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Paleo Diet Review - 6 Things You Need to Know

Don’t laugh, but more than 50% of diet plans simply don’t work. Let’s see if the Paleo Diet is one of the good ones. We checked into all the rules, allowed/disallowed foods, side effects, and research. We also read every comment we could find to see if dieters are happy with the changes. Then, we narrowed it all down to give you the bottom line.

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Paleo Diet Video Review

Overview

What is the Paleo Diet?

Firstly, the Paleo Diet is an eating plan that focuses on how the first men and women would have eaten. There is a heavy focus on natural and organic choices, and processed foods are cut out altogether, according to StatPearlsHowever, the Austrian Family Physician noted that this kind of diet remains controversial.

You can find hundreds of books explaining the relevance and details of how to make the change. There’s no one creator, but Loren Cordain, Ph.D., claims to be the founder of the movement.

From a weight-loss perspective, there are mixed feelings about the Paleo Diet. Ancient art pieces depict women with large bellies, which negates the idea that eating this way promotes a “healthy” body. Some skeptics believe severe restriction is difficult to maintain long-term, so support varies, but read on…

Food Restrictions

Food Restrictions – “Should the Dieter Stick With It?”

The first thing a dieter may notice about Paleo Diet is the list of restricted, or discouraged, foods. “Anything that is processed, in any way, should be cut from the diet,” explains our Research Editor. “Unfortunately, this is where things can get confusing because one author allows something like diet soda, and another doesn’t. This is because there’s no definitive structure.”

According to the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, food restriction can negatively affect the body. In particular, results “show significantly lower BMC (bone mineral content) values in women with high CER (cognitive eating restraint) scores.”

Health.gov explains how people should eat. “Healthful diets contain the amounts of essential nutrients and energy needed to prevent nutritional deficiencies and excesses. Healthful diets also provide the right balance of carbohydrate, fat, and protein to reduce risks for chronic diseases, and they are obtained from a variety of foods that are available, affordable, and enjoyable.”

Prices

Prices – “Is Paleo Diet Affordable?”

With words like “organic” and “free-range,” there is the question of affordability with the Paleo Diet. You’re supposed to eat foods as they would be found in nature, and those choices are much more expensive than options traditionally chosen as part of a Western diet.

“We’ve read advice from numerous people who follow the Paleo Diet,” offers our Research Editor. “Some suggest starting with a 50% change to keep costs down. Others claim all you have to do is give up cable or other luxuries to switch 100%.”

After years of research, it’s the smallest of things, like increased food prices, that wreck your long-term success chances. If the Paleo Diet is just too expensive, the dieter may not be able to stick with it for long.

Research

The Science – “Does Research Say Paleo is Better?”

The Journal of Physiological Anthropology explains that Paleo is about more than just cutting out processed foods. The idea is that living in nature, surrounded by plants and animals, supports overall health. “…if green space is associated with mental well-being…it would certainly suggest that it might also be associated with reduced mortality rates.” Though eating natural can improve nutritional intake, some people eat common foods and maintain a healthy weight.

What Users Are Saying

What Users Are Saying

“I love this book. I had purchased this book many years ago. back then I was on Paleo life and never felt better. I lost weight and food was delicious. I was excited to see that this book was updated and I was not disappointed! So much good information and humor too. It’s a must in my opinion, this book has worked wonders for friends of mine as well. One of my friends lost serious pounds her first month, and in 2 months her doctor was able to take her off her medications for diabetes, high blood pressure and cholesterol. My friend is a testimony. And the book has other testimonials of how Paleo has helped others.”

“Junk – Couldn’t live on this diet.”

“I have lost weight but not fast like many people said but yes, I did. More important than weight, I am healthy at the age of 71. I am still working and doing well. I had to have a heart cath and despite eating a high fat diet, my arteries are clear. I just wish that I could find a good recipe for pork chops, without fruit that will come out tender. I love good pork chops but mine tend to come out on the hard side.”

Bottom Line

The Bottom Line – Does the Paleo Diet Work?

Do we think you should go all-organic and natural? We are all for eating healthy foods rich in all the vitamins and nutrients the body needs. However, we’re not convinced that the Paleo Diet is more effective than simple changes that cut out anything that’s been heavily processed. We feel it may be an easier, more sustainable choice just to make healthier decisions.

It’s always a great idea to base your diet on healthy, nutritional foods. We also think you can add a program with clinical support that is ideal for getting you on track while teaching you long-term tools to lose weight and keep it off.

