Paleo All-in-One For Dummies - Kellyann Petrucci - E-Book

Paleo All-in-One For Dummies E-Book

Kellyann Petrucci

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Beschreibung

Live the Paleo lifestyle to get healthy and fit with naturalfoods Paleo All-in-One For Dummies is the powerhouse resourcethat includes all the information you'll need to get started withthe Paleo lifestyle or further refine your diet if you're already aconvert! With content from leading authorities on the Paleolifestyle, this easy-to-read, all-in-one resource offers a completeoverview of living the primal life to lose weight, improve athleticperformance, get fit, and stay healthy. Use the tips from the bookto change your diet to include healthy, natural foods, then jumpinto the companion workout videos to master the Paleo moves andtechniques that are featured in the book. The Paleo movement is taking the scientific world by storm, withstudies indicating that the diet lowers the risk of cardiovasculardisease, encourages weight loss, controls acne, and leads togreater overall health and athletic performance. * Discover an appealing, sustainable alternative to highlyrestrictive diets that are doomed to fail * Incorporate healthy, natural foods into your daily routine toachieve better health and a better physique * Get comprehensive coverage of the Paleo lifestyle from leadingexperts * Start or refine your paleo diet whether you're new to theconcept or a seasoned Paleo follower If you want to know where to start with the healthy-eating Paleolifestyle, Paleo All-in-One For Dummies is your resource toget on track and stay the course to create a healthy, happy, andfit new you.

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Paleo All-In-One For Dummies®

Published byJohn Wiley & Sons, Inc.111 River StreetHoboken, NJ07030-5774

www.wiley.com

Copyright © 2015 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, New Jersey

Media and software compilation copyright © 2015 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved.

Published simultaneously in Canada

No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, scanning or otherwise, except as permitted under Sections 107 or 108 of the 1976 United States Copyright Act, without the prior written permission of the Publisher. Requests to the Publisher for permission should be addressed to the Permissions Department, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 111 River Street, Hoboken, NJ 07030, (201) 748-6011, fax (201) 748-6008, or online at http://www.wiley.com/go/permissions.

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Library of Congress Control Number: 2014951013

ISBN: 978-1-119-02277-0 (pbk); ISBN 978-1-119-02278-9 (ebk); ISBN 978-1-119-02279-4 (ebk)

Paleo All-in-One For Dummies®

Visit www.dummies.com/cheatsheet/paleoaio to view this book's cheat sheet.

