Differences Between the Weston A. Price Foundation Diet and the Paleo Diet

We are posting this information to clear up the considerable confusion about the Weston A. Price Foundation dietary principles and the “paleo diet.”  We feel it necessary to do this because we often hear the two diets mentioned together—“the Weston Price Paleo Diet”—and we feel it very important to notethat the principles of these two diets are not the same.

Rest assured, we are not doing this to “attack” anyone personally; we are posting this information because we have a duty to provide accurate information about nutrition.

We are aware that many people experience short-term benefits from the paleo diet, especially people coming off the Standard American Diet (SAD) or vegan/vegetarian diets. However, in the long term, the paleo diet can lead to cravings and serious deficiencies.

We also appreciate the fact that many people who have adopted paleo diets are supporting farmers and ranchers who produce pasture-raised animal foods; and many paleo dieters are members of the Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund.

We also realize that there are many versions of the paleo diet, some of which incorporate some of the WAPF dietary principles.  Nevertheless, the principles proposed by the two main spokesmen for the paleo diet—Loren Cordain and Robb Wolf—have virtually NO points in common with the WAPF principles.

For reviews of these two books, see

The Paleo Diet by Loren Cordain: www.westonaprice.org/thumbs-down-reviews/paleo-diet

The Paleo Diet Solution by Robb Wolf: www.westonaprice.org/thumbs-down-reviews/the-paleo-solution-byrobb-wolf

A Google search for “Paleo Diet” brings up first the Loren Cordain and Robb Wolf websites, along with the Wikipedia entry for the paleo diet; The following analysis compares the WAPF diet with the paleodiet principles expressed in these websites and the books by Cordain and Wolf

WAPF DIET .. PALEO DIET
Animal Foods Eat the whole animal, including the meat, fat, organ meats, bones, cartilage and skin (poultry, pork).
.
.. Only lean muscle meats, no added fat
Meat Should be pasture-raisedfor higher levels of minerals, and vitamins, especially fat-soluble vitamins and minimal hormones, antibiotics and other harmful chemicals; always eat meat with the fat.  If the meat is lean, prepare it with added fat.
.
.. Prefer pasture-raised because it is lean.
Organ Meats More important than muscle meats, should be consumed frequently
.
.. No mention of organ meats
Poultry Always eat with the fat and skin; make pate with the livers and hearts; eat the gizzards also
.
.. Skinless; no organ meats
Pork OK to consume when cured (bacon, ham), marinated in an acidic medium before cooking, or with a lacto-fermented food such as sauerkraut
.
.. No special preparation needed.
Seafood Wild seafood, particularly shellfish, oily fish, fish heads, fish liver oils and fish eggs.  Prepare seafood with added fat. Eat the skin of the fish.
.
.. Wild fish and shellfish, no added fat
Raw Animal Food All traditional cultures consumed some of their animal food raw; so it is important to include raw dairy, raw meat, raw fish and/or raw shellfish in the diet on a frequent basis.
.
.. Not mentioned.
Eggs Preferably pastured-raised; emphasis on egg yolks rather than egg whites
.
.. Allowed; no emphasis on pasture-feeding; extra egg whites encouraged.
Vegetables Raw or cooked, always with added fat, such as butter
.
.. Raw or cooked, no added fat
Fruit Raw or cooked, some fruits more digestible when cooked; add fat (butter or cream) or consume in the context of a meal containing fat.
.
.. Raw, no added fat
Grains Recommended on the observation that many healthy primitive and traditional peoples included grain in their diets; need to be properly prepared to neutralize anti-nutrients and improve digestibility. Individuals who have trouble with grains may be able to eat them (properly prepared) after following the GAPS (Gut and Psychology Syndrome) protocol
.
.. No grains, based on the theory that paleolithic peoples had no grains in their diet, and also because grains contain various anti-nutrients.
Legumes (beans, lentils, etc.) Should be included in the diet; need proper preparation to neutralize anti-nutrients.  Legumes are consumed as a major source of calories by many healthy traditional cultures throughout the world.
.
.. Not allowed, because they contain anti-nutrients
Nuts Good to include in the diet after careful preparation to neutralize anti-nutrients.
.
.. Allowed, even though nuts also contain anti-nutrients (just like grains and legumes). No special preparation recommended.
.
Starchy carbohydrates (potatoes, yams, sweet potatoes) Can be included in the diet.  Should be well cooked and consumed with a fat, like butter
.
.. Potatoes/carbohydrates not allowed, although Wolf includes sweet potatoes in some of his recipes
.
Dairy (milk, cheese, cream, yoghurt, kefir, etc.) Should be raw, whole, full fat. Wonderful foods for growing children.
.
.. Not allowed
Butter Consume liberally
.
.. Consume only occasionally (Wolf) or not at all (Cordain)
.
Meat fats—lard, tallow, etc Consume liberally
.
.. Not recommended.
Oils No industrial oils (corn, soy, canola, etc); Olive oil and coconut oil allowed, but the diet needs to also include liberal amounts of animal fats.
.
.. No industrial oils (corn, soy, canola, etc).  Very small amounts of olive oil and coconut oil allowed.
.
Lacto-fermented foods Include with every meal.
.
.. “Not worth the hassle” and a source of “too much salt.”  Take a probiotic pill instead.
.
Bone broths Consume liberally
.
.. Not mentioned
Fat-soluble activators, Vitamins A, D and K Most important WAPF principle; consume liberally of foods that contain them.
.
.. Foods containing the fat-soluble activators are not emphasized. Promotes plant forms of A and K.  Wolf recommends vitamin D supplement. (See Wolf: “Vitamins A, D and K, Who Cares?”)
Vitamin D Needs to be consumed as part of food, in balance with vitamin A.
.
.. Take 2-5000 IU per day as a supplement, with no supporting vitamin A
Vitamin A Animal form of vitamin A vital to health; vitamin A-rich foods need to be balanced by foods containing vitamin D. Precursors (carotenes) in plant foods are a poor source of vitamin A for humans; many lack the enzymes needed for conversion.
.
.. Avoid animal form of vitamin A. Claims adequate vitamin A can be obtained from the pre-cursors in plant foods.
Calcium Best source is raw dairy foods; cultures that don’t have dairy foods made use of bones (fermented fish bones or bones of small birds and animals ground up and added to food).
.
.. Paleo diets provide only about half the RDA of calcium, virtually all from plant foods. Oxalic acid, phytic acid and other mineral blockers make assimilation of calcium from plant foods difficult.
Protein No more than 20% of calories
.
.. 30-35% of calories. Protein levels this high will deplete vitamin A.
Fats Can be anywhere from 30-80% of calories, with saturated fat predominating.  When fat intake is low, balance of calories needs to come from carbohydrates (which the body can turn into saturated fat).
.
.. 39 % of calories, with monounsaturated fatty acids predominating
Saturated Fat No limit.  Saturated fats are critical for good health.
.
.. Only 7% of calories (about 3 ½ teaspoons per day). No carbohydrate foods in the diet that the body can turn into saturated fat.
Carbohydrates Some carbohydrate in the diet is necessary.  Avoid refined carbs.
.
.. Carbohydrates not necessary.  Avoid both refined and unrefined carbs.
Processed Foods No industrially processed foods; eat liberally of foods prepared by artisan processors (lacto-fermented foods and beverages, naturally cured meats, cheese, sourdough bread, etc)
.
.. No processed foods
Fish liver oils Recommended as a daily supplement for vitamins A and D
.
.. Not recommended
Fish oils Not recommended; can overload the body with omega-3 fatty acids and interfere with arachidonic acid.  Human requirements for omega-3 fatty acids like DHA are actually very low.
.
.. Recommends up to 2 tablespoons fish oil per day.
Salt Very important; adults need at least 1½ teaspoons per day, preferably unrefined; we consumed up to 3 teaspoons per day in the past
.
.. Little or no salt
Cholesterol Very important to have enough cholesterol for hormone production, production of bile salts, healing and repair, protection against cancer.  For men under 60, no additional risk for heart disease with cholesterol levels up to 300 mg/dl.  For women at any age, and for men over 60, higher cholesterol levels are associated with longevity; no need for these groups to reduce cholesterol levels even if very high.
.
.. Total cholesterol should be kept at 120-140 mg/dl.  Very low levels of cholesterol in this range are associated with increased rates of cancer, intestinal diseases, violence and depression, accidents and suicide.
Chocolate Not recommended
.
.. Allowed
Coffee (and tea) Not recommended
.
.. Allowed
Alcohol Wine and unpasteurized beer in moderation with meals
.
.. Cordain allows white wine.  Wolf recommends tequila on an empty stomach.
Pre-Conceptual and Pregnancy Diet Nutrient-dense diet, rich if fat-soluble vitamins, extremely important to ensure the health of the next generation. .. No special diet recommended.

