Monday, July 21, 2014

“What’s The Best Diet?”

Hello e3 Fam! The second lecture on e3 Nutrition Accountability Group was just as successful as the first and again, I’d like to thank all those that attended. I hope that all of you gathered a new perspective on how to approach your nutrition and take into practice the strategies we discussed. For those who were unable to attend, don’t fret. I’ll now provide a brief summary/blog on the lecture “What’s The Best Diet?” below. I’ll only share a small piece of it though ;) There are four popular diets practiced in the United States and in some parts of the world that has taking the nutrition culture by storm. They are Paleo, Low Carb, Vegan, and Fasting. The Paleo are practiced by your Cross-Fit junkies and the Vegans by your animal friendly neighbors, while Fasting is the trend in Hollywood and everyone else seems to fall into the Low Carb diet camp. Out of these four, what’s the best diet? Well in my personal and professional opinion, I believe it’s Paleo. Paleo promotes a lifestyle of eating nutritious foods such as vegetables, meats, eggs, nuts, seeds, and all sorts of healthy fats and avoiding toxic foods like grains, legumes, vegetable seed oils, dairy, and added sugar. That’s why Paleo is the best. BUT wait, hold up…isn’t eating Paleo too restrictive? No cheese? No bread? Also, I get the fact that we should eat whole, natural, grass fed, free range, gluten free, etc, etc, so we can live longer, right? But there are no studies showing that theory is valid. And to top it off, whole foods are EXPENSIVE! I’ll have to sell my car and live in a card board box just to afford the food they promote you to eat! So you know what? I changed my mind, no, no, no, Paleo is not it! I think Low Carb is the best diet. Low Carb promotes much of the same as Paleo, but you’re at least allowed to eat legumes and dairy. Man I love my cheese! And they want you to give up wheat, highly processed foods, and foods that are sugary and high in the glycemic index, and avoid HFCS, trans fats and artificial flavorings at all cost Ok sure. BUT, hold on again…come to think about it, it’s still too restrictive. And when I do give up some of the foods that are high in the glycemic index like wheat and certain fruits, I begin to feel lethargic, irritated, I get headaches, and my performance level diminishes and my workouts turn to poop. Speaking of poop, I have a hard time pooping when I’m Low Carbing! Ok, I changed my mind again, the best diet isn’t Low Carb. The best diet is Vegan! FOR SURE! With the Vegan diet you’re allowed to eat fresh fruits, veggies, leafy greens, legumes, grains, nuts and seeds. I’ll be pooping then! It’s just you have to avoid meat, fish, poultry, or any products made from animals. Hmm…BUT…what about when I go out to eat with friends or gather with family during the holidays? Does that mean I can’t have Turkey for Thanksgiving? Tofu Turkey? Really?? As a Vegan, I’ll miss out on the importance of essential complete proteins found in animals. Essential proteins needed to build muscle. If I build muscle, I burn fat. If I burn fat, I get toned. Geez! Vegan can’t be the best, so I guess there’s no other choice but to say that Fasting is the best diet. Yeah! I’ll drink water. That’s it though…wait, I could suck on air. It really doesn’t matter because you know what? According to hunger strike wiki, I’d be dead somewhere between 52-74 days if I were to just live on water alone and by being dead I won’t have to worry about being fit and healthy! :( So, what is the best diet?? Ok, my real answer to that question is that I don’t believe there is a single, absolute, positively without a doubt best diet for evert person to follow, always and forever! We’re a civilization with diverse backgrounds. Some of us are tall and thin, some of us are short and stocky. Some of us eat meat, others don’t. Some of us have food allergies. Some of us are in a budget, others don’t have to worry about money. Some of us have the time to pursue a healthy fit lifestyle while other don’t due to work, disabilities, what have you. These diversities need to be taken that into account when creating a nutrition program. I want to share something fascinating with all of you. The Arctic Inuits and the African Masai have a traditional diet of animal fats and proteins with little to no vegetables due to the environment that they live in. The Kitavans of the South Pacific traditionally have a diet filled with fresh fruits and vegetables and starchy carbs with little to no fats. And the Tokelaus near New Zealand have diets that are super high in saturated fats. As you can tell, these ethnic groups/tribes have diets that are found in opposite sides of the nutritional spectrum, yet they all have one thing in common. They all share minimum incidences in cardiovascular heart diseases, stroke, diabetes, and inflammatory obesity just to name a few. Why is that? The reason for this amazing outcome is the human physiological phenomenon known as metabolic flexibility. It allows the human body to adapt to a host of different dietary conditions. Did you know that it is possible to be healthy and fit whether you eat mostly meat or mostly veggies, mostly fat or mostly carbs, many times a day or just a few times, and so on? You can! That’s why I believe there no single, absolute, positively without a doubt best diet for evert person to follow, always and forever! So knowing this, what now? How do we address our nutrition? We address our nutrition by taking what works for us specifically and respecting other people’s choice of nutritional practice. The Paleo, Low Carb, Vegan, and Fasting diets are different, yet they all have a similar theme that works. And that theme creates habits that are essential to our goals. Those habits are 1) raising our nutrition awareness and attention, 2) helping us focus on food quality, 3) helping us eliminate nutrient deficiencies, 4) helping us control appetite and hunger, and 5) promoting exercise. These habits are what should shape our nutritional programs. It’s these habits that will provide you the engine that will power you to the healthy, fit body that you deserve. Long term nutritional habits trump diet plans and rules. Always! If you want to know more on how to approach your nutrition properly using a progressive nutritional program that builds habits intelligently, intentionally, and sustainability over time versus asking people which diet is the best to follow and overhauling your lifestyle in one day, join e3 Nutrition Accountability Group, beginning Thursday, August 7, 2014 from 6:30-7:30 pm or add on a 30 minute nutrition consultation to your already existing e3 membership. We’ll listen to your needs, what you want to accomplish, how you live, and what’s important to you, giving us the tools to help you create a dietary approach that’s specific to your goals, your beliefs, and your lifestyle. For more information please contact us at 314-375-6FIT or email me at In strength, Coach Anjo

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