By Ashley Shipton
How do you get the strength and vigor of an ancient hunter-gatherer? You begin by eating as humans ate before modern civilization. The traditional hunter-gatherer diet consisted of 35% protein, 40% carbohydrate, and 22% fat. Compare that to the modern North American’s diet consisting of 15% protein, 47% carbohydrate, 36% fat. Our diets have changed considerably.
There are a few tricks to eating “Paleo,” as the hunter-gatherer diet is known. You can’t just increase your protein intake and think you are going Paleo. The meat hunter-gatherer ate was wild and contained less than 5% fat compared to modern meat which has up to 35%. Choosing lean cuts of meat is the first step in the Paleo diet.
Another thing to consider is that the carbohydrates consumed by hunter-gatherers were fruits, vegetables, legumes, and roots. They consumed no cereals or refined sugars. The type of carbohydrates are much different from the typical modern diet. The amount of carbohydrates consumed in both the Paleo and modern diet are similar, but the fiber content is astoundingly different. The Paleo diet provides roughly 100 grams of fiber, whereas the typically North American diet provides only 11-18 grams.
People following this type of low fat, low sugar, and high fiber diet have significantly fewer diseases, and sicknesses.
The Paleo diet is eating the foods that humans are naturally adapted to eat. Eating in this way decreases your chance of diseases. Modern diseases such as diabetes, cancer, heart disease, stroke, and gastrointestinal disorders are the most common causes of sickness and death in Canada. Research suggests that eating like a traditional hunter-gatherer decreases the likelihood of developing these diseases.
If you are looking for a way to try to lose a few pounds and decrease your chance of getting sick, try going wild and eating like a hunter-gatherer. ≣