Human beings can become reactive to any ANY protein that is more than 15 amino acids long – such as bananas, avocado, gliadin, corn, coconuts, or salmon, among many others. We do know that eggs, nuts, grains, legumes, and dairy are going to be much more likely to become reactive and lead the charge.
This doesn’t mean, however, that if you eat blueberries every day, and your gut health is suspect from years of binge drinking, or you were raised in an overly hygienic environment, that you will not become reactive to blueberries.
We have to individualize and self-experiment. This expedition into the unknown is more difficult because the world is not black and white, and everyone could be right.
Here are some examples:
An overweight woman with hypothyroidism and small intestinal overgrowth likely should not eat fast acting carbohydrates for a very long time. Her GI tract and body as a whole are not going to be able to deal with that type of sugar bolus well. This means she also needs to limit the amount of high intensity physical activity she engages in.
She may also need to cut out foods that are high in FODMAPs for a while and will likely never do well eating a fruit salad after every meal. Sorry.
This woman’s road is extremely difficult, as it is about as counter-cultural as it gets and she is likely already wading through a swamp of how she feels about her body and what she thinks she should eat and how much.
Grass-fed beef liver could be the rapture for a vegetarian with heavy menstrual flows, but may be the single most inflammatory food choice for a man who absorbs iron more effectively.
A fourteen year old boy with five immediate relatives who have autoimmune diseases (Celiac, MS, Hashimoto’s, Lupus, etc) just wants to be normal. He also wants to gain muscle mass for his sport. He is talented, but little for his age. He starts to eat peanut butter sandwiches and chug glasses of skim milk every hour.
He doesn’t feel that bad, but is having trouble paying attention in class, and he isn’t growing. Now, is he going to become massive if he changes his diet to AutoImmune Paleo? His why is being giant. His why is making the team. He is 14!
He is a hardgainer likely because his GI tract is destroyed and has been for quite some time. You have to heal his gut and figure out what he can eat that will make him gain weight successfully, and then you likely have to rotate these items so he doesn’t become reactive. He has to master the basics and then you get fancy.
For the last example let’s point the finger inwards. My lifting brethren (male and female) and I would not exist in the Paleolithic era. There was no progressive overload with boulders and tree branches.
There were no anabolic windows or magic white dust for every hour of the hunt (maybe there was, but it was likely very different substances).
Muscle mass is not easy to put on, and it is the least efficient tissue. Our ancestors would only have put on enough to do the tasks they needed to do for them to survive. Thus, the strength and power game is already directly opposed to any type of Paleolithic ideology.
So why would you religiously attach yourself to that ideology if your goal is to get as big and bad ass as possible, and you don’t really care if you die at 75 or 85?
Insulin is the most anabolic hormone in the human body. We have to respect it and be able to manipulate it. For some of the general population, this could mean the only carb sources they should encounter are broccoli and other vegetables, but for athletes this could be mean tubers, white rice, or even ice cream and rice cakes at the right times, for the right individual (this is going to be rare and you are going to have to earn it).
Look to the Past, but Focus on the Future