View Full Version : Paleo Q&A

06-20-2003, 09:07 AM
Greetings folks, first time poster. I look forward to discussing all things fitness with like-minded individuals.

I want to start out on the nutrition subject. Now, what little I know of the Paleo diet I picked up here and there on the internet, so I know the premise just not the particulars. With that in mind, here are some observations and questions.

1. Wild grains and breads have been a staple of the human diet since the beginnings of agriculture. Why then is obesity a modern problem?

2. Does the Paleo diet espouse a diet of lean meat? I've seen resources on the net that suggest fat was a large portion of the diet. I read somewhere that a 'wild' deer has something like 60% fat tissue. This seems high but may be true. I have seen copious amounts of fat on harvested wild deer, but guess what those deer ate? mostly corn and beans and lots of it. Personal experience suggests that deer that live in woodland habitats without access to crops have very little fat. Of course, my experiece is limited to the hunting season (fall and winter).

3. The diet also proports that paleo man ate lots of vegetables and leafy greens. It is my understanding that much, if not most, of the veggies in the supermarkets are products of hundreds and even thousands of years of selective breeding. The veggies we have simply were not in existance in paleo times. Interesting tidbit- Brocolli, brussel sprouts, califlower, and cabbage are of the same genus and species. They can cross-pollinate. This is an example of sel. breeding in agriculture. Perhaps, paleo people simply ate the ancestors of these veggies. Do the paleo books cover this?

4. Native americans had agriculture- even corn. Why were they not fat?

5. I've seen some reference to insects and the paleo diet. It seems to me that insects and grubs would be a much easier meal than say a mastodon. I'd like to hear more about this too.

Well, I've got more, but I'm getting hungary. I look forward to your answers/commments. Got any grasshoppers?


Robert Wolf
06-21-2003, 04:36 PM
1) The "beginning of agriculture" is talking about a few thousand years. A tiny fraction of the 5 million years our Hominid and early human ancestors comsumed a died devoid of grains, legumes and dairy.
2) The livers ability to process urea ( a byproduct of protein metabolism) is a maximum of ~40%. This requires the fattier portions of wild game (and larger game) to be consumed preferentially or where available additional carbohydrate sources to be consumed. See Loren Cordains paper on HG macronutrient subsistence ratios. As an asside the fattier portions of wild meat are still far leaner than virtually all cuts of conventional meat.
3)The nutrient profile of the cruciferious vegetables you listed are in accordance with those commonly described in the ethnographic atlas. The topic of selective plant breeding is NOT covered however these foods do not pose a significant glycemic load and do not contribute to gut wall permeability and are therefore "paleo friendly" despite their modifications.
4) The native americans who had agriculture had poorer health than HG's in every measurable paramater. See the Ethnographic Atlas or other works by Loren Cordain.
5) 75% of humans loose the ability to digest lactose at some point in life. No human looses the ability to digest the exeoskeletons of insects. This indicates a long and consistent consumption. Perhaps a swarm of locusts may head your way!


06-27-2003, 11:59 AM
Thanks for the reply. I'll check out Cordain. Can you jot down a few more resources for me? I'd like to learn more.


Robert Wolf
06-27-2003, 07:44 PM
www.paleodiet.com (http://www.paleodiet.com)
www.thepaleodiet.com (http://www.thepaleodiet.com)
www.evfit.com (http://www.evfit.com)


Lights Out: Sleep, Sugar, Survival

Protein Power: Lifeplan


Natural Hormonal Enhancement

Ishmael, Story of B, My Ishmael (all by Daniel Quinn).

African Exodos: By Christopher Stringer

The !Kung San: Men Women and Work in a foraging Society: by Robert Lee.

There is the Short List!

Patrick Johnston
06-28-2003, 08:48 AM

My killer Holsteins are watching you!

Robert Wolf
06-28-2003, 08:10 PM
I know!!!! I FEEL therir eyes....