Table of Contents

Cover

Introduction

About This Book

Foolish Assumptions

Icons Used in This Book

Beyond the Book

Where to Go from Here

Book I: Getting Started with Paleo

Chapter 1: Grasping the What and Why of Paleo

It’s a Lifestyle, Not a Diet

Glimpsing the Science Behind the Lifestyle

Curing Modern Ailments with Prehistoric Practices

Stealing Moves from Cave Men: The Paleo Fitness Difference

Undergoing the Paleo Transformation

Creating a Paleo Lifestyle

Practicing Paleo Fitness: Movement by Design

Chapter 2: Modern Foods and Your Inner Cave Man

Getting Familiar with the “Yes” and “No” Foods of the Paleo Diet

The Truth about Common Foods

Figuring Out How Much You Can (and Should) Eat

Supercharging Your Body with the Power of Paleo Foods

Capturing Your Personal Before and After Makeover

Building the Foundation for Success: The 30-Day Reset

Chapter 3: Preparing and Using Your Cave Kitchen

Rethinking What You Know about Nutrition

The Paleo Big Three: Animal Proteins, Natural Fats, Complex Carbohydrates

Getting Rid of the Foods that Don’t Fit

Refilling Your Kitchen with Paleo Foods

Cooking Smart to Retain Flavor and Nutrition

Chapter 4: Using Paleo Concepts in Your Fitness Routine

Cultivating Strength

Moving Every Day

Breathing the Way You Were Meant To

Knowing What Compels You

Training the Primal Patterns Primarily

Keeping Your Conditioning Inefficient

Doing the Least You Have to Do

The Big Seven: Tracking Your Progress with Health Markers

Chapter 5: Making Paleo Practical in a Modern World

Dealing with Potential Pitfalls

Dining Out and Traveling

Enjoying Special Occasions

Transitioning the Family

Book II: Recipes for Every Occasion and Meal

Chapter 1: Crafting Paleo Breakfasts

Expanding Your Breakfast Options

Enjoying Paleo-Friendly, Grain-Free Goodies

Chapter 2: Packing Nutrition into Soups and Salads

Making Your Own Savory Soups, and Buying Wisely When You Can’t

Seizing the Versatility of the Salad

Chapter 3: The Meat (and More) of the Matter: Paleo Main Dishes

Building Paleo Meals from Top-Quality Meats

Buying Fresh Fish for Fab Dishes

Chapter 4: Paleo Life in the Slow (Cooker) Lane

Getting the Scoop on Slow Cooking

Chapter 5: Vegetable Dishes That Satisfy

Evolving Past Starches: Paleo-Friendly Hot Side Dishes

Chapter 6: Paleo for Kids: Recipes Your Littles Will Love

Packing Kid-Friendly Paleo Lunches

Book III: Paleo Extras: Snacks, Sauces, Spice Mixes, and Sweets

Chapter 1: Snacks That Fuel Your Body, Sugar Crash Not Included

Making Sure Your Snacks Are Healthy

Chapter 2: Spicing Up Paleo Cooking with Sauces, Dressings, and Salsas

Making Your Own Dressings and Condiments

Adding Flavor with Sugar-Free Spice Blends

Chapter 3: Mixing Rubs and Paleo Seasonings

Tapping the Healing Power of Spices

Chapter 4: Satisfying Your Sweet Tooth

Spotting Sugar in Its Sneakiest Forms

Book IV: Primal Power Moves for a Healthier Body

Chapter 1: Hinging and Squatting Your Butt and Legs to Primal Perfection

The Lowdown on Hinges

Beginner Hinging Exercises

Intermediate Hinging Exercises

Advanced Hinging Exercises

The Lowdown on Squats

Beginner Squatting Exercises

Intermediate Squatting Exercises

Advanced Squatting Exercises

Chapter 2: Pushes and Pulls for a Strong, Solid Torso

All about the Primal Pushes

Beginner Pushes

Intermediate Pushes

Advanced Pushes

All about the Primal Pulls

Beginner Pulls

Intermediate Pulls

Advanced Pulls

Chapter 3: Carrying Heavy Things and Ab Exercises That Don’t Suck

Mastering the Art of the Loaded Carry

Beginner Carries

Intermediate Carries

Advanced Carries: The Bottoms-Up Carry

Getting the Abs of Your Dreams

Beginner Ab Exercises

Intermediate Ab Exercises

Advanced Ab Exercises

An All-Around Paleo Exercise: The Turkish Get-Up

Chapter 4: Primal Power Moves for Explosive Athleticism

Understanding Primal Power

Beginner Power Moves

Intermediate Power Moves

Advanced Power Moves

Chapter 5: Beyond Strength Training and Cardio to Metabolic Conditioning

Introducing Primal Strength Training

Gaining Strength Without Gaining Weight

Moving Past Chronic Cardio Syndrome

Developing the Recipe for a Good Exercise Program

Introducing Metabolic Conditioning

Turbocharging Fat Loss with Complexes

Chapter 6: Programs for Getting Started — and for Pushing Forward

Beginning at the Beginning: The 21-Day Primal Quick Start

Gearing Up for the 21-Day Program

Your 21-Day Primal Quick Start

From Average to Elite: The 90-Day Primal Body Transformation

Building a Balanced 90-Day Program

Your 90-Day Primal Body Transformation

Appendix: Metric Conversion Guide

About the Authors

Cheat Sheet

Connect with Dummies

End User License Agreement

Guide

Cover

Table of Contents

Begin Reading

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Introduction

Any Paleo aficionado will agree that your Paleo journey starts with food. Discovering the “yes” and “no” Paleo foods, converting your kitchen into a primal one, and creating your own Paleo meals can help you lose weight, boost immunity, fight aging, heal conditions, and perform better.

But living Paleo isn’t a “diet” in the traditional sense but a way of thinking about health and fitness — one that’s based on eating and moving like your ancestors did. This means loading up on some foods and avoiding others. It also means heavy lifting, sprinting, and other movements that the conveniences of modern day have made largely irrelevant.

Whenever someone comes along with a “new and exciting” exercise program, it’s generally all wrong. When it comes to fitness, a new way of doing something is rarely a better way of doing something. It’s almost invariably the exchange of one nuisance for another. The same is true of what you eat. This book shows you what you need to live a lifestyle that supports your health with all the information, tips, and recipes you need to feel alive, vibrant, and nourished the Paleo way.

About This Book

Adopting the Paleo lifestyle may seem overwhelming at first, so Paleo All-in-One For Dummies is organized in a way that makes the benefits of eating and exercising Paleo easy to understand. Use this book as both a reference and a cookbook; if you need to check on whether a food is a Paleo yes or no, you can find that information easily. If you’re creating a menu for a dinner party and want to go all Paleo, you can pick your recipes and get to work. If Paleo is new to you, you can start with the foundational information and get to know Paleo superfoods, how Paleo eating can improve how you feel, and how you can get started with a cleansing 30-Day Reset. You can find out exactly what it means to work out Paleo, the benefits you reap from doing so, and all the exercises you need to build a solid workout program. (For good measure, you also get 90 days’ worth of workouts to follow.)

Cooking is a big part of the Paleo equation. The recipes in this book will keep you well fed from breakfast through dinner, with healthy snacks in between. Here are some specific recipe-related conventions that apply throughout the book:

Temperatures are given in degrees Fahrenheit.

All eggs are large unless noted otherwise.

All water is filtered so all the toxic elements are removed.

All bacon is free of nitrates, casein, gluten, and antibiotics.

All pepper is freshly ground black pepper unless otherwise noted.

All butter is grass-fed and organic. (If you can’t find grass-fed butter, though, you can substitute conventional organic butter.) You may also replace any butter with

ghee

(clarified butter).

All salt is unprocessed. Good sources for unprocessed salt include Selina Naturally brand Celtic sea salt (

www.celticseasalt.com

) and Real Salt brand sea salt (

http://realsalt.com

).

At the end of many recipes, you’ll see a note indicating that the recipe has been vetted by the team at Whole9 (http://whole9life.com) and is considered acceptable for a cleansing 30-day Paleo launch, which in this book is called the 30-Day Reset Paleo cleanse. These recipes don’t include any added sugars (real or artificial), grains, legumes, or dairy. They replace butter with clarified butter (ghee). If a recipe includes a processed food (such as chicken broth, bacon, or tomato paste), you should choose brands that don’t contain off-limits ingredients such as sugar, soy, additives, or preservatives.

So that this book is as practical as possible (because that’s what it’s really about, right?), it includes web addresses for sources of products and other information. Some web addresses may break across two lines of text. If you’re reading this book in print and want to visit one of these web pages, simply key in the address exactly as it’s noted in the text, pretending as though the line break doesn’t exist. If you’re reading this text as an e-book, you’ve got it easy — just click the web address to be taken directly to the web page.

Foolish Assumptions

As we wrote this book, we made the following assumptions about you:

You want to change your diet, lose weight, improve your fitness, or manage some type of medical condition and have heard about the Paleo diet.

You want to stop eating processed and unhealthy foods to feel younger, healthier, happier, and more vibrant.

