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Carbs vs fat, --paleo right for the wrong reason? (A paleo 3.1. manifesto)

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created May 18, 2011 at 9:34 AM

  1. Paleo is optimized for reproductive success/survival

  2. Successful/optimalreproductive survival does not equal or entail health or health span This is NOT about longevity, --a red herring in the present context.

  3. Paleo may give you ideas, but given 1 and 2 above, for health(span) there is no reason to directly imitate it. (Anything is better than SAD, of course, --again a red herring)


  4. Features that promote reproductive survival may be (a) neutral) (b) beneficial (c) harmful for (postreproductive) health(span)

  5. (At least in post-reproductive life) you clearly want to actively avoid those aspects of the paleo metabolic environment that fall under (c), --assuming you can identify them.

  6. Quite some research has suggested high protein intake as falling under (c)


  7. You might argue that optimizing for reproductive success is not just potentially (which I think cannot be reasonably denied) but typically deleterious for health(span).

  8. Kulimai (actually that's me again (sorry) wherever a google account is required) argues on Don's Primal Wisdom like this: "A rather imperfect metaphor that nevertheless indicates what I have in mind: Suppose if your car finishes top 2% in a killing race that you must participate in, your car is likely to be total junk by the end but you definitely get a shining new replacement. If the car finishes top 10% your old car may still work for a number of years (good also for spares) but your chances of getting a replacement are much reduced. You may choose either strategy. But if these races are repeated many times over a longer time span eventually only owners with the first, more agressive strategy will continue to have cars. The kind that put the special fuel in the tank that makes the car go twice as fast for the first few hundred miles without regard to whether it cripples the engine soon afterwards..."

  9. Now the reason for the title at last: Whenever KGH points out that our ancestors ate a lot of fat I get uneasy, --maybe then current science is on the wrong track and high fat is like high protein in relevant respects ( ie. good for reproductive survival of the genes but bad for the health(span) of the individual?) But with Don's research and when Stephan G says "I think most of our ancestors have probably been eating more carb than fat for a very long time", I'm reassured that a high fat diet has a good chance of being healthier than a high carb one.


  10. Reproductive survival and health(span) seems to be largely a growth vs repair orientation issue. High carbs, high protein appear to stimulate insulin, IGF-1, mTOR, --growth, not repair.

0bc04a2ee661857e8458df34646e70ef

(319)

on September 13, 2012
at 03:49 AM

This sounds like Ron Rosedale without the cherry picked studies.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 20, 2011
at 06:40 PM

Incidentally, I noticed on another thread, that a diet along such lines did not much agree with you. It occurs to me that CR introduced in adulthood is generally beneficial, but detrimental if introduced abruptly. Perhaps there is a parallel on this too.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 20, 2011
at 06:31 PM

Calorie restriction might (it's far from clear, I think, outside the lab) be an example of a case that provides better healthspan. (One might argue it's actually paleo.) But a lot of research tends in the direction of protein and carb restriction activating largely the same cellular pathways and having most of the same advantages. If true then a low carb low protein diet might be more healthful (without the CR disadvantages) and whether or not our ancestors ate a lot of meat/carbs (presumably for fast growth and a lot of it, in a competitive environment for reproductive success).

6da7ce6a4a250c46a6e78b5b4e22da83

(987)

on May 19, 2011
at 05:44 PM

Would severe calorie restriction be a simple example of what you are suggesting? Paleo would suggest that, for the most part, one should eat to satiety and not deliberately limit calories. Eating paleo foods to satiety leads to increased energy, vitality, and libido. Deliberately and severely limiting calories, on the other hand, seems to lead to significantly longer lives (although at the cost of energy, vitality, libido). This seems fair - or did I miss the point?

4145b36f1488224964edac6258b75aff

(7821)

on May 18, 2011
at 10:21 PM

And my response is that the longer you live as a productive member of society, the better the chances your entire tribe will survive, thus creating selective pressure for _functional_ longevity. You have yet to reconcile your position with the existence of elders in HG tribes, menopause, or really posit any evidence for your supposition, so as of now you have a hypothesis derived from deductive logic predicated on assumptions not everyone agrees with. You've got some work to do before you've got something convincing :)

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 08:45 PM

(a) I was not calculating how long HGs live, but how much longevity follows from your argument.(b)Of course longevity is not irrelevant as such, it is relevant for many things, like for example the considerations you mention. My point was that it is irrelevant to the argument I make: paleo diet is not optimized (by evolution) for the health (span) of the individual but for something else that will often be deleterious for health(span). Longevity is irrelevant in that it does not *equal* healthspan which is what my argument is about.

