Archive for June 30, 2013

Protein Builds Your Muscles and Helps Your Moods

hunting and gathering solutionsHey, I’m at the beach in Duck, NC with my family:)  There’s 9 of us in our house, plus a couple sisters and their families will be joining us for dinner every night.  Check out my What I Eat page to see how we cook for crowds and eat on vacation.

Ready for a little Daily Ammunition to eat for health and leanness?  I am!  Read on –

Protein, after water, is the #1 building block in our body; and while everyone knows we need it to make muscle cells, did you know it’s CRUCIAL for brain and thyroid function?  It is.  When we eat and digest Proteins, they breakdown to Amino Acids, like tyrosine, tryptophan, glutamine, and methionine.  There’s 21 amino acids, but infinite combinations that our body makes with them.

Our body uses tyrosine and tryptophan, among others, to produce serotonin, dopamine, and thyroid hormones (T3 and T4, the T stands for Tyrosine).  If you don’t EAT enough protein, and you don’t DIGEST well (indigestion/stomach issues signal poor breakdown and absorption of nutrients), then there’s a HIGH probability you’re not getting the “ingredients” you need to make these neurotransmitters and hormones.   Same goes for your children.

Another way to block their formation?  Diets high in simple sugars and refined carbohydrates (cereals, breads, junk foods, pastas…);  because these foods stimulate the release of Insulin, and Insulin sweeps Glucose/Sugar OUT of the blood stream and it also sweeps Amino Acids out too.   We need those Amino Acids available in the blood,  so that the brain has access to them.  Does that make sense?

Adult rates of depression and anxiety TRIPLED between 1990 and 2003.  It continues to climb.  Does that sound normal?  Studies show higher depression now than during the actual Depression.  How can that be?  It’s Diet.   The average American is eating a diet of 70% grwoing out of skinRefined, Processed, Chemical containing,  or Restaurant food.  This isn’t healthy, and the consequences are serious:  we’re up to 70% Overweight,  Diabetes has increased OVER 100% in several states since 1990;  heart disease, auto-immune conditions, cancer,  and mood disorders continue a meteoric rise.    ITS THE FOOD!!

Are you convinced, but unsure of how to proceed?  I hear that all the time, because we’ve been brainwashed since birth that restaurant food or store bought prepared foods are NORMAL and NECESSARY.  You all, that’s not true.  They’re NOT normal for our bodies, and they’re not necessary if you put your focus and attention on your diet and your families diet.   We’ve been trained to make our work, our home, and our kids schedules our Priorities.  If FOOD isn’t our priority, everything else suffers:  our relationships, our health, our kids health, our ability to be our best at work, or keep up with our home., and going back to the beginning, our mood and attitude suffers (or our children’s mood and attitude).

Decide to get organized about shopping, prepping, cooking and packing.  Write it down and stick to your schedule.   Slow roast some meats that will keep for days in your fridge, make a big salad, cut up and roast potatoes and vegetables that can either be reheated or added to other recipes.  Change your Belief System as to what constitutes a normal breakfast, lunch and dinner if your normal is starchy carbs and easy foods, even if they’re “diet foods”.  Lowfat cereals, breads, and waffles are loaded with chemicals and SUGARS that cause disease and put on weight – not take it off.  The whole “healthy grains” line, PLEASE rethink that.  How bout a 2 or 3 week experiment of going sugar and grain free? It’s easier than you’d think once you get used to it.

I took a little flak last week for comparing Pop Tarts to Cigarettes.   Have you looked at the ingredient lists for Pop Tarts?  Did you see how many chemicals are on that ?  How much sugar? High fructose corn syrup?  Food dyes?  They’re Health Bombs, half those chemicals are linked to cancer yet moms who love their kids willingly give them every day because advertising and media have made them NORMAL.  THINK ABOUT THIS.

we had that last weekThis brings me back to protein.  If you’re starting the day, (or your kids are), with refined, processed, carb-loaded/chemical loaded breakfasts, how can you possibly expect to feel alert, be productive, and have your body and brain hum like they’re  supposed to?   Want to be awake, active, and lean?  Pop Tarts won’t get you there.  (Neither will cereal, toast, or waffles.)   They’ll get you sleepy, foggy, and chunky.    Start your day with eggs or meats or high fat dairy or vegetables/fruits/nuts or seeds.  Real foods with nutrient contents your body  and brain can use.

Focus on making the connection between what you eat, how you feel and how you look.  If somethings off, it’s the food.  Overweight?  It’s your food.  Brain Fog? It’s your food.  Gut issues?  It’s your food.  Health Problems?  It’s your food.  Trust me on this.  You’re not lacking a diet soda, aspirin, Tums, a statin, or Prozac.  You’re missing the nutrients that build every cell in your body.  Change that.  Eat Real Whole Food.

Ditch Brain Fog and Belly Bloat!

lindahamiltonHow about some more Eat Right, Get Healthy and Lean Ammunition?  Because the more you know, the easier it is to eat for health, and when you eat for health, …..weight loss, if you need it, is a Side Effect.

You know what else happens when you eat Real Whole Foods and ditch the diet foods and low calorie food plans (that don’t work anyway)?  You improve brain function – really.

Did you know that Brain Fog is the Number 1 side effect of Gluten?  Seriously.  Studies show that for people who are “gluten sensitive” – and that’s MOST people, 1 person will have Gut Issues, and 8 people will have “other problems”, with Brain Fog being the most common.  Still eating flour products that contain gluten?  What about your kids?  Behavior or attitude issues?  Why don’t you just TRY to go without gluten for a couple of weeks?  What’s the worst thing that could happen?  A little sadness missing a sandwich, cereal, pasta or junk food?  Really?  There’s people all over the world who don’t have those, and they live.  Confusion about what else to eat?  Look at my What I Eat Page, or try any of the hundreds of Paleo, Real Whole Food Recipe sites out there.  It’s easier than you think, especially after you get used to it.

