The TRUTH About All Those “Eat Whatever You Want and Lose Weight” People

It’s true! You CAN eat pizza and lose weight. You CAN eat Big Mac’s and lose weight!

This is something that I see ads for, marketing for, and friends sharing posts about all the time. I myself even share the occasional “I eat ____ as part of my healthy diet”.

The disconnect is this – most people who eat this way don’t show, or talk about the other 90% of their diet. Because that wouldn’t appeal to the average person that wants a quick fix, minimal effort, life-changing plan.

There are some in the industry who do this very responsibly, and are very balanced about it and are very transparent about it. These people are my friends – I don’t associate with the other type – so if you are reading this I’m probably not talking about you ūüôā¬†

Then there are those who have an unhealthy relationship with food. They post about eating 2 pizzas and still having abs, but they then go on to skip their next 4 meals and chug away on the treadmill for 2 hours.

They preach about “eat what you love, get results” – but this isn’t true – because all YOU see is the “bad food” that they indulge in.

Be wary of these people. Be wary of someone who tells you that you can eat WHATEVER you want and still lose weight. The next question you should ask should be, “what quantity of whatever can I eat ūüôā “?

Look, it all comes down to creating a calorie deficit if the goal is to lose weight. We get it. 

I could lose weight eating nothing but Ben and Jerry’s for 2 weeks.

Americone Dream (1 pint) – 1140 cals – 64 fat, 123 carbs, 17 protein

I could lose weight eating 2.5 pints of this per day. But that’s ALL I would get to eat.

How realistic is that?

I would give myself maybe 2 days before I –

  • A) crapped my pants so bad,
  • B) went insane and/or
  • C) Ate my own arm off.

Yes, you COULD do this and lose weight. But it’s not realistic, AND you would become so deficient in many vitamins, minerals, and protein that your weight would be the least of your worries.

Again – you CAN eat whatever you want, but likely not how much you want, and still lose weight.

This is called balance, moderation, or managing – whatever adult term we want to use.

There are many ways to do this, eyeballing things and making general assumptions to literally measuring everything out and tracking macros to a T.

So how can you REALLY eat WHATEVER (not HOW MUCH) you want, and still get results and NOT end up deficient in nutrients or malnourished?

The Most Accurate Way – TRACKING LIKE A BOSS. Become “scale guy” or “scale girl”.¬†

This works for some people – and I am super happy for them. But I also know many people who won’t do this, even though it damn near guarantees results.

After figuring out your goal intake, if you can hit 80% of your calories from nutrient-rich, balanced foods, you would be just fine hitting the other 20% from foods that you like to indulge in…but you probably can’t indulge in them.

Let’s say your calorie goal to lose weight is 1800 calories. 20% = 360 calories from “junk”. Well, you get a little over a half cup of Ben and Jerry’s. If you are like me, a half cup of ice cream is one spoonful.

But this is how it is done.

You make “adult decisions” earlier in the day if you plan on indulging later in the day. It’s really simple. You eat lower calorie, high protein, high nutrient-rich foods, then indulge later in the day on calorie-dense goodies. But everything is measured out perfectly.

The Eyeball Method

This might be less accurate, but it also still involves making responsible adult decisions.

If you KNOW you will be eating pizza and cake later, how can you “offset” those foods earlier?

Well, pizza and cake is mostly fat (cheese, pepperoni, butter) and carbs (the crust, sugar, flour) so maybe breakfast would be egg whites and veggies (high protein, low fat, low carb), snack 1 would be a protein shake, lunch would be a big ass salad with chicken, and snack two would be a Greek Yogurt and fruit.

It’s not as perfect as measuring and weighing, but it’s still making a conscientious decision to make changes earlier in the day, to enjoy later.

But here is where that approach can backfire…

Let’s say you eat 3 pieces of Little Cesar’s Cheese Pizza and 1 slice of Oreo Ice Cream Cake (1/12th of the cake…LOL, who only eats 1/12th of a cake!)

