Is Obesity New?
In 1934 there was a doctor named Hilde Bruch, who immigrated to New York City. The first thing she noticed upon her arrival was that the children she saw in the streets were obese. Children, obese, in 1934? Which, when you think about it is really bizarre. How can it be possible that in 1934 there would be so many children running around New York City in what she termed a ‘bloated and blown up’ state. It’s almost unimaginable! At this time in history, there were no fast food places back then, there was no such thing as super size me, foods weren’t being processed yet, and high fructose corn syrup didn’t even exist! In fact, when you think about the era of 1934, that year was during the great depression. These were the days of the ‘Grapes Of Wrath’, people putting all their belongings onto their trucks, in the hopes of moving to an area in the USA where there might be jobs. At that time, there were line ups at soup kitchens and homeless families were standing around barrels burning whatever they could get a hold of to create heat, unprecedented poverty haunted America, six out of every ten people were standing in bread lines for food.
In 1939 this paediatrician, Bruch, started publishing studies that she had conducted to do with the obese children that she had the opportunity to treat. What she had learned was that they ate excessive amounts of food and that’s all she could identify at that time. The studies that she conducted were based in a solution of instruction on how to eat less to both children and/or parents.What she learned was that nothing actually really worked. In order to be able to maintain a lower weight, the children had to be able to live on a semi-starvation diet.
What became very interesting about the work of Bruch, was what she recounted in a book that she wrote in 1957. What she had found was that between her original work in 1939 and the treatment of obesity up until 1957 had not changed. The main ingredient for losing weight remained at; eat less, exercise more.
So basically, her studies were based on previous studies that have been conducted since the 1800’s to do with obesity. Interestingly enough, what had been determined all the way back from the 1840’s was, that a cure for obesity was to live cheaply on meat, in 1864. In 1869, it was determined that vegetable based foods were fattening and a cure for obesity was determined to be abstinence from carbohydrates. A fellow by the name of Banting in 1862 published his experience of trying to lose weight, which was later known as the Banting System, in which he cut out from his diet; bread, butter, milk, sugar, beer, and potatoes. Bruch in her work, also determined that meat is not fat producing. But the fat producing foods she determined were the innocent foods that no one thought about being, such as bread and sweets.
Between 1943 and 1952 Stanford University published a general rule of ‘A Guide To Eating’ with a list of 8 do nots. Do not eat or you will gain weight and not keep it off;
Number 1, was anything to do with sugar.
Number 2, was anything to do with sugar.
Number 3, was anything to do with sugar.
Number 4, was anything to do with flour.
Number 5, was anything to do with pasta, potatoes, beans or peas.
Number 6, was anything to do with fried foods.
Number 7, was anything to do with sugared drinks.
Number 8, was not to have any of the foods we just listed.
So the list of ‘you can eat as much as you like’ published in 1951 in Britain consists of 5 things.
Number 1, meat.
Number 2, green vegetables.
Number 3, eggs.
Number 4, cheese.
Number 5, unsweetened fruit.
Well, there you go. I am still reeling from the thought that kids in 1934, years before the Alfred Hitchcock movie ‘Psycho’ came out, were obese! It blows my mind, because the food and why adults and children are fat, for today make sense, but in 1939? Really? I guess the reason why the studies of yesterday were not taken seriously, all boils down to convenience, politics, and marketing. In those days advertisements could say anything, false advertising was not a concern.
But damn, finding out that the leading country known for their ever rising obesity crisis is the country that had the key to weight loss since basically the 1900’s? That is a great depression.
Well first, I just want to say congratulations to me!! Today I have reached the 100 blog post, a post I have slaved over everyday for 100 days! Yay!!
I have addressed so many topics from weight loss, not weight loss, vitamins, colon stuff, Freud stuff, addictions to food, etc. etc. etc.!
So what could there possibly be to talk about today, you might ask. Well, since I am such a humble person, I thought I might shift the spotlight to, drum roll please, Gwyneth Paltrow and her ‘GOOP’ diet! I was reading the new issue of ‘The Science Of Weight Loss’ A special Time edition, and I stumbled across an article talking about Paltrow and her detox diet so, I thought ‘what a lovely topic just dropped into my lap’.