 

NOTE: As of May 2015, the diet recommended by Cordain at thepaleodiet.com is as follows:

EAT  DON’T EAT
Grass-produced Meats  Cereal Grains
Fish/Seafood  Legumes
Fresh Fruits and veggies  Dairy
Eggs  Refined Sugar
Nuts and seeds  Processed Foods
Healthful oils (Olive, walnut, flaxseed, macadamia, avocado, coconut)  Salt
 Refined vegetable oils
 Potatoes

 

As of May, 2015, Robb Wolf recommends the following diet at RobbWolf.com

OK TO EAT  AVOID
Fruits  Dairy
Vegetables  Grain
Lean Meats  Processed Food & Sugars
Seafood  Legumes
Nuts and seeds  Starches
Healthy fats*  Alcohol

 

* Defined as HEALTHY FATS FROM NUTS, SEEDS, AVOCADOS, OLIVE OIL, FISH OIL AND GRASS-FED MEAT

RECOMMENDED READING

Letters on the Paleo Diet:  Link

Guts and Grease by Sally Fallon Morell:  http://www.westonaprice.org/traditional-diets/guts-and-grease

Precious Yet Perilous by Chris Masterjohn: http://www.westonaprice.org/know-your-fats/precious-yet-perilous

On the Trail of the Elusive X Factor by Chris Masterjohn: http://www.westonaprice.org/fat-soluble-activators/x-factor-is-vitamin-k2

The Right Price: http://www.westonaprice.org/basics/the-right-price

The Cod Liver Oil Debate: http://www.westonaprice.org/cod-liver-oil/cod-liver-oil-debate

BOOK REVIEWS
 Tending the Wild by M Kat Anderson: http://www.westonaprice.org/thumbs-up-reviews/tending-the-wild-by-m-kat-anderson

The Biggest Estate on Earth by William Gammage: Link

VIDEOS

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ggr1KkNOBGk

30-35% of calories. Protein levels this high will deplete vitamin A.

Sally Fallon Morell is the founding president of the Weston A. Price Foundation and founder of A Campaign for Real Milk. She is the author of the best-selling cookbook, Nourishing Traditions (with Mary G. Enig, PhD) and the Nourishing Traditions Book of Baby & Child Care (with Thomas S. Cowan, MD). She is also the author of Nourishing Broth (with Kaayla T. Daniel, PhD, CCN).

104 Responses to Differences Between the Weston A. Price Foundation Diet and the Paleo Diet

  1. caramelos says:

    There are sugar-free chocolate chip cookies which use an
    equally sweet sugar substitute. The food pyramid breaks foodstuffs down
    into carbohydrates, proteins and fats. Nowadays, obesity is getting worse and several people are troubled from
    diabetes, several individuals are starting to turn to sugar free
    chocolate as a favorable choice to the calories and
    fat in the normal kind.

  2. Joe Mills says:

    I think anyone interested in health wouldn’t be eating cookies — sugar-free, gluten-free, Paleo-approved, or otherwise.

    • I love cookies! I don’t think it’s fair to say I don’t care about my health because of cookies.

      I have been a dedicated WAPF fan for six years.

      I eat homemade cookies, with real butter. No industrialized oils. No artificial sweeteners. Just real sugar, or one of those less-refined versions — Demerara, etc.?

      Not saying anyone should make a meal out of them. I don’t think a little dessert is such a bad thing, though.

      • Susan Willhoit says:

        Old Chinese proverb says….”Live life like a stream…not too fast…not too slow..not too pure.” I think some healthy made desserts and healthy chocolate are definitely in the “not too pure” category. It’s about balance.

    • Erik says:

      Cookies really aren’t unhealthy if they are prepared with the right ingredients. My wife is diabetic but she eats some cookies that I make for her that do not spike her blood sugars. They aren’t even sugar-free, just prepared properly with whole ingredients.

    • Deby says:

      Cookie – a variety of ingredients, shaped into a small form and baked.
      Opening the mind to understand “cookies” as being a convenient way of consuming food, it’s what is in them that matters, not the word “cooky / cookie”

  3. Angel says:

    I am disappointed by the lack of research in this article. This is a good site to refer to
    http://paleoleap.com/ . Here you will find that the big difference between these diets is the
    consumption of grains. This article is based on only the ideas of 2 men.

    • Erik says:

      I believe that is because those two are the ones that coined the paleo diet. It has long since evolved from there but the “faithful” still refer to the rules set down by those two.

      • SC says:

        Paleo predated both Cordain and Wolf. Cordain received a tradmark for the term The Paleo Diet but he is not the originator nor the authority on the Paleo diet. Also, the faithful is used in appropriately. Also, Wolf has changed his stance from his early Paleo Cordain days and is more in the Kresser/Jaminet camp. This article served no purpose on clarifying the Paleo Diet. The article comes across as a lame attempt to present the WAPF Diet as more superior to the Paleo diet which I believe it failed and only served to drive away many Paleo followers who previously supported WAPF.

        • daRenegadeMama says:

          I agree. Although I never opted to do it, I researched the Paleo diet extensively, and found much of Mark Sisson’s approach to make a lot of sense. Mark advocates LOTS of animal fats, LOTS of organ meats, LOTS of bones, LOTS of butter, etc. This WAPF article shows either 1) Insufficient research to make the argument the author is attempting, or 2) Deliberate manipulation of the data regarding the Paleo diet in order to make WAPF appear superior. In either case, it renders this entire article invalid. Bad move, WAPF.

        • Michele says:

          He is taking recommendations from the websites of the first two that pop up on a “paleo” google search. This is clearly stated in the article. Those sites are: thepaleodiet.com and robbwolf.com
          The article also states they realize there are many versions of the diet. Honestly, as an outsider who follows neither diet, I found the article very interesting, and not a slam on paleo at all. People have been interested on the take of Weston A. Price on various nutritional issues for a long time. It is probably important, to them, to make sure that people understand what portions of paleo WAPF endorses and what they don’t.

      • Patrice says:

        I agree 100%. This is a poorly researched & biased article. Your description of paleo is incorrect & misleading. Did you give Cordain & Wolf the opportunity to reply? Perhaps Robb Wolf should interview Sally Fallon on one of his podcasts?

  4. Natalie says:

    I think whoever wrote this article is more than a bit biased against paleo. Maybe what those paleo recommendations say would have been true in it’s early conception, but most -if not all- paleo blogs and authors have adapted their views to suit what we now know about nutrition. Just from reading blogs such as MDA and Robb Wolf I know exactly what the WAPF teaches- Paleo now means sustainable real food, organ meats and bone broths are widely acclaimed as excellent for our heth. Also I don’t know many paleo blogs which wouldn’t recommend raw milk for those who can digest it- I started drinking it on the advice of paleo practitioners. Some more research done would have been nice rather than painting all those paleo with the same antiqutated brush.

    • Rene Forestier says:

      “Paleo” has evolved and adapted DUE to the influence of WAPF. In most circles, “Paleo” now resembles the WAPF diet.

      • SC says:

        Hardly, the diet was misrepresented by Cordain and I’ll pass on soaking grains for the limited nutritional value they offer in the first place.

  5. Stephanie says:

    I agree with Natalie. These claims were not well researched by the author (or they were excerpts from books that were written years ago, and author’s viewpoints/recommendations have changed). WAPF and PD do have many overlapping recommendations (I have heard from the main Paleo sources on numerous occasions how sprouting grains/legumes and consuming raw dairy is of benefit to those who can tolerate it). Also, Paleo is not a “minimal fat” diet. Quite the contrary; they suggest that people consume ample fats for optimal health.

  6. Christine says:

    I am somewhat surprised by this article. I have been following a paleo-ish diet for sometime, and everything I have come across seems to promote much of what weston price promotes. Going through the list, it all seems so wrong, not paleo at all. At least not the paleo diet that I have come to know through tons of food blogs and friends. I definitely think this needs more research, especially branching out from those two people, who btw, I have never heard of.

    • Catherine says:

      I totally agree with you and posts above- this article slams paleo and makes WAPF look like “sour grapes” for sure. Everything I have read and followed with paleo people like Mark Sisson and the Paleohacks guy includes organ meats, bone broth, good fats, etc. Grains and legumes is where they differ. WAPF writer- you are just plain wrong!!

      • Victor says:

        You are missing the point. This article is spot on, and as many posters here have noted, most Paleo practitioners are actually closer to being WAPD practitioners, which is great. But this article is pointing out the dangers of literal and popular Paleo practices – representing the implied definition of ‘Paleo’ as well as the leading practitioners it references. This is a real danger that this article is addressing.

