Cutting through the Paleo hype: here is the current evidence

Paleo hype or media witch hunt?  Lets see what are the doctors saying?

I have many patients who have made incredible changes to their health, improved their blood pressure, reduced weight, reduced waist circumference, reduced rising blood sugar – impressive results. Many of these happy souls started with Paleo – they may not have continued strictly paleo but it played an important role in the process.

Where does Paleo stand today? The media sit on one side and the celebrities and bloggers on the other. So who can we trust? I wondered what the current studies showed and this little gem showed up…

An article this week on AFP journal Australian Family Physician titled ‘Cutting through the Paleo hype: The evidence for the Palaeolithic diet. This article is a doctors review of paleo.. for other doctors – no agenda.

As a doctor our first rule is do no harm… so can Paleo be doing my patients harm. Secondly does is have benefit.

The important key I took away from this article is summaries by the author here..

“There appears to be enough evidence to warrant further consideration of the Palaeolithic diet as a potential dietary option in the management of metabolic diseases.  Larger independent trials with consistent methodology and longer duration are required to confirm the initial promise in these early studies”

Claims that the paleo diet could treat or prevent conditions such as autism, dementia and mental illness are not supported.  Clinicians should be aware of potentially inadequate calcium intake on the Paleo diet –  especially those at risk of osteoporosis.

Adherence is a challenge, unless you are a celebrity chef maybe?!  ps Pete I do love your work.

So my thoughts –  starting is always the hardest part.

The best aspect of Paleo is the satiety factor, meaning you feel full, that means you feel happy.

So success when the first large hurdle is conquered… less fear…. you start seeing results…  quick weight change…  positive reinforcement…   excitement…  which feeds continued action = very passionate paleo advocates.

So if you are overweight, have metabolic syndrome, insulin resistance, high blood pressure or a large tummy..  why not give it a go?  Tell your doctor first and get a check up, ask if he/she has reviewed the evidence and the latest article in AFP, ensure you have enough calcium and until further notice lets just wait and see and enjoy the benefits we can measure.

Be well with love

Dr-Rachel-Wyndham

 

 

 

References

Pitt, C E – AFP vol 45, No1-2 Jan 2016 pg 35

Further references available.