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The Eating Commandments!

It’s plain and simple:

  1. Eat a wide range of highly nutritious raw and cooked foods
  2. Eat foods with a low glycemic load
  3. Eat 6 or more meals per day

The Eating Commandments!That’s really it in a nutshell, but it’s not enough. So I created a list of principles which I follow very closely to maintain my ultra-lean body easily at 40 years old.

I live by these commandments and I suggest you adopt them to. There is nothing crazy or outrageous, it is just sensible decision making based on what science has shown about the way our bodies use and react to the foods we eat.

So print this out and place it on the refrigerator….

These are the basic principles for you to follow.

Just by following these commandments, I’m able to maintain an ultra-healthy body and still eat of a lot of food I thoroughly enjoy.

  1. Stop eating when you’re full
  2. Spread your food over at least 5 meals (preferably 6 or more) a day because your insulin and energy levels will remain stable and digestion will be better. If you eat 5 meals, that’s about 1 meal every 3 hours you’re awake
  3. Consume ultra-high nutrient food because the higher the nutritional value of the food, the fewer calories your body will crave. Best sources are fresh, in season, locally grown fruits and vegetables and foods from pasture grazing, free range livestock and fish
  4. Make sure at least 50% of your fruits and vegetable are eaten raw because processing (including cooking) destroys some of the vitamins, antioxidants and phytochemicals. Salads without croutons, ranch type dressing or bacon bits, are a great way to get raw vegetables
  5. Prepare your meals at home (doesn’t mean you don’t have to eat them at home). The more you eat out the more likely you are to eat the wrong foods. I understand it SEEMS convenient to eat out but there is nothing convenient about obesity, diabetes and heart disease
  6. Eat all or most of your starchy carbs (breads, pasta, rice, potatoes etc) in the first 2 thirds of the day because they have a higher glycemic load (GL) and the resultant insulin spike while you’re sleeping and not using blood glucose for energy will increase fat accumulation
  7. Don’t eat refined starchy carbs like white bread (and other white flour products), white rice, white pasta etc because most of the fiber and nutrient content has been removed leaving a high GL/low nutrient food that will spike your insulin levels without providing much else
  8. Go easy on the condiments because ketchup is loaded with HFCS and most other sauces like ranch are high in sugar & saturated fats. Instead try yogurt, cottage cheese, mashed avocado, lemon juice, vinegar or no condiment all
  9. Eat foods high in fiber because fiber reduces the GL of the food, contains calories that are bio-unavailable, reduces LDL cholesterol levels, swells in your digestive tract to reduce appetite and provides an ideal environment in your colon for good bacteria to flourish
  10. Try to eat some protein with every meal if possible because protein signals your body to secrete hormones like cholecystokinin, which act to suppress your appetite
    • Always eat some protein at breakfast time because you’ll have less appetite for the rest of the day
  11. Choose your fats carefully. Completely avoid trans fats, limit your saturated fats and try to eat only unsaturated fats (nuts, olive oil, avocado, fish, leafy greens etc). Make sure some of those unsaturated fats include omega-3 fatty acids (cold water fish, nuts [especially walnuts], flax seed etc)
  12. Avoid foods containing obesogens (it’s difficult to avoid them 100%) because studies have already proved they cause infant obesity and we may only be a few studies away from discovering they cause obesity in adults too
    • Avoid highly processed soy products or processed food containing soy oil because soy contains estrogenic obesogens which promote fat storage
    • Don’t eat foods containing high fructose corn syrup or any other high fructose sweetener because they convert easily to fat and cause a number of health issues like obesity and heart disease
  13. Eat folate rich foods because studies have shown that your rate of weight loss can be up to 8.5 times faster when your folate levels are high
  14. Don’t drink your calories, instead choose to quench your thirst with water, green tea, coffee (limit your caffeine drinks to a couple a day) and freshly squeezed-before-your-eyes fruit and vegetable juices (not packaged or bottled juices).
  15. Avoid highly processed foods because processing removes the nutrients and adds chemicals and empty calories
  16. Don’t eat in the last 2-3 hours before bed because studies show late night eating substantially increases propensity for weight gain and obesity
  17. ALWAYS READ THE INGREDIENTS!

Eating As A Way Of Life

Eating As A Way Of LifeThe word diet has come to mean “a magical eating formula that will transform your body in no time with no effort”. I’m being contrite, but I’ve no doubt you know what I mean.

Interestingly, the word diet comes from Greek and means “a manner of living” or “a way of life”, which is really how it should be treated today.

But given the abundance of strong emotion regarding weight, thinness and attractiveness in our consumerist society, it’s not surprising marketers have found it easy to sell the “diet” concept as a pot-of-gold at the end of a magic rainbow.

