Meet Mark

Let me introduce myself. My name is Mark Sisson. I’m 63 years young. I live and work in Malibu, California. In a past life I was a professional marathoner and triathlete. Now my life goal is to help 100 million people get healthy. I started this blog in 2006 to empower people to take full responsibility for their own health and enjoyment of life by investigating, discussing, and critically rethinking everything we’ve assumed to be true about health and wellness...

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February 09 2010

10 Real-Life Reasons Why the Primal Blueprint Works for Me

By Mark Sisson
256 Comments

There’s been a lot more talk in the mainstream recently about “caveman” diets and barefoot training. Primal/Paleo/Evo seems to be gaining in popularity and may be nearing the critical mass needed to garner mainstream appreciation. John Durant appeared on Stephen Colbert last week, Art De Vany was featured in Der Spiegel, Born to Run is a NYT Bestseller and my book recently made the top ten Health and Fitness titles on Amazon. Even so, we Primal types still get those occasional looks of derision or incomprehension when we show up at the gym with our Fives on and a bag of homemade jerky hanging off our belt to do a quick 15 minute HIIT session. I think there’s a sense among outsiders that the Grok fairy tale trumps the science within the Primal crowd – that the notion of living like a caveman is a cute ideal but irrelevant in a 21st century high-tech context. Of course, it’s not true; science always leads the way here at MDA and on most Primal/Paleo/Evo sites. But even with the science completely supporting the idea that we ought to emulate our hunter-gatherer ancestors in many aspects of life, I still hear things like, “I trust my doctor too much to give up the statins and start eating fats.” Or “I’m lazy, undisciplined, and I love good food too much to be able to change this late in my life.” Hey, me too! So for those of you who are looking for more detailed rationale why living Primal is best for everyone (including your doubting spouse and your parents), here are my 10 Real-Life Reasons Why the Primal Blueprint Works for Me.

1. I’m lazy.

Ironically, I spent 25 years of my life pursuing high level fitness and peak health through hard work, discipline, sacrifice and misery. That didn’t work out for me. I’m over it. Now I just want the best results with the least amount of pain, suffering, and sacrifice. I jokingly tell my ex-triathlete buddies, “I’d rather look fit than be fit.” Of course, the irony is that when you actually do what it takes to look fit (eat right, cut the Chronic Cardio, sprint a bit now and then and lift intensely two or three times a week ) you become VERY fit. And healthy. And happy. And more productive. The best part of Primal Blueprint living is that you can get appreciably better results with significantly less time, less effort and less sacrifice. Instead of the old 20-30 hours a week I used to put in training, I now train less than three hours total a week. I try to play the rest of the time.

2. I love good food.

Some people mistakenly think the Primal Blueprint requires giving up eating good food. Nothing could be further from the truth. When I was a college endurance athlete, my buddies nicknamed me “Arnold,” after Arnold Ziffle, the pig on Green Acres. I could eat more than just about anyone in school (including the football linemen). I ate everything and enjoyed it all. But I became a slave to the carbs and to the hunger that they generated every three hours of my life. Later, when I retired and researched the damage I was doing eating grains, sugars, hydrogenated oils and all the other stuff I consumed to fuel my massive cardio efforts, I feared I might have to suffer a lifetime dearth of gustatory delights if I wanted to keep my boyish figure. Never happened. Primal eating reprograms the genes in a way that takes the edge off hunger, while assuring more-than-adequate energy and stable blood glucose levels. Now, I eat as much as I want, whenever I want from a list of fabulously tasty foods. I just avoid eating most things from that other list. Hunger doesn’t drive my life the way it used to. When I sit in a restaurant with a rare 20-ounce rib eye steak, a bowl of butter-sautéed mushrooms and a glass of fine Cabernet in front of me, I never feel sorry for myself that I didn’t order pasta or that I won’t be having the bread or potatoes or rice. And for dessert, if I’m still hungry, I’d really rather have another lamb chop or a bowl of berries than a slice of cardboard cake or mucous-inducing ice cream. Worst case, I can have a small taste of the latter and be satisfied.

3. I like to play.

I spent a fair amount of my life training for grueling endurance contests (marathons, Ironman triathlons, 24-hour relay running events). Only just recently did it occur to me that I NEVER really had fun while I was competing or while I was training. Admittedly, I could sometimes get into “the zone,” but that’s really only a temporary zone of less pain. I did appreciate the valiance of my efforts and certainly felt pride in my accomplishments, but from the time the gun went off until I crossed the finish line, I never once could truthfully say, “Isn’t this fun?”  In contrast, today I plan most of my (minimal) training around being able to participate in fun activities later. And while I don’t necessarily see play as “workout time,” it is most assuredly contributing to my fitness. Primal Blueprint training gives me the functional strength and endurance to jump into an aggressive Ultimate Frisbee game, stand-up paddle and surf for two hours, take a 90-minute trail hike with sprints thrown in, play a round of golf, or snowboard for five days in a row. I stay fit so I can play at stuff I find FUN.

4. I like to sleep.

I used to feel guilty if I slept too much. As if I were missing out on something that might be taking place while the lights were still on somewhere. Now I get at least eight hours every night and embrace the idea that I am NOT wasting time, but am recharging the batteries and will probably live longer as a result. I think most people would prefer to get adequate sleep, but feel like it’s a sign of weakness that they “need” eight or nine hours. It’s not. Sleep is integral to health.

5. I don’t like being sick.

No one does. At the peak of my endurance career, I got colds and flus five to seven times a year. I also had severe seasonal grass pollen allergies. The nature of Chronic Cardio training (all that cortisol) and the obligate high carbohydrate diet (all that sugar) kept my immune system so trashed that anything that was going around was going to take me down with it. And stuff is always going around. The Primal Blueprint works because everything about it is contemplated to support or boost the immune system and not trash it. My allergies have long since disappeared. I rarely get any kind of cold or flu now and, if I do, it’s with no real down time and over quickly. Many people argue that this benefit alone is worth the switch to Primal.

6. I’m vain (I want to look good naked).

The Primal Blueprint exercise laws are designed to sculpt a lean, muscled and balanced look without being overly “huge” or disproportional the way bodybuilders can get. It works perfectly for both men and women. I often say here that 80% of your body composition is determined by how you eat. The remaining 20% is a combination of genetics and exercise. If you dial the eating in properly, it doesn’t take very much exercise to optimize muscle size and strength, and to cut the last few percentage points in body fat. Notice I said optimize and not maximize. Think Calvin Klein underwear and SI Swimsuit models as opposed to swollen Muscle&Fitness or WWF cover models.

7. I like to be tan (vain part 2).

Sorry, I never understood the porcelain skin thing. I notice the dramatic effect a lack of sun has on my disposition as much as I notice it on my skin if I skip a few weeks (winter sucks – except for snowboarding). Getting adequate sunlight daily is an integral part of the PB as it has been for humans for millions of years. Vitamin D is critical to maintaining good health. As I say in my book, I honestly believe we’ve seen an increase in overall cancer incidence as a result of (ironically) heeding the advice of doctors to stay out of the sun. I think everyone would rather be outside for a while every day if they knew it was not only NOT harmful, but beneficial. A slight tan just looks good, and it’s indicative of a healthy Vitamin D status. Getting sun also improves mood and productivity as numerous studies continue to show.

8. I’m not organized.

If you saw my desk you’d probably cringe. Stuff all over it everywhere. Same goes with my training style these days, and I love it. I almost never train with anyone, because I like being able to head out the door on a whim and go sprint or hike or bang off a few hundred pushups. I hate having a set training schedule or the idea of having to meet someone at such and such a time to work out together. Don’t get me wrong, I do train with friends once in a while, but the Primal Blueprint training outline fits my fractal, sporadic, random, intermittent, flakey and spontaneous nature. If I don’t feel like training today, the PB says “take the day off – you’ll be stronger and more focused tomorrow.” Not to be outdone, the Primal Blueprint eating style is also unorganized. Not set meal times, no regimentation, no calorie-counting or portion control. Eat when you want and as much – or not – as you want. Of course, none of this is to say you HAVE to be disorganized to benefit from the PB. If you’re organized, it works that much better. But for those who eschew schedules, the PB is perfect.

9. I want to stay uninjured.

Downtime from injury sucks. As I said earlier, I want to get more play time now as I get older. I recognize that my body doesn’t recover from workouts as easily as it used to. I also notice that I have to pay attention to potential soreness a bit more. PB fitness provides a set of guidelines and workout styles that foster balanced, functional strength. It actually focuses on injury prevention and avoidance, while building muscle and burning fat.

10. I like certainty.

I’m a skeptic at heart (OK, I’m actually a cynic). I hate investing my precious time, money, energy or emotion in anything I don’t feel confident will yield dividends. It has to be based in science, rational thought and real results. Conversely, I hate thinking that some of my choices in exercise, diet and health may have been wrong (as they were so egregiously when I followed Conventional Wisdom). I need to have confidence that my choices are good ones. The research backing the PB is the most solid there is. Evolutionary biology and modern genetic – and epigenetic – science are proving that we have remarkable influence over how our genes express themselves throughout our lives. Stuff we do and things we eat turn genes on or off. It’s that simple. Intervals and Tabata work have been proven over and over to be more effective at increasing speed and stamina than Chronic Cardio. The dietary science of low-carb is nearly irrefutable now, as more and more researchers and docs begin to understand the true nature of insulin and they rethink the cholesterol hypothesis. Look, there is no right or wrong here. You can eat Twinkies and smoke cigarettes for the rest of your life and you still might reach 90 or 100. But I have never in my life been more certain of anything than I am that the Primal Blueprint way of eating, exercising and living is the optimal way to have the most energy, the most fun, look the best and live the longest. And I know I can do this for the rest of my life.

What would you add to this list? Let me know in the comment board and thanks for reading!

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256 thoughts on “10 Real-Life Reasons Why the Primal Blueprint Works for Me”

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  1. Yes on #8. Anyone who has ever dabbled with Weight Watchers can tell you point counting really sucks the fun out of eating. And scrutinizing nutritional labels really sucks the fun out of grocery shopping. My new Grok-method of grocery shopping = me wondering around the produce section looking for colorful things to toss in my salad. 100% spontaneous. 100% delicious.

    1. I am having a tough time. I love eating this way. But it seems, and maybe because I am 59(!) but feel and look a lot younger, that I am gaining, gaining too easily. It’s like every time I do a great day, I gain weight anyway and I can’t afford to gain more! I did recently stop doing my day work and am starting a new business, so I am not out of the house as much, meaning besides exercise, I am not moving as much!
      I even did good exercise days and still didn’t get lighter or gained??

      What can I do?????

      1. Stop looking at the scale. When you are making good choices for your body, your body will reward you. Continue on the path of healthy eating and increase your vegetable intake. Also, take time to relax everyday and tell yourself positive thoughts such as…
        “I enjoy large glasses of fresh water
        People are much more attracted to me already
        As the days progress, I feel stronger and healthier
        I release all excess fat
        I release all desire to consume fats and sweets
        I visualize the ideal figure for my height and bone structure
        My body is being shaped according to my liking
        I enjoy my body
        I am becoming healthier and stronger as I achieve my ideal figure
        The fat is melting away as it is consumed by my body
        I enjoy exercising to help my body consume the fat” -from Slimming Down and Loving It!

    2. You’re right – counting calories, tallying points, and weighing food all take the joy out of eating. It leads people to agonize over their food choices and develop a negative association with eating.

      But real food doesn’t make you fat. We all require tons of vegetables, quality meats, and flavorful fats to become lean and achieve optimal health. It’s a blessing that we don’t need to starve ourselves, sip cabbage soup, or eat dinky branded dinners to get ripped. We just need to refuse to eat low quality, calorie-dense processed foods in favor of REAL food.

      1. Okay, I have been working out consistently for several years. I have had a few knee surgeries and I have recently been diagnosed with a thyroid disorder. I am 60 pounds over weight and no diet or lifestyle change has helped. I have been on EVERY DIET you can imagine and nothing works. I have done P90X, Basic Weight Lifting and nothing? Any suggestions or reasons why this will work.

        At whits end

        1. You can’t lose weight if your thyroid isn’t functioning properly. How about your adrenals? Have you had your cortisol levels checked? Removing grains from your diet might help your thyroid start working properly.

        2. Agree with mommydoc here, got to get your vitals checked over. Paleo diet can do so much but best to get checked out to see if you’re starting off with some severe imbalance/ issue in your body.

          Maybe try blood tests for thyroid function, and maybe try naturopath if you are open to homeopathic remedies.

        3. To add regarding your knee surgeries, I would recommend working out with a highly trained individual who have knowledge in functional movements (squats, deadlifts, clean, jerks, etc). Avoid isolating muscle machines at all costs!! PROPER (and this is key because most people do not know what proper means) squats actually put little-to-no stress on your knee itself and builds up the hamstring and quadricept muscles, ultimately strengthening your knee.

          I had majory reconstructive knee surgery on my left knee (re-woven ACL and removed meniscus) and I work out a CrossFit gym where proper lift techniques are held in the highest regard. My knee is fantastic. If you don’t want to work out at a CrossFit gym, read “Starting Strength: Basic Barbell Training” by Mark Rippetoe – this explains proper barbell techniques, what to do and what not to do. That being said, it’s also good to have someone to critique your technique in order to improve.

