Monthly Archives: February 2014

How to Eat Clean

For years I have heard the phrase “Eat Clean” used as good advice for reaching your fat loss and transformation goals.  In addition, eating clean can lean to the elimination of cravings, and a wonderful feeling of balance around food.

I think you can all imagine that clean eating leaves out processed high sugar foods, but what does “Eating Clean” mean for you personally?  I know plenty of people who can eat oat bran, bananas, and almond flour and not get triggered.  The foods I just mentioned don’t leave me with a sense of fullness and satisfaction, but that doesn’t mean they won’t work for you.

So how do you discover what your clean foods are?  You test and experiment.  Here is a simple test for all of the foods you may be considering for your personal clean eating strategy.  Ask yourself these questions about the food you are considering:

“Can I eat one standard serving of this food without immediately wanting more?”

And, “After I eat this food, do eat end up overeating for the rest of the day?”

It is question number two that I have found to be most effective in helping me find my personal clean eating strategy.  Let’s take the humble banana for instance.  Eating a banana may not send me off on an immediate binge, but it does contain enough fructose to stimulate a higher insulin response, which does leave me feeling vaguely unsatisfied.

The great news is that experimentation has led me to a wonderful food that I can include on special occasions: organic, soy free dark chocolate like Taza brand.  My husband got me some as an anniversary gift.  I enjoyed it that evening and the scale was actually down the next day.  How cool, organic dark chocolate as plateau buster.

I have learned that trigger foods are highly personal and often quite surprising.  After 2 weeks on the Sugar Freedom Diet, and certainly once you reach your fat loss goal, it can be a very good idea to test new foods in order to add variety and enjoyment to your eating plan.

Once you get in touch with how your body reacts to new foods, you can develop your personal strategy for eating clean.

Why I Feel Lucky to be a Sugar Addict

What does it mean to be truly addicted to sugar?

A few evenings ago, I was shopping with my son, and he asked if he could get a Twinkie.  He said he had never had one before, and I said “Go ahead.”

In the car, he opened the package, and took a bite.

He was not impressed.  When we got home, he threw the second Twinkie from the package in the trash.  He is clearly not addicted to sugar and flour.

I distinctly remember Twinkies, Ho Hos and Ding Dongs from my childhood.  I remember how I thought the chocolate on the Ding Dongs was weird- like plastic, and I remember that I was never satisfied with eating one or two.  Even though they didn’t taste nearly as good as my grandmother’s famous cake, once I had one, I wanted to eat the whole box of them.  I still do.

So how does that make me lucky?  Well, for me, processed snack foods are simply not an option.  The consequences: bloat, swollen lips and face, joint aches the next day, headache, are almost immediate, and they get worse as I approach age 50 this April.  I am so lucky that the “cheat” is not a good option.  I have to look elsewhere for the little spark of enjoyment that most people can get from the snacks that surround us these days.

The most important thing you can do stay off the sugar train is to have satisfying, trigger free foods on hand. Make sure that you have protein, vegetables, low-sugar fruits, and healthy fats available at all times.  When I got home from teaching my classes last night I was hungry, so I had 2 chicken thighs, and a cup of strawberries.

Weird?  Maybe, but that’s the whole point.  Sometimes you have to be a little weird to succeed at permanent fat loss.

So today, make extra vegetables, mix up some salmon salad, try a new salsa, or take a Granny Smith apple with you when you run errands.  Remember the Apple computer ad from years ago: “Think Different?”

It may be that your permanent success requires you to “Eat Different” too.

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Success Begins at the Grocery Store

Here are a few of the items I picked up on the way home from the movies last night.  You’ll see several of them on today’s food plan.

If you’ve read the Sugar Freedom XP manual, you know that you’ll  be eating very

Groceriessimply for the next three days.  Just because your food is simple doesn’t mean it can’t be tasty though.

I cooked some of the carrots you see here in coconut oil with sea salt, ginger, and a dash of turmeric.  It was so good and satisfying, and no guilty aftertaste.

This morning, as I was thinking over what I wanted to share with you today, this notion came to me.

 When you prepare food that is truly good for you, eating stops being just a pleasure, and it becomes a joy.

With Sugar Freedom, we are putting food back in its proper place.  Food is fuel for the life you want to live.

So here is today’s menu:

Breakfast: 2 eggs, 2 slices uncured bacon, I cup cooked carrots, 1/2 avocado.  (Yes, I’m feeling very full and satisfied right now.)

