4

votes

Does Paleo have to equal Healthy?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created October 06, 2012 at 4:22 AM

A recent, and now Closed question sought to ask why certain Paleo foods (such as bacon) are so cherished that they have the power to induce a reality distortion field when it comes to being critiqued for their health benefits.

This leads me to pose a broader and more pivotal question before the PH community:

Does it follow that a food should have a certain threshold of health benefits in order for it to be considered for inclusion in a paleo dietary template?

If so, what should such criteria include?

It may help to have a definition of what health and dietary health means:

  • Health, according to the WHO, is a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity

  • Dietary health, according to wikipedia, is mediated by a balance of fats, proteins, and carbohydrates, calories to support energy need and micro nutrients to meet the needs for human nutrition without inducing toxicity or excessive weight gain from consuming excessive amounts.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 14, 2012
at 12:03 AM

So you would say that bacon provides a fairly good base of nutrition?

518bce04b12cd77741237e1f61075194

(11577)

on October 10, 2012
at 10:25 PM

Sure, it's the internet and you can't tell tone etc, but really, talking down much?

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 09, 2012
at 12:42 AM

If you had more sense than scorn you would have googled before opining. Plus what is it with all this hostility? Surely you've heard of the socratic method?

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 09, 2012
at 12:39 AM

If you had more sense than scorn you would have googled before opining.

Medium avatar

(10611)

on October 08, 2012
at 07:23 PM

Those 100% variations were definitely unhealthy, from parasites to cramped guts. But they were probably eagerly anticipated reward meals.

Medium avatar

(10611)

on October 08, 2012
at 06:15 PM

Certainly. The certainty is variability. There would have been 100% pig stints, and 100% whatever the paleo version of bananas was. But no fresh strawberries in January and no daily bacon.

518bce04b12cd77741237e1f61075194

(11577)

on October 08, 2012
at 05:59 PM

Or, for fun, because you seem to think that everyone you talk to is science illiterate, and that science literate people would never question the gold standard science based methodology, just head over to "Bad Science" and enjoy the TedTalks. I gotta head out before I sound like too much of a conspiracy theorists, my biochem exam is way to soon for me to be here.

518bce04b12cd77741237e1f61075194

(11577)

on October 08, 2012
at 05:57 PM

Harry, you don't have to bust a gut trying to talk down to the interwebs. We get it, you are trying to fit something as complex and varied as health into a single format, and if you can't do that, you get to smuggly confirm your initial conclusion. If you want to be patted on the back for being a critic after googling peer review and learning a smidgen about medical research, take it elsewhere.

518bce04b12cd77741237e1f61075194

(11577)

on October 08, 2012
at 05:53 PM

Keep bringing it back to space, JayJay. Too awesome. Also, this harry dude seems like a mansplainer. This is diffusing!

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on October 08, 2012
at 05:21 PM

Diets vary in variability as well.

Medium avatar

(10611)

on October 08, 2012
at 04:22 PM

Ancestor diet was much more variable - seasonal - than modern diets. Getting a pork belly was a much more difficult proposition than it is now that there are pig farms. If there is paleo optimality it is in eating a diet with highly variable macronutrient mixes.

F694fc245d03b64d6936ddb29f4c9306

(2613)

on October 08, 2012
at 01:27 PM

I also want to mention that I don't think anybody can definitively say what's healthy. Everyone, even experts, work on imperfect information. That being said, Paleo concepts are consistent with some scientific evidence, and it's better to choose a dietary philosophy and stick to it than throw up one's hands and capitulate to dietary indifference.

