5 Ways Fasting Speeds Up Fat Loss

Intermittent fasting is simply engaging in periods of time when no calories are consumed, and then eating in a condensed time frame.

It can be especially helpful for those who are stuck in a fat loss plateau to kick start fat burning.

There are a number of methods to choose from, but all of them include not eating for a period of 16-24 hours, and then consuming all of your calories within a certain time frame usually 6-8 hours.

When people are fasting, it includes the time when they are  asleep, luckily!

In a typical 16 hour fast you would stop eating after dinner around 8pm. When you wake up in the following morning instead of eating breakfast, you would  have coffee, tea or water and wait until lunch time at 12-1pm to have your first meal. You would eat from 12-1pm until 8pm.

This would be an example of a 16-18 hour fast. To help with the hunger some people will add coconut oil or heavy whipping cream to their coffee or tea  to keep them satiated until they eat at lunch time. This kind of fasting can be done daily.

Another popular form of fasting is to go a full 24 hours without eating, this could be from 2pm Tuesday to 2pm Wednesday with just water and coffee consumed.

This approach allows you to fast for a full 24 hours, but still eat every day. If someone engages in a full 24 hour fast these are typically done 1-2 times per week.

There are great benefits from fasting down to a cellular level, but today our focus is on how fasting can help with fat loss.

When fasting is applied correctly it can be an extremely powerful tool to help with fat loss. Below we will cover some of the ways fasting works its magic in the fat loss war.

1.) More Calories Burned

As you all know it is not just about calories in and calories out, but when trying to achieve fat loss calories do matter.

The closer you get to your ideal body composition the more specific your approach will need to be.If fat loss has stalled calories should be looked at to assess if they are too high or too low, for too long.

Contrary to popular belief sometimes calories need to be increased for a short period to boost the metabolism, and continue with fat loss.

During periods of fasting the metabolism is boosted and adrenaline is increased which allows you to more efficiently tap into fat stores on he body. 

An added benefit of fasting is that you will have more energy than you would think and the mental clarity can be great for those looking to be productive.

As I write this newsletter I am currently fasting, and am about 14 hours into a 16 hour fast!  

2.) Become A Fat Burner, Not A Sugar Burner

When you are fasting the metabolism will switch from relying on blood sugar to burning predominantly stored body fat .

When eating the body chooses to utilize carbohydrates for fuel first, and then shifts to burning fat.

Because people consume so many processed carbs, sugars and excess calories on a daily basis the body rarely have the opportunity to burn fat.

As a result any extra calories that aren’t needed will be converted and stored as body fat.

When you are fasting the body has no other option but to burn up stored body fat. When you are completing a fasting period the body will be burning far more fat than it would during a normal day of eating.

3.) Fasting Increases Fat Burning Hormones

Hormones are at the base of all metabolic functions in the body, and losing body fat is no different. Growth hormone is one of the most important hormones that contributes directly to body fat reduction.

During periods of fasting growth hormone becomes elevated in both frequency and intensity. Because of the abundance of growth hormone during fasting we get put into a fat burning overdrive!

4.) Increase Fat Burning Enzymes

While hormones definitely reign supreme in the fat burning world, enzymes play a role in supporting the functions of hormones.

Hormone sensitive lipase is the enzyme that helps fat cells release fat to be used by the muscle, and lipoprotein lipase is the enzyme that allows your muscles to burn fat as fuel.

By fasting you up regulate both of these enzymes causing more fat to be released by fat cells, and allowing more fat to be used as fuel in the muscles.

This is a marriage made in heaven for anyone who is looking to burn extra body fat!

5.) Decreased Fasting Insulin Levels

With insulin present the process of lipolysis which is the release of stored body fat for fuel can not take place. Without lipolysis the releasing of stored body fat to be used for fuel is very difficult.

Fasting keeps insulin levels low, while lipolysis is increased. This insulin blunting effect of fasting means that during a time where we are taking in zero calories we need to be able to access stored body fat to have energy to fuel our machine.

Luckily fasting allows us to access far more body fat that we would otherwise have access to.

Fill out the form below if you’re looking for a coach who can help you adopt the simple habits necessary to reach your health, fat loss or muscle building goals.

These habits are based on getting you to your goal in a sustainable fashion that can be maintained, while keeping you accountable along the way.


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How Many Meals Per Day ?

When it comes to changing how someone eats one of the most common questions is how many meals a day should I be eating ?

There are different views on the topic of how frequently people should be eating. Some believe that eating breakfast is how you jump start the metabolism for the day, while others believe that having six smaller meals a day keeps your metabolism from slowing down.