        Paleo, by definition, excludes not only grains, but all healthy ancient food preparations. Bone broths, kefir, natto, and other fermented foods, were not consumed by paleolithic man. Nor was any dairy. WAPF focuses on incorporating all beneficial ancient wisdom and practices, while Paleo (again by literal definition) excludes all that wisdom.

        Sticking with the word ‘Paleo’ dogmatically is a danger, as it will always have an inadvertently negative impact on some people. If you are thinking ‘Paleo’ your diet will be severely flawed. This article is a great education piece that can prompt people to search for Paleo guidance.

  7. Paul says:

    The comparison table in this article is poorly formatted thus difficult to read and neither of the links provided above are valid as they both get page not found. This alone is enough to cast doubt on the rest of the information contained within because it obviously was not reviewed by anyone with a lick of sense prior to publishing.

  8. Frank says:

    As a supporter of the Price foundation whose dear wife is exploring paleo, I look forward to a continued conversation about these two, true allies in the support of our health.

  9. Well, everybody who posted here, including Frank, supports Paleo, apparently. I wish more WAPF folks would post.

    As far as the allegedly poor formatting on the table: – I think there may be some tech-phobic folks at WAPF, which doesn’t really have anything to do with the contents of the table. Formatting in HTML is a horse of a different color from formatting for a hard copy.

    WAPF is based on decades of research and travel, as well as dedication.

    One of the above paleo fans claims that there is no minimal fat requirement for paleo. Yet, the front page of the “paleoleap” website specifies that you should keep healthy butterfat in dairy to a minimum.

    Another (or maybe the same?) post claims that the only difference is that paleo does not include grains, but the more important main difference I can see is that paleo does not advocate the consumption of cholesterol.

    Further, isn’t it obvious that paleoleap has some big corporate backers? I can tell that as soon as I see the website.

    Paleo is for weight loss. Nobody at WAPF ever talks about losing weight.

    Paleo is a theory of two contemporary guys. WAPF is based on the true lives of real traditional people, many of whom HAD BEEN (at the time Dr. Price visited them) maintaining their tradition since the paleolithic age. There’s a little bit about that in a book called, The City in History, by Lewis Mumford, who was the art and architecture critic for the New Yorker in the ’30’s.

    • Kris says:

      “WAPF is based on decades of research and travel, as well as dedication.”

      As is the paleo lifestyle

      “One of the above paleo fans claims that there is no minimal fat requirement for paleo. Yet, the front page of the “paleoleap” website specifies that you should keep healthy butterfat in dairy to a minimum.”

      Ok, I’m sorry this statement does not even make sense…Those are two different things – no minimal fat requirement and keeping butterfat in dairy to a minimum(you’re singling out one specific form of fat here not all fats). Some people who do not tolerate dairy well and still have an issue with consuming butterfat (some do not) and may need to keep consumption to a minimum. You are also basing your judgement on one bloggers site – not paleo as a whole. The wonderful thing about the paleo lifestyle is that the goal is finding what works best for YOU, its not just about following a set of rules. We work from a template to find what works best for us – some people tolerate dairy and feel fine consuming it some do not. Some can eat nightshades while in others that can cause some pretty uncomfortable issues. Its really about finding what works best for each individual.

      “Another (or maybe the same?) post claims that the only difference is that paleo does not include grains, but the more important main difference I can see is that paleo does not advocate the consumption of cholesterol.”

      What??? The may be some paleo bents that do not consume a ton of fat but most paleo people I know consume plenty of healthy saturated fats. You seem to have chosen one site as being representative of paleo as a whole.

      “Further, isn’t it obvious that paleoleap has some big corporate backers? I can tell that as soon as I see the website.”

      Really?? I don’t get that feeling at all from visiting the site – but many bloggers do have sponsors/affiliates – most often carefully choses to fit with the message they are trying to get across or for products that they have found helpful/useful.

      “Paleo is for weight loss. Nobody at WAPF ever talks about losing weight.”

      Paleo is not for weight loss – its is a welcome side effect for many but that is not the ultimate goal – optimum health is…which is why the paleo lifestyle puts strong emphasis on sleep, stress management and exercise as well

      “Paleo is a theory of two contemporary guys. WAPF is based on the true lives of real traditional people, many of whom HAD BEEN (at the time Dr. Price visited them) maintaining their tradition since the paleolithic age.”

      I don’t know where you get your information but Paleo is not a theory of 2 contemporary guys – where did you even get that?? I’m sorry I really don’t mean to be argumentative but your response to the article seems to be just as uninformed/poorly researched as the article itself. There really isn’t a whole lot of differences between WAPF and paleo and I just don’t get the us vs. them mentality that seems to be happening at WAPF. We really should be working together to get the message out there rather than playing this ‘we’re better than them’ game.

      • Diana says:

        The Paleo website is not a blog.

        It’s a sophisticated, high-end corporate advertisement. WAPF is a non-profit 501(c)(3) educational organization.

        Why should anyone “work together”? That doesn’t apply here.

        • daRenegadeMama says:

          “Working together” totally applies if your goal is to created a more healthy, happy human race. That is your goal, right?

  10. Really disappointing to see this kind of disparity of WAPF & Paleo Nutrition when it is very clear and has been made clear to Sally that both Loren & Robb have changed their POVs since their books were written YEARS AGO! Disappointing and definitively not in the best interest of anyone to put this type of comparison in writing on the internet, least of all WAPF. The Paleo Lifestyle, it is NOT a diet, it is a long term sustainable lifestyle that reaps long term health benefits and it’s very disappointing that such lack of care, disregard of research and responsibility for facts was taken in posting this comparison. For real facts about the paleo lifestyle, my suggestion is to attend many of the Paleo experts workshops, read their books or come to one of the Paleo f(x) events to see many of them in person. http://www.paleofx.com This comparison is NOT remotely accurate by any stretch of the imagination. My comment is in response to someone who saw this and was very confused and questioned me about it. All this article has done is lead to much confusion with NO ANSWERS, whatsoever.

    • I wish very much that I had time right now to do enough reading to show how incorrect Michell Norris’ statements are. I did click the link she includes in her comment.

      What I read at that website only confirmed everything I’ve already said. I feel more confident than ever before now that I have checked out her link. It’s a slickly produced corporate marketing website.

      I see no mention of soaked, sprouted or fermented foods.

      Yes, Paleo IS a diet. They mention weight loss frequently — not just once or twice, in passing. They call people “obese.” They also recommend supplements — something that WAPF NEVER does, except for supplements that are made of actual food. They also have muscle-building products.

      They say nothing at all about cholesterol. I don’t see any way in which they directly support small farms —- which WAPF does do, directly and legally, with the — is it the “Family Farm Defense.” (That’s not the proper name, I don’t think, but can’t think of it right now.) The only mention of family farms I can see on this Paleo website is “Get more veggies at the farmers’ market.”

      They have a book that they sell, which is supposed to show you what your individual physiology “needs.” (For what? — Weight loss, apparently, although it’s a little unclear.)

      I’d like to go into all these issues a little more, but I have study and work to do right now.

      Paleo is a fad and a cult. They’re not a non-profit organization, like WAPF is. They are trying to present themselves as a mini – WAPF, but if they were really as SIMILAR to WAPF as they keep claiming here, then why not just join WAPF? Nobody at WAPF is going to force you to eat grain, if you don’t want to.

      Paleo is not similar to WAPF at all. They are trying to profit from Dr. Price’s hard work. I don’t think Dr. Price made any profit from anything, but I’ll have to look that up to be sure. I know WAPF does not make a profit.

      I intend to write a longer article about this. It makes me really nervous the way these Paleo fanatics are logging in here to criticize Sally’s article. They have nothing specific to say, really. (Except the table is not formatted correctly. What about the contents of the table, though?)

      They seem to be on some sort of rampage. Maybe they’re not getting enough cholesterol? Or Vitamin K? Or fat?

      • Erik says:

        Someone is apparently raging…

        The problem is trying to compare Cordain and Wolf’s originating ideas with the current state of Paleo because Wolf and others have progressed it beyond Cordain and Wolf’s original ideas. Right now the primary differences with the WAPF diet seem to be the exclusion of grains, legumes, and possibly dairy, the specific goal to target a 1:1 O6:O3 fat ratio with no more than a 4:1 ratio, and (according to this chart) the lack of restriction against tea and chocolate. Otherwise they are pretty similar now.

        Sally’s article is supposedly a comparison of the differences between the two diet recommendations. The recommendations she references are out dated even for the date her article was written. People who see that have the right to comment and point out that discrepancy.

      • Victoria says:

        Thank you Diana for your well reasoned comments. I too wish WAPF folks would comment but perhaps they actually have important things to do.

        • Victoria, yes, agreed. LOL

          Thanks. I was getting kind of lonely here. Not sure what’s up with these folks?