F694fc245d03b64d6936ddb29f4c9306

(2613)

on October 08, 2012
at 01:07 PM

It absolutely does apply. Protein powder isn't Paleo, imo. It's highly processed food in a form as detached from its natural source as possible, and it has a higher glycemic load than pure sugar! http://www.mendosa.com/gilists.htm

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 07, 2012
at 08:02 AM

LLM, I've also said before that I have no issue with vices whether they be bacon or cigars. My objective is to foster critical thinking about what makes a food paleo. It's perfectly OK to challenge conclusions and the evidence they are founded on - its one of the central aims of peer review.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 07, 2012
at 07:57 AM

This was a legitimate question designed to foster a productive discussion and hopefully lead to enlightening answers. It is a disappointment to see it closed with no cause - and by 4 people who have not even bothered to comment!

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 07, 2012
at 02:40 AM

^ I coulda just gone with what LLM said.....simple and true.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 07, 2012
at 02:38 AM

I can definitively tell you that there are no agreed upon metrics to health FM providers are probably the closest to working it out, but it is quite a work in progress...

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 07, 2012
at 02:34 AM

I said it before Harry, if your quest for optimal causes you to rule out reasonable vices like a couple pieces of bacon, an occasional cup of coffee or the odd bit of dark chocolate you are going to be doing more damage to yourself from obsession than any of those foods would ever do to you. OCD isn't Paleo in my book.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 07, 2012
at 02:26 AM

Oh I see this was closed as subjective and argumentative...I don't mind subjective and argumentative myself. I actually like this. I saw the bacon question as quite resolvable by presenting the current science and debating the use of pork belly....end discussion, make your choice.....but hey that's me.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 07, 2012
at 02:20 AM

As to the definition of healthy....we actually have a legitimate definition in that of what the WHO states and including homeostasis. The problem is that we have not developed legitimate ways of testing for health. We only know how to test for and assess disease. So in the lack of disease we have health right???? but, no....that is not actually the definition. So we have no absolute parameters at this time to determine optimal health on an individual basis. AKA we don't know everything.....hence the evolutionary model. Model healthy humans to become healthy. Its the best we have.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 07, 2012
at 02:17 AM

You seem to have come to a lot of conclusions that many of us would disagree with. I actually consider myself well versed in how to read and analyze scientific data. I really think you should develop it further in yourself....as we all should even if we think its a strong point. There is mistrust....then there is prudent cynicism. Recognizing probable biases and monetary gain does not make make or break a data set, but gives you some clues if statistics seem a bit skewed for a particular effect.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 07, 2012
at 02:09 AM

Or do you present data and allow them to come to their own conclusions?....One is authoritative and one is a partnership in discovery IMO.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 07, 2012
at 02:08 AM

^ Is it what you do with the things you discover? Do you advise others?

61f9349ad28e3c42d1cec58ba4825a7d

(10490)

on October 07, 2012
at 02:05 AM

You did that by linking to two questions about bacon that you have already used as your soapbox, one of which was closed for that reason? Yeah, righto.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 07, 2012
at 01:35 AM

Luckie, this discussion is designed to - hopefully - result in some metrics on health and where paleo - within this community - sits within the parameters of health. I've gone out of may way to avoid references to bacon. You, on the other hand seem to raise it at every turn. Who is on the crusade here?

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 07, 2012
at 01:31 AM

If all we can do is define things for our selves, why then should we seek advice and and provide it to others?

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 06, 2012
at 05:23 PM

And as I said "healthy" by what and whose standards? You probably need to further define your goals.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 06, 2012
at 05:22 PM

I think your issue is that you keep attempting to define what even you call a "template". And a template that is meant to be fluid and changing at that. Seems like a less than fruitful endeavor. All you should really attempt is to define things for yourself.

61f9349ad28e3c42d1cec58ba4825a7d

(10490)

on October 06, 2012
at 04:58 PM

No, it more implies that people still have differing opinions on what is or is not healthy.

61f9349ad28e3c42d1cec58ba4825a7d

(10490)

on October 06, 2012
at 04:57 PM

Yes, just like I seek to suffocate religious evangelists from spamming their wares. It's not that your point of view is not valid - it's the repetition and presentation.

