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Changing Your Diet Philosophy Forever

We are all on “diets.”  A diet only means what someone consumes each day, every day. A true diet plan is a lifelong one, something practical, restoring energy, metabolizing nutrients and one a person can realistically stay on. If not, they are only setting themselves up for yo-yo dieting. Ask yourself before you begin, “Is this how I can eat forever?” God gave us a bounty of nutrients and each has a purpose. Enjoy them all!

Whenever I hear of some diet guru claiming they’ve found the latest fad diet or pill, I shudder. Today, everyone is searching for an instant fix. I heard a great quip years ago which stated, only today’s generation will stand in front of a microwave and be angry it’s not quick enough! Everyone wants instant gratification!

There are so many qualified Registered Dietitians and Nutritionists in today’s world. Creating menus and assisting patients with overcoming their illnesses was challenging. I too, wanted to challenge and motivate others to be successful in their healthy aspirations, but I felt there was a step missing. The root cause in their self-destructing nature. Awareness is always the first step in recovery.

So I became a Nutritional Counselor. What I enjoy most about being a counselor is seeing the “lightbulb” come on when patients figured out for themselves, why they ate as they did. Until one recognizes why he/she acts in a particular way, they won’t change. They are only masking the problem. Therefore, change begins at the source.

Trusting in God’s guidance and my degree in counseling, I continued to study physiology, anatomy, biology as well as countless books on nutritional basics while working for family physicians to create my diet philosophy. I would never be so arrogant as to say I know all the answers. No one will really know until we are in front of God, our true Creator, and can ask Him.

Nutrition is a never-ending research project! But man’s truth has shifted with the wind – God’s Truth stands fast! A potato was as acceptable in the Garden of Eden as it is now. (1 Corinthians 10:23)

Scripture has the answers. It contains Absolute Truths. They cannot be dismissed, even in advanced physiology. There’s a wonderful Chinese saying that states, “Even if 5,000 men are wrong, they are still wrong.”

I believe in Absolute Truth. God declared “It is Good” when He completed Creation. That meant fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, seeds and herbs were ALL under that umbrella, (Genesis 1:29, Genesis 9:3) debunking the Paleo, Keto, Atkins and various other restrictive diets (unless you have an illness or allergy preventing certain foods of course. Common sense prevails.)

Always go back to God’s basics. ” We are fearfully and wonderfully made . . .” (Psalm 139:14.) There’s a reason we need nutrient variation.

No matter how many times someone tries to create their own fad diet plan, it’s still a fad and the wrong way to lose weight forever. Just look at all the diets which have come and gone through the decades: grapefruit, cottage cheese, cabbage soup, Scarsdale, Atkins, cookie (no really, a cookie diet – that really educates the person doesn’t it.) liquid diets, and on and on.

Yet the nutritionally-based Mediterranean diet prevails as does the Volumetrics and DASH diets. I also like the NOON diet plan which also educates and stresses getting to the source.

So ask away, submit your question below, and in time I hope this blog will truly inspire you to become your own New Creation!

*** The above post is based on My Diet Philosophy which is posted on my main page.

Football, Dr. Oz and Breakfast as a Team Sport

Super Bowl Sunday’s coming and both have strong teams. Your body’s a strong team too.

Imagine a football quarterback as the body of the “NUTRIENT” team. In order to win effectively, his metabolism needs a nutrient-dense offensive line. Without one, he has no defense against illness.

Now imagine in front of him are ten players, each representing unique nutritional functions: the center, (B’s) running back (D), tight end (C), corner back (magnesium) fullback (calcium) and wide receiver {omega 3s.) Other nutrients are on the bench ready to participate as needed.

If the team consisted of only fullbacks, how well would the team work? Not efficiently at all. Similarly, a diet consisting of fruit alone would prevent the body from absorbing over 50 vital nutrients for optimum health. We need nutrient variety as much as a football team needs various players to win.