Go without starchy carbs/flours for a few weeks, and not only will brain fog, stomach issues, joint issues, and mood improve, but *** your stomach will flatten!***  Who doesn’t want a flatter stomach?  Carbohydrates attach to water molecules and cause “belly bloat”. garfield Go without and you’ll immediately lose some water weight – and size.  Keep going without, lower insulin levels in your blood stream, then the real magic happens:  when insulin levels are LOW, the pancreas releases Glucagon.  Insulin STORES calories,  but Glucagon taps fat cells and gets them to RELEASE their contents, and FAT IS USED FOR ENERGY instead of blood sugar.  Doesn’t this sound like a good plan??? (This doesn’t happen when you eat “mini-meals” all day that contain carbohydrates.)

Want to really get your body humming?  Include plenty of Traditional Fats in your meals.  Honestly.  Fat doesn’t make you fat!  Your body needs and uses TONS of fat to run correctly.  Fatty Acids are part of the “gas” that makes us go.  We use fatty acids for brain function(60% of your brain is Fat), our heart, all of our hormones, joints, our immune system.  Did you know that fatty acids from Traditional fats, like butter, animal fats, and coconut oil, also have Anti-Bacterial, Anti-Viral, and Anti-Microbial properties?

happyeat lardIn light of that information, what happens to a body that doesn’t get the healthy fats that it needs?  For one thing, your liver has to MAKE a TON of cholesterol.  Cholesterol is an antioxidant and healing substance, and if you’re not consuming enough, the body/liver will make up for that.  Without enough fat, your immune system will suffer tremendously.  You won’t make sufficient testosterone or estrogen.  Your skin cells and connective tissue will become dehydrated and dry.   Fatty Acids are part of the “recipe” for thousands of functions in our body.  Fat doesn’t just get deposited in fat cells.  That’s inaccurate.

Want a trick for learning to LOVE vegetables, or getting your kids to love them?  Cover them with butter or olive oil and hard grated cheese, and real sea salt – Delicious!   Did you know that several vitamins and minerals can ONLY be absorbed and/or used in the presence of fat???  The calcium and vitamin D in Skim Milk?  Useless.  How are they going to help your bones or your immune system without the fat to transport them?

Consumption of saturated fat and cholesterol has plummeted in the past several decades, but disease and weight have skyrocketed.   More people are eating low fat, low calorie diet foods than ever, and disease and weight have skyrocketed. More people are eating trans fats and Omega 6 vegetable oils than ever, and disease and weight have skyrocketed.  More people are eating at restaurants, and eating processed, refined foods than ever, and disease and weight have skyrocketed.

Look at what HASN’t worked, and try a different tactic.feedingtube

Being overweight, feeling depressed, having indigestion, high triglycerides, skin problems, joint issues, these conditions aren’t normal.  They’re brought on by Bad Eating Habits.  Want to be healthy, feel good, and lose weight if you need to?  Work on changing your Belief System.  You can’t lose weight by starving.  Diet foods, low cal/low fat for weight loss is a damaging myth.  You’ll destroy your health and your moods if you don’t eat real foods. Load your plate with traditional fats, tons of vegetables, good proteins, then some fruits, nuts and seeds, and some dairy (if those work for you).  These are the foods that contain the building blocks of nutrients your body and brain needs to function.

Choose today to make a plan, write it down, and jump off the Diet Roller Coaster to eating Real Whole Foods, 3x a day.  Quit snacking, shop, cook, pack, think about your week and make eating healthy the priority it deserves to be.


What’s Wrong With Bread and Pasta?

flintstonesWhy should you avoid “healthy whole grains”?  Aren’t they the biggest part of the US Food Plate?  Aren’t they necessary for “carbo loading”?  If you’re active, don’t you NEED grains?

Oh my gosh, NO. We’re all just USED to grains.  They’re an enormous, familiar source of calories and pleasure, and meals built around bread and pasta are so ingrained that for some people, living without is unthinkable.

Well, I’d like you to think about it.

Grains/whole grains/ starchy carbs, cause terrible health problems (heart disease, diabetes, auto-immune), severe intestinal problems (crohn’s, ibs, colitis), they’re addictive, and they make you fat.  That’s my short take on them.  If you hear someone with far more years of education than me claiming that whole grains are healthy or necessary, they’re either not as educated as they think, blind to all the contrary evidence out there, or lying.
Honestly, if this news is new to you, trust me when I say I could fill a thesis with scientific reasons to stay away from starchy carbs, in their whole grain form or refined.  Besides the FACT that our body wants only a TEA-Spoon or two of blood sugar at a time(all grains digest to blood sugar), and anything more than that is an EMERGENCY/PRIORITY to get rid of, grains are really, really hard to digest.  That goes for whole or refined.

Here’s the Short Version:
All grains contain phytates, or phytic acid.  These are referred to as “anti-nutrients”, because their job is to Grab Hold of minerals like Calcium, Iron, Zinc, Magnesium found in the whole grain OR found in other foods mixed in your stomach, and make those minerals UN-USUABLE, and INDIGESTIBLE.  Did you get that?  Those healthy whole grains contain substances that leach on to minerals and make them worthless. Minerals are VITAL to your health.

