As a jame. Camille Joubert’s column is broadcast daily on Jimmy Gourmaud’s “Sea Jamie” program from Monday to Friday at 5:00 pm on France 5.
Fruits, vegetables, seeds, and lots of protein: The Paleolithic Diet (or the Paleo Diet) has gained a lot of followers around the world. Behind this diet hides a very doubtful scientific reason, as the diet of our ancestors is more adapted to our body than what we eat in the modern era.
The Paleolithic period was most distinguished in our digestive system
The paleo diet consists of eating like our distant ancestors, and today it has millions of followers. The idea came from a book by Dr. Walter L. Weigtlin in 1975. According to him, our modern diet is harmful to our body, with which we did not have time to evolve to adapt. But if our current diet is not appropriate, it remains to be determined which diet to recommend, which is what radiologist Stanley Boyd Eaton raises, who took over the torch in 1985. For him, it is the Paleolithic system, which happened 3 million years ago. Around 10,000 BC, because it is the longest period in human history, and thus would have characterized our digestive system more strongly.
This makes sense, but it is quite the opposite. In fact, our DNA can evolve very quickly: our ability to digest lactose, for example, was prevalent in Europe only 5,000 years ago, to the extent that it is present today in 70 to 90% of the population.
It is difficult to define a typical plate over 3 million years
But even if the logic is wrong, is the paleo diet good for your health? To find out, the first hurdle is determining what the fishermen ate at the time. Again, it’s a bit silly: Defining a typical dish over a period of nearly 3 million years doesn’t make much sense. But suppose they had to eat fruit, vegetables, seeds, lean meat, fish, and eggs. Goodbye to dairy products, grains, legumes and all their derivatives such as oil or beer. And yes, the latter only appeared in the Neolithic period, with the first agricultural revolution.
More protein, less sugar
Cutting out ultra-processed foods and preferring fruits and vegetables is a good idea for your health. In contrast, the paleo diet includes a lot of protein – up to 35% of the daily ration instead of the recommended 12%, and it does not contain enough glucose – the sugars. The slow sugars of grains and legumes, which are not found in the paleo diet, are really necessary for the body to function properly. Our bodies can produce sugars from protein, but it’s an expensive mechanism. Replacing sugars with proteins also leads to an overproduction of waste products that tire the kidneys over time.
No need to try to imitate our ancestors: the key to our success for millions of years is that we can eat anything! Balanced eating is really good.