Today, I’m picking a fight with the Paleo diet.
As you look ahead to New Years and think about trying to get healthier, this is information you need to take into consideration, especially if you have been eating Paleo, because you will soon learn why the downsides (there are MANY) absolutely outweigh any upsides (and there ARE many things I like about it).
Now, I’ll be honest. There’s a lot I do like about the Paleo diet. For starters, it’s anti-sugar. Anything that helps Americans eat less sugar can’t be all bad.
It has also helped a lot of people transition away from a grain-based diet and dairy, both of which are highly acidic, clogging, and damaging to your gut lining.
And because it’s a dairy and grain-free, it has led to many people noticing how much better they feel when they avoid these toxic substances.
Last but not least, it stresses the importance of eating more vegetables, which is the staple and foundation of the Alkaline Diet.
But that’s where my admiration ends and I have to pick a fight.
Two words – PROTEIN and SUGAR!
First and foremost, the Paleo Diet doesn’t place any limits on high net-carb vegetables, fruits (which many are high in the sugar fructose), and other sugars high in fructose, such as honey and coconut sugar.
Remember – SUGAR IS SUGAR in all forms, even fruit!
Second, the Paleo philosophy prescribes that people should eat a diet of 38% protein and 39% fat. This amounts to far too much protein, and not nearly enough fat in your daily diet.
And many Americans have bought into this idea, believing that you just can’t get enough protein.
This could not be further from the truth. Yes, protein is necessary and important. Our bodies can’t function without it.
But eating too much protein can lead to all sorts of health problems including:
- Overly taxed kidneys
- Weight gain/increased body fat
- Mineral loss in bones
- Yeast infections/fungal infections
For example, research shows that excess animal protein is linked with osteoporosis, kidney disease, calcium stones in the urinary tract, and some cancers.
Increasing red meat intake by more than half a serving per day raises the risk for type 2 diabetes by 48 percent.
According to a Harvard study, people can live up to 20 percent longer by eliminating or at least reducing how much red meat they eat. People who ate the highest levels of red meat died the youngest, most often from colon cancer and cardiovascular diseases.
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU EAT TOO MUCH?
Let’s take a closer look at what happens when you consume more protein than you need.
Your body starts converting excess protein to sugar, which can be stored as fat.
All that extra sugar can increase blood sugar levels, feed yeast and fungus in the body, and even fuel the growth of cancer cells.
So excess protein could not only make you fat, it could also make you inflamed and chronically sick!
That might explain why protein-restricted diets have been shown to lengthen your life span, according to several other studies. It’s believed that eating less of a specific amino acid present in meat is responsible for this added longevity.
PROTEIN IS ACIDIC. PERIOD.
Protein is a double-edged sword. By itself, it is highly acidic and toxic because of the sulfuric acid, phosphoric acid, ammonia, and urea it produces as it’s metabolized.
Second, proteins use up your mineral reserves by neutralizing the acids and toxins in your body (that the meat produced in the first place).
Lastly, as I mentioned above, consuming too much protein can actually produce sugar in your liver! And we know by now, SUGAR = ACID = GLUE.
How much protein do you really need?
The average American consumes three to five times more protein than they require, which gets will be converted to sugar when metabolized.
It’s a fact that Americans eat too much, too often, and the wrong kind. In addition to quantity (eating far too much), the quality could be the most damaging component to your health.
I always like to approach things like this with common sense.
At what stage in our life do we grow the fastest, develop muscles the fastest, and therefore require the most protein?
As babies of course!
And what is the best possible food for babies? Breast milk has only 3 to 5% protein, so that’s all that Mother Nature in her infinite wisdom chose.
Don’t believe that’s enough?
Look at some of the largest and strongest mammals on earth that eat a 100% plant-based diet, such like cows, hippos, elephants, gorillas, and my favorite, the rhino. While they metabolize vegetables and proteins differently, and have different enzymes, let’s look at the take away from this.
These are powerful animals and their bodies get all the protein that they could ever need from eating greens They’re really eating an alkaline diet when you think about it!
The CDC recommends around 46 grams of protein per day for women and 56 grams for men.
But again, most Americans eat 3 to 5 times this recommendation! That is way too much and your health, weight, and complexion is paying the price!
Excess acid needs to be eliminated from your body, and when you eat too much protein from meat, it gets stored as FAT, as well as eliminated via the largest organ in your body, your skin. This causes blemishes, wrinkles, brittle hair and nails, and overall advanced aging.
So how does all that protein translate into actual food?
- An 8-ounce steak has approximately 62 grams of protein. (Yes, that’s more than the total recommended value for a whole day!) Remember, beef is highly acidic
- A 6-ounce salmon filet has 34 grams of protein. Salmon is mildly alkaline or mildly acidic, depending on where it is caught. Pacific or Alaskan wild-caught USED to be the best source, until Fukushima. Now, I like sourcing wild-caught from Norway, Spain, and New Zealand.
- 6 ounces of chicken has 45 grams of protein. Chicken is acidic, and in Chinese medicine, it is inflammatory.
- An egg contains about 7 grams of protein. 1 egg has over 1 million bacterial forms, which makes them acidic.
- A half of a cup of almonds has 15 grams of protein. Raw almonds are alkaline (4 almonds equals 1 gram).
- A half-cup of cooked adzuki beans contains about 20 grams of protein. Adzuki beans (and other smaller beans) are high in protein and alkaline (but please soak first to remove any anti-nutrients).
- 3 tablespoons of chia seeds contain 4 grams of protein. These are highly alkaline.
- A half-cup of cooked quinoa has 4 grams of protein. Quinoa is NOT a grain like most are led to believe. It is a seed and alkaline.
As you can see, you don’t need to eat a steak every day to get enough protein. In fact, if you’re eating meat of any kind every day, you’re probably eating too much protein.
If you are a meat eater, try to limit your consumption to no more than 2 to 3 times a week, and always use the good/better/best approach. Red meat that comes from animals fed with pro-inflammatory Omega-6 fats like corn and soy is the WORST.
Grass fed meat would be better. And your best option would be wild-caught cold water fish high in anti-inflammatory Omega-3 fats, such as salmon, anchovies, sardines, trout, and herring.
If you combine a few plant-based protein sources each day and eat animal proteins every now and then as part of the only 20% acid you’re aiming for in your diet, you’ll get plenty of protein. Meat should always be the “side show” and not the main event of your meal. When you eat less of it, you can spend the extra few dollars to get the good stuff.
Here is the ideal food plate, called the GET OFF YOUR ACID Food Plate.
You will learn more about this, and the brand-new food pyramid I created in my NEW book launching January 9, entitled GET OFF YOUR ACID – 7 Steps in 7 Days to Lose Weight, Fight Inflammation, and Reclaim Your Health & Energy!
It is on pre-sale now, so pick up a copy for yourself, or a post-Christmas gift for a friend or a loved one in the New Year!