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"Long-term" effects of Primal Diet

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  • #31
    Originally posted by ASC View Post
    There are examples of certain groups of people that live long lives despite eating lots of the things that are unhealthy according to a primal diet. Take the Asian population for example. Any time I'm in China town I see lot of very old Asians that are still walking around and active. I'm Asian and my grand parents both lived into their 90's. They both ate lots of rice as a staple of their diet. If I'm lucky, I will hopefully live into my 90's also.

    So on one hand, "playing it safe" might be eating a diet like the Asian population so that hopefully I will living as long. On the other hand, there is eating a primal diet that seems to be much healthier, but the long term effects have yet to be seen. (When I say long-term, I mean the effects when a person who lives into their 60's, 70's, and 80's having eating primal for the majority of his/her life.)

    Why take the gamble? If I'm trying to live longer than my grandparents, who both died in their 90's, then perhaps I can live to be 100 years old. But what if there are longer term health conditions caused by a primal diet that only become apparent after 20 or 30 years eating that way. That might cause me to die at 50 or 60 years old. The cost/benefit ratio just doesn't seem to add up.

    Note: I really love eating primal. But recently, it just seems like it's not worth the gamble.
    I eat rice pretty much every day as part of primal, as do many on here. What else do you think is magic about these diets?
    Lifting Journal

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    • #32
      Originally posted by ASC View Post
      Is there a better option? I would say the a potential better option would be a diet that has proven to result in long lives of many people. Thus, I'm wondering if eating a diet like Asians is a better one.
      You would probably like the Jaminets, then.

      Perfect Health Diet

      Go forth. Eat rice. Be happy.
      Steph
      My Primal Meanderings

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      • #33
        Originally posted by cori93437 View Post
        I'd agree with that... pork, especially fatty pork was used in small portions as flavoring.

        But by keeping the rice amount reasonable, and including things like Asian root vegetables for some carb sources as well... you could still be totally Primal, and totally comfortable with eating like your own Asian family used to...
        Lotsa veg... fish, eggs... sounds good to me!

        Did you know that Marks own wife eats basically Ovo-Pescatarian Primal... Just sayn.
        cori's nailed it.

        Yes, why not eat primally Asian-style? There's a wealth of empirical evidence indicating that this is a very smart thing to do. Aspects of French and Mediterranean traditional diets are also worth considering for their proven benefits for health and longevity.
        F 5 ft 3. HW: 196 lbs. Primal SW (May 2011): 182 lbs (42% BF)... W June '12: 160 lbs (29% BF) (UK size 12, US size 8). GW: ~24% BF - have ditched the scales til I fit into a pair of UK size 10 bootcut jeans. Currently aligning towards 'The Perfect Health Diet' having swapped some fat for potatoes.

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        • #34
          Originally posted by jakey View Post
          i think you're getting hung up on how life expectancy is calculated. life expectancy was lower in the paleolithic due to the incidence of infant mortality, viruses & infections, and becoming a sabertooth tiger's breakfast.
          But the question still stands. To our ancestors, the greatest threats to survival/causes of death were not longevity-related, but rather illness/accidents/other dangerous aspects of everyday life. The upshot of this is what was critical for our ancestors was being strong, agile, and disease-free into middle age - and thus things that might have negative long-term effects once one reaches 50(or older) were really not all that important from an evolutionary/adaptation perspective.

          So I think it's a fair question - the odds are very good that such a diet is great for health/viability over the short and moderate-term, but I'm not sure the question of long-term effects has really been answered. Though in fairness, I don't believe the same questions have truly been answered regarding long-term effects of some components of the "standard" american diet, nor certain "safe"(as declared by the FDA) food additives, either.

          But just for the sake of inclusion:

          You can play with the macros all you want, but I don't see how you could ever want to step outside the "eat real food" paradigm, except for planned cheats.
          I wholeheartedly endorse this. I think one can argue about dietary breakdown, but it all probably still falls within this realm with the occasional supplement for micronutrients - if it means eating a bit more fish and a bit less red meat, or other similar variations, that would hardly be surprising(and probable, in fact).
          Last edited by jsa23; 04-05-2012, 03:29 AM.

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          • #35
            Originally posted by jsa23 View Post
            But the question still stands. To our ancestors, the greatest threats to survival/causes of death were not longevity-related, but rather illness/accidents/other dangerous aspects of everyday life. The upshot of this is what was critical for our ancestors was being strong, agile, and disease-free into middle age - and thus things that might have negative long-term effects once one reaches 50(or older) were really not all that important from an evolutionary/adaptation perspective.

            So I think it's a fair question - the odds are very good that such a diet is great for health/viability over the short and moderate-term, but I'm not sure the question of long-term effects has really been answered. Though in fairness, I don't believe the same questions have truly been answered regarding long-term effects of some components of the "standard" american diet, nor certain "safe"(as declared by the FDA) food additives, either.
            I agree, it still stands.

