Category: Intermittent Fasting

Women and Weight Loss

We have all heard it and many of us believe that we have lived it, it seems easier for men to lose weight than women. There are differences, no doubt, but we can’t use that as an excuse to be overweight and unhealthy. We will suffer the consequences of overweight/obesity if we allow ourselves to be that way. We will also reap the benefits of extreme health if we work for it. Again, it’s merely a choice.

Men have more muscle than women and this gives them a higher resting metabolism. Women burn fewer calories at baseline. Since we are usually smaller, we burn fewer calories doing the same exercise. Our bodies also hold onto fat stores more efficiently than men’s to assist with pregnancy. In order to offset some of this make sure that you stay away from extremely low calorie diets that cause you to burn even fewer calories by getting your metabolism off balance. With your doctor’s permission include strength training in your exercise regimen to hold onto the muscle that you have and build more. It will stoke your metabolism to burn more calories.

As women age and estrogen levels plummet, metabolism slows down. As a result, women lose muscle and gain fat, especially around the midsection. Research also indicates that as women approach menopause, they tend to exercise less. Offset this tendency to put on this sneaky fat by getting more active. Amp it up to the degree that your doctor will allow and prevent the muffin top.

There is evidence that women are more likely to be an emotional eater than men. When a woman eats her emotions, she is more likely to reach for high calorie, sugar laden foods than men. To curb some of these cravings, avoid sugar which causes intense cravings for more sugar and stay full of good, nutritionally dense whole foods. We don’t usually want to eat when we are full and our nutritional needs are met. The worst time for cravings is when we allow ourselves to get empty and our blood sugar falls. Then we crave sugar and simple carbs to give us a quick lift. This is 100% controllable with minimal effort. Eat well and often and always remember that women cannot eat the same portion size as a man normally. They are bigger and require more calories. If you eat like your much larger husband, you will be his size.

And for Heaven’s Sake ditch the all or nothing thinking! Emotional creatures that we are, if we “mess up” one time, sometimes we want to just give up. Remember, a “diet” will not help you. That’s temporary. You are in this for the long haul, it’s a lifestyle and there will be ups and downs. Get up and keep going.

Eat more protein. A high protein diet can decrease cravings and boost metabolism. There is a study that indicated that increasing protein intake by just 15% decreased daily caloric intake by an average of 441 calories resulting in an 11 pound weight loss. (1) Make sure to get enough fiber. Fiber binds with protein to keep you full longer. A favorite snack of mine is a cheese stick with an apple. That combination keeps me from being hungry for a couple of hours.

Keep a food journal to be accountable for what you eat. It’s easy to forget the extra bites if we don’t keep an honest record. Every bite counts.

At David’s Way we encourage Intermittent Fasting. Read David’s article 16:8 Intermittent Fasting for some good information concerning IF. It helps almost everyone lose weight. With your doctor’s permission, give it a try. When we allow our blood sugar levels to stabilize, our insulin levels subside and we release stored sugar from our fat cells to use for energy. I promote IF, especially for women who have difficulty losing weight, because it worked for me when nothing else did.

Although women have unique challenges with weight loss, there are ways to lose the weight and keep it off. Read our articles, avoid sugar, work out with your doctor’s permission and commit to IF, again with your doctor’s permission. IF may not be suitable for everyone, especially diabetics. Whatever you do, don’t use being female as an excuse to be unhealthy. You deserve better. Get up and pursue excellence. We have given you the tools.

(1) https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/weight-loss-for-women#section3

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David’s Way

At David’s Way, we take a holistic, whole body approach to weight loss and management. David and Brenda are both AFPA certified Nutritional/Wellness Consultants who emphasize living a healthy, nutritionally sound and sustainable lifestyle. Since it’s a lifestyle and not a diet, there is no endpoint. We promote healthy eating and exercise for a healthy body and sound mind.

David’s Way is a healthy nutrition and active lifestyle based on years of personal experience and scientific research. Our methodology involves the consumption of a high protein, low carbohydrate, nutritionally sound and diabetic friendly diet. Our numerous dessert recipes are all sugar free and can be enjoyed by anyone without having the concerns of blood sugar or insulin spikes. Nor will our desserts cause you any cravings such as you would get from treats made with sugar.