Well that little meal was 960 calories (122 carbs, 38 fat, 38 Protein)

So unless you offset by that much earlier in the day, you could STILL be in a calorie surplus aka weight gain zone.

This just shows how calorie-dense foods like pizza and ice cream cake and add up super fast! SUPER FAST!

These are usually cases where most people THINK they are “barely eating” and not losing weight.

I’m sorry to break it to you – but if if you don’t track something in your food journal or track it accurately – your body still will.

Whether you want to learn to use a food scale or just start eyeballing things, making a change for the positive is the right way to go.

The last bit of tough love for the day is this: people who say that diets void of treats, sweets, grease, and drinks every day are deprivation diets are full of you know what. How many years, decades, and centuries did people live just fine and healthy lives without junk food?

True moderation of these foods is much less than most people think.

True moderation is once a week, once a month, or “here and there” – not once per day, or even 3-4 times per week (depending on the food/drink).

While macros and calories matter, your quality of nutrition matters as well. It goes beyond the number on the scale. It is about internal health, blood health, gut health, heart health, skin health, and the true sustainability of a diet.

So yes, you can eat a little bit of what you want, and still lose weight, and feel batter – just probably not to the extent of what you might think.

 

Would you like more help on taking back your life, learning to love health and food again, figuring out how to find true balance, or just crush some goals and get the body of your dreams?¬† IF so —> CHECK OUT ONLINE COACHING***

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Stay healthy my friends,

 

You Can’t Run Away The Fat

 

Sure, go from zero running to some running to lots of running and you will probably lose some weight. But then what?

I’ve seen it, in people I know, in people I read about, in people I see out in public…the weight loss stalls.

Now, I used to be that meat head that would say “cardio is dumb, you don’t need to do cardio, just lift and diet and you will be good”.

While I partially still agree with this – I also don’t think cardio is dumb. It is very important to make sure your heart is strong and functions well or, well, you die. If you ENJOY running – or more traditional cardio, and it doesn’t harm you – then more power to ya, run run run!

However, using cardio as a sole means of fat loss with complete ignorance of diet and some cross training is a recipe for disaster.

The three common traps that cardio lovers seem to fall into are:

  1. Weight loss stopped? Time to run more.
  2. I run a lot/train for marathons – I can eat whatever I want.
  3. I want to be better at running – so I will run more!

When weight loss stops on a pure cardio routine, many peoples first instinct is “I need more cardio”. Here why that might not be the best idea.

www.active.com

When you live by the cardio – you die by the cardio. Meaning that the more cardio you add and add and add to your week, as soon as something happens in your life that doesn’t allow you to run 10 hours per week, your progress will backfire and your weight will rocket back.

Without paying any attention to creating a slight caloric restriction through food instead of just trying to run more, you set yourself up for trouble when trouble strikes in your life.

Your body also becomes very efficient at running at a slow and steady pace. Meaning you CONSERVE calories so you can last longer on your run, but at a slightly slower pace. When fatloss is the goal, efficiency sucks.

Crank up the intensity, hit some sprints (on a bike especially) and turn your body into a furnace in a shorter amount of time.

This is where problem 2 comes in – the “I run a lot therefore I can eat whatever I want”.

There is a generic statistic that says you burn about 100 calories per mile traveled while running so lets just use that for an example.

Say you run 10 miles one day – so “burn” 1000 calories. Then you go to Olive Garden to celebrate with friends and get the biggest past dish you can find because you “earned” it.

Well that dish is 2500 calories, plus the 4 breadsticks you ate – so there you go, you now cancelled out your run plus jumped into a surplus.

The main point being – its very easy to supplant the caloric burn of a cardio workout if you blindly eat whatever.

You must still pay attention to diet, and eat enough for performance – but also if you goal is fat loss, you must be in a slight deficit.

And the last trap – more running = better at running, its not always the case.

Yes, you need to practice any skill to get better.

But for runners, don’t forget strength!

You need to build up the muscles through strength training so they can endure long runs, and the pounding on the pavement.

Strength training not only builds muscle (which boosts your resting metabolic rate) but it also helps build BONE.

