Everything You Need To Know About Going Paleo

Marianna Gould
·3-min read

From Delish

Not satisfied with your current diet and fancy trying something different? Well, as always, it's worth knowing exactly what you're signing up for before you commit to anything. And so, if you're interested in having a go at the age-old diet known as Paleo, then you've come to the right place.

Luckily for you, we've taken it upon ourselves to do some research of our own, with the help of Dr Deborah Lee from the Dr Fox Online Pharmacy, and she's given us the low-down on everything we need to know about the so-called 'caveman diet.'

So, What Is Paleo?

The Paleo diet, often termed the 'caveman diet,' is a diet modelled on what our ancestors used to eat. The aim is to eat as naturally as possible, opting for grass-fed meats, lots of fruit and vegetables and other whole foods like nuts and seeds.

Cooked food is (obviously) permitted, but Dr Deborah Lee recommends eating as much raw food as you can.

What Can and Can't You Eat On Paleo?

Paleo is centred around eliminating foods that are bad for digestion, this means no dairy, grains, legumes, and processed sugars.

Dr Deborah Lee says, "processed foods which contain additives, preservatives, and have a high-salt content, are forbidden." Yep! That means no takeaways, guys.

Here's a non-exclusive list of foods you can eat while following Paleo:

  • Meat (including beef, lamb, chicken, turkey, pork)

  • Fish and Seafood (including salmon, trout, haddock)

  • Fresh Fruits and Vegetables (including cauliflower, broccoli, sweet potatoes)

  • Eggs

  • Nuts and Seeds (including almonds, macadamia nuts, sunflower seeds, walnuts)

  • Healthy Oils (including olive, walnut, flaxseed, macadamia, avocado, coconut)

Photo credit: yulka3ice - Getty Images
Photo credit: yulka3ice - Getty Images

Here's a list of foods you should avoid while following Paleo:

  • Grains (including bread, pasta wheat, spelt, rye, barley)

  • Legumes (including beans, lentils)

  • Dairy

  • Vegetable Oils (including sunflower oil, grapeseed oil)

  • Trans Fats

  • Artificial Sweeteners

  • Highly Processed Food

What Are The Health Benefits?

Existing studies on the Paleo diet are small, which means more longer-term research is required before we can make any conclusions on the diet's effectiveness.

But, what we do know (according to a study by the NCBI), is that the Paleo diet has been found to have some moderate short-term health benefits including weight loss, improved blood sugar control and a reduction in the risk factors for heart disease.

What Does A Week-Long Paleo Meal Plan Look Like?

When it comes to mealtimes, following a Paleo diet doesn't have to mean boring, tasteless meals. There's a variety of ways to make recipes paleo-friendly, and just as delicious. Need some inspiration? Below, you'll find a week's worth of recipes perfect if you're following the Paleolithic diet.

Breakfast: Brussels Sprouts Hash, Bell Pepper Eggs, Paleo Granola, Paleo Pancakes, Coconut Flour Banana Bread, Breakfast Tomatoes, Cloud Eggs.

Lunch: Roasted Butternut Squash Soup, Grilled Chicken, One-Tray Garlicky Prawn and Vegetables, Basil Avocado Prawn Salad Wraps, Poached Salmon, Broccoli Bacon Salad, Prawn, Avocado And Courgette Salad.

Dinner: Sweet Potato Chilli, Chicken Fajitas, Peach Balsamic Chicken, Baked Swordfish, BLT Burgers, One-Pan Balsamic Chicken and Asparagus, Coriander Lime Salmon.

You should always consult your GP before partaking in any form of diet.

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