You’re open to the idea of making lifestyle changes — avoiding certain foods, making sleep a priority, reducing stress — to enhance your quality of life.

You want to encourage yourself to continue the Paleo lifestyle by finding great-tasting recipes that are easy to make.

You’re adopting a level of commitment to Paleo that has you craving an all-around useful guidebook that has everything you could possibly need to jump back into your kitchen — and into your life.

You want to be healthier, leaner, stronger, or more productive. Or perhaps you want to be all of these things.

You’ve tried exercise programs in the past and haven’t been satisfied with the results or have been frustrated with the process.

You have control over your food choices and those of your family, and you want to help your loved ones enjoy a healthy Paleo lifestyle, too.

Note: We recommend that you get your doctor’s approval before beginning any exercise program, whether you’re a novice or a veteran to fitness.

Icons Used in This Book

To make this book easier to navigate, the following icons help you find key information about the Paleo lifestyle and Paleo cooking.

This icon indicates practical information that can help you in your quest for improving health and fitness, adopting a Paleo diet, or making one of the recipes.

When you see this icon, you know that the information that follows is important enough to read twice!

This icon highlights information that may be detrimental to your success or physical well-being if you ignore it.

This icon gives you a heads-up that what you’re reading is more in-depth or technical than what you need to get a basic grasp on the main topic at hand.

Beyond the Book

In addition to all the material, resources, and recipes you can find in the book you’re reading right now, this product also comes with some access-anywhere goodies on the web. Check out the eCheat Sheet at www.dummies.com/cheatsheet/paleoaio for details on Paleo superfoods, ideas for getting your kids to eat their Paleo veggies, and advice for eating Paleo while you’re traveling.

You can also go online to see the proper method for performing many of the Paleo exercises included in Book IV. The videos linked to at www.dummies.com/extras/paleoaio show you how to position and move your body correctly, thereby reducing the chance of injury from using the incorrect form. At www.dummies.com/extras/paleoaio, you can also read about supplements that may be beneficial to your health and protein-filled foods that are suitable for packing in your kid’s lunchbox.

Where to Go from Here

This book is organized so you can read it in the way that makes the most sense to you; feel free to jump around to the information that’s most relevant to you right now. You can use the table of contents to find the broad categories of subjects or use the index to look up specific information.

Do you want to know more about the Paleo superfoods so you can get started on the Paleo path? Start with Chapter 2 of Book I. Feeling hungry and want to get started on the recipes? Feel free to jump right into the recipes in Books II and III. Can’t wait to get an exercise high? Book IV has the exercises that will get you there.

And if you’re not sure where to begin, read Book I. It gives you the basic information you need to understand why and how eating and living Paleo can help you improve your health and quality of life.

Book I

Getting Started with Paleo

Visit www.dummies.com for free access to great Dummies content online.

Contents at a Glance

Chapter 1: Grasping the What and Why of Paleo

It’s a Lifestyle, Not a Diet

Glimpsing the Science Behind the Lifestyle

Curing Modern Ailments with Prehistoric Practices

Stealing Moves from Cave Men: The Paleo Fitness Difference

Undergoing the Paleo Transformation

Creating a Paleo Lifestyle

Practicing Paleo Fitness: Movement by Design

Chapter 2: Modern Foods and Your Inner Cave Man

Getting Familiar with the “Yes” and “No” Foods of the Paleo Diet

The Truth about Common Foods

Figuring Out How Much You Can (and Should) Eat

Supercharging Your Body with the Power of Paleo Foods

Capturing Your Personal Before and After Makeover

Building the Foundation for Success: The 30-Day Reset

Chapter 3: Preparing and Using Your Cave Kitchen

Rethinking What You Know about Nutrition

The Paleo Big Three: Animal Proteins, Natural Fats, Complex Carbohydrates

Getting Rid of the Foods that Don’t Fit

Refilling Your Kitchen with Paleo Foods

Cooking Smart to Retain Flavor and Nutrition

Chapter 4: Using Paleo Concepts in Your Fitness Routine

Cultivating Strength

Moving Every Day

Breathing the Way You Were Meant To

Knowing What Compels You

Training the Primal Patterns Primarily

Keeping Your Conditioning Inefficient

Doing the Least You Have to Do

The Big Seven: Tracking Your Progress with Health Markers

Chapter 5: Making Paleo Practical in a Modern World

Dealing with Potential Pitfalls

Dining Out and Traveling

Enjoying Special Occasions

Transitioning the Family

Chapter 1

Grasping the What and Why of Paleo

In This Chapter

Explaining the foundations of the Paleo diet and why it works

Digging into the scientific foundation of the lifestyle

Looking and feeling better by following the Paleo lifestyle

Bringing the exercise component into your Paleo program

Finding out about the Paleo transformation

Being sensible about moving your body

Paleo is the answer. If you’ve suffered with weight problems or health issues, you’re in for a treat. Every aspect of your health improves when you incorporate Paleo principles into your life. Your body starts to transform right before your eyes, and suddenly, your outlook is optimistic.

Your eyes brighten, your skin takes on a completely different sheen, and your wrinkles start to fade. You begin to shed body fat as you watch your stomach get flatter and flatter. Your muscle tone improves, your hair gets silky, your teeth seem stronger. Your mood elevates, and you begin to notice that you feel happier. Your body begins to calm, releasing anxiety and tension. You start to forget what it feels like to have aches and pains, and your entire body seems to lose the bloated feeling it’s been carrying around for far too long. You begin to be more than just present in life; you begin to start really living life. For some, it’s the first time in a very long time.

You’d be hard-pressed to find a more excited group of people than those who have transformed their lives to living Paleo. What you find in the pages of this book is an easy-to-follow nutritional blueprint and fitness program that actually exists and works — and when you adopt this plan, everything gets easier.

