you’re struggling with where to start, planning meals that you simply enjoy and then deciding how to prepare that paleo meal will be an honest place to start. Instead of immediately switching to a diet full of chicken and broccoli, find ways to boost creativity with the method of cooking the food you really enjoy.
Yes, even paleo food can be delicious; all it takes is a little imagination and getting out of your comfort zone. Here are few creative paleo meal ideas.
Make A List
Once you have decided what meals you would like to prepare for the week, create an inventory of all the ingredients that you would like to make up that meal. As simple as it may sound, it will be much easier for you to stick to a group plan and stay out of the aisles of a grocery store.
Having something as simple as a shopping list will keep you on target and ensure that you get exactly what you came for. It will also help you familiarize yourself with where to look for these paleo-friendly foods at your local grocery store.
Shop Outside The Aisles
This basic rule of thumb will help you shop for paleo foods if everything else fails. Many grocery stores have a fairly simplistic layout: prepared processed goods are usually found in the inner aisles. Bread, noodles, cereal, flour, sugar, and so on. The bulk of the food contained in the supermarket’s interior aisles would most likely be “non-paleo-approved items.”
Now, you will find some “paleo” foods inside the interior aisles (many paleo-approved flours could also be inside the interior aisles of a grocery store), but that’s the exception, not the rule.
Typically if you are shopping in the outer aisles of a supermarket there will be produce, meat, poultry, eggs, and bulk food section. All of those areas tend to provide you with the inspiration for a paleo diet, which includes fruits, vegetables, nuts, and meats.
If you find that you are missing a transparent direction when shopping for groceries, using this simple rule should help you create a transparent path and help you avoid the variability of temptations within the aisles.
Paleo Meal Delivery
If you are new to a paleo diet, you may want to start with a structured meal delivery service. Starting a replacement diet is often challenging, especially once you really don’t know where to start and can’t spend hours researching ways to make creative paleo meals.
Using a meal delivery service like Trifecta, which will send you fresh, ready-to-eat creative paleo meals will help you get started on your new lifestyle!
Here’s where you can learn more about the paleo meals Trifecta has to offer:
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