On the other side of the coin there are the people who skip breakfast all together, and do some form of intermittent fasting.

In this blog post I am going to  discuss the myths and truths around the ideal meal frequency. What you should  be taking into consider when deciding how many meals to eat on a daily basis and why calories and food quality both matter.

Is Breakfast Really That Important ?

Breakfast is really the first meal of the day no matter what time it is. You are breaking the fast from dinner and overnight.

We have been told our entire life that breakfast is the most important meal of the day and aids in losing weight by jump starting the metabolism.

There is nothing physiologically special about breakfast. It is not essential in any way for boosting metabolism, and is no different from any other meal eaten throughout the day.  

There is no legitimate evidence that breakfast helps people lose weight. Those who typically skip breakfast have a higher likelihood of obesity though.

People who skip breakfast in an unplanned fashion are more likely to make poorer decisions later in the day when hunger strikes.

For those who are less health conscious, and have skipped breakfast having a pastry or a big fast food lunch to make up for breakfast is normalized.

Many folks who do skip breakfast end up overeating to compensate for the missed meal without thinking about it.

There are people who go for periods of time where they plan to avoid consuming calories,this is called intermittent fasting. There are some interesting health benefits from intermittent fasting that could make up an entire blog post.

Verdict: If you are hungry when you wake up go ahead and eat breakfast. If you are looking to lose body fat focus on protein, fat and veggies for breakfast.

If you’re not hungry skip breakfast, but make sure your other meals are healthy and you are not overeating to compensate.

More Meals Boosting Metabolism  ?

We have all been told the folk tale about  frequent smaller meals boosting the metabolism, this is false though.

It is one of those relics that sticks around even though it is not true. old myths die hard.

It is true that eating and digesting food does raise the metabolism. This is the thermic effect of food. The total volume of food digested at the end of the day is what matters most.

The energy expended to digest 3 big meals or 6 smaller meals of equal size will be the exact same.

Eating 6 meals of 300 calories is going have the exact same thermic effect as eating 3 meals of 600 calories. There is literally no difference in the energy expended between these two ways of eating.

For athletes looking to recover or those looking to gain muscle you will need to eat more frequently to fuel your activities and give the body a caloric surplus to use.

Verdict: Smaller more frequent meals compared to fewer larger meals creates no difference on total fat loss or the metabolic rate. At the end of the day with the metabolism what matters most is the total calories consumed. 

Balancing Blood Sugar

There are people who have trouble with chronically low blood sugar (hypoglycemia). These people typically have adrenal glands that  are so worn out that they can not adequately raise blood sugar when it gets low.

For these folks eating more frequent smaller meals that are macronutrient balanced is better than three larger meals

For others who do not have adrenal dysfunction and can regulate blood sugar adequately, meal frequency is less important.

People typically think of larger meals as creating larger spikes in blood sugar, compared to smaller meals creating smaller spikes in blood sugar.

What matters the most when it comes to spikes in blood sugar is the kind of foods that you are eating.

If you compare a  large salad with dressing and a chicken breast  to a turkey sandwich on wheat bread. Even though the salad may be larger in size the bread in the sandwich is going to cause the larger blood sugar spike. 

Verdict: If you have blood sugar regulation problems eating more frequently can be helpful to avoid letting levels get too low.

When it comes to balancing blood sugar the focus should be on the quality of foods.Certain foods even in small amounts quickly spike blood sugar such as bread or pasta. Other foods in large amounts have little effect on the blood sugar levels such as a salad with lots of leafy green veggies, nuts, seeds or coconut.

 Fasted Or Fed ?

intermittent fasting is strategically planning to avoid eating certain meals or during a period of time. Some people will choose to do 24 hour fasts or choose to skip breakfast daily.

Fasts usually last between 16-24 hours, and a large chunk of that time is going to be when the person is asleep ideally.

Living in our abundant society food is literally everywhere, so when someone chooses to not eat for an extended period of time they are likely to get questions and funny looks.

When looking at our eating from an evolutionary standpoint we are well adapted to handle both feast and famine. Today however we have a society of all feast and no famine.

Every religion in existence today has a form of fasting. In many cases it is viewed as a cleansing ritual which is funny because we now know that we have a cellular cleaning that happens during fasting.

This cellular house cleaning is named autophagy. During autophagy the body works on making cells function more efficiently and cleans up any waste products.

 Insulin sensitivity will be increased, which  means the body will more efficiently use carbohydrates due to fasting. This insulin sensitivity can also be achieved by strength training.

