BFY Faculties

BFY’s Faculty, Padmashri Shanmugaraj’s take on the Paleo Diet.

Blog By: Kavitha Iyer.

BFY’s Faculty Padmashri Shanmugraj talks about the Paleo Diet.

Padmashri .jpg

Padmashri Shanmugraj, BFY Faculty

Dietician.

You must have heard of the Paleo diet, which focuses on food that can be hunted or gathered: Vegetables, fruit, seafood, grass-fed meat, eggs, nuts, seeds, and poultry. Small amounts of healthy oils are also allowed. However, the more “modern” foods like grains, dairy, and processed foods are strictly omitted.

Loren Cordain, the founder of this diet believes and propagates that food has evolved and changed more rapidly than the rate at which the human body evolved, which simply means that our bodies haven’t adapted enough to adequately digest many present day foods. This, according to Cordain, results in cellular inflammation and an increased risk for chronic diseases like heart ailments, insulin resistance, obesity & cancer. Promising everything from fat loss to more energy and clearer skin, Paleo certainly has appeal.

To more important considerations…

Why Paleo?

1) It is rich in soluble fiber, vitamins A, C & E, phytochemicals, omega-3 fatty acids, monounsaturated fatty acids, and complex carbohydrates. Plus, it is naturally gluten free (so, least allergenic) and low (almost nil) in added sugars, trans fats, salt, and simple sugars.

2) There are anti-inflammatory benefits from the phytochemicals in fruits, vegetables, oils, nuts, and seeds.

3) Improved satiety — primarily due to the higher intake of protein and fats.

4) Weight loss but that may be due to the limited food choices.

Negative effects

1) It can burn a hole in your pockets

2) It is heavily dependent on meat, and meat today isn’t as lean and as organic as it was thousands of years ago

3) It lacks some of the micro-nutrients, namely calcium and vitamin D, which may lead to their deficiencies

4) Impractical for vegetarians, especially since it excludes beans, grains and dairy

What you can do, instead…

Eat 6-7 meals a day.

Include a protein-rich food at every major meal and, preferably in at least one snack.

Aim for a minimum of three colours on your plate, at every major meal

Opt for whole, unprocessed grains, always!

A little fat at each meal, such as nuts, butter, salad dressing, oil adds to the satiety and prevents cravings.

Choose ‘real’ food over packaged, processed & refined foods.

The point I want to emphasize on, is that, in a diet plan, if you are to take away foods and nutrients but you are not suggested suitable replacements, it can create a nutrient imbalance and that diet plan is probably not ‘healthy’.

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