Ryan Murphy Explains Why the Paleo Diet and the Exact Opposite Diet Can Both Work

I was going to post on this (I swear) but Ryan beat me to it. I had thought about this when I saw a guy posting the anti-paleo diet -- plenty of starch! -- and boasting about how many people had had success with it. For one thing, he claimed, eating lots of starch makes you feel much more full than meat does!

So let me add a couple of points to Ryan's:

1) These diets also work by simply cutting lots and lots of things out as verboten: once you have seriously reduced your food selection, you are unlikely to eat as much, since your diet is less interesting; and

2) These diets work by telling you that you will feel so much more full if you eat a lot of X, whether X is meat or X is starch or X is vegetables. You have invested in the diet, so you eat a lot of X, and say to yourself, "Gee, he's right: X really does fill one up more than Y!"


  1. This applies to an extremely short time frame.
    Veganism leads to B12 deficiency.
    Most people who lose weight gain it back in two years.
    The paleo diet is too young to make much of an impact on the stats, but it is unclear even to me whether or not it alone can help people get the results I did.
    I did the Shangri-La Diet + low carbohydrate + paleo + calorie restriction. So, I get to be an outlier because of more rules? Okay, but the rules can't be random. If you have problems with blood sugar, more sugar/starch will just increase the damage. You have to have rule sets that do no harm. It is also good to have rule sets that require less discipline to adhere to. The Shangri-La thing is trivially easy to do, and the appetite suppression from it made it possible for me to do everything else.
    Paleo ends up being a good lens through which you can generate hypothesis and then test them. More rules I guess, but there's a good chance these rules are safer than other rules, like eating 40 bananas a day or other nonsense.

  2. Gene, in re your professional-sports heuristic for medical/diet theories - which I think is a decent one - it's worth noting that the paleo diet is picking up enthusiasts among competitive weightlifters. Also among bodybuilders, I think, though that's not the same thing.

  3. once you have seriously reduced your food selection, you are unlikely to eat as much, since your diet is less interesting click here


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