“Eat Less, Move More” is a RESULT, Not a Method. 

Not only is this common adage laughingly simplistic and misguided, but it is ill-conceived. “Eat less, move more” should never be recommended as a method for weight loss, but rather, recognized as the result of a well executed lifestyle change.

This flawed mantra has been parroted by doctors, nutritionists and fitness trainers for nearly 50 years as if it were nothing short of common sense. But yet our nations obesity statistics have continued to climb for the past 50 years. The notion that weight loss is as simple as “eating less and moving more” is just shy of offensive to someone who struggles with obesity.  Would you tell  someone who doesn’t know how to swim to “drown less and swim more“?

FB.com/BodyForWife

“Eat less, move more”, given as advice for weight loss, comes with it a condescending undertone of blame. The mere accusation that such a complicated problem can be solved so simplistically is nothing short of reprehensible to a person who has been struggling for years with their weight. Look around you, 2 of every 3 Americans are overweight, 1 out of 3 are obese. If it were really that simple, wouldn’t you think we’d have figured all of this out by now? To a person who’s struggling with obesity, “eat less, move more” is passive-aggressively shaming and counter-productive.

Eat Less“…  (Calorie Restriction)

Not an effective METHOD for sustainable weight loss

The implication that an overweight person simply eats too much food is a complete falsehood. The old disproven “calories in vs. calories out” model of weight loss simply doesn’t work and does not account for the differing hormonal effects of varying macronutrients. It is much more likely that an overweight person has eaten too much of the wrong kinds of foods and unfortunately, due to misguided nutritional advise given out by most healthcare providers, they don’t even know what the wrong kinds of foods are. It’s also probable that this eating pattern/behavior has gone on over an extended period of time, often decades. Obesity is a slow, degenerative, metabolic process of gradually increasing degrees of insulin resistance. No one just wakes up one day to discover that they are obese. The simplistic “eat less, move more = weight loss” was conceived under the notion that all calories behave the same in our bodies. Meaning that a simple reduction in caloric intake, coupled with an increase in exercise output should result in weight loss. Believers in this naïve philosophy like to parrot the first law of thermodynamics that states “Energy can not be created or destroyed …”

“Energy cannot be created or destroyed. It can only be converted from one form to another”

The problem is, there are two parts to this statement. They hang their hat on the first part, and collectively ignore the second: “… it can only be converted from one form to another.” Let’s make this as simple as it was intended to be …

Do you want your fuel to be converted into stored fat, or do you want it to be converted into energy that your body actually uses? Meaning kenetic energy instead of potential energy. That being said, the hormonal theory of weight gain/loss does NOT imply an exception to the first law of thermodynamics, it actually confirms it.

Caloric Reduction as Primary, or C.R.A.P., for short, is a term pinned by Dr. Jason Fung and his Intensive Dietary Management team. The (above) graphic from their website best illustrates the broad-strokes of my point. 

 The subject of Calorie Restriction is an in-depth topic for which entire books have been written.  The following resources provide an extensive, thorough explanation that is complete with references: 

Calories: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6 

… “Move More”   (Exercise)

Not an effective METHOD for sustainable weight loss

The implication that an overweight person can reverse their obesity by simply exercising more is also false.

This effective celebrity fitness trainer/nutritionist and author of “Fitness Confidential” has been preaching this for years

Especially in the context of a low-fat, calorie restrictive (“eat less”) diet. Though the benefits of exercise are numerous and should always be encouraged, weight loss is not amongst those many benefits. Perhaps in the short term, one might experience some success. But long periods of calorie restriction will slow the metabolism, rendering excessive exercise less and less effective towards ones efforts at weight loss. Our bodies are constantly seeking a state of homeostasis. If you deprive your body of the proper* fuel for extended amounts of time, while simultaneously accelerating exercise, the metabolism will slow down to compensate. (This is why 90% of the contestants on “The Biggest Loser” gained most all of their weight back.)

 Here’s another rabbit hole down which you can climb. Linked below are a couple of research studies substantiating the ineffectiveness of exercise as it pertains to weight loss:

Exercise: Study 1, Study 2, Article 1, Article 2

Food vs Exercise as a 50/50 Acquisition:

Not an effective METHOD for sustainable weight loss

So now, in our collective societal wisdom, we have coupled 2 ineffective weightloss methods together in the assumption that when executed simultaneously they will somehow magically become effective? Then, to add insult to irony, we allow the eating of unhealthy foods to be a reward for excessive exercise. In fact, a majority of people still believe that exercise is far more important to the equation of weight loss than it actually is. 

Here are some great quotes from Dr. Jason Fung, Canadian Physician and Author of “The Obesity Code” to better illustrate my point:

“Consider this baseball analogy. Bunting is an important technique, but accounts for only perhaps 5% of the game. The other 95% revolves around hitting, pitching and fielding. So it would be ridiculous to spend 50% of our time practicing the bunt. Or, what if we were facing a test that is 95% math and 5% spelling? Would we spend 50% of our time studying spelling?”

“The benefit of exercise has a natural upper limit. You cannot make up for dietary indiscretions by increasing exercise. You can’t out run a poor diet. Furthermore, more exercise is not always better. Exercise represents a stress on the body. Small amounts are beneficial, but excessive amounts are detrimental.”

“We are writing a final examination called obesity 101. Diet accounts for 95% of the grade and exercise for only 5%. Yet we spend 50% of our time and energy studying exercise. It is no wonder that our current grade is F – for Fat.”


Stop the Madness!    (The Vicious Cycle)

When your diet consists of predominately carbohydrates, a vicious cycle begins. The glucose from carb consumption will quickly set this cycle in motion, as glucose is a very short-lived fuel. The presence of glucose will trigger several hormones into action, and deliver a dopamine reaction to the pleasure centers of your brain. The hormone insulin is released in an effort to lower your blood sugar. Some of the glucose will be used to fuel your body, but the excess will be stored away in your fat cells. This happens relatively quickly and as your blood glucose levels plummet, the hormone ghrelin is released to tell you that you are hungry again. Leptin, the hormone that would normally trigger a feeling of satisfaction and communicate to your body that you are full, is stifled in the presence of excess carbohydrates. Thus, setting in motion a vicious cycle, the broad strokes of which are illustrated here:


Now for the Good News!  (Flip it & Reverse it)

There is an alternate fuel source! … and it’s from a source that your body was designed to use … your own body fat. That’s right, you can train your metabolism to utilize fat as a source of energy.  The notion that eating dietary fat actually equates to “getting fat” is a complete farce. In fact, healthy dietary fats are much more satiating than carbohydrates, and they do not initiate an insulin response that prompts the storage of fat. When you deprive your body of carbohydrates, your liver starts releasing ketone bodies. These ketones are a far more efficient fuel source, they don’t inhibit the hormone leptin, therefore your body feels satiated for longer amounts of time. Intermittent fasting becomes a natural and effortless progression and ultimately “eating less” becomes the result. Fueling your body with ketones increases your metabolism and provides in upwards of 40% more energy than glucose metabolism, thus allowing you to “move more.” 

You can bring this endless cycle of sugar/carb addiction to a screeching halt by simply optimizing your metabolism. Click here to learn more about this process and consider purchasing “The Art and Science of Low-Carb Living” by Drs. Phinney & Volek, which has become the nutritional industry standard for formulating a therapeutic ketogenic diet. 

Weight loss is only a pleasant side effect of this lifestyle change. Beyond the results of “eating less and moving more,” a well formulated ketogenic diet has been proven to be a beneficial therapy for dozens of metabolic diseases, such as diabetes, metabolic syndrome, PCOS, epilepsy, Alzheimer’s disease and several auto-immune disorders. For even metabolically heathy individuals, this anti-inflammatory diet change can benefit mental clarity, energy levels and overall wellbeing, stunting elements of the degenerative aging process and staving off future illness. 

For decades, nutritionists, doctors and healthcare providers have been taught that glucose is a necessity for brain function. That is emphatically true. Because of this fact, carbohydrates have been touted for years as a necessary, and vitally important macronutrient. This all seems very logical, until you consider the process of gluconeogenesis. Gluconeogenesis is a natural process in which your body can convert protein into glucose. This process provides more than enough fuel for brain function. That’s right, your brain needs glucose …but you don’t have to eat it! Turns out, dietary carbohydrate consumption is not as important as once thought. 

Dietitians and other health care professionals often mistake the word ketosis for the word ketoacidosis simply because they have the same root word keto. Both words represent metabolic states, but that is all they have in common. Ketosis is a natural metabolic process (described above), while Diabetic Ketoacidosis is a metabolic abnormality that is very dangerous and is usually suffered by type one diabetics that have the inability to produce the hormone insulin. 

I invite you to visit (HERE) to discover the research behind many of the myths surrounding  low carbohydrate lifestyles. 

For the latest videos & articles pertaining to optimal health & ketogenic nutrition, as well as encouragement, advice & great ketogenic/low carb Recipes (updated several times daily). Whether you are Keto, LCHF, Paleo, Atkins, Banting, Low-Carb or Zero Carb … everyone’s welcome in the Facebook Group: WELCOME TO KETO COUNTRY

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Ghosts Of Diets Past, Present and Future

It always makes me laugh whenever someone refers to eating a low-carb diet as a “fad”.  Be it LCHF, Ketogenic, Paleo, Banting, Atkins or whatever trendy name you want to call it, human beings have been nourishing their bodies with animal fats/proteins and vegetables since the beginning of their existence.  Over the vast scope of time, humans in general, have always been carnivores/omnivores, feasting on hunted meats, gathered vegetables and the occasional seasonal fruit.


