noun_Search_345985 Created with Sketch.
0 cart-active Created with Sketch. noun_Search_345985 Created with Sketch.

The Paleo Diet November 2020 Digest – The Importance of Balance

By The Paleo Diet Team
November 30, 2020
The Paleo Diet November 2020 Digest – The Importance of Balance image

In recent decades, the media has pushed for the consumption of certain micro- and macronutrients such as vitamin-D, calcium, and omega-3 fatty acids. Backed by a growing body of research the health benefits of these nutrients are not disputed. Many of us have been quick to supplement these key nutrients only to find that the realized benefits are underwhelming compared to the promised hype. In some cases, like with the over supplementation of calcium, the results can even be damaging.

So, what gives? Has the research and media hype led us astray? The answer may lie in newer researching making it clear that focusing on individual nutrients is becoming an outdated concept. What may be more important than individual consumption is to focus on consuming these nutrients in a healthy balance to their counterparts; calcium is balanced by magnesium vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acid is balanced by omega-6.

The importance of ratios, as well as health consequences of disrupting these ratios, was The Paleo Diet’s focus for November. Specifically, we address the importance of the three critical nutrient ratios that have gotten out of balance in the modern Western diet: omega-6/omega-3, calcium/magnesium, and sodium/potassium.

We also address The Paleo Diet’s 85/15 Rule and how it can help you have a healthy, but sustainable, diet.

We also provide seven stress relieving drinks for mental balance when life feels overly hectic.

We hope you enjoy!

-The Paleo Diet Team

The Paleo Diet November 2020 Digest – The Importance of Balance image

Explaining the 85/15 Principle

By Aimee McNew

A key aspect of The Paleo Diet is the 85/15 rule; this means consuming 85 percent of your calories from Paleo foods and allowing the remaining 15 percent to be from non-Paleo foods. While 100 percent Paleo is a great goal, warranting “cheat” meals makes the diet more sustainable. Plus, you’ll still reap the same benefits.

November's Theme: Balance

The Importance of the Omega-6/Omega-3 Ration to Human Health

By Dr. Mark J. Smith, Ph.D.

Human beings evolved to consume a diet comprising approximately a 1-to-1 ratio of omega-6 to omega-3. In Western diets, this ratio can be 15-to-1 or greater leading to increased risk of chronic diseases. While the media has hyped the benefits of omega-3 fatty acids leading to an increase in its consumption, it’s still not enough to counteract the overconsumption of omega-6.

The Importance of the Calcium-to-Magnesium Ratio

By Trevor Connor, M.S., CEO

Calcium is important to our bodies’ bone health and muscle function, however, overconsumption, particularly from milk, has been associated with multiple health problems, including cancer and heart disease. It is believed that this may at least partially explain why women, who frequently supplement with calcium, are starting to exceed men in heart disease. A growing body of research has found that the quantity of calcium consumed is not as important as its ratio to magnesium.

The Sodium/Potassium Ratio and its Importance in Human Health

By Dr. Mark J. Smith, Ph.D.

Unlike our Paleolithic ancestors who ate a sodium to potassium ratio of 1-to-5, modern humans’ diet of processed food and added salt often doubles this. A diet that is low in potassium and high in sodium increases the net systemic acid load on the body which leads to a chronic metabolic acidosis. This can have many negative effects on the body such as decreased muscle and bone mass in adults and kidney stone formation.

7 Stress-Busting Drinks

By Aimee McNew

The world we live in is filled with stressors and this year in particular has tested individuals mental health. Fortunately, there are many ways to boost your self-care game including these stress-relieving drinks!

December at The Paleo Diet: The Paleo Diet Verse Other Diets

At The Paleo Diet, our bias is that a diet void of cereal grains, dairy, legumes, and processed foods like that of our hunter-gatherer ancestors is the best lifestyle choice. Our bias, however, is rooted in science. Study after study has shown following a Paleo Diet results in weight loss, better mental health, and a decreased risk for chronic diseases.

However, we recognize that with so many diets out there - all promising similar benefits - it is easy to feel overwhelmed and question who to trust. So, we have dedicated December to researching several of the most popular diets.

We will compare the Paleo Diet to other popular diets such as Whole30®, Keto, South Beach, and intermittent fasting to determine which diet is best for you. And while we’re confident the Paleo Diet will come out on top, we promise to ground our writing in science. We know the research behind the Paleo Diet, but that doesn’t mean other diets – such as Whole30 – don’t have good research behind them as well.

As always, our team appreciates your support of The Paleo Diet. We look forward to and encourage your feedback on our website and Facebook! 


The Paleo Diet Team  

Even More Articles For You

Water: The Most Important Nutrient, and How It Ultimately Determined Amelia Earhart's Final Fate
In this thoroughly researched article, Dr. Loren Cordain sheds new light on what led to Earhart’s death in the Pacific, and the whereabouts of her demise.
By Loren Cordain, Ph.D.
How to Carb Cycle on Paleo
While The Paleo Diet doesn’t support a long-term keto diet, occasional carb-cycling can help optimize weight loss and metabolic flexibility.
By Betsy Schroeder
Coconut Oil: The Ultimate Fat, or Completely Terrible for You?
Coconut is one of the most popular Paleo staples, but there is some confusion about its health benefits and risks. Learn about the evidence from the experts at The Paleo Diet!
By Casey Thaler
Paleo Leadership
Trevor Connor
Trevor Connor

Dr. Loren Cordain’s final graduate student, Trevor Connor, M.S., brings more than a decade of nutrition and physiology expertise to spearhead the new Paleo Diet team.

Mark J Smith
Dr. Mark J. Smith

One of the original members of the Paleo movement, Mark J. Smith, Ph.D., has spent nearly 30 years advocating for the benefits of Paleo nutrition.

Nell Stephenson
Nell Stephenson

Ironman athlete, mom, author, and nutrition blogger Nell Stephenson has been an influential member of the Paleo movement for over a decade.

Loren Cordain
Dr. Loren Cordain

As a professor at Colorado State University, Dr. Loren Cordain developed The Paleo Diet® through decades of research and collaboration with fellow scientists around the world.