Will Modern People Feed Like Our Forefathers in 2021

Modern People vs Forefather Food

According to the literature on the paleo diet, eating like our hunter-gatherer ancestors will help people reduce and avoid disease. But is that good nutritional advice? Article: Will Modern People Feed Like Our Forefathers in 2021

homo sapiens around a fire - shutterstock
Article: Will Modern People Feed Like Our Forefathers in 2021

Is it possible to avoid weight gain and health issues in the twenty-first century by feeding as our forefathers did?

That’s the premise behind the paleo diet, which are inspired by the Paleolithic era that spanned between 2.6 million and 12,000 years ago, before the advent of agriculture and the domestication of animals.

Some followers of the paleo diet believe that humans are genetically adapted to eat in a particular way, one that is closer to how early humans ate. These views are rooted in the evolutionary unconformity hypothesis, which states that human evolution stopped about 50,000 years ago.

In other words, our Stone Age bodies don’t fit our modern convenience and carbohydrate diets, and this mismatch makes us fat and sick.

Although eating like a caveman or cavewoman aren’nt straightforward, the paleo diet has been linked to a slew of health benefits. Including weight loss, clearer skin, increased exercise, improved mood, and better sleep. However, experts conclude that, like many other fitness and lifestyle fads, Paleo’s health benefits are simply too real to be valid.

Unfortunately, experts haven’t uncovered any data to back up the paleo diet’s wellness effects except weight reduction. Other allegations have not been thoroughly investigated. However, research has found that adopting a paleo diet can be detrimental to certain people. Including those who are worried about their heart and kidney health.


But there is another mammoth inside the room: not even Paleolithic people ate “paleo.” Much anthropological research has found that the preferred diet interpretations of how humans ate from the Paleolithic era are quite inaccurate.

“When people were on the old diets, they ate everything they could get their hands on. According to Colleen Rauchut Tewksbury, principal investigator, and director of the University of Pennsylvania’s bariatric program.

We now have access to a broader range of foods as a result of today’s globalized food market, which complicates the approach. She is a regular spokesperson for the Academy of Fitness and Dietetics.

Will Modern People Feed Like Our Forefathers in 2021
Article: Will Modern People Feed Like Our Forefathers in 2021

The Paleo Diet of Today’s World

According to Google Trends, the most popular diet in 2013 was “paleo.” Diets like ketogenic, extended fasting, and thus the meat-eating diet have driven paleo out of the top spots in recent years. However, according to the findings of the 2018 study, about 3 million Americans already follow a paleo diet.

It also sometimes called the Paleolithic diet, Stone Age diet, hunter-gatherer diet, or caveman diet. Whole30, which can be a 30-day regimen backed by the paleo diet, has also become popular thanks to supposedly “resetting the body” after an indulgent season.

Although, however, you call it, the need to reintroduce traditional diets is not new. Walter L. Voegtlin, an American gastroenterologist, advocated a meat-centered “Stone Age” diet for better wellbeing in the 1970s. Voegtlin is widely regarded as the father of the fad Paleo diet, having written the first book on the subject.

However, his theories were never well-received, which perhaps unsurprising given Voegtlin’s radical and unsavory views, such as promoting mass dolphin killing and eugenics.

Since then, other so-called health gurus have helped take paleo out of the cave and into the mainstream. Primary eating feels welcome in our current age of idealizing the health wisdom and habits of the past.

But before continuing to drink bone broth, it would be an honest idea to think about what actual prehistoric people actually ate.

What Did Our Paleolithic Forefathers Consume?

While Paleolithic people may have deliberately hunted and picked their own food, modern Paleo dieters will just get in their vehicles and head to the closest supermarket to look for the paleo items on their shopping list. They’ll have all of the beef, fish, eggs, fruits, non-starchy vegetables, and nuts they’ll need with them.

However, you can stop dairy, legumes, cereals, refined sugars, beer, caffeine, and packaged foods. The paleo diet comes with a variety of flavors, each with its own set of rules.

