The only 10 tips you need for Fat Loss.

If you’re anything like the rest of society, at some point, you’ve probably found yourself confused about the perfect diet for fat loss..

Less than helpful nutritional advice and recommendations from the Government and food marketing teams makes the matter worse. This blog is for you.

Here’s my list to allow you access to the knowledge to create sane and individual choices about your fat loss nutrition, and they’re all completely realistic, doable and healthy.

Oily fish, seeds and nuts are a great source of healthy fats.

 

1) Eat a diet with high quality proteins. 

You should plan every meal around quality whole protein sources. This includes meat, eggs, dairy and fish, as these will give you the largest nutrient content per calorie, as appose to vegetable protein sources which may not. Higher protein foods will also help improve blood sugar regulation and improve satiety, thanks to the release of gut hormones they stimulate which help you feel full.

2) Reduce inflammation by eating foods high in anti-oxidants

As necessary as protein is to feel fuller for longer, it can also cause some oxidative stress. This can be easily combatted however. Any of the following foods can increase blood antioxidant capacity and alleviate the free radicals that are responsible for inflammation; coffee, chocolate (use your common sense here though..), tea, whey protein, blueberries, blackberries, avocado, pomegranate, coconut oil, olives, eggs, almonds and coloured peppers.

3) Dont be afraid of Fat.

Not only is it satisfying to your appetite, it provides vitamins and minerals that are readily available to your body to help promote health and a heightened metabolic rate.

4) Eat your Greens.

Another great tip for making yourself feel fuller. They also provide fibre and help to metabolise surplus oestrogen for a healthier hormonal balance. Great veggies to try include kale, swiss chard, bok choy, broccoli, cauliflower and Brussel sprouts.

The only 10 tips you need for Fat Loss.

Use greens to fill up and up your intake in fibre.

 

5) Avoid Alcohol, juice, fizzy drinks and sports drinks. 

Stick to tea, water, and coffee. Not only do sugar filled drinks have zero nutritional benefit, they are also the single largest provider of calories in the whole American diet; research suggests. They do nothing to reduce appetite, and Alcohol is guilty for reducing inhibitions in relation to food; so people eat unhealthier foods in larger quantities as a result.

6) Remove processed foods from your diet.

The majority of foods that are processed have been engineered, to trigger further food intake. They also have a lower ‘thermic effect’. This means that you would burn more calories by digesting whole unprocessed foods than you would digesting a processed junk meal, a ready made sandwich for instance.

 

7) Try to eat foods that increase Insulin sensitivity 

Insulin sensitivity is the body’s ability to store the carbs you eat as muscle glycogen instead of fat. Foods such as vinegar, coconut/olive oil, cinnamon, turmeric and lemon and limes have been shown to increase your sensitivity. Eat these foods whenever you eat a high carbohydrate meal to get the most from this.

 

8) Eat less Grain.

Grain based foods (Bread, cereal, biscuits etc.) are easy to over eat and are nutritionally dense, meaning you get less food for the same amount of calories that vegetables would offer you. Use vegetable instead to increase portion sizes.

 

9) Use fish oil, nuts and seeds.

Vegetable oils are high in Omega 6 fats, which have shown to be associated with diabetes and increased body fat. Instead, use the healthier Omega 3 fats which can be found in oily fish, or fish oil tablets, walnuts or flaxseeds.

 

10) Never just reduce your calories.

If you’ve ever been constantly hungry whilst dieting, you’re probably guilty of this. Your calories are probably too low. Pay less attention to the amount of calories, and ensure you’re getting plenty of vegetables, healthy fats and high quality animal proteins to make you healthier and fuller.

Should we be surprised about the warnings over processed meats?

Should we be surprised about the warnings over processed meats?

 

 

Should we be surprised about the warnings over processed meats?

Cancerous Meat. Yum.

As I’m sure you’re aware, the entire world is furiously discussing the (irresponsible) announcement by the World Health Organisation that processed meat raises the risk of colon and rectal cancer, and that red meat ‘may’ also ‘possibly’ increase the chances.

The outrage and surprise is stupid. The same evidence appears in the Food and Cancer Report in 1997 and 2007.. and further analysis published in 2011 which said the same.