In this chapter, you discover some foundational Paleo principles, including the answers to questions about how the Paleo diet came to be, the foods that make up the Paleo diet, the science behind Paleo success, and how living Paleo will soon have you looking and feeling better than ever.

Living Paleo takes you from a place of hopelessness to hope. So what are you waiting for? Dig in!

It’s a Lifestyle, Not a Diet

Living Paleo takes the mystery out of eating. It’s simplicity at its finest, which is one of the reasons eating Paleo foods works well for so many. When you eat simply (but deliciously), you get results.

Many eating plans, programs, and products give you lots of rules and may even require special foods, which makes understanding these plans and staying committed to them even harder. The biggest missing element in other plans is the core ingredient for long-term success — health. Most programs don’t move you toward health either biologically or behaviorally. If your cells aren’t getting healthier and your behavior is expected to change in strict ways only for the short term, the entire purpose is lost. You don’t discover how to eat and live for the rest of your life.

Paleo is different; Paleo is based on simple, easy-to-understand nutritional principles. Eating Paleo takes away all the confusion and is natural to implement. It’s something you can stick with for a long time.

Paleo is the abbreviation for Paleolithic. The Paleo diet refers to foods consumed during the Paleolithic era, the time from about 2.5 million years ago up to 10,000 BC.

A lot of people start the Paleo diet to get a killer body. And living Paleo is a great way to move toward your ideal body, but what most people experience is even more powerful. Living Paleo literally changes their lives for the better. If you’ve had aches and pains, fatigue, skin issues, menstrual problems, chronic inflammation, digestive complaints, weight gain, depression, fertility problems, autoimmune struggles, diabetes, or cardiovascular disease, you’re going to love living Paleo.

The hormone-modulating, anti-inflammatory, nutrient-dense properties of the Paleo lifestyle help regulate all the systems and functions of the body. Your body resets at a higher functioning level, so you’ll not only look better eating Paleo, but you’ll also feel better. Living Paleo supports the healing and prevention of many chronic diseases. And thanks to the nutrition-packed foods of the Paleo diet, you start sporting a much stronger cellular system, and with that comes healing and transformation.

Enjoying foods that make up the Paleo diet

When you think Paleo foods, think grassroots — simple, back-to-nature foods filled with nutrients that bring you back to life. Paleo foods are what you are designed to eat. They’re the foods that your body digests and absorbs efficiently. Paleo foods have the most positive impact on all the structures and functions of your body.

The foundational Paleo foods include lean meats, seafood, vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, and naturally occurring healthy fats — those that have always been found in animals and plants. Our hunter-gatherer ancestors survived on these foods. In the Paleolithic era, no one planted crops, and no factories churned out industrialized foods. Our ancestors didn’t have access to grains, sugars, starches, legumes, dairy, processed foods, or oils — and autopsies show that they were better for it. They may not have had the convenience of a one-minute meal, but our ancestors had far higher levels of health and didn’t suffer from the modern-day diseases we do today.

Changes in everyday foods and in food processing have fundamentally altered modern diets. Paleo foods differ nutritionally in several ways, such as their ability to do the following:

Balance blood sugar and keep your overall sugar load down

Create a favorable fatty-acid balance (omega-6 to omega-3 balance)

Balance macronutrients (proteins, fats, and carbohydrates)

Provide adequate amounts of trace nutrients (minerals)

Promote and maintain acid-base balance (how acid and alkaline your blood is)

Add robust amounts of fiber to your daily plate (for intestinal health)

The fact that modern-day foods aren’t working is rather obvious. People are sicker and fatter than ever and are more confused about what to eat and how to live than in any other time in history. But living Paleo cuts through the confusion and clarifies what foods move you toward health.

When you begin eating Paleo, your body sheds unhealthy cells. You peel away layers of fat; you become leaner, stronger, and healthier.

Taking a cue from our ancestors

Our bodies haven’t changed much since before agricultural society. Our body’s needs now are similar to what they were during Paleolithic times, before the dawn of agriculture.

Humans have been shaped and molded over a hundred thousand generations. What our bodies were designed to eat then, they are designed to eat now. In other words, our genes are still stuck in the hunter-gatherer’s time, even though we’re living in the modern world. Our genes simply haven’t caught up to the modern-day divergence.

About 10,000 years ago, the birth of agriculture changed the way people lived. Hunter-gatherers became attracted to a new way of life based on a routine and settled existence that centered around agriculture and the breeding of animals.

The tidal wave of change happened again a few hundred years ago with the Industrial Revolution. The impact that this technological progress has had on human biology is huge. Some of these advancements have provided safety and convenience. But some of these man-made environmental changes have caused a pandemic of human suffering and diseases that were unknown to our ancestors.

Autopsies show that the hunter-gatherers were some of the healthiest people to walk the earth. Using their lifestyle as our template, we can strike a balance between modern-day living and our grassroots beginning.

Living the way we were designed

If you’ve tried other eating plans and haven’t been successful long term or if you’ve been trying to get well and are making little headway, you’re probably carrying the wrong road map. Here’s why: The missing link is probably that you’re not eating the foods that you’re designed to eat or living the lifestyle you’re designed to live.

Our genes have changed very little since Paleolithic times. In fact, according to medical anthropologist S. Boyd Eaton, MD, 99.99 percent of our genes were formed before the development of agriculture. This is big. That means that our hunter-gatherer ancestors programmed our genes. How they ate is our nutritional blueprint, how they moved is the blueprint for our physiology, and how they lived is the blueprint for the lifestyle we should strive to lead.

You don’t need to live life as a science experiment, trying to reenact everything our ancestors did or see the world through Paleo goggles. You just need to understand how your genes were programmed and try to model that as closely as you can. When you model the Paleo lifestyle, your struggles will be greatly reduced.