However, one nuance that diet fad war lacks is that hunter-gatherers ate a wide range of foods. Different communities of early humans lived in ecosystems and landscapes that were drastically different. People ate whatever was available to them, wherever they happened to be.


“For [approximately] 100,000 years, Homo sapiens filled every niche on Earth. Jennie Brand-Miller, a diet professor at the University of Sydney, says, “We were very adaptable.” “There were hunter-gatherers from high latitudes who consumed mainly animal foods and very little manure… and then there were others who ate a lot of plant foods and just a little animal [protein].”

“It’s worth noting that no vegan hunter-gatherers have been found,” she says.

Meat consumption generally emphasized in anthropology only because the bones of slaughtered animals are often better preserved and more likely to be discovered than evidence for plant-based meals. Supported by what has been discovered, early humans did not appear to be picky eaters.

They probably ate insects or not turn their noses to the brains of the elephants. They ate starchy tubers or ate oatmeal, processed by hand.

However, one thing is for sure: our ancestors certainly did not eat bacon or chocolate. Those indulgences appeared on the food scene much later in history, yet they are sometimes recommended in the paleo diet literature. (But it’s pretty safe to mention that our paleo ancestors would have eaten bacon or chocolate if given the chance.)

Will Modern People Feed Like Our Forefathers in 2021
Article: Will Modern People Feed Like Our Forefathers in 2021

What Foods Have Humans Adapted to Consume?

The idea that we should always adopt a special diet because our genes are still trapped in the Stone Age not entirely accurate. As cultures change over time, our genes change too. Brand-Miller says there are a couple of genetic adaptations to modern diets that help illustrate this.

One of the simplest examples relates to the exploitation and therefore the prevalence of lactase deficiency. for many of the stories of our species, the power to digest milk after infancy did not exist. Adults lacked lactase, the enzyme needed to reduce lactose to simpler sugars that will be absorbed from the intestines.

When people began to domesticate livestock about 10,000 years ago, they began to rely on dairy products as a food source. Over time, these groups developed a mutation to create lactase in adulthood. But because dairy was not a standard part of diets everywhere, many descendants of those groups lack this mutation today.

People also vary in their ability to process other foods, Brand-Miller says. People with genetic links to regions that historically ate a high-starch diet tend to have more copies of the gene related to increased production of salivary amylase, an enzyme that breaks down carbohydrates.


Which makes East Asians especially more efficient at digesting starchy foods. Although Brand-Miller says the fruit was not part of the normal Arctic diet. Therefore, it is not surprising that a higher incidence of individuals of Inuit descent is deficient in sucrase, the enzyme that processes sucrose, a type of sugar.

However, Brand-Miller believes that certain people who don’t have enough digestive enzymes can still eat small quantities of some foods without injury. Apart from these distinctions, humans are usually well suited to consume just about everything that comes their way, which likely one of the keys to our species’ survival.

According to Melyssa Roy, a public health researcher at the University of Otago in New Zealand, “people have always done it and will definitely always consume a healthy kind of food based on the society and what is available.”

Is the Paleo Diet Good for You?

The health claims surrounding the paleo diet are controversial due to the ancient menus themselves. Typically, the fad Paleo diet is high in protein and low in carbohydrates. Paleo often gets a bad rap for being so restrictive and does not allow the consumption of foods such as legumes, whole grains, and dairy products.

“There are a lot of grey areas of eating,” says Rauchut Tewksbury, “and many diets like these leave no room for choice or individualization.”

Because paleo has not been widely studied, the long-term benefits and potential risks are poorly understood. But if weight loss is the main reason to consider the paleo diet, there is some evidence that it works.

In a recent study, Roy and his colleagues compared the weight loss results of 250 overweight people who followed one of three diets: intermittent fasting, Mediterranean, and paleo. After 12 months, all groups lost weight, but the paddle was the last. Paleo dieters lost 4 pounds on average, compared to a loss of 6 pounds on the Mediterranean diet.

