Blog | Liberate Breakfast
21284
page-template,page-template-blog-large-image-whole-post,page-template-blog-large-image-whole-post-php,page,page-id-21284,ajax_fade,page_not_loaded,,select-theme-ver-3.8.1,wpb-js-composer js-comp-ver-5.1.1,vc_responsive
Measuring Body Composition: An Overview | Liberate Breakfast

How to “Measure” Body Composition: An Overview

Curiosity killed the cat but it made the humans smarter. When you start focusing on getting healthier, more fit, or losing weight eventually you get curious about your body fat percentage. There are a few things to note before even looking into which test to get, if any at all.

Measuring Body Composition: An Overview | Liberate Breakfast

Curiosity Noooo!

All tests are wrong to a certain degree.

Huh? Why would anyone use a test that is inaccurate? The thing is, what may be inaccurate on an individual level can be very useful on a population level when statistical significance is taken into account. Take BMI for instance. The Body Mass Index (BMI) is often called out as a ridiculous tool because you can be jacked with single digit body fat, but according to the BMI, you are overweight (or worse, obese). That type of classification doesn’t bode well for someone with body dysmorphia (I’m looking at you, bodybuilders). When applied to the population as a whole, the BMI is a very useful tool for determining the overall health of the country. Outliers like bodybuilders are a small percentage that barely affects the overall outcome of calculations.

Think of it like target practice at a shooting range (is there any analogy more American than combining obesity and guns into one?) From a distance, all your shots are generally around the bullseye, so it looks pretty good. After taking a walk to your target you realize there is one round that went high and right (probably pulling too hard with your trigger finger….anyway…) That one shot is an outlier that is not representative of the overall accuracy of your shooting. Those people who are in excellent shape but still fall into the overweight category (I’m guilty of this) or obese category (I’m bordering on this) are outliers who are not indicative of the entire population.

What can you do about it?

Whichever method of body fat test you choose will be somewhat inaccurate. So what should you do about it?

Stay consistent with your measurements or chosen test location and administrator. You may not get a perfectly accurate reading on whatever test you choose, but if you remain consistent with your measurements, over time you will be able to rather accurately show change and progression. The same rings true for measuring your weight on a scale: always measure yourself under the same conditions with the same scale in order to maintain consistency of error.  

Now, let’s take a cursory look at the science behind calculating body composition, before we talk about the actual tests that you could have administered.

 

The Compartment Models

Body composition tests can be broken down into various categories that generally correlate to the level of accuracy. The first and simplest category is the Two-Compartment Model.

Measuring Body Composition: An Overview | Liberate Breakfast

The Two-Compartment Model breaks the human body into two distinct compartments: fat mass (FM) and fat-free mass (FFM), i.e. muscle, bone, water, etc. Certain values are assumed for the density of FM and FFM respectively. Typical methods for the Two-Compartment Model are Hydrodensitometry “underwater weighing” and Air Displacement Plethysmography (ADP). A typical issue with Two-Compartment Model methods is that there is no room for individual variability in fat-free mass, which is quite common from human to human.

Measuring Body Composition: An Overview | Liberate Breakfast

The Three-Compartment Model is the next category, and is more accurate than the Two-Compartment Model. The Three-Compartment Model breaks the body down into three compartments: FM, FFM, and a third, either Total Body Water (TBW) or, less frequently, bone density. The model that measures TBW rather than bone density may not take into account variations in FFM that present in individual bodies, such as bone mineral density and actual lean muscle tissue. Even still, the Three-Compartment Model is the most accurate single iteration tests you can get. DEXA, for example, is a Three-Compartment model test.

The final category is the Four-Compartment Model. In addition to fat mass, fat-free mass, and body water, the Four-Compartment Model also takes into account mineral mass. There is currently no single test that can do the entire Four-Compartment model on its own. Multiple tests must be conducted that can measure fat mass, body water, and fat-free mass broken down into bone mass and the residual components. The only remaining component of the body left unknown by these tests is the value of the residual, un-measurable fat-free mass (such as DNA mass, etc.)., but as is taught in 5th grade algebra, it’s pretty easy to solve for one unknown variable when all others are known. In this way, the Four-Compartment Model can make a pretty accurate assessment of body fat percentage.

The Four-Compartment test is the Gold Standard. You will see that most companies claim their machines to be the Gold Standard in body composition measurements; DEXA, BIA, and BOD POD are three culprits in this marketing scheme. The only true Gold Standard, however, is the combination of multiple tests that give enough variables to calculate the Four-Compartment Model.

 

The Tests

Now that you have a general understanding of what is actually being measured in these tests, let’s look at the actual individual tests to see which is the most practical and realistic for you. The tests are broken down into three categories: indirect methods (observational, noninvasive methods), direct methods (include some type of physical penetration), or criterion methods (big fancy accurate machines, AKA most expensive).

Indirect methods:

Measuring Body Composition: An Overview | Liberate Breakfast Measuring Body Composition: An Overview | Liberate Breakfast

The most common indirect methods are known as Anthropometric measurements, including measuring weight, stature (height), and Body Mass Index (BMI). Techniques such as Circumference Measurements and Skinfold Techniques fall into Anthropometry. Both of these measurements take skill, but little else. You can learn how to measure your own body circumference measurements here. Skinfold measurement techniques are an art that is slowly dying due to the newer more accurate machines mentioned below. Though if you are able to find someone with a steady hand and experience in measuring skinfolds, you may be able to get a fairly accurate reading with little hassle or financial burden.

Measuring Body Composition: An Overview | Liberate Breakfast

Bioelectric Impedance Analysis (BIA) is another indirect method of measurement. BIA machines send an electrical current through the body, and based on resistance, they estimate the total body water (TBW), fat-free mass (FFM), and fat mass (FM). BIA tends to be more accurate on a population level than on an individual level (this is true of all methods because of fancy statistical analysis, but especially true of methods that tend to have greater thresholds of error for the individual). BIA machines are calibrated for certain populations that assumptions are made for, and because of this, if you are not in that population the machine was calibrated for, the resulting body composition estimate can be quite wrong. When using a BIA, try to find the type that uses both your hands and feet for the electric current, they tend to be more accurate and consistent than the machines that only use your feet.

Direct methods:

Total Body Water is a direct method in which a person consumes a certain isotope that can be measured in the body. The isotope dilutes throughout the body over a set period of time into the body’s water. It is then measured to find out how much total water is contained in the body. Once this is measured, it is used to predict the amount of fat-free mass in the body. Simple subtraction then allows for the calculation of fat mass. There are two important assumptions to note in this method: one, that the relationship between total body water and fat-free mass is constant, and two, that the time of measurement after the isotope is fully diluted is correct and not premature or too late.

Measuring Body Composition: An Overview | Liberate Breakfast

Two other less known and used direct methods of measuring body composition are Total Body Counting and Neutron Activation. Total body counting measures the amount of naturally radioactive potassium in the body. From the measured potassium levels, fat-free mass can then be estimated. This method isn’t really used that often because there are few machines that are capable of doing it, nothing to be said of its accuracy or potential for error. Neutron activation is some crazy Bruce Banner Incredible Hulk shit. A person is exposed to Gamma radiation which somehow affects the constitution of cell nuclei. Needless to say this method isn’t widely used because of the high levels of radiation that are blasted into, through, and around subjects going through the procedure.

Criterion methods:

These methods are considered more accurate and reliable than the direct and indirect methods.

Measuring Body Composition: An Overview | Liberate Breakfast

Underwater Weighing: Looks like fun…

Measuring Body Composition: An Overview | Liberate Breakfast

Bod Pod… AKA Escape Pod

 

Body density: Both Hydrodensitometry (underwater weighing) and Air Displacement Plethysmography (ADP) estimate body composition by measuring body weight, volume, and residual lung volume. Basically, how much water or air you displace can be used to calculate your fat mass from your fat free mass. These methods both have their own associated issues. For instance underwater weighing is difficult for certain patients because it is hard to fully submerge them underwater, you know like old people, children, and the physically incapable. ADP, often called the Bod Pod, makes certain assumptions about tissue density which can yield inaccurate results if the assumptions are off. Issues aside, both of these methods are a fairly accurate method for measuring your body composition; just ensure that you continue to go to the same machine for follow-on assessments to ensure consistency.

Measuring Body Composition: An Overview | Liberate Breakfast

Dual-Energy Xray Absorptiometry (DEXA) is fast, relatively harmless, and easy to use. The DEXA machines blast two low-energy level waves through the subject which have the ability to discriminate between adipose tissue, soft tissue, bone mineral content, and bone mineral density. Some studies have shown that DEXA has a tendency to overestimate fat-free mass; this means you may think you are more muscular than you actually are. If you have an overly honest friend or relative they should help keep your head from getting too big from this slight over estimation. All DEXA machines vary, just because one machine reads one body fat percentage, another might read something different. All machine models and manufacturers make differing assumptions in their equations that they input into the machines at programming. There is no coherence across machines. So again, frequent the same establishment for your follow-on tests.

Measuring Body Composition: An Overview | Liberate Breakfast

Computed Tomography (CT) and Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) are also known to be used to get body composition readings. Both machines are in high demand for other tests and procedures, and for this reason they aren’t generally used for body composition. In addition, technicians need to train on how to conduct body composition procedures and upgrade their machine’s software. If you are able to find a place to conduct one of these tests for you, consider yourself lucky…. Also keep into account that because these methods aren’t widely used, there is potential error in their measurements that are not yet fully realized.

 

The Gold Standard

The Four-Compartment Model is the gold standard for measuring body composition. The idea that there is a singular Gold Standard  is a misnomer. There is no one technique or machine that measures in the Four-Compartment model. Multiple tests are needed in order to calculate the four compartment equation. Typically this is conducted by combining DEXA for bone mineral mass, Underwater weighing or BOD POD for body density and body fat, and Total Body Water dilution to measure total body water.

If the Gold Standard is really required for scientific analysis then multiple tests must be conducted and then combined to get the most accurate possible reading. This makes sense actually when you put it in simple terms. As an individual it would be nice to get a Gold Standard reading but it is often outside of reasonable expectations. Many funded broad scope scientific experiments can’t even get Gold Standard testing for their research. If you can find a place to do it expect to pay a premium.

 

 A whole lot of words for something that isn’t that necessarily necessary.