Among the best products we’ve seen this year is one called Noom. It with clinically-tested and proven methods of weight loss that this app works. Unique tools like an extensive food database managed by nutritionists, expert health articles, and the knowledge that doctors created the app are all welcome benefits.

Plus, you can take advantage of a free trial offer from the makers of Noom because they are so confident in the program.

Learn More About Noom »
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Paleo Diet

Q:
What does the Paleo Diet consist of?
A:

The Paleo Diet consists of food that can be hunted, gathered, or fished. A few items that can be categorized with hunted foods would include meats. Gathered foods include berries, fruits, and things that come from the land. Fish, Salmon, Seaweed, and shrimp fit well into the category of foods that can be fished.

Q:
How do you lose weight on Paleo?
A:

To obtain your goal weight focus on lean meats. Chicken, vegetables, and eggs will also be the key to getting down to your goal and maintaining it. Try to stay away from nuts and fruit as well. Their fats are not easy to burn and can easily be over consumed.

Q:
How does the Paleo diet work?
A:

The Paleo diet excludes all processed foods. Processed foods are difficult for the body to break down and extract vital nutrients from, which causes it to sit in the body for long periods of time.

Q:
What is the main purpose of the Paleo diet?
A:

The Paleo diet contains natural foods that were consumed thousands of years ago. It limits food like dairy and grains because they emerged in society fairly recently, and do not have a good track record with the digestive system.

Q:
What is the Paleo diet plan?
A:

It is lean meats such as chicken, lamb, goat, etc. It also includes fish, shrimp, oysters, etc. The Paleo Diet plan is basically all foods that are not processed. Dairy is included in modern Paleo diet plans.

Q:
What is the Caveman diet?
A:

The Caveman diet is just another word for the Paleo diet. It comes from the notion that everything in the original Paleo diet is what a caveman would consume.

Q:
What is the Paleo diet all about?
A:

The Paleo diet is about eating as healthy as possible. It consists of natural things from the Earth that can be hunted, fished, and gathered.

Q:
Can you have cheese on the Paleo diet?
A:

Many people avoid processed foods all together while on the Paleo diet, but cheese is okay to enjoy because it is mostly saturated fat and will not effect lactose levels at all.

Q:
How do you start the Paleo diet?
A:

You can start the Paleo diet whenever you are ready! It ideally consists of low amounts of animal protein and carbohydrates, along with a bunch of good fats. Good fats include butter and oils (such as butter and coconut oil).

Q:
What are the benefits of the Paleo diet?
A:

Your body will have more protein from all the red meats on the Paleo diet. You will also have less bloating because the foods will not be processed at all. Nothing will contain the harmful chemicals found in additives and preservatives either.

Q:
Why is the Paleo diet good for you?
A:

The Paleo diet is good for you because it focuses on healthy fats, lean meats, and untouched fruits and vegetables.

Q:
Is Squash Paleo?
A:

Yes! It is a great choice to include in your Paleo diet because of the manganese and potassium in it.

Q:
Can you do the Paleo diet as a vegetarian?
A:

Yes! Excluding the meat portion of this diet, you can certainly still get all of your nutrients and have a successful diet.

Q:
What did the Paleolithic man eat?
A:

They consumed all foods straight from the Earth. They ate chicken, shrimp, berries, water, fish, nuts, and many other unprocessed foods.

Q:
Is corn on the Paleo diet?
A:

No, corn has little nutritional value.

Q:
What you can't eat on the Paleo diet?
A:

Anything processed, containing chemicals, or is not easily digested.

Q:
Are chickpeas Paleo?
A:

They are not, but they have good enzymes in them that are great for consumption.

Q:
Are beans Paleo?
A:

They are found in nature but they are not specifically recommended for the Paleo diet.

Q:
Who made the Paleo diet?
A:

In 1975, gastroenterologist Walter Voegtlinn wrote a book about the perfect diet for the digestive system, which is the Paleo diet.

Q:
Is Paleo the same as gluten free?
A:

No, not all gluten-free foods qualify for the Paleo diet.

Q:
Are bananas Paleo?
A:

No, they are also high in starch which assists in accumulating weight.

Q:
Is goat cheese on the Paleo diet?
A:

It has grains and legumes, which are not a part of the Paleo diet.

120 Paleo Diet Reviews

  • Can you eat black beans on this diet?
    Terry

    Can you eat black beans on this diet?

