Lil Miss Fitness Freak

"And though she be but little, she is fierce"


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Detox? Oh That Thing You Already Do? Fitness Friday 26

detox

Okay so this Friday’s post is about something that really rubs me the wrong way.

Detoxes. 

Do you know how many people opt to try out “detoxifying” products? When I worked at GoodnessMe! I had to really bite my tongue whenever someone would ask me about the effectiveness of the latest liver detox kit.

It bugs me even more when people jump onto a ‘detox diet’… that basically is a starvation diet… in order to rid their bodies of toxins because its overloaded

Overloaded you say?

What does that even mean or feel like?

Is that the feeling you get after drinking all weekend? Having a holiday meal and perhaps eating one too many servings of overly sweet or calorically dense foods?

I’m sorry, but that’s not toxins, that’s just a feeling of sluggishness and fatigue from your body having to go into overdrive to break down everything you just ate.

So on this side, no, a detox isn’t required. Instead, next event, try to monitor yourself. No, I’m not saying to restrict, feel guilty or over compensate with restriction and over exercising the next day. What I’m saying is to be mindFUL of your choices and your satiety cues during these events to prevent yourself from over eating.

If you happen to over eat, the best detox would be …

water

Yeah. Easy no?

Conclusion of first rant: Feeling not so great is generally the outcome of nutrition related choices. Enjoy yourself and don’t feel the need to skip your favourite treat this holiday season but don’t let yourself take a free-for-all because no, your body will not be happy afterwards. It is not filled with toxins to be rid of, it’s simply stuffed and needs some time for processing.

Before I go onto rant numba 2, lets just highlight the fact that your body does a pretty good job as detoxifying your body.

That’s kind of its job.

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Yes, we don’t eat the same quality of foods these days and we take in a lot more toxins from our air, water, etc, but the liver is still going to detox just fine unless it’s some extreme event. Otherwise, the fatigue and ‘bleh’ feeling you are experiencing is most probably more so the result of chronically eating foods that are not nutritionally dense and take a lot of processing. If heavily processed food is your go to, it’s not a detox you need, its a change in diet.

#SorryButSomeoneHadToSayIt

Okay so that’s one part out of the way, the other reason some people do detoxes is for weight loss or to ‘jump start’ their weight loss journey.

Why you shouldn’t do this…

~Any weight you loose is water most definitely because most of these detox diets and/or kits require a huge caloric deficit. Many of them are liquid based diets or eating mostly veggies. So no foods with real substance. 

~You are freaking your body out with days and days of poor caloric intake. When it gets scared, it does things to compensate and save energy. When your body starts “saving energy”, say bye-bye to any potential for weigh loss. 

~As mentioned in the first point, any weight loss is not something that will stick around. Once you actually begin to eat again, you will just gain the weight back and possibly more depending on the degree of dietary restriction and length of time (ie. how much your body adjusted)

So tell me again how this is helpful for loosing weight?

From what I have seen, it doesn’t help at all. It often just makes you worse off than when you started because many people binge eat after the detox

Over-eating when your body is not adjusting to being starved = weight gain.

My advice: Just don’t do it.

Lastly, because this can’t be all about me ranting, are their studies that actually show some effectiveness or positive outcomes from these detoxes?

Not really. There have been some studies showing some detoxifying benefits of certain types of foods BUT they are done on animals and some studies have been found to have some methodological issues. (Refer to this study)

The study just mentioned also discussed:

~How there have been no studies that have looked into detoxes and weight loss

~Presents a study that shows a potential mechanism for preventing weight loss due to high stress of a low calorie detox diet. 

~Detox diets, whether food/liquid or supplement based, are DANGEROUS! Overdosing on the supplements and severe caloric restriction have major negative consequences

Another study looked at 3 types of detoxes and highlighted some interesting things:

~Main motivators

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~There is no data that shows the efficacy of detoxes

~Detoxes should not be attempted by everyone. If you are already sick, you definitely SHOULD NOT attempt these stupid things because they are going to cause more stress on the body. 

…..

So to bring this post to a close, I will ask that if there is no evidence regarding benefits and/or potential negative consequences of these detoxes PLUS they are unpleasant to do, why even do them in the first place?

As proposed in the first study, what we should be focusing on is the reasoning behind WHY people want to do these. I personally believe that a big reason for most is weight loss and I’m going  to be blunt and say that weight loss does not come from a quick fix. Dietary and lifestyle changes are needed and people need to accept that. No it’s not easy, but that’s just the way it is. If we just ate more so the way our previous generations ate (less processed/fast/convenience foods and actually had proper meal times) I don’t think we would be struggling as much as we are with obesity.

Just my two cents. 

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Nuff said.

Have a great Friday night my friends!

-Chelsea


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Fad Lifestyles, Gym Newbs…Thinking Out Loud

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My friends I have a lot to think out loud this week, so lets get started right off the bat shall we?

Thanks to the lovely Amanda from Running with Spoons for being the hostess to the mostess.

1. Maggie on my Mind

Here I was saying I’m an adult and everything and was going to be just fine when Rita left, but day 2 it hit me hard. You know that ‘down’ feeling, yeah that was me. I try my hardest to still smile (okay I don’t have to try that hard to smile, its just me) because smiling just makes you feel better, but I would be lying if I said that I didn’t have a bit of a dark cloud floating over me the past few days. It is perfect timing for me to go home this weekend and spend time with my familia and I have to say I just want snuggles…

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Of the puppy variety.

Is it bad that I have been ‘craving’ having a dog a lot recently…Ugh. Come to me money! Or better yet, can I just have one and it not cost me anything and never get sick… ever?

