Disclaimer – I am not a medical professional and none of the below is medical advice. I am trying to educate the reader on newer medical science and present research from these doctors. What I did over 3 years was lose 175 pounds and researched thousands of hours of what the latest science is telling us. I have two master’s degrees – but neither are in the health field. I mention this because I want you to put my ability to research and aptitude into consideration here. Keep this in mind for the section below.
Doctors are not Gods…
I had a recent discussion with someone close to me, let’s call him Bob, where I kind of lost my shit over nutrition. I called his doctor a quack, which then made him defensive. What led up to this? I feel that most of you have no idea what a doctor does and doesn’t know. In today’s society, we bestow God-like powers on to them, as if they are some omnipotent being.
My first hint that doctors were mere mortals was when I was finishing up my IT degree in the late 1990s, one of the professors talked about this newfangled software they were rolling out to the local hospitals. Doctors wanted nothing to do with it. They couldn’t deal. Wanted their pen and paper and files. Scrapped the system.
This told me that while they were REALLY good at a certain thing, they had limitations. Do you ask your doctor for financial advice? Ask them how to do drywall? What about gardening advice? So – you realize doctors DO have some limits, right?
According to Dr. Ken Berry – one of the people I watched a lot on YouTube over the years, doctors have about one class in one semester in med school dealing with nutrition. Please, re-read that statement. This would be different from dieticians who focus a lot on nutrition.
So what I’m telling you is this. Your GP took microeconomics 101 and is trying to provide advice on how to run a fortune 500 company. Maybe this isn’t a completely fair assessment, but the point here is these guys (and gals) are not going through med school thinking “heal thyself through food”.
When you go to a GP today, what happens? You tell him things, and expect a pill. What you hope for is the latest and greatest science to get you the best pill possible.
What if you ate the RIGHT combinations of the RIGHT foods and you found out you didn’t NEED to go to a doctor? Preventive medicine, if you will.
In my last shitty metaphor, imagine you bought a car and drove it all over the place, never put oil into the thing, and put the cheap gas in when it was calling for high octane? You’d go to a mechanic to replace parts.
What if you had the owners manual in front of you the whole time, and it told you how to operate your vehicle properly? You’d expect you wouldn’t smash up your car, your parts would last longer, and your trips to the mechanic would be rare – to do maintenance tasks, and not replacement tasks.
The engineering of you…
For 500,000 years humans evolved from apes to where we are today. It’s not a perfect timeline, and this still is a “theory”, but the point is with all of those generations of “survival of the fittest”, adaptations happened to get us to where we are today. What most people don’t comprehend, and cannot fathom today, is that humans had a hard time finding food and they didn’t eat three square meals a day. They were the “hunters and gatherers”. Maybe you ran across a berry patch. But with food being scarce, humans would go for the most energy-dense food they can find. Fats. More of fats below, but fats are 9 calories per gram. Carbs and protein are 4.
In many parts of the world, they eat grasshoppers. If you go back, say 200,000 years – I want you to consider what we may have eaten. My guess is we ate a lot of bugs, worms, lizards, and things like that. Maybe rodents. These were the easiest food for us to get. Turn over a rock and there’s some worms and lizards. Once we developed tools and weapons, we had a better chance against bigger game, like deer or even rabbits. Think of spear throwing to take down something. You have to get close enough.
So what does that diet look like? It looks very close to what the keto diet is today. This is how our bodies were engineered. I know people like to talk about paleo eating and the like, but that’s a bit more advanced than bugs and worms.
Agriculture only started about 10,000 years ago, give or take a thousand years. Could have been 10,000 BC, not sure. Up until that point, humans were nomadic. Moved around. Think of native Americans in many movies how they would have teepees and hunt, then move. What seemed to happen was were figured out how to grow things, and then we stayed in that area and developed land. This is where you get the dawn of civilization around “the fertile crescent”.
Over the course of that time, farming was hard work. People found a lot more carbs in their diet. Breads came about. But this doesn’t mean they had pasta night all you can eat every night. They may have had to work for hours to knead things, get the wood to make a fire, and cook.
All of these things took a lot of human energy to do.
