You don't need to hunt wooly mammoths to be a "caveman" these days. In fact, you don't even need a cave.

The "caveman" diet is more about what you eat than where you live -- and if you can stick to a 100-percent natural lifestyle of fresh meats and vegetables with no processed foods, congratulations.

You're officially a caveman.

It's hard to find anything wrong with this diet, and science now confirms what should have been obvious all along: Eating only fresh foods can help put you in the best shape of your life and slash your risk of illness and disease.

Researchers at the University of California San Francisco asked a group of unhealthy people to stick to a "caveman" diet high in healthy fats and proteins from meats, fish, and nuts as well as generous amounts of fresh fruits and veggies.

After just two weeks, everyone's blood pressure and cholesterol levels plunged -- with triglycerides alone falling by an average of 30 points.

"That's the kind of drop you get by taking statins for six months," Dr. Linda Frasettom, who led the research, told Medical News Today.

I'd almost agree -- except statins come with a risk of severe muscle pain, liver problems and kidney damage. A diet of fresh natural foods will do none of those things to you.

Statins can even increase your risk of diabetes -- but a diet with no added sugars and zero processed foods will practically guarantee that you'll never get the disease.

Dr. Robert Lustig, an endocrinologist at the university, says diabetics who've tried this back-to-basics approach have seen a reversal of the condition -- and some have actually been cured.

That's right. The "c" word -- and while most of the media is of course only too happy to trash the diet and even mock the people who follow it, one reporter got an up-close and highly personal look at just how well it works.

Dr. Kim Mulvihill of the CBS station in San Francisco had been battling a weight problem and pre-diabetes when she volunteered for the UCSF study. In just 10 days, she saw dramatic changes to her cholesterol, blood pressure and blood sugar levels as well as a boost in energy.

She eventually lost 30 pounds, and after seven weeks was no longer considered a pre-diabetic -- causing her own doctors to tell her to stick to the diet permanently.

If you're facing your own battle with disease -- or simply want to avoid ever having to worry about one -- maybe it's time to go caveman yourself.