These days, there are many different types of flour: almond flour, coconut flour, even banana flour. All of these can have a place as part of a healthy Paleo diet, but when we say “flour” most of us still think of ground wheat, and there’s nothing Paleo about that.
Avoid Processed Foods
The Paleo diet is, first and foremost, a whole foods diet. Anything that has been processed beyond recognition should be avoided and there are a number of reasons for this. First, processed foods often have added ingredients, including sugar and various chemicals hiding as “natural flavors”. Second, processed foods (such as flour) tend to be low in nutrients and high in carbohydrates.
Paleo and Managing Blood Sugar
Lately, whole grains have been touted as healthy because they have more fiber and more nutrients than refined flour. Whole grains are also lower on the glycemic index than refined grains, but that’s not enough to make them healthy. Even whole grains are high enough in carbs to cause a massive spike in blood sugar. This will inevitably lead to a crash, leaving you feeling tired, cranky, and craving more carbs.
Paleo and Antinutrients
Despite the processing, wheat flour still contains gluten, lectins, and phytic acid, all antinutrients we should be sure to avoid as much as possible. They interfere with mineral receptors (which causes nutrient deficiencies) and increase gut permeability (which lets toxins and undigested foods into the bloodstream).
Paleo As A Nutrient-Dense Diet
Even without these antinutrients causing trouble, wheat is fairly nutrient-deficient. Sure, it has some minerals, but it’s nothing compared to what you can get out of a nice big salad.
Mark Sisson has no shortage of reasons to avoid wheat.