When looking at weight loss, doctors today take a “physics” approach to weight loss. Let’s explain what everyone agrees on – that 3500 calories is equal to one pound of fat. These calories (actually kilocalories) are units of heat, and your body can take these calories and break them down into energy for usage. Essentially, you eat three types of calories: fats, carbs, and proteins. Fats are needed for hormones and a ton of other things. Proteins are your building blocks which helped you produce muscle and many other of the connective tissues and a billion other things. Carbs? You could literally go the rest of your life without carbs and have zero ill effects. Many don’t know this. I remember my doctors in the early 1990s telling me to embark on a fat free diet. The thinking was that fats were 9 grams of calories per gram, so if you just removed the fats, I could lose weight. This was medical science telling a population not to eat fats. Which are essential.
And the promoted a “healthy diet” which told you to eat 11 servings of something your body doesn’t need to survive.
So the basic concept is, your body tells you it needs something, and you eat to satisfy that need. Going to cover a lot more of this in the hormone section below.
Doctors will school me in the following subject in depth – but I’d like to introduce you to a concept many of you may not be familiar with. The concept that different activities may burn different kinds of energy. Think about when you have a hybrid and you are accelerating on to the highway and driving 70mph. This may use gasoline. It burns dirty, but you got power. Then, think of when you are in stop and go traffic and you are using your battery. No emissions, it’s clean.
Your body does sort of the same thing with fats and carbs. If you were a sprinter or playing basketball with spurts of sprinting, you will burn a lot of carbs. In a sense, these “carbs” are stored in your glycogen stores in your muscles and liver. This is IMMEDIATE energy – your high octane rocket fuel. If you go back 200,000 years, think of the need to run from a tiger or chase food. You don’t need a ton of this, but it comes in very handy when needed.
With fats, think of walking. Breathing. General body functions. This is your battery. Overnight, your body may drain some of your liver glycogen (if I recall, about 400-500 calories) and then rather than dipping into your muscle glycogen stores, it breaks down your stored fat into glucose in a process called gluconeogenesis.
Why carbs matter? I can tell you from years of eating a lot of carbs versus years of eating virtually no carbs, there’s a MASSIVE difference in your brain. With high levels of carbs, I was playing 8 hour games of chess in the world open. I was a math olympiad. Spelling bee champ. Deep, deep, deep thinking. I also was an extreme introvert and had problems speaking in front of people. The act of conversing with people was very difficult around new people – why? Anytime people talked to me, my mind raced down dozens of neuropathways immediately. It was hard to even form sentences at times because as I was saying things, I was calculating how people would take it and how I would respond, and how they would respond – AS I was talking. It was like living in a fog. However, I felt the carbs and sugar helped me with “brilliance” if you will and get 2 master’s degrees. My focus for long periods of time was incredible. And – it’s possible this level of depth of thinking is what helped humans evolve. So – I cannot discount this. And why maybe I wouldn’t go full keto with a teenager. That being said the side effects of TOO many carbs were blocking neuro pathways for clarity – so much so that I felt I was dealing with a form of dementia in my 20s. My recall was horrible, unless I was writing. Trying to articulate thoughts verbally were impossible. I can easily see how many people now call alzheimers “type 3 diabetes”. Yeah, that’s now a thing.
So unless you are a growing child, an athlete, or a deep thinker, you don’t need carbs. At all. Zero. I did use carbs with training, but sparingly.
What you find is work out there with low carb and keto is amazing. They found that when you do a diet with say, 10-20% carbs, and exercise, your glycogen stores are drained from the harder exercise, and then your body is forced to burn a lot more fat for calories needed. When I unlocked this with my body, my whole life changed. One thing that happened in the first 2-3 months was my thinking was “shallower”. I could not go down those hundreds of neuropathways in conversation, and suddenly I was “sharp” and my recall improved many times over.
But another thing happened when I went low carb…
I lost my appetite.
One thing many people don’t know much about are hormones. And what hormone does what. Do you know hormones are mostly made from fats? So I wonder how that goes over telling a population for a decade to avoid fats? Almost as if it might cause mental illness. Amazingly, before 1995, this country never had a school shooter. Ever. In fact, when my mom was a kid in the 1960s, she brought a rifle to school for show and tell. One of MY theories with all of this is the abundance of cheap carbs, especially in lower income households, leads to mental illness of some form. MY “excited brain” calmed down when I changed my diet to 60% or so fats.
So why do you eat? There’s two prevailing schools of thought here. One – you are bored and sitting around and as a habit you walk over to the fridge and grab something. Second, the main thing, is you get hungry. Most don’t realize this is a hormone called ghrelin. Any of you that have had children know they go through growth spurts. Other times, they aren’t hungry. That growth spurt may be your body producing ghrelin to tell you to get more calories so we can build more bones and muscle. Other times, your kid may pick at food and not eat.
