Can The Paleo Diet Actually Help You Burn Fat, Build Muscle And Feel Better?
We have heard more times than we can count that you can’t lose weight just by switching to a paleo (caveman) diet. True, but it can and usually does make it easier.
But, that’s not why we promote this lifestyle. As people who suffer from digestive issues and food intolerances, we have found through much trial and error that we FEEL better, are less sick, have more energy, and reach our goals whether building muscle or cutting fat more easily.
Being on a paleo based diet makes it easier to not overeat, but still doesn’t mean that you can eat as much as you want. Go off of a plan with goals of specific calories and macronutrients (fats/carbs/protein), but differs from IIFYM (If It Fits Your Macros) where you can eat anything as long as it fits your macros.
A good starting point is 35% Fats/20% Carbs/45% Proteins. DON’T GET OVERWHELMED there are cool tools like, the MyFitnessPal App, that makes it easy by allowing you to plug these goals in along with your current stats and what your goals are.
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Why are natural food sources important?
Eating sugar, grains, wheat and dairy on a regular basis causes many people to have inflammation in the body which contributes to extra water weight and bloating making you appear puffy and thick and many time preventing fat loss.
*Note* The only way to know if you have an issue with certain foods is to remove all processed foods from your system for 2-3 weeks and add one food back in at a time to see how your body reacts to it.
These foods can cause inflammation in your intestinal wall through such things as bacteria, allergens or other toxins. When food causes inflammatory responses in your gut, it affects your whole digestive system. The more inflammation we have in the intestines, the more toxins enter our bloodstream.
When this happens in your digestive system your body thinks there’s a foreign intruder and sends mastocytes and macrophages to get rid of the intruder. These cells start an immune-response process throughout your body by ingesting foreign elements and alerting the rest of your body’s protecting cells that intruders have entered the area. The macrophages attack the food your body doesn’t agree with as a foreign invader.
This causes your whole body to start attacking these foods and causes inflammation in your bloodstream. Eating these foods could be like having an infection that triggers an immune response which causes the inflammation.
Intestinal inflammation can also be triggered by fat and blood sugar. One of your body’s functions is to send glucose in to feed brain cells and inflammation in your body prevents sugar from getting to those cells, so you end up craving more glucose so you eat more sugary foods, which then increases inflammation and starts the whole cycle again.
While keeping our body fat at a healthy level is important, we should also focus on decreasing our body’s inflammatory response. Genetics and food intolerances play a role in inflammation too – some us have more than others, and smokers usually have a higher level of inflammation than non-smokers), but the process of gaining fat can be caused by ongoing inflammation.
When you can decrease your body’s inflammatory response, you can also decrease your body fat and your waist size as well!
So how hardcore are we? Do I believe that our caveman ancestors drank coconut milk coffee creamer? No. Do we stick with ONLY lean cuts of meat and raw nuts? No, pass the cocoa & coconut almond butter please! We choose to stick to “paleo” about 90% of the time. We drink protein shakes (although we try to find more natural ones) and have a cheat meal of our choosing once a week. But for the most part we stick to natural eating. No dairy, no sugar, no grains. “Yes, it’s hard at first!” But, the more you work at it, the more natural it becomes and the better you look and feel.
We feel so much better this way that we don’t even want to eat those foods anymore.
What about people that don’t have known intolerances?
We suggest everyone to make these changes for the first month of their program and then slowly introduce healthy options that aren’t strictly paleo to see how they react. Most stick with this lifestyle because they feel that much better! We have never had anyone try it out and not say that they didn’t feel better in some way or another, mostly an increase in energy and less bloating overall.
Let Us Know If You Have Any Questions In The Comments Below!
How Can We Help You? Contact Us At Ryan@FlexFitAZ.com or 480.442.3539“>480.442.3539