Paleo Month

I will be giving a seminar on Paleo nutrition at Better Health Stores in Novi, MI at 1:00 Feb 23rd. In honor of this epic event, I will be posting Paleo recipes for the next three weeks. These are all recipes I have tried and approved as delicious. Here is number one.

Egg Muffins

The idea is simple. Cook some meat and veggies. Put mixture in to a cupcake pan, pour egg on top and bake for 20 minutes.

Total active cook time is about 5 minutes and these are loaded with nutrients and high in protein.

YUMMY!

Nate

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Alpha-Lipoic acid for weight loss, anti-aging and nerve repair?

While I love the idea of getting all my nutrients from natural sources, I have come to believe that our food is so nutrient-deficient (watch the movie food, inc) that worthwhile supplements should be considered for optimal health…that is, until I buy a farm! Those who are actively working out should specifically consider the gaps in their nutrition because of the increased demand on their bodies. Store bought food is often lacking in nutritional content because of the soil it was grown in, early picking, poor shipping quality, etc. Alpha Lipoic Acid is a well studied supplement I have grown to love and feel we should consider.

Alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA) stands out above many supplements in its ability to promote health, energy and body composition by being a powerful anti-oxidant. In other words, damage to the cells is thought to be responsible for some cancers, aging effects, and injuries and ALA helps stop these really effectively. Unlike some, ALA is capable of being dissolved in both fat and water which means it can get to every part of the cell!

R-form Alpha Lipoic Acid is also an anti-inflammatory with studies showing its many benefits for cell sugar absorption, nerve damage, and detoxifying the body of metals. It’s important to note that R-form is the naturally occurring and more effective while S-form is synthetic. Bottles that don’t specify R or S are often a blend of both.

Other studies are showing ALA benefits weight loss. A 2011 study published in the “American Journal of Medicine” showed that obese people taking 1800 mg a day lost significantly more weight than a placebo group. Another 2010 study showed an eight to nine percent body weight drop in participants taking 800 mg over four months!

Increase drive of sugar to your cells (less of your food gets stored as fat),more fuel for your muscles, decreases in oxidative stress and aging, decrease in inflammation and weight loss all have me convinced that ALA is a must-have for fitness. I don’t like to play games with quality so I get mine from a pharmaceutical grade source like Douglas Labs or Thorne. Check back on wednesday for a link to Douglas Labs R-form ALA.

 

References:

American Journal of Medicine; Effects of Alpha-Lipoic Acid on Body Weight in obese subjects
E.H. Koh, et al; 2011

Current Pharmaceutical Design; Alpha Lipoic Acid Supplementation: A Tool for Obesity Theraoy; M.G Carbonelli, et al.;2010

“Lipoic acid improves nerve blood flow, reduces oxidative stress, and improves distal nerve conduction in experimental diabetic neuropathy,” Nagamatsu, M., et al., Diabetes Care, 18(8) (August 1995): 1160-67

Exercise Perspective #1

My wife sent me a picture of a T-shirt that read like this:

I take Aspirin for the headache caused by the Zyrtec I take for the hayfeaver I got from Relenza for the uneasy stomach from the Ritalin I take for the short attention span caused by the Scopederm Ts I take for the motion sickness I got from the Lomotil I take from the diarrhea caused by the Zenikal for the uncontrolled weight gain from the Paxil I take for the anxiety from Zocor  I take for my high cholesterol because exercise, (and) a good diet…ARE JUST TOO MUCH TROUBLE

Imagine complaining about a $30 to $60 a month gym membership and spending $200 to $300 on prescription meds just to help you feel normal…Perspective is everything!

Osteoporosis: Fight!

You can strengthen your bones and avoid osteoporosis and its close cousin osteopenia by exercising and eating right. Even better, if you have osteoporosis, you can dramatically slow its progress.

How, you ask?

First, we have to understand that bones do not necessarily have a preset timeline. Generally, we tend to think that we have been born with a certain bone density that gets better through the mid-twenties and then begins to decline until you die. On the contrary, bones are moving tissues. Specialized cells that disassemble (osteoclasts) and build bone (osteoblasts) send these tissues in to a continuous state of breakdown and renewal. Osteoporosis/penia is diagnosed when the bones breakdown faster than they can be repaired and holes form, which results in weakness.

We see then that the key to building strong bone is to increase the release of osteoblasts to a specific region. And make sure those cells have enough spackle to do the restorative work they need to do.

 

DRUGS! NOM NOM NOM!

You may consider taking supplemental Vitamin D and calcium. If you take a combination supplement, it’s recommended that people under 50 take 400 to 800 and people over 50 take 800 to 1000 IU a day. I have personally found much success with 5,000 to 10,000 IU a day. This higher dose may also be associated with decreases in body/belly fat.

 

EXERCISE!

“Which is better? The treadmill or elliptical?”

Your body will adapt to whatever you put it through and studies have actually shown that bones develop stress lines. While stress lines are less than desirable on the face, bones  strengthen themselves in a pattern that protects the tissue from whatever stress it encounters. So if you jog and slam the end of your leg bones in to the treadmill, you constantly cause a trauma that your body builds up a resistance for….it strengthens your leg bone.

The constant impact across the length of the bones sends a signal  to your body. This signal lets your system know it needs to send more calcium-carrying Osteoclasts to strengthen the “attacked” tissue.

The same goes for weight/resistance training. Although a 15-25 repetition exercise is great for building stability and increasing endurance, it doesn’t do much for strengthening bone…so those of you who do water aerobics, aerobics classes and high-repetition programs aren’t doing much for your bones.  Eight to Twelve repetition exercises (meaning that you can’t do more than twelve because the weight is so heavy) have been shown to increase/maintain bone density.

 

 What if I’m not old and don’t have Osteoporosis?

Osteoporosis starts earlier in life than you may think. If you consistently have too little calcium in your diet, your body will use up some of the supply in your blood and then begin leaching it from your BONES (remember that calcium is used in many areas of the body including muscle contraction).  Without calcium available, the muscles of the body won’t be able to function…it only makes sense that the body would begin to eat at its supporting structure rather than cease the function of your heart, lungs and muscles….think about starving in a gingerbread house!

 

Other Tips: 

Eat your calcium (spinach, leafy greens, milk), exercise regularly and get SUN!

Kettlebell Swing Workout

High Intensity Interal Training is one of the best ways to kick your body in to fat burning high gear. It increases the amount if hormone like IGF-1 and growth hormone to force your body to work better. Try this simple workout and push to total exhaustion!

10 kb swings (35 to 45 pounds) and 10 second rest
Repeat this 20 times for a total of 200 KB swings

Enjoy your body fat loss.

Do you have any good interval workouts?

Tip 3: Easy Steps to Lose Weight Without Starving

You should never starve yourself to lose weight.  If you are, something you are doing is wrong.
I know you have carefully researched the USDA food pyramid and eat exactly according to your calories in vs. calories out goals, you have the right magazine advice and eat low-fat everything but listen to me.
If you’re starving, you’re wrong and I’ll tell you how to fix it.

1. Take 3 to 6 grams of omega 3 from fish oil a day. 

This is ground zero and the type you take matters. Forget the amount of fish oil written on the front and look for EPA and DHA on the back. Take enough to get as close to 6 grams as you can for a couple weeks, then taper off a bit depending on your body. The stuff increases peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors, which aid in using fat on a molecular level.  It also helps rebalance your Omega 6 to omega 3 ratio, which will help lower inflammation within the body

2. Take a multivitamin
Dump the centrum. Search consumer labs.com for a quality multi you can afford. Without enough vitamins and minerals, your body can not function properly, which means no matter how much you exercise, your body won’t use the fat you want it to and you stay fat.

3. Eat meat with every meal
Try to move toward exotic, grass-fed and free range animals like elk, grass-fed beef, kangaroo, buffalo, etc. these meat have far higher levels of Omega 3 and Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA). CLA will decrease your body’s production of lipoprotein lipase, an enzyme that makes your body store fat. You can also get CLA in milk and eggs.
Don’t worry about the saturated fat…I’ll write on this later but it’s carb and trans fats that are the real enemy. While saturated fat raises bad cholesterol a little, it raises good cholesterol a LOT.

4. Eat seeds and nuts as a snack
Pumpkin seeds, almonds, pecans and walnuts are some of the best choices around Pumpkin seeds have a tremendously high magnesium count, which is good if you want your sugar absorbers to work well. Yes, they are high fat but the fat is mostly Omega 3 and the snack will make you really satisfied.
5. Eat tons of raw veggies
This is your carb, devour them! You can also cook them lightly in olive or coconut oil but make sure they stay bright…less cooking time equals more nutrients.

6. Drop gluten, all sweets and dairy for two weeks
You may have an allergy and not know it. If you hop back on after two weeks and notice fatigue, swelling, lethargy, itching or bloating and gas, you’re probably allergic or intolerant and it could be slowing your weight loss and killing your body.

7. Sleep 7 to 8 hours a night
No tv or computer right before. Think about melatonin if you can’t sleep.

8. Only eat when you feel hungry and stop when you feel satisfied
Break your emotional attachment to food.

9. If you can’t kill it with a spear or it isn’t bright green, yellow or orange, don’t eat it.
Easy enough.

There’s your starting point. You will not starve, you WILL drop fat and you will be healthy  if you do this. Remember, this is not a diet, its a lifestyle. Good luck!

Salmon Salad

1 Cup Spinach

1/4 cup Garbonzo beans

1/4 cup Black Beans

4 -6 oz. Wild Alaskan Salmon

Mesquite BBQ seasoning

Dash of Salt

Dash of Pepper

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Fat: 3 g

Sugar: 6

Fiber: 6.5

Protein: 45.5

Calories: 320

If you’re not used to eating your salads without dressings, get used to it. The minor subtraction from your meal reduces unnecessary sugars and man-made chemicals and forces you to add other sources of flavor such as fruit, nuts, etc. The Salmon in this dish is absolutely loaded with high-quality Omega 3s. Go the extra mile and get wild-caught fish. Remember that whatever chemicals were in your meat’s body will be in yours…get some happy salmon.