At David’s Way we don’t tell you what to eat so much as we tell you what not to eat. This is no weight loss gimmick, this simple plan is how our mothers, grandmothers and generations past used to feed us. It is simply a matter of using portion control when consuming healthy, whole foods, while avoiding foods that are not nutritionally sound. In other words, do not consume anything that does not provide you a nutritional benefit.

We advocate Intermittent Fasting on the 16:8 protocol. While there is a lot of information which can be found all over the internet regarding Intermittent Fasting as if it is a new found weight loss gimmick, it is really nothing new. Intermittent Fasting used to be the norm in America even though it did not have a name. For example, when I was a child we used to get up in the morning and have breakfast, lunch and then dinner. Once the dinner dishes were cleaned up and put away, we did not eat again until the next morning’s breakfast. If your mother caught you eating after the dinner dishes had been put away, you might get a little reprimanding for not eating either all of your dinner, or not enough. Intermittent Fasting was just a normal part of American life before this era of our obesity epidemic.

At David’s Way, we advise you to maintain a regular exercise regimen, and to count and track your calories and macro-nutrients in order to ensure you are eating enough, and also that you are not eating too little which is detrimental to your metabolism. For your personal caloric needs, simply go to our menu and click on Calorie Counter Pro and enter your information and get a customized calorie count to suit your individual needs. Your personal information is only visible to you, as we respect and follow all HIPPA privacy laws. We advise entering your information to lose one pound per week in order to ensure that you have plenty to eat and still manage to lose body fat in a healthy manner and comfortably.

At David’s Way our first and foremost intention is to help people live a nutritionally sound lifestyle in order to improve or maintain your health. The vast amount of content on this blog will always be free to you. We promise to never treat you as a perpetual stream of income as some other weight loss businesses are prone to do. Lastly, as a method of lowering the stress of weight loss,and or management, we encourage our followers to focus on achieving a healthy body fat percentage over trying to achieve a specific or random number on the scales. We welcome all questions and comments and can be reached by e-mail through the Contact tab on our blog menu. We promise you will hear personally from either one or both of us.

