Recently I came across something called the “Paleo Diet”. Being a curious sort I decided to look into it. Oddly enough it’s one of the very few that I can give any credence to. It makes more sense than any of the other diets out there with names. I did some rather extensive research on it and came to a few conclusions about it. I’ll be using it as a guideline for my own food choices, and I will certainly put my own research to use. I won’t be following it though, I have some rather heavy issues with it.
This all got me to thinking about something related to diets and dieting. Extremism exists even in diets, never forget that. I tend to be a middle of the road person, meaning that I avoid extreme views in most things. Why is it that so many diets and lifestyles are so restrictive based upon seemingly arbitrary principles?
The Paleo diet hails itself as a way to get back to the way our ancestors ate. A couple of the biggest components seem to be avoidance of grains, dairy, and legumes. Weird I thought to myself, ancient man consumed all those things. Ancient man consumed anything he could get his hands on. After we found fire, we cooked things which kinda negates the raw food fanatics too come to think of it. Why is it that people don’t bother to learn some world history? Oh well, at least the name suits the reason behind the diet, even if the entire premise is flawed. Still, I can’t promote or follow something that is flawed from the outset.
Other diets are just as guilty. The followers and enthusiastic promoters and supporters of these diets have fallen prey to the flawed logic. They all take an extreme (flawed) view and spread it like gospel.
Vegans and vegetarians are all over the place on their reasoning, from one flawed argument to another. I’ve heard them say that they are vegan because we are herbivores, because it’s unethical to kill animals, because they are protesting the treatment of farm animals, and a few other reasons. Frankly the only one that I can wrap my head around is that one about protesting the treatment of farm animals. Even then I wonder why they don’t just buy meat from a responsible farmer, the same way other vegans buy produce. If you think that we are herbivores, I feel sorry for you. Go do some research on why beans make humans flatulent, find out that we lack the enzymes to digest beans properly. You want to be a vegan, fine. Be a vegan but at least use a reason that makes sense, not one that is based upon flawed logic or arbitrary ethics.
I have my OWN diet. I tend to (try) to eat like MY ancestors. The ones who actually lived, not some idealized notion. I keep in mind the “Inuit paradox” and remember that the “China Study” has been debunked. I will remember that humans are built to ADAPT and SURVIVE. We are able to eat a great many more things than most animals out there. Grains and cereals may be good things, but all things in moderation is the key. Dairy isn’t unethical or evil, it is misunderstood and mistreated. Eating flesh does not make me evil, it is part of my spiritual path. Vegetables are good for you, try a new one if you can. Sugar is not bad for you, but too much IS. starting to get a clue? The problem with most diets is that they tell you to eat too much of something, or to stop eating something. Think before you eat.