Ultimately body fat percentage is a number you don’t need. You can live a perfectly happy and healthy life and never get your body composition measured. Shit, you can lead a perfectly happy, healthy, and successful figure competitor or lingerie model career and never get your body composition measured. What truly matters for health is how you function, how you perform, and how you look at the world. If you aren’t chronically ill and have no issues digesting your food, then you function well. If you are able to do the types of exercise and recreation that you enjoy, as well as get through everyday chores without pain, then you perform well. If you can find the silver lining in life’s challenges and have relationships that make you a better person, then your world view is probably quite alright.

For those quantitatively-minded folks who enjoy experimenting with their bodies, AKA biohacking (ugh I find this term pretty nerdy) then getting your body composition measured is a great way to get some before and after metrics for whatever you are implementing into your life.

 

Sources

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2769821/

http://www.physiology.org/doi/full/10.1152/jappl.1998.85.1.238

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4140034/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17228350

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Body_composition

0
0
Nutrition Experiments Are Hard | Liberate Breakfast

Nutrition Experiments Are Hard

This week in news we are talking about why the news can never seem to report accurately on nutrition studies. It’s not their fault they’re stupid, it’s their parents fault…also nutrition studies are inherently hard to conduct.

Standby:

I’m not an actual scientist. This article is to give the layperson a basic understanding of why all scientific studies are not equal and conducting nutrition experiments is hard. If you are an actual scientist go read something with more Latin words and numbers. Or take a literal chill pill before reading this because it is by no means academic.

 

Although the scientific method provides a great framework for exploration into life and the forces that guide it it is far from perfect. The further you get into the complexity of our modern world the more you need to compromise the structure of an experiment. In nutrition specifically it is extremely difficult to conduct an experiment without major flaws. These flaws will need to be adjusted for, that is just the nature of human variability. Below is a brief rundown of the major types of experiments you may see used in a nutritional paper.

 

Control Lab Study

In a lab (or metabolic ward) a scientist can conduct a proper controlled study in which there is one variable and all else is held constant. Once you start to move away from things that are easily observable in a laboratory setting you begin compromising aspects of control. Again, a controlled study conducted in a sterile environment is the ideal experiment for scientists who are studying things that they wish to examine.  one variable of a chemical reaction, or biological process, or physics phenomenon at a time. It is basically impossible to conduct this type of study when studying human life, societal interactions, or macro phenomena.

 

Double Blind Placebo Controlled

This is the gold standard for scientists in fields like nutrition, health, and the social sciences. It includes two groups an experimental group and a control group. In the experimental group a new drug or technique is administered. In the control group a placebo drug or technique is administered. For instance a sugar pill for a control drug or regular therapy as opposed to whatever the new experimental technique is. The rule of thumb for these experiments is that all else is equal except for the actual administration of that which is being tested. The blind part of this study is that the participants have to be blind. Just kidding. They are just not given the details of the experiment. And aren’t told whether or not they are in the control or experiment group.

 

Field intervention study

A field study is that which is not performed in the lab. Intervention means that scientists will implement some type of experiment in which subjects are expected to continue with their normal routine. They will then be periodically brought in for questioning and tests. For instance, having an experiment group of similar people (i.e. 30 year old former athletes who now work office jobs or 95 year old former fire breathers with dementia) implement intermittent fasting in their diet for a set amount of time. The control group is of the same demographic as the experiment group. However, the control participants are not asked to change anything in their habits. Possible flaws in a field study include human variability, adherence issues, truthfulness (whether intentional or unintentional).

 

Field Non-Intervention observational study

As I’m sure you can guess this study involves observing human life or some macro phenomenon without intervention. Obvious issues include but are not limited to human variability, unknown pre-existing condition, lack of any control. Many things need to be adjusted for these types of studies with fancy math. Papers for these experiments often have many caveats. The repeatability of these experiments is difficult as well since the original conditions will never be exactly the same.

 

Survey

A survey is self explanatory. If you don’t know this google it. Historical studies are a type of survey study in which the data is collected from events that happened in the past. That was probably an unnecessary explanation as well.

 

No Nutrition Study Is Perfect

All studies in nutrition have flaws. It is impossible to conduct a long term broad scoped study that is relevant to a whole population in a lab.  Conducting a double bling study in nutrition is quite difficult when that which is being tested is a dieting style or a lifestyle change. This is because the subjects obviously know what they are changing in their life.

Even studies that are considered a gold standard or the study to replicate are often misleading as well. Typically they will get a result on one population, be it 30 year old, in shape Scandinavians living in the 1950s or what have you. Readers of the study will then extrapolate the results out to the whole world and say that “this” is how the world is, or should be. This is a flawed approach and often something only an adept reader will realize. We aren’t all 30 year old Scandinavians with six-packs and golden hair living during the Cold War.

Just think of each study on nutrition you find yourself reading for fun as a beautiful snowflake in which you need to find its flaws before you can fully appreciate it. It’s kind of like love. All people seem the same on the surface, it’s only once find find the flaws, intricacies, and as Robin Williams put it “picadillos” of another person that we can truly love them.

Nutrition Experiments Are Hard | Liberate Breakfast

Now Go Learn Something

Now you have a better understanding for why nutrition is always changing and always declared wrong by some people. To top it all off you also got life life advice from an American Icon. Take this as a lesson in individuality. Every study has it’s own quirks, just like every person is unique. This is the same reason why there is no perfect diet for the whole world or perfect fitness plan.

If you are looking to try and figure out what works for you, check out this page and sign up for a free consultation with me. We can get you to where you want to go without worrying about what everyone else is doing.

0
0
Food Influence Liberate Breakfast

Food Influence: How does it impact you?

A lot of people ask me why I have been intermittent fasting since July 2014. I usually don’t respond. But when I do my life partner asks me who I’m talking to….

I’m then reminded that William Hurt and Dane Cook aren’t my friends. [sad face emoji]

I have often thought about the day when someone values my opinion enough to ask about intermittent fasting. I’ve concluded that among the many benefits of fasting there is one intangible that I have come to value the most.

Growing up my mother was constantly cooking and grocery shopping, but there was still a never-ending competition among the children for the best and most food.

Needless to say I had developed a habit of eating as much as I could as soon as possible as a survival mechanism against my siblings’ ravenous hunger.

Just like on the plains of the Serengeti, we were always in constant competition for the same food.

I carried this habit with me into my 20s. In college my friends always pointed out that I never left an empty plate in the cafeteria. I also never turned down an opportunity to go get food.*

Lucky for me, I’ve always led a very active life, so my constant eating never caught up with me.

Intermittent fasting has helped me greatly now that my metabolism is starting to slow down a bit. (I certainly don’t recover from a night of drinking the way I used to.)

I still eat like Kobayashi.**

But only for eight hours out of the day.

The rest of the day I sit contently in a fasted state, usually typing nonsense posts, killing mosquitos with my electric racket, or growing mushrooms.

I get the best of both worlds. I experience the sensation of eating plenty of food for 8 hours and I get all the added benefits of fasting for 16 hours.

This was not a benefit I anticipated. It really underlines how much we are influenced by our surroundings. By taking the time to think about why I eat the way I eat, I have identified an influence from my past that may have resulted in me living a much less healthy lifestyle if left unrecognized.

Intermittent fasting is not for everyone.

But,

What is for everyone is taking a conscious look at your food habits and recognizing your predilections whether they be positive or negative.

What Type of Hold does Food have on you? Liberate Breakfast What Type of Hold does Food have on you? Liberate Breakfast

 

Three Food Control Tests

Try one of these three food control tests to see what type of unconscious control food has over your day to day life. Each test will make you think twice about the everyday impulses that you have in regards to food.

I recommend you try whichever one seems most feasible to your lifestyle. They can all be conducted in a matter of days. I would say with minimal impact to your life, but actually the whole point of them to to make you think about how you are actually eating and to help identify any unhealthy habits you may have developed both physically and mentally.

 

1. 24 hour Fast Test

This is the simplest and shortest of the tests. It may prove to be the most difficult and eye-opening as well.

Simply abstain from eating or drinking anything but water for a 24 hour period. If you finish your last meal on Tuesday at 8:00 PM then you won’t eat again until Wednesday at 8:00PM. You are still allowed you to eat on the fasting day, just eat after the 24hr period has ended.

Keep a notebook with you during this period and write down any urges, desires, or confusion that may arise around food.

REMEMBER: A 24 hour fast is not dangerous. In fact thousands of people do them every day. Don’t freak out and think you are going to pass out from low blood sugar. If you are otherwise totally healthy you will have no issues with this test. If you have preexisting medical conditions talk to your doctor before doing any of these tests.

 

2. 5 Day Same Food Test

As the name implies you are going to eat the same exact foods everyday for 5 full days. This is the longest of the tests and requires the most preparation.

Take one day to plan, buy, and prepare your foods for the test period. Every day eat the same exact breakfast, lunch, and dinner, as well as snacks.

What may find and observe is that your body has an ability to become very regular and consistent when given a consistent quantity and quality of food. Keep a notebook for the whole test period that documents any cravings, urges, desires, or habits that you observe.

 

3. 3-Day Meal skip

The most confusing of the tests. Over a 3-Day period skip one of each of the major meals on each day. Day 1 skip breakfast. Day 2 skip lunch. Day 3 skip dinner.

This requires little planning and should help show you how much meal timing and rituals have a grasp on your subconscious.

 

What You Will Encounter.

None of these tests are designed to be easy. They will all challenge you in different ways. Remind yourself throughout the test that the information you will gain from these tests is worth the sacrifice you are currently going through.

What may seem like an impossible challenge to you is how someone else lives their everyday life.

 

Selfishly

I hope you realize how easy and safe fasting is. Maybe you will even decide that you want to work with me in a private coaching capacity to help you complete change, for the better, your relationship with food and exercise.

Footnotes
*This reminds me of one time one of my friends, let’s call him Schliam, accidently ordered a half pound of turkey at Wawa late one night after coming back from the bars. He thought he was getting a turkey sandwich. That lunch meat was eaten that night by someone.

** No I don’t eat 41 hotdogs. My food choice is a lot better than that. I don’t need all the nitrites (Yes I mean nitrites, not nitrates. Look it up) #thanksdoctorrhondapatrick

What Type of Hold does Food have on you? Liberate Breakfast

0
0
Pull Ups Progression Liberate Breakfast

Pull Up Progressions Anywhere

I rarely see proper pull ups performed on the gym. Coming from a world where I literally got paid to do pull ups for a living I find this extremely hard to swallow.

Pull up Progressions Liberate Breakfast

Pull ups are amazing for strength, posture, aesthetics, pulling you literally out of life threatening situations*, and confidence. The pull up is one of the most popular and most efficient pull techniques available.

Any trainer worth his/her skin-tight t-shirt is going to get you performing pulling techniques using an underlying fundamental programming principle… Push v. Pull.

