Unless you've been living in a cave-like our Paleolithic ancestors for whom the diet was named-you've certainly heard of the Paleo diet by now.
But after the World Health Organization (WHO) released a report last fall linking meat with increased cancer risk, many Paleo eaters took note. And with good reason: it's not the first study to link meat with higher rates of cancer, heart disease, and other illnesses. Additionally, though the Paleo diet is usually associated with high meat consumption, current studies suggest our early ancestors probably ate less meat than we originally thought.
So what's a would-be Paleo dieter to do? Take the naturally gluten-free caveman diet meat-free! Focus on fresh, organic vegetables, fruits, nuts, and seeds. If you're really concerned about getting enough protein, make concessions to the typical Paleo regimen by adding some lentils or beans to your diet, or add eggs for a vegetarian-not vegan-take on the typical Paleo diet. And try these delicious meat- and-grain free selections that are sure to please every palate, Paleo or not
Paleo Vegan Recipes
- Cabbage Rolls with Toasted Walnuts & Tarragon-Mustard Sauce
- Cauliflower Gratin
- Spicy Sweet Potato & Collard "Dosas"
What exactly does "Paleo" mean? Generally, it's thought to be composed of foods that were available to preagricultural humans, meaning no grains and legumes and, of course, no processed foods or artificial ingredients. The basics:
Grass-fed meat, poultry, and fish.
Fruits and vegetables are the cornerstone;
some Paleo diets restrict potato intake, while others are more forgiving of the tuber.
Nuts and seeds;
some seeds, like quinoa, behave more like grains in the body, so they are excluded from the diet.
All grains are excluded;
including corn, rice, oats, wheat, barley, and rye.