In fact, if one were to measure human history by the scale of a 24-hour clock:

  • Refined carbohydrates were introduced to our diet a mere 5 seconds ago.
  • The dietary advice to eat low-fat for optimal health, only 2 seconds ago.

Perhaps these short sighted individuals should reexamine the definition of the word “fad”

What has happened since we have adopted this new “low-fat fad”?  A global insurgence of metabolic disease, all in different stages of epidemiological development, all with the same root cause.  Certainly heart disease remains the number one cause of death in the U.S., but could obesity, diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease all be related to this defective dietary advice as well?  Many Doctors and nutritional research scientists believe this to be a fact. And the root cause is S.A.D. “The Standard American Diet.”


As far back as the 1800s our country was on the right path in regards to the treatment of obesity.  Back in 1825 Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin published The Physiology of Taste in which he said “The second of the chief causes of obesity is the floury and starchy substances which man makes the prime ingredients of his daily nourishment.”

In 1863 William Banting published his Letter on Corpulence, Addressed to the Public.  This pamphlet was considered by many to be the worlds first diet book.  Banting believed that weight gain resulted from eating too many “fattening carbohydrates.”  In fact, for most of the 1800s and into the early to mid 1900s, diets low in refined carbohydrates were accepted as the standard treatment for obesity.  (By the 1950s it was considered to be standard advice.)

“Rich desserts can be omitted without risk, and should be, by anyone who is obese and trying to reduce. The amount of plain, starchy foods (cereals, breads, potatoes) taken is what determines… how much (weight) they gain or lose.”

Dr. Benjamin Spock 1946

Notice the dietary advice to combat obesity in this short video clip from 1958

In the early 1900s the “calorie counting” philosophy was spawned by the publication of Eat Your Way To Health written by Dr. Robert Hugh Rose and then further expanded upon by Dr. Lulu Hunt Peters in her book entitled Diet and Health, With Key to the Calories.  This began the debate as to the value of the calorie dense saturated fats.  But still, the majority of the scientific community at the time, was still certain of the detriment of refined carbohydrates and sugar as the culprit in obesity.  In 1972, John Yudkin’s published PureWhite and Deadly: How Sugar is Killing Us and further educated the medical community of the evils of sugar and its affects on our collective health.  Dr. Robert Atkins’ famous Diet Revolution was published later in that same year and became one of the fastest selling diet books in history.

But then, the tables started to turn. In response to the popularity of Dr. Atkins book, in 1973 the American Medical Association’s counsel on foods and nutrition published a blistering attack on Dr. Atkins’ ideas.

Dr. Ancel Keys

Many physicians had developed the unfounded belief that the high fat content of the diet would lead to heart attacks and strokes solely based on the 7 Countries Study conducted by Dr. Ancel Keys.  Unbeknownst to scientists at the time, this study was not only inaccurate, but its conclusions were derived in a manner that should have prevented its publication in the first place.

George McGovern

By 1977, bad science had officially invaded the mainstream and the demonization of “dietary fat” took hold.  The debate was settled, not as a result of scientific discovery, but by a governmental decree. George McGovern’s Select Committee on Nutrition and Human needs declared The Dietary Goals for the United States.  Thus requiring that the “low-fat” model for healthy eating become an official guideline for doctors, and medical professionals to follow, recommend and prescribe.

Keep in mind, there are but 3 macro-nutrients: fats, proteins and carbohydrates.  Everything that we eat falls into one or a combination of these 3 categories.  Food companies were faced with the challenge of removing the fat.  In order to adhere to these new dietary guidelines, they had to replace the fats with either protein or carbohydrates.  Being that many sources of protein are also rich in fat, adding refined carbohydrates became the only solution, and of course adding sugar for taste.  Then came the chemical nightmare of changing from real butter, lard and healthy oils to the unstable, toxic molecules of hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated oils.


Here we sit, 4 decades later amidst a disaster.  These guidelines changed not only the way Americans ate, but changed the way Americans thought as well.  Over the course of these past 40 years we have collectively sat back and watched as heart-disease, cancer, obesity, diabetes and dementia has trended upwards to epic proportions.  Believe it or not, to this day, a majority of doctors and health professionals will continue to substantiate this bad science in spite of its 4 decades of detrimental results and failure.

The New/Old Truth:

We now know that insulin is the hormone most responsible for triggering fat storage.  Refined carbohydrates (sugars) is the macro-nutrient most responsible for spiking insulin and glucose levels in our bodies. The ritualistic ingestion of these high glycemic foods over the course of years cause obesity.  Furthermore, this continued pattern of eating can also lead to the development of insulin resistance and a diagnosis of type 2 diabetes.  In this past decade, it has come to light that this same insulin resistance can begin to take hold in the brain, leading to what many scientists are calling “Type 3 diabetes” or as its been referred to in the past, “Alzheimer’s Disease”. 

Let’s look at some stats: 

The Big Picture

Epidemic # 1 Obesity

Obesity started trending upwards in the 1970s.  In the 1970s only 1 in every 10 Americans were obese. Today it has progressed to 1 in every 3.  Obesity is projected to trend up to 1 in 2 Americans by the year 2030.

20 year later … Epidemic #2 Diabetes

Diabetes statistics start trending upwards in the 1990s.  In the 1990s, diabetes effected 3% of the population, today it effects 10%. Diabetes is projected to effect 1 in every 3 Americans by the year 2050.


20 years later …

Epidemic #3 Alzheimer’s Disease 

The data on Alzheimer’s disease started trending upwards in the 2010s and has just started its statistical upswing.  See the chart below for current projections:

This has been a very simplified overview of the bastardization of the American diet, but solely for the purpose of brevity and sharing.  And yes, I am aware that the U.S. Dietary guidelines have been altered a bit since their inception, but not by much, not by near enough.  Recently these guidelines have been changed a bit towards taking the stigma away from cholesterol and by the addition of a reduction in “added sugars.”  But the baseline problem is STILL the adherence to the continued demonization of healthy dietary fats and the recommendations of a low-fat diet for optimal health. (To learn more about optimizing your metabolism with proper nutrition Click Here)

In this day and age, everyone has the power of the internet at their fingertips.  It is no longer necessary to simply place blind trust in the “old wives tales” parroted throughout your youth.  With resources like Google Scholar and PubMed, the truth behind the many myths of modern nutrition are merely a few thumb strokes away.  Gone are the days that Oprah Winfrey, Dr. Oz and your local news anchor wield the same influence that they once did.  The current political climate has made most Americans distinctly aware of the reality of “fake news” and the abundance of resource information that is propagated by the corporate influence of the food, agriculture and pharmaceutical industries.

                 Small Victories = inspire CHANGE

Dr. Salim Yusuf is a world renowned cardiologist and epidemiologist.  He is the Marion W. Burke Chair in Cardiovascular Disease at McMaster University Medical School and the current President of the World Heart Federation.   Last month Dr. Yusuf publicly denounced the current dogma regarding the causes of cardiovascular disease in an effort to inspire change in the guideline treatment of this most prevalent illness.  (To watch, Click Here)

Yoshinori Ohsumi, is a Japanese Biologist that was recently awarded the Nobel Prize in 2016 for advancing the knowledge of cellular autophagy.  Thus, further spotlighting and legitimizing the science behind the detoxifying benefits of intermittent fasting, a state that happens naturally with a well formulated low-carb/high-fat ketogenic dietary lifestyle. (To learn more, Click Here) 

Almost two years ago, the FDA implemented a three year phase out program to rid the American diet of trans fats by June of 2018.  “It’s about time,” says Dr. Fred Kummerow who was instrumental in discovering the correlation between trans fats and heart disease way back in 1957!  Since then, heart disease has become the # 1 killer of men and women in the United States.  Dr. Kummerow, who will be 103 years of age this October, and has made this battle his life’s work. My hope is that he gets a chance to see this process through to completion. (To learn more, Click Here)

On May 20, 2016 the FDA finalized the new Nutrition Facts label for packaged foods.  Among some other minor changes, the FDA is requiring food manufacturers to identify all “added sugars” in food products.  Previously, these added sugars were lumped in with the “Total Carbohydrates” section of the label, and only naturally occurring sugars were identified.  “Total Sugars,” in the past, have included added sugars, but this new label will expose those added sugars on an additional section of the label.  Manufacturers will need to implement this new label by July 26, 2018. However, manufacturers with less than $10 million in annual food sales will have an additional year to comply. (To learn more, Click Here)

Professor Timothy Noakes has been accused of “unprofessional conduct” by the Health Professions Council of South Africa for a comment he made on social media.  As ridiculous as that sounds (and it is ridiculous), Dr. Noakes has taken this opportunity to educate the world during his depositions by thoroughly explaining the detriment of the current “low fat” dietary guidelines and the benefits of low-carb/high-fat dietary intervention.  Regardless of the outcome of this frivolous trial, Professor Noakes’ testimony is so organized and thorough that it could easily be formatted into a text book to benefit the education of past, present and future nutrition professionals.  Here is a link to the videos of his testimony in its entirety (Click Here).  Professor Noakes has also mapped out a therapeutic approach for doctors to utilize in the treatment of the metabolic diseases caused by the current inadequate dietary guidelines. (Click Here)

Nutritional Warriors:

In the past decade there has been an insurgence of passionate leadership in the world of nutrition. Be it through the authorship of best selling books, the infiltration of mainstream media or simply tireless support and education on social media. These nutritional “Warriors” have been relentless in providing resources, education and motivation to a hopeful but misguided public.  The list of passionate communicators grows longer with each passing day. The truth is out there.