I’m sure you are familiar with many push exercises, you’ve probably even prioritized things like bench press, shoulder press, and overhead press in your current workouts. Why do we do this? My working theory is that there aren’t enough mirrors that allow us to see our backs on this planet**. If there were you would quickly realize that you may have the front side of a professional body builder but the back side of a prepubescent 4th grader.

“Not me man! I’m jacked. My pecs are just so big that they make my back look flat and unimpressive….”

-Every Bro Science “Doctor” Ever

 

Posture

In all seriousness, the world around us is designed to create bad posture. From long work day sitting at a desk, to constantly looking down at your smart phone, all the way to hanging your head low like Charlie Brown for not living up to your parents expectations. By focusing only on push exercises you raise the potential of exponentially exacerbating this problem. Pull ups are here to help and may even make your dad love you again.

By having a strong back you will start pulling your spine back into its proper, erect, position. When you are out of balance with more muscles on your front than on your back your spine suffers. This is precisely why it is important to conduct a pull exercise for every major push exercise you conduct. Pull ups are a perfect partner for an overhead press. Horizontal pulls are the perfect partner for bench press…. See how it works?

A little bit of Yin… A little bit of Yang.

Pull up Progressions Liberate Breakfast

Want to start pulling like a boss? Don’t know how or think it is impossible? Below are some pull up progressions to get you started, regardless of where you prefer to exercise. But first…. Form.

 

Proper Technique

What is proper pull up form? It’s pretty simple for this exercise because your body tells you how far you can move.

As you can see this beautiful man’s form is impeccable.

Tight core:Pull up Progressions Liberate Breakfast

Focus on Scapulae engagement at the bottom:Pull up Progressions Liberate Breakfast

 

Pull chest to bar to engage full back, Focus on pinching the shoulder blades together at the top, Chest to Bar is perfect form: Focus on Scapulae engagement at the bottom

 

The above techniques translates to just about every pull exercise imaginable. These are the fundamentals of a pull:

  • Full Extension
  • Back Engagement
  • Pull To Chest
  • Repeat

 

Basic Progression Exercise

Horizontal pulls:

Scapulae engagements: Pull up Progressions Liberate Breakfast Pull up Progressions Liberate Breakfast

 

Eccentric pull ups or as I call them Let-downs: Link IG Post: 

Assisted pull ups- preferable not with a partner because you can’t get consistent assistance. Using a machine or a band:

Frequency 2-3 times a week with variations with 8-10 reps per set. Once you can do one variation for 3 sets of 10 move on to a more difficult variation.

Use pull ups as your last major lift of a workout or your first assistance lift. Depending on your view of pullups’ importance.

 

Home workout

Horizontal pulls: Perform these on your kitchen table or counter. It is important to use a sturdy surface that allows you to fully extend your arms and back at the end of the technique. A porch railing or a dowel between to similar height counters can also work.

Hanging: The easiest way to satisfy the requirement of needing a pull up bar is just to buy one. There are many models available that fit in a door frame, just remember that the more you spend on the bar the less likely you are to fall from an equipment malfunction. A steel beam in the basement, your garage door frame, or porch rafters can all be used as pull up bars as well.,

Assisted/ Eccentric Pull ups: Buy some bands they are relatively cheap and should last you years. The next best alternative is to use a chair. Put your foot on the chair and apply the amount of pressure necessary to complete the rep. It is much harder to quantify how much effort you are supplementing with a chair. I always prefer the bands over a chair or a partner helping.

 

Commercial gym:

Horizontal pulls: Smith Machine (this may be the only time I ever recommend the Smith Machine). I’m not saying anymore about the smith machine.

Set up a bar in the squat rack. Be prepared to get some looks with this one if you go to a gym with serious squatters. Usually if I’m going to perform horizontal pulls in a squat rack I make sure it is right after I squatted or I will perform these in between my sets of squat.

If they have parallel dip bars and they aren’t at some ridiculous height. Just use a box to get your feet to the proper height.

Hanging/ Assisted/ Eccentric Pull ups: Pull up bar… If your gym doesn’t have one get a new gym…. Seriously. Also force them to buy bands if they don’t have them. You’re paying for a membership. Make them work for you.

 

Wilderness

Tree branches and logs are your best friend here.

The wider the branch or log the more intense it will be on your grip. Same goes for in the gym. By finding fatter bars or hanging on the structural beams of the racks themselves you will be working your grip strength as well. This way when you’re hanging from a ledge you can’t make the excuse that the rock face is a non conventional width compared to your olympic lifting bars are Gold’s Gym.

 

Time to Execute

Make Gabe proud.

{Insert pic of stallone smiling from Cliffhanger}

The only way to become a pulling machine is to start pulling no matter where you may find yourself.

Interesting in 1-on-1 Coaching?

 

Footnotes

*Pun Intended

**I can’t speak for the International Space Station. I’ve never been there and am not totally sure how the whole zero gravity thing works.

 

0
0
https://www.liberatebreakfast.com/coaching/

Adherence Is For The Old

The most important part of any workout plan is consistency. You could get strong doing just about any type of exercise if you are consistent with it, except maybe zumba, I’m pretty sure that’s nonsense. Similarly the most important part of any eating style is adherence. There is no point going full paleo if you have a soft pretzel everyday and you know there is nothing that can stop you and it from becoming one. Eating style adherence is something that comes with age, lifestyle age to be exact. Those that have been living a certain lifestyle for an extended period of time get really good at it. Diet adherence is for the old, those that are old in their lifestyle, mature in its ways, and used to its inherent pitfalls.

 

The Best of Intentions

We all start a diet plan with the best intentions usually something like:

No carbs, no sugar, no alcohol, only organic fruits and veggies, and ethically sourced meats.

Looks great typed out doesn’t it?

The problem lies in the implementation over time, AKA diet adherence. If your current diet involves a Chick-fil-a chicken and biscuit for breakfast, a bag of doritos and a foot long sweet onion chicken teriyaki for lunch, and some cheesy mac hamburger helper for dinner with half a loaf of white bread and 16oz of mountain dew code red for dinner you are going to have serious issues jumping into the aforementioned dietary deep end.

 

Adherence is For The Old

I first started getting into nutrition for my own enjoyment in my early twenties. I would try to eat healthy, you know, the typical stuff like eat enough protein to get stronger, eat enough fruits and vegetables*, not eat so much ice cream, blah blah blah. Whisky and Cokes even left the menu I switched to whisky and soda water. Sounds pretty good right…? The more I read the more I wanted to implement. Then my world was rocked when I discovered intermittent fasting (IF). Thank god I found IF before I started meal prepping 6 meals a day, what a waste of time and cause of decision fatigue** that is.

From an uneducated outsider looking in I saw the “not what you eat, but, when you eat” tagline and was sold. I had much to learn.

Things were good in the beginning because I was motivated. 8 hour eating window of whatever I wanted, no problem. Then life kicked in and I realized that my eight hour window was getting in the way of my normal life events. For instance hungover Saturday and Sunday morning breakfasts. Usually six eggs, half a pound of bacon, an avocado, and a ton of toast***. Not to mention the nights before these mornings where I would go hard in the paint****.

This persisted for years. I would be solid during the week, sometime losing as much as 5 or 6 lbs between Monday and Friday afternoon. BUT, as soon as I would get out of work on Friday it was time to throw that weight back on. Not to mention destroy my bowel movements that you could set your watch to. I believe it was 9:30 AM everyday Monday through Friday. 😉

Just by implementing intermittent fasting for what in effect was five days a week I managed to keep my weight within a ten pound range, around 185. I wasn’t eating super healthy but I also wasn’t crushing happy meals on my lunch break. This is something I was pretty happy with considering I was bordering on a sloppy 200lbs a few months prior.

With maturity in this lifestyle I have managed to clean up some of my inconsistencies. Drinking is minimal now*****. Honestly, that cleared up most of my issues with fasting. For any big drinkers out there this sounds like a death sentence I know. But, consider drinking inside of your eating window instead of late into the night, even that is better if you have to have a little sippy. Also, few things are as enjoyable as a nice buzz while the sun is still out.

 

Don’t Be The Sprinter

Now that I’ve matured in my lifestyle choice I’ve figured out way to make it more efficient and help me reach better results over time. The other method is trying to make a dramatic shift and hoping it sticks.

Adherence is For The Old

When trying to lose weight, or gain weight for that matter take baby steps if you want it to stick. There are diets out there such as the Whole30 diet in which you jump into the deep end and tread water for 30 days in order to get the bad stuff out and try to develop a few good habits. This method is a sprint though, the end is always in sight and you have no commitment on day 31. There are plenty of benefits to this style of diet intervention as long as your goals are short term as well, like getting ready for beach season or your child’s wedding. It is not a sustainable method for a lifestyle change that will stay forever.

 

The Nomadic Lifestyle******

Instead consider your dietary adherence like that of a nomad. Nomads are constantly on the move, there is no final destination in sight, moving is the destination. For this reason we need to choose a method of being nomadic (eating) that is both enjoyable and sustainable. Nomads don’t sprint from locale to locale. Just like we shouldn’t dramatically shift from eating style to eating style. Slowly nomadic peoples become more efficient at packing their things, at moving along treacherous terrain, at finding water, and at conducting trade. This is akin to us learning over time how to cut sugar out of our diets, to drink only during appropriate occasions, cook our own meals with efficiency and skill. Change doesn’t happen overnight, if you try to force it you will fail because you aren’t that person yet.

There is no rule of thumb or set standard for how to do this because it is so individual. Take a periodic hard look at your diet lifestyle and choose one thing to try to improve that you are sure you can stick to. Once one thing sticks you’ll be able to add more and more.Pretty soon people will be asking you how you manage to do something seemingly so difficult from an outside perspective. You’ll just shrug and say it’s not that hard. Adherence comes with age just like the rind on a stinky wheel of cheese.

Remember what Derice Bannock named his bobsled…. Cool Runnings AKA “Peace be the journey”

Adherence is For The Old

May your diet lifestyle journey be peaceful, progressive, and compounding.

Want some help or advice on this journey?

 

Footnotes

*We say fruits and vegetables all the time as if they are interchangeable. This leads to people thinking that they can substitute broccoli for a pomegranate or spinach for an apple. The reality is these are not interchangeable. You need much much more vegetables than fruits in your diet.  

**Potential future post

***The healthiness of this meal was unintentional. I’ve never really been a huge fan of breakfast pastries. That’s a topic for another time though.

