Much of the information you have been given about food over the last thirty years is quite simply incorrect.
Has it ever occurred to you that the diet you are doing is actually making you over weight? Over the years I have had a go at just about every plan on the market. Often, I had considered that the diet was a success but was it really if I always ended up overweight again?
It's now a good many years since I had a weight problem. Sure I've put on the odd pound or two but I have never reached the overweight stage again and I am going to share with you the information that can end you diet dilema.
I share this information with you willingly and for free because I am tired of people making money out of making you fat. I am going to explain to you why diets make you fat, how calorie counting cannot work, how your body works and explain what really constitutes a healthy diet etc
We have come to regard fat only in a negative light whereas once it was seen as a sign of wealth and success (and still is in some countries and a sign of beauty in others). Maybe that's because in our societies obesity has become prevalent amongst the not so wealthy and has losts its relative snob value. But storing fat is a survival tactic - it's just stored energy, that's all! And the ability to store fat would have been a considerable advantage for a hunter gatherer.
Now I know this may come as something of a surprise to some of you but there was a time when there were no shops. In our very early history everything we ate had to be caught or gathered. That meant that we ate a wide variety of plant-based foods that changed with the seasons. We only ate the meat and fish we could catch. The very process of getting our food meant we got exercise. It also meant we respected and valued our food.
Now I know you will hate me for saying this (and they will probably sue me so best not give names but you know who we are talking about) but their plans just don't work. And like many of my clients you will no doubt jump to their defence. "They do work, I lost 2 stone last time!" people say. But the important phrase is last time. And then I smile and ask, "And how much the time before, and the time before that ...." and their faces change as they realise, "You see they just don't work". In my experience most slimming club devotees have been through the process at least four times, each time losing weight only to quickly put it back on. And that's because the information they give you is simply wrong.
Did you know for example that the biggest and most famous slimming club has a 97% per cent failure rate. It's the most successful unsuccessful company ever. And many Boot Camps have people exercising without insisting that they drink enough water so their weight loss is owing largely to severe dehydration (water is heavy stuff).
And even when you do lose weight with slimming clubs you tend to end up fat thin. You may be smaller in size but the remaining flesh is adipose tissue rather than lean. This is because many of the plans actually make your body burn the lean tissue. It's the reason why weight gain can be quite rapid. Lean tissue is like putting aturbo charger on your cr, it makes your body burn more fuel. If your body has lost lean tissue (and adipose tissue does not use energy) then it just starts to store energy again.
Most diets fail because they are based on bad information that ignore how your body works and what it needs to achieve and maintain a healthy weight. So lets move on to busting some myths.
Myth 1- Fat is Bad
Not true. Now some fat is bad and some is good but you may be surprised that it's not the ones you think that are bad for you. Fat, including saturated fat and cholesterol, is vitally important to good health and it should make up around 30% of your diet. The fat you choose should depend on what you are using it for.
Cooking at High Temperature: Extra Virgin Coconut Oil, Cold Pressed Rice Bran Oil, dripping*, lard*, Cold Pressed Rape Seed Oil
Sauteing: Butter, Extra Virgin Coconut Oil, Cold Pressed Rice Bran Oil, Cold Pressed Rape Seed Oil, Olive Oil
Salad Dressings: Cold Pressed Nut Oils, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Hemp Oil
For the full low down on fats and their importance in for health, wellbeing and weight loss read the section on fat in my Blog Youth, Health & Vitality
Myth 2: Low Fat Products Will Help You To Lose Weight
Personally, it is my opinion that low fat products have made a massive contribution to the current obesity issues in this country. Low fat invariably means:
- High Sugar/carb
- Low Nutrient Content
- Low or no fibre content
- Lots of nasty additives
- Don't satisfy your appetite
When you consume foods with a high sugar content, little or no fat and little or no fibre, the sugars are released very rapidly into your blood stream. High blood sugar levels are very dangerous so your body then releases insulin to mop up the sugars and bring your blood sugar levels back within safe levels. Some of the sugars are stored for short-term energy requirements in your body tissue and the rest is converted into fat for storage. A side effect of this process is that your blood sugar levels will then drop along with your energy levels which is likely to make you reach for stimulants and refined carbohydrates.
