The New Evolution Diet: What Our Paleolithic Ancestors Can Teach Us about Weight Loss, Fitness, and Aging
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Believe it or not, our DNA is almost exactly the same as that of our ancestors. While scientific advances in agriculture, medicine, and technology have protected man, to some degree, from dangers such as starvation, illness, and exposure, the fact remains that our cave-dwelling cousins were considerably healthier than we are. Our paleolithic ancestors did not suffer from heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, or obesity. In fact, a good deal of what we view as normal aging is a modern condition that is more akin to disease than any natural state of growing older.
Our predecessors were incomparably better nourished than we are, and were incredibly physically fit. And certainly none of them ever craved a doughnut, let alone tasted one. In fact, the human preference for sweet tastes and fatty textures was developed in an environment where such treats were rare, and signaled dense, useful energy. This once-helpful adaptation is the downfall of many a dieter today. It's what makes it hard to resist fats and sweets, especially when they are all around us.
We are not living as we were built to live. Our genes were forged in an environment where activity was mandatory―you were active or you starved or were eaten. This created strong selective pressure for genes encoding a smart, physically adept individual capable of very high activity levels. Humans are among the most active of species, and we carry energetically expensive brains to boot. Our energy expenditures rank high among all animals. At least they once did.
The New Evolution Diet by Arthur De Vany, PhD is a roadmap back to the better health our ancestors once enjoyed. By eliminating modern foods, including carbohydrates, dairy, and all processed foods from our diets, we can undo much of the damage caused by our modern food environment. The plan is based on three simple principles:
1. Enjoy the pleasure of food and do not count or restrict calories. Eat three satisfying meals a day filled with non-starchy vegetables, fruits, and high-quality, lean proteins
2. Do not starve yourself, but do go hungry episodically, for brief periods, to promote a low fasting blood insulin level and increase metabolic fat-burning.
3. Exercise less, not more, but with more playfulness and intensity. The goal is to create a strong body with a high resting metabolism and a large physiologic capacity to move through life easily―not to burn calories.
diseases result in gross body asymmetry. For our purposes, being in symmetry means you’re probably in good shape. It shows you’ve attained balance in movement and in muscle groups, so there is less chance of injury while working out. After the barbell row exercise, I move on to the chest workout, specifically the upper part of the pectoral muscles, just under your collarbone, which is where you need strength most. I find that weightlifters devote too much effort to building a massive chest,
will stay younger and smarter than joggers, who actually lose those vital three kinds of tissue as they run. If there is a fountain of youth to be found at the gym, it is strength training. Weight lifting silences or reduces the expression of at least thirty genes that promote ageing. It produces an acute use of energy restriction and, therefore, mimics some of the effect of calorie restriction. Individuals as old as 90 respond well to weight training and can double their strength within a few
grains, beans and legumes, and milk that cause acidification and offers the plant polyphenols and other compounds that reduce inflammation. In a later chapter, I discuss the dietary supplements I take to enhance my health, but the subject also deserves mention here. A key effect of inflammation is the depletion of glutathione, one of the key antioxidants present in the supplements I take. It increases the permeability of tissues in the body, which in turn allows immune-system cells to heal
Nutrition, 2008, 8, 1263–71. BODY COMPOSITION AND AGEING Research tells us that loss of muscle mass is associated with ageing and may even be what ageing really is. One review summarises the connection thus: sarcopenia is associated with a reduction in muscle mass and strength occurring with normal ageing, associated with a reduction in motor unit number and atrophy of muscle fibres, especially the type IIx fibres (the fastest fibres). The loss of muscle mass with ageing is clinically
husky because metabolic syndrome causes fats and glycogen, a form of sugar, to build up in muscles, giving them a bigger look. Since he or she spends a lot of time sitting, an activity that promotes poor metabolism, someone with metabolic syndrome will have reduced muscle mass in the buttocks and legs – their trousers will just hang. Doctors say that apple-shaped obesity – where the fat is concentrated around the mid-section – indicates a strong likelihood of cardiac disease. A waistline of over