****Play to win!

*****I think now that my prefrontal cortex is finished developing I’m as much fun sober as I am with a couple of drinks. Its nice being comfortable being me. Also nice is not being hungover 2/7ths of the year minimum..

******I guess the more linear comparison to a sprinter is a marathoner not a nomad. But, even the marathoner sees an end in sight. 26 miles (42 km) is just not long enough to compare to human life. Especially since now there is a trend of marathoners bragging about their after race meals and how plan on gorging themselves. You burn about 2 pizzas worth of calories during a marathon depending on individual factors.

0
0
Liberate Breakfast | What does your excrement say about you?

What does your excrement say about you?

I’ve always been fascinated by the fact that animal feces is so uniform. That might be a little weird but it is something I think about at least twice a day, usually when I’m taking care of business. Everyday is a surprise, I never know what I’m going to get. With animals it’s just the opposite. We actually identify species by the shape, size, and style of their droppings*!

 

What is wrong with humans?

If you are familiar with my work you know exactly where this is going. Yeah it has something to do with what we eat. Let’s not jump ahead though.

Allow me to elaborate on this phenomena of the animal kingdom sans homosapiens.

The wombat poops cubes. This is one of the more hilarious evolutionary solutions for a species. Wombats have notoriously bad eyesight. Partly because they are nocturnal and partly because they are the Mr. Magoo of the animal kingdom.

 

Liberate Breakfast | What does your excrement say about you?

They even have the same nose!

Liberate Breakfast | What does your excrement say about you?

 

Wombats needed a way to mark their territory using another sense since their peers can’t  see anything. Because they are well mannered they decided to start defecating at nose level, this way they don’t need to keep their faces in the dirt all the time. The trouble with snout level is that round things are prone to rolling off of elevated places. Boom! Cubed turds! All the wombat’s territorial fears were eradicated. Billy Mays couldn’t have come up with a better solution to this modern inconvenience himself (RIP).

We as humans may not have our shit together as well as the wombat but we are definitely better than the capybara…

Without going into extreme detail. Just know that the digestive tract of the capybara doesn’t absorb all the nutrients of food during the first go around the ferris wheel… Yeah. There’s a second revolution. Think of a fat kid eating soft serve ice cream straight from the machine.

Well that’s disturbing but what about us?

 

The love/hate relationship between the brain, the gut, and what we eat?

Why don’t we have some awesome waste  trend that happens involuntarily? That everyone does always?

It has something to do with our diets but also something to do with our brains.

There is a complex link between your excrement and your brain,  and it’s not just because you might be a shitty person. There is a nerve called the Vagus nerve, it’s actually a bunch of nerves but KISS**,  that runs directly from your gut to the brain. This nerve is part of what is called the enteric nervous system (ENS). The ENS covers your gastrointestinal tract with over 100 million nerves and it has a direct link to your central nervous system via the vagus nerve. This is why people are always saying to trust your gut, because your gut is literally your second brain. While the brain may be caught up in conscious thought about how to handle a certain situation, your gut is giving that instinctual push one way or another in a more visceral (enteric?) way.

 

Everything is connected.

Makes sense, but what is new is that researchers at Johns Hopkins are discovering that the link is much deeper and complex than that.

We know that our mental state can affect the way the rest of our body feels. This is why people who are chronically depressed also develop other seemingly unrelated symptoms. What is new though is that this relationship may go the other way around as well.

Distress in our gut may send signals to our brain to change our general disposition. This is intuitive when you find out that people with GI issues like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and other bowel issues have a higher percent chance of developing depression than the average person.

There are some inferences we can draw from this connection. If our brain affects our gut and our gut affects our brain then what we put into our gut affects our brain and our mental perceptions about what we eat affects how our gut treats those things.

The strength of this effect is still being tested but this really is a game changer when it comes to diet and diet intervention.

Did you feel like shit after your last Whopper? Sour patch kids put you in a sour/ sweet mood swing? Did that feeling of shittiness extend past your physical feeling but also to your mental state? Were you embarrassed to admit that you had eaten the whole thing and all the fries as well?

That may be your gut’s way of telling you that you made a terrible decision and you should feel bad about yourself. It’s time to start unconditioning yourself from falling into these decisions.

On the other hand how do you feel after you eat a meal you know you can feel good about? Are you happier than before you ate? Does it make you want to make more good decisions?

 

Okay, get back to the crap.

My simple proposal is to take a look at your own leavings to get a glimpse on how your body and mind are doing. This may be especially helpful for those who aren’t as in touch with the rest of their body as they could be.

The ancients used to tell fortunes using feces… Poopy may not tell you if you have a winning lottery ticket but it can certainly tell you if you need some type of life intervention before other body parts start to go down hill.

If things look weird and abnormal*** downstairs then maybe you need to take a look at your head. The first thing you can do to fix things up without feeling like you are forcing yourself to smile is clean up your diet and see if that releases your pearly whites from their long hibernation.

Ready to take the next step in cleaning out your mental bowels? Want to start achieving the body you always wanted in a sustainable way? Get our free newsletter on the truth about incentives and how the rest of the world is out to destroy your progress by signing up here. As a bonus you’ll get email updates whenever a new article is posted and other great content! Welcome to the front lines of Liberation.

 

Footnotes

*My goal is to never use the same word for poo twice. Let’s see how it goes.

**Liberate Breakfast | What does your excrement say about you?                                                                                     I like this .gif. I’ll use it as many times as I can.

***Weird and abnormal because your normal may be abnormal for most people. Your mom always told you that you are special she just never specified how.

0
0
Liberate Breakfast | Historical Evidence of Apathy

Historical Evidence of Apathy

The  Historical Evidence

Back in the early 1900s, a group of religious fanatics, obsessed with sexual purity and abstinence except for the express purpose of procreation, came to the conclusion that strong smells entering the nose were the source of all sexual desire. Ever been turned on by the smell of sizzling bacon, fresh cut grass, or more likely, catching a whiff of an attractive woman’s perfume? Scents are the devil’s seduction.

To prevent sin, this group even went as far as to medically sew shut baby’s’ nostrils to preemptively prevent desires and urges.

Smartly, to push their message, they associated other benefits with having closed nostrils: less chance of infection, head cold, headaches, etc. These “benefits” to health quickly caught on with the lay public–whether sewing shut the nostrils truly helped or not, people were willing to try it, to do what was “best” for their children–and over time, the actual purpose of the procedure, sexual oppression, fell to the wayside and was slowly forgotten. The practice of sewing baby’s nostrils shut had become mainstream.

Fast forward 100 years. We now live in a society where the majority of people are missing their nose holes.  It’s a world of Voldemorts.

If you were privy to the above story of religious intervention, what would you do?  Would you allow your child’s nose to be sewn shut? Would you even question it, or just let the doctors sew, as they had with the last 83 percent of babies they’d seen?

Would you demand your own sense of smell back?

……..

Flash back to reality.

(Oops there goes gravity!)

………

You might still have your sense of smell, but I’ll tell you what probably did go….

Not gravity.

Your foreskin.

The above scenario actually did happen. But it wasn’t your face that was affected. It was your manhood’s man hood.

 

The Forgotten Hooded Soldier

Back in the early 1900s, a man named John Harvey Kellogg existed. Maybe you recognize the name?

Yup, he’s the creator of cornflakes. Although his brother made Kellogg’s the household name it is today, JHK was very much the creator and first advocate of the cereal.

Kellogg believed that the single worst evil an individual could engage in was masturbation, or “self-abuse,” as he referred to it. As a member of the Seventh-Day Adventist Church, he believed the second coming of Christ was imminent, and therefore the formal education of children was unnecessary. He did, however, believe in the formal removal of the foreskin of little boys and the application of carbolic acid to the clitoris of little girls.

How could anyone with such crazy ideas actually turn those twisted machinations into reality? Kellogg was not a dumb man. Along with cornflakes (which, by the way, he specifically made bland, as bland food is less likely to stimulate arousal according to him), he also invented a number of revolutionary medical instruments, personal hygiene and food sterilization tools, and even started the first sanitarium, a resort-like medical facility that placed huge importance on personal health, which was revolutionary at the time and became wildly popular. Some of his health apparatuses were even featured in the gym of the Titanic.

Side note: many of his health inventions vibrated… One shook violently in order to stimulate the organs of the lower abdomen. Funny how someone so opposed to sexual arousal basically invented one of the first vibrators.

Kellogg even created the yogurt enema (yum), which he used to cleanse the gut (sound familiar to some of today’s trends?), and was an early adopter of the germ theory of disease, a perfectly sound scientific thought.  His brilliance was intertwined with his crazy, making it hard to distinguish the two.

Kellogg’s views on sexual abstinence were influenced by two factors really. In the late 19th and early 20th century, there were very few cures or treatments for STDs. The best way to stay clean was to abstain. Secondly, Kellogg’s religious beliefs, the beliefs of the Seventh-Day Adventist Church, strongly spoke out against sex for any purpose other than procreation. He was so serious about abstinence that he is even on record bragging that he never had sexual congress with his own wife during their 41 years of marriage.

To be clear, the circumcisions in question here are not those based in scriptural mandates, as they are in Judaism. Kellogg didn’t claim that God or the Bible demands all boys be circumcised. Rather, he saw circumcision as a means to an end: the complete castration of sexual desire for the whole race, all because his group of religious zealots believed the human body was something to be ashamed of rather than embraced and lauded.

So yeah, Kellogg really went HAM (Hard As a Motherf*cker) when it came to anti-masturbation. He believed masturbation caused cancer of the womb, urinary diseases, nocturnal emissions, impotence, epilepsy, insanity, and mental and physical debility, in addition to being the worst sin a person could commit. And circumcision was meant to stop boys from masturbating (though most circumcised 13-year-olds might beg to differ).

Brutally, Kellogg believed the process of circumcision should be performed without anesthetic in order to instill the pain in the “patient’s” mind forever. An alternative option that he also advocated was to simply wire the foreskin together over the head of the penis, so that erections would become painful, and less likely to occur over time. And for women, burning the clit with acid at birth was meant to dull any sense of sexual pleasure to prevent sin.

As a man with a penis, I’m very happy the second procedure did not catch on, and on behalf of all women, I’m pleased that we no longer apply acid to the clit at birth. But Kellogg did manage to convince the nation that the secondary “benefits” of circumcision (increased cleanliness, prevention of STDs–benefits that have been largely debunked as exaggeration today) made it a medically advisable procedure. At its height in the 60s, 83% of American male infants were being circumcised, and still 77% are circumcised today.

 

What does all this mean for us?