Ef777978cfeb8fbdd18d75c4f6c4cb23

(1297)

on October 06, 2012
at 04:27 PM

more on bacon from chris kresser http://chriskresser.com/the-nitrate-and-nitrite-myth-another-reason-not-to-fear-bacon

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 06, 2012
at 04:18 PM

The only hate, Luckie, comes from those who would seek to suffocate knowledge.

61f9349ad28e3c42d1cec58ba4825a7d

(10490)

on October 06, 2012
at 03:45 PM

Ahead of you there, dear. I enjoy some of your other questions and answers but I am a little over the repeated bacon-hate.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 06, 2012
at 03:45 PM

In terms of defining health don't forget hormesis, even in food chooses. I think this is in large part where some synthetic additions of vitamins can be detrimental (or appear to be in some studies). There actually NEEDS to be a certain level of cell destruction if you will, before the body takes active steps such as autophagy to improve its health status.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 06, 2012
at 03:42 PM

^ I think I've spent too much time reading the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy lately.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 06, 2012
at 03:40 PM

Its all good. I tend to go with the evolutionary model for filling gaps. How large you perceive the gaps and how well you think this model fills them are dependent on your own readings and how convinced you are that a.) the current analysis/model is incomplete b.) the HG model actually does promote health.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 06, 2012
at 03:37 PM

lol...I had to google tricorder, but its all seeming to come together now! Life is starting to make sense :). We should ditch this paleo thing and review the star trek archives for enlightenment.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 06, 2012
at 03:34 PM

And the iPhone is well on its way to becoming a tricorder..

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 06, 2012
at 03:32 PM

....and to boldly go where no man has gone before!....so Steve Jobs what a Treky? Cool.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 06, 2012
at 03:28 PM

The term "reality distortion field" was initially attributed to Steve Jobs who had the capacity to powerfully persuade and alter the perception of his audience during business meetings in ways that transcended the evidence at hand.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 06, 2012
at 03:13 PM

That's a very good point: why is it that the principle of nutrients in isolation from their food source generally being either less beneficial or sometimes harmful does not apply to something like whey protein isolate?

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 06, 2012
at 02:57 PM

It would be preferable to avoid the topic of bacon _per se_ since it attracts a great deal of controversy.. How about your opinion on whether food must be healthy in order to be considered as paleo?

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 06, 2012
at 02:44 PM

In that case, Luckie, you should - with all due haste - initiate a vote to close..

Ef777978cfeb8fbdd18d75c4f6c4cb23

(1297)

on October 06, 2012
at 01:50 PM

Ah yes, bacon. Well of course there is some really rubbish bacon out there and it certainly belongs in the processed food world. And there's plenty of bacon that has sugar added, so that comes up short too. But if you pay up for the quality gear and you don't go nuts on it, it's a real pleasure. I'm with Clifton Harski on this More than 2-3 times a week & you're being an *** about it http://cliftonharski.com/ba-diet/

61f9349ad28e3c42d1cec58ba4825a7d

(10490)

on October 06, 2012
at 01:50 PM

Another bacon in disguise question? What is with this anti-bacon hobbyhorse? We get that you're not a fan but this is starting to look like a crusade.

Ef777978cfeb8fbdd18d75c4f6c4cb23

(1297)

on October 06, 2012
at 01:42 PM

Clearly I have no idea where my ancestors came from going back more than a few generations. It's not really a paleo thing at all. I prefer where I can to eat local. That's all

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 06, 2012
at 01:39 PM

Shh.. Let's not get this question closed down ;)

B3173217a49b5b0116078775a17eb21d

(11488)

on October 06, 2012
at 12:54 PM

Shhh, Harry has a thing about bacon.

B3173217a49b5b0116078775a17eb21d

(11488)

on October 06, 2012
at 12:53 PM

I don't get the whole "coconut oil is hardly what any sort of ancestor of mine would have consumed". Do you think that all your ancestors came from Britain, since the beginning of time?

