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The Paleolithic or Caveman Diet is based on consuming berries, nuts, lean grass-fed meats and fish. Proponents of the diet claim that human genes evolved over thousands of years to optimize metabolism from eating these natural foods. Industrialization changed the human diet suddenly to include the consumption of grains and calorie-dense, high fat, processed foods. Food choices also increased dramatically, which promoted overeating and overconsumption of unhealthy foods. Researchers from Eastern Michigan University found that middle-aged adults consuming a Paleolithic diet low in grains experienced substantial decreases in total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, triglycerides and increased HDL (the good cholesterol). These changes occurred after they had first consumed a traditional cholesterol-lowering diet. Critics of the Paleolithic diet point out that the diets of ancient humans varied greatly from one place to another, so that it is unlikely that metabolically linked genes adapted uniformly.


(Nutrition Research, 35: 474-479, 2015)