          • daRenegadeMama says:

            OH, ladies. Throwing these insults isn’t helping you out. I did happen to come across your website randomly. I’ve been exploring new and sustainable eating habits for my family for about a year now – not wanting to just join in with some “fad cult,” and just now – this very minute, noticed “WAPF” on another website. I googled it, and clicked immediately into this article since I have been impressed by some of the Paleo principles and could use my knowledge of them (and the things I agree with and disagree with within their lifestyle) as a framework to evaluate the WAPF sustainable eating protocol.

            Thing is, the research in this article IS sub-par — I have no motive to recognize that other than wanting a true comparison between WAPF and Paleo. And, because the research does draw some false conclusions, it is most certainly fair for a Paleo-eating-person to seek to correct the misinformation.

            Nobody is out to get you here – in fact, if y’all were to recognize the errors that have been pointed out to you, to express gratitude for the enlightenment, and then to amend you article to reflect the actual facts of the paleo-diet-at-large, you’d appear to be one heckuvan awesome community to join! (One that contained empathy and human kindness to the same degree that it followed a kick-butt nutritional plan.)

            In any case, you acrid responses and flaming defensiveness are doing much more to turn me away from a WAPF lifestyle than the simple error in reporting that the original article demonstrates. I don’t want to join a community who MUST BE RIGHT AT ALL COSTS. Ya know?

      • Kris says:

        “I see no mention of soaked, sprouted or fermented foods.”

        You may not find info on soaked or sprouted grains and legumes because for the most part paleo followers don’t eat much of those – we do however eat fermented foods – it may not be mentioned on the website Michelle linked because that is a website for a big paleo event not necessarily meant to be an information source for the paleo lifestyle.

        “Yes, Paleo IS a diet. They mention weight loss frequently — not just once or twice, in passing. They call people “obese.” They also recommend supplements — something that WAPF NEVER does, except for supplements that are made of actual food. They also have muscle-building products.”

        The word ‘diet’ does not necessarily mean weight loss – it just refers to a way of eating and is often used for lack of a better word (you could call it a way of eating). Weight loss may be mentioned but it is not a weight loss ‘diet’ many people do lose weight when they ditch the processed junk and remove gut irritating foods from their ‘diets’. Some people may use the paleo lifestyle as a way to lose weight but most of use eat this way because its healthy and makes us feel better. And weight lose is often a natural side effect of that. There may be some paleo advocates that recommend supplements (or supplement use in certain cases) but supplementation is not a large part of the paleo lifestyle – same goes for muscle building products.

        “They say nothing at all about cholesterol. ”

        I’d really like to know who this ‘they’ is that you keep referring to because your source particularly on this issue is incorrect.

        “I don’t see any way in which they directly support small farms —- which WAPF does do, directly and legally, with the — is it the “Family Farm Defense.” (That’s not the proper name, I don’t think, but can’t think of it right now.) The only mention of family farms I can see on this Paleo website is “Get more veggies at the farmers’ market.””

        Are you serious?!!? One of the main things that the paleo lifestyle promotes is buying humanely raised meats from local farms whenever possible.

        “They have a book that they sell, which is supposed to show you what your individual physiology “needs.” (For what? — Weight loss, apparently, although it’s a little unclear.)”

        Again you’re way off base here – and again with the ‘they’ who is the ‘they’ that has a book to sell? Paleo is not an organization or an entity or a business it is a bunch of individual people that are part of a movement to spread the word about eating real, well-raised, unprocessed food (very much like WAPF). Yes, there are paleo books as an information source on the whys and hows to the lifestyle (you might want to read one) and many many cookbooks out there – so what? Thats how people get this information and there are so many cookbooks because people buy them for the very same reason they buy any cookbook – for ideas on how to make yummy dishes. Didn’t Sally write a book? Nourishing Traditions? How is that any different?

        “Paleo is a fad and a cult. They’re not a non-profit organization, like WAPF is. They are trying to present themselves as a mini – WAPF, but if they were really as SIMILAR to WAPF as they keep claiming here, then why not just join WAPF? Nobody at WAPF is going to force you to eat grain, if you don’t want to.”

        I’m not even going to address the cult statement as that is just ridiculous coming from someone that makes WAPF sound like a cult (though I know its not!). Why all the animosity? Why do people that follow the paleo lifestyle bother you so much? I at one time did consider joining the foundation until I read Sally’s anti paleo rant and decided that wasn’t the type of organization I wanted to be a part of – I respect the work of Dr. Price very much but the ‘us(WAPF) vs. them(paleo)’ really turned me off. I always considered WAPF as a close cousin to paleo and there is a lot of good info to be found here I just don’t understand the animosity. And for your information there are many, many paleo advocates that are WAPF members and refer to Dr. Price’s work (leading more people to the foundation).

        “Paleo is not similar to WAPF at all. They are trying to profit from Dr. Price’s hard work. I don’t think Dr. Price made any profit from anything, but I’ll have to look that up to be sure. I know WAPF does not make a profit.”

        Nobody is trying to profit from Dr. Price’s work rather we are trying to spread the word so that more people can become informed about how what we eat can help or hurt us.

        “I intend to write a longer article about this. It makes me really nervous the way these Paleo fanatics are logging in here to criticize Sally’s article. They have nothing specific to say, really. (Except the table is not formatted correctly. What about the contents of the table, though?)”

        Really? Nobody that wrote here had anything specific to say?? Or you just don’t consider it relevant because they don’t happen to agree with you? People are being critical of the article because there is a lot of false or outdated info in the article. Why do you have a problem with people pointing that out? What’s wrong with correcting the false information?

        “They seem to be on some sort of rampage. Maybe they’re not getting enough cholesterol? Or Vitamin K? Or fat?”

        It seems like you are the one on a rampage – the paleo comments I have read here have been very civil and well thought out and informative…

    • TheresaS says:

      These comments and debate are rather..exhausting. I will have to throw in though and say that there is more value to the WAPF eating style than the “Paleo diet.” There are countless articles and amounts of research that disprove the basic foundation of “paleo.” (I honestly don’t have time to go back and list links…but I have been researching various diets/eating lifestyles for over 4 years because I have an autoimmune disease.) I give credit to the founders of Paleo that they have built such a devout (and often malevolent) following. That said, the basic principals of eating healthy, whole, organic, REAL food is one that we should all follow and not argue about. For the Paleo evangelists on this thread- yes Paleo does get a bad rap. It is associated with cross-fit and getting SUPER lean (which is not healthy). It also advocates the elimination of entire food groups- which is foolish…and your dear founders have realized this and have relaxed their stance/boundaries on it….so yes, the Paleo followers out there who adhere to a more WAPF style..great…to the rest..it is only a matter of time before you relax your stringent beliefs. Also, for either camp WAPF or Paleo…people who have found healing through Ayurevedic diets or those who have found health through genetic based diets…or traditional Chinese medicine diets (or others) can put up a pretty good argument too.

      • TheresaS says:

        Also if we could ONLY band together and fight against the people who REGULATE our food and food production in the US then we may have something here….instead of fighting amongst ourselves. I would really rather see all this fervor change the construct of what is deemed as ok to be sold and distributed as FOOD in this country (mass production, GMOs, pesticides, terrible farming practices (animal and produce), processed foods, lack of raw foods being sold and people getting arrested for trying to sell it..)….than us fight this losing battle and with each other.

        • tj says:

          as long as we continue to accept regulation and control over others as OK, then we will continue to be regulated and controlled by others. There is no compromise with liberty and freedom. We either have it all and accept the responsibilities and consequences of full liberty or we’ll eventually have none as those we hire to “regulate” us have no stopping point and are filled with self-righteous zeal. And then the pendulum will swing again towards liberty. You’d think by now the human race (with the advent of the internet) would learn that liberty is good, control bad, but we are a stubborn lot and usually require a few million to die in misery before we wake up and catch on again.

  11. Tyler says:

    I agree the paleo diet began overly restrictive but they have now reversed many of their positions on fat, cholesterol, starch and dairy is considered grey area. This is directly off of Loren Cordains site.
    “Despite its blood cholesterol raising effects, recent meta analyses (combined, large population studies) show that saturated fats have little adverse effect upon the risk for heart disease. We recommend that you should choose free-ranging or grass-produced meats over feedlot meats whenever possible. These meats are more healthful because they have nutritional characteristics similar to wild animals”.
    I listen to Rob wolfs paleo solution podcast and he frequently recommends bone broths, sauerkraut. He frequently talks about eating bacon and coconut oil and recommends it to listeners as breakfast.
    Chris Kresser is now one of the most influential people in the paleo diet and he has written many articles on the benefits of organ meats, starches, raw dairy, fermented foods and even did a piece on Dr Oz about how legumes are okay if well tolerated. I believe many of these ideas were pulled from WAPF that has help perpetuate the diet forward to a more sustainable long term diet such as WAPF diet.

