Foods to Eat on the Paleo Diet

Paleo Diet: Red light foods

Red means “STOP!”. So before you eat red light foods stop and think. As a rule they are to be avoided like the plague.

Processed Foods

Avoid processed foods that contain high fructose corn syrup, monosodium glutamate, trans fats, fake fats or chemical sweeteners. In short, avoid anything your grandparents wouldn’t recognize as food.

Processed meats include most lunchmeats at deli counters, anything that comes with a casing or in sausage form as well as any smoked or cured products. Consumption of this type of meat has been linked to an increased risk of:

  • Cancer – Sodium nitrate and nitrites are added to processed meat to preserve its color. These chemicals react with stomach acid to produce carcinogenic nitrosamines 35.
  • Diabetes – Consumption of processed meats favors the production of AGEs, compounds that promote inflammation and can impair insulin sensitivity 36.

Plus these meats often contain lots of salt, sugar, monosodium glutamate and fillers such as breadcrumbs, maltodextrine, cheaper cuts of meats or extenders which consist of a cereal mixture combined with meat, fat, blood and internal organs.

 Industrial Seed Oils

Industrial seed oils such as sunflower oil ‎are obtained through a series of unnatural processes including chemical extraction (usually with hexane), heating, bleaching and deodorizing. Plus these oils are loaded with omega-6 fatty acids – regular consumption of industrial oils have been linked to a disturbed omega-6 to omega-3 ratio which could predispose you to a host of inflammatory conditions such as diabetes and heart disease 37.

Industrial seed oils include:

  • Soybean
  • Corn
  • Cottonseed
  • Safflower
  • Sunflower ‎

Alcohol consumption (even as little as 1 drink a day) has been linked to:

  • A reduction in brain volume – this hampers brain health and cognitive function 38.
  • An increased risk of cancer 39.
  • A higher risk of congestive heart failure 40.
  • Accumulation of body fat 41.

Grains are off the Paleo diet for several reasons:

  • Wheat, barley, rye and many other grains contain gluten, a protein that damages the gut’s lining even in people who are not gluten intolerant 42.
  • Grains are loaded with phytic acid, an “antinutrient” that binds to and prevents absorption of essential minerals such as calcium, magnesium, iron and zinc. In the long run, this can lead to mineral deficiencies that have been linked to chronic fatigue, fertility issues, increased susceptibility to infections, bone disorders, skin problems and anemia 43.
  • Grains also contain lectins, another type of antinutrient known to affect intestinal permeability and increase the risk of leaky gut 44.

Wondering what to use in lieu of wheat flour? Try coconut or almond flour – they’ll add a nutty touch to your dish.

You can also make ‘pizza’ dough by combining (in a food processor) 3 cups of cauliflower florets with 1 tablespoon of chia seeds, 1 teaspoon of flaxseeds, a few garlic cloves, 1/4 cup of water and 1 tablespoon of virgin coconut oil. Flatten this ‘dough’ to make a pizza base and bake at 160C for 10 to 15 minutes on each side before adding the topping.

And coconut aminos can be used instead of soy sauce which typically contains wheat.

Soy & Soy Protein Isolates

When soy is processed, many toxins are formed including synthetic nitrates which are considered as carcinogens 34.

Switching to a Paleo lifestyle can appear to be a daunting task but hop on the Paleo bandwagon and you’ll no longer have to worry about counting calories or getting sufficient macronutrients and micronutrients. And you will also be able to bid farewell to cravings without ever depriving yourself.


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Foods to Eat on the Paleo Diet was last modified: June 21st, 2020 by the team
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