A new study involving over 20,000 people revealed what I (and many others) have been talking about for a long time: diets closer to what previous generations ate are overall healthier.
This study, published in the Journal of Nutrition, revealed that people on either the Paleo or the Mediterranean diet experience lower "mortality" (death).
What is even more interesting is that fact that this was proven true not just for "all cause" mortality, but also for mortality from specific diseases, including cancer and cardiovascular disease (heart disease).
Do you have to eat like our ancestors to get these benefits? I don't believe so.
My view (based on all the research I've done over the years) is that avoiding foods that do not exist in nature can dramatically improve your health.
However this is easier said than done, because sometimes it's not clear what is even "in" the food we're eating.
I'll give you some practical guidelines:
- Avoid processed foods (that's an easy one).
- Avoid most foods with a "label" and a list of ingredients.
- Vegetables: eat organic as often as possible, since pesticides and herbicides have been shown to be a potential cause for cancer, gut microbiome disruption, diabetes and more.
- Avoid grain-fed and non-organic animal products: always eat grass-fed, free-range organic. It's not "animal protein" that causes disease, it's the "bad quality" animal protein that does.
- Same goes for dairy: from grass-fed organic sources only (unless you want all these antibiotics and inflammation markers in your milk!).
- Avoid farmed fish (often fed genetically modified soy and corn) and eat wild.
- Avoid sugary drinks and artificial sweeteners.
- Avoid genetically modified grains (90% of grains today, especially wheat, corn and soy).
Now if you want to "take it to the next level", then you can fine-tune even more and eat closer to your personal ancestry / genetics.
For example, I feel a lot better after eating lamb and goat meat vs. beef. I don't feel well after eating rice. I've come to realise over the years that the closer I stick to my own ancestral diet (Mediterranean), the better I feel and perform.
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