8

votes

Is paleo about obesity?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created February 29, 2012 at 7:10 AM

I'm far from being a big thinker in the paleo world but it seems to me there's a lot of discussion going on about higher carbs vs. lower carbs and all kinds of micromanaging of dietary minutia to affect this, that or the other hormone that supposedly has to do with blood sugar or appetite or obesity.

Is this really what paleo is about at the core for a lot of people? Just losing weight?

I mean, I know many people struggle with weight loss for a lot of reasons, often interrelated with other issues that are affected by paleo style eating. And I don't want to minimize that obesity is a problem for many people, and that neolithic eating contributes to increasing obesity rates. But it seems that writings by a certain segment of the paleo sphere define paleo eating as being fundamentally about getting/being lean, and all other issues are secondary to that.

I'm curious to see where people stand on this issue... Be honest, paleo for you is it at it's core about becoming lean? Did you start eating paleo to lose weight but then got more interested in other aspects? Or did you come to paleo eating out of other reasons (performance, gut health, etc...)? If you came to it for other reasons, what's your viewpoint about all these debates about insulin and leptin and food reward?

742ff8ba4ff55e84593ede14ac1c3cab

(3536)

on April 07, 2012
at 07:56 PM

Skin, mood, sleep and fitness have always been my main interests. Weight...nah, I have a hard time maintaining.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on April 07, 2012
at 09:04 AM

Those were the days...

Bf57bcbdc19d4f1728599053acd020ab

(5043)

on April 07, 2012
at 07:39 AM

I swear you channeled my brain writing that response. I, too, am umbroken, and I also have broken (cancer, T2 diabetes) relatives. And I also think the obsession with detail obscures the larger picture that I try to remember: we're given this particular body, we have one go-around, we should be attentive and careful to treat it right.

A03adfdd71be77f20e07d800bc19e3c4

(390)

on March 01, 2012
at 05:13 AM

The looks I got from women when I started the sentence: "before we do this, there is something I have to tell you, I am different than other men...". Some even had this 'hopeful' look in their eyes. I wonder what they were expecting... Anyway, I did learn though, that it was mainly my view on my situation that dictated how other people reacted to it.

35ba1f50dad25c85ac1aa2599fe5c5cb

(2485)

on February 29, 2012
at 07:53 PM

Yeah, but when they changed food to deal with the low fat craze manufactures started looking at food as something they COULD change to make it more compelling so people would eat more. In any case... I don't think it's a one shot "this is what explains rising obesity rates" rather a link in the overall chain.

E0250b1e6dc5ec1539ffb745042b4d80

(3651)

on February 29, 2012
at 07:22 PM

Interesting as well. I just can't see that as a valid explanation of what happened around 1980. N=1 again, All the time I was huge, I knew that what people said was the cause was wrong, and didn't know where to go. The LAST thing on my my was rewarding myself! I would have eaten nails and liked it if someone would have been able to explain what the heck was going on and had the right answer. I know there are plenty of big folks in the same boat. They aren't monkies in cages, midlessly pulling a lever for a pellet. Food reward theory is insulting in the extreme, to me anyway.

35ba1f50dad25c85ac1aa2599fe5c5cb

(2485)

on February 29, 2012
at 06:02 PM

I think my issue was not the impressing that everyone does it for weight loss... in fact, I have the opposite view, it seems like people pursue this way of eating for a lot of other reasons. But it then confuses me how so many of the high level debates in the paleosphere boil down to debates about obesity.

35ba1f50dad25c85ac1aa2599fe5c5cb

(2485)

on February 29, 2012
at 06:00 PM

It's a good point to recognize that this whole movement doesn't occur within a vacuum and that in America we have a whole culture that equates leanness with health. I guess it's a lot to expect CW-rejecting caveman types to shake that off completely.

246ebf68e35743f62e5e187891b9cba0

(21430)

on February 29, 2012
at 05:45 PM

Very good point JJ - I would say what you attain by diet can be "factory default" - to go beyond that, I think that requires less dietary changes, and more mobility/lifestyle/fitness changes.

35ba1f50dad25c85ac1aa2599fe5c5cb

(2485)

on February 29, 2012
at 05:34 PM

Thank you! I think you saw through a lot of my late night rambling. I just see this anti-obesity subtext that's very strong in a lot of the most charged debates in the paleosphere and it seems like some people in those debates are losing track of the larger message.

