Get Healthy (Faster)

Everything you need to know before you start fasting. 

Have you ever fasted?

If you think you have never fasted you might want to think again. In fact, everyone fasts, everyday. Thats exactly why the first meal of the day is Breakfast. In other words we fast for parts of the days while we are sleeping, thats why the first meal of the day is called break-fast, to break our nighttime-fast. When you’re sleeping good things are already starting to happen within your body, you’re already shifting into this conservational state. Doctors, like Dr. Longo and others are now promoting we keep that fasting state going in the morning instead of running down the stairs and throwing a bunch of sugar in our mouths. So, we start to extend that fast onwards up until 12 and do our eating from that time until 6 in the evening, and after 6 in the evening we will be done with food. 

Many will perceive this as intermittent fasting, but really quite properly this is Time Restricted Feeding (TRF). TRF vs intermittent fasting is different in that we fast once a month in a repeated short fasts which are intermittent and is a wonderful thing to do, in an ancient myth of when we used to go 4-5 days without food, kind of clean ourselves out, and rejuvenate that process.

The truth of it is, any time we don’t particularly eat is actually a good thing, which makes anytime that you do eat so particularly important, that you need to be providing yourself with the best foods for nourishment that you possibly can. 

No, this does not mean do not eat anything ever, the laws of physics do play effect. You are burning calories and you do need food for the incredible processes of your body to happen. Without eating anything you will start eating yourself, your muscles, and bone. The body has feedback loops for feedback loops and it is not dumb, it will do anything to survive. Just as it will for systems of storage and waste when we fall victim of overconsumption.

We live in the age of too much. We are constantly eating and it ages us. Wrinkles, grey thin skin, what we eat and what we don’t eat matters. The issue is we do not want to be eating and digesting all the time. It ages us, and just like we don’t want to be exercising all the time we also don’t want to be eating all the time. We just lose perspective on the what and how much sometimes. But we also do not want to be starving all the time either. So we use fasting as a lifestyle intervention, integrated into our lives purposefully and intentionally.

What is Considered a Fast?

In the strictest sense consuming ‘water only’ for more than 24-hours and  usually at a 42 to 72-hour minimum constitutes a true, “water-only” fast. 

Medical centers such as the True North center have supervised over 7,000 water fasts and become very fluent at learning how to do this. 

RESPECT THE PROCESS

There should be a high respect for the process. It harkens back to a half a million to a million years ago in our evolution our ancient ancestors on the African savanahs foraging for food, you could imagine that it might easily be the next 4-5 days until you found the next bush with berries on it, and you have to imagine you would have to do these intermittent periods of 4-5 days of water only. Our body shifts into this remarkable state, it knows that every calorie on the body is precious and it doesn’t want to waste them in useless activities. It doesn’t want to burn these precious calories off as heat, so it turns off inflammatory reactions, if your body thinks its dying of starvation one of the complete wasteful things to do is to run a malignant tumor in that time, so the body turns off cancer growth during a water fast.

When ask someone if they’ve ever fast, without intentionally imposing a fast themselves, they will answer no. In fact, everyone fasts, everyday. When you ask someone what is the first meal of the day we would answer “Break-Fast.” In other words we fast for parts of the days while we are sleeping, thats why the first meal of the day is called break-fast, to break our nighttime fast. When your sleeping good things are already starting to happen within your body, you’re already shifting into this conservational state. Dr. Longo and others are now promoting we keep that fasting state going in the morning instead of running down the stairs and throwing a bunch of sugar in our mouths. So, we start to extend that fast onwards up until 12 and do our eating from that time until 6 in the evening, and after 6 in the evening we will be done with food. 

Many will perceive this as intermittent fasting, but really quite properly this is Time Restricted Feeding (TRF). TRF vs intermittent fasting is different int that we fast once a month in a repeated short fast which is intermittent and is a wonderful thing to do, in an ancient myth of when we used to go 4-5 days without food, kind of clean ourselves out, and rejuvenates that.

The Truth of it is, any time we don’t particularly eat is actually a good thing. which makes overtime that you do eat so particularly important, that you need to be providing yourself with the best foods for nourishment that you possibly can. 

No, this does not mean do not eat anything ever, the laws of physics do play effect. You are burning calories and you do need food for the incredible processes of your body to happen. Without eating anything you will start eating yourself, your muscles, and bone. The body has feedback loops for feedback loops and it is not dumb, it will do anything to survive. Just as it will for systems of storage and waste when we fall victim of overconsumption. 

THE REMARKABLE BENEFITS OF FASTING

We live in the age of too much. We are constantly eating and it ages us. Wrinkles, grey thin skin, what we eat and what we don’t eat matters. The issue is we do not want to be eating and digesting all the time. It ages us just like we don’t want to be exercising all the time, we don’t want to be eating all the time. We just lose perspective on the what and how much sometimes. 

Autophagy

The body shifts into this remarkable state of conservation. Remarkably, thyroid function dials down it doesn’t want to generate excess, and the body starts looking for things to burn in the metabolic furnace if no calories are coming in. So, it goes into the cells and it looks for old junk carbohydrates, old burned out proteins and it cleans them out. This process is called autophagy, and the metabolism eats up these scrap proteins, and scrap carbohydrates, and we clean ourselves on the inside during this state. It truly is a remarkable state and anywhere between 3-5 days is really a wonderful cleanup, and its really becoming quite common to do this once a month to rejuvenate that ancient rhythm from the African savannas a long time ago. 

At True North Center, when they have patients with severe conditions, really high blood pressure, inflammatory diseases, these patients do these long fasts along the lines of 3-4 weeks and sometimes up to 5 and a half weeks. 40 days is one of the longest medically supervised fasts on water. 

Its a profound experience that our body can go into over the course of one of these long fasts, but medical supervision is highly advised from experienced professionals. 

1-3 days on water, or a good 5 day fast is a great tune up for most of everybody. If you have a real medical condition that you need help with you  shouldn’t do a long fast and should consider medical supervision first. 

WHO SHOULD NOT FAST?