4145b36f1488224964edac6258b75aff

(7821)

on May 18, 2011
at 06:25 PM

Given that observed HGs seem to regularly live past 40, your calculation and reality are at odds. How do you reconcile this? And longevity conveys a massive survival benefit unique to humans: collected wisdom. Thus, it is not irrelevant, and is in fact one of the most significant survival traits for humans: if your tribe is full of long lived individuals, you will have more expertise and knowledge to hand around than one full of 18 year olds mating like crazy, and thus be more likely to survive the chaos of existence.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 06:08 PM

My point was that evolution (largely) follows the fast car strategy. Humans have various aims and will try to make the best of the resources they are endowed with, trying to fulfill those.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 06:06 PM

As far as I can calculate with reproduction at 15 or so, if your argument adds a generous estimate of 10 years that gives a longevity (not even necessarily healthspan) of about 25. Longevity is irrelevant in any case, so this seems to me both not only a non-sequitur but also a red herring (the latter I indicated in my question.) Sorry if this sounds strident, --maybe I'm missing something you have in mind here.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 05:55 PM

Your remark about the neolithic diet being more successful for reproduction (at least so far in history) just highlights exactly the point I am making: repreoductive survival and health do not have to correlate.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 05:54 PM

Again, I did not say "perfectly" optimized, and the degree of perfection in the optimization is not relevant to my point. Only that paleo metabolism must have been targeted to reproductive survival not individual healthspan. When I say paleo is optimized for reproductive survival that is really just the survival of the fittest principle. Suppose you were right (and evolutionary theory is totally wrong), and paleo is not optimized *even* for gene survival, --why on earth would anyone think it is relevant for anything having to do with health?

4145b36f1488224964edac6258b75aff

(7821)

on May 18, 2011
at 05:27 PM

You're comparing lifestyles. History shows that the neolithic lifestyle wildly outperforms a paleolithic lifestyle when it comes to reproductive success, to the point where it is now quite difficult to even find humans practicing a paleolithic lifestyle. So it is clear from the evidence that paleo is not very well optimized for reproductive success or survival - merely that it was adequate - relative to the only other lifestyle available to choose from. If your statement is wrong, there of course would have been a neolithic, since you can survive without being perfectly optimized.

4145b36f1488224964edac6258b75aff

(7821)

on May 18, 2011
at 05:25 PM

You're comparing lifestyles. History shows that the neolithic lifestyle wildly outperforms a paleolithic lifestyle when it comes to reproductive success, to the point where it is now quite difficult to even find humans practicing a paleolithic lifestyle. So it is clear from the evidence that paleo is not very well optimized for reproductive success or survival - merely that it was adequate.

4145b36f1488224964edac6258b75aff

(7821)

on May 18, 2011
at 05:20 PM

How is pointing out that human childhood lasts over a decade a non-sequitur in an argument about how human childrearing requires longevity on the part of the parents? It's clear evidence for the supposition that human reproduction and longevity are inextricably linked. Also, grandfather/mother hypotheses aside, it is an observed fact that most HG tribes are organized around elders passing on wisdom to the young; do you have an example of an observed group which follows your "fast car" strategy? Your dismissal of the grandmother hypothesis doesn't appear grounded in any real observation.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 03:39 PM

oh, I see, I attributed this to KGH in a comment, not in the question. You are quite right, that attribution was careless and strictly speaking incorrect. However, AFAICS this does not change anything of substance: KGH connects the assumption that animal fat is not harmful to the assumption that our ancestors ate a lot of it.