Grains also contain extremely hard to digest PROTEINS,  the most famous one is GLUTEN, but there’s others. Animal proteins are easy to breakdown, proteins from grains aren’t. These proteins are so difficult to breakdown and digest, that it often doesn’t happen.  Then you have undigested proteins literally banging on the small intestine wall.  (Proteins USUALLY get broken down to Amino Acids and ABSORBED thru the intestine wall, into the blood stream.  That’s normal and healthy.).  Eventually, the big, in-completely digested protein pieces break thru the intestine wall and enter the blood stream, where  ***********OUR IMMUNE SYSTEM TREATS THEM LIKE FOREIGN INVADERS, AND MOUNTS AN IMMUNE RESPONSE.  (this is aka   Leaky Gut Syndrome)   The Results:  massive amounts of inflammation, and not just in the stomach, but EVERYWHERE in the body.
Allergies, auto-immune conditions, asthma, migraines, mood disorders, ect ect.  Grains Aren’t Good For You Or Your Kids.

Wheat contains another protein called Gliadin, which has the addictive effect of stimulating appetite by binding to opiate receptors in the brain, making them want more. (sound familiar?)

And a point I’m making in post after post? Excess carbohydrates get converted to FAT. foods to eat The body can’t store carbs, it can only store fat.  We can store more than 40,000 calories as fat, but only a couple thousand as carbohydrate.  Excess Carbs Are Toxic To The Body and must be  gotten rid of.

This was a BRIEF summary of a FEW problems grain causes.  Still on the fence?  Keep digging for yourself, Please.  There’s a lot of GREAT books out there by doctors :  Wheat Belly by Dr. William Davies is one, buy it and read it, or at least go on his website,  There are so many doctors counseling against sugar and grain consumption right now that it’s amazing: Dr. John Briffa, Dr. Cate Shanahan, Dr. Mary and Mike Eades, Dr. Colin Champ, and Dr. Jonny Bowden to name a few.  They all have blogs if you want to check them out.   The more you know, the easier it becomes to make choices that make you healthier;  weight loss (if you need to) is a SIDE EFFECT of being healthy.

beyond baconNeed some grain-free recipe ideas?  Thanks to the poor state of health in this country, that whole direction of cooking is exploding.  Here’s a few sites:

If you’re wondering how to feed your family without grains, check out my What I Eat page.  This is also how I fuel myself for hours of exercise every week.  You don’t need the grains!  Your kids don’t need the grains!  You can live without them and be so much healthier and leaner for it.  It’s completely doable, and not even an issue once it becomes your norm, I promise.

Mind Ammo for Clean Eating

diet coke womanThe foods we eat either  (1) trigger hormones that stimulate hunger, and create energy storage (fill up fat cells);  or (2) trigger hormones that lead to satiety and induce fat cells to give up their contents.

It’s one or the other.

If the foods stimulate hunger, and energy storage,  (this would be starchy, sugary, chemical enhanced, processed foods), they create Bad Health: heart disease, diabetes, auto-immune conditions, and mood disorders.  If you’re eating foods that cause satiety and fat burning, you’re making choices that lead to better health and better moods.

This goes for you and your children.  The foods we eat 100% directly create our health, our moods, and our weight.  If you’re unhappy with your health, your moods, or your weight, then focus on cementing that connection in your mind.  That way when “opportunities” arise, you’ll be able to make good choices that you feel happy with AFTER you’ve eaten.

What if you’re addicted?  What if you truly believe that we’re 100% what we eat, but still give in to chips, cereals, and desserts, as in you just couldn’t say no?cat-remember diet

Then you need to look at your habits and patterns.  Do you go out to a regular happy hour and always indulge because you deserve it after a hard day?  Do you have a group of friends that you regularly indulge with?  Do you have a particular night of the week when you sit down for hours of TV and snack foods?  Do you feel like you “need” a sweet after dinner?  Start eating in the late afternoon and feel unable to stop?

Every time I run a Nutrition Group, I survey everyone’s “worst habits”.  I’ve asked hundreds of people now but it’s always a similar group of answers.  There aren’t a lot of original bad habits.

Identify yours, and then make a plan to eliminate it.  Email me if you need help, because Habits and Patterns are tricky to reverse, but if you Don’t, and nothing changes, then,…. nothing changes.

Here’s a little ammunition:

Cheesecake Factory Oreo Cheesecake, 1 slice: 1204 calories, 90g Carbs

Cheesecake Factory Chinese Chicken Salad: 535 Cals, 63g Carbs

FiberOne 90 Calorie Brownie: 90 Cals, 18g Carbs, 11 sources of sugar and starch, hydrogenated oils, 2 sources of soy(estrogenic and thyroid slowing), several chemical flavors, scents, emulsifiers, thickeners, and preservatives

Tostitos Artisan Southwest Tortilla Chips: 8 chips are 140 Cals, 19g Carbs, 13 sources of starch and sugar, 3 sources of Omega 6 vegetable oils, and brain cell damaging MSG (yeast extract and natural flavors)

Kellogg’s Frosted Blueberry Pop Tarts: 200 Cals, 36g Carbs, 11 sources of starch and sugar, 3 sources of vegetable oil and soybean oil, more chemical flavors, scents, preservative, and emulsifiers than you can count.

Digiornos Stuffed Crust Pepperoni Pizza:  1 slice, 380 Cals, 40g Carbs,  more than 40 ingredients, with numerous sources of starch, sugar, hydrogenated oils, soy, and chemicals.

kid eating junkThis may seem like an eclectic list of foods, but they have a lot in common.  All these foods contain chemicals and enough starches that when you eat them, you want more.  Areas of the brain are triggered that leave you craving more food.  They all also contain ingredients that DAMAGE your body and mind.

Practice looking at foods like these and NOT focusing on the pleasure sensations (yep, I’m comparing them to drugs and alcohol); focus on the AFTER effects of eating these foods.  Think of these foods as poison in the package or on the plate.   Really.  You wouldn’t let your kids smoke, but what’s the difference between the chemicals and damage from cigarettes, and the chemicals and damage from Pop Tarts?  One causes cancer,…. and the other causes cancer.

