Here is today's edition of Paleo Diet Q & A.
I heard Dr. Cordain speak twice in optometry meetings. He understood everything about his diet, but both times, I left with the same question in my head: what about eggs?
SO if you could please pass it on to him, I would appreciate it. Because eggs are a source of lutein which is very bioavailable and because lutein is extremely important in ocular health, I would like to know what his opinion is on that.
A: Dear Barbara,
Eggs are part of The Paleo Diet, as humans have consumed eggs during the paleolithic era, although not in a year round basis (because bird eggs appear only seasonally), hence Dr. Cordain has advocated eggs, specially those rich in omega-3 fatty acids, in his three books. One of the egg white functions is to protect the yolk against microbal attack using proteolytic enzymes, besides being storage of nutrients for the growing embryo and transport of nutrients into the growing embryo. Except for ovoalbumen, most of the proteins in egg white have antimicrobial, antibacterial or antiviral activity, some of these proteins are called ovomucoid, ovomucin and lysozyme, among others. These proteins may disrupt the integrity of the gut lining leading to increased intestinal permeability and lysozyme is the most harmful of these proteins in terms of membranolytic activity (breakdown of cell membranes). We recommend that patients suffering from autoimmune diseases to avoid egg white at the beginning as Lysozyme may increase intestinal permeability which is one of the contributing factors in autoimmune diseases. Another issue is egg allergy which is quite common.
On the other hand, eggs are rich in selenium, vitamin A, vitamin D and the B vitamins, and some minerals.
If the person does not suffer from autoimmune disease or egg allergy it shouldn't be a problem to eat eggs.
I hope this helps.
Q: Is The Paleo Diet an option for someone with Type 1 Diabetes being treated with Coumadin?
A: Yes, The Paleo Diet will work good for you. Indeed, in our previous newsletter (v_5#36 2009) we reported how The Paleo Diet influences the different pathways involved in the disorder.
There are several known factors of the western diet contributing to triggering Type 1 Diabetes:
- Proteins found in cow's milk: Beta-Lactoglobulin, Bovine Insulin, Bovine Serum Albumin and Beta Casomorphin-7.
- Proteins found in cereal grains: Gluten is a well known trigger of an autoimmune disease associated with T1D called Celiac Disease. A gluten-free diet led to improvement in insulin response during a glucose tolerance test.
- Another factor at the root of almost all autoimmune diseases is increased intestinal permeability. Certain substances found in the typical western diet (lectins, saponins, gliadin, alcohol and capsaicin) may increase intestinal permeability.
- Other factors such as diet's fatty acid composition or vitamin D deficiency contribute to the pathogenesis of T1D.
Finally, a low glycemic load diet will help you to better control your blood glucose levels in the long run.
On the other hand, if you are taking Coumadin it shouldn't be a problem with The Paleo Diet unless you are consuming high amount of omega-3 or vitamin E supplements.
I hope this helps.