Episode 118. Superheroes and Villains

Episode 118. Superheroes and Villains

★★★★★
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Show Notes

Every superhero needs a super-villain, even in nutrition dogma. Pop science portrays protein as the hero nutritional macro, with carbs playing the bad guy. Research suggests protein may be the real villain.

 

There’s a difference between conclusions, based on research, and dogma

  • Protein has become the nutritional superhero.
  • Protein’s superhero status isn’t supported in research. In fact, research shows that protein may be the villain.
  • The low fat, lower protein diet is emerging as the true superhero for weight loss and overall health.
  • Animal protein correlates to weight gain.
  • A 2017 study concluded “the claim that consumption of dietary BCAAs stimulates muscle protein synthesis or produces an anabolic response in human subjects is unwarranted.”
  • Protein is being marketed as something needing in greater and greater amounts. Now, even nightclubs offer drinks with protein added.
  • The (total/optimal) RDA for protein in the U.S. is set at 56 grams for men, and 46 grams for women.
  • According to bariatric surgeon Garth Davis, MD (whose practice centers on treatment of the severely obese, and author of Proteinaholic) “in virtually every study, animal protein is correlated with weight gain… People whose diets are high in animal protein have significantly higher rates of chronic diseases: hypertension, cancer, diabetes, heart disease.”
  • “Nothing will benefit human health and increase the chances for survival of life on earth as much as the evolution to a vegetarian diet.”
    –Albert Einstein

[References]

Wolfe RR. “Branched-chain amino acids and muscle protein synthesis in humans: myth or reality?” J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2017 Aug 22;14:30. doi: 10.1186/s12970-017-0184-9. eCollection 2017.

Woolf SH, Aron L, editors. “U.S. Health in International Perspective: Shorter Lives, Poorer Health.” National Research Council (US); Institute of Medicine (US). Washington (DC): National Academies Press (US); 2013.

 

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Episode 117. Keto Diet is an Epic Fail

Episode 117. Keto Diet is an Epic Fail

★★★★★
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Show Notes

Lose weight short term on keto…but at what cost? Scott presents clinical research that highlights the long-term health and cosmetic downsides of the popular low carb, ketogenic diet approach.

 

“Man prefers to believe what he prefers to be true.”   – Francis Bacon

  • Most dieters select a diet for weight loss and don’t consider long-term effects.
  • There’s not much evidence in clinical research to support keto as a sustainable diet strategy.
  • Keto diets are hard to follow for long periods of time. It’s difficult to find someone who is advanced in years who’s followed a high-fat low-carb diet.
  • The National Weight Control Registry states fewer than 1% of subjects lost weight and kept if off with a low carb diet.
  • The Inuit study that high-fat low-carb advocates use to support their argument has been discredited since its publication.
  • The 1970s study of the Inuit people of Greenland, that jumpstarted the fish oil supplement market, contains highly questionable data, according to researchers who’ve studied the topic since.
  • A study published in 2006 in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition documented severe metabolic and emotional consequences after only six weeks on keto.
  • Loss of lean tissue is a long-term side effect of keto dieting according to a 2015 study published in Clinical Metabolism. Keto coincided with increased protein utilization and loss of fat-free mass, meaning muscle mass.
  • Another study documented low energy and fatigue in keto dieters, reducing the desire to exercise.
  • A study of 10,014 adults and 200 other papers investigated health and nutrition indicators and popular diets. It found that BMIs (Body Mass Indexes) were significantly lower for men and women on the high carbohydrate diet; the highest BMIs were noted for those on a low carbohydrate diet.
  • Okinawans live healthy, long lives, often into their 100s. Their diet is heavy in fruits and vegetables and low in meat, refined grains, sugar and full-fat dairy.
  • Low carb diets have been associated with higher risk of all-cause mortality.

[References]

Johnston CS, et al. “Ketogenic low Carbohydrate Diets have no metabolic advantage over non-ketogenic low carbohydrate diets.” Am J Clin Nutr. 2006 May;83(5):1055-61.

Hall KD, et al. “Calorie for Calorie, Dietary Fat Restriction Results in More Body fat loss than Carbohydrate Restriction in People with Obesity.”  Cell Metab. 2015 Sep 1;22(3):427-36. doi: 10.1016/j.cmet.2015.07.021. Epub 2015 Aug 13.

White AM, et al. “Blood ketones are directly related to fatigue and perceived effort during exercise in overweight adults adhering to low-carbohydrate diets for weight loss: a pilot study.”  J Am Diet Assoc. 2007 Oct;107(10):1792-6.

Kennedy ET, et al. “Popular diets: correlation to health, nutrition, and obesity.” J Am Diet Assoc. 2001 Apr;101(4):411-20.