Myth 3: Diet Drinks Are a Useful Part of Any Weight Loss Programme
Diet drinks are an absolute disaster. They rob your body of vitamins and minerals, make you crave sugar, and recent studies have found that people who drink diet pop consume more calories than people who don't. They also make you think you have had a drink, which you haven't so lead to chronic dehydration. So to summarise, diet pops:
- robs your body of vitamins and minerals
- make your body very acidic (and acidity makes your body hang onto fat to buffer against the damaging acid)
- make you crave sugar
- make you eat more
- destroy your digestion
- make you bloated
- make you dehydrated
- aspartame has been linked to cancers, increased risk of cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, diabetes etc
- aspartame has also been linked to MS, Lupus and other autoimmune conditions
In addition a study completed in Japan last year (they tracked 20,000 people's diet and health for 18 years) found that women who drank fizzy drinks raised their likelihood of having a stroke by 83%.
Myth 4: Calorie counting is a good way to lose weight
Calorie counting is a very ineffective way of losing weight and has several disadvantages:
- All calories are not equal (100 grams of chocolate will have a very different effect on your body to 100 grams worth of dates even though they may have a similar calorie count)
- Calorie counting encourages people to cut down on high calorie foods such as protein sources and fats which actually help to satisfy your appetite and don't cause an insulin response
- Weighing portions and counting calories is tedious and makes you feel deprived
Myth 5: Eating lots of pasta, rice, jacket potatoes etc will really help you to lose weight
Whilst counting calories is not particularly useful, keeping an eye on how much carbohydrate you consume is very useful. How much carbohydrate is contained in a food tells you how much energy that food will deliver. If you consume more energy than you expend you will store the excess as fat (which we have already established is stored energy).
Before everyone had cars, central heating, labour saving domestic devices etc, people had a much higher requirement for carbohydrate in their diet, in fact they needed more food all round. With our modern, relatively sedentary lives, we need much less carbohydrate. We can in fact get all the carbohydrate we need from vegetables and fruit together with an abundance of vitamins, minerals and other beneficial nutrients. When trying to lose weight you should only consume very small amounts of complex carbohydrate in the form of brown rice, wholemeal bread, whole grain pasta and the bulk of your carb intake should come from vegetables and fruit. That way your body will get the energy, vitamins and minerals it needs without the excess energy which needs to be stored. Make sense?
People who eat a diet which is heavy in refined carbohydrates are liekly to overeat as a result of their roller coasting blood sugar levels and their body constantly looking for nutrients. If you feed your body rubbish then it will press you for more because it needs nourishment.
1. Get Hydrated - poor hydration impairs digestion, puts an unnecessary load on your liver (which is the organ that draws fat out of fat stores), impairs your memory and cognitive functions, robs you of energy, makes you constipated etc. You need 35mls of pure, clean water per kg of body weight plus an extra half litre to repay your hydration debt. It can take up to a year to get fully hydrated on a cellular level. You can read more about the effects and dangers of dehydration on my blog Youth, Health & Vitality The Importance of Good Hydration and How To Get Hydrated
2. Check Your Stomach Acid - If your stomach acid is low you could be prone to:
- Malabsorption of nutrients
To check your stomach acid levels you need some bicarbonate of soda. Put a heaped teaspoon of bicarb in a small glass of water, stir briskly and drink - do this first thing in the morning before you eat or drink anything. If you are not burping your head off in 5 minutes then your stomach acid is low and you would benefit from taking a digestive enzyme supplement such as my Well Digested or Go Daily. You can also use organic apple cider vinegar to boost digestion either taking a tablespoon in water half an hour before a meal or using the vinegar in dressings for salad. Being well hydrated will also improve digestion.
3. If you are constipated then get your bowels working - Colonic Irrigation is an amazing therapy for getting you going. Read more about colonic irrigation. Colonics make you feel great, flatten your tummy and make you feel leaner, cleaner and lighter immediately. Using Go Daily either in conjunction with colonics or alone is very effective (along with drinking more water) and has ingredients that actively assist weightloss. Clients have lost 6-7lbs over several weeks just by starting to take Go Daily and that was before the specific weight loss ingredients were added.
You can also achieve similar result using one of my colon cleansers. My favourite is Oxy but there are several to choose from.
4. Consider Having a Food Sensitivity Test - When I did my elimination diet after having a food sensitivity test years ago, I lost 24lbs in the first month despite eating way more food. If you have found it difficult to lose weight even when you know you are eating healthy foods it could make a big difference.