These are the individuals that have inspired me on my journey back to good health: 


For the latest articles from around the world that pertain to optimal health and ketogenic nutrition, as well as encouragement, advise, video lectures and the tastiest of ketogenic/low-carb recipes …Everyone’s Welcome in the Facebook Group:    

WELCOME TO KETO COUNTRY



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Medicine is NOT Healthcare, Food is. 

Are We Addressing The Root Cause, Or Just Treating The Symptoms?

No offense Thomas Edison, but were you ever wrong! Or could it be that this prediction has simply not yet come to fruition.  One can hope for the latter.  At this point in history though, not only do doctors give out medicine, but it has become the absolute BIGGEST of big business.  Talk about a growth industry,  as the population gets progressively sicker, the healthcare industry is exploding into a billion dollar per day nightmare.  This is an epidemic that still continues to trend upward, largely due to the fact that doctors (in general) do not seek to treat the Root Cause of metabolic diseases.

The United States spends more than any other country on healthcare.  Per capita, the U.S. spends more than twice the average of other developed countries.  Unfortunately, we are not getting what we are paying for, when you consider that we are only the seventeenth healthiest country (according to 2016 statistics).  This begs the question, are we addressing the cause of our health problems or merely treating the symptoms with inordinately expensive drugs?


Consider this: did you wake up one morning overweight, or with arthritis, diabetes, heart disease, irritable bowel, osteoporosis, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, or any of a number of other health issues?  Or did these problems begin to develop over time as a result of annoying little sympoms?

Aside from annual checkups, most folks seek help from their doctor for a particular purpose, makes perfect sense, you have a symptom and you want it alleviated.  That annoying cough, that throbbing pain, that “It hurts when I do this …”  and we expect our physician to give us something to make us feel better.  A quick fix in the form of a medication.  Not that there is anything wrong with that, it’s just what we’ve come to expect.  After all, that is what most doctors do, they medicate symptoms.  Wham bam, in and out …and in many cases, that is enough.  But when it comes to a situation that has become chronic, perhaps medicating a symptom isn’t the solution. 

Indulge me this common scenario: 

A patient presents with a fever and cough.  After further investigation, it’s discovered that a bronchial infection is the diagnosis.  The patient is prescribed an antibiotic and a cough suppressant.  The patient takes the prescribed medications for the suggested amount of time and eventually the symptoms are alleviated.  Victory.  This treatment was effective because it addressed the Root Cause of the symptoms.  Does this patient then return to the doctor to get more medication to stave off the return of his symptoms?  Of course not.  That would be ridiculous, as the problem has been solved.

Why then can’t we seem to apply this same logic to other common symptoms like high blood pressure, or high blood sugar, or joint pain, or acid reflux, or high triglycerides (yada, yada, etc. etc.)?  The answer is simple.  Because the common medicinal treatments for these symptoms are NOT addressing the Root Cause.


To what end?

Why are we so quick to just accept the notion that some diagnoses require the use of medications for the rest of our lives?  Why are we not seeking to address the actual reason that our blood pressure (or blood sugar, or triglycerides, etc.) is high?  Why do we take such solace in the idea that “all will be well” as long as we keep taking this magic little pill.  Don’t get me wrong, I understand the need for medications, but is there no end game?  Should the goal not be to eventually discontinue the medication?  You know, actually fix the problem.  I mean, if this medication actually has any kind of healing properties, there should most definitely be an end to this, right?  Well, apparently not. Across this great country of ours people are waking up to a breakfast that looks a lot like this:

Peeling the onion …

Remember, your doctor is busy and spends an average of 10 -12 minutes with you during an average visit.  If you are not an advocate for yourself, it is likely that no one will be.  Ask questions until you feel that you have an understanding of what kinds of things could cause the symptoms you are experiencing.  Follow up that question with another and another so you will know what topics to research and educate yourself about.


The first set of questions you should ask your health care provider when given a prescription for a medication is “are these drugs going to make my body stronger and healthier?  Are they addressing the root cause of the problem, or do they only merely address a symptom?”  Most prescribed medications only treat a symptom.  They rarely help strengthen your body, immune system, heart, joints, intestines, liver, kidneys, etc.

  • Are cholesterol lowering drugs and blood pressure medications helping your heart, or are they just lowering the markers we measure that tell us our cardiovascular system is in jeopardy?
  • Are the acid blockers and antiacids fixing your digestive system, or are they just reducing the gastro intestinal pain?
  • Are pain medications for arthritis, joint pain, or fibromyalgia fixing the problem, or are they only disrupting the pain signals your body is sending?
  • Are hormone replacement drugs balancing out the imbalance by adding hormones, or addressing what’s causing the imbalance so you don’t need to take the hormones?

Remember, drugs have side effects.  Some can cause serious problems, problems that are far worse than the symptom you originally presented with.


Seeking Root Cause …

This is where I explain that your body is like a car … because I can’t think of a better example to illustrate diagnostics:

The human body is however similar to a car in that it gives you signals, little warnings that something isn’t right.  It seems like most people do a better job of responding to the signals their car gives them than their body.  Unfortunately our bodies don’t have warning lights, but they do exhibit symptoms.  Symptoms like fatigue, indigestion, cravings, headaches, elevated cholesterol, and blood sugar are nothing more than signals that let us know that something isn’t functioning properly.  It’s our job to address what is causing those problems.  If we don’t, those simple annoying problems could grow and be at the root of your major health complaint.  This graphic illustrates the “5 Whys” method of Root Cause Analysis:

Some prefer a thought map similar to this one to help guide them to the discovery of Root Cause:

Here are some ideas to help develope the thought process for Root Cause Analysis in the context of some common symptoms:

  • All of those digestive problems (bloating, gas, reflux, heartburn) are telling us our digestive system isn’t functioning properly. This can lead to poor absorption of nutrients and even deficiencies. How can you expect your body to overcome any ailment or re-build itself if the food and nutrients aren’t absorbed?
  • If fatigue is your problem, could your hormones be so out of whack that it throws your metabolism off?
  • How about cravings?  Are we eating the wrong foods, too many carbs and not enough good protein and healthy fats?  Either way, it throws our blood sugar off and leads to moodiness, irritability, inability to concentrate and focus, and is a prime cause for adult ADD/ADHD.
  • Don’t assume that blood sugar problems only cause diabetes. That is a huge mistake and one of the biggest reasons traditional medicine hasn’t been able to help the chronic and degenerative problems (fatigue, weight gain, arthritis, diabetes, heart disease, depression, hot flashes, PMS, nightsweats) our nation faces. They are not addressing the true cause.
  • Blood sugar imbalances and insulin resistance can put additional stress on your adrenal glands, which cause an overproduction of the stress hormones, cortisol and adrenaline. This also contributes to weight gain and fatigue. In addition, it throws our reproductive hormones (estrogen,progesterone, and testosterone) out of balance. Blood sugar imbalances also cause high blood pressure and elevated triglycerides, which eventually can lead to high cholesterol.
  • Even conditions such as arthritis, heart disease, and fibromyalgia can be a result of inflammation. The best way to overcome inflammation is with a good diet. The body makes its own natural ‘anti-inflammatory drugs’ if we feed it the right foods. For example, the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish, fish oils, olive oil, nuts, and seeds can dramatically decrease inflammation. Conversely, trans fats will trigger inflammation. 

Just keep learning and asking:


Alway start with the basics…

If you’re struggling with any chronic or degenerative condition, you need to make sure your digestive and elimination systems are functioning properly.  Are you keeping your blood sugar stable?  Are your stress hormones out of balance?  Is your metabolism functioning properly?  These are the most basic questions that need to be answered when dealing with any health challenge.  Too often we skip over these fundamental concerns and wonder why we aren’t getting better.

The healing process is exactly that, a process.  There is not one magic formula that is going to do everything for you.  It’s like peeling an onion, it’s one layer at a time.

Educate yourself on the details of your condition.  Understanding the “whys” of what ails us is half the battle towards resolution. Do research using credible sources like:

CLICK HERE

CLICK HERE

Here is another great place to start:


Share this document with your doctor.  This is a submission in the British Medical Journal by Professor Timothy Noakes in which he and his colleagues map out strategies by which Timothy Noakes therapeutic diet plans can be implemented in order to treat many metabolic diseases.  This document comes complete with linked references to the scientific studies that substantiate these claims.  You and your doctor will both be shocked as to how effective a good therapeutic diet can be toward alleviating the symptoms of metabolic disease.  Why, you ask? Because this strategy actually addresses the Root Cause of so many of today’s modern illnesses of metabolism.