35ba1f50dad25c85ac1aa2599fe5c5cb

(2485)

on February 29, 2012
at 05:29 PM

Here's the thing though, for some people at the edge of the bell curve genetically their "factory default" may still be overweight. A SAD is going to push them further into obesity, but a good clean diet may still leave them overweight. And that's where I have a concern that people are tinkering and hacking to the detriment of their overall quality of life (and possibly the detriment to their health)... when really they're at a point where they are fine. The weight isn't a symptom anymore and they resolved 80%-90% of those gut/inflammation/allergy kind of issues.

35ba1f50dad25c85ac1aa2599fe5c5cb

(2485)

on February 29, 2012
at 05:24 PM

That's interesting. I found value in the food reward theory aside from issues of losing weight, because for my n=1 it seemed to explain why I kept feeling compelled to eat crap food that I knew made me feel bad. As I settle further into a paleo lifestyle though, it seems to be less of a factor.

C56baa1b4f39839c018180bf63226f7d

(3499)

on February 29, 2012
at 04:56 PM

Ha, I *still* believe that about myself.

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on February 29, 2012
at 03:30 PM

"I was convinced that somebody up there just didn't want me to have a social life." hahaha, man, STORY OF MY LIFE :D

A4587cfef29863db612c43f89c202cc1

(2053)

on February 29, 2012
at 02:58 PM

Awesome! I like the "factory defaults" idea.

A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4

(20436)

on February 29, 2012
at 01:39 PM

A lot of people want to lose weight, but paleo is mostly about being healthy. Of course, being 100 pounds overweight is probably not very healthy. Paleo is not necessarily better for weight loss than other weight loss plans, but it is healthier. And for many, weight normalizes on paleo. But it is also a struggle for many as well (including me). I'm here for both reasons.

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18 Answers

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8
Cd717290eb43a6e17061f9920deed977

on February 29, 2012
at 01:05 PM

Yes, I've noticed this as well. It seems that much of the advice that you get is based on an assumption that, of course, what you really want to do is lose weight! And then there are the eating disordered people who show up on this site in particular, who REALLY want to lose weight, even at the expense of their health.

For me, Paleo is all about health. That's it. Of course, if you are obese, then losing fat IS all about your health. However, since I don't want to lose weight, I've had to sift through the 'what is Paleo' advice with an eye to NOT losing weight. When I first started Paleo, I just did what I was told, which turned out to be bad advice for someone who doesn't need to lose weight.

It would be nice if there were more general clarity that Paleo isn't particularly about losing weight. It is about what is the optimal diet for a healthy human being. Then, from that starting point, there are particular things that people with various issues (including obesity) need to watch out for. Which might include avoiding starches, or nightshade, or nuts, or whatever.

35ba1f50dad25c85ac1aa2599fe5c5cb

(2485)

on February 29, 2012
at 05:34 PM

Thank you! I think you saw through a lot of my late night rambling. I just see this anti-obesity subtext that's very strong in a lot of the most charged debates in the paleosphere and it seems like some people in those debates are losing track of the larger message.

6
1a98a40ba8ffdc5aa28d1324d01c6c9f

(20378)

on February 29, 2012
at 08:07 AM

For me it is about increasing health, prolonging enjoyable life.

4
C56baa1b4f39839c018180bf63226f7d

on February 29, 2012
at 04:54 PM

Paleo is about the following to me:

  • Minimizing risk of the deadly diseases of civilization, like CHD and cancer.
  • Greater longevity and better health into old age
  • Eliminating the non-lethal but more immediate diseases of civilization: GERD, IBS, hypothyroid, obesity, poor sleep, depression, etc.
  • Undoing the damage to our diets and our economy caused by decades of junk science and consolidated agribusiness.

All of these are equally valid reasons to go Paleo, and they all matter to me. However, I wouldn't have ever bothered learning about any of it if I hadn't started out obese. It is vanity alone that kick-started my search into optimal health, and I think plenty of others echo this sentiment.

4
Ca1150430b1904659742ce2cad621c7d

(12540)

on February 29, 2012
at 04:04 PM

I started paleo because I was losing my quality of life, and it seemed to make sense to me that some of the issue could very well be the plastic and toxic chemicals I was ingesting and calling "food".