Anyone who has also done any form of low carb knows the satiety value in fats and proteins. You also probably have experienced the time you went to the chinese buffet and had tons of noodles and rice and 2 hours later were hungry.
The fun thing about carbs are they actually can make you hungry, to an extent. Carbs also force your body to secrete insulin from the pancreas. What happens is you eat some form of carb, whether they are the simple sugars in milk like lactose, table sugar like sucrose, or fruit sugars like fructose – or even the complex carbs in breads and pastas that break down to simple sugars – and the glucose in your bloodstream increases. Insulin is produced to then take this glucose from the bloodstream and force it into the cells. When insulin is going through your system the cells have glucose getting forced into them, and any glucose in there is not allowed to escape.
Meaning – when you are eating breads and pastas, your body is being fueled by this sugar, and insulin goes flowing through you. If you have excess glucose, your body then convers these to fats.
So if you are constantly consuming carbs every 4 hours, your body is always running on gasoline and never, ever gets a chance to run on the battery around your waist.
When insulin comes crashing down later, you get sleepy and you get hunger pangs.
Let’s say you are 100 pounds overweight. If each pound is 3500 calories, you are carrying 350,000 excess calories on you in a battery.
Quick question. If your body knew it had 350,000 calories strapped to it, why would you get hungry?
Because we are not operating our vehicles how they were designed.
Fun fact – when you look at something called the “glycemic index”, it gives you a good idea about how much something can spike your insulin level. With this, IF you eat carbs, steer towards the lower end of the gylcemic index. It doesn’t mean you cannot have a baked potato out with your steak on your cheat night, but what it means is you probably shouldn’t be pounding every meal with high glycemic carbs. Not only will it continue to punish your pancreas by continued production of insulin, but you will be stuck in a never-ending loop of hunger created by foods which spike your insulin.
What most don’t realize is when you mix your foods, it can dull the effect of the insulin spike. You see pizza above has a 33, but white bread has 49. Well, pizza is bread and cheese. This dulls the glycemic spike a little. So if you were to have a snack, and say “I’m going to have a cup of watermelon”, it’s going to spike your insulin and 2 hours later you will be starving. It might be better to have an apple with cheese. Or plain yogurt with blueberries.
If we go back a few thousand years, again, think about how hard it was to come by food. It might have been easier closer to water, where animals live. You can fish or trap, but fish are not throwing themselves at you, and there were no steel size 10 hooks then.
What might have happened when you came about a berry bush? Perhaps you ate your fill. You didn’t eat lettuce, there were no calories in it. Maybe over the warmer months, your body knew it could store extra energy for the cooler months, and thus stored excess sugars in the form of fats. When times were leaner, your body then had 35,000 calories to drawn from over the winter.
So I DO think carbs served a purpose of sprinting – and there were abilities to be stored as fat pretty easily.
What I believe is the food pyramid is upside down. Any woman in the 1950s would say about pie, “a moment on the lips, a lifetime on the hips”. We all KNEW sugars make you fat.
This is what I believe we SHOULD be eating….
Meat will kill you!
What happened in the 1970s was inflation happened. The costs of everything went through the roof. Perhaps the ordinary person ate 2000-2500 calories of meats and potatoes. Most people were outdoors a lot and working construction and at factories. They moved around a lot.
When inflation happened, costs of things like meats went nuts. They had to make them less expensive. Where cows may have USED to roam around grasslands everywhere, it was no longer economical. So what do you want to do to fatten a cow? Feed them grains and “feed”. Want to fatten a chicken? Take them away from their natural diet of bugs and worms and give them “feed”. Meaning, the lowest level of the food pyramid. We already know that when we give this to animals, it makes them fat. But us? No……
Why? It makes us hungry. When you go on a low carb/keto/atkins/paleo, you will find that perhaps after 2-3 weeks, you lose your appetite a lot. This is your body capitulating and understanding there are no more carbs to be found, that winter time has come. Your body then starts drawing on your battery. And when it does this, you lose a lot of your appetite.