David’s Way

  • Do not consume sugar or simple carbs such as refined sugar, pasta and breads made of refined white flour. Avoid sugar sweetened drinks and alcoholic beverages as they are loaded in simple carbohydrates.
    1. Foods containing added sugar and simple carbohydrates will spike your blood sugar and insulin which will drive your cravings for more. If you have not had control over sugar and simple carbohydrates in the past, it is unlikely you will keep them under control in the future if you have been prone to binge eating. If you are addicted to simple carbs you will almost certainly have the same issues as an alcoholic who thinks he can enjoy just one drink. This might work occasionally, but will usually derail the individual entirely.
    2. The only caveat to not consuming simple carbs is fruit. The fiber in fruit acts to buffer the simple carbohydrates in them from just dumping into your blood stream like happens when you eat sugar and other simple carbohydrates.
    3. In our recipe category, we have subcategories with plenty of sugar fee dessert recipes that are delicious, and can be eaten by anyone including diabetics, while not having to concern yourself with the health issues and cravings which come from sugar.
  •  No processed foods as they are almost always high in sugar, sodium, unhealthy fats and          preservatives.
    1. While there are some processed foods that are nutritionally sound, most are not. If you are going to consume processed foods because of the convenience factor, be sure to read the label first. For example, if you purchase a sauce, read the label to identify whether the product contains added sugar, unhealthy fats, high amounts of sodium and any other ingredients which you might have to do a Google search of in order to even know what it might be.
  • Simply put, we encourage you to eat whole foods such as meats, seafood, vegetables, fruits and dairy products that are easily prepared at home. Skip restaurants and fast food’s unless you know that you are able to make healthy choices from their menu.
      1. An example of a healthy choice in a restaurant would be meat and vegetable fajitas in a Mexican restaurant. You could enjoy this while skipping the flour tortilla’s and the corn tortilla’s and salsa that is usually served. Have a unsweetened drink with your meal instead of a soda pop or alcoholic beverage.
  • Be sure to track how many calories a day you consume and do not exceed the amount your body requires. Just as important, you want to ensure you are not under eating.
    1. If you find yourself going over on one day, simply eat lighter the next day and do not stress over it. One day is not going to derail your weight loss, especially if you are eating healthy, whole foods only. You can do an average of your daily caloric intake for the week, and if your average does not exceed what it would be if your calories were spot on each day, there is no need for worry about weight gain.
    2. If you have an exercise regimen, you will especially want to track your caloric intake in order to ensure you are consuming enough calories to fuel your physical activities. Too large a caloric deficit will cause you to lose lean muscle mass along with body fat. This will only serve to slow down your metabolism.
  • Be sure during your weight loss mode to eat a diet that is high in protein and lower in carbs, Do not skip out on healthy fats either as they are essential for good health and proper absorption of nutrients from the foods you eat.
    1. A diet that is higher in protein and which includes healthy fats will keep you satiated between meals far better than a diet that is higher in carbohydrates than protein.
    2. During your weight loss, try to consume no less than 35% and up to 50% of your calories from a variety of protein sources. Meats, seafood, dairy, eggs and even protein shakes that do not contain sugar. Once you are maintaining your weight, try to eat at least 35% of your calories from protein sources. Track your macro-nutrients!
    3. If you have a vigorous exercise regimen such as strength training and or running, be sure to eat from .8 grams to 1 gram per pound of body weight if you are female. And 1 gram to 1.2 grams of protein per pound of body weight if you are male. Protein is a must in order to maintain, build and repair your lean muscle tissue which gets broken down during vigorous exercise.
  • Be accountable to yourself! Besides tracking your calories and macro-nutrients, weigh yourself no more than once per week, and aim for only a 1 pound per week weight loss, and no more than 2 pounds per week.
    1. Be consistent in your weigh in. Do it on the same day each week, at the same time of day and in the same clothing or lack there of. We recommend weighing yourself before you even get dressed, and before you have anything to eat and drink.
  • Practice Intermittent Fasting on the 16:8 protocol. This means to fast for 16 hours and then eat all of your allotted calories for the day during your 8 hour eating window.
    1. You can build yourself up to 16:8 by first starting with 12:12 then 14:10 before going 16:8. By consuming enough protein along with healthy fats, you will find this much easier than you might think. With the elimination of added sugar and simple carbohydrates, you will feel hungry, but the hunger will not be unbearable as when you are craving simple carbs.
  • David’s Way is NOT Keto. Keto only allows you to consume about 50 grams of carbs per day. We advocate you target 100 to 150 grams of complex carbohydrates per day, with 125 grams as a target number. 16:8 Intermittent Fasting while on high protein and low carb will drive you into ketosis for weight loss. But again, we are not a Keto plan.
  • Aim for a healthy body fat percentage as an ultimate goal over a specific number on the scale. Everyone has fluctuations in their body weight from day to day, and from morning to night. These fluctuations are from water weight. If you are aiming for a healthy body fat over a specific number, you will find weight loss to be less stressful. Your weight can fluctuate by 5 pounds or more with no impact on your body your level of body fat.

Again, David’s Way is about living a healthy lifestyle over living on a diet. We believe it keeping it simple, thereby reducing the level of stress which can come when on a weight loss mindset. What we advocate is nothing new under the sun, this life style is just how life used to be lived before the epidemic of rampant obesity in America. It is about personal responsibility and accountability to self and loved ones as your health will always become a burden on others should you allow it to. Someone will always have to pick up the broken pieces behind you should you live a unhealthy lifestyle. Do not allow yourself to become a burden to your loved ones simply because of a lack of dietary control or discipline. You are better than this, and your loved ones deserve better.

Are We There Yet?

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Every time that most adults begin a weight management program, the first question in our minds and quite often out of our mouths, is “How long will it take?” I was naive enough to ask David this question when I first began lifting heavy. Not wanting to discourage me, he didn’t give me a direct answer immediately. As time unfolded I began to understand the answer that he finally gave, “The rest of your life.”

Moving Goals

In programs where I just wanted to lose X number of pounds, I could safely estimate how long it would take. When I began David’s Way however, everything changed. I was losing pounds but I was also gaining lean muscle. When I achieved a specific number of pounds lost, my goals changed. Now I wanted to add shapely muscle. I wanted to be strong and look like it. That first goal of “Lose 20 pounds.” (David), was met quickly with Intermittent Fasting but that was only the beginning. I had achieved a quick loss of pounds but was nowhere near the type of body that I wanted or the strength. It was necessary to press on. I wasn’t there yet.