As humans, our bodies are the result of an optimal design that has been shaped and molded by nature. To look and feel your absolute best, you have to do what it’s designed to do. Paleo All-in-One For Dummies is your reference guide to show you how to live according to your nature.

Living Paleo is about getting you healthy. When your cells are healthy, everything falls into place. You feel better, look better, and lose weight. What makes Paleo different from everything else is that the nutrient-dense foods are just one piece of the puzzle. The way you live outside of the kitchen has as much to do with how you look and feel as the foods you eat.

Traditional diets provide food rules, and that’s where they end. You follow the rules, hope to get results, and hope that the results stick. This pattern is often the recipe for disappointment and frustration because eventually the rules stop and your life takes over. You haven’t made lifestyle changes that support lasting results.

Paleo considers why you eat, when you eat, how you eat, and other factors in your life that influence how you feel, such as amount and quality of sleep, stress levels, sunlight, movement, supplementation, and your thoughts. It’s a lifelong change that’s fairly simple to make and has lasting, positive consequences, unlike a diet that’s meant as a short-term solution to lose a few pounds, which ultimately leads to frustration and hopelessness.

In the end, your habits and patterns are responsible for how you look and feel. Living Paleo gives you the lifestyle patterns and strategies that go well beyond a flash-in-the-pan diet. You figure out how to make the lifestyle changes that have lasting, positive effects.

Genetically, you can live for 120 years. The key is creating healthy lifestyle patterns so your body expresses health and vitality and doesn’t express disease or obesity. That’s what living Paleo is all about.

Glimpsing the Science Behind the Lifestyle

Yes, the excitement and results of living Paleo are awesome. But knowing that some of the most respected leaders in the field, as well as some of the most brilliant researchers, have found evidence for why Paleo foods and Paleo living work well is a great reassurance.

Here are some facts from leading Paleolithic researchers S. Boyd Eaton, MD, and M. Konner, PhD, cited in the New England Journal of Medicine (“Paleolithic nutrition: a consideration of its nature and current implications.” 1985: N. Eng. J. Med. 321, 283–289):

“The human genetic constitution has changed relatively little in the past 40,000 years.”

“The development of agriculture 10,000 years ago has had a minimal influence on our genes.”

“The Industrial Revolution, agribusiness, and modern food-processing techniques have occurred too recently to have any evolutionary effect at all.”

“Physicians and nutritionists are increasingly convinced that the dietary habits adopted by Western society over the past 100 years make an important etiologic contribution to coronary heart disease, hypertension, diabetes, and some types of cancer.”

“These conditions have emerged as dominant health problems only in the past century and are virtually unknown among the few surviving hunter-gatherer populations whose way of life and eating habits most closely resemble pre-agricultural human beings.”

Here’s some compelling research from Dr. Loren Cordain (The Paleo Diet [Wiley]), professor in the Health and Exercise Science Department at Colorado State University and one of the top global researchers in the area of evolutionary medicine:

“DNA evidence shows genetically humans have hardly changed at all (to be specific, the human genome has changed less than 0.02% in 40,000 years).”

“Nature determined what our bodies needed thousands of years before civilization developed, before people started farming and raising livestock.”

“In other words, built into our genes is a blueprint for optimal nutrition — a plan that spells out the foods that make us healthy, lean, and fit.” (The

blueprint

is Paleo foods.)

Finally, Rainer J Klement and Ulrike Kämmerer discuss the striking benefits and prevention of cancer with a Paleo diet in Nutrition & Metabolism (“Is there a role for carbohydrate restriction in the treatment and prevention of cancer.” October 2011. 8[75]):

“Cancer is

very

rare among uncivilized hunter-gatherer societies.”

“The switch from the ‘cave man’s diet’ consisting of fat, meat, occasionally roots, berries, and other sources of carbohydrates to a nutrition dominated by easily digested carbohydrates derived mainly from grains as a staple food, would have occurred too recently to induce major adoptions in our gene encoding and metabolic pathways.” (In other words, our bodies don’t have the genetic wiring for adapting to grains.)

“[In a cave man–like diet,] carbohydrate restriction is not only limited to avoiding sugar and other high glucose foods, but also to a reduced intake of grains. Grains can induce inflammation in susceptible individuals due to their content of omega-6 fatty acids, lectins, and gluten.”

“Paleolithic-type diets, that by definition exclude grain products, have been shown to improve glycemic control and cardiovascular risk factors more effectively than typically recommended low-fat diets rich in whole grains. These diets are not necessarily low carbohydrate diets, but focus on replacing high glycemic index modern foods with fruits and vegetables, in this way reducing the total glycemic [sugar] load.

This brings us back to our initial perception of cancer as a disease of civilization that has been rare among hunter-gatherer societies until they adopted our Western lifestyle.

Many anthropologists and health care providers recognize that the hunter-gatherers represent a reference standard for modern-day nutrition and a model way of eating to get well and stay well. When you see the results and the research, you begin to understand why.

Curing Modern Ailments with Prehistoric Practices

Modern-day ailments have become pandemic. Everyone knows someone who’s wrestling with diabetes, cancer, or an autoimmune disease. To be in one’s 60s and not be on medication is remarkable. Even worse, the diagnosis of chronic childhood diseases has almost quadrupled over the past four decades.

Think about it. With all the modern drugs and all the surgeries, we’re not getting any better. You can’t possibly look at the data on our supposed health care model and think that what we’re doing is working. In fact, in a two-part series published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, Dr. Elliot Fisher, professor of medicine at Dartmouth University, came to the following conclusion: “Our study suggests that perhaps one-third of medical spending is now devoted to services that don’t appear to improve health or quality of care — and may makes things worse.”

What that means is staggering. Here’s some perspective: We’re spending annually about $1.4 trillion a year on health care that’s proven to be ineffective! So that’s $4 billion per day down the drain! Then there’s the issue of not only having ineffective treatments but also having adverse effects from the treatments. Either way you look at it, it’s not the answer.

