What to Eat on the Paleo Diet

You’ve heard of the benefits of the Paleo Diet but still don’t fully understand what it is? Or you’re looking for a simple guide to share with your family and friends who keep asking about it? ThePaleoDiet.com guest writer Paul Vandyken has created a visual, clear and very simple guide to what you should eat and not eat on a Paleo diet. Enjoy!

What to Eat on the Paleo Diet

Infographic courtesy of http://rigorfitness.com/

About Paul Vandyken

Paul VandykenPaul Vandyken is a personal trainer and nutrition coach. His personal website is RigorFitness.com. His blog has articles, videos, and pictures with tips and tricks about fitness, nutrition, and healthy living. If you are on the journey to your healthy and happy lifestyle, visiting his blog may help you enhance your process. Visit Paul's website at RigorFitness.com

Comments to this website are moderated by our editorial board. For approval, comments need to be relevant to the article and free of profanities and personal attacks. We encourage cordial debates for the betterment of understanding and discovery. Comments that advertise or promote a business will also not be approved, however, links to relevant blog posts that follow the aforementioned criteria will be allowed. Thank you.

“291” Comments

  1. I wanted to point out the similarity between the paleo diet and the more revolutionary diet being used by diabetics (as opposed to that espoused by the World diabetic associations) to remove carbs from the diet and have high protein / moderate fat to achieve almost normal blood sugar levels. Historically high carb diets rich in grain / starch were recommended and still are to an extent.
    Wheat / sugar and simple carbs – have another effect apart from the inflammation effects called out by Paleo – that the carb is so simple it gets converted to glucose / sugar in your mouth by your saliva and continues that rapid absorption into the bloodstream. For those of us who are diabetics we have to take insulin to lower our blood sugar, for non diabetics the body releases a load of insulin quickly (which is also an irritant). too much glucose in the blood is what causes all of the complications for diabetics which are all associate with damage to blood vessels / organs / nerves by the glucose in the blood. Studies are showing that even non diabetics are getting the same damage in smaller doses over longer period (leads to heart attacks)
    By removing these simple carbs, then diabetics can achieve normal blood sugar levels (better than most non diabetics). On low carb diets, proteins also then start to release blood sugar for energy which is better use of the protein and its released much slower into the blood stream so much easier on the body.
    The key difference is fruit is allowed in paleo and some high GI vegetables like Beets/ carrots / sweet potato which are not allowed in the diabetic diet as the sugar from these releases to quickly into the blood stream for it to be controlled (in terms of sweet potato its release into the blood is the same as a potato so interesting to see it allowed in paleo)
    I would bet a lot of money that if someone who followed the paleo diet took an A1C test which is the blood test that diabetics use to see how controlled they are then they would get better results than the majority of the population (diabetics and non diabetics) .
    For reference, A1c is a measure of how much glucose is in your blood over a 3 month period. Too much glucose in the cells is REALLY BAD – causes all the complications to the vessels / heart and other organs.
    A normal A1C is less than 5 (4.5 is optimum). Diabetics are told to have an A1C of 7, a lot who get complications are 8+.
    By adopting the paleo diet and also removing the fruit piece and high GI vegetables, then its possible for diabetics to get their A1C below 5.
    The medical establishment classify normal right up to 5.7 !! Pre-diabetes is 5.7 to 6.4 and 6.4 onwards is Type 2 diabetes. 5.7 is way to high. All the press that talks about the millions who are at risk of diabetes is not even taking into consideration the millions of people who have an A1c between 5 and 5.7 as well.
    What is that is causing this problem – eating wheat and sugar and too much glucose in the diet. Paleo fixes this with some small amendments to the plan.
    I’m a type 1 diabetic who started following the paleo but removed the fruit and high GI vegetables. I had a A1C of 7.5 – its now 5% so better than the majority of the population. The good news is that if you get it this low then a lot of the damage caused previously is repaired by the body in a few years. So I recommend you launch a Paleo diabetic diet which removes the fruit and the bad vegetables

  2. Hello,
    My son 8 yrs old has vitiligo since 2 years ago.
    His test intolerant food casein is 0.9; lactoferrin 2.3; cows gee 2.2
    Is paleo diet a good idea for him?

    Thank you,

    • All grains and legumes require extensive processing, sedentary lifestyles, and large populations to rely on as a food source. Grains and legumes were not a part of the human hunter-gatherer diet for the majority of our evolution. Grains and legumes also tend to promote low-grade chronic inflammation in the body and disrupt gut health.

  3. Some aspects of this diet sound good and logical but, How does anyone know that prehistoric homosapiens were at all “healthy”? Maybe the life span of Cro magnon was so short because of poor diet and extreme physical labor. Has anyone seen long term proof of such a basic intake? Don’t misunderstand me, I think the chemistry we’ve developed and added to our foods can’t be good but, I can’t help wonder if finding a balance in what we eat is better than eliminating foods that we can process and use. Broken down to a basic form of existence, all life has the same properties of nutrition and survival of the species. Whether it’s milk from a coconut or milk from a goat, it has the same purpose, just a different presentation. I think this diet is a good start to eating less processed foods, which to me seems more important than eliminating milk from a different animal than ourselves. Maybe the unnatural way we produce milk from cows has more to do with lactose intolerance than the essence of that product. Maybe genetic modifications of grains have led to gluten intolerance. The life span of humans has certainly increased. Maybe not treating our food with growth enhancement or pesticides would be the answer to allowing us to consume some foods that are emerging as not inherently good for us. Just a few ideas to ponder. I’m going for another cup of organic coffee.

    • Well said! Common sense . That’s what’s most important! Not a jump in the pan idea every other day! People need to dig for the truth, not stay on the surface where all looks rosy!

  4. Hi i am weigting 130kgs bcoz i have thyroid problem and irregular periods problem and really wanna to lose weight in a 6months of time atleast to a medium state and i dont wanna to face any future problems bcoz of my obese can u please help me out with veg paleo diet

  5. Hello,
    Where do I get a complete list of foods I can eat with Paleo diet? Naturally, I am a skinny person. With this diet, I lost way more than I want. Please, help me how I can gain some weight without grains and starch? I don’t think it is good to eat more than a few fruits a day because of fructose and according to the Paleo answer book, nuts, beef and sea foods have high AGE level, but I still eat fish especially salmon and lamb.

    Thank you.
    Liz

  6. Unfortunately I cannot eat Cauliflower, Cabbage, Broccoli. I get horrible stomach pains and gas. I wonder why. It is so disappointing because I love white rice and I found the riced cauliflower and was jumping for joy. I knew I couldn’t eat it but for some odd reason I thought if it was riced I would be okay. NOT!

        • Everyone here really needs to take the time and watch the health documentary on Netflix “what the Health ” to have a true understanding of ther body’s and diet.
          Have a blessed day.

          • High wheat / simple carb diets cause gastroparesis – which is the symptoms you describe with cauliflower and broccoli. Its a common problem for diabetics – the food is released very slowly from the stomach and the associated other problems happen. Remove the wheat and sugar and those problems will definitely clear up eventually

  7. Ia very crazy about eating chocolates and bakes. but now i stopped everything. If i’m fond of eating will it affect my diet plan. Please suggest an easy way to reduce my weight.

    • Well chocolates and baked goods wouldn’t be a part of a paleo diet simply because they wouldn’t have been available to our ancestors hundreds or thousands of years ago. How much weight are you trying to lose? There are some fairly simple hints you can do to expedite weight loss. From colonics/hydrotherapy to fasting, exercising to surgery like gastric bypass. Cleaning out your colon is a hugely important element most people ignore when losing weight. Flush your colon (water, laxatives, enema) you’ll lose 5-10 pounds right there. Then add in good foods. Moderate your calorie intake. Cardio. Sleep 8 hours per night. DRINK WATER!!!! Good luck @tikibiggs

  8. I think right now am 70 kgs. Could you please plan diet for me to reduce 15 kgs in 3 weeks. I do paleo diet by taking vegetables soups with one wheat chappati a meal. Is this okay r i need to cut down the chapati intake.

  9. Hi,

    I just got to know about this paleo diet from one of my friend. I have gained some 6-7kgs in 2.5 months that’s because i fractured my leg and no workouts. Now i’m seriously trying to reduce my weight by dieting and excising, but i have vitamin D deficiency and end up getting sprain on my neck or low back while excising . Could you please suggest me the diet that i should be taking.

  10. HELLO GUYS I AM A BIG GAINER BY LOSING 18 KGS AND I ONLY STOPPED TAKING CARBS,SALT,SODIUM,PROCESSED FOOD,CANNED FOOD,SUGAR AND SODAS.

    I BET YOU ALL IF YOU FOLLOW THE SAME AS ABOVE WILL START GETTING RESULTS IMMEDIATELY!

  11. I respectfully must challenge the entire approach and inherent contradictions offered. You list herbal teas so I assume caffeine tea and coffee are taboo in spite of many positive health benefits. How many women have damaged their reproductive cycles drinking unregulated doses ‘herbal teas’ and when were coffee and tea expelled from the Garden of Eden as not themselves herbal. Language is descriptive, not prescriptive. You O.K. items such as almonds and sprouts. Has anyone considered the massive water use to produce one almond VS dairy milk? Water will be, if not now, the driving force of conflict in the coming decades as oil is now. Sprouts are notorious for bearing pathogens and outbreaks of salmonella. I could go on; depleted fisheries with mercury and plastic particulate tainting, indigenous peoples murdered, raped, enslaved or displaced for planation world crops and grazing, monoculture agriculture destroying biodiversity and a healthy food base. You have also ignored many foods of a true ‘paleo diet’ because of the same cultural norms that lead
    people to high tea or breaking bread for sacrament; insects! to get your attention. Not everyone on food aid can afford grassfed beef and you might start listing grasshoppers.
    We can never claim individual health on a unhealthy and injust planet.

      • I recommend you read the books “Wheat Belly” or “Brain Grain” for the science behind these arguments. Neither are paleo books, and in fact barely mention them, but they both discuss the benefits of low carb, low wheat/gluten diets through personal testimonies and are actually really enjoyable! The former is written by a cardiologist and the latter by a neurosurgeon. I think the term “diet” for Paleo is silly because how you choose to eat healthy should just naturally become part of your lifestyle and not be considered a diet at all. As for the humanitarian and health issues (water and insects too) mentioned by Christopher, these will always be issues with any type of food we eat.

          • Well in my opinion nothing should ever be called a diet. It is a lifestyle change. People go on diets to go off them. Again it is a lifestyle change when it comes to eating healthy and losing weight. So I really do not know what you are talking about. All these weight loss gimmicks out here, and that is what they are gimmicks, to get people to buy in to this mess,
            and they all have the same foods, and same meal plans DUH!!!!!!! It’s a money racket, everybody is trying to get rich, this is why I will never pay for diets, Paleo, Jenny Craig, Weight Watchers, Low Carb Keto, Mediterranean, You name it.
            Why would I pay for something that is common sense. Just stop eating the way you are eating and eat right!

    • Seriously? Hardly worth the lengthy time required to invalidate your spurious arguments which clearly show you did not properly read/interpret the “don’t eat” vs “can eat” list.

    • Of course, soups are quite paleo. Just make sure you don’t add any beans, rice, or grains to them. A vegetable soup or a beef stew is very very good for you and 100% paleo. If you’re looking for encouragement with the diet, I just shared my before and after photos on my blog. It’s not a before and after post though. Rather, my goal was to show people that anyone can change their diet. I had crazy bad eating habits before I got sick enough to want to change.
      If you need encouragement or you don’t think you can go paleo, check out my article here where I admit to 5 embarrassing habits I had pre-paleo.
      http://imsimplyadad.com/paleo-before-and-after/

  12. I suffer from IBS, lactose intolerance and coeliac. Life is never easy for me because my diet is very strict but at the same time I want to eat a bit of everything even though I am aware that my stomach will eventually hurt later on. A workmate of mine have introduced me to Paleo diet which I’ve never heard before made me think I should go and try this diet. Although I am a pescatarian vegetarian, there is still tons of variety I can choose from the paleo diet.