Verdict: Intermittent fasting has very interesting health benefits, but just like anything else in nutrition it may not work for everyone.

Intermittent fasting is a form of stress and those who are dealing with blood sugar, adrenal or sleep problems will not feel good if they attempt intermittent fasting. The key here is to experiment and see what works for you and fits your lifestyle. 

Closing Thoughts

At the end of the day what matters most is food quality and the total number of calories. In regards to fat loss and metabolism how many meals you choose to eat on a daily basis is up to you and makes no real difference.

Breakfast has no special metabolic effect, but can help prevent overeating and cravings.

If you are someone who has adrenal or blood sugar problems smaller more frequent meals or snacks may be helpful. Fewer meals would be a good option for folks who have digestive problems.

Some people will prefer to skip breakfast and have an intermittent fast. Finding what works for you is going to be individual.

Make sure that you are taking steps towards your goals and don’t blindly follow someone else's advice. Test and see what works best for you and helps you to reach your goals.

If you’re tired of working hard, and not getting the results you want, I can help you adopt the simple habits necessary to reach your health or fat loss goals.

These habits are based on getting you to your goal in a sustainable fashion that can be maintained. I’ll be there every step of the way to support and keep you accountable.  

Get on a Strategy Call with me to Discover how to achieve your health or fat loss goals, and make them yours to keep this time around.

Whether you decide to work with me or not I can guarantee you will leave this call with more knowledge on how to achieve your goals.

 

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Are You Chasing The Magic Bullet ?

There is very a popular idea in the fitness and health industry that “miraculous” shortcuts exist. These shortcuts  require little to no effort, but  produce remarkable results.

This is the magic bullet theory that we have been sold. The magic bullet rests on the idea that there is one exercise, superfood or supplement can transform your body composition and dramatically improve your health. 

This style of thinking about health and fitness leads people  down a path that always ends in frustration and confusion.

The idea of the magic bullet also leaves people looking for the easy route and shortcuts or hacks  instead of working hard and showing dedication to something they value. 

The instant gratification we all experience is more the norm than the exception. We want fast results and immediate gratification with as little work as possible.There is endless information at our fingertips twenty four hours a day.

We can stay in our car and pay for food through a through window. We are impatient  and want all the results as quick as possible with as little work as we can get away with.

There no surprise we treat our health and fitness the same way. There is always the next big supplement, superfood or fitness hack that allows you to opt out of the hard work. I don't think we should cut corners when it comes to our health. 

Frankly there is no valid shortcut, hack or magic bullet when it comes to optimal health. If there was a magic bullet someone besides the infomercial guy at midnight selling fat burning supplements would know.  

There absolutely are more efficient and intelligent ways to train and fuel your body. The missing part of the shortcut that no ones discusses is dedication, hard work and consistency. The magic bullet is just that: dedication and consistency.

Somewhere along the way as a society we learned to shy away from hard work. Getting uncomfortable and putting the time in to get what you deserve became viewed as a bad thing.

Every kid gets a trophy these days, and this is leading to a skewed perception of real life and how the world really works. 

The fact in life is  not everyone gets a trophy for their efforts. Some folks are just going to be stronger, more attractive and smarter.

This is the way the genetic cookie crumbles, your genetics are not a choice, but hard work and persistence  is a choice you make everyday!

 From successful business owners to phenomenal athletes who are asked about their path to greatness, they all share something in common: Hard work and staying consistent day after day, whether they felt like it or not.

No one has ever achieved something amazing because they found the shortcut, hack or easy route. As long as each day you commit to getting better and showing up you are on the path towards a better version of yourself.

The best part is to transform your body or health you don’t need to buy anything. You just need to make the decision that you are ready and committed to changing what you are not happy with.

Being dedicated and making changes is going to be difficult at first. It will feel like you HAVE to go to sleep earlier, eat cleaner or  hit the gym after work.

Your focus  will be on what you have to give up for these new habits. When these habits become part of your life you longer think about, the mind starts to shift and something interesting happens.

You start to view these habits as something you GET to do. You begin to think about what you are gaining from these habits. You start to build your own resistance to those temptations, and  you gain momentum heading towards a better version of yourself.

If your goal is to get as healthy as humanly possible and reach your fitness goals  I am going to give you the recipe to achieve this  below this will require dedication and being consistent, but these are the true magic bullets:

Eat nutrient dense whole foods that improve your health , and consume these foods everyday. Eat enough food to support your daily activity level and reach your goals.

Match your activity level to your food intake. Eat  less of the foods that you know are holding you back from reaching your goals.

