5 things the “Grandfather of the Paleo lifestyle” wants you to know

Posted on 30. Oct, 2011 by in Product Reviews, What to Eat

Art De Vany is 74 years old.

If you get a chance to talk to anyone thats lived to be 74 years old and still has his wits about him, he probably can teach you a few things about life.  Now if that 74 year old man looks like he’s 40, has a six pack, has not been sick in 25 years, and can deadlift more weight than you, it’s probably a good idea to shut up, grab a pen and paper, and listen to what he has to say. 

Art De Vany is a beast, plain and simple. 

He even has a cult following that has created a website http://artdevanyeatsvegans.tumblr.com/  ( gotta love that web address!) which has brought Art to superhero status with the likes of Chuck Norris and the Dos Equis Most Interesting Man in the World. Visit the site to enjoy more funny photos like the picture above.

 After reading a bunch of different Paleo/Primal books and blogs, I knew it was only a matter of time before I got around to reading Art’s New Evolution Diet book.   Art defines what it means to be superhuman.  This is evidenced by his workouts where he often pulls his Range Rover SUV down his neighborhood street.   

 His book, The New Evolution Diet is set up different from a lot of diet books out there.  Its very personal in the sense that Art details his own nutrition and exercise regimen so people can see exactly what he does to stay in shape.


 In many cases, “this works for me, so you should do it too” just doesn’t hold much value.  But The New Evolution Diet is very different from the puffy guy in the gym that tries to give you tips on your curls based on some bro-science he saw on a bodybuilding.com forum.  Art is from an economics background, and has taken a systematic approach to his diet and fitness for the last 25 years.  He has studies to back why he does, what he does, and he clearly has results.  Even at a time in his life where most people are sick or nearly dead, Art looks like he will be thriving for another 25+ years. 

 If you want a chance to learn from one of the fittest old(er) guys on the planet on how to live long and stay strong, you owe it to yourself to pick up his book. 

Here are 5 things you can learn from Art and the New Evolution Diet:

 1) Intermittent Fasting is a Superhuman Weapon

 “Every living creature since the beginning of time has gone hungry now and then.  Intermittent fasting is embedded in our metabolism.  Brief fasting improves insulin sensitivity and protein turnover in muscle.  A little hunger turns on your body’s repair mechanisms.”

 “The problem with snacks is every time you eat, you turn off you body’s fat burning mechanism.”

 How to apply it:  Art usually eats 3 times per day, but skips dinner at least once per week.

 2) If You Want to Live Long, Glucose Restriction is Key

 “Calorie restriction has been shown to improve health markers in rats, primates, and humans.  The benefits of calorie restriction, we are learning, come primarily from the restriction of glucose in the diet.”

 “A typical kitchen today probably contains more glucose or glucose elevating foods than our ancestors saw in a lifetime.”

 How to apply it:  Restrict high carb/high glucose foods and supplement with a tablespoon(approximately 10-15 grams) of branched chain amino acids 1-3 times per day.  BCAA’s can be picked up at most health food stores and they will decrease your cravings for sweets since the liver will convert only the amino acids to glucose specifically for what your body needs and no more.  They also provide the body with protein if your not getting enough from your diet. 

 3) You should work out regularly, but not for the reasons you may think. 

 “Physical activity is not simply something you do to help you lose weight.  It is a crucial component to how your body adapted to its environment, and it is absolutely necessary for good health.  If you’re not active, you are depriving your body of something as vital to it as food, water, and sunlight.”

 “Focus on making muscle, instead of dropping pounds.”

 How to apply it: Spend no more than 30-45 minutes in a gym setting daily.  Go for a walk after dinner, play sports, or do anything that gets you outside.  Workout to improve your performance in activities you enjoy, not to burn calories. 

 4) Workout intensity beats duration.  Your health is most defined by your few moments of high intensity.

 “There is a power law of exercise: your least frequent, most extreme exertions, will have the greatest influence on your fitness.  The peak moments of your workout count far more than the amount of time you spend working out.”

 “Your body should be required to do something it has never done before.  Each workout is supposed to leave its mark on you.”

 How to apply it: Focus on intensity and keeping every workout different.  Opt for brief periods of high stress, like lifting heavy or running sprints, and beating personal bests in every workout.  Your toughest sets will likely have more benefits than your entire workout.

 5) You don’t have to be perfect

 “Too much regularity is no good, variation is better.”

 “Even I eat a bit of cheesecake every once in a while.  My favorite dessert is cheesecake with a great cup of coffee.”

 How to apply it:  Make an effort to be very strict with your diet most of the time so cheats like cheesecake and red wine are more enjoyable.  Also, don’t worry if you have to skip a meal or a workout.  The variation is likely benefiting you.

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