3

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Who/what was responsible for the rise in popularity of Paleo?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created June 21, 2010 at 11:03 PM

Looking at google trends:

http://www.google.com/trends?q=paleo+diet

If we can read anything into the popularity of Google searches (and I think we probably can) the terms 'Paleo Diet' effectively flatlined (besides a a few minor blips) before some point at the start of 2007 where it garnered a modest popularity. It gained steadily in 2009 before taking a massive leap at the end of the year.

There are no news articles to account for this so what was the catalyst in the popularity growth?

Me personally I came to Paleo as I was low carb for a year with great success, became more interested in nutrition and started reading some blogs on the subject. Started with Dr. Eades, progressed to Stephan and Peter at Hyperlipid. I think it was PaleoNu that made me finally switch to paleo, though it was a pretty natural progression when you realise the evils of gluten etc.

A727956fa3f943057c4edb08ad9e864e

(4183)

on December 21, 2010
at 07:49 PM

Heehee! Awesome, man I don't know why I like upsetting vegans but I do..

C61399790c6531a0af344ab0c40048f1

on December 20, 2010
at 02:47 PM

Pretty sure the Times article about DeVany is where I first picked up on it. Never ceases to amaze me how many people can read all the info about it including the science in Taubes' book, agree that it sounds good in principle but then claim they couldn't possibly do it because they just couldn't give up bread or whatever.

Dfd71315b44a74520ead7d6752e70fc7

(678)

on June 27, 2010
at 08:50 PM

The commercial has is great information about the health benefits and risks of specific diets (i.e. you'll get acne if you eat grains). But if you are cavalier about how you relay that information, you are going to turn avast majority of people off immediately. SOME people will react negatively, I absolutely agree with you. But if you are trying to spark a tipping point, you need a groundswell of support. Vegans are viewed negatively, not because their diet is unhealthy, but because of the self righteous vocal crusaders who don't care how their message comes across. We are better than that

2acab1c60fe533b0c651e36cc9e57a68

on June 26, 2010
at 11:24 PM

Joe, Let me tell you, people will react negatively no matter what I say. But I don't plan to sugarcoat anything. If I had 10 million I could post it during superbowl, and I would.

Dfd71315b44a74520ead7d6752e70fc7

(678)

on June 26, 2010
at 07:17 AM

IF anyone's got a million bucks, the Super Bowl is the best time to air the commercial. While I personally like that commercial, telling people that milk will give them acne will cause much more visceral, negative reactions than you necessarily want. No publicity is bad publicity but we aren't trying to get people to pay attention to Paris Hilton, we are trying to get people to make lifestyle changes for their better health. I'm not sure how to approach a commercial, honestly. It's a great idea and a commercial campaign could do wonders.

2acab1c60fe533b0c651e36cc9e57a68

on June 26, 2010
at 04:43 AM

Joe, So here's my idea... tipping point needs to be highly visible. My approach is a commercial, something to floor people that have no idea what the Paleo Diet is, or what is really going on. Some people will be outraged, some people will jump for joy. But, people will talk. When I know when and where it needs to be aired, I'll air it. http://paleoapproved.com/index_video.html -Karen Btw... my whole purpose was to move this mainstream. Any suggestions please let me know, I'm open to anything.

Dfd71315b44a74520ead7d6752e70fc7

(678)

on June 22, 2010
at 10:49 PM

And he picked an overweight woman to be surgeon general during an obesity epidemic. From everything I have heard, she is quite an intelligent woman and knows her shit. BUT if she has a hard time keeping her weight in check, what message is that sending? A little pudge is understandable being so busy and all but it sends a bad message. So yeah, not expecting that tipping point during this administration.

03aeff8d87a3b53a449b5b8e9158da98

(3268)

on June 22, 2010
at 01:09 PM

Given that Obama's Agriculture Department just released the report for the updated federal dietary guideliness--which are worse than ever--I wouldn't hold out much hope for this Administration. And sorry, but a man who smokes doesn't have much credibility talking about health, IMO.

