Paleo Supplements?

Answered on June 19, 2014
Created June 18, 2014 at 5:13 PM

I am a 22 year old male, current college athlete , and am currently at the end of my first month of my Paleo diet. I have seen great results, losing around 15lbs since I have started. My diet consists mainly of fish, turkey, beef, eggs, mostly green veggies, healthy fats like coconut oil and avocados.

Ive been doing research on the topic whenever I get the chance too, and what I haven't found a good answer to is: Do I need to be taking supplements while on paleo? Whether I need them to healthily stay in ketosis, or for not creating kidney stones.



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5 Answers



on June 19, 2014
at 02:52 AM

Answer to OP...supplement if you want but a varied paleo diet should do the trick. However, depending the intensity of your activities supplementation is probably cheap insurance against doing more damage to your body.

With respect to ketosis......

Depends on the sport, I would suggest OP reads Peter Attia's blog about how a very high fat diet influenced his athletic performance. His blog entry is long and dense but imo worth reading


The 'takeaway' grom Attia's blog entry

>>>>>Implication: The one drawback, it seems, to completely eliminating carbohydrates from my diet was a loss of all-out top end power. For someone like me, this doesn't seem to hinder performance too much, but if I was trying to win an Olympic gold medal in the 400 meter run or the 100 meter freestyle, it seems I'd be better off with some carbohydrate in my diet.

So what did I learn? Keto-adaptation made me far more metabolically flexible and efficient in the aerobic environment. This seems particularly important for folks who compete in events longer than a few minutes (e.g., 10K, marathon, triathlon), but less so for folks doing short-burst activity.

The real question is how can you get the best of both worlds? That is, is there a way to reap the benefits of keto-adaptation of on the aerobic side, without any of the anaerobic cap costs?

In short, I believe the answer is yes, and I look forward to writing about this in great detail in the near future. <<<<<<

Bobk back.....

I have not found or read his followup about how to get the best of both worlds but thinking the optimum is being "fat adapted" and then using something like "SuperStarch" as 'icing on the cake'. :)

Not exactly paleo but since when is elite athletic performance paleo? I'd imagine paleo people conserved energy as much as possible, using just enough to get the job at hand accomplished.


on June 19, 2014
at 12:42 AM

Ideally you shouldn't need to take supplements, as a diet should supply all the nutrients you need, but in a world with depleted soil and reverse osmosis water, somethimes this is just not possible. lots of paleos take fermented cod liver oil for the vitamin D and A and omega 3 fatty acids, or just plain ol' fish oil for the omega 3 fatty acids. I personally supplement magnesium and vitamin D since my diet simply can't get enough of either from food alone and vitamin D is not very widespread. What you should probably do is log what you eat on Cronometer for several days and see if there are any nutrients you consistantly fall short on, and only supplement those.



on June 19, 2014
at 12:34 AM

Cronometer.com and plug in your di et, see what you're lacking.

In general people usually say things like magnesium, d, c, iodine are useful for everyone but YMMV. At this point it really depends where you want to be in respect to the RDA and how varied and nutrient dense your diet is. Supplementation is a very individualized affair IMO.

As an alternative there are ways to get sufficient amounts of all vitamins without supplementing, it would just require a bit more effort and thought, including things like fatty fish, animal organs and bone broths and a large amount of veggies (maybe some of those from the sea), also getting sunlight.



on June 18, 2014
at 08:07 PM

Athlete + ketosis? That's generally not advised.



on June 18, 2014
at 06:24 PM

I take daily supplements. I feel that they're probably not essential, but potentially useful and unlikely to be harmful. You'll have to decide for yourself.

You could look into supplemental foods like offal / bone broth and do some cronometer tracking to see where you might be coming up short.


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