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 06, 2012
at 10:30 AM

The food that caused a great deal of commotion when its risk/benefit ratio was questioned was bacon. To see the degree of commotion click over to http://paleohacks.com/questions/152768/bursting-the-bacon-loving-bubble-closed and http://paleohacks.com/questions/151777/how-is-bacon-paleo

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 06, 2012
at 10:28 AM

That's a novel methodology - if the food improves health it must be paleo :)

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 06, 2012
at 10:25 AM

The food that caused a great deal of commotion when its risk/benefit ratio was questioned was bacon.

A08b210e4da7e69cd792bddc1f4aae4b

(1031)

on October 06, 2012
at 09:16 AM

Another factor that needs to be included is the toxicity of the food (all foods have some level). The equation then becomes Benefit/Harm; Paleo can be interpreted as optimising that equation, i.e. maximise Benefit and minimise Harm. It's a 'multi-variant optimisation problem' which has no simple answer, only crude approximations (heuristics). I think the best test is how you personally feel from eating a particular food stuff (N=1), if your health is better from eating the food then you might then decide to call it "Paleo".

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9 Answers

5
2c0d21fbac7feaf9377ce9a3d2d5376e

on October 06, 2012
at 12:37 PM

bacon is as good as it gets, its fat its protein and if you make your own it is low in sodium, matter of fact im gonna go make some bacon right now

B3173217a49b5b0116078775a17eb21d

(11488)

on October 06, 2012
at 12:54 PM

Shhh, Harry has a thing about bacon.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 06, 2012
at 01:39 PM

Shh.. Let's not get this question closed down ;)

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 06, 2012
at 02:57 PM

It would be preferable to avoid the topic of bacon _per se_ since it attracts a great deal of controversy.. How about your opinion on whether food must be healthy in order to be considered as paleo?

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 14, 2012
at 12:03 AM

So you would say that bacon provides a fairly good base of nutrition?

5
Ef777978cfeb8fbdd18d75c4f6c4cb23

on October 06, 2012
at 08:00 AM

I guess it would help if you did name the foods you are referring to and the nature of your perceived reality distortion.

Many foods that are embraced in Paleo don't sit comfortably in Conventional Wisdom (CW), anything to do with saturated fat and relatively high levels of red meat for example and of course grains and beans get a terrible rap in Paleo where unrefined carbs are a cornerstone of CW.

Well, you believe what you believe and lots of people who actually try Paleo say they feel better. Now of course the Paleosphere is a dangerous place because presumably people who don't feel better or don't lose weight or aren't successful in their goals tend to slope off after a while rather than getting into a fight about it and so you have survivor bias in the story-telling.

If you mean by cherished foods things like coconut oil, well that's an interesting one. I live in the UK where coconut oil is hardly what any sort of ancestor of mine would have consumed. I can easily live without it. Even a small quantity of it makes my body sort of fizz. So I'm not attracted to it.

But lots of people who are involved in healthy eating choices feel they want to put good stuff in their bodies and coconut oil is perceived as good stuff. In the end eating Paleo is quite simple, some people like to complicate things. No harm in that if that's your thing.

Ef777978cfeb8fbdd18d75c4f6c4cb23

(1297)

on October 06, 2012
at 04:27 PM

more on bacon from chris kresser http://chriskresser.com/the-nitrate-and-nitrite-myth-another-reason-not-to-fear-bacon

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 06, 2012
at 10:25 AM

The food that caused a great deal of commotion when its risk/benefit ratio was questioned was bacon.

