The Paleo Diet: a healthier lifestyle

After a plentiful holiday season with family and friends, many of us are feeling the aftermath of those delicious holiday meals. With the new year well under way, some people are looking to make a healthy lifestyle change, while others may just be looking to shed those extra pounds.

Whatever the motivation behind this lifestyle switch, there is an option out there that is not only healthy but that has also been around since the Paleolithic Era: the Paleo Diet, or, as some call it, the Caveman Diet.

This diet mimics the eating habits of our hunter-gatherer ancestors who ate meat, fish, shellfish, fruits, vegetables, nuts, eggs and berries. The premise is that evolution has genetically molded us to eat like our predecessors 10,000 years ago.

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No one likes counting calories or carbs. No one likes being told what they can’t eat. By making an immediate or progressive switch to this diet, not only will you lose those extra worrisome pounds, you’ll also see a number of other benefits.

According to Dr. Loren Cordain, author of “The Paleo Diet,” some benefits of the Paleo Diet are higher levels of energy and higher levels of alkaline (thanks to all those fruits and veggies) that result in better resistance against diseases like osteoporosis, asthma or hypertension. The Caveman Diet also improves your blood sugar and insulin levels, which improve your chances against diabetes and all those “itis” diseases.

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Still interested? Here is what the Paleo Diet entails.

The goal is to consume as much meat, fish, eggs, fruit and vegetables as possible while avoiding an excess of starches, grains, dairy, processed foods and salt. Although eliminating potatoes, rice, cheese or milk might be hard for most, some doctors recommend keeping these foods to about 20 percent of your intake. This way you’ll still ease those cheese or potato cravings while still fueling your body efficiently.

Here is a typical Paleo day:

Breakfast: A healthy omelet filled with mushrooms, onions, peppers and broccoli. You can even add some turkey or slices of chicken.

Lunch: A salad with any kind of vegetable you like! Top with either lean meats or seafood. For example, try mixing spinach, bell peppers, cucumbers, avocados, carrots and almonds with some turkey or chicken.

Dinner: Switch the regular spaghetti for squash spaghetti. Then top with meatballs and marinara.

Pretty simple, right? Whether you decide to make the switch or not, aiming towards a healthier lifestyle is always a great choice. Exercising regularly, never eating anything in excess and keeping a positive attitude is already a healthy lifestyle.

Stay healthy, Devils!

For more information on the Paleo Diet and recipes, visit the Paleo Diet site.