In reality, it has to be “a way of life” if you are going to sustain your results. And it has to be a “manner of living” if you are to achieve your results in the first place.

Meaning, don’t design a diet of nothing but cabbage soup because you will never be able to incorporate nothing but cabbage soup as a “way of life” (the Cabbage-Soup Diet is a real thing, I didn’t just make that up!).

You need real food, that you can eat every day for the rest of your life to first achieve dramatic weight loss and then maintain your ideal weight.

It’s not as difficult as you may think. But it does require a commitment to eating healthy, real foods like those in the chart above.

Can you ever enjoy a pizza again? Of course you can, I do.

And I don’t mean some kind of “healthy-pizza”… I mean good-ol’ Italian pizza with cheese.

But I don’t do it often.

Most of my meals are made from real, unprocessed, highly nutritious foods. And I love my meals.

Not because I’m some kind of health-nut but because they taste great. Full of juice, texture, flavor AND life. Yes life, the living essence of natural foods which is sadly snuffed-out during processed food manufacturing.

How to Choose Which Foods To Eat

Choosing the right foods is half the battle. Even if you persist with other bad eating habits like over eating, skipping meals or eating late at night, you can still lose a lot of weight by eating the right foods.

Now I didn’t just give you permission to continue with those bad habits, I’m just making a point. If you get rid of those other bad eating habits AND eat the right foods your results will be amazing… I’m living proof of that.

We’ve already discussed briefly which foods you should keep in your pantry and which you should toss in the trash (or preferably donate to a soup kitchen), now let’s get more specific.

We know from the Eating Commandments that you should aim for foods which have high nutrition and low glycemic load (GL).

Say “No” to Dieting Gimmicks

There are ‘spike’ diets, ‘reward and reinforce’ diets, ‘metabolic typing’ diets and much more but all these philosophies have elements I’m just too uncomfortable with.

The benefit of using of these ‘gimmicks’ is it’s great for your marketing. You can say it’s a ‘revolutionary’ new way to eat that will strip your body down and so on. And the companies selling these diets use that ‘uniqueness’ as one of their key selling points…

… but that’s just the problem. I feel these eating philosophies are included not because they will be of the greatest benefit to you but more because it makes the product so much easier to sell.

Most Fad Diets Have No Supporting Scientific Evidence

There is just too much scientific evidence placing doubt over there efficacy. In fact most of the biggest fad diets are completely lacking in scientific evidence and there is even evidence showing they cause health complications and can be downright dangerous.

Most Fad Diets Are Not Sustainable

Here is what makes me most uncomfortable of all… these eating philosophies are not sustainable. That is, it is very unlikely you’ll keep eating that way forever because of the effort it takes and their impractical design.

Eating should be a wonderful event that you enjoy without too much hassle about how you do it. For example, eating mostly meats and fats which some diets recommend is not only unhealthy it’s also a depriving you of so much of the wonderful palette of food choices nature offers.

And what about a diet where you eat less than you want for 2 days and then only eat enough to be satisfied on the third day? Is that the way you want to eat for the rest of your life? I’m betting your answer is “No way!”

I agree with you, I couldn’t eat that way forever and I would never expect anyone else to.

So the question begs:

“What do I do after I stop eating according to these gimmicky dieting philosophies?”

Sadly, all these fad diets have no answer for you. The inevitability is, if you did manage to lose any weight, you’re going to put it all back on again if you don’t have an eating philosophy you can maintain for the rest of your life.

And that fact is more than amply supported by mountains of evidence proving successful long-term weight loss is extremely rare.

The SECRET to Losing Weight WITHOUT Counting Calories

The SECRET to Losing Weight WITHOUT Counting CaloriesI can honestly say I achieved my results WITHOUT EVER tracking calories, however, it doesn’t mean I’m not mindful of how many calories certain foods contain. For example, I don’t eat potato chips because I know they are packed with empty calories.

What’s needed is a system that keeps calories under check without the necessity to count them every meal… or ever.

What you need is these 3 tools:

  • Method for measuring portions
  • List of acceptable foods
  • Meal plan that uses portions of acceptable foods

Trust me, this is sooo easy.

1. ‘Handy’ Method For Measuring Portions

You’ve probably heard health recommendations speak of ‘portions’… “Eat 3-5 portions of vegetable a day”.

But of course, the question begs, “How big is a portion?”

Well, here is a simple principle I use to determine my portions. Pay attention here because this will become an important principle you’ll also use many times a day.

How to Measure Carbohydrate Portions

Portion of carbohydrates = size of a closed fist.