If you are eating a squeaky clean paleo diet, but are still  eating a full jar of almond butter every two days be honest with yourself about your negative habits.

Exercise intelligently and  consistently. Do not be afraid to work hard and feel some discomfort, this is where you will grow physically and mentally.

When you exercise strive to work harder than you did yesterday. Be honest about where you are in your fitness journey and realize too much and too little exercise are sides of the same coin

.Find a good middle ground between pushing yourself and throwing up during your workout. 

Sleep 8-9 hours every night in a pitch black cool room. Sleep will help with any health or fitness related goal.

You will not always hit the mark on this, but make it a priority and shoot for the 8-9 hour mark. Even if this means you spend this much time in bed get in the habit of being in bed earlier and getting away from electronics. 

Develop a stress management practice that you enjoy and can stick with long term. It doesn’t have to be fancy: go for a morning walk, think of five things you’re grateful for or create a vision of what you want your day to look like, meditate, or go to a yoga class.

Get deep into your thoughts and away from electronics and other people if you can.

Take time to recover from exercise and work on mobility. We all sit too much and our poor movement patterns reflect this, it will only get worse unless you work on it.

Recovery and mobility work improves training and everyday movement. Greater mobility allows you  move efficiently and work harder in the gym while staying pain free.

Move more often throughout the day. We are designed to move at various levels of intensity throughout the day.

The time spent in the gym is relatively short and intense. Many of us are missing the other end of the spectrum which is low intensity movement. Take movement breaks and stretch, go for walks or hikes, sit in a squat position for a bit or roll around on a foam roller. 

If you do the above things consistently, frequently and for as long as you can, your health, fitness and body composition will speak for itself. This is as far from the magic bullet as you can get. No miracles, hacks or shortcuts to be found here. 

It is simple but it is not easy, and will require sacrifice. Nothing worthwhile comes easy, and your health is worth while.

When it comes to your health I urge you to stop looking for the magic bullet, hack or shortcut and realize, you know what needs to be done. Start today with one better decision and begin building momentum towards better health.

If you’re tired of working hard, and not getting the results you want, I can help you adopt the simple habits necessary to reach your health or fat loss goals.

These habits are based on getting you to your goal in a sustainable fashion that can be maintained. I’ll be there every step of the way to support and keep you accountable.  

Get on a Strategy Call with me to Discover how to achieve your health or fat loss goals, and make them yours to keep this time around.

Whether you decide to work with me or not I can guarantee you will leave this call with more knowledge on how to achieve your goals.


Evolve Nutritional Therapy Strategy Session


Name *
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Why Is Sugar Addictive ?

Why Is Sugar Addictive ?

There is no little doubt that sugar is one of the most damaging parts of our modern diet. Many of the diseases we suffer from as a society today are tied to excess consumption of sugar and processed carbohydrates.

Obesity, cardiovascular disease, metabolic syndrome, Type 2 Diabetes, high blood pressure, cholesterol, fatty liver disease and even Alzheimer’s (Type 3 Diabetes) all have links to excess refined sugar,  carbohydrate and calorie consumption.  

We have been conditioned to accept the amount of sugar in our modern diet and think of it as normal. Next time you go to the grocery store flip over the packaged foods and read the ingredient list.

You will absolutely find a form of sugar listed. Even the “health foods” at supermarket are going to be loaded with sugar.There are over fifty six names for sugar, and food manufacturers use this to their advantage.

Even foods that are considered “healthy” such as granola, low fat yogurt and breakfast cereals all have so much added sugar they are more like a soda than a health food.

Why is it that all packaged foods at the grocery store contain so much added sugar ? and how did sugar become such a large part of our foods ? There are a two very important events that dramatically altered food industry and our intake of refined sugar as a society, lets take a closer look.

Two Big Milestones

The introduction of refined sugars into our diet took place about four hundred years ago. As societies grew larger, more people needed to be fed.

For our society to continue to grow we started to move away from more natural foods that easily perished and adopted more industrialized processed foods.

These industrialized foods needed to be able to last longer while they were shipped and delivered to different regions and sat on food shelves.

It was quickly realized that refined sugar made foods taste much better, and was a very cheap preservative. Making foods last longer and taste better by adding refined sugars became the industry standard.

Without any consideration of the health consequences this extra refined sugar would have, it  became an ingredient in all processed and packaged foods.

Another huge milestone that changed the way we still eat today was the low fat movement. On the advice of our government society was told to eat less saturated fat and cholesterol at all costs.