Digging In

There are sessions of weight training that are long and arduous. There may be moments that surprise you with a gain in strength that you didn’t expect at that moment in time, but for the most part, hours, days, weeks and months will pass in blood, sweat and tears or what seems like it anyway. It will be hard. You will want to quit. You will feel inept. You will also feel like the King/Queen of the World. You become formidable. It is a process. It doesn’t happen overnight. Your confidence will soar as you realize that the same will that raises you from a heavy squat will get you through anything that life throws at you because nothing is any harder than that squat. You will refuse to let go. You can’t go back. You are a Winner.

Metamorphosis

As the Iron begins to change your outside, it is changing your inside to. The deltoids in your shoulders/upper arms that were not there before exemplify the confidence and determination that is building inside your mind and heart. The power that you thrust into getting that deadlift to move will move you to conquer the “little foxes that spoil the vine” on your job. “There’s always something.” (Gilda Radner) that has the potential to ruin your day or your entire life if you allow it. When you realize that you are in control of that barbell that is a true beast, you will realize that you are in control of almost everything in your life by controlling your reaction to those things. We call that being proactive instead of reactive. Take control of things in your life just like you take control of that bar and you will increase your strength in all areas.

Go Deeper

As I move along in my program, I constantly look for flaws in my form because I have high goals for myself and form is everything. With good form I will be able to lift more, longer, stronger and hopefully injury free. I do everything in my power to avoid injury. When I see evidence that a specific program or lift is known to cause injury, I know that is what I don’t want to do. I question the intellect of someone who readily accepts injury as a normal part of their fitness regimen. Healthy living should avoid injury, never running towards it. As I continually work on my form, I gradually buy equipment and accessories along the way to help me with that. My best idea as of today was my power rack that gives me a place to dump the weights safely if they get too heavy or if something goes wrong. So far the only injury has been to a cell phone, may it rest in peace. Word to the wise, if you are using a standard bar with locks, use them…every time. One of the greatest things about my Olympic bar is that I don’t have to use locks. These are things that you learn as you go deeper. I never thought that I would use “one of those big ole’ bars”, (an Olympic bar that weighs 45 pounds and is 7.2 feet long) but now I can’t imagine lifting any other way. Occasionally for a light lift, I’ll use my standard bar. I can’t wait to get back to the big ole’ bar. I love my Olympic bar. It means that I’m a badass who has worked hard to get to where I am and that bar can take me anywhere that I want to go.

Do It Again

As I struggle to perfect my deadlift, David has realized that my valsalva, a breathing maneuver used to increase power during lifting, may not be right. He was right. Although I knew what to do, I was losing focus and losing tightness throughout my body during my deadlift which was allowing a bit of a curve in my spine. This can’t be. It has to be corrected. I have been using a velcro closure lifting belt that will stretch a little. That can contribute to lost tightness so David advised me to get a latch belt, which I have ordered. I have also ordered a hex bar, which allows you to stand straighter during your lift. I have been lifting for about a year and a half and have just done these things. In lifting as in other areas of life, we are ever learning and ever correcting.

No, We Are Not There Yet.

We will have many twists and turns and detours and as long as we keep giving it our best effort our lives, and our lifts, will improve. We will not just magically “arrive” one day and be at the end of our destination. David says that “We don’t own our present level of fitness. We are only paying rent.” This means that we must continually search for better ways to do and be better at what we do. If we quit working at it, we will lose our fitness. When I finally got that answer, “The rest of your life.” in answer to “How long will it take?” I was already beginning to understand. The more you fix in your body and in your life, the more you find to fix. In order to be our best selves, we must continue down this path indefinitely. Anything else is falling short of our full potential. Come on. Stretch yourself. Get accustomed to doing and being your best. Work at it. Strive for it. Never quit. Always endure. You are all you’ve got so make yourself excellent in all ways. It will not be easy but it will be worth it. Just get up and go again.

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16:8 Intermittent Fasting

All who have followed my blog for any length of time know that I am a fan of 16:8 Intermittent Fasting (IF). But since I have not written on this topic too much lately, I felt it would be a good idea to address it for our new readers, and and as a refresher for our long time readers.