The author trying out the GOOP diet shows what she had to eat from Sunday to Thursday, and I honestly thought, “how in any way are these meals any different from what you would find if you typed in diet in the Pinterest search engine?” It was typical, salad with tuna on top, Salmon with rice and red cabbage, lettuce wraps, and some kind of lentil soup with avocado on top. I also looked up the website and watched a video of Paltrow with a young chef, creating a normal meatloaf with the addition of cheese and a GOOPified meatloaf, with the addition of kale. Even though the normal meatloaf had ketchup and panko crumbs in it, the GOOP meatloaf was worse. It was meatloaf with sweet potato rolled in it, accompanied with smoked hot sauce with honey in it and, well, I was just shocked with how much sugar there was in this diet.
Now, I know what you must be thinking, ‘But Emerald, Gwyneth Paltrow is so thin!! How could this diet possibly not work?’ Let me tell you something, Paltrow is, like, 6ft tall. I can also bet you that she doesn’t have time to be soft steaming sweet potato, peeling it, mashing it up, mixing the meat part, blah blah blah she doesn’t do it, and to tell you the truth this Goop brand is reportedly worth 250 million dollars US.
I don’t understand this diet, as it is really not a detox. It is Ketogenic perhaps, with gluten free misc. and no coffee. All the dishes look gourmet, enticing, and honestly I would try all of them with my own twist of low carb. For real though, I honestly believe that Gwyneth Paltrow doesn’t eat three meals a day, and she doesn't eat pasta, and she certainly doesn’t eat the portion sizes they were showing on that website. Interesting that the author, Kathleen Felton, said that in the end she felt energized, yet she stated that she also felt more hungry. She also said that she didn’t eat the lunches, and that she wanted to add back into her diet whole grains, shellfish, and soy, plus that with her normal carb sugar and dairy including M&M’s and Goldfish, that she considers that she actually has a healthy diet. She stated that she had lost five pounds on this detox, which makes me question that if she lost weight on what I am considering a non-detox, then perhaps this diet for a week is actually a detox for those who think that they are eating heathy and perhaps are actually not. Wake up call.
What’s up my fat busting bitches?
Today is the third and final day of my juice cleanse. I mentioned yesterday that I had no hunger pangs, felt energized, and the only problem I really had was that I missed chewing.
WELL, today was a bit of a different story. I didn’t have hunger pangs but I felt TIRED. I haven’t considered taking a nap in years but today I was struggling not to, I don’t know if it’s because of the juice cleanse or because of the combination of the juice cleanse and shovelling snow (which I found out I didn’t even need to do anyway because someone came and bulldozed what I didn’t shovel). Regardless, I was exhausted. I also, for a brief while, suffered from mild but persistent heartburn, which I’m pretty sure is because of all the ‘detoxifying’ lemon juice I have been drinking.
I think for a first try I have done an excellent job of being on this not eat cleanse. I learned that you actually don’t have to eat as much as you think you need to eat. Just the nutrients from the vegetables can be enough for a time. However, because of the heartburn and feeling exceedingly tired, I think my body is telling me to stop for a bit. The benefits of this cleanse is that I lost a good amount of weight during it. Yesterday I lost 3 pounds and today I lost 3 pounds, so tomorrow I am hoping that I lose another 3, even though I am breaking the detox tonight. I also learned that I can go 3 days without eating and still feel relatively fine. I always wanted to try an extended fast but always had the fear that I would just faint in a public place. Also I have found that there is a lot of taboo that there around fasting. I now know that this fear factor isn’t true.
I will be honest, before Christmas I was doing pretty good in regards to my weight loss. I set a goal that by the New Years I would have lost 30 pounds. Unfortunately I ALMOST reached my goal. I only had 5 more pounds to lose and I could have called myself successful. However, I sabotaged myself. I indulged in everything there was to indulge in (check out my earlier blog posts for greater details) but I skyrocketed back to my starting weight.
After this disaster in the first week of the new year I was able to lose 10 pounds, but it has been a struggle since. Before Christmas I was getting into the habit of regimented fasting. I could go the whole day just drinking liquids, had limited cheese, grapes, and wine when my family got home, had a small supper, and then would go to bed. This was the key to my almost weight success. But after all the sugar intake over the Holidays I found I had relapsed. I struggled to go a couple of hours without caving into eating something (everything I ate was zero or close to zero carbs but I was exceeding my calorie intake so I just maintained my weight).