Ef777978cfeb8fbdd18d75c4f6c4cb23

(1297)

on October 06, 2012
at 01:42 PM

Clearly I have no idea where my ancestors came from going back more than a few generations. It's not really a paleo thing at all. I prefer where I can to eat local. That's all

Ef777978cfeb8fbdd18d75c4f6c4cb23

(1297)

on October 06, 2012
at 01:50 PM

Ah yes, bacon. Well of course there is some really rubbish bacon out there and it certainly belongs in the processed food world. And there's plenty of bacon that has sugar added, so that comes up short too. But if you pay up for the quality gear and you don't go nuts on it, it's a real pleasure. I'm with Clifton Harski on this More than 2-3 times a week & you're being an *** about it http://cliftonharski.com/ba-diet/

B3173217a49b5b0116078775a17eb21d

(11488)

on October 06, 2012
at 12:53 PM

I don't get the whole "coconut oil is hardly what any sort of ancestor of mine would have consumed". Do you think that all your ancestors came from Britain, since the beginning of time?

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 06, 2012
at 10:30 AM

The food that caused a great deal of commotion when its risk/benefit ratio was questioned was bacon. To see the degree of commotion click over to http://paleohacks.com/questions/152768/bursting-the-bacon-loving-bubble-closed and http://paleohacks.com/questions/151777/how-is-bacon-paleo

4
32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on October 08, 2012
at 03:19 PM

I take issue with your premise that foods by default are forbidden and need to be proven healthy. That's an orthorexic view of food. I take issue with the idea that food need be optimal to be consumed. That's an orthorexic view of food.

Orthorexic paleo is the worst variety - worse than even dogmatic paleo or hypochondriac paleo.

Medium avatar

(10611)

on October 08, 2012
at 06:15 PM

Certainly. The certainty is variability. There would have been 100% pig stints, and 100% whatever the paleo version of bananas was. But no fresh strawberries in January and no daily bacon.

Medium avatar

(10611)

on October 08, 2012
at 07:23 PM

Those 100% variations were definitely unhealthy, from parasites to cramped guts. But they were probably eagerly anticipated reward meals.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on October 08, 2012
at 05:21 PM

Diets vary in variability as well.

Medium avatar

(10611)

on October 08, 2012
at 04:22 PM

Ancestor diet was much more variable - seasonal - than modern diets. Getting a pork belly was a much more difficult proposition than it is now that there are pig farms. If there is paleo optimality it is in eating a diet with highly variable macronutrient mixes.

2
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 06, 2012
at 04:33 PM

From the responses so far it appears a consensus definition of paleo continues to elude - this of course is nothing new, in this vibrant and opinionated community.

However, there were novel findings from the PH community based on some of the answers and comments for this question:

  1. paleo does not necessarily mean healthy (but a consensus on what healthy means could not be reached either).

  2. for some people paleo is a means of self-expression and individualism (explaining the emotive responses when paleo food icons are challenged).

  3. there is a culture of anti-establishmentarianism and mistrust in accepted medical and scientific findings.

Given such strongly held views it's unsurprising that an evidence based methodology is not commonly adopted when evaluating health benefits.

No consensus could be reached at this time on what constitutes "healthy" in food, and on how paleo foods can be measured against a health scale.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 06, 2012
at 05:23 PM

And as I said "healthy" by what and whose standards? You probably need to further define your goals.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 06, 2012
at 05:22 PM

I think your issue is that you keep attempting to define what even you call a "template". And a template that is meant to be fluid and changing at that. Seems like a less than fruitful endeavor. All you should really attempt is to define things for yourself.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 07, 2012
at 01:31 AM

If all we can do is define things for our selves, why then should we seek advice and and provide it to others?

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 07, 2012
at 08:02 AM

LLM, I've also said before that I have no issue with vices whether they be bacon or cigars. My objective is to foster critical thinking about what makes a food paleo. It's perfectly OK to challenge conclusions and the evidence they are founded on - its one of the central aims of peer review.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 07, 2012
at 02:09 AM

Or do you present data and allow them to come to their own conclusions?....One is authoritative and one is a partnership in discovery IMO.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 07, 2012
at 02:08 AM

^ Is it what you do with the things you discover? Do you advise others?