So the question becomes, what is the answer? How do we get well and stay well? We need to understand how we got into this mess in the first place. We’re not sick because of bad genes or rotten luck. Most of our modern-day ailments were born out of bad choices. If we want to get well and stay well and avoid the circus of reactive health care, we have to get in the right paradigm and learn to make smart choices and prevent disease before it starts.

Putting real food first, like eating Paleo foods that you’re designed to eat, is one of the smartest things you’ll ever do to get well and stay well. The following sections explore other benefits of living Paleo.

Losing weight on the Paleo diet

If your goal is to lose weight, you’ve come to the right place. When you eat a well-planned Paleo diet (this doesn’t include copious amounts of Paleo cookies, bars, muffins, and so on), your body naturally loses body fat until you’ve reached your ideal weight. When you get healthy, everything in your body recalibrates, including your weight. What’s so great about eating Paleo is that you lose stored fat because you’re actually using that stored fat for energy. Your body transforms in a way it may never have before, and you begin to look — and feel — lean and toned.

Here are some of the reasons you lose weight by eating Paleo:

You’re eating foods with a high-nutrient density without all the garbage calories.

You lose the

bloat

(dump excess water retention).

You reduce food sensitivities by healing your gut.

You eat foods that help you maintain a healthy blood sugar.

You eat foods that regulate your hormones along with the signals associated with hormones.

You burn stored fat, thanks to the proteins and fat in the food you eat.

You feel more satiated because of the healthy fats you’re eating.

You eat nutrient-dense foods, creating healthy cells, and weight loss is a natural byproduct.

You have more energy eating Paleo, so you tend to move more and have more efficient workouts.

You use stored fat for energy instead of sugary carbohydrates, which is a more efficient fat-burning pathway.

You eat foods with a high fiber content, which encourages weight loss.

Living Paleo is about getting you to optimal health and keeping you there. The weight loss is a wonderful bonus!

Clearing up gut and skin issues

Eating Paleo is like an internal spring cleaning. You feel healthy from the inside out. All the grains, sugars, starches, legumes, and poorly prepared, refined, processed, and denatured foods have created havoc in your intestines. Over time, this means inflammation and leaky gut.

Your intestinal walls are lined with these armed guards (immune cells). As long as these cells and good bacteria are there lying over your intestines, you’re good to go. Nothing can get in or out. Your body is in a health lockdown. When your gut becomes damaged or perforated by the inflammation caused by the foods you eat or the medications you take, it becomes leaky and porous. The structures of the intestines become damaged, and your armed guards are killed in action. You can’t absorb nutrients the same way. Undigested food and bacteria flow into your body where they don’t belong and aren’t recognized. When undigested food and bacteria flow into your bloodstream, your body screams, “Attack!” like it would with any foreign invader. Your body literally attacks itself instead of protecting itself, as it’s designed to do, and you get autoimmune problems, chronic disease, unexplained fatigue, intestinal distress, and hypersensitivities. Not a whole lotta fun.

Interestingly enough, a damaged gut causes skin problems as well. A direct link exists between intestinal health and the health of your skin. If you have acne, rashes, eczema, psoriasis, or poor skin tone, a leaky gut may be the culprit. If you want beautiful skin, it’s an inside job, and it starts with putting real food first.

The upside here is a leaky gut isn’t hard to fix. It’s completely reversible, and when eating Paleo foods, you’re well on your way!

Getting a good night’s sleep

One of the most motivating factors to give Paleo a spin is the improvement to your sleep cycle. After you’re adjusted to Paleo and hit your Paleo stride, you’ll find your sleep is deeper and more restful.

Here are some of the reasons you sleep like a baby when you start living Paleo:

You’re getting foods loaded with minerals, which are grounding and calming to your body.

When your blood sugars are more balanced, like they are with Paleo foods, you don’t get that blood sugar dip in the middle of the night, causing your body to release hormones to restore blood sugar, which disturbs sleep.

A lot of Paleo foods contain B vitamins, which are great for calming nerves and balancing the nervous system for restful sleep.

Some Paleo foods, like eggs, turkey, nuts, fish, and some fruits, contain an essential amino acid called

tryptophan,

which helps promote sleep.

When eating Paleo, your body naturally regulates hormones and signals associated with hormones that, in turn, help you sleep better.

When you create healthy cells like you do when eating Paleo, all the systems and functions in your body run smoother, including sleep cycles.

You have more energy eating Paleo, so you run your battery down naturally with activity, rather than with sugary foods and carbohydrate crashes, leading to more restful sleep.

If you have sleep issues, let Paleo be your all-natural sleep aid. It works — with no nasty side effects!

Stabilizing blood sugar

What may be most astonishing about eating Paleo is its powerful ability to manage blood sugar, which is one of the most compelling and worthwhile reasons to make the switch. Managing blood sugar is essential for disease control, energy level, and how youthful you look and feel.

People with diabetes or pre-diabetes or those who feel a little out of kilter with their blood sugar benefit tremendously when eating Paleo. By eating mainly non-starchy vegetables and moderate amounts of fruit with minimal starchy foods, you can dramatically lower blood sugar load. Lean proteins and healthy fats round out the Paleo diet to further control blood sugar.

High blood sugars are a thing of the past when eating Paleo. Work with a health care provider who knows you and your situation and prepare to be amazed!

Reducing chronic inflammation

When you think inflammation, you probably think “ouch!” because the inflammation you’ve probably heard about or experienced firsthand is the kind of inflammation that makes you feel all-over aches, pains, swelling, fatigue, or just plain discomfort.

