Dr. Barry Sears has no problem with the Paleo Diet recommendation to only eat foods that were around 10,000 years ago. The creator of the Zone Diet takes issue only with the idea that you can eat unrestricted quantities of those foods.
“Ancient foods” are more compatible with our genes, but Dr. Sears contends that balancing fat, carbohydrates and protein is still critical to reducing inflammation and improving health. The strict Zone Diet is actually a Paleo-Zone plan that balances these macronutrients in high-quality foods and spreads calorie consumption out through a series of smaller meals. It turns out low food quality isn’t the only thing that can damage your health.
“The other way to raise inflammation is to consume too many calories at each meal,” Dr. Sears says. “So what is too many calories? Anything more than 500 calories. Maybe six, max.”
If Sears had to choose between weighing and measuring quantities of any food and eating unregulated quantities of Paleo foods, he would choose the former. The best approach is to actually combine the two.
“I think that the consistency of using the weigh-and-measure approach will give you far greater anti-inflammatory benefits than basically an unlimited, unrestricted Paleo Diet,” Sears says. “Now combine the two, well then basically it is truly synergistic.”
Video by Again Faster.
Additional reading: Zone Meal Plans by Greg Glassman, published May 1, 2004.