Vitamins are utilized and dispersed through FOOD. B vitamins convert food into energy. Fat soluble vitamins need fat to be absorbed. No food in your stomach – no energy. No chewing, no enzymes either. Without enzymes, one cannot walk, talk, think or move!

Dr. Oz held more interviews January 22, again claiming, “We don’t need breakfast!”  Who’s we? I need breakfast.

“Eating breakfast isn’t based on any medicine,” he insisted.  Of course not, doctor – it’s not medicine, it’s based on physiology.

He insisted breakfast is simply “marketing hype.” Some advertisements ARE to blame for unhealthy children. I too wish children weren’t feed Sugar Smacks but consuming a healthy breakfast is important for physiological reasons. Any teacher who sees hyperactive children arriving or her student’s blood sugar slumping mid-morning will attest to that.

“Our ancestors didn’t eat right away, they had to hunt and gather.” Our ancestors??? Maybe Dr. Oz’s came from cavemen. Mine were created by God. Adam and Eve were created perfectly . Originally farmers, they probably ate grains and fruit for breakfast. (Naturally I’m not dogmatic about this because I wasn’t around then. We’ll find out in Heaven.)

It’s personal choice to eat or not eat immediately. Listen to your body. I usually wake up with coffee, eating about hour or later. No need to eat breakfast immediately, eat small meals but make them nutritious, not caloric.

Our body utilizes calories for energy – any food produces energy. But a calorie isn’t a calorie: donuts are empty calories, a banana is packed with B vitamins, potassium, magnesium, fiber, etc.

Simply cutting calories for weight loss won’t make us healthy. Every nutrient has an individual purpose. Without nutrients, it takes a toll on bodily functions.

When I worked in an office, sometimes I didn’t eat breakfast. However, around 10am, starving, I reached for the first thing I found in the break room for ENERGY: donuts or coffee cake. It takes Herculean effort to resist when hungry. By eating breakfast, it never tempted me. After awhile, I usually brought a healthy snack with me.

Dr. Oz thought everyone should eat brunch instead. Brunch??? How is that going to help the teacher, nurse, factory worker or myriad of others who can’t tell their boss, “Excuse me, I’ve got to eat brunch now.” You’ll have plenty of time to eat in the unemployment line.

“Listen to your body,” Dr. Oz suggests. I’ve said that from day one. But I also advised my patients to use common sense. Dr. Oz logic comes from viewing food as calories – I’m viewing food as nutrients.

Eat to have a healthy system filled with nutrients rather than simply food. Amen!

“Teach me good discernment and knowledge, For I believe in Your commandments.”  (Psalm 119:66)

Have You Tried the Sausage and Ice Cream Diet?

So how many diets have you tried already? The no-fat, no-taste diet? The no sugar-penance diet? The no-carb diet plan? The bacon and cheese diet?

By now, have you realized the only thing lighter is your wallet? This is the time of year when normally sensible humans start believing in unicorns and Big Foot.

There is no magic formula to lose those pounds. If there were, everyone would be following one diet plan instead of grasping at rainbows.

False diet gurus are nothing but modern day snake oil salesmen. They get richer while you get fatter. I’m always amazed how many believe their proclamations: “by consuming sausage and ice cream you will lose weight while remaining healthy.” Those are the same people who laugh at me, as a Christian for believing God created mankind and I trust in Him. I have physiological proof for my diet, do they?

There’s a reason God created the three food groups: carbohydrates, proteins and fats – the Absolute Laws of Physics don’t change! Our bodies don’t “evolve” into different creatures!

FACT: The body needs nutrients to survive and to work as a well-run machine. FACT: The body needs balance – the three legged chair of nutrients carbohydrates, proteins and fats creates a balanced physiological system. FACT: Missing essential nutrients upsets nutrient balance, resulting in  bodily chemical chaos.

Every nutrient has a purpose. Skipping certain nutrients increases the possibility of illness such as diabetes, heart disease, high cholesterol or worse. Without balance you set yourself up for Metabolic Syndrome. MS is similar to the domino affect. For example, consuming too much fat makes your heart work harder, resulting in higher LDL cholesterol which leads to heart disease, which leads to stress, leading to potential nerve damage – you get the picture.