          Once you start to strengthen those knees, and lift heavy (assuming your thyroid isn’t hindering weight loss) you will start to lose weight. Lifting heavy, as Mark Sisson indicates, is key to weight loss!

          Best of luck.

        4. It’s odd cause my mom is nearly in the same exact position as you. She has knee problems because of her weight and her thyroid problem is just adding on to the problem! I’ll have to figure out something for her as she’s desperate!

        5. A few years later than these posts – but………
          I developed Hypothyroidism when I was 44, gained 50 lbs before I found out what the problem was. Took 2 yrs for thyroid to get straightened out. Was determined to lose weight then found out I had feet problems (plantar fistiss…(spelling)). Then developed breast cancer, & mastectomy 12/1996. Problems then had reconstructive surgery – pain pills, antibiotic pills. couldn’t lose. Gradually just stop trying to lose.
          — Fast forward to last year 2014 – discovered the show Know The Cause with Doug Kaufman and discovered other problems were probably caused by Fungus so began the Phase 1 diet, remained on it & began Phase 2 foods Jan this year. (I will admit I ‘cheated’ a few times last year.
          — I wrote all that to say that in the past year I have lost over 35 lbs – without trying. And while eating Full-Fat Plain Greek Yogurt with Live cultures, & sometimes – Full fat half & half & heavy cream. And lots of nuts & seeds & no grains with produce (preferably organic)… And Not ONCE have I thought of calories, fats, etc. – Oh yeah, and I’m 63 years old. –

    3. Amen to that!!!
      I HAAAAATTTTTEEE keeping track of what I ate it’s so flipping tedious! Whenever I was dieting it always ended with me frustrated thinkin.. how the frack does anybody have time to do this with all the weighing and measuring and researching and the “20 min workouts” that are really more like 45 min after warmups and stretches and cool downs. Conventional dieting makes me grumpy!

  2. I don’t like being manipulated by corporations: Things like high fructose corn syrup or msg hijack our biological reward systems, making us think they are good, when they really aren’t. This is good for corporations when they make us addicted without having to actually put nutrients in the food.

  3. I hate to admit it, but I’m now a proud owner of a pair of Vibram Five Fingers shoes. Went on a hike for the first time with them yesterday – in the snow.

    Fine, I can see what the fuss is all about.

    Damn you Grok Straps! What have you Paleo nerds done to me?!

    1. You will wear ridiculous footwear and eat red meat and love it, muaaaah hahahahaha

    2. I love My VFFs. 5-6 miles every other day on pavment or varied trails. No problems what-so-ever. Oh, to go truly barefoot, thats the next great leap! Enjoy.

      1. Bought VFF’s but then injured toe and just said “what the heck, just go barefoot!” Now the VFF’s sit in the closet with all the other shoes. Try Invisible shoes for closest to barefoot.

    3. Hi Matt! Have you tried Barefoot Ted’s sandals? Easier to get on…

    4. Man, your toes gotta be able to curl and grip and grab as you run. These Gork straps are every cave dwellers dream! I wish they made these for football back in my day! With metal cleats… LoL! I would have been thrown out of every game!
      Keep runnin!

  4. I started PB because I liked the idea of not having to run for an hour a day to “be in shape.” At 23, having no cartilage left in my knees, knee caps that constantly pop out of place, and arthritis as a result, the idea of being able to cut out hour after hour of running was truly liberating (more running = more pain). Being able to adapt workout schedules to how my knees feel on any given day let’s me not feel like I’m a fat/lazy a$$ on the days I don’t work out. Then add to the fact that I can eat all this delicious food and not have to worry about my weight or count calories or try the next fad diet… the lifestyle is priceless!

    1. Holly, I suggest you learn to run and move like Grok runs and moves…

      Knee pain due to misuse will become a thing of the past.

      BFT

      1. Ah, but every Grok and Grokette would have done what they were good at. In a village between the sea and the planes, the thinkers, runners and lifters would have hunted the deer, the climbers, walkers and those with good eyesight and a good sense of smell would have gathered and the swimmers would have fished.

        Sure, everyone may mix and match. If fish was in short supply, the swimmers may hunt and gather. But, most of the time, you would have done what your body was good at, not what you’re uncomfortable with. I’m more of a walker and weight-lifter. It feels good and keeps me healthy. I have the odd burst of explosive energy, but mostly I walk, climb and carry stuff about with me.

        Everyone should TRY and do a bit of everything, to see what they’re good at and develop a bit of every skill, but, after a childhood of say, swimming, your joints may have specialized to an extent, meaning swimming is more comfortable (and more fun!) than, say, climbing. Yes, you CAN climb, but remember that swimming works better for you.

  5. 11. I like not having high blood sugar.

    12. I like confounding and confusing my doctor when he looks at my blood work.

    13. I like not being hungry!

    14. I like not feeling guilty about eating things that taste good.

    15. I like having dropped 70+ pounds in six months with no effort.

    16. I like not having to use a wheelchair.

      1. I love making doctors look stupid….I am a cancer survivor….The oncologist tested my blood and my hemoglobin was that of “what cross country runners in the olympics usually blood dope to get to” …illegally.

        During chemo i did my research. Went to a chiropractor who did natural diet stuff. He put me on the Paleo diet. That’s enough for me.

        1. I’m pretty new to Paleo diet myself but am having a great experience with it. My mom was just diagnosed with cancer and I am looking for information on Paleo diet and cancer and can’t find much. Do you have any sources? Her doctor told her to eat a diet high in whole grains and drink carnation instant breakfast drink with whole milk to try to put some weight back on!

        2. well i’m not an expert on cancer, but I can tell you for sure that whole grains and carnation instant breakfast are NOT going to cure cancer. i cannot believe how uninformed doctors are. a strict paleo diet would probably be very beneficial, but also here is a link to another source i trust… http://www.naturopath4you.com/IfYouHaveCancer.htm

        3. OMG. That is terrible advice!. I hope you have come up with a lot better alternatives to that advice. I would recommend going off of dairy altogether, eat organic fruits and vegetables, have her eat 6 smaller meals a day, 3 regular and 3 healthy snacks. Also doing a series of colonic hydrotherapy cleanses to clean her colon. There are a couple of really good books out there right now. I have a book coming out this Fall on eating healthy as well, but not addressing your mom’s concerns. The books I do recommend are: Healing Cancer from the inside out; Mike Anderson. and
          Cancer, step outside the box, by Ty Bollinger. Excellent resources for alternative healing of diseases, including Cancers. I also recommend taking Apricot seeds, but they have to be very organic. I get mine from: go on line and put in: info@apricotsfromgod.com Jason Vale. And also Marks book on the site you are on of course!! Good luck. Look for my book this fall of 2011 called. The Nuts and Sprouts of Healthy Eating. by Gael D. Meyer

        4. Everything about that comment from the doctor is just wrong! If she went raw vegan during this process she would benefit dramatically and also combine that with having a series of colonic hydrotherapy cleanses to clean the colon out of very old waste. gael.

        5. Kev, Do you use a water ionizer to keep your body in the alkaline state?

      1. This is in response to Heather concerning her mother’s cancer diagnosis. Here’s another great book in addition to the ones Gael suggested. Killing Cancer Not People by Robert Wright contradicts a lot that we think is good for battling cancer. Read it, it makes sense! it can be ordered throught the American Anti-Cancer Institute.

    1. 17. I like not gaining any weight when I’m pregnant! (vain part 3)

      18. I like having a baby that doesn’t get sick.

      1. I dont understand…dont you have to gain SOME weight during pregnancy to be healthy? Assuming you werent overweight pre-pregnancy…

        1. Amy, the wt you gain during pregnancy should only be the weight of the baby and the supportive fluids. Gone are the 30-40# weight gains. Most ob’s recommend only 15-20#. You only need 300 extra calories per day to have a completely healthy baby. Quality calories, of course.

        2. I don’t think she necessarily has to gain weight. She is eating for herself and at most a 10th of another human. That’s only an extra 300 or so calories a day. If she doesn’t overeat, most of that will go into the baby, which will disappear when she gives birth. Maybe she also means not gaining weight above what is necessary. If you are of normal weight to begin with you only need to gain a maximum of 25-35 lbs according to conventional wisdom. A woman who’s overweight to begin with much less. So as long as she is getting nutritious food and has no problems I wouldn’t worry about it. The side effects of gaining too much weight are a much bigger concern frankly.

      2. This is so awesome to hear. I’ve always wanted 3-4 kids, but will be having them in my 30’s (I’m 28 now, been married 2 yrs). I swore I wouldn’t look like the women in the midwest where i grew up, where pregnancy is used as an excuse for laziness and incredible indulgence. Especially since it would be harder to get the weight off in my 30’s.

  6. After 30 inches of snow Saturday and 20 more expected tomorrow, amen to “winter sucks.” I can’t wait for the spring day when I can find a warm place outside to soak up a little sun and make some natural vitamin D.

    Great list!

    1. So you are in the Baltimore – Washington DC area too. Tomorrow should be fun.

  7. If I had to try and rank it:

    1) I love meat. Yeah, I’ve found some good recipes here and I’ll choke veggies down to be good to my body but I love the meat portion of my meals more than anything. I’m not 100% carnivore but I love that meat is important to a primal diet.

    2) I want to look good naked.

    3) I can’t believe that I feel better at 40 than I did at 18. When I was 18 I was in a rock band and eating McDonald’s and Taco Smell non-stop. I still looked good naked but I didn’t feel like this. I “feel” thin.

    4) The meat that’s good for you is good for the environment too. How cool is it that grass-fed beef and pastured poultry are good for your body and the best thing from a humanitarian perspective? Win, win. Well, kinda.

    5) I don’t like junk food anyway. I was never a sugar addict but I would occassionally rock a 3 Muskateers with a Yoo Hoo. Now, I can’t imagine eating that stuff and even my occassional sweet tooth is satisfied with much less now. It’s not real food.

    6) I hate being sick.

    7) Cows not chemists. That’s right. I think that God gave us what we need for the most part. Butter tastes better and I know what’s in it. Butter wins.

    8) If we’re wrong I still enjoyed my food. Quality of life is more important to me than anything. No way I’m spending my life eating something I don’t want to.

    9) I like having fun. I hate gyms and I hate running. If I can look like this and feel like this with some mountain biking and skiing, I’m there.

    10) I like to cook, so I don’t mind staying home and cooking up yummy meals.

    1. Im with you there with loving meat! Definetly my favorite part of every meal. I’m working on buying and eating grass-fed beef, pastured chicken and eggs etc. Looking for good affordable options here in Buffalo. It is totally worth it. But a lil difficult with a family, budget etc

      1. Affordable choices in Buffalo is pretty easy. I go to the lexington co op, which is easy for me because I live in the elmwood village area. All their meats are grass fed, or naturally pastured. Some great choices for real food

  8. Amen to not being constantly hungry! My husband can’t believe how I’m no longer a ravenous, cranky beast if I don’t eat within 3 hours of my last meal.

    I can’t really get on board with the tan thing, though…I’m a burner. I burn, peel, and am all porclain and freckles afterwards again. I burn through my hair, for goodness sake (yes, it’s blonde, and fine). It’s uncomfortable, so I just weat a hat in the summer, and only stay out in the sun for play (when I may well resort to sunscreen). I don’t use it spring/summer/fall…I’m far enough north that the intensity of the sun isn’t much of an issue except for in high summer.

    1. Jennifer,
      You might try astaxanthin, 4mg to 8mg per day. You will find you can stay in the sun much longer without burning. I can mow without a hat for 3 or 4 hours in hot southern sun. I will get a little red but not really burnt and be just tanned the next day. Before astaxanthin I would have been burnt and peeling badly.

      1. To add to this, try Neptune Krill Oil (its all essentially from the same company so brand does not matter). Krill eat algae, astaxanthin is found in algae. Absorption is much higher than taking straight astaxanthin because the krill have already converted astaxanthin into a usable form (esterified astaxanthin).

        ORAC value: 378

        Also contains vitamin A and E; can’t get much better than nature

        Krill is like fish oil on ROIDS, without the back acne of course!

    2. My hair is blonde, thick and luxurious! And I still burn through it! Especially around the part!

    3. I can’t get on board with the sun, either. I’ve had skin cancer (basal cell carcinoma and not melanoma, thank god) already at 37 and I have NEVER been a sun worshipper. Not worth the risk.

  9. haha, great list. I’m still a bit skeptical about going totally paleo, but it’s hard to argue with your points. Who doesn’t like being lazy, eating good food, and having fun doing it?

    1. Ya, I was a tad skeptical at first…even after pouring over the success stories. But then my husband and I read “Wheat Belly” last weekend, and we cut out wheat starting on Monday. I’m still struggling with sugar and coffee, but had already been eating more produce and less processed foods, so ditching wheat wasn’t hard. “Wheat Belly” has all the science, history, etc. So my skepticism went out the window 🙂

      1. Hmm… sounds interesting. I will have to read that. I think that the PB lifestyle has attracted me the most because of the no grains. I’ve always realized how much I don’t care for grains and how I never feel great after eating them. I’m doing the PB more as an experiment on myself and so far I feel great and think more clearly off of grains. : )

  10. I am especially a fan of Numbers: 1, 4, 5, and 8.

    One little post correction to be had… Number 10: remarkable influence over how OUR genes express themselves.