First, stop circumcising your boys. There is no real medical reason for it. It is merely a remnant of a much more barbaric and ill-informed time, spurred by a religious maniac.

Second, let’s start thinking for ourselves and questioning those things that we do just because “it’s the way it is.” There are plenty of other asinine practices and ideas left over from a more rudimentary time that still persist in society today that are worth examining, such as:

  • The 2nd Amendment (there weren’t semi-automatic weapons in the 1700s or the 1st world “problems” we have today)
  • Statues of Confederate “heroes” (i.e. lifesize slavery trophies)
  • Demonization of dietary fat (This one is totally debunked. If you don’t think so you have been living under a rock)
  • The concept of a “traditional” modern marriage (Sexuality is a spectrum, we don’t all look or act the same, why should we be forced into cookie-cutter relationships?)
  • Current farming practices (both animal (gross) and plant (greedy); one strain of anything is a bad idea for the planet, what happened when the Nazis tried it with people?)
  • The necessity of a college degree (You can literally learn anything online for free)
  • Columbus Day (Why do we consistently ignore our actual history?)
  • Early morning breakfast as the most important meal of the day (Literally, NO. here and here)
  • The two-party system in politics (When was the last time something was actually accomplished?)

I’m sure there are many more, but we do need to start somewhere.

 

How To View This Conundrum

The following is a story that I used to tell to my Marines to get them thinking critically about the standards and practices around them.

There was this lab who was testing social behavior on rats living in a group cage. The scientists in charge put food on an electrified plate in the middle of the cage. When one rat would go to claim the food, all of the rats would get zapped. Eventually all the rats had learned that attempting to retrieve the food on the plate in the middle of the cage would only result in pain.

So, the scientists decided to take one of the rats out of the cage and put a new, unindoctrinated rate in. The new rat almost immediately attempted to retrieve the food on the electrified plate. The other rats attacked the new rat before he could reach the plate in order to prevent everyone from getting electrocuted. The new rat learned very quickly that if it attempted to retrieve the food on the electrified plate in the middle of the cage it would get assaulted by the other rats. This taught the new rat to not even think about retrieving that food.

The scientists swapped out another indoctrinated rat for an unindoctrinated one. The same process repeated itself, with the previously new unindoctrinated rat taking part in the attack of the unwitting newest rat.

Eventually there were no original rats remaining in the cage. The new rats continued to attack each new rat for attempting to retrieve the food in the middle of the cage. Only now they are not attacking for fear of electrocution they are attacking because that is what they were taught is the proper thing to do.

The scientists had even turned off the electricity to the plate in the middle of the cage. Still no rat would attempt to eat it for fear of their peers attacking.

We can continue to be like these rats, blindly accepting previously established doctrine, and continue to fight each other because of it. Or we can start looking at social norms, policies, and procedures through the lens of history for what they are: imperfect solutions to difficult problems that were established with less information than we currently have. If we choose the second route, we may start to find that we live in a more pleasant world with a lot more foreskins.

 

It Starts With One

The list of issues that survive because of complacency is long and filled with very complex problems that will take the cooperation of many in order to rectify. But as individuals, we can start making a difference now, by acting on the cellular level: we start with ourselves.

Here’s a few places to start.

The current accepted social norms for men are all in the category of strong, silent type or repressed emotions. We need to start bucking these trends. Just because your father or his father handled a situation a certain way does not mean that it was the end-all-be-all answer. This is not to say that men need to start crying when they feel stressed or start asking for a safe space to feel their emotions. Men should still be men. They simply need to learn how to relate their emotions into something more than anger and sexual frustration.

Every action you take or fail to take has second and third order effects you don’t even realize, that impact not only you, but also your fellow citizen. If you are a shit head, for example, fix that. The world needs more kindness and unity, not more ego. Put emotional effort into your relationships with your lovers, family members, children, friends, and even colleagues to help prevent depression and garner love in yourself and others.

Next, take an interest in the nutrition going into your body so you don’t become a statistic with metabolic disease. Move your body daily so you don’t develop some “incurable” back pain that puts you on disability.

Nutrition and fitness are two areas in which everyone needs to take responsibility for themselves. Blindly accepting the fad diets (Zone, Paleo, HCLF, LCHF, Keto, etc), and one-size-fits-all advice (lifting will make you bulky, cardio will cause/cure cardiac disease) that gets pumped out of the 24 hour news cycle are not responsible actions. This is the area in which bucking accepted conventions can yield the single greatest benefit to your life. Take an interest in what goes into YOUR body and how YOUR body moves and feels.

No time?

No interest? (There are bigger issues behind this one…. We will save that for another time.)

Hire someone to help personalize your health, someone with your best interest in mind (not a corporation, invest in another human). If for some reason you think that food and nutrition science is settled check out these amazing articles on why that is not even close to true. Tried everything all the fitness magazines say to do and still not happy? That’s because click-bait is not science, also those models don’t even do most of those ridiculous workouts. Working with a professional will be the best money you spend on yourself, probably ever, definitely better than your frosted hair tips, that Kardashian waist trainer, or your tanning salon membership.

 

Personal Responsibility is the True Sign of Maturity

What it all boils down to is paying attention. Pay attention to what you have blindly accepted and why. When it comes to our personal health, we need to examine the source of every piece of advice we receive, or work with someone who has. Don’t blindly follow the blanket advice of more rudimentary times, when doctors and scientists had far less information. Question the advice of modern nutritionists as well, source studies are often skewed by lobbies and big industries with their interest in mind, not yours. Ultimately the only way to know if something works for you, like limiting carb intake, is to try it, not read a book about it. Realize also that just because you have success with an eating or exercise technique, like intermittent fasting, doesn’t mean it will be successful for everyone you meet.

The world is at a point where a lot of things are going to change. It is up to us to be in a position where we are able to decide whether those changes are positive or negative. This isn’t the Presidential election, there is no electoral college, your individual vote actually counts in this race. It is a race in a sense, one where your own mental and physical capability dictate the amount of influence you have on our future.

Next time you are approached with a decision akin to slicing the tip of your son’s dick off (or eating breakfast), ask why or why not before you decide.

P.S. If you are ready to start making yourself a better person and want to start with getting healthier, check out the rest of my site or shoot me a direct message. This is a conversation worth starting in your life.

P.P.S. I would also love it if you shared this article with friends, relatives, colleagues, even that asshole who lives down the hall or street from you (he/ she probably needs it the most).

 

0
5

Hijacking Your Food Choices

You might consider yourself mentally strong, but everyone has a breaking point. We all reach decision-making fatigue at some point. When it comes to food, there are an overwhelming number of decisions to make if you have no guidelines to dictate some answers for you. The food industry has figured out how to urge you to buy and eat more than you need. Your psychology has been overridden by external factors. The food industry and social norms are hijacking your food choices.

Socially Acceptable Is Not Necessarily Nutritionally Acceptable

I don’t explicitly think that strict macro-nutrient calorie counting is necessary for everyone at all times in their life. What is necessary are some guidelines that keep people from eating all of their Halloween candy in one sitting. It is possible to eat too much. It is also possible to eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner and get no actual quality nutrition due to poor food choice.

How your mind is wired will dictate what foods you crave and how much of them you desire. Food culture in America has wired us to constantly crave food (usually shitty food) in every possible occasion. 

For example:

  • 3 square meals a day
  • Breakfast in bed
  • Keeping your metabolic fire stoked by snacking small*
  • Dinner and a movie
  • The ubiquitous candy dish
  • Birthday cake party at work
  • Popcorn as an after dinner TV snack
  • Brunch
  • Hungry? Grab a Snickers
  • Appetizers/ Hors d’oeuvres
  • Midnight snack
  • Bodybuilder diets including a minimum of 6 meals a day
  • 10,000 calorie challenge

If we borrow just a few of these we find ourselves eating all day everyday.

The beauty of these conventions is that you don’t have to strictly follow any of them to become a victim of their allure; you just need to be aware that they exist. By acknowledging their existence you leave the door open for them to enter your eating habits.

Take the following scenario as an example.

Wake up: eat breakfast,

Go to work: grab a candy off the secretary’s desk.

Mid morning hunger strikes:** go grab a frozen burrito from the vending machine at work.

Lunch time comes around: you have Subway*** because you want to be “healthy”.

Back to work: Oh surprise! It’s Debbie’s birthday, guess you are having some cake.

Home for dinner: and it’s actually a healthy meal that your loving husband made for you****.

Time to sit and relax with some TV: Why not some popcorn and a glass of chocolate milk, or whiskey as a TV watching snack?

Bedtime.

Ugh midnight and you can’t sleep: maybe if you have a couple of cookies, you’ll sleep better.

 

The actual amount of food consumed aside, this is a crazy way to ingest life-sustaining nutrition. Under this model, you can justify eating anything at any time of the day for a number of reasons without any rhyme or reason. A great one that I’ve heard people use to justify a mid-day candy bar******? “Bodybuilders eat six times a day; that’s all I’m doing to keep my metabolism churning”. Sure, bro.

Look, there’s nothing wrong with a mid-day candy bar if you have planned for it. In the past, when I was watching all my macros, I actually calculated in a buffer for my standard end of  the day drink while my partner and I watched old episodes of 30 Rock. I was in great shape then and never felt guilty about it because I had planned for it.

When you leave the door open anyone could walk in

We each make over 200 food related choices a day******. The easiest way to choose incorrectly is by not having a plan. Set yourself up with some rules to live by. With a plan you can leave the guilt to the Catholic Church and enjoy every bite of food you shove in your largest face hole.

Need help making some rules to live by? Check out my coaching page and get some one on one love. 

Footnotes

*Which is BS by the way

**probably from ghrelin, the hormone that regulates your eating patterns, if you usually snack your body will grow to expect it. This is easily defeated by short fasts.

*** Subway  can easily be as terrible for you as McDonald’s

****You thought this was a straight man the whole time didn’t you? Surprise it’s not. Might be gay. Might be a woman. Who’s to say…

*****I include in the category “candy bar” all the health food and protein bars that are so popular today. They have just as much sugar and calories for the most part, with a nice shitty aftertaste. If you are gonna have a bar, just have a Snickers and enjoy it, rather that trying to trick yourself that you are eating something healthy.

******Thanks Mindless Eating by Brian Wansink

0
2

Morning Fast and Mental Clarity

Have you ever noticed a sharp clarity during your morning fast, before breakfast? 

It’s your body telling you it’s ready to face the challenges you are currently experiencing. Your body doesn’t realize that you’re wearing footy pajamas and currently looking at a GIF of a sea lion attacking a little girl and laughing about it.