You know you’re desperate when you start wanting a cat just because you want a snuggle friend and they are less baby-like in their needs…

2.The gym is not a playground FYI

Not to sound like a preacher, but for real, take the gym seriously and don’t be an idiot when you come into the gym. I’m going to sound sexist here, but this specifically applies to guys because most often girls will run away to the cardio section when they are not sure (which is not the answer either!) rather then just being plain stupid.

Okay so that was a bit harsh, but I really don’t feel like seeing someone die when I’m in my domain.

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Pardon my lack of spell checkin…slips happen when you are speaking with irritation passion

This most often happens when said individuals are not only newbs but also when they decide to bring their newb friend(s) with them too. Multiples just increase the stupidity that occurs.

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And they just laugh…after they barely rack the bar and the guy crawls out from underneath it.

Just sits there and shakes my head. 

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And when you don’t succeed, try again with more weight? Cuz that makes perfect sense

And fail again. Like actual fail and once again, spotter barely racks it with 50 extra pounds. Unfortunately in cases like this, it generally takes an injury for them to smarten up a bit.

Let me say something before someones like “you talk **it but why didn’t you step in”. One, I wish I could lift 150+lbs just so maybe I could show them up (plus ya ya save their life and everything). And two the spotter did manage to get it on the bottom rung (i.e. two inches from the guys face…).

Please note how there were numerous GUYS around these two and they did nothing…

Speaking of which…

3. Girls vs. Guys

We apparently think very differently. I went over to talk to a gym friend of mine about said newbs and his response to my “They’re freaking me out because I would rather not see someone die this morning…”

You apparently have a bigger heart then me, I would laugh if it fell on their face.

Now before you judge my friend, please note that most guys would have said the same thing. Call it tough love. They are being idiots, so the guys logic is that maybe if they actually loose it, maybe they will learn their lesson…plus get a bit of entertainment.

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Lets be realistic here, guys often get a kick out of seeing other guys pain. 

4.Eating Like a Caveman…

Check out this podcast as this inspired this lil rant thought.

 To the paleo folks, did you know that you have been depriving yourselves?

Of oat gains!

That’s serious.

New research has pointed out the fact that Palaeolithic people did in fact eat grains. BLASPHEMY! In fact, a new paper was published (and discussed in the podcast) on a new tool that was discovered that has traces of a type of oat fiber suggesting that it was used to grind the grains into a flour.

So yeah….Sorry?

They also touched on some other forms of ‘dieting’ that I wanted to mention.

Intermittent Fasting

This is no miracle solution to loosing weight, but rather just a different way to space out your calories for the day. Mr. Dolce happened to mention that he had tried and and felt like absolute crap for the 3 months he was on it.

No PR’s

No Strength

No Energy

Why make life hard on yourself?

Eat something before you train and fuel your body to make gains. Simple as that.

Exception may be for runners who get sick with running on full. Perhaps eating something very quick to digest is best, but go with your gut. Pun intended. 

IIFYM (If It Fits Your Macros)

I discussed a while back about this and what it was actually supposed to address when it was first released but they give great basic information as to why eating whole foods, rather then processed crap, is really how to keep your body weight in check. No, I’m not saying you need to eat clean 100% of the time to maintain your weight, I’m saying that eating wholesome makes a huge difference in satiety and often leaves you eating the calories your body needs. IE. Not in excess.

He said something very real..

Have you ever seen someone sit down and eat 3 apples? Not really. 4 donuts, yes.

The truth is that the satiety of the fiber and water from the apple often leaves you not wanting more due to feeling full and satisfied. The sugary, easy to digest foods leave you feeling unsatisfied and wanting more. Unfortunately, the latter is much higher in calories and can easily put you over your maintenance and lead to weight gain if consistently indulged in.

In other ranting news…

5.Why Do People Still Hate On Carbs.

Ugh I know that education on this topic is not there yet but it kind of infuriates me to hear people saying that I’m cutting carbs to loose weight or body fat.

Guys, no macronutrient (carbs/pro/fat) are the “fat storing macros.” If you go over your calories you will gain weight. You could eat over your cals in lettuce and you would gain weight. Don’t try that though because that may be painful…

Carbs bring with them a lot of water (about equal water per gram of carbs) so often people may reduce them to feel ‘slimmer’ just due to water loss but that is it. It’s not fat you are loosing. ITS WATER!

Okay rant over. Let me unruffle my feathers…

Disclaimer. I’m talking about carbs in general. Some people will avoid all carbs, including natural sources (oats, sweet potatoes, rice, etc) thinking that weight loss will follow. I’m not talking about cereal, sugar, etc

6. Bunny Therapy?

I just discovered that the pet store near my house lets you hold newborn bunnies just because. They just messed up because imma be there ERRYDAY!

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OMG I just can’t get over my joy.

…or over that baby bunny. Uh Oh…

7.The Best Compliment.

“You look like you’re an athlete.”

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This is when strength and athleticism has surpassed aesthetics for the reasons why you work out, you know there is passion there. Find what you love because that is when it will stick and that is when you will progress.

I workout for me because I love it and I love getting stronger. I don’t work out because I feel that is required to have a certain body type.

…..

Well I’m off to lift real soon, so I’m gunna close it off there. I will be heading out for a nice lil hike post lift with a friend of mine to catch up which will be real nice…and maybe I will drag her back to the bunny shop…

I have a problem okay. At least I admit it.

Happy Thursday Friends!

-Chelsea


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Fake Pregnancy For Weight Loss? Fitness Friday 10

Please, please, please never believe a word Dr. Oz spews out. Mmmmkay? Or at least take his advice with a large injection of skepticism…

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Is that a flex? Do you even lift brah?

Speaking of injections…

Would you ever inject yourself with a hormone released during pregnancy if you thought it could help you loose weight?

Oh and while you’re at it, why don’t we just slash your calories to about 500 too.