66e6b190e62fb3bcf42d4c60801c7bf6

(12407)

on May 18, 2011
at 03:19 PM

@donat i apologize if i've misinterpreted what you've written.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 02:47 PM

lucky, you take me to task for not reading KGH carefully enough. I do think you are wrong on this. I feel at the same time, that something in what I wrote makes it difficult for you to grasp what I am actually saying. In any case it is nice that we agree on something: the importance of food quality. I'm sure there is a lot more agreement between us, that hasn't surfaced here.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 02:38 PM

Thanks pfw for a rational consideration. I thought of what one might call the grandparent argument but I am rather uncertain about its strength. Actually point 8 above is precisely why I don't think it changes the picture significantly. You also say "Even basic physical post-birth development is so slow as to require longevity on the part of those who have already reproduced" I'm afraid on the face of this looks like a non sequitur. Also you say you are "unaware of KGH making any recommendation "because our ancestors" did anything" I'm unaware of having claimed that he has done so.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 02:30 PM

You sure? If my statement was wrong, there would have been nothing for the neolithic agriculture to wipe out in fact there would have been no neolithic since humans would have died out. Also it is news to me that neolithic humans are a different race.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 02:24 PM

Hi Mark, the question was "is paleo right for the wrong reason?"

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on May 18, 2011
at 01:56 PM

excellent points regarding how reproduction and longevity are NOT mutually exclusive for humans. I haven't thought about it like that. Really nice to read something honestly illuminating. Cheers

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on May 18, 2011
at 01:28 PM

what is this? TL;DR

66e6b190e62fb3bcf42d4c60801c7bf6

(12407)

on May 18, 2011
at 01:18 PM

in that last paragraph, you stated what i was trying to get across much better than i.

6fa48935d439390e223b9a053a62c981

(1676)

on May 18, 2011
at 01:00 PM

Sorry, but what exactly is the question...?

66e6b190e62fb3bcf42d4c60801c7bf6

(12407)

on May 18, 2011
at 11:41 AM

carbs vs. fat: i think it's either or in a healthy individual. before i healed my metabolism through a high fat, high protein paleo diet, i didn't handle carbs well at all. after several months of smartly reintroducing carbs pwo, i handle them well. i think food quality is more important than any macronutrient ratio.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 11:02 AM

I really have no desire to cause offence. I greatly respect KGH and SG otherwise I would not comment on their work, --neither of them by the way appears to wish for unthinking acceptance of their work. I do not think however that you are addressing any of the points I made.

66e6b190e62fb3bcf42d4c60801c7bf6

(12407)

on May 18, 2011
at 10:31 AM

actually, i think kgh's paleo 2.0 is the best written account of the paleo diet that i follow. if we're going to be dubbing a new version of that manifesto, i think you should at least go in depth as he did and not pull some self-serving comment from him or SG. out of the thousands of words of scientific evidence they've given on their site, and with KGH saying openly that he is skeptical of the "because grok did it" logical fallacy, you take cherry-picked quotes that reference hg's to make a point that doesn't go nearly as in-depth as these gentlemen's original writings.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 10:22 AM

it makes me feel better, makes my health markers look better and makes life an overall more enjoyable experience" Cf. "Anything is better than SAD, of course, --again a red herring" The question is not about the reasons to follow a paleo diet, it's about what conclusions one can draw from whatever knowledge we have about the ancestral diets.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 10:16 AM

Reenactment?? The question does not use the word or the concept. When KGH says eat high fat because our ancestors did and DM and SG say eat higher carbs because our ancestors did, -- are they suggesting reenactment? Yes? I would not say that, but then you are against reenactment so you agree with me that their argument is incorrect. No, these statements are not suggesting reenactment? Then why do you think my suggestion that the connection they make is erroneous has to do anything with reenactment?

2f54dbe892ec89b12d1db686568e885a

(919)

on May 18, 2011
at 10:12 AM

I can think of no better reasons, than those you have articulated, as to why one should follow a paleo diet.

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5 Answers

6
4145b36f1488224964edac6258b75aff

(7821)

on May 18, 2011
at 12:58 PM

I think you need to re-think your fundamental delineation between long term survival and reproductive success. They are, in fact, one and the same when it comes to humans. You cannot successfully reproduce without being alive long enough to protect and teach your children how to survive, something which will take you the better part of your adult life. Human tool use and culture are fundamental survival strategies which rely entirely on the existence of elders to pass on knowledge to the next generation.

