I am a creationist… but I enjoy engaging in friendly, respectful discussion with others who hold opposing views, including evolution. In fact, I have found that I agree with evolutionists on many points, one of which is that the modern American diet is far inferior to the diets of our ancestors! I agree that our health has degenerated since the introduction of genetically modified and processed foods, as is evidenced by the negative changes in the dental health of even modern traditional people groups who introduce processed foods into their diets. I affirm that modern forms of dairy and grains have wreaked havoc on our wellbeing. I concur that going back to a more “primitive” diet and lifestyle would certainly benefit our culture and reverse the healthcare crisis we are facing. Did you know that even though the United States spends more per year on healthcare than 12 other countries combined, a whopping $3.8 TRILLION (1), we have the worst health of any developed country? So much for evolution improving the species! But is The Paleo Diet really the answer?
To be completely fair, there are many merits to this way of eating:
- Low carbohydrate-- I preach low glycemic load to my family, friends and clients. It is very important for overall long-term health because it reduces inflammation and insulin spikes! And, I regularly emphasize limited carbohydrate intake to my clients, especially when they are in the form of refined sugars and grains, but there is more....
- High fiber-- amen to that! I recommend 5+ daily servings of non-starchy vegetables, especially leafy greens, to my clients for the same reasons that Dr. Loren Cordain, Ph.D. cites in his book: good for cholesterol, abundant vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals and antioxidants (in their complete, natural form), plus fiber helps to balance blood sugar, but something is missing here….
- Lean proteins-- again, I recommend this to my clients: protein at EVERY meal, which also helps with maintenance of steady blood sugar as well a lean body. The good fats in meats, particularly from animals that consume the food sources they were designed by the Creator to eat (grass for cows, insects for chickens, water plants for fish, etc.), also prevent insulin spikes and benefit every system of the body including hair, skin, endocrine and brain, to name a few. Fats and proteins also increase satiety and reduce food cravings. However, there is more to optimal health than lean proteins and good fats….
- Low sodium & high potassium-- processed foods contain a high sodium content, not to mention a “special blend” of salt, sugar, and fat engineered to create “the bliss point” which fuels food addictions. High SODIUM (not organic, unrefined Sodium Chloride or Salt) and low potassium levels do contribute to high blood pressure and other avoidable diseases, but… well, I will get into this later….
As you can see, there are many points of agreement here, but my basis for evaluation of health benefits differs from Dr. Cordain’s worldview. I don’t mean any disrespect to this man in saying that the foundation of my belief about lifestyle and nutrition extends beyond claims of scientific fact… it is first grounded in biblical truth. Unfortunately, or maybe fortunately, personal philosophies inform conclusions about what the best diet is for mankind, and from my perspective, it takes just as much faith to accept many evolutionary concepts as it does to accept the Bible as true.
What about you? Do you eat a biblical or paleo diet? What has been your experience with either diet?
Next time, I will talk about the Minuses of The Paleo Diet. While you are waiting, download your FREE copy of my eBook called Back to Biblical Health for Women.
L’chaim-- To Life!