The obesity epidemic is solved!

Well at least, that must be true because DIS GUY said so.

…..

Fitness Friday 10

So if you didn’t guess already, this weeks topic is on another diet SCAM which is the hCG diet.

Lets begin with some background shall we.

What is hCG?

HCG stands for Human Chorionic Gonadotrophin and it is released by a fertilized egg when it implants and has an integral function in maintaining the corpus luteum which then releases progesterone and helps to build the uterus for the nourishment of the developing fetus

So I know what you are thinking, it has to do with pregnancy so what the hell ?….

What does it have to do with weight loss?

Created by Dr. Simeons, he stated that individuals could loose fat without losing muscle if they were given low doses of hCG in addition to being on a very low calorie diet. He came up with this ‘theory’ through his research in overweight males with pituitary problems and pregnant females in India (background here). From his studies he said that hCG acted to protect the fetus and so in times of deficit calories, the body would then be rid of excessive and unneeded fat because it would immobilize it for energy.

He wrote a book on this and stated that targeting obesity was the main goal. He also said that individuals could loose fat while keeping muscle.

Totally sounds legit right!?!?

So what’s the diet?

Put very simply, in addition to getting a lovely needle of the hormone every day, you also get the pleasure of having 2 solid meals a day adding up to 500 calories only. Oh and you can choose to have some water or tea but that is it. Finally, these meals are both low in fat and carbs and high in protein. so enjoy being constipated while you’re at it

Side Effects?

Do you even need to ask?

One, you’re basically starving your body. A mere 500 calories is NOT maintainable and no one can argue that it is. Apparently it is not recommended to go more then 40 days on said diet by medical professionals (source) …

Instead they should be saying you shouldn’t go on this diet at all…But hey, I’m not a professional doctor.

What about the hormones?

Research doesn’t even support the idea that it leads to weight loss (source). The weight loss that was supposed to be from the hormone is much more likely to be due to starvation. Starvation then brings with a whole host of potential consequences including protein loss from your vital organs, deficiencies, cognitive impairment, and the list goes on.

To to conclude…

This diet has been attacked from the research world on multiple occasions. The FDA stated that all products that contain the hormone must have a disclaimer that it has not been found to cause weight loss and any weight reduction is simply a result of starvation. Weight loss companies have to inform their patients of the lack of research to support it and also potential problems associated with it.

So the fact that Dr. Oz stated in an interview that he continues to support it and that every time he is asked he believes it works more and more is simply BS.

Again, don’t believe this ‘doctor’ because his word is a bunch of crap just like this diet scam.

HCG-Diet1

LIES!

Rant over. Happy Friday my friends!

-Chelsea


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Friday Fitness Questions

Hey Friends,

Update, lets all pretend it’s Friday mmmmmkay 😉 

So I wanted to do a lil Friday thing (lets see if it sticks! Hope so!) where I answer a few common fitness related questions that I used to get in my comments section back when I was a real blogger (ie. was able to post more then once a week…promise that is my goal for this summer, not because I feel I have to, but because I want to and miss you guys!).

Anywho, so hopefully these will be useful to many, and although some of them may some simple and common knowledge, I did get these questions a lot so they are new information to many. Feel free to post any questions in the comments below on each of these posts and I will make sure to answer you in a following post!

Also, if you have different opinions and research also comment away! I’m always up for learning more.

So lets get started shall we?

1. Do I need protein powder if I’m lifting weights? If so, what is the best kind to get?

Part 1: No you don’t.

Even the most “hardcore athletes” don’t need to use protein supplements. In most cases they simply choose it for convince OR because it is what they can digest easily after their training. I personally tend to fall into the second of those two. I found that when I was eating whole foods, it took my too long to feel the effects (due to having to break it down too much I suppose and release the nutrients) after my workouts and I tended to get sleepy and stay sleepy. After switching to having my current post workout meal (organic brown rice cakes + protein powder ‘icing’ + banana + coconut oil), I feel the effects right away and feel more awake, even after those tough leg day sessions where I’m slightly shakey post-workout.

Most tend to think that they need to down protein shakes post workout because that is what all of the bodybuilders do, but there is really nothing in the literature that says that is best over whole foods, from what I have found. Yes, whey is arguably one of the best sources of protein in terms of bioavailability to the body (in other words, percentage of the protein you absorb) and thus is very quick to be used as the powder and and easily digestible form enables quick absorption, but in terms of growth and repair, it’s not going to get you better or faster results per say then something like eggs or meat.

I say per say because I’m not sure if you would see different results comparing a  post workout recovery meal of whey vs. a whole food one of less bioavailable sources like plant-based proteins that also may not cover all of the essential amino acids. You also just need to ensure you’re getting enough protein in general!

If greater muscle synthesis is what you’re after, research shows that the essential amino acids (the 15 AA that need to be ingested as they are not made in the body) are what you should be leaning towards. A study by Paddon-Jones et al (2006) that looked at the difference in muscle synthesis in elderly and young individuals taking either a whey or essential amino acid supplement and found that the supplement showed greater synthesis then the whey. To be brief, they concluded that it appears that the addition of the other amino acids did not appear to stimulate greater synthesis.

One thing to keep in mind, however, is the fact that although you see people chugging straight protein, carbohydrates appear to be important for greater effects (I have seen some conflicting observations BUT the majority talks about a benefit). A study by Tang et al (2007) concluded that even a minimal dose of whey (10g) with the help of a carbohydrate source (21g) created a 2 fold increase in muscle protein synthesis in young men post-exercise.