To empathize how desperate people are to lose weight, I remind you of the time Rachel Ray posted this advertisement:

Wanted: Volunteers to test new diet program. Some foods are toxic and will cause blindness and death. Call 555-. . . . . . .

You think this is too farfetched? Wonder, who in the world would sign up for such a crazy plan??? Well, over 1400 people, that’s who.

Oh I’d never fall for that, you protest. Really? If you believe that the Keto Diet can assist in weight loss for a lifetime, I urge you to place oil in your gas tank and see how long that works for your car.

Even Paleo has changed their recommended diet foods to include more balanced offers. But Paleo still for some reason, rejects legumes, cereal grains and potatoes – all fibrous selections. (Yes avoid sugary cereals but Oatmeal, Raisin Bran and Kashi brands are far different from Fruit Loots. And they don’t clarify that oily French Fries everyday is far worse than a fiber-rich, nutrient-dense baked potato.) God’s diet never changes its mind.

Don’t follow blindly, question everything about a diet plan.

It’s simple: anything God created, should be fine in moderation. It’s man that messes things up. Be careful with processed foods. Consuming all those chemicals in one’s body festers inside us like a chemistry set. We all know what happens if too many chemicals come in contact with each other . . . disastrous results!!!

Try to eat as many whole foods as possible. Even eat those in moderation. I’ve even counseled overweight vegetarians. Live smartly and eat well.

“Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good; Blessed is the man who trusts in Him!”  (Psalm 34:8)

God’s Plan doesn’t restrict your culinary enjoyment; He simply urges sensible eating!

What are You waiting For? Get Healthy Now!

We’re approaching that time of year again when approximately 45% of people resolve to go on a diet and 70% resolve to become healthier. They check out diet program after diet program, read countless magazine articles professing a secret formula, spend a fortune on boxed food and profess, “The eighteenth time is the charm! This time it will happen! This year, I’m resolved!”

That resolve usually lasts 2-3 weeks. But hope springs eternal – Your friend said she lost 20 pounds in a week on yet another diet and surely if she did, so will you!!! Nope.

Why don’t these programs work? Because each of us have different physiology, personalities, stress levels, metabolism, employment, family responsibilities, etcetera,  etcetera . . . Next, even if you eliminate 3500 calories, the amount needed to lose a pound each day, for a week, you’d only lose seven pounds.

Face it, everyone knows how to lose weight. Eat less, exercise more. Drink water, exercise, slow down and consume smaller portions. Easy peasy, everyone says – until everyone fails. Then everyone believes they have no willpower, they give up and pompously declare, “Well, this is how God made me, therefore, “so be it.”

Wrong! God wants you healthy whether you’re a size twelve or two. Health is more important than weight loss.  True health incorporates energy level, how your clothes fit, emotional wellness, whether you are mentally alert or “fuzz-brained.”

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve overheard someone speak about their current diet announcing proudly, “I’m cutting out all carbs!” while the companion nods his head in agreement.  AAARGGHH! (If you don’t consume wholesome carbohydrates, your brain doesn’t get energized daily. Our brain feeds on glucose, a carbohydrate!)

It gets discouraging when few listen to the nutritionist who has kept her weight off for thirty years but they follow false diet gurus. Now I don’t expect you to be a size two, but I do practice what I preach and enjoy a vibrant and energetic lifestyle – I only want you to also.

What I follow is a diet plan based on Genesis 1:29 and Genesis 9:3. Anything is fine in moderation. Very similar to the Mediterranean, DASH or Volumetrics diet plan. Over the next few weeks I’ll offer the “why” and provide practical applications.

For now: Consume five times more veggies and fruit than meat on your plate. Eat healthy omega 3 fats and wholesome whole grains. In leu of processed foods, choose fibrous foods. Next exercise, relax and don’t sweat the small stuff.

No one gets healthier unless they are mentally, physically or spiritually ready to. It’s the main reason I started this blog and wrote, Life’s Too Short to Eat Bad Cheese (Nutritional and Life Lessons God Teaches Us) available on amazon.com.