    • You say, “paleo diet.”

      You and these paleo shills keep saying “paleo diet”. You keep talking about “WAPF diet” —- as if there even WERE such a thing. (Thus revealing your own already obvious lack of knowledge or facts.)

      There is no WAPF diet.

      WAPF is not for weight loss or bodybuilding. It’s quite obvious that Paleo is marketed for bodybuilding and weight loss. Why else would they call people “obese”?

      • LBSAdams says:

        It’s fairly evident the term diet (noun) is being used to refer to “a : food and drink regularly provided or consumed; or b : habitual nourishment.” (Webster’s)

        Keep up the name-calling. It really adds credibility.

  12. Tom says:

    I guess it is natural that ‘best selling’ popularisations be taken as defining a diet by the examples the give of what the author approves of. I had felt that Cordain’s fear of saturated fats came through in his book but thought it simply reflected an influence on his thinking because of current fashions of thought. I suspected that in fact presenting an assessment of traditional diet more in line with Dr Price’s observations might have been as difficult to get published as it was for awhile for modern dentists to not dismiss Dr Price’s warnings against root canals as based on shoddy work – the word ‘shoddy’ seems most bizarre to associate in any way with a careful scientist and observer like Dr. Price. Dr Timothy Noakes, a leading expert in exercise and sports science [in particular in connection with distance running, in his description during interviews of his positive experience with ‘Banting’ describes his regimen as consisting of very very low carbohydrates and healthful fats. I suspected this wording helped avoid the issue that saturated fats in fact could be part of his diet.

    I am not sure if this is the case but assumed this was an attempt to avoid having one’s message lost in the fuss over offending another sacred bias (how many biases can one step on before one’s entire message is lost?). Given Cordain’s suggestion of what ‘Paleo’ meant it seemed to me it could not mean excluding organ meat or full fat foods. I cannot really picture my ancient forebears carefully skinning an animal before eating it or discarding any fat at all.

    I remember when decades ago I was in the Far East and generally trying to follow a supposedly healthful diet as per Pritikin, a Chinese friend of traditional background expressing very strongly her astonished horror at the idea of wasting chicken fat and chicken skin and all sorts of other delicious affordable sources of beneficial nourishment. Given memories of what my grandparents apparently were accustomed to eat when they could get it in the villages they grew up in and remembering Chinese I knew who had grown up and lived most of their lives in very traditional settings I guess the thought of our Paleolithic forebears being so freaky about food as it comes to us naturally as to avoid organ meat or saturated fat never really occurred to me.

    So for years now I have assumed ‘Paleo’ not to mean at all what perhaps most people think it.
    means.

    I find the proportion of meat suggested in some versions of the Paleo diet staggering. Is the assumption that our ancestors managed to kill a buffalo and eat one every week? I find it difficult to believe given the bodies we have evolved with that too high a proportion of protein and omega-6 fatty acids did not also make our Paleo forebears feel rather sick… especially in a low carbohydrate diet it seems to me our bodies can feel horribly ill without enough saturated fat whereas having the fat seems to me at least to make my body feel better in my 70’s than I did in my 20’s.

  13. Suzanne says:

    Clearly the two books cited for the authors research are INCREDIBLY outdated. I would say those books were a mere starting point for the paleo I know (I follow marks daily apple). The paleo I live by is pretty much W.A.P. minus the sprouted grains dairy as I am allergic to milk and celiac. I can understand wanting to distance WAP from the old and outdated “idea” of paleo…but why not research what is really, currently happening in all the blogs with their millions of followers? That would be a better comparison, and would provide unity among two groups who really are trying for the same thing…whole food diet, local sustainable farmers, high quality NONindustrialized meats. This article just makes the people who wrote it seem biased, uninformed, and frankly, a little small.

    • Renee Katz says:

      I couldn’t disagree more. I think the paleo writers are the ones who seem uninformed and ‘a little small.’ Bluntly, the ‘paleo diet’ is completely irrelevent after Weston Price’s writings. (paleo should be renamed ‘the whole foods diet). The entire premise of paleo was false to begin with. They didn’t know and never knew what ‘Grok’ ate. The ‘new’ paleo was rewritten to fit Weston Price’s observations of primitive cultures, and WAP was not concerned with what our paleolithic ancestors ate anyway. His whole point is we don’t have to know what Grok ate, cause he found out what healthy human beings were eating in his day, which often included grains and dairy foods!! Also paleo tends to promote protein powders and fish oil pills, they are way too obsessed with o6 and o3s – while they ignore the fat soluable vitamins. All in all, paleo is an unprincipled, haphazard approach to nutrition. WAPF has principled, rational guidelines on how to eat, and they give good explanations for what they believe. Weston Price was a scientist and a genius. Wolf and Cordain are neither. They are just popular writers trying to cash in on Weston Price’s work.

      • Ana says:

        Cordain is actually a University academic…

        • Apparently you have never read anything by or about Dr. Price.

          First, he was a DENTIST — AND, he did his OWN research, paid for by himself, personally. He wrote HIS OWN book, which will never be out of print because of a trust (I don’t understand all the details, really) that he created, to ensure it stayed in print forever, so that people could learn about what TRUE health is.

          His last words were, “You teach. You teach. You teach.”

          The traditional peoples that he traveled the world to interview (at a time when it was considered insane for a white man to learn from people with brown skin — although some of the traditional cultures did have lighter skin, as well) were following their own traditions FROM the Paleolithic period, but they had also learned other things from beyond the Paleolithic period, and they had incorporated that knowledge.

          It’s ridiculous to claim that another person is somehow better than Dr. Price because the other person is a university academician. University academicians are a dime a dozen, if that much. More like one penny a dozen.

          Sheesh!

          • Kris says:

            I think the comment about Wolf being a Univerity Academian was in reference to to Renee’s comment:”Weston Price was a scientist and a genius. Wolf and Cordain are neither. They are just popular writers trying to cash in on Weston Price’s work.” She said they weren’t scientist but just rather 2 people out to make a buck – clearly that statement was incorrect.

          • Sprittibee says:

            Agreed – PHD = Piled Higher and Deeper. I don’t see what the problem is in comparing these versions of nutrition (Paleo “diet” and WAP Nutritional Info). If your version of “Paleo” is more like WAP, then great! If it isn’t, then maybe you should consider making some changes.

            When my friends ask me what “diet” I’m on, I just tell them I’m not on a diet – I’m making healthy food choices for good nutrition and trying to eat very little processed foods. I tell them that everything Americans believe about nutrition (the Standard American Diet and Heart Association’s Low Fat Diet) is a lie. Then I educate them on the things I’ve learned.

            I still eat chocolate. I don’t eat near enough organ meats (still can’t bring myself to do it). I can always use improvement… but …

            I DON’T see Paleo as an enemy – rather a friend – because now days, it’s great to have Paleo and Gluten-Free choices popping up on menus all over the place. Even burger joints have “protien style” burgers wrapped in lettuce now. We are all working TOGETHER to eat better. Can we just get along and take what we learn with a grain of salt (preferably pink hemalayan)? ;)

            I dare yourselves to call your “diet” a Weston A. Price Paleoish Non-Processed Health and Living Nutritional Lifestyle Choice. ;) WAPPNPHLNLC Diet. hahaha

      • Thanks, Rene. Way to go! I completely agree.

        These Paleo people are definitely trying to cash in on Dr. Price’s work.

        Please note that none of the Paleo fanatics here have addressed the issue of why Paleo website is so corporate and slick, with “high-end” graphics.

        Obviously NOT a non-profit corporation.

        • Kris says:

          Again which paleo website are you referring to? Paleo is not an organization with just one website – you keep referencing the corporate aspect to ‘the’ website. I’m still trying to understand why you are so angry…

        • Karin says:

          Diana – Your contributions to this thread are off-putting, to put it mildly. You might consider how you discuss your point of view with others, and you also might consider less divisive “us vs. them” rhetoric. And before you dismiss me as another paleo “fanatic”, I will say that I identify as neither paleo nor WAPF, but make choices more in line with WAPF list above.

      • Kris says:

        Loren Cordain is an American scientist who specializes in fields of nutrition and exercise physiology. Robb Wolf is a former biochemist.

    • Suzanne ~~~ Ok, so riddle me this: Why are you out here shilling for Paleo?

    • Suzannee, thanks so much for making the WAPF case.

      You admit the paleo books are incredibly outdated, even though they were published ca. — IDK? — about four years ago?

      Yet, Dr. Price’s work, published in the ’20’s, is not outdated at all — except for the style of writing.

      Glad you pointed that out.

