A Guide to Intermittent Fasting

What is intermittent fasting?

Intermittent fasting (IF) is not a diet, but rather a dieting pattern. In A Guide to Intermittent Fastingsimpler terms: it’s making a conscious decision to skip certain meals on purpose. By fasting and then feasting on purpose, intermittent fasting generally means that you consume your calories during a specific window of the day, and choose not to eat food for a larger window of time.

There are a few different protocols to take advantage of intermittent fasting.

16 – Hour Intermittent Fast

Popularized by Hugh Jackman and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson as a fast to trim extra pounds. It is common to fast after dinner to around lunch the following day. Fast for 16 hours each day, for example by only eating between noon and 8pm. I am personally a fan of the 16/8 method, as I find it to be the simplest and the easiest to stick to.

13 – Hour Circadian Rhythm Fast

Based on research of scientist Dr. Satchin Panda. Participants aim to start fasting a close to sunset as possible for at least 13 hours daily

Eat-Stop-Eat

Once or twice a week, don’t eat anything from dinner one day, until dinner the next day (a 24 hour fast).

The 5:2 Diet

During 2 days of the week, eat only about 500–600 calories. A plan that involves eating the recommended calorie intake for 5 days a week but reducing calorie intake to 25% for the remaining 2 days – to 500 calories a day for women and 600 a day for men.

The 23:1 One Meal a Day

Referred to as 23:1, meaning a person spends 23 hours of the day fasting, leaving just 1 hour a day to eat, drink and consume calories. Basically you only eat one meal a day

The Potential Benefits of Intermittent Fasting

Since the body is unable to get its energy from food during fasting, it taps into glucose that is stored in the liver and muscles. This begins around 8 hours after the last meal is consumed. When the stored glucose has been used up, the body then begins to burn fat as a source of energy, which can result in weight loss.

Here are some changes that occur in your body when you fast:

  • Human Growth Hormone (HGH): The levels of growth hormone skyrocket, increasing as much as 5-fold. This has benefits for fat loss and muscle gain, to name a few.
  • Insulin: Insulin sensitivity improves and levels of insulin drop dramatically. Lower insulin levels make stored body fat more accessible
  • Cellular repair: When fasted, your cells initiate cellular repair processes. This includes autophagy, where cells digest and remove old and dysfunctional proteins that build up inside cells
  • Gene expression: There are changes in the function of genes related to longevity and protection against disease

These changes in hormone levels, cell function and gene expression are responsible for the health benefits of intermittent fasting.

As long as you stick to healthy foods, restricting your eating window and fasting from time to time can have some very impressive health benefits. It is an effective way to lose fat and improve metabolic health, while simplifying your life at the same time.

The Benefits of One Meal a Day (OMAD)

One meal a day is a form of intermittent fasting that literally involves eating one meal a day. Intermittent fasting is an eating pattern or dieting cycle where you transition between periods of eating and fasting. The primary aim is to lose weight using an effective method that does not include the shortcomings or failures of other methods.

The Benefits of One Meal a DayOMAD utilizes the two periods of intermittent fasting which are fasting window and feeding window. In one meal a day the fasting window consists of about 22-23 hours of a day while the feeding window is limited to 1-2 hours in a day. Therefore, OMAD pushes intermittent fasting to its maximum capacity.

Within the limited feeding window, you can eat as much as you want but maintain a healthy diet that includes appropriate food groups. One meal a day is also quite flexible and allows a calorie-free light snack during the fasting window.

OMAD might seem extreme to those who are ignorant of its benefits and lifestyle plan. It is the most natural and effective way to lose weight, and stay healthy. Here are some benefits of OMAD:

Efficient Weight Loss

So many people struggle with weight loss because they keep trying methods that produce less result. Most of these weight loss plans come with strict diets and counting calories. Still the effects are short-term and unsatisfactory. One meal a day is an almost effortless way to lose weight. By simply eating less and healthy you shed calories quickly without a struggle.

Your Overall Health is Improved

Eating one meal a day helps to reduce various health risks such as blood pressure, cholesterol level and blood sugar levels. One meal a day helps the body maintain better insulin control.

Saves Time

Most people spend long amounts of time cooking, heating, and eating every day. OMAD lifestyle plan will help you cut down on those hours and find more use for time. Eating once a day guarantees less cooking, heating, and dishwashing time.

Saves Cash

One meal a day is one of the cheapest weight loss plans. It helps you save money by purchasing fewer junk foods and using less gas. Your grocery shopping becomes more cost-effective, and so does your lifestyle.

Increased mental and Physical Productivity

The benefits of one meal a day include higher clarity and concentration levels. It also includes increased energy and productivity than eating frequent times a day. OMAD improves memory, energizes cells and reduces fatigue.

Other benefits of one meal a day include:
  • Improved immune systems
  • Discipline
  • Long-term results

Ghee vs. Butter: Which is Best?

Ghee vs butter: what are the key differences?