Everyone starts out with good intentions. No one starts out wanting to fail; it’s humiliating!  But people self-destruct for different reasons;  could be educational fallacies, while other times psychological. Do you realize that sometimes when you reach for a cookie, it’s not a cookie that you desire but the warmth and security of family memories?

Having a goal to become healthier is more important than weight loss. Building muscle creates the physiological furnace that burns fat. Get moving! Exercise releases feel-good endorphins; so find some form of exercise you enjoy! Walking, gardening, dancing, biking . . . Being out in the fresh air contributes to an extra endorphin bonus.

Over the next several weeks, I’ll provide practical information so you won’t “spin your wheels” on another useless diet program. Get Healthy Now!

“So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.” (1 Corinthians 10:31)

 

News Flash??????? Red Meat’s Now Okay!

Oh gracious, stop the Presses; there’s been a remarkable News Flash proclaiming: “Red Meat is NOW acceptable to eat!”

Well, when wasn’t it? Oh right, about thirty years ago when scientific studies came out claiming it caused horrific artery blockage, while little nutritionist me, was scoffed by declaring, “it’s fine in moderation.”

“He feeds on ashes; a deluded heart has led him astray, and he cannot deliver himself or say, “Is there not a lie in my right hand?” (Isaiah 44:14–20)

This recent study didn’t go into detail as to how much red meat one should reasonably consume. Nor did I see where it even distinguished between the skinnier sirloin or filet mignon, as opposed to fattier prime rib or 73% hamburger.

Why is that important? First, one cut of beef is not the same as another. Secondly, more is not better. Depending on its type, it takes longer to digest the protein and fat in beef, from 4-8 hours. (Plant/fruit/grain protein is normally 2-4  hours.)

Of course red meat is very beneficial in moderation. Red meat contains iron for red blood cells and is one of the only protein ways to obtain B12 as well.

But so many misconceptions! I was appalled when I overheard a trade show vendor pitching a product which supposedly absorbed fat. She proclaimed as her selling point: ” . . . and red meat rots in your stomach!” People believed this claim!

Actually, stomach acid has a pH of 1- 3, about the same as battery acid. This acidic environment helps create pepsin, the enzyme which breaks down food in the stomach. Not much can survive intact within that acidic pH!

But I can hear the critics exclaim, “How then are we to know what to believe? Nutritional scientists are always changing their minds on what we can eat!”

Well, that’s what happens when people listen to science. They begin to worship the creation instead of the Creator. My Creator God told me in Genesis 9:3 that it was perfectly all right to consume meat. So I do . . . in moderation . . . as I’m also told in 1 Corinthians 10:23. What’s moderation? About 6-8 ounces of meat per day.

Balance is needed. Red meat has many benefits: It’s high in minerals including zinc, iron. phosphorus and selenium, a “feel-good” nutrient. It also contains amino acids and the antioxidant Glutathione. L-Carnitine metabolizes fat and is proactive in heart health.

But beef has a few precautions as well.

Cows nowadays are pumped up with growth hormones to hurry beef off to market. People ingest these hormones because they’re eating out much more – especially at convenient, fast food restaurants. Young people are affected greatly. Why do you think children as young as 8 – 9 approach puberty sooner?

I know someday, someone will sit near me consuming a huge 20 ounce bacon-wrapped steak, happily stuffing themselves into oblivion because some study told them it was okay to do so.

Regarding the study, I’d need to know more. It simply acknowledged it used a large, diversified demographic and geographical group. I’m skeptical. What type/categories of people participated?

We are all unique with a different physiological makeup. Did they use many more athletic high school and college aged men who worked out five times per week, an elderly or overweight population or those who took a cholesterol-lowering drug daily? Who paid for this study? Was it the beef industry or someone with an agenda regarding the outcome?

I urge you to never become a sheep when reading any study. Don’t follow blindly. I know what I believe and why. I’d rather trust God than men. Men make mistakes, God does not!

