US News “Best” Diets

104 Comments

So…I’ve received a ton of emails, FB pings and twitter inquiries about the recent US News piece that ranked Paleo dead last in a list that included SlimFast, MediFast and Weight Watchers as contenders in this Diet Battle Royale. The whole thing is as sad as it is funny, but the most important feature to all of this is the “experts” consulted for this piece did not address the science.

At all.

I’m still working on the Kidney piece, but Prof. Cordain has put together a great response. More are in the works and we are working to have an opportunity for an official rebuttal or debate with the “experts” on that piece. The “why” behind this piece is pretty obvious: with no governmental support, no reality show, no acceptance amongst most departments of Nutritional ”Science” the Paleo concept is exploding.

Please copy Prof. Cordain’s response to your blog, tweet it and Facebook it.

 

Hi Doc,

I’m not sure if you’ve seen this or not, but US News ranked Paleo last of 20 diets claiming a lack of scientific evidence and no-long term weight maintenance guidelines. I’m not sure if you’d be interested in defending it or not, but if you’d be willing to provide specific refutations of their claims, I’d like to write a response piece for the Colorado State University Collegian to run next Wednesday, my deadline is Saturday.

Thanks.

http://health.usnews.com/best-diet/paleo-diet

 

http://health.usnews.com/best-diet/best-overall-diets

Seth

June 8, 2011

 

Hi Seth,

 

Good to hear from you and many thanks for your continued support of the Paleo Diet.  I hadn’t seen this piece, but I appreciate that you have brought it to my attention.  It is obvious that whoever wrote this piece did not do their homework and has not read the peer review scientific papers which have examined contemporary diets based upon the Paleolithic food groups which shaped the genomes of our ancestors.  Accordingly the writer’s conclusions are erroneous and misleading.  I feel strongly that it is necessary to point out these errors and make this information known to a much wider audience than those reached by the readers of the U.S. News and World Report.  You have my permission to syndicate my response and or your write up for the CSU Collegian to any of the major news services including AP and UPI.  Additionally, I will copy a number of colleagues and scientists worldwide with this message to ensure that it will be widely circulated on the web, blogs and chat groups.

The writer of this article suggests that the Paleo Diet has only been scientifically tested in “one tiny study”.  This quote is incorrect as five studies (1-7); four since 2007, have experimentally tested contemporary versions of ancestral human diets and have found them to be superior to Mediterranean diets, diabetic diets and typical western diets in regards to weight loss, cardiovascular disease risk factors and risk factors for type 2 diabetes.

The first study to experimentally test diets devoid of grains, dairy and processed foods was performed by Dr. Kerin O’Dea at the University of Melbourne and published in the Journal, Diabetes in 1984 (6).  In this study Dr. O’Dea gathered together 10 middle aged Australian Aborigines who had been born in the “Outback”.  They had lived their early days primarily as hunter gatherers until they had no choice but to finally settle into a rural community with access to western goods.  Predictably, all ten subjects eventually became overweight and developed type 2 diabetes as they adopted western sedentary lifestyles in the community of Mowwanjum in the northern Kimberley region of Western Australia.  However, inherent in their upbringing was the knowledge to live and survive in this seemingly desolate land without any of the trappings of the modern world.

Dr. O’Dea requested these 10 middle aged subjects to revert to their former lives as hunter gatherers for a seven week period.  All agreed and traveled back into the isolated land from which they originated.  Their daily sustenance came only from native foods that could be foraged, hunted or gathered.  Instead of white bread, corn, sugar, powdered milk and canned foods, they began to eat the traditional fresh foods of their ancestral past: kangaroos, birds, crocodiles, turtles, shellfish, yams, figs, yabbies (freshwater crayfish), freshwater bream and bush honey.   At the experiment’s conclusion, the results were spectacular, but not altogether unexpected given what known about Paleo diets, even then.  The average weight loss in the group was 16.5 lbs; blood cholesterol dropped by 12 % and triglycerides were reduced by a whopping 72 %.  Insulin and glucose metabolism became normal, and their diabetes effectively disappeared.

The first recent study to experimentally test contemporary Paleo diets was published in 2007 (5). Dr. Lindeberg and associates placed 29 patients with type 2 diabetes and heart disease on either a Paleo diet or a Mediterranean diet based upon whole grains, low-fat dairy products, vegetables, fruits, fish, oils, and margarines.  Note that the Paleo diet excludes grains, dairy products and margarines while encouraging greater consumption of meat and fish.  After 12 weeks on either diet blood glucose tolerance (a risk factor for heart disease) improved in both groups, but was better in the Paleo dieters.  In a  2010 follow-up publication, of this same experiment the Paleo diet was shown to be more satiating on a calorie by calorie basis than the Mediterranean diet because it caused greater changes in leptin, a hormone which regulates appetite and body weight.