How many cardio lovers do you know who have gotten stress fractures? I know a few.

Heavier loading of the bones and especially the axial skeleton greatly improves bone density. This means squats, lunges, step ups, deadlifts, all those good lower body exercises should be done 2-3 days per week. 

So if your goal is to lose some fat here’s what I would recommend:

  • Don’t rely solely on running- if you enjoy it, cool, but you don’t NEED to run. Biking, swimming, hiking, circuit training, are all great ways to get cardiovascular improvements as well.
  • Don’t ignore diet. Your goal should be to lose fat at a pace of 1-2 pounds per week with as little change to your normal routine as possible. So don’t just add in 10 hours of cardio per week because that wont last. Start with bodyweight x 10 for your calorie goal.
  • Weight train – not only to help prevent running injuries, but also to improve your metabolism, your muscle tone, and to improve your mood and energy.

 

 

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Stay healthy my friends,

All Cholesterol is Not Created Equal: A Review (Summary) of Egg Consumption and Heart Health

This is something I have been waiting for for a long time. A review article, published by The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, looking at egg consumption and finally getting with the times on egg/cholesterol/heart disease research. Without further adieu, here are some of the main points, as highlighted by yours truly:

All Cholesterol Is Not Created Equal: A Review of Egg Consumption and Heart Health.

Clayton, Z. and Fusco. E. ¬†SCAN’S PULSE. Spring 2015, Vol 34. No.2

In several recent studies, egg consumption and thus higher intakes of cholesterol than previously recommended, NO relationships to serum cholesterol, all-cause mortality, coronary heart disease, heart attacks, or angina has been observed. The original cholesterol recommendations (less than 300mg/day Рand one egg yolk contains 185-265mg) were based off of a popular study known as Framingham Study (1961) which showed that high SERUM, not dietary, cholesterol did lead to increased risk of  cardio vascular disease (CVD). The study then made the gutsy recommendation that dietary cholesterol be limited, although it never actually showed any link between dietary cholesterol intake and serum cholesterol levels.

“To date, no controlled dietary intervention trials have determined a link between egg consumption and CVD in individuals who are at low risk and at increased risk for CVD. Egg yolks are a fantastic source of potent anti-oxidants lutein and zeaxanthin, which help protect against lipid oxidation (one of the key contributing factors to CVD). ”

Different study findings, with the direct intake of eggs being the key variable: 

  • “…consumption of an egg-based breakfast that added 2 eggs per day to normal dietary intake for 12 weeks did not alter lipoprotein concentrations in healthy, active individuals” , “…the egg based breakfast significantly improved triglyceride concentration independent of resistance exercise”
  • “…2 eggs, 5 times per week for 14 weeks did not alter blood lipids when compared to an egg-free, calorie matched breakfast”
  • “…3 eggs per day for 30 days did not have alterations in their LDL or HDL…”

What about egg intake in people who are at increased risk for CVD?

  • “Individuals following an egg based, lower fat diet exhibited significantly decreased adiposity relative to those consuming a bagel based, low-fat diet”
  • “…when 3 whole eggs per day for 12 weeks were added to a moderate carb restricted diet in overweight/obese adult men, no difference in LDL was observed, whereas sig. increase in HDL occurred relative to a cholesterol free egg substitute”
  • “…the addition of whole eggs to a moderate carb restriction (25-30% energy) was applied, producing a significant increase in HDL, along with decreases in triglycerides, oxidized LDL and VLDL in¬†individuals with Metabolic Syndrome”
  • …” individuals consuming whole eggs have significantly decreased tumor necrosis factor, and C-Reactive protein – relative to individuals consuming a cholesterol free substitute.”

The final take away, directly from the article:

“…it is becoming clear that eggs do not place healthy or diseased individuals at increased risk for CVD, and they may ultimately serve to decrease disease risk.”