This then led to me doing things like “intermittent fasting”. Where, perhaps I would only eat in 1 hour windows each day. I would probably fast 3-4 Fridays a month on something called “Fasting Fridays”. Then, I was able to do 3 day fasts with little problems a few times. Most people don’t realize all major religions have fasting protocols – and much of this is thought to ward off diseases. Many cancers are thought to be formed by feeding off of carbohydrates, and many brain cancers are treated with a form of a low carb diet. Fasting introduces a concept called “autophagy” which essentially means “eat yourself”. When you do fasting protocols, your body FIRST has to exhaust glycogen stores, which are about 1800 or so calories of glucose stored all over your body. When you are on keto, it’s very easy to deplete these stores. Autophagy essentially takes dead cells or weak cells and breaks them apart for food and recycles all the bits into the hopper to make new cells. This is potentially why a Halle Berry at 50 something looks like she’s in her 30s. It’s sort of a fountain of youth.
Did you know, the research on Autophagy won a Nobel prize in 2016? Did your GP know this?
Now, I want you to look at your high carb diet, and think about skipping a lunch. The world might end. Food anxiety. So let’s not go into fasting Fridays or 3 day fasts just yet, I just wanted you to know fasting is a hell of a lot easier when you aren’t fucking hungry. That’s some PhD level shit right there for you.
But I digress. Meat will kill you. Right? According to any documentary out there against meat, right?
There’s nuance in everything.
Remember I told you above about cows, pigs, and chickens eating their natural diets? What happens when they do NOT eat their natural diets? They get fat. And….the meat they have with the fats is extremely high in omega 6 fatty acids. There’s several types of omegas, and the truth is I forgot most of this shit over the years, but let’s focus on 6 and 3. Omega 6s are where you have your inflammation. Some of this is needed. Think about if you cut yourself, there’s inflammation there to stop blood flow. Omega 3s are anti-inflammatory. Every food with fats has a different balance in it.
The natural human diet – meaning your operator’s manual – has humans eating a 4:1 omega 6:3 ratio. So that vegetable oil you use to make those brownies you love, with all of that sugar? That vegetable oil was created as industrial lubricant and they discovered it was edible, and has a 700:1 ratio.
The below is just an example – there’s many charts out there to look from, but this is just an idea….
I love almonds, but if you look at the chart above for keto, it’s to have on the low end. Maybe 1 oz. Here and there. There are better nut choices. But when you look at meats, your eyes pop open. WOW!! High ratios!!
Well, the problem here is that what meats are they testing? All of these articles for 40 years talking about how bad red meat is for you, is it based on grass fed/grass finished cows, or the cows that don’t move and eat tons of grains and get fat?
Take a look at this…I buy a quarter cow of grass fed/grass finished beef every 6 months. You are buying shitty walmart beef.
So the beef I’m eating is 2:1. You are at 17:1, and even up to 25:1 I’ve seen in other studies.
Think about salmon? You want to go to the store and get salmon. There’s a MASSIVE difference between the wild caught versus the farmed.
While the farmed salmon is 1:2, the wild caught is 1:10. Still the farmed may be a decent choice due to the cost difference. Then, you also get what you pay for…
So a few things. When you see studies that are long term studies of meat consumption, the ask here is – “what kind of meats are you eating”? Most don’t even know about grass fed/finished, and most cannot afford it, even if they knew about it.
But it still will kill you, look at all of that cholesterol!
This is where you had the great egg debate for 40 years. Now, they come out and say, “eggs are ok!”. Well, even with this, I also get the free range chickens. Look at the difference with the yolks. This is the difference between a chicken fed “feed” versus a chicken that eats a natural diet.
So the one on the right is more orange and has a superior omega 6:3 ratio. But we’re talking about cholesterol, right?
I want you to think about all of this shit food going into your body, with high omega 6s. High levels of preservatives. MSGs. Sugars. You literally are causing all kinds of inflammation inside of your body, far more than it was designed to handle. While your engine was designed at 4:1 omega 6:3, many of you are running 15-20 times hotter than that.
Your body produces a TON of cholesterol all by itself every day, especially when you get your good fats. Your brain is made of cholesterol. Let that sink in. Where you run into problems is let’s say you have a raging inferno inside of your arteries due to all of the inflammation. Here comes the cholesterol to spackle it up. It’s patching it up until you can heal, sort of like a wound for a cut that heals. Now, imagine you do not cause a raging inferno inside of your body? The cholesterol passes by harmless.
So when you are evaluating cholesterol in meat and eggs, consider the omega 6s you are shoveling in your pie hole while you are doing this, and the amount of that cholesterol that will be sticking around to repair that damage.
