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The New Evolution Diet: What Our Paleolithic Ancestors Can Teach Us about Weight Loss, Fitness, and Aging

3.77  ·  Rating Details ·  437 Ratings  ·  40 Reviews

Astonishing as it may be, it’s a fact that human DNA has evolved very little since our Paleolithic ancestors roamed the earth. But while our genes may be similar, the environment in which they express themselves has changed radically. Living in an age when activity was mandatory and food was scarce, our ancestors thrived. Early man did not suffer from heart disease, high b

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Published by Rodale Press, Inc. (first published December 21st 2010)
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Nov 26, 2011 Jane rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Make that, "The Narcissist's Evolution Diet." I was excited to read a book said to describe "the robust health that Mother Nature intended...Eat only those foods that were available to early man..." However, the author's ego gets in the way and he's so busy bragging and describing exactly the foods he eats, that he never gets to the information you want. Not only that, you expect that his PhD is related to nutrition or kinesiology, so you feel a bit deceived when you find out it's in economics. ...more
Jecka Marie
I agree with the low carb/"paleo" lifestyle and try to live it myself, but De Vany makes some really dubious "scientific" claims that are very outdated and I definitely can't get behind them (like demonizing butter. Uh, what?). Maybe this book is too old for the science, I don't know. His obviously huge ego also got pretty annoying very early on. Yes, you're an old dude and you surely have a great body; yes, I'm sure you have the testosterone of an 18-year-old boy. Yes, I'm sure your doctor said ...more
Steve Greenleaf
Mar 20, 2013 Steve Greenleaf rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Reading Nassim Taleb's Fooled by Randomness in the spring of 2007, I came across the name of Art De Vany, the author of Hollywood Economics. Taleb mentioned it in his book because it addressed the issue of the difficulty of predicting winning movies. De Vany, an academic economist, talks about power laws, stochastic events, complexity, etc. in that academic work. Taleb noted in passing that De Vany also applied these principles to fitness. I checked it out on the web and discovered De Vany's web ...more
Jun 04, 2017 Lee rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Well written and draws you in at the start, however, it unravels into a confused mess as the book progresses. There's far too much repetition and confused advice. For example, early on, the author recommends that dairy and alcohol should be avoided, however, cheese, wine and beer feature in the 'day in the life of' meal and exercise routine section. De Vany also holds that the calorie in/out model is irrelevant which is obviously misleading at best and down right irresponsible at worst. Was real ...more
Bala Kamallakharan
Turns all conventional thinking about diet and exercise in its head

This book has helped me understand why the world is on an diabetic epidemic and what to do about it. Simple answer cut sugar and carbohydrates from your food. Don't do repetitive regimented physical activity. Bring variety into the activity and oh go without food or water for some time
Michal Zuber
Jun 02, 2017 Michal Zuber rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Najlepsia o paleo
Mar 25, 2017 Nicole rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Lots of interesting ideas!
Matches many other theories out there!
I like the take on exercise - back n the day, people didn't jog for an hour to catch dinner or escape being dinner...

Ray Isaac
Jan 31, 2017 Ray Isaac rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Useful for beginners looking to improve poor health (as any diet that focuses on quality amino acids and abundant micronutrients is nigh guaranteed to offer benefits) but little beyond that. Inaccurate representation of the "original' human diet coupled with the tired demonization of saturated fats.

There is, however, a brief note on maximizing lipolysis with low intensity exercise immediately following HIIT, which has the potential to increase efficacy of training for those interested.

Nassim Nic
Nick Short
Nov 04, 2013 Nick Short rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: health, read-in-2014
Diet book. Summarizes via negativa and kurtosisic diet/lifestyle of econonomist Art De Vany.

Reads like infomercial in beginning and spurts throughout. But still makes strong arguments about simple and complex carbs becoming an addictive cycle making us want to eat more of them. And that being loaded up on carbs prevents our body from entering a fat burning state.

Advocates and explains subtracting foods that have not yet been distilled through time/evolution as healthy. Also advocates and expla
Feb 10, 2012 Peter rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A great read and highly recommended. De Vany has a very playful style, and manages to get his points across without being pushy. In fact, it's almost Zen-like how he focusses on process over outcome and in doing so removes a lot of stress from his life. With the book, he makes his case and then let's you decide for yourself if you want to make lifestyle changes or not.

What also speaks to his advantage is that he doesn't have an overly romantic view of the caveman, which paleo advocates sometimes
Lisa King
Impressions...a fairly easy read. I am not convinced that a New Evolution Diet would work for me but for others, yes. I just don't eat that much meat. I've already read books about the effects of a high carbohydrate diet and this is just another approach to this way of living.

Aurthur had some interesting ideas that may have merit especially when it comes to exercise. Three to 4 days a week in the gym, each about half an hour max, is a good idea. HIIT or high intensity interval training where yo
Jan 01, 2016 John rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful book! Loved it. Eat the right things, avoid eating processed garbage food. Eat vegetables, fish and meat. Cut out bread, rice, pasta,

Exercise like our ancestors did - walk a lot. Sprint a little. Lift heavy things once in a while. No need to exercise like a drone - forget long, monotonous jogging and repetitive treadmill stuff. Don't spend more than 45 minutes total in the gym, once or twice a week. Do quick, intense workout. Leave.

