Food Paleo/Primal/Ancestral/Low-Carb Dietary Lifestyles




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  1. #1
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    Paleo/Primal/Ancestral/Low-Carb Dietary Lifestyles

    Any other gamers here into this health lifestyle? I have to say, I've experienced some very good results with this. I dropped clothing sizes, look leaner, and feel healthier. I only wish I had discovered this stuff earlier in life, not that I'm old or anything, but I want to keep gaming happily and healthily well into my twilight years.

    If you dig this stuff, tell me of your experiences.

    I get sad to think that some of our hobby's pioneers could still be with us if they had known about and followed this lifestyle. My own father is now experiencing complications from diabetes and other lifestyle-related illnesses, and I'm sad I can't convince him to change his ways

    I know we gamers get a bad rep on the health and fitness side of things, our hobby being of the more sedentary kind, and I'm not trying to offend here, but if your health and fitness concerns you, I heartily recommend books like Robb Wolf's [ame="http://www.amazon.com/Paleo-Solution-Original-Human-Diet/dp/0982565844"]The Paleo Solution, [/ame]or Mark Sisson's [ame="http://www.amazon.com/Primal-Blueprint-Reprogram-effortless-boundless/dp/0982207786/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1349282679&sr=1-1&keywords=primal+blueprint"]Primal Blueprint[/ame], and the author's respective blogs:

    Mark's Daily Apple (there's a free set of guidelines here)
    Robb Wolf's blog

    Bonus:
    Nerd Fitness (I wish I had come up with the idea for this one!)
    Last edited by Androlphas; Saturday, 6th October, 2012 at 04:21 AM. Reason: Fixed links
    "It is important to keep in mind that, after all is said and done, ADVANCED DUNGEONS & DRAGONS is a game. Because it is a game, certain things which seem "unrealistic" or simply unnecessary are integral to the system."

    - Gary Gygax, AD&D Player's Handbook 1st Edition

 

  • #2
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    Not heard of it. How does it differ from a thousand other low-carb diets?

  • #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Androlphas View Post
    I get sad to think that some of our hobby's pioneers could still be with us if they had known about and followed this lifestyle.
    My opinion:

    There is a big, big, big question here. Are you and others seeing results because you are on *this* particular plan, or because you're on *a* plan? I suggest it is more the latter.

    Virtually anyone who goes on any type of dietary plan will see results, as long as they stick to the plan. The issue here isn't whether it is low-carb, or paleo, or superfoods, or Weight Watchers, or whatever, but that it is a plan, and it has you observing and paying attention to what you eat. Following a plan gets better results than acting at random. Duh!

    The danger isn't in failing to eat paleo, but in failing to watch what you eat, in general.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Umbran View Post
    My opinion:

    There is a big, big, big question here. Are you and others seeing results because you are on *this* particular plan, or because you're on *a* plan? I suggest it is more the latter.

    Virtually anyone who goes on any type of dietary plan will see results, as long as they stick to the plan. The issue here isn't whether it is low-carb, or paleo, or superfoods, or Weight Watchers, or whatever, but that it is a plan, and it has you observing and paying attention to what you eat. Following a plan gets better results than acting at random. Duh!

    The danger isn't in failing to eat paleo, but in failing to watch what you eat, in general.
    I'm largely of the opinion that all of these plans in their own way pretty much reduce calories. Some have small percentage advantages over others, but not enough that any normal person cognizant of confirmation bias will notice; the hi-tech science stuff in these diets only really matters to Olympic athletes and the like where tiny differences are important. To everyone else, they're all much of a muchness.

    There's no magic diet. There just isn't (well, there's one every year - or one that claims to be). It all boils down to the same thing: eat less, exercise more, and if one of those thousands of plans indirectly accomplishes that for you then great. Don't worry about types of fat and types of carbs and glycemic indexes and all that stuff unless you're literally an Olympic athlete within 1% of your required physical condition, in which case it'll matter.

    Calories in - calories out. It's just basic mathematics and the laws of thermodynamics. All the rest is just fluff to sell you books.

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    So should D&D characters lose levels over time? I mean, they kill monsters and absorb their calories (XP), and likely have to expend calories to kill more monsters, but as long as they consume regularly enough they'll get ahead. But if they grow idle, they'll burn off calories.

    Maybe more D&D characters should just be fat.

    Sorry, it's the end of my work day and my brain is too tired to make sense.
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  • #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Morrus View Post
    Not heard of it. How does it differ from a thousand other low-carb diets?
    Not much, to be honest. Individual diet plans differ on the details, but the overall movement has a few things in common:

    - Favoring "real" foods over processed stuff. Basically, eating the kinds of foods our ancestors could get in the wild during our hunter/gatherer days: animal products (preferably, free-roaming and grass-fed), fruits, nuts, and vegetables (esp. leafy greens and tubers).

    - Avoiding wheat and other grain products, soy, and processed sugar, as they all have deleterious effects on the body and its metabolism.

    - Avoiding processed fats (vegetable/canola oil, trans fats) in favor of fat from animals and/or other naturally-obtainable sources, like olive or coconut oil.

    As for exercise, most recommend intensity (lifting heavy things, and sprinting a couple of times a week) over volume (running on a treadmill every day). Mind you, this is for overall fitness. More athletic types will have different, individual needs.