Physics versus hormones
Gary Taubes has written a few books about sugar. He is a Harvard Physics graduate, who then got a master’s in journalism. Became a science writer. His job was to critique the science of Nobel winners and the like. In the late 80s, early 90s, one of his buddies turned him on to the junk science that was nutrition science in the US. Taubes was astonished at how shitty the science was. One thing he found was that goddamn food pyramid you see above, that was recommended to people for 40 years? Yeah. That one. He found that it was never tested to see if it worked, but doctors were guided to ensure you complied to it. So it wasn’t about testing the thesis of “does this shit make me fat”, it was “the book says this is what you need to do to be healthy so I must comply to this”.
He did his research for years on sugar and hormones, and I’d implore any of you to read his books. He talks about how terrible the “science” is, that everyone blindly follows. This is from a guy with a Harvard physics degree.
What him and others found were mostly around this….the physics of calories are more or less the math that results in weight gain or loss. For example, if you ate 3500 calories more than you consumed in a day, you’d gain a pound. It was a RESULTING MATH PROBLEM. But it didn’t explain how some could eat those 3500 calories extra and not gain weight. Why would some have a stronger metabolism than others – those that are sticks that can’t gain weight. Then you had others who might put fat on in certain areas genetically – he looked at twins. He then talked about about hunger and hormones.
Essentially, your doctors have been programmed with things like the food pyramid and calories.
“You need to eat 1800 calories a day and you will lose weight”.
This is what I heard from doctors for years. Many years. They would point me to the food pyramid. I’d be hungry ALL THE DAMN TIME. I had no idea how humans could eat 1800 calories with these foods and not go to bed hungry every night.
Doctor are programmed with the physics side of this. If you just had the will power to cut your calories, you won’t have this problem. It is put on you as a failure, and if you just were not dumb and stupid and could count calories better, you would not be a fat ass.
This is what hurt the most. These doctors with their MDs telling me I’m a fucking dolt because I cannot add things up correctly.
The truth is this.
- They get very little nutrition education
- They have guidelines of how to treat things and cannot vary from this or they risk losing their license.
Check out the fight of Dr. Tim Noakes in South Africa. He told a woman to cut back on her carbs when she was pregnant and they went after his license. Let’s go back 20,000 years and ask ourselves where the fuck a pregnant woman got a bagel please.
Going further, let’s discuss Dr. Robert Lustig, an MIT graduate and Cornell MD. He did a ton of work in childhood obesity and here’s where he unlocked the hormone secrets of weight loss. In fact, he goes further to talk about how fructose and alcohol are literally processed the EXACT SAME WAY in the liver. He went into Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and how children at 8 years old were getting it from fructose. You know, fruit sugars.
“But Nate, fruit sugar is healthy sugar”.
And this is when I rage on you.
See, there’s orange growers out there. There’s banana growers out there. Then apple juice people. They want you buying their shit so they all hype up the vitamin C. Remember what I said about how you car is supposed to operate?
This is what watermelon looked like 200 years ago. Check to see if your MD knew this…
Meaning, they took all the fruits out there and made them sweeter. Check out a baanana.
Not so appealing, huh?
Consider now that a big banana has about the same sugar as a can of coke. Coke is made with high fructose corn syrup. HFCS is 55% fructose and 45% glucose. Table sugar is sucrose, which is 50% fructose and 50% glucose. So HFCS is a few percent more than regular sugar.
Remember what I talked about above with the liver glycogen and breaking down fructose? According to Lustig, your body can process about 1 serving of fruit per day in your liver. So why the F do you have Weight Watchers telling people they can eat all the fruit they want?
Fructose is actually processed like alcohol. Would you give your kid a beer, asks Dr. Lustig? No? Then why the F would you give them tons of fruit and fruit juice. It’s beer without the buzz.
Meanwhile, your doctor is telling you to go to Weight Watchers. My mom went there. With diabetes. They told her she could have all of the fruits she wanted. I was beside myself. Begged her to cut back on the fruit. “My doctor tells me it’s healthy sugar”. Almost lost my shit. I’m not an MD, so what the hell do I know? I learned from the best MDs in the world. So guess what. Insulin is produced in the pancreas. Lots of sugar makes you obese, and causes metabolic disease. Many cancers feed on sugar. So my mom got pancreatic cancer and died after a battle for 18 months. Her doctor didn’t even see the cancer for months.
