Supporters say that the typical Western diet is responsible for the epidemic rise in obesity, heart disease, cancer, diabetes, arthritis and other chronic diseases and that if we got back to our caveman roots we could lower risk factors for these ailments and improve our quality and length of life.
The diet is based on the foods that could be hunted, fished, and gathered during the Paleolithic era – grass fed meat, wild fish, shellfish, free range organic eggs, tree nuts, organic vegetables, roots, fruits, and berries – i.e. before cultivation of grain crops, hence it is a gluten-free diet and does not include dairy.
Given modern farming techniques, only a modified version of the original diet is possible. In addition to the absence of grains and dairy, it does not include sugar, salt, legumes, potatoes, processed oils, and any foods that were grown after agriculture started.
Beverages are water, coconut water, or organic green tea. Food and beverages may be sweetened with raw honey, coconut or palm sugar.
In addition hunter-gathers had active lives seeking food, water, and shelter. Though you don't need to do that, exercise is a significant part of the protocol.
Based on the wealth of research dairy, legumes and whole grains have a place in a healthy, well-balanced diet because these foods are nutrient dense.
Elimination of grains, dairy, processed foods and sugar will most likely lead to weight loss. If this diet appeals to you, consider supplementation of calcium and vitamin D.