Want to feel good, look good, and be healthy?  Want your kids to feel good, look good, and be healthy?  Eat Real Whole Foods.  Get in the habit of planning, shopping, cooking, and packing. Schedule cooking, schedule shopping, schedule packing.  Eating Real Foods takes a little effort.  Eating Processed, Refined, or Restaurant foods takes NO EFFORT and the results are disastrous:  70% of America is OVERWEIGHT, and Disease and Poor Health are RAMPANT.

You can make the switch.  You can feel good, you can look good, and you can be healthy.

How To Lose Weight and Starbucks LowFat Goodies

shocked monkeyAlright,  I’m always on the “don’t go on a diet” bandwagon, “diets don’t work”, “studies show that almost 100% of everyone who loses weight on a diet gains it back”, blah blah blah.   I’ve touted eating healthy proteins and fats, tons of vegetables, some fruit/nuts/seeds/dairy, and NO grains or sugar.  I still get asked how to lose weight when there’s no dieting involved. I’ve also been asked about Weight Watchers, the Lean Protein Diet System, and Juice Cleanses/Fasts, as a means to lose weight.

Here’s the answer.  “Dieting” is an Industry.  Last year, between diet foods, diet drinks, diet pills and diet programs, Americans spent billions, and got heavier and sicker.

“Dieting” is a business, and everyone is selling it, from the drug store to the health food store to your doctor.  “Buy this product”,  “Buy this plan”, and you’ll lose weight.   It’s not true, and it never has been.  Again, the studies show this.  But do you need a study to believe that?

Ask yourself, how many times in the past have you lost weight?  I had a woman tell me that Real Whole Food didn’t appeal to her, and she was going to try Weight Watchers – AGAIN – ** because it had worked for her before!!!**  If you lost weight, and couldn’t keep it off, I wouldn’t count that as “worked”.  I would look at that as a “didn’t work”.

Media and Advertising have hypnotized bazillions of people into believing that losing 10 pounds in 10 days or even a month is possible if you use a special product.   Unless you are VERY VERY overweight,  It’s Not.  Not permanently at least.   There are no magic pills, or magic drinks, or magic foods, that will melt off your fat.  While I believe in the power of fasting or cleansing for your liver and organs, I’ve never known ANYONE who lost FAT doing a fast or a cleanse.  Making yourself go to the bathroom a little more due to laxatives DOESN’T PULL ANY FAT OFF YOUR BUTT, THIGHS, OR STOMACH.   Using stimulants doesn’t change your eating habits or pull the fat off either.   No concoction of cayenne, syrup, and lemon will make fat cells spill their contents.

If you need to lose weight and you want to get healthy (because Food is 100% connected to your physical and mental health.)  it’s about your day in day out habits. How to stick to a plan for life?  Two things:

1)  Eat Real Whole Foods.  Get rid of the grains, sugars, and chemicals.  Eat plenty of Fat andcavepeople Protein and Vegetables – they contain the Nutrients that Build Your Body and Mind.  They Trigger Satiety Hormones. They satisfy your brain chemistry.  They Keep Cortisol Low. They keep your Thyroid humming.   Space your meals out to 3x a day, and hormones will be released that compel Fat Cells to spill their Fatty Acids and Triglycerides, and they’ll be used to fuel your body.  Keep the Carbs low, and Body Fat will be burned.

If you eat Grains and Sugars, then they have to be used for Fuel INSTEAD of body fat.  Excess Glucose/Blood Sugar is DEADLY to the body, and a priority of the body to GET RID OF. Fat, believe it or not, is NOT a priority to get rid of.  God gave us the capacity to STORE TONS OF FAT.   Our body actually turns ALL THE EXCESS CARBOHYDRATE INTO BODY FAT.

Here’s an interesting fact:  Our bodies can store OVER 40,000 calories as Fat, but only about 2,000 calories as Carbohydrate.  Our body doesn’t WANT to store carbs or keep carbs; our body turns excess carbs (more than a few TEAspoons!) into Fat.   Let that soak in and then consider Main Stream Nutritional Advice to eat several serving of Whole Grains and other starchy foods EVERY DAY.  That doesn’t make any sense!

2) Become aware of what processed, refined, sugar/grain/chemical laden foods do to you.  Here’s one:  Starbucks Reduced Fat Cinnamon Swirl Coffee Cake.  Here’s the scoop on this disaster:  340 calories/slice, 62 grams of Carbohydrate!!  That’s 13 teaspoons of starbucks coffee cakeGlucose/Blood Sugar!!  Your body can accommodate 3 or 4 (ish) teaspoons at any one time, a little in the muscles, a little in the liver, a little in the blood – the rest get repackaged into triglycerides and fatty acids – and STORED in the fat cells.   There are a MINIMUM of 65 ingredients ( flavors, colors, scents,  and additives don’t have to list all their ingredients), 15 sources of carbohydrate; hydrogenated fats, soy, food colorings, and more.

Think about this:  It’s called “Reduced Fat”, but do you really think eating food products like this could help you lose any weight at all?  No.  Could this have ONE positive effect on your physical or mental health?  NO.  This junk makes you sick, overweight, and depressed, and ***it stimulates your brain and gut to WANT MORE****,  NO satiety hormones are triggered at all.

Back to “How to Lose weight”?  Practice, think on, meditate on, read about, focus on the connection between every single thing you put in your mouth and your health, your weight, and your mood.  Our body builds itself from the nutrients we feed it.  Quit thinking of food in terms of calories.  Become a Nutrient Seeker.  Space out your meals.  Look at your habits and patterns, do you need to change them?  Email me if you need help establishing meal plans or habits and patterns that lead to good health and optimum weight.  You can get off the Diet Roller Coaster.  You can feel energetic and positive.  You can reverse poor food induced health conditions.  Don’t wait another day.

