5 Great Reasons to Enjoy “Steady Carbs”

LGILow Glycemic Index. I wish it had a better name. LGI foods are simply carbohydrates that digest slowly, keeping your blood sugar level steady. That’s a big deal if you want to feel well or release weight.

When we eat carbs with a low glycemic load some very good things happen:

1. Easier weight release & maintenance: Low-glycemic foods are nutritious, filling and delicious so you don’t feel deprived. They are NOT diet foods.

2. Disease prevention: A LGI menu reduces your risk for Type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease, gallbladder disease, and breast cancer. WOW!

3. Increased energy: Your body digests and metabolizes LGI foods more slowly so your energy is steadier throughout the day, not on a roller coaster. A LGI breakfast keeps you feeling good all morning. A LGI lunch means you’re not yawning midafternoon due to a drop in blood sugar. Plus you won’t be prowling around for a snack after dinner because…

4. Decreased Cravings: Since your blood sugar level is not acting crazy you feel more sane and satisfied all day long.

5. Improved mood: The amount of serotonin in your bloodstream and brain is strongly linked to the carbohydrates you eat. LGI carbs make for high serotonin which boosts your mood and promotes restful sleep.

Sugary foods (high glycemic index) cause a quick release of glucose into your blood stream which feels great at first but then – as your blood sugar and serotonin levels come crashing down shortly afterward – you feel grumpy, gloomy and tired.

Filling your menu with mostly low and medium glycemic index food makes a big difference today, and for the rest of your life.

Here’s one easy guideline: Limit foods with added sugar and white flour and you are well on your way to keeping your menu in the LGI range.

Click here for an easy list: http://www.the-gi-diet.org/glycemicindexchart/

 

2 Things About Carbs & Weight Release

nutIf weight release is on your mind here are a few powerful things to know about carbohydrates:

1. If you want to weigh less, choose unrefined carbohydrates

Carbs that are refined/processed (made in a factory) jack your blood sugar and insulin way up high then drop it low. When your blood sugar is riding this roller coaster you end up feeling hungry all the time and craving even more processed carbs.

Whole food carbs are hefty and take longer to digest so they don’t affect your body in such a dramatic way. The more “real food” carbohydrates you choose the easier it is for your body to release fat. Think fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, seeds and nuts. An extra added bonus is that your cravings decrease too!

2. If you want to weigh less, pair your carbs with protein and/or fat

When eating a carbohydrate, have some fat and/or protein too. Think banana and peanut butter or pear and smoked mozzarella. Fats and protein slow down your digestion. This means your blood sugar and insulin are not on a roller coaster so you have more energy, you feel less hungry, you feel more sane and your body can burn fat.

This is NOT about good food/bad food.  This is about biology.

Making these changes will give you more energy, less mood swings, looser pants, and full satisfaction. These are delicious, filling foods; they will not lead to feeling deprived and hungry like we used to feel when we were dieting. This is powerful knowledge.

What hearty carbohydrates are you enjoying these days?

Why Can’t I Stop Eating ? (Here's Some Research That'll Help)

burgerHave you ever noticed that it’s harder to stop eating some foods than others?            

Researchers at Rutgers University* are beginning to understand some of the neurological reasons for this – and their research can inform us too.

It seems that fatty foods produce higher levels of dopamine in our brain. This is a neurotransmitter that signals our brain’s reward system to keep on doing whatever we are doing at the moment. Keep on eating that pie or ice cream or pizza or fries…because eating them feels very rewarding!

Until, of course, it doesn’t.

This new research is compelling and can help us in several ways:

1. PLAN AHEAD – When you choose to eat a brain-grabbing-food, intentionally decide ahead of time how much of it you will be glad you’ve eaten. Choosing a reasonable portion before you dig in will be easier than trying to reign yourself in after the munching has begun.

2. CHOOSE FOODS THAT DON’T CREATE A BRAIN BATTLE – You can create a vast, fantastically delicious**, nutrient-rich menu that gives you the vitality and taste you want – without fighting your brain over it.

If you want to stay away from foods that make you want to binge – you can! That’s not returning to restrictive dieting – that’s knowing yourself well. That’s using your inner wisdom.

Once again, we are free to eat anything. There are no illegal foods. And PERMISSION WORKS BOTH WAYS. We have permission to and we have permission not to.

As liberated eaters we are in charge now!