    • You’re likely having these negative reactions to wheat products, which hide in many different pre-made foods, especially vegetarian foods. Try reducing the number of different ingredients you consume on a daily basis. For example, eat whole fruits and veggies you bought and chopped up yourself, raw nuts (not legumes), organic eggs, and don’t be afraid to try eating free range chicken breasts and grass fed cow meat for a 30 day health experiment. Use healthy oils like olive oil or coconut oil to cook meat and make salad dressings. And check pills, cleaning products, makeup and lotion for wheat based products as well, to eliminate them from your routine.

  13. Is Organic Brown Rice OK? Or is it Zero Carbs Completely?
    I think that my body craves carbs because I have eaten them for so long. But weren’t they able to make bread in this era? I would think full of grain because that is what they were able to find?

  14. i am new to paleo i am weighing 104kg and i need to reduce 15kg is it possible in paleo How many months will it take in paleo.And most importantly will it sustain not gain later.What diet should i follow can you suggest.Is theer any diet plan for indians food.

  15. Many paleo recipes call for coconut milk. Easily available in any supermarket are several choices of coconut milk, almond milk, cashew milk and combinations of each. Are any of those available products allowable on the paleo diet?

        • Cashews are inedible in their natural state and are actually very poisonous if consumed without extensive processing. Also, while subject to debate, cashews are generally considered legumes. Some people accept them as Paleo foods and others do not. It’s up to you to experiment and decide. Cashew milk is further removed from its original form. Remember, it is best to consume food in its natural state. Coconut milk is a much better option if you are looking for a milk substitute.

  16. After reading these comments what I have enjoyed the most is the poor author having to explain that diary and grains should be avoided at least 5/6/7 times… Do people just skim read, I’m curious.

    • Haha! Yes people do just skim read. They also skim listen. I have had a vegan diet, mostly raw & organic, grain free except for rice & rice milk, for about 26 years now, and i work as a landscape gardener. I am walking proof that my diet works for me, I never get sick, don’t need supplements. I still get all the same repeat questions, even after explaining a vegan diet, like, “so do you eat any meat?” “What about fish” and “so you don’t eat bread but what about toast or wraps?” People can have quite ignorant listening skills, and different ways of life still scare the masses. To accept difference is to accept ones self… and most people do not. 💖

      • I’m guilty of skimming through comments. But, that is because most are worth skipping. Unlike your reply.

        “To accept difference is to accept ones self… and most people do not.” – The saddest truth about Humanity. Countless lives spent in denial and self-deceit.

        Also, Custard Apples do not receive the sort of fame and affection they truly deserve.

  17. I can see how a strict Paleo diet has its place in society for some people, but for me, a very under weight older person trying to gain at least 30 pounds to get back up to my normal comfortable weight, I will sprout quinoa and buckwheat, make my own gluten free breads, have the occasional red potato and rice, lentils and split peas and consume grass-fed and raw dairy products.
    Your mileage will differ but this is what is going to work for me. If I were to become overweight or have other health issues that called for restrictions, then I’d make some radical changes toward Paleo.
    I think people get hung up on labels and tend to view things black or white, such as “I’m a Vegan” or I’m doing Paleo”.
    Eat what your body will allow in order to sustainably have enough energy and be healthy in the long term.

  18. I’d like to know if Paleo Diet can help decrease FSH and help to infertility problems?
    I am in a treatment for infertility and my FSH is higher than 30 (normal: lower or equal 10). Can I reduce it with Paleo diet? Thanks.

    • Hello, a change in diet, eating lower amounts of carbs, and sugars can certainly help the mechanisms, also it should be noted that it is important a back be healthy as well, because the back being the sympathetic, and parasympathetic system controls these functions. So a massage just above the tail bone, as well as strengthening, and alignment can help. (A majority of misalignment, or inflammation is not felt) One should also not underestimate how our bodies are absorbing the foods we eat, and so it is important to use a digestive enzyme (not a cheap one) and a microprobiotic, to try and help balance the system better. I have enough information to write a book on this question alone, however, I hope the straightforwardness of the answer will help 🙂

  19. HI – WOUDL THE FOOLOWING DIET BE ok?

    BREAKFAST: BUTTERED TOAST, CHEERSIOS, WHOLE MILK, 3 VODKA SHOTS
    LUNCH: PASTA WITH CHEESE BUTTER AND MILK, CHEESECAKE, 3 VODKA SHOTS
    SNACK: CHOCLET COOKIES, 3 VODKA SHOTS
    DINNER: CHEESE RAVIOLI, CRUSTY BREAD WITH BUTTER, 2 BOTTLES WINE, 3 VODKA SHOTS

    THANKS. SORRY FOR POOR ENGLISH. I IN RUSSIA.

      • I am a 41 year old woman who has been healthy my whole life but was recently diagnosed with hypothyroidism, sjogrens syndrome and more frighteningly, relapsing polychondritis. That is an autoimmune disease where the body destroys it’s cartilage. It is rheumatic, aggressive and there is no cure. Eyes, ears, nose, heart valves, kidneys, spine, entire tracheobronchial tree are affected. It is normally fatal when the airways collapse. Of course im on humira, after 6 other medications failed to bring relief from the chronic extreme inflammation. My hair is falling out at an alarming rate. I began researching paleo and autoimmune disease and realized I could reverse every bit of this and send these diseases into remission by getting off the grains and carbs and dairy. And GLUTEN. Its all a bit overwhelming but I bought a cookbook and have been reading here a lot and for the first time in years, my pain is a 2 out of 10 after 2 weeks of cutting gluten and dairy and sugar. Ive literally eaten nothing but lean protein and low glycemic fruits and veggies. Also a lot of eggs and lots of water. I know it has taken many years to get in the wretched shape I am in with autoimmune disease and I can’t reverse it overnight but it is now my mission. My husband and kids are feeling better already as well. Cant wait to ditch the humira and steroids. Thank you!!

        • Great news Tracy! It also might be worth exploring The Autoimmune version of The Paleo Diet or the “Autoimmune Protocol.” Also, don’t be afraid of healthy fats (animal tallow, extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, avocado, etc.)

          • Hello,
            Could you please share the Resource for LD Naltrexone comments. Saw it earlier, but now can’t find the date it was mentioned.

            Thank you,
            Naomi

          • Hello again,
            Forgot to mention that LD Naltrexone has changed my life forever, using it to treat Fibromyalgia. Had Fibro 20 years or so, but had not successfully found a treatment.