Get all your nutrition news and the most current in nutritional research science all in one place! Also a safe place to ask questions, get answers, encourage others and share recipes on your journey to health and happiness. Whether you adhere to Low Carb, LCHF, NSNG, Paleo, Atkins, Banting, Zero Carb or Ketogenic Diets …Everyone’s Welcome in the Facebook Group: 

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Talking Fast, Intermittently Fast

Yoshinori Ohsumi is a Japanese Biologist that was recently awarded the Nobel Prize for advancing the knowledge of cellular autophagy.  Intermittent fasting, or IF for short, is an eating regimen in which one cycles between periods of feeding and extended periods of fasting.  I know what you’re wondering, what is autophagy and what does IF have to do with it?  Well, intermittent fasting is the process that initiates cellular autophagy. (More on autophagy in a moment) Thanks to the work of Dr. Ohsumi, we now have even further evidence of the benefits of this misunderstood, therapeutic weight loss strategy. 

Intermittent fasting has a history as old as mankind itself. Yet, the mere mention of it in most social circles now-a-days will likely illicit confused stares and perhaps even accusations of having an eating disorder. Numerous studies have shown that implementing an intermittent fasting regimen can have powerful therapeutic benefits. Unfortunately most people are so entrenched in the dogma of 3-6 meals per day (due to an addiction to sugar and refined carbohydrates) that the thought of skipping more than one meal (on purpose) is simply an unfathomable concept. The foods included in the standard american diet illicit hormonal reactions that truly do make fasting a difficult acquisition. There are quite a few time consuming steps that one should take prior to attempting to implement a successful fasting regimen, but that’s a topic for another day. (Learn more)

Though the credible advocates of intermittent fasting are far too numerous to mention, one doctor in particular has been on the forefront of advancing awareness of its many benefits.  

With the publication of two best-selling books on the topic in 2016, Dr. Jason Fung of Ontario Canada provides an excellent road map to success in both The Obesity Code and the how-to manual that he co-wrote with Jimmy Moore entitled The Complete Guide To Fasting. Both have become essential reading to maximizing the benefits of intermittent fasting.

I know what you might be thinking, this doesn’t prove anything in regards to the safety and effectiveness of intermittent fasting at all. After all, anyone can write a book, or win a Nobel Prize (…oh, wait). Still need more evidence to stave off the naysayers? Well, how bout some solid science. Don’t mind if I do …

Here are several evidence-based health benefits of intermittent fasting, complete with linked references to scientific studies and literature:


When you refrain from eating for an extended amount of time, several important things happen. Your body initiates a cellular reparative process that alters hormone levels that make stored body fat more accessible.

Some of the changes that occur in your body during fasting are as follows:

* Blood levels of insulin drop significantly, which facilitates the burning of fat for fuel (1).

* The blood levels of growth hormone increase by as much as 5 times (2, 3) which facilitates fat burning and muscle gain. There are other benefits as well (4, 5).

* The body induces an important cellular repair process that removes waste material from your cells (6).

* There are beneficial changes in gene expression and molecules related to increased longevity and protection against disease (7, 8)


Many of those who utilize intermittent fasting are doing so for the purpose of weight loss (9).
In theory, when fasting intermittently, you are eating fewer meals. Provided you don’t compensate by overeating, you are taking in less calories on average over the course of time. Most importantly though, intermittent fasting enhances your hormone function to facilitate this weight loss. Lower insulin levels, higher growth hormone levels and increased amounts of nor-epinephrine all increase the breakdown of body fat and facilitate its use for energy. For this reason, short term fasting actually increases your metabolic rate by as much as 14%, helping you burn even more body fat (10, 11). Interesting that this is diametrically opposed to the current day conventional wisdom that somehow eating more frequently speeds up metabolism. That is simply a myth that has no basis in science.

If you are one to put credence in the oversimplified calories in vs. calories out theory (CICO), I guess it could be said that intermittent fasting works on both sides of that equation. It boosts your metabolic rate (increasing calories out) and reduces the amount of food you eat (reducing calories in).

Here’s a video clip interview with Dr. Jason Fung explaining weight loss and muscle retention as it pertains to intermittent fasting:

According to a 2014 review of the scientific literature, intermittent fasting can result in weight loss of 3-8% over 3-24 weeks (12). This is a significant amount. These same participants also decreased their waist circumference by 4-7%, which indicates that they lost visceral belly fat, the harmful fat located in the abdominal cavity known to cause disease. One review study also showed that intermittent fasting resulted in less muscle loss than continuous calorie restriction (13). So many myths, so little time. 


Type 2 diabetes has become so common in recent decades that it’s not an exaggeration to refer to it as an epidemic. This debilitating metabolic disorder results from the combination of high blood sugar levels in the context of insulin resistance. Improving insulin sensitivity will result in the lowering and controlling of blood glucose levels. In human studies on intermittent fasting, fasting blood sugar has been reduced by 3-6%, while fasting insulin has been reduced by 20-31% (12). One study conducted on diabetic rats revealed that intermittent fasting provided protective properties against kidney damage, one of the most severe complications of diabetes (13).

Intermittent fasting, in concert with a well formulated low-carbohydrate diet have been known not only to improve insulin sensitivity, but in many cases to reverse, or stave off the progression of type 2 diabetes (12)


Oxidative stress and inflammation are two of the main contributing factors to the progression of aging and many chronic metabolic diseases (14). It involves unstable molecules called free radicals, which cause adverse reactions with other important molecules (like protein and DNA) and cause damage to them (15). Several studies show that intermittent fasting may enhance the body’s resistance to oxidative stress (16, 17). Additionally, studies show that intermittent fasting can help fight inflammation, and other key drivers of common diseases (17, 18, 19).


Heart disease is currently the world’s #1 killer (20). Intermittent fasting has been shown to improve numerous different risk factors, including high blood pressure, total and LDL cholesterol, blood triglycerides, inflammatory markers and blood glucose levels (12, 21, 22, 23). As discussed earlier, intermittent fasting can improve upon biomarkers of oxidative stress, inflammation, and hyperinsulinemia, all of which are considered common measures of cardiac health risk.


When we fast, the cells in our body initiate a cellular “waste removal” process called autophagy (7, 24). “Autophagy is a normal physiological process in the body that deals with destruction of cells in the body. It maintains homeostasis or normal functioning by protein degradation and turnover of the destroyed cell organelles for new cell formation.” Intermittent fasting facilitates and accelerates this process. This video provides a brief overview of autophagy (please excuse the robot voiceover, as this clip has been translated from Japanese)

The autophagial pathway involves the cells breaking down and metabolizing broken and dysfunctional proteins that build up inside cells over time. Increased autophagy may provide protection against several diseases, including cancer and Alzheimer’s disease (25, 26). You’ve likely heard the buzz words detox or cleanse thrown around in non-scientific circles in the context of juicing and the like. Well, autophagy as it pertains to intermittent fasting is the only TRUE cleansing and detoxification process. Think of it as a detox on the cellular level. 


We all know cancers are often characterized by an uncontrolled growth of cells. Many cancer cells are glucose dependent. Fasting has been shown to have several beneficial effects on metabolism that can lead to a reduced risk of cancer. Fasting starves glucose dependent cancer cells. It only makes sense that cancer cells that thrive on glucose for growth would be deminished when their fuel is taken away.

Here’s a short talk by Mark Mattson, one of the foremost experts on neurology from Johns Hopkins University

Although more human studies are currently underway, promising evidence from animal studies indicates that intermittent fasting may help prevent cancer (27, 28, 29, 30). There is also some evidence on human cancer patients, showing that fasting reduced various side effects of chemotherapy (31).


What is good for the body is good for the brain as well. We’ve already discussed the positive effects that intermittent fasting can have in regards to improvements in insulin sensitivity in the body.  It only makes sense that IF would decease insulin resistance for the brain as well. Reducing oxidative stress, inflammation and lowering blood glucose levels have positive affects on cognition and brain function. Several studies in rats have shown that intermittent fasting may increase the growth of new nerve cells, which have enormous benefits for brain function (32, 33). It also increases levels of a brain hormone called brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) (32, 34, 35), a deficiency of which has been implicated in depression and various other brain abnormalities (36). Animal studies have also shown that intermittent fasting protects against brain damage due to strokes (37).

Alzheimer’s disease is the world’s most common neurodegenerative disease. There is currently no cure available for Alzheimer’s patients , so prevention is of the utmost importance. A study in rats shows that intermittent fasting may delay the onset of Alzheimer’s disease or reduce its severity (38). In a series of case reports, a lifestyle intervention that included daily short-term fasts was able to significantly improve Alzheimer’s symptoms in 9 out of 10 patients (39). Animal studies also suggest that fasting may protect against other neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson’s and Huntington’s disease (40, 41).

One of the most interesting applications of intermittent fasting may be its ability to extend lifespan by slowing the aging process. Studies in rats have shown that intermittent fasting extends lifespan in a similar way to that of continuous calorie restriction (42, 43). In some of these studies, the effects were quite dramatic. In one, rats that fasted every other day lived 83% longer than rats who weren’t fasted (44). Although this is far from being proven in humans, intermittent fasting has become enormously popular amongst the anti-aging crowd, as I’m sure you can imagine. Given the known benefits for metabolism and health markers, it only makes sense that intermittent fasting could help you live a longer and healthier life.

