Changes, changes! Lots of people seem to be rethinking their philosophies, on account of how the original notion of ancestral nutrition and health has been hijacked by people trying to make a buck off of "the paleo movement*." Some of the highest-quality bloggers in the 'sphere are bailing out like rats. I'm sticking.
"Paleo" HAS had its personality altered by people wanting to make THEIR version THE version. If you're not an athlete spending hours working out and needing extra carb-fuel, you aren't allowed to consider yourself a REAL paleoid, some think -- certainly not those middle-aged, red-faced fat low-carbers. Others who have healed their original SAD-damage have moved on to readopting foods they no longer think are so deleterious. Still more just seem kinda bored with it, and ready to try something more exciting ... because it's easier to adhere to a "restrictive" lifestyle if you ARE excited about it.
The deserters remind me of all those discontented folks in the suburbs who move to small towns, then insist on having the amenities that they left behind ... and thus manage to drag all their baggage to where it never was before and screw things up for everybody.
There's no argument here that at NO TIME has paleo ever been a reliving of the free, clean, egalitarian lifestyle some of our ancestors might have enjoyed tens of thousands of years ago. But ya know what -- i don't care. It's NEVER been about reenacting the past: it's about limiting the damage that's so rife in the present, and attempting to escape more damage in the future.
When the nest has become fouled it doesn't make a damned lick of sense to jump over to the next nest and do the same thing over again. I know a lot of people do literally that, but all they manage is to leave a trail of garbage and irate landlords behind them -- it's stupid and expensive and wasteful, but they don't care. Cleaning up after themselves and changing their ways would mean acting like an ADULT, and the Peter Pan types would rather squander their energy on gym visits and late-night web-surfing than do anything actually constructive. Ergo they can't FIX paleo, all they can do is move on to the next shiny object du jour.
I don't have anything to sell, nor does novelty attract me. The only reason I got into paleo in the first place is because the template WORKS. I've tried so many means of keeping my weight under control through the decades with greater and lesser success, and until i tried deleting the "neolithic agents of disease," i was trapped in accelerating malaise and frustration. Conventional weight-loss advice is marginally effective when one has young and resilient hormonal responses, but craps out completely in middle age, or if one has a "flipped epigenetic switch" for dysregulated hormones or neurotransmitters. The low-carb end of the paleo spectrum succeeds where Atkins-style low-carbing and high-carb paleo fall short for me, and where CW fails completely.
So let the flighty young people move on to the next bright promise, and the older ones who have based their careers on "helping" the seekers after health and fitness rephrase their mission-statement -- i wouldn't be too surprised to find them dragging back in a few decades when their resilience has left them. ...That is, if they still have enough functioning brain-cells to remember how well it worked before they messed it up.
The core values, for me, remain the same: juggling toxic substances in my life, so i don't have to give up ALL my favorite indulgences; making sure i get enough restful sleep through manipulating quantity and quality of LIGHT around me; supplementing the nutrients that i can't absorb well, whether it be through my body's shortcomings or that of my food; getting good MOVEMENT into my day, without hurting myself or raising stress-hormones more than need be ... and so on.
We each DO have to tailor our lifestyles to what is appropriate for our own physiology. The recent argument about Inuit genetics and nutrition highlights this -- our ancestors' contributions to what we are TODAY must be taken into account! It doesn't matter what other people thrive on -- our personal needs and tolerances are what's important. Until we realize exactly what they are, we must do a good deal of experimenting, but when the puzzle is solved we're idiots if we don't adhere to it.
* JEEEEZ, how I hate that expression.