            Went from Depression, & severe fatigue, to vitality, more alert, focused, and wake up daily feeling “Happy”. Asked the Rheumatologist for the lowest dose, as I am very sensitive. Taking 1.5 mg. daily! A true MIRACLE! No Depression at all! It acts like an Opiate, but not an Opiate. Must get Prescription (Saw Rheumatologist, and compounded, so not covered by PPO Insurance Buy 90 Days worth, so more affordable).
            5/24/17

  20. Too bad we can’t send all these people back to the Paleolithic Era, it would be so much easier to stick to your diet and you would gain the most important part of the diet – running from large predators trying to eat you!

    • dont forget how hard it is to hunt for food and then carry it back to where you lived to make it into a meal. unless we were all expert trapers, wich still required quite a hike to set them then check them before some other predator eat te catch. that alone would be more of a workout then just walking the isles of a grocery
      store,then the hike and chase involved in hunting with a spear could be maybe even more chalenging. so yea i’m still a firm beliver in getting pleanty of exercise over any diet is the key to healthy living, the rest is more moderation in what you injest. granted some diets can help ease the new health problems poping up and being an epidemic problem in the 20th centry, choosing to stay away from prcessed foods and drink as much as possible is also a good idea, but then again not a big problem in moderation. a few times a month to eat fast food and soda’s no prolem, a cupple times a week still not too wory, but a few times a day watch out you are in for some truble, espacialy if you do not exercise regularly. I’m not a nutrisionist, far from it. but i do have somthing most dont, thats will power and common sense.

  21. Hi,

    My name is Ruban.

    Can we take butter in Paleo?
    Also we can take all regular fruits like apple / orange / grapes / pomegranate?
    What amount of Nuts we need to intake if we are in weight loss?
    Can we add salt for taste in Salads?

    Thanks,
    Ruban

  22. Hi, I have a question regarding the vegetables that can and cannot be consumed in a Paleo diet. What kind of root vegetables are proper for a Paleo diet? I know sweet potato is fine but what about Yucca and Parsnip, Rutabaga?

    • Sweet potato, yucca, parsnip, and rutabaga are all fine. The nightshade variety of tubers are problematic for some individuals and also tend to contain negative properties (saponins, etc.) and possess a higher glycemic load.

      • I keep seeing that Dairy is a no-no here but then I read other dietary experts insisting it is an essential. (e.g. http://www.bbc.com/news/health-39575804) I understand that the idea is to avoid foods for which the body isn’t adapted but surely dairy, at least for those with a European or African lineage, is something to which our bodies have been long adjusted. The same can be said for some other foods on your forbidden list so how far back do you have to go in time to arrive at your list of acceptable foods? Far enough back our ancestors didn’t eat meat either!

      • The hypocritical nature of this diet is out of control. I get it, grains do make people fat. That’s why in a natural cycle they appear at the end of summer and let animals fatten up for the winter. But to rule out foods simply because our ancestors did not eat them is ridiculous. By this rule tomatoes, squash, peppers, avocados, quinoa, and let’s not forget COFFEE and CHOCOLATE were not around during the evolutionary period because they are all new world foods and humans did not make they’re way over here until much later (and anyone of European decent only the last couple hundred years). This is an Atkins diet, plain and simple, repackaged for the modern age. Don’t get me wrong- I totally believe it’s a better way of eating, but the pitch is just ridiculous. Our ancestors also did not use cell phones, drive cars, and use complicated medical technology that has lengthened the lifespan of human 4-5 times the years they lived.

        • I know! The ability to process dairy IS something that humans have adapted to! That’s lactose tolerance vs. intolerance. I am a lactose tolerant person, which by definition means that I still produce the enzyme lactase despite being over the age of 3, and I’m therefore able to process milk. Lactose tolerance is an example of the fact that humans are still evolving. It is a trait that has developed in Africa and Europe over the last few thousand years. It is a trait that has become more and more widespread due to the fact that it benefited our ancestors, and still benefits us, to be able to draw nutrients from yet another source.

  23. Sounds like a drag to me. Dairy is healthy and really has no alternative. Over consumption is the issue. My life without dairy would be bland, tasteless and thoroughly boring. I raised five children on a dairy predominant diet and they are extremely healthy adults. NOTHING tastes better or is as satisfying as real butter, it’s natural especially if you buy organic. Sorry, but I disagree with most of your theories.

    • I finally kicked my dairy “habit” & have never felt better in my 63 years on this earth! I grew up in the dairy industry & in an era where everyone was expected to eat what they were told was good for them. Think about what cow’s milk is meant to do. A small calf drinks from it’s mother & it turns into a huge animal. Yet, in order to sustain that hugeness, the cow must consume up to 10 times it’s body weight in grasses on a daily basis!

      That said, dairy is NOT for everyone & we humans need to wean ourselves if we want to have healthy & long lives on this earth. I went strict Paleo about one year ago & left all the heart healthy crap the doctors were “advising” me to eat & ALL of my adverse health issues were gone within the first 3 months of cutting out dairy, grains, sugars, & processed foods. I am happier & healthier than I have ever been & lost 30 pounds by doing nothing other than eating! It takes patience to learn what works for each of us. I know I will never go back to abusing my body with crappy foods again!

      • The fact that you use completely blatant lies that are so off balance makes it mandatory for anyone to research any statement you say.

        You stated because calves are fed cows milk when young to grow them to their adult sizes it in turn causes them to consume ten times their own weight in grass per day to sustain. This is absolutely false as the standard cow consumes an average of 27 pounds per day which is a minimal fraction of their total weight.

        If you want to support something you say works and if it does work just be truthful and honest about it.

  24. I am new at this and * Limited * dairy. What does this mean? I think the only thing I will have to move at deleting from my diet is cheese. What about cream for coffee? Is it better to go with a whole/ heavy cream vs nothing?

  25. Having just started researching Paleo diets I’ve come across sites that, like yourself, tell me NOT to EAT potatoes and other sites that say they’re okay. Can you please explain why potatoes are a NOT EAT food?

