"I saw few die of hunger; of eating, a hundred thousand." -Ben Franklin

Thursday, June 9, 2011

A Look at the US News Diet Ranking and the Paleo Infographic

A few days ago, US News ranked the Paleo Diet as #20 (out of 20) on its "Best Diets Overall" list. This is completely ridiculous and kind of ironic because, as of the time that I'm writing this blog (5:45PM on June 9th), Paleo has the most "yes" votes out of all of the diets for the "Did this diet work for you?" question, with 113 votes. The highest-ranked diet (DASH) only had 3 "yes" votes, and the next-highest "working" diet was Atkins (ranked #19) with 25 votes. So this makes perfect sense-- the lowest-ranked diet seems to work for the most people... or, perhaps, all of the enraged Paleo enthusiasts (myself included) clicked "Yes" to show support.

Regardless... this list is bogus, because when you look at the breakdown/statistics of Paleo, the two major "cons" are "Goodbye to grains and dairy" and "pricey" --which aren't bad at all (and you can make super-cheap Paleo/Primal meals)-- and none of the statistics are conclusive or informative, such as follows:
-Will you lose weight? No way to tell.
-Does it have cardiovascular benefits? Unknown.
-Can it prevent or control diabetes? Unknown.
-Are there health risks? Possibly. By shunning dairy and grains, you're at risk of missing out on a lot of nutrients.

This is absolutely ridiculous, because if the people actually did their research, they'd know that 1) Paleo will help most SAD people lose weight, 2) It will prevent and control diabetes, and 3) You can get the nutrients in dairy and grains by eating vegetables. I'm not a doctor, but I've read the Paleo books and the scientific papers and peer-reviewed studies that show all of the health benefits of the Paleo lifestyle... so I highly encourage you to read Dr. Loren Cordain's response to this for a more detailed explanation that cites many of these studies. Also, Sarah Fragoso (of Everyday Paleo) has this great "Stay Positive. Eat Food. Keep it Simple." post to tell you just that: stay positive, eat food, and keep it simple.... and don't listen to these "experts." Like I said a few posts ago: do your research and learn to keep questioning these articles and Conventional Wisdom.

On a more positive note, it's really interesting to see how SADieters react to eating Paleo/Primal for a few days, because they immediately notice the difference. We recently had some family members stay with us for a few days, and my cousin remarked to me how much better she felt after eating our Paleo/Primal meals than when she ate stuff at home, and my aunt kept talking about how much better she felt and how much energy she had after eating healthier. They even asked me to photocopy the Primal Palate recipe from Paleo Magazine for them to take back home! (Speaking of which, the first issue of the magazine was amazing-- I highly recommend subscribing to it or buying the online version of the issue!)
So if you still haven't tried Paleo, just give it a few days: you'll immediately notice the difference. Once you go Paleo, you'll never be "SAD" again!

Further, take a look at the infographic that just came out today from PaleolithicDiet.com. It provides really fascinating information and statistics and is really easy to read and understand:
Paleolithic Diet Explained

Quote of the Day:
"As much as 90% of published medical information that doctors rely on is flawed." -Paleo Infographic


  1. I just found your blog via PaleoHacks. Thanks for pointing out that paleo was the most upvoted diet on the awful US news diet ranking- I'd seen the line-up (which was depressing) but not noticed the voting. Personally I think the whole ranking was flawed by the fact that paleo isn't a diet, it's a theory about what a good diet is. It's no surprise that ranking diets according to the 'low fat diet = good' theory, the high fat 'diets' did poorly!

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  5. There is a problem here, the beginning of agriculture and consumption of grains is debated. some say humans began eating grains 100,000 yrs ago, not just 10,000. Also, celiac disease is not a reason for the paleo diet, celiac disease is a lack of tolerance for gluten. Many gluten free substitutes are not allowed on the paleo diet, yet people who have celiac disease seem to be fine eating them.

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