  14. Renee Katz says:

    I love this comparison, but I wonder why the WAPF says some carbohydrates are necessary? I thought one of the most interesting things about Weston Price’s research was that there were cultures who had almost 0 plant foods who were very healthy. I eat a WAPF version of the ketogenic diet, with cod liver oil, beef liver, bone broth, probiotic foods, all that good stuff (no dairy cause of leaky gut issues). I mainly started avoiding carbs cause of the GAPS diet, but it works for me so I have just been zero carb for almost a year now.

    • Yes, I’m not at all surprised. My son in-law had some rather disturbing and serious symptoms lately. Very scary! it seemed that his tummy was not working properly. He was anemic, and could not digest things well. He’s only in his 30’s, and they have two little boys and a teenager.

      My daughter studied Nourishing Traditions and making bone broths and fermenting veggies.

      One morning he woke up and said, “I feel human for the first time in five days!”

  15. Brian Wilson says:

    This article seems to have caused a lot of emotional responses. Not surprising since those who “follow” a lifestyle often imbue it with religious zeal. All told, those posting with support from the paleo camp are correct. Much of what falls under the paleo label has a close resemblance to the Weston Price material. This is especially true of the Auto Immune Protocol developed by Sarah Balantyne, PhD. Her work is well researched and backed by hundreds of studies. It is nearly identical to the WAPF. It varies in places due to the necessity of treating an autoimmune disease.

    I’ve noticed a hostile attitude within the WAPF in the comments and book reviews. Rather than denigrate anyone who espouses a diet that varies from the WAPF I think it would be of greater value to celebrate and support those who make their contribution to nutrition science. Their work may not jibe 100% with WAPF but does support what Weston Price found so many years ago.

    The “you don’t believe exactly what I do so you are wrong” camp is a childish religious notion. It doesn’t seem to be prevalent in WAPF but it does seem to exist.

    • Nice straw man, Brian.

    • Diana says:

      WAPF is not a diet.

      Paleo is a diet. You keep chanting, “WAPF diet,” as if that would make it true. Then, you say it’s “like” the Paleo diet.

      WAPF is not “like” anything, because it’s not a diet at all. It’s the NAME of a non-profit organization.

      The non-profit organization does many things to promote health on the deepest levels — not only for people, but for the earth, the environment, and society in general.

      Paleo is a hyper-simplistic, shallow, unscientific CORPORATE, MONEY-MAKING fad.

  16. Molly Malone says:

    Wow. I have to agree with Brian Wilson, there seems to be a lot of emotion surrounding this Paleo vs WAPF issue. There’s no need to take any of this personally, and there’s no need to be condescending or ‘snarky’ either. People really do have the right to make their own choices!

    I guess a lot of people missed this direct quote from the above article:
    “We also realize that there are many versions of the paleo diet, some of which incorporate some of the WAPF dietary principles. Nevertheless, the principles proposed by the two main spokesmen for the paleo diet—Loren Cordain and Robb Wolf—have virtually NO points in common with the WAPF principles.”

    It seems obvious to me that Sally Fallon (the president of WAPF for those of you who don’t know who she is) is acknowledging the ever-changing face of this modern diet, giving it credence, and is simply presenting the WAPF counter-principles to the ORIGINAL Paleo inventors’ principles. Nothing more. I found the chart easy to read and understand, and extremely helpful.

    People, choose the lifestyle and dietary regimen that seems best to you after reading Nutrition and Physical Degeneration by Weston A. Price. If Paleo works for you, fine. Everyone has some health issue that they need to address, don’t sweat it, just do what works for you.

    The only caveat to “do what works for you” is to first read and research both sides of the issue before you decide, in order to be able to make a fully informed decision.

    Good Health to all,
    Molly

    • “People really do have the right to make their own choices!”

      So true.

      They can choose to tell the truth , or they can choose to lie, and scam the public for profit.

      Isn’t THAT condescending, personal, and snarky?

      I think it is.

    • Natalie says:

      I personally agree that it’s really silly that people are getting so mad about it (seriously WAPF people, we’re on the same lines as you! We aren’t the margarine-loving, sugar endorsing enemy.) I personally just think it might be a good idea to have the revised view of Paleo for people to look at? I don’t know any paleo fan that still believes in those antiquated ideas about sat fats and cholesterol and everything. But really, people who are calling out paleo bloggers for stealing W.A. Prices’ work… it’s not a competition. We’re all just trying to moving forward in our health and wellbeing, so why not do it together?

      • Diana says:

        Paleo folks have made it a competition by using the WAPF name and reputation to make a profit.

        BTW, so far I’ve seen no denial that Paleo is a corporate profit-making entity. I’ve mentioned it many times. If it were not true, surely someone would have mentioned that by now?

        No matter. It can be readily verified.

  17. Of course I know who Sally is.

    I first read her book, *Nourishing Traditions*, in 2008. I first joined my local WAPF chapter as soon as I read NT.

    What’s your point?

  18. Chris says:

    This article is inaccurate in it’s claims about what the paleo diet represents. The most preposterous being no added fats, only lean meats. This is simply not true. Also, paleo writers talk immensely about pastured raised animals. I could provide many more inaccuracies, but they have already been mentioned and I think anybody who has been in this scene long enough knows the bias in this article.

    What is the motivation? I suspect jealousy. The paleo diet has a much larger following than WAPF. I personally love both hand take ideas from both sides which suit my needs. Paleo writers give plenty of credit to WAPF, but it seems this writer is in competition and there is some hate involved. As said already, just looking at the chart shows the incredible bias and misinformation about what paleo represents.

    This isn’t a competition for followers so more money can be made. This is a world wide change in our habits which affect health. There’s no need for this kind of misleading article.

  19. Robbie says:

    This article seems to be written by a bitter person over all the attention paleo is getting. Paleo is not your enemy. Proctor & Gamble and Monsanto are. The WAPF and Paleo both want the same. Healthy people and both are very, very much in line with each other.

    I support the WAPF. I donate to the WAPF, but if you insist on keeping this article up without revision then my support will stop.

  20. erdoke says:

    I am not sure why high quality chocolate is banned, or why coffee and tea are categorically not recommended. Also, I don’t see the strong evidence behind the suggested level of salt consumption. Is there any firm report on how much healthy groups consumed like the Masaai or Kitavans?
    Just to avoid confusion, I am more on the WAPF side in this case, except for above.

  21. Snowleopard says:

    I visit this site and some paleo sites from time to gather ideas to improve my health. I consult other sources as well. I’m not selling anything, don’t have a dog in this “fight”, and doubt paleo has a definable orthodoxy.

    Dr Price was a genius, well ahead of his times. Nonetheless times move on, and if mankind is lucky, the truth is adopted in many forms. Nobody owns the truth.

    IRDK about who has the purest motives, or about who’s on top in a petty turf war. Paleo “followers” and “testers” shouldn’t feel like they need body armour to read your commentariat. Sniping, for those who must, would be better directed at the poisoners. Perhaps this thread is an anomaly; I hope so.

  22. John Nemati says:

    Hey guys,

    You do the argument, but I follow both.As far as I know, paleo diet recomend eating meat with the fat. I been on paleo diet for about 6 years and about one year following the WAPF nutrition requirement.I confess I crave sometimes.

  23. Brandon says:

    I was very absorbed in some articles here and considering donating. Then I come across this inaccurate and biased list from a link off the home page no less. What a way to turn people off. Why not rewrite it with a truthful representation of general paleo viewpoints and point out the real differences you recommend and why. You’ll have many more supporters by embracing similarities and researching reasons for modifications, rather than viewing paleo communities as a threat to your organization.

  24. I am saddened to see this article presented in such a manner. There is no reason to fight or point fingers between WAPF and Paleo/Primal. The books cited here are some of the first to appear on the Paleo market…in the meantime numerous books have been published which further align the Paleo recommendations with WAPF recommendations (loosening up on restrictions for legumes, gluten-free grains, carbohydrates and white potatoes, as well as adding essential components such as saturated fats, organ meats, bone broth, cholesterol, natural salts, etc).

    The main thing is that both WAPF and Paleo/Primal have taught real people to eat real food – the whole animal, the natural fats, the yellow butter oil (found in clarified butter from grass fed animals), foods cooked at home, bone broth, fermented foods, the list goes on and on. Followers of either protocol truly understand how health and healing are directly connected to feeding the body the proper nutrients. Any bickering between these two groups will only discourage others to pursue either one of these valid, health-promoting lifestyles. In my opinion, this article is a disservice to those still caught in the Standard American Diet.

    • Larry says:

      I agree, this is a VERY unfair comparison.

      Loren Cordain basically appointed himself as THE Guru of the Paleo movement and foisted a LOT of incorrect “information” as to what Paleo Man supposedly ate and didn’t eat (yet had no background in anthropology or primitive peoples archeology).

      And Robb Wolf was a student of Cordain’s so Harper the same message.