518bce04b12cd77741237e1f61075194

(11577)

on October 08, 2012
at 05:57 PM

Harry, you don't have to bust a gut trying to talk down to the interwebs. We get it, you are trying to fit something as complex and varied as health into a single format, and if you can't do that, you get to smuggly confirm your initial conclusion. If you want to be patted on the back for being a critic after googling peer review and learning a smidgen about medical research, take it elsewhere.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 07, 2012
at 02:20 AM

As to the definition of healthy....we actually have a legitimate definition in that of what the WHO states and including homeostasis. The problem is that we have not developed legitimate ways of testing for health. We only know how to test for and assess disease. So in the lack of disease we have health right???? but, no....that is not actually the definition. So we have no absolute parameters at this time to determine optimal health on an individual basis. AKA we don't know everything.....hence the evolutionary model. Model healthy humans to become healthy. Its the best we have.

61f9349ad28e3c42d1cec58ba4825a7d

(10490)

on October 06, 2012
at 04:58 PM

No, it more implies that people still have differing opinions on what is or is not healthy.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 09, 2012
at 12:42 AM

If you had more sense than scorn you would have googled before opining. Plus what is it with all this hostility? Surely you've heard of the socratic method?

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 07, 2012
at 02:26 AM

Oh I see this was closed as subjective and argumentative...I don't mind subjective and argumentative myself. I actually like this. I saw the bacon question as quite resolvable by presenting the current science and debating the use of pork belly....end discussion, make your choice.....but hey that's me.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 07, 2012
at 02:40 AM

^ I coulda just gone with what LLM said.....simple and true.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 09, 2012
at 12:39 AM

If you had more sense than scorn you would have googled before opining.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 07, 2012
at 02:17 AM

You seem to have come to a lot of conclusions that many of us would disagree with. I actually consider myself well versed in how to read and analyze scientific data. I really think you should develop it further in yourself....as we all should even if we think its a strong point. There is mistrust....then there is prudent cynicism. Recognizing probable biases and monetary gain does not make make or break a data set, but gives you some clues if statistics seem a bit skewed for a particular effect.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 07, 2012
at 02:34 AM

I said it before Harry, if your quest for optimal causes you to rule out reasonable vices like a couple pieces of bacon, an occasional cup of coffee or the odd bit of dark chocolate you are going to be doing more damage to yourself from obsession than any of those foods would ever do to you. OCD isn't Paleo in my book.

518bce04b12cd77741237e1f61075194

(11577)

on October 08, 2012
at 05:59 PM

Or, for fun, because you seem to think that everyone you talk to is science illiterate, and that science literate people would never question the gold standard science based methodology, just head over to "Bad Science" and enjoy the TedTalks. I gotta head out before I sound like too much of a conspiracy theorists, my biochem exam is way to soon for me to be here.

518bce04b12cd77741237e1f61075194

(11577)

on October 10, 2012
at 10:25 PM

Sure, it's the internet and you can't tell tone etc, but really, talking down much?

2
3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 06, 2012
at 03:20 PM

I dunno..... questions that invoke a "reality distortion field"....sound more like Star Trek than any sincere effort to discover some form of truth. As to your questions....

"The question of does it follow that a food should have a certain threshold of health benefits in order for it to be considered for inclusion in a paleo dietary template? If so, what should such criteria include?"

Well who determines if a food has the aforementioned health benefits to include it in "a" dietary templete? If you are looking to an authority figure then you would just pick your particular group of recognized professionals and follow their guidelines. If you think the paleohack community is hashing it out well enough, follow the views here. If, like me, you don't really like either of those two options then you will just have to sort it out for yourself. Read the science and come to your own conclusions. Why do you feel compelled to define a paleo template anyhow? Is it so you can say with authority "this is not paleo!" or "that is paleo!".