If you’re someone who likes to pay attention to public health warnings that constantly appear on the peripheries of society, this is a thoroughly debated topic.

That doesn’t mean that the argument between meat and cancer has been settled. There are no definite answers or conclusions, because  when it comes to saying how the meat/cancer association works, what it might mean, and how strong it is, there are strong arguments on BOTH sides.

So, everyone has lined up to have an opinion. This is the general gist..

Vegans are delighted about this headline (obviously). This is normal for this group of people. Any time meat production or consumption is incriminated (rightly or wrongly), these are the kind of people to crack open some Tofu and write a celebratory blog about it and how superior their lifestyle choices are.

On the other hand, meat producers and their organisations are defending their business, culture and livelihood (I am doing my absolute best to remain impartial in this blog, however it is worth noting I was born and proudly raised on Farms amongst the food producing community).

So what makes it different this time? Why has it gone so viral in this particular instance?

Websites, Red Tops and ‘less then reputable’ media sources that normally report less than scientific results have irresponsibly, as might be expected, printed their usual half-wit paper selling headlines proud with utter nonsense like:

Just two rashers of bacon a day raises your risk of cancer: Health chiefs put processed meat at same level as cigarettes — Daily Mail”

“World Health Organization: Processed Meats Cause Cancer” — Huffington Post

Should we be surprised about the warnings over processed meats?

Are they really as harmful as they’re made out to be?

So what is the truth?

The truth is the findings are incomplete, uncertain and have been thrown wildly out of proportion by the Media. Again. The problem lies with the classification system in the research. For instance, these classifications are not meant to convey HOW dangerous something is, just how certain we are that something is dangerous.

The actual research reads:

“Group 1 is billed as “carcinogenic to humans,” which means that we can be fairly sure that the things here have the potential to cause cancer. But the stark language, with no mention of risks or odds or any remotely conditional, invites people to assume that if they specifically partake of, say, smoking or processed meat, they will definitely get cancer.” Ed Yong

Take away points:

  1. Don’t throw the steak and bacon out the basket just yet.
  2. Don’t believe everything you read in the Media. Think about the credibility of the source.
  3. The association between processed meat and cancer is already established, but very minor.
  4. Focus on other areas of your life that could be addressed (smoking, drinking, poor nutrition, poor sleep) that could be detrimental to your health.

Understanding your Hormones

Understanding your Hormones

Hormones are often the key to unlocking a better body, or better performance. However, if one area slips up; the rest fall like a Domino effect. Understanding and optimising our Hormones is key.

Your body releases several types of hormones, at several key times throughout your day and night. You’d never stop to think about it, until something just doesn’t feel ‘right’, if you’re constantly tired, for instance. To put this in context, here’s a brief overview of how your hormones fluctuate in just one 24 hour period (Your circadian rhythm).

  1. As you wake up, your body temperature is naturally lower. You get a surge of Cortisol, the stress hormone, to increase your energy and give you energy.
    Opening the Curtains, or being exposed to light; stops the production of a hormone Melatonin (This hormone is responsible for aiding your sleep). It also prompts the release of Testosterone.
  2. The body continues to warm throughout the day, and your peak performance time is thought to be from 2.30 to 6pm
  3. As it turns to twilight hours, the increasing darkness causes Cortisol to drop again.
  4. You have your evening meal, and blood sugar and Insulin will begin to fall
  5. As this happens, a hormone Leptin is released to curb your hunger.
  6. This also triggers Thyroid Hormone release. This helps keep you warm and burn stored fat throughout the night. This is followed by Melatonin to make you feel tired.
  7. Your body temperature drops overnight. By 5a.m. it’s at it’s lowest. When it hits this low point, the body re-releases Cortisol, and the cycle starts again.

This intricate butterfly effect can be disrupted in a number of ways. Here are the most common:

  • Caffeine and other Stimulants
  • Alcohol
  • Sugar
  • Light exposure at the wrong times (Being on your phone late at night, in Bed)
  • Excessive Stress

Take away points:

  • Curb intake of Caffeine, Sugars and Alcohol
  • Avoid using bright screened devices (laptops, phones, iPads) whilst in your dark bedroom
  • Take the time to relax and wind down before sleep

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