  26. Another fad which will die off soon. If you want a lean, fit body just go out more and start moving. Sitting behind a computer 10 hours a day will not make you lean no matter what you eat. Cavemen didn’t have ipads and tvs and internets. They went out and fought for food, constantly on the move. They slept on bed of rocks, they walked miles and miles everyday. Compare them with us now.
    So just eat whatever you want, with moderation and start moving more.

    • Not true! People overweight such as myself, need a special eating plan. People who make such comments as yourself are fit and do not understand the life of a person with eating disorders and chances are you never will.

    • To Caveman:

      Eat what you want and move? Really? McD’s? Wendy’s? Foods filled with pesticides? GMO? Our body is NOT made to metabolize genetically modified foods or any of the pesticides Monsanto, Bayer, Dupont are putting in their crops to control the world’s food supply. Think for one second how many women have had difficulties conceiving without IVF or any other types of procedures. Erectile dysfunction or depleted sperm count… all that since the 70′ with the rise of fast food chains and supermarkets. All that to profit themselves, BigPharma, etc.

      You should do some research to back your opinions. Your comment is empty and you probably wrote it just to get attention.

    • I’m not overweight (am 112 lbs) and am physically fit. People do this diet for many reasons. The reason I decided to do it is obviously not because I want to lose weight, but because my energy levels are at an all time low with no physical explanation (all tests prove fine). I’m celiac so I already can’t eat gluten and am also dairy intolerant. But even after eating something healthy like oatmeal with coconut yogurt, I am exhausted and struggle to stay awake. It’s been suggested that maybe I need a detox and eliminate all grains and higher carb foods for a little while to let my body readjust so that’s the reason I’m trying this diet. So if it doesn’t work for you, don’t do it. But why criticize it?

      • Are you using gluten free oats? I ask because apparently oats in the US are frequently cross contaminated with gluten, so you might be having a mild reaction to some cross contamination.

  27. Regarding the place of alcohol in paleo discussion in college . . .
    Alcohol can pump up people but not by being a stimulant. It progressively disconnects the inhibition part of the brain and the short-term memory part, and this leads to disinhibition which FEELS like stimulation.  It leads to decreased memory of your day when you drink after work.  The depressive aspect and fractured sleep lasts for days or weeks in one’s brain tissue, depending on the unit dose and frequency of dosing.  These side effects temporarily overwhelm the liver.  Drinking faster than the liver can filter is the effect people are SEEKING WHEEEE ! The body can adjust somewhat so it is harder to kill it, like tolerating starvation or sugar spikes or cardio without weight change.  

    We consciously practice walking and talking while intoxicated until we can balance well, but our reflexes and judgment are still off when anything unexpected occurs around us.  Different bodies have different tolerance to intoxicants.  A FEW unlucky ones throw the addiction switch in the brain sooner than other people and this leads to bodily cravings and unconscious behavior blips involving ‘the car drove itself to the liquor store’ or ‘we never see the old you anymore.’  

    To further the discussion, Marijuana is an intoxicant that is so much stronger since the 60s (the best buds were propagated for generations) that it seems to be ‘turning on’ schizophrenia- like symptoms for the unlucky few who carry those genes.  The psychosis goes away the first few times they quit, but eventually does not go away even if they quit.  

    Marijuana soothes its own withdrawal nicely ‘the only thing that calms me down every day’ and for some the anxiety becomes mild paranoia ‘nobody likes me at work’ and depression ‘I don’t know what’s wrong with me.’  Legalizing marijuana is a MASSIVE natural population study to decrease the cost of jailing addicts.  We may see the half of the bell-curve people who unfortunately cannot afford any lowering in IQ also have some decrease in motivation to get to work on time.  Since a % of mental illness is driven by some level of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (alcohol intoxication before ya know you’re pregnant hits the fetus hardest) legal intoxicants have built a cycle of poor judgment — it is good to decide where you choose to fit on this wheel.  As always, get the fullest benefit from whatever you choose to do : )

  28. Would you list the names of all the preservatives that are bad for you, like in commercial sauerkraut and pickles and other foods. Is vinegar ok in fermented foods?

  29. hi,
    i am sakshi .my height is 5 feet.my age is 27.
    my weight is 142 calories.i have been taking paleo diet from21 days.i lost 4.4 lbs .i want to know how many calories should i eat to lost my weight.my lifestyle is sedentary.is there any limit of taking calories.

  30. all paleo diet is okay provided, u live like people of those days, eat when hungry sleep when u feel sleepy and physically work for food, run for life in threatening situations. and most importantly dont work for money. . if you want paleo diet and then live like a moderern human then surely after some time we will find out negatives of such a diet..

  31. I am on a paleo food closed group on FB and while its been great recently they have been posting recipes that use cassava and tapioca flour. When I tell them that’s not paleo, I get shot down by others saying that its allowed, or others who are AIP, use it all the time and that its paleo. I have directed them to Dr. Cordain’s website to point out that those items are not on the paleo diet but its caused a bit of a flame war on there now. Any help would be appreciated. also as a type 2 diabetic who is hyperglycemic I have been on the paleo diet for 2 months. I have lost 17 lbs and my blood sugar has gone down from a fasting level of 277 to a normal waking level of 135-150. I can’t have any fruits since anything causes sugar spike that lasts for almost the whole day and no sweet potatoes, which sucks majorly either way. So its veggies and meat primarily. Any suggestions to not get into a funk or boredom with food day in and out?? thank you for your time in reading my reply.

    • Yeah I am frustrated too. I keep going to Paleo recipe sites on the web and many are using non paleo ingredients. Very confusing. Did someone reinvent the Paleo diet out there that everyone is following different guidelines? I want to try the baked avocado and egg with miso butter but then I find miso is soy. Can you offer a yummy substitute for the miso part of the miso butter? Id really appreciate it.

  32. Because this diet plan relies heavily on meat you’ll be getting a fair amount of protein to feed your muscles. This helps to promote a leaner physique, and can even help with muscle growth if you engage in weightlifting while on it. When you consider the physique of Stone Age man they didn’t really have a lot of excess baggage in the form of a lot of fat and underdeveloped muscles. They were lean, mean, sabretooth tiger battling machines, and this sort of efficient physique still helps out in our modern world. With a leaner body structure you’ll be able to better handle life’s challenges, including the stresses that occur with a busy 21st century lifestyle.