In the second modern study (2008) of Paleo Diets, Dr. Osterdahl and co-workers (7) put 14 healthy subjects on a Paleo diet.  After only three weeks the subjects lost weight, reduced their waist size and experienced significant reductions in blood pressure, and plasminogen activator inhibitor (a substance in blood which promotes clotting and accelerates artery clogging).  Because no control group was employed in this study, some scientists would argue that the beneficial changes might not necessarily be due to the Paleo diet.  However, a better controlled more recent experiments showed similar results.

In 2009, Dr. Frasetto and co-workers (1) put nine inactive subjects on a Paleo diet for just 10 days.  In this experiment, the Paleo diet was exactly matched in calories with the subjects’ usual diet.  Anytime people eat diets that are calorically reduced, no matter what foods are involved, they exhibit beneficial health effects.  So the beauty of this experiment was that any therapeutic changes in the subjects’ health could not be credited to reductions in calories, but rather to changes in the types of food eaten.  While on the Paleo diet either eight or all nine participants  experienced improvements in blood pressure, arterial function, insulin, total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol and triglycerides.  What is striking about this experiment is how rapidly so many markers of health improved, and that they occurred in every single patient.

In an even more convincing recent (2009) experiment, Dr. Lindeberg and colleagues (2) compared the effects of a Paleo diet to a diabetes diet generally recommended for patients with type 2 diabetes.  The diabetes diet was intended to reduce total fat by increasing whole grain bread and cereals, low fat dairy products, fruits and vegetables while restricting animal foods.   In contrast, the Paleo diet was lower in cereals, dairy products, potatoes, beans, and bakery foods but higher in fruits, vegetables, meat, and eggs compared to the diabetes diet.  The strength of this experiment was its cross over design in which all 13 diabetes patients first ate one diet for three months and then crossed over and ate the other diet for three months.  Compared to the diabetes diet, the Paleo diet resulted in improved weight loss, waist size, blood pressure, HDL cholesterol, triglycerides, blood glucose and hemoglobin A1c (a marker for long term blood glucose control).    This experiment represents the most powerful example to date of the Paleo diet’s effectiveness in treating people with serious health problems.

So, now that I have summarized the experimental evidence supporting the health and weight loss benefits of Paleo Diets, I would like to directly respond to the errors in the U.S. News and World Report article.

 

1.            “Will you lose weight? No way to tell.”

Obviously, the author of this article did not read either the study by O’Dea (6) or the more powerful three month crossover experiment by Jonsson and colleagues (9) which demonstrated the superior weight loss potential of high protein, low glycemic load Paleo diets.  Similar results of high protein, low glycemic load diets have recently been reported in the largest randomized controlled trials ever undertaken in both adults and children.

A 2010 randomized trial involving 773 subjects and published in the New England Journal of Medicine (8) confirmed that high protein, low glycemic index diets were the most effective strategy to keep weight off.   The same beneficial effects of high protein, low glycemic index diets were dramatically demonstrated in largest nutritional trial, The DiOGenes Study (9), ever conducted in a sample of 827 children. Children assigned to low protein, high glycemic diets became significantly fatter over the 6 month experiment, whereas those overweight and obese children assigned to the high protein, low glycemic nutritional plan lost significant weight.

2.            “Does it have cardiovascular benefits? Unknown.”

This comment shows just how uninformed this writer really is.  Clearly, this person hasn’t read the following papers (1 – 6) which unequivocally show the therapeutic effects of Paleo Diets upon cardiovascular risk factors.

And all that fat would worry most experts.”

This statement represents a “scare tactic” unsubstantiated by the data.  As I, and almost the entire nutritional community,  have previously pointed out, it is not the quantity of fat which increases the risk for cardiovascular disease or cancer, or any other health problem, but rather the quality.  Contemporary Paleo Diets contain high concentrations of healthful omega 3 fatty acids, monounsaturated fatty acids and long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids that actually reduce the risk for chronic disease (10-18).

3.            “Can it prevent or control diabetes? Unknown.”

Here is another example of irresponsible and biased journalism which doesn’t let the facts speak for themselves.  Obviously, the author did not read the study by O’dea (6) or Jonsson et al. (2) which showed dramatic improvements in type 2 diabetics consuming Paleo diets.

 

but most diabetes experts recommend a diet that includes whole grains and dairy products.

If the truth be known, in a randomized controlled trial, 24 8-y-old boys were asked to take 53 g of protein as milk or meat daily (19).  After only 7 days on the high milk diet, the boys became insulin resistant.  This is a condition that precedes the development of type 2 diabetes.  In contrast, In the meat-group, there was no increase in insulin and insulin resistance.  Further, in the Jonsson et al. study (2) milk and grain free diets were shown to have superior results in improving disease symptoms in type 2 diabetics.