For healthy weight loss and management, I love intermittent fasting on the 16:8 protocol, which is 16 hours of fasting with an 8 hour window to eat all that you are going to eat for the day. With all the hype about Intermittent Fasting, you would think it was some kind of new fad, yet the reality is, it is nothing more than how my generation used to always eat. You had breakfast, lunch and dinner and once the dishes were done, you stood the risk of catching hell from your mother if you were caught eating again. Many of us grew up hearing “Eat all you want, just make sure you eat all you take” along with “If you are hungry again, you should have ate more at dinner”. Do those phrases sound familiar to any of you? To our younger readers, there actually was a day when being overweight or obese was not the norm. There was a day when we did not mindlessly eat at all hours of the day. For those who look at the term Intermittent Fasting and assume this is a fad, or something new which might not actually be healthy, go ask a senior citizen how they grew up eating and ask, if back in the day in America, if we were a nation of unhealthy fatty’s or not.

Why I promote Intermittent Fasting

(Note: If you are an insulin dependent diabetic, please discuss intermittent fasting with your physician before trrying this as your dietary needs are stricter than those who are not)

Intermittent fasting is nothing new, it used to just be a natural part of our lifestyles in America. For my generation and older, this is how our mothers and grandmothers fed us. Intermittent fasting on the 16:8 protocol is not anything new, does not require a special diet, nor does it cost you a single penny as some of the popular diet plans will. If you want to lose weight in a healthy manner, and have a lean body, simply eat a healthy diet, do not graze your refrigerator at any and all hours, and ensure you do not eat more calories than your basal metabolic rate requires. If you want to make this easier on yourself, quit eating added sugar and simple carbs which drive cravings for unhealthy foods. If you adopt high protein, low carb dietary habits, you will be satiated much easier, the cravings will leave you, and hunger will become a minor annoyance instead of something that you might feel needs to be addressed right away. When you get cravings, or the feeling of being “hangry”, this is simply nothing more than your carb addiction rearing it’s ugly head to be fed, no different than a junky looking for dope or an alcoholic feeling the need to tip a bottle of booze.

I find IF combined with healthy dietary habits to be an easy and healthy way to lose or manage weight which anyone can accomplish. That is, easy for anyone who is serious about losing weight and has made the personal choice to actually go all in and just do it. Please, do not tell me you are serious about weight loss if you are going to refuse to give up your low nutrition, empty calorie dense junk foods. That which got you to the point of obesity in the first place. You may actually believe you are serious, but by trying to keep eating that which got you fat is not what I would consider going all in to get lean and healthy. If you want to continue eating cookies and cakes on a regualr basis, you are not serious about being healthy in any way, shape or fashion. Period. This type of thinking is a major flaw I find in Weight Watchers, where they tell their members they can eat anything they want and still lose weight. I have two thoughts on this; First, if you had no control over junk food in the past, you are not likely to just gain permenent control over it simply by joining a weight loss group. Second, while I have no proof, I cannot help but to feel that Weight Watchers and groups like this, who advocate still eating your unhealthy junk, are doing you, the consumer, a great disservice. They know that by telling you that you can do this, you are nothing more than a perpetual income stream to their business. Don’t believe me? Follow their social media and you will see this struggle every day where people are following the plan yet cannot lose their weight.

What makes IF effective is the food we eat is broken down by enzymes in our gut and eventually ends up as molecules in our bloodstream. Carbohydrates, sugars and refined grains are quickly broken down into sugar that our cells use for energy. If we do not use all this energy, we store it in our body as fat. Sugar enters our body’s fat cells through insulin, and will keep it there. An over abundance, obviously causes obesity. Between meals, as long as we are not shoveling food down our throats, our insulin levels will go down and our fat cells can release their stored sugar to be used as energy. We lose weight when we let our insulin levels subside. (1)

This does not happen when we are constantly snacking on low nutrition high claorie foods, does it?

The idea of IF is to allow your insulin level to go down long enough to burn off our fat. Or in other words, we go into ketosis which means our bodies are burning fat for energy instead of glycogen. Intermittent fasting will help you to easily lose weight in a healthy manner without ever feeling overly hungry if you eat whole, healthy foods with no added sugars or processed foods.

Another thing that makes IF easy is a good portion of your fasting hours can, and should be, at night when you are asleep. Hopefully, you will get 7 to 8 hours sleep during the night. If your last meal of the day is at 6:00pm, then you will not eat again until 10:00am the next morning. This should be simple for anyone who usually skips breakfast anyhow. And keep in mind that without sugar cravings, once you quit sugar, your hunger at the end of your fast will not feel overwhelming as it would if you continue eating refined sugar and simple carbs.

