What would happen if you had a beautiful, roaring fire going and just let it burn down, with out adding more wood. It’s going to die out, right? You can think of your metabolism the same way. The brainpower it takes to just read these words is taking energy and energy for us creatures comes from, thankfully, food. It’s a beautiful pleasure we get to enjoy multiple times a day! Now, imagine if just by eating delicious food, you could turn on innate powers in your body that will heal you from the inside out. Your system was designed to heal itself, to burn fat effortlessly, and to produce endless energy. Food is energy and vitality. It shapes your physical being.
You can turn your body into a supercharged, roaring fire of a machine with the right approach.
One of the most important and overlooked keys to controlling your weight is managing your blood sugar. If your blood sugar levels and insulin levels are spiking and dropping, it puts an enormous strain on your metabolic system and signals to your body the “I’m in distress mode” message to store fat and energy. Your body is pre-wired to take care of you in the event of an emergency. Stop telling your system that it needs to store fat and you can turn your body from a fat storing machine into a fat burning machine.
If your goal is to get leaner, you MUST start by eating cleaner – not by going on a diet that focuses on deprivation. This focus on clean, whole foods and the occasional treat, lots of leafy greens, non-starchy vegetables, low glycemic fruit, clean protein and fats, and lots – I mean LOTS of water. I can’t believe I’m about to say this but hydration is almost more important than the food. Every cellular function in your body requires water, and often times, if you don’t drink enough of it, you’ll think you’re hungry when you’re in fact thirsty. So drinking half your body weight in clean, filtered, ideally pH 7 or higher water is essential to your success. Tea and coffee can also be helpful in giving your metabolism a boost, just as long as you watch your total caffeine intake. Caffeine has a tendency to stave off hunger, so you don’t want to trade our your healthy appetite for a constant buzz (or maybe you do, but that’s not a long term strategy).
And let’s just debunk the myth – fat does not make you fat. For so long, we were obsessed with fat calories in food, but It’s refined, process junk and lots of sugar that will do the serious damage. Just ask Dr. Mark Hyman, Medical Director at Cleveland Clinic’s Center for Functional Medicine, the Founder of The UltraWellness Center, and a ten-time #1 New York Times Bestselling author. I also had the honor of working with him on developing the meal plans and recipes for the New York Times bestseller, “The Daniel Plan,” and he’ll be the first to tell you that fat is your friend.
Here’s the REAL dish…digestion of carbohydrates begins in your mouth. Digestive enzymes in your saliva start to do their work and if you’re gulping down your food in a hurry, it may not be processed and utilized by your body as effectively. The point is, chewing triggers your metabolism. The longer you wait to eat, the longer the signal of ‘hunker down and hold onto fat’ your body hears. You can use intermittent fasting, or the act of limiting the hours that you eat into a smaller period of time – but it’s called intermittent for a reason. The same goes for juicing. It’s not a long term fix, but can be used as a ‘cleanse’ and not as a meal replacement strategy.
So let’s break it down:
- Eat regularly
- Fill up on tons of leafy greens and non-starchy veggies, low glycemic fruit, protein, fat and a smaller amount of starchy veggies and clean ‘treats’
- Drink half your body weight in clean alkaline water (over pH 7)
- Chew slowly, especially carbohydrates
- Enjoy coffee or tea, but don’t over-caffeinate
- Enjoy lots of fresh spices, and spicy food if it agrees with you. Hot spice also gives your metabolism a boost.
I’m happy to share some of my favorite recipes that will never have you saying ‘sacrifice’ because they’re some of our favorites – mac n’ cheese, including brownies, bars and cupcakes – because let’s face it. If you can’t have some fun with your food, we may as well just hang it up. I make these clean so you can enjoy them guilt-free, but in moderation. Eating a tray of clean brownies is still a lot of calories!
If you’re looking for a clean eating plan that works with your new lifestyle, make sure to check out our Eat Cleaner Meal Prep Club. See you there!