PDA

View Full Version : The Caveman Diet aka EODD



mugaliens
2009-Dec-10, 08:55 PM
PREMISE: We evolved in a particular environment, and that most of our overweight issues revolve around being in a different environment than the one in which we evolved.

OBSERVATIONS

EATING

Cavemen ate:

- very little fruits/vegetables throughout harsher winter months

- lean meats and fats throughout winter months

- sporadically

- almost always after some serious exercise

- almost always while very hungry

Cavemen did not:

- count calories

- have diets

EXERCISE

Cavemen exercised:

- almost always when they were fairly hungry

- sporadically, yet a good deal throughout any given month

Cavemen did not exericse:

- at a constant cardio level

- at a high cardio level for more than half an hour

RESULTS

Cavemen were:

- lean

- in shape

- as long-lived as we are, today

Well, these are the basic ideas behind Jon Benson's EODD diet (aka the Every Other Day Diet), combined with some basic principles about focusing on healthy foods rather than unhealthy ones. It's not a new concept, and whenever I've found myself loosing weight, consistantly, or when I've been at my slimmest and most healthy, it's been after unconsciously doing a lot of what he talks about in his diet.

Basically, during those times I've simply been on the go, with too much to do, and too little time in which to do it (or eat properly),I'm still still exercising and eating right, but loosing weight without even thinking about it, much less trying hard. And when I've had excess time on my hands, free access to the kitchen, and groceries in the cupboards, well, that's when I gain the most weight.

Put simply, here's what works for me in terms of loosing weight:

Exercise:

- before breakfast

- three times a week (say, M-W-F), with 30 min of intervals (alternating between 75% (130 bpm) and 90% (156 bpm) of my max heart rate

- general weight training on the other two days (Tu-Th),

- nibbling on fresh fruits and veggies and lean means throughout the day

- avoiding big meals (particularly processed foods), sweets, deserts

I found several articles on it, here (http://www.articlesbase.com/nutrition-articles/eodd-diet-or-traditional-diets-which-is-the-best-1411874.html), here (http://www.ultimatefatburner.com/every-other-day-diet.html), and here (http://ezinearticles.com/?EODD-Diet-Vs-Traditional-Diets&id=3193806).

It appears good in that one doesn't have to restrict one's calories. It's essentially, "eat whatever you want every other day" hence the EODD designation. His only requirements are to stick to it, exercise, and don't expect instant results.

In short, it really does appear to mimic our early ancestors' lifestyle, where they hunted when hungry.

What do you think of it? Heard any good, bad, or ugly?

I thought perhaps if I just kept one meal's worth of food at home, and simply walked the mile to the deli when I needed to eat...

Seriously - when I started riding my bicycle to work in 2006, I went from 215 to 190 in five weeks:

- I rode to work before eating breakfast

- I picked up breakfast (usually sausage, egg, and cheese biscuit) on the way to work, but didn't eat it until I'd changed

- I walked to lunch (normal lunch, soup, salad, pizza, burger, whatever)

- I picked up dinner on the way home (almost always a pita sandwich with beef or lamb, veggies, bread, and a garlic sauce)

That's it! It took me about 18 min to ride to work, and about 31 to ride home (I lived at the top of about a 500' hill).

So now that I'm doing cardio (intervals) 3x/wk, and weights 2x/wk, why am I not loosing weight this time around? (I am in better shape than when I started, about a month ago).

Thoughts?

Fazor
2009-Dec-10, 09:08 PM
PREMISE
So now that I'm doing cardio (intervals) 3x/wk, and weights 2x/wk, why am I not loosing weight this time around? (I am in better shape than when I started, about a month ago).
Thoughts?

Could just be the three extra years. I don't know your age, but I certainly don't lose weight the same way I did 3 years ago. And god knows I don't lose weight like I did even 6 or 7 years ago. And I'm only 27.