Changes that occur in your body during intermittent fasting (2):

  • Blood insuling levels drop which causes your body to burn fat.
  • Human growth levels increase which facilitates fat burning and development of lean muscle mass.
  • During IF, important cellular repair takes place such as the removal of waste material from our cells.
  • There are beneficial changes in several genes and molecules related to longevity and protection against disease.
  • IF can reduce insulin resistance and lowers your blood sugar which lowers your risk for type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes has spread significantly along with our epedemic of obesity.
  • IF reduces inflammation and oxidative stress in the body. Oxidative stress and inflammation contribute to early aging and many chronic diseases including cancer.
  • IF is beneficial for heart health by helping to improve blood pressure, lowering total and LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, and reducing inflammatory markers.
  • IF improves various metabolic features known to be important for brain health by increasing levels of a hormone called brain-derived neurotrophic factor. A deficiency of this hormone has been shown to cause depression and various other brain problems.

Of course with the desire for instant gratification now days, here are a few other results you can expect almost right away with Intermittent Fasting. Your energy levels will stabilize throughout the day, you will feel less need for naps in the afternoon. You will notice a quick initial weight loss and your clothing will feel looser as there will be an almost instant shedding of excess fluid retention. If you go all in with your commitment by quitting sugar and processed foods, your cravings are going to rapidly diminsh which will make it easier for you to continue on your weight loss journey. You will feel better physically and mentally which is going to greatly help your self esteem and confidence in being able to continue going forward. If you do not believe me, or have been curious about giving IF a try, then commit today to doing it. Intermittent Fasting does not cost you a penny and other than cleaning up your diet, there are no special dietary considerations such as special foods. You will find that by quitting added sugar and processed foods, it often becomes quite difficult to consume all of the calories your body requires based on your basal metabolic rate. By going to our main blog menu, you can find your daily caloric needs by simply entering your information into our Calorie Counter Pro. Give intermittent fasting an honest try and let us know how well you benefit. If you have further questions about IF, please contact us through email. You can go to our blog menu to do this. I promise that either Brenda Sue, myself or the both of us will get back to you with answers to your questions.

God bless and thank you for reading.

(1) Harvard Health

(2) Healthline.com

How To Lose Weight

Most people want to lose weight.  There are Countries where this is not true but in a large part of the world, we are too heavy.  While body fat percentage is the true measure of how fat we are, we love to see that number on the scale go down.

Go to the Calorie Counter Pro on the Home Page of this blog and enter your information and you will be given the number of calories that you should eat to lose either 1 or 2 pounds per week or to maintain your weight or to gain.  Once you have this information, use it.  If that was easy for everyone, few would be overweight.  Overeating is associated with cravings and most, or all, cravings are caused by eating sugar.  If you have trouble believing that, stop eating it for a week and watch your cravings begin to disappear.

Once you have decided to commit to your calorie budget, look ahead and plan your meals.  If you know that there are saboteurs at work, go prepared with good food that you like and plenty of healthy snacks. Don’t allow yourself to be hungry for more than a few minutes.  If you do, you will feel justified to eat whatever you find.

Don’t take sugar or any other “trigger foods” into your periphery.  Don’t lie to yourself and say that those cookies are “for the kids”.  They don’t need them either.  Instead, make sure that you have food that you really enjoy, maybe something that you won’t always buy for yourself.  Go ahead, if it’s a healthy food, buy it. No matter what it costs, it’s cheaper than health care to “fix” problems caused by a bad diet.  I spring for watermelon in the Winter sometimes to fulfill my carbohydrate requirement.  It’s expensive and I love it. I feel good when I eat it, in no way deprived.  It’s sweet but doesn’t cause cravings like cookies and other sugar laden desserts.

I prefer David’s Way of eating because it works and I have plenty to eat. I have absolutely no cravings and never feel deprived.  I am at a good body fat percentage and have energy to spare. I work a high stress, full time job and have domestic responsibilities that most people my age don’t have.  I am 62 and I am a power lifter. A year ago, I could only squat 35#, to my dismay.  Now I can squat 125#. I can deadlift 145#. Yes, I know, it’s not cool to tell your numbers, but I really don’t care.  The truth is that David’s Way is making me strong and healthy and I want to tell the world. My goal is to squat 210#.