4.            “Are there health risks? Possibly. By shunning dairy and grains, you’re at risk of missing out on a lot of nutrients.”

Once again, this statement shows the writer’s ignorance and blatant disregard for the facts.  Because contemporary ancestral diets exclude processed foods, dairy and grains, they are actually more nutrient (vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals) dense than government recommended diets such as the food pyramid.    I have pointed out these facts in a paper I published in the American Journal of Nutrition in 2005 (13) along with another paper in which I analyzed the nutrient content of modern day Paleo diets (12 ).  Most nutritionists are aware that processed foods made with refined grains, sugars and vegetable oils have low concentrations of vitamins and minerals, but few realized that dairy products and whole grains contain significantly lower concentrations of the 13 vitamins and minerals most lacking in the U.S. diet compared to lean meats, fish and fresh fruit and vegetables (12, 13).

Also, if you’re not careful about making lean meat choices, you’ll quickly ratchet up your risk for heart problems” .

Actually, the most recent comprehensive meta analyses do not show fresh meat consumption whether fat or lean to be a significant risk factor for cardiovascular disease (20-25), only processed meats such as salami, bologna, bacon and sausages (20).

References

 

1.            Frassetto LA, Schloetter M, Mietus-Synder M, Morris RC, Jr., Sebastian A: Metabolic and physiologic improvements from consuming a paleolithic, hunter-gatherer type diet. Eur J Clin Nutr 2009.

 

2.            Jönsson T, Granfeldt Y, Ahrén B, Branell UC, Pålsson G, Hansson A, Söderström M, Lindeberg S. Beneficial effects of a Paleolithic diet on cardiovascular risk factors in type 2 diabetes: a randomized cross-over pilot study. Cardiovasc Diabetol. 2009;8:35

 

3.            Jonsson T, Granfeldt Y, Erlanson-Albertsson C, Ahren B, Lindeberg S. A Paleolithic diet is more satiating per calorie than a Mediterranean-like diet in individuals with ischemic heart disease. Nutr Metab (Lond). 2010 Nov 30;7(1):85

 

4.            Jonsson T, Ahren B, Pacini G, Sundler F, Wierup N, Steen S, Sjoberg T, Ugander M, Frostegard J, Goransson Lindeberg S: A Paleolithic diet confers higher insulin sensitivity, lower C-reactive protein and lower blood pressure than a cereal-based diet in domestic pigs. Nutr Metab (Lond) 2006, 3:39.

 

5.            Lindeberg S, Jonsson T, Granfeldt Y, Borgstrand E, Soffman J, Sjostrom K, Ahren B: A Palaeolithic diet improves glucose tolerance more than a Mediterranean-like diet in individuals with ischaemic heart disease. Diabetologia 2007, 50(9):1795-1807.

 

6.            O’Dea K: Marked improvement in carbohydrate and lipid metabolism in diabetic Australian aborigines after temporary reversion to traditional lifestyle. Diabetes 1984, 33(6):596-603.

 

7.            Osterdahl M, Kocturk T, Koochek A, Wandell PE: Effects of a short-term intervention with a paleolithic diet in healthy volunteers. Eur J Clin Nutr 2008, 62(5):682-685.

 

8.            Larsen TM, Dalskov SM, van Baak M, Jebb SA, Papadaki A, Pfeiffer AF, Martinez JA, Handjieva-Darlenska T, Kunešová M, Pihlsgård M, Stender S, Holst C, Saris WH, Astrup A; Diet, Obesity, and Genes (Diogenes) Project. Diets with high or low protein content and glycemic index for weight-loss maintenance. N Engl J Med. 2010 Nov 25;363(22):2102-13

 

9.            Papadaki A, Linardakis M, Larsen TM, van Baak MA, Lindroos AK, Pfeiffer AF, Martinez JA, Handjieva-Darlenska T, Kunesová M, Holst C, Astrup A, Saris WH, Kafatos A; DiOGenes Study Group. The effect of protein and glycemic index on children’s body composition: the DiOGenes randomized study. Pediatrics. 2010 Nov;126(5):e1143-52

 

10.            Cordain L. Saturated fat consumption in ancestral human diets: implications for contemporary intakes.  In: Phytochemicals, Nutrient-Gene Interactions, Meskin MS, Bidlack WR, Randolph RK (Eds.), CRC Press (Taylor & Francis Group), 2006, pp. 115-126.

 

11.            Cordain L, Miller JB, Eaton SB, Mann N, Holt SH, Speth JD. Plant-animal subsistence ratios and macronutrient energy estimations in worldwide hunter-gatherer diets.Am J Clin Nutr. 2000 Mar;71(3):682-92.

 

12.            Cordain L. The nutritional characteristics of a contemporary diet based upon Paleolithic food groups. J Am Nutraceut Assoc 2002; 5:15-24.