To meet the new demand of society the food industry quickly began making low fat “health foods”. The problem is that when a natural flavor profile such as fat has been removed the food tastes terrible. Luckily the food industry is great at solving problems to make sure they don’t lose money.

This problem was  solved  by adding mass quantities of sugar to these low fat foods. Because people were told to be concerned about saturated fats and cholesterol the extra sugar injected into the diet went unnoticed.

People were far more worries about seeing the words fat free or low fat on their foods they were about the grams of sugar on the label.

People in the United States are consuming mass quantities of refined sugar everyday, even if they don’t know it . When you combine this excessive intake of refined sugar with processed carbohydrates and calories it creates a perfect metabolic storm and sets up strong cravings for sugar.

It isn’t until people reduce sugar and processed carbohydrates that they quickly realize how strong their cravings and addictions to sugar are.

No one is to blame for this dysfunctional relationship with sugar, except the food industry. We are hardwired to enjoy and crave sweet foods, they provide a strong evolutionary signal of nutrient and energy density.

Primal Brains, Modern Foods  

Our brains have built in evolutionary mechanisms that are major drivers for our behavior. Many of these evolutionary drives are meant for survival, one of the main drives is eating.

When we eat sugar there are certain reward systems in the brain that are stimulated releasing neurotransmitters such as dopamine.

Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that makes us feel good. Because dopamine causes us to feel good we have the evolutionary instinct to repeat that behavior.

This reward system is designed to help us navigate the behaviors for survival. These reward systems played pivotal roles in our survival during times of feast and famine.

A Hijacked Reward System

Today  we have the same primal reward systems in place that guide our decisions around food. The refined sugar  that we eat these days is much sweeter and concentrated  than what could be found in nature.

As a result of this concentrated and hyper sweet energy source our brain becomes flooded with dopamine causing an overstimulation of the reward system.

The dopamine signaling that is meant to guide our dietary decisions has been been taken over by these sweet foods. A much stronger pleasure signal is sent than what we would find in nature and our reward system becomes overwhelmed.

The same opioid pathways in the brain that sugar stimulates are similar to those  which heroin and morphine use. This is why some people seem powerless against sugar laden foods, and can’t control themselves.

Cravings Or Hunger ?

A lot of people mistake cravings for hunger, but there is a significant difference between the two. When a person is hungry they have physiological need for energy, when a person has a craving the brain is looking for a reward.

The perfect example is someone who just finished a big meal and if full but still craves a bowl of ice cream. The meal has satisfied their hunger and the body is well nourished, but the brain is looking for that reward, regardless of how well nourished you are.

The brain is looking for the dopamine and opioid signal to stimulate the reward system in the brain, and the quickest way to stimulate the reward system is with a large quantity of refined sugar.

More Is Less

Because of the easy access to refined sugar we begin abuse the reward system and signal too much dopamine release too often. Our body has protective mechanisms in place to make sure we keep things in better balance.

The brain downregulates (reduces) the amount of dopamine receptors, and as a result the same amount of sugar does not provide the same amount of pleasure as before.

Our solution to this problem is to consume larger quantities of sugar in an attempt to elicit the same dopamine response. Developing a tolerance to any kind of substance like sugar is a strong sign of addiction.  

The Poison Is In The Dose

As a person gains a greater tolerance to sugar more is needed to elicit the same feeling of pleasure because there are fewer receptors for dopamine.

While this person may not realize it they are are chasing the “sugar high” and the feeling becomes more important than the volume of sugar they are consuming.

Chasing this feeling and not worrying about the volume of sugar can lead people to binging in an attempt to feel pleasure.

The problem is that with far fewer dopamine receptors available the person may not reach that high they are looking for because of increased tolerance.

The Sugar Blues

Once a person realizes their sugar consumption has gotten out of f hand they commonly cut back or eliminate sugar from their diet.

Without  sugar to stimulate the pleasure center, and far less receptors for the dopamine being released the person does not feel the same pleasure they did before.

Your body is looking for sugar to stimulate pleasure, but it is not present. As a result the cravings mentally and physically get much stronger for the sugar. This experience is what has been coined withdrawal.

Tolerance and withdrawal are the hallmarks of addiction, similar to what people experience with cigarettes, alcohol or cocaine. This withdrawal and extreme cravings that people experience are what makes eliminating sugar from the diet so difficult.

An Interesting Correlation

Because many people who are in recovery from a alcohol, cigarettes or drugs are still seeking that pleasure they once felt with their drug of choice, many of them turn to sugar.

The brain of those who struggle with addiction still crave the stimulation of the pleasure center. While they have made the choice to avoid their addiction, sugar plays on the same reward pathway and causes an identical addiction, but to sugar instead.  