What are the health benefits of ghee? Is ghee better than butter? I prefer using fats from nature and of course ghee. What about butter however? Check out below why I prefer ghee over conventional butter.

Both butter and ghee contain small amounts of important fat-soluble Butter vs Gheenutrients like vitamins D, E, K and beta-carotene. While this is awesome, don’t throw out your supplements just yet. Neither butter nor ghee contain high enough amounts of these nutrients to depend on as your sole source.

 

Many people look to butter for its high butyrate content; an anti-inflammatory fatty acid that keeps your gut lining and metabolism in good shape. There’s some conflicting information out there on whether or not ghee contains butyrate, but the consensus seems to be not so much. No worries. If you’re worried about your butyrate consumption, simply include more resistant starch in your diet or use both.

This is the biggest difference between butter and ghee and might be a game changer for you if you’re super sensitive to dairy protein. Butter is mostly fat and water, but it still has trace amounts of casein and lactose, the two compounds in dairy that most cause allergies and sensitivities. Casein is what gives butter its wonderful creaminess. It can also cause symptoms like: rashes and redness, wheezing, coughing, asthmatic symptoms, itching, abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.

 

Removing the milk solids and water from butter, ghee is left with a stronger, more intense flavor than regular butter. Its taste is also often described as nuttier, richer and deeper than butter. Ghee has little to no casein or lactose, meaning even very dairy-sensitive people can usually eat it. It blends into Bulletproof Coffee well and is a decent substitute for butter in most recipes, although it’s more oily than butter and may change the consistency of a dish slightly. If you do make Bulletproof Coffee with ghee, know that it won’t foam the same way butter does. So you won’t get that frothy latte top. Don’t worry – it’s still tasty

Grain Brain

Grain Brain

 

This book is the perfect companion to Dr Perlmutter’s book Brain Maker, one of my favorite recent health titles. Grain Brain carefully and clearly presents the reasons why everyone needs to make drastic and life altering changes to the way we view food and illness. The cause and effect link that Dr Perlmutter proposes undoes long held beliefs in the health care world about the relationship between diet and disease. Important life altering information is presented which will propel most readers into permanent dietary change. If you are looking for a way to change the way you eat and feel Grain Brain is the perfect place to start. Excellent and fantastic information.

If you truly believe that high carbs/sugar diets are not an issue in the American diet, then you aren’t looking around. I’m now completely sold on the idea that wheat is entering our diets in so many ways, and destroying our systems. I am telling all of my friends to remove it from their diets and of course, am coming across as some kind of loonie. I’ll admit, I think I believed the whole ‘gluten free’ trend was just that….a trend. Not anymore!

What you learn in this book is eye-opening, frightening and also life changing. If you aren’t ready to read the book, then just start by going gluten free for a week. I am betting that you will feel a remarkable change in your sense of wellness and your energy level.
There are other books on this as well, such as Wheat Belly. A friend of mine lost 30 pounds in six months just by following the advice of that author, which included getting rid of wheat.

I’m not the only one who loves it. Here are just a few of many:

“Dr. Perlmutter outlines an innovative approach to our most fragile organ, the brain. He is an absolute leader in the use of alternative and conventional approaches in the treatment of neurologic disorders. I have referred him patients with wonderful results. He is on the cutting edge and can help change the way we practice medicine.” —Mehmet Oz, MD

“Dr. Perlmutter takes us on a detailed tour of the destructive effects that ‘healthy whole grains’ have on our brains. Modern wheat, in particular, is responsible for destroying more brains in this country than all the strokes, car accidents, and head trauma combined. Dr. Perlmutter makes a persuasive case for this wheat-free approach to preserve brain health and functioning, or to begin the process of reversal.” —William Davis, MD, author of Wheat Belly 

“If you want to boost your brain power, keep your memory, and lift your mood and energy, as well as heal from a host of other common complaints, Dr. Perlmutter is your guide. This is the definitive instruction book for the care and feeding of your brain!” —Mark Hyman, MD, author of The Blood Sugar Solution

“Dementia and many other brain diseases are not inevitable, nor are they genetic. They are directly and powerfully linked to a diet high in sugar and grains. Grain Brain not only proves this, it also gives you everything you need to know to protect your brain–or a loved one’s–now.”–Christiane Northrup, MD, author of Women’s Bodies, Women’s Wisdom

Check out Grain Brain today:
Want to know what else I’m reading check out the Blake Murphy Book Club

Brain Maker

Brain Maker

 “The Gut–Your Second Brain–Who Knew!”

Terrific book about brain health and its relationship to the health and integrity of your gastrointestinal tract. Dr Perlmutter is a practicing MD, neurologist and nutritionist. Information presented is grounded in scientific research and peer reviewed literature. Much of Dr Perlmutter’s approach is cutting edge and offers a new way to view how the brain is affected by the diet you eat. Practical and easily applicable advise on how to improve your health and make a real change in the way you feel each day.

I have learned so much from this book. All of the healthy eating struggles and health obstacles of the past will be no more. I have acquired a second chance for me and my family. To alter our future and prevent all the brain diseases that we assumed were set in stone due to genetics. Absolutely astonishing information.