So why do I fight? Because your doctor knows very little about nutrition. And to shut me down because I’m not an MD is rather silly when just about everything I wrote above I can source to some of the most brilliant MDs on the planet. Yes, all of them can be found on YouTube.
So when your A1C is over 5.4, Dr. Berry says that all doctors will tell you to “lose weight” as “losing weight” will bring down your A1C. He says “we’ll monitor you over the next year to see how your are doing”. You are “in pre-diabetes”. THIS is what caused me to rage – because “Bob” had an A1C of 7.4. I didn’t know this, and I talked to him for about an hour a month ago. I tried to give him some advice on the glycemic index.
I have helped now about 3 dozen people lose a TON of weight – some are my closest friends. Yet with a track record of taking off 175 pounds, doing the research of learning from the smartest doctors in the world, and helping about 3 dozen people take off about 1200 pounds, I’m not an MD, so I cannot be listened to over your GP who talks about “healthy sugar”, “food pyramid”, recommending Weight Watchers, and not having a ton of education on the subject.
What I like to say is, “if you want to lose weight, solve the hunger issue”.
When you do low carb, you can mostly have a ton of salt. Remember, our bodies were not designed to eat tons of carbs. If you do, you get full glycogen stores for hours of basketball – and salt is retained for electrolyte purposes. Blood pressure can be increased with more salt and decreased with less salt or more potassium, or a mix of the two. These are “opposites” with the electrolyte stuff. So if you are a massive carb eater and have massive high blood pressure issues, what happened to me over years was I went low carb – my body didn’t retain the salt, and I ate tons of green salads with chicken and had high potassium. My BP was like 110/71 the last time I was at the doctor. Due to all of the running I did, my HR at rest was 48.
Additionally, people have tons of calcium in their diets. Perhaps too much. This might be where a lot of people think of calcification. The opposite of calcium is magnesium. For thousands of years, this was plentiful in our food supply. Due to agriculture destroying soil over thousands of years, magnesium isn’t abundant in our food anymore. I supplement with magnesium. It’s a calming agent. Ever take a bubble bath with the salts? That is magnesium.
So consider electrolytes in your diet. Think of the guy in tip top shape who runs and drops over. Possibly electrolyte issues.
My tips for losing weight – at the 50,000 ft view:
- Start with tracking your calories and macro nutrients. You might find that you are eating 3,000 calories and 60% carbs, 25% fats, and 15% protein. Track your water you drink
- Look at your food choices and try to understand the glycemic index and omega 6:3 ratios as well as glycemic index.
- Get your numbers with your doctor. Weight, cholesterol, HbA1C, etc.
- Set reasonable goals of 1 pound per week weight loss. While you CAN lose faster, this race is won over longevity with the right choices. This is creating a DEFICIT of 500 calories a day or 3500 calories a week.
- Meet with a trainer and dietician to suggest diets and makeup of foods. When I was 372 pounds, I was recommended to eat 2600 calories per day with 40/30/30. This was 40% carbs, 30% fats, 30% protein. Establish calorie goals. Big picture, I’m against this, but overall this is a good interim step.
- Establish 2-3 cheat “meals” per week. I still stayed within my calories, but this is when I would say, “its sat night, I’m eating 2 slices of pizza and fries” and I would have had a light lunch to plan for it.
- Meal prep. Lots of time doing meal prep pays off. How many times did you run out of time or work late and stopped to get window food on the way home? Popping something out of the freezer to eat that is healthy and heating it up in 5 minutes saved me dozens of times. One of my favorites was chicken breast, broccoli, and brown rice
- Meet with a trainer, for real. I learned at the age of 40 that I only needed to exercise major groups 1-2 times a week. Meaning, don’t think “I want to lose weight now, let me go to the gym every day”. No. I went 1 time a week for an hour and worked out every major group with the trainer.
- Add lots of water and walking. Avoid going too hard with the cardio, FOR NOW.
- DO NOT create too much of a calorie deficit. Slow wins this. Why? Too few calories and your body will start to break down your muscle using gluconeogenesis. I LOVED to run. And bike. These are great for helping to create caloric deficits – but ultimately too much of these break down your muscle. Avoid too much of this at first and stick to walking with music or YouTube videos.