With the juice fast I have been doing a lot of thinking. I have successfully reminded my body that I can go a while without eating, and I think I have successfully reminded my psyche that it can do it too. My new goal is to lose 50 pounds in this year (from my starting weight before Christmas) and so far I am successful. For me to lose the fifty pounds I need to lose 1.5 pounds a week or 4.5 pounds a month. So with the juice cleanse I have lost 23 pounds again. I am now 210 pounds. I want to achieve my goal weight, and I believe that I will because of the support of the Emotionally Focussed Eating Program. Not only has it introduced to me the Ketogenic/Atkins, low carb, high fat diet, but it has also given me the support and tough love that I need.
I know I can do it.
Hey weight busters,
I decided to do a juice cleanse. I have heard about juice cleanses from Pinterest, and I know at least two people who tried them (they were both unsuccessful, but whatever). I have often seen on Pinterest, twitter, and Facebook the benefits of doing a juice cleanse, but I never really thought about trying them. The other day a woman came into the office and told me about how she specialized in colonoscopies. Now I wasn’t interested in doing that, but she did mention the juice cleanse and how wonderful and ingenious it was to remove toxins and get the gut going again for those that have shut their gut down. So here I am, my second day of cleansing. I have included the recipe to my juices under the recipes, but be warned, this isn’t something to do if you are on the hunt for flavour (yummy flavour that is).
I thought that I would be starving by today (I started yesterday), but with the enormous amount of water I am drinking, I haven’t had one single hunger pang. I thought I would feel weak and unable to focus, but I actually feel quite energized. To be perfectly forward I thought I would be pooping non stop, I envisioned myself chained to the toilet, in pain, cursing myself and whoever recommended the cleanse, but nothing has come out at all, except of course a river of pee. That has pretty much been non-stop since the start.
Apparently the purpose of the cleanse is to detox the liver. The liver is the second heaviest organ in your body. Your liver takes in all the nutrients and toxins, sorts them, detoxifies them, and then ships them to the other areas of your body to use as energy. Everything happens in the liver, and can result in an inflammatory response if there are not enough nutrients to be digested. Detoxification is actually really to help the liver clean itself out.
So, when foods enter the small intestine there is a process in place to screen the nutrients. Only, if it happens to be the wrong kind of food or has toxins with it, then there is an inflammation that results, which can lead to pain, gas, nausea, or gastrointestinal discomfort.
There are two phases that occur during detoxification, apparently named (this one will be hard to remember) phase 1 and phase 2, detoxification. Phase 1- your liver converts fat-soluble toxins into water-soluble substances. Phase 2, excretes these toxins using urine, sweat, and other bodily fluids (yes, even the saliva you spit at mean people).
Both phases require optimal nutrients, without adequate nutrient intake, detoxification can slow down and contribute to something called oxidative stress, which contributes to inflammation, cell damage, and disease.
Some of the nutrients your liver requires to detoxify are:
Minerals like selenium, copper, zinc, manganese, magnesium
Glutathione (a super antioxidant your body creates from vitamin B6 and amino acids)
Amino acids become especially important during phase 2. Many metabolites in phase 1 are free radicals (an uncharged molecule (typically highly reactive and short-lived) having an unpaired valence electron) and harmful on their own to your body. If your liver doesn’t have the nutrients it needs to perform phase 2, your body can’t properly excrete those toxins. In other words, you become more toxic, achieving the opposite effect.
The most frustrating thing about doing this process is that I have to drink my food. I miss chewing! I miss flavour! I miss meat! I miss the act of swallowing something solid!
Anal Fixation a.k.a Butt Stuff
There are many characteristics of those adults that have become stuck with anal fixation. The term ‘you are being anal’ denotes a person that needs to have extreme structure and has a particular way in which they look at order. This can be viewed as constrictive on the one end of the anal spectrum; being intense about cleanliness, having to have things in a particular place.
The other side of the spectrum of those that have an anal fixation is the opposite, in which the anal character is based in being messy, not having any order, soiling the pants unexpectedly, and also being inconsiderate of others feelings.