Even basic physical post-birth development is so slow as to require longevity on the part of those who have already reproduced. We are not mayflies or fish; we can't just spray some sperm and eggs around and have 10% of them grow to adulthood. Applying evolutionary thinking predicated on such logic to humans just doesn't work.

Also, I'm unaware of KGH making any recommendation "because our ancestors" did anything. He's repeatedly stated that such logic can only generate ideas which must be validated with actual science. He's pretty strongly stated that you shouldn't do certain things "because our ancestors didn't do them", but you've not mentioned that anywhere. There's no macro-nutrient recommendation in the "don't do" list.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 02:38 PM

Thanks pfw for a rational consideration. I thought of what one might call the grandparent argument but I am rather uncertain about its strength. Actually point 8 above is precisely why I don't think it changes the picture significantly. You also say "Even basic physical post-birth development is so slow as to require longevity on the part of those who have already reproduced" I'm afraid on the face of this looks like a non sequitur. Also you say you are "unaware of KGH making any recommendation "because our ancestors" did anything" I'm unaware of having claimed that he has done so.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on May 18, 2011
at 01:56 PM

excellent points regarding how reproduction and longevity are NOT mutually exclusive for humans. I haven't thought about it like that. Really nice to read something honestly illuminating. Cheers

4145b36f1488224964edac6258b75aff

(7821)

on May 18, 2011
at 10:21 PM

And my response is that the longer you live as a productive member of society, the better the chances your entire tribe will survive, thus creating selective pressure for _functional_ longevity. You have yet to reconcile your position with the existence of elders in HG tribes, menopause, or really posit any evidence for your supposition, so as of now you have a hypothesis derived from deductive logic predicated on assumptions not everyone agrees with. You've got some work to do before you've got something convincing :)

4145b36f1488224964edac6258b75aff

(7821)

on May 18, 2011
at 05:20 PM

How is pointing out that human childhood lasts over a decade a non-sequitur in an argument about how human childrearing requires longevity on the part of the parents? It's clear evidence for the supposition that human reproduction and longevity are inextricably linked. Also, grandfather/mother hypotheses aside, it is an observed fact that most HG tribes are organized around elders passing on wisdom to the young; do you have an example of an observed group which follows your "fast car" strategy? Your dismissal of the grandmother hypothesis doesn't appear grounded in any real observation.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 06:08 PM

My point was that evolution (largely) follows the fast car strategy. Humans have various aims and will try to make the best of the resources they are endowed with, trying to fulfill those.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 03:39 PM

oh, I see, I attributed this to KGH in a comment, not in the question. You are quite right, that attribution was careless and strictly speaking incorrect. However, AFAICS this does not change anything of substance: KGH connects the assumption that animal fat is not harmful to the assumption that our ancestors ate a lot of it.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 06:06 PM

As far as I can calculate with reproduction at 15 or so, if your argument adds a generous estimate of 10 years that gives a longevity (not even necessarily healthspan) of about 25. Longevity is irrelevant in any case, so this seems to me both not only a non-sequitur but also a red herring (the latter I indicated in my question.) Sorry if this sounds strident, --maybe I'm missing something you have in mind here.

4145b36f1488224964edac6258b75aff

(7821)

on May 18, 2011
at 06:25 PM

Given that observed HGs seem to regularly live past 40, your calculation and reality are at odds. How do you reconcile this? And longevity conveys a massive survival benefit unique to humans: collected wisdom. Thus, it is not irrelevant, and is in fact one of the most significant survival traits for humans: if your tribe is full of long lived individuals, you will have more expertise and knowledge to hand around than one full of 18 year olds mating like crazy, and thus be more likely to survive the chaos of existence.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 08:45 PM

(a) I was not calculating how long HGs live, but how much longevity follows from your argument.(b)Of course longevity is not irrelevant as such, it is relevant for many things, like for example the considerations you mention. My point was that it is irrelevant to the argument I make: paleo diet is not optimized (by evolution) for the health (span) of the individual but for something else that will often be deleterious for health(span). Longevity is irrelevant in that it does not *equal* healthspan which is what my argument is about.

66e6b190e62fb3bcf42d4c60801c7bf6

(12407)

on May 18, 2011
at 01:18 PM

in that last paragraph, you stated what i was trying to get across much better than i.