As I've said in another posting, for me, Paleo=Source rather than Paleo=Macronutrient Profile.

I've tried a lot of things over time, and tweak pretty often, fall back into old and bad habits occasionally, pick myself up, dust myself off, and try again--but for me, regardless of the shape of the body that I end up with, my over-riding goal is to have as happy and productive a life as I can until the day that I give up the ghost. I eat in an ancestrally-mindful way because I think it can help me get to that point.

4
Fb10cf8e5dbac271762e13721181d5dc

(453)

on February 29, 2012
at 08:09 AM

Yes, I started paleo because I wanted to lose weight. But, especially as someone who loves instant gratification, the energy and clarity I have when I'm eating paleo is what's keeping me here for the long run. Planning on tweaking things to try and improve hormonal issues, and it looks promising! The preventative aspects of paleo also are reassuring, as someone who's uninsured, haha.

It does feel really good to think that maybe, in several months, I can be lean for once in my life. But it's not "about" losing weight at this point. I think if it were, I'd be approaching it like any other diet-- one that I'd plan on using to my ends, and then more or less quit.

3
35ba1f50dad25c85ac1aa2599fe5c5cb

(2485)

on February 29, 2012
at 05:54 PM

To answer my own question (I wanted to throw it out there late at night and get some responses to think through before I answered.) I found out about paleo from someone who was trying to lose weight. I adopted it because I was faced with some other health issues that could be managed by diet and paleo emerged as a really low-stress framework for dealing with those issues.

However, as I've settled in and matured in this whole approach to eating, I realized something very fundamental about my body and my hormones. I am not defective or broken. I typically carry about 10 pounds more than I'd like to aesthetically, but that doesn't mean there's something wrong with my insulin system or thyroid or leptin or neurochemistry or anything like that. As a young(ish) woman I've absorbed a lot of messages that my body shape can be altered if I just did everything right or tweaked this or tweaked that. But as I've been eating well, and performing well in the gym, and sitting behind my computer pondering people's debates and reading really great food for thought (like Melissa's review of Why Women Need Fat) that it's dawned on me that there's no point in stressing my (not broken) body by trying to micromanage my hormones. In fact it's counterproductive.

Here's the thing though... I certainly have relatives and friends that have gotten to the point of "broken". Type 2 diabetes, borderline blood sugar, elevated liver enzymes/fatty liver disease, joint damage, autoimmune disease. I know there has to be a level where people look to their diet as a way to improve those things. But the weight is a symptom of that big hormonal/malnutrition mess. I see a lot of debates in the palesphere that seem fixated on the symptom of overweight and how to micromanage your way into leanness. And to me, that misses the point. People want to be healthy. They want to be lean to get on with leading enjoyable lives. All this thinking about macronutrient ratios and leptin sensitivity and neurologically boring diets... it might be needed to help some people heal. But for many other people that's a level of attention to detail that may well be damaging, both psychologically and physically.

Bf57bcbdc19d4f1728599053acd020ab

(5043)

on April 07, 2012
at 07:39 AM

I swear you channeled my brain writing that response. I, too, am umbroken, and I also have broken (cancer, T2 diabetes) relatives. And I also think the obsession with detail obscures the larger picture that I try to remember: we're given this particular body, we have one go-around, we should be attentive and careful to treat it right.

3
246ebf68e35743f62e5e187891b9cba0

(21430)

on February 29, 2012
at 11:17 AM

Initially (in 2003) I started Paleo to lose weight. It lasted for a year and I lost about 100lbs.

After that, I fell in love with the sport of strongman where my weight was not a hinderance, so I replaced that 100lbs with 50lbs of muscle (and some fat).

When I resumed the Paleo diet in 2010, it was to combat my fatigue, my horrible leaky gut, inflammatory bowel issues, and allergies.

That was when I realized that obesity is a symptom, not the illness itself. Fix inflammation, and the body tends to set itself to "factory defaults".

So I currently diet with the goal of losing weight, and I track it diligently. However, my main goal is to treat my guts, my fatigue, and my body as a whole. Losing fat is just one of those items I'm "curing".

A4587cfef29863db612c43f89c202cc1

(2053)

on February 29, 2012
at 02:58 PM

Awesome! I like the "factory defaults" idea.