Your body thinks you are in a world where food is scarce. It thinks you will need to go hunting for food soon.

 

What’s really going on deep inside that Power Rangers onesie?

According to the above studies, your body is heating up and wants to expend more energy in the fasted state you are currently in. An increase in production of the hormones epinephrine (adrenaline) and norepinephrine (noradrenaline) are making you more active and mentally sharp for survival purposes.

Keep in mind that the current human form has not lived in our modern comfortable and civilized  state long enough for it to cause generational physiological changes across the race. That being said, all of our hormones, biochemical reactions, organ functions, and mental processes are still optimized for living on the Savannah hunting prey, collecting wild foods, and avoiding predators.  

Back when I was in school, I would do my homework in the early morning prior to classes, I found that I was sharper and able to complete the work quicker and be distracted less. I’m sure some of this effect came from the urgency of having the work due soon, but, I now also understand that my body was primed in the morning because of the hormones that were pumping through my body.

Now that I better understand the relationship between fasting, hunger, and mental acuity, I maximize my work time in the early morning. I save the easy work for the afternoon when I know I will have a belly full of food.

 

In the fasted state, our body thinks it’s time to go find food.

When we fast, we prime our system for functioning in the fasted state. Think of the fasted state as the opposite of the feasting state, the state most people are always in. In the fasted state, there are tons of processes that the body conducts, such as autophagy and apoptosis* that are otherwise rarely experienced.

The sympathetic nervous system is initiated, epinephrine and norepinephrine are increased, and you become more ready to tackle the day’s issues.

The common modern day thinking is that if you don’t eat, you will get tired, sluggish, and unmotivated. When you actually think on that, you realize that is quite counter-intuitive.

 

We use “hungry” as a slang term to describe someone who won’t stop until they succeed. Not someone who is tired and complacent.

This is our nature as homo sapiens. Hunger makes us active, sharp, and alert.

 

The 12 Hour Rule

A general consensus in the scientific community is that you start reaping the mental benefits of fasting around 12 hours after you stop eating**. This is highly variable and depends on your last meal, but it is a satisfactory rule of thumb. After 12 hours, your body has run out of easily accessible food energy in the form of glucose, and is forced to tap into the glycogen stores in the liver.

During this shift of energy sources, the body starts the transition to the fasted state and begins pumping hormones like norepinephrine (noradrenaline) and epinephrine (adrenaline), which is necessary to help make the glycogen in the liver available for energy. These hormones stimulate us and make us ready to go find more food.

That means that during your morning fast after around 12 hours without food, your adrenaline is pumping, your body is running off glycogen, and you feel more alert.

If you finish eating around 8 PM***, around 8 AM the next day you should start to feel primed and ready to move. When you eat breakfast as soon as you roll out of bed, you never get the benefits of this brain and body force multiplier****.

The next time you find yourself about 12 hours from your last meal, take a minute to notice if there is anything different about your body. You’ll feel it. This is a great time to try to get some serious work done, or to schedule a brutal workout. This doesn’t need to be a morning fast, you can time it to take place during any part of the day.

 

Use This Knowledge

This information is relatively new, only really being realized and studied in the last 30 or 40 years. This is one of the benefits of being alive now; 90% of all scientists ever are alive today. Every hour of every day new things are being discovered. When it comes to something as complicated as the human body, don’t rely on some old wive’s tale passed down for 1000 years. Listen to the latest and greatest science that  could not have been conducted any time other than today.

Thank God For Technology!

 

Dismissing modern science for traditional “knowledge”  because it seems counter intuitive is a crime. Remember, modern breakfast was invented by the same guy that took your (or someone you know) foreskin and guess what…. He was selling something*****

If you think this isn’t true, try a 16 hour fast. Take note of hour you feel for the last four hours of those 16 hours.

If you want some guidance on how to fast like a pro take a look at our coaching page.

Everyone has a morning fast, some of us choose to maximize its benefits, some don’t.

There are powerful benefits of fasting that were not understood until now. Use these benefits to be smarter, more productive, healthier, and happier than those who came before you. 

 

Foot Notes

*I’ll cover these in another post. Just know that they are really good and on average modern humans don’t experience them nearly enough. Here’s an intense Primer on Autophagy

**As long as you don’t suffer from metabolic syndrome, diabetes, on insulin resistance. In these cases it could take longer for some effects to begin. Always keep in mind that humans are highly variable. So you won’t be the same as the person sitting next to you.

***which is probably the latest you should be eating. New studies on our internal Circadian Clocks by Dr. Panda show that the body is not designed to function properly when we are eating outside of our natural rhythm. The natural rhythm is in concordance with the sun.

****It’s 7AM now as I’m writing. It’s hitting me now. 😉

*****If nothing else check out the “masturbation prevention” section of his Wikipedia page

0
0

Cut Refined Sugar

The following is based heavily on the transcript of this podcast by Dr. Rhonda Patrick on why you should cut your refined sugar consumption as much as possible. I took some artistic license and added comments and formatting for readability and entertainment value.

 

Sugar is not always the demonized version we see in news headlines. It also occurs naturally in fruit and dairy products. The current versions of these products are variants that have been selectively bred over the last couple thousand years. They have much more sugar than their ancient ancestors. That fact aside, sugar in a piece of fruit is much better for you than a spoonful of refined white sugar.

Refined sugar is made from sugar cane or sugar beets and undergoes refined processing. This process involves removing all other aspects of the plants, leaving only pure sugar.

 

Some Astounding Facts About Sugar Consumption

Nearly three quarters of adults in the US get nearly a tenth of their daily calories from added refined sugar.

And 10% of US adults get a quarter of their calories from refined sugar!

Sugar is linked to prediabetes, type II diabetes, and many diseases of aging. Prediabetes is a condition where a person’s blood sugar levels are higher than normal, but aren’t high enough to be called Type II diabetes….yet.

Scientists estimate that consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages in 2010 may have contributed to:

133,000 deaths from diabetes,

43,000 deaths from cardiovascular disease, and

6,450 deaths from cancer worldwide.

(This does not include all sugar intake, just sugar-sweetened beverages alone!)

One can of soda, or other sugar sweetened beverage a day raises your risk of diabetes by 46%. If you replace one of those drinks a day with an unsweetened beverage, like water, you can reduce that risk of diabetes by 25%. (The math is not purely subtractive in this equation. It is nonetheless astounding.)

Sugar leaves the body rather quickly. With a week of no sugar intake, insulin, cholesterol, and blood sugar improve a measurable amount.

 

Diets High In Refined Sugar Linked To Cancer.

Nearly 600,00 people died in 2016 from cancer in the United States. 200,000 of those death are contributed to lifestyle and/ or environmental factors, meaning with better lifestyle choices these people would have lived to see 2017, potentially. Lifestyle and environmental factors include things like having a diet high in processed foods and refined sugar, smoking, or having a low level of physical activity.

Refined sugar increases both DNA damage and inflammation throughout the body. These two processes are two of the primary paths to cancerous cells in the body.

There are multiple studies linking refined sugar consumption to all types of cancer, including prostate, breast, and intestinal cancer. These studies are accepted by the whole science community, not fringe elements publishing suspect papers. The exact mechanism to these cancers is complicated and briefly described in this footnote*.

 

Sugar And Getting Old As Hell

Telomeres are very important in determining the biological age of an individual. Telomeres are the caps on the end of our chromosomes (think: tips of shoelaces). As the body gets older, telomeres get shorter. On unhealthy people telomeres get shorter faster and potentially cause chromosomes to lose genes or allow the chromosomes to stick to other chromosomes during cell division.

When telomeres get too short the cell stops dividing or it dies. Your days are numbered when this happens….

Scientists think that telomere length might not only be a biomarker for cellular aging but it might also cause cellular aging. This is a big deal considering we lose about 21 nucleotides a year off the end of our telomeres. In some cells that divide more rapidly, we lose as many as 60 nucleotides a year.

What’s worse is that there are genetic mutations that cause telomeres to shorten unusually fast.

Remember Jack?

Werner syndrome, one such mutation, affects 1 in 200,000 people in the USA and somewhere between 1 in 20,000 and 1 in 40,000 people in Japan.

Science is finding a silver lining though; an enzyme, conveniently named telomerase, has been shown to help regrow telomeres in rats. More studies are required on this enzyme’s effects in humans.

How does the above link to sugar? How about this…

Adults who drink 12 oz of sugar-sweetened beverages each day have much shorter telomeres in their white blood cells, a reduction roughly equivalent to 4.5 years of biological aging compared to people the same age who don’t drink soda or other sugar-sweetened beverages. If not important to you now, in your 80s, 4.5 years will feel like a blessing.

 

Inflammation From Sugar and Aging

As previously mentioned, inflammation is not good. Refined sugar causes inflammation. Inflammation is linked to cancer, but it also increases the signs of aging.

Inflammation is a natural part of the healing process. When you have an illness or an injury it can help to protect you so your body can heal itself. However, it is always meant to be short-lived.

Sometimes the stress causing the inflammation is not short-lived. Environmental triggers, such as constant increased refined sugar intake or chronic stress in life can cause inflammation to go haywire. It is this chronic or long-term inflammation that ages us.

It is now believed that successful suppression of inflammation through lifestyle may be the most important driver of successful longevity, actually increasing in importance with advancing age.

Just 20 ounces of soda daily has been shown to increase a biomarker of inflammation by 60-100%!

What’s more, that same 20 ounce sugary beverage has been shown to increase the number of small dense LDL cholesterol particles in the blood. Small dense LDL particles tend to be the most dangerous cholesterol particles, because they can’t be recycled back to the liver. They stay in the bloodstream where they can undergo more inflammatory transformations.

 

Brief Aside: A longevity gene

FOXO3 is a master regulator of hundreds of genes that are involved in stress resistance, stem cell production, and autophagy (a type of self-destruct mechanism that maintains healthy cells). People with a particular variation of this gene have a nearly three times more likely chance of becoming a centenarian. It is currently thought that refined sugar may inhibit this gene in humans. Though more human research is needed, the it has already been proven true in fruit flies. 

 

Refined sugar and hormone production

A new study concerning refined sugar and hormone production has proven to be a staggering one for men. When men between 19 and 74 consumed 75 grams of refined sugar (roughly the amount in a sugar-sweetened soda and a donut), they experienced a 25% drop in testosterone for up to two hours immediately after consumption. For some men, that is a noticeable and perceptible drop in testosterone, which is crazy when talking about hormones.