  11. As a certified Type-A personality, I can say:

    a) I love eating a truly gigantic salad, topped liberally with toasted pine nuts, homemade salad dressing (made with olive oil — the horror!), and STEAK while my mostly female co-workers stare jealously and slurp their fat-free yogurt. WIN!

    b) I love any excuse to sleep 9 hours a night. But also, I love the look on people’s faces when I tell them I regularly sleep 9 hours a night. WIN!

    c) I love recording new PBs in the squat cage while all the other girls climb rapidly nowhere on the Stairmaster. And then I destroy them in hockey. WIN!

    1. Is the stairmaster bad? I thought it might be primal since it was like climbing stairs. I do this at least twice a week but am worried it might be bulking up my legs. Thoughts? Thanks

      1. Overall, I think you are thinking too much about it. Primal movement is about doing what you want more than what you think you should.

        I think the Primal-ness of a stair-climber is more based on how you use it, rather than the equipment itself. Are you using it for your slow and frequent moving, or for your High-Intensity Interval Training?

        I assume you are female, and it’s pretty rare that women have to honestly worry about bulking up. If you are following a primal diet, your body will balance itself out to create a toned look. Larger legs that are toned and muscular (like my wife’s) are still attractive. Stick-skinny legs are not. Don’t stress about it.

  12. Amen to sunlight. Winter does suck and I can’t wait to get the hell out of Michigan. I use to literally hate winter and now do my absolute best to enjoy it.

    But, there is nothing like playing a round of golf in the morning or afternoon with some buddies or your family members. Unfortunately this is only possible for half of your life if you live in Michigan.

    I am not fully onto Primal living but I am getting there. Once I am on my own I am going 100% Primal. I know I will love it to death and will be more happy and healthier because of it.

    Amen.

    1. I grew up on the Iowa/Illinois border, and ran away 3.5 yrs ago…all the way to Seattle. Ya, it rains…but doesn’t pour like out there. The best part? You can be active outdoors ALL YEAR ROUND!!!! No hypothermia in winter, no heat stroke in summer. 😀 People are most health-conscious too. My reaction when first visiting Seattle: “Where are all the fat people?” hehehe

  13. Great list!

    For me, the best thing about the Primal Blueprint is how natural and effortless it is to maintain. In my fast-food, carb-junkie days, I used to dread the idea of any restriction in my diet, thinking it would make life miserable. What’s the point of eating healthy, I thought, if it just means a long life of tasteless food? Little did I realize it was my own tastes that needed fixing.

    When I finally tried dropping grains and sugars, I was shocked at how quickly my appetite adjusted downward. All that carb-rich food that comprised the bulk of my diet doesn’t even look edible to me anymore. These days I rarely indulge a carb craving, but when I do, it’s fruit and it tastes amazing — better than any candy or dessert ever did.

    Also, I’ll second the praise for the Vibram Five Fingers. Mine just came last week, and running through the grass in them is liberating beyond belief!

  14. Now that’s a post with PASSION! Well said my friend! Very visceral (isn’t that primal word?), and HUMAN. No softening agents used in this post. Good stuff Mark – I am really diggin the post over the past few months!

  15. The Primal Blue Print works for me because it virtually cured me of a freak form of diabetes I contracted four years ago, at 23 years old as a non-overweight person. No more insulin shots and blood sugar swings.

  16. The thing I like most about the Blue Print is that — contrary to what a typical “health” program may lead people to believe — there is actually a lot of flexibility and simplicity in it.

    A lean and healthy body should never be so complicated, and should never sacrifice the fine things in life.

    Best,
    Johnny

  17. Mark, you think you’re lazy? I’m so lazy I’ve been following Doug McGuff’s Body By Science Big 5 routine that involves heavy lifting only once a week (at most) with only one set per exercise. 12-15 minutes per week, and if I miss a week due to traveling or something–no sweat! And I’m seeing great results on the BBS routine.

    1. Me too! I don’t follow their exact routine but the concept at least.

  18. The Primal lifestyle accomodates so many of us because…it’s so damn accomodating! Kick grains to the curb, eat as needed, be active as you should and the rest takes care of itself. Like others who have mentioned similar thoughts – I’m 41 and in the best functional shape of my life. I’m doing more pushups than ever, my body fat is leaner by the day and I’m getting better and better inventing primal recipes on the fly. Tonight I had chicken breast that I cut up – put it in egg wash, drizzled it with coconut flakes and then fried it in coconut oil. Then I put all of that on top of a Big Ass Salad with peppers. Pure joy and a filling meal. I’m loving this way of life for all the reasons Mark mentions, all the ones already listed and all the intangibles that go with great health. Grok On!

  19. I started eating primally out of vanity, pure and simple. But then it got pretty excited to be eating eggs and bacon for breakfast — seriously, if I IF for a day, I’m probably going to eat breakfast for dinner because it’s so awesome!

    Sprinting for 15 minutes is way better than chronic cardio, and I was already privvy to the advantages of weight training, even as a female.

    And then I discovered that good meat and steamed veggies are actually never boring. Good meat is just, good.

    The longer I stay primal, the less I want junk food. I feel a craving for chocolate chip cookies coming on, but I think it’ll be from my own homemade almond cookies with some dark chocolate chips instead of the garbage from the grocery store. But that’s the 80/20 principle for ya!

    1. I would love to get a copy of that almond cookie recipe if you’d share!
      Sounds like, as you said, a good 80/20 moment and especially great for secretly coaxing friends in on the primal thing too. ^^

        1. these cookies are awesome! I also love Elanas brownie recipe–best brownie ever without all of the sugar and flour

  20. I am form land down under and I will disagree about tan thing, to cancerish

    1. Then you’ll be interesting the study that shows that Australian office workers get more skin cancer than the lifeguards… and that geographic epidemiological study of skin cancer in the US shows that most of it is crowded around the northern US, where there’s a lot less sun.

      1. Link pls, I moved here from Europe. And at the beginning I was not aware of sun, cos I was not used to. And jeez I can see effects on my skin. Not I surf every weekend so not sure I am office worker

  21. Echoing everyone else. For me it has been very liberating. No longer a slave to 6 meals a day or being hungry. You wouldn’t think if you ate all day, you’d be hungry. Eating 3 squares and an occasional snack if I feel like it.
    Fasting for 24 hrs once a week and not going all grrrr if I miss a workout. Never liked running so sprints hit the mark even at age 50.

    Hiking, playing, oh my…what a life!

  22. I dont get herpes outbreaks anymore I used to gulp down 1 pill of valciclovir a day to keep the outbreaks to happen if I did’t take the pills in a week I would get the outbreaks.Now I been primal for 5 months without the pills and haven’t have an outbreak, besides having lost 30 lbs in those 4 months and 4 inches of waist!!!

    1. Hey, I just got on this site, and am fighting to get back paleo and crossfitting after a year of due to a major back injury. Now I have OTHER setbacks. Can you drop me a line at my email, I have some questions for you with the recent new blows…

  23. I love that my husband and I lightly chat with people about their own eating habits and constantly have to explain why rice for dinner isn’t going to cut the cravings of hunger! Keep in mind I am typically looking at someone who is very overweight and trying to cut their “fat and calories.”

  24. I love:

    1) Going to a restaurant and never feeling ‘guilty’ about it.

    2) Ridiculous amounts of consistent energy

    3) Finding excuses to workout (I love weights and just dance around / hike the rest of the time) rather than not to

    4) Not owning scales but having visible abs for the first time ever

    5) The taste of coconut oil 🙂

    6) Marks Daily Apple!

    6) Working in a nutrition centre and eating bacon in front of the co-workers miserable fat-starved cracker-stuffing faces, while they look on in envy…

    1. I agree with the abs thing! I use to weigh myself obsessively and eat as little as possible and I have never had as flat and muscular tummy as I do now. Paleo Rocks!

  25. The best bit for me is the relationship I now have with my brother as we Grok on together 🙂 priceless.

  26. I have flirted with the Primal Blueprint for 6-8 months now, and in fact it was the final influence that got me over my 16 years of vegetarianism! I tried moving directly from vegetarianism to PB for a while and it was a nightmare as I knew nothing about even how to eat most meat, not to mention cooking it!

    I have to say, after leaving it for a more conventional diet (Burn the Fat Feed the Muscle and I finally got abs), I LOVE carbs. I love beer, I love taco shells, I love pasta…. etc. etc.

    What I can’t imagine is leaving them out of my life for the rest of my life. One of the big reasons I was interested in meat was so I could enjoy the delicacies of the world. It seems that if i switched over to the PB I would once again be unable to eat a HUGE percentage of the world’s food.

    Are there any travel bugs out there? What do you do? Just always get whatever American food (steakhouse) you can get? The rest of the world eats carbs in everything, just like they eat meat with nearly everything. Doesn’t make it right, but it sure makes it hell if you want to enjoy high tea at the Peninsula Bangkok, a proper paella in Barcelona, or hash cakes in amsterdam 😀

    1. Before wholeheartedly embracing the PB, I think many people feel the way you do right now. For someone who loves tacos, how to eat one without the shell? What’s a burrito without the tortilla? A hamburger without the bun? Chicken curry without the rice? It all seems a bit overwhelming.

      But, once you really decide to eat primally, the starches begin to seem like useless fluff. The taco shells, the tortillas, the buns, rice, bread, mashed potatoes, are simply vehicles for delivering the good stuff. Just eat the filling and you discover that’s where the flavor really is.

      I still love to go for dim sum. I simply remove the wrapper from the shumai. I love Italian food, but that doesn’t have to mean pasta. Every ethnic cuisine has non-starch choices, but you can always have a little taste if you want and fill up on the healthy food.

    2. I’ve found that since I’ve started eating Primal(6 weeks now), occasional carby meals aren’t as debilitating. Foods that used to put me in a coma for an afternoon don’t have much of an impact if they aren’t eaten often.

      I can eat out with my brothers without being a stick in the mud about restaurants and still lose weight. (12 pounds since New Year’s)

    3. Believe me, the appeal of carbs goes away a lot faster than you think it will. My husband and I had our first wedding anniversary on December 27th, only four months after I went Primal and cut out grains, and when we had the traditional bite of wedding cake-that-had-been-saved-in-the-freezer-for-one-year, it tasted disgusting! Overly sweet, and then I had the wheat allergy reaction from hell. No, I can’t imagine eating sweets or bread or any of the high-carb, grain-and-starch-laden foods we all used to think of as “normal.” They’re not food for humans!

  27. As an aside I’m often struck by how everyday traditional language/idioms seem to “support” the Primal way:

    “Chewing the fat”
    “Bringing home the bacon”
    “Beauty sleep”
    “Daily constitutional” (a bit archaic this one meaning, I guess, “to walk daily”)
    “Red blooded” or “fire in the belly” surely an instinctive reference to hormonal levels ; )

    I find that my “argument” for primal seems to be more compelling for people when I drop in these terms-connecting up what feels traditional with what they thought was new or faddish.

    But then they’ll often talk in terms of “daily bread” ah well…

  28. Great stuff, I agree wholeheartedly. I don’t miss anything I’ve stopped eating and I enjoy the exercise that I do and it is never a chore. My mood is way better and my energy levels have doubled. What a revelation living this way has been in just a few short months. I think your last point is the most valid though Mark. I can do this for the rest of my life.

  29. Great list and additions! I’m losing weight and getting back in touch with how my body moves. My body also seems to have re-set itself to be comfortable eating 2 meals a day, instead of worrying that I won’t have something to snack on all day long when my blood sugar drops from the insulin roller-coaster I used to ride everyday.

  30. -I like experimenting to make new recipes. The first time I made primal pancakes I was amazed that the banana/egg mush resembled a flap jack!

    And the consistent energy levels go a long way in keeping me focused throughout the day.

  31. Wow Mark, what a great list of reasons!I love it! We are just about to embark on a Paleo challenge at our CF so this will be great info to help people get on and stay on the program.

    Now, if I could only get my 16yr-old, type 1 diabetic son to see the the primal light, all would be well!Teenagers sure do love crappy food!

  32. I have just done six days of snowboarding, and I was wondering how PB it was. Apparently it is :-).

  33. “…my fractal, sporadic, random, intermittent, flakey and spontaneous nature.” More proof I’m in the right place. 🙂

  34. True regarding the recent coverage… I saw a bit on France 24 about the “cro magnon moderne”…or something to that effect. Of course, as with the coverage stateside, they tend to focus on the guy eating the raw steak in front of the camera rather than the science, results, etc… so don’t be surprised if everyone still thinks we’re all nuts!

  35. #11: I hate moderation of the foods I really like. I love the idea of eating until complete satiety without compromising my health.

    #12: The psychological and physiological effects of the PB reinforces the fact that there is nothing inherently wrong with human nature. Being in good emotional and physiological terms with our animal side is very gratifying.