            The question of long-term effects cannot possibly be answered with hard scientific data until decades down the line. Until then all we have to go on is theory, plus limited evidence for short to medium-term benefits.

            So the pragmatic thing to do is eat and live 'primally' based on practicable traditional diets/ways of life for which solid supporting data are available. Also, as with most things in life, it's sensible not to take things to extremes.
            F 5 ft 3. HW: 196 lbs. Primal SW (May 2011): 182 lbs (42% BF)... W June '12: 160 lbs (29% BF) (UK size 12, US size 8). GW: ~24% BF - have ditched the scales til I fit into a pair of UK size 10 bootcut jeans. Currently aligning towards 'The Perfect Health Diet' having swapped some fat for potatoes.

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            • #36
              Originally posted by ASC View Post
              I've been mostly eating primal for about a year now and it's gone very well. But some questions are still lingering in my mind and I'm really starting to question if I should continue to eat this way.

              Our ancestors evolved eating a particular way and what they ate is likely closer to what is best for our bodies. However, our ancestors only lived to perhaps 30 years old or so. Since we are living far past this age, how do we know that primal eating is optimal for us past the age of 30?

              It's possible that certain types of foods don't take a toll on us until later in life and that our ancestors never reached an age where they would come across these issues.

              In the end, is there any evidence that eating primal is optimal into our older years?
              You are full of shit. No way you've been eating primal for a year or even 7 days or you wouldn't be asking these questions.

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              • #37
                "In the end, is there any evidence that eating primal is optimal into our older years?"

                There is plenty of evidence of longevity in native peoples that was documented by various observers in the 19th and 20th Century before most of the natives died out (many from converting to Western diets). Average life span statistics are meaningless when discussing diets. There are too many other factors involved.

                And I hope you're not suggesting that the Standard American Diet is an alternative. Eating dirt is probably a better alternative to SAD.

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                • #38
                  There is also some evidence from some modern hunter gather tribes. They had elders that were in pretty good condition, far better then the average elder american.
                  Primal since March 2011

                  Female/29 years old/5' 1"/130ish lbs

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                  • #39
                    Jack Lalanne ate plenty of meat in his younger years and succumbed to the same nonsense low-fat BS as everyone else, hence his diet change later in life. However, he had all those years of good health as his base, not to mention a base of strong muscles.

                    The Blog of Michael R. Eades, M.D. Jack LaLanne vs Ancel Keys

                    If it is longevity you are after, you should either eat a calorie restricted diet or practice intermittent fasting. These have been shown to actually affect your longevity. Just going back to a grain and sugar-based diet and hoping your genes provide longevity is not an answer.
                    Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

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                    • #40
                      You should also avoid getting hit by a car, or falling off a building, etc etc etc.
                      I used to seriously post here, now I prefer to troll.

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                      • #41
                        Personally, I'd rather have a short life and feel great than a long, miserable life full of illness and disease.

                        In almost every population, obesity and disease have only become an issue when their natural, historical diet has moved towards the SAD. In the US (and the UK) the natural, historical diet was primarily meat and vegetables. Of course until the industrial revolution when grains, sugar and convenience food began to become available - so we're no different.

                        I'm far from an expert, but in my novices view, there is likely some kind of genetic reason that asians do well on a diet high in rice - it is ancestral. There's no guarantee that someone from the US or the UK would do equally well on the same diet.

                        I reckon stick with your own ancestral diet if you want optimum health and let longevity look after itself.

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                        • #42
                          How do you feel? Have you had blood work done? If so, how are your #s ie body fat %, HDL/LDL, triglycerides, fasting glucose etc. Some paleo proponents like Jack Kruse this eating lower carb has an anti aging effect on the body through preserving telomere length.

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                          • #43
                            Originally posted by fiercehunter View Post
                            How do you feel? Have you had blood work done? If so, how are your #s ie body fat %, HDL/LDL, triglycerides, fasting glucose etc. Some paleo proponents like Jack Kruse this eating lower carb has an anti aging effect on the body through preserving telomere length.
                            You can actually get that by introducing Intermittent Fasting as Mark posted this week
                            Primal since March 2011

                            Female/29 years old/5' 1"/130ish lbs

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                            • #44
                              What you're missing is the fact that not all paleolithic humans died young. Many survived past the age of 30. The ones that made it to old age do not show the signs of modern disease. Therefore, no risk.

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                              • #45
                                In terms of centurians I'm more moved by the social structures that enable higher concentrations of these people. Eating primal/paleo creates an environment conducive to aging without promoting degenerative disease, but there is that something extra that the extra long lived enjoy. In my opinion its purpose. These people are afforded high social status, sense of community, and purpose.

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