(Beer and soda / pop are awful, I've noticed. Just cutting those out of one's diet can do a lot. That is, if you drink much of either in the first place.)

rommel543
2009-Dec-10, 09:10 PM
My main comment on people trying to loose weight is they use their bathroom scale. Don't. When you start exercising (if you haven't been for some time) the first large weight loose is water. You're body starts sweating and your body starts loosing all the water it stores up (which is why you need to drink lots of water when exercising). What happens next is either you plateau or you can even start going up in weight. This is because as you start loosing fat, you're also gaining muscle. Muscle is heavier than fat, so if you're weight training then you could get even heavier than you are now albeit in better shape. Also depending on what type of cardio you're doing you are more than likely gaining muscle there.

Thats why I laugh at all the diet advertising that say "loose up to 20lbs in your first 2 weeks with you meals" and in very small print "following our exercise program". It's a marketing ploy because once you start exercising you loose all that water weight and it looks like the diet works.

Fazor
2009-Dec-10, 09:23 PM
My main comment on people trying to loose weight is they use their bathroom scale. Don't. When you start exercising (if you haven't been for some time) the first large weight loose is water.

True. I've never really had a target "weight", just a target look. Haven't ever been able to achieve that either though. :)

Swift
2009-Dec-10, 09:45 PM
RESULTS

Cavemen were:

- lean

- in shape

- as long-lived as we are, today

How do we know any of those three things? I'd guess the first two are true (and I even think you might be able to tell a little bit from the bones), but I don't know for sure, and I very much doubt the last point.

Jens
2009-Dec-11, 02:34 AM
How do we know any of those three things? I'd guess the first two are true (and I even think you might be able to tell a little bit from the bones), but I don't know for sure, and I very much doubt the last point.

Yeah, it's certainly true that cavemen were not as long-lived as we are. But there's an important caveat to it, which is that they lived shorter lives for reasons that didn't have anything to do with a bad diet (except when they starved to death, of course!). Many died of infectious diseases which can be cured with antibiotics, as well as from traumatic injuries. For us, breaking a leg is not fatal, but for them it often was. I've read somewhere that while many cavepeople died in their 20s or 30s from injuries, an older person could expect to live to the age of 70 or 80 just like modern people. So the low life expectancy was because of the horrendous infant mortality and accident rate, not because people died at an earlier age of say cancer or heart attacks.

redshifter
2009-Dec-11, 02:43 AM
Most Americans eat far more fat, sugar, and salt than a caveman could even dream of. Not to mention processed foods and unhealthy fats. You should probably cut out more carbs/calories from your diet. I'm not sure I agree with the 'eat whatever you want every other day' diet; at least as far as serious weight loss goes, as eating whatever you want could quite easily dump all the fat/carbs back into your body that you burn off, plus more.

Also, depending on your age, those 3 years could have something to do with is as well. Three years ago, I could lose a few pounds quite easily whenver I wanted, and sometimes even when I didn't want to. Now I have to work at it.

danscope
2009-Dec-11, 05:56 AM
According to Lewis Black, there was a guy living out on his own at 115 years old
with all his faculties, and no health problems. And they asked him what his diet was. He told them that after 90 years old, he'd narrowed it down to .....
Bread fried in fatback , and three gallons of thunderbird wine per week.
And so they asked him why he didn't fry the bread in bacon fat, and he replied.... " Cause it was too lean !" :)

Dan

jokergirl
2009-Dec-11, 08:59 AM
Cavemen were:

- lean

- in shape

- as long-lived as we are, today


No, they weren't. (WikiAnswers says 20-35 years, I would say that not counting death in childhood and death from trauma a 40yo Cro-Magnon would still have been considered ancient by her peers. Lifetime didn't actually increase much until recently)

And I don't think any doctor would recommend a regular starvation - feasting diet. That doesn't sound good for the body at all. And even with vigorous exercise most people's lifestyles don't even get close to the caloric equivalent of the motion cavemen did.
Look at all the examples for indigenous people who only recently got introduced to the "wonders of civilisation". Almost all of them have problems with obesity now that they have changed their lifestyle. (That's not saying "modern" indigenous people necessarily had a lifestyle similar to cavemen, but it's probably as close as we can get.)