      Since then, a number of much better Paleo writers have surfaced and painted a much stronger picture of true Paleo Diets.

      That said, I don’t fully agree with the Paleo Diet or the “Weston Price” (i.e. Enig-Fallon) Diet.

      To me, both are simply too high carb – unless worked very strictly. They at least have the potential to quickly slide away from Low Carb if followed within the open parameters.

      I prefer the LCHF diet as espoused in Allan’s “Life Without Bread” (for something older and simple) or the “Low Carb High Fat Diet Revolution” (for something newer). Perfect? No. (Stay away from soy for example)…. but a cup of coffee with a big dollop of heavy cream isn’t Paleo or Weston-Enig-Fallon — but is actually GOOD for you!

  25. JLM says:

    As I’ve been reading through these comments, I have been thinking, “At least they are ‘for’ eating meat and hopefully real foods rather than processed rubbish or vegetarianism.” I appreciate the WAPF research, but I don’t think I’m going to die if I indulge in a cup of coffee. Anyone who blindly accepts any diet, no matter its name, without his/her own research is going to be disappointed.
    Also, it does say in the title alone that these are just the differences not the similarities. Perhaps it would have helped to have a third column for such info.
    And, Rachel, I so agree that either would be a vast improvement over the Standard American Diet.

  26. Sam says:

    What’s funny about this article is that I actually heard about Sally Fallon through a friend first, then found Paleo/Primal (which I stick to to this day) because of this very controversy. I love Sally and I love Mary Enig and the WAPF, but obviously this issue was not handled well at first; I see that it has been updated appropriately and am glad that it goes after the very overly-restrictive versions of Paleo that don’t even include tubers, animal fats, or raw dairy as real food (which I eat almost at every meal), and that also overemphasize the idea that grains are so bad that no one should ever eat them despite the lack of real evidence for that, given how many cultures eat them that have been around for quite some time. It has more to do with the crumbling of food traditions being passed down and the relinquishment of proper agroecological farming practices, i.e. the cheapening of the food system, and also the lack of understanding of human digestion and physiology. Today Paleo/Primal is really just grain- and legume-free, with dairy as an option if it’s raw and grass-fed and well-tolerated, but other than that it’s very much centered around Weston A. Price principals.

  27. Sasha says:

    Interesting, I have been following the WAPF diet for almost five years battling chronic pain and inflammation due to psoriasis. I’ve had arthritis in my joins since the 3rd grade. Following the WAPF diet modified for sensitive eaters has taken away joint pain.(not due to climate change)
    Now that I am not able to live on a farm I am not able to afford everything on the list, the paleo diet feels like a cheaper imitation- literally for people without the flow to feasibly follow a more realistic diet, I had no idea, the guys behind the book were recommending supplements. you know, paleolithic diners didnt have that. Maybe they liked to pretend they did…. we like to imagine a lot in our forward moving society of freedom of thoughts and ideas…
    that being said, for myself I cannot recommend alcohol, or wine, but an Ayurveda doctor told me I should in fact eat chocolate… and part of me thinks its due to where I was born, genetics, and the fact that my parents gave me chocolate at a young age….. It makes me wonder even more about the details of evolution and adaptation.
    we are not immune.

  28. Mary Sue Laing says:

    I can see that the paleo diet is extremely dangerous. I have a friend who was obviously on a paleo diet given to her by her doctor for weight loss. It was a low fat, high meat diet with Vitamin D supplements and a small amount of dairy. She told me that she was eating a pound of meat a day. I begged her to stop doing that. About three months ago she fell and broke her femur lengthwise. The bone just fell apart. She’s now in a nursing home rehab, unable to place any weight on this leg.
    On the other hand, I’ve been following the WAPF diet very strictly for ten years, including a large amount of raw dairy and liver every day. I have poor balance, so I’ve slammed my body on hard surfaces several times. None of these falls has resulted in any injury. At age 73 I do many hours of part time teaching 7 days a week. I take care of my yard, including weeding, mulching and pruning of bushes and trees. I firmly believe the researched opinions of WAPF.

  29. BodybuildrChick says:

    My biggest concern with the paleo diet is that it does not provide enough calories for weight gain. If you are trying to gain muscle through weight lifting you need a caloric surplus. Even if I eat 100g fat a day with meat and healthy veggies I can not eat enou calories to gain muscle. By adding in raw cheese and fruits and minimal phytate free carbs like quinoa and buckwheat as part of the WAP diet I can gt enough calories to gain weight. I find it odd that no where in my adding about the paleo diet does it mention gaining weight, just loosing it.

    • Larry says:

      Why restrict yourself?

      Eat 600 grams of fat and 400 grams of protein, or even 1000 grams of fat and 600 grams of protein or whatever… as long as it is some form of meat / poultry / fish / seafood / hard cheeses / etcetera! Besides CALORIES alone do not build muscle. Carbs nor even fat won’t build muscle – they are producers of energy. Only PROTEIN, completed active protein (as oh found in ANIMAL products) builds muscles – and everything else! Protein (nitrogen) builds EVERYTHING in the body. And protein NEEDS fat for proper and full absorption.

      It sounds to me like maybe you are still afraid of saturated fat – and can’t take that Giant Leap forward!

  30. Kurt says:

    I found WAPF a decade ago after trying vegetarianism and primal/paleo. I don’t keep up with paleo but it WAS strongly promoted as a high-protein/low-carb/low-fat diet before and lean red muscle meats were king. That never sat well with me. To think ancient peoples would waste the fat and organs? In fact we know that fats and organs were the most highly prized and are the most nutrient-dense. We know animals were hunted when they were the fattest. Primitive peoples are all familiar with “rabbit-starvation”.
    From a quick search on Amazon, both popular paleo books referenced in this article were published in 2010. That was 4 years ago. The summary of both books mention weight-loss. If their messages have changed considerably since then that is the sign of a fad. The message of Dr. Price hasn’t changed in 80 years and is based on the traditional foodways of people all over the world. Though the diets varied, the principles were the same. I can only speak for myself, but I feel tremendously better on a high-fat (pastured animal fat, coconut oil, raw EVOO), moderate protein, moderate carb diet with ample bone broth, liver, raw dairy and fermented foods (veges, sourdough, FCLO) than I ever did with a lean-meat and vegetable diet of paleo. That being said, I would still consider paleo people my brethen as we all eschew processed foods and seek to know the source of our food. I would eat paleo over SAD anyday.
    I do think paleo folks with problems digesting properly prepared grains and raw/fermented dairy should try the GAPS diet to heal their gut issues caused by their formerly “modern” diet.

    • Victor says:

      Great post Kurt. I think sally was being very kind in her post, as in fact, the idea of a paleo ‘way of life’ is ridiculous. It sounds great for about a minute, but the logic quickly falls apart, and it was not built on nutritional science. Anyway, you make many excellent points in your post, so I wanted to comment simply to bring it to attention.

      Indeed, Dr. Price’s work has not only stood the test of time, but has continued to gain significance and validation.

  31. Ian Gregson says:

    The Paleo Approach: Reverse Autoimmune Disease and Heal Your Body Paperback – by Sarah Ballantyne is absolutely brilliant – maybe the most important diet and health book since 1939!

    http://www.amazon.com/Paleo-Approach-Reverse-Autoimmune-Disease/dp/1936608391/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1416456538&sr=8-1&keywords=paleo+approach

  32. Eilien Mcgowan says:

    As a scientist all I have to say is that paleo-man lived to be about 20 so why do we want to emulate him or her. Of course he had no health problems. He also did not live in a world of chemicals.

  33. rael says:

    I am really disappointed. I came to this website looking for some good information based on what I had recently read about the Foundation. I am not Paleo or anything else so have no vested interest in the Paleo perspective. I was totally dismayed to see how poorly the research had been done into the Paleo diet and anyone who just keeps abreast of what is happening in the news re paleo would know that the article had many points that were simply wrong- tequila on an empty stomach – come on.
    Needless to say, I won’t come back to this site as the reliability of the information is suspect at best.

  34. Tiffany says:

    I am very disappointed in this chart. Paleo includes many items as WAP. This needs to be updated.

  35. Adam says:

    This is a funny line of comments, I love all of the passion and religious zeal! YOu are all amazing! Such vibrancy, if not lacking for any humor or apparent ability to enjoy life, a very energetic bunch!

    I am part of a large community of people who live by Nourishing Traditions. A huge community of mothers and father and children and farmers and educators. It’s wonderful stuff! It was very hard for me to stomach after having been raised vegetarian my whole life and eventually developing metabolic syndrome as a result. A diet of brown rice and miso soup did do me very well after 40 years.