Bike and play tennis or basketball eve
Jan 10, 2012 Kyle rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
While Loren Cordain's "The Paleo Diet" (2011 edition) will remain the bible for those wanting to improve their health through approximating the dietary intake of our pre-agricultural ancestors, I believe one benefits from reading a variety of sources on dietary and health techniques. De Vany's book supplements Cordain's by bringing more focus on exercise. Pre-agricultural humans did not run marathons, or train on treadmills for hours on end. What can we do to alter our fitness regimens in order ...more
Dec 24, 2013 Kevin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good guide to the paleo diet from a more traditional dieter's perspective. The author makes some good arguments and appeals well to his experience helping his wife and child manage diabetes. It gives a good overall perspective about why the paleo diet works so well physiologically. Having just finished other books explaining the scientific evidence that supports paleo diets, this one seems light on more complex explanations, and on occasion, especially in the section about longevity, the autho ...more
Greg Linster
Art de Vany isn’t your typical nutritionist or health professional. By trade he’s an economist, albeit he’s one of those rare economists that actually understands that the human body is a complex system. For that matter, he argues, it’s simply another economic system. He writes about some things you won’t hear mentioned in popular nutrition or health classes, e.g, “information cascade”, chaos theory (and the “butterfly effect”), power laws, fractals, and stochasticity.

Read the rest of my review
Melissa Mcavoy
Interesting info on carb restriction. Very interesting, and new for me, input on the importance of randomness in exercise and diet. The book is focused more on maintaining health, increasing muscle mass and avoiding the negative effects of aging, including Altzheimers, than on weight loss. Adequately well written. The vanity of the author and the famous economist who writes his post-script are noticeable but don't detract too much from the information offered.
Arron Kallenberg
I picked this book up because Nassim Taleb wrote the afterward and also writes about De Vany's ideas in his books The Black Swan and Antifragile. Coming from that perspective, The New Evolution Diet was great, zeroing in on how we can take advantage of randomness, kurtosis and stochastic living to benefit our minds and bodies. That being said, I'm not sure I would have appreciated The New Evolution Diet nearly as much had I not read Taleb's books beforehand.
May 10, 2014 Joakim rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: {paleo dieters}
Shelves: 2014
Nothing new in this new insights into paleo/evolution-based diet. De Vany preaches randomness when it comes to eating paleo foods and working out (randomness ad in timing). For diet it translates to intermittent fasting, and for exercise- random bursts of HIT(High Intensity Training).
Presentation was pretty felt like I was reading random blog posts, and it just could be a copy-paste job from the subscription-based blog he runs.
Dec 28, 2011 Tasneem rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this book and the approach it takes to managing health and fitness. I liked that it wasn't a diet book, that it had plenty of data to back up its suggestions and tips and I enjoyed that it made sense to me on a personal level. I am going to try making the changes recommended in this book. I feel confident that it is a diet that will work.
Overall, it was a good book, but I didn't feel like it really added anything new to the concepts of a "paleo" or "whole30" lifestyle. If anything, he toes a slightly more "traditional" line (low cholesterol, stay away from red meat, etc.) One thing that I did enjoy was the idea of randomness/adaptability/anti-fragility, and exploring how that relates to optimal expressions of health.
Will Slade
Jun 30, 2011 Will Slade rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good book. Simple, straightforward, with a lot of applicable, sensible advice.

The point that diet is very important, and that bursts of exercise are more important to health than rigid, regular workouts is good. It's what I want to do. Being a robot is hard.
Mar 19, 2011 Greg rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Short, simple and contains prescriptions for diet and exercise that everyone can follow. If you are looking for the simplest and easiest way to get healthy and prolong your life, this is the book to read!
Dec 15, 2012 Chana rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Written by the "grandfather" of the Paleo movement, a great book for inspiration and information about an evolutionarily appropriate diet for our bodies.
Vern Glaser
Sep 17, 2011 Vern Glaser rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
another solid book, a little evolutionary in it's style but some interesting ideas that are worth considering, particularly thoughts on aging.
Apr 10, 2015 Alice rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
interesting when reading the facts, blah and not enough info other than his personal experience and theories.
May 11, 2011 Ron rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The introduction would be good for anyone new to what the study of our species' evolution has to say about our health. Not much new info here for me though.
Oct 30, 2013 Ace rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Although it struck a chord with me when I read it, upon later inspection it truly shows its own stupidity.
Cari Taplin
Jun 15, 2011 Cari Taplin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Awesome book that could save your life... definitely your quality of life!
Michael Welch
I like the whole idea of randomness but I wish more hard science was discussed.
Anil Jaiswal
some good thoughts, and do not agree with evryhting in it, but worth reading and trying, more as a practice than a diet
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