Podcast #4: Alex Leaf Exposes Shortcomings in the Paleo Narrative

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Last week I published Everything You Believe About What Paleoman Ate Is Way Wrong. That post was based on some research identified by Alex Leaf in: Eat first, share later: the foraging habits of Hadza hunter-gatherers. After the interview portion of that, we delve into what Alex’s nutritional recommendations are, which might surprise you.

You can read both of those posts for any background you wish to get. Otherwise, just dive in. The listening options are iTunes, Soundcoud, and YouTube.


Alex is a certified nutritionist and proprietor of Leaf Nutrition. He also contributes to Examine.com.

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Richard Nikoley

I started writing Free The Animal in late 2003 as just a little thing to try. 20 years later, turns out I've written over 5,000 posts. I blog what I wish...from diet, health, lifestyle...to philosophy, politics, social antagonism, adventure travel, expat living, location and time independent—while you sleep— income by geoarbitrage, and food pics. I intended to travel the world "homeless," but the Covidiocy Panicdemic squashed that. I became an American expat living in Thailand. I celebrate the audacity and hubris to live by your own exclusive authority and take your own chances. ... I leave the toilet seat up. Read More


  1. thhq on September 19, 2016 at 08:04

    Good discussion. Thanks.

    5-13 hours a day out of camp. Easily 1000 kcal/day of activity. In my experience high glycemic carbs become irresistible for this. I can see now why they target honey.

    The Round Up. Never seen wild cow milking before, and not very productive. Tribal bareback relays either. This is Cordain’s Paleo world through Colorado filters. Having a horse is as essential to this life as kayaks are to Inuit. Both are essential Neolithic tools.

    Had a good ribeye there.

  2. sassysquatch on September 19, 2016 at 09:01

    When Mr Leaf was asked to give a generalized diet he might recommend for someone, I thought his advice to get your fats from a whole food source, was good. I thought his mention of making protein the focus of his diet, kind of placed him with most Americanized ‘nutrition experts’. Really, Americans or any other non third world peoples are suffering from lack of protein?? Maybe lack of fiber and a whole foods, plant based diet. But what do I know – I don’t have a Masters degree in anything.

  3. Jennifer Wilson on September 20, 2016 at 20:43

    I am wondering how they eat when at (home?camp?). I would imagine it’d be even less meat? So, right now it looks like they have an overall protein intake of about 24% while foraging/hunting. And in reality, it’s probably much less than that. So I’m curious as to why Leaf’s takeaway is that most calories should come from meat.

    Anyway, I’m sure the paleo community’s response will be, “More Baobab”.

  4. Laurence on September 20, 2016 at 21:46

    Ray Peat. Perhaps not so extreme after all. My view of him has progressed from being an alternative cherry-picker of studies to a complete genius.

    Great oversimplification but –
    He seems to like: sugar (fruit), dairy, eggs, meat, saturated fat, ice cream, potato, raw carrot, coffee, aspirin, pregnenolone, DHEA, progesterone, optimising thyroid function.
    He does not like: PUFA’s, grains, beans, non-tuber starches, nuts, fiber(!), estrogen, serotonin.

    About time I RayPeat my paleo experiment. Starting blood tests complete, off to buy honey and OJ!

    • Richard Nikoley on September 20, 2016 at 22:35

      If he has a blind spot, I think it’s fiber, gut health.

      I’ve been doing a bean burrito fest last week. Most calories coming from no-fat refried beans, just a sprinkle of a Mex grated cheese blend, wrapped in organic, unenriched spelt tortillas (which, damn, are better than traditional wheat flour). Some OJ, whole milk, and Mex Coke rounding things out…with an egg and a bit of meat. Feels great. Digestion very surprisingly fantastic.

      Going to continue it for a while, adding in some oysters, sardines, and potatoes.

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