 

“What About Boxed Diet Programs?”

Please tell me what’s wrong with this statement?

“I know certain diets don’t work because I’ve tried them all. But this (boxed) program? I know that works, because it worked for me SEVERAL TIMES!!!”

That was the response I received as I counseled a new patient whose goal was to lose 150 pounds. Poor sweet lady, she just didn’t get it; she was only stressing her heart as she searched for an easy fix, believing a convenient “buy a box” program would work again.

First, the only real diet is one that will work for an lifetime. Of course one could get lucky and lose a few pounds on a gimmicky diet plan but for how long? Sure it worked for celebrities but will it fit into your lifestyle? For example, if you entertain clients at restaurants, host office dinners for your husband, teach 32 children in your classroom or show homes as a realtor, it’s nearly impossible to follow a boxed diet program successfully.

And keep in mind that the celebrity spokesperson, ecstatic over her current boxed food plan, has a lucrative contract, personal shopper, chef, publicist, housekeeper, private gym with trainer, stylist, masseuse and an incentive to look good in front of the television cameras!  You’ve got a mirror and box of cheese doodles in your cabinet. And I can buy my family an entire day’s worth of food for one individual’s cost of a boxed program at $9-11 per day, not counting the extras that go with it like dairy, vegetables and fruit.

Secondly, unless one knows how to maintain a balanced, HEALTHY diet, purchasers usually gain it all back and then some! Look at Oprah. Currently there are no one-on-one meetings with counselors to answer personal challenges on topics relevant to your individuality.

A nutritional counselor will discover the root cause of your self-destruction. Check a company out thoroughly and ensure the diet company has counselors who will keep you educated on physiology so you can maintain the weight loss under real life circumstances.. (Think Weight Watchers and Jenny Craig.)

We are each uniquely designed by God. We also have different DNA’s, lifestyles and challenges we face daily. A stay-at-home mom faces different stressors than a lawyer who’s single. That mom needs to know how to overcome the cupboard temptations calling her name while the lawyer needs to alleviate mental stress by hitting the gym after work.

Pre-planning and controlling our own destiny instills personal confidence that we can overcome anything. No one else can get healthy for us. We might think that someone else preparing our meals so we can simply pop them in the microwave is convenient but what have we learned about meal preparation, grocery shopping for healthier choices, portion sizes and cooking for a family of five? That’s right, nothing! We might get a few brochures and pamphlets but can we decipher it? (Or as I usually ask, “Do you know what it means to you in dog years?”)

Selecting the right foods isn’t that hard. It’s common sense. Choose as many whole foods, lean meats, good quality yogurt and healthy fats (olive oil, coconut, milled flaxseed or avocados, etc.)

“You say, “I am allowed to do anything”–but not everything is good for you. And even though “I am allowed to do anything,” I must not become a slave to anything.”   (1 Corinthians 6:12)

Very few remain healthy and slim on a prepackaged meal plan. Please don’t believe everything your itchy ears want to hear. (2 Timothy 4: 3-4)

 

 

Whole Life Challenge review

I absolutely love this intelligent and thought-provoking post. It’s so great to come across another dietitian who understands all aspects of nutrition (while calling out the false diet gurus who proclaim anything people want to hear.) I highly recommend finding and following her blog too:

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You know what I’m sick of? Engineers and people with zero nutrition education making claims that you can “biohack” your life, undermining dietitians, and giving one-size-fits all nutrition advice. This rant seems appropriate coming on the heels of my post about the carnivore diet.

Earlier this summer my brother asked for my thoughts about this “Whole Life Challenge” that a bunch of people in his office were doing. He was a little sceptical about the nutrition advice they were providing and wanted to know my thoughts as a registered dietitian.

My first question was, “who is behind this challenge?” Well, we’ve got the founders: Andy who has a background in sales and engineering (quelle surprise) who then opened a crossfit gym and Michael who was a coach and manager at a crossfit gym, and has a degree in philosophy and culinary arts. Well, at least he’s got a…

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