Get Off The Diet Roller Coaster

shooting the scaleHere’s an email that I bet will resonate with some of you:

“Hi Debbie,

I started a clean eating plan on June 1, because I have a wedding to attend at the end of the month.    I did okay at first, but now have totally blown it.  Any advice for me, or should I just wait and start again July 1.  I have a dress that will fit either way.”

Here’s my answer:
If you constantly think about food in terms of “calories” and being on or off a diet, you can’t win.  You’re on the cycle of the Diet Roller Coaster.  If you think about food in terms of what it does to your body, you’ll get healthy and lose weight.  To be successful and healthy and a good weight, it’s not about dieting, it’s about eating right, day after day, week after week, month after month; and it’s ALWAYS the right time to start eating right.  There will NEVER be a better time to begin than TODAY, even if it’s the middle of the week or the middle of the month.   Eating right isn’t about dates that correspond to events;  or your mood, or circumstances.  If events, moods, and circumstances rule your eating, you’re in trouble.  Events have finite dates, and moods and circumstances are ever changing.  They can’t be our guides when it comes to eating well.

You also can’t wait til “things are less busy”,  “life gets a little easier”, or you get done with a big project.  Those are excuses that allow you to eat foods that make you sick, depressed, and keep you weighing more than you want.
If you only want to eat well to lose weight, that’s never enough motivation to stay consistent day after day, week after week. Instead, that mindset gets you on the Diet Roller Coaster.   NOTHING CHANGES WHEN YOU’RE ON THE ROLLER COASTER. You might loose a few pounds, but then you’ll gain them back when your diet-mindset wains.    How many years do you want to do that?

Eat well because nutrient dense foods allow your body and mind to FEEL GOOD, and by swim all day and don't losedefault, you’ll look good.  Eat well and if you need to lose weight, you will.  Nutrient dense foods allow you to make nice skin cells, and hair cells, a strong immune system, sufficient hormones, good energy, and brain neurons that make positive connections.  Processed, refined foods full of flour, sugar, and chemicals literally destroy your body and poison your mind: heart disease, cancer, diabetes, auto – immune, mood and behavior disorders – they’re all the product of bad foods.

Did you know that depression and anxiety are HIGHLY linked to poor nutrition in study after study?  Our body builds our brain from the food we eat.

Need more reasons to eat well?  Are you a parent, because if you are, you’re a Role Model.  An eating roll model.  However you eat, you’re TRAINING your kids to eat that way too.  I promise. And they will deal with the same issues, or worse, than you’re dealing with as an adult.   If you don’t have kids, then know that your friends, family, and co-workers will and are influenced by the choices you make.  Ever noticed that if you don’t order dessert at a restaurant, it puts an immediate damper on someone who did want to order dessert?

Back to the wedding.  You were “doing okay til you blew it”, should you wait til July to start again??  Does that mean eat lots of bad foods til July?  Don’t worry about cooking, planning or packing meals to go?   NO don’t wait til July! Eat healthy today, because you always feel better when you eat healthy, because just like not smoking or not taking drugs, IT’S THE RIGHT THING TO DO FOR YOUR BODY.

If you’re dieting however, you won’t be able to stick to your plan, you’ll be too hungry.  Dieting, low/cal, low/fat meal planning, slows down your thyroid, restricts the amount of nutrients your brain can use to make serotonin and dopamine, and will give you compulsive, obsessive thoughts about food.  NO ONE CAN STAY ON A DIET.  That’s why 95 – 99% of ALL DIETERS GAIN THEIR WEIGHT BACK.  You’ve got to eat plenty of good fats, plenty of good protein, tons of vegetables, and some fruit, some nuts and seeds, and some dairy (if all that works for your stomach).

vegetarian diet:grain to fattenHave you checked out my What I Eat Page?  It is possible to live a life without grains, sugar and chemicals, in the Real World, with 4 kids and a job.  It just takes planning, and practice and fore-thought.  Once it’s a habit though, it’s not an effort anymore.

So instead of dieting, work on cutting the junk out of your life.  Eat less and less fake/processed/refined foods, and more and more Real Whole Foods.  Shop, prep, cook, freeze, PLAN.  Cook in batches.  Make 12 chicken breasts instead of 4.  Make 2 meat loafs, and cut and freeze one in single servings for later.  Make a giant salad.  Cook 10 sweet or white potatoes at a time, and then pull them out during the week for breakfast or lunch.  Slow cook a whole roast, pull it, and baggy servings for the week.  Get used to making PB&Js or a meat and cheese sandwich  for your kids to eat after practice instead of putting poison in their bodies at the fast food restaurants.  (yeah, I hate bread, but for kids, it’s a better choice than fast food.   Plus, they can make it themselves.  )

Being healthy and lean is about the every day choices, day after day, week after week, month after month.  It’s not about “being good” for 5 days or 10 days or 2 weeks or a whole month.

If you haven’t been able to stay consistent, I can guarantee it’s the food choices you’re making.  Take a risk, and CHANGE THE CHOICES.  Eat more fat and protein, cover your vegetables with butter or olive oil, and grated cheese, cook your chicken breasts with the FAT ON, eat your egg YOLKS, pop a couple spoonfuls of coconut butter in your mouth, or add some whole cream or coconut oil to your tea or coffee.  These foods have nutrients that nourish your body and trigger SATIETY HORMONES.  You will be able to go HOURS between meals when you eat like this;  you’ll be able to mentally say you’re not hungry.  You’ll be able to stay out of the fridge or the pantry.  And I swear these foods won’t make you fat!  Excess carbs, from flours or sugars, put weight on you!(they also cause disease and poor health) Traditional, Real, Fats are used by our body for thousands of jobs;  carbohydrates are mostly STORED, because they’re ONLY used for energy, not to build us.