Bilsborough SA, Crowe TC. “Low-carbohydrate diets: what are the potential short- and long-term health implications?”  Asia Pac J Clin Nutr. 2003;12(4):396-404.

Wilcox DC, et al. “The Okinawan diet: health implications of a low-calorie, nutrient-dense, antioxidant-rich dietary pattern low in glycemic load.”  J Am Coll Nutr. 2009 Aug;28 Suppl:500S-516S.

Noto H, et al. “Low-carbohydrate diets and all-cause mortality: a systematic review and meta-analysis of observational studies.”  PLoS One. 2013;8(1):e55030. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0055030. Epub 2013 Jan 25.

 

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Episode 116. Let’s Get Nuts!

Episode 116. Let’s Get Nuts!

★★★★★
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Show Notes

We go nuts for nuts in this episode, discussing how nuts deliver a nutritional punch and contribute to metabolism in a way that few other foods do. Scott shares scientific research about their physique, health and disease prevention benefits.

 

Eat Nuts Freely!

  • Calorie counting and macro tracking go out the window when discussing nuts as a nutritional source.
  • Nuts increase fat-burning metabolism. They’ve been associated with weight loss in some studies.
  • Nuts are energy-dense but due to their metabolic benefits, do not contribute to adipose tissue.
  • In nearly two dozen clinical trials researching body weight, not one study showed that regular consumption of nuts led to weight gain.
  • One study showed nuts improved risk factors associated with metabolic syndrome.
  • Walnuts have been shown to burn fat.
    (See Tapsell L, et al.)
  • The far-reaching positive effects of a plant-based diet that includes walnuts may be the most critical message for the public.
  • The body uses calories differently. The way the body uses calories, not just the amount consumed, determines contribution to weight gain.
  • Nuts reduce cardiovascular risk among people who already have Type 2 diabetes.
    (See Li TY, et al.)
  • People who eat nuts tend to live longer.
  • Eating a plant-based diet is economical…at least as cheap as fast food, yet much healthier.
  • Overall dietary and physical activity pattern is critical to reduce chronic disease risk.
  • Eating plant-based allows for larger portions over time.
  • Eat nuts freely!
    Eat when you’re hungry and until you’re full…no portion control, calorie counting or carb counting.

[References]

Natoli S, McCoy P. “A Review of the evidence: nuts and body weight.” Asia Pac J Clin Nutr. 2007;16(4):588-97.

Wang X, et al. “Effects of pistachios on body weight in Chinese subjects with metabolic syndrome.” Nutr J. 2012 Apr 3;11:20. doi: 10.1186/1475-2891-11-20.

Martinez-Gonzales MA, Bes-Rostrollo M. “Nut consumption, weight gain and obesity: Epidemiological evidence.” Nutr Metab Cardiovasc Dis. 2011 Jun;21 Suppl 1:S40-5. doi: 10.1016/j.numecd.2010.11.005. Epub 2011 Jan 8.

Tapsell L, et al. “The effect of a calorie controlled diet containing walnuts on substrate oxidation during 8-hours in a room calorimeter.” J Am Coll Nutr. 2009 Oct;28(5):611-7.

Lim SS, et al. “A comparative risk assessment of burden of disease and injury attributable to 67 risk factors and risk factor clusters in 21 regions, 1990-2010: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2010.” Lancet. 2012 Dec 15;380(98

Bao Y, et al. “Association of Nut Consumption with Total and Cause-Specific Mortality.” Indian Heart J. 2014 May; 66(3): 388–389. doi:  10.1016/j.ihj.2014.03.020

Luu HN. “Prospective evaluation of the association of nut/peanut consumption with total and cause-specific mortality.” JAMA Intern Med. 2015 May;175(5):755-66. doi: 10.1001/jamainternmed.2014.8347.

Fernandez-Montero A, et al. “Nut consumption and 5-y all-cause mortality in a Mediterranean cohort: the SUN project.” Nutrition. 2014 Sep;30(9):1022-7. doi: 10.1016/j.nut.2014.02.018. Epub 2014 Mar 12.

Guasch-Ferre M, et al. “Frequency of nut consumption and mortality risk in the PREDIMED nutrition intervention trial.” BMC Med. 2013 Jul 16;11:164.doi:10.1186/1741-7015-11-164.

Li TY, et al. “Regular consumption of nuts is associated with lower risk of cardiovascular risk in women with Type 2 diabetes.” J Nutr. 2009 Jul;139(7):1333-8. doi: 10.3945/jn.108.103622. Epub 2009 May 6.

Aldemir M, et al. “Pistachio diet improves erectile dysfunction parameters and serum lipid profiles in patients with erectile dysfunction.” Int J Impot Res. 2011 Jan-Feb;23(1):32-8. doi: 10.1038/ijir.2010.33. Epub 2011 Jan 13.