How to Measure Protein Portions

Portion of protein = width, length and thickness of your four fingers from tip to base (roughly the size of a pack of cards).

I know it doesn’t look like much but you’ll be eating several portions throughout the day.

How to Measure Fat Portions

Portion of fats = size of your thumb.

Is this ‘Handy’ Method Accurate?

Yes, it is accurate enough when you are portioning acceptable foods.

Bigger people have bigger hands, smaller people have smaller hands so you generally stay within your calorie range.

Can you believe it’s so easy to keep your eating habits in check just using these simple measurements? Try it out during your next meal!

The Most Efficient Eating Schedule For Weight Loss

These are the nutrients the typical American is deficient in, so be sure you’re getting enough of these:

  • Omega-3 fatty acids: seafood, nuts, grains and seeds
  • Folate: leafy greens, nuts
  • Vitamin C: fruits and vegetables
  • Vitamin E, Selenium, nitric oxide, glutathione and cartinoids
  • B6: beans, nuts, legumes, eggs, meats, fish, whole grains, and fortified breads and cereals
  • B12: animal products like meat and dairy products
  • Fiber: fruits, vegetables and grains

A New “Food” Axiom

The Most Efficient Eating Schedule For Weight LossWhen choosing a meal in the past, you’ve most likely limited your internal questions about food as to this:

“Does this food look and taste good?”

Instead, make it your habit to include the impact the food choice will have on your health by asking this:

“Is this a healthy food, will it benefit my body, can my body digest it easily AND does it taste good?”

This one simple change can make a world of difference in your waistline, but of course it all depends on your self-honesty and willingness.

Are you up to the challenge? I think so.

First things first…

Before we design your meals, you need to find time to eat. I know it sounds obvious but it’s very important because too many people are skipping breakfast, eating only 2-3 meals per day or scoffing down meals on the run.

That’s the wrong way to do it.

For optimum management of your energy levels and insulin levels, you should be eating at least 6 meals per day, certainly no less than 5. I personally eat 6-8 meals per day.

Why eat to manage your energy and insulin levels you may ask? Well, because that is a central key to controlling fat accumulation. Hopefully you read the earlier sections about insulin and know what I’m talking about. If not I suggest you go review that section.

Now as I was saying… I don’t make 8 separate meals, instead, for some of my meals I’ll make a large serving and eat half now, then eat the other half a couple of hours later.

Why?

Because by breaking a meal into 2 meals:

  1. I save time by not needing to make another meal AND
  2. By splitting the nutrients over 2 meals spread across a few hours my insulin levels are more stable and if you’ve chosen your food carefully (foods with a low GL), the glucose is not stored as fat but instead utilized as energy.

My Eating Schedule

Here’s a sample eating schedule for my typical day:

7:00am – First half of breakfast

8:00am– Second half of breakfast

9:30am – Morning Snack

12:00noon – First half of lunch

2:00pm – Second half of lunch

5:00pm – Afternoon snack

7:00pm – Dinner

8:30pm – Small snack

A Sample Eating Schedule

You may find it easier to follow a plan of 3 main meals and 2-3 snack meals in a day.

Such a plan would look like this:

7:00am – Breakfast

10:00am– Snack

1:00pm – Lunch

3:00pm – Snack

6:00pm – Dinner

9:00pm – Snack

The Two Most Important Meals of the Day

There are 2 meals which should NEVER be skipped.

  1. Breakfast: Never skip brekky because after a 9-hour fast, your body needs wholesome food to top up your micronutrient levels and bring your blood-glucose back into the stable range.

    If you don’t eat until lunch, glucogen and blood glucose levels will become so low that your body will begin breaking muscle tissue for conversion to glucose as an energy source à that’s bad news for fat loss

  2. Post-workout meal: this meal is ultra-important because for a period of 30-40 minutes post-workout, your body has increased capacity to absorb nutrients necessary to minimize muscle catabolism (muscle breakdown), reduce recovery time and build muscle mass.

    You benefit most from a meal of simple carbs and easily assimilated protein so a whey protein shake with sweet fruit (bananas, pineapple, mango) is ideal. Keep fat content low because getting the nutrients into your body quickly is important in the post-workout meal and fats will slow that process down.

The more efficient your eating schedule, the faster you lose weight. With such a simple concept making such a big difference, why not try it and watch the pounds just fall away?

Detoxify Your Pantry and Speed Up Weight Loss

Detoxify Your Pantry and Speed Up Weight LossIf you’re planning on taking this whole weight loss thing seriously, then it’s time to remove the temptation (aka toxins and fat-making-foods) from your pantry.