Note the ratio of carbs to protein….2:1 friends. Don’t forget about your carbies

 Further evidence of the important role of carbohydrates came from the 2006 study by Bird, Tarpenning and Marino. They reported a synergistic effect of post-exercise carbohydrate and essential amino acid supplementation pairing on muscle protein synthesis. Specifically, the anabolic affect on muscle was greater when paired together rather then taken independently. So once again, it’s the essential aminos that appear to be important for muscle growth, but it also appears that carbohydrates help aid in that process.

 This article by Volek (2004) provides a great overview of the literature if you’re interested further OR if you want a more easy read, here’s an article by Eirik from Organic Fitness (not a journal article but includes research in the article) talking about how quantity of protein is more important then timing and how a protein shake is not necessary.

So overall, eating a whole food protein vs. whey doesn’t seem to make a difference in terms of recovery and growth post-workout. So everyone out there who are lifting and exercising because they simply enjoy it or are just trying to keep active in their daily lives, a meal of whole foods would be just fine. If you want to get specific, are an avid bodybuilder/athlete and are looking to gain the most from your post-workout nutrition, then the literature suggests to look more so at those essential amino acids (particular interest on Leucine ratio?) for a greater anabolic affect.

Also in general, don’t forget about those carbs. They are important not only for replenishing those glycogen stores, but also appear to aid in the process of muscle synthesis.

Before I get some comments regarding glycogen replenishing, intensity or the workout is an important factor here. If you eat a pre-workout meal that is rich is carbohydrates and you’re workout is not at an intensity high enough to burn through them all, then this is not an emergency, but I still feel that it’s important to get some good, complex carbs in post workout for energy levels. 

Part 2: Best kind to get?

This is purely coming from experience and also my opinion. If you’re out to get a whey powder, I would ensure to check for a few things:

~How many other ingredients are in it? Too many fillers, preservatives, artificial crap and sweeteners are just a recipe for an aggravated tummy and are just not necessary. Keep as natural as possible. If it’s sweetened, go for stevia.

~Do they list a proprietary protein blend? Be cautious because for some reason they are not telling you their blend and it could be that they are using ingredients of lower quality.

~Go for grass-fed, antibiotic free sources of whey if possible. I feel the same kind of way about milk products if you choose to eat those.

~Whey isolate vs. whey concentrate? The isolate will be more expensive because it’s a higher percentage of protein. Basically, the concentrate may have a slightly larger proportion of carbohydrates and fat (mostly coming from lactose). Some may even go as far as saying that concentrate is more of a ‘whole foods’ supplement, but I don’t think it’s that big of a deal unless you are looking for the purest form you can get your hands on. See this article for some more info.

~Other useful ingredients? If they are going to add things, they mind as well be beneficial. I think that all proteins should have enzymes in them to aid with digestion. Lactase is obviously the most important in this case as it helps break down the milk protein, lactose. Glutamine is sometimes added and has been reported (mixed results still however) the help with muscle repair and gut health in some studies. Also, more recently, anti-inflammatory ingredients likes turmeric and other herbs are starting to be added to some proteins but they aren’t required for it to be effective from a protein aspect, but just a little bit of an added bonus.

What do you think?

Do you have a post workout shake?

Favourite flavour of whey is you use it?

-Chelsea

References

Bird, S.,  Tarpenning, K., Marino, F. (2006). Independent and combined effects of liquid carbohydrate/essential amino acid ingestion on hormonal and muscular adaptations following resistance training in untrained men. Eur J Appl Physiol, 97, 225–238. doi: 10.1007/s00421-005-0127-z

Paddon-Jones, D., Sheffield-Moore, M.,  Katsanos, C., Zhang, X, Wolfe, R. (2006). Differential stimulation of muscle protein synthesis in elderly humans following isocaloric ingestion of amino acids or whey protein. Experimental Gerontology, 41, 215-219

 Tang, J., Manolakos, J., Kujbida, G., Lysecki, P., Moore, D., Phillips, S. (2007). Minimal whey protein with carbohydrate stimulates muscle protein synthesis following resistance exercise in trained young men. Applied Physiology Nutrition and Metabolism, 32(6), 1132-8. doi: 10.1139/H07-076

 


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The New Biggest Loser

Let The Diets Begin…

A new show this season, My Diet Is Better Than Yours, came to CTV and randomly caught to my attention when I was waiting for my post-ice cream sugar crash to send me into a slumber Friday night.

I was curious.

I clicked play.

My thoughts starting going…as usual.

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Oh hey looky it’s Shawn T!

This show, like The Biggest Loser, is all about weight loss but it takes a slightly different spin as each individual is placed with an expert that is passionate about a certain diet. They believe that their diet is not just a short term thing, but a longer term solution or lifestyle change to weight management.

Now while it’s interesting to see the different fad diets put head to head in a real life experiment, you know how I feel about diets…

Diet= Short term (if it even does anything in the first place) and possibly puts your health at risk!

I don’t agree with diets whatsoever. I think that everyone needs to take the time to learn their bodies, play around with their nutrition and find out what works effectively for THEIR body and lifestyle. This allows it to be maintainable for the rest of their lives and not feel deprived.

For most, I feel as if this is a lifestyle of eating mostly whole foods with some processed and/or treats in moderation. I believe that is sustainable and something that is sustainable is your secret to success.

Plans that TAKE AWAY are not sustainable because whenever something is lost we want it more.