5
66e6b190e62fb3bcf42d4c60801c7bf6

on May 18, 2011
at 09:54 AM

From what i'm reading, your whole answer is predicated on the assumption that paleos are following this diet as some form of reenactment, as kgh calls it, and it's not until your tenth point when you actually inject specific scientific reference into your argument. You may be right or you may be wrong, however, from my experience with my own health and the health of friends and family, I'm following a paleo diet(which sometimes gets in the territory of high fat or high protein) because it makes me feel better, makes my health markers look better and makes life an overall more enjoyable experience. That argument over reenactment and macronutrients is something that has and continues to be argued over by bloggers and laymen alike and will continue to be but you will find most here don't fall under that category.

66e6b190e62fb3bcf42d4c60801c7bf6

(12407)

on May 18, 2011
at 11:41 AM

carbs vs. fat: i think it's either or in a healthy individual. before i healed my metabolism through a high fat, high protein paleo diet, i didn't handle carbs well at all. after several months of smartly reintroducing carbs pwo, i handle them well. i think food quality is more important than any macronutrient ratio.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 02:47 PM

lucky, you take me to task for not reading KGH carefully enough. I do think you are wrong on this. I feel at the same time, that something in what I wrote makes it difficult for you to grasp what I am actually saying. In any case it is nice that we agree on something: the importance of food quality. I'm sure there is a lot more agreement between us, that hasn't surfaced here.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 11:02 AM

I really have no desire to cause offence. I greatly respect KGH and SG otherwise I would not comment on their work, --neither of them by the way appears to wish for unthinking acceptance of their work. I do not think however that you are addressing any of the points I made.

66e6b190e62fb3bcf42d4c60801c7bf6

(12407)

on May 18, 2011
at 10:31 AM

actually, i think kgh's paleo 2.0 is the best written account of the paleo diet that i follow. if we're going to be dubbing a new version of that manifesto, i think you should at least go in depth as he did and not pull some self-serving comment from him or SG. out of the thousands of words of scientific evidence they've given on their site, and with KGH saying openly that he is skeptical of the "because grok did it" logical fallacy, you take cherry-picked quotes that reference hg's to make a point that doesn't go nearly as in-depth as these gentlemen's original writings.

66e6b190e62fb3bcf42d4c60801c7bf6

(12407)

on May 18, 2011
at 03:19 PM

@donat i apologize if i've misinterpreted what you've written.

2f54dbe892ec89b12d1db686568e885a

(919)

on May 18, 2011
at 10:12 AM

I can think of no better reasons, than those you have articulated, as to why one should follow a paleo diet.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 10:22 AM

it makes me feel better, makes my health markers look better and makes life an overall more enjoyable experience" Cf. "Anything is better than SAD, of course, --again a red herring" The question is not about the reasons to follow a paleo diet, it's about what conclusions one can draw from whatever knowledge we have about the ancestral diets.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 10:16 AM

Reenactment?? The question does not use the word or the concept. When KGH says eat high fat because our ancestors did and DM and SG say eat higher carbs because our ancestors did, -- are they suggesting reenactment? Yes? I would not say that, but then you are against reenactment so you agree with me that their argument is incorrect. No, these statements are not suggesting reenactment? Then why do you think my suggestion that the connection they make is erroneous has to do anything with reenactment?

1
A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4

(20436)

on May 18, 2011
at 02:01 PM

"1. Paleo is optimized for reproductive success/survival"

I have to disagree with that on historical grounds. Neolithic/agriculture all but wiped out hunter gatherers across the globe, due to their much increased reproductive success.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 05:55 PM

Your remark about the neolithic diet being more successful for reproduction (at least so far in history) just highlights exactly the point I am making: repreoductive survival and health do not have to correlate.

4145b36f1488224964edac6258b75aff

(7821)

on May 18, 2011
at 05:27 PM

You're comparing lifestyles. History shows that the neolithic lifestyle wildly outperforms a paleolithic lifestyle when it comes to reproductive success, to the point where it is now quite difficult to even find humans practicing a paleolithic lifestyle. So it is clear from the evidence that paleo is not very well optimized for reproductive success or survival - merely that it was adequate - relative to the only other lifestyle available to choose from. If your statement is wrong, there of course would have been a neolithic, since you can survive without being perfectly optimized.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 05:54 PM

Again, I did not say "perfectly" optimized, and the degree of perfection in the optimization is not relevant to my point. Only that paleo metabolism must have been targeted to reproductive survival not individual healthspan. When I say paleo is optimized for reproductive survival that is really just the survival of the fittest principle. Suppose you were right (and evolutionary theory is totally wrong), and paleo is not optimized *even* for gene survival, --why on earth would anyone think it is relevant for anything having to do with health?