Don’t think of it as throwing away tasty food, instead think of it as what it really is:

Removing foods that are toxic to your body, pollute your liver, interfere with your digestion, mimic your hormones, linked to numerous serious health conditions AND make you very fat”.

Keeping that in mind will make it easier.

Ok, here we go:

  • Throw out foods containing vegetable shortening, hydrogenated vegetable oil or partially hydrated vegetable oil (collectively known as trans fats)
    • Hydrogenated vegetable oils occur nowhere in nature but they are added to foods because they have a long shelf life, give food a creamy texture and are extremely cheap which achieves the ultimate business objective of increased profits.

      They are created through a process called hydrogenation which changes naturally occurring liquid vegetable oils to solid vegetable fat.

      They do nothing good in your body but do plenty of bad including clogging arteries, impairing heart function, hardening cell walls, cancers, eczema, arthritis, irritable bowel syndrome, liver toxification…. the list goes on (more on trans fats later)!

  • Throw out foods that have sugar (or other sweetener) listed in the first 4 ingredients
  • Throw out foods made with white flour
  • Throw out foods made with white corn flour
  • Throw out your white rice
  • Throw out foods containing artificial sweeteners
  • Throw out foods containing processed soy products, especially soy oil
  • Throw out foods containing high fructose corn syrup
  • Throw out foods containing lots of additives
  • Throw out foods high in saturated fats
  • Throw out any highly processed foods

If you’re brave enough to really get this food out of your house (I hope you are), then of course don’t throw it in the trash, instead donate it to a shelter or other organization that could use it… even just your neighbor.

If you just can’t part with it, then pack it into boxes and store out of the way to remove the ‘convenience’ factor and hopefully your willpower will be strong enough to resist the urge to unpack them.

Foods to Stock Your Pantry With

  • Fresh fruits and vegetables (lots and lots of these)
  • Leafy greens (high in folate )
  • Legumes
  • Whole grains: brown rice, whole grain bread (oat is better than wheat), rolled oats, quinoa
  • Eggs
  • Fish and seafood
  • Meats and poultry
  • Cultured dairy products
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Nuts and seeds

Again, don’t think of it as throwing out food. Just remember that you are detoxifying your pantry, and doing what you should have done a long time ago!

Where Else Do We Get Obesogens?

The three main sources of the obesogens you’re exposed to are from:

  • Bisphenol-A (BPA) – found in the lining of cans used for canned food and in plastics with recycling codes 3 and 7
  • Organotins – biocides found in conventionally (non-organic) grown fresh produce
  • Phthalates – found in personal products containing plasticizers like nail polish, shampoo, lotions, perfumes, etc., as well as plastics like PVC

How Do I Avoid Obesogens?

Now that we have identified the main obesogens sources as:

  • Highly processed soy products
  • High fructose sweeteners (not true obesogens)
  • Hard plastics
  • Biocides (eg. Pesticides) and
  • Phthalates

All we need to do is avoid them right?

Where Else Do We Get ObesogensWell, yes but our food chain is so dense with them, it will be difficult if not impossible to avoid them altogether.

Even domestic water sources in major cities have been found to contain obesogens.

So what do you do?

Answer : Avoid them the best you can.

Below are the principles for avoiding obesogens, I’ll let you decide to what degree you want to follow them. Do I follow every principle… “No” but I do

Principles for Avoiding Obesogens

  1. Highly processed soy products: Don’t consume them of course. However, soy oil is used in many products you’re most likely not aware of so you need to get in the habit of reading the ingredient label of everything you buy. That should be a standard practice anyway.

  2. High fructose sweeteners: These are mostly widely used in packaged drinks like cans of soda and fruit boxes. Stick to water, natural squeezed-before-your-eyes juices, green tea, herbal tea and limited caffeine drinks.

    But don’t stop there, HFCS is used in just about every packaged or processed food you can imagine, so limit your consumption of those and again, read the labels.

  3. Hard plastics : Don’t drink or eat from plastic containers and store your food in glass, metal or ceramic containers with foil or wax paper instead of plastic containers and plastic wrap and don’t microwave or dishwasher plastic bowls, plates and containers because both increase the degree of leeching. Limit your consumption of canned foods.

  4. Biocides (eg. pesticides and herbicides): Eat only in season fruits and vegetable that are locally grown. This ensures they have not been treated with chemicals to preserve then or ripen them off the tree as they are exported from another distant part of the country or world.

    And if you want to really do it properly, only buy organically grown, which although sounds “new-agey” is actually not new-age but instead the way we ate for the first 2 million years of our existence. It’s only in the past 100 years we’ve taken to spraying poisons all over our foods.

