3

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Healthy Neolithic Foods

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created June 11, 2011 at 12:11 AM

Many arguments for paleo eating rely on an evolutionary biology, i.e. we ate a certain way for x number of years and therefore are not adapted to neolithic foods. But, as Kurt Harris has written, not all evolutionarily novel foods are automatically unhealthy (I think he gives the example of butter or maybe for the lactose intolerant we could say ghee). As a heuristic model, deeming neolithic foods unhealthy is probably the easiest route to a non-inflammatory paleo diet. My question is, though, what evolutionarily novel foods would factor into a diet of health and longevity?

Medium avatar

(19469)

on June 05, 2012
at 03:53 AM

Whey is used to lacto-ferment vegetables and to soak/sprout grains (big in WAP circles) so I would say that there is definitely a long history of whey consumption in humans that is at least as long as that of other dairy products.

1dd1d4bde5b46b4c90efeadea3a96a75

(180)

on June 05, 2012
at 01:40 AM

Is there lifetime studies of that on large groups? If not why bother consuming?

47a42b6be94caf700fce9509e38bb6a4

(9647)

on June 11, 2011
at 10:36 PM

Right on to that, Ben. Guess I'm just playing it safe. I was really surprised about the sweet potato effect on my tongue, actually. Since sweet potatoes are often given as one of the base foods for elimination diets.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 11, 2011
at 12:37 PM

I agree theoretically, Paul. I have to say though that i've consumed sweet potato at least once every day for over 6 months now and havent had any problems. I know there could be longterm issues but just as far as acute things, like you mentioned your itchy tongue etc, I have had none. Not recommending we eat the same plant daily just saying that it hasnt caused me any issues.

535fafe8afe6923870905c707c4f4454

(720)

on June 11, 2011
at 07:55 AM

I like your reasoning Paul. Damn plants and their defense mechanisms!

47a42b6be94caf700fce9509e38bb6a4

(9647)

on June 11, 2011
at 07:49 AM

Thanks Eric !

1a98a40ba8ffdc5aa28d1324d01c6c9f

(20378)

on June 11, 2011
at 07:20 AM

Nice comment Paul!

47a42b6be94caf700fce9509e38bb6a4

(9647)

on June 11, 2011
at 07:17 AM

@PaleoMouth, when I have too much sweet potato too many days in a row it makes my tongue itch. I do much better with white potato and rice. If you go with the general theory that most plants are going to have some kind of poison in them then I think the best bet is to see which ones you react best to and then put them in a rotation. With the further qualification that tubers are better than grains, since they're there for a larger part of our history. I'm buying that, anyhow.

535fafe8afe6923870905c707c4f4454

(720)

on June 11, 2011
at 07:07 AM

Im thinking of getting off sweet potato due to its Neolithic status and trypsin inhibiters, its just not safe to eat raw... I mean I might as well start eating some grains if I thought potent anti-nutrients were acceptable?

47a42b6be94caf700fce9509e38bb6a4

(9647)

on June 11, 2011
at 07:04 AM

White potatoes and sweet potatoes are Neolithic, at least insofar as they're New World plants. So is yuca/cassava/manioc. But yeah, I'm with you, paleo in the metabolic milieu sense.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 11, 2011
at 12:59 AM

here here! Same I'd say for BCAAs, though not considered by many to be food.

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4 Answers

6
47a42b6be94caf700fce9509e38bb6a4

(9647)

on June 11, 2011
at 07:47 AM

Check out our "but is it paleo" tag for a number of fun and delicious debates about foods that fall in that special part of Dr. Harris's concentric circles: neolithic, but good for your paleolithic "metabolic milieu." The tag may ask "is it paleo" but the discussions ask "is it good."

Including:

Apple cider vinegar.

Ghee (also here).

Coffee.

Yuca.

And, if you want to push the envelope: Eggs.

--

But my best direct answer to your question is: New World tubers, like potatoes, or New World animals, like .... jaguars?

