Anyone care to opine about the wider impact of Don's 'Farewell to Paleo' post?
Undoubtedly we'll get some triumphalism from 30BAD et al, but the real question is how can this diet have failed for Don so emphatically?
Should he have leaned more towards 'Paleo 2.0'? Is failure amongst paleo-types inevitable given that there is no standard paleo model?
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considering that all of his observations appear to be n=1 at best, i doubt it gets too many people stirred up.
i think many paleos have already figured out, like the paleo 2.0 manifesto stated, that there is no set paleo macronutrient ratio. In my mind paleo is more about removing the modern sources of toxicity from your diet(gluten containing grains, industrial seed oils, and limiting fructose) and going from there to tinker to see what is optimal for you given your current health/goals.
if he wants to shake up the paleo orthodoxy, the way to go about it is to write a series using actual studies that challenge the current thinking, a la stephan guyanet in his most recent series.
The whole thing is a straw man. It seems like everyone is like Art and Loren who recommend trimming fat off of grass-fed meat and avoiding fatty cuts of meat OR eating bowls of coconut oil and pound of bacon for breakfast and dousing their chicken with heavy cream. Either people who advocate low-carb OR people eating just fruit. Either people saying fiber is teh devil or people scouring their poor colons with the stuff. Where is the middle way in all this?
I'll tell you that if I ate the diet his new wife describes my stomach would turn to sludge too.
I'd also be a lot more interested in his manifesto if it weren't laced with woo.
Also, I was reading his wife's blog and she was saying how she regrets eating beef and how bad conventional beef is for the environment blah blah blah. I'm like...who the heck is eating conventional beef? Then I remembered his stupid primal on a budget thing involved eating factory farmed meat, which I do believe is somewhat unhealthy. IMHO it's not a coincidence that he spent an entire series on how conventional beef is AOK. It all stems from his really quite un-compassionate libertarian worldview, he started the dumb experiment because he saw Food Inc and didn't believe that a poor family couldn't afford good food (hint: it's not just about money!!). So to prove that he started eating meat from a system that is cruel to both humans and animals. I don't believe in woo, but I'm surprised that he doesn't see the karma here.
References to a supposed body of evidence for a specific stance, but without a single source attribution?
Irrelevant opinion piece.
Whatever he calls it, if it took him 14 years to figure out it wasn't working, he's doing it wrong, and I have to question his powers of observation and judgement.
Breaking: "Man Realizes Paleo-Diet Is Not For Him: Only Takes Him 14 Years"
why is everyone so offended by him and his change of diet is beyond me....
- he doesnt need someone to tell him he must have a beef allergy b/c he feels better without red meat often
- he isnt unpaleo, at all. if anything he is expanding paleo to WHAT IT SHOULD BE
he has tried every diet out there and settled on one... good for him. who is anyone here, or any paleo eater to say his diet isnt working for him...what, because it not YOUR relgious-like cult-of-high-fat paleo so it must be wrong?
he isnt out to PROVE to you or convince you that you should eat like he does. he is simply stating his experience, and attempting to make sense of it and back it up if anyone is interested in changing
there is NO DENYING that the high protein high fat paleosphere is NOT working for MANY people. myself included, i convinced myself to keep going, keep eating high fat, keep waiting for the miraculous whatever of health and it aint happening. so because i dont coconut oil my food and eat bacon and 75/25 beef mean i am not paleo? because i dont eat a bowl of bone marrow at every meal and cook extra egg yolks with a cup of cream mean i am not paleo? i dont touch dairy either....but i may not be this way forever. i see no point in it being added mostly because it is expensive as $hit.
i like fish. my body loves red snapper, trout, flounder, redfish and everything else i can go catch for myself because i live on a coastal state. i go TO a farm and PICK my own eggs every week. i attend the farmers market every thursday and eat what is offered from local families. its wat is in season, its real food. i dont care what it is macro wise that is so far from a determinant of my food intake. i eat paleo because the grounds of eating local, nourishing, correctly grown food makes sense. this implies you eat with the seasons, your macros change, your nutrient surpluses and deficiencies change.
when there is free access to food i sure as hell am not going to the grocery store and buying beef pork or chicken.