Theres a list of people who should not run their body on water only. Children under 18, pregnant women do not fast, folks with type 1 diabetes should not be fasting, patients with advanced cancers and are just wasting away and do not have much muscle mass, really should not be doing a water fast or a even a very judicious one. Also, people with neuromuscular wasting diseases such as ALS or muscular dystrophy, an advanced water fast will deplete your muscle strength in even healthy people. And finally people with reno or kidney failure should not do a fast. For these folks maybe a more vegetable juice cleanse (not fruit juice) is a wonderful idea, but you don’t go into a state of ketosis, and there may be some issues with juicing altogether, where a Whole-food, Plant-based, no-oil diet, with the restriction of animal products, might even top that all together. However, its a wonderful thing to flood your body with all these phytonutrients if you cannot do a water fast. 

MEDICALLY FASTING FOR CANCER

Folks in their early or middle stages of cancer have seen some remarkable results. Especially at True North they have seem patients with malignant cancers or tumors just melt away and provide under medical supervision that they can truly benefit from fasting. The ones that really shouldn’t are end stage, down to 80 lbs, and just skeletal. Short of that absolutely, persons with cancer should give it a go under more judicial medical supervision.

JUICE-FAST PARADOX

When we blend the vegetables we are left with the whole food, more understandably recognized in the form of a smoothie. This retains all the fiber and a whole lot more of the phytonutrients bound to the fiber. Juice fasting simply cannot exist in comparison to a water fast, because your going to retain some of the glucose regardless if the fiber is extracted to some extent.  Juicing is more recognized as a cleans rather than as a fast for this reason, but is a wonderful way to bath your cells in phytonutrients. Again, it is important to recognize that this is done using fresh vegetable juices not fruit juices. 

TYPE OF WATER

When we’re talking about health we hear organic, and phytonutrients but here we are drinking water, tainted with fluoride, chlorine, BPA from plastics, and all these things. Is there a particular water that we should have? Yes, you want to use a clean of water as possible. Some tap water may be better than plastic bottled water, but most sources generally cannot be trusted. Unless you feel particularly knowledgable about the tap water you have, highly filtered water or distilled water is definitely preferred. 

HOW MUCH WATER?

Turns out the often quoted “drink at least eight glasses of water a day” has little underpinning scientific evidence. Based on all the evidence to date, authorities from Europe, the U.S. Institute of Medicine, and the World Health Organization recommend  on average to drink between 2 to 2.7 liters of water a day for women. Thats 8 to 11 cups a day for women, and 10 to 15 cups a day for men. Now that’s water from all sources–not just beverages–and we get about a liter from food and the water our body actually makes. So these translate into a recommendation for women to drink 4 to 7 cups of water a day, and men 6 to 11 cups, assuming only moderate physical activity at moderate ambient temperatures. 

On a water-fast we are talking about 12-16 oz glasses of water 4-6 times a day. However, everybody is different, especially when you burn off fat tissue, there is water locked into that fat tissue, as so called metabolic water is generated on the inside. So, many people do not drink a whole lot of water because they are generating it on the inside. The general rule?

1. Listen to your thirst plus one more glass. 

2. Don’t get thirsty, so drink when you are thirsty, plus one more. 

PREPARING FOR A FAST

Prepping the Intestinal Tract

Before you start with a mindset, lets talk about preparing the intestinal tract. Anyone can mentally tough it out, but mental toughness is not what we are going for. We’re focused on healthy outcomes in a sense of safety and  quality outcomes where a sense of “toughness”  to bear the storm, does not always mean the best outcome. This is very important. You do not want to go into a fast, let alone a 5 day water fast, with a bunch of animal flesh, and white bread sitting in your intestinal tract, it will turn into a brick during the fast. At an absolute minimum maybe longer for a 5-day water only fast, you should do 3 days of fruits and vegetables only! That means no baked goods, no flour products, and only things from the plant kingdom in their whole form. So, rice, beans and fruits and vegetables for at least 3 days preferably 5 or longer for the water fast. 

PREPARING YOUR MINDSET

It’s undoubtably a special sacred time for yourself. Especially doing a 5 day fast, your setting aside some time for yourself. You’re kind of putting up the sign to the world that your taking the time for yourself. On a 5 day water-fast only, you are not going to be running errands, doing lots of stressful work, your going to be home, but not just laying in bed. Stretching is great, even a little yoga to add in some isometric exercise, but thats it. No aerobics, and you want to kind of close off from interactions from the outside world in a limited fashion. Think of a 5-day water only fast, not just from food but from everything. 

You want to fast from everything, including stress


Its important to let people to know what you’re doing. That its a time to catch up on yourself. Its a time to let yourself catch up on reading, stationary work, chores around the house and the like. In essence get your outside demands minimized.

Our Brain chemistry sort of changes during this time as well. You can almost expect to feel a higher sense of calm and clarity through the process. Its a time for your body to recompose itself in a stable more less stressful way to live. 

WHAT TO EXPERIENCE

FOR THE NEWBIES

Water-only Fasting is of the strictest forms of fasting that I would recommend, and we can see the most intense forms of medically observed water fasts go as long as 40 days (of which I only recommend under medical supervision and intervention). A 10 day water only fast would be the longest any experienced persons should really go unsupervised, but working up to a 5-day water only fast is fantastic, and quiet possibly as far as i would recommend based off the best available evidence. The best is to do this at a minimum of once a year even two-three and upwards of once a month within a year.

Personally I am new and have been working up to the 5 days every other month with intermittent fasting and daily time restricted fasting for the weeks in between on a complete whole-food, plant-based, and no oil diet. 

As a newbie it is important to start by dipping your toe in, its a remarkable state when you start introducing yourself into doing a complete water-only fast. You can start with one day and comfortably working up to the 5 days in home for one week within each month. So, for one day give it a go, and then two to three weeks later, go two days, and slowly build up until you can comfortably do the 5 days, 

H(A)NGRY

Understand that the first and second days are the worst. Thats when your hungry and pretty irritable. Think of a recovering addict, in essence food is here all-day, every-day, so taking that away and becoming “hangry” is similar to that of a withdrawal from addiction to drugs. By day three you will find the sensation of hunger to pretty much be gone. As day three approaches you enter a state of Ketosis, and what Ketones-molecuels do is that they suppress your appetite. Obviously you will have to push through the two days of hunger pains but most folks report to waking up the third day with feelings of euphoria, energy, and in a remarkable state. Its a worthwhile goal, but it is a challenge to building up to that over time, 78 hours is a long time when normally we are consuming something every 2-3 hours in an average day.