 

13.            Cordain L, Eaton SB, Sebastian A, Mann N, Lindeberg S, Watkins BA, O’Keefe JH, Brand-Miller J. Origins and evolution of the Western diet: health implications for the 21st century. Am J Clin Nutr. 2005 Feb;81(2):341-54.

 

14.            Kuipers RS, Luxwolda MF, Dijck-Brouwer DA, Eaton SB, Crawford MA, Cordain L, Muskiet FA. Estimated macronutrient and fatty acid intakes from an East African Paleolithic diet. Br J Nutr. 2010 Dec;104(11):1666-87.

 

15.            Ramsden CE, Faurot KR, Carrera-Bastos P, Cordain L, De Lorgeril M, Sperling LS.Dietary fat quality and coronary heart disease prevention: a unified theory based on evolutionary, historical, global, and modern perspectives. Curr Treat Options Cardiovasc Med. 2009 Aug;11(4):289-301.

 

16.            Cordain L, Eaton SB, Miller JB, Mann N, Hill K. The paradoxical nature of hunter-gatherer diets: meat-based, yet non-atherogenic. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2002 Mar;56 Suppl 1:S42-52

 

17.            Cordain L, Watkins BA, Florant GL, Kelher M, Rogers L, Li Y. Fatty acid analysis of wild ruminant tissues: evolutionary implications for reducing diet-related chronic disease. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2002 Mar;56(3):181-91

 

18.            Carrera-Bastos P, Fontes Villalba M, O’Keefe JH, Lindeberg S, Cordain L. The western diet and lifestyle and diseases of civilization. Res Rep Clin Cardiol 2011; 2: 215-235.

 

19.            Hoppe C, Mølgaard C, Vaag A, Barkholt V, Michaelsen KF. High intakes of milk, but not meat, increase s-insulin and insulin resistance in 8-year-old boys. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2005 Mar;59(3):393-8.

 

20.            Micha R, Wallace SK, Mozaffarian D. Red and processed meat consumption and risk of incident coronary heart disease, stroke, and diabetes mellitus: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Circulation. 2010 Jun 1;121(21):2271-83

 

21.            Micha R, Mozaffarian D. Saturated fat and cardiometabolic risk factors, coronary heart disease, stroke, and diabetes: a fresh look at the evidence. Lipids. 2010 Oct;45(10):893-905. Epub 2010 Mar 31.

 

22.            Mozaffarian D, Micha R, Wallace S. Effects on coronary heart disease of increasing polyunsaturated fat in place of saturated fat: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. PLoS Med. 2010 Mar 23;7(3):e1000252.

 

23.            Siri-Tarino PW, Sun Q, Hu FB, Krauss RM. Saturated fatty acids and risk of coronary heart disease: modulation by replacement nutrients. Curr Atheroscler Rep. 2010 Nov;12(6):384-90.

 

24.            Siri-Tarino PW, Sun Q, Hu FB, Krauss RM. Saturated fat, carbohydrate, and cardiovascular disease. Am J Clin Nutr. 2010 Mar;91(3):502-9

 

25.            Siri-Tarino PW, Sun Q, Hu FB, Krauss RM. Meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies evaluating the association of saturated fat with cardiovascular disease. Am J Clin Nutr. 2010 Mar;91(3):535-46

 

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  1. Victoria
    June 9, 2011 at 9:35 am

    Well said Doc!

  2. The Warning
    June 9, 2011 at 9:38 am

    Notice the top ranked plan is the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension, a collaborative effort of the National Institutes of Health and Monsanto.

    The panel of US News “experts” is attempting to protect a trillion dollars the government and agricultural industry have invested in modifying human behavior.

    The diets are essentially ranked in descending order of similarity to the USDA’s MyPyramid guidelines, ignoring the science behind the diets or their observed results.

    Lies alone need the support of government. Truth will out.

  3. JD
    June 9, 2011 at 10:07 am

    Seth, great job! Way to go directly to the source. This also serves as a great encapsulation of the scientific literature that supports Paleo and refutes conventional dietary wisdom. (In which the so-called ‘experts’ USA Today relied on were obviously well versed.)

    Thanks for posting Robb.

    JD

  4. Artur
    June 9, 2011 at 10:27 am

    I’m not surprised that Paleo came in last. We’re too easily influenced by ads and popular trends to think for ourselves, in general. To me it’s obvious, logical and what ever, that a diet closer to how we evolved would be better than, say, one based on frozen processed foods. I even saw a book about a rice diet.

  5. Jeff Nimoy
    June 9, 2011 at 10:45 am

    Hey Robb,

    Great rebuttle. It never ceases to amaze me how paleo pisses off more people than any other diet known to the unknown. I have almost 3,000 readers, and I’m going to put up a link to this so they can read it too. Keep up the good fight!