;)

Strange
2009-Dec-11, 02:24 PM
This also ignores the fact that we have continued evolving since then. Partly driven by changes in diet and lifestyle. The (relatively) recent development of the gene for lactase in some populations is one obvious example.

Swift
2009-Dec-11, 02:32 PM
Yeah, it's certainly true that cavemen were not as long-lived as we are. But there's an important caveat to it, which is that they lived shorter lives for reasons that didn't have anything to do with a bad diet (except when they starved to death, of course!). Many died of infectious diseases which can be cured with antibiotics, as well as from traumatic injuries. For us, breaking a leg is not fatal, but for them it often was. I've read somewhere that while many cavepeople died in their 20s or 30s from injuries, an older person could expect to live to the age of 70 or 80 just like modern people. So the low life expectancy was because of the horrendous infant mortality and accident rate, not because people died at an earlier age of say cancer or heart attacks.
No doubt, but that works both ways. For all we know, if cavemen were given antibiotics and such so that they did live till they were in their 50s, 60s, 70s, given their diet, they would have been as overweight as we are, and had similar rates of heart disease and cancer. Again, I don't know any of that, but that's my fundamental problem with this hypothesis, the lack of data.

Nick Theodorakis
2009-Dec-11, 02:48 PM
It's not so much a hypothesis as a "just so" story. There is also a problem in defining exactly what a "cavemen diet" actually is, since Homo went all over the old world and lived in a variety of climates for over a hundred thousand years. Moreover, although it is relatively certain that our ancestors exercised much more than we do (we don't have to go back too far for that!) there is nothing to indicate they didn't do much cardio. In fact, there is a reasonable hypothesis that early man may have been an endurance hunter, hunting down game by the simple expedient of running them to the point of exhaustion (many animals that are faster than we are over short distances will overheat if constantly pursued).

Nick

Strange
2009-Dec-11, 03:25 PM
early man may have been an endurance hunter

Indeed, and there are people who still hunt this way (or did until recently). On the other hand, others sat around all day catching fish. Others may well have survived on a largely vegetarian diet (fruit, nuts, roots) supplemented by the occasional lizard or insect...

It is very difficult/dangerous to try and generalise to the "perfect" diet and lifestyle in this way. There are just too many variables. We have evolved to survive in a wide range of environments with a wide range of diets.

Fazor
2009-Dec-11, 03:28 PM
We have evolved to survive in a wide range of environments with a wide range of diets.

I concur; though I'm still hoping to find the proper environment to promote health through a diet of pizza, chicken wings, and beer. So far, I have not found such an environment.

Strange
2009-Dec-11, 03:29 PM
to promote health through a diet of pizza, chicken wings, and beer

I think the key is: moderation in all things (including moderation).

Fazor
2009-Dec-11, 03:46 PM
I think the key is: moderation in all things (including moderation).

Well, I don't want a moderate diet of those. Rather, and exclusive diet of those.

...but not really. The more active I am, the more my body wants non-greasy foods. And I've been fairly active recently . . . at least, relative to my normal state.

nauthiz
2009-Dec-11, 04:32 PM
PREMISECavemen ate:

- very little fruits/vegetables throughout harsher winter months

- lean meats and fats throughout winter months


The red flags start to go up right here for me. The majority of our evolutionary history largely takes place in regions that don't really have a harsh winter.

novaderrik
2009-Dec-12, 08:57 PM
the key to losing weight and maintaining a "healthy" weight is simple- eat less and do more.

SolusLupus
2009-Dec-12, 09:24 PM
the key to losing weight and maintaining a "healthy" weight is simple- eat less and do more.

That's it? Eat less and do more?

So if I was eating, say, 4 lbs. of food mixed, I could replace it all with 3 lb. of chocolate cake?