FASTING FOR COMPLETE GREATNESS

In a water- only fast consuming water definitely helps fit your stomach without the calories. Carbonated or sparkling water may help even better. Whenever you have a hunger pang, just have a glass of water. Hunger pains are reported through day 2 and up until day 4, but for most, you wake up in the end range of day 4-5 feeling great. You are not hungry and full of energy and clear and bright.

At this point you almost feel like you can go exercise, do some great feat, but don’t. ‘Romain’ calm, do some light stretching or yoga, maybe even a walk, but at this point you have reached the metabolic survival stage of Ketosis. 

At this point your muscle glycogen stores are at an all time low. High physical activity, or a physical job even just being on your feet too long will bring some harsh muscle fatigue.

We also do not want to start breaking down muscle tissue for energy so there is no more benefit to exercising on extreme intermittent fasts. 

Expectations For body Size

The positive for larger folks is that they will see better results from fasting. It is usually the leaner lighter people who have a tougher time with it, who will see symptoms of lightheadedness the quickest, maybe headache, and possible nausea, in which instance you need to re-feed. Lighter, leaner women seem to experience this the most but not to be alarmed, this comes at about 1 out of 5 experiences in generality. It is important to note that everyone is different and experiences different outcomes. When we are leaner we go through a detox quicker. It can be said:

“Every fast is like a box of chocolates, you never know what your going to get”

Long intense fasts 5 days and beyond is a much more intense medical procedure meant for supervision. 5 days at home water-only fast is as much as you ever need to do especially if you are already lean and living a healthy lifestyle, it would just add unnecessary stress on your body that could lead to more damage. 

If your eating a whole-food, plant-based diet, you don’t need to do these long fasts at all, a short quick clean out is a great thing to do and even a weekend vegetable juice cleanse is a lovely thing to do for most lean individuals. 

What really creates a lean body is meal after meal of whole-plant foods.

I cannot emphasize this enough  It really is not 5 days on a water fast. 5 days on a water-only fast should be recognized more as a little jump-start-tune-up. It is the food that you eat every single day that is the most important focus. The day to day feeding and choices that you make to treat your body in the best way possible.

There is something that happens to the body when we free it from the food trap that we fall into. You experience clarity you experience an awareness that you may not have had prior to. Not everybody experiences this because they are distracted by hunger, but if you can muddle through recognize that its only a short time you can separate yourself into a clear state of mind. It truly is an ancient powerful therapy. 

BREAKING FAST

If your just doing water, or you have a little bit of calories on a Time Restricted Fast, if you have just a little bit of watermelon or watermelon chunks it is a great way to reintroduce food. For more severe fasts if we can slowly reintroduce the fiber it is even better. For example we can go from watermelon juice, to watermelon chunks and then some fruit, grapes etc., or melon chunks, then steamed vegetables, then soups and eventually on to vegetables that are higher in fiber.

Why watermelon? Its mainly water with a little bit of water, and a little bit of sugar and thats exactly what we want to break our fast with. 

The general rule and trend is to have High Water Content Foods comping out of a fast. 

(It is important to note while no one with diabetes or high blood pressure should do a self water fast, the reality exist that some may try, for this reason it is important that a fast is broken by non-sugary methods of vegetable broth or blended squash. Further, boiled zucchini chunks and right up into well steamed vegetables like Swiss chard and into soups thereafter. Slowly increase the fiber content because out intestines have not seen any solid fiber for 5 days.)

The process of food reintroduction will take a good 3-4 days to reintroduce food back into your system. So, hopefully it will be a better diet than you started with when you move forward.

Think of it as coming to a stop light, when the light turns green you don’t slam on the accelerator and scream through the light.

Same thing with your digestion system, slowly increase the amount of fiber in your diet afterwards so, watermelon chunks, fruit, soups, stews should be on your mind, but easy-does-it. 

As far as physically activity, after a long fast of higher restriction, don’t go straight to the gym and have a high intense workout. Ease back into it. Go For a walk or do some more stretching and yoga oriented movements and core. 

STOP THE FAST

These are the three focuses you should keep while fasting and not muddle through. If you feel like vomiting from nausea, or have a splitting headache, its time for some watermelon juice or a few junks and break the fast right away. Its normal to have a slight head ache, but very slight. 

  1. If you get lightheaded when you stand up
  2. If you get nausea and you feel like you want to vomit. 
  3. If you get a headache from low blood sugar

MOVING (FAST) FORWARD

Your body is asking you to do this. You want to feel this. But consider all of the complications and lets fast safely and effectively. Its a fragile time, and should be highly respected as to not do any thing that will bring an unhealthy outcome from it. Vigorous activity, continuing a hard physical job, just because you think you can is different from what you should do during this time. Know when to break fast if need be and not just tough it out because you have to prove anything or to “just get through it”. There is nothing to prove from creating issues, and most likely we did not ever go into a fast for unhealthy outcomes, but healthy and rewarding outcomes. when it comes time to break the fast there is always another time to go a little farther. 

It is a time to take 100% responsibility for our life, and that includes our health, that includes our careers, our finances, that includes our mind body spirit and giving back into the world, all of those things should be held to our personal responsibility. With this we are going to focus on Healthy living and eating, and being happy, within and outside, of ourselves. Taking 100% responsibility and owning your life. 

If you or anyone you know is thinking about fasting this is just one article they should read and share before doing so, thank you! If you liked this article please pass it forward using:

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My Good People

If you want more on this lifestyle check out and follow me on my webpage www.tedykopytowski.com. Thank you for reading and check out my instagram @teddieddie, Facebook (Teddy Kopytowski, and Facebook Page (Currently ‘Live Simply’) for more where I share tons of information’s pass forth the best available evidence to live a healthy, happy, and productive life today.  

Top Tips Hacking Healthy Travel with Mar!