The theory of eating in a paleo manner is that we are adapted better to certain foods than others. I don't think every food has to have a definitive health benefit based ONLY on its nutritional breakdown. The evolutionary theory of eating tends to help to fill in the gaps between our currently incomplete/incompetent nutritional analysis model and what we hope to know in the future.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 06, 2012
at 03:37 PM

lol...I had to google tricorder, but its all seeming to come together now! Life is starting to make sense :). We should ditch this paleo thing and review the star trek archives for enlightenment.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 06, 2012
at 03:28 PM

The term "reality distortion field" was initially attributed to Steve Jobs who had the capacity to powerfully persuade and alter the perception of his audience during business meetings in ways that transcended the evidence at hand.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 06, 2012
at 03:42 PM

^ I think I've spent too much time reading the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy lately.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 06, 2012
at 03:40 PM

Its all good. I tend to go with the evolutionary model for filling gaps. How large you perceive the gaps and how well you think this model fills them are dependent on your own readings and how convinced you are that a.) the current analysis/model is incomplete b.) the HG model actually does promote health.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on October 06, 2012
at 03:32 PM

....and to boldly go where no man has gone before!....so Steve Jobs what a Treky? Cool.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 06, 2012
at 03:34 PM

And the iPhone is well on its way to becoming a tricorder..

518bce04b12cd77741237e1f61075194

(11577)

on October 08, 2012
at 05:53 PM

Keep bringing it back to space, JayJay. Too awesome. Also, this harry dude seems like a mansplainer. This is diffusing!

2
F9638b939a6f85d67f60065677193cad

(4266)

on October 06, 2012
at 03:01 PM

I thought the threshold for paleo was the whole evolutionary thing. Would it have been available? The bellies of fatty pigs were available. Protein powder was not.

F694fc245d03b64d6936ddb29f4c9306

(2613)

on October 08, 2012
at 01:07 PM

It absolutely does apply. Protein powder isn't Paleo, imo. It's highly processed food in a form as detached from its natural source as possible, and it has a higher glycemic load than pure sugar! http://www.mendosa.com/gilists.htm

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on October 06, 2012
at 03:13 PM

That's a very good point: why is it that the principle of nutrients in isolation from their food source generally being either less beneficial or sometimes harmful does not apply to something like whey protein isolate?

1
Medium avatar

(10611)

on October 08, 2012
at 04:31 PM

No. I think the goal is to emulate ancestral patterns of diet and activity. While this does not exclude coconut oil, grains, chickens, cow meat and bacon; it puts a low limit on their consumption. Seafood, leafy greens, squash, root vegetables and eggs are essentially unlimited.

1
F694fc245d03b64d6936ddb29f4c9306

(2613)

on October 08, 2012
at 01:25 PM

Nutritional thresholds (however defined) may be outside the realm of Paleo, even though many Paleos use them. Your dietary choices are arguably a mash-up of multiple philosophies. Some of these philosophies are Paleo--avoiding grains, eating more meats, etc. Others may come from separate diet families or from common sense. I would try to maximize my micronutrient intake no matter what diet I'm using. I think we, as a community, have a tendency to ascribe any healthy behavior to Paleo, when Paleo is really just a component of the gestalt.

Grok wouldn't have worried about the ANDI of his lamb shank.

F694fc245d03b64d6936ddb29f4c9306

(2613)

on October 08, 2012
at 01:27 PM

I also want to mention that I don't think anybody can definitively say what's healthy. Everyone, even experts, work on imperfect information. That being said, Paleo concepts are consistent with some scientific evidence, and it's better to choose a dietary philosophy and stick to it than throw up one's hands and capitulate to dietary indifference.

1
Bdc6244bdbd664d2168a8e326018ffbe

(431)

on October 06, 2012
at 03:08 PM

Okay, well in response to the title of your question, Paleo doesn't always equal healthy, clearly- but it does mean that, at worst, its not more than very slightly bad for you. Legumes and nuts are the most unhealthy that it gets, really, within the field of genuinely Paleo foods.

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