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Old 04-24-2010, 07:18 AM   #1
Jeremy Raffer
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Why aren't beans and peas paleo?

I'm trying to figure this out so I can explain it to people. I understand that beans have phytates but I don't like that reason. If the paleo diet is the diet that the caveman ate. Than I have trouble believing that the caveman was conciously avoiding phytates. So why?

Last edited by Jeremy Raffer : 04-24-2010 at 07:27 AM.
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Old 04-24-2010, 09:47 AM   #2
Mark E. Wallace
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Re: Why aren't beans and peas paleo?

I'm no expert, but what I've read on legumes (incl. beans and peas) is that it's the phytates and lectins that are to be avoided.

From (wfs) http://www.healingcrow.com/dietsmain/paleo/paleo.html:

Quote:
Legumes:

Beans have been touted as the healthy
protein alternative to meat. The fact that they can cause gastrointestinal distress should be enough for our concern. Most legumes are poisonous if eaten raw. Legumes are high in lectins, protease inhibitors, and phytates. Lectins are proteins that bind carbohydrates, been identified as being inflammatory and toxic, and have a casual relationship with auto-immune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, Type I diabetes, and lupus. Phytates or phytic acids, have been shown to inhibit the absorption of minerals such as calcium, magnesium, iron, and zinc in the digestive tract. Furthermore, the presence of protease inhibitors interferes with the breakdown of proteins into amino acids. Vegetarians seeking protein from legumes, may actually be making their protein deficiencies worse! A diet high in legumes, at best, will give you gastrointestinal problems and could result in a mineral deficiency. At worst, a diet high in legumes could induce an "auto-immune" response. Furthermore, the soy industry has been pushing the "health benefits" of soy. As a result, most of our processed foods contain a soy additive or byproduct, in effect, lacing our foods with possible toxins.
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I understand that beans have phytates but I don't like that reason.
Not sure what difference it makes if you like the answer or not.

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Old 04-24-2010, 11:46 AM   #3
Jeremy Raffer
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Re: Why aren't beans and peas paleo?

I get that its the phytates that are bad for you. When I said I dont like that reason I meant that it isn't why cavemen didn't eat them. Cavemen weren't wondering around talking about phytates. So how did they know. After all the paleo diet was established by studying what paleolithic man ate, not what science tells us is bad for us. They used science in order to explain the benefits of the paleo diet....not to construct it.

do you see what i mean?
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Old 04-24-2010, 12:35 PM   #4
Greg Privitera
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Re: Why aren't beans and peas paleo?

Jeremy, you are correct.

Some "cavemen" (again, whatever that means) surely ate legumes. As well as starchy tubers. And grains. Assuming they had to know-how to prep all of this stuff, which some of them surely did.

I'd advise you to get out of the mindset of strict paleo and make informed dietary choices based on what we know about foods NOW and how your body reacts to them.

Beans and peas are not bad for you, the phytates could be an issue if you're eating a ton of them. Or if they replace more nutrient dense foods.

That being said, beans especially have been proven to be quite healthful to include in your diet. They are also a good slow digesting source of carbs with high protein and fiber, which means they are quite satiating for a low number of calories.

A varied diet is key.
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Old 04-24-2010, 04:06 PM   #5
Katherine Derbyshire
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Re: Why aren't beans and peas paleo?

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Originally Posted by Jeremy Raffer View Post
I get that its the phytates that are bad for you. When I said I dont like that reason I meant that it isn't why cavemen didn't eat them. Cavemen weren't wondering around talking about phytates. So how did they know. After all the paleo diet was established by studying what paleolithic man ate, not what science tells us is bad for us. They used science in order to explain the benefits of the paleo diet....not to construct it.

do you see what i mean?
You've stumbled into (IMO) one of the key arguments against the Paleo diet. Many Paleo proponents start from the idea of eating what cavemen ate, but then add or subtract foods based on their ideas about what is (or isn't) healthy. The avoidance of starchy tubers is a prime example: there's lots of evidence that hunter gatherers ate plenty of tubers, but they are often rejected for their high GI. An even more extreme example is the avoidance of egg yolks: there is *no* chance that Grok threw half his eggs away.