1c4ada15ca0635582c77dbd9b1317dbf

(2614)

on June 22, 2010
at 06:27 AM

PS - the British newspaper was The Times, see the article here http://women.timesonline.co.uk/tol/life_and_style/women/diet_and_fitness/article4523487.ece

1c4ada15ca0635582c77dbd9b1317dbf

(2614)

on June 22, 2010
at 06:24 AM

Yep - I remember reading this article in 2000 on De Vany on Clarence Bass's site http://www.cbass.com/EvolutionaryFitness.htm Also, this success story was interesting to me (third one down "Transformed by Evo Lifestyle" http://www.cbass.com/success_stories3.htm

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16 Answers

5
Dfd71315b44a74520ead7d6752e70fc7

(678)

on June 22, 2010
at 02:43 AM

Truth be told, I'm not sure the paleo movement has had its "tipping point" yet. If anyone is familiar with the Malcolm Gladwell book, I believe the original poster was asking about that moment with the "massive leap" comment. I don't think that we have had it yet. The NYT article was a help, seeing John Durant on the Colbert Report is good and helps raise awareness and the multitude of blogs are a great resource for those of us who are curious but the general public is still ignorant or don't care. My own mother refuses to admit that organic foods are worth wild.

A good friend of mine had her mother admitted to the hospital due to what she thought was a heart attack but was actually her blood sugar spiking over 400. She was pre-diabetic and is now full blown diabetic. So I sent her a lengthy facebook message (she's a cool mom like that) explaining the benefits of fat and meat and how long term health is really related to control your insulin levels, ESPECIALLY for an overweight diabetic. Her response was "thanks for the effort hun but I'm going to stick to whole grains and rice and limit my fat and meat intake". I really don't think that this is unusual or unique. I get a lot of odd looks and befuddleness when I discuss diet and food and exercise.

I can trace my interest in paleo/primal lifestyle all the way back to fantasy baseball, as odd as that sounds haha. In an effort to gain an edge in fantasy baseball, I read Will Carroll's Saving the Pitcher. In the book, he discussed Jose Reyes overcoming his hamstring issues by using Pavel Tsatsouline's Relax into Stretch techniques. This led me to trying the book and leading me to the wonderful world of kettlebells. This led to a drive for functional fitness and when I started up my twitter account, I had a lot of kettlebell activity and one of my followers is Sandy Sommer, who is an RKC trainer and a huge backer of Mark Sisson. Quite funny how life works sometimes.

I'm still hoping for that tipping point to come. Something BIG has to happen, like Obama coming out and supporting the paleo movement and overhauling the FDA or something to that effect. With the news of genetically modified alfalfa being OKed by the Supreme Court, I really don't hold out hope for this. Looks like I'm going to have to start my own farm after all.

2acab1c60fe533b0c651e36cc9e57a68

on June 26, 2010
at 04:43 AM

Joe, So here's my idea... tipping point needs to be highly visible. My approach is a commercial, something to floor people that have no idea what the Paleo Diet is, or what is really going on. Some people will be outraged, some people will jump for joy. But, people will talk. When I know when and where it needs to be aired, I'll air it. http://paleoapproved.com/index_video.html -Karen Btw... my whole purpose was to move this mainstream. Any suggestions please let me know, I'm open to anything.

Dfd71315b44a74520ead7d6752e70fc7

(678)

on June 26, 2010
at 07:17 AM

IF anyone's got a million bucks, the Super Bowl is the best time to air the commercial. While I personally like that commercial, telling people that milk will give them acne will cause much more visceral, negative reactions than you necessarily want. No publicity is bad publicity but we aren't trying to get people to pay attention to Paris Hilton, we are trying to get people to make lifestyle changes for their better health. I'm not sure how to approach a commercial, honestly. It's a great idea and a commercial campaign could do wonders.

Dfd71315b44a74520ead7d6752e70fc7

(678)

on June 27, 2010
at 08:50 PM

The commercial has is great information about the health benefits and risks of specific diets (i.e. you'll get acne if you eat grains). But if you are cavalier about how you relay that information, you are going to turn avast majority of people off immediately. SOME people will react negatively, I absolutely agree with you. But if you are trying to spark a tipping point, you need a groundswell of support. Vegans are viewed negatively, not because their diet is unhealthy, but because of the self righteous vocal crusaders who don't care how their message comes across. We are better than that

03aeff8d87a3b53a449b5b8e9158da98

(3268)

on June 22, 2010
at 01:09 PM

Given that Obama's Agriculture Department just released the report for the updated federal dietary guideliness--which are worse than ever--I wouldn't hold out much hope for this Administration. And sorry, but a man who smokes doesn't have much credibility talking about health, IMO.