As discussed earlier, fasting can be a much easier and a nearly effortless acquisition when conducted in a state fat adaption. To learn more about how this process staves off hunger and optimizes the burning of stored fat, visit this link (click here). The fasting process is optimized once you’ve adapted your body to seeking its fuel from fat instead of carbohydrates. Though you will still eventually achieve a state of ketosis while fasting, being previously fat adapted simplifies and quickens the process, and allows for much less struggle in regards to hunger pangs. This graph, provided by the Quantified Body Podcast, illustrates the increase in serum ketone levels during the fasting state.


Should you decide to look further into intermittent fasting as a possible aid in weight loss or the reversal of metabolic disease, might I suggest educating yourself further by reading one or both of the books suggested at the beginning of this article. The implementation of an intermittent fasting regimen is most effective if utilized in the context of a low-carbohydrate, LCHF or Ketogenic diet. As always, consult your physician prior to implementing any drastic dietary changes.


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Change Your Doctor or “CHANGE” Your Doctor

So your doctor is concerned about your cholesterol and your LCHF/Ketogenic diet …

Most general practitioners and family doctors have had little to no training in regards to nutrition. In fact, it is extremely likely that they know little more than you do, if not less. Over the decades, their jobs have deteriorated into a fast paced test/diagnosis regimen that excludes any discussion of treatment beyond that of prescribing medication. These prescriptions are often based on test results that measure a symptom, and root cause is never even explored. They will scrutinize the quality, frequency, dosage and interactions of your medications, while more times than not, these symptoms have an actual cause that can be reversed by simply scrutinizing the quality, frequency, dosage and interactions of the foods we eat each day.


Your doctor is not your enemy. It’s not their fault, they know what they’ve been taught. The dietary guidelines provided to them are based on science (or lack there of) that has been heavily influenced by both the pharmaceutical and industrial food industries. It is your job to be an advocate for your own health.

Don’t get me wrong, sometimes medications are necessary. Research the specifics of your individual situation before blindly taking them. There are many metabolic anomalies that can be easily treated by optimizing your dietary intake. You just have to figure out if this applies to you, and your specific situation.


Ask yourself (and your doctor):

  • Is this treatment addressing the root cause of my problem?
  • Do I have high cholesterol because of a statin deficiency?
  • Is a total cholesterol measurement even relevant?

What follows are links to 3 PRINTABLE scientific research studies that you can present to your doctor, in an effort to enlighten him or her to the metabolic benefits and safety of your LCHF diet. This diet will treat the root cause of so many metabolic abnormalities. Do yourself a favor, and explore these options with your doctor before taking dangerous statin drugs or having invasive bariatric procedures.

Is your doctor freaking out about your cholesterol?Print these studies to share with your doctor:

I.

Entitled: Long-term effects of a ketogenic diet in obese patients

This is a general 24-month study involving 83 obese patients. Primary conclusion: the “Study confirms that it is safe to use a ketogenic diet for a longer period of time than previously demonstrated.”

CLICK HERE: Annals of Experimental & Clinical Cardiology 2014

II.

Entitled: Association of dietary, circulating, and supplement fatty acids with coronary risk: a systematic review and meta-analysis

This is a 2014 Meta study of 76 observational and randomized controlled studies with more than 650,000 participants that found that those with a high saturated fat intake did not have an increased risk of heart disease.

CLICK HERE: Annals of Internal Medicine, March 2014

III.

Entitled: Lipid levels in patients hospitalized with coronary artery disease: an analysis of 136,905 hospitalizations in Get With The Guidelines

This is a study of 138,000 people admitted to US hospitals with myocardial infarctions (heart attacks). Average cholesterol was measured at 105.  Thus showing no correlation or causation. Primary conclusion: high LDL is not a marker for heart disease.

CLICK HERE: American Heart Journal, 2008

Please note: It might not be a bad idea to familiarize yourself with the ins and outs of Cholesterol prior to your doctor visit. This will most certainly make for a more productive discussion. Here is an article that sums up Cholesterol fyi: 

Cholester-all You Need to Know

Also, understanding the benefits of your LCHF/Ketogenic diet might aid in the productivity of your meeting as well:

Optimize Your Metabolism

In the interest of thorough preparation, here are some more resources that might shed more light on your specific situation:

Arm Yourself With Science

 

For the Latest Videos & Articles Pertaining to Optimal Health and Ketogenic Nutrition, As Well As Encouragement, Advice & Great Ketogenic/Low Carb Recipes …Everyone’s Welcome in the Facebook Group: WELCOME TO KETO COUNTRY
 

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Arm Yourself With Science

Scientific Studies, and Other Useful Resources to Help You Defend Yourself Against the Most Common Myths and Outdated Nutritional Arguments:


Science is a beautiful thing, its truth is not based on opinion. Real science holds no place for tradition, dogma, or conjecture. When discussing science, one must differentiate between what is simply a myth, and what has been substantially proven. Honestly, science doesn’t really give a damn what “you believe. Science just is.

“It’s easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled” – Mark Twain

The subject of nutrition has become a push button topic that evokes passionate arguments, not unlike that of politics and religion. The current obesity and diabetes epidemics have catapulted the topic of nutrition to the forefront of discussions. For the first time in the history of our country, the overweight to obese population has taken over as a majority, and still most are flummoxed as to why. Doctors are still telling patients to “eat less and move more,” while fearing saturated fat and cholesterol. Dietitians are still praising the benefits of “heart healthy grains,” and teaching us how to count calories. The general population just blindly falls into step with the 40 year old, outdated dietary guidelines that caused this mess in the first place.

It’s not surprising that people argue so vehemently in defense of their nutritional beliefs. They likely learned what they know from someone they trust or respect, like a doctor, professor, parent, or healthcare professional. It’s not completely their fault. Much of the misinformation that is currently accepted as undeniable truth has been so imbedded into our collective thought processes over the past 40 years, and it is unlikely to be unlearned overnight. If you’re interested in learning more about the origins of these falsehoods, this article goes into much greater detail: Click Here

In this modern age of advancement, nearly every modality of science has advanced by leaps and bounds. Technology, communication, and industry have surpassed our wildest dreams in many aspects. Why then is it so perplexing that nutritional science might advance over the course of decades? This is a mystery that continues to confound me.

What follows are some of the more common misconceptions in the world of nutrition. You may have been challenged on these topics before. Although knowledge is power, some people need a little more proof in order to prompt their rethinking process. So for each of these myths, I have provided not only links to scientific studies, but I have included investigative articles, book recommendations and shareable videos as well.

False. Weight gain/loss is driven by many factors beyond just simply energy/calorie balance. Hormones play a much more prominent role.

This is completely false, different sources of calories go through different metabolic pathways in the body and activate different stimulus in regards to hunger, hormones, and brain function. 

An optimally healthy, or detrimentaly dangerous food item is not simply measured  by its high or low caloric values. Several calorie sources such as added sugar and vegetable oils, can cause harmful effects on metabolism that have absolutely nothing to do with their caloric value.

Let’s play science says. 

Studies:

Here are some links to some great articles that break down the debunking of the calorie myth in a more understandable format:

Articles: (one), (two), (three), (four) and (five)

Book Suggestion: Good Calories Bad Calories – Gary Taubes

Watch: Shareable Video

False. Of the three macronutrients (fats, protein and carbohydrates), fats are least responsible for the storage of adipose fat.

Even though fat has more calories per gram than carbs and protein, it is not any more fattening. Foods that are naturally high in fat tend to satiate and reduce appetite. While carbohydrates and excessive protein both initiate an insulin response that promote fat storage. 

The studies consistently show that diets that are high in fat (but low in carbs) lead to much more substantial and sustainable weight loss than diets that are low in fat and high in carbohydrates.

Let’s play science says. 

Studies:

Articles: (one), (two), (three), (four) and (five)

Book Suggestion: Eat Fat Get Thin – Dr. Mark Hyman

Watch: Shareable Video

False. There is no advantage to remaining in a feeding state throughout the day.

It is a myth that it is best to eat many, small meals instead of several bigger meals. The studies show that it doesn’t have any effect on health, body weight or increased metabolism. In fact, a case can be made that allowing your body to constantly remain in a feeding state can be counterproductive if weight loss is your goal. 

Let’s play science says.

Studies:

Articles: (one), (two), and (three)

Book Suggestion: The Complete Guide to Fasting: Heal Your Body Through Intermittent, Alternate Day, and Extended Fasting – Dr. Jason Fung & Jimmy Moore

Watch: Shareable Video

False. Sodium is an essential electrolyte that is necessary to sustain life.

Even though sodium restriction can lower blood pressure, it does not appear to reduce the risk of heart disease or death. Several studies show that if you restrict sodium too much, it can increase risk factors for disease. There is no real science behind the 1500-2300 mg per day recommendation. Sodium is an essential electrolyte that is necessary to sustain life. 

Let’s play science says. 

Studies:

Articles: (one), (two) and (three)

Book Suggestion: The Real Meal Revolution: The Radical, Sustainable Approach to Healthy Eating – Prof. Tim Noakes

Watch: Shareable Video

False. The omega 6s and polyunsaturated fats of partially hydrogenated vegetable and seed oils are a dangerous source of transfat.

