I’m constantly amazed (horrified) by all bad diet info, gimmicks, and utter crap guidance out there these days. I sometimes assume that everyone knows all the info I teach and it’s common sense. I also forget the average American is over 30% body fat… males 32% and females over 35%. So I guess common sense isn’t all that common.
It blows me away when I hear some of things, and the rationale for, what we eat. It’s worse when it’s avid, fitness enthused people are the ones eating so terribly.
I guess the idea is to work out and exercise so we can eat what we want. It’s a very backwards mindset for an athlete of any sort.
So, because eating Paleo is sooooo complicated and difficult to understand (it’s not!), I thought I’d post some basics.
1.) Eat meat and eggs for protein. Nuts and oils and seeds for fats, dark green veggies for carbs and fiber, very little starch, no grains, and no sugars. If you follow this one sentence you’ll be healthy, properly fed, and not fat. The above statement is all you need to know and really, there’s no reason to read any further.
2.) Sugar, in any form is bad. Even from fruit, you body processes all sugars the same. Forget the glycemic index thing and simply stop eating all simple carbohydrates, especially those derived from grains… breads, pasta, cake, muffins, oatmeal (yes dammit! oatmeal too.), cookies. Pretty much all baked goods. Oh, and that wine or beer is full of sugar. It’s not on the label because it’s from sugar alcohols. So the 130 calories in that glass of wine is from sugar. So yeah, the benefits of any alcoholic bev, even wine are not worth the costs. But hey, if you drink wine every day, you’ve other issues than sugar intake. Here’s a basic read by Dr. J. Bowden on how to avoid sugar: 10 WAYS TO CUT BACK ON SUGAR
3.) Calories count. All calories count. Just because your body doesn’t prefer to convert protein to glycogen and store as fat does not mean it won’t. And because fat doesn’t elicit large amounts of insulin like carbs do, doesn’t mean it won’t be converted to the same glycogen as the carbs and then stored as body fat also. So just because you’re eating “strict paleo” (but you’re not) doesn’t mean you can eat all your little heart’s desires. You have to eat only what you need to sustain the activities you do each day.
4.) Fats from natural sources are not bad for you. Fats in nuts, seeds, oils from nuts and seeds, coconut, and avocados are very good for you. The food industry and demonized fats and you’ve been told for two decades a low fat diet is good for you. Now we’re all fat and unhealthy from eating over 250 grams (yes, the national average is over 1 cup a day) of sugar and carbs instead of healthy fats. The gov’t and food companies think you’re too dumb to know the difference between essential fats and those that make you sick. So it’s just easier to tell you not to eat any fats… mostly, the gov’t (FDA) is right.
5.) Gimmicks never work. Diets sold via infomercials, at convenience stores, and on Dr. Oz typically won’t last for you. Weight loss is done and maintained through eating healthy over a lifetime. There’s one quaranteed way to loss weight. That is to not each as much. Simple. It works and there’s nothing difficult about it. Now, if you want to lose weight in a healthy manner, you need to refer back to #1. Build your diet around less of those, and only those, items and you’re set. Magic? Nope. Too simple to be true and you’re sure it won’t work for you? Email me… I’ve a weight loss secret I’ll sell you. It’s gonna require a cat and a litter box though.
6.) THERE ARE NO SECRETS. Fit, lean, and healthy people do the things listed above. The guys and girls you see in the gym with abs all year long do the things listed above. Some eat more carbs than others. Some even eat grain products. But the one thing they all have in common is they don’t eat enough to make themselves fat.
That’s just SOME of the basics. The bottom line is up front and posted in #1. You’re the only person that can control you and your habits. Take control of yourself and fix your diet and you’ll be better at everything you do.