Alessa Mar is a graduate of Arizona State University with a Bachelors of Science in Social Justice and Inquiry and a minor in Communications. She is certified in Plant Based Nutrition from the T. Colin Campbell Institute and is currently studying at Cornell University for a second nutrition program – Nutrition and Healthy Living.

travelhealthywithmar.com

Alessa Mar and I went Live on Instagram during my “12 Days of Healthy Living” in December to talk all things travel and staying healthy through the holidays or whenever. Alessa is dedicated to helping others stay heathy while you live and travel, and she definitely brings some fun while doing it

Life can be hard between 31,000 and 38,000 feet — 5.9 to 7.2 miles — high. depending on how far you are traveling, there is not a whole lot to eat up there!

Especially during this holiday season to keep you from ending up like Ebineezer Scrooge, you need to have a plan and be prepared!

Alessa comes equipped with everything you need! The tips and hacks she has to share are certainly going to change the way you travel forever!  

Alessa is always looking to pack convenient and help your health on the airplane, in-flight, or in navigate the airport environment. Staying healthy is important through our travel, especially on the holidays. We really want to end up at our destination without sacrificing our happiness by making unhealthy behaviors and not having a plan for our travel.

Tips include packing, staying active, interesting facts about airplane atmosphere on your body, conflicts with sleep, and how to hack jet-lag. 

When I asked Alessa for her  top 3 tips, she said:

  1. Hydrate! – 8 ounces of water for every hour of flight time. 
  2. Pack your own food!
  3. Shower before you go to bed after flying.

BUT the tremendously easy and helpful tips do not stop there. 

Airplane air is dehydrating and your going to lose a lot of water. You can refill these at any stop! Maintaining hydration helps combat altitude sickness. The “DO’s” for hacking your hydration are below! Airport Snacks are difficult to find. Alessa offers a way to fix this too!

Convenience over bulk! Im all about efficiency


Says Alessa

Missing a meal or no access to food and your snacks have run their course? For meal replacements we offer a couple suggested items as well. Alessa uses a travel Pouch to carry all of these things and even it holds her skin care items. 

If you are in a bind and you didn’t bring anything?

Alessa suggests dry roasted nuts from snack shops. She also suggests to choose low sodium foods to keep your blood pressure down especially on the plan where it may increase with altitude. Also look for big green salads and avoid high sodium dressings and go more unprocessed than processed will help you feel good while flying.

How do I land fleeing the best I possibly can?

Dress comfortable on the plane. As you are seated move your hands and feet, your extremities are going to loose that blood pressure. Get up, walk and lift your legs while you do. Stay conscious to movement. 

While it may seem fun getting drunk on a plane, maybe skipping the mini bar offers more fun in the future. Alessa says “If you really want to feel good when you land, you should really hold off.” Caffiene as well may not help your flight, instead ask for some hot water and carry some tea, Alessa likes to carry Peppermint. 

Handling Delays?

Alessa says its all about being prepared with your healthy snacks. Go look for a healthy salad and get your greens. Go walk! If the airport has it, go to the facility that has a gym or a stretching room and use it! 

Alessa made me realize its important to

Plan around healthy behaviors, instead of the other way around!

Teddieddie

Do making decisions in the air also apply to on the road?

On the road, the conflicts arise are that you can easily choose more unhealthy influences, from rest stops, to fast food. Alessa says “your basically eating things to be social.” Alessa has found that if you bring healthy snacks you actually choose those and make less unhealthy decisions and even others want healthy snacks! Alessa says that just by bringing snacks for yourself, “people want your healthy snacks too.” Helping others choose healthy options and stay satiated might actually help you not be influenced because you satisfied their cravings with healthy snacks!

You’re not as hungry as you think you are.

Alessa

She even suggest starting your meals with fresh vegetables so you do not end up splurging, overeating, or eating a lot of calorie dense foods. 

“For me,” I said, “not eating or not having an opportunity to eat is not always a bad thing. Use the time as opportunity. You Might even experience a spike in energy and mental clarity.”

Teddieddie

A heavy meal might make you tired, and with airplane altitude, it might make you even more tired. We want to keep your sleep cycle in line and not be sluggish and tired when you get to your destination. When you do get an opportunity to eat after a long, sort of, fasting-like-periods, keep it light. Choose juices, maybe vegetable juices, or watermelon juices, but not added sugary fruit juices. Or maybe some melon, watermelon chunks, move to fruit, grapes, water dense steam veggies, or soups where and when you can. A lot of rest stop have a ton of fresh fruit options so there is really no excuse. 

If your feeling shaky, have a headache, or nausea and you have not eaten in a while, it is definitely a good idea to get something, but don’t over do it, again focus on water dense fruits and vegetables and don’t go overboard on the fiber too fast! 

Why is healthy travel skin care important?

Alessa doesn’t stop with healthy traveling there. She has tons of Skin care techniques especially with dry airplane air. Alessa says chapstick is a must! If you want more head over to her website! Alessa is crazy about skin care! And her skin can prove it!. She  has a lot to offer on skin care! You can check that out here

Keep good posture. A small pillow or even better a neck pillow is always great to have on the airport, on the plan, or on the road. A neck pillow can double as a lumbar support as well. Especially when we start slumping and slouching in our seats. 

Hacking travel sleep?

“If you need to sleep, sleep.” Typically for shorter flights within the U.S. Alessa says she doesn’t sleep, just because she does not want to mess her sleep cycle up. “When you take off, that cabin pressure you start to experience, creates less blood flow, which means less flow to your brain and automatically makes most feel a bit more tired than usual.” For longer flights, sleep if you need to, “especially if your getting there in the morning, because you want to stay up all day and then go to sleep when its time to go to sleep there.”  Alessa suggests that if you are going to land around 5-6pm in the evening its probably better not to sleep, “you want to get as close to your destinations sleep schedule as you can and as quickly as possible and just push through it.” Its important to have a sleep plan to not sleep too long out of schedule and miss enjoying your time at your destination. It is better to push through the travel transitioning your sleep to save the daylight when you arrive and sleep when everyone else is. 

What about Jet-Lag?

Staying hydrated and keeping your blood oxygenated is key.