35ba1f50dad25c85ac1aa2599fe5c5cb

(2485)

on February 29, 2012
at 05:29 PM

Here's the thing though, for some people at the edge of the bell curve genetically their "factory default" may still be overweight. A SAD is going to push them further into obesity, but a good clean diet may still leave them overweight. And that's where I have a concern that people are tinkering and hacking to the detriment of their overall quality of life (and possibly the detriment to their health)... when really they're at a point where they are fine. The weight isn't a symptom anymore and they resolved 80%-90% of those gut/inflammation/allergy kind of issues.

246ebf68e35743f62e5e187891b9cba0

(21430)

on February 29, 2012
at 05:45 PM

Very good point JJ - I would say what you attain by diet can be "factory default" - to go beyond that, I think that requires less dietary changes, and more mobility/lifestyle/fitness changes.

3
E0250b1e6dc5ec1539ffb745042b4d80

(3651)

on February 29, 2012
at 09:56 AM

It's part "other reasons" (like I study history and politics, wny not how the body really works and how even modern science and medicine can be so far off track!), and part I made it here after losing weight, but I don't know enough and keep reading to learn more.

As far as the current debates on things-

Insulin theory works fine for you if you are insulin resistant.

The stuff on leptin is really good.

The food reward stuff, for me, is the worst idea in Paleo. I tried reading Guyenet's site about it and switched the site off instead.

Some anecdotal/n=1 stuff: I got huge due to past medical history and got the medical runaround for 15 years. The idea that this is explained by some desire for chocolate cake to me is absurd and insulting. If I'm making this out to be a strawman someone correct it, that's what I read on Guyenet's site and stopped there.

I assume that food reward seeks to explain the current crisis in type 2 diabetes and obesity? All you need to know that this is not the explanation is find one of those charts that shows obesity, and T2 diabetes since about 1980, right when the low fat craze took hold. Food suppliers changed food. People ate it. Now here we are. It has nothing to do with some reward mechanism, it's whats in the store... It's not that complicated!

When I was huge, I had to see people for advice that never were huge. They were pretty much useless. I take the same view when I'm reading "experts" that come up with this explanation or that one, and it's just tireseome reading so many people act like experts on something they never experienced themselves. Maybe Guyenet thinks big folks are just waiting for the next treat because that is what he sees and he doesn't understand the rest.

I would rather hear from people that corrected mistakes, learned from them, and have something to offer. Sisson learned his lesson about over training and stress. Kruse lost weight fast on full on Paleo. The thyroid hormone dr I see works for one of the best clinics in the country and the founder was big himself at one time too. Jimmy Moore lost a ton of weight, still struggles, and he lets people know it. It's nice that a lot of folks are fit and stayed fit, but that doesn't make them experts on it!

E0250b1e6dc5ec1539ffb745042b4d80

(3651)

on February 29, 2012
at 07:22 PM

Interesting as well. I just can't see that as a valid explanation of what happened around 1980. N=1 again, All the time I was huge, I knew that what people said was the cause was wrong, and didn't know where to go. The LAST thing on my my was rewarding myself! I would have eaten nails and liked it if someone would have been able to explain what the heck was going on and had the right answer. I know there are plenty of big folks in the same boat. They aren't monkies in cages, midlessly pulling a lever for a pellet. Food reward theory is insulting in the extreme, to me anyway.

35ba1f50dad25c85ac1aa2599fe5c5cb

(2485)

on February 29, 2012
at 05:24 PM

That's interesting. I found value in the food reward theory aside from issues of losing weight, because for my n=1 it seemed to explain why I kept feeling compelled to eat crap food that I knew made me feel bad. As I settle further into a paleo lifestyle though, it seems to be less of a factor.

35ba1f50dad25c85ac1aa2599fe5c5cb

(2485)

on February 29, 2012
at 07:53 PM

Yeah, but when they changed food to deal with the low fat craze manufactures started looking at food as something they COULD change to make it more compelling so people would eat more. In any case... I don't think it's a one shot "this is what explains rising obesity rates" rather a link in the overall chain.

2
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on April 07, 2012
at 09:35 AM

Or did you come to paleo eating out of other reasons (performance, gut health, etc...)?

I have never been overweight. If anything, I have trouble maintaining weight.
I came to be eating this way because various food allergies and intolerances had limited the foods that I could eat. I ended up with basically meat, fish, eggs, nuts, fruit and non starch veg. I later found out that these were the same foods that some people on a diet called "The Paleo Diet" limited themselves to. I remember thinking to myself "I'm on The Paleo Diet and I didn't even know it!" lol. I felt a lot happier when I found out that I was not the only person in the world eating this way.