    Jeff Nimoy
    CookingCaveman.com

  6. Harvey
    June 9, 2011 at 10:52 am

    Awesome scientific rebuttal! Well done gentlemen.

  7. Andy Barge
    June 9, 2011 at 11:24 am

    Bah! Who needs science to back up arguments anyway… propoganda thats the way forward. I always knew those poptarts were good for me. Health whole grains with all natural fruit flavourings. yummy.

    As you were beaten by the Zone Diet does this mean we can all eat our “5 fries”?

  8. Mike K
    June 9, 2011 at 11:56 am

    I find it funny how the diet with the most votes for “Yes” on the did this diet work for you section is for the paleo diet…

    • Mandy McDaniel
      June 9, 2011 at 1:32 pm

      …And it’s about to have one more!

      • Devin R.
        June 9, 2011 at 3:14 pm

        …And another. Paleo is currently at 122 votes for “yes this worked for me,” doubling every other diets “yes” count.

      • Steph Greunke
        June 9, 2011 at 4:56 pm

        haha that’s awesome and a great point Mike! I’m about to add one more! :)

    • Baba Ghanoush
      June 10, 2011 at 12:33 pm

      I believe that is simply the “slashdot effect”… online paleo advocates reacting to news that paleo was ranked last in the list.

    • Tom
      June 10, 2011 at 1:35 pm

      Paleo almost has 1000 yes votes ha! Most of the others have more no than yes. I’d honestly like to meet someone who has given paleo a fair shake and had it NOT work for them. Still yet to meet that person.

  9. C George
    June 9, 2011 at 12:05 pm

    I work in nutrition research and constantly come across people unwilling to do a little reading. Unfortunately, most people publishing articles are funded through either companies not promoting health(Nutella, Pepsi, etc.) or the Government. I truly believe there needs to be a systematic change, not only with nutrition, but in America’s feeling of entitlement. Unfortunately, our worst enemy is our ego. As we continue to feed it crap, so it grows(sounds familiar huh?).

    Stepping away from the mic, I would like to say thanks for representing this movement! This rebuttal is a great stride in opening the eyes of those sleep walkers out there! Keep bringing it!

  10. Nutritionator
    June 9, 2011 at 12:09 pm

    Thanks for the healthy dose of Dr. Cordain. Another well critiqued response to a news report that belongs in recycle bins. That Australian study is very cool, haven’t seen that one as of yet.

  11. Geoff
    June 9, 2011 at 1:01 pm

    “Contemporary Paleo Diets contain high concentrations of healthful omega 3 fatty acids, monounsaturated fatty acids and long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids that actually reduce the risk for chronic disease (10-18).”

    Cordain you silly lipophobe you. I’d be far more willing to forward people to this piece if it wasn’t for that sentence.

    • Robb Wolf
      June 9, 2011 at 1:27 pm

      That does seem like a deal breaker…

      • Adam
        June 10, 2011 at 5:16 am

        Yeah, I was thinking of following the paleo diet, but I think I’ll try the FAST approach now XD

        • Robb Wolf
          June 11, 2011 at 7:26 am

          Mee too. I think I’ll get most of my calories from cans. SlimFast & MGD.

      • Caitlin
        June 10, 2011 at 9:18 am

        Can you explain why for those of us who are new to class? I thought omega-3s were good, so what’s wrong with saying they are good?

        • Robb Wolf
          June 11, 2011 at 7:24 am

          Not sure what’s driving the question but EPA/DHA are what we want ALA (like from flax) not so much.

    • Shel
      June 9, 2011 at 4:32 pm

      read the last sentence. he has no fear of unprocessed meats, “whether fat or lean”; and know what? i’m not sure anymore that he’s wrong about “processed meats such as salami, bologna, bacon and sausages”.

    • Natalie
      June 10, 2011 at 12:43 pm

      Especially since it’s not true. Pretty much every paleo blog I’ve read extols the virtues of coconut oil, bacon and the likes.

    • Stabby
      June 10, 2011 at 2:36 pm

      The thing is that when Cordain writes he is writing for…those people, the ones who are so steeped in lipophobia that one mention that palmitic acid might not be bad and they tune out. Cordain just said in the same article that even conventional grain-fed meat (which has plenty of palmitic acid) has no relationship with heart disease.

  12. Jeremiah
    June 9, 2011 at 4:15 pm

    From the review:

    “Does it have cardiovascular benefits?

    Unknown. While some studies have linked Paleo diets with reducing blood pressure, bad “LDL” cholesterol, and triglycerides (a fatty substance that can raise heart disease risk), they have been few, small, and short. And all that fat would worry most experts…

    Can it prevent or control diabetes?

    …Control: One small study comparing a Paleo and a traditional diabetes diet in 13 type 2 diabetics showed the Paleo diet resulted in lower levels of hemoglobin A1C, a measure of blood sugar over time. The approach needs to be studied more before strong conclusions can be drawn, but most diabetes experts recommend a diet that includes whole grains and dairy products.”