We are talking about Anal Retentive vs. Anal Expulsive. Anal fixation is representative of the toilet training period in which the child holds in their feces, refusing to void their bowels in order to remain in control, or the opposite getting gratification is being constantly sitting in mess.
The anal character is also denoted by those that keep their nose up in the air or those that continually lift their upper lip, giving the impression that they are constantly sniffing at something as they have a pleasure in this type of smell (poopy).
The small intestine experiences great range of emotions that symbolize gastrointestinal distress. It reacts to foods depending on their inflammatory effect, mild annoyance can appear as bloating, anger can appear as gas, stubbornness can appear as constipation, and temper tantrums can appear as diarrhea . The small intestine is the second brain of our body, it feels, thinks, and helps you decide what to eat, and if your intestinal wall can’t absorb nutrients it tells you this by the experience of an upset stomach. Our intestinal emotions influence us in ways we don't normally associate with food, like feeling groggy or a decrease in energy, lethargy, or the opposite, we can feel extremely energized.
Food and toxins line our intestines. Good foods slip right through easily being digested, while other foods stimulate an aggressive response resulting from inflammation, swelling, gas, and belly cramps. Those that have the anal characteristics tend to store stress in their belly, releasing high amounts of steroids. Your gut hosts bacteria and viruses and these gut residing microbes provide the enzymes you need in order to digest fibre in fruits and vegetables. Without these enzymes this fibre would pass through your system without being absorbed. Excess fat and inflammatory chemicals can start a cascade of toxic protein released into the body causing more inflammation.
The idea is, that emotion can actually shut down the gut or do the opposite and cause the gut to go into void mode. For those that have a main characteristic of anal retentive or anal expulsive adult functioning, food digestion is constructed to provide disguised forms of either gratification or defence, or a combination of both. Just like when some people feel stress they feel the need to eat, especially sugar, to increase the feeling of gratification whereas, others feel the need to shut everything down, and stop eating in defence.
So there is a link in either oral fixation and anal fixation because both have to do with how a person processes emotion. As those with oral fixation have a tendency to offset depression through eating, while those with anal fixation also too longing for nurturance and the need to fend off a sense of abandonment, have a tendency to have obsessive and intrusive negative thoughts, fending these obsessions off by either being retentive and retaining them, by holding them in, or expulsive, ejecting them and not being able to hold them in, releasing them unexpectedly, like when verbally blurting out inappropriately in conversation.
Freud had a drive theory. Drives for Freud, were inborn needs and dependant on constitutional dispositions. In classical Freudian theory the centre piece of what makes up your personality is predominantly based in instinctual gratification; these he termed oral, anal, phallic, and genital. The idea is, that we all go through fazes, and one of the fazes becomes predominant over the others in later adulthood, to a fixation point based upon which of these had the strongest impact. For example, Freud believed that depression results from an oral fixation. At the oral fixation stage one longs for nurturance and if there is a feeling of a sense of abandonment this can lead in later life to a feeling of depression.
Freud believed that the fundamental motivation in life is pleasure, and the pleasure longing is actually really to do with connections with others. All of us shape our relationships according to the patterns internalized from our earliest significant relationships, and this plays out in our relationship with food. The longing for emotionality plays out in eating.
Freud believed that we are profoundly social creatures, and we dread isolation, and as such, we shape ourselves according to social need. The point is, that eating is to do with relationships and when we think about eating we think about community, sitting down at the table together, breaking bread, and generally when we are young, we eat in relationship with family. These “feel goods” are the stuff of oral fixation where continuing to keep the mouth busy is also continuing to be in relationship and fending off isolation. The term ‘chewing the fat’ for example is about talking to one another in relationship around the table, while eating and discussing ones day, and when you think about those that have an oral fixation ‘chewing the fat’ is literally about chewing, such as; chewing gum, smoking, drinking, keeping the mouth busy with either eating or talking, and occupied like chewing the end of a pencil, and in essence continuing to entice the pleasure centres of the brain to be stimulated.
That is why the Emotionally Focussed Eating Program is imbedded to finding out how relationships and lack of relationships have played a historical part in what is happening in the present. When a person experiences relational trauma, healthy development is thrown off course by destructive events, resulting in conflict in the psyche. Trauma can be anything from feeling like you have been hurt, disrespected, or your needs have not been met. Trauma doesn’t have to be something that is dramatically negative or frightening, it can be indicative of parents needs not being able to meet what the child’s needs are in the moment. A caregivers style might be quite effective with one child yet, might not meet the needs of another child, creating enormous difficulties. This relational mismatch allows an individual to become stuck in one of the drives.