With your doctor’s permission, get active.  Find an activity that you enjoy and do it religiously.  You can never out-exercise a bad diet, but exercise will tone your body and give you a more positive mental state. A good mental state is beneficial to weight loss.  You won’t be trying to self medicate your depression with food if you don’t feel depressed.  There are circumstances where exercise is simply not enough to alleviate depression but talk to your doctor and you will most likely discover that even in those cases, exercise will most likely help the medication do it’s job if you need medicine.

Search for ways to decrease the stress in your life.  If you have less stress, you will have more energy to devote to being healthy. Don’t waste precious time and energy focusing on negative things that you have the ability to remove from your life.

The most important part of weight management is perseverance. Don’t quit. You will have good days and bad days. You will do your program perfectly sometimes and go way off track others.  Over time, if you don’t quit, your program will become your normal and then you have a new, healthy lifestyle.  Lifestyle is your victory.  Once it becomes a lifestyle, the anxiety and pressure to see that scale plummet lessens because you know that you will reach your goal.

We are always here for you.  Soon we will also begin private consultation, but the blog will always be free.  Join us. Visit often. We reply to comments and questions. 😉

Keto, Ketosis and Ketones, What Is all This?

Now that we are almost half way through October, the holiday season is rapidly approaching and many who are currently on a weight loss journey are likely to go completely off the rails and gain back some of their lost weight. At the beginning of the new year most of these folks along with the resolutions crowd will be looking for that best way to drop weight, which brings us to the question, “What is all this Keto malarkey I keep hearing about?”

Since I am questioned all the time about what I think of Keto I will explain what it is, and I will give you pro’s and con’s of this way of eating.

Keto

Keto is a very low carb, high fat diet which is quite similar to the Atkins diet. The key difference between Keto and Atkins is that with Atkins there is no maximum amount of protein you are allowed to consume while with Keto, you are encouaged to keep your protein intake to about 20 percent of your total caloric intake. Keto involves drastically reducing carbohydrate intake and replacing it with fat. This reduction in carbs puts your body into a metabolic state called ketosis. When this happens, your body becomes incredibly efficient at burning fat for energy. It also turns fat into ketones in the liver, which can supply energy for the brain.

Ketogenic diets can cause massive reductions in blood sugar and insulin levels. This, along with the increased ketones, has numerous health benefits.

From Healthline:

There are several versions of the ketogenic diet, including:

  • Standard ketogenic diet (SKD): This is a very low-carb, moderate-protein and high-fat diet. It typically contains 75% fat, 20% protein and only 5% carbs.
  • Cyclical ketogenic diet (CKD): This diet involves periods of higher-carb refeeds, such as 5 ketogenic days followed by 2 high-carb days.
  • Targeted ketogenic diet (TKD): This diet allows you to add carbs around workouts.
  • High-protein ketogenic diet: This is similar to a standard ketogenic diet, but includes more protein. The ratio is often 60% fat, 35% protein and 5% carbs.

Cyclical or targeted ketogenic diets are more advanced methods and primarily used by bodybuilders or athletes. Besides being effective for weight loss, Keto has been shown to be effective in treating:

  • Heart disease: The ketogenic diet can improve risk factors like body fat, HDL cholesterol levels, blood pressure and blood sugar.
  • Cancer: The diet is currently being used to treat several types of cancer and slow tumor growth.
  • Alzheimer’s disease: The keto diet may reduce symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease and slow its progression.
  • Epilepsy: Research has shown that the ketogenic diet can cause massive reductions in seizures in epileptic children.
  • Parkinson’s disease: One study found that the diet helped improve symptoms of Parkinson’s disease.
  • Polycystic ovary syndrome: The ketogenic diet can help reduce insulin levels, which may play a key role in polycystic ovary syndrome.
  • Brain injuries: One animal study found that the diet can reduce concussions and aid recovery after brain injury.
  • Acne: Lower insulin levels and eating less sugar or processed foods may help improve acne.

However, keep in mind that research into many of these areas is far from conclusive.

Con’s of Ketos

1. Your brain needs glucose which comes from carbohydrates. The brain derives energy from blood-glucose. Carbs are needed for glucose to enter your blood stream. Without carbs, your cognitive function can be less than stellar and you will feel yourself feeling drained, sluggish if you will, for the first couple of weeks. If you are athletic, you are likely to see your performance suffering from a lack of carbs.