Alessa

In general experience, Alessa says its all about taking care of yourself overall. She doesn’t often get all that jet-lagged. She really feels like the chlorophyll really helps.  Before the flight, in flight and in between its all about your choices you make, avoiding alcohol, caffeine, more tea, and staying mobile, Alessa believes in a more preventative approaches to jet-lag than responsive actions to fixing a problem that can be prevented. 

Is there anything I can do if I am Jet-Lagged?

In terms of combating jet-lag, I suggest there are foods you can eat to help increase hormones associated with sleep and speed up your sleep cycle when you need to without taking risky supplements or messing with your natural hormone productions. The foods I suggest include foods that actually fall in line with Alessa’s values as well including:

  1. pistachios (raw unsalted)
  2. Tart cherries (dried, juice, or powder)
  3. Cocoa Powder
  4. Cocoa Nibs

The First two will offer some natural hormone production like melatonin and pistachios are loaded with thiamine which may help with sleep as well. Tart Cherries will even help with muscle soreness and arterial function, especially with changes in arterial pressure from flight. Cocoa in any form, but also 100% cocoa, will help combat chronic fatigue, it mixes well in hot water, and goes well with teas too. Cocoa can also help with arterial function for overall wellness and change in atmospheric pressure. Here are some videos for more information:

Pistachios to Treat Jet-Lag
Chronic Fatigue


On the road.

the rules generally apply the same aside from the fact that you are in control of the vehicle, and you have a higher responsibility to keeping yourself and others safe while traveling. If you are tired, you need to be honest with yourself and pull over, quick naps, 20 minutes will keep you energized. Any longer than 20 minute may make you drowsy. Aside from an airplane where it may not be a good idea, caffeine in a car may be a good idea, but don’t over do it. Drinking coffee, or tea, will not only keep you hydrated but force you to pull over, get up, walk, and go to the bathroom. Maybe even grab a quick apple or banana. Driving past points that you are tired is not only harmful to yourself and your passenger, but also irresponsible to other people on the road who are trying to visit loved ones, traveling home from work, or headed to their vacation destination. So, be honest and drive responsibly. 

DO’s

  1. Drink 1 glass (8 ounces) of water for every hour you’re in the air
  2. Use Boxed Water or a metal reusable water bottle. I find that metal water bottles can be heavy when I’m already schlepping a lot of stuff around
  3. Chlorophyll drops will help keep you hydrated and fight jet lag
  4. Pack your own snacks: almonds, cashews and pumpkin seeds are my go-tos. Make sure any nuts you have don’t have add oil or sodium, look for “dry roasted”
  5. Celery and carrots with peanut/almond butter or hummus
  6. Pre-portion your snacks with little zip lock bags. It’s super convenient and will stop you from eating too much. 
    1. For my environmentalist out there heres my recommendation for a  reusable option 
  7. Have vegan protein powder in packets or pre-portioned in ziplock bags. Mix with water or almond milk on the go. Some people use portable blender bottles but I just grab a cup and a spoon.
  8. I always try to have a few servings of Green drink with me at all times, especially first thing in the morning or after a long flight.
    • (My recommendation for ingredient approved is here!)
  9. Health Warrior has great bars, just check the label for excess sugar and ingredients you can’t pronounce. The more simple the better
  10. Carry tea bags, I like peppermint in case I get a little nausea in flight, and ask for hot water
  11. Move around before, during and after your flight. Stretch before you get on the plane, make sure to walk around during the flight and I try to do 15-20 minutes of cardio as soon as I land.
  12. Roll your wrists, neck and flex your feet in flight – get that blood circulating
  13. Wash your hands and use hand sanitizer frequently, especially before eating or touching your face
  14. In-flight skin care routine for the long flights to keep your skin hydrating
  15. Non-scented hand lotion because the airplane is going to dry your skin out.
  16. Shower when you land. If not, then shower before you go to sleep and wash those germs off!

DON’T

  1. Drink alcohol, this will further dehydrate you.
  2. Drink caffeine, it also dehydrates you.
  3. Eat foods high in sodium, it will raise your blood pressure and bloat you. No one wants to be puffy when they land.
  4. Eat airport or airplane food, plan ahead! If you absolutely have to, then look for dry-roasted nuts or edamame beans. A big salad, no meat, dairy or dressing. Use avocado and lemon or hummus as a topping.
  5. Be afraid of people watching you stretch, drink chlorophyll water or take out your healthy snacks. People want to be healthy when they travel but don’t because they think travel is just an excuse to eat poorly

Mental Take Aways

  1. Failing to Prepare, is preparing to fail. 
  2. Plan in health
  3. Bring items that can pack down.
  4. Energy dense snacks and bars that pack a punch
  5. Stay light even with containers & storage like Alessa’s example of a metal bottle vs boxed water.
  6. Keep Moving – Stretch/Stretch/Stretch
    • Set a reminder in your phone
  7. Stay clean
  8. Stay hydrated

I want you to have a safe travel, but you have to want it for yourself! Take 100% responsibility for your own health through holiday, vacation, or any travels. Alessa is on top of her game and she wants to help you have fun without making health so obligating. I hope to work more with her in the future to help even professional athletes who are always traveling make their travel even healthier. Definitely, check out her webpage and social media for more information!

Going Keto

Truth, Dare, or Death and Disease?

Recently, a ketogenic diet has been having its spotlight sweeping the nation in the trending world of the latest fad diet.

Despite the excitement of the diet we need to consider a few questions before mistaken enthusiasm leads to a waste of time, money, and potentially worse, your health.

Whenever we come across nutritional information, the latest trending cure, or the personal journey to get shredded we have to say, “show me the evidence.” Anyone flirting with the idea of adopting a new diet ought to keep reading, and ask real questions to get factual answers: What is a ketogenic diet? Is a ketogenic diet safe? And Do I recommend it? 

“Man prefers to believe what he prefers to be true.”

Great Scientist, Francis Bacon

Despite the recent hype from celerity exposure, the preconceived notions, all the cherry picked and slant information, a ketogenic diet is not something new. In medicine, it has been used for almost 100 years now as a therapy for drug-resistant epilepsy. But the studies and treatments have not gone without side-effects involving complication such as kidney stones, kidney failure, sudden deaths, and more.