6
Medium avatar

(19469)

on June 11, 2011
at 12:32 AM

I have neither seen nor experienced any evidence that would suggest that 100% whey protein (typically derived from the manufacture of yogurt or cheese) is detrimental to health. In fact, it has been found to be suitable not only for athletes, but cancer patients and individuals suffering from a wide range of chronic and infectious diseases.

http://www.megawecare.co.th/file/research/Therapeutic%20Applications%20of%20Whey%20Protein_36.pdf

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 11, 2011
at 12:59 AM

here here! Same I'd say for BCAAs, though not considered by many to be food.

Medium avatar

(19469)

on June 05, 2012
at 03:53 AM

Whey is used to lacto-ferment vegetables and to soak/sprout grains (big in WAP circles) so I would say that there is definitely a long history of whey consumption in humans that is at least as long as that of other dairy products.

1dd1d4bde5b46b4c90efeadea3a96a75

(180)

on June 05, 2012
at 01:40 AM

Is there lifetime studies of that on large groups? If not why bother consuming?

2
22212e9ba2a041e6da6c963d4d41615a

(5773)

on June 11, 2011
at 12:24 PM

I know this could be argued but some studies have shown dark chocolate and red wine to be beneficial in small amounts. I know mark Sisson would agree with the benefits and they are definitely Neolithic!

1
3c6b4eed18dc57f746755b698426e7c8

on June 11, 2011
at 06:32 AM

Healthy neolithic foods would be raw milk for the Swiss and Masais.
White rice for the Japanese and Southeast Asians. Traditional corn for the Pima Indians.

I'm assuming that all tubers (potatoes, yams, yuca, etc.) are Paleolithic.

1a98a40ba8ffdc5aa28d1324d01c6c9f

(20378)

on June 11, 2011
at 07:20 AM

Nice comment Paul!

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 11, 2011
at 12:37 PM

I agree theoretically, Paul. I have to say though that i've consumed sweet potato at least once every day for over 6 months now and havent had any problems. I know there could be longterm issues but just as far as acute things, like you mentioned your itchy tongue etc, I have had none. Not recommending we eat the same plant daily just saying that it hasnt caused me any issues.

47a42b6be94caf700fce9509e38bb6a4

(9647)

on June 11, 2011
at 07:49 AM

Thanks Eric !

535fafe8afe6923870905c707c4f4454

(720)

on June 11, 2011
at 07:07 AM

Im thinking of getting off sweet potato due to its Neolithic status and trypsin inhibiters, its just not safe to eat raw... I mean I might as well start eating some grains if I thought potent anti-nutrients were acceptable?

47a42b6be94caf700fce9509e38bb6a4

(9647)

on June 11, 2011
at 10:36 PM

Right on to that, Ben. Guess I'm just playing it safe. I was really surprised about the sweet potato effect on my tongue, actually. Since sweet potatoes are often given as one of the base foods for elimination diets.

535fafe8afe6923870905c707c4f4454

(720)

on June 11, 2011
at 07:55 AM

I like your reasoning Paul. Damn plants and their defense mechanisms!

47a42b6be94caf700fce9509e38bb6a4

(9647)

on June 11, 2011
at 07:17 AM

@PaleoMouth, when I have too much sweet potato too many days in a row it makes my tongue itch. I do much better with white potato and rice. If you go with the general theory that most plants are going to have some kind of poison in them then I think the best bet is to see which ones you react best to and then put them in a rotation. With the further qualification that tubers are better than grains, since they're there for a larger part of our history. I'm buying that, anyhow.

47a42b6be94caf700fce9509e38bb6a4

(9647)

on June 11, 2011
at 07:04 AM

White potatoes and sweet potatoes are Neolithic, at least insofar as they're New World plants. So is yuca/cassava/manioc. But yeah, I'm with you, paleo in the metabolic milieu sense.

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