and about deficencies...did it ever occur to anyone you just might NOT want a surplus of vitamin D 365 days a year, you may NOT want a high potassium iodine selenium ratio and high fish oil intake makes NO sense if you approach food seasonally. you just might want to stop throwing back supplements and looking for the answer to health when it lies in listening to your own body. so few people are actually WILLING to test a range of food on themselves without preconceived notions of whether or not it 'should' be healthy
instead of question whether you can eat mushrooms and onions, EAT THEM and figure out how you handle them. instead of knocking don for how he eats i can guarantee you havent tried it so who are you to say? how many people have actually attempted a low fat HIGH carb PALEO PALEO PALEO diet. everyone and their mom has tried a low fat diet, but not a paleo one. that doesnt mean a PSMF, that means a paleo diet based around starch, not protein.
I read his whole shpeel. Quickly came to a conclusion well before finishing it.. >> Bogus.
There's something inherently slippery about his approach. It oozes rottenness, never a good thing.
People who don't know how to process information and think correctly will flock toward him now, foolishly believing that they can 'trust' him because of his openness and willingness to 'tell the truth'.
Not me. I think exactly the opposite. I think he has been lying to himself and those he was teaching for all these years.
I always wish everyone well, even those who don't believe "Paleo" is right for them, of course.
But this exit is the opposite of classy. If he is willing to do this, what's next?
So let me get this straight: Paleo is awesome for the first 14 years. So awesome that I'll be inspired to create a blog and act like pedantic pr*ck to all of the non-paleo advocates. Then, at the stroke of midnight, it all turns back into a pumpkin?
That's the only explanation, because otherwise it would have been intellectually disingenuous of Don to have had the symptoms all along and not to have been honest about it...
Using "Traditional Chinese Medicine" as a marker for the Paleo Diet being good or bad is pretty ridiculous IMHO - isn't this the same quack-culture that brings us 1,000+ cure-alls for "impotence" and "the lungs" (the majority of which involve ingesting dried phallus from endangered animals) ?
It seems he is diverting from meat and fat-based paleo to a higher starch and more wholehealthsouce type of paleo, or paleo 2.0. I see nothing wrong with him doing that, but saying "farewell to paleo" is somewhat of a misnomer.
Hmm. Maybe I'm doing something wrong 'cause my diet isn't particularly "high fat, high protein", but maybe it depends what you are comparing it to? I do eat higher carb than a lot of Paleo people because I run long distance. But it seems very, very odd to me that it would take him 14 years to figure out he had a problem. As for the symptoms -- what deficiencies would cause those? In so many ways, I've had exactly the opposite experience as him, though I've only been Paleo for 4 months.
I hope everyone reads Don's article. Thanks for posting it. He is right to mention other modalities, like Chinese medicine. What I like about the Chinese medicinal diet approach is that it considers everything in context and considers the bio-individuality of the person. How it works out in practice is another question, but I think this general approach is the correct one.
The One-Size-Fits-All approach of Paleo and other diets is simplistic and, quite frankly, dumb. We should know better than follow some kind of mechanistic diet like Paleo. Paleo has made its contribution. Yes, we should consider evolution when thinking diet, but there are other parameters to consider as well. It's time to realize that, become more nuanced and sophisticated and move on.
I don't know what the wider impact of this article will be. Dissolution is already taking place, it seems to me, in the Paleo community. You might (or might not) be surprised at how many people contact me off list and admit it's not working that well for them). People want to cling on to the notion of "versions of Paleo", because the name "Paleo" gives them some kind of comfort and, besides, people don't like to admit they were wrong (when they were quite recently singing praises...it's embarrassing!) Nonetheless, these versions are the first steps away from the diet, or so it seems to me.
If changing his diet helps him and his wife than I am happy for them both and think they are doing the right thing.
What I don't quite get is the assumption that if the diet didn't work for his wife he should change as well.
As a result of this thread, I've just read Don's "goodbye to Paleo". And the diet he is coming to - which has veg, non - gluten carbs, fish, no sugars or precessed foods - is very much what I have conceived Paleo to be about for the past 2 years. I found after a fortnight that very low carb, high fat and high protein gave me shocking diarrhea and added back carbs and reduced fats.
The results have been brilliant - asthma gone, all medicinal drugs gone, weight gone - so Don has adopted what I feel is paleo anyway.
Surely it is a matter of eating what suits each individual with the proviso that gluten grains, seed oils, processed foods of all kinds are eliminated for everyone following "paleo"?