    It only takes 5 days of eating an organic diet to reduce levels of pesticide based obesogens to almost undetectable levels in your body.

    I understand we can’t all afford ‘organic’ foods because they tend to be more expensive, but buying locally grown and in season shouldn’t be too hard. Just find your local growers market and get your fruit and veg there.

    Now the same goes for your animal proteins. Try, if you can, to buy meats that come from animals that were free to walk about and graze the meadow enjoying the foods nature intended in preference to animals raised in pens, knee deep in their own manure and living on a diet of corn and soy.

  5. Phthalates : Don’t drink from the hose! Phthalates are in PVC so avoid storing water in PVC containers. Also, try buying cosmetics that are made without phthalates.

  6. Filter your water : Add a carbon based filter to your faucet or get a carbon filter pitcher because the USDA Pesticide Data Program found 54% of domestic water tests contain pesticides.

  7. Eat lean meats : Most obesogens are fat soluble so fatty meats are already higher in obesogens AND most meats available in the supermarket are wrapped in PVC plastic wrap which leaches phthalates into the fat of the meat… yet another reason to avoid fatty meats.

High Fructose Corn Syrup – It’s Everywhere

High Fructose Corn Syrup – It’s EverywhereHigh-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) is a very common food sweetener and preservative. HFCS is made by changing the sugar (glucose) in cornstarch to fructose — the type of sugar typically found in fruits.

The resultant fructose is then mixed with corn syrup (100% glucose) to achieve the desired sweetness.

HFCS extends the shelf life of processed foods and is cheaper than sugar so it has been used increasingly since the 1970s. It’s also pleasant tasting so proves to be a good additive for reduced fat foods because its sweetness compensates for the flavor lost when fat is removed.

You’ll find HFCS has become a popular ingredient in many sodas, fruit-flavored drinks and a myriad of other processed foods. In fact, I think you’ll be downright astounded at how pervasive its use is (they’re in almost every processed food you can think of!).

HFCS also parades under the guise of these different terms on the ingredient list:

  • Isoglucose
  • Iso Glucose
  • Maize syrup
  • Glucose-fructose syrup in the UK, and
  • Glucose/fructose in Canada

As your about to discover, HFCS is terrible for your weight and your health for a bunch of different reasons.

But I want you to be aware it’s not only high fructose sugars made from corn you need to avoid. Any high fructose sugar made from any plant should be avoided. Here is a list of other high fructose sugars to avoid:

  • Inulin
  • Chicory
  • Fruit Fructose
  • Agave syrup
  • Agave nectar (agave is touted as a healthly alternative to sugar but its fructose levels can be up to 93% compared to about 57% in HFCS)

Statistics on HFCS Consumption

According to a 2008 USDA Dietary Assessment of Major Trends in U.S. Food Consumption report, the use of HFCS in the diets of all Americans increased a mind-blowing 10,673 percent in the 35 years from 1970 and 2005 (in 2005 the average American ate 59 pounds of high fructose corn syrup).

This scary statistic is made possible by the fact processed foods now account for more than 90 percent of the dollars Americans spend on our meals.

All this means HFCS is now the #1 source of calories for Americans… an artificial highly processed sugar made from corn!

Just a single can of soda contains about 40 grams (1.4 ounces) of HFCS. And it’s so cheap, fast food companies are able to super-size you with very little additional expense to them.

USDA Food Guide Dietary Guidelines recommends no more than 8 teaspoons of added sugar per day (not including sugars occurring naturally in fruits, vegetable and grains). But the average American in 2005 ate 30 teaspoons of added sugar, mostly HFCS.

That means, an adult on a 2000 calorie per day diet is getting 24% of their calories from added sugar – that won’t end well!

What’s So Bad About HFCS?

High fructose corn syrup is closely associated with obesity and type 2 diabetes mellitus (adult onset diabetes).

Processed fructose found in HFCS is highly lipogenic (converts easily to fat in your liver) compared to other sugars, so high consumption of HFCS causes increased fat levels in your blood.

This is because the processed fructose found in HFCS does not follow the same chemical path as other sugars when processed by the liver. When other sugars enter your liver a decision is made of whether to:

  • Convert to glycogen and store in your liver and muscles
  • Or convert to glucose and burn as energy
  • Or convert to fat and store in your fat cells.

But the processed fructose found in HFCS does not follow this path and instead bypasses the first 2 steps and converts directly into fat.

When HFCS consumption is very high, which it is for most Americans, your body fat increases, your blood fat level also becomes high and the floodgates to a host of problems, including obesity, are opened.