  36. Here’s another positive for PB, less dental work! I went to my dentist yesterday who always get on me about me disdane for flossing and my love of Java. I admit I don’t brush 2-3x per day for 2 minutes, etc… Yesterday the hygenist was amazed that I had no tartar and no coffee stains. Sad to say I didn’t change my oral hygene, just let go of my carbs.

    1. *laugh* I know! A friend of mine who’s always had dental problems said to me after going Primal a month ago, “You know, it’s a lot easier to get your teeth clean when you stop eating carbs!” Yeah, because that’s where the plaque (and the tartar!) come from.

      1. Although I’m still at that point where I go on and off the wagon (I’m not primal, although it’s tempting, but I have been low-carbing off and on), I still keep my carbs considerably lower on average than the way I ate in my ignorant days.

        I went five years without a dental visit due to lack of insurance. When I finally went in a couple weeks ago, I had tartar on my teeth, but it wasn’t nearly as bad as the dentist was expecting. I’ve got one molar way in the back going bad, but no other cavities, and even the gingivitis I had was mild and probably set off by the tartar, which is gone now.

        I haven’t even been using fluoride toothpaste for most of the last 5 years. I am now, because that’s what’s in the house, but my usual preference is fluoride-free.

        My daughter had a cavity starting on the side of one of her teeth but in the last six months I’ve upped her fat and vitamin A intake. That alone seems to have made a big difference. The dentist had made note of the impending cavity, but this time around it wasn’t there anymore.

        My daughter’s teeth get dirty, though. So do mine. We can’t keep our teeth pristine all the time because no matter what you’re eating, it’s going to stick to your teeth in some way.

        I think something else is going on there. The dentist Weston Price noted that among the isolated cultural groups he evaluated for their dental health, they could have teeth so dirty there was green slime all over them, yet not one cavity nor tooth out of place nor misaligned jaws.

        I really think something changes in the chemical environment in the mouth, or maybe something inside the teeth themselves, when we don’t eat right–something that works independently of how clean our teeth are. I feel like dental medicine relies a bit too heavily on the Everybody Knows fallacy rather than on real science, and it’s a shame. We might have figured this out by now, and saved the health of countless, countless people.

        1. I’d say there is quite a lot out there about dental health, carbs and grounding has an effect too, if the polarity is out of whack then the tartar sticks more I gather, but it is not promoted as the dentists want to make money, just like Big Pharma. That’s why we are sold fluoride toothpaste instead of changing the diet as you did to repair your daughter’s tooth. The fluoride not only damages the teeth, but health too and especially intuition, they wouldn’t want us all healthy and knowing! Lol!

          Same for my thoughts on No 7, of course sunshine is good for us and it would promote better health and no doubt fewer cancers, amongst many other things, especially better mental health, but that really would lose Big Pharma big bucks! Think of all those anti depressants, chemo and sun tan lotion that wouldn’t be sold? They keep us unhealthy to make money by scaremongering. Anyway, off my orange box and back to thank you Mark, great site, great info and materials, just wish I did not have chronic pain syndrome and a disc gone in my back and could do the exercise stuff, it would make my life so much better! Keep up the good work!

  37. I like this theme a lot – the fact that you have to tailor your lifestyle to your interests. What’s the best exercise? Simple – the one that you’ll do. If you’re struggling through a particular diet, exercise program, and “lifestyle” in general, you’re not going to succeed. You have to arrange your life so it is in tune with how you are as a person.

  38. I’ve been eating mostly meats and veggies for just a month now. I do a 5×5 workout 3 days a week that I really enjoy doing. I’m very happy that my belly is shrinking. Clothes are fitting better. Most importantly, I feel great. No after lunch crashes. The only downside is that my grocery bill is higher but well worth it.

  39. I have been doing this for two months now. I have lost 40 lbs and feel so much better.

    I am not 100% primal. I like ranch dressing too much, but hey, no potatoes, bread, pasta or cereals has made a HUGE difference in me. I am learning more and more as I read and repeat more and more!

  40. Great post except I don’t fully agree with #7. Yes, I used to love being tan too…a pure vanity thing. However, last June at 32 years old, I was diagnosed with skin cancer (a basil cell which is very minor). I was told that I was very young to be getting this and it was partly caused by not wearing sunscreen in the sun. I had to get surgery and it was on my face. Fortunately, it is far off to the side.

    So I’ve changed my tune on wanting to be tan and embrace my beautiful white skin. I still try to get as much sun on the warm days but will always wear sunscreen. I encourage every one else to do so as well. Sometimes vanity is not worth the consequences if we have a chance to prevent bad ones.

      1. I agree, nothing better than beautiful white skin. I live in california, where the culture is definitely against that look, but I managed to find the perfect girl with porcelain skin ; )

    1. Do you wear sunglasses a lot? Just asking for the data point. I heard something a while back about skin cancer being more likely in people who wear them. It wasn’t a mainstream site, obviously. I think the hypothesis went that our eyes help mediate our skin’s response to sun exposure, but can’t do the job if they’re fooled by dark lenses.

      I guess I just can’t see how people in the old days got by without constantly burning or succumbing to skin cancer when they had neither sunscreen nor sunglasses. Even coconut oil’s alleged SPF isn’t that high.

      1. In the old days, most people didn’t want to be tan. It was a sign of poverty, of being a field hand. Ladies covered up. Bonnets, long sleeves, long dresses. And in caveman days, not all of us were developing in sunny regions. Those of us hailing from Celts often come with light eyes and even lighter skin. Overcast skies provided protection back then.

  41. Yo Mark,
    If I can be snowboarding when I am 56, then I am in.

    I have been doing P90X and a somewhat primal life style and I am Truly in the best shape of my life.

    I used to have back and joint pain all the time. All gone. I feel great, I have a great attitude and life is a blast again.

    If only more could see the benefits that you share here as well as exercise and a healthy lifestyle there would be a lot less sick people and a hellvu lot more kind, happy folks.

    Grok on!

  42. OK I’ve only been at this for about 3 weeks, but I have lost 12lbs, don’t get hungry much, and feel awesome. I’m 48, still kinda chunky but 180lb at 5’7″ isn’t bad for a guy. Not exercising, because as in point #1 I am lazy.

    My personal opinion on cardio is that Og the caveman only ran under stress/flight/fight situations, whether being chased or chasing something, releasing a rush of adrenaline and whatnot which isn’t such a good idea on a sustained basis. I’m sticking to that even if it’s wrong 😉

    There’s a guy at work who goes on about all the running and hiking and stuff he does, but he’s still fat and he eats utter crap. I win.

    Oh and at the beginning I made myself think “poison” whenever I saw junk food, and now it’s a pretty immediate association.

  43. Mark/All,

    I’ve stumbled across this website and I think it’s very informative and backed up with easily accessible scientific data. It’s compelling.

    Now I have no agenda, indeed I’ve cut grains out almost entirely over the past 10 days. My question is what is the assumption and / or scietific evidence regarding longevity of the human lifespan and the Primal diet. The grain dominated diet is certainly compatible with longevity.

    Apologies if you guys have already covered this, I’d be happy if you could point me in the right direction.

    Sincerely,

    Chris

    1. Read GAry Taubes. He covers the lot in his amazing book. Bit of a tome, but it’ll blow your mind. I found it really helpful to have all the science laid out in a trustworthy manner as in his history of the science of nutrition.

  44. Mark and everyone,
    The biggest reason i chose PB is because it is actually something I look forward to doing. I am 61 years old and I have chosen to go into a new career on retirment-personal fitness training for older folk and life coaching. I also find CrossFit training a perfect match for PB.
    Jack

  45. I would have to agree whole heartedly with number nine! I severely broke my wrist in December snowboarding, Mark, and now I have a plate and six screws in it, along with a second surgery. And it SUCKS having to have down time. I guess a good thing though for my body, they do need breaks once in awhile. However, I would rather say when it is a good time to lay off of training, not be forced into it.
    Great post.
    Jenn

  46. ~ I want to have more babies, and live to see them grow up.

    OK, I’m not yet converted. I saw the thing on the Colbert Report last week, and now it’s 6:00 AM and I can’t sleep, and I’ve been reading Paleo-Diet websites for three hours.

    I have one son. My pregnancy was horrific. I became anemic, I lost *way* too much weight, couldn’t hold food down… and I nearly died after giving birth to him. My son’s 18 months old now, and I’m just starting to realise that perhaps all of that was because I WAS UNHEALTHY TO BEGIN WITH!!

    Sure, I wasn’t overweight, and I wasn’t sick… but I lived on cake and High Fructose Corn Syrup. I mean, I love food, and I love to cook and I love healthy food… but I like my pint of Ben -n- Jerry’s for dessert, too.

    Still, I can’t shake the fear that I might not live through another pregnancy like the last one. Something has to change, and since I can’t trade bodies with someone else… perhaps I should treat mine own a little better?

    1. Would I really have to give up potatoes? Does it matter that I’m Irish? ^_^

    2. Hi Alyson

      It sounds to me like you’d certainly benefit from getting on to a more healthful diet before thinking about another pregnancy, that’s for sure.

      This is my story – my son was born 5 weeks premature weighing 6lb 4oz and suffered (we now know) a huge plummet in sugar levels immediately after he was born (he’s now 21). It was a horrific delivery, forceps and no pain relief. I was very, very wary of having a second, but two and a half years later took the plunge. There had been no explanation for his early arrival. During the second pregnancy I came across a very switched on consultant who on reviewing my past history ordered me a glucose test (it is now done routinely.

      Lo and behold I was a gestational glucose intolerant, in fact just before her birth I became gestational diabetic but as she arrived didn’t have to have any further treatment as the condition disappears on delivery and 6 weeks post natal blood screening showed I had returned to normal. During the period between diagnosis and her birth I controlled my sugar levels through a convential diabetic altered diet – about 6 weeks.

      Although 5 weeks early just like my son she had no problems other than being 51b 12 oz and not fitting any clothes for a month or two!

      My point – it’s really important to be in good shape to start with, I wish I’d known about PB then because it’s clear to me now that I’ve always been sensitive to insulin/glucose and the difference I’ve seen in my own well being since dropping the grains and sugars is huge and I was already eating what is considered healthy, I didn’t eat processed foods but I did rely heavily on grain-based carbs for fuel.

      As for potatoes, as I train a fair deal I do have some potato to replace burned carbs on days where I do more than is outlined by PB, see Mark’s thread about compromises for Athletes. But I do find that generally I just don’t need or want them.

      Give it a try for a week or two, I was amazed the difference it made and found I simply don’t miss the things I thought I would. And the benefits far outweigh not having a sugar binge!

      Good luck, it takes a lot of courage to put yourself through another pregnancy after a bad experience. My second delivery was natural and uneventful with just one midwife present and went a long way to removing the horrid memory of the first.

      Or you could just rejoice in the fact you did come through and enjoy your son without risking any more and both eat healthy together 🙂

      1. Thank you, Kelda!
        I spoke with my husband about PB, and we’re both looking forward to next month, where we are going to experiment with the lifestyle for the whole of the month. Me letting go of sugar, and him letting go of cheese… this should be interesting. ^_^

        1. The crucial bit I think is cutting out the grains and the added sugar for the insulin control. I still have some good quality cheese as do many PBers, low carb with benefit of calcium etc.

          Good luck!

    3. Oh yeah, there’s definitely a difference between women who eat properly for their biological needs, and women who don’t, in terms of how childbirth goes.

      Weston Price noted that when he was studying Inuit people in the far north. They had some hospitals up there built by the white folks and at first, they never saw Inuit women there for childbirth. Doctors would run out into the wilderness to attend births and the baby would be born before they got there.

      Then white people’s stores appeared on the scene stocked with industrial and over-refined foods. Suddenly they began seeing Inuit women in the hospitals with problem births, with labor taking 10 hours and more.

      I was poorly nourished during my second pregnancy in particular. I had a nasty inflammatory response in the first trimester where my knees swelled up like inner tubes and every joint hurt. I couldn’t even turn over in bed. My daughter was born with a kidney defect and urinary reflux, and when her teeth came in they began decaying almost immediately. Come to find out I was probably borderline deficient in vitamin A and animal fats, and had probably been for some time.

      They’re actually telling pregnant women to go easy on liver during pregnancy, and trotting out the usual low-fat propaganda. It’s unconscionable.

  47. Very interesting reading through this great and informative thread. I had stopped eating grains several weeks ago. I have been doing my own version of PB I guess before I knew about this site or PB. The interesting thing about the last few posts to me is the fact that I have been using cheese alot and I really love cheese. The idea of letting go of cheese is daunting.

  48. I’m frustrated that when anybody mentions the fact that grains are compatible with high-longevity, nobody responds. I seem to remember this happening in a number of threads.

    Has anybody seen the TED talk about longevity:
    http://www.ted.com/talks/dan_buettner_how_to_live_to_be_100.html

    This talk profiles communities with the highest longevity. All are characterized by low meat consumption, all have plenty of conventional carbohydrates in their diet, and the 7th day adventists eat an entirely vegetarian diet.