Dfd71315b44a74520ead7d6752e70fc7

(678)

on June 22, 2010
at 10:49 PM

And he picked an overweight woman to be surgeon general during an obesity epidemic. From everything I have heard, she is quite an intelligent woman and knows her shit. BUT if she has a hard time keeping her weight in check, what message is that sending? A little pudge is understandable being so busy and all but it sends a bad message. So yeah, not expecting that tipping point during this administration.

2acab1c60fe533b0c651e36cc9e57a68

on June 26, 2010
at 11:24 PM

Joe, Let me tell you, people will react negatively no matter what I say. But I don't plan to sugarcoat anything. If I had 10 million I could post it during superbowl, and I would.

5
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on June 22, 2010
at 12:29 AM

here is a chronology:

http://evfit.com/tracking.htm

arthur de vany i believe credits eaton for a lot of it. de vany was first on the internet and influenced robb wolf and mark sisson. robb wolf i believe brought paleo to crossfit. nassim taleb brought arthur devany to a larger audience via an interview with him in a british newspaper i forget the name of.

1c4ada15ca0635582c77dbd9b1317dbf

(2614)

on June 22, 2010
at 06:24 AM

Yep - I remember reading this article in 2000 on De Vany on Clarence Bass's site http://www.cbass.com/EvolutionaryFitness.htm Also, this success story was interesting to me (third one down "Transformed by Evo Lifestyle" http://www.cbass.com/success_stories3.htm

1c4ada15ca0635582c77dbd9b1317dbf

(2614)

on June 22, 2010
at 06:27 AM

PS - the British newspaper was The Times, see the article here http://women.timesonline.co.uk/tol/life_and_style/women/diet_and_fitness/article4523487.ece

C61399790c6531a0af344ab0c40048f1

on December 20, 2010
at 02:47 PM

Pretty sure the Times article about DeVany is where I first picked up on it. Never ceases to amaze me how many people can read all the info about it including the science in Taubes' book, agree that it sounds good in principle but then claim they couldn't possibly do it because they just couldn't give up bread or whatever.

4
89e238284ccb95b439edcff9e123671e

(10299)

on June 22, 2010
at 12:06 PM

Although a lot of people, websites, blogs, publications are really important for the rise in the popularity, and I thank them all, I think one major factor could be the main reason:

the sound scientific and evolutionary frameword of the paleo-life. It just makes sense!

That's what got me hooked (and I never even thought about nutrition before, not did I look for a diet or weight loss program.) I stumbled upon Art De Vany and his essay, my mind was open and prepared (I'm always hugely interested in evolutionary biology and psychology), it made incredible sense, and I changed my eating patterns...

2
8287c6ddae0d78eae0a09fdd5999617c

(2581)

on December 20, 2010
at 01:21 PM

I did a search on Google Trends with vegan diet as well as paleo diet. Looks like paleo has overtaken veganism in popularity! believe it or not.

http://www.google.com/trends?q=paleo+diet,+vegan+diet&ctab=0&geo=all&date=all&sort=0

A727956fa3f943057c4edb08ad9e864e

(4183)

on December 21, 2010
at 07:49 PM

Heehee! Awesome, man I don't know why I like upsetting vegans but I do..

2
0242b468fe1c97997749db416c92e7ed

(4528)

on June 22, 2010
at 12:11 PM

I'd definitely give some props to Jimmy Moore and his wonderful podcast for pointing me in the right direction. I started down the grain-free path after reading Good Calories Bad Calories, and subsequently found Jimmy's podcast show as a resource. I had been dabbling with low carb, cleaning up my diet, and finding non-CFO sources for my family's meat, eggs and cream - but it wasn't until I listened to interviews with Mark Sisson and Drs. Eades (and later Dr. Kurt Harris, Rob Wolf, etc.) that I realized that paleo really summed up what I was trying to do.

Jimmy's podcast guests are certainly not all 100% paleo friendly, but if you listen with a skeptical ear, it is a treasure trove of information.

2
Ae011d9f1c8654ea66854ca2a977c397

(1165)

on June 21, 2010
at 11:58 PM

I think that the Crossfit and MMA movement helped blow it up. The same type of people that are into Crossfit seem to like MMA and those into MMA often train in one way or another.And both of these sports gained a lot of steam right around 2007 (especially MMA). This all leads to a search for optimal nutrition. I heard about Paleo on Sherdog.com which is an MMA website. I paid it a little attention but then heard it again from my buddy who is an ex-green beret and brought me out to a day of crossfit where the owner was also talking about it. Im not a crossfitter but that day forward Ive been Paleo.