More specifically, studies have shown the disruption of normal lipogenesis (fueled by too much processed fructose) leads to insulin resistance, which we discussed at length earlier makes you obese and at risk of diabetes.

A study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism as early as 2004 showed high processed fructose meals decrease circulating leptin, the hormone secreted by fat cells which suppresses appetite, and therefore HFCS contributes to weight gain and obesity.

Another effect of HFCS is nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). A 2008 research paper published in the Journal of Hepatology concluded “excessive dietary fructose consumption” contributes to NAFLD.

We already know from earlier discussion liver dysfunction is common in obesity, even being overweight but not yet obese has been shown to stress your liver. And when you liver is stressed it becomes less efficient in the processes necessary for maintaining a healthy weight AND a healthy body.

High fructose corn syrup, it seems, snuck up on us all these years when the food industry was developing into the processed foods giant it is now.

Are You Addicted to HFCS? Are You Sure?

In a scientific paper published in The Bariatrician in 2009, Dr. Lustig MD says:

Similar to ethanol, through direct stimulation of the central nervous system “hedonic pathway” and indirect stimulation of the “starvation pathway”, fructose induces alterations in central nervous system energy signaling that lead to a vicious cycle of excessive consumption, with resultant morbidity and mortality.

In short, he’s saying HFCS is addictive. You want more and more and more!

This is a major concern for all of us because not only is HFCS:

  • Addictive
  • Converts to fat super easily
  • Causes high blood fat levels which contribute to heart disease
  • Causes insulin resistance and obesity
  • And causes non alcoholic fatty liver disease,

…it’s also in just about every processed or packaged food you can think of!

That’s scary!

I could go on and reveal more horrors about HFCS but hopefully I’ve said enough to convince you to avoid it as best you can.

Obesogens, The Fat-Making Chemical (Part 2)

Obesogens Affect… You?

Obesogens, The Fat-Making Chemical (Part 2)Bruce Blumberg PhD, the scientist that coined the term “obesogens” says there is still no evidence that obesogens are causing obesity in adults, but he also points out this science is still very new.

We may only be a few scientific research studies away from discovering a conclusive link between obesogens and adult obesity (such a discovery may have even been made since I wrote this book).

In the meantime, Bruce Blumberg PhD recommends a policy of “better safe than sorry”.

And for American adults born after World War II, they may already be suffering the consequences of prenatal exposure to obesogens, that could include you.

The obesity epidemic is worse in the USA than any other country in the world. And we discover, the citizens of the USA also have the highest exposure to obesogens both prenatally and during their lifetime than any other people in the world.

At the moment, the average American consumes 10-12 different pesticides each and every day. And 9 of those are identified as EDCs!

And 93% of all Americans test positive for the obesogen Bisphenol-A (BPA)… more on specific obesogens soon.

Considering there are over 3000 approved food additives and many thousands of different chemicals used in biocides and pesticides and many thousands more used in plastics and other food packaging, we can expect that many more obesogens are yet to be discovered.

In short, everyone is most certainly exposed to some degree of obesogens.

Obesogens From Soy

“Isn’t Soy Good For You?”

Soy has a reputation for being a good heart food and providing other health benefits. However, due to the evidence of recent studies, the American Heart Association (AHA) Nutrition Committee no longer recommends eating soy to lower cholesterol because we now know it has to be consumed in unrealistic quantities for only modest lowering of LDL cholesterol.

Soy protein on the other hand is a very high quality protein for a vegetable, is similar in quality to animal protein and therefore a healthy alternative to meat because of its high fiber and polyunsaturated fat content.

But don’t be fooled into thinking the mention of ‘soy’ means it’s good for you because most likely it’s not soy protein but instead a highly processed soy oil.

Estrogenic Obesogens in Soy

I mentioned earlier that soy is now used to make baby formula and that it contains 2 naturally occurring obesogens called genistein and daidzein.

Those 2 obesogens are estrogenic, meaning they mimic the female hormone estrogen.

When your estrogen levels are high, you have decreased capacity for building muscle, but an increased capacity for storing fat. That’s a formula for easy weight gain but a lot of difficulty losing it. Not to mention high estrogen levels are linked also with breast and uterine cancer.

You may be thinking you don’t eat soy products so it’s not really a concern for you but you’d be surprised how much soy you are actually eating because it’s in so much of the food we eat nowadays.. more on that in a moment.

Soy, Isoflavones and Your Thyroid

Soy is very rich in isoflavones.

Isoflavones act as phytoestrogens in mammals, meaning they mimic estrogen (the estrogenic obesogen, genistein, which we discussed above is an isoflavone).

But not only do they mimic estrogen, they also inhibit the production of thyroid hormone and for this reason are also called goitrogens because when thyroid hormone levels become low your thyroid may enlarge to compensate (goiter).