Get off the Diet Roller Coaster.  Don’t wait til July.  Eat well today, tomorrow, this weekend, next week, etc, etc, etc.  You’ll feel and look so much better for it.


Question and Answer Day

I’ve got some questions that aren’t personal, just nutritional, and good, so I’m going to answer them here instead of replying to the specific posts.

eating ice creamThe first one was “what do I think of the Glycemic Index”?   A little FYI, the Glycemic Index rates how quickly 50 grams of the glucose in a food goes from mouth to blood stream, and it’s referring to the effect that those foods would have on blood sugar and insulin.  The standard of measure is 50 grams of table sugar, or white bread,  (Fifty grams is about 10 teaspoons.), this reference food  is given an arbitrary value of 100.  The GI value of a specific food is expressed as a percentage of that arbitrary rating.  The higher the percentage, the greater the surge in blood sugar.   Diabetics are encouraged to use the GI scale to determine which foods are safe for them.

I’m not crazy about the GI scale and here’s why.

50 grams of a food is a LOT, that would be 10 to 12 carrots, to give you a visual.  The scale rates homemade ice cream as LOW (1 -39%), table sugar and spaghetti as MEDIUM (40 to 69%), and carrots, watermelon, and corn as HIGH (70 to 100%).  The ice cream got the low mark because the fat and protein in it slow the absorption of glucose from the intestine to the blood stream, but ice cream is NOT a good food for diabetics or anyone trying to lose weight. Spaghetti, which gets a MEDIUM, and therefore a “kind of okay” nod, is NOT okay for diabetics or anyone trying to lose weight; it’s too many carbs, most of which will be turned into triglycerides (unless you’re a young, male, athlete).

Carrots, corn, and watermelon, Real Whole Foods loaded with vitamins, minerals, and FIBER, should be included in our meals because they contribute to the nutrients our body needs for repair, maintenance, and thriving.

Foods/carb foods,  eaten in the context of a MEAL that contains fat and protein, as opposed to by themselves, ALWAYS absorb more slowly – and that’s a good thing.  We want our blood sugar to absorb slowly as opposed to quickly and causing a high blood sugar that needs to be met with high insulin.

High blood sugar and High insulin are DAMAGING to the body:  nerve cells on the extremities, the organs, the eyes, the skin, the brain, and the arteries take a HIT.   The amount of inflammation this causes is deadly.  Excess blood sugar, of which our body needs VERY LITTLE, gets turned into TRIGLYCERIDES, and mostly deposited in the abdominal area.

I think a much better way to “pick your foods” is to look at Nutrient Density, which you’re ONLY going to find in Real Whole Foods.  Pasta and bread have little to no nutrition; the high carb count causes just about everyone to convert at least part of those carbs to fat; and there’s little to no satiety from foods that are so highly processed.

Next, I was asked if Expeller Pressed Canola Oil is okay for salad dressings.  Canola oil is a tricky thing.  It’s an Omega 6 oil, which most of us get way too much of in relationship to the amount of Omega 3s we consume.  We should consume O6:O3 at a 3:1 and some say a 1:1 ratio.  In the US, we’re waaayyy off that with our high consumption of vegetable oils; garfield saladstatistics say we’re between 10:1 to 20:1.  Not good.  Huge negative implications for our health.  Vegetable oils/Omega 6s are very very delicate and prone to damage with any kind of heat and oxygen, this is why cooking with them is a bad idea.  Expeller pressed means “not heat extracted”, which is good; but it’s still an Omega 6, and still prone to damage from the air.  Canola Oil doesn’t have many nutrients or benefits, unlike Olive oil, Walnut oil, or coconut oil.  These oils are very nutrient dense and help that O6:O3 profile.  I say ditch the Canola Oil for an oil that provides more health benefits.

chipotle comicOne more question, about Chipotle;  is it Healthy?  I did a little digging, and I have to say, I’m disappointed.  Their marketing says they want to use at least 50% local and organic WHEN IT”S POSSIBLE.  They are TRYING to source clean meats when Possible.   I like to think they have good standards and intentions, but they are a business, and they do need to turn a profit to keep running.  Let’s call Chipotle a healthier option than other fast foods.  HOWEVER, stick to the meat and vegetables!  Get a burrito, chips, rice, or any other processed grain product, and you’ll consume a boatload of carbohydrate that turns into belly fat.  Make good choices!

Keep the questions coming:)

Summer BBQs, Picnic, and Party Stratagy

garfield and odieSummertime, the season of BBQs, pool parties, beach or lake get togethers, and vacations that include a lot of restaurants.  I hear all the time that it’s impossible to eat well with all the special occasions. That when someone sees a great dessert, or their favorite hotdog, or chips and dip, or macaroni salad, they just couldn’t say no.

That’s not true, you can say no;  eating well is a choice.

How do you get to the point where you Choose to avoid that foods that make you unhealthy and/or heavier than you’d like to be?  Two ways:

  1. Don’t let yourself get hungry.  Fill your body with delicious foods full of good fats and proteins, and plenty of vegetables.  These foods literally trigger satiety hormones in your brain and stomach, and*** fats and proteins take a LONG time to digest.  Carbs zip from mouth to stomach to blood stream in no time at all, and you’re genuinely hungry very soon after you eat them. Maybe you need to eat at home before or bring your own food to the cookout if you know the choices won’t be good – that’s okay, and smart.

You know what I say,  “Want to Gain Weight?  Go on a Diet and Get Hungry.”  Study after study after study proves this, so don’t do it to yourself.

