Paleopathology and the Origins of the Paleo Diet

Paleo Diet: Paleopathology and the Origins

Origins of the Paleo Diet

“Blood-vessel disease was common (among the ancient Egyptians), contrary to assumptions that it arises from urban stress and a modern high-fat diet,” Dr Michael Eades, reads aloud to the audience at the CrossFit Health Conference on Aug. 1, 2018.

Eades is a well-known physician and author of several books about the science behind low-carb diets. Still, this quote from Arno Karlen’s book Napoleon’s Glands brought to mind knowledge from a previous career path when he was a college student interested in Egyptology.

Eades had researched the dynastic Egyptians’ lifestyle and knew they had eaten a wheat-based diet. The statement he read in Karlen’s book, he says, “electrified” him. He recalls waiting in anticipation for the library to open the next morning so he could perform additional research on the ancient Egyptian diet and its potential relation to cardiovascular disease (CVD).

In this presentation, Eades shares some of the outcomes of that research, taking his audience “on a journey through the anthropological literature and what that means in terms of ‘off the carbs.”

“So if you look at all the data out there,” Eades concludes, “you look at the metabolic constraints, the Kleiber line, the expensive tissue hypothesis, you look at the stable isotope data, you look at the hunter-versus-farmer data, you look at the ancient Egyptian data, you look at the modern RCTs, and it’s pretty clear that ‘off the carbs’ is the way to be.”

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