    So my family began adopting (or rather attempting to adopt) the ideas in Nourishing Traditions. Talk about mission impossible! As if finding raw dairy weren’t difficult enough, I’m supposed to find all types of exotic animal products in my modern society and modern life?!?! Thsi cookbook is enough to drive anyone to the point of madness such that they might be inclined to find themselves infuriated by otehr people who have their own passions and anonymously voice them on an internet web page! What a shinng example of rounded blanaced living!

    So, my children still eat in a very similar manner to what Ms. Fallon receommends, albeit not quite as fanatical as to follow of the absurd recipes (I highl;y doubt anyone here regularly makes many of the bizarre recipes in that book).

    Me, on the other hand, was directed by my Dr. to look into a carb restricted diet. She mentioned the work “paleo” in passing but gave me specific instruction, the top one being “EAT MORE FAT!!!”.

    So I do not identify as Paleo, I identify as Primal, because Mark Sisson outlines a diet that is ACHIEVABLE and doesn’t restrict those things that are important and good! Like full fat dairy! In fact I eat over 500 calories of full fat dairy every day in my coffee! And I have never felt better! I maker bone broth, I eat coconut oil by the spoonful and I can not describe the joy of eating all of the skin off of a roast chicken before anything else, this coming from a lifelong vegetarian.

    I will recommend to my children that they reduce carb intake once their brains have fully formed and they are no longer growing, until then I believe they need some carbs. As a grown adult, there is no reason for any non-fiber carbs in my mind, they create cravings for more. My rule is simple, no root, fruit, grain or sugar. ESPECIALLY LACTOSE AND FRUCTOSE.

    So you see the biggest difference between Fallon and Paleo is the use of carbohydrates. In raising a family I agree with her, as a middle aged man, I agree with Mark Sisson.

    I have done both diets, and the menu Sally presents is simply impossible for me to achieve so it isn’t really a matter of which is best, more of which is possible.

    Sheesh you folks on here with all of your dogmatic hatred sound almost as bad as a vegetarian! Or (gasp) a vegan!

    Now, I’m off to make some sauerkraut, eat some full fat meat, and really enjoy this life and appreciate others for whtat they have to offer, even if only a lesson in how NOT to act or what NOT to do.

    • Victor says:

      Your diet sounds great Adam. And I would definitely look at you as a person that is following WAPF guidance. Sally’s book, while excellent, does not represent ‘the’ Weston Price diet. There is no such thing. There is only guidance. One of the great achievements of Weston Price’s work was to show that optimum nutrition can be achieved by a great many diets. There is no single, strict Weston Price diet. Just the guidance, which each person should adjust to suit their own situation. We use WAPD (Weston A. Price Diet) for convenience, but again, but definition, it has tremendous flexibility and variety, as demonstrated by the diverse cultures that Price studied.

      It is good that you are aware enough not to identify with Paleo. You don’t have to identify with any label. I think the WAPF guidance is the holy grail of dietary guidance, but we don’t have to label ourselves.

      What you are seeing here in the comments is akin to vegans insisting that they can eat meat and still be vegan. That obviously contradicts the definition. Yet the paleo people are doing exactly the same thing. Sally’s outline of Paleo in this post is spot on – as implied by the definition of the word, the concept of the caveman, and the guidance espoused by mainstream practitioners. There is simply no logic in disagreeing with this article, or even being offended by it.

  36. Adam says:

    One more comment. On the supplement thing. I have always believed in “food as medicine”. My Dr. had to twist my arm very hard to get me to take supplements. And you know what? After having actually read “Nutrition and Physical Degeneration” I see that she was espousing the same thing as Dr. Price. You Dr. Price was very concerned with the degradation of soil on the planet. My Dr. says that no longer are we able to extract the nutrition from plant foods that we need because it no longer exists in the soil. So the plants that our food stock eats, as well as the plants that we eat, simply do not have the nutritive value that they once did and so in order for us to achieve the optimal health levels of our forebears we must supplement.

    Makes sense to me, and in fact this thinking is EXACTLY in line with Dr. Price in my mind.

    • Victor says:

      I think your idea is correct about supplementing. One other great thing about the WAPD, is that it puts a lot of emphasis on checking your food sources. In fact, I am actually not a fan of supplements – I mean the heavily processed, artificial nutrition (i.e. synthetic vitamins), that is often loaded with fillers and chemicals and sold as pills and powders. It is always better to get nutrition from natural food sources – or natural supplements. And there are many great food items that look like supplements – meaning they are packaged in pills, powders, liquids, oils, etc. Pines Wheat Grass is one good example, and the Fermented Cod Liver Oil and Butter Oil at Green Pasture are others. I recommend looking to those types of products for your supplements.

  37. Ben says:

    Can you please just have a look at Pete Evans ‘The Paleo Way’. Many similarities to WAPF but differ on grains and dairy. Pretty much everything else is the same. Just choose which lifestyle you want to follow and do it peacefully without complaining about other lifestyle choices. Eat healthy live healthy and be happy

    • Victor says:

      If a vegan eats meat, and insists that we still call him vegan, that is a problem. We cannot let people corrupt basic definitions and create confusion. If it looks like WAPF, then it is WAPF. Using the word ‘Paleo’ is keeping people from finding the great wealth of information that is at WAPF, and that is a shame. Seeing the disgruntled comments on this article shows you the problem that these ‘Paleo’ practitioners has created – tons of people that do not understand the basic definition of paleolithic. Sally’s article does a great job of educating, and has more than enough disclaimers.

  38. Victor says:

    Paleo people, please understand that this post by Sally is a fantastic service to Paleo practitioners. Paleo, by definition, and as championed by many, is severely flawed, as Sally clearly points out. Do not confuse this with the many Paleo people who are in reality WAPD people that are using the term Paleo by preference.

    I love Paleo because many of the Paleo people are actually promoting WAPD. But I also loath Paleo because it is a dangerous word. The word ‘Paleo’ excludes all the wise traditions and great foods of our ancient cultures. Paleolithic, by definition, predates those traditions. No dairy, no fermented foods, no broths, etc.

  39. Herbalists R. Quacks says:

    For a solid year I ate a Weston A. Price diet by recommendation of a certified master herbalist. At the end of the year, these were my results: A solid 10 pound gain, fatigue, depression, stiff achy joints, horrible periods, and a diagnosis of uterine fibroids. I have gone back to my plant-based diet and exercise. The weight is coming off and my mood and energy are much better. Hoping to get the fibroids under control. I wouldn’t recommend this diet to anyone. These people are radical. You cannot attain perfect health through food. We were not created to fulfill some physical goal. We were created for much more than that. If you seek God’s kingdom first, He will give you the fullness of your days. We were never meant to obsess about food and health. That is His concern, not ours. Be reasonable. Make wise choices. But stay away from the radical health maniacs. The are going to die too…when God has already previously determibed.

  40. BMK says:

    Wow. Just wanted to say (like many others have) that the mean-spirited, small tone of this article and some commenters above (mostly Diana) do a huge disservice to promoting WAPF. So sad. I agree with much of the content of this site and its foundation, but talk about a huge turn-off. I wouldn’t consider donating or joining with such low attacks and slanted presentation. Major credibility problem–surely, you can do better WAPF.

  41. Larry says:

    This is a VERY unfair comparison.

    Loren Cordain basically appointed himself as THE Guru of the Paleo movement and foisted a LOT of incorrect “information” as to what Paleo Man supposedly ate and didn’t eat (yet had no background in anthropology or primitive peoples archeology).

    And Robb Wolf was a student of Cordain’s so Harper the same message.

    Since then, a number of much better Paleo writers have surfaced and painted a much stronger picture of true Paleo Diets.

    That said, I don’t fully agree with the Paleo Diet or the “Weston Price” (i.e. Enig-Fallon) Diet.

    To me, both are simply too high carb – unless worked very strictly. They at least have the potential to quickly slide away from Low Carb if followed within the open parameters.

    I prefer the LCHF diet as espoused in Allan’s “Life Without Bread” (for something older and simple) or the “Low Carb High Fat Diet Revolution” (for something newer). Perfect? No. (Stay away from soy for example)…. but a cup of coffee with a big dollop of heavy cream isn’t Paleo or Weston-Enig-Fallon — but is actually GOOD for you!

  42. Rick says:

    The so-called paleothic or “hunter-gatherer” diet is at best a guess at what ancient man ate. No documentation. No historical records. Only romantic ideas about an ideal human diet. Everyone is free to make up their own version of it because it is not based on historical records. No one can even prove that “cave men” were healthy and long lived.

    On the contrary Dr. Price spent many years “in the field” studying and documenting the diets and lifestyles of indigenous peoples. He discovered what constituted healthy living.

    I understand completely why WAPF wants to distance themselves from the “Paleo” gurus. Their dietary principles are different. We don’t have to obsess about our diet but the principles of the WAPF diet are based on cultural realities and not on modern author’s dietary presumptions and theories.

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