- Reduce calories over time. My doctors would tell me for years, “eat 1800 calories”. Too few calories had me hungry and I’d lose weight at first, but it would strip muscle off of me and doing exercise I’d get injured. The trainer started me at like 2600-2800 calories and it blew my mind I lost 8 pounds the first month. By the end of my time with the trainer, I had no idea how many calories I was on. After a year, I had gone down to 2200 calories a day. More on this later.
- Get your numbers now. Check progress.
- Start thinking about autophagy. Maybe skipping a lunch here or there. Look into intermittent fasting.
- Look into a low carb lifestyle. This might start you with ketosis for a few weeks. At first, you will be weaker. Then clarity starts to happen. Take a look at the Primal Blueprint with Mark Sisson. Common sense. Easy to read and understand. Tells you after ketosis, head to 75-125g of carbs for a day. The higher your carbs, the more you probably need to be active.
- Do not calorie count. Watch carbs and appetite. I didn’t count calories for 2 years.
- Look into more fasting protocols
- You can plan a cheat meal or day once every 3-4 weeks once you get to your goal weight. Every now and then I just have a weekend where I eat what the hell I want. My body will immediately put on water to store the carbs and I’ll put on 5-10 pounds, and within 3-4 days I pee it all out when back on my low carb.
Calories matter, but not how you think. If you are eating the proper nutrition, your body is self regulating. As much as I may have sold you on a low carb approach, it is too hard for most people to do it for a long period of time. I suggest the beginner stage up there for you to use for about 1/3 of your destined weight loss. For example, if you want to lose 100 pounds, try the beginner stage for the first 30-35 pounds. If it works for you, keep doing it. If you hit some plateaus or falling into some bad habits, perhaps take the next leap into intermediate/advanced.
The calories matter in a MACRO sense. Like in a year of 365 days, assume you wanted to eat 2500 calories per day. That’s consuming 912,500 calories. If you actually consumed 800,000 calories, that would mean a year later you’d be down ABOUT 32 pounds. It’s a RESULT of consumption. What you cannot REALLY do is mathematically understand EXACTLY how many calories you burn a day and then weigh out every morsel of food the rest of your life. What happens is the beginner step helps you understand QUALITY food. Helps you understand consumption and how a massive salad with chicken might be WAY more filling than the slice of pepperoni pizza you would have eaten.
Furthermore, the first phase starts making you feel better and get your numbers under control. IF YOU WANT, you can stay in this phase forever. For ME, I just started learning way too much about type 2 diabetes and how it really wasn’t a thing until the 1890s. Like, people didn’t know what it was. Now, something like 65% of people over 45 have diabetes or pre-diabetes, and you have doctors telling people to go to weight watchers who tell diabetics to eat all the fruit they want.
Where to learn more? I think I have a post several years ago with like 50 sources, but let’s give you a rabbit hole to start with…
- Dr. Ken Berry. Will tell you doctors aren’t educated on nutrition nearly as much as you thought they were.
- Gary Taubes. Harvard Physicist and science writer turned nutrition writer.
- Dr. Tim Noakes – MD and professor
- Dr. Volek and Phinney – they do a lot about the athletic performance with low carb diets out of Duke.
- Dr. Robert Lustig – MIT and Cornell (MD) researcher in endocrinology and youth obesity.
- Dr. Peter Attia – former ER doctor that blamed patients for diabetes, found doctors gave bad advice
- Dr. Jason Fung – research on autophagy
- Mark Sisson – former marathon and Ironman competitor on magazine covers in the 1980s suffered under the 500-700g of carbs he had per day training. The second he went low carb, his problems went away. Author of my favorite book to give any advanced dieter – The primal blueprint.
So all of this is extremely important to me. None of the above is really about ‘my experience’ versus ‘your experience’. It’s about facts. It’s about how several generations of people have been taught bunk nutritional science and doctors are educated on that science, and if they deviate from what is written in the book, they can lose their license. It’s about informing you that the brilliant people out there now on YouTube can help you understand a lot more about your body than your GP might.
Overall, this is trying to show you this….the more I learned in grad school, the less I felt I knew. You start to appreciate how much knowledge IS out there. I had considered going for a 3rd masters, possibly something with nutrition, and life happened. You start to really know that people who may be experts, are experts in really narrow areas, as there’s too much out there to be an expert in everything. What you start to realize is that your doctor may be a brilliant person. Accomplished. Smart by any definition. But they may not have the whole picture. They may not be as educated in nutrition as much as you think they are.
And knowing that may save your life.