    So, either the other factors mentioned are more important than diet (in which case why can’t I just address those other factors and eat foods I like, such as corn, wheat, brown rice, legumes, etc), or a moderate- to high-carb diet is directly causative of longevity.

    Please, informed people of MDA, say something this time!

    1. I can understand your confusion. I own Mr. Buettner’s books and videos, and the important thing to realize is that he is mainly finding correlations, not causes. They live long and they do this. Is that proof? No, but it is worth considering.

      There’s also some contradictions involved. The website, Bluezones.com, has a list of tips. Tip 2 is to eat foods that satisfy. In this one he mentions whole grains, which I have never found to be satisfying. Tip 3 is to eat nutrient dense foods, which does not include grains when compared to vegetable and meat options. Volume wise, many low carb folks eat more veggies than meats, so we’re not that far off of the recommendations.

      Also remember that these people are extremely active. In Ikaria for example the terrain is very hilly and they are walking up and down hills in order to do anything. Okinawans traditionally grow most of their vegetables themselves. When you are putting out a lot of energy carbs don’t have the same impact.

      Finally, I think a lot of people treat Primal as a strict regimen. For me, studying humans in their “natural habitat” is the starting point for diet selection rather than the end. You can vary quite a bit if you know your body.

      You’ve inspired me to go through my Bluezone books again. Maybe I’ll do a writeup of the differences and send it to Mark when I’m done.

    2. I don’t care how long I live if I spend the last twenty or thirty years having to take ten medications a day and needing help walking around my own house.

      I keep bringing up Weston Price on this post–I’ll mention him again. He counted cavities in several ethnic groups around the world, comparing the traditional members of those groups with members who had adopted an industrial diet.

      It was fascinating. I need to go back and double-check, but the Swiss had the highest incidence of cavities even in the traditional, isolated group he evaluated. I believe they had the highest dairy intake plus grains. The group with the lowest incidence of dental caries was the Inuit, whose traditional isolated groups ate virtually no plant foods at all.

      Your teeth are one of the first places that symptoms of poor health show up. If you’re losing them, you need to stop and re-evaluate what you’re doing.

      If you’re eating a low-animal, high-grain diet… you’re probably losing them, or would if not for modern dental care.

      We didn’t evolve over millions of years with dental clinics on every corner. Grok never had a word for “dentist” in his language. Worth considering.

  49. Hi, I’m not familiar with the Bluezone or the longevity study you are referring to, but I would make this comment. In this age of technology longevity doesn’t necessarily imply good health, a long life may be of inferior quality being ‘held together’ by various medications.

    A society that has high levels of physical activity will certainly fair differently from one that does not. During the 1940s in the UK (and into the 1950s; rationing didn’t end here until 1954) people were much healthier because many food items now so prevalent were restricted (notably sugar)they were also much more active as fuel was severely rationed and they were involved in much more manual labour.

    The very fact one group grow their own vegetables makes it less likely that their diet is full of processed foods I would imagine so in reality they may well be eating closer the Primal ideal than may appear.

    At the end of the day you have to make your own decision, that’s what I’ve found so empowering about PB, I feel as if I’ve taken my health back into my own hands and am now making conscious decisions about what I eat. As Kelly said it is a template rather than strict rules.

    Try it, if you don’t like it or find it works for you, fair enough, nothing ventured, nothing gained!

  50. There is significant genetic diversity in human metabolism. Other posts in Mark’s blog have mentioned lactose tolerance. It seems to have developed in humans in post-paleolithic times.
    http://genome.wellcome.ac.uk/doc_WTX038968.html

    The Inuit have a VDR mutation adapted to a low-calcium diet.
    http://www.cmaj.ca/cgi/content/abstract/168/9/1141

    A genetic study of Hemochromatosis indicates the C282Y mutation has an origin of less than 1500 years ago.
    http://www.scripps.edu/bcmd/pdfarea/issue_20_98/lucotte.pdf

    I think the primal diet is a good idea for people with non-agrarian ancestors (i.e. Inuit, Sami, etc). For those with agrarian ancestors I think traditional grains (oats, barley, and possibly wheat) are good.

    1. Agrarian people got away with their diets as much as they did because they used fermentation to prepare their foods. This also explains why so many peoples have utilized dairy foods. They either drank the milk raw or they fermented it–either way it was richer in enzymes than what we have in grocery stores today.

      And for all that, these people still suffered from more chronic diseases than did their meat-eating counterparts in other areas of the world. If you look into the field of paleopathology you will find some really interesting accounts of this.

      Animals that naturally eat grain also have the ability to either secrete the enzymes or house the organisms that help them get the most out of that type of food. We have neither. We do make a limited amount of amylase, but not enough to overpower the chemicals in seed foods that behave as antinutrients (phytic acid, enzyme inhibitors, etc.).

      If you’re going to eat grain, I’d look up the Weston A. Price Foundation and learn about how to prepare it properly. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that obesity rates and mineral deficiencies and such have skyrocketed at the same time that Americans are eating more and more whole-grain foods, and I don’t think it can all be explained by the carbohydrate content. Add in the vegetarianism fad and you basically are left with people who don’t eat enough of the foods with the most bio-available minerals, but DO eat the foods that act as chelating agents to remove what minerals *are* consumed almost as quickly as they’re eaten.

  51. I love the fact that at 37 and for being overweight, I am keeping up and in fact surpassing many of my younger colleagues physically!
    My tummy is shrinking and I feel (literally) better!
    One of the most remarkable “side effects” I have noticed is that my hair is not falling out by the handful any more and feels thick and healthy.
    I have more energy, and my girls have loads of good energy….no more agressive hyperactivity.

  52. I started this past Tuesday at 216 pounds. today is Sunday im 208 pounds. Im eating all the time, just sticking to the Blueprint, I had one bad cupcake on Friday but I didnt beat myself up. I threw some kettlebell training in there, and I have lost 8 pounds! Thank you Mark!

  53. Wow! I just stumbled on this website and I find all this information relating to a diet and lifestyle which is close to man’s ‘natural’ habitat and abilities/capacities very interesting.
    I am 35weeks pregnant now and I intend to explore the possibilities of following this diet after childbirth.
    One question though, I haven’t noticed any comment from any African or black person. Our own history and natural habitats is different from most ‘Westerners’ so I wonder, does it matter? – Please can someone reply? Thanks

    1. Primal living is based on the hunter/gatherer lifestyle, rejecting the rise of agriculture, which took place about 12,000 years ago. At that time, all “races” were hunter/gatherer societies, with no real difference in diet- everyone ate what was locally available.

      In addition, the hunter/gatherer lifestyle is still being lived in some areas of Africa.

      A good intro to the rise of agriculture is the National Geographic documentary entitled, “Guns, Germs, and Steel” which is also a very interesting (but very technical) book.

  54. How about… “I don’t like being hungry ALL THE TIME.” like I was on any other low-fat, carb fueled “diet” I ever tried.

  55. I’m 40 and have fought being obese my entire life. I’ve probably lost and regained 150-200 since I was a young teenager. I smell food and I want to eat. It’s almost almost a genetic curse…as if my brain tells me to eat when I smell food. My mouth does indeed actually water when the smell of food meets my nostrils…

    I’ve only been following Primal for 8 days and the difference is remarkable!! The main thing? I DON’T GET HUNGRY! It’s the most amzing development! Before, I followed the tiring “6 small balanced meals a day” routine and was starving, especially when eating grains. With Primal, I almost feel guilty that I’m only eating 3 times a day and sometimes I don’t want that much! The Primal lifestyle is going to save my life.

  56. I’ve now been primal for a few weeks… diet wise. However I purchased VFF last October & wear them every chance I get. Of course that’s when I’m not going barefoot! What a remarkable difference eating primal has done for me! Thank you Mark for being in tune with Grok! My life has forever changed… now I have the challenge of convincing the rest of my family to read PB, & enjoy the benefits of being in control of their appetites, and general, wellness & physical condition. And of course having some fun along the way too! Wish I would have known about Primal eating, exercise, and lifestyle 10-years ago! Oh well, better late than never.

  57. Ok, I found this website by accident because I was looking for websites on living without grains. In a nutshell, I’ve been tested for food allergies and can’t find any to answer the problems of gastric/intestinal distress, Gerd, sinus infections and growing breathing problems (exercise-induced asthma) and clogged ears. Doc told me to go on a diet of organic veggies, fruits, ocean caught fish and introduce organic meats gradually and he called it an ‘allergy elimination diet’. I was to eliminate all grains, dairy, sugar and processed anything. Only eat whole, nature foods. Within four days I felt the best I have felt in a long time!! I had so much air moving in my lungs I felt like I could run around the world and not get winded. My joints stopped hurting and I noticed they are not as puffy looking. My skin is crystal clear, smooth and I look as if I have had a face lift. And…can I say weight-loss? It’s dropping off of me with very little effort and I feel a little guilty for all of the food that I’m scarfing down. I’m not used to eating this much, and having weight fall off!!
    Wow, I now know that what I’m eating is the primal way of eating. I am looking forward to reading your book and getting your cookbook so I can expand our menu with all of the wonderful foods to eat.
    Thank you very much for the great website and fantastic information!

  58. Mark,
    I’ve really come around to the primal way of eating. Slowly but surely, I’m eliminating all the garbage I’ve been eating. Definitely some challenges, but I think it will certainly pay off. Thanks!
    Dave

  59. Jeremy,

    The Primal Blueprint is intended to be more of a lifestyle alteration than simply a “diet” so please stop trolling the site with the “And what if the weight comes back, as it does for 90-95% of dieters?” responses to every single post.

    Maybe it’s not for you, perhaps you enjoy your grains (not a problem), nobody is trying to take that away from you. The primal blueprint has worked out for a lot of people, so shut up and use the freedom you have to seek out a lifestyle that grants you the ability to be productive and contribute to something that is actually of interest to you rather than trying to tear down the people that are here trying to make legitimate efforts to better their health. It’s pathetic.

  60. Yes, Jeremy, please go back under your bridge and harass the billy goats. You are flaunting your own ignorance and are annoying and repetitive.

    And oh yes, you might consider getting a life.

  61. Oh, no wonder trolls come here to rile everyone up.

    You do know that they think long-winded, angry rants are funny, right? That the bitchy dogpile is the intended result? You can ban ’em, but they’ll just proxy hop and come back and taunt you a second time.

    This means responding to trolls only serves to make the responders look stupid. Just sayin’, it’s Intarwebs 101.

    1. Ginger,

      If making educated statements about why that person needs to shut the hell up makes all of us look stupid, then I guess we’re guilty of being intellectually superior. What a tragedy.

  62. I like a low carb diet; it agrees with me. But you go ahead and eat like your proverbial, never-existed caveman and take his 30-year lifespan and I’ll eat like I do and keep my average of 75 years. Thank you very much.

    1. Because, you know, cavemen’s short lifespan had everything to do with their diet and nothing to do with large predators, weather exposure, lack of medical care, etc.

      Meanwhile, I’m going to live longer than you will, and I’ll be healthier while I do it, too.

  63. Mark,

    I recently read The Primal Blueprint and I believe the information is great for both your physical appearance and long-term health benefits. I have recently incorporated some of Grok’s principles into my lifestyle and have noticed fantastic results, specifically in my body fat percentage and energy levels! Keep up the great work!

    Alykhan

  64. I’ve been really enjoying the Primal lifestyle. Less than two weeks and ten pounds down. Great energy, sleep, testosterone levels, food and workouts. I literally was going to sleep at 7PM every night before PB. Iwas completely exhausted, depressed and lethargic. Can’t believe in two weeks, I feel so much better. Eating meat, fish, veggies, fruit nuts and seeds has been incredibly liberating. I feel like I have to hunt a little to find the right food, but that’s part of being primal!!

    Grok On!!

  65. I started eating Primal 5 weeks ago. I am a 50 year old female and have fought with my weight my entire life. I would excercise 7 days a week, 1-3 hours per day. NOTHING WORKED! My 57 year old sister read the PB and loved it. I purchased the book and the cookbook and since have lost 9.5 pounds. I have cut back my workout to three days a week of weights, tennis every other day and walking the other days. I could keep writing of how PB has changed my life.
    THANK YOU!

  66. Just curious, have you had any blood work done recently and what did it look like?

  67. Legumes make my stomach stormy, i feel hungry almost straight after eating rice, and bread makes me feel like a slug. If i eat a homemade, grass fed beef burger with shredded, unsweetened cocunut and vegetable(almost raw, not over cooked in any case), then i don’t have these issues. I’m a third through Mark’s book, and although i knew much of what ids written through previous research, it’s an extremley readable…..read. Really doesn’t take himself seriously, no pressure, but very well informed book. Damn glad i bought it.

  68. Number 1 is really ironic. What I used to consider good food now gives me stomach pains and makes me feel lousy. It’s only through eating primally that I have discovered what really good food is like.