    Even US News admits it: science supports paleo. The “experts” don’t. Neither do debunked theories from the 1960s.

  13. wildpaleo
    June 9, 2011 at 4:26 pm

    The top ratings for diets that work, at the bottom of each diet, you can vote to say if the diet has worked for you. LOOK AT THE NUMBERS! #1 Paleo is at over 160 say yes and #2 Weight Watchers over 60. Does that say anything to the publisher of US News that maybe they should get their facts straight before printing something as important as a persons diet?

  14. Liz
    June 9, 2011 at 4:39 pm

    What’s so sad about all this is that everyday consumers are going to read that article and take it for fact. I used to work in PR for a lot of big food companies and that one article will have a profound effect I don’t think many people realize.

    While I respect Prof. Cordain’s rebuttal, as an online marketer, I can’t help but worry that it won’t help influence the thinking among regular people (or journalists for that matter). No one trying to decide whether to try buy into the Paleo diet or not is going to take the time to read through a long rebuttal with tons of science. They need something digestible, easy to read, that links off to the science if they choose to investigate further. People’s online attention span is literally 30 seconds.

    I mean, I’ve been paleo for two years, feel passionately about this article and even I couldn’t get through that letter. No offense Prof. Cordain!

  15. Jill
    June 9, 2011 at 4:48 pm

    I saw that so called list on yahoo….bogus! Makes no sense to me. AT ALL – why this diet (the diet we humans evolved on) is considered the worst??? BOGUS!

    LOVE This post!! love this diet!! and kudos to you for posting it!

    I am linking back to this from my blog – I gotta share!

    K-U-D-O-S!!

  16. Dylan
    June 9, 2011 at 5:04 pm

    Look at the raw food diet, which ranks third to last. Nearly all the assessments are favorable, but for some reason the numeric scores it receives are very poor. The only knock they really have on it is that it’s expensive and inconvenient, but that only applies to one of the scores. You can even compare the answers to the DASH diet answers and it appears they are much more enthusiastic and thorough in explaining how you would get all of your nutrients in a raw food diet. The answers in the DASH diet are vague and presumptive (uninterested… almost indicative of a lack of knowledge to what the concept of the diet actually is), yet it receives much higher numeric scores. The part about the Paleo diet is obviously ridiculous, but it’s quite peculiar that the numeric scores seem to have no basis in the descriptive assessments (or sometimes less than descriptive)

  17. Jim Anderson
    June 9, 2011 at 5:59 pm

    When you look at the overall rankings and the comments about each diet, it is obvious that the “experts” are assuming that only low-fat diets are heart healthy and only diets with plenty of carbs are balanced. So naturally any low-carb, high-fat diet will score low in the heart health and balance categories. The report scolds the Atkins Diet for allowing people to eat steak without trimming off the fat first. The bias is plain and obvious.

  18. Andrew Doane
    June 9, 2011 at 6:00 pm

    As I’m typing this, only two diets had more Yes, It Worked For Me votes than No It Didn’t votes, and they were the bottom two ranked: Paleo and Atkins.

  19. Martin
    June 9, 2011 at 11:48 pm

    My comment will be a bit cynical, just for the sake of an argument. Why does it matter what the official / general view of the PD is? Well, of course if your career is based on researching and popularizing the concept of PD, then it does matter to you. But from a farther perspective we have a situation where the population is getting more and more unhealthy, the medical experts and authorities have no good solution, what they propose does not work and at the same time they reject what seems like the real solution, which does work and is based on good science. They do so for numerous reasons, due to ignorance but also strong pressure from the food industry. Now, if we take another step back, we no longer see diets, food pyramids or official dietary recommendations, but an overpopulated world in which the dominant species, starts to self-regulate by following on a sure path to self destruction. Those who eat and live paleo a minority should slowly acquire certain advantages (think fertility, physical, mental) which in the next generations would become very prominent. Do we really have to worry about that fact we might be getting an evolutionary edge over the ‘grain-eaters’?

    • Robb Wolf
      June 11, 2011 at 7:28 am

      VEry…Maclevelian! The problem will arrise when growing our own food and being healthy becomes a crime against the State.

      • Whitney
        June 11, 2011 at 11:09 am

        I hate thinking about that part. This diet appeals to me as a Libertarian. And I’ve noticed that Libertarians and conservatives in my world immediately adopt the diet, mostly 100% right away and Liberals half ass it and make excuses.

        • Mary
          June 11, 2011 at 3:50 pm

          In my world it’s the conservatives who think grass-fed meat is a waste of money and are gobbling processed food as fast as possible. Gimme a break, this has nothing to do with ideology.

          • Robb Wolf
            June 12, 2011 at 8:02 am

            Maybe you need some different conservative in your life Mary! Neo-con imperialists are antithetical to freedom. And no, it has EVERYTHING to do with ideology.