Anyways, I wanted to take the time and go through the fad diets that are being highlighted and give thoughts on them. Now these are strictly my opinion and I’m no expert, I just wanted to go through and discuss them. I would love for you all to give your thoughts too so feel free to jump into the commentary in the comments section! 🙂

The Wild Diet

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Basic Idea: My automatic thought here was that it was a paleo or even maybe a ketogenic style of diet. The first thing he introduced to his client was bullet proof coffee, or when you butter grass fed butter in your coffee. This may seem gross to you at first, but many ketogenic followers love this high fat, caffeine boosting start to their day.  Personally I don’t agree with the ketogenic diet, but my thoughts aside, the basic principles here are eating higher fats to compensate for the lower carbohydrate consumption. This is supposed to make you a ‘fat burner’ rather then the standard ‘sugar burner.’ With regards to proteins, they will be high quality the fattier cuts and varieties are encouraged because these are natural fats that are nourishing for the body. Despite by initial perception, he does have a major focus on plant based foods (2/3 of the diet) which is different from the ketogenic diet which I believe is more like 75% fats.

In addition also utilizes a 7-minute workout a day as your exercise and that’s it for the most part.

Despite my hesitations due to the whole keto feel of this diet, there are a lot of things I do like about it.

My Thoughts THE GOOD:

~Focus on REAL food. Don’t count calories but just avoid processed crap and diet foods, which he states are just cardboard tasting things disguised as food. I completely agree with this logic. Too many people just read calorie counts and ignore what is actually making up those calories. Something lower calorie may be completely made up of chemicals while a higher calorie food may be all natural foods. Now, considering both, which would rather eat?

~Meeting your farmers/butchers/etc. He talks a lot about eating quality meats and seafood and to know where you food comes from. If you have the opportunity to do this, I think this is so important. I always feel better knowing that my meats come from a local source rather then shipped across the ocean from a place where the conditions the animals were raised are unknown.

~You have to eat fat to loose fat. SOOOO TRUE! Low fat is not the answer. Fat is satiating and thus by cutting it out, you are basically setting yourself up for a binge. In addition, you body needs it for basic hormone production and guess what is included in hormones? What cues hunger and satiety.

~While I love my long workouts and despite being hesitant to say that a mere 7 minutes can really work especially once the initial weight comes off, the idea that short bursts (think HIIT) works as a very effective fat burner is completely correct.

My Thoughts THE BAD:

~I still don’t like the idea that carbohydrates are evil. This diet and many others place a negative light on all carbohydrate sources (vegetables are exempt here) and I still don’t believe this to be true. Saying you shouldn’t eat a sweet potato just doesn’t seem right to me but my learning continues on this topic.

~I don’t know how sustainable this is. I don’t think you should worry about what everyone else is eating, but true low carbohydrate eating is really not the norm and so many may have issues eating out. Also, alcohol is often banned with these types of diets and while some people like myself are perfectly content without the booze, most are not and would then feel deprived.

~I also still believe that there is never one true lifestyle for everyone. Right now for me personally, my coach would laugh in my face if I told him that I wanted to even reduce my carbohydrates let alone reduce them to sub 100g levels. Carbohydrates are the easiest fuel for your body to use and call me a sugar burner all you want, but most bodybuilders thrive on carbohydrates when building muscle because it’s an easily accessible source of energy that your body is set up to use.

The “No Diet” Plan

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Basic Idea: This one is really interesting to me because he specifically states that it’s not about the food. Instead, he states that the food has become the habit that needs to be tackled. So yes he does tweak their diet and their exercise habits, but he focuses on behavioural changes that are supposed to lead to weight loss. Some of his ideas may sound crazy, like eating on a blue plate to reduce how much you eat (Reasoning: blue is not found in nature often and therefore you eat less because you don’t automatically think of a food), but when really think about some of them, they make sense. So he refocuses your thoughts on the way you shop, the way you sleep and how you perceive food in order to help you loose weight. One of the things that really stuck with me was…

If it goes bad, it’s good for you.

My Thoughts THE GOOD:

~I’m on board with the notion that often it’s not the food that is the problem, its the underlying behaviours and attitudes that lead to weight gain. Much like eating disorders, food becomes the way of dealing with something they don’t want to face. Notice how many individuals with depression or poor self esteem often turn to food for comfort?

~I love the fact that sleep is a major focus because many Americans are not getting enough and that really does have a potentially deviating effect on the body and that cortisol (i.e. product of stress) can lead to weight gain all by itself.

My Thoughts THE BAD:

~As I mentioned, many of his ideas may seem bizarre and therefore may not be followed in the long run.

~Due to not focusing a lot on food and exercise, I’m wondering how long the weight loss will continue before a plateau occurs. When their goal weight is 100+ pounds away, I’m wondering if these changes are enough to reach where they want to be.

The Superfoods Swap

JASMIIN QUEEN, DAWN JACKSON BLATNER

Basic Idea: This plan says that can really have whatever you are craving because you can just swap out some of the less nutrient dense foods for more nutritious ones. As an example, in the first episode she made a cauliflower cheese sauce for her daughter’s beloved mac n’cheese and she said it was good and couldn’t even taste the cauliflower in it. This plan also says that you can have your treats, they just have to be a social thing (eat it out, don’t bring it home) rather then something done in secret.

Cut the CRAP

C-Chemicals

R- Refined Flours and Sugars

A- Artificial Stuff

P- Preservatives

My Thoughts THE GOOD:

~Teaches proper servings and how to eyeball proper proportions on a plate. Instead of the typical American plate that is probably 50/50 carbs/protein, dedicate 1/2 to veggies and a 1/4 to each other macronutrient (carbs and protein). A healthy dose of healthy fats is also called for as a topping.

~You are not depriving yourself. Taking out always leads to binge eating if there are underlying food relationship issues so I like how this talks about how you can eat your treats but do with others to take your focus off the food and make it more about the company.

~This seems more reasonable and sustainable then some of the other plans. A little bit of learning on what nutrient dense foods are, how to shop for them and how to incorporate them into your favourite dishes are really all you need.

