Debbie Forbes tried many diets over several years and each one, she said, left her dissatisfied.
“With Weight Watchers, the additives and processed foods they asked you to eat didn't jive with me,” the Land O’ Lakes resident said. “With Atkins, no veggies for at least awhile didn't make me happy. Paleo made sense to me.”
Forbes is referring to the Paleo Diet — the diet that’s been called the Caveman Diet and has spawned a number of best-selling books. Followers of the eating program eat as our ancestors did prior to the Agricultural Revolution. The hunter-gatherer diet says yes to meat, fruit, vegetables and seafood, and no to grains, dairy, salt and refined sugar.
Dr. Loren Cordain, author of the best-seller “The Paleo Diet,” says adherents keep weight off and consume lots of nutrients.
“It’s got many characteristics that combine all the best ideas we’ve ever had about nutrition,” he said in an interview on the Dr. Oz Show. “It’s a high-protein, a low glycemic load diet. We know those characteristics are the best way to get weight off and keep it off.”
Some experts have cautioned that while it can help folks lose weight and lower cholesterol, eliminating grains, legumes and dairy is extreme because there are health benefits associated with those items, too.
It works for people such as Forbes, who says the lack of grains does not mean you are left unsatisfied.
“I'm more full and find that sometimes I don't even want to eat dinner,” she said. “You will be eating a lot of veggies, which means the fiber fills you up. Protein is very filling and good fats like avocado, coconut and olive oil and some nuts are very satiating.”
Smart shoppers know the foods OK’d in the Paleo Diet — meat and produce — are among the most expensive in the supermarket. But the way Forbes sees it, spending more money on food is a wise investment.
“Good nutrition will keep you out of the doctors office,” she said. “Cancer is expensive. Grass fed beef is not.”