I'll second the sentiment that he is still eating paleo, since (in my understanding) paleo is about cutting out processed, neolithic garbage from your diet, and he's doing just that. High-fat, low-carb just happens to be the easiest way to eat after doing so (for me, at least).
That said, though, the fact that he's having such a change of heart after 14 years (and 12 months of his wife trying it) make me wonder if he's being influenced by his wife.
Now, don't misunderstand; I don't mean that in a "Pfft, paleo is perfect, it's his own fault" sort of way. In trying to sway my wife toward paleo, I've thought about offering her a "try it for x days, and if you don't feel great, I'll _" deal. (The reason I haven't is that I worry her answer will be "if I don't like it after a month, I want you to give it up.")
Never underestimate the power of a wife. Mine is a force to be reckoned with if she wants to be.
His words are just his personal opinion, he may be looking for a convenient scapegoat instead of taking personal responsibility for his choices, or lack of choices, he has made over the years re his nutrition and health. He makes the mistake of boxing himself into a narrow view of what paleo is, this way it's easier to blame. Paleo is a broad spectrum lifestyle that incorporates nutritional and physical ideas as well as mental and even spiritual elements.
After reading his words I get a sense that there is more here than meets the eye, it's not so much what he said but what he didn't say.
Chinese medicine? I think he's lost his mind. I'm loving the uproar.
I honestly do hope he feels better. I've eaten similar to how he used to (VLC most meals, lots of stone fruits [which makes me itchy and affects my digestion for the worse], loads and loads of meat) and not felt my best, so I can understand him wanting to fine-tune things. I even agree that excessive protein is Not Good in the long term. But how he is going about it flummoxes me! I see 'paleo' as such a flexible, broad-spectrum way of eating... apparently he does not.
I would bet money he's going to gain at least 20 lbs eating this new way. Wonder if he'll be honest about it.
My first thought was maybe he has a beef allergy. And probably both him and his wife should try some probiotics. I agree that it's very appropriate to adjust the diet when you see symptoms like this, but I don't think you can make blanket statements that lay the blame on high fat intake in particular, there are just too many variables.
Anyone with biochemistry knowledge care to weigh in on the "high fat intake leads to increases blood coagulability" assertion? I don't have the background to know whether this makes any sense or not.
It seems to me that leaving paleo means adding back crappy oils, pasta and bread and the like. Oh and let's not forget about the processed food he needs to start eating again. If he seriously thinks that that is going to be his salvation he is not as smart as I thought it was.
I thought the point of this diet was to focus on quality of foods, rather than quantity of macronutrients.
Itching after eat 6-8 oz of beef, return of seasonal allergies, development of lipomas, cramping and tension... those don't sound like symptoms of a high fat diet, they sound like allergies, genetic predisposition and either dehydration or possibly stress caused by worrying about lipomas, allergies and itching.
If his new diet works for him, great. Other than my family, I do not care what other people eat... I'm not a vegan.
Looks like he'll be speaking at the Ancestral Health Symposium about "shamanism as evolutionary medicine". Would be incredibly interesting to hear what he has to say. Report back here in a month people!
Don's new thinking just seems to be a sort of extension of the higher carb rice and potatoes based paleo. Maybe he sets up a low carb straw man, but whatever. I will wait to see where he takes it in future posts.
on the one hand, it all boils down to the issue of clear and strict definition / interpretation - or rather lack of it - of what is "paleo": and for this reason, he could just as well have claimed to discover the "true paleo" rather than abandoning "paleo" concept altogether
on the other hand, if his description of "paleo" (="animal-based, relatively high in protein and fat and relatively low in carbohydrate") is correct, than there is an issue that it is (quite likely) IMPOSSIBLE [[[i, for one, personally tend to believe so]]] to have both the paleo content (foods / macro ratio) and the modern neolithic form (feeding pattern): that is, if one goes "animal-based, relatively high in protein and fat and relatively low in carbohydrate" while eating three square meals a day as they used to with non-paleo way of eating, there is a possibility they would end up with all those unpleasant issues he blamed paleo for
Paleo made me feel sick as a dog, and I gave it a fair try.
Plus, and not to be rude, but has anyone seen what Loren Cordain looks like lately? Not exactly a poster boy for paleo. Sorry, I know that sounds awful, but someone has to say it.