On legumes specifically, the argument is that they are not Paleo because they are not edible in their raw state, but require additional processing. However, many legumes actually *are* edible raw, and Paleo man most certainly would have eaten those that existed in his environment.

Katherine

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Old 04-24-2010, 06:04 PM   #6
Jared Ashley
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Re: Why aren't beans and peas paleo?

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Originally Posted by Katherine Derbyshire View Post
On legumes specifically, the argument is that they are not Paleo because they are not edible in their raw state, but require additional processing. However, many legumes actually *are* edible raw, and Paleo man most certainly would have eaten those that existed in his environment.

Katherine
This.

As with anything else, the best thing to do with the "paleo" diet is to take the useful information and discard the rest.

The useful part of the paleo concept is that meat, fruit, veggies, nuts, and seeds are generally good for you and just about anything that doesn't fit that category is less good for you. Grains, when eaten as whole grains, depend on the individual. Same goes for dairy... some can handle it and others can't; you must listen to your body. Sugar isn't "good" for anyone, but in limited quantities it won't kill you either.

Ignore the nonsensical arguments about beans, potatoes, honey, bacon, peas, and countless other items.
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Old 04-24-2010, 06:52 PM   #7
Steven Chicoine
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Re: Why aren't beans and peas paleo?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Katherine Derbyshire View Post
You've stumbled into (IMO) one of the key arguments against the Paleo diet. Many Paleo proponents start from the idea of eating what cavemen ate, but then add or subtract foods based on their ideas about what is (or isn't) healthy. The avoidance of starchy tubers is a prime example: there's lots of evidence that hunter gatherers ate plenty of tubers, but they are often rejected for their high GI. An even more extreme example is the avoidance of egg yolks: there is *no* chance that Grok threw half his eggs away.

On legumes specifically, the argument is that they are not Paleo because they are not edible in their raw state, but require additional processing. However, many legumes actually *are* edible raw, and Paleo man most certainly would have eaten those that existed in his environment.

Katherine
They're are people that eat paleo but avoid the yolk? I've never met one. It's usually people afraid of fat that do that.

If they could eat the beans without them causing GI problems then they probably would of ate them. I'm pretty sure that is really the base of whether or not a cavemen would of ate something. (that and taste of course)

Katherine got it right when she said is it digestible without micro-level processing? (macro level processing like removing hair from an animal corpse doesn't count) Then of course digestible isn't a simple term to define and has a HUGE gray area.

Last edited by Steven Chicoine : 04-24-2010 at 06:54 PM.
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Old 04-24-2010, 07:04 PM   #8
Wayne Riddle
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Re: Why aren't beans and peas paleo?

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Originally Posted by Steven Chicoine View Post
They're are people that eat paleo but avoid the yolk? I've never met one. It's usually people afraid of fat that do that.
You'll see them post on this forum.
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Old 04-24-2010, 07:19 PM   #9
Nic Kirkland
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Re: Why aren't beans and peas paleo?

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Originally Posted by Wayne Riddle View Post
You'll see them post on this forum.
Yeah. People who do Zone with Paleo foods and those who are strictly following the advice of Loren Cordain in The Paleo Diet are very leery of saturated fat.
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Old 04-25-2010, 05:19 AM   #10
Michael Dries
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Re: Why aren't beans and peas paleo?

Funny thing is if you listen to robb wolf, it's the lysozime in the egg WHITES that can cause GI problems.


Everything is bad for you!


I don't eat beans and peas because I don't like them. I stay away from peanuts because I find I break out when I eat too many.

However sweet potatoes and yams FTW!!!

Robb wolf also said it best in one of his podcasts... something to the effect of "I don't want to make a religion out of this thing... indoor plumbing isn't paleo either but I like running water."
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