    Reply
    • Stephen

      The book says no beans of any kind, they are considered toxic at their dried state & all the toxins aren’t removed with cooking, so no beans.

      Reply
  • Is an initial weight gain usual or unusual?
    Barbara Fry (Verified Purchase)

    I am in my 3rd week of the Paleo diet. Constipation is a problem. How can this be corrected without laxitives? Also, I gained 2.5 pounds the first 2 weeks. I have adhered to the diet with the exception of about 1/4 c. of fat-free milk for morning coffee. Is an initial weight gain usual or unusual?

    Reply
    • Ron

      Barbara..ZERO dairy products and dairy based products..no exceptions..I have been on the diet 11 weeks,I have been fat since childhood,I cheated too at first,now I have lost a total of 31 pounds..DON’T CHEAT!

      Reply
    • Stephen

      Are you eating all of the coniferous veggies you can? cauliflower, broccli, brussell sprouts? This is a huge amount of natural fiber & constipation is not a problem for me. FYI!

      Reply
    • Janie

      I suspect your problem is more from doing fat-free milk than doing milk at all. Whole milk is a better option – there are people, including me, who do Paleo + dairy. Fat free and reduced fat milk still have lactose, which is a sugar – whole milk does as well, but it’s got fat to counteract. I know it sounds weird to want whole milk instead of fat free, but fat is integral to Paleo success.

      Reply
      • Maria

        Janie,,,, what about having soy milk?

        Reply
        • ERF

          I am pretty sure that any soy product would be extremely frowned upon in the paleo diet. First of all, soy milk is highly processed, with many additives. Paleo dieters are encouraged to stay away from processed foods. Second of all, soy is known to contain high levels of phytoestrogen, which locks onto your own estrogen receptors and can wreak havoc on your endocrine system. I’m with Janie – go for whole milk, and if you have a trusted source, go for whole, raw milk.

          Reply
      • Lisa Ann

        WHAT ABOUT ALMOND NONSWEET MILK

        Reply
    • Anonymous

      your not supposed to have milk or cofee so just from what u have wrote i think u need to do more research to see how weel your actully following the diet…almond milk is fine

      Reply
    • TheDietGeek

      Barbara –
      I just started the diet as well – I usually get tons of fiber from grains, so I bought & watered down prune juice. Also, coconut flour (paleo friendly) & pumpkin are exceptionally high in fiber

      Reply
  • DID OUR ANCESTORS NOT EAT FISH
    CLAY

    DID OUR ANCESTORS NOT EAT FISH – IS THAT TO BE TOTALLY REMOVED WHILE ON THE PALEO DIET. I ASK BECAUSE I AM JUST STARTING OUT TODAY 1/9/10

    Reply
    • Lessa

      Clay, Fish is not only allowed but encouraged due to the high levels of the Omega-3 fatty acids it contains. So go ahead and eat the fish. The book and your body say it is all right.

      Reply
    • Anonymous

      You should eats LOTS of fish!

      Reply
    • Steve

      There are very detailed lists of which fish contain high levels of mercury, it is encouraged to eat fish (seafood) as the Omega-3 that your body is lacking is found primarily in Fish. For those interested in more information, read Robb Wolf Paleo Solution. Remember this isn’t a diet, so much as a change in living.

      Reply
  • It is extremely easy to follow
    Barb (Verified Purchase)

    I am trying the Paleo Diet, and so far am liking it very much. It is extremely easy to follow, and I can even eat out and still be compliant. I feel well on the diet and am seeing weight loss, even tho’ I am eating quite a lot of food… I don’t feel hungry on this diet.
    I do disagree with the statement in the review under “Disadvantages”, “Does not address the genetic or hormonal issues related to weight gain.”
    The entire premise of the diet is that we are not GENETICALLY programmed to eat the processed carbs and starch that are in today’s accepted meals. And, I have to question how much of my own weight problem is genetic. I come from a line of very fat people. Not surprising… we all pretty much eat the same way. So, is obesity truly genetic, or have we simply passed down bad eating and lifestyle habits?? For my self, I have been able to “break the mould”… I don’t eat like the rest of my fat relatives, and can control my weight. Food for thought.

    Reply
    • Boe Campbell

      Couldn’t agree more! I’m educated, in Healthcare, and started this Nutritional path 6 weeks ago. I’m probably a Level III, but am a new man, in all the physiologic categories.

      Reply
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