  20. Rachel Wolff
    June 10, 2011 at 12:17 am

    A list of 4 letter words spring to mind after reading this……

    So after washing my mouth out with soap, I’m climbing on my soap box and adding some 4 letter words of my own to add to your “Why”s (wise) response words Robb.

    FEAR
    FAIL
    LIES
    GAIN
    PROF
    OWNS
    MEDI

    and…TINY BALL (couldn’t resist that one!)

    And on the off chance that the ‘science profs’ can add 4+1 letters, how about mixing up a batch of these 5 letter words instead?

    ADMIT
    TRUTH
    PROOF
    ROBB
    WOLF(F) (again, couldn’t resist)
    PALEO
    FACTS
    SAVES
    LIVES

    Like you said Robb, the Paleo concept IS exploding. The $$$ puppet masters are losing their strings.

    And so, I challenge the puppets.
    Do what you like to do best.
    Advertise.
    Call the government.
    Oh, and while you’re on the line, call Jeff Probst and Mark Burnet. Let’s start filming that reality show.
    This Wolff Woman is ready to roar :)

  21. Chuck
    June 10, 2011 at 12:21 am

    A reality show- that’s a great idea! Just like the Biggest Loser; it would be a great way to prove it!

  22. John Koenig
    June 10, 2011 at 4:01 am

    Let me join the chorus praising Robb Wolf and Dr. Cordain for so simply and accurately throwing the harpoon. I was stunned when I read the original story, but gave it little thought as I have so much disdain for the “diet plans” praised in the piece. But now understanding how much coverage mass media gives this, I feel galvanized. I’m running Dr. Cordain’s piece in the “Stuff I Like” portion of my website. Thank you for leading the charge.

  23. Billy Mosley
    June 10, 2011 at 6:40 am

    Man im glad the paleo diet got dead last, two reasons. One its not a diet but a way of life. Two I don’t know what Id do if everyone just started trusting my advice because we got first. lol I saw this when it came out and at first was like whhhaaattt the f!!! After some thought, All i can say is people are so easily corrupted.

  24. Bodhi
    June 10, 2011 at 7:14 am

    I have copied Dr. Cordain’s response to my blog.

  25. Charles McArthur
    June 10, 2011 at 7:19 am

    I live the Paleo lifestyle for 8 months. My doctor will take me off my meds with 20 more pounds lost. My wife is on weightwatchers program but is fighting to lose weight. She said my diet was last place on the US New piece. I said that is fine, I read Robb’s Blog and books. I also read Mark’s Apple Blog. US New can keep talking trash, I know what works.

  26. Tony
    June 10, 2011 at 7:52 am

    I love that they included an area for the public to say whether a particular diet has succeeded for them or not. If you look through the different diets, almost ALL of them have a negative balance (i.e. more people have tried and failed than succeeded… even #1 the DASH diet has currently 62 successes to 126 failures). Then you look all the way down at the Paleo Diet and we have a HUGE positive balance at what is currently 573 successes to 23 failures! What the hell? This just goes to show the F***ING experts that they are truly… FULL OF **IT!

  27. Diane S
    June 10, 2011 at 9:25 am

    I am new to this life style,and in 12days I have lost 11lbs.!! They can say what they want but this is the first time in my obese life that I feel good and I am not craving, so the “experts” aren’t always right! I wish they would learn this way so they can see the effects for them selves. I am doing this in conjuntion with the Leptin Diet rules. I am only having 25 crabs a day or less no grains of anykind! And I dont miss them, thanks to you & my big brother Dr.Jack for opening my closed eyes!! :) Any suggestions for me on the weight training, I have no idea on how or what things I need to start doing after the 8weeks of getting my leptin back where is supposed to be?

    Thanks again!!
    Diane

  28. Alek Edwards
    June 10, 2011 at 11:02 am

    Whats funny to me is when you read the top 20 diets, when you look at the buttons “Did this diet work for me?” Yes, No, Haven’t tried it, Paleo is overwhelmingly the winner out of all 20 diets having worked for people. So even though it is last in being recommended it is first in being effective according to the public. Hmmmmm, I wonder why… Great post, keep up the fight!!!

  29. bill
    June 10, 2011 at 11:18 am

    Will the writers/publishers who no longer research *anything* before they postulate it as fact, please die soon so there will be more left for the rest of us who read/think?

    Thank you.