There are two types of polyunsaturated fats, Omega 3 and Omega 6. It is true that Omega 3s reduce the risk of heart disease, but the same is not true for the Omega 6s. Even though the Omega 6s (soybean oil, corn oil, etc.) can lower cholesterol, the studies show that they actually increase the risk of heart disease. Recent studies have shown that dietary cholesterol is not a detriment to your health. Therefore, the advice to increase polyunsaturated fat, without regards to the type, is likely contributing more to the cause of heart disease than preventing it.

Let’s play science says. 

Studies:

Articles: (one), (two) and (three)

Book Suggestion: Trans Fats, The Hidden Killer In Our Food – Judith Shaw

Watch: Shareable Video

False. Red meat is one of the most nutritious foods you can eat. It is loaded with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and various other nutrients that can have profound effects on health.

Though it is true that the consumption of processed meat is associated with an increased risk of disease, the same is not true of unprocessed red meat. Though it may form harmful compounds if it is overcooked, unprocessed red meat is harmless. The answer is not to avoid red meat, but to make sure not to burn it. It should also be noted that the association between unprocessed red meat and cancer is highly exaggerated. Large review studies show that the effect is very minuscule in men and nonexistent in women.

Let’s play science says:

Studies:

Articles: (one), (two) and (three)

Book Suggestion: Always Hungry?: Conquer Cravings, Retrain Your Fat Cells, and Lose Weight Permanently – Dr. David Ludwig

Watch: Shareable Video

False. Though the words “ketosis” and “keto-acidosis” both share the same root word “keto”, they have very different meanings.

This is simply not true. Since 2002, low-carb diets have been studied extensively, and over 20 randomized controlled trials have been conducted that attest to their safety. They consistently lead to improvement in regards to common health markers as compared to the typical low-fat diet. They result in more sustainable weight loss and improve most major risk factors for disease, including triglycerides, HDL, and blood sugar levels. 

Sidenote: Dietitians and other health care professionals often mistake the word ketosis for the word ketoacidosis simply because they have the same root word keto. Both words represent metabolic states, but that is all they have in common. One is dangerous, the other is not. For these people, might I suggest they seek some continuing education credits. 

Let’s play science says. 

Studies:

Articles: (one), (two) and (three)

Book Suggestion: The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Living: An Expert Guide to Making the Life-Saving Benefits of Carbohydrate Restriction Sustainable and Enjoyable – Stephen Phinney & Jeff Volek

Watch: Shareable Video

False. Saturated fat found mostly in meat and full-fat dairy is not linked to cardiovascular disease, coronary heart disease, ischemic stroke, type 2 diabetes or overall mortality in healthy adults.

This is a myth. Saturated fat raises HDL (which some call the “good”) cholesterol, and changes LDL particles from small and dense to large, buoyant (benign) LDL particles, which does not increase the risk of heart disease. This has been intensively studied in the past few decades, and studies consistently show that saturated fat, as well as dietary cholesterol, are not contributers to risk for coronary heart disease. 

Let’s play science says.

Studies:

Articles: (one), (two), (three), (four) and (five)

Book Suggestion: Cholesterol Clarity: What The HDL Is Wrong With My Numbers? – Jimmy Moore & Dr. Eric Westman, MD

Watch: Shareable Video

False. In study after study the low-fat diet falls short in regards to sustainable weight loss

The low-fat diet has been put to the test in several huge randomized, controlled trials. It does not cause any weight loss over a period of 7.5 years, and has literally no positive effect on the prevention of heart disease or cancer. The low-fat diet is a huge failure, and likely a contributor to the development of many metabolic disorders. All major studies show that it doesn’t work for sustainable weight loss.

Let’s play science says. 

Studies:

Articles: (one), (two), (three), (four) and (five)

Book Suggestion: The Obesity Code: Unlocking the Secrets of Weight Loss – Dr. Jason Fung

Watch: Shareable Video

False. Protein intake has no detrimental relationship with kidney function in healthy individuals

It is often claimed that a high protein intake can cause harm to the kidneys, but this is false. Even though it is important for people with pre-existing kidney disease to reduce their protein intake, the same is not true for people with healthy kidneys. Studies show that protein consumption has no detrimental effect on kidney function in healthy people … even in the case of bodybuilders who often eat large quantities of protein rich foods.

Let’s play science says. 

Studies:

Articles: (one), (two) and (three)

Book Suggestion: Keto Clarity: Your Definitive Guide to the Benefits of a Low-Carb, High-Fat Diet – Jimmy Moore & Dr. Eric Westman, MD

Watch: Shareable Video 

False. Low fat dairy tends to have more sugar content than full fat dairy.

There is no evidence that people benefit from consuming low fat dairy in place of full fat dairy products. In fact, the opposite is true. Low fat dairy is higher in sugar which makes this misguided advice seriously questionable. Full fat dairy (especially from grass-fed cows) contains important nutrients like Vitamin K2 and butyrate, which are often scarce in the average diet. High fat dairy products are actually associated with a lower risk of obesity. In countries where cows are largely grass-fed, people who eat the most high fat dairy products have a drastically reduced risk of heart disease.

Let’s play science says. 

Studies:

Articles: (one), (two) and (three)

Book Suggestion: The Big Fat Surprise: Why Butter, Meat and Cheese Belong in a Healthy Diet – Nina Teicholz

Watch: Shareable Video

False. Depriving the body of protein is a detriment to bone health in the long term.

Although it is true that protein can cause calcium loss from the bones in the short term, this effect does not persist in the long term. In fact, studies consistently show that protein actually improves overall bone health in the long term. Moderating protein intake is often advised in low-carb and ketogenic diets because of glyconeogenesis, not for the purposes of bone health or thwarting osteoporosis. 

Let’s play science says. 

Studies:

Articles: (one), and (two)

Book Suggestion: New Atkins for a New You: The Ultimate Diet for Shedding Weight and Feeling Great – Dr. Eric Westman, Stephen Phinney, Jeff Volek

Watch: Shareable Video

False. There is no correlation between the cholesterol in eggs and heart disease risk.

Cholesterol contained in eggs do not raise the LDL cholesterol in the blood. It does, however, raise HDL ( considered by some the “good”) cholesterol. Eggs actually improve the overall blood lipid profile. Recent studies show that egg consumption is not associated with heart disease. Whole eggs are among the most nutritious foods available on the planet. 

Let’s play science says. 

Studies:

Articles: (one), (two) and (three)

Book Suggestion: Why We Get Fat: And What to Do About It – Gary Taubes

Watch: Shareable Video

False. The consumption of added sugar in our food supply is likely the single greatest contributor to the obesity/diabetes epidemic.

There is nothing empty about the effects that sugar has on your body. When consumed in excess, sugar can lead to harmful effects on metabolism, and cause insulin resistance, fatty liver disease, and various other metabolic disorders. Studies show that in the long term, high consumption of sugar is strongly associated with the risk of obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and even cancer. 

Let’s play science says. 

Studies:

Articles: (one), (two) and (three)

Book Suggestion: Fat Chance: Beating the Odds Against Sugar, Processed Food, Obesity, and Disease – Dr. Robert Lustig 

Book Suggestion: The Case Against Sugar -Gary Taubes

Watch: Shareable Video

Should you find yourself motivated to research a particular topic, bookmark the links attached to the following clickable banners. These are some of the finest research resources on the internet:



For the Latest Videos & Articles Pertaining to Optimal Health and Ketogenic Nutrition, As Well As Encouragement, Advice & Great Ketogenic/Low Carb Recipes …Everyone’s Welcome in the Facebook Group: WELCOME TO KETO COUNTRY

Unlearn. Rethink.


I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that this song has been playing in my head all day. (It’s quite the earworm) Let’s Play Science Says by elim Hall:

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Stallbusters: Scaling Weight-Loss Hurdles

So you’ve hit a plateau with your weight loss … you’re exhausted, hungry, and frustrated.

“I just don’t understand it, I’ve been exercising more and eating so much less! It was working, but now, for some reason, it’s not.” 

   –  Almost Everyone Everywhere

1. CHANGE YOUR DIET (Unlearn,Rethink)

Has the thought occurred that you may be taking the wrong approach? Well, for a vast majority of the population, that is the case. The 50 year old myth that expending more energy than you take in only works in the short term. It is simply not sustainable. Why you ask? Your body is smart and it tries to correct itself  by slowing your metabolism. This is why you are tired, hungry and your weight loss has stalled. This is the point where you must, as I like to say “Unlearn. Rethink.”

The answer is simple. Weight loss and weight gain are not driven by calories alone. It’s about your body’s response to insulin! “Well, that doesn’t sound simple at all!” Oh, but it is:

  • Insulin is the hormone that prompts your body to store fat.
  • If you eat foods that cause a notable insulin response you will store fat (foods like sugar & refined carbohydrates)
  • If you eat foods that do not cause a significant insulin response you will not store fat (foods with healthy fats, moderate protein, and perhaps fiber rich non-starchy vegetables)

I am simplifying just a bit in the interest of brevity, but when it is all said and done, it really is almost that simple. Do yourself a favor and research this. For those of you who have been following a calorie restrictive (calories in vs. calories out) regime, simply optimizing your nutrition from the standard high carb, low fat diet to a low carb, high fat diet, will get you over any weight loss plateau. That’s right, calories don’t mean as much as you’ve been led to believe. There are dozens of books that all come to this same conclusion, written by some of the foremost experts in nutrition and obesity. Just pick one and read it!  Reading List

The remainder of the advice in this article will be in the context of a low carbohydrate diet (low-carb, ZeroCarb, LCHF, NSNG, Atkins, Banting, Paleo and/or a Ketogenic diet.)

