My Top 12 Metabolic Supportive Foods

My Top 12 Metabolic Supportive Foods Recently, I have been focusing a lot of my time and energy on finding and using foods to heal the body, the metabolism, the thyroid, the liver and the gut. I have discovered that some foods can support your metabolism, while other foods can slow it down (more on those in another blog).  Some may be pretty obvious to you while others may be quite surprising to you… You see, I love to eat.  I love great tasting healthy food that provides me with great energy, nourishment, tastes great and helps support my metabolism.  There use to be a time in my life when I would eat cardboard tasting food because I thought it was healthy for me, how wrong I was.  Like many, I got caught up in the marketing of food.  Low calorie, low fat, low in nutrition, easy to make, yet taste like crap and filled with crap. Now, I know better, now I know what is going to energize me and keep my metabolism fired up (fresh, organic, not processed foods) vs unhealthy food (processed, fast food, frozen, conventional, sugar) that is going to slow my metabolism down and take energy away from me.  Can you remember a time that you ate a great, healthy meal and felt great afterwards?  What about when you ate an unhealthy meal, how did you feel?  Different?  Of course! With that said, I want to give you my TOP 12 healthy, energizing, metabolism boosting foods.  If you can find a way to get all of these foods in your diet, in the right amounts, at the right times, within your day and week, then...

Is Your Diet Making you Fat?

Is Your Diet Making you FAT? In my career, spanning over 20 years in the health and fitness industry, there is one thing I know for sure, dieting never works, at least long term.  In fact, long term, people who diet usually end up slowing their metabolism down and end up gaining weight and getting fat FATTER !   YIKES! First, what do I mean by dieting? When I reference “dieting”, I am referring to any food plan that is restrictive in one or all of the following area: 1. Calories.  The energy we get from food. 2. Micro-nutrients.  This could be vitamins, minerals or combination of both 3. Macro-nutrients.  This includes fat, protein, and/or carbs. These diets include, but are not limited to low calorie diets, low carb diets, low fat diets, low protein diets, low salt diets, liquid diets, cleanses, fasts, juice diets, vegan diets, and low REAL food diets. Can you lose weight on any of the above diets?  Yes, of course you will…short term. Will you also feel hungry and deprived?  YES! Will also you become cranky and crave sweet or salty foods?  YES!  Will you be able to maintain this diet for a lifetime?  Most likely, NO!   You might be able to last for awhile or a restrictive diet, but eventually you will crack and eat the foods you are craving. In fact, you have about  a 1-2% chance or maintaing a restrictive diet for over 2 years.  The only people I know that can maintain a calorie restrictive, nutrient deficient diet for any extended period of time are those that usually develop an eating disorder…and well,...

Leafy Greens or Toxic Food? The Other Side of Eating Vegetables

Leafy greens or toxic food? The other side of eating vegetables Here I go again…are you ready? I am about to question one of the most widely promoted health recommendations in the U.S. What is it? I’m challenging the recommendation to “eat more vegetables”. This is an interesting topic since most of us have been told all our lives that we need to eat more vegetables. Right? For most of my life, I have been a huge advocate of eating tons of vegetables including kale, spinach, lettuce, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, etc. Personally, I would eat at least 8 to 9 servings of vegetables a day — mostly raw. We have all been told vegetables are good for us because they contain loads of nutrients, fiber, and antioxidant properties. And this is true — vegetables are filled with all these health-promoting properties. However, does this mean that all vegetables are good for us? Or is there another side of the story we’re missing? As many of you know, about three years ago, I went through a massive transformation in my beliefs about health and nutrition. At the time my diet consisted of organic vegetables, gluten free grains, lots of organic chicken and meats, protein shakes, some fruits, and tons of water. My diet included no dairy, little fat, and no fruit juice. Sounds pretty healthy, right? The problem was, my body started to break down, I started to feel like crap, and I had no idea what was going on quite honestly, because I thought I was eating the perfect diet. Over the next year, through trial-and-error and lots of...

Is Your Workout Making you Fat?

  Is your workout making you fat? Lately, I have been bombarded with calls and emails from women and men, who are doing tons of cardio AND gaining weight! Correct, they are doing loads of cardio exercise (1-3 hours day) and are gaining, not losing weight. Is this possible? My first thought is, perhaps they are simply gaining muscle? Well, maybe? However, if they are doing tons of cardio, trust me when I tell you, this is NOT an anabolic workout (a muscle-building workout) this is a catabolic workout (a muscle-breakdown workout). Thus, a high amount of cardio usually results in muscle loss, not muscle gain. Have you ever seen a really muscular marathon runner? I certainly have not. Most elite marathon runners look emaciated. They are super lean yet have very little muscle. You see, long distance endurance activities are very catabolic. They end up breaking down muscle — not building it. Over time, this means: Lots of cardio=catabolism=Less muscle = lower metabolism = Fat gain Most people think the opposite: Lots of cardio = more calories burned = weight loss Shouldn’t this be the right equation? Well, it would be, however, you are leaving out one very important component — hormones. Lots of cardio = elevated cortisol, decreased T3 (active thyroid), and increased estrogen (fat storing hormone) = Muscle breakdown + lower thyroid function = FAT gain and muscle loss. Is it really possible to gain fat while doing tons of exercise? Yes. Here is what is really going. After about an hour of exercise, your cortisol levels increase and stay elevated until you have finished your extended...

The Secrets to Proper Core Training

The Secrets to Proper Core Training Six pack abs, a flat stomach, NO belly fat, a small waist, thin, trim, and skinny…all words that attract us when it comes to our  mid-section. What about proper posture, corrective work, improving muscular imbalances, reducing back and hip pain, and improving spinal function…maybe not as popular, but all can occur IF you train your “core” properly. First, what is your core? The core is a group of muscles that provide stability and support through the entire body.  Many of us would say the core is your abs or stomach.  True, but there is so much more.  Your core is made up of your ABS which include your external obliques, internal obliques, rectus abdominis, and transversus abdominis.  The core is also made of your hip muscles (glute medius, maximus, minimus, and psoas) and your lumber spine muscles (erector spinia, Multifidus spinae, quadratus lumborum, lower lats).   Some texts books will even consider the rotary cuff of your shoulder and  your neck as part of your core as they both have a direct effect on how your mid section operates and creates stability. So now that you know what muscles you need to work to provide proper stability and support for your body, how should you train your abs? Can you train your core everyday? Well, Yes and No. Yes, as long as you train different parts of your core on different days. An example would be: Day 1 *Lower abs and hips (Rectus Abdominis and transverse abdominus) Day 2  Obliques and low back Day 3 *Upper abs (rectus abdominus) *Although we actually don’t have a separate upper and...