If you came to it for other reasons, what's your viewpoint about all these debates about insulin and leptin and food reward?

I don't bother reading most of them. I mostly just read about stuff that could be useful to me or if I can offer my help or experiences on the subject. I admit that I sometimes jump into a thread to add a sarcastic comment or something but that's because sometimes people really need to be brought back down to earth. "Paleo" used to be a very healthy and simple way of eating but it is getting hijacked by people who seem determined to change it from it's original meaning. Paleo does not need healthy, athletic people fussing over the glycemic index of a fruit that only contains 20g of carbs and other ridiculous minutae. Get over it.

2
A03adfdd71be77f20e07d800bc19e3c4

(390)

on February 29, 2012
at 03:24 PM

For me the weight is an added benefit. I started Paleo as a test a month ago (yes, I am new), and saw results within days on multiple levels.

My reasons are based on my background:

I was diagnosed with colitis when I was 4, was reasonably flare free when I was thirty, and developed psoriasis when I was 31 (oh, goody!). I was convinced that somebody up there just didn't want me to have a social life. Although I have access to great healthcare, and have seen a number of hospitals from the inside, doctors were mainly giving me more "tests" and less "results". Add to that the fact that I am from a "well to do" family in terms of bodysize, and you can imagine I have tried almost everything. So when I do something it has to have a clear ROI: the Paleo lifestyle is the first to offer me that on multiple levels.

Another factor is that I am fairly analytical in the sense that I can be a very good b.s.-artist, having earned my living with that, so as a result I can spot one as well. So when I decide to do something the science behind it may be "new" or non-conformist, but it must be clear and repeatable. Again..

In short, whatever Paleo does, it works for me as a whole.

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on February 29, 2012
at 03:30 PM

"I was convinced that somebody up there just didn't want me to have a social life." hahaha, man, STORY OF MY LIFE :D

C56baa1b4f39839c018180bf63226f7d

(3499)

on February 29, 2012
at 04:56 PM

Ha, I *still* believe that about myself.

A03adfdd71be77f20e07d800bc19e3c4

(390)

on March 01, 2012
at 05:13 AM

The looks I got from women when I started the sentence: "before we do this, there is something I have to tell you, I am different than other men...". Some even had this 'hopeful' look in their eyes. I wonder what they were expecting... Anyway, I did learn though, that it was mainly my view on my situation that dictated how other people reacted to it.

2
B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on February 29, 2012
at 01:13 PM

Weight is the last thing on my mind, since I never really had any issues with it. My main interests are skin, mood and sleep. I'm also interested in muscles and allergy relief, but as a student I can't be working on my diet all the time.

A lot of people do paleo for various reasons : to bring down their cholesterol, to deal better with horrible allergies, to solve cardiovascular problems, ... Weight issues are so common though, that you'll easily be under the impression everyone does it for weight loss. I don't see many people with a good composition around me : everyone is skinny or has lipodystrophy, has a beer belly, a big butt, ....

35ba1f50dad25c85ac1aa2599fe5c5cb

(2485)

on February 29, 2012
at 06:02 PM

I think my issue was not the impressing that everyone does it for weight loss... in fact, I have the opposite view, it seems like people pursue this way of eating for a lot of other reasons. But it then confuses me how so many of the high level debates in the paleosphere boil down to debates about obesity.

742ff8ba4ff55e84593ede14ac1c3cab

(3536)

on April 07, 2012
at 07:56 PM

Skin, mood, sleep and fitness have always been my main interests. Weight...nah, I have a hard time maintaining.

2
Ec6e6cb0bee067776433dea987d6c844

on February 29, 2012
at 12:33 PM

I started for health.

Paleo is, to me, about health via the removal of toxins. For many people that will bring them down to a healthy weight(healthy != skinny, thin or ripped).

Due to media brainwashing, at least in America getting healthy and losing weight are nearly synonymous. This, combined with obsiety being the most visible health problem, is where the confusion comes in.

35ba1f50dad25c85ac1aa2599fe5c5cb

(2485)

on February 29, 2012
at 06:00 PM

It's a good point to recognize that this whole movement doesn't occur within a vacuum and that in America we have a whole culture that equates leanness with health. I guess it's a lot to expect CW-rejecting caveman types to shake that off completely.