Closing Thoughts

Sugar is one of the most widely accepted and used drugs on the planet. Just like with other drugs sugar causes a tolerance and withdrawal and can cause people to lose control over their behavior.

Once you are addicted to sugar, it is very hard to give up and avoid.

Because of the way our food system has been developed it is more difficult than ever to avoid refined sugars. It is present in all prepackaged foods that make up the majority of  the modern diet.

As a result the health of our society has been in a downward tailspin. Most of the modern diseases we are suffering from as a society can be linked back to excess consumption of sugar and processed carbohydrates.

If we are going to improve our health as society we need to break the cycle of sugar addiction, and eat foods that do not contain refined sugar or processed carbohydrates.

If you’re tired of working hard, and not getting the results you want, I can help you adopt the simple habits necessary to reach your health or fat loss goals.

These habits are based on getting you to your goal in a sustainable fashion that can be maintained. I’ll be there every step of the way to support and keep you accountable.  

Get on a Strategy Call with me to Discover how to achieve your health or fat loss goals, and make them yours to keep this time around.

Whether you decide to work with me or not I can guarantee you will leave this call with more knowledge on how to achieve your goals.

 

Evolve Nutritional Therapy Strategy Session


Name *
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12 Reasons You're Not Losing Weight On A Low Carb Diet

There are many factors that go into sustainable fat loss. These factors go far beyond counting calories, macros or whether you are vegan or paleo.

The fat loss war is bigger than just the diet and exercise portion. It is about the signals you are sending to your body on all home fronts that need to be considered diet, exercise, stress, sleep, lifestyle, genetic factors and your hormonal profile are all contributors to the fat loss war. 

Many people see significant benefits in their ability to lose fat by reducing carbohydrates and sugars. It has proven to be very effective for a lot of clients I have worked with.

However just like any other piece in the health puzzle, what fits someone else and helps them attain their goals may not work for you. We are all bio-individuals and have a number of different needs and factors that make you unique, and one of  kind. A snowflake of sorts! 

The individual needs of each person reaches farther than their diet and exercise regime. Many of these individual factors need to be recognized and planned for when waging a war against body fat.

In this blog post I am going to explain the main reasons beyond lowering carbs that you are not losing weight, and what to do about it. 

Too Much Stress In Your Life

The reality for a lot of people is that a healthy diet and exercise alone are not enough to achieve the fat loss they are looking for. We live in a fast paced world packed with unnatural stress.

Our body recognizes stress as a stimulus which it responds to the same  no matter where it  comes from. Whether you are getting chased by a sabertooth tiger or getting reprimanded by your boss, the body reacts the same way.

This stressful lifestyle puts our body in a constant state of fight or flight causing the release of the stress hormone cortisol.

Chronically elevated cortisol can increase unhealthy food cravings, muscle breakdown, fat storage and makes insulin resistance much worse. Sounds like a recipe for fat gain huh ? 

The Fix: Take a step back from your life and honestly assess how much stress you deal with on a daily basis, and what stressful situations could be eliminated. Adopt a stress management technique such as meditation, journaling, walks outside and deep breathing. These simple steps could help your overall health not only weight loss.

Your Carbs Are Higher Than You Think

It is very common to underestimate how much we eat, and overestimate how much we exercise. There is also the fact that some folks are far more sensitive to carbohydrates than others, and it's going to cause them to lose or gain weight much quicker.

The leaner you are chances are pretty good you can tolerate more carbs without fat gain than someone who is very overweight. 

If your weight loss has plateaued  log your food for a day or two and put it into some sort of fitness tracker like Fitday or My Fitness Pal to see where your carbohydrate intake is and adjust to meet your goals from there. 

The Fix: If you are not a hard charging athlete and are taking in over 100-150 grams of carbohydrates per day  dial back on carbs until fat loss begins again. To enter nutritional ketosis where many find accelerated fat loss go for 50 grams of carbohydrates from vegetables,  berries and other lower glycemic load foods or fruits.

You Need To Move More Throughout The Day

The caloric deficit we create daily with exercise is fairly small, and can become caloric excess with a snack or extra helping of food.

You should not be exercising to burn calories, but instead because mentally and physically there are many benefits.With exercise you will be able to create a better metabolic environment, build muscle and improve your mood and feeling of well being.

Not all exercise has to be a sweat drenched high intensity trip to the gym, aim for three to five hours per week of low level physical activity like walking or hiking.