 

2. OPTIMIZE YOUR METABOLISM

The most efficient way to lose weight is to first optimize your metabolism. Simply put, when your body is provided a steady flow of glucose from carbohydrates, it will use that glucose for energy first. If provided too much glucose, it will store that energy away into your fat cells. Depriving your body of carbohydrates over time (usually about 4-6 weeks) will force your body to start getting its energy from the healthy fats in your diet. Eventually your body will learn to acquire energy from your own stored body fat by way of the ketone bodies created in your liver. This is a very abbreviated description of the process. If you have not yet transformed yourself from a Carb Burner to a Fat Burner, I encourage you to delve deeper into the process. It will quite literally become the greatest factor in your fat burning efficiency. Here is a link that will more thoroughly explain the process:

Optimizing Your Metabolism

Carbs = Insulin Reaction

3. TOO MANY CARBS

There are essential amino acids and there are essential fatty acids, but there is no such thing as an essential carbohydrate. If you’re having trouble moving the scale, it could be that your daily carbohydrate intake is too high. Every different version of a low carb diet has different theories and parameters for success. Every person is unique, some people can tolerate more carbs than others. Depending on your goals, and assuming that you want to get past a weight loss plateau, I would consider taking the Ketogenic diet route. This would entale lowering your daily carbohydrate intake to less than 20 grams. In addition, if you were one to count net carbs (meaning carbs minus fiber and sugar alcohols), consider counting total carbs instead. This article goes into greater detail as to how carbohydrates interact with your metabolism:  A Rebel Without a Carb

Moderate as according to your goals

4. PROTEIN: NOT ENOUGH OR TOO MUCH?

Your protein intake may be too high/low. This is a topic that has been very controversial as of late. Phinney and Volek, in their best selling book, say one thing, and Dr. Jason Fung says another in his. But, I like to keep it simple! In my interpretation of the topic, the consensus is a combination. It depends upon your goals! 

Protein is a satiating macronutrient and you should include high-quality animal protein in your diet. Lack of protein can also lead to muscle loss. However, if you eat too much protein, the excess protein converts into glycogen and disrupts ketosis. Consider the simplicity of this approach: Dietary fats and dietary protein coexist in so many of the healthy foods we eat. Being that healthy fats make us feel full, usually whatever protein comes along with that fat just seems to be moderated by proxy.

Bottom line:

  • If you have plenty of excess body fat and exercise infrequently = lower your protein intake
  • If you are close to your goal weight and are very active = raise your protein intake to protect the muscle you’ve built.

BUT you’re reading this article because you’re trying to get past a weight loss stall, am I right?! So, try staying on the lower side of the parameters.

Phinney and Volek, in their book The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Living recommend 0.6 – 1 gram of protein per a pound of lean mass / 1.3 – 2.2 grams of protein per a kilogram of lean mass a day (lean mass = total body weight without fat). If you really want to nerd out on this topic, this is an excellent explanation of optimizing protein intake in the context of a Ketogenic diet by Richard Morris of Cambria Australia: Forward to about 20 minutes in and listen till 47 minutes Or, if you’d rather read about it, check out the written submission, also by Richard Morris: Click Here. If math is your thing, Click Here

Don’t Be Fooled, They’re Hidden Everywhere!

5. HIDDEN CARBS, CHEMICALS AND SUGAR

Hidden carbs, chemicals or sugars in processed foods could be another possible cause of weight loss plateaus. You should try to avoid processed foods whenever possible. Don’t just look at the nutrition label, look at the ingredients list as well. You may find hidden sugars, chemicals and transfats that could also trip you up. Don’t just assume that all nuts are all the same, some food companies roast them in partially hydrogenated oils that are yet another source of dangerous transfats. To learn more about hidden transfats:

Click Here.

To learn more about hidden sugars and artificial sweeteners that will cause an insulin reaction:

Click Here.

In this video, Dr. Eric Westman explains the ketogenic diet and emphasises that even  mints or gum could affect ketosis and weight loss results. Sometimes, when a label says sugar-free, it could still be riddled with carbohydrates.

Moderate healthy fats as according to your goals

6. TOO MANY CALORIES FROM FAT, WHAT?

It’s indisputable that all calories are NOT equal. It really matters whether you get them from healthy and sating LCHF food or processed food rich in carbs. Sam Feltham’s 5000 calorie experiments may be extreme, but they have shown that calories are most certainly NOT created equal and their source is is of paramount importance. However, some people on a LCHF diet may find it easier to lose weight if they also watch their calorie intake. Though they do not cause a significant insulin response, fat contains twice as many calories as either carbohydrates or protein.

When you started your low carb diet, regardless of what regimen, you likely began with an extremely carb restrictive and fat inclusive “induction phase.” This was for the purpose of becoming fat/keto adapted. You were teaching your body to discontinue the use of glucose (from carbs) as a fuel source while simultaneously teaching your body to seek fat stores for fuel. To encourage this process, eating healthy dietary fats to satiety assured that your new energy source was never in deficit. This process took anywhere from 3 weeks to 3 months depending upon your personal level of insulin resistance.

Now that you are fat/keto adapted and you have hit your first extended weight loss plateau, it’s time to tweak your macros a bit. Don’t worry, it’s simple:

Now that your body has learned to get its energy from your fat stores …let it! Lighten up a bit on your fat intake to allow your body to target body fat. Once you’ve reached your goal weight and enter into a “maintenance phase” you can return your fat intake to the regularly scheduled program. I personally find 75% fat, 20% protein and 5% carb to be an effective daily ratio for maintenance.

Also consider adding coconut oil or MCT oil to your diet. These medium chain triglycerides are satiating and are excellent for immediate energy and inducing Ketone production in the liver. They are also less likely to be stored.

Prepackaged processed treats

7. LOW-CARB TREATS

Most manufacturers of prepackaged, processed low carb, sugar free, gluten free, yada, yada, treats only concern themselves with creating a product that has a low net carb count. These food companies will create products that are 7-10 grams of carbs and call it healthy. Honestly, do you really want to get half of your daily allotment of carbohydrates from a chemical laden, sugar alcohol filled chunk of mystery goo that’s the size of your middle finger? They also are known to use artificial sweeteners that, though they may be low in carbs, do, in fact, cause an insulin reaction in some people. I hate sounding like a cliché, but, we are unique “snowflakes.” What triggers an insulin reaction on one person, might not in another. We will discuss glucometer experimentation in #20.

Another point to note, even fat bombs and delicious homemade treats made from the finest ingredients can interrupt ketosis and, at the very least, spark cravings for sugar in some people. I would suggest avoiding all sweet foods when trying to hurdle a weight loss plateau.

Even snacking on nuts and cheese can keep your body in a feeding state

8. SNACKING ON NUTS & CHEESE

One of the common mistakes people make is overeating dairy and nuts when they are trying to lose weight. You may experience weight stalling or even weight gain not because nuts and dairy will kick you out of ketosis but because these foods are calorie-dense and easy to overeat (100 grams of macadamia nuts has over 700 kcal and over 70 grams of fat!) Your body will look at this snack as if it were a meal and your insulin will remain at a basel level, but you are preventing your insulin from retreating into a non-feeding state. There is no reason to avoid non-starchy vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini, bell peppers or fruits like avocado or berries. These foods are very high in micronutrients, low in carbs and won’t impair your weight loss efforts. For more detailed information on this topic, read this article:

To Snack or Not to Snack

Altering meal frequency and intermittent fasting

9. MEAL FREQUENCY & FASTING

The dogma of “3 square meals a day” has become so entrenched in modern society that we never even question its validity. Why not just eat when you’re hungry? I promise the meal frequency police will not knock down your door and arrest you for skipping breakfast, or lunch, or dinner for that matter. That other old wives tale that “you should eat 6 small meals a day” is also bunk. If you’re hungry, eat. If you’re not, don’t. For more details on the topic of meal frequency, click here. 

Intermittent, Alternate-day and extended fasting has been in practice since the beginning of mankind. As a method for weight loss, it is safe and wonderfully effective. It’s health benefits stretch far beyond just weight loss. If you have already optimized your metabolism and have become fat/adapted (See #2), I encourage you to look deeper into this method of weight loss, especially if you have many pounds to lose. The last chapter in Dr. Jason Fung’s book “The Obesity Code” goes into great detail as to proper ways to implement a healthy fast.

In my personal experience, some form of fasting has gotten me (and many clients) successfully past every weight loss plateau that I’ve ever encountered. Don’t fear this! If your body is ready, it’s easier than you may think.

