Wednesday, June 25, 2014

BEGINNING YEAR # 5 ON ZERO CARB


I just cannot believe I am beginning YEAR 5 of a ZERO CARB diet. What amasses me is I feel today, more then ever, that this way of eating is a safe, healthy and let’s say it, easy way to take care of my nutritional needs and my mental drive to “eat to survive”.

Interestingly, I must also admit one of the great quality of ZERO CARB is it’s sustainability aside being a quite satisfying way to eat. I never feel deprived and if I am hungry, I can eat as soon and as much as I want. In a few words it has nothing in common with low-fat or low-calories boring and unsustainable diets which, according to ALL studies, are doomed to failure 95% of the time…

So let’s begin about the “fun part” of ZERO CARB: it is an easy diet to do.

OK, maybe some of you will not appreciate this “easy” quality of this diet but in today’s busy world, I, myself, jolly do.

First, the shopping: you do not have to spend half of your Saturday morning running through 3 supermarkets to do your weekly shopping. Usually, one stop is enough. Entering the store, you go directly to the meat stand, pick up any cuts of beef, pork, lamb or chicken …or duck, turkey, sausages, organ meats, name them… and you are done. Maybe sometimes, you may enjoy adding different items to make a change from meat, such as fish or seafood and so, you may go to them. Finally, the ultimate treat, you pick up some butter, some cheese and maybe some heavy cream and you are out of there and free to enjoy the day!!!

Life is easy on ZERO CARB as most of these ingredients do keep well and for long periods of time, can be frozen and are easy to prepare. You do not have to look for ripe fruits or fresh vegetables that will not survive long in your kitchen or fridge, that requires cleaning, chopping and special cooking, And I am avoiding the subjects of looking for fresh bread, all the kitchen mess of cooking pastries and let me say eat, the stress of doing a mistake in a recipe and having to do it all again…

Aside overcooking a piece of meat, the ZERO CARB way of eating do eliminate a lot of hassle in one’s life!!!

Of course, someone may argue life is also good on “read to eat highly processed food” but this is there personal choice and I am not here to discuss about this…

I do often get the same questions, on and on, about this way of eating and it is: “Don’t you get fed up always eating the same thing?” Well I am now beginning year 5 on ZERO CARB and my daily lunch is “eggs lightly cooked in an ocean of salty butter” and each day I am pleased to sit down and enjoy of my plate of sunny yolks!!!

Of course, one can be very imaginative on ZERO CARB and create amazing plates: fish and seafood ceviche, shrimp Carpaccio, smoked salmon and fresh mozzarella, beef filet with creamy gorgonzola sauce, butter chicken, rosemary lamb roast, beef tartar, crab cakes, stuffed pork filet, sea bass with béarnaise sauce, only your imagination can limit the endless list of possibilities.

But in “real life”, a simple piece of meat grilled to perfection does satisfy my daily evening needs…

OK, enough about the fun part; let’s looks at the serious stuff.

Is ZERO CARB it a safe way of eating?

If you have been a regular reader of this blog, you probably know I had a serious check-up last year and the results were more then excellent. My hearth CT-SCAN came with a score of ZERO for coronary calcium, putting me at extremely low risk for hearth disease, my blood test profile was more then perfect with an astonishingly low “glycated hemoglobin” at 4.4, which means I had extremely low quantities of glucose circulating in my blood at all time in the last 2-3 months, and my “body inflammation levels” were more then good. All this meaning that, according to today’s medical knowledge, I am at low risk for developing cancer, Alzheimer, neurologic diseases and hearth disease.

Coming from a family with very bad genes, I am quite please with this diet and these results. Of course, I do realize there is probably a limit to what I can prevent as I am also expose to environmental pollution, a lot of chemicals in my daily life and “nowadays stress of life”, but I do feel ZERO CARB has a very positive effect on my ACTUAL QUALITY OF LIFE.

I think this is probably my most powerful motivation to continue this way of eating:
I feel well in my body and in my head TODAY AND NOW, I sleep well, I am active on a daily basis and do not have to push myself to do things.

In a few words, I cannot see myself going back to my old way of eating full of carbohydrates, unneeded dietary fibers and inflammation stimulating vegetable oils…

Of course, there is the subject of SUGAR. The “addictive you will find everywhere” sugar that is extremely difficult to avoid. Did you know that in today’s regular salt that you may buy at any supermarket, producers are now adding dextrose?

Sugar is our enemy # 1 and anyone that wants to do ZERO CARB must first deal with his relationship with sugar or he will fail on a long run. And I am including all the other “sweet stuff” here, from aspartame to stevia. I always say to anyone telling me he could never stop sweets that the trick to stop consuming sugar is to find new ways “to celebrate life” aside eating sugary treats.

Finally, the last most common question I get aside “variety” and “sugar” on a ZERO CARB diet is: “Where do you get your vitamins?”

Clearly, my diet is providing me with some vitamins, as we all well know meat brings in a lot of nutrition from amino acids to antioxidants but also lots of vitamins. VITAMINS DO NOT COME ONLY FROM FRUITS AND VEGETABLES. The best example is essential vitamin B12: it comes only from animal sources!!!

But the greatest quality about the ZERO CARB diet is that avoiding the intake of carbohydrate stimulate your body to do 2 things: it stops leaking nutrients as most of them do compete with sugar at the kidney level (when you do eat some), and it puts your metabolism in an healthy “recycling mode” to preserve your reserves of vitamins.

I am now beginning year 5 of a “TOTALLY VITAMIN C FREE DIET ACCORDING TO ANY NUTRITIONIST” and even so, I have not developed and sign of scurvy (vitamin C deficiency).

We do all recall stories about early settles crossing oceans during months to discover new world and developing scurvy, scurvy that was easily treated afterward by adding citrus fruits to their diets. But as citrus fruits could not be kept for long months… and BECAUSE they were also eating sugar and flour (that did keep well…) while travelling, their vitamin C was washed out of their bodies to give priority to preserving glucose in the “final glomerular loop reuptake” step of the kidney function.

I remember reading Charles Washington writings on ZERO CARB many years ago and one thing he said did strike me at this time (and still does today…): when someone begins to do ZERO CARB, after even a short period like 6 months, he rarely goes back to an earlier way of eating. The reason being the impact this way of eating has on one’s health and well-being are so great, these improvements overcomes any incentives to eat “the old way”.

Denis









Wednesday, June 18, 2014

SCAMS IN NUTRITION OF INTEREST ON A ZERO CARB DIET

 "THE SCAM OF WHOLE GRAIN":

If there has been a scam in the wild world of nutrition, the one that needs to be mentioned is about the “whole grain” insanity.

I use the word “insanity” on purpose because we really need to fight this very wrong thinking. I am especially shock when I see nutritionists recommending to diabetics to eat whole grain products just to see them getting absolutely no control on there blood glucose and, still, continuing to eat them with the final results of getting their medication increased… Yes, it is pure insanity.

The mention “whole grain” do, on one side, have good intentions: it would mean the grains were less processed thus preserving more nutrition, including more fibers, more vitamins and minerals. But, sadly, this is far away from the “reality of whole grain”.

Let me explain.

The best example is the “whole grain bread”. First, the food companies have learned very early how to get a bread to look healthy, meaning giving a dark and warm color without using any whole grain at all. Interestingly, they also can make “whole grain bread” that is “white” to satisfy this particular request of some consumers… So, as you may see, appearance of bread has absolutely no relation with its nutrient content.

Then, if you have ever read with attention the content of any commercial bread, you would have observe that even if they do contain SOME whole flour, MOST of this ingredient, at the end, is still “white refined bleached flour”. The reason being the bread taste better and keeps LONGER, this translating itself as “more profitable” for the producers… and certainly no health benefit for the consumers. Anyway, as you may know, bread should be made with flour, water, salt and yeast. But today’s commercial bread do contain between 15 to 20 ingredients including fructose, which gives a nice taste, a colorful crust… and a longer shelve life… Strangely, the moment some whole grain is on the list, companies are allowed to sell it as a whole grain product.

Now for the reality.

The difference between a slice of “white bread” and a slice of supposed “whole grain bread” is, on the average, one gram of fiber. How can anyone think, including doctors and nutritionist, that consuming one gram of fiber by portion of bread will have any health benefit? The effect it will have on lowering the speed of sugar absorption (glycemic index) is about… nothing. This is the scam and it needs to be known by everyone.

If you look into the data of a food composition website, you could see one slice of whole wheat bread contains 2 g fiber BUT also 2 g of sugar, WHILE white bread, even if containing only 1 g fiber, do also contain ONLY 1 g sugar… Really.

Imagine now if a diabetic eats the recommended 6 to 9 portions of this kind of whole grain product per day: yes, he will get some amount of fibers but the relation to the total amount of carbohydrates will sky rocket their blood sugar and, in any person at risk, rapidly cause a full bloom metabolic syndrome.

You may also use the same scam and imagine the reality of all the whole grain products that are push on us every day from breakfast cereals, pasta, energy bars, crackers, name them.

Of course, for someone that can metabolize easily carbohydrates, which is now down, according to some studies, to a maximum of 10 % of the population, this kind of whole grain products may be OK. But again, as it contains only a fraction of the real whole grain, it gives them a fake sensation of security. Because, on the long run, these fake whole grain products with the huge amount of refined flour will “get to them and “screw” their metabolism… I assure you.

Finally, the saddest part of this story about the whole grain scam is the consequences for diabetics and all the related presentation of the metabolic syndrome. This is catastrophic.

I will be honest and answer the ultimate question: what if one can find real whole grain? Well look at the difference: a slice of 100% whole grain bread will contain 3 g of sugar BUT ALSO 4 G OF SUGAR. So even if the fiber has a positive impact on blood sugar, at the end you will have to deal with metabolizing much more sugar…



“THE SCAM OF ORGANIC FOOD”:

Just like me, you probably read on a daily basis a lot of information on organic products. It is a big market and it has taken a larger part of the supermarket space in the last years, no doubt about it. And everyday, we all meet folks saying they are into “organic food”, convince they are following the best path available for their health.

The concept of organic food is appealing; I do not need to explain why. But is it all true? Could it be also a scam like the whole grain? Could it be we are again exploited by the food industry?

So let me do some comments about a surpassingly “organic food” scam.

What I like to do from time to time is to go to a Whole Food supermarket and have a walk around.

The first section of the store is usually made up of fruits and vegetables. What is absolutely astonishing is to realise how many of these food items are actually NOT organic. Surely, one must be very attentive when purchasing and must read with attention the labels. After a rough estimate, I would say between 60-80 % of the fruits and vegetables FOR SALE in this kind of store are actually NOT organic…

I remember one time where I wanted to purchase an “organic” piece of beef. Yes, the cuts looked really nice but after inspection AND asking the butcher, there was NO one of piece of “organic beef” available in the entire store…

In the “fish section”, even if I could find wild caught fishes, I could make the same kind of discoveries: it was full of farm-raised fishes!

Then moving on into different alleys, I was under shock to see how much processed food was available. Yes, they were containing organic ingredients but when a simple crackers, which should contain 3-4 ingredients, is made of 15+ ingredients, I have a lot of doubt about the health qualities…

In the dairy section, of course, there was all these insane 0% fat products full of carbohydrates and an array of “reinforced” products such as milk with added omega-3 (but low-fat…), artificially produced vitamins C and D, ect…

I tried to look for some organic toothpaste: they were all full of chemicals, from saccharin to something called “natural colorings”…

Finally, at the cashier, I was not surprise to see how one small bag of shopping items cost a fortune… At the end, I was not surprise to realize the cost of organic products are 50 to 100 % more expensive then the regular items.

Back home and after doing some research, interestingly, I learned that there is NO difference between “coconut oil” and “organic coconut oil”, as the farming of this crop never requires any chemicals. But there is a huge price difference. The same thing is also true for many everyday ingredients: paprika for example, requires no pesticide to grow but may be sold with an “organic label" while being exactly the same product as the regular stuff.

Recent studies have found that even if organic food contains fewer pesticides, they still do contain a CERTAIN quantity of residues. Interestingly, to get the USDA label approval for ‘organic product”, it needs to contain 95 % of organic ingredients. Do you know how much the other 5 % of the UNORGANIC INGREDIENTS is an open door for unwanted molecules? A lot…

So to think "going organic" brings you safety and good health, you are living in a dream. I do not advocate we stop offering this option but one have to be vigilant when purchasing these ingredients.

For myself, I do often buy organic butter and eggs, The main reason being they look and taste better. For the rest, I have lost since a long time the belief this kind of choice will assume me health and longevity. BUT I STRONGLY BELEIVE THE BEST WAY TO REACH THESE KIND OF RESULTS IS TO GO... ZERO CARB!!!

Denis












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