Such a story is based in individuals who suffer from anxiety, or depression, which may result in bulimia. When a person might feel initially good in regards to an interaction with another person and that might have felt helpful initially, might later turn into fear. Filling the fear might be attained by eating a huge bag of cookies and then purging would allow for an emptying experience creating calm. These experiences are indicative of two very different ways of a conflictual experiencing of relationship. Initially the feeling of hope and longing in relationship can feel extremely dangerous, if the learning throughout life had been that hopes are always crushed and longings are always painfully disappointing. The cookies are representative of the means to burry and smother the connection between being hopeful and gullible, and the impending ultimate disappointment.
New love objects such as cookies are chosen for their similarity to bad unsatisfying objects of relationship in the past, and the interaction provokes old expected behaviours. In this way, old patterns of self fulfilling prophecies become repetitive disturbances. That is why the connection between these painful states of mind and self defeating patterns of behaviour are so difficult to change.
The bottom line reason why there is a huge return rate in most weightless programs; it’s not about limiting food intake that lowers weight, it is about dealing with these psychic disturbances that heals the need of oral fixation.
What is Metabolic Syndrome?
Metabolic Syndrome, is when a person becomes insulin resistant. What happens is that your system secretes more and more insulin, and when this happens we have a tendency to gain weight, especially around the waist. The waist is where your fat cells are most sensitive to insulin, and the larger your waist, the higher the risk of heart disease. Other related metabolic disturbances are; higher blood pressure, an increase in triglycerides, and the decrease in HDL cholesterol, all of which, leads to your trouble in controlling your blood sugar, which may lead to type 2 diabetes. This combination of metabolic disturbances is known as metabolic syndrome, and are all indicative of heart disease risk factors. It is estimated that a quarter of the population in the USA now suffer from it.
Researchers first identified that there was a link between carbohydrate intake to high triglycerides, to heart disease, in the late 1950’s. Researchers and doctors and health organizations just could not come to terms with the fact that it was a persons intake of carbohydrates that had been identified as the dietary cause of heart disease and diabetes. Not fat. Insulin works in our body by accumulating in the fat cells by expanding fat cells, releasing inflammatory molecules and thus the accumulation of fat. The chronically elevated blood sugar levels that go along with insulin resistance causes what is called activated stress, which invades throughout the body.
The reason that we need to eat foods and drink foods with antioxidants is in order to combat and prevent oxidative stress. So bottom lining it, it’s the carbohydrates that drive up insulin levels and as such, low carbohydrate high fat diets,improve the metabolism, keeping hormonal abnormalities at bay and, keeping us free from metabolic syndrome.
Generally, the way in which the medical community sees someone with metabolic syndrome is to diagnose that the person has sedentary behaviour and overeats, and that is what has made the person fat. So the answer the medical community usually provides to this poor person is the low fat diet, eat less, and exercise.
I have a story. There was always this one table in my college cafeteria that hosted the gym rat parasites. You know the ones, big muscles, took the business course, yeah those guys. One day I was sitting at the table beside them and overheard the conversation going back and fourth between the guy sitting with a girl on his lap (every damn day she sat on his lap) and another dude. The conversation was ‘I always hear fat people complain about how they are fat because of genetics, but girls like her (referring to the nameless woman I assume was his girlfriend on his lap) work for their bodies!’
I’m sure I don’t have to tell you that,
#1. He has never spoken to/listened to a person that has trouble with their weight.
#2. His girlfriend never ate. I saw her everyday at that same lunch table, sitting on that same lap, and she NEVER ate.
So in conclusion, is that exercise doesn’t help, eating carbohydrates definitely does not help, what does help is eating low carb/high fat and increasing your antioxidants. I have since switched to red wine.
Also I recommend educating your local gym rat.
