The Paleo diet — sometimes called the cave man diet — is based on the idea that eating foods similar to those consumed by our hunter-gatherer ancestors is the healthiest, most successful path to sustainable weight loss and optimal health. These guidelines will get you started on making the transition to eating Paleo:

  • Build your meals around animal protein sources, vegetables, fruits, and naturally occurring, high-quality fat sources.

  • As much as possible, eat grass-fed, organic, pasture-raised meat and poultry and wild-caught fish and seafood.

  • Eat a wide variety of vegetables (including starchy vegetables, like sweet potatoes and winter squash) and fruits (especially berries).

  • Enjoy a wide range of naturally occurring fats, including coconut products (milk, flakes, butter, and oil), avocados, olives, and olive oil.

  • Avoid all gluten and grains, including wheat, rice, corn, quinoa, buckwheat, barley, spelt, and oats.

  • Avoid all seed and industrial oils, including canola, soy, and corn.

  • Avoid dairy, including milk, cream, half-and-half, cheese, and yogurt.

  • Avoid all processed and packaged foods.

  • Avoid all added sugars and artificial sweeteners. (The naturally occurring sugar in fruit is okay.)

  • Eat protein, vegetables, fruits, and fats to satisfaction, rather than to the state of being "full" or "stuffed."