*Disclaimer: Not promoting any diet. Just making a comment on a video which claimed to debunk a diet.*
Christina Warinner is an archeological scientist who studies the diet of ancient people. The goal of her lecture is to debunk the so called caveman diets like the Paleo Diet and The Primal Blueprint. Watch it here. Did she debunk the diets? No. Every time she'd "debunk" a "myth" she turned around an supported the caveman diet. My comments here on out is based on the primal diet as I'm more familiar with it.
Basically she's saying people can't eat like cavemen because we eat domesticated animals and produce which are artificially fattened, grown (hormones, antibiotics, synthetic fertilizers, etc), and bred. The end of her talk is where she really supports what she's trying to debunk. She tells the audience
There's no one "correct" diet, but diversity is the key.
Humans lack the ability to synthesize the nutrients we require for life so we must acquire it through food. "Eat a diet rich in species" she says and reveals American diets today is based on only 3 species: corn, soy, and wheat. She emphasizes fresh, in-season foods and the importance of whole foods, not highly processed foods.
From my understanding, the primal diet advocates everything she talks about. It's a guide to help people return to a healthy lifestyle and eat real food (pesticide and hormone free), not processed foods. I don't think anyone really thinks they're eating the same foods eaten by cavemen. It's about eating lots of different types of whole foods cooked in your own kitchen. Though she tells people we have an anatomical predisposition for eating plant matter she goes on to say primitive man ate seasonal wild game (esp organ meats and bone marrow) and foraged what they could. Eating free range organic meats as raw as possible is promoted by the primal diet. Any old culture has recipes for organ means such as raw liver (freshly slaughtered). The lifestyle she describes is pretty much what the primal diet advocates: get more sun, slow down and move more, get a good nights sleep, PLAY, and don't run with scissors. I kid, its avoid dangerous things (is teasing a Rottweiler really a good idea and unless you know the plant don't eat it). The archeologist is basically saying we need to be omnivores due to the adulteration of our food supply and provides evidence that our ancestors were omnivores which the primal diet promotes. It just so happens the paleo and primal crowd is inline with the animal rights activists b/c they don't want meat from feedlots injected full of chemicals, and they're inline with organic produce b/c they want clean veggies without pesticides, antibiotics, and maybe to varying degrees prefer heritage seeds to gmo. She has amazing things to say scientifically about human diets so people should watch the video for the info. As for the debunking part, I think she failed.
The primal diet is actually a low-carb, high fat diet. Primal supporters love their bacon. Its predecessor is the Ketogenic diet which gained publicity (Jim Abrahams) and supporters due to its ability to help diabetics, cure children with seizures, and help obese patients loose weight.
1. The Primal Blueprint
2. Ketogenic diet