The Paleo Diet (Paleolithic Diet) focuses on the foods we evolved on over the centuries as hunter gatherers. This diet avoids all grains, beans, dairy, processed food, refined sugars, and processed foods; and it sticks with what our ancestors ate including meat, vegetables, fruits, eggs, nuts, and seeds.
Some Paleo diet protocols include starchy tubers like sweet potatoes, others do not. Some Paleo diets are very low carbohydrate, others are not – while you will get less carbohydrates on Paleo because of the lack of grains and sugars, the goal is not necessarily “low carb.” It can be implemented individually (as I think all diets should) to the personalized (bioindividual) nutrition needs of the person.
The “caveman diet” is still a very popular diet today. But even though we live in modern times it makes sense that this ancient diet is popular. It gets people back to the diet that we evolved to thrive on. And it avoids many of the modern foods that contribute to the health conditions we have today such as inflammation, pain, digestive issues, blood sugar imbalances, neurological conditions, behavioral and learning disorders, and obesity. Processed foods, excess sugar, and refined grains are at the core of these problems (or add fuel to the fire).
Children with ADHD, autism, and other conditions often have this same inflammation, oxidative stress, and digestive conditions, often making Paleo a good choice for them as well.
Meat and vegetables and these other Paleo foods are dense in nutrients: minerals, fat soluble vitamins, fatty acids, amino acids, and more. These help replenish nutrient deficiencies, probiotic levels, and nutrients needed to grow, repair, and learn.
I have many clients that thrive on this diet, and they still follow this diet years later because it avoids foods that cause inflammation and focuses on foods that reduce inflammation.
The Autoimmune Paleo Diet is a stricter form of the Paleo Diet, often used to address the symptoms of autoimmune disorders. This diet further restricts foods that cause inflammation in some individuals.
This low inflammation diet removes the foods not allowed on Paleo: grains, legumes, dairy, sugar, and processed foods, plus others including eggs, nuts, seeds, alcohol, coffee, and nightshades.
I teach parents and individuals in my Nourishing Hope for Healing Kids program and practitioners in my BioIndividual Nutrition Training how to successfully implement a healthy Paleo or Autoimmune Paleo diet based on the unique needs of the individual.