One kind of inflammation is actually a good thing; it’s called acute inflammation, or short-term inflammation. This inflammation is a natural part of your body’s healing process and one of the “trump cards” your body hands out to give you a healing push. When you get an illness, like the flu, or physical trauma, like a shoulder injury, your body goes into action immediately by calling on your immune system for healing. The inflammation that ensues is there to protect the damage already done and make sure it doesn’t get any worse.

So how does this good thing (your healing push) get out of hand and cause you trouble? If your intestines have those pesky little perforations called leaky gut (see the earlier section “Clearing up gut and skin issues”), foods are going to squeak through the holes to the other side of your intestinal wall into your bloodstream where they don’t belong and aren’t recognized. When your body goes into overdrive to fight off these foreign invaders, you have chronic inflammation.

Whatever overloads your immune system can cause this overreaction and inflammation. Here are some of the immune system stressors:

Unhealthy foods (packaged, processed, refined, or foods denatured in any way)

Foods containing gluten

Toxic overload (everything from environmental toxins to toxic cleaning products)

Excessive stress

Overload of medications (especially NSAIDs) or antibiotics

Sleep deprivation

Too much exercise training

You can see from this list that many of these immune stressors are lifestyle choices, including the foods you eat. When you eat Paleo foods, you make a huge difference in controlling and preventing the long-term inflammation that can lead to a lot of misery.

Here are some of the conditions that are caused by chronic inflammation:

Arthritis

Asthma and allergies

Autoimmune diseases, like celiac disease

Cardiovascular disease

Diabetes

Intestinal inflammatory disease, like Crohn’s disease

Thyroid dysfunction

Eating Paleo does an outstanding job at keeping your immune system strong and inflammation at bay.

Stealing Moves from Cave Men: The Paleo Fitness Difference

The cave man was perhaps a perfect role model for health and exercise because he didn’t try to improve something that was virtually faultless. He followed his genetic programming: He moved how he was meant to move and ate how he was meant to eat. He was fit and healthy.

In the domain of exercise today, fads come (and just as often go) like pimples on a teenybopper. Most of these crazes are, at best, useless, but quite a few have even grown to be dangerous.

Most popular fitness programs make people move but fail to first show them how to do so. Many make the conventional assumption that people just know how to move, or that they know how to move well. However, for most, quality movement is like writing cursive — an elegant skill that gets sloppy without practice.

Three principles of Paleo fitness

Not all movement is good for you, and more exercise isn’t necessarily better. The principles of Paleo fitness give you basic directives for making the most of your fitness routine:

The first principle of Paleo fitness states that the most basic and appropriate function of exercise should be to condition for something other than exercise. Whether that something is a sport is of small significance. Exercise should be a means to health. Exercise should promote health and vitality — and never, under any circumstance, should it ever detract from that.

The second principle of Paleo fitness states that exercise is best served in small to moderate doses, which is to say just enough to get the job done and not a smidgeon more. But again, conventional practices overlook this detail, made clear by the number of people who spend hours every day trudging on treadmills and spinning on bicycles. Practices that create a chronic state of stress on the body are ill suited for sustainable bodily profits, not to mention wholly ineffective for long-term weight loss.

The third principle of Paleo fitness states that exercise should promote beautiful movement and stimulate a positive hormonal response. Just as trudging on the treadmill is equal to committing biomechanical treason, so is crushing yourself day in and day out by lifting weights.

With Paleo fitness, you marry beautiful movement with beautiful food, which results in a strong, beautiful body.

Keeping it simple: The secret to a good fitness program

Any exercise (and nutrition) program will improve in direct proportion to the number of things that you can keep out of it that don’t need to be there. In other words, the secret to a good exercise program is to strip it down to the fewest possible parts — the fundamentals — and leave it at that. Paleo fitness is all about simplicity.

The fundamentals of Paleo are simple and proven effective. All you have to do is follow a simple diet of meats, eggs, fish, veggies, nuts, seeds, and some fruit. Then move often and move beautifully, lift heavy every couple of days, and occasionally run for your life (just not on a treadmill).

The secret is to practice strength selectively. About 20 tried-and-true exercises — which probably amounts to less than 5 percent of all the exercises out there — are guaranteed to get you 95 percent of all the results you could ever want.

Undergoing the Paleo Transformation

You live longer, stronger, and more healthfully when you start eating and living Paleo because you move toward health. When you’re truly healthy, your immune system is solid, protective, and strong. Your body works for you, not against you, and transformation happens.

People usually start Paleo to lose weight. Then layers and layers begin to peel back. Their waists get smaller, their skin and eyes glisten, and their hair may get shinier. They notice conditions healing, and before long, they get the most amazing part of the transformation — a mental, spiritual kind of change. They start thinking more clearly and enjoying a more positive outlook. Paleo reboots the body by flooding it with vitamins and minerals. This healing is possible for anyone who decides to commit to living Paleo!

Identifying why Paleo works better than other approaches

Paleo is more effective than other approaches because it centers on the food that works best with your body. Most important, Paleo foods have one purpose, which is what truly defines Paleo: to nourish the body and get you healthy.

That’s right, the objective behind eating Paleo is to get you healthy. Period. Everything else that comes along the way just follows the natural progression. It’s against natural law not to lose weight, boost immunity, fight aging, heal conditions, and perform better when you’re healthy.

Switching on your healthy genes with Paleo

You’re in the driver’s seat of your health. Your lifestyle choices and the environment in which you choose to live have the biggest impact on the quality of your life. This science is called epigenetics. If you feel as though your genes are the reason you can’t lose weight or get well, no matter how much Paleo food you eat, you can erase all that thinking. Epigenetics is proof that how we look and feel is the result of our choices. Think of epigenetics as your ambassador of health. Epigenetics sends messages to your genome (genes) telling it to flick on the switch of health — or not — depending on your lifestyle choices.