1
E64992e5e224cada4a25ae9e62b326fa

on June 26, 2010
at 03:48 AM

Have any of y'all watched Tom Naughton's documentary "Fat Head"? (He started out planning an "answer" to that propaganda film "Supersize Me!" -- ended up making a superb, in-depth, scientifically sound, and VERY funny documentary. Both Drs Eades appear in it, as do Dr. Mary Enig and Susie Fallon. Also several mentions of Gary Taubes, Uffe Ravinskov... and ... one other author, I forget who at the moment...) Not quite primal -- more low carb, but leading toward primal. (Tom also posted a very charming and funny clip on YouTube of his young daughters going nuts over some marrow bones!) Really good movie, especially for introducing recalcitrant relatives and friends to the concepts!

Made me tentatively consider trying marrow... some day...

1
485bcefe7f1f7a6df1a293a826bf6137

on June 23, 2010
at 02:26 AM

Back in 2004, before all these bloggers and even Gary Taubes, the lone voices for Paleo specifically, were Ray Audette (Neanderthin) and Loren Cordain. I believe these were the people who started it all and influenced all the bloggers who took it to the next level.

1
89985542ffc00c296552951369fe809a

on June 22, 2010
at 11:45 PM

I am... ha ha ha! I have been living Paleo for ten years, I just never wrote a book about it.

1
96af716e609fc88b1b0d2adc6512e7fd

on June 22, 2010
at 01:23 AM

We have a few important movers and shakers out there as mentioned above....Both Dr. Eades, PaleoNu, Robb Wolf, & the rest of the rabid "Crossfit" community.

I would also mention people like Dr. Nora Gedgaudes, Dr. Loren Cordain, Dr. Al Sears, & Mark Sisson for being major influences in this movement.

Tremendous credit must also be given to the scientific investigators who have researched, questioned and debunked the lipid hypothesis and overall dietary status quo....Gary Taubes, Malcolm Kendrick, Uffe Ravnskov, Anthony Colpo....The list goes on and on.

In the end, I also see Paleo's popularity exploding because the community fundamentally believes the information needs to be shared! This generous flood of knowledge is life altering and ultimately addictive!

Who doesn't deserve to live a happy and happy life?

1
F82f7d4dafb6d0ffc4c2ee2a85420786

(484)

on June 22, 2010
at 12:50 AM

I think the fact Robb Wolf's Paleolithic Solution podcast appears in the iTunes Top 20 list for Health and Nutrition may help. I can't remember exactly, but I think that was one of my first exposures to Paleo. It's the kind of thing you find when you're just cruising around on iTunes.

1
Be77e9c4c04dde5b68d7651dee8794a1

on June 22, 2010
at 12:50 AM

I'm a Professor of Evolutionary Psychology/Biology and I was aware of the hunter-gatherer diet/lifestyle from my studies as a graduate student for a while. I fully embraced paleo after graduating in 2002, and have been on and off the wagon for a while. Recently, with my strong interests developing around CrossFit/Functional Fitness + Nutrition + Ancestral Living all becoming part of my research program I am back on, and this time all my family knows about it - I've educated them, even if they won't switch - and I think it'll stick this time.

0
0fb8b3d6dcfb279b0f7e050d2d22510f

(4645)

on June 26, 2010
at 09:05 PM

Probably Cordain but we all came from different directions. I started with the Warrior diet then discovered many folks on the blog- some I like , others I feel are just loud mouth louts but from a science direction Cordain is the god-father, though I feel he has a great fear of fat like DeVany and a few others have. Robb Wolf, who studied with Cordain but has an open mind about research is go to guy for me. His podcasts are worth their weight in Grass Fed beef. Jimmy Moore is not Paleo but has shown a recent lean toward its popularity.

0
F6d085f1ee85b600b652b5ec73222078

(38)

on June 22, 2010
at 01:27 PM

Gary Taubes and some great blogs (wholehealthsource, hyperlipid, animalpharm, nephropal) led the way intellectually.

0
7df8f3cc7f1475c3ecbbd4a4feb87d04

(514)

on June 22, 2010
at 01:26 AM

My first exposure was the NYT article from perhaps half a year ago. It sensationalized the movement a bit, but it did catch my attention and made me want to know more.

0
647ae1f5aa7f7a3939ef5a0608059ac1

on June 21, 2010
at 11:46 PM

I have only heard about it from crossfitters but am interested in knowing where it came from or who else is responsible for such a great way of living!

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