Now before I go on I need to temper this discussion with a balanced assessment. There is still no conclusive evidence that soy disrupts thyroid hormone production, however we need to keep in mind the companies behind ‘soy’ are giant multi-billion dollar behemoths with arguably the power to influence popular media and sway opinion.

The Chinese have used soy for 5000 years so it can’t be all bad, but here’s the difference and what you can use as a rule for choosing which soy products you eat:

Historically, soy has been eaten as the unprocessed bean or in fermented forms like tofu and soy sauce.

So if you enjoy eating soy and want to keep it on the menu, stay away from processed forms like soy milk and soy oil and opted instead for the more traditional forms.

What Foods Contain Soy?

Soy has become one of the largest crops in the US because it is cheap, easy to manage and very easy to process. The food industry has developed methods for processing soy to the nth degree and found many new ways to incorporate it into the food you eat for the simple purpose of increased profits via lowered costs.

The majority of soy you eat is most likely in the form of soy oil found in cookies, chips, pizza and many more.

Go to the kitchen and check the labeling of some of the packaged and processed foods you have in your pantry and I think you’ll be surprised.

For a more extensive listing of commercial foods containing soy, look here: http://www.neisd.net/foodserv/HTML/documents/FoodAllergens13Jan09.pdf

Indirectly you are also exposed to soy because livestock raised for the dinner table aren’t eating grass in the meadow as nature intended anymore. Instead the beef, pork and poultry you eat are raised on an unnatural diet of soy and corn (and hormones, antibiotics and other nasties).

Even farmed fish are raised on a diet of soy and corn. Is that natural? Yeah right! I don’t think so.

Obesogens From Corn

While corn doesn’t contain any specific obesogens and none are made from the processing of corn, there is some evidence to suggest that a processed corn sugar may actually create sugar cravings in your brain.

Obesogens, The Fat-Making Chemical (Part 1)

Obesogens, The Fat-Making Chemical (Part 1)Obesogens are chemicals that disrupt the normal hormonal balance of your body in such a way that leads to an increased propensity for obesity.

Obesogens are a subclass of chemicals called Endocrine Disrupting Compounds (EDC) (a.k.a. endocrine disrupting chemicals), which act like hormones in your endocrine system.

The majority of EDCs make their way into your body via the food you eat.

 

Obesogens enter the food chain and your body from a number of different sources including:

  • Synthetic hormones fed to livestock and other animals raised for human consumption
  • Herbicides and pesticides sprayed on the grains, fruits and vegetable we eat
  • Naturally occurring chemicals found in soy
  • Plastic compounds found in our food packaging
  • And chemical additives used in processed food

What obesogens do:

Obesogens confuse your body. They send false messages, prevent other messages from being sent and cause some of your genes to turn off and others to turn on.

In short, you don’t need them in your body and you definitely don’t want them in there either.

The actions of obesogens include:

  • Mimicking human hormones
  • Blocking others
  • And even changing the action of genes

Specifically, obesogens act to make you gain weight and become obese.

Should I seriously consider obesogens something to worry about?

Consider these US statistics:

  • Roughly 1 in 3 American adults are obese, not just overweight, but obese.
  • If we expand the statistic to include the overweight it’s actually 2 in 3 (67%)!
  • In the past 25 years, obesity amongst adolescence (12-19 years) has more than tripled from 5% to 17.6%
  • For 6-11 year olds obesity rates have almost tripled from 6.5% to 17%
  • Obesity in 2-5 years olds has more than doubled from 5% to 12.4% (http://www.cdc.gov/obesity/)

Remembering early on in this series of articles we discovered:

  • Americans spend $192 million PER DAY on weight loss products but official statistics show 95% of people will FAIL to maintain weight loss

So we must consider there are many other factors at play other than just calories and exercise.

Hopefully you agree managing your self-image (mind) and self-esteem (spirit) are 2 of the other factors we need to nurture for successful weight loss, like I show you soon.

But how can we explain this statistic:

  • Obesity in infants under 6 months has risen 73% since 1980! (Harvard School of Public Health, 2006)

These babies are only drinking breast milk and baby formula and at 6 months no babies get much exercise so the normal reasons for obesity don’t apply.

So why?

New research is showing that obesogens can trigger precursor cells (cells that have not yet been designated a role in the body and still have the potential to be any kind of body cell) to become fat cells.

So because of obesogens for example, precursor cells that were destined to become connective tissue cells, are triggered by the obesogens to become fat cells instead.

Exposure to obesogens also lowers your metabolism and triggers your body to hoard calories as fat.

