The modern notion of womanhood, in which women eat little, exercise a lot, have eating disorders and body image issues, and are expected to look like rails, fails women time and time again. The solution to that failure–to all of the pain, to all of the confusion, and to all of the self-loathing in modern America–is to adopt an evolutionary perspective.
Adopting an evolutionary perspective with respect to diet means looking at evolution and trying to align modern practice with what women’s bodies were designed for. It does wonders for health. A paleo diet (though not a specific diet, but rather the template in which to experiment and exist) is the only cure, really, to the disconnect that has emerged between a woman and the natural programming of her body.
Yet the paleo diet I advocate falls under a larger umbrella of perspective and meaning. This is why what I really advocate is the evolutionary perspective more than anything else. The evolutionary perspective includes eating the proper foods, but it really is so much bigger than that. It’s about naturalness, about outlook, and about real, proud, embodied womanhood. There are specific aspects of an evolutionary perspective beyond the physiological that arise out of and are necessary for living this way. What follows in this post is an articulation of what I think those roles and benefits are.
With an evolutionary perspective, a woman does not work against but instead works with her body. She understands that her hormones are designed to maintain a healthy body. She understands that her body is programmed for optimal fitness and fertility. She understands that war is not the answer. How could a war ever be sustained? How could victory ever truly be won? Is there such a thing as winning, and if so, at which price does it come? That is a scary question, and its one that many of my readers face. The price of war is eating disorders, body image issues, amenorrhea, infertility, acne, hair loss, fatigue, depression, anxiety, and eventual weight gain. The answer is instead discerning the foods that the body truly needs, and feeding it those so that it can do its own job.
With an evolutionary perspective, a woman listens to her body. An evolutionary woman undertakes eating and lifestyle choices that optimize how good she feels, her health, and her well-being. She does not feed her body toxins. She does not run it into the ground with excessive exercise. She does not spend all day hunched over in an office chair under the unrelenting glare of florescent lighting. These things she knows are not good for her. They do not feel good, either. What then really does make her feel alive, embodied, sexy, and powerful? In order to know, she must listen.
With an evolutionary perspective, a woman does not see herself as separate from her body. There is no need to fight. In fact, there is a direct dictum against fighting. The body is the physiological basis of a woman’s mind, so any attack on the body is in reality an attack on the woman herself. She is not separate from her body. If she hates her body, she hates herself; if she loves her body, she loves her self. What great things in the world were ever accomplished with hate? What about love?
With an evolutionary perspective, a woman loves and respects her body. This is not just something she can do, but rather something she must. And something that comes naturally. After just a little bit of practice, it becomes easy to love something that nourishes her, that provides the basis for her life, that gives her pleasure, and that enables her to do all of the wonderful feats and have all of the breathtaking experiences of her life. Isn’t the body an amazing thing? Isn’t it a powerful organism worthy of love? Full of wisdom? Deserving of trust? Bodies are amazing, and when they are properly nourished their ability to provide a powerful basis for a lived and amazing human life grows exponentially.
With an evolutionary perspective, a woman is free. She is free from the dictums of the modern world, free from silly norms, free from hate. She is free from chronic exercise, free from paying money to food factories and food design chemists, free from counting calories, free from the toxins and bullshit in which so much of the modern world swims. She is free of self-loathing. She is free of what society wants her to be. She is instead exactly what she wants to be. She is free to be who she is, and to be so fiercely.
With an evolutionary perspective, a woman feels good. This is a fact! Sometimes women undertake a paleo diet, or at least some form of it, and find that their effort does not work. I get that. But the whole point of an evolutionary perspective is to feel one’s way around food and lifestyle until she finds what fits and works best. The paleo diet is a template, and it provides a toxin-free, hormone-nourishing springboard off of which women can spring. From here, women find individually what works best for them. Their blood sugar levels stabilize, their estrogen dominance diminishes, their energy goes through the roof, their libido skyrockets… whatever they need, they can find it with natural methods and an evolutionary perspective. For women with health problems, it can take a while. It can take some troubleshooting. That’s what people like me exist for. But it’s out there. Women who love their bodies and treat them well feel damn good.
With an evolutionary perspective, a woman looks amazing and real. Overweight women naturally lose weight with an evolutionary perspective. Period. Easy. Done. Eliminating modern toxins from the diet enables a woman to balance her hormone levels and to let her natural mechanisms for weight modulation come into play. Women with hormonal acne see their cysts fade and turn into scars. Women who are weighed down by the pains and fatigue of modern diseases straighten their backs, and rise. But: Nothing in the world will turn everyone into a supermodel. That’s not the point. The goal is not to be supermodels. It is not to be 00s. The goal is, in fact, the opposite. Instead, the goal is to throw off the shackles of female expectations. It is to be fierce and to be confident and to be healthy exactly as nature intended. It is to be natural, to listen to one’s body above all other things, to be healthy, to be unapologetic, and to be fierce and hot and all of this, again, not because a woman is meeting social expectations of female physicality–whatever those might be for a particular woman–but rather because in natural womanhood there are serious health and serious pride. The fact that a paleo diet turns a woman into a natural, glowing, fertile, energized machine is a byproduct. It’s important, because it demonstrates that the woman is achieving greater health, but it’s only truly powerful in this way in that it shows a woman just how beautiful she is in her own unique, natural body.
With an evolutionary perspective, chins come up. Look. It’s amazing, being a natural woman. It’s the healthiest thing a woman can do. How can that not be empowering? How can that not inspire? How can the world not be in awe of someone who owns what she is, and who uses that to her advantage? An evolutionary perspective demands that a woman not apologize for who and what she is. It demands that she embrace and love her body, and she does so, proudly. It demands that she walk with pride in her power and in her womanhood. With an evolutionary perspective, a woman’s confidence, life, and joy multiply without end.
With an evolutionary perspective, a woman is fierce. Being empowered, and learning to not apologize for who and what she is, a woman is enabled to pursue her life and her happiness with vigor. There is a very serious power in being a natural woman. With a natural diet, a woman has the fuel to burn brightly. Working in concert with her body, a woman knows how much she is capable of, and what she can achieve. Being healthy and nourished and totally self-assured, a woman can walk into any room and be a boss. Norms won’t get her down. Self-loathing won’t get her down. Social pressures to apologize for who she is won’t get her down. Instead, she will own her desires, and can pursue them with all the ferocity and joy inherent in being healthfully alive.
With an evolutionary perspective, things aren’t perfect. A paleo diet is not a miracle cure. I advocate paleo diets, but they will never make someone a super human. Instead, it is about moving forward one day at a time, and about doing everything possible to be alive. This means eating well, and it also means living freely, and it means each individual chooses what is best for her. It means moving forward with love and with positivity, and facing an imperfect world and a self– a self perfect in its imperfections–with all the power and wisdom garnered from natural womanhood.