  33. Hi,
    I am wondering if rendered fat, specifically grass fed beef tallow is ok or even as beneficial?
    And thoughts on basic Pemmican being compatible to Paleo?

  34. Hi, I am recently diagnosed with Hashimoto disease and I have give up gluten, grains, and dairy. Is Paleo a good option for me? Also, is it ok to have some chocolate once in a while.

    • Wije,

      Very dark chocolate is fine and considered healthful in moderation. From what you have described, it sounds like you are already following The Paleo Diet. Legumes, artificial sweeteners, and vegetable oils should be eliminated as well.

  35. I noticed a recipe on your site asking for
    •1 Tablespoon Omega 3 Mayonnaise
    •1 tsp. Paleo Smoky Seasoning
    I never heard of either. Are they both sold in any store as is or do you have to make them yourself if you cant find them? Wait isn’t mayo dairy?

  36. I noticed a comment here that said they have paleo pancakes or waffles with fruit instead of syrup. is pure maple syrup and raw honey allowed on this diet? Also are plantain pancakes allowed?

    • Maple syrup should be avoided. There is evidence for hunter-gatherer groups collecting honey on a seasonal basis, but it surely would not have been available as a constant food source. Fruit is definitely a better choice since it includes sugar with fiber.

      • Native American tribes certainly took advantage of the sugar maple trees that grew in their territory, and tapped them every year for the sweet syrup. They may not have had access to it all year round, but it was certainly used as a seasonal treat. If that’s the criteria, then the occasional tablespoon of maple syrup isn’t going to do you any harm.

    • A great pancake recipe is : 2 mashed bananas, 1 egg & 1 heaping Tablespoon almond butter. Just mix in a small processor, then fry “pancakes” at 300-325 degrees on a skillet you have oiled with a little extra virgin olive oil. DO NOT TURN THEM TOO SOON! Let them set up a bit (and only flip one time to keep them from getting tough. I smash up some berries to replace the syrup or use the tiniest drizzle of honey on them. You really don’t need the extra sweetness. Served with a side of bacon and a cup of herbal tea or black coffee it makes a delicious breakfast.

  37. Hi ,
    I am following the Paleo diet for last 3 weeks and i have reduced around 1.5 kgs.
    I am taking one cup of milk every day morning , is that ok while following Paleo or should i avoid intake of dairy ?

  38. Hi,

    I have started this diet based on “Paleo Diet for Athletes”. I am 193 lbs as of right now but at my fittest (before hip surgery last year) I was a lean 175 and wish to get back around that weight. I do crossfit 4-5 times per week with accessory work at home. The macros I follow every day are 175 protein/89 Fat/125 carbs. Do you feel these are the correct macros for my goal?

    Also, to aid in getting the proper amount of protein, I use non-fat greek yogurt as a “dessert”. Should I cut out the yogurt and go fully non dairy?

    Thanks and I love the book!

  39. I am a South Indian Vegetarian and consume alcohol (3 pegs of brandy with hot water) on most days of the week. I am little more than 26 on BMI reading and wish to follow the Paleo Diet. What sort of full day diet would you advice for me to reduce weight and become fit?

  40. can i eat corn i have been eating corn based pasta which is glutten free also what types of fish can i eat shell fish and can i use olive oil

    • Corn and all other grains should be eliminated. All fish is fine as long as it is not breaded and free of non-paleo ingredients. California-sourced extra virgin olive oil is preferred. Some olive oils have been demonstrated to be tainted with undesirable vegetable and corn oils. If you do a quick Google search, you will find lists of olive oils that are unadulterated.

  41. hai I have joined paleo diet before a week. instead of loosing I have gained 2 pounds. so I am very confused why is it so happens. so pls let me know wat actually is the problem…

    • Shaista,

      You might want to look into changing your fat/protein/carbohydrate ratios, or restricting your caloric intake. Perhaps you could provide us with a list outlining the foods that you typically consume over the course of one day.

      • I have been following the paleo diet for about 2 weeks now. The first week i did gain weight , but it was my body bloating. it was in complete shock of the drastic change i made. I was eating fast food once to twice A DAY, i know gross right???!!! anyways I have now been since the pounds drop, but in a healthy manner. Im loving this lifestyle and I highly recommend you give it more time = ] hope this helps!

  42. I am new to the Paleo diet.I have not started but very confused how to get started.So many books to buy ? Is there not a menu plan and a list of foods to buy ? Without buying all the books? I was looking at your Breakfast,lunch and dinner plan for 29.00 each .This is expensive

  43. Paleo shmaleo.
    No one, but no one, knows what was available at the time.
    The diet is good for weight control and is relatively healthy but almost all advocates of the diet ‘allow’ some form of alcohol.
    We all knoe alcohol is bad for us whatever form it is in.
    To try and justify it’s inclusion makes the whole concept a farce.
    If you want it, have it but don’t try and pretend that the alcohol we drink today was in any way similar to what was probably around then.
    Same with salt, animals lick salt from rocks and likely did then.
    I find my body tells meif I need extra salt.

    • That is not even remotely close to being true. You cannot just throw all scientific research out the window because you think no one knows what was eaten at the time. If you think it’s impossible to know, you probably also think it’s impossible to know whether or not humans really evolved or if creationism is real.

  44. My daughter is on the Paleo diet, she is organic and glutin free. All most all the meat except for beef is grain feed with corn. And she cannot not have corn. What to do