Maybe it's not quite so simple. :)

ShadowSot
2009-Dec-12, 09:53 PM
Honestly speaking, looking at indigenous tribes from some of the books I've had, I've noticed that they tend to not all be incredibly athletic looking. Some appear to be a bit or more over weight.
Some of these tribes have little or no interaction with outside people, and live much as they have for centuries.
The differences there are the people who today are saved through medical treatment, die in those situations, leaving behind those who are best able to survive.

mugaliens
2009-Dec-13, 08:11 AM
Honestly speaking, looking at indigenous tribes from some of the books I've had, I've noticed that they tend to not all be incredibly athletic looking. Some appear to be a bit or more over weight.
Some of these tribes have little or no interaction with outside people, and live much as they have for centuries.
The differences there are the people who today are saved through medical treatment, die in those situations, leaving behind those who are best able to survive.

So then, being "healthy" is a tendancy to be abnormally overactive and underfed? At least so far as evolutionary tendancies go.

novaderrik
2009-Dec-13, 08:19 AM
That's it? Eat less and do more?

So if I was eating, say, 4 lbs. of food mixed, I could replace it all with 3 lb. of chocolate cake?

Maybe it's not quite so simple. :)
stay active, and you can eat whatever you want. eventually, your body will make you want what it needs to function, and chocolate cake won't look so appetizing any more.

SolusLupus
2009-Dec-13, 08:21 AM
Um, if you say so.

mugaliens
2009-Dec-13, 09:46 AM
stay active, and you can eat whatever you want. eventually, your body will make you want what it needs to function, and chocolate cake won't look so appetizing any more.

Interestingly, that's been my experience. When I've been involved in activities involving lots of work and where meals were few and far between, I usually wound up loading up on healthy foods, first, and topping it off (if there was any room) with sugar-laden, but somewhat "healthy" treats like ice cream.

Jens
2009-Dec-14, 06:09 AM
This also ignores the fact that we have continued evolving since then. Partly driven by changes in diet and lifestyle. The (relatively) recent development of the gene for lactase in some populations is one obvious example.

I'm almost certain that is wrong. I don't think that we developed a gene for lactase -- that would be much too difficult a process evolution-wise. What happened is, we stopped shutting off the gene at some age. It's a process called neoteny.

Jens
2009-Dec-14, 06:12 AM
It is very difficult/dangerous to try and generalise to the "perfect" diet and lifestyle in this way. There are just too many variables. We have evolved to survive in a wide range of environments with a wide range of diets.

That's definitely true with regard to fish vs. meat vs. vegetables. But it starts to break down when we start consuming enormous amounts of salt and raw sugar (or pizza!). Sadly, pizza is not found endemically in any environment that I know of.

Jens
2009-Dec-14, 06:15 AM
Maybe it's not quite so simple. :)

If you're only talking about losing weight, then yes I think it is that simple. Eating 800 calories a day of chocolate cake will allow you to lose weight. Now if you start talk about being healthy, then you certainly have a point.

Nick Theodorakis
2009-Dec-14, 01:42 PM
I'm almost certain that is wrong. I don't think that we developed a gene for lactase -- that would be much too difficult a process evolution-wise. What happened is, we stopped shutting off the gene at some age. It's a process called neoteny.

More info in this post (http://www.bautforum.com/1607345-post38.html), although I'm not sure this would be a good example of neoteny.

Nick

Strange
2009-Dec-14, 01:55 PM
I'm almost certain that is wrong. I don't think that we developed a gene for lactase -- that would be much too difficult a process evolution-wise. What happened is, we stopped shutting off the gene at some age. It's a process called neoteny.

You are right of course.

that would be much too difficult a process evolution-wise

Although, presumably it did evolve at some point... (not in humans though, I think we share the same genes with bacteria)

Strange
2009-Dec-14, 01:55 PM
Sadly, pizza is not found endemically in any environment that I know of.

Naples?

danscope
2009-Dec-14, 05:53 PM
Providence,Rhode Island?