*Click here to see more on the research:http://qz.com/464629/scientists-think-theyve-found-the-reason-youre-overeating/

**Long but fascinating: http://jamesclear.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/why-humans-like-junk-food-steven-witherly.pdf

The Crazy Thing About Real Food*

candyFirst, some background:

  • I was stuck in the diet/binge cycle for 30 years
  • Sugary packaged foods were my binge-drug of choice
  • It felt terrible physically and emotionally
  • The more sweet stuff I ate, the more I craved

But now:

  • No more diet rules, just reasonable guidelines
  • No foods are forbidden so there is no guilt over eating certain foods
  • I love feeling good so it makes sense to do the things that make that happen
  • Eating mostly whole foods and being physically active give me what I want

LESSONS LEARNED ALONG THE WAY:

Once I stepped away from dieting I was free to eat anything, even the foods that made me feel crappy. And I did. But I also began to listen to my body instead of diet rules…and soon I began to want to feel good.

I REALIZED WHAT I TRULY WANTED:
1. To feel vibrant in mind and body
2. To eat foods I enjoy
3. To LIVE whole-heartedly, which meant being life-focused, not food-focused

Over time, it became evident that eating real food (most of the time) got me what I wanted. Eating processed foods eventually left me feeling “wanting” – not good enough or full enough for long enough.

Some things I discovered about real food:

  • What I eat really does have an effect on how I feel, especially my energy.
  • It’s easier to stay at a weight that feels good when I eat real food.
  • Whole foods keep me satisfied longer so I don’t feel like prowling. .
  • Eating real food helps regulate my hypoglycemia (blood sugar) so I don’t feel crazy as often.
  • Real food has more fiber so it keeps me reg’lar.
  • I have WAY less cravings when I eat real food.

That’s it. I CAN EAT ANY DANG THING I WANT!!!! And – over time – I have genuinely come to crave whole foods most of the time.

BIG TAKE-AWAY: Eating nutritiously naturally happens as we become more intuitive and mindful. It’s a process – not a “program”. It takes time, honesty, grace, a lot of relapse along the way, and encouraging support from others who are on this same path.

If I can help you on your path in any way please let me know!

*Whole food (real food) is in it’s natural state – not processed and refined. It is close to the way it was originally found. An apple is a whole food. Apple Jacks is not.

CLICK on these links below for more on whole foods…

A COOL BLOG WITH GOOD RECIPES & RESOURCES

REAL FOOD MADE SIMPLE SITE

 

Are All Calories the Same? Not Anymore…

mmmmRecently a team at Harvard conducted some telling research and found that foods with a high glycemic index [raises blood sugar level significantly – think sugar, white flour, white potatoes, etc.] trigger the “addiction center” in our brain.

Researchers gave 12 overweight men a low sugar/low glycemic index (37 percent) milkshake, and four hours later, measured brain activity, blood sugar and hunger.

Days later, they had them back for another milkshake. This time the “trick” milkshakes tasted exactly the same but were high sugar/high glycemic index (84 percent). They had exactly the same amount of calories, protein, fat and carbohydrate as the first shakes – only the sugar content had changed. The participants didn’t know there was a difference.

Four hours later, the researchers measured the brain activity, blood sugar and hunger level of each man. Without exception, they all had the same response.

The high sugar milkshake caused:

  • a spike in their blood sugar
  • an increase in their cravings
  • and the addiction centers in their brains lit up like a Christmas tree!

Processed sweet foods act much like a drug for us. This is important to know since our food has gotten increasingly sweeter over the last forty years. Did you know that…

  • In 1800 Americans ate 10 pounds of sugar a year on average. Today we eat 140 pounds a year.
  • Sugar is often hidden. One serving of Prego tomato sauce has more sugar than a serving of Oreos.
  • Some yogurt has more sugar than a can of Dr. Pepper.
  • The average American eats 133 pounds of white or wheat flour, which raises blood sugar more than table sugar.
  • Foods like pizza, chocolate, ice cream and French fries were found to be the most addictive.

Hyper-processed, artificially-“tasty”, hyper-sweet industrial foods are hijacking our brain chemistry, our taste buds and often – our health.

The good news is that it’s quite simple to take back lost ground.

Here are a few ideas:

• Begin to replace the processed foods you normally buy with real food – a few at a time, over time.
• Find an easy, whole food recipe website you like and try one new recipe a week.
• Intentionally allow your taste buds to awaken to the beauty of natural foods.
• Join a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) and begin to eat according to the seasons.

CONDUCT AN EXPERIMENT OF YOUR OWN: Devote a season to eating simple, natural food. Be curious and note what you observe over that period of time.

And PLEASE let us know what you discover!

To read more about the research, CLICK HERE.