My Thoughts THE BAD:

~I always think the term ‘superfood’ is misleading. Personally I think a majority of vegetables and many fruits are superb in their nutrition stats. Yes, there are some such as your greens that pack a huge nutrition punch, but you should always remember that a rainbow is best. Just because green is getting the spotlight, the reds, oranges, yellows and purples need lovin’ too because they also give you a great range of those nutrients.

The Wellness Smackdown

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Basic Idea: This plan is focused on detoxifying the body and is anti-inflammatory. It centres around lots of water, vegetables, vegan eats, and other lifestyle habits including oil massages, non traditional exercise (yoga, meditation, etc) and really listening to your body and dealing with stress in a more positive manner.

My Thoughts THE GOOD:

~I like the idea of focusing on inflammation and dealing with stress better because cortisol is really NOT your friend when maintaining not only a healthy weight but also overall wellness as well

~Drinking lots of water is great because it’s something that many forget but is vital in letting the body cleanse itself and for basic processes.

~Focus around vegetables and wholesome foods. With the amount of processed foods these days, it’s no wonder why many kids have no idea what vegetable makes up ketchup.

My Thoughts THE BAD:

~The initial liquid cleanse. I HATE CLEANSES. Can I say that any louder? What is your liver for? Your body is designed to detoxify and cleanse itself naturally. Yes, it has taken a bit more of a hit with all the crap food we eat these days but to put yourself on a liquid diet of juices for a week is not something I would ever recommend.

~This leads me into my second issue which is the reinforcement that juices and such make you loose weight. The initial week she lost about 6 pounds. Granted because she is overweight, she will loose more then an individual in the healthy range, but she lost mainly water weight because SHES NOT EATING! When you consume only liquids, typically you will show “weight loss” but it’s not long term. DONT FALL FOR THAT.

~The notion that veganism is best. She stated that research shows that those who practice a plant based diet get sick less and live longer. Although I would need to do more research, I doubt that the relationship here is direct. I feel like it may have something to do with the focus being shifted to more vegetables then the average person because of the loss many of the other food groups. Vitamins and minerals that protect you from illness mostly come from your vegetables and fruits, so if you eat lots of those, of course you should then have a stronger immune system. Concluding thought. Don’t blame meat for illness.

~She stated some interesting thoughts on these oil massages and how it apparently releases toxins that allows them to then leave the body. I don’t know how strongly I believe this. Toxins are invaders and often get stored in fat as your body doesn’t want them freely floating around. I have a  hard time vouching for massaging causing weight loss due to releasing said toxins. I do think that toxins can lead to weight gain, but I don’t believe that if you can actually rub those free to get rid of them that the loss will be a great one.

~Listen to your body BUT DONT SNACK!….Hmmm…

~A lot of raw is included here which is a bit rough on the system. I have stated before, we are not cows and we started fire for a reason. Cooked is easier to digest and therefore we absorb more of the nutrients. I’m not saying cook the **it out of your food and never touch anything raw, I’m just not suggesting eating the majority raw or you may run into some GI upset.

UPDATE: She got the boot after the premiere unfortunately. 

The cLean Mama Plan

my-diet-is-better-than-yours-carolyn-barnes

Basic Idea: As a busy mom, Carolyn’s plan was made to try to advantage of the busy lives of her clients through ‘taskercise.’ This is where you take your every day chores and tasks and tweak them to be a form of exercise. She doesn’t believe you need a gym or equipment, instead squat while playing with your child, use your stairs for cardio or even pushups, etc. She also believes in making healthy food options quick and easily accessible so that you are less likely to grab the less nutritious foods due to being busy.

My Thoughts THE GOOD:

~I like that she is trying to make this more doable for the busy bees of our world. At least it’s something they can do every day if they just use a lil bit of imagination.

~Focuses on cLean eating. The notion of CLEAN aside, she means to fuel your body often to avoid crashes (which can then lead to poor food choices), and places an emphasis on whole foods and vegetables in particular.

~I love that she stresses variety to get a bunch of different nutrients. Many people forget that foods lack certain nutrients and therefore a healthy diet should include many different foods to ensure you are getting a broad spectrum of vitamins and minerals. Yes, eating kale is great, but if that is your only vegetable you may run into other deficiencies.

My Thoughts THE BAD:

~Eating every two hours would probably not be doable for someone who doesn’t even have the time to sit down.

~I don’t see this form of exercise being particular useful for large weight loss goals (diet aside). Perhaps in the beginning due to the increase in activity overall, but I do believe that you will plateau pretty quickly. The food will help to keep the losses going, but this is like any other ‘clean eating’ lifestyle.

~The idea of ‘Lean’ is concerning. I’m sure this lifestyle does include the use of healthy fats, but I never like the idea of only consuming lean proteins. It gives the false notion that the fattier cuts, like beef, lamb, etc are bad for you which is not the case. These are natural fats and how can you say that something that is natural is going to cause you harm when eaten in moderation?

Concluding Thoughts. 

Overall I think the superfood swap is most likely the one that can be maintained over the long term. It’s easy to understand and is about moderation and not deprivation.

Well there is a lot more that I could say, but at 2700 words already, I think I should be done.

Please give me your thoughts! I would love to hear them.

Which, if any, do you think are the most sustainable over the long term?

-Chelsea


3 Comments

Emotions Out Loud

My Friends My Friends

Today I knew was going to be a good day

Why?

Because today I got a free tea.

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Thank you UofG

Why can’t other main chains have cool cards like this? Timmie’s take note!

#Cheapos

This Thinking Out Loud is full of emotions because I’m quite thankful for all of the love and support that I have been graciously given over the past few days. Amanda, here’s a big thanks heading your way for the link-up!

Thinking-Out-Loud

First off, thank you all for your kind words from my last post on my new journey. I have felt so much love over the past few days and that kicked off with your amazing and sweet comments. You are all so positive and I cannot say enough how much you all help to push me towards better places. You are part of my journey, never forget it! 