Much of what the diet is composed of today, was already popular in the 1970s. Pick up any of Dr. Atkins material and see that he used this very low carbohydrate diet for weight loss that began with a very strict two-week ketogenic phase. From there it would follow that other fad diets would start using similar approaches for weight loss. 

Theres is no population in the Blue Zones that have thrived on a ketogenic diet. Contrary to popular belief not even the Inuit survived or thrived on a nightly fair of seal blubber, whale sirloin, and caribou jerkey while being in the reportedly nirvana-like state of ketosis. Turns out that idea is more of an “Eskimo Myth” that was disproven over and over since the 1930’s. 

The totality of evidence from actual clinical investigations, autopsies, and imaging techniques is that they have the same plague of coronary artery disease that non-Eskimo populations have, and the Eskimo actually have twice the fatal stroke rate and don’t live particularly long.

Dr. Michel Greger, Nutritionfacts.org

The Inuit of Greenland and Canada certainly ate those things because farmers markets are not necessarily readily available in the Arctic, but it came at a sacrifice of their longevity and health. 

What is a Ketogenic Diet?

Right to it, it is a diet that shifts cells to utilizes ketones where blood sugar is normally preferred. The body releases these ketones into the bloodstream to act in absence of blood sugar, which normally comes from carbohydrates in food; the body’s main source of energy. The absence of circulating blood sugar from food, almost tricks the body into a mechanism of starvation. The body starts breaking down stored fat into molecules called ketone bodies and the body goes into a state more commonly known as ketosis, hence the name Keto- and Ketogenic Diet. Once the body is in a state of ketosis, most cells will use ketone bodies as the main source of energy just until, we start eating carbohydrates again. It usually takes a course of two to four days of eating 20 to 50 grams of carbohydrates for the body to shift from using glucose to breaking down stored fat as a source of energy. Generally two to four days, because the process is highly individualized and the restriction may vary from person to person to produce enough ketones, and to enter a state of ketosis. 

What does a Ketogenic Diet Look Like?

A ketogenic diet is rich in protein and fats due to the lack of carbohydrates. A typical diet could include plenty of meats, processed meats, eggs, sausage, beef, fish, butter, cheese, dairy, oils, nuts, seeds, and high fat fibrous vegetables like avocados. Most whole grains, legumes, and fruit are severely restricted and will most likely set you over the limit of carbohydrate consumption. Even some vegetables contain too much starch to be allowed in the diet.

The state of being in ketosis is so fragile and most will proclaim to be on a ketogenic diet because they are eating more of these foods. A large misunderstand comes from the complete state of restriction of carbohydrates to keep the body in the actual state of ketosis. Quiet often, much of the population claiming to be on a ketogenic diet are consuming more of whats considered  “Paleo,” a diet composed of high fats, high protein, and low-carbohydrates.

For example, the carbohydrate level to remain in a state of ketosis is equivalent to just 2-1/2 cups of raw broccoli reaching your limit for the day and an extra 1/2 cup serving would set your carbohydrates over and out of a state of ketosis. Broccoli is also not a high fat item so usually is not top of the menu for those going “Keto.”

Is a Ketogenic Diet Healthy?

Almost 100 years ago studies published astonishing results showing a ketogenic diet reduces seizures in children, sometimes effectively as medication. There are no human studies to date, that prove this diet has any other possible neuroprotective benefits associated with cognitive conditions.

The primary reason most people use a ketogenic diet is commonly associated with goals of achieving some form of weight loss. There is evidence to suggest a more rapid and immediate weight loss however, the evidence suggest that the effect is short-term and the difference in weight loss seems to diminish in returns over time.

Beyond short-term weight loss, there is evidence to suggest blood sugar control for people with type 2 diabetes, but only again, short-term. Controversy comes when the safety and efficacy and the intervention of a ketogenic diet calls cholesterol levels into play.

Increased cholesterol raises the risk of dying from heart disease. Few studies show a drop in cholesterol, but those studies did not control for whether it was the actual ketogenic diet, the caloric restriction, or the weight-loss that produced the lower cholesterol levels. This is a problem because any form of caloric restriction will provide weight loss and weight loss is associated with a drop in cholesterol levels.

This study shows that participants on a ketogenic diet had increased levels of good and bad cholesterol. There are only a few studies that show high cholesterol at the beginning, only to see cholesterol fall a few months later. There are not a whole lot of long-term research to analyze its effects over time on diabetes and high cholesterol, the best we have is a meta-analysis that points to no benefit for diabetes long term. It is important to not that the only place cholesterol is found in diet is with the consumption of animal products.

Critical Criticisms of the Diet

  1. The ultra low carb diet makes it super restrictive to other foods which makes it hard to follow over the long run where Carbohydrates currently make up 50% of the Standard American Diet (SAD). 
  2. People tend to eat too much protein and poor-quality fats from processed foods, with very few fruits and vegetables. 
  3. Patients with kidney disease need to be cautious because this diet could worsen their condition. 
  4. Patients reportedly have suffered from kidney stones, restricted growth, fatal cardiac arrhythmias, pancreatitis, higher cholesterol levels, and many more.
  5. Additionally, some people have reported feeling a little tired in the beginning, bad breath, nausea, vomitting, constipation, and sleep problems. 

Takeaways From a Ketogenic Diet

It may be an interesting alternative to medicine in treating certain conditions, and may also be associated with an accelerated weight loss, but these aspects should not come at the mortgage of our health. 

Study upon study has shown increased death with low-carb diets. The Ketogenic diet being the supreme in low-carb dietary restriction. What we do know is that a diet heavy on red meat and many other processed (animal or non-animal) fatty, salt laden foods are associated with increase risk for all cause mortality. A study published in The Lancet associated higher mortality rates for those with diets relying primarily on animal based foods, such as pork, beef, lamb, and yes, chicken. We all ready know the increased risk of dying from studys that compare eating animal based protein such as dairy and eat, vs plant based protein from a variety of vegetables. 

For this reason it is one of the most un-sustainable ways of eating. Not only for health, but for the impact it may have on the environment due to the association of heavy animal product consumption, animal agriculture, and green house gas emissions, meat is most daintily heat.