Lift weights to build muscle mass which in turn improves your hormonal profile and helps to burn body fat in the long run. Use some short interval training or sprints as your cardio, it will boost growth hormone and can help to oxidize (burn) fat long after you are done.

The Fix: Incorporate 3-5 hours of low level walking and hiking along with 3-4 bouts of strength training per week. If you really want to make a push to burn extra fat include a sprint session or two. 

You Need More Sleep

Not getting enough sleep causes people to feel hungrier , have less willpower , blood sugar dysregulation, decreased performance in the gym, difficulty losing body fat/ building muscle and can negatively impact your hormones.

Lack of sleep is a stress on the body that can wreak havoc on our health, especially when trying to perform at an optimal level daily. 

Not getting enough sleep causes the release of the stress hormone cortisol, which is efficient at helping us store body fat. To add fuel to the fire, our largest release of the  muscle building/ fat burning hormone (growth hormone) takes place while we are in the deepest stage of sleep.

Sleep is not negotiable, and is required for health. your results in the gym, work and life will suffer if you don’t get between 7-9 hours of quality sleep a night consistently.

The Fix: Get to bed before 11:00 and shoot for 7-9 hours of sleep nightly. If you have trouble falling asleep clean up your sleep hygiene and start to make a night time routine to help you wind down and get to bed earlier. If you need tips for helping to improve your sleep refer to my earlier blog post “ 10 Ways To Improve Your Sleep”

You Are Eating Too Many Calories

Low carb is an effective strategy for a lot of people, but at the end of the day when you are trying to lose fat calories do matter.

What makes a low carb diet so effective is that it reduces the appetite and naturally makes people consume less calories.

If your fat loss has stalled but you are doing everything else right, look at how many calories you are taking in on a daily basis.

Be aware though that all calories are not created equal, and have different hormonal effects on the body because of the nutrients, vitamins and minerals they contain or lack.

As you approach your ideal body composition the small details become a larger part of the picture. 

The Fix: Take a look at some of the more calorically dense foods in low carb diets like nuts, nut butters and cheese that people can go overboard with ,and reduce consumption. Use a calorie tracker like My Fitness Pal or Fitday and see what your calories for three days are. When going for fat loss shoot for the range of 10-12 times body weight in calories. I am not encouraging anyone to count macros or calories long term, but just for a few days to get a realistic idea of how many calories you are taking in. 

You Are Not Eating Enough Vegetables

Many folks who adopt a low carb diet assume that they should avoid vegetables and fruits because they contain carbohydrates, but this is a big mistake.

Plants are some of the most nutrient dense foods and contain vitamins, minerals and lots of indigestible fiber that help with fat loss. The indigestible fiber you get from fruits and veggies helps you to feel fuller for longer and reduces the cravings.

Make sure to consume healthy fruits and vegetables with every meal and avoid the ‘low carb treats” and bars.

You will need to personalize your fruit intake, because some of them are higher in carbohydrates and will prevent you from entering ketosis. Fruits such as berries and other low glycemic load fruits can fit in the low carb diet because they are lower in carbs and higher in vitamins, minerals and fiber.

The Fix: Consume 1-2 cups of low glycemic vegetables at every meal to give your body the nutrients it needs and keep you fuller for longer. Some vegetables that are lower in carbohydrates and can be enjoyed are: spinach, kale, collards, eggplant, broccoli, celery, bok choy, mushrooms, avocado, tomatoes, asparagus, cabbage, cauliflower, peppers, onion, garlic.

You Are Over Consuming Dairy Products

Even though dairy is lower in carbs it does contain a good amount of protein and like carbs,  protein can be insulinogenic.

Protein much like carbohydrates when over consumed can raise insulin levels. This insulin  causes fat storage.  Even if you have no negative reactions to dairy, consuming it multiples times a day can cause extra spikes in insulin shutting down fat burning capabilities, and stalling fat loss progress.

The Fix: If fat loss has stalled reduce and eliminate milk, cheese, yogurt and cream. Because butter is very low in protein and lactose it will not spike insulin, you can also get Ghee which is butter fat with all the milk solids removed.

You Have Restricted Calories For Too Long

Being in a calorie deficit for too long can create some problems with the metabolism and can slow weight loss. When in a caloric deficit for too long it will slow down the metabolism.

The body is very intelligent and realizes that less food is coming in and in response it becomes more efficient by slowing the rate at which we burn calories to prevent starvation.

To prevent the metabolism slowing down people will purposely spike calories from healthy foods, especially from carbohydrates once a week. This weekly spike in calories sends the signal to the body that we are not starving and to  keep the metabolism humming along.

