You know the drill. You want to lose weight for summer – so out go the fats and sugars – cakes, sweets, chocolates and chips – replaced by smaller portions and lots of fresh fruit, whole grains and veggies, lean fish and diet yogurts. So far so good, right? Well – not really.
How many times have you scrupulously dieted only to find that your weight hasn’t budged or, worse still, increased? On top of that, the whole rigmarole has left you so energy-depleted there’s little likelihood of taking up any regular exercise.
Sometimes it seems as though the healthy food we eat actually works against us. If you’ve ever pondered that – you are not alone. It’s called food intolerance and the same debate is taking place in kitchens and dining rooms around the globe.
What’s weighing us down?
But before we go down that track it’s time to face facts – the world has a chronic weight problem. Every second person, it seems, is on a diet – but we continue to get fatter. It seems the more we learn about the issue the less we know.
Even our kids are getting bigger – much bigger. Childhood obesity has reached epidemic proportions. Last year, nearly 43 million of the world’s under-fives were overweight.
But who says what ‘good nutrition’ is?
In Australia about one in four children is classified as overweight or obese (close to a third of adults are oversize). Yet, has there ever been a time we were being taught more about ‘good nutrition’?
Breakfast programs, daily fitness classes, health-conscious canteens, multi-million dollar awareness campaigns – just where is it all going wrong?
Every TV ad for a food product trumpets its ‘essential vitamins and minerals’, or is touted as a Good Source Of … (calcium, omega-3, fibre, protein, iron, folate).
Even food manufacturers – with profit targets to meet – have become experts in nutrition. Wait . . . Que?
Most of us do try to follow the ‘rules’. . . in fact – many feel guilty straying outside them – which says a lot for how entrenched these ideas have become.
But entrenchment of ‘nutritional rules’ does not make them factual.
Facts about correct diet must be based only in hard evidence: rigorous scientific observation and investigation which considers the whole picture of humanity. The Food Intolerance Institute takes all its information from peer-reviewed studies published in the medical literature.
As our body measurements balloon, so do the weight-loss and exercise industries. It is estimated that the Australian fitness industry will reach almost $3.5 billion in annual revenue by 2016-17. Are we all fit as fiddles? Hardly.
The weight loss industry is healthy at $586 billion worldwide. But our health is less and less certain – and we still can’t budge those extra kilos. What should we take from this?
Could the nutrition recommendations be faulty?
Shouldn’t we factor in food intolerance?
We say yes! As obesity rates rise, so do reports of food intolerance. This is the inability to fully digest certain foods. This partial digestion produces gremlins which interfere with metabolism. And that magically leads to unexplained weight gain or weight loss – regardless of calories consumed.
Food intolerance is linked to the development of obesity in children. Allergy UK reports that 45% of people in the UK have experienced food intolerance.
To complicate matters we often crave and binge on the very foods that make us sick leading to problems such as migraine, fatigue, fluid retention and bloating. Sound familiar?
Significantly, two of the most common food sensitivities, dairy and wheat, form the staple of western diets. These account for about 60% of the calories consumed by Americans.
Australians are among the highest per capita consumers of milk, chugging down more than 102 litres per person a year.
There’s nothing wrong with that of course unless you happen to be sensitive to those foods – and there’s the rub. Food intolerances are as individual as the people who have them, and range from milk and cereals to vegetables, fruits and additives.
The ideal diet – if you are Homo sapiens
There is a diet which applies to all of us – especially anyone with food intolerance. It is the one for our species: the Paleo diet of our Old Stone Age ancestors. Why? Because all the scientific and fossil evidence shows:
- Paleo humans were tall and lean
- They had no chronic disease at all
- … and when grains and milk were introduced to the human diet by Neolithic farmers:
- People no longer grew as tall (they had shorter stature)
- And clear physical evidence of chronic disease appeared – osteoporosis, rheumatoid arthritis, tooth decay and more
Try Paleo for yourself – the PaleoRanking app.