The ultra-low-carbohydrate restriction, necessary for maintaining the body in a long-term states of ketosis, makes the diet very hard to follow, and may lead to the promotion of unhealthy eating behaviors that eventually lead to even more weight gain and associated chronic diseases.

Diets simply do not work and it is particularly important to point out that “yo-yo diets” that lead us to rapid weight loss fluctuations are associated with increased mortality as well. Anyone can lose weight in the short term on nearly any diet, but diets don’t seem to work in the long-term. Usually this is because they come with the compensation of our health.  Instead of being wrapped up in the Diet Fiction and engaged in the next popular diet that can only last a few weeks, to a month, or a short period (yes this includes most peoples ambitions to take on a ketogenic diet) why not embrace the diet that comes at no compromise of your health and is the most sustainable long-term solution for losing, managing, and maintaining weight. 

The Optimal Diet for Human Consumption

A Diet rich in very colorful fruits and vegetables, whole grains, fruits, berries, beans, legumes, nuts, seeds, and more water seems to have the best available evidence for a long, healthy, vibrant life. A Plant-Based Diet is among the only type of diet that has been shown to be sustainable long-term, perhaps because not only do people lose weight but they often feel so much better.

A nutrient-dense approach combined with foods low in energy-density may in fact be a way to Eat More and Weigh Less. Fewer calories per pound already adds up to less. A small drop in energy density can lead to a small drop in weight, and the greater the decrease in energy density, the greater the weight loss. This would include a diet heavy on starch, fruits, and non-starchy vegetables. A high energy-dense food like Bacon packs a lot of calories in a small package with a relatively low nutrient-density. Compared to a bagel, which is a medium energy-density, fruits and vegetables have the lowest energy-density with the highest nutrient-density. The CDC offers more examples here.  

Contrary to the popular belief that a plant-based diet may be deficient in vitamin in minerals, one study on a ketogenic diet fount deficiencies in every vitamin and mineral analyzed except for B12. Where even just a vegetarian diet that is meat free proves higher intakes of nearly every nutrient: more fiber, more vitamin A, more vitamin C, more vitamin E, more of the B vitamins (thiamin, riboflavin, & folate), more calcium, more magnesium, more iron, and more potassium. At the same time, they were also eating less of the harmful stuff like saturated fat and cholesterol. And yes, they got enough protein.  

Compared to the ketogenic diet that excludes fruits, vegetables, legumes, and whole grains, according to the editor-in-chief of the Journal of the American Dietetic Association asked, “What could be more nutrient dense than a vegetarian diet?” it is no wonder the risk of dying goes up when you leave these foods off the plate.

We don’t need a “diet”; we need a new way of eating that we can comfortably stick with throughout our lives. If that’s the case, then we better choose to eat in a way that will most healthfully sustain us. That’s why a plant-based diet may offer the best of both worlds. It’s the only diet, for example, shown to reverse heart disease–our number one killer–in the majority of patients, as described in my video: One in a Thousand: Ending the Heart Disease Epidemic.

Dr. Greger Nutritionfacts.org

As it turns out, the issues of weight, obesity, and our leading killers of all cause mortality does boil down to an egg. Eating animal products is highly associated with chronic diseases. Eating any diet just for weight loss at any sacrifice of your health is like putting gasoline on a fire. You have a long life to live and you don’t want a short quick blaze of heat just to get warm for the day and then be left with no fire. To date the best available balance of evidence concludes that this diet will leave worse off than you started. 

LATEST POSTS

‘Diet Fiction’ The Film The Weight Loss Industry Doesn’t Want You to See

Have you ever wondered why diets don’t work? Or did you ever question that maybe you are broken; passed the wrong genes, doomed for devastation? 

We are in a diet Revolution. There are hundreds of diets out there in a multi-billion dollar industry. Yet, we are desperate, frustrated, confused and stuck in a vicious yo-yo effect, year after year. 

If your looking for answers, trying to cut through the confusion, then look no further. The new documentary, Diet Fiction stands to set our diet straight. Now available on iTunes now for pre-order, Diet Fiction will premiere January 1, 2019.

According to the film, Diet Fiction was produced to, “expose the most popular diets on the planet as well as several misconceptions about weight loss and nutrition. It follows the audacious filmmaker Michal Siewierski (Food Choices) in his treacherous journey into the controversial world of weight loss and dieting, as he uncovers several shocking facts and confronts common misconception, and misleading information propagated by the industry over the last several decades. Showing the often-devastating effects that obesity has on people’s lives and exposing the viewer to new disruptive ideas and science-based evidence that could potentially lead to long term sustainable weight loss and improved health.” 

60% of Americans are either obese or overweight, Dr. Angie Sadeghi states. While it may be shifting closer to 70%, Dr. Micheal Greger of Nutritionfacts.org writes that, “one in three American adults is obese, seven times the rate of China and eight times more than Japan. If the current trend continues, virtually 100% of Americans will be obese by the end of the century. Strikingly, the annual cost attributable to obesity among full-time U.S. employees is estimated at $70 billion.”

If diets are selling the cure for our weight, then why are Americans getting sicker and fatter?

The film explores the truth about food addiction, diet, overconsumption, over-nutrition, industry deceit, confusion, poverty, and exercise, as it relates to the current state of obesity and disease. 

“It is important to lose weight, but its more important to lose weight in ways that do not mortgage our health”

Dr. Dean Ornish

“You are what you eat,” says the Plant-Based Dietician Jullean Hever, “In this extraordinary new documentary, Michal Siewierski absolutely exposes the insidious fiction behind the multi-billion dollar diet industry that leaves millions of people desperate, frustrated, confused in a vicious feedback loop year after year.”

The trailer points out that almost 99% of diets don’t work, that the Standard American Diet (SAD) is killing us, and diets are trapping us in a mass of confusing and conflicting information.

Filmmaker Michal Siewierski sets off on a journey to find answers. Along the way he will risk his safety to uncover and put forth these shocking truths.

Diet Fiction Trailer

Currently, the food industry has accused inactivity, in an erroneous message, that distracts our attention away from the problem, “you cannot out train a bad diet,” the trailer claims. But how far has industry really gone to confuse the population? 

