Podcast: Why Cutting Grains Can Save Your Life

I love it when two of the people I listen to their podcasts separately, come together to be a guest on the other’s show!  I enjoyed listening to this conversation and I think you will to.  If you’re on the fence about eating good fat, wait until you hear how Dr. Gundry likes to eat his eggs!!

In this episode of the podcast, Dr. Gundry sits down with New York Times List #1 Bestselling author, four times over, Dr. David Perlmutter. During their conversation, Dr. Perlmutter reveals that, despite the success of his book “Grain Brain” and many others, he is certainly not without his fair share of critics. He also highlights the many struggles of spreading his anti-grain, anti-sugar medical stance in a world that still very much abides by an ‘everything in moderation’ attitude.

So if you’re one of the people who prefers to learn the inconvenient truths – and act on them before it’s too late – this episode of the podcast is for you!

Link To Podcast: Dr. Gundry Podcast – Why Cutting Grains Can Save Your Life

One of the best articles I’ve read of late…

This article does a great job explaining in detail how the body works in relation to increased processed foods and sugar.  There are a lot of visual aids to help you comprehend the whole concept.  You won’t be disappointed if you take the 5-7 minutes needed to give this article justice.  Feel free to reach out if you have any questions.

Here are a couple of bullets from the article:

  • A University of Washington study showed that 1 glass of water stopped hunger pangs for 100% of studied dieters
  • 75% of Americans are chronically dehydrated
  • Sugar can rewire the brain’s pathways.  Diets full of processed and sugar-heavy foods can increase the risk of depression by 58%
  • High-sugar diets pump inflammatory cytokines into your bloodstream, which can exacerbate arthritis
  • One of the most efficient strategies for reducing carb cravings in most people is to stop relying on carbs for energy

Link to Article: Dr. Jockers – Carb Cravings

How Does Sugar Impact Your Body?

This is a straight forward article talking about the impact sugar has on your body.  I think many of you who read the article, will be amazed at all of the different ways in which it does impact you.

The article will explain the impact to each of the following:

  • Brain
  • Mood
  • Teeth
  • Joints
  • Skin
  • Liver
  • Heart
  • Pancreas
  • Kidneys
  • Body Weight
  • Sexual Health

The word cloud below shows you all of the different words used to describe various forms of sugar in products.  It’s kind of overwhelming.  After reading these, you’re ingredient label reading will go to a whole new level.  You will see sometimes as many as 4-5 different forms of sugar in a product, or in the case of the product below, 9 times!

Here’s an example of “Find the Sugar” in an ingredient line of a National brand chewy granola bar:

Granola (Whole Grain Rolled Oats, Brown Sugar, Crisp Rice [Rice Flour, Sugar, Salt, Malted Barley Extract], Whole Grain Rolled Wheat, Soybean Oil, Dried Coconut, Whole Wheat Flour, Sodium Bicarbonate, Soy Lecithin, Caramel Color, Nonfat Dry Milk), Semisweet Chocolate Chips (Sugar, Chocolate Liquor, Cocoa Butter, Soy Lecithin, Vanilla Extract), Corn Syrup, Brown Rice Crisp (Whole Grain Brown Rice, Sugar, Malted Barley Flour, Salt), Invert Sugar, Sugar, Corn Syrup Solids, Glycerin, Soybean Oil, Contains 2% or Less of Sorbitol, Calcium Carbonate, Salt, Water, Soy Lecithin, Molasses, Natural and Artificial Flavor, BHT (Preservative), Citric Acid.

The total sugar is 7 grams, which is 29% of the total weight (24 grams), which is less than 1 ounce.

The easiest way to avoid a lot of sugar in your diet is to eat whole foods!

sugar_cloud

LINK: WebMD Article; How Does Too Much Sugar Affect Your Body

Is The Primal Lifestyle For You??

The stretch from Thanksgiving through New Year’s is one filled with family, friends and indulging on food and libations.  So what exactly is a New Year’s Resolution.  It is a tradition in the Western Hemisphere, in which a person resolves to change an undesired trait or behavior, to accomplish a personal goal or otherwise improve their life.

I make reference to the New Year’s Resolution because with it being the middle of January, fitness centers around America are slowly becoming less and less crowded as we inch our way to February.  In a 2014 report, 35% of participants who failed their New Year’s Resolutions admitted they had unrealistic goals, 33% of participants didn’t keep track of their progress, and 23% forgot about them; about one in 10 respondents claimed they made too many resolutions.

Always at the top of the list for resolutions is to lose weight and exercise more.  People start the year off with great intentions.  They’re doing their best to workout every day, eat more veggies, cut out sweets, and on and on.  As mentioned in the stat above, people tend to go back to their normal ways because they truly did make unrealistic goals and tried to bite off more than they could chew.  It’s not easy to go from your normal lifestyle that you’ve been working on for many years and then all of sudden come January 1st you are going to do a 180 and adopt it 100% and feel great.  Once people get sick of their new “diet” or the chronic cardio sessions on the treadmill, they slowly revert back to their old ways.

I have been working on living a Primal Lifestyle now for almost three years.  I have embraced this because of the simplicity of it once you understand the basic principles.  Finding your way here is a much more gradual process than the 180 degree change on January 1st!  There are three main principles to grasp:

  1. Eat Primal “Whole” Foods
  2. Ditch Toxic Modern Foods
  3. Exercise Primally

Eating Primal foods means you can eat meat, fish, fowl, eggs, vegetables, fruits, nuts, and seeds.  All of these foods are nutritious, highly satisfying, and promote stabilized energy levels and efficient burning of stored body fat for energy.  You will learn to become a fat burning machine versus being carbohydrate dependent.  No more “Carb Crashes”!

