You really are what you eat. The British Journal of Medicine states that a Mediterranean diet keeps people genetically younger, with their cells showing fewer signs of aging. The study was conducted on 5000 nurses over a decade. Specifically, scientists looked at structures called telomeres. These are protective caps at the end of chromosomes that protect our DNA from losing genetic information during cellular division. With each consecutive division, the telomeres shorten. When they reach a critical length, they signal cells to stop dividing, which essentially leads to aging.
The Paleo diet, or as it is properly named, the Paleolithic diet, just makes sense. It may not be 100% accurate in terms of the original argument for its support, but from a physiological point of view, it’s simply logical. The original concept was based on the theory that humans existed as hunters and gatherers for much longer (about 100 000 years longer at least) than as farmers. Agriculture began about 10 000 years ago. Today, our society feeds itself from modern agriculture. Thus, the theory goes, the digestive tract of humans has not had enough time to adapt to modern foods through genetic selection.
What we are talking about in the Paleo diet is a diet primarily based on meats (fish, seafood, wildlife, beef and poultry), healthy oils (such as olive, grapeseed, hemp, fish and coconut, for example) as well as berries, fruits and vegetables. This is the basis of the Paleo diet. It lacks grains (including wheat), wheat-based products, dairy of any kind, processed foods, fast food, and salt. The primary drinks are water and tea. It lacks coffee and any fruit juices, and most notably, it lacks pop drinks of any kind. The food also comes in a raw form more often than the modern diet due to the pretense that ancient people did not cook the majority of their food. Continue reading →