2
560db54689099082bd5b88c73e22b285

on February 29, 2012
at 08:20 AM

I originally became interested in healthy food because I was overweight. For me they go together and I would imagine for most people that have been overweight or are currently overweight and eating paleo or primal it is indeed about health AND weight loss. The ultimate goal is health, and weight loss is a desired and happy side-effect.

1
21b36b3de8ff31b0d41e7f0f4b5c1e03

(1688)

on February 29, 2012
at 02:23 PM

My weight was fine and I wasn't looking for a way to lose any. I was also very healthy and unlike most people really feel no better or different on paleo than before.

So why even do it? I see it as an investment in my future health - I want an old age with minimum health issues. Vanity-wise I would also like to stay younger looking for as long as possible. Let's see how it goes.

1
028e70a250f38bd61fa81b0e0789bb6e

on February 29, 2012
at 11:50 AM

Before doing paleo, I was both fat and strong, my fat hides all my muscle definition, I was that sort of health conscious guy, I knew some foods are bad for me but kept binging on them.

Initially I was "web-crawling" for information on weight loss on body-building sites. I wasn't looking for some magic pills; I was looking for motivation and a way to ditch those unhealthy food. I came across the term paleo and was hooked. I decided to give it a try because many of its explanations make common sense (and I was a math major. The explanations make sense is definitely a big plus for me).

In four months, I lost around 20lbs, and my physique is much better. I still have some belly fat to lose. Right now I'm still on paleo, but for different reasons:

1) To maintain/achieve better physique (this one stays the same);

2) To maintain overall health and enjoy the health benefits;

3) Because paleo seems to fit myself -- my body doesn't seem to digest starch very well;

4) Most importantly, to get full and enjoy food. Paleo is full of food that I enjoy.

1
35a8b223ae5d863f17a8c9e3a8eed5eb

(571)

on February 29, 2012
at 10:52 AM

The early adopters were all about health. It was crazy back then (4-10 years ago) to eat such a diet. Only people, who've really tried a lot went paleo as a last resort. You can still find old threads on curezone and other disease forum quoting staffan lindeberg.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on April 07, 2012
at 09:04 AM

Those were the days...

0
1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

on April 07, 2012
at 03:20 AM

I have always been lean and I became "paleo" at 13 or 14 for performance reasons and basically just being a perfectionist. It bothers me how much of the paleo arena is about weight loss and obesity cause it causes way too much confusion about macronutrients. Diabetics, obese people, and lazy people think carbs are bad. Athletes thrive with some healthy and safe carbs. I really like your question.

0
78cb3c4f70de5db2adb52b6b9671894b

on April 07, 2012
at 03:12 AM

Sure, health is something that is important to keep in mind. Paleo is helping me try to keep my binging under control. But mostly, for me, at least...paleo helps me see food from an entirely new perspective. I think of food as food. I am trying to have an active relatinship with food, rather than blindly consuming and paleo helps me do this. This probably makes no sense, so I'll try to explain.

I used to pick up food almost mechanically. I used low-calorie food as a way of filling me up without thinking about my food. I picked food that would give me a false sense of fullness. I looked at food as a forgein object almost, inspecting the ingredient list and spending 2 hours in the grocery store looking at the boxes. Food as nourishment didn't really cross my mind. I began to think more about where my food came from a long time before paleo, but paleo brought it up a notch.

On paleo, I've gained a sense of awareness. I love the "thinking" of paleo living more than any other positive benefits of the diet. I eat my food with much greater appreciation of what it is doing for my body. I look at food in a whole new light. I am connecting my food to life for the first time. I eat with much greater respect, knowing that my food was real. I try to know where my food comes from. It's like being connected to the earth (you are probably rolling on the floor and laughing at how cheesey I sound now).

The thing that drove me to begin paleo was how much people seemed to respect food--the focus on real food. Grassfed and humanely treated meat, relationships with farmers, and respect for natural living, thinking about environemtnal pollutants and chemicals in our lives (both for us and the animals and earth)...You'll never find this in a slim-fast forum or an atkins forum. Paleo seemed to attract people that wanted to live a good, happy life, and not just diet and lose weight which seems to be at the center focus of lots of programs out there.

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