Don’t get frustrated

10. SHORT TERM WEIGHT FLUCTUATIONS

You put on weight over a short period of time. This could happen if you had more carbs (even once!) than your daily limit (e.g. you went to a party). As you may know, there is a relationship between water retention and glycogen stores. If your body manages to store some extra glycogen, you also increase water retention. This happens literally from one day to the next. Don’t panic, it’s just water. Once you’ve gone back to your daily routine, this will repair itself, though it may take from 2 to 3 days to lose the excessive water.

Get Proper THS Testing

11. THYROID OR ADRENAL DISEASE

You may have a thyroid or adrenal dysfunction that you are unaware of. It only takes a blood / saliva test to find out – visit your doctor! Dr. Broda Barnes, spent over 50 years on thyroid research, suggested in his book “Hypothyroidism: The Unsuspected Illness” that the minimum amount of carbohydrate intake for patients with hypothyroidism should at least 30 grams of net carbs.

In this short video, Neurologist Dr. Perlmutter interviews one of the foremost experts in thyroid disfunction:

If you want to learn more about thyroid/adrenal disorders and the tests you may require: Click Here

Stress Causes the Release of Cortisol

12. STRESS

Managing stress is a significant factor in weight loss. When we are stressed, our bodies produces a hormone called cortisol, which is responsible for storing fat around your stomach area (visceral fat), and makes weight loss more difficult. Cortisol initiates the “fight or flight” mechanism in our brain, telling our body to store energy in our fat cells that it doesn’t actually need. Stress, and the cortisol reaction it causes, can be the most significant culprit in weight loss plateaus for many adults.

The trick is finding a stress relieving technique that works for you. Some might find  meditation or prayer useful, while others find a long walk to be cathartic. Exercise in any form can be a great stress reliever! Many find solace while occupying their mind with a hobby. You know yourself better than anyone, do something that makes you happy at least once a day.

For more information on how stress effects  Ketosis and metabolism: Click Here

Your Body Needs 7-8 Hours of Sleep!

13. LACK OF PROPER SLEEP

Lack of sleep, and disrupted circadian rhythms, can trip up your progress in regards to weight loss. It may sound cliche, but sleep is a vital part of the fat loss process. The time you spend sleeping is also a time you spend fasting, allowing your insulin levels to submerge to below their basel levels. This is also the time when many of your bodies systems are receiving essential opportunities for repair.

A normal day is no longer normal when conducted with lack of proper sleep. This is a cause of stress that drives a cortisol hormone reaction in your body. (See #11 STRESS above). 7 to 8 hours of sleep, per night are recommended to allow for proper rejuvenation.

Have trouble falling to sleep? In addition to the obvious recommendations, there are some healthy measures that one can take to optimize your ability to fall asleep.

  • Discontinue screen time an hour before bed.
  • Take your magnesium supplement an hour before bed time.
  • Consider 10mg of Melatonin an hour before bed time. 

NyQuil and many other liquid sleeping aides are riddled with sugar, not to mention other chemicals that can be a detriment to your efforts. ALSO: Don’t fall prey to any of the old wives tales about a glass of warm milk, or some concoction with organic honey in it. Both are just sugar delivery systems that are not only counterproductive for sleep, but for weight loss as well.

For an intensive and thorough scientific explanation of the inner-workings of sleep in the context of both carbohydrates and Ketosis: Click Here

Leptin is the Hormone That Tells You You’re Full

14. LEPTIN & SATIETY

The hormone Leptin, and its satiety signaling mechanisms could also be a culprit in your weight loss troubles. Fat is hormonally active and it sends out leptin, a hormone that tells us when we’ve had enough to eat. As you lose fat, there will be less fat cells to do the job. This does not apply just to low-carb/ketogenic diets, but any diet. The question is how significant this factor is for your particular situation. Bottom line: If you eat food rich in fat and protein, this leptin anomaly can be minimized.

If you would like to learn more about leptin, no one explains it better than Dr. Michael Eades M.D.

Muscle Actually Does Weigh More Than Fat

15. TOO MUCH EXERCISE

In this confusing world of nutrition and fitness there is so much advise dispensed that is only based on heresay, old wives tales, or bro-science from some roided-out musclehead at the gym. Though the myths that most folks just accept as fact are seemingly countless, this is one that is actually true: “Muscle weighs more than fat.” I’m sure you can do the math yourself. Though there are literally dozens of wonderful benefits to be gained from a healthy amount of exercise, weight loss isn’t one of them.

Here are three short excerpts from Dr. Jason Fung on the subject:

“But diet and exercise are not fifty-fifty partners like macaroni and cheese. Diet is Batman and exercise is Robin. Diet does 95 per cent of the work and deserves all the attention; so, logically, it would be sensible to focus on diet.”  

 “A recent study suggests that 75 per cent of the weight-loss response in obesity is predicted by insulin levels. Not willpower. Not caloric intake. Not peer support or peer pressure. Not exercise. Just insulin.”  

“Exercise is still healthy and important—just not equally important. It has many benefits, but weight loss is not among them. Exercise is like brushing your teeth. It is good for you and should be done every day. Just don’t expect to lose weight.”

Exercise is of vital importance to maintain good health, and it shouldn’t be discouraged. However, exercising to excess for the purpose of weight loss, that’s just counterproductive. After all, you are trying to hurdle a weight loss plateau. If weight loss is your goal, take a walk or a run, maybe a trip to the gym. Do something daily. But if you think that you need to push yourself like you’re training for the olympics in order to move the scale a bit, well, you might be your own problem.

Cravings and Bloating are a Real Issue For Some

16. MENSTRUATION & CRAVINGS

Don’t weigh yourself during your period, or at least, don’t give any validity to what you see. This isn’t a weight loss stall, this is an expected fluctuation.

Estrogen is dominate during the first part of your cycle (however long that is for you, think *snowflake) during that time, on average, women eat 15% less naturally. During and just preceding your period, progesterone dominates, and you may eat ~15% more. This is the time when the cravings are a factor and your body is driving you to binge. This is a natural hormonal process. This is where will-power is essential. Don’t deny your increased appetite completely, just make an effort to satiate yourself with LCHF foods. It will all level out eventually (and of course, start all over again).

Don’t compare your weight loss journey to that of your male counterparts. On average, weight loss is a slower process for women. Think of your journey as a staircase: 3 steps forward, 1 step back, 3 steps forward, 1 step back, etc. You will get to the top eventually.

For some more insight into the unique challenges that women face on a LCHF/Ketogenic diet: Listen to This

Alcoholic beverages can slow your progress

17. ALCOHOL 



Frequent consumption of alcohol could be the culprit in stalling your weight loss. We’ve all seen studies touting the benefits of a daily glass of wine. Whether these studies are true or not, alcohol is most certainly not an essential nutrient. When trying to hurdle a weight loss plateau, this is something that could be discontinued.

Beer and spirits mixed with sugary mixers are the worst in the libation portfolio. Beer is practically the glycemic equivalent of eating a loaf of bread. Most mixed drinks are sugar bombs that will send your insulin levels into the stratosphere. Both are completely counterproductive. Though less of a detriment, straight spirits such as whiskey, bourbon, rum, vodka, gin, tequila, etc can still stifle your progress. Not to mention the effect an altered mental status can have on cravings.

prescription drugs and interactions

18. DRUG INTERACTIONS

Many prescription medications can cause weight gain. If you are currently taking meds, it is within the realm of possibility that one of your medications, or their interactions with other drugs could be the culprit in your weight loss dilemma. Unfortunately, in this world of hyperpharmacology, it would be an impossibility for me to list all of the medications that have the side effect of weight gain. Might I suggest researching the meds that you are taking, or inquiring of your doctor.

Here are some links that will reveal some of the most common prescription medications that effect weight gain, start your research here and here.

*IMPORTANT: Never discontinue a medication without first consulting your doctor.

Keep Track of What You Eat & Consult an Expert

19. JOURNAL AND ASK FOR HELP

Still flummoxed as to why the scale won’t move? Well, perhaps what seems mysterious to you, might not be such a mystery to someone else. Consider writing down everything you eat for a few days, and share it with a friend, or someone you perceive as more knowledgeable than yourself in regards to your diet regime. If you have access to an expert, ask them to take a look. Sometimes Internet forums such as twitter or Facebook groups can provide you with help.

Maybe you’ve been eating a particularly problematic food item or ingredient that you are simply unaware of. Perhaps this food item or ingredient has even become a staple in your diet. I once had a client that was perplexed as to why the weight loss had stopped, only to discover that she had a 2 pack a day gum chewing habit. Turns out this gum was sweetened with a sugar derivative that was spiking her insulin.

Monitor Your Blood Sugar

20. CHECK YOUR BLOOD SUGAR

As we’ve discussed before, our bodies are all unique. In some cases, especially when it comes to artificial sweeteners, what might cause an adverse insulin response in me, might not have that same reaction in you. The only way to discover what triggers are unique to you and your metabolism would be to test yourself.

Glucometers have become very common. They are readily available, relatively cheap and easy to use.

Follow this regime to test your glucose levels vs. any particular food, drink or sweetener:

2KetoDudes.com

For the Latest Videos & Articles Pertaining to Optimal Health and Ketogenic Nutrition, As Well As Encouragement, Advise & Great Ketogenic / Low Carb Recipes …Everyone’s Welcome in the Facebook Group: WELCOME TO KETO COUNTRY



 

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