2.  Be aware of what those foods do to your mood, your weight, your health, your behavior, and your emotions, because the effects are pretty profound. Processed foods are FILLED WITH CHEMICALS THAT STIMULATE YOUR APPETITE, AS OPPOSED TO SATISFY YOU.  You’re not SUPPOSED to feel full after processed foods.

dog eat dog world Let’s look at a hot dog with a bun, ketchup, and relish.  Pure Summer fare, right?  Here’s the list for Oscar Mayer Beef dogs Ingredients: BEEF, WATER, CORN SYRUP, CONTAINS LESS THAN 2% OF MODIFIED CORN STARCH, SALT, DEXTROSE, SODIUM PHOSPHATES, SODIUM PROPIONATE, SODIUM DIACETATE, SODIUM BENZOATE, FLAVOR, ASCORBIC ACID (VITAMIN C), EXTRACTIVES OF PAPRIKA, SODIUM NITRITE.

Does this mix of chemicals look like something you want to eat, or feed to your child?  The amount of sodium will puff you like a balloon, the Sodium Benzoate is a KNOWN CARCINOGIN, and the Sodium Nitrite is an EXCITOTOXIN -that means brain cells are overstimulated to the point of migraines/headaches, and bad behavior.

Here’s the ingredients in a typical hotdog bun:

Here’s Heinz Sweet Relish Ingredients:
Pickles (Cucumbers, Salt, Calcium Chloride)High Fructose Corn Syrup, Cabbage (Cabbage, Salt)Distilled White Vinegar, Natural Flavoring, Sodium Benzoate and Potassium Sorbate as Preservatives, Xanthan Gum, Alum, Guar and Locust Bean Gum, Dehydrated Red Bell Peppers, Extractive of Turmeric, FD&C Yellow No.5 & Blue No.1. Polysorbate 80.


And here’s the list for Doritos Cool Ranch Chips, (12 equals a serving size, by the way) Whole flavor dustCorn, Vegetable Oil (Contains One or More of the Following: Corn, Soybean and/or Sunflower Oil), Corn Maltodextrin, Salt, Tomato Powder, Corn Starch, Lactose, Whey, Nonfat Milk, Corn Syrup Solids, Onion Powder, Sugar, Garlic Powder, Monosodium Glutamate, Cheddar Cheese (Milk, Cheese Cultures, Salt, Enzymes), Dextrose, Malic Acid, Buttermilk, Natural and Artificial Flavors, Sodium Acetate, Artificial Color (Including Red 40, Blue 1, Yellow 5), Sodium Caseinate, Spice, Citric Acid, Disodium Inosinate, and Disodium Guanylate.

Do you see how little actual food is in these manufactured food products?  Eat this and get a whopper dose of cancer causing, diabetes causing, heart disease causing, behavior disrupting, mood plummeting, weight gaining, chemicals.

diabetes 10 yrs global warmingA little here or a little there – it DOES matter.  This stuff is POISON to your body, that’s how you want to TRAIN yourself to look at it.  You wouldn’t drink the cleaner from under your sink because it’s dangerous;  these foods are dangerous too.  When you quit thinking in terms of Calories, which doesn’t work anyway, and think of food in terms of it’s actual effects on your body, going to a BBQ or party or eating out, becomes easier.

Think you can’t resist?  Quit saying that!  Your brain believes what you tell it.  Plan, pack, choose healthy foods when you’re out;  think in terms of consequences when you see the Chemical Foods.  Don’t let yourself be ruled by a desire for bad foods that make you feel bad afterwards, it’s never worth it.  Once that 30 minute burst of Serotonin fades, any good feelings about bad choices fades away too.  Choose Real Whole Foods everywhere, and every time.



Mac N Cheese and Baby Formula – Getting Us Hooked Early

kids eating mac n cheeseWhat do summer picnics and feeding our kids have in common?  Macaroni and Cheese!  It’s pretty synonymous with both.

Here’s the ingredient list for Kraft Mac N Cheese :  Actually, forget it, it’s LONG. Here’s the condensed version: 15 ingredients, several chemicals, 2 (cancer causing/headache making/ADD inducing) food dyes, and 47 grams of carbohydrate – in a COUPLE OF OUNCES!

What about Annie’s Organic Mac N Cheese?  The ingredient list is shorter – 5 ingredients, but a small, 2.5 OUNCE serving of this stuff is 47 grams of carbohydrate – there goes the blood sugar.

Here’s the stats on Panera’s Mac N Cheese: 79 Ingredients,  490 calories, 37 grams of carbs, 30 grams of fat, and 1020 mg of sodium.  This comes in a little cup, I know because my youngest tricked me after a lacrosse game into taking her there and she came out with that.  I almost wrecked the car!

Mac N Cheese is a standard American comfort food.  We feed this to our small children, and couple selling macncheesecontinue eating it through adulthood.  Parents, this stuff is poison.  Don’t fool yourself by thinking that if your kids are slim, or don’t eat too much, or are very active, that a little bit of Mac N Cheese won’t hurt.  All food hurts or helps.  We build or destroy our health with every bite.  It honestly matters.

There’s more than just health to consider, there’s Habit Building.  We help our children build and form food and eating habits that last their entire life time.

Eating every single time a whim hits?  Life time habit.

Snack before bed?  Life time habit.

Just eating bread/carby/starchy/bland foods? Life time habit.

Barely eating vegetables? Life time habit.

Junk food for every movie/event/reward/?  Life time habit.