4145b36f1488224964edac6258b75aff

(7821)

on May 18, 2011
at 05:25 PM

You're comparing lifestyles. History shows that the neolithic lifestyle wildly outperforms a paleolithic lifestyle when it comes to reproductive success, to the point where it is now quite difficult to even find humans practicing a paleolithic lifestyle. So it is clear from the evidence that paleo is not very well optimized for reproductive success or survival - merely that it was adequate.

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 18, 2011
at 02:30 PM

You sure? If my statement was wrong, there would have been nothing for the neolithic agriculture to wipe out in fact there would have been no neolithic since humans would have died out. Also it is news to me that neolithic humans are a different race.

0
44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 19, 2011
at 05:47 AM

Thanks to all for the reactions. Notice that in points 1-3 I'm saying more or less exactly what KGH says: that paleo re-enactment is not a good idea. But then KGH also points out that just because something is neolithic it does not follow that it is poisonous and in the next three points (4-6) I am saying that just because something is paleo it does not follow that it is good for one's health(span). And in further three points (7-9) I give some reasons to think that in fact aspects of paleo diet that are not optimal for health(span) are very likely to be not untypical.

Then in point 10 I hinted at a potential alternative paradigm

Pfw correctly notes that there may be selection for longevity, especially in the context of humans with extended childhood ("the grandparent effect"). No doubt having knowledgeable and helpful elders around might confer an evolutionary advantage. The trouble is, we do not know how much, and whether other evolutionary pressures (like for example competition for resources) override this. So even granted the existence of the grandparent effect, its force is unclear.

My point about evolution selecting for survival of those who are optimized to be successful at reproductive survival is of a quite different nature: it is trivially true given an evolutionary approach. In fact this point is just a way of stating the central survival of the fittest hypothesis.

So I don't think I owe any further arguments here, I am only pointing out implications of certain truisms of the evolutionary approach. Notice further that I am not saying anything like that a paleo diet is unhealthy, all I am saying is that paleo is not a guarantee of being good for health(span) and aspects of paleo may easily be outright harmful for it. This clearly follows from what I am saying quite independently of what weight one assigns to the grandparent effect. And no, this does not mean that SAD crap is better...

I may of course be completely wrong. But overall the reaction of this community to my question has been comparable to that of an establishment MD to questioning the diet-heart hypothesis. "Ignore the awkward"!

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 20, 2011
at 06:31 PM

Calorie restriction might (it's far from clear, I think, outside the lab) be an example of a case that provides better healthspan. (One might argue it's actually paleo.) But a lot of research tends in the direction of protein and carb restriction activating largely the same cellular pathways and having most of the same advantages. If true then a low carb low protein diet might be more healthful (without the CR disadvantages) and whether or not our ancestors ate a lot of meat/carbs (presumably for fast growth and a lot of it, in a competitive environment for reproductive success).

6da7ce6a4a250c46a6e78b5b4e22da83

(987)

on May 19, 2011
at 05:44 PM

Would severe calorie restriction be a simple example of what you are suggesting? Paleo would suggest that, for the most part, one should eat to satiety and not deliberately limit calories. Eating paleo foods to satiety leads to increased energy, vitality, and libido. Deliberately and severely limiting calories, on the other hand, seems to lead to significantly longer lives (although at the cost of energy, vitality, libido). This seems fair - or did I miss the point?

44c0064c835001351885a6d349a2542f

(279)

on May 20, 2011
at 06:40 PM

Incidentally, I noticed on another thread, that a diet along such lines did not much agree with you. It occurs to me that CR introduced in adulthood is generally beneficial, but detrimental if introduced abruptly. Perhaps there is a parallel on this too.

0
796d2266c54ffe57bf43a00b4315b747

on May 18, 2011
at 12:07 PM

idols have feet of clay.

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