  69. Wow, Mark, I really *loved* this article …

    Part of what I love is your honesty. Isn’t it amazing people can go for years doing something they *hate* without ever really questioning it, because someone along the way told them it was “good” for them? Lol, thank goodness we are all putting that sort of thinking behind us …

    I listen to my body. If my body doesn’t like it, if I’m not getting joy out of the process, then I’m not doing it anymore. This is why I cancelled my gym membership some years ago … and I *love* to ski so I’m out there in the mountain air all winter long 🙂

    Some of your other points, I feel the same way about energy healing … it makes everything so much easier … I use my acupressure system every single day, and it keeps my vitality at peak levels. Among other things that happened, effortlessly, just like with your program, my blood pressure dropped, my weight dropped (no need for a scale anymore), my skin healed, my emotions stabilized, I felt happier, and my chronic pain went away … now this is something that feels inherently motivating to do every day because the benefits are so wonderful and so obvious.

    I’m glad we connected over the summer, and I’m going to be dropping by here more often to hear what you have to say 🙂

    cheers,
    Erika

  70. im a filipino, and i love the fact that i can cook all the meals that i grew up with just minus the wheat and carbs. i lost 20lbs in a month just cleaning up my diet with this. thank you!

  71. The more I read about primal eating the more i am finding it is solid advise.
    One of my clients has agreed to become the guinea pig for our guinea pig project where we are going to test out different workout and eating solutions to help him lose weight and get healthy. I think I am going to go with HIIT style training and primal eating and to be honest I’m not sure I will need another strategy.
    We are going to post his results online so others can see the results! So the proof will be in the pudding. Thanks for the great post that shows why this is the best approach for the average guy!
    Jeff

  72. I found this PB lifestyle while researching ketogenic diets for the treatment of epilepsy. My neurologist said while she didn’t see any harm in giving it a try, she also didn’t see why I would bother given that my seizures are under good control on meds. What I want is to be able to cut back on the meds that are undoubtably putting a strain on all my organs.

    So the prospect of being seizure free and less pill dependent would be my # 11 on the list. I’ll see how it goes and report back. Anybody else out there in a similar situation?

  73. Hi!
    I navigated to your page by way of StumbleUpon, and while I was pleasantly bemused on why I would fall on to this page which I have no interest at all in, I realized that it was in fact a “sponsored stumble”. I found this to be highly unethical as well as quite annoying, since it seems like you don’t really grasp the idea of the service in the first place. People don’t use SU to find glorified ads such as yours, and when they do, I can personally guarantee that they will want nothing to do with your product. I say this for the simple fact that you wasted their time and insulted their intellect.

    Thanks for perverting a once great service!

    Kent

    1. I stumbled upon this site a while ago, and I love it. I use stumble to find things I didn’t know existed, and if I don’t like them I just go about my day without letting it bother me. And I can’t see how helping people live healthier lives is wasting their time, or intellect. I do, however, think it might be a waste of time to post a mean comment that doesn’t actually describe this site.

  74. How about more love, and less cranky?

    More love people, more love!!!!

  75. So many guys I know feel like you have to suffer and deny yourself to be in shape. I’ve always felt that overdoing anything is just no good. I do what’s right for me and an Ironman competition or anything extreme is out.

  76. This post has inspired me. yes, I do love my carbs but reading through the comments it is clear that many people “get over this” – so that eventually it does not feel as if you are denying yourself.

    I bought a copy of Mark’s book a while back but – one thing and another – never sat down and read it. Big mistake, I’m thinking.

    So long as I can still eat my fermented foods because I do believe they are critical to health, I believe that me and primal might get along fine.

  77. Fantastic article! I’m new to this lifestyle too and learning all that I can- amazing resource!

  78. thank you so much for sharing your knowledge and for making this website!! it has helped me learn and understand I am so grateful!

  79. I came across PB while in Iraq and looking deeper into crossfit/Diet change and improvement/Celiac issues for my wife back home. I’ve made a concerted effort to come as close as possible to a Paleo/Primal diet while I’m deployed. WOW, what a change!!! After about a week I really noticed a change in how I felt, I slept better and inspite of varying work schedules I wasn’t near as tired as previously. In fact once a week I left myself have some ice cream for after a dinner meal. After not doing that for 2 weeks I had a bowl yesterday, bad idea. I felt bloated and overfull afterwards, plus I didn’t even want to eat it all. I guess my body knew best and I was finally able to hear it over all the c@%p I had been eating before. My fellow Soldiers are actually jealous of the way and quantities I eat and still stay fit and healthy, while they struggle to lose weight. If they would just put down the cheeseburgers and fries and pay attention.

  80. Hi Mark,
    Love your list of reasons here – good enough for me! Like you I was a chronic fitness fanatic for years, transitioning now into the ‘look fit rather than be super fit’ phase that you talk about 🙂
    I follow a pretty much alkaline diet and find it to be excellent – I am 31 now and look as young as when I was 22. It’s definitely helped to keep me youthful. Same for others I know too.
    Anyway, great post
    Laura

  81. Hi Mark. I love your site and your posts. So down to earth and real. I also believe in what you speak about. Having an alkaline body is really the key to a healthy life. I cherish the sun and fell that most people get skin cancer because first their body is not alkaline, and they put all that crap on their skin, which probaly in turn causes cancer because of the junk they put it in. I personally go in the sun everyday and just use organic coconut oil on my skin (without any added smell so I don’t smell like a coconut at all). The first thing everyone says is that you would fry and burn. Since I have been doing this for the past 3 years I have not burned once. I used to burn all the time. No one should put anything on their body that they can’t eat. look forward to your next post. gael.

  82. I don’t see alot of posts on MDA from 2011 so I hope people are still “listening” and wouldn’t mind commenting on my post.
    I have read here, multiple times, how following the Primal diet can help you gain a lean and healthy body. I started following it 4 days ago and have not seen much change yet. (I realize these things take time so I am not obbsessed with instant gratification). But i wonder: how long does it really take to start seeing outwardly physical results?
    So many that post here report losing quite a bit of weight in a short period of time. I would love to see thatbas well.

  83. Hi, I’m a Primal newbie who adds a little dairy, lentils and sprouted grains to her Paleo diet. To keep within the 100-150g carb range, I feel like I do need to be careful. Do you think it’s important to count carbs on a daily basis?

  84. Some aspects of this stuff are outstanding – HIIT/fartlek/sprints, resistance work, the miportance of good fresh vegetables… plus the debunking of the lipid hypothesis (yet another example of public policy made on the fly based on completely bogus science).

    All that said… the only thing that makes PB a no-go for me is all the death (of animals).

    I’m a veggie – not for health, but to prevent death and cruelty (in that order). To the extent that I pay a health penalty for not consuming meat (and I doubt that I do) the price is worth it (as Madeleine Albright once said about killing 500k Iraqi kids).

    I’m all for the Primal way of conflict-resolution, though: if someone gives you a bad day, you stick a spear in him (it’s what Grok woulda done). Just not for chickens or cows, who have never done me no harm. As Mike Mahler shows, there is no performance penalty to veganism. Mike is the vegan advocate of ‘Aggressive Strength”… looks to go about 230 on the old scale: I’m not a fan of kettle-bells, but I’m not going to argue with him.

    So it’s Golden Pea protein shakes, home-made tofu/okara, and other stuff with an amino-acid profile of 100 (or more); at 46 years old and 6’1″ I have no problem maintaining 230-240lb with a flat gut, good ‘bloods’, RHR of 60 and a beep test of 10 (but I was being lazy last time I did a beep test; I can get an 11 on a good day).

    Yesterday I had to carry home my new dumb-bells (77lb – 17.5 kgs times two), walking a total of almost 2km thus laden; broke a sweat but never panted until climbing the last 3 flights of stairs to my apartment.

    So… you don’t gotta eat dead animals to be a big hairy galoot (I know – I is one).

    Plus, I seriously doubt that the archetypal ‘Grok’ was as good a hunter as is made out… he ate a WHOLE bunch more plant-based foods that most of us would believe. Hunting animals is seriously bad risk-return for a slow biped; I have heard it said that early man scavenged bone marrow more often than he made his own kills – even hyena tend to leave behind the femur, which tool-making man cracked to his benefit.

    Yes, I miss bacon, pork chops and so forth – until I think of the unimaginable suffering they cause.

  85. I LOVE not being ruled by food any more.
    I LOVE being able to function on less sleep.
    I LOVE not having reflux any more.
    I LOVE having an hourglass figure at last!

    When I ate the CW diet I noticed that I would get fat in all the wrong places. I desired a feminine figure but all my fat was around the upper arms, stomach and chin and my bum was getting worryingly flat. I had no shape. Now its like my body KNOWS to store any fat in the CORRECT places -ie my BUM, hips and upper thighs so I at last have nice curves around that area and now I have a waist too!! I cannot tell you how great it is to finally have a waist!! I feel like Beyonce!!! I never had a shape in my life before!

  86. This just made me convinced to go all out PB. A friend of my told me about your site, I never really dived too much into it all because I was skeptical. “this wasn’t for me was” was my first thought.

    After reading this, and how you remind me of myself. I’ll give it a full-out go.

  87. I love the energy and the way I always feel stong and fast feeling of super powers!

    1. PB stands for Primal Blueprint. I was confused at first too, thinking it meant Peanut Butter (hmm)

  88. This works perfectly for me. I’m an outdoorsy sort of person and I like to eat a lot!

    I thought I’d never be able to give up my sugar/carb addiction, but now I don’t even flinch when I pass a bakery, the stuff has no appeal for me whatsoever. We were at a buffet place recently and for dessert I went back for more rare steak. Nom nom nom. Juicy, flavorful and filling. How can a piece of sugary cardboard compare?

  89. Hey everyone,

    A friend of mine recommended the lifestyle and enthusiasm and figure speak volumes! And i want in!

    What do you sweet tooths sbstitute sugar in your tea/coffee with??

    Great website, loving how informative and gnerous everyone is :0)

    1. I use xylitol as sweetner when I drink coffee. I don’t drink coffee every day though now. Only about once a month these days. Xylitol is my sweetener of choice though for coffee and tea

  90. You need to show the second picture of Otto and Ewald and look at how much bigger Otto’s calves were. I remember seeing those photos and reading that Otto was a track runner, which is how he got those massive calves.

  91. Hi (:
    So I’m 16 years old and I’ve pretty much been overweight my entire life. Yea, I have more muscles than fat in my body but wayyyy more “water”. I am an athlete, no doubt ! I am on a swim team (captain) and I play with a German soccer team (I live in Germany right now). When soccer season comes around in the spring, I play first string goalie there.
    The thing is, I never had an easy way with losing weight, becoming fit and eating healthy foods. A couple years ago, I didn’t like meat at all but now I’m becoming more fond of it. I don’t eat nuts and rarely any veggies…I guess I need to change that but I do need advice on how I can make this enjoyable for me. Fruits are no problem! I could be a fruitarian for all I know (if…that even existed!)
    As many of you know, teens definitely do not have it easy with eating healthy. I do bring home made lunch and I rarely eat fast food even though McDonald’s is right down the street from me.
    My mom and I joined weight watchers August 2010. I tried it out but it only worked for me for a couple months until I started gaining my weight back. I was too ashamed to tell my mom but then I stopped all at once with it. It was too much for me to bother with writin down every meal and points and weighing it all. Sports was no problem, just eating healthy. I do eat healthy for the most part, it’s just hanging out with my friends and eating healthy…that’s really not easy.
    I bought the 21 days to going primal book yesterday and I read through it all night too. I thought it was brilliant and I felt positive about it until the end..I lost some of my hope when I thought about the food changing and everything … How would I tell my parents, friends and German grandparents that I won’t be eating a LOT of the foods I used to eat all the time?
    I really eat want to try this, but I’m not really sure how to start. I can’t clear out the pantry and put away all that stuff. Weight Watchers worked for my mom, she used to weight about 112 kilograms and now she ways less than 70 kilograms. My dad is overweight and he pretty much gives up with trying to improve himself – he’s 57. My brother is fit and muscular and a gym/health freak.
    I seem to have the genes like my dad did. When he was younger he used to be very fit – he’d go running everyday and so on but now he’s over 110 kilograms..
    I weigh about 90 something kilograms and never in my life have I weighed that much. I feel ashamed of myself and I am always self conscious. I just really want I try this but I do not know how to start. I did read mark’s letter to us youngster, asking us to start now and like I said before, I really want to but I just do not know how to start. I know my family won’t try it with me, maybe my brother will but I’m unsure. I haven’t told them anything about this and oh wow..I’m sorry that I had to write so much but I was hoping that you guys could please give me some advice.
    Thanks, I’d really appreciate this. I no longer want to be fat and always be self conscious around guys and skinny girls..

    1. Hey there, I see you posted a few months ago and I am wondering if anyone got back to you.

      My first piece of advice is to start small. Choose eggs, meats, and veggies whenever you can over carbs. No need to try a drastic overhaul all at once.

      Send a message if you never got a response … I started small and am now pretty darn Primal (under 20 carbs per day and those are fruits and veggies). I’d love to help.

  92. I ate primal for 5 days and felt good (except adjusting to the higher fat diet, which meant a little upset stomach in the morning), but I don’t like eating meat, seafood, etc. I was grossed out by day 5 and felt very unsatisfied, not in that I was hungry, but that I was eating foods I don’t like the taste or texture of. I have been this way since a kid. Has anyone had a similar experience? I know I’d feel better if I stuck to this way of eating, but it’s just not doable when you hate the food. Any suggestions?