I’m not the only one who loves it. Here are just a few of many:

“Dr. Perlmutter’s book is among those rare and exciting exceptions: information so empowering, so enlightening, and presented so clearly and concisely that the reader emerges far better off for the reading experience. Put this book on your short list of must-reads for health and nutrition.”—William Davis, MD, author of Wheat Belly

“The single most important medical innovation in the 21st century is making the link between the gut and the little bugs that live there and nearly every chronic disease – from autism to depression, from asthma to autoimmune disease, from diabetes to dementia. Brain Maker is a game changer. For the first time, this brilliant scientist doctor connects the dots and teaches us why we need to tend our inner garden (our microbiome) and provides a radical but simple plan to reset, reboot, and renew your microbiome. This book shouldn’t be called Brain Maker, it should be called Health Maker.”—Mark Hyman, MD, author of The Blood Sugar Solution

Check out Grain Brain today:
Want to know what else I’m reading check out the Blake Murphy Book Club

The Basics of The Ketogenic Diet

I will teach you today, the basics of the Ketogenic Diet, also known as Keto Diet.

 

Disclaimer: I am neither a doctor nor self proclaimed nutrition expert so please consult your doctor before starting any diet or taking any action that affects your health and wellbeing.

 

First a summary of the science behind the Ketogenic Diet.
 
Keep in mind I’m summarizing hundreds of pages of explanation and supporting data into a few paragraphs:
 
A keto diet is well known for being a low carbohydrate diet, where the body manufactures ketones in the liver to be used as energy. It’s referred to as many different names – ketogenic diet, low carbohydrate diet, low carb high fat (LCHF), etc.
When you eat something high in carbohydrates, your body will produce glucose and insulin.
 
  • Glucose is the easiest molecule for your body to convert and use as energy so that it will be chosen over any other energy source.
  • Insulin is produced to process the glucose in your bloodstream by taking it around the body.
 
Since the glucose is being used as a primary energy, your fats are not needed and are therefore stored in the body. Typically, on an ordinary, higher carbohydrate diet, the body will use glucose for its main source of energy. By lowering the intake of carbohydrates, the body is induced into a state known as ketosis.
Ketosis is a natural process the body initiates to aid us survive when food intake is low. During this state, we produce ketones, which are manufactured from the breakdown of fats in the liver.

So the bottom line here is, if you want your body to burn fat – meaning if you want your fat cells to break down triglycerides into fatty acids, release them into your blood stream and actually use them as energy – you need to keep your insulin level as low and absolutely avoid spikes in insulin.

A note on calories: Counting calories or increasing exercise output, according to the research of Taubes and many others, is a bad way to try to lose weight because what usually happens is instead of your body burning fat to make up for the deficit in calories, it simply decreases the amount of energy it expends. So you end up lethargic and still fat.
 
Being on a diet isn’t the easiest thing in the world, especially when you don’t know what you should eat. We’ve put together this ketogenic diet food list to help people out there make decisions on what they are eating and shopping for.

 

Below you can find a quick visual guide to what to eat on a ketogenic diet. Let’s go over some of the commonly identifiable items that people use on keto.

 

Eat as much as you want ingredient ideas:
  • Beef
  • Steak
  • Hamburger
  • Prime Rib
  • Filet Mignon
  • Roast Beef
  • Chicken
  • Duck (awesome if you can get it because it is very high fat),
  • Any Fish, Tuna, Salmon, Trout, Halibut,
  • Lamb
  • Pork
  • Bacon
  • Ham
  • Eggs
  • Shrimp
  • Crab
  • Lobster
  • Ghee
  • Oils (Olive Oil, Flaxseed oil, etc.),
  • Salt, Pepper, Soy Sauce,
  • Spinach
  • Lettuce
  • Mustard Greens
  • Celery
  • Cheeses
  • Oysters
  • Abalone
 
Add for variety but in moderation:
Read the ingredients (if applicable) and make darn sure they contain no sugar:
  • Avocados
  • Mustard (with no sugar or carbs)
  • Tea no sugar with milk
  • Coffee black no sugar
  • Heavy Cream
  • Broccoli
  • Cabbage
  • Asparagus
  • Mushrooms
  • Olives
  • Celery
  • Green Beans
  • Brussel Sprouts
  • Peppers (Red, Green, Jalapeno, Habanero)
  • Onions
  • Nuts preferably almonds
  • Bok Choy
  • Kale
  • Cucumbers
You absolutely must avoid all sugar on this diet because it is the highest GI carbohydrate that will very quickly spike your insulin and destroy any Ketogenic effect. Other foods to avoid roughly in order of damage they will do to the diet:
All sugar.
All Bread.
Did I mention avoid sugar?
All traditional carbs like rice, pasta, wheat, potatoes, even the low GI ones like beans and lentils.
Beware of sauces that contain sugar or things like corn starch.
 
Here are a few things I use to get into ketosis and maintain it.
ketogenic