The excessive intake of processed carbohydrates and chemically altered fats in the Standard American Diet (SAD) may be the most health destructive element in modern life.  Excess insulin production from a high carb diet leads to fatigue, burnout, disease, life-long weight gain, and a continued dependency on additional health-compromising carbs!  You should seriously consider eliminating the following foods from your diet:

  • Sugars and Sweetened Beverages
  • Grains
  • Vegetable Oils
  • Processed and Packaged Foods

Exercising Primally doesn’t have to mean you beat yourself up each day at the gym and run like a crazy person on the treadmill, which is what I did for many years thinking I was doing the right thing.  What is great about Primal exercise is that it is much easier to fit into a busier lifestyle.  These are the core elements you try to follow:

  • Increase daily low-intensity aerobic workouts like walking, hiking, easy cycling, jogging, etc.
  • Shoot for 2 strength sessions each week lasting no more than 30 minutes.  You don’t even need to go to the gym, you can focus on the four Primal Essential Movements:
    • Pull-Ups
    • Push-Ups
    • Plank
    • Squats
  • Once every 7-10 days, push yourself to do sprints lasting 8-30 seconds for 20-30 minutes.  You can do this on a treadmill, or go outside and do them.

hiking

If you can adopt this simple exercise routine, it will help to optimize fat metabolism, delay the aging process, build and maintain lean muscle mass, and develop lifelong functional fitness.  This approach to fitness can deliver maximum results taking up less time and less suffering!

 

Sugar Season. It’s Everywhere, and Addictive.

By James J. DiNicolantonio and Sean C. Lucan
December 22, 2014
New York Times

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YOUR co-worker brought in brownies, your daughter made cookies for a holiday party and candy is arriving from far-flung relatives. Sugar is everywhere. It is celebration, it is festivity, it is love.

It’s also dangerous. In a recent study, we showed that sugar, perhaps more than salt, contributes to the development of cardiovascular disease. Evidence is growing, too, that eating too much sugar can lead to fatty liver disease, hypertension, Type 2 diabetes, obesity and kidney disease.

Yet people can’t resist. And the reason for that is pretty simple. Sugar is addictive. And we don’t mean addictive in that way that people talk about delicious foods. We mean addictive, literally, in the same way as drugs. And the food industry is doing everything it can to keep us hooked.

Up until just a few hundred years ago, concentrated sugars were essentially absent from the human diet — besides, perhaps, the fortuitous find of small quantities of wild honey. Sugar would have been a rare source of energy in the environment, and strong cravings for it would have benefited human survival. Sugar cravings would have prompted searches for sweet foods, the kind that help us layer on fat and store energy for times of scarcity.

Today added sugar is everywhere, used in approximately 75 percent of packaged foods purchased in the United States. The average American consumes anywhere from a quarter to a half pound of sugar a day. If you consider that the added sugar in a single can of soda might be more than most people would have consumed in an entire year, just a few hundred years ago, you get a sense of how dramatically our environment has changed. The sweet craving that once offered a survival advantage now works against us.

Whereas natural sugar sources like whole fruits and vegetables are generally not very concentrated because the sweetness is buffered by water, fiber and other constituents, modern industrial sugar sources are unnaturally potent and quickly provide a big hit. Natural whole foods like beets are stripped of their water, fiber, vitamins, minerals and all other beneficial components to produce purified sweetness. All that’s left are pure, white, sugary crystals.

A comparison to drugs would not be misplaced here. Similar refinement processes transform other plants like poppies and coca into heroin and cocaine. Refined sugars also affect people’s bodies and brains.

Substance use disorders, defined by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, exist when at least two to three symptoms from a list of 11 are present. In animal models, sugar produces at least three symptoms consistent with substance abuse and dependence: cravings, tolerance and withdrawal. Other druglike properties of sugar include (but are not limited to) cross-sensitization, cross-tolerance, cross-dependence, reward, opioid effects and other neurochemical changes in the brain. In animal studies, animals experience sugar like a drug and can become sugar-addicted. One study has shown that if given the choice, rats will choose sugar over cocaine in lab settings because the reward is greater; the “high” is more pleasurable.

In humans, the situation may not be very different. Sugar stimulates brain pathways just as an opioid would, and sugar has been found to be habit-forming in people. Cravings induced by sugar are comparable to those induced by addictive drugs like cocaine and nicotine. And although other food components may also be pleasurable, sugar may be uniquely addictive in the food world. For instance, functional M.R.I. tests involving milkshakes demonstrate that it’s the sugar, not the fat, that people crave. Sugar is added to foods by an industry whose goal is to engineer products to be as irresistible and addictive as possible. How can we kick this habit? One route is to make foods and drinks with added sugar more expensive, through higher taxes. Another would be to remove sugar-sweetened beverages from places like schools and hospitals or to regulate sugar-added products just as we do alcohol and tobacco, for instance, by putting restrictions on advertising and by slapping on warning labels.

But as we suggested in two academic papers, one on salt and sugar in the journal Open Heart and the other on sugar and calories in Public Health Nutrition, focusing narrowly on added sugar could have unintended consequences. It could prompt the food industry to inject something equally or more harmful into processed foods, as an alternative.

A better approach to sugar rehab is to promote the consumption of whole, natural foods. Substituting whole foods for sweet industrial concoctions may be a hard sell, but in the face of an industry that is exploiting our biological nature to keep us addicted, it may be the best solution for those who need that sugar fix.

James J. DiNicolantonio is a cardiovascular research scientist at Saint Luke’s Mid America Heart Institute. Sean C. Lucan is an assistant professor at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine.