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SANE Show: Eat More. Lose More. Smile More. with Jonathan Bailor

Welcome to Wellness 2.0 Where Starvation Isn't Healthy! When it comes to most things in life, we welcome the latest advances in science. Could you imagine using the same phones we used in the 50 years ago? So isn’t it time to free yourself from obsolete and oppressive wellness theories from the 1960’s like calorie counting? You don’t have to go hungry or do complex math to live your best life. With the new science of SANE living, optimal wellness for everyone in your life is simpler than you ever imagined. Listen more. Learn more. Laugh more. Live better!
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Now displaying: July, 2014
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Jul 27, 2014

DR. MAO SHING NI, L.AC., D.O.M., PH.D., DIPL. C.H., DIPL. ABAAP

Dr. Mao is a Licensed Acupuncturist, a Diplomate of Chinese Herbology and a Diplomate in Anti-Aging. He is currently in general practice with special interest in immune, hormonal and aging related conditions. He was awarded the Outstanding Acupuncturist of the Year Award in 1987. Dr. Mao along with his brother (Dr. Dao) and their father founded Yo San University of Traditional Chinese Medicine in Santa Monica. He is currently director and a professor of Chinese medicine at Yo San University. Dr. Mao is a member of the American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine, the AOM ALLIANCE, American Society of Acupuncturist, the American Association of Acupuncturist & Oriental Medicine and National certification Commission for Acupuncturist & Oriental Medicine Diplomate in Chinese Herbology.

Jul 27, 2014

Feel in control and empower yourself with a transformational way of thinking about wellness.

Jul 20, 2014

Go behind the scenes and get inspired as you hear how Carrie overcame tremendous medical obstacles to achieve her optimal wellness.

Jul 12, 2014

This week we cover how to determine the right level of SANE carbs you should be eating.

Full Transcription

Carrie: Hello, everyone. This is Carrie Brown and with me I have Mr. Jonathan Bailor.

Jonathan: We are here, Carrie, on the newly-titled Calorie Myth and Smarter Science of Slim show because we couldn’t decide how to rename the show so we just said, let’s call it everything. Yay!

Carrie: Everything, yay! Stereo yay’s.

Jonathan: Stereo yay’s. Actually, Carrie, it’s been out for a while now, but I wanted to draw our listeners’ attention to the fact that they don’t have to be just listeners anymore. They can actually be viewers.

Carrie: Viewers.

Jonathan: Viewers. Not viewers of Carrie and I talking because Carrie will not allow that to happen despite the fact that I want it to happen. However, we have started a new video podcast, or vodcast as the Internet people call it. If you’re on iTunes, just check out – if you’re not on iTunes you can just download it on your PC or on your Mac – and just type in “Calorie Myth” or just type in “Jonathan Bailor,” and you can check out our new video podcast which has all sorts of great videos.

It was pretty amazing and actually debuted in the number one slot on iTunes for video podcasts in the alternative health category. Thank you so much for everyone who’s already tuned in, and if you haven’t, check it out in iTunes, “Calorie Myth.” It will say “Calorie Myth videos” versus this show which just says, “Calorie Myth.” Woo-hoo!

Carrie: What viewing delights can we expect?

Jonathan: Viewing delights. There’s all sorts of viewing delights. One piece of feedback we got actually last year, Carrie, that we’re going to try to do a better job of this year is people said it’s awesome all the content team Calorie Myth and SANEity is putting out, but it’s all over the place and I can’t keep tabs on it. What we’re going to try and do is to consolidate and streamline all of our content for you. We have lots of videos. As folks know, we did a bunch of videos with former “biggest losers” from NBC, we have our fun animated videos, we have our non-profit educational videos, we have new videos, we’re filming with some really exciting partners, which I almost just shared and I am actually legally not allowed to share yet so I’m glad I didn’t.

All of those are going to be distributed in this one channel so you don’t need to look all over the web for them.

Carrie: Awesome.

Jonathan: Woo-hoo!

Carrie: Fantastic. That means we have to think less and we love that.

Jonathan: We can think less and eat more and sleep more. What could be better?

Carrie: I cannot think of anything.

Jonathan: Well, what could actually be better, Carrie, is talking about the awesome question that you brought up to me for us to tackle in today’s show.

Carrie: About 300 episodes ago, you mentioned that there was such a thing as high fat, low carb SANE and low fat, high carb SANE. You just touched on it briefly and we never really talked about it. I have questions about what that would look like, and who would do that and why. I thought it would be helpful for everybody to understand variations of SANEity.

Jonathan: I love, love, love this question, Carrie, and it actually ties back to something that, while doing some of the press and media for the Calorie Myth, I would often get asked questions about certain diets: “What do you think about this diet? What do you think about this diet? What do you think about this diet?” I came to this really interesting realization, which is if you look at any lifestyle or eating habit that has withstood the test of time – withhold all judgment and just think about eating habits that have withstood the test of time.

Veganism, vegetarianism, South Beach, Mediterranean, low carb, Paleo, all of them. You’ll notice they all have one thing in common. None of them tell you to count calories or to eat less. They all tell you to eat different and higher qualities of food, right? Vegans aren’t saying eat less. They’re saying eat all plants and no animals. Paleo is definitely not saying eat less. They’re saying eat higher quality natural foods.

The reason I bring this up is then people say, “Well, what’s your diet Jonathan?” As listeners of this show know, it’s not its own diet, what it is is healthy 2.0. It’s the way to think about foods and however you want to then customize your lifestyle to best meet your needs. If you’re a vegan, you can be a SANE vegan. If you like eating low carb, high fat, you can be SANE low carb, high fat, and if you prefer a higher carbohydrate lifestyle, then you can be SANE in that higher carbohydrate lifestyle.

Certainly SANEity out of the box is going to share characteristics with certain lifestyles more than others, but we can absolutely customize it based on our taste preferences.

Carrie: I love this. Love.

Jonathan: Taste preferences?

Carrie: I love the fact that you can apply SANEity to everything.

Jonathan: Yes, you absolutely can. Even things that aren’t traditionally thought of as diets such as kosher and halal. Both Carrie and I work at Microsoft. There’s a lot of individuals who practice kosher and halal lifestyles, and that’s just like being vegan, Paleo, low carb or anything. It’s just saying of all the foods in the world, you already pick from this subset, and now we’re just saying here’s a tool set for you to pick the best within that subset.

Carrie: Awesome. I love it.

Jonathan: Specific to your question, though, Carrie, was if we’re going to do higher fat or higher carbohydrate, there is also this implied question, which is what about protein? Let’s actually cover protein first. That’s one area that is not flexible because protein is required. The reason that fat versus carbohydrate is flexible is because they’re both energy sources. Protein isn’t an energy source. If you don’t eat protein, you die. You can’t not eat protein. You would perish off the earth because your body’s made of protein.

So eating protein is required. There’s no such thing as low protein SANEity because eating a low protein diet is insane. It’s like eating a low vitamin and mineral diet. It’s insane.

Carrie: That’s very simple. Got it.

Jonathan: It’s very simple. From a protein perspective, it is one of the required components of a SANE lifestyle. You’re going to be eating between 100 and 200 grams of protein per day spread out throughout the day depending on your size, activity level, and taste preferences. But then when it comes to where you get your energy from – because remember, protein isn’t an energy source. It’s a structural component of our body, and that actually gets back to the whole inefficiency thing. Remember your body has to do all these conversions, blah, blah, blah.

When it comes to your energy source, where you get your energy from, you can eat a balance of fat and carbohydrate, you can eat mostly fat or you could eat mostly carbohydrate. Should we talk about what might work best for who?

Carrie: Right.

Jonathan: Okay, so from a just purely subjective, scientific perspective.

Carrie: Why would someone chose to do high fat, low carb and vice versa?

Jonathan: To be very, very clear if we look at the scientific research as well as the epidemiological research – and when I say epidemiological I mean people just observing other people – there are millions, more than that, there are billions of case studies showing that a SANE high carb lifestyle can lead to health and slimness. The canonical example that is always discussed in the ancestral community is the Catawbans (?) which is a group of people who eat a 90-plus percent carbohydrate diet but it’s coming from SANEr sources.

Therefore, they achieve positive health outcomes. Contrast that with the Inuits or Eskimos who eat upwards of a 90 percent fat diet but again getting them from natural SANEr sources. Both of them achieve dramatically better health outcomes than the standard American or western diet, thus providing some useful observational evidence that as long as it’s SANE it can work well. Now we just need to say if you want optimal, or if you have pre-existing medical conditions, or if you have taste preferences, how do you make your choice? Make sense?

Carrie: Yeah.

Jonathan: All right, so from a purely SANEity optimization perspective, personally, based on the research I’ve reviewed, it seems quite clear that getting most of your energy from fat is the optimal state. The reason for this I think is quite profound. And that’s if you think about how you’re body is meant to fuel itself, your body is meant to fuel itself by regulating your fat stores, right? If you don’t have enough energy, your body should just be able to say, boop! I am going to just burn fat off your hips. It doesn’t matter that you just didn’t eat food through your lips, because I’ve got food stored on your body, and I can easily burn that if I need to.

It’s a fact your body is optimized around fueling itself based on fat as evidenced by the fact that you can store fat readily on your body, but you can’t store, for all intents and purposes, carbohydrate in your body. You can store a little bit of what’s called glycogen in your muscles, but for all intents and purposes, if you eat too much carbohydrate it gets stored as fat. Fat is the energy source for your body. Wouldn’t it make sense, and it bears out in clinical practice, that if you want to make your body good at burning body fat, the best way to train it to do that is to make it good at burning fat in general, which means its preferred fuel source should be fat?

If you eat predominantly carbohydrate your body will get used to running on carbohydrate, and if you don’t eat carbohydrate your body will say, I’m hungry, because it has no carbohydrate and it has no stored carbohydrate. So it will drive cravings and hunger. Whereas if you eat predominantly fat, your body becomes used to burning fat as energy. And if you don’t eat enough fat, your body can just say, well, I already have fat stored, aka you become what researchers call fat-adapted, and you regain your ability to burn stored fat as fuel.

Carrie: I love how simple you make everything. Thank you.

Jonathan: You’re welcome.

Carrie: I hope this isn’t inserting this in the wrong place. Is this what they call ketosis?

Jonathan: Kind of. Ketosis-ish yes. Ketosis is when your body is fueling itself basically on fat instead of sugar, so yes, for all intents and purposes, yes. The other reason I prefer fat being the primary source of energy, and again I am not saying it’s the only way to go, but just based on my research, as well as if you look at the success rates of various lifestyles, the long term success rates for individuals who are struggling with overweight and obesity is consistently higher in clinical trials for lower carbohydrate, higher fat SANE lifestyles than it is for higher carbohydrate SANE lifestyles.

It doesn’t mean people cannot eat carbohydrates and be healthy. It just means if you’re not reaching your goals and if you’re insulin-resistant and metabolically clogged, higher fat, lower carb is probably going to work out better for you. The other reason from a nutritional perspective that I prefer higher fat, lower carbohydrate is the only way you can eat a higher carbohydrate diet is to eat a diet that contains a lot of nonessential things.

For example if you were to just eat the highest quality sources of carbohydrate as defined by SANEity, the forms of carbohydrate you are going to be eating are non-starchy vegetables, trace amounts of carbohydrate in certain nuts and seeds, as well as the carbohydrate found in low-sugar fruit such as berries and citrus. If that’s where you’re getting your carbohydrate from, it is very hard to get more than thirty percent of your calories from carbohydrate. You would just have to eat…

Carrie: Right because your stomach would explode.

Jonathan: It just wouldn’t work. Now contrast that with fat. It is very easy to get, if you wanted, 90 percent of your calories from the highest quality sources of fat. The highest quality sources of fat are going to be things like avocados, flax seeds, chia seeds, fatty fish, things like coconut, cocoa. Those types of optimal fats are very calorically glorious.

Carrie: Dense.

Jonathan: Dense, exactly. If you want to eat an abundance of them, which you should, by definition you are going to get most of your energy from fat.

Carrie: So how about eating full-fat versions of dairy? Would that work for this?

Jonathan: Full-fat versions of dairy are fine if you are doing a high fat, low carbohydrate SANE lifestyle because by definition a full fat version of a dairy food – the fats found in dairy, while they are not bad for you, are not optimal for you.

Carrie: That wouldn’t be the SANEst route to go? You could do that to up your fat but that just isn’t the SANEst option?

Jonathan: Well, if you’re going low carb, high fat, you would probably do that simply because you’re not really worried about your fat intake because you’re not eating very much carbohydrate. What you really want to watch out for is this middle ground of eating things that aren’t optimally SANE carbohydrate while simultaneously eating non-optimal sources of fat, because remember SANEity is about maximizing quality.

It’s about saying regardless of what your preferences are, within your set of preferences maximize quality. Whenever possible eat the highest quality of fats, eat the highest quality proteins and eat the highest quality of carbohydrate. If you decide to eat non-optimal fats and non-optimal carbohydrate and if you’re going over 30 percent of your calories from carbohydrate you have to do that because that’s the only – non-optimal sources of carbohydrate are things like quinoa, oats, sweet potatoes. Things that obviously aren’t going to kill you, but they’re not as good for you as green leafy vegetables.

If you’re thinking, I am going to eat a bunch of full fat dairy and a bunch of quinoa and that gives you 70 percent of your calories, well, you just missed out on all of the nutrition you could be getting from higher-quality carbohydrate and fats.

Carrie: Got it. Just run down a quick bullet point list of the fats we should be focusing on if we are doing high fat, low carb SANE.

Jonathan: If you’re doing high fat, low carb it depends on how low carb you’re going. If you don’t eat any fruit and you don’t eat any non-starchy vegetables and you don’t eat any processed sugar or starch, meaning you’re staying below seventy five grams of carbohydrate per day, we’re saying if all of your carbohydrate is coming from top-tier, non-starchy vegetables, the optimal fats are what I just listed.

They’re things like macadamia nuts, chia seeds, flax seeds, fatty fish, cocoa, coconut, avocado, whole eggs, and grassfed beef would be your optimal – and any source of seafood would be your optimal sources of fat. But if you eat other forms of fat, that’s totally fine because you have to get energy from somewhere. You’re not getting it from carbohydrate so you get it from fat. You just don’t want to get it from lower quality sources of fat instead of higher quality sources of fat.

Carrie: Got it.

Jonathan: Make sense?

Carrie: Very useful. Thank you.

Jonathan: If you are choosing to go on a higher carbohydrate version of SANEity what that means, and this is actually true – I wish I had a whiteboard, but I can’t do it because we aren’t doing a video, we’re not doing a vodcast.

Carrie: We’re not doing a vodcast. Thank goodness.

Jonathan: Wherever you choose to get the majority of your calories from, that’s the area that’s going to be a little more flexible in terms of quality. For example, if you’re getting the vast majority of your calories from fat, obviously a wider array of fats are available to you, but by definition you would then be eating fewer carbohydrate. If you want to get the vast majority of your calories from carbohydrate, you’re going to have a broader array of carbohydrate to choose from simply because that’s the only way to get that many calories from carbohydrate.

But if you go high carbohydrate, then the calories you get from fat have to be optimal because you only have, let’s say, 20 – I don’t think anyone should eat a only 20 percent fat diet, I mean that’s too low, but let’s say you ate a 20 percent diet. I would urge you to have 100 percent of that 20 percent be from optimal fats rather than, say, cheese, which would be a suboptimal fat. The less percent of your diet that a macronutrient is, the higher quality it has to be simply because the less of it you’re eating.

Carrie: Got it.

Jonathan: That’s why when people eat a low carbohydrate lifestyle – even the most ardent Atkins fans, who are going sub-fifty grams of carbohydrate per day, are still saying you must eat green leafy vegetables. In fact in the newest Atkins book, A New Atkins for A New You, which is a great read, very, very, very science-based, they explicitly say green leafy vegetables are required throughout. Because if you’ve got only 5 percent of your calories that you can get from carbohydrate, you need to squeeze all the nutrition you can out of those carbohydrates.

Carrie: Go spinach!

Jonathan: Spinach and kale and chard. We’ve been killing it with different greens recently, Carrie. We’ve been having Swiss chard, we’ve been having mustard greens, we’ve been having collard greens, and we’ve been having this red kale and then this other kind of kale that looks like dinosaur fingers. I don’t know what it’s called.

Carrie: Whatever works, Jonathan. Whatever works.

Jonathan: Does that help answer the low carb, high carb/low fat, high fat conundrum?

Carrie: It does. Well, except I’m still unclear about who would do this.

Jonathan: The primary thing that both common sense and research show is that the lifestyle that works for you is the one that brings you enjoyment and you’re going to stick with. If you’re someone who prefers the taste of sweet and starchy to fatty and savory, you’re going to have more success on a higher carb, lower fat SANEity.

Carrie: Got it.

Jonathan: If you’re someone who prefers creamy and fatty and savory, then you’re going to do better on the higher fat version. I personally think it’s easier to go higher fat because you can use natural non-caloric sweeteners to approximate the taste of sweets, whereas there’s no way to approximate the taste of fat. There’s some processed nonsense being thought up by scientists right now, but even when that comes out I wouldn’t recommend using it.

Also, from a scientific perspective the studies that have examined it have shown that individuals who are struggling with their weight or who are struggling with diabetes without question have higher success rates on a lower carbohydrate, higher fat version of SANEity. Taste and sustainability is priority number one, but setting that to the side for a second from an experimental, from a clinical perspective, from an ease of implementation perspective, and from an ease of getting the highest quality foods possible, if I personally had to make one recommendation, it would be higher fat, lower carbohydrate.

Again I caveat that with if it doesn’t work for you, it’s not going to work, so you’ve got to find something that works for you.

Carrie: Awesome. I love how simple you make this stuff. Thank you very much.

Jonathan: Simple!

Carrie: Yay.

Jonathan: Carrie.

Carrie: You’re awesome.

Jonathan: Woo-hoo! We are awesome, SANEity is awesome, the brilliant researchers who made this all possible are awesome, and this is a good show, I think.

Carrie: I think so. I think we’ve cleared up a lot of questions.

Jonathan: Lots of questions.

Carrie: We love that because that means people don’t have to think as much. They can think about things that matter instead of the things that don’t.

Jonathan: Yes. It’s not that they’re not thinking. It’s that they can do higher quality thinking.

Carrie: There we go. Smarter thinking.

Jonathan: Smarter thinking. Carrie, remember, and listeners, this week and every week after eat smarter, exercise smarter and live better. We’ll chat with you soon.

Carrie: See ya.

[Audio Ends 21:45]

Jonathan: Wait, wait don’t stop listening yet.

Carrie: You can get fabulous free SANE recipes over at carriebrown.com.

Jonathan: Don’t forget your 100 percent free eating and exercise quick start program as well as free fun daily tips delivered right into your inbox at bailorgroup.com.

Jul 5, 2014

Full Transcription

JONATHAN: Welcome to the Smarter Science of Slim, the scientifically proven program where you eat more and exercise less to burn fat and boost health.
CARRIE: Eat smarter. Exercise smarter. Live better. I am so ready for that! Hi, everyone. This is Carrie Brown at the Sane Show and with me I have the dashing Jonathan Bailor.
JONATHAN: Dashing, indeed, I guess. Dashing is one of those words that is not used as frequently anymore.
CARRIE: That’s why I used it. It is underused. It is an underappreciated word. Dashing.
JONATHAN: There was a word that I used the other day which was not… I don’t remember. Anyway, dashing! We are going to continue with delightful reader questions this week, or listener questions or viewer questions depending on whether or not…
CARRIE: Community questions.
JONATHAN: People! Questions from dashing people.
CARRIE: Yes. All right. First up we have a question from Mel [?sp?]-Hershel who wants to know can you each too much protein? And with smoothies and shakes, can you put on weight if the ratios of what you put in them are not right?
JONATHAN: Great question, Mel and a quick reminder to everybody. Remember, you are welcome to come over to our Facebook group to ask questions. But please, please remember that you can ask questions immediately to Google or to Bing, your search engine of choice and you can get immediate answers to lots and lots of questions already answered online and search engines are great at finding them.
But thank you so much Mel. The answer to your question is yes, you can eat too much protein. You can eat too much of anything and I don’t say that to make an obvious point. What I mean is, for example, you can drink too much water but it is very difficult to drink too much water. It is very easy to consume too much arsenic because arsenic is very very toxic whereas water is not toxic at all. So it is possible to eat too much of anything. The real issue we need to think about is how easy is it to eat too much of anything?
It is extremely easy to eat too much arsenic, so just a little bit of arsenic in your food, if you eat it, you’re not going to have good results. You’d have too really really, really try hard to drink to much water, but people have died from over-consuming water. You can look it up online. So can you eat too much protein? You absolutely can, but I think what would be really helpful is for us to think about how easy or how hard it is to eat too much protein.
Now if you’re eating your protein from whole food sources, which we always recommend as your primary source of protein — think humanely raised animals, seafood, things like that — if you are eating double digit servings of non starchy vegetables per day “first”, that’s priority one, it is physically impossible to eat too much protein. If you are eating double digit servings of non starchy vegetables per day and you are getting your protein from whole food sources, it is practically — over-consuming protein would be like over-consuming water — it can be done but it’s very difficult.
Now if you are using powdered protein is would be very easy to eat too much protein. You can go into your kitchen right now. You can get whey protein isolate which, in a little scoop which is about the size of a shot glass, have about 25 grams of pure unadulterated protein. You could mix a couple of those with some water and in one sitting consume 100 grams of protein pretty easily. You shouldn’t do that and that’s why these powders should be used when whole foods aren’t available.
That said, can you over consume protein? Yes. If you get it from whole food sources, are you? No. If you’re taking a bunch of protein powders in, can you and can that cause you to gain weight? It absolutely could. If you overdo anything, you would gain weight. But chances are, if you’re gaining weight, it’s not because you’re consuming too much protein.
CARRIE: Got it.
JONATHAN: Does that make sense?
CARRIE: Yes.
JONATHAN: Was that too loquacious of an answer or does it make sense?
CARRIE: It made sense to me. The other thing I just wanted to throw in, and again from my experience of the past eight weeks that the guidelines that Jonathan has in The Calorie Myth for at least three 30 gram servings of protein a day. I wanted to let you know or remind you that those are guidelines. So for me, I do that in the morning and I do that in the evening but I just don’t have the appetite to do that at lunch as well. So in the morning I have protein with breakfast and in the evening I do, too, but at lunch time I just have a huge salad. I just have the veggies. A lot of people have asked me is that okay? And the answer is I’m losing weight like I’m melting so…
JONATHAN: Losing fat.
CARRIE: Losing fat — sorry, old habits die hard — I am losing fat like it’s going out of fashion eating two servings of protein a day, not three, so for me I look to the guidelines but I did what worked for my appetite and yes, that’s working.
JONATHAN: Thank you so much, Carrie. I remember when we talked about this in the last show and we got so caught up in our topics. This is extremely, extremely important. We’ve said it and we’re going to keep saying it because even I forget it as well. Before we were recording today, Carrie was asking me a bunch of questions about weight training. They were great questions, but prior to those questions Carrie came in and she was beaming and the reason she was beaming was because again, just like last time when I saw her four weeks ago she just looked like amazing. She looks even more amazing now and I don’t mean just in the traditional sense. I mean skin, eyes, everything just looks like a vibrant human being.
And she said something like, “Wow, Jonathan. Before, I felt like no matter what I did I couldn’t burn fat. Now I feel like I don’t understand what that I’m doing, which doesn’t really seem like that much is causing me to burn all this fat. And then she asked me all these questions. Is this right? Is this right? What about this? What about this? And then we popped up and said, “Hey, Carrie. If you’re effortlessly burning fat, the chances are that whatever you’re doing is awesome so keep doing it.”
Again, if what you’re doing is moving you in the right direction, chances are you’re on the right track. Don’t beat yourself up. If what you’re doing isn’t working, then you might want to try something else. But is it right or wrong? Well, what are the results it’s giving you?
CARRIE: Yes. So for me, yes. I’m no longer hung up on the fact that I don’t eat three servings of protein a day because eating two a day with all the veggies is working really really well for me. So I’m not going to worry about it anymore.
JONATHAN: And not to get too philosophical but, as humans, we have a tendency to confuse means with ends. Let me explain this for a second. Eating three 30-gram servings of protein per day is a means, an approach, a technique to achieve the end of a lowered set point. Right?
For example, being a certain denomination of a religion is a means to go to Heaven. Conceptually, the end goal is to get to Heaven. The goal in our world is to get to a lowered set point. Focus on the end, not so much the means. High carb/low carb, high fat/low fat — clearly high quality is better than low quality. That’s just true. That’s like saying truth is better than lying, that smiling is better than frowning. Focus on the ends. Focus on the results you’re getting rather than beating yourself up that these means, these guidelines — these are means to get you to the end. If you’re getting towards the end it’s good. If you’re not getting towards the end, recalibrate.
CARRIE: Got it.
JONATHAN: What is next from our wonderful listeners, Carrie?
CARRIE: We have Peter [?sp?]-Carrol who, if he had some time with you, he would want to talk about balancing fat, protein and carbs in each meal.
JONATHAN: Perfect question to follow up on the question just asked because the ratio of fat, protein and carbs you each is incredibly dependent on what you’re trying to accomplish in your life and what your taste preferences are. Studies have shown consistently — and this isn’t just biology studies but psychology studies — that if we want people to change their lifestyle, what they’re doing needs to be enjoyable and sustainable.
For example, if you hate the taste of starchy foods and someone says, “Hey, the only way you can lose weight is by eating a lot of starchy foods,” it’s not going to work out well for you. Is there a right ratio of fat, protein and carbs in each meal? No. There is no more a right ratio of fat, protein and carbs per meal than there is a right outfit for you to wear. You say what outfit should I wear? “I don’t know. Where are you going? What are you doing? Who are you with? What kind of a body structure do you have? What kind of an image are you trying to give off?”
I would really recommend, Peter and all the other dashing listeners out there, focus on food first in this order:
1. Non starchy vegetables — half your plate,
2. Nutrient-dense protein — “a third” of your plate, and then
3. Whole food fats and/or — depending on your goals — low fructose fruits as the remainder of your plate.
So fat, protein and carbs are abstractions from food just like calories are an abstraction from food. Focus on food — non starchy vegetables first, nutrient-dense protein second, whole food fats third and then low-fructose fruits fourth. Judge your results. If you’re not happy, tweak; if you’re happy, keep going.
CARRIE: Awesome.
JONATHAN: Oh yeah.
CARRIE: The Calorie Myth gives you the scientific guidelines. We should tweak them to what specifically works for us.
JONATHAN: And I don’t know if I’ve said this yet on this show, so forgive me if I have, but a lot of the confusion… This analogy may or may not work. If you were to ask Carrie, “Carrie, what makes you happy?” chances are Carrie might say something along the lines of writing recipes. Is that fair, Carrie?
CARRIE: Absolutely.
JONATHAN: If you were to say, “Jonathan, what makes you happy?” I would not say writing recipes.
CARRIE: And thank heavens for that, people!
JONATHAN: Now imagine. Say an alien came to earth and was like, “Carrie, I’m an alien and I notice that there are happy people and there are sometimes unhappy people and I’m trying to learn what makes people happy.” And the alien asks, “Carrie, what makes you happy?” Making recipes. And he said, “Jonathan, it sounds like you’re not as happy as you want to be. Maybe you should make some more recipes. I’d be like “Oh no! That doesn’t make me happy at all.”
CARRIE: You’d make the rest of the world unhappy.
JONATHAN: The alien gets really confused. Jonathan likes… What do I like doing? I like going to Gold’s Gym recently because I joined Gold’s Gym and it has actually been very enjoyable for me. So you can imagine the alien getting very confused. Well, what is it? Is is writing recipes that makes people happy or is it working out at Gold’s Gym that makes people happy? (And by the way, I’m not getting paid or sponsored by Gold’s Gym. I’ve just had a really good experience working out there.)
The answer, of course, is that both are true. Some people are happy writing recipes. Some people are happy exercising. Some people are happy playing lacrosse; some people are happy playing the piano. We do know and science has shown us that there are certain things that generally make more people happy than others, for example things that involve your brain, things that you are good at generally give you more enjoyment than things you are bad at. Again, you have to apply it to yourself; you have to look at what works for you. So what is the right balance of protein, fat and carbs? Well, Peter, that’s going to depend on you, your goals and what gets you to the end you desire. Did that analogy make any sense, Carrie, or did I go way off the ranch?
CARRIE: I loved it.
JONATHAN: Okay. Yea.
CARRIE: Am I biased? Possibly a little.
JONATHAN: Well hopefully our listeners are as well.
CARRIE: So the next question comes from Pat Thompson and I don’t know if that’s Patrick Thompson or Patricia Thompson, but welcome. Pat is looking for ideas for vegetarians or vegans who are trying to meet protein goals.
JONATHAN: Pat, I am going to refer you to Google simply because I cannot do this as much justice as has already been done. So simply go to Google or Bing and type in “Smarter Science of Slim, vegan protein or vegetarian protein” or “Calorie Myth vegan protein, vegetarian protein”. You will get some amazing resources and you’ll also find some incredible success stories of Sane vegans and vegetarians who transformed their life by taking their existing vegan and vegetarian diet and simply “Sane-atizing” it. So please check that out; it’s helpful.
CARRIE: All right. The next question comes from Michelle Bishop and Michelle wants to know about measuring raw vegetables.
JONATHAN: Carrie, you can answer this one.
CARRIE: Can I? She says that in the Calorie Myth, it says that one cup of veggies is a serving but it also says that eight baby carrots are a serving. Eight is less than one cup and Mel says she’s always second-guessing herself. I think for me anyway, this is much like Mel’s question about protein. The way I look at it is I don’t count to ten every day to see if I’ve eaten enough. I start with non starchy veggies first, protein second, whole food fat’s the third and I eat until I’m full and then I stop.
JONATHAN: Yes. Perfect. So Michelle, again, I understand from personal experience why we are tempted to ask these questions because we have been told to count our whole lives. Count calories! It’s precisely 1200 calories. If you eat 1210 calories, if you eat ten too many calories, in ten years you’ll gain ten pounds! Right? It’s this absurd precision that has been put upon us which is wrong! It’s just wrong.
And you know it’s much easier said than done, but Carrie hit the nail on the head. The point is you’re eating baby carrots instead of Pringles. That’s awesome. That is so awesome! Keep eating baby carrots. Celebrate the fact that you’re eating baby carrots instead of Pringles as a success rather than focusing on is eight baby carrots the same as a cup. I can promise you, Michelle, that we don’t have an obesity epidemic in this country…
If you are having success or having struggles either way, it’s not because people are measuring their serving sizes of baby carrots imprecisely. It’s because our entire approach to fueling our bodies has gone in the wrong direction. It’s been focused on quantity and calories rather than nutrient-dense whole foods. Eat baby carrots. Enjoy them. Eat other vegetables. Enjoy them and try to make raw vegetables or just non starchy vegetables in general the majority of what you put in your mouth. If you do that, smile, smile, smile because you’re on the right track.
CARRIE: Yea. The only time I measure, having said that I don’t measure, is that I have a smoothie for breakfast every day because I find that the simplest, fastest, easiest way to get everything in. I use six ounces of spinach, which would count for six servings of non starchy vegetables. But other than that, the rest of the day I just eat vegetables until I’m full and then I stop.
JONATHAN: These are the reason in the book I say things like ten servings of non starchy vegetables is we do need a guide. Right? So let’s say you don’t care so much about your health, but chances are that’s not a lot of people who are listening to this show. But telling those people moving from one serving to three servings, they’ll probably say, “Okay. With breakfast I’m still going to eat a pop tart; I’m not going to eat any vegetables. With lunch, I am going to get a salad on the side and with dinner I’m going to have something.”
Someone who really wants to dial up their health, understanding that they need ten servings, are they really eating ten servings technically, or are they eating eight or are they eating 12? Think of it more as small, medium and large. That’s the level of precision that we’re working with. Are you eating not very many vegetables? Are you eating vegetables at every meal? Are you eating a therapeutic dose of vegetables? Measuring with that level of precision is important because otherwise it’s not really possible for us to direct people in the right direction.
Michelle I don’t know you personally, but I can pretty much guarantee that you have a lot of stuff going on in your life and you’re busy and you’re brilliant and I promise you that your brainpower does not need to be spent on measuring baby carrots. It should totally be spent on all the other stuff you’ve got going on in your life.
CARRIE: I think for me it’s easier to just look at the plate size and just go half of the plate needs to be full of vegetables. And I think the other thing that gets people confused is you know our appetites are all different, so what might be ten servings for Jonathan might be 20 for me because Jonathan’s appetite is bigger than mine. When I think about doing what’s right for my appetite, I eat what total volume of food I can eat. I find it much easier to know I’m on the right track by making sure half my plate is full of vegetables, and then a third of it is protein and then the rest is whole fool fats. I just find that so much easier and less “crazy making” than ten servings of vegetables.
JONATHAN: I’m going to do another off the farm analogy, so we’ll see if this works. Recently I has a conversation with someone. It was an interview where I was focusing very heavily on this idea of essential, eating the most of what’s essential and eating the least of what is nonessential, so essential amino acids, essential fatty acids, essential vitamins and essential minerals. They were like, “Well, what studies have been done to verify the fact that eating more essential substances will help your health more than…”
I kind of looked at myself and I said the question that person just asked would be a bit like saying… So take a step back. I said to this person, “What is essential to a healthy relationship?” So honesty, trust, love. These are things that are essential to a healthy relationship. Do you think it would ever be true that having more love, more trust in a relationship, more honesty would ever make that relationship worse? Of course not.
But do we measure the amount of trust we have? Do we measure the amount of love we have in a relationship? Do we say to ourselves, “I’m going to make sure I say 16 positive things to my partner today”? We don’t. We might if we’re in couples therapy and we need to do some artificial technique to get ourselves back on track. But think about every other area of our lives where we achieve success.
We usually achieve success because we get, generally, here’s what needs to happen, what needs to happen to have a happy relationship? You need to be honest. You need to be loving. There are these essential things. The more of them you can do, the happier you’ll be, the healthier your relationship will be. The same thing applies to your relationship with yourself and with your body. There are essential things, vitamins, minerals, amino acids, fatty acids. Focus on maximizing the amount of those and this becomes really simple really fast.
CARRIE: The next question we have comes from Debbie Gallo and this kind of just rolls on from what we just talked about. Debbie says, “I would love to know about men versus women, larger folks looking for health and also large weight loss versus smaller loss looking for health but in the 10 to 20 pound weight loss goal.”
The point of that was a bit confusing, but the point she’s asking is how do suggested serving sizes change if we’re talking about men versus women or if we’re talking about people who are looking for larger fat loss versus people who are looking for smaller fat loss?
JONATHAN: I’ll give you the specific answer and then I’ll give you one more general answer. The specific answer is I think most of the serving sizes we generally try to frame them to your body, meaning that we say like it’s one hand or one palm, one fist, one thumb. The reason for that is that it counts for differences in body structure. Right? So if we say a serving of nutrient-dense protein is generally the size of your palm, then a six foot six, 320 pound NFL linebacker will clearly have a bigger palm and thus a bigger serving of protein than a 150 pound, 65 year old female who is five six. Right? Hopefully that accounts for some of that.
But really, really, really. I’m going to beat the dead horse, or the living horse. I’m going to invigorate the living horse. If you have any confusion about your progress when trying to go Sane, I want you to get out a piece of paper and I want you to put that piece of paper somewhere, maybe next to your keys, somewhere you look every day. Put a pen next to it. I want you to put a check mark on that piece of paper every time you complete a day and in that day you consumed approximately ten or more servings of non starchy vegetables, meaning very clearly the number one thing in terms of volume you put into your mouth that day was non starchy vegetables.
Until you do that for 21 consecutive days, just try to do that. I promise you that is the one thing where if you get it right, a bunch of other things happen because you can’t overeat nonsense if you’re eating all those vegetables. As you start eating those vegetables, your tastes will change and you’ll have re-sensitized your sweet taste buds and things will miraculously start tasting better. So again, serving size is about this versus that, his versus nah nah nah — 21 days, double digit servings of non starchy vegetables, simplify and savor the results.
CARRIE: And remember, one of the over-arching things that Jonathan always says is eat when you’re hungry, stop when you’re full. That is going to be a completely different looking plate of food that Jonathan would eat versus what I would eat because my appetite is so much smaller than his. So eat when you’re hungry, stop when you’re full. Focus on non starchy vegetables. It’s all goodness.
JONATHAN: Beautiful. Thank you so much Mel, Peter, Pat, Michelle and Debbie and we will pick up with the dashing Tom Fleming next week. So again, folks, thank you so much for tuning in as always. And remember this week and every week after, eat smarter, exercise smarter and live better. Chat with you soon.
CARRIE: See you.
JONATHAN: Wait! Wait! Don’t stop listening yet!
CARRIE: You can get Fabulous, Free, Sane Recipes over at carriebrown.com.
JONATHAN: And don’t forget your 100% Free Eating and Exercise Quick Start Program as well as free, fun, daily tips delivered right into your Inbox at bailorgroup.com. That’s B-A-I-L-O-R Group dot com.

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