Lunch: 2 Chicken thighs, Green salad with olive oil and vinegar, 1 cup broccoli

Dinner: Grass fed top sirloin, 1 cup asparagus with home made mayo.

You may notice that I use a “Large, Medium, Small” strategy when it comes to meal size.  I don’t snack in between meals, but that is a result of my own discovery that I have to take eating seriously.  I sit down quietly at breakfast and lunch, and I eat without distractions.  Dinner will be shared with Van and Colin, and the pleasure of their company makes up for the fact that I have just two or three different foods on my plate.  (Note, Van and Colin will be having yukon gold potatoes with sour cream as well.)

Today, I get to use the energy from breakfast to make up new routines for my G-Mix class.  I’ll take that over sugar and grains any day.

What will your food be fuel for today?

Simple Eating For A Rich Life

Make everything as simple as possible, but not simpler. Albert Einstein

Welcome to the Sugar Freedom journey.

Yesterday, I flirted with wine and chocolate, and I got burned.  Sometimes, I have to repeat lessons until they sink in deep enough to change my behavior for good.  Yes, the chocolate was dark, organic, and soy free, and I ate it with raw almonds to cut the sugar and glycemic load even further, and I only had two moderate glasses of wine.  Still, this morning my stomach is off and my head hurts, and I just want that feeling of clarity and optimism I get when I eat Freedom style.

Of course, there is a reason why Sugar Freedom XP was released yesterday, and that’s because February 15th is a great day to get off of sugar.  Any day is a great day to get off of sugar for those of us who are triggered by it, but in these days between Groundhog’s day and the beginning of Spring can be ideal for making a change in our eating habits that will blossom and grow into a more creative and productive life.

You see, more creativity, productivity, self respect, and confidence are some of the benefits of letting go of the foods that lead to overeating.  May I re-visit the calories in- calories out energy balance argument for a moment?  I have spent countless hours reading, studying, and just ruminating over whether it is what we eat or how much we eat that drives our bodies to store more fat than we want.

I have come to think that yes, over eating is the central problem we must solve in order to release fat, and reveal the body that is the right vehicle for pursuing our dreams.  It is equally important to realize that what we eat absolutely determines whether we will eat too much.

So the basis of the Sugar Freedom philosophy is this: Content drives quantity.  In Sugar Freedom and Sugar Freedom XP, I have shared the content of the diet that allowed me to overcome obesity for good with all the honesty I could muster.  It is also the eating strategy that is getting great results for my students at Gordon Studio.   So here in this blog, I will continue to take the journey with you, and share what is working for all of us here in Sonora.

The truth is that the farther I get from sugar, grains, and fake fats, the better I feel.  Ideally, a life with no slips and no cheats sounds like a dream come true, and so it is time to take that dream very very seriously.

So here is where you will find my Sugar Freedom diary, and I want to encourage you to write about where Sugar Freedom takes you as well.  We need your stories.  All of us who struggle with over eating need to hear about the strategies that work for people in the real world.

Right now, I’m in the pro division of the Turbulence Training Transformation Contest.  In addition, I’m teaching 11 TT and G-Mix fitness classes at Gordon Studio.  That means that it’s time to bring my focus to eating for fat loss while preserving muscle.  I will be following the Sugar Freedom Diet, and I will do Sugar Freedom XP for the days leading up to the photo shoot I am doing for my contest entry.

I hope that my diary will give you a look at how life on the diet works in real time.

Let’s get down to business with my meal plan for the day:

Lemon water, Coffee with Raw Cream. (Note, on XP I will use organic, unsweetened coconut milk.)

Breakfast: 2 eggs, 2 strips uncured bacon, mixed vegetables cooked in 1T coconut oil

Lunch: 2 chicken thighs, large green salad w/ oil and vinegar dressing, 1 cup broccoli with 1 tsp. butter.

Dinner:  Ground Bison sautéed with onion and celery, and cilantro and seasoned with sea salt, and cumin, wrapped in red cabbage with salsa for dipping.  2 cups of mixed cooked vegetables on the side.

Tip of the day:  Make extra vegetables and protein sources.  It is so important to have Hearty Grass-Fed Beef Saladsomething to reach for and eat that isn’t made with sugar or grains!  Don’t just resist cravings, block them by eating something that isn’t a trigger food.

It is so worth it.