A TIME SAVER A few months ago, I started BLENDING all three of my macronutrients: protein, fats, and healthy carbs, for breakfast and lunch. Blending, versus juicing, retains valuable fiber that helps reduce the insulin response to the concentrated sugar from the juice minus the fiber. I blend everything in water and unsweetened almond milk with a small amount of berries. For dinner, I have more time to slowly enjoy a healthy dinner of solid foods. This helps me maintain my mood, energy level, and acute thinking. Try experimenting to see what works for your body and lifestyle. INSULIN AND ITS EFFECT ON METABOLISM The real problem with health and weight is insulin. Remember, calories are “burnt” in the production of energy in your body. This rate of burn is called metabolism. Calories from food consumed are utilized for energy OR stored as fat. Insulin is a hormone, a chemical messenger, made by a gland called the pancreas. Insulin is the key to getting sugar into the cells, lowering excess sugar in the blood after eating, storing sugar in the liver and muscles, converting sugar to fat and cholesterol, and allowing protein and minerals into the cells. So, what’s the problem? Insulin is the main FAT-MAKING hormone, and, in its presence, no fat can be burnt! Insulin converts carbohydrates to fat, especially belly fat. Your belly size is the best indication of how much insulin you have in your bloodstream. The main trigger in insulin production is carbohydrates (excluding those healthy veggie carbs mentioned above). Carbs turn into sugar, raising blood glucose level. This triggers more insulin to reduce sugar in the blood. This stuffs the cells (insulin resistance) , overloads the liver (fatty liver) , stores fat (belly fat) , produces excessive cholesterol (artery deposits and dependence on statin drugs) , leads to hyperglycemia (Type 2 diabetes) , creates cravings (hypoglycemia) , and leads to weight gain (obesity) . You get the picture. If your blood sugar is properly regulated, you have about one teaspoon of sugar in your blood. The average American consumes 31 teaspoons of sugar daily. Wow! The American Diabetic Association recommends foods that equate to over 50 teaspoons of sugar per day. The American Heart Association, the USDA food pyramid, and The Obesity Society all recommend a similar high-carbohydrate eating plan. But eating carbohydrates, excluding healthy carbs mentioned above, is the main trigger for insulin production. I encourage you stay educated and to strive to control the controllables by building a HEALTHY LIFESTYLE that includes good nutrition; moderate exercise, including flexibility and balance movement; abstinence from smoking and excessive drinking; meaningful work and volunteer projects; associations with the right people; and avoidance of the pitfalls of social media, including negative news. PREVENTION is the key. IT’S WORK, but the rewards are there to experience over your lifetime. We all have our dreams, and handling our bodies helps us minimize future health risks that could prevent us from “chasing our dreams, big and small.”
DR. BRAADT’S WELLNESS COLUMN
One of the meanings of the word DOCTOR is to teach, hence this column. In September’s newsletter, I explained calorie confusion and recommended several solutions. For this edition, I want to expand on this topic because there’s still a lot of confusion and misinformation across various forms of media. I want you to understand how proper calorie intake affects your overall health, including maintaining a healthy weight without the endless yo-yo of fad diet experimentation that often leads to weight apathy. A CALORIE DEFINED A calorie is a unit of heat. It’s a measure of energy production in our bodies . I don’t count calories, which makes eating and weight management a lot simpler. If you’re like me, you want to feel energetic, maintain a comfortable weight, and NOT experience the following maladies: Type 2 diabetes; heart attack or stroke; statin drugs that ruin the liver; cancer; Alzheimer’s and other dementias; chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD); heartburn; constipation or diarrhea; constant hunger and cravings for sugar that contribute to brain fog; continuously looking for the next diet craze; and depending on the drug companies to save the day. 3 MACRONUTRIENTS Protein is necessary to build and rebuild the body. We only need 3–6 ounces of protein per meal, which can be found in meat, full-fat dairy and eggs, aged cheeses, seafood, and raw nuts. Fats are insulin-neutral and do not generally increase a negative insulin response in the body. Good sources include organic, full-fat dairy; eggs; olive, coconut, and avocado oils; avocados; raw nuts; butter and ghee; aged cheese; fatty fish like salmon and tuna; grass-fed or hormone-free beef and other meats; and poultry. Carbohydrates are necessary, but minimize carbs from bread, pasta, cereal, and all forms of sugar. Get about 30 net carbohydrates (calories minus fiber) per day from lots of cruciferous vegetables, leafy greens, and root veggies. Roasted, diced rutabagas and yams are amazing. Shoot for seven cups per day spread over your meals. SOLVING THE CALORIE CONFUSION: PART 2
Just ask me if you need help!
–Dr. Paul Braadt
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