I could say it’ll catch up to them, but that’s false.  When you eat processed, chemical, high carb, hydrogenated oil filled foods, the effects are IMMEDIATE, even for kids. Just because the effects aren’t obvious to the eye doesn’t mean they aren’t happening.  When you quit thinking of food in terms of calories, and start giving a nutrient assessment to the food, and when you know what the “anti-nutrients” do (cancer, migraines, behavior /mood issues, skin problems, depression, auto-immune….)  it becomes more and more apparent that it really matters what we, and our children, put in our mouths.  Every bite either adds to our health, or detracts from it.  We build our health, or our lack of health, with our accumulated food choices through the years.

whenIgetthristyIonlydrinksimilacOne more interesting ingredient list, baby formula. Big Food is determined to hook us from the very beginning.  Similac Sensitive has 54 ingredients.  Here’s the top of the list:  Corn Syrup, Sugar, Maltodextrin, Milk Protein Isolate, Safflower Oil, Soy Oil, Coconut Oil, Galactooligosaccharides (SUGAR),  followed with more oils and Synthetic Vitamins and Minerals.  I fed a little formula when my kids were babies and never even thought to look at the ingredients.  Their advertising makes you think you’re feeding your baby Manna from Heaven; instead, you’re feeding them Corn Syrup, Sugars, Chemicals, and Omega 6 oils.  Honestly, I consider this stuff to be poison from the devil:  it makes us sick, weak, tired, and fat; yet like so much other food poison, it tastes delicious and triggers food addictions.

Read your ingredient lists, plan, shop, schedule a couple hours in your week to prep and power cook food in big batches, pack your lunch and **** start thinking of food in terms of Nutrients,… not Calories*****.    Eat Real Whole Foods.

You Can’t Lose Weight If You’re Hungry; and Gluten-Free

Cultured/Fermented Foods Workshop Friday, June 14th, 1pm. Info Here

im on a dietHave you ever correlated being hungry with losing weight?  Because I sure used to.  I remember in 11th grade, Mrs. Poland, who worked in the office at my highschool, told me that.  I completely and totally took that advice to heart, for about 35 years or so.  She was overweight, I didn’t have a pound to lose in 11th grade, but the impact was immediate.

Here’s the facts on being hungry:  it’s the surest way to SLOW DOWN YOUR THYROID, AND YOUR METABOLISM, that you could possibly find.  Being hungry – really hungry,  is a signal that your body isn’t getting the Nutrients it needs to rebuild, function, and thrive.  It means your brain’s not getting the proteins and minerals to build Serotonin and Dopamine, it means there isn’t enough fat to replenish the 60% fat that makes up your brain, it means that there’s not enough actual amino acids, fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals to replenish/rebuild the liver cells, the kidney cells, the heart cells, not enough to make more hormones (Every Single Hormone is composed of Cholesterol, or Fat, or Both), there’s not enough nutrients to rebuild/replenish your gut wall, or the collagen in your skin (Hello Wrinkles) or joints (Hello Stiff Joints).  I could go on and on, but get this:  Hunger Doesn’t Equal Weight Loss, Hunger Means Your Body will SLOW DOWN To Conserve The Energy It Needs to LIVE.

What if you’re eating ALL THE TIME, as in 5 or 6 “mini” meals a days, and you’re still hungry??

THEN YOU’RE EATING THE WRONG FOODS.  If that’s the case, you’re probably on the Diethungry:full:hungry Ferris Wheel, eating low cal/low fat nutrient deficient foods that leave you obsessing about the next meal and in a state of Metabolic Slow Down.  This isn’t the road to health, or healthy weight.  Even if you’re thin eating this way, the Nutrient Deficiencies will eventually get you: headaches, dry skin, bad joints, auto-immune conditions, poor immune system, and so on.

How should you eat?  Plenty of Real Whole Traditional Foods:  fats, proteins, tons of vegetables, some fruits, some nuts and seeds, some dairy – if you tolerate that stuff.

I have a page on my Site called What I’m Eating Today.

Here’s what I ate yesterday:

paul newman organic vanilla coffee with raw cream and stevia

I worked out, trained legs HARD, ran around w hubby and did a bunch of errands

lunch:  can of sardines w/greens/ whole big avocado/tomatoes/strawberries extravirginoliveoil/balsalmic,    with my chocolate-coconutbutter homemade treat

gardened for 2 hours, cleaned, made big dinner for a crowd

dinner:  lamb burger w/cheddar, big giant salad w/ oliveoil/vinegar /feta,  roasted potatoes (white and sweet) with roasted onions coated in butter and sea salt

When you eat this much fat and protein, you just don’t get hungry.  I can’t tell you how “freeing” it is to NOT FEEL HUNGRY.  To literally NOT think about food, even though I was highly active.
Here’s the Important Part:  Eating like this Does NOT make you gain weight.  If you need to lose weight, and you eat like this, YOU WILL.  You’ll be nourishing your body, giving it what it needs to rebuild, replenish, and fluorish.    That’s how you get healthy and lose weight (if you need to).

eating bagelLet’s look at a Looks Healthy But Isn’t:  Udi’s Gluten Free Cinnamon Raisin Bagel, Certified gluten free, 16g of whole grain per serving.  45 Grams Carb Per Bagel

Shelf life: approx 5 months  (Real Food Does NOT last this long)

Ingredients: Filtered water, brown rice flour, tapioca starch, sunflower oil, raisins, egg whites, potato starch, evaporated cane juice, tapioca maltodextrin, xanthan gum, tapioca syrup or brown rice syrup, yeast, salt, cinnamon, mold inhibitor (cultured corn syrup, citric acid), enzymes.

NINE sources of starch and sugar, an Omega 6 (inflammation), and chemicals.  This is just a crappy, processed food product that sends your Blood Sugar to the moon, causes inflammation and triglycerides, clogs your liver, and will digest SO QUICKLY, THAT YOU’LL BE STARVING IN AN HOUR OR TWO.   Does this sound like a good plan?  Ditch the diet mentality. It doesn’t work.   Eat Real Whole Food.