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Answers from the BJC Experts

Ask the BJC Expert allows you to get the answers you need about a variety of health, medicine and exercise issues to help you live a more healthy life.

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What is the Paleo recipe craze? Is it healthy?

Loren Cordain is acclaimed as the founder of The Paleo Diet Movement. His 2010 popular book, "The Paleo Diet," is based upon eating wholesome, contemporary foods from the food groups our hunter-gatherer ancestors would have thrived on during the Paleolithic era — the time period from about 2.6 million years ago to the beginning of the agricultural revolution, about 10,000 years ago.

These foods include fresh meats (beef, pork, lamb, poultry and game meat), fish, seafood, fresh fruits, vegetables, seeds, nuts and healthful oils (olive, coconut, avocado, macadamia, walnut and flaxseed).

Foods not consumed by our Paleolithic ancestors include dairy products, cereal grains, legumes, refined sugars and processed foods, so they are not included in the menu. 

Mr. Cordain is a professor in the Department of Health and Exercise Science at Colorado State University. His education includes a bachelor's degree in health sciences from Pacific University, a master's degree in physical education from the University of Nevada-Reno and a Ph.D. in health from the University of Utah.

Omitting entire food groups is generally not seen as a viable, long-term eating option. Although we can all benefit from reducing our consumption of refined sugars and processed foods, the total elimination of dairy, cereal grains an legumes would be a cause for concern related to essential vitamins and minerals. 

Talk with your physician or make an appointment with a registered dietitian to get more feedback.

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