Almost 9 pounds with intermittent fasting. Overall, the participants found it easier to follow the Mediterranean diet, which a crucial part of maintaining weight loss over time.

But if your goal to lose weight quickly, the paleo diet has its merits.

“In the short term, low-carb paleo diets link to improved satiety and faster weight loss,” Brand-Miller claims.

About 70 obese postmenopausal Swedish women tracked for two years in a randomized, controlled sample. A paleo diet for some of the patients, which includes lean meat, fish, eggs, vegetables, fruits, berries, and nuts. Other participants were given a diet based on the Nordic Nutrition Recommendations (NNR), a set of nutritional guidelines established by Nordic countries. The NNR contains fewer protein and fat than the paleo diet, but more carbohydrates.


Six months later, the paleo group lost more weight than those who followed the NNR. Paleo dieters lost 13 pounds on average compared to 5 pounds with NNR. But after 24 months, the difference in weight loss between the 2 diets was less pronounced.

Both groups showed similar improvements in vital signs and cholesterol. Interestingly, the participants’ triglyceride levels decreased the most on the paleo diet. High levels of triglycerides, a type of fat found in the blood, are linked to a heart condition.

However, this does not imply that the paleo diet is heart-healthy. According to Brand-Miller, multiple studies have linked low-carb diets to an increased risk of mortality, especially from heart disease. To have it, she believes that high-carbohydrate diets have been shown in mouse experiments to improve lifespan. Maybe it has everything to do with our microbiome.

One study compared the blood tests of 44 paleo dieters with 47 people on a diet that supports Australia’s national health recommendations. Among the paleo dieters, the researchers found elevated levels of a compound called trimethylamine N-oxide, which linked to heart problems.

The researchers explained that the main levels of this compound could be due to the shortage of whole grains within the paleo. However, bacteria in the gut produce trimethylamine N-oxide while digesting meat. But consuming whole grains increases the assembly of beneficial gut bacteria, which appears to counteract the harmful compound.

Will Modern People Feed Like Our Forefathers in 2021
Article: Will Modern People Feed Like Our Forefathers in 2021

Saturated fat could be another thing to emphasize on the paleo diet. Dietary fats, in general, are not demonized today as they were in the 1990s. But saturated fats are not totally clear. Decades of research have linked the consumption of saturated fat to elevated levels of LDL cholesterol (the bad kind). Which has shown to amplify the danger of heart disease.


“The study about why this form of diet has excessive amounts of saturated fat is inconsistent. Instead, some people, particularly those who follow a more conventional diet, would profit from restricting large amounts of animal fats. According to Roy, a rigid paleo diet excludes dairy, and calcium intake can be a problem.

Kidney complications have also been related to high-protein diets. It’s unclear if this even happens to those who have usually functional kidneys. Filtering extra protein from the blood puts more strain on the kidneys, reducing their role even further in patients who already have kidney disorders.

But the idea that paleo should incorporate large amounts of meat might be a misnomer, to begin with.

“[Paleo] all about enjoying food as it is,” Roy says.

Brand-Miller says there are healthier approaches to paleo. for example, incorporating lots of fruits and vegetables, even people who are full of carbohydrates. Plant-based foods can add nutrients, fiber, flavor, and variety to diets. And they will also help you live longer.

If the paleo diet does anything right, it’s the stance against processed foods. Highly refined ultra-processed foods now account for nearly half of all calories consumed. 90 percent of added sugar intake in the US, increasing the danger of weight gain and some other health conditions. . But it not a question of paleo or bust.

Finally, the most basic reason to diet for your health is so you will get better. Most people are conscious of what they should do to lose weight. Limit their calorie intake, eat fruits, veggies, whole grains, and lean proteins.

“The challenge is finding out how to roll in the hay,” says Rauchut Tewksbury. “This can be done in a multitude of forms. The key is to determine which is best for you as a private and stick with it.

Article: Will Modern People Feed Like Our Forefathers in 2021

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