    • I am also allergic to corn. I have had food allergies my entire life, the severity and type has consistently been inconsistent! E.g. Sometimes an allergy will go away and resurface years later, sometimes new ones develop, etc. Last year I had many unexplained symptoms that my regular doc had no explanation for–swollen lymph nodes in armpits, GI issues (severe gas and lots of noise from tummy), extreme lethargy and tiring easily, fuzzy thinking, inability to concentrate, anxiety and *maybe* depression (or were symptoms causing depression?!). I felt really awful. I saw an alternative doc (with an MD) who recommended I avoid cereal grains, all dairy from any source (eggs ok), and CORN, among a few other things that I already avoided such as sulfites, most nuts (childhood peanut allergy). I had already been avoiding corn and corn products such as corn starch & MSG (at the time I didn’t know this had corn in it but I knew it had the potential to make me feel weird); She gave me an much more comprehensive list that was extremely helpful. My conclusion is the vast majority of additives may or may not have a corn component so it is best to avoid them altogether. (This is not an issue outside of US (for obvious reasons) but IMO corn should treated as in everything–xanthan gum, natural flavors, citric acid, hydrolyzed vegetable protein, regular salt (versus sea salt), to name a few off the top of my head. One of the biggest surprises and bummers for me was white vinegar which I had been using for cleaning and as a hair rinse because of my allergic reaction (hives, swollen gums, itchiness, dandruff, eczema) to most products. Due to my inability to identify a common element that I was reacting to I practiced avoidance and/or used vinegar and a few other safe products. However, I had discovered that white vinegar often has a corn ingredient! Bah! (Importantly though, I finally figured out what allergen my cleaning/beauty products had in common–CORN!–and clearly my white vinegar reaction was extremely mild comparatively. It all finally made sense: for example I had finally identified sodium laurel sulfate as an allergen and that is in many things–turns out it is made from corn. But, I wasn’t only allergic to SLS. “All Natural” “organic” were meaningless allergy-wise. So since my food allergies have bloomed, I have stopped using white vinegar and replaced with Apple Cider vinegar. Anyway, corn is tough. To get to the point though: I was told that I need only be concerned about “corn feed” for beef and that other animals because they were smaller and have less fat are ok. This seemed a little weird to me but as I have followed the diet it seems to be true. I wanted to post and answer to your question and let you know how hard it is to be allergic to corn. I have been strictly avoiding it in all its manifestations and feel much better. So dairy and grains seem to be “intolerances” for me, but I am not sure I buy that whole differentiation. Corn has given me hives in the past, now it only gives me stomach ache and affects mood. So has it changed from an allergy to an intolerance? I think ultimately they are all allergies whether there is a strict histamine reaction or not. Clearly more scientific work needs to be done in this area with more and more people claiming to suffer from allergies and intolerances. Corn isn’t even listed as a potential allergen in packaging so that makes it really tough, especially since it is often deeply disguised. ANYWAY, today when I was shopping I realized that this whole paleo thing that has been in my peripheral vision may be a great guide for me with a few modifications! Hence, I am at this page, researching what the parameters are and giving a very lengthy answer to the parent of the corn-allergic daughter!

      • Sounds like you need to start on FOOD GRADE DIATOMACEOUS EARTH (AKA SILICA, FOSSIL SHELL FLOUR)!!! This is a supplement that has AMAZING BENEFITS!!! Our bodies have been exposed to and bombarded with so many environmental chemicals that our bodies don’t know how to react to various foods and viruses and diseases! OMG!!! I just discovered FG DE and started it on December 1, 2016, and it has done absolutely miraculous things for me and SO MANY OTHERS who have discovered it. Google “diatom” and see what comes up about the benefits of food grade diatomaceous earth! Get rid of all those allergies, aches and pains in joints, get over allergies, lose weight, don’t worry about changing your diet b/c FG DE naturally decreases your cravings! I URGE EVERYONE TO CHECK IT OUT… This is no hoax. silica is a natural essential mineral that is available for very cheap and is a vital element that has been missing in our bodies for decades. Our farmers used to amend their crop soils with FG DE until government and chemical companies came in and told them they couldn’t use it anymore. Then the soils became depleted. In the 1940s pesticides started being used, and within a decade we started seeing a rise in disease and illness, and especially cancer!!! PEOPLE, PEOPLE, PEOPLE!!! Please research this! I AM NOT TALKING ABOUT CHEMICAL POOL GRADE DE… I’M TALKING ABOUT SOMETHING TOTALLY DIFFERENT… THE FOOD GRADE DIATOMACEOUS EARTH THAT PHARMACEUTICAL COMPANIES DON’T WANT PEOPLE TO KNOW ABOUT, AND OUR DOCTORS ARE NOT EDUCATED ABOUT IT EITHER. LOOK UP THE MSDS SHEET FOR FOOD GRADE DIATOMACEOUS EARTH. THERE IS NOT A SINGLE THING ON THERE OTHER THAN “INHALATION” THAT IS HARMFUL ABOUT IT. I’VE DONE MY RESEARCH AND CAN HONESTLY SAY THIS IS GOD’S GIFT TO US ON EARTH THAT IS THE MISSING LINK TO OUR GOOD HEALTH WITHOUT EVEN REALLY TRYING HARD! There are many places online to purchase FG DE… Amazon is one place, also your local farm supply store! YES! Farm supply. This product is not only good for your health but also your animals, your home, your property, your health. It is also a natural pesticide and can get rid of ants, bedbugs, fleas, and rid yourself and animals of parasites!!! Clear up your gut problems! Help your bones, cartilage, connective tissue, and collagen!!! And so much more!!! I have been talking to everybody that I know about this product and cannot stress the importance of this vital mineral that our bodies are lacking. There is more research that has been done in the UK than in the US that also proves the vast benefits of FG DE! My hope is that someone here on this site will look into this and comment on it… I’m just a “messenger,” trying to spread the word. I’ve also been looking into the Paleo diet; and when I ran across this post, I felt compelled to reply.

        • I looked into it but am skeptical. It says that stuff is good for detoxing body, your digestive system and cosmetics too. Then it says it repels rodents and kills roaches, bedbugs and fleas. I don’t know what to make of something that is supposed to be awesome on one hand and yet repels and kills on the other. What a strange product.

          • DE is a fine crystalline structure that when it gets on the pests, it slices their exoskeleton causing them to bleed/dehydrate to death. Never tried food grade DE, but I just might. Anyway, just spreading some information around. 🙂

        • I’m about to buy this powder after I read about its benefits after you told me about them. Going to put our family on it. So.. I get this big bag of powder in the mail…now what? How do I use it? How do we take it? How much? Thanks!!

      • so you mean you are so allergic to corn that you cant even eat meat from animals fed by it? I wonder if you are allergic to all corn or just todays corn. Todays corn is all genetically modified food.