Cravings, Obsessions, and Addictions
There are patterns that exist if you are a food addict. One of the most important features of being able to identify if you actually have a food addiction, is the experience of food cravings and food obsessions. Typically these would be focussed on high sugar, fat, and salt items, such as muffins or an icecap, pizza, doughnuts, or even a Big Mac, etc. The obsessing leads to continually thinking and strategizing about the next food intake. Favourite foods enter into the mind as soon as you stop eating, and can be a preoccupation in between busyness. The plan might even be put in place, for when the next meal or snack is to be had, even while eating. These cravings and obsessions can be insidious, permeating everything. The trigger is not necessarily quantity or unhealthiness but, it can also be triggered when eating healthy foods, or what one considers to be healthy. Continuous eating can overwhelm the bodies regulatory system, and override the feeling of when a person is actually really full. The more you eat, just like any alcoholic or drug addict, the more you want.
A lot of people overeat in order to keep their mouth occupied, similar to people who smoke. Freud (1905) had a term for this, ‘oral stimulation’. If when you were a baby your were weaned either too early or too late in development, the thought is that you will develop an oral fixation. This may contribute to behaviours involving the mouth such as; smoking, alcoholism, over-eating, talking too much, or having an abrasive or "biting" personality.
People with oral fixations, do these things in order to have the experience of putting something in their mouth. If you have ever watched a baby of around nine months of age, all they do is put everything into their mouth. They do this in order to savour the touch sensation of their mouth, sucking as well as chewing and swallowing. The goal with oral fixation is to keep the mouth busy, and people do this by; chewing on nails or cuticles, pens or straws. The busyness of the mouth keeps the mind preoccupied, and the sensation excites the pleasure centre of the brain.
The infant that is either weaned too early or too late works through this conflict orally. So, the answer is to be able to find ways to self sooth as well as manage anxiety, that take you way from needing to stimulate the mouth and to chew or suck. Sometimes this might be solved by increasing drinking water and using a water bottle, chewing on items with no carbohydrates, such as no carb gummies, gum, or sucking through a straw, or sucking on or chewing ice. Otherwise, the answer is to better understand that oral fixation is actually an issue for you, and as such, creating strategies that allow you to redirect yourself to healthier choices, is a way in which to manage your oral fixation.
People who are oral fixators are also sensitive to rejection. Rejection is a huge driving force that leads to the pain of shame and guilt, and no one likes to be rejected. The fear of rejection leads people to do whatever it takes to not be rejected, and as such, they are willing to “swallow” the bad feelings in order to hide them. This experience of rejection is a painful or fearful experience. Many individuals that have been larger than others at any given time, have experienced this pain as socially unacceptable. Unfortunately, because oral fixation also has a tendency to lead to weight gain, this becomes an even bigger painful experience.
What are net carbs?
When talking about carbohydrates, what are we actually talking about?
In the Emotionally Focussed Eating Program, I have learned that this program concentrates on the carbohydrates identified on the food label, across from the line entitled ‘carbohydrates'. However, there is also something called ‘net carbs’.
The Atkins diet for example, is really based on net carbs, not just carbohydrates listed on the label, which is the total carbohydrate number with the subtraction of the fibre content. This net carbs number for the Atkins diet reflects the grams of carbohydrates that significantly impact blood sugar levels. Therefore, the net carb number is mostly always lower than the total carbohydrate number, if the food contains a fibre content.
What is the significance of fibre?
Fibre slows down digestion, which in turn slows down carbohydrate ingestion into your blood stream. Fibre intake helps feeling full longer and so also helps fight off hunger pangs. When you combine dietary fibre with fat, you can slow down the onset of hunger even more. Fat intake, also slows down the rate of which your food leaves your stomach, and as such, your carbohydrate intake is also slowed down in entering your blood stream. Fat adds flavour to food, as well as helps you feel full.
So, in regards to net carbs, dietary fibre is actually a form of carbohydrate that the body cannot break down, in essence it goes right through you, and as such is not converted into blood sugar. So, according to Dr. Atkins, the carbohydrates that are listed on the food label are not distinguished between those that impact blood sugar from those that do not.
So lets take a look at Cinnabon.
A Cinnabon contains 127 grams of carbohydrates according to the chart on their website. The Cinnabon also contains 2 grams of non digestible fibre. In contrast, if we look at a high fibre food such as nuts, the nut would have 2 grams of digestible carbs and the other 3 carbs would be non digestible.
So when I take a look at this distinction between carbohydrates and net carbs, what do I see?