Toner CD. “Communicating clinical research to reduce cancer risk through diet: Walnuts as a case example.” Nutr Res Pract. 2014 Aug;8(4):347-51. doi:10.4162/nrp.2014.8.4.347. Epub 2014 Jul 28.

 

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Episode 115. A Journey Into Food Freedom

Episode 115. A Journey Into Food Freedom

★★★★★
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Show Notes

This episode explores how our perceptions shape reality. Scott illustrates how personal and cultural expectations shape the standard of perfection and influence our own body images.

 

We nurture what we love and we love what we nurture

  • People perceive what they see based on their perspectives. Scott illustrates this by using audience participation, showing a series of pictures and asking the viewers what they see.
  • Personal perceptions apply to how we view food and diet.
    We see what we want to see.
  • If a person is disgusted by their own body, they will often sabotage best efforts at weight loss.
    We disrespect what we find disrespectful.
  • Scott asks: Are you working from a place of self-acceptance or self-rejection?
  • The “thin cage” is as much a prison as the “fat cage.” If a person’s lost a lot of weight but still worries about calorie counting, macros, etc., they’ve traded life in one cage for another.
  • Physique transformation success Ange Golding achieved permanent weight loss by setting a realistic, achievable goal: to look feminine and be able to wear pretty clothes. She achieved her goal and now lives in food freedom.
  • Cultural imprints are powerful and may not reflect realistic body image expectations.
  • Ideals of beauty change. Beauty contest winners from the mid-60s were curvier and fuller-figured than ideals who followed.
  • Twiggy—with her “streamlined androgynous appeal”—replaced Marilyn Monroe as an ideal body shape. The ideal then went further. The new term became “anorexic heroin chic.”
  • Are these ideals realistic and achievable, or unrealistic and unhealthy?
  • Women today often want a six-pack, where that would have been unheard of years ago.
  • The beauty industry markets products by establishing impossible standards and making consumers feel inadequate. Food and eating issues are often the result.
  • Body image and food issues go together.
  • Change is a process, not an event. Scott’s new Food Freedom course provides helpful guidance for dealing with body image.

 

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Episode 114. The Hardgainer Solution 2.0

Episode 114. The Hardgainer Solution 2.0

★★★★★
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Show Notes

Coach Scott Abel introduces subtle tweaks to his bestselling workout program, the Hardgainer Solution. Fitness model Andy Sinclair—himself a hardgainer—joins Scott to discuss the program’s evolution and applications.

The Hardgainer Solution (HGS) became a bestseller and later produced as a video program.

 

HGS 2.0! BOOM!

  • Scott kicks off the show by sharing Seth Godin’s blog about shortcuts and its relevance to the diet and fitness industry.
  • HGS was designed specifically for trainees who work hard but have difficult time developing their physiques, related to anatomy, genetics or age.
  • People over 50 are automatically hardgainers.
  • Several genetic and age-related factors define a person as a hardgainer:
    – Narrow collarbones
    – Tall and lanky
    – Long limbs
    – Long trunk
    – Tendon length and attachment location
  • HGS works well for people who travel a lot.

The Tweaks!

+ Two days on, one day off.
+ All biplexes. No triplexes in this revision.
+ Five sets for large muscle groups, four for biceps and triceps.
+ 10 reps or greater for all other exercises.
+ Active recovery days (tweak prompted by feedback from clients.)
+ Rotate of the first muscle group each day.
Example: Day 1 would begin with chest, Day 2 back, Day 3 shoulders, and Day 4 legs.
+ Low reps, heavy weight has moved up to six reps from five.

 

  • Apply these tweaks to the existing HGS program.
  • Hardgainer Solution 2.0 is as versatile as the original. Scott recently developed an HGS variant for a military client on deployment that used his duffel bag as resistance.
  • Scott experimented with performing two exercises for the first body part in each workout, but quickly learned it wasn’t sustainable.
  • Active recovery allows trainees who find three or four straight HGS days are too much, but don’t exactly want an off day.
    Here are a few options for active recovery days:
    Andy’s Awesome Abs
    Great Glutes
    Busy Woman’s Train at Home
    – Long walks. Scott takes his long walks on the hilly terrain around his home on his off days.
    – Yoga
  • There are many ways to use HGS and stay true to its operating principles, using good program design.
  • Other forms of training can be integrated. This is an example of what Scott calls “tweakology.”
  • HGS 2.0 stays true to the original principles:
    – Whole Body, Peripheral Heart Action protocol
    – Uses inter– and intra-workout recovery
    – Reps-based, not exercise-based program
    No training to failure

 

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