  30. Daveman
    June 10, 2011 at 1:31 pm

    HA…check out that us news vote page for those diets…we GROKKED EM today!
    I saw it with my Facebook tribe this morning and prompted (with others) a massive retaliation…and we just walked WW into the ground…LOLOL GROK ON ROBB>>>

  31. Tom
    June 10, 2011 at 2:42 pm

    Really going through the report is making me want to punch my computer screen. When you look at the reviews page for each diet, there is an OBVIOUS bias. All they say about paleo is, ‘no research, no research blah blah blah’ and give it 1 or 2 stars. But then you look at other diets like Slim Fast, Dash, and Weight Watchers and they’re all rated much higher despite not mentioning anything about research!! This tidbit was just comedy after seeing paleo get crushed for lack of research…

    “Although more than a few experts noted that they’d like to see long-term weight-loss studies examining DASH, many still handed out 3s and 4s”

    I really hope they read and respond to Cordain’s piece. Looks like most of those experts are in some way on the government’s payroll.

  32. Evert
    June 10, 2011 at 3:11 pm

    I was really irritated by that news article, so I’d like to thank dr. Cordain for clearing it up for us all!

  33. manny c
    June 10, 2011 at 4:27 pm

    way to lay down a sound solid scientific bi#&$ slap! i guess being correct in this case all but gaurantees that this write up won’t make a ‘letter to the editor’ section of a future issue. thank you for getting this information up so quickly!

  34. Mary
    June 11, 2011 at 4:01 pm

    I am completely unimpressed by us news’ list of experts. I even went to high school with one of them and, apparently, he’s as uncreative now as he was 30 years ago. He sure knows how to follow the money and get his face on tv, though.

  35. Lee
    June 12, 2011 at 10:20 am

    This is totally BS – but it’s the way of what’s most popular – who demands the most pay for the most people in general – hey! I paid nothing but the price of a few books! The Robb Wolf book being the “gold” standard – however, that said, it doesn’t follow the national food pyramid or orb – or whatever it is now!
    I’ve lost 30+ lbs without trying – I did this for the medical benefits – and I have won in SPADES! Hey! I did WWs a few yrs back – still gained back the weight – still had my RA, still had osteo probs, and still had gastric reflux –
    Thanks Robb – even if I can’t afford to do the diet with grass fed meat – I take fish oil supplements – lots of chicken liver and fish – and good eggs! Thanks to you and the info you provided – and my son – I’m a person w/out meds and w/out depression, w/out debilitating arthritis and at an ideal weight – lower than my high school years – and I thought those days my weight was good!!!

  36. JamieWho
    June 13, 2011 at 1:01 pm

    I love your rant/rebuttal. My favorite part is how the Paleo diet is the only one that addresses all of the “nutrients of concern” yet they still say that it is not a nutritious diet. Their analysis is exactly opposite of their statement about missing out on “all those nutrients” by “shunning diary and grains.” What nutrients do you get in a slice of bread that a slab of meat doesn’t provide. I guess its all that sugar that you don’t get when you cut out the chocolate milk. If you look at the “data” tab (they call it that, not me), they score Paleo around 2 on everything despite what they write in the description and analysis.

    Someone needs to chart the yes/no responses on there to see how well the diets actually work for people.

  37. Lisa
    June 14, 2011 at 7:26 am

    Hey Robb,
    Nice rebuttal:) my husband and I were commenting on the news article about paleo and how who ever wrote that obviously had not done their homework or even tried the eating plan. Thanks so much for taking the time to rebuttal and thanks for all you do:) I did have a question about AGES in our cooked meat and if you find it a problem or is it just more scare tactics?
    Lisa

  38. Cheryl Bertin
    November 6, 2011 at 12:32 pm

    I was so incensed by this US News article that I was compelled to respond to this string. I am not an expert in research by any means but I am grateful people like Robb Wolf are. I think the crux of the issue is people just don’t like to make difficult choices. Especially American people. Let me clarify that I am American therefore I am an expert in this arena. We like freedom and do not like when we can’t do what we want. the other diets are popular only because they are easy. I can’t tell you how many of my friends have been on weight watchers or slim fast only to gain the weight back as soon as they finish the program. I found it very difficult to adopt the Paleo Diet at first. It was so foreign from my small ,frequent, whole grain, low fat, conventional wisdom way of life. Now a year later I couldn’t think of another way to eat. But I was looking for optimal health not just weight loss. It is a lifetime commitment not a quick fix. I think Americans are ingrained with what’s on the surface mostly. We are just concerned with how we look and we trust that Modern Medicine will cure the rest. We don’t want to do the leg work ourselves. This is what needs to be addressed. I think it comes down to pure personal accountability. That and that the government needs to stop being in bed with everyone in the food industry. That’s a whole different post and there probably isn’t enough band width for it. Thanks Robb for being our Defender!

  39. Marleen
    December 6, 2012 at 1:31 pm

    Thanks for clearing up!

  40. Erica Murphy
    December 13, 2012 at 9:36 am

    New paleo book:
    http://6aaf166o08tgzxfii6pg4u5m83.hop.clickbank.net/

  41. Astrid
    February 26, 2014 at 5:12 am

    Thanks very much!

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