If you’re living Paleo, your body will flip the switch to health, and your genes will express this choice. You’ll be healthy, lean, strong, and energetic. If you aren’t making healthy choices, your genes will express sickness, fatigue, or obesity.

A Paleo diet and lifestyle create the raw material your genes need to flip the switch to health. You find that you look and feel your best — naturally.

Creating a Paleo Lifestyle

Eating Paleo foods is exciting. It’s a simple approach to eating that has gained so much traction in mainstream media because of its landmark success in helping people lose weight and get healthy. But that’s just the beginning of the story.

Paleo is a lifestyle, not a flash-in-the-pan, red-carpet diet with the entire focus on getting the weight off. That’s the magic of Paleo: It does get the weight off, but it does so by creating healthier cells. When you create healthier cells, you naturally lose weight, boost your immunity, heal your body, and fight aging. You literally get healthier from the inside out when you live a Paleo lifestyle. It’s against natural law not to.

Putting real food first is the foundation. However, Paleo considers all influences on your body, even those that happen outside the kitchen. Your relationship with food and how your food makes you feel, how much you eat, your movement, your exposure to sunlight, supplementation, your stress levels, and your thoughts all matter. Each of these variables creates the building blocks for the positive, long-lasting effects of living Paleo.

Ultimately, your habits and patterns are the defining factor of your success in losing weight, healing your body, boosting your immunity, and aging gracefully. The following sections give you the lifestyle strategies that have positive, lasting effects, allowing you to live your life by the optimal design shaped and molded by nature.

Shifting your belief system

Wrapping your head around Paleo living means changing your belief system, or paradigm. You may be used to some of the following beliefs about eating, which Paleo debunks:

Cow’s milk is the best way to get your calcium.

Beans offer the benefits of superimmunity and fiber.

Grains and whole grains are an essential part of a healthy diet.

Soy is a superfood.

A slab of meat and a baked potato make up the perfect meal.

If you want to balance your blood sugar, grab a cheese stick.

Fruit is healthy, so eat as much as you want.

Red meat is really bad for you and will make your heart explode.

Fat is evil.

You should eat eggs in strict moderation because they raise your cholesterol.

Vegetarian-based diets are the healthiest.

These statements may have been a big part of your life, so the Paleo principles may take you by surprise. Until, of course, you see the cold hard truth: the undisputable results.

Will you make the paradigm changes necessary to live your healthiest life? Some people may need to make only small changes, but others may need to make bigger changes. Shifting your belief system requires a conscious choice to embrace health. Your choices — not bad genes or bad luck — determine your health.

Adjusting your belief system so you constantly work toward choosing health may be one of the best gifts you can give yourself. When your body gets the raw material it requires to function at its best, the magic starts to happen.

Summing up the lifestyle with a few basic guidelines

Your habits create your destiny, and that plays out profoundly in your physiology. Like it or not, the human body is designed to live a certain way, and the more we stray from nature’s blueprint, the more we suffer. The environment you choose to live in and stay in determines whether you create a healthy body or an unhealthy body, so choose an environment that lets your body function the way it was designed. The following sections point out a few major guidelines for creating a Paleo-conducive environment (don’t worry; none of them involves moving to a cave).

Sticking to the 80-percent rule

To get long-lasting results, you can benefit from spending at least 30 days eating a strict Paleo diet (see Book I, Chapter 2). After that, the 80-percent rule keeps you in check both physically and healthwise. The 80-percent rule means that if you adhere to Paleo principles at least 80 percent of the time, you’ll experience the benefits of Paleo. If you eat poorly, you’ll feel bad. What you eat is like the foundation of a house, and you must build a healthy framework to build a solid house. That said, you do have a little life leeway; you can adjust the rule to fit your personal needs.

This 80-percent rule assumes that you’re not trying to heal yourself of an illness or lose considerable weight. If you are, you may need to be 90 percent compliant or more for a while.

The 80-percent rule isn’t a license to fill 20 percent of your diet with crummy processed foods or go to town on cookies, pancakes, bread, or muffins — even if they’re Paleo! Sugar is still sugar, and too much of it is going to send you right back to needing a 30-day Paleo cleanse.

Some people choose to eat Paleo 90 or even 100 percent of the time, which is very powerful. Others feel that eating Paleo even 80 percent of the time causes constant cravings. It really comes down to food choices and what works best for you in your life.

Getting more — and better — sleep

Quality sleep is essential for losing weight and being healthy. One of the most priceless factors when eating and living a healthy lifestyle is improvement to your sleep cycle. After your body adjusts to eating cleaner, more nutrient-dense foods, you find your sleep is deeper and more restful.

Maybe you have trouble falling asleep, or you wake in the middle of the night, unable to drift back to sleep. No matter what the scenario, eating Paleo foods can completely change the quality and duration of your sleep. You find good reasons for this benefit in the earlier section “Getting a good night’s sleep.”

Becoming more social

No matter where you fall on the social spectrum, one thing is for certain: Your body is healthiest when you take some time out to be a part of a community or socialize. Humans aren’t designed to be alone for an extended period. Your social blueprint is wired to spend time around others, enjoying yourself.

Although some time alone is definitely beneficial, be sure to actively include social time as another path to wellness. Joining a community or group of people with like-minded interests can really make a difference in your life.

You may be thinking, “But I’m busy enough already!” Just remember that you’re better at everything else you do when you satisfy your soul’s innate desire for connection!

Spending time outdoors

One of the most important shifts in your health is to spend time outdoors so you get sunshine. When sunlight hits the skin, a process begins that leads to the creation and activation of vitamin D.

To make radical changes in your future health, be clear about this point: Sunlight is a nutrient. When your body creates vitamin D, your body fights colds and the flu better as well as osteoporosis, cancer, heart disease, depression, and a host of other conditions. When you’re outdoors getting sun and vitamin D, your body also produces more of the feel-good hormone serotonin, which helps you relax.