Should we eat like in the Stone Age? In a webinar hosted by the Food Association, Prof. Andreas Hahn from Leibniz University in Hanover, among others, provided answers.


The average life expectancy of humans more than 2 million years ago was relatively low compared to today. Not only the saber-toothed tiger, pathogenic germs, parasites and viruses were certainly to blame for this. Basically, the Stone Age housewife's menu included everything she could gather and catch in nature, wild vegetables and fruits, herbs, seeds, berries, nuts, honey, eggs, fish, small mammals, the occasional bird or decrepit reptile, and certainly tasty insects and larvae. Game meat was only on the table when the husband and his mates successfully found their way back from the hunt to the cave.


The Paleo Diät supporters argue to limit also the today's nourishing way again to these stone-age basic food in as unprocessed a form as possible. That means above all no milk products, no sugar, very little salt... Prof. Hahn sums it up in one sentence: "The Paleo diet is defined as a diet consisting of nutrient-rich, relatively low-energy foods.

But can you simply replace a mammoth steak with a T-bone steak from farmed beef? Nutritional studies from the Stone Age could provide insight, but unfortunately they don't exist.


The renouncement of any milk products has however a serious disadvantage: The calcium supply is very limited and also regarding Vitamin D and folic acid the Paleo Diät tends to the under-supply. Compared to the strictly vegan diet, however, it has the advantage that essential vitamins and trace elements are supplied in sufficient quantities due to the relatively high proportion of meat.


In 100% vegans, nutritional deficiencies often occur in iodine, selenium, the essential vitamins B2 and B12, iron, zinc and omega-3 fatty acids. They should therefore be complemented in a selective manner. This can be done conveniently via dietary supplements, but also through substitute products such as algae for the iodine and salt supply and high-quality vegetable oils that supply omega-3 fatty acids.


Who decides for a vegan or also the Paleo Diät must pay attention thus very attentively to the fact that he/she takes essential nutrients in sufficient quantity, age and need-appropriate to himself/herself. A consultation with a nutritionist and a look at nutritional tables can be helpful here.


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Author: Dr. Frank Mörsberger