For me, I find this just to be a waste of time doing math. The difference between the net carbs and the carbohydrates listed on the label is negligible, and in my mind a waste of time trying to figure it out. So in my estimation, the devision of carbohydrates into whether they are simple or complex, doesn’t actually really matter. I think that the difference between the two have minimal impact on blood sugar.
So how do you identify how many carbohydrates you’re really eating?
The food label is definitely one way, if you look across from the carbohydrate line on the label, you can see that it will say the percentage of your daily requirement. Lets take a look at the dried mango bag I have in my cupboard. Under nutrition facts it says ‘per 8 pieces’, so across from the carbohydrate line it lists 32g, (which is 32g in those 8 pieces). Under percentage of daily value is listed as 11%, which is the percentage of my carbohydrate intake I need for the day (if you believe in that sort of thing). There is also listed, 2g of fibre within those 8 pieces according to the line on fibre. Yet, when you look at the sugar line, it outlines only 23g of sugar within those 8 pieces. The reason why there is such a significant different between the carbohydrate listed as 32g and the sugar line listed as 23g, is because there are ingredients not listed on the package, such as; lignins, organic acids, sugar alcohols, glycerals, flavonoids, pectins, and gums. These additions are supposed to not have significant impact on blood sugar levels, but that is not the point. They are carbs.
Another way to identify how many carbohydrates you are eating is to Google it, to identify how many carbohydrates are generally in the food you are eating. Based on the Emotionally Focussed Eating program, it isn’t the specifics of the number, but the general carbohydrate number that you add up for your daily intake. The point is, to be able to lower the number to be able to identify what your body can and can not handle.
What happens during the night?
When you stop eating in the evening, something significant starts to take place. Whatever it is that you have eaten during the day will become fuel for your body to burn until it is that you eat again the next day. When you stop eating, your blood sugar will begin to decrease, as well as your insulin levels. More and more of the fat that you ate, more and more of the carbohydrates that you ate during your day will start to be released from your fat storage, which is in your fat cells. The more time passes without eating while your sleeping, the more fat you will burn. The fat that begins to flow out of your fat tissues keeps fuelling your body until the next morning, and that is why you can sleep during the night without being constantly bothered by hunger pangs.
It is important to realize that during the day your body is in constant flux. When you eat, you add fat to your fat cells and once you start digesting what you have eaten, then you start releasing that fat from your fat cells. The more fat you release from your fat cells, the leaner you become.
When what you gain in fat during the day is equal to the amount that you burn during the night, this allows you to maintain your weight. However, if you want to lose weight, then you would actually have to burn more fat during the night then the fat you gain during the day.
It is the insulin you produce that is the driver of this cycle. When insulin levels go up so does the storage of fat, and when insulin levels go down, the fat is being used as fuel, and being burned. That means if your insulin levels are elevated for an extended period of time you are also extending the period of time you are storing fat. It is also shortening the period when the fat is being burned, and when this is happening it won’t actually take long to start to pack on the pounds, slowly but surely over time.
The other thing that happens when you are sleeping, is that you are actually entering into ketosis. The lower the carbohydrates are in your diet, your body starts to run on molecules called ‘ketones’. Ketones are mobilized from fat tissue when eating carbohydrates at a minimum, resulting in insulin levels being low. Ketones can provide as much as three quarters of the energy that your brain uses. That is why carbohydrate restricted diets, are known as Ketogenic diets. Carbohydrates are fattening while fat and protein become the fuel for the brain.
So over night, when you are sleeping, you are burning your excess fat for fuel. Your liver takes some of this fat, converts it to ketones, and your brain works off of that energy. This not only happens when you are sleeping, but it happens anytime you skip a meal. As the night progresses, more fat is burned, and the liver increases the production of ketones. It has actually been reported that your body runs more efficiently on ketones, and as such, it is a healthier way of being.
Some people actually use this process to their benefit in order to avoid feeling hungry. They put themselves to bed. Going to bed can be a great avoidance strategy. So, going to bed is actually a strategy for fasting. Keeping yourself busy and occupied away from food is another. It is good to remember that you won’t have to be concerned about starving yourself during the day, because when you have already fasted for 8-10 hours during the night, you have done a good job for ketosis as well as weight loss.