5. Consider Asking Your Doctor to Check Your Thyroid Function - If you have several of the following symptoms it's definitely worth getting tested:
- Tired all the time
- Can't be bothered
- Weight gain whilst not eating much
- Unable to lose weight
- Feeling cold
- Dry and/or pale skin
- Coarse thinning hair
- Loss of eyebrow hair on the outer half
- Weak and sore muscles and/or joints
- A hoarse, croaky or deeper voice
- Puffy eyes
- Memory loss and poor concentration
- Heavy, irregular or prolonged periods
- Tingling in hands and arms
- Low sex drive
- Slow heart rate
- Yeast Overgrowth
- Enlarged thyroid (can look like a bow tie shape on your throat)
- People with coeliac disease are prone to under active thyroid
All these symptoms can be caused by other issues but if you are suffering from a selection of them it's worth getting tested. And when you have a test ask your doctor for the scores. The USA have very different measuresments to determine whether your thyroid is low or not. Often people in the UK are told their thyroid function is fine when in the USA they would have been diagnosed as having an underactive thyroid. I then recommend speaking to Simon at Bronze Age Nutrition in Scarborough on 01723 501444. I found him to be very helpful and he knows his stuff when it comes to the thyroid.
6. Start Supplementing with EFAs - Essential Fatty Acids are called so because our bodies cannot make them and we need to get them through diet. Unfortunately the modern diet is very unbalanced and most people are short of EFAs. You can get EFAs from a variety of sources including oily fish, nuts and seeds etc but it's difficult to get enough so it's worth supplementing initially. The benefits according to Udo Erasmus are:
- Increased Energy: Omega oils increase oxidation rate, increase metabolic rate, increase energy levels and increase stamina.
Weight Loss: Increased metabolic rate means that we burn more fat. Helps kidneys dump excess water held in tissues. Help decrease cravings, lower glycaemic index of foods and suppress appetite.
- Cardiovascular Disease Prevention: Consumption of EFAs may prevent heart attacks and also reduce risk of sudden death due to cardiac arrythmias. Omega oils have a number of heart-healthy effects, including reducing triglyceride levels, raising levels of HDL (“good”) cholesterol and reducing blood pressure.
- Decrease in Symptoms of Inflammatory Diseases such as Arthritis: Omega oils are successful in the treatment of symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis particularly in its early stages. EFAs are also very useful in the treatment of PMS (and related cramps) and inflammatory bowel disease.
- Strengthened Immune System: Omega oils can make hormone-like eicosanoids that regulate immune and inflammatory responses. Omega 3 has anti-inflammatory effects and can slow autoimmune damage
- Improved Brain Function: The brain is over 60% fat and omega oils are vital components of our nervous system. They are needed to make the neurotransmitter serotonin. Depression and other brain diseases show decreased levels of omega 3
- Increased Recovery and Healing Capabilities: Omega oils are necessary for cell growth and division. They form all cell membranes and regulate vital cell activity
- Healthy development of Infants: For nervous system development, a growing child needs optimum omega 3 fatty acids.
- Decreased Possibility of Infection: Omega oils have anti-fungal, anti-yeast, and anti-microbial properties, helping to protect against infections
- Stronger Bones: EFAs aid in the transport of minerals that keep bones and teeth strong, helping to prevent osteoporosis
- Protected Genetic Material: EFAs regulate gene expression, and omega 3′s inhibit tumor growth
- Reduced PMS Symptoms: Studies indicate that omega 6 intake was voted, by women, among the top three most effective PMS treatments. Omega 3 may be even more effective
- Clearer Skin, Stronger Nails, Shinier Hair: EFA deficiency often leads to dry, flaky skin, weak hair, and brittle nails.
There are lots more benefits, in fact healthy EFA intake benefits just about every part of your body. Beware of the cheaper supplements (such as those in the supermarket) that can have high levels of mercury contamination. There are two options available on my website Omega 3-6-9 and Antarctic Krill
7. Make a list of the benefits of losing weight - get clear about what you want to achieve. My biggest motivator was when I was going to live in India for a year and knew I would be spending a lot of time on the beach and in my bikini. I wanted to feel carefree and comfortable and it worked a treat. Visualise yourself in the situations you desire. Visualisation can be very powerful tool.
Once upon a time people had pantries and store cupboards with lots of ingredients so they could always make tasty meals. Tasty satisfying meals are the key to losing weight easily. Here is a list of ingredients that can be useful to make your meals tasty and interesting:
Salad for Lunch - Have some of these ingredients in your store cupboard
- Olives (have a look at http://www.olivesetal.co.uk for high quality, good value olives with no nasty additives)
- Nuts and seeds
- Caper berries
- Baby gherkins
- Pickled walnuts
- Sunblush tomatoes (or slow roast a batch of your own)
- Pine kernels
- Jars of artichokes, roasted peppers etc
- Seeds, beans etc for sprouting
- A variety of cold pressed nut oils for dressings such as
Work in progress please check back - should be finished this week.