Babies are exposed to obesogens circulating in their mother’s blood while still in the womb and then from the hard plastic bottles they drink from (containing the obesogens called bisphenol A) and even the soy-based formula they may be drinking (containing the naturally occurring obesogens called genistein and daidzein).

Scientific Findings From The Experts:

In 1997, Dr Baille-Hamilton published an article in the Journal of Alternative and Complimentary Medicine, in which she mentioned there seems to be a correlation between increasing obesity rates and the increasing use of pesticides and plasticizers over the past 40 years.

While it was an unfounded claim at the time, it sparked the interest of other scientists and subsequent studies began to show there is indeed a relationship.

Scientists in Japan were able to show in a lab dish that some of the chemicals used in hard plastic baby bottles actually cause prefibroblasts (cells destined to become connective tissue cells) to change and become fat cells instead.

Since then several more studies have shown that prenatal exposure to obesogens increases the likelihood of infant obesity.

This is very new science and research is continuing but there is enough evidence accumulated now for The Endocrine Society to make the following official scientific statement regarding EDCs:

“The rise in incidence in obesity matches the rise in the use and distribution of industrial chemicals that may be playing a role in generation of obesity suggesting that EDCs may be linked to this epidemic.”

Tips On How To Eat Meals For Fat Loss!

Tips On How To Eat Meals For Fat Loss!By now, you understand that eating in a way that creates a large insulin spike leads to unwanted fat storage.

What you may not be aware of yet is that even if you eat a healthy meal containing low GL carbohydrates, you will still get a large insulin spike if your meal is huge.

Let me repeat that because it’s important:

“Eating a huge meal of carbohydrates (even if they are low GL) will create a larger than desired insulin spike.”

So rather than eat 2 or 3 large meals every day, its much healthier to eat the same volume of food over many more meals, 5-6 meals in a day for example.

By nibbling many times in a day, rather than gorging a couple times a day, your body receives a constant supply of energy and your metabolism remains high.

It makes sense when we consider that for ancient man a huge meal was a rare event. More commonly they scrounged and foraged throughout the day, nibbling a few nuts here and some berries there.

This is the way your body has evolved to receive nutrients.

Don’t Skip Breakfast

But, if you skip breakfast and then eat a huge lunch and a huge dinner, your body thinks there is a famine and goes into starvation mode. Why else would you go so many hours without supplying nutrients?

So when you do eat your huge meal after a long fast, your body decides the food should be stored rather than used. Typically after eating your big meal you’ll feel sleepy because your body has slowed your metabolism to conserve energy so the nutrients can be stored (as liver and muscle glycogen and as unwanted fat).

Knowing this, it comes as no surprise to learn research published in the American Journal Of Epidemiology in 2003 showed that the more meals eaten in a day the lower the risk of obesity.

The study also showed skipping breakfast in particular, increased the likelihood of obesity.

If you find you’re just not hungry in the morning, start eating smaller meals in the evening because you’re probably overeating at dinnertime and waking with a ‘full’ feeling from the night before.

Skipping breakfast and then getting so hungry you gorge at lunch and dinner only to wake full again the next morning is a cycle you need to break if you want to start eating more frequent smaller meals throughout the day and lose weight.

Avoid Late Night Eating

Also avoid eating late at night because it interferes with your hormonal cycle and circadian rhythm.

In research at Northernwestern University by Fred Turek et al they fed one group of mice high fat diets during normal sleeping hours and another group of mice the exact same diet but during normal waking hours.

The mice fed during normal sleeping hours gained more than twice the fat as those eating during waking hours!

Cortisol and growth hormone are typically secreted at night between the hours of 3-6am, presuming you follow a standard sleeping pattern.

Both of these hormones counter the effects of insulin and by doing so, increase your insulin resistance.

So if you eat late at night and your blood glucose levels are elevated during the same time your body is secreting cortisol and growth hormone, your pancreas will have to compensate by secreting higher levels of insulin.

Combined with the sedentary nature of sleep, your body will store the nutrients as fat and you’ll wake in the morning in a state of reactive-hypoglycemia and be more likely to reach for the high sugar cereal and overeat.

Eating Frequency in Practical Terms

Presuming you have about 8 hours of sleep per night (you shouldn’t be sleeping any less than that if you are trying to lose fat), then this is how often you should be eating during waking hours:

  • 5 meals per day: 1 meal about every 3 waking hours or
  • 6 meals per day: 1 meal about every 2.5 waking hours

It’s actually possible to eat TO lose weight, as long as you follow these important tips. Eat more and weigh less sounds like a strange contradictory combination, but it actually works. Try it out today.