    As you can see, some of it is pretty controversial if you go by what authorities tell you should do for health (eat low-fat products and whole-grain wheat, avoid fat, jog every day, etc.). Of course, I don't expect you to take my word for it. Check it out for yourself. Mark Sisson even has all his info on his blog for free, so you don't really even need the book, or any other purchase.

    Guys, while I don't want to start an Edition War of Diets here, and you're right that there are no magic diets, suffice it to say I respectfully disagree with the both of you on several points, "calories-in-calories-out" being one of them. What you eat is far more important than how many "points" it's worth. I know it's hard to get out of that mentality for us gamers Seriously though, the thermodynamic explanation for weight gain/loss falls short when you're talking about a complex biological system like the human body.

    Umbran, I understand what you are saying about diet plans, and there's a level of "who is right?" fatigue here. Dr. Peter Attia has an amusing blog post about why diets like Weight Watchers work when they do (hint: it's not what they're eating, but what they're not eating). It's a sad fact that commercial, medical, and political forces have (deliberately or not) muddied the informational waters on what is healthy and isn't*. The good thing is that you can learn about this stuff for yourself and see what works.

    Anyway, I started this thread for those of us who are into this lifestyle and as a "public service" for my fellow gamers. As for those who are curious, and (rightfully) question this lifestyle's validity, I cannot stress enough to look this stuff up, learn, and decide (even *gasp* try it out).


    * The Men Who Made Us Fat and Fat Head documentaries are pretty good if you want to know more.
    "It is important to keep in mind that, after all is said and done, ADVANCED DUNGEONS & DRAGONS is a game. Because it is a game, certain things which seem "unrealistic" or simply unnecessary are integral to the system."

    - Gary Gygax, AD&D Player's Handbook 1st Edition

  • #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Morrus View Post
    Calories in - calories out. It's just basic mathematics and the laws of thermodynamics. All the rest is just fluff to sell you books.
    While I agree with you that there no magic diet, I'm going to make the bold claim that this mentality is a prime example of tragically misapplied nutritional science. Not picking on you @Morrus

    Thermodynamics says nothing about causality. In other words, it's easy to blame fat people for their overeating and sedentary lifestyle (gluttony and sloth) as the cause of their condition, when its equally possible that the gaining of mass in the form of fat is what's causing them to eat more and conserve energy. The question in that case would be "well what's causing them to get fat then?" Which is an *excellent* starting place for a real inquiry.

    There's a whole body of research out there that gets deeply into this notion, though as a lay person myself I've relied on Gary Taubes' Good Calories, Bad Calories (the heavily footnoted TOME of research) and Why We Get Fat (the digest version, sources but no footnotes). Gary Taubes ? Author of Why We Get Fat and Good Calories, Bad Calories. He is a medical researcher, writes for Science, received 3 Science in Society Journalism Awards, and is a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Investigator in Health Policy Research at UC Berkeley's School of Public Health. IOW he's not a "diet guru" and he's not trying to sell you anything...well, besides his book (but I'm not yet cynical enough to discount any altruism of all authors everywhere).

  • #8
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    Anyway, I started this thread for those of us who are into this lifestyle and as a "public service" for my fellow gamers. As for those who are curious, and (rightfully) question this lifestyle's validity, I cannot stress enough to look this stuff up, learn, and decide (even *gasp* try it out).
    Personally, I consider myself "Fry Curious"...

    I'm a fat dude who cooks. I grew up in a medical family, so seeing dieticians was, essentially, free for most of my life.

    General consensus: as long as your diet has all the right nutrients, it really is calories in, calories out. There's some new research coming up showing that types of calories do matter, but the jury is still out as to how much they matter.

    (My personal diet? Wildly varied, quite complete, few red flags. My issue is mainly one of portion control.)
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  • #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dannyalcatraz View Post
    General consensus: as long as your diet has all the right nutrients, it really is calories in, calories out. There's some new research coming up showing that types of calories do matter, but the jury is still out as to how much they matter.
    In physics, we have a useful notion: "to first approximation".

    For example, Newton's Laws are correct, to first approximation. Einstein gives us corrections, but, for most folks, in most normal situations, Newton is good enough.

    I would say that,with all the dietary study done to date, that we haven't already clearly and unequivocally identified certain foods as "evil", that the same holds here - to first approximation, you can treat it as calories in, calories out. This is where the low hanging fruit of improvement lies - you'll get major results following this principle, and it is the simplest.

    Mind you, there is a psychological effect in which having a "trick", or piece of secret knowledge, makes a scheme seem more valid. The logic goes that, since so many people are overweight, it *must* be that the real issue is something complicated or hidden from normal view, or we'd have solved the problem. It couldn't be that we snack on high-calorie foods too much, and don't get as much exercise as our bodies are designed to have - that's too simple!

    (My personal diet? Wildly varied, quite complete, few red flags. My issue is mainly one of portion control.)
    Portion control, and, for many, not really realizing how many calories some foods have (sugared sodas, I'm looking at you!), and how much you actually need for a given level of activity.

  • #10
    The Guvnor
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quickleaf View Post
    While I agree with you that there no magic diet, I'm going to make the bold claim that this mentality is a prime example of tragically misapplied nutritional science.
    That's bold indeed. Nutritionists across the planet would be excited to discuss with you this notion of calories being "tragically misapplied nutritional science".
    I'd be amazed if even the authors of these books make that claim about the notion of calorie intake and expenditure.
    Last edited by Morrus; Thursday, 4th October, 2012 at 07:37 PM.

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