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So Easy A Caveman Can Do It!

January 5, 2010

As you know by now, I’m a big fan of Mark Sisson’s blog, MarksDailyApple.com and his book, Primal Blueprint.  You can’t help but get lost in his site because one post takes you to great info which leads to another great post with relevant info, etc., etc.  I could use some help in that area!  I guess what I’m getting at is that a person truly interested in their health, with good science to back it up, will really enjoy this site (and its humor).

Last week, Mark helped clear up some confusion going on in the Primal/Paleo world.  According to Mark’s Post:
“Julio Mercader of the University of Calgary examined a variety of tools (scrapers, grinders, points, flakes, and drills) he and others retrieved from an excavation site in Northwest Mozambique. Based on dating of surrounding sediment layers, Mercader estimated the age of the oldest tools to be approximately 100,000 years old. Some 80% of the tools he found tested positive for sorghum starch residue, which – he says – suggests that sorghum was used as a food source at the time.”

This research caused a lot of hub-bub on many websites last week, including that of the Paleo Diet’s founder, Loren Cordain.  Opinions from both sides came out to play on this topic pointing out this as a flaw in the Paleolithic Age; that grains were indeed a staple of the caveman.  Those “Pro-Paleo” claim this was not a flaw because it would have been inefficient for folks in that time frame to process food and would have only done so were regular staple items not readily available and this merely showed a possible step they took in a time of survival.  My personal favorite flaw to finding a tool with sorghum residue was Mark’s when he pointed out that the tools with sorghum were not eating instruments/tools.  The sorghum was used in other ways OR in addition to eating.  The quotes in the box above were part of my comment on the topic which later showed up in Sunday’s post as the Comment of the Week.  I’m expecting my prize money to hit the mail any day now.  🙂

Grains are highly touted in the carbohydrate eating world.  Complex grains are the best, right?  But at the heart of many grains is gluten.  And gluten is not what our stomachs were designed to take in.  I’ll open this up to a little debate, but try this on for size and report back:  Stay off of grains for a week and substitute it for good old fashioned fats – fats coming from nuts, olive oil, animal, etc.  No trans fats or fried foods, mind you.  Then report back how it felt.  Ever heard of casein free/gluten free diets?  Gluten free is becoming a household term and is appearing on many foods as well as restaurant menus.  Gluten contributes to celiac disease and irritation in the gut.  While research is still pending, many believe autism is also related to ingesting gluten.

The Washington Post also gave the Primal/Paleo Diet some love this past week.  Is this diet so easy even a caveman could do it?  The evidence still says yes.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Kevin permalink
    January 5, 2010 8:59 am

    I think you hit the nail on the head here. Even if paleolithic man were ingesting grains, it doesn’t mean that grains are instantly ok. The body’s reaction to gluten tells the whole story, giant insulin spike, gut irritation. It all builds on itself, because your gut is irritated you aren’t absorbing as many nutrients from your diet as you should be. All the while you are getting an insulin spike from eating grains, opening the body up for fat storage and sending your blood sugar for a ride.

    We humans just do so much better without poisoning ourselves with gluten, the fact that celiac is even in existence speaks volumes to the validity that we aren’t designed to digest grains. As you mentioned in your comment to Mark if they find an instrument used to dig through sabre toothed tiger poo, does that mean they ate that too?

    The market is saturated with processed foods, the government tells us to eat lots of whole grains, and obesity is at an all time high. Sifting through the misinformation is becoming quite difficult!

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