 

Refined Sugar On The Brain

The brains of obese children are much more responsive to refined sugar than non-obese children. 60 different studies have shown that obese children have a heightened pleasure response when consuming refined sugar compared to non-obese children. This has negative implications, since it has been shown that increased refined sugar intake is linked to memory problems, specifically compromises of spatial memory in rats. Obese children are more inclined to eat more sugar, and are therefore more likely to have reduced brain function.

Excessive long term sugar intake can change the structure of a type of nerve cell, called medium spiny neurons, in the nucleus accumbens. The nucleus accumbens is a part of the brain associated with reward circuitry. These structural changes from sugar are very similar to the changes caused by powerful stimulant drugs, such as amphetamine, cocaine, and nicotine.

The parts of the brain associated with memory and emotion actually begin to shrink when a person has higher than normal blood sugar.

People with blood sugar levels on the high end of the normal range, 100-125 mg/dl, (considered prediabetic) experience 6-10% more brain atrophy in the hippocampus and amygdala than people with normal blood sugar levels.

 

High Fructose Corn Syrup and Traumatic Brain Injury

High fructose corn syrup (HFCS) prevents neurons in the brain from being able to communicate, and also prevents brain rewiring after a traumatic brain injury.

What’s crazy is that fructose from fruit does not have the same effects as refined fructose or HFCS. This is likely due to the beneficial effects of polyphenols and fiber in the fruit.

 

What Is The Difference Between Sugar Types Exactly Anyway?

Sucrose, also known as table sugar, is a 50/50 mix of fructose and glucose, two simple sugars. HFCS, like sucrose, is also a mixture of fructose and glucose, but with a higher percentage of fructose and a lower percentage of glucose. Mostly a 55/45 ratio.

Okay… So what does the body do with glucose and fructose?

Glucose and sugary foods containing glucose can be metabolized or broken down by every cell in the body. When glucose is eaten the body responds in the pancreas by producing insulin. Insulin** is essential for the body’s cells to be able to take up and utilize glucose. This response also promotes the formation of leptin (a hormone that’s responsible for the feeling of satiety).

Sounds good…what about fructose?

In contrast, fructose is metabolized primarily by cells in the liver and does not require insulin. This means there is no insulin response, and therefore no leptin to create the feeling of satiety. You will continue to eat because there is no feeling of fullness. Your liver struggles to keep up and produce enough triglycerides in order to store that excess energy, which elevates the risk for heart attack and stroke.

Okay, so we should avoid fructose at all costs then?

Not totally. Fruits contain both glucose and fructose, and fruits are good for you, in moderation. Fructose in fruit is bound up in the food matrix, a complex mixture of fiber and other compounds such as polyphenols***. This changes the way sugars are metabolized and doesn’t raise blood sugar dramatically. Additionally, fiber itself increases satiety.

 

Dopamine… The Silver Lining… Kinda

The only good thing about consuming refined sugar is the short lived buzz you feel after consuming it, due to a release of the neurotransmitter dopamine. Dopamine controls the brain’s pleasure and other reward centers. This is in ways that are similar to the effects from drugs like nicotine, cocaine, morphine. Sugar is less dramatic of a response, but similar, and over time you begin to crave more of the drug or another substance with a similar response. You eventually build up a tolerance to the effects and you crave even more and more of it. This is why so many people have trouble quitting sugar cold turkey.

Oh cool, so refined sugar is basically a drug, and when I eat it I’m getting the same pleasure as those guys in Trainspotting.

This movie finally makes sense to me****.

The Recommendation

It’s pretty simple: cut refined sugar as much as you can if you want to live a happy and high-quality life. If you don’t care about living long and well, honestly, I’m surprised you made it to the conclusion. Start slow, cut one beverage a day, and go from there. Refined sugar has no nutritional qualities that are necessary to the human body. It has been shown that foods not sweetened with refined sugar will start to taste better to you as you decrease your intake of refined sugar. Refined sugar numbs your palate to other foods. It’s like a scorned lover: if it can’t have you, no foods can. Start breaking refined sugar’s hold on you today.

Sign up here for more great posts like this!

Footnotes

*Excess refined sugar appears to cause intestinal cells in the gut to accumulate beta catenin, a type of oncogene, which enhances cellular proliferation. A potentially bad thing. Our cells are hardwired to prevent damaged cells from surviving. This is done through apoptosis (AKA programmed cell death). Oncogenes allow damaged cells to bypass the checkpoints that promote cellular death. This allows those damaged cells to become immortal cancer cells. Accumulation of beta catenin in this case as a component of the insulin response produced by excess sugar may just be one more way in which excess refined sugar consumption can tie back to increased cancer risk.

**Insulin is to digestion and fat storage what testosterone and growth hormone are to muscle growth. If you aren’t following, it is highly highly important.

***Polyphenols are a class of chemical which confer many health benefits

****In people who quit smoking, it takes roughly 3 months for the 15-20% drop in dopamine to come back to normal after quitting. The same drugs effective in helping people quit hard drugs are effective in treating addiction to sugar. Sounds like a great reward for children when they get a good grade in social studies.

Sources

1.https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/02/140203163432.htm

2.https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/to-your-health/wp/2015/06/29/sugary-drinks-linked-to-180000-deaths-a-year-study-says/?utm_term=.111dc1a05610

3.https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2016-11/tuhs-rio110716.php

4.https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/04/150430191138.htm

5.http://www.health.com/news/cutting-sugar-from-diet-boosts-kids-health-immediately-study

6.https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16298215

7.https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/04/160405182105.htm

8.https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/02/130201100149.htm

9.https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2014/oct/16/sugar-soft-drinks-dna-ageing-study

10.http://www.ebiomedicine.com/article/S2352-3964(15)30081-5/fulltext

11.http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/94/2/479.full

12.http://www.cell.com/cell-reports/abstract/S2211-1247(16)31719-3

13.https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22804876

14.https://health.ucsd.edu/news/releases/Pages/2014-12-11-obese-childrens-brains-on-sugar.aspx

15.https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/10/141007111227.htm

16.http://journal.frontiersin.org/article/10.3389/fnbeh.2016.00054/full

17.https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2012-09/aaon-ein082812.php

18.https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/04/160407111828.htm

19.https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2016-07/e-rod072816.php

20.http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0150270

21.https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/11/151125143622.htm

22.https://www.acast.com/foundmyfitness/refined-sugar-and-its-affects-on-mortality-the-brain-cancer-hormones–more

0
1

Hold The Internet Accountable

All the things that make the internet an amazing mechanism for information dissemination, community building, and business creation are the same mechanisms that make it so dangerous. There is no system of accountability on the internet, it’s still the Wild Wild West out there. For this very fact fitness, food, political, science, etc… icons on the internet are not to be trusted without a preliminary investigation first. Know who you follow and know where they get their information from. It’s time to hold the internet accountable.

Gotta call ’em like you see ’em

A beautiful relationship can be built on the internet these days. It’s the same relationship that people in a small town have with their doctor or bank teller.

Let’s walk through how this relationship can be built, and why you can and should use it to get quality information out of the internet instead of mass-marketed drivel*.

The Doctor Analogy

You move to a new town. You realize that being in a new town makes your tummy ache (hopefully you didn’t move to the town in Erin Brockovich or Flint, Michigan***). So you look for a doctor to give you a check-up.

Doctor 1: There are 25 patients in the waiting room which is beautifully decorated on the top floor of a gigantic office building overlooking a park or lake or something, and when you get into the consultation room a nurse takes all your vitals and tell you the doctor will be with you soon. After another 30-minute wait the doctor comes in. He looks you over in 1 minute flat. He then starts to tell you that there could be 5 different things wrong with you and prescribes you 3 different medicines all meant to treat a different potential illness. Once done he also tells you that he is conducting a randomized trial that has the potential to heal an array of ailments. One of which may be one of your 7 potential illnesses. So try everything, and like sprinkles, here’s a round of antibiotics.

Doctor 2:There is a small office with two other people in the waiting room. At your appointment time, your name is called and you go into a consultation room to meet with the doctor. After some pleasantries and getting to know each other, the doctor spends 15 minutes conducting tests. All the while he is asking you questions to confirm his suspicions, and he diagnoses you. He prescribes you a medication that will heal your troubled belly. He also explains your condition, how to prevent it in the future and what home remedies may help it in its beginning stages of onset.

Which do you choose?

The Analogy Sets In

In every industry there are a lot of websites that are only interested making money and pumping the most people through their business funnels as possible. The fitness and nutrition industry are no different.

An easy way to tell if you are getting smoke blown up your bum hole is to look for references on the website you are looking at, or at least a detailed explanation talking about real science or something an undisputed professional did.

“Always perform sumo dead lifts, never do the straight leg variant, the sumo dead lift leads to greater overall strength gain and fewer back injuries”

“Eat more colorful fruits because they promote gut health and nothing is more important than your gut”

“When hard boiling an egg always bring the water to a boil first then add the eggs”

The above justifications are catch-alls which always indicate potential BS. Every person and body is different, blanket diagnoses are more and more proving to be not only unhelpful but detrimental. There are very few catch-alls that cover every human+.

Another catch-all I’m not sure about…

Some Better Alternatives

“When studied the sumo dead lift has been shown to put (x) amount of more mass on the hamstring and in longevity studies has shown to produce less injuries across (y) number of experienced lifters surveyed. This evidence however is far from conclusive”**

“Colorful fruits have more antioxidants in them. Increased numbers of antioxidants have been proven to increase gut health through (z) process”**

“By adding eggs to already boiling water you can more easily account for the amount of heat applied to the egg and can then more accurately remove the eggs from the heat to achieve your desired level of doneness.”**

These second examples  show you that the author has put in the thought and research to ensure she/he is giving you the most accurate information possible.

Keep your thinking cap on when surfing through the world wide web. It’s free to make a website; anyone can do it for any number of reasons. Stick with websites that try to prove themselves to you with every post or article and build a relationship with these people in order to continue to hold them accountable. Especially if they are making fact-based claims that have the potential to impact your standard of life.

Footnotes

+  Like drink water, eat food, and sleep. Past these three examples things are highly variable.

*Drivel: a word British people use.

** I made all the examples up, if you have issues with them you can talk to your imaginary friend about them because they contain the same level of reality.

*** This is a reference to the Flint Michigan Megabowl not the water issue, which I would never joke about.

Dark Times

 

    

0
0

Effective frequency and its effects on your gains.

The more you hear something the more you are likely to believe it, especially if it is not in your area of expertise. Effective frequency is preached by all great marketers. Its basic premise is the more you are exposed to something, the more likely you are to believe it. In the world of marketing this leads to conversions and profits. In the world of diet and nutrition this leads to a lot of bad information circulating, also companies making profit off of the fad diets and false claims.

