Paleo and Gluten-Free: Pros and Cons of Two Trendy Diets

With so many trendy diets flying around these days, it’s hard to keep them all straight. Many of today’s specialty diets offer nutritional advantages, but along with these perks can come fallbacks for the inattentive dieters among us. It’s nearly impossible to follow the nutritional pyramid to a T, but doctors do advise that dieters be aware of their bodies’ reactions to restrictive eating habits. If you’re planning to cut out a certain element of your diet, be sure to supplement with a balanced stream of vitamins and minerals. This way, you’ll meet your weight loss goals, without sacrificing your health.

Below are two of today’s most popular diets, along with some advice on how to maintain a healthy, balanced metabolism while trying to shed extra weight or build muscle.



Meat | Source: iStock

According to WebMD, Paleo is also called the Caveman Diet or the Stone Age diet, and it is characterized by “a high-protein, high-fiber eating plan that promises you can lose weight without cutting calories.” All in all, this means Paleo is a carnivore-friendly diet with a focus on fresh lean meats, fish, fruits, vegetables, and healthier sources of fat. Paleo stresses the avoidance of processed foods such as dairy, refined sugars, starches (potatoes), and salt. Paleo is based on the philosophy that because these products were not available to our Stone Age ancestors, our bodies have not evolved to the point where we can healthily digest them.

Paleo, like most diets, has its benefits. Time reports that “cutting down on preservative-packed processed foods” is an intelligent move. Scientific American compounds this statement, writing that “such processed foods often offer less protein, fiber and iron than their unprocessed equivalents, and some are packed with sodium and preservatives that may increase the risk of heart disease and certain cancers.” So far, so good.