Thursday, February 27, 2014

Fat Chance

As I have mentioned I am a bit of a book worm.  I just finished the most fantastic book about the obesity pandemic that is a problem not only in our nation but world wide.  The book is Fat Chance: Beating the Odds Against Sugar, Processed Food, Obesity, and Disease By Robert H. Lustig, M.D.  He is a pediatrician on a mission to help combat the obesity pandemic that is plaguing our world.

As a population we are increasingly getting larger.  He addresses many of the reasons why this is happening, there is so much information in this book that answered so many of my personal questions.  But here are a few main things that he talks about and how you can help yourself to be healthier and by being healthier the weight will take care of itself.  He talks about how a calorie is not a calorie, so the whole theory of calories in vs. calories out does not apply.  This made sense to me as I have struggled to loose weight when just monitoring my calorie intake and adding in exercise.  Your body processes different foods differently and therefore, has a different reaction.  Your body likes real food!  It does not like things from a package.

First off eat your fruits and veggies, don't juice them, but eat them so you get the fiber.  He talks a lot about fiber and how important it is in our diet.  It is my new mission to get more fiber, as this is something I rarely pay much attention to.

Eliminate or at least limit your sugar intake.  Sugar is toxic and addictive.  He talks about how the chemical reaction that takes place in our brain when we eat sugar is similar to that of consuming alcohol.  He talks about how fruit has sugar in it but with the combination of fiber our bodies understand how to process it, but when you eliminate the fiber our body doesn't like it near as well and the consequence of this is we slowly put on the weight.  He also talks about how fruit juice has more sugar in a serving than a can of soda!! YIKES!!!

His recommendations if you must eat something out of a package it needs to:

  • Don't consume your calories through liquid form unless it is in milk he says that our bodies process the sugar in milk (lactose) differently than other sugars.
  • have no fewer than 3g fiber (my trip to the grocery store was very interesting I couldn't find a bread that had 3g of fiber per serving in it).  
  • Sugar no matter what form its listed in (there are about 40 different names for sugar, but dextrose, fructose, glucose, sugar, cane sugar, beet sugar, corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup are a few) should  not be in the first 3-5 ingredients.
  • No hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils (this is code for trans fat)
  • Skip the fast food
  • If you must go out, order something green, skip the frappuccinos and smoothies, make sure you get some form of lean protein.
He talks in his book about all the different diets from Vegan to Paleolithic diets and many in between and the reason that most people have success with these types of diets is because they are eliminating sugar... that is one component all the diets have in common.  He also talks about hormonal imbalances in our bodies and how to adjust to help yourself.  

He talks about exercise and how when most people begin exercising it is with weight loss in mind, and are sometimes defeated when the number on the scale doesn't budge too much.  Studies show that exercise alone will account for only 2-3lb weight loss, it is your diet that changes the number on the scale.  Exercise is a great way to improve your health and build muscle, but not a great component for weight loss.  Here is the book from Amazon, and I highly recommend it!  There is more information in the book than I can share with you in one little blog post but I felt like I hit some of the most important parts in the book.
Physical book Kindle Book The cookbook that is supposed to be amazing!! I just ordered it myself!

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