  93. The root of your writing while appearing agreeable in the beginning, did not sit perfectly with me personally after some time. Someplace throughout the sentences you managed to make me a believer unfortunately only for a very short while. I still have got a problem with your leaps in assumptions and one might do well to help fill in all those breaks. If you can accomplish that, I will undoubtedly be impressed.

  94. What is the difference between the Atkins Diet and Primal Blueprint? It seems like the same thing to me packaged in a different wrapper.

  95. These are all great points. The chronic cardio would have left you more hungry. I also prefer the less eating, less exercise approach. When your busy trying to make a life for yourself, killing yourself in the gym is not the answer but working out a few times a week is great.

  96. My dad has been on the Primal diet for about two years. I haven’t started myself, but it seems very interesting and something I might start doing with my mother.

    This morning I drank this chocolate “milkshake” from Eat Like A Dinosaur from my Kindle. I used
    2 dates
    1 can of full fat coconut milk
    1 cup of ice
    1 avocado with the skin and pit removed
    1 ripe banana that was frozen
    1/4 cup cocoa powder
    The “milkshake” was delicious and only concludes that I think going Primal is a great idea!

  97. Cool article (BTW, who isn’t vain?). I don’t follow all principles of primal eating, but I introduced quite a few changes in my diet thanks to your blog and I believe that it significantly improved my health. Thanks!

  98. I’m a vegetarian and not about to give it up. Is Paleo for me?

    1. Sorry, Jerry, but not so much. That said, one of the primary criticisms I see for the primal/paleo life is the belief that we’re all eating gobs and gobs of meat. I don’t, and I think I eat more vegetables than most vegetarians I’ve known, about 10-12 servings a day on average.

      If you’re interested in trying to make a more paleo version of vegetarianism check out No Meat Athlete’s blog post on the topic: http://www.nomeatathlete.com/vegetarian-paleo-diet/

      I disagree strongly, however, that the “Paleo diet is by no means veggie-friendly”.

  99. Thanks for an awesome website and a great article. I started off with a Whole 30 by Whole 9. My cousin was doing it and posted on Facebook. I am seriously overweight, so I figured it was worth a shot. I already knew I had issues with dairy, and was fairly certain that wheat wasn’t sitting well with me either. After the 30 days, I realized I just could not go back to my old way of eating. I’d lost 12 lbs and felt great.

    Since starting this just 2 months ago, I’ve lost 21 lbs and am so pleased. I still am not sleeping enough, and I haven’t started adding in the exercise. I’ve started to read the PBF guide, and I’m looking forward to getting started with that. I have to admith that I don’t have a ton of energy, but I think that once I start getting adequate sleep, and exercise, that will improve.

    Some friends and I are going on a cruise in March – I still have 100 to 110 lbs to go, but I don’t doubt for a second that I will get there.

  100. Ok, I’ve been reading more and more about paleo and have decided to take the plunge this week. Here’s mine reasons—
    I want to NOT think about food all the time. Seriously. I spend waaay too much time making all our food for our family from scratch. I want to lose weight, but have finally figured out that all my focus on food and working AGAINST me. I’ve been walking A LOT the last three months and LOVING it as well as working weights.
    I want to live my life and ENJOY it being healthy and STRONG.
    Plus—you all are having A LOT more fun than the rest of the people trying to live a healthy life I know.

  101. I’ve only been eating primal for a week and I can honestly say I am already reaping the benefits. I don’t really have any “weight” to lose. I switched to the primal lifestyle so I didn’t have to “work” so hard at maintaining my weight, so I didn’t have to embrace hunger, and to rid myself of inflammation and random bouts of arm eczema. I already look way more cut since I don’t have all those useless card stores taking up space under my skin and with all the extra fat I’m eating my skin looks amazing (first time in my life I have not had to put lotion on) and (excuse my bluntness) I am pooping the best I ever have!! Who knew it was grains reeking havoc on my body. Thank God I gave up that unhealthy vegan diet. Why do people do that to themselves?

  102. 3 reasons why Primal blue print works for me:

    – I’ve stopped hypoglycineating, meaning my blood sugar levels stopped spiking and instead of NEEDING to eat every 2 hours, I eat when I’m hungry…
    – Constant energy levels. Constantly high.
    – Weight loss to a very comfortable 13 stones, 1 stone lighter than 3 months ago. I actually try not to loose more weight!

    Best part is, I know you’re trying to get to 10m people helped, I’m up to 8 people who’ve started living Primal after seeing the results for me. Here are some of their changes:

    – Rich: after 5 years on very strong antacids, stopped taking them on day 3 of new lifestyle
    – Mike: stuck at 110kg for ages and no change, after 1 month primal, at 105kg but A LOT more muscle replacing that fat
    – Patrick: Feeling bloated and tired for years, 5 days in, looks distinctly better already and more energy
    – Pete: After 15 years of very bad IBS needing steroids treatment (with all issues associated), getting better and considering coming off the meds.

    Amazing stuff, and yet so logical. It’s like we’ve been conned into eating badly for years…

  103. I’ve been doing paleo and crossfit since jan 2012 with amazing results lost 20 + lbs plus I’m getting very lean. I eat all I want. Just eat the allowable foods.

  104. My father-in-law would disagree VEHEMENTLY about skin cancer being a result of “avoiding the sun.” That doesn’t make sense. He worked outside for a good portion of his youth, had sunburns all the time, etc etc. As a result, he will have to have his skin checked once a month for the rest of his life, and he has to have pieces removed at least every other time.

    Unless you’re a dermatologist, please don’t try to be an expert about skin cancer. People will believe you, and you might very well kill them.

  105. Unfortunately, when an MD gives nutritional advice it´s akin to a plumber giving you advice on fixing an electrical outlet. Generally speaking (although some schools are adding nutrition to their core curriculae), an MD´s nutritional background is limited to a couple of days on the basics of nutrition. Even my husband, who is a DC and also has a BS in Human Nutrition, admits that at least 50% of what he learned about nutrition was pure, unadulterated bunk. Outdated at best, and dangerous at worst. Hopefully, things will change but for now we must rely on cutting-edge resources for sound nutritional knowledge. This site is a great start!

  106. I,ve been primal now for just 6 weeks, but have lost about 6.5lbs. I am not a big girl, small framed, but I seem to be unable to loose the bulgy little belly! Go to the gym twice a week for hour and a half, work out hard with fair amounts of weights, eat a clean diet…meats veggies coconut oil, olive oil, eggs etc…does anyone have any other tips as to how to get the “gut gone”? need a bit of help here!!!! 🙂

  107. Cosnochta, Ceannochta, Fiannta.
    My grandmother used to call us these things. Barefooted, bareheaded and wild (or free!). That’s what I was as a child. I ran around barefoot most of the time, I had the healthiest skin colour of all the local kids, I climbed trees, rode bikes, sprinted during water fights and honestly, ate the most primal diet ever. Eggs, cheese, fish, veg. My father used to say: eat your meat, best part of the dinner, and never cared if we left the spuds behind. My mum cooked us eggs/bacon/sausages every morning of our lives. I was super healthy and super happy. Then I became a teen, discovered take-aways were fun places to find boys, eat chips and smoke cigs. And I’ve been battling my weight problem ever since. Low fat, no fat, high carb, points, syns, soups etc. etc. etc. Sinusoidal peaks and troughs of success and failure. Shin splints and plantar tendonitis from years of pounding the roads, bad skin, lethargy, digestive problems. Problems, problems, problems, you name it, I had it.
    In October 2010 I re-joined Weight Watchers for the umpteenth time. By Xmas I had starved myself into a miserable 17 pound loss. By March that was back on again. In July, fed up of 20 years of the raging mood swings, the venomous petty jealousies aimed at others, the feelings of inadequacy drowned out by bottles of JD and bags of weed I decided to do something different. I rediscovered Primal food, I went barefoot every chance I got, I admitted that whilst I loved hill-walking and beachcombing, I actually hated running. I picked up a racquet again, bought a bike, did random spontaneous exercise and free healthy eating and I once again went Grokking in the free world.
    I lost 40 pounds without trying and I once again became that barefoot, free child I had once been, rooted to the earth and sure of my place. I became, dare I say, serene, for the first time in 20 years.

    #11 I love being me again.

  108. Just curious as to why no legumes or beans? Over the past 16 years I’ve slowly but surely adapted my eating to an almost Paleo diet on my own anyway but still eat beans, and some sprouted grains.

  109. Hey! Thanks for the list. I was thinking about dieting again but of the biggest problems i have is motivation to stick with it long term. But i think im going to start my diet after reading this list! You just got one more loyal reader. Thank you!

  110. Ones every gal should appreciate:
    -I like not feeling guilty about eating.
    I have been a “dieter” from age 13. Always unhealthy, sometimes insanely skinny, sometimes quite large. Genetically, I’m from the Baltic area, where you could argue we have even LESS of a tolerance to grain, meaning that, on SAD, we’re terribly prone to weight-gain. I always thought this was how it “had” to be: get fat, diet. I’d feel like I’d kicked a puppy every single time I nibbled some chocolate or ate “high fat”. Now I follow lacto-paleo 98% of the time and keep so healthy that I can AFFORD to mess with my diet the other 2%, or even up to 5/10%! As long as I don’t gorge on high-sugar when the time for a treat “feels right”, my body filters and copes, because it isn’t in a continual “toxic overload”, where weight-gain is easy!

    -I like to pinch my areas of fat and know that it’s EXACTLY the right body-fat percentage for my body.
    A young woman usually needs between 16-25% body-fat. The exact number varies depending on the woman, but we DO need more than men! We have our menses, pregnancy and hormonal ups and downs to fight and our bodies like being in a state of mild “calorific surplus” and will FIGHT to keep our fat, wether us gals like it or not. But on the SAD diet or any of my weight-loss diets, I was never certain about how much body-fat I needed! I had this feeling I was always at least slightly overweight and felt that any “pinchable” skin was an offence.
    Now I realise that a certain amount of body-fat is natural and needed. And I know that that amount is the amount I have! On Paleo, my body fat never drops much under 20% or over 23%. Yes, it moves around, but not because I’m dieting or “over-indulging”, but because my body is WORKING AS IT SHOULD. I’ve stopped worrying about over/under eating or about how much/little soft/loose skin I have and just started ENJOYING food, exercise and my own body!

    -I like having strong nails, clean hair and only the odd spot.
    Again: hormones. We have them going through a CONTINUAL cycle and cannot tame them. For many women, these lead to brittle nails, “bad hair days” and ridiculous levels of acne. I should know, I was one of them!
    Since going Paleo my nails are strong (yes, they sometimes break, but rarely, only when they reach a certain length and now they only ever break ABOVE the skin!), my hair is clean and fluffy up to four days after a wash (usually it took 36 hours for it to re-grease) and, even when VERY stressed, I have less spots than before!

    -I feel like a sexy Grokette!
    I won’t go too far into this, but it all adds up: my body-scent is more natural, I’m happier with my body and I’m healthier all round. I feel sexier than ever!

    -I like being able to do “endurance” WITHOUT stocking up on sugars.
    I now routinely carry 5-20kg in my hands or on my back when walking around. I’ll carry this for 20-45 minutes as I do my shopping, go for a walk or sort my room. And I don’t get a sugar-craving or feel tired after. I can even do it on an empty stomach and my body is FINE with it!

    -I like being able to skip a meal without panicking or feeling terrible.
    Before, if I missed ONE meal or ate it at the “wrong” time I was grumpy, hungry, tired and continually worried about how I’d “recover” those “lost” calories! Now I just eat when hungry and, if I miss a meal, my digestive system shuts down. No tummy-rumbles, no hunger-pangs, no salivation, no grumpiness, no worries.

    -I like feeling awake without caffeine.
    Yes, I LOVE the odd plain/milk/cream coffee or tea. But I don’t NEED it. Caffeinated drinks have become a nice treat, something to have in the morning or the afternoon for hydration and enjoyment. Not something I swallow to wake me up. Because my body wakes itself up and, unless I’m running on five hours for five nights, my body can also COPE with the odd night where I sleep less. It just sleeps deeper the next night. Or gets me into bed earlier. Either way, no more living on four hours sleep and caffeine!

    -I like being able to look “bad” foods in the eye and NOT feel tempted.
    Before, on every single diet it was “I see, I want”. Chocolate, ice-cream, fatty bacon… And I couldn’t have them. But I felt terrible and miserable for not having them. Now, who can honestly say that, if they see a potato, they want one? That the pasta is their favourite part of spaghetti bolognese? That fruit and nut cereal wouldn’t be better if it were ALL fruit and nuts (pretty much everyone aims to get as much fruit and nut and as little cereal into the bowl as possible!)?
    There’s just this automatic reaction of “Meatballs –> pasta.”, “Roast –> potato.”, “Quick food –> sandwich.” or “Breakfast –> cereal or toast.” People don’t seem so much to LIKE the grain and white potatoes as to see them as “what you do”. And that’s how I thought also. Making it all the easier to put more mince (the good stuff!) into my pasta-sauce and not have any pasta, to roast parsnips instead of potatoes, to have fruit and nuts with milk and WITHOUT cereal.
    Let’s admit it: this diet is all the tasty foods and none of the “bulk-style” “I’ll throw it on the side for tradition” foods!