Full steam forward!

I said earlier that I have to be my own cheerleader, which is true, but it’s nice to have a team of cheerleaders too.

Also on my side are my amazing housies who both were asking how I was doing all day yesterday when my meal plan really kicked in. I was so anxious about that first pre workout meal that I ended up distracting myself making breakfast for Rita.

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It doesn’t look that scary, but for me, all I was thinking going into it that this is an additional plate of food in the same time I’m usually digesting my pre-workout oats and therefore I was going to be going into the gym too full.

But I did it. I ate it. And you know what?

I had a lot of great energy in the gym despite being kinda super tired as I woke up an hour earlier to try to squeeze 2 meals into a 3 hour window before my lift.

Plus I remembered how much I really loved the simple taste of bite of roasted chicken with a bit of mashed avocado and sweet tater. Like Thanksgiving!

Both my parents also contacted me yesterday to ask how I was doing…

I also have the support of my coaches FB group. They are all telling me that great things will happen.

So much love, so much love.

Also, getting positive affirmation from my coach always is a bonus!

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I always say to never reward with food because that can make you have weird relationships with it, but sometimes food just tastes like a reward…

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Craving for lobster….

So much orange…

Also something I learned yesterday,

Rice cakes aren’t actually that bad. Kinda nutty actually. Of course I buy good quality ones (brown rice is the only ingredient and they are organic), not the preservative and sugary white ones.  And hey, topped with my salted caramel Diesel whey (made into an icing) and some nanner for hitting those protein and carbs post-workout on the go, they were actually not too shabby..

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I had it all over my face (#StickyMess) but who am I trying to impress when I’m hangry and eating at the gym?

What is really bad…

Shooting back a serving of Greens first thing in the morning.

Pranin

OMG. So bad. Pluggin the old nose is an understatement.

Finally, to end on a funny note

Random blurb from my biophysio class…

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Sorry I had to. He’s comin for ya….

The antechinus is am marsupial that has so much sex, it begins to disintegrate…

Hmmm I kinda feel bad for these lil guys as they only last through one mating season (i.e. 2-3 weeks) but they are literally having sex 24/7 no joke, even when, as it was put, “they are dishevelling.” Some may see that as not being such a bad life.

Hope that made you LOL.

Happy Thursday my friends!

Oh and comment about what serious or more educational topics you want me to post about, I want to know what you want to hear about 🙂

Are you a fan of rice cakes?

-Chelsea


23 Comments

What I Would Eat If I Was Low FODMAP

Hey friends!

So talking to Ellie over email after my last post, she had mentioned that she really enjoyed the What I Would Eat If posts when I highlighted a certain type of diet + gave you examples of what types of meals you could make with the included foods soooo I decided to bring those back. As I want to abide to the rules of Jen’s WIAW, I will keep these separate as of now.

This post will highlight a diet that most foodie blogs have touched on or experimented with themselves and that is the…

Low FODMAP diet.

Normally something that people turn to when they are having digestive issues (IBS related), this diet is one that avoids foods that include FODMAPs or fermentable oligo-di-mono-saccharides and polyols. Speaking very generally these are specific types of short chain carbohydrates that have been found to irritate the digestive track due to poor absorption in the small intestine which leads to your gut bacteria fermenting them instead. This then leads to unpleasant symptoms of bloating, gas, abdominal pain and constipation/diarrhea.

Before I move forward, lets break those carbohydrates down real quick.

Monosaccharides:

These are your simple sugars that make up long chains of carbohydrates or saccharides molecules. They include glucose, galactose and fructose. In this diet, the one that is of concern is fructose (commonly understood as fruit sugar), especially when a food contains a higher ratio of fructose then glucose.

Disaccharides:

Chains of 2 monosaccharides. For example, milk sugar, or lactose, is made up of the monosaccharides galactose and glucose. Other common ones include maltose (malt sugar) and sucrose (table sugar). Lactose is the main culprit here.

Oligosaccharides:

Chain of saccharides or mono-saccharides (simple sugars) that are said to be hard to digest. The ones that are highlighted in this diet are fructans, which are chains of fructose, and galacto-olgiosaccharides, which are chains of galactose molecules, as both are poorly digested and absorbed in the small intestine.

Polyols:

These guys are famous sugar alcohols that are used so that foods can advertise “low carb” and “sugar free” on their foods as a major selling strategy. The reason for this is because these are not well broken down by the body, so they don’t end up contributing many calories due to only being partially absorbed. They are generally less sweet then something like real sugar and are often in combination with other sweeteners in foods. Some commonly seen ones include maltitol, xylitol, sorbitol, etc.

I will also mention that some of these are naturally found in some stone fruits such as peaches and plums and vegetables like cauliflower and mushrooms.

What is the diet?

As I already mentioned, this diet is often one that is commenced by individuals who are suffering from IBS or other related digestive issues (Crohns and other inflammatory bowel disorders, IBD)  as a method of alleviating some of their symptoms. It is very useful in pinpointing specific trigger foods that may cause individuals issues.

Generally when you first start, there is a huge list of off-limit foods and then slowly over the course of diet, you gradually start re-introducing foods into your diet to see how they make you feel. If they create symptoms, then you know that your body doesn’t digest them well and they may be something to consider removing from your diet all together.

Now, from the terminology I listed above, it may seem as though there aren’t that many foods that would be considered off limits or high FODMAPs. They are all carbohydrate based right? So yea, just another low carbohydrate diet, yada yada…

Think again.

This is not directed at loosing weight. This is also not meant to be a low carbohydrate diet. In fact, it states that if you remove something from your diet, you should find a nutritious alternative to avoid dietary losses.