“Consumption of manufactured, calorie-rich, nutrient-poor foods, is the prime cause of obesity.  Food and beverage intake along with calorie overconsumption are actually more important than physical activity in weight maintenance and loss.” 

Dr. Micheal Greger 

Sugar has also been a long time scapegoat next to exercise, not only to blame for the obesity epidemic, but accused for chronic diseases like Type II Diabetes as well.

“Sugar is not a health food but the idea that is whats wrong with the whole diet, is not correct,” 

Dr. Neal Barnard

To steal clear of the truth, in order to protect industry profit, Americans’ attention has been pushed away from Chicken meat, milk, refined grains, meat, and fish contaminated with industrial pollutants which may also raise obesity risk.

We also know the risk associated between consuming Dairy, meat, eggs, and junk foods associated with the activity of the TOR enzyme, which appears to be linked to obesity risk. 

Other factors of Industrial pollutants that may build up in our body fat from diet may help explain the link between obesity and diabetes.  Just take a look at Endocrine-disrupting chemicals in foods, increased uric acid levels from meat and sugar intake, Not getting a good night’s sleep as all may increase obesity risk. 

Yet, we continue to ignore these causes. The vicious yo-yo effect of fad diets combine with grand promises to “exercise more” in the new year. 

The Trailer also presents the links between food and chronic diseases, obesity as a symptom of poverty, and the genetic predisposition we place on our health. 

We know diet and exercise is important, we’ve gotten that right, but the “what” and “how much” is what we have gotten all wrong.

Fortunately, the experts featured in Diet Fiction help set the confusion straight. In fact, they offer a look into a disruptive evidence-based solution for long-term sustainable weight loss and improved health, for good. 

Increasingly, businesses, organizations, and the public are becoming more aware of the benefits of plant-based eating. Even the NHS recently recognized the health benefits of an all-plant diet. 

A plant-based diet can help prevent and treat obesity and other serious health conditions. Plant-based diets appear to protect against metabolic syndrome and may foster the kinds of gut bacteria linked to reduced obesity risk.  Breastfeeding infants may help protect them against subsequent obesity for over 30 years. Green tea, beans, whole grains, and fiber from various sources may also help lower obesity risk.  Fiber-consuming bacteria in the gut create the compounds propionate and butyrate, which appear to have an anti-obesity effect. Research has associated nut and dried fruit intake with lower obesity risk.

 – Dr. Micheal Greger of Nutritionfacts.org

The announcement of Diet Fiction follows other enticing documentaries on diet and health such as, Food Choices, Forks Over Knives, Eating You Alive, What the Health, Dominion, The End of Meat, and the premier of the critically acclaimed documentary Game Changers.

Diet Fiction is available now on iTunes for pre-order and will premiere January 1st, 2019. 

(SOURCES Page 2)

LATEST POSTS

Cherry Pie Delicious C=πd

Be it for Post-workout, Anti-inflammatory, to eat more fruit, or simply enjoy a healthy pie without the guilt, this Whole-Food, Plant-Based Cherry Pie is comes with no added sugar, salt, fat, or oils. Even better Tart Cherries have substantial evidence supporting a multitude of benefits from sleep to muscle soreness.

(C=πd)(A=πr^2) ITS SCIENCE. Cherry Pies are Delicious and Apple Pies are too! But did you know the crazy benefits of eating tart cherries, or even berries!? 

Have you ever woke up and say, ‘I’m going to make a cherry pie’ . . . Yea-me-niether……UNTIL TODAY!

Nailed it! Seriously, I’m on a pie roll! I Love pie, I reeeeally do not know who doesn’t.

This WFPB pie is disease free. *I don’t put cancer or heart disease in my recipes because I don’t use animal products or processed foods. 

Instead, this pie is just what you need for a Post workout, to sleep better, or even reduce muscle soreness. Got Arthritis? This Pie can help with that too!

BENEFITS OF TART CHERRIES

Waiting for your pie to be done?

Watch these quick videos from Nutritionfacts.org to learn about how you are about to get a healthy kick in the . . . pants. 

Tart Cherries for Insomnia

https://youtu.be/fYkuxbaPv_A

Anti-inflammatory Life Is a Bowl of Cherries

https://youtu.be/pkPhH1RSkds

Treating Gout with Cherry Juice

https://youtu.be/N5rcQBVf-_E

Reducing Muscle Soreness with Berries

https://youtu.be/GpAGy5mk_kw

Blueberry Muffin Pie

This is Like a Giant Blueberry Muffin!

Here are some Items Included in this recipe!

Build Your Pantry

  1. Wildway Banana Nut Grain-Free Granola
Gluten-Free, Non-GMO

#Livewild and top this all off. I love Wildway Banana Nut Grain-Free Granola. This product is great because its packed with great foods you should be eating everyday from organic dates to walnuts, pecans, and flavored with vanilla beans and hint of cinnamon. At a low sodium content and no-oil, the company does a great job at offering a quality product at a great price. you have to pic this up!  The best part is that its super versatile to add anywhere so you’ll be using it more than just in this recipe.

2.  Rob Mills Oat Bran Cereal

Robs Red Mill products are always one of my go-to brands. As soon as I spotted  Rob Mills Oat Bran Cereal I had to try it! Not only has it been a staple breakfast with blueberries and spices, but it is easier on my stomach than quick oats and old fashioned oats. It just seems to digest better and keeps me well satiated with out the indigestion. I also notice that I love the taste more than regular oats! I’ve linked the large package here because I promise this isn’t going to stay long in your pantry.

3.  Date Sugar

I admit it. I am a date sugar addict. Whenever I see cereals, cookies, products adding sweeteners, cane-sugar (almost everywhere), and honey, I cringe. I die little inside. I don’t understand why they don’t use DATE SUGAR?! Maybe because they want to profit by using lower quality, cheaper ingredients? Yes. Date sugar comes at a higher price, but it is the Healthiest sweetener you we have available to us. Its simply dates, ground into a granular sweet powder-and I Run through this stuff. Its so versatile in baking, cooking, sauces, oatmeal, smoothies, wherever you want! I’ve linked the  2 lb bag because your living a successful plant based life, this is on your counter or in your belly!

Check out the Cookie Crust I used to make this!

COOKIE CRUST