    -I like having the energy to play with my niece and nephew.
    Before I just did the “grown-up” thing. I’d play a bit, get bored/tired and lounge with a coffee. Now I look forward to visiting so I can climb trees, dress up as batgirl and play penalty shoot-out!

    -I like the idea of being able to STILL do/feel all this when I’m in my 60s, 70s and 80s!
    Combine natural good health AND modern medicine, and there’s no reason I won’t be able to!

  111. As a personal trainer who promotes this kind of approach to health and fitness, my clients, friends and family think I’m crazy when I tell them that fat won’t make you fat. But when they put it into practice and start seeing results, they soon see sense.
    We know why this isn’t mainstream, food standards agencies and pharmaceutical companies don’t like it.
    But it is vital to our health to balance our lives in this way, it makes so much sense. Continue spreading the word, and we can all get a little bit better.

  112. Just come accross your site, and I love the idea, but where does beer fit in please?

  113. Please Mr. Sission become a demagogue , that will make everything better for everyone. Yay.

  114. Wow! I love it. It’s an inspiration to think we can live the life that we want to live… I’m going to chase my dream.

  115. Primal is easy. It is filling and energizing. No more asthma, migraines,30 pounds gone never to return.
    Suffered with an unknown virus and anemia recently. Tons of blood test and others. It was not the end of the world, but the Doc could not deduce what was causing the anemia other than the virus. Had felt pretty sluggish for 3 months. Once I was informed I was anemic I got off my own case. Stopped thinking I was being lazy. Gave my body the rest it needed and the food (liver) and supplements (natural B-12) it was screaming for and now less than 2 weeks later I feel great. I was told it may take me a month or more to recover. Ha! GROK on!

  116. Nice article Mark although their is something special about the immune system of raw foodies who know what they’re doing, as they never seem to be even phased the slightest bit by a cold or anything for that matter and I know because I used to be one for a couple of years. Another interesting thing about raw foodies is their incredibly fast recovery time, I was just watching an old lady around the age of 65 on youtube that was used to recovering the next day after completing the iron man in hawaii and she mentioned that no other fellow athlete was capable of joining her for sight seeing the day after the race haha and she never mentioned any form of recovery protocols, however I also have raw foodie friends with incredibly fast recovery time compared to my paleo friends although neither of them do marathons I thought her example was interesting. I think the PB may be missing something, perhaps the emphasis on more raw foods? Less cooked foods? Maybe raw meat? Although I’ve never read the PB I think the body’s capability to recover should not be less efficient with age nor do I think that the immune system should ever have any hiccups with an optimum health management routine.

  117. I think it’s great that you’re so honest about yourself and the reasons this diet worked for you. Most people would definitely never admit to being lazy (though most of us are 🙂 and a lot of people who are advocating diet plans don’t like to admit they like food (though who doesn’t?) I really like these reasons for trying this diet and I think that they are definitely ones most people will agree with.

  118. Thanks Mark, I just recently went into Paleo and I’m very excited to see all the information on this blog!! Thanks for all the hard work!

  119. this diet really really makes sense. if you read the intro’s to people getting into primal diet, a lot of them mention that.

  120. I started Monday eliminating gluten, and carbs. Tuesday I started feeling flush, head to toe. My blood P went up to 160/90s, and stayed. I went back and looked at what I ate, little to no carbs, under 100. Concerned my wife gave me a Xanax, and it helped some, but not really. Ate a high fat supper, fresh green stuff, and drank a beer. The beer had an instant impact on my edginess. Blood P dropped to 120/70s. Here it is Friday, going to see doc. Didn’t work out today, wife worried about BP, as well as me. Anyway throughout the days my BP is racing, my neck tingling, skin crawling. At supper, high fat, low carb, and two beers, and last night BP was 116/67 at bedtime. What is up with this?

  121. This blog was… how do you say it? Relevant!!
    Finally I have founnd something which helped me.
    Cheers!

  122. I’ve been following the Primal way of eating for just over a year now and my weight has gone down to what is was when I was in my early 20’s. I don’t have as much muscle as I had then and still have too much fat on my belly, but I am 70. That’s my excuse. I keep to the Primal way of eating at least 80% of the time. I have to admit I’m a little amused at some peoples comments about not being able to eat all that high Carb stuff out there. I’ve been a medically diagnosed Coeliac for 21 years now and lots of the carbs are not safe for me to eat and I just accept it. If I ate the wrong things I suffered with diarrhoea. I used to worry about getting enough Carbs when eating out, but not any more. Its been very liberating. I grew up in the 40’s and 50’s when we all ate high fat and had cooked breakfasts and very few of us were fat. Also sugar rationing was in operation until I was 9, so I never really developed a very sweet tooth. We hadn’t heard of pasta then and certainly didn’t snack between meals. As for the comments about being pregnant, I only put on about 14 lbs with my second child and he weighed 7.5 lbs. I was living out in the far east and I don’t think we ate as much as it was so hot. I had a short easy labour. Can’t remember what we ate, it was 45 years ago.

  123. Where does the 80% of body composition due to diet (nutrition) come from? Are there any published studies or books that explain this empirically?

    I see it alot on the web, and it makes sense to me, but I’m just curious….

    –Joe

  124. Yanno, some of us simply don’t tan. My skin has never tanned. Freckles sure. Burn? No problem, I gotchyer burn just give me 15 minutes in the sun. Water blisters? Scabs from peeling too deeply? Been there done that, and I wasn’t even TRYING to get a tan. Some of us Celtic types simply can’t. Our Groks didn’t evolve in the sun.

    I’m down with ya on everything else but for some of us, the “porcelain skin thing” doesn’t mean we never go outside. It just means we’re between painful burns.

  125. I jumped on the bandwagon and am totally loving not feeling guilty about my meals…….that being said I’ve gained 5 pounds and its taking everything I have to not ditch! Lost 19 lbs that I worked really hard for eating healthy “unhealthy ” foods and can’t believe I’m eating way less but am gaining. I cut out cheese and backed off the nuts, what can I do?? Also, thought on half and half in my coffe? Kind of the only cheat during the day
    Thanks

  126. I agree with all of what you say with the exception of the tan thing- I am a redhead. I don’t tan, I burn and freckle. My skin, where usually exposed to sun, looks much older and more damaged than the skin on say my legs where the skin never sees sun. I am 26, live in sunny California and have already had skin cancer removed because I have not been careful and was raised (with blonde, tan siblings) being told to go outside and get my vitamin D. My redheaded aunt has also had skin cancer, twice. So, perhaps for 95% of the population-yes- go bask in the sun. But I’ll continue donning my hat and sunscreen, thank you very much.

  127. I’d rather be working out all day than to be lying in bed, sick from one of the many viruses that spread all around this planet!

    I can see how people are catching up to the primal living. It doesn’t make sense to count on technology for the sake of saving a bit of energy or out of laziness. We’re surrounded by all kinds of things that don’t need much of our activity: Elevators, cars, etc.

    I LOVE running barefoot…I live in a resort so it’s easy for me to just step outside without any worries of glass or anything.

    Primal all the way!!

  128. I’m glad you noted the mucus inducing ice cream. I think it is an issue with dairy that I also struggle with. Sometimes I don’t have to worry about it, but other times it is an issue for sure.

    I think the biggest thing is balance. I guess if you really don’t want to have all of the non-Primal foods EVER then it is fine to stick to that. I find that being so strict can be a mental challenge as it creates some superiority complexes and other not so attractive issues….

  129. I started this paleo thing because I had been diagnosed with pre-diabetes. There is NO way I want to go there, so I was willing to try anything. I got glucose levels well within normal range, and it has been easy.

    But that is only the beginning. All my lab numbers are within normal ranges, blood pressure is low, I have lost weight without hunger, I feel great, my skin looks great and people tell me I look younger, I have lots of energy, I sleep better, my sniffly nose is no longer sniffly, I think better without the ‘fog’, and I feel happy for no reason. Why would I ever want to do anything else?

  130. Really interesting article here Mark!

    It’s hard to argue with the 10 points you make. Committing to a lifestyle like the caveman diet is something that needs dedication but can really offer so many gains

    Keep the posts coming!

    Rob

  131. I love this! When people say to me (after finding out that I walk at lunch everyday, or some such factoid) “Oh, you are so GOOD!” (implying some sort of moral high ground) I just laugh, and say, “No, I do this because I am SELFISH!”
    I completely agree, Mark! I do these things just because they make me happier!

  132. All of the 10 reasons resonate with me.
    I know there is a problem when if I was asked what one food I would choose to eat for the rest of my life, I would respond good bread with butter.
    I know it isn’t healthy and it’s my addiction that is talking.
    I want to jump into the 21 day trial for 2 reasons, I want to LGN and I’ve had “idiopathic” HBP for 7 years and want to quit taking medication for it. The potential side effects of all the HBP meds are awful.
    I figure that I have nothing to lose, except fat, and much to gain, like all the 10 reasons listed above.

  133. I definitely felt better after eating primal. I am gong back at it again after we moved to an eco-village. best decission ever!

  134. Your post resonates with me. I am a 51 year old woman, have been an ultrarunner since 2001. I run 5 or 6 100 mile races each year and many 50 milers, 50Ks, etc. Up until 2011 when I had a complete hysterectomy, I hadn’t had any injuries. Of course I’m 5 years older since that hysterectomy. I run a 100, I have to recover for WEEKS or even months. After my last 100 I had neuroma surgery. The recovery was long. I ran a 50 miler last Saturday, I don’t just bounce back anymore. I ended up with cellulitus while running..what the heck? A dirty gaiter? I am not sure but my calf swelled to double, my ankle is sore…on antibiotics, still swollen and it is probably a stress fracture. Another appt. this week. I just probably need to stop this as recovery is taking longer and longer.

    I have been following MAFFETONE training the last 6 months, it’s easier on my body by following a heart rate of 140, eating more fats, less carbs. I’m beginning to realize I may have to move away from ultrarunning and toward easy biking, hiking, yoga, etc. I’ve always carried an extra 10 – 15 pounds. Perhaps the 21 day Primal Challenge would be a great kick off to a new way of life. There is SO much good information here, I thank you!

    I do wonder how you mentally gave up the long endurance stuff..how did you take those steps to shorter workouts, the social aspect, the friendships made, the hours spent on the bike or on the run with others. That is the part that will be difficult for me.

  135. Fantastic read! Personally I love barefoot running, and after doing it for a year I can tell the difference. If any of you have read the free book being offered on this website, you may like Jaret Grossman’s book “Cracking the Code.” It’s a free book he’s giving away on his website about how to become the best person you can become by cracking your own blueprint. Here’s his website if you’re interested: https://jaretgrossman.clickfunnels.com/order-form-9242124

  136. Actually, I think I like all those just the same… I enjoy not eating carbs… and certainly not eating any wheat/gluten at all, when I’m hungry it’s not an emergency, of course, sometimes I’m still the first in line in the kitchen, but only so that I get the first before anyone else does as I live with a family of 4 who still are addicted to said gluten… and I don’t want my share to be contaminated.
    I have tried eating just small bits of said gluten and felt terrible, not just mentally, but psychically as well, my stomach ached and nothing I did soothed it, and anytime I sneak a Klondike bar (as part of paleo 80/20 or 90/10) all the artificial ingredients get me every time with some skin reaction.
    I think I’m finally done with it all… not even going 90/10 works, it has to be just about all the way 100, nothing can be artificial or I’ll get a reaction from it.
    But, I do love Sweet Potatoes!!!! I can’t do the nightshade white ones, they cause such pain in my lower abdomen to where I think I’m getting a very painful period… then of course, I have to limit Onions and Garlic… and even peppers, I’ll eat them once in awhile, but I don’t eat them every day and I seem to do better eating that way as compared to eating those every day, but no matter how long I wait – can’t have the nightshade of potatoes… nope!

    Albeit, my mom would peel more than just the skin off and would soak the potatoes for a few hours and change the water out, but since my brother’s taken over he doesn’t do the things she does… it doesn’t cook anything long and slow, which might explain the acid reflux I’ll get with the peppers even when they’re once in awhile… if they aren’t cooked to mush.

    I don’t really work out though, I try to stretch and do a little movement.
    And, I just noticed this article was posted about 10 years ago… lol. But, you probably still read the comments.
    I love eating Paleo, and following the lifestyle, except for shutting off the computer/tv 1 hr before sleep and staying on the sleep cycle… ’cause most of the time I get sleepy and can fall asleep despite having just been on the computer 10 minutes prior, and when I’m not sleepy but go to bed, I definitely can’t fall asleep fast.
    I supplement on a few things, though, only because we can’t afford to buy grass-fed all the time, but they would if they would eliminate the gluten and grains, plus other processed foods… which aren’t foods which is why their bodies are constantly hungry, they’re starving for nourishment and NOT stuffing more food every 3 to 4 hours, their bodies want nourishment!

    Anyway, enough rambling… although, it doesn’t matter how often I tell them how great I feel not eating all of what they eat, they won’t give any of it up, because their addicts.