Also, this is not a permanent diet. Of course, if you find that everything on this list upsets your stomach, well then maybe it is, but for most people, it will only cause the loss of a few foods if they wish to avoid their symptoms from returning.

So overall, this is meant to help you learn about what foods makes you feel your best.

So now that I have cleared that bit up, lets look at those high FODMAP foods that are to be strictly avoided vs. those friendly foods.

A more detailed list can be found here. This also lists the quantities of allowable foods if they have a limit. 

Overwhelmed?

Yeah, the ‘to be avoided’ list seems a bit extensive BUT REMEMBER that this is not permanent (unless you have issues with them). You will slowly re-introduce them back into your diet to gradually to see how you respond to them.

So to conclude the informative portion of this post, lets make a summary.

  1. This is not a permanent diet for most. Instead, this is a way to pinpoint the triggers of your symptoms and simply remove those foods from your diet. This resource said it best -> the intent is to lower the FODMAP load at each meal to help manage symptoms.
  2. This works best if a food log is kept (to monitor what food are introduced + feelings after consuming them a few times) AND is under doctor supervision.
  3. This is not meant to be a means for weight loss. Ensure you are getting sufficient calories from those accepted foods.

For more information, check out these great sites!

Canadian Digestive Health Foundation

IBS Diets FODMAP Dieting Guide.

So now onto the goodies.

If you were to start this diet, what the heck would you eat?

Let me help ya out with some blog love eh?

Oh and I will attempt to show you more creative recipes rather then just keeping it simple because that’s more fun.

 Breakfast

For the sake of keeping things different and original, I will loose my beloved oats even though they are allowed for low FODMAP. Instead, something I have seen that looks quite interesting is this..

plantain socca

This is a super simple recipe (only 3 ingredients!) by Purely Twins that is quick to make and can have humpteen different uses. You could use it as bread (maybe think of adding some savory herbs in blend…no garlic though as that’s something to avoid. :-() or you can make it like this..

Later on, topped with almond butter and chocolate chips preworkout.

Avocado Athlete

Which would be how my breakfast would be (replace the chocolate chips, you could use unsweetened carob if you wanted to, with nanner) because when it comes to breakfast, there always has to be a sweet or desserty like thing and there also must be a vessel for nut butter because breakfast without nut butter…

I have no words. It’s just not right.

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Or you could do coconut butter + cacao nibs and a homemade chocolate sauce a la Powercakes if coconut is your thang.

Confession. I hate the taste of coconut. I tried to like it, I really did, but I cannot.

Other cool ideas to try:

Low FODMAP Banana Oatcakes

No Oat Oatmeal

Scrambled Egg Stuffed Baked Potatoes. Limit or omit cheese and leave onion out.

Lunch.

How about some pizza?

No wheat? No problem, thank the sweet tater.

And Sweet Chili Mango.

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The sweet potato acts a the main constituent of the pizza ‘dough’ with amaranth and quinoa flours, psyllium husk and egg whites holding it together.

Sweet potato is a moderate FODMAP food so perhaps do half sweet potato and half squash.

Go crazy with the veggie and protein toppings but watch which cheese you choose and don’t over-do it. Goat and sheep cheeses and aged varieties in general are often safe in limited quantities as they have lower lactose. I still don’t advocate the use of ‘fake cheese’ like Daiya and other vegan cheeses because 1. they are filled with chemicals, fillers and weird binders that are bad for you and 2. those ingredients probably contribute to your symptoms.

Other Cool Ideas:

Sweet Potato Spring Rolls. I would add a protein to these like shrimp

Warm Salmon Salad with a Lemon, Ginger and Soy Sauce Dressing.

Ginger-Curry Chicken Lettuce Wraps. Omit the scallions (no onions sorry) and make your own ginger sauce, unless you can purchase one without anything you can’t eat.

Dinner.

This caught my eye

Warm Seared Scallops over Zucchini Noodles - Eat Spin Run Repeat

Warm Seared Scallops Over Zucchini Noodles. Eat, Spin, Run, Repeat

I mean it’s my loves…Scallops. I also really love the idea of zucchini noodles because they just seem fun and I’m all about a plate of veggies.

One problem for me though…

I need more carbohydrates. Enter again the sweet potato.

pho (6 of 6)

Mmmm Pho. This site also gave some interesting information regarding bone broth and gut health. If beef is too hard to digest, or if you are removing beef in the beginning to give your system a digestion break, use shrimp or another form of seafood as they are easier to digest. Also sad fact, you cannot have the mushrooms. Sigh.

Other Cool Ideas.

Stacked Polenta with Bolognese Sauce. It’s like lil mini lasagnas without the noodles and the cheese. Add some veggies to the layers and you can add a small amount of goat or sheep cheese, just ensure you are under the maximum quantities described in the charts.

Winter Vegetable Ragout. Omit garlic.

Fresh Summer Vegetable Cod Pockets. Follow her substitutions.

Snackage.

Sometimes better digestion comes with less frequent meals throughout the day, which is something I have found for myself, but some still need something in between so here are some options for ya!

Sweet….

Low-FODMAP Chocolate Swirl Banana Bread #FODMAP

Nanner Bread from FODMAP Fun

….and savory

lemony kale hummus blog.katescarlata.com

Lemony-Kale Hummus from Well Balanced.

Well there ya go guys. I hope that was an interesting read for you and can be helpful to anyone with problematic tummies like myself.

I will say that a few things I would have a really hard time giving up for that lil while would be:

  • Garlic and Onions. Flavour base for errryyythang
  • Avocado. Because..fatty goodness.
  • Mushrooms. Tears my heart.

What would you be most sad about removing from your diet temporarily?

Anyone follow the low FODMAP diet already? Tried it?

What’s another diet you are interested in hearing about?

-Chelsea