Gluten is bad for you…

Red meat gives you cancer…

Alcohol makes you fat…

Detoxing your body is necessary…

Eat often to stoke your metabolic fire…

Dark berries will make you smarter and immortal…

Which of these have you heard before, which do you believe, which are correct?

I’ll put an answer key below for all of these.

 

Muddying the waters

The point is that you’re probably confused. That’s because there is a lot of information out there that is misleading, misguided, or just flat out wrong. Even if it’s all 3, it might still get repeated over and over again because it makes a good headline or is an easy response to a tough question.

Just more muddying of the waters

Question everything you hear and read, especially when it comes to diet and nutrition. There are few areas of society where so much is always changing and being challenged. Nothing is written in stone. More importantly, there is nothing stopping anyone from putting out an article or video saying that if you want to truly cleanse your digestive system you should eat sand to act as an abrasive and scrub the inside of your organs. That is nonsense, but there is no regulatory agency that can prevent a major news source from publishing it for the ratings.

There’s kind of a beautiful Darwinian dichotomy at play here. Only those of us that are capable of thinking for ourselves and challenging accepted truths are able to thrive completely in society. There will always be sheep–that’s how humanity works. Without sheep, bold thinkers can’t exist and spread their ideas.

Step out of the crowd.

Think and challenge. Pull the news and information you want. Don’t allow mass media agencies and big corporations to push the information they want to you.

 

Answers

Gluten Bad?

There is no cookie cutter answer for this. What are your body goals? How’s your immune system? Read this and think for yourself.

Red Meat = Cancer?

This is inconclusive. Is it a risk you are cool with? I am. Read this and think for yourself.

Alcohol Fat?

The answer again is, eh–maybe but it depends on you. Do you love to binge drink? Does drinking cause you to eat more than you normally would? Are you a rampant alcoholic with abs? Read this and the linked studies and think for yourself.

Detox?

This one is actually BS unless you have Heroin in your system. Read this and help the woefully uneducated from wasting their money on $20 juice.

Stoke Your Metabolic Fire?

Your metabolism is much smarter than you give it credit for. Funny what thousands of years of evolution will do. Eating six times a day may yield great positive effects for you, BUT stoking some metabolic fire is not one of them. Read this and accept science.

Berry Flavored Fountain of Youth?

Ponce De Leon is gonna be pissed! Not really, but dark berries are super good for you. Just don’t go snorting them like cocaine 17 times a day. Read this and be slightly pleasantly surprised for once. I had to end on a good note.

 

Blueberries won’t drown you…

0
0

The Not Financial Breakdown of Big Food

I wanted to do a full financial breakdown of the food industry but upon further introspection (extrospection?) It turned out to not be necessary. If you understand incentives you can see through this shade. The food industry is a more than 75 billion dollar industry. What could their main incentive be?

Hint: It isn’t you or your health.

It's not about you

It’s about profit.

If there is a way to make money, it isn’t by suggesting you eat less. It is by suggesting that you eat things like these individualized 100 calorie packs that are actually more expensive than the original full bag, and produce exponentially more plastic waste to boot. But with 100-calorie packs, you can be convinced that you are eating less, even though you might be having five a day because you think they’re healthy, or you’re supplementing those calories with a couple of Hershey kisses at grandma’s house, since you were good and only had a 100-calorie snack before that. Mindless Eating by Brian Wansink is an eye-opening look at how your brain is being hijacked by the very well-thought-out manipulation of the food industry–not just by their packaging, but also by how you have been manipulated to function around certain food scenarios.

Remember, you also can’t trust all scientific articles. A real jacked-up thing that can and does occur is that the food industry sponsors scientists to conduct research that will validate their products. On top of that, Big Food companies also use money and influence to get their sponsored articles onto media outlets. Ensure that you trace every health claim back to the source, so that you know exactly how trustworthy it is.

 

I think this might be my dead horse.

Liberate Breakfast Intermittent Fasting

 

Today we all hold the sum of the world’s knowledge in our pockets. We need to stop teaching just the facts in school. Start teaching methods and critical thinking and the various schools of thought that enable and empower people to think for themselves. When you have the ability to think critically about any situation, you have an inherent advantage over those that take things at face value. We are all busy, so we pick and choose what we blindly accept. Anything that goes into your body should not be one of those things.

0
0
Liberate Breakfast It's Inevitable

It’s Inevitable

Here’s my attempt at liberating honesty…

In an era where everything is dominated by technology I found myself deficient.

Last year I identified one of my biggest faults and sought to fix it.

I couldn’t keystroke. You know typing…

I know, I know! How could a millennial, raised by the internet, AIM, MySpace, and Mavis Beacon not know how to type 100 words per minute.

I went to a high school where typing was a mandatory class for all Freshmen. I got a great grade in it too, I didn’t earn that grade though…. A girl that I befriended complete my assignments in the morning before classes started.*

Flash forward to 2016. I find myself working in the United States Marine Corps, arguably the most Alpha organization of all time, in a position where my main duty included typing 20-30 wordy emails a day, arguably the least Alpha job in the world.

I’m sitting in my cubicle pecking away at the keyboard deciding that a few things need to change.

  1. I gotta get a new job, that has nothing to do with a keyboard. (that hasn’t panned out yet)**
  2. I gotsta learn how to type for realz!

A few hard months of playing online games, in which the main method of saving the princess involved properly and quickly typing the word “‘kumquat”, I can now type 17 words per minute! Kinda

Moral of the story is:

Delaying the inevitable doesn’t negate the inevitability of something.

 

Next goal that I stubbornly ignored in 4th grade:

Proper Sentence Structure

 

*I did however learn the art of subtle manipulation.
**Also Uncle Sam led me astray.

0
0

Your Priorities Are Out Of Order

What do people notice about you when you walk by them on the street? Is it the size of your biceps, the brand of clothing you’re wearing, the spot you missed while shaving, or that you got a tight shape-up the day before? Your priorities are not the same as the average person you see on the street. Few things stand out enough to make stranger’s heads turn.

Unless this is your haircut, you probably aren’t getting noticed.

In reality, the odds are that a lot fewer people notice you than you think.

Enter the Spotlight effect*.

This phenomenon has been proven by a few studies conducted on normal everyday people.. It states that you think the spotlight is on you way more than it ever actually is. You are the center of your universe but not the center of anyone else’s. Except maybe your mom’s.

That’s good news for everyone. You are not in the spotlight. So stop worrying what you look like so much. Having abs is great, and showing them off is fun, but no one cares if you are 5% body fat or 15%, much less the difference between 5% and 7%.

This post is really about you learning to love the process and reaping the rewards as a secondary effect.

If you want a vascular stomach, great, but don’t let it cloud your vision of the present. Every time you workout or eat something  good for your body you are making yourself better. Live in that moment every day.

Keepin’ it Real

In an effort to keep this from turning into a self-help post I’m gonna get real.

You need to recognize the time it takes to get the results you want. Anyone that promises you results in weeks is a liar. If you’re the type of person looking for a quick fix I guarantee you don’t have the type of body that will show any significant results in weeks. Start measuring things in 6 month increments if you want to be realistic. Building muscle takes time. Losing weight is quicker, but keeping it off in the long run requires real work.

Now that you are disheartened, it’s time to become process-oriented. Love every workout for what it is. Learn to appreciate the nutrients in the foods you eat. Have respect for the time and skill it takes to prepare a meal. Become a professional at everything you do. I’m the best fucking dishwasher I know. That doesn’t have a lot of application outside of a kitchen directly. Indirectly, I can take the focus and pride I have and apply it to everything else in my life.

If that sounds dumb to you, you don’t get it, and are probably horribly unhappy.

How to know if you love the process/ can live in the moment/ have respect for the simpler things in life:

If you find yourself thinking about your next meal while you are eating your current meal. You need work.

If you are thinking about how hard the next rep or set is going to be while you are in the middle of a rep or set. You need work.

If you are thinking about work tomorrow while you are laying on the couch watching Netflix and getting a foot rub from your gorgeous wife. You need serious work.

If you are fantasizing about driving a Bentley while driving your Ford Taurus past people waiting at a bus stop in the rain. You are missing the point.

In Summation

Before I digress further:

People care a lot less than you think

You are probably focused on the wrong things

If you are in agreement with all the above and are not found deficient in mental presence, then I’m sure you know someone who is. Send them this, and buy yourself a Kit Kat.

*Yeah I used wikipedia as a source. Deal with it. Read the resources there if you want the actual studies.

0
0
Liberate Breakfast In The Beginning Post

In The Beginning

This is me scratching my itch.

I had the first 26 years of my life planned out for me. 3 months ago I found myself in position I hadn’t before found myself in, I had no one and nothing telling what to do and where to be. This is a new beginning. 
I’ve decided that it is now time for me to do what I want. About the only thing I read about in my free time is in someway connected to food. Be that food nutrition, cooking food, or watching videos of David Letterman dropping food off of buildings in the name of science.

Intermittent fasting has protected me from a growing waistline like that of my peers.

I hope to use this outlet to circulate my thoughts and research into the topic.

Fasting has been practiced since the beginning of life on planet earth. It is what our ancestors practiced when food was scarce, when there was a religious occasion, or when they needed a remedy for illness.

“Everyone has a physician inside him or her; we just have to help it in its work.  The natural healing force within each one of us is the greatest force in getting well.  Our food should be our medicine.  Our medicine should be our food.  But to eat when you are sick is to feed your sickness.”
                                              – Hippocrates

Only in the past 70 years has fasting become something that is looked at as a bad idea. After WWII fasting was put on the back burner and a whole new nutrition mentality took hold of the western world.

The fasting movement is representative of a school of thought  that needs to keep building strength in modern society.

The school of questioning.

The entrenchment of the post WWII nutritional framework is just a proxy. Many levels of societal norms that today’s leaders embody have similar underpinnings to ill-formed or downright false doctrine.

Courage to stray from the pack and accepted norm is rare.

I hope to not only talk about the science behind intermittent fasting and other healthy lifestyles but also to explore some of these conventions that are accepted truth.

The nutrition community is overflowing with false truths, It’s just where the liberation begins.

So all I’m going to do now is post things that I find interesting or important. If you don’t like it or think someone is doing better somewhere else please do the following three things.

    1. Let me know I suck and who is better.
    2. Stop reading and go meditate on why you are probably the issue not me.
    3. Check out the about page and don’t forget to sign up.
    4. Watch this video: 

 

 

0
0