What do you get when you combine paleo and vegan? The pegan diet is one of the newer trends for people who don’t want to give up certain nutritional elements. Unlike simply being vegan, pegans can still enjoy meats & local produce. Dr. Mark Hyman invented the phrase on his blog in 2014, but the theory has only recently gained traction. According to Pinterest, interest in the pegan diet has increased 337 percent in the last year, with searches continuing to rise.
Eating a Paleolithic diet & avoiding any animal products can be hard. A pegan diet, on the other hand, allows for some meat/fish/eggs but restricts entire grains/dairy/legumes.
Here’s how it works in practice:
What is the pegan diet?
The pegan diet, as the names indicate, combines elements of both the paleo diet and veganism. In summary, paleo eaters aim to consume only foods that were accessible during the Paleolithic era 2.6 million years ago: vegetables, fruits, nuts, fish, and meat. It typically avoids dairy, wheat, sweets, legumes, oils, salt, alcohol, and coffee. Veganism advocates abstaining from all animal products and by-products, including meat, fish, eggs, cheese, yogurt, and honey, in favor of eating plant-based cuisine.
Foods to Eat
The pegan diet consists of 75% fruits and vegetables. The remaining 25% is made up mostly of meats, eggs, and healthy fats like nuts and seeds. In restricted quantities, certain legumes and gluten-free whole grains may be permitted.
- Vegetables: Low-glycemic (non-starchy) veggies make up the bulk of the diet.
- Fruit: The more variety, the better.
- Nuts: Eat lots of almonds, pistachios, walnuts, and other nuts besides peanuts.
- Seeds: Flax, chia, pumpkin, and other seeds also get the thumbs-up.
- Fish: Choose low-mercury options like sardines, herring, and anchovies.
- Meat: Grass-fed beef, pork, and poultry are emphasized.
- Eggs: Eggs are an inexpensive source of vital nutrients and protein.
- Some Oils: Olive and avocado oil have heart-healthy fats.
Foods to Avoid
Several foods and dietary groups are forbidden on the pegan diet. It is, however, somewhat adaptable. In rare times, small amounts of prohibited foods may be allowed.
- Dairy: Avoid milk, yogurt, butter, and cheese, especially if it’s made with cow’s milk. Sheep or goat’s milk are allowed in small amounts.
- Grains: Gluten is strongly discouraged, but small amounts of gluten-free whole grains are okay.
- Legumes: Starchy legumes (including peanuts) especially get nixed, but lentils are allowed.
- Sugar: Use it sparingly and skip sweetened products.
- Some Refined Oils: These include canola, sunflower, corn, and soybean oil.
- Processed Foods: Skip stuff made with lots of artificial additives.
The pegan diet may benefit your health in a variety of ways. Perhaps its finest feature is the considerable emphasis on fruit and vegetable consumption.
Fruits and vegetables are among the most nutrient-dense foods. They are high in fiber, vitamins, minerals, and plant chemicals that have been shown to protect against illness and decrease oxidative stress and inflammation.
The pegan diet also stresses healthy, unsaturated fats derived from fish, nuts, seeds, and other plants, which may benefit heart health. Furthermore, diets that are high in whole foods and low in ultra-processed foods have been linked to an increase in overall diet quality.
While the pegan diet allows for more flexibility than the paleo and vegan diets, sticking to all of the guidelines can be an unnecessarily difficult method to lose weight.
Numerous studies show that fiber- and nutrient-rich whole grains and legumes may both be part of a healthy diet. Plus, they’re still plant-based – many vegans rely on antioxidant-rich beans as a source of protein.
And if you like milk, cheese, yogurt, and, dessert, there’s a place for that as well. “A life without sugar is a life without meaning,” London adds, “since attempting to restrict something your body may desire to have would always backfire.”
Should I try it?
The pegan diet is based on paleo and vegan principles. However, it does allow for occasional meat-eating. It stresses complete foods, particularly vegetables while avoiding gluten, dairy, most grains, and legumes.
It’s high in nutrients that can help you live a healthier life, but it may be too restricted for some individuals.
You can experiment with this diet to observe how your body reacts. If you’re currently paleo or vegan and want to change your diet, the pegan diet may be simpler to adapt to.
You can get The full guide here: