Paleo, vegan, junk food, does it really matter what we eat?
There are so many different styles of eating, and every one of them thinks they are the best and all the others are deluded. Well, what works for one, might not work for another. There are many reasons for this, and it can be anything from philosophy, to what bacteria you have in your system for digesting. Your stomach flora can be inherited from your parents, it can be destroyed, and what you eat changes what bacterium is most prominent. You might not even have some bacteria that you need for certain foods. So there is no one size fits all diet. Here are some food styles, that seem to work for people and some that don’t.
Paleo is the theory that we should follow what our ancestors did, back when we were hunter-gatherers. Imagine what they would eat, and eat that, such as meats, fish, eggs, veggies, and fruits. If it is packaged or has additives, don’t eat it. Overall it’s not a bad diet to live off, though as in any lifestyle, people can get a bit obsessive.
A warrior diet is similar to the paleo, though it is more in timing than what you eat. This goes back to the old days again, on the assumption that we only got one good meal day and the rest was snacking small amounts of nuts and things while we hunt. There are a lot of people that swear by this diet style.
Protein (Adkins style)
This starts out as 100% protein to get you used to it, and putting you in a state of ketosis. Ketosis is where your body uses fat as a primary fuel source as opposed to glucose. There is nothing wrong with this and the body responds well to it. After a period of time, green vegetables are added to the diet but not enough to change from ketosis to glucosis. So constant measuring is required. Although there has been a lot of criticism on this style, it has good health benefits.
Another common dietary lifestyle is Vegan. Vegans don’t eat anything that comes from an animal, or any animal byproducts such as eggs. This is a healthy diet style, although a special effort has to be made to get enough protein and fats. You also have to get some sunshine, as it is hard to get enough vitamin D. Vegans are another groups that can get pretty obsessive.
They are similar to vegans, but they will eat animal byproducts such as milk and eggs. There is basically the same health benefit as vegans, though it’s a bit easier to maintain proteins as you can have eggs and milk.
Intermittent fasting isn’t so much what you eat, though you should eat as nutritiously dense food as you can. It’s more a health benefit for not eating at times. You can do this every other day, or have the occasional 3 days fast. Doing a 24 hour fast a couple of time a week, basically not eating from after dinner one night until dinner the next night, is pretty easy to do. The health benefits are amazing.
Yes, we put junk food here too. The vast majority of people eat a junk food diet. We don’t mean just Twinkies and candy, but things that are not based on nutrition. Such as pre-packed food, fast food, drive-throughs, soda, and many other easy foods that people gravitate towards. The vast majority of America is overweight because they live off junk food. The Philippines in Asia 10 years ago was full of slender people, in 10 years of bringing in fast food and prepackaged, they have gained an average of 10 pounds across the board. That says enough i believe.
Avoidance diets are the opposite of junk food. You avoid things that you know are not good for you, but otherwise, you eat whatever you want. You avoid fast food, you avoid sugary drinks, and you avoid corn syrup, etc. if you are not sure what diet you want to live with, the avoidance diet is your best shot. If you slowly take things out of your diet that you know aren’t good for you, eventually, you will settle into a healthy eating lifestyle.
Diets are not always about losing weight, they are about being healthy. We believe you can have any style of diet you want, as long as you understand its limitations. Any diet except junk food of course. Eating healthy, either all protein or all carbs is fine as long as you get the right amount of calories and the right nutrients. Some are easier to live with than others. Your body will know what is best. We have tried vegan for 6 months, and it was interesting, the tastes change after a month or so, and it’s quite enjoyable. We found however that we feel much better and have better health and energy on high protein and fats. Just live in moderation and know what you are doing. Experiment and find what makes you feel the best. Good luck!