My take away:

As always, there may be exceptions to these studies, and some people (~10%) have been deemed hyper-responders when it comes to dietary cholesterol. It is always best to check with your doctor, and make sure they are constantly monitoring your cholesterol levels, especially your¬†small particle LDL. Also, by just adding eggs to your diet, and not changing anything else, you may still not have the benefits. Example – if you add 3 eggs to your diet, but still eat sugary cereals, bagels, muffins, and other highly processed carbohydrates on a constant basis, you won’t benefit from just adding eggs. Also, still keep overall calories in mind, as a calorie deficit is still needed to lead to weight loss!

Lastly, here is my breakfast, almost every single morning:

IMG_1708

3 eggs, 3 turkey sausage links, 1/2 red pepper, slice of onion, 3 mushrooms Рsautéed in coconut oil

1 cup strawberries, 1/2 cup blackberries

410 calories, 25g carbs, 21g fat, 34g protein, 8g fiber

Macadamia Nut Oil: Why You Should Be Using It

When it comes to oils, the big hype is always generated around the ever so popular Olive Oil. Olive oil is indeed a very healthy form of fat (especially when compared with butter, margarine’s and some other oils), however it has a few drawbacks. First, it can have a very strong flavor, which makes it great for some dishes, but others not so much.

Also, it has a low smoke point(1), making it less desirable for high heat cooking. Don’t get me wrong, the benefits of olive oil are great! It is high in cholesterol fighting monounsaturated fats, which have been shown to decrease LDL and possibly increase HDL.

But what if there was an oil that had a better nutritional makeup than olive oil, AND wasn’t as potent AND had a higher smoke point for saut√©ing and cooking up some delicious scrambled eggs? You guessed it, it’s macadamia oil!

macadamiaoil

Macadamia oil is one of the lesser known oils when it comes to cooking, and is actually more popular for its uses in skin moisturizer products (because of its high levels of the omega-7 , palmitoleic acid – but that’s a different story all together)

First, take a look at the nutritional content of macadamia vs. other oils:

http://www.adoctorskitchen.com/about/about-fats

http://www.adoctorskitchen.com/about/about-fats

Macadamia is higher than any other oil in the cholesterol fighting monounsaturated fat. It is slightly higher in saturated fat, however this is from a plant form, and is pretty negligible.

It is also much lower in  Omega-6 fats than other oils, which is good because high omega-6 intakes have been associated with some cancers and cardiovascular problems.

When it comes to smoke point: olive oil is around 325 – 375 F, depending on how processed it is. Macadamia oil sits at a nice 410 – 450F. This means it can be heated higher without becoming rancid. It has also been found to me MUCH more shelf stable than other oils.

The flavor is much more subtle, but really REALLY good. It almost has a butter taste, and you can find some awesome recipes to use it in. I highly recommend it for scrambled eggs with sautéed veggies.

Lastly: the price. Here is where it gets interesting. Depending on the quality and composition of olive oils, the price can range from about $0.40/oz. to $1.20/oz. Macadamia oil ranges from $0.80/oz to $1.85/oz. The price could be a big factor, but for what it’s worth, the macadamia oil will last longer (don’t have to use as much) and also won’t go bad as fast.

Slide1

All in all, I think Macadamia oil is worth everyone giving a try. If anything, you can always use it to moisturize your skin (chemical free!) ¬†if you don’t like the taste! *Just remember, it is still a fat, so it packs 9 calories per gram, or about 40-45 calories per teaspoon.

Want to know more about oils, especially for deep fat frying purposes? Check out this great article by my buddy Michael Joseph –¬†http://nutritionadvance.com/best-oil-for-deep-frying

Now, we don’t need to go crazy and start deep fat frying everything (lots of extra calories!) – but, if you choose to deep fat fry the occasional foods, this article is money and will put you on the right track!

(1) the smoke point of an oil or fat is the temperature at which it begins to break down to glycerol and free fatty acids, and produce bluish smoke. The glycerol is then further broken down to acrolein which is a component of the smoke. It is the presence of the acrolein that causes the smoke to be extremely irritating to the eyes and throat. The smoke point also marks the beginning of both flavor and nutritional degradation. Рvia Wikipedia