The Fix: If you have kept your calories and carbohydrates restricted for a long period of time and fat loss has stalled you may want to consider picking a meal or day once a week and  eat higher calories especially from carbohydrates at this meal/day. These should still be healthy foods, this is not a license to crush a dozen doughnuts once a week.

You Are Putting On Muscle Mass

Don’t live and die by the scale, while it can be helpful the scale does not tell the entire story when it comes to losing weight.

When you start to incorporate a more active lifestyle with better sleep and better eating habits  an environment to put on muscle mass and improve bone density has been created.

The great thing about  gaining muscle mass is it will help with fat loss. But because muscle mass is denser than fat,  weight on the scale may stay the same or go up.

The Fix: Take greater stock in other measurements that are not related to the scale. Make sure to keep how you look, feel and perform in your mind. If you staying at the same weight but body composition is changing in the mirror for the better don’t sweat the scale.

You Are Not Being Honest With Yourself

A lot of people will tell someone that they want to lose weight, but their actions do not match what they are saying. Everyone has met the person who tells everyone at a gathering they are on a strict diet.

Twenty minutes later the same person is at the food table stuffing their face with cookies, candy and potato chips. When asked  about their “diet” they explain that they are going to restart it tomorrow.

Months later you run into the same person again and ask them how the diet  is going and they respond saying it didn’t “work” for them. I highly doubt it was that the diet didn't work. That person was not ready for the large change they attempted to take on. 

The problem is that most people are not honest with themselves about what they really want in that moment. Delaying gratification is very difficult and can take years of practice.  

There should never be any shame or guilt around food choices, just consequences. If you value eating four cookies every day more than fat loss or getting healthier that is your personal choice, no judgement. However don’t tell people you don’t know why you can’t lose that last ten pounds.

The Fix: Be completely honest about what you value in your life and why that is important to you. Do not beat yourself up over slip ups. Instead recognize in that moment you valued what you chose over the delayed gratification of staying on course. The beauty is that next time you have the opportunity to make a better choice. 

You Are Eating Processed Low Carb Foods, Not Real Foods

There are plenty of low carb bars and processed foods that can be found in the grocery store. Low carb does not always mean it is a healthy option.

When adopting a new style of eating you have to be aware of the buzzwords that the food industry will use to sell you products.

When switching to a lower carb diet replace those carbs with whole nutrient dense food that comes from nature such as fish, meat, eggs, vegetables and healthy fats.

When reducing carbs it is very important to eat more fats. You are taking one energy nutrient away in the form of carbohydrates, and need to replace it with fats for energy. If you try to go low carb and low fat at the same time you will be starving all the time and feel horrible.

The Fix: Eat nutrient dense whole foods that come from nature such as meats, vegetables, fish, fruits, eggs, nuts, seeds and healthy fats such as coconut products, butter, palm oil, avocados and olives and olive oil.

You Are Impatient

One healthy meal will not make you lean, just like one unhealthy meal is not the cause of weight gain. Changing your lifestyle and staying consistent is the key to the battle against fat loss.

Some people are able to lose fat very quickly while others will lose fat slower. If you are someone who loses fat slowly don’t jump ship after a month saying it didn’t work, you need to be patient and adopt a new lifestyle that includes sleep, exercise, stress management and healthy eating. Diets fail but lifestyle changes do not. 

Adopting new habits can be very intimidating and difficult for people. I like the example of the mountain that is made up of pebbles.

The mountain is the persons goal and the pebbles are small habits that will get them to their goal. Most people want to move the entire mountain on the first day, but quickly get discouraged when the mountain doesn't budge.

What works better is to move a pebble a day, and over time you will move that mountain, but one pebble at a time. Small habits add up to big changes and goals being met. 

The Fix: Be patient and know that it will take time, if you stay patient and stick to the plan the reward of that consistency will be looking, feel and performing your daily tasks better. Given a long enough time to make these changes you can lose weight, but not everyone will look like a fitness model with just these tips. Be honest and realistic with yourself about your habits, and learn to love the process.

If you’re tired of working hard, and not getting the results you want, I can help you adopt the simple habits necessary to reach your health or fat loss goals.

These habits are based on getting you to your goal in a sustainable fashion that can be maintained. I’ll be there every step of the way to support and keep you accountable.  

Get on a Strategy Call with me to Discover how to achieve your health or fat loss goals, and make them yours to keep this time around.

Whether you decide to work with me or not I can guarantee you will leave this call with more knowledge on how to achieve your goals.

 

Evolve Nutritional Therapy Strategy Session


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