Paleo Diet, Why it's Popular, Why Avoid Potatoes?

Eating Paleo seems to be all the rage these days.  Many people see it as a way of life.  Others see it as a diet fad.  In any case, the concept of eating paleo came from Walter Voegtlin in the 1970's.  Later, in the 1980's there was an article published in The New England Journal of Medicine, called Paleolithic Nutrition.  The authors Stanley Boyd Eaton and Melvin Konner discussed the benefits of the Paleo Diet in the modern world.  The idea behind this diet is that we as humans  should be feeding our bodies with real food not processed foods. I think it's important to understand the foods that are allowed when following the Paleo diet.  Understanding why this diet can be helpful for those with gut and autoimmune issues and some of the common misconceptions of the paleo diet.  The diet focuses on whole foods rather than processed foods.  It also focuses on foods that are low in carbohydrates, sugars and sodium.  Due to the nature of the diet, it can be used to heal a number of auto-immune diseases.  When processed foods, grains, legumes and dairy are cut out diet, the gut can start to heal.

The SAD (standard American diet) has run a muck on most peoples gut.  Probiotics can help but changing your diet is the biggest game changer.  Changing your diet to a more clean eating model (paleo, keto, AIP, etc.) can help.  Paleo isn't the answer for everyone.  Especially if you are not armed with the right information.

This is what prompted me to write this post.  I follow a few people on Instagram who are paleo recipe developers.  The problem with some is that potato (not sweet potatoes but all others) ends up being part of recipes.  According to the originators of the paleo movement, potato is not a food that should be included in this diet.

The paleo diet focuses on low carbohydrate, high protein and high fat food intake.  Most people consume potatoes on a daily or weekly basis.  Potatoes are one of the highest glycemic foods. When you eat potatoes (fresh, frozen, dehydrated and chips) it spikes your blood sugar levels.  The break down of potatoes in the body turns into glucose (sugar).  The body doesn't know the difference between sugar from fruit, potatoes, candy, etc.  To the body, sugar is sugar.

Another negative aspect about potatoes is they contain antinutrients.  Antinutrients are compounds in various foods like beans, grains, legumes, nuts and potatoes (not sweet potato).  These compounds restrict absorption of vitamins, minerals and nutrients.  The two antinutrients in white potato varieties (saponins) can have toxic effects on the body.  So much so that in high amounts, it could be deadly.

Potato and potato derivatives are in a lot of processed foods.  It can be as plain as day or hidden.  One of the main "hidden" potato ingredients I've found is dextrose and maltodextrin.  These can be derived from corn, potato, rice or wheat.  Either way, following a paleo or clean eating diet, these ingredients are not part of the plan.  Staying away from processed foods is.  Eating low glycemic foods is.

So, whether you are following a strict paleo type diet or not, staying away from potato is a good idea.

Ciao,

Val

Disclaimer: The information on this website (Alt Yoga Vibe) is for informational purposes only and does not substitute for medical treatment.  If you are experiencing any severe symptoms, please consult a healthcare practitioner.

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Sources:

http://www.mitodascalorias.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/Voegtlin_1975_The_Stone_Age_Diet.pdf

http://thepaleodiet.com/are-potatoes-paleo/

https://ultimatepaleoguide.com/potatoes-paleo/