    • Diabetic here, on Metformin 2x/day (2) 500MG tablets (total of 4 pills a day). My doc has not reduced my dose (yet) but my readings were about 120, then dropped to mid-90’s after being on paleo for a few months, and losing 30 pounds. Was it the paleo diet or the weigh loss? Don’t know. But happy. I ran out of Metformin for a few days and my readings never got to 120. So, doing better without and on paleo than with the Rx and off paleo. Looks like if I drop another 15 pounds I might drop the Metformin. As I lost the weight, I also stopped experiencing the extremity nerve pain.

    • You can just stay on it forever. I have cheat days about once a week so it’s not like you’re in prison. You do not suffer at all as far as hunger.

      My days are typically this:
      paleo blueberry pancake for breakfast with fresh fruit on top. No syrup. I make a batch once a week and microwave one each day.
      lunch is a salad or last night’s leftovers.
      dinner is fish/chicken/pork or beef plus a vegetable (usually just steamed in the microwave) and sweet potato.

      I also make a paleo banana bread once a week and have slices of that as an evening snack.

      It is realtively easy. You tend to be fuller and eat less because the more tempting things are not on the plate. Win win.

      Visit The Ulitmate Paleo Guide for more detailed info, food lists and recipes. You don’t need to buy anything with paleo; that website sells things but I’ve never had a need to buy anything.

  45. Thank you for being available for questions. I eat an already limited diet. Celiac and Dairy free for over 6 years. I have food intolerance to broccoli, cauliflower, onions, beans, peas and cabbage. My intolerance also extends to any kind of nuts or seeds. I’m struggling to eat enough. I average 1000 calories a day. I’m gaining weight rapidly and would value an opinion to how this way of eating could help me.

      • Audrey,

        While organic is optimal, you can still enjoy health benefits while consuming conventional meat and produce. That being said, conventional meat tends to be lower in omega-3’s so make sure you are eating plenty of seafood or supplementing with fish oil. Good luck!

    • Onalee… please see my earlier post about food grade diatomaceous earth! I bet if you start on FG DE that you’d find a LOT of your intolerances will magically disappear!

    • Your base metabolic rate is going to be over 1000 calories per day. Even if it wasn’t, you’d be at a minimal surplus and it would take a long time to gain weight. This means you’re grossly underestimating how many calories you’re taking in. It’s illogical that you are “struggling eating enough” and “gaining weight rapidly”.

      You need to educate yourself on portion sizing and practice judging caloric values so that it’s easy to judge accurately and quickly. An app like myfitnesspal would be a great resource.

      Best of luck.

    • yes, but make sure you cook it yourself and add for vegetables and lean meat than carbohydrates. Do not order it as a takeaway as these sauces are high in fat and refined sugar.

    • We’ve found organic food in Aldi and Walmart. It seems that enough people are realizing how much healthier they are, and as a result, they are easier to find and getting less expensive. Also at the chain Grocery stores, if you keep an eye out for specials, or meat nearing expiration time, you can get good deals on organic, grain fed meat as well.

  46. I really dislike it, when they don’t call “Salt” for Paleo, for several reasons!

    Salt is necessary for the body, as it controls a lot of Hormones, and without getting Salt, you would simply crash and die! That being said, there is a lot of difference in Salt, and a lot have Synthetic stuff added, which of course would be a no no, but saying Salt is not Paleo, is not true at all!

    Also Dairy, an article was published in “Nature” magazine a few years ago, and then later on in other magazines, stated with the latest DNA Technology, and other fancy stuff, they’ve managed to solve a mystery, about a 9.000 year old “Bathtub” kinda looking thing, with small holes in the bottom, which showed that they did consume Dairy, as the “Tub” was to drain of “Lactose”, so they made Cheese!

    Another thing that bothers me, is there is always talk about “Lean Meat”, Saturated is NOT bad for you, we’ve known that forever, but some myths still hangs on i guess… I always suggest people, to look out their window, and notice, that there is no other animal (In this case, Carnivores) out in Nature, that leaves the “Fat” behind, infact, that is what they go for first, all the Organs!

    • Organs are not made of fat.

      Our ancestors didnt selectively breed and factory farm meats so that an 8 week old chicken is full sized and storing fat – these animals would have lived active lives and be… “lean meat”!

      You cannot “drain off” lactose.

      Salt is naturally present in many foods, you do not necessarily need extra added.

      • Being lactose and gluten and sugar intolerant, i am learning lots. look up why some aged cheeses are ok, you learn that the liquid portion is drained off removing the major portion of the lactose. For that reason some cheeses are ok foe those with the lactose affliction, lactose can be as low as 0.5% or less. look it up, don’t assume your opinion is fact.

    • I’m new to the paleo concept, but the bathtub process you mentioned sounds like it is from an already agricultural society 9000 years ago, so the food produced would not be consistent with that eaten by our hunter-gatherer ancestors, those people among whom our metabolism adapted.

  47. First , many thanks to Dr. Loren Cordain and his team and special thank to Trevor. It’s awesome to be here.
    Second, I will try to answer all the questions related to this post.

  48. Did you say “wine could never have been available to our ancestors”? If so, cross out also the “healthful oils” from your list (I guesstimate both productions came to be around same period)….

    • Haha, i agree! Wine is definitely Paleo! Naturally there is Alcohol in Fruits and Berries when they’re Ripe! In some cultures, they chew on Berries, and spit them out in a bowl of Water, and let it ferment… Alcohol gets bitched more at than most things, but the body still see’s Sugar as a worse enemy, which is why it tries to get rid of the Sugar first… That is afterall, the main reason, why you get easier drunk, if you mix your booze with a Sugar Free Soda or just Water, compared to a regular Soda, Juice etc.

      Unless you drink extremely much, you always gotta remember, that your Liver keeps repairing itself, it is quite a magical Organ! Fructose is hard on the Liver as well… In the end, i’ve heard about people with Cirrhosis Liver, who never Drinks, just like i hear about people with Lung Cancer, who never Smoked!!! Everything is not always what it seems, just use your best judgement 🙂

  49. I am new to the Paleo diet. I have two main questions.
    1) In regards to seeds and nuts, does it matter to eat roasted nuts or do they have to be raw?
    2) I have low blood pressure and the only way to keep it at the optimum level is to take salt. Does it matter if I keep my salt intake the same as usual?

    I would appreciate a response,
    Regards,
    Azita

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