Warning: This is less about paleo diet and more on paleo philosophy. Skip it if this does not interest you!
The paleo diet has worked wonders for me. I am so glad I found it at a relatively young age, and I really am grateful to the great community which helped me get here.
I am a man of science. When I am not acting like a caveman, I actually design/construct/manage mine sites as an engineer. Naturally, my mind is very logic oriented. With my work, I consider every permutation of a situation or idea that I can think of and hopefully come out to a conclusion which satisfies me. In time, if new information comes to light, I adjust my conclusion accordingly. This is how I work.
When I found the paleo diet, it made sense. I thought about it and considered all the philosophy and science behind it, and I couldn’t fault the logic. It worked. It was great. But halfway through I found myself with this nagging feeling that I didn’t want to accept. I pushed it to the back of my mind, until recently when I saw a question (“What are some arguments against the paleo diet?”) that opened the floodgates and made me sit-down and write this post.
The paleo diet is unsustainable on a global scale.
When we look at the past century we have seen a major population explosion. With this explosion, comes the requirement for food to support all these people. The only food which is able to be mass produced for worldwide consumption and provides the most energy per gram are the grain based carbohydrates. Here in lies the problem, the availability of genetically modified grains that are able to grow in any season gave us the capacity to grow, however it has now locked us in to using them, or suffer mass starvation.
The world must eat grains or face starvation
I believe the dietary associations of the major western governments push grains and carbohydrates to such an extreme, because they understand that concept. We simply don’t have the capacity to supply the meat/fish/eggs/fats the paleo diet requires to the 6 billion people on this planet. Imagine tomorrow if the dietary body of the government decreed, that everyone should drop the bread and pasta and go get some bacon if they want to lose fat and get healthy. We are talking a major shift, not just politically but economically, environmentally and socially.
So what’s the solution? I have no idea.
The paleo diet works for me. It works for my family. I am so grateful that I have the means to buy healthy paleo foods to feed myself and my loved ones. But what about the rest of the world? Is the paleo diet only for the rich? Is a smaller population the answer? Should governments keep pushing grain-based diets even though it is killing us for the sake of feeding us? All these questions really get me deep in thought, and I really have no answers. I have no idea.