2. Calories count the most when it comes to weight loss, no matter what your diet plan may be telling you. Be it the points system promoted by Weight Watchers or simply eating fats untl you are satiated while on Keto. The problem with Keto is it paces far too much emphasis on eating fat and little to none on calorie count.

3. You are limited severly in the foods you are going to eat while on Keto and might get bored and decide to go off track with other foods. For many people, Keto is too restrictive to be feasible in achieving long term objectives as not only is sugar not allowed, but you are also restricted in foods which will provide you with good complex carbohydrates and fibers. A good diet plan is one which is going to encourage you to eat a well rounded diet which will provide your body with all the nutrients required for good health.

Ketosis

Ketosis is a metabolic state where the body is using fat for energy when it’s stores of glucose have been depleted. When your blood-glucose is depleted, your levels of insulin go down and fatty acids are released from body fat stores in large quantity. Many of these fatty acids are transfered to the liver where they are converted into Ketones. These molecules provide energy for the body and, unlike fatty acids, can cross the blood-brain barrier to provide energy for the brain. Your brain will function without carbs, however there are some functions that do require glucose.

Alternative to the Keto Diet

You do not have to eat a Keto diet in order to go into ketosis. In fact, on David’s Way, while you are in weight loss mode you will find yourself going into ketosis about every day because you are not eating sugar, ever. During your weight loss mode, you will be limiting your intake of carbohydrated to about 100 to 120 grams of complex carbs a day, and you will be practicing Intermittent Fasting on the 16:8 protocol. This protocol is 16 hours daily fast while eating all of your caloric needs in whole high protein foods and complex carbohydrates during your 8 hour feeding window.

A 16 hour fast is easier than it sounds as once you have finished your dnner in the evening, you simply do not eat for 16 hours, usually you will sleep close to the last 8 of those hours if you time yourself right. If you set your caloric needs correct to match your basal metabolic rate, you will burn through your glucose stores during your 16 hour fast and your body will go into ketosis. Your body will be burning fat even without exercise for a time period which will specifically correlate with your intake of carbohydrates. You can know if you are in ketosis by the following:

  • You will get an unusual taste in your mouth, kind of fruity. Some people may experience bad breath.
  • You can use test strips purchased from your pharmacy to test your level of ketosis. Honestly, I never thought this was necessary.
  • Appetite suppresion. This, combined with getting over sugar cravings, will make fasting far easier than you might ever imagine. Most people can not envison going 16 hours without eating. During my own weight loss mode, I would sometimes not eat for 20 hours simply because I was not hungry.
  • Increased focus and energy. Note, in the early weeks, you might feel more fatigued, but this goes away.

Is David’s Way or Keto for you?

Only you can answer that question for yourself. Keto and David’s Way will both get your body fat down to healthy ranges. Keto does not require anything other than following a diet plan that is high fat and very low in carbs. While David’s Way is high protein, low carb with zero simple or refined sugar consumed combined with Intermittent Fasting specifically during your weightloss mode and then backing off of IF once you have reached your goal body fat percentage instead of a number on the bathroom scale.

My methodology is a life style which not only includes healthy eating, it also involves consistent exercise of some type while also concentating on stress reduction through the combination of these factors which all tie together to make you the best you can be. Healthy eating, exercise, and rest to facilitate stress reduction which is one of the driving factors behind unhealthy eating and our obesity epedemic.

Intermittent Fasting

When I first started David’s Way I immediately began IF. I saw drastic changes in my weight and body. I lost so much weight so fast that I got a little freaked out and stopped. I continued with The Way, (of course…) but decided that I didn’t want to lose anymore weight. Just recently, I realized that I do, so back to fasting. It’s awesome if done the right way. I prefer 8 hours of eating during which time I ingest all my calories for the day, followed by 16 hours of no calories. I’m seeing changes that I like.

Some of the claims of IF are:

1-Improved mental clarity

2-Weight and body fat loss.

3-Lowered sugar levels

4-Reversal of type 2 diabetes

5-Improved fat burning

6-Increased fat burning

7-Increased growth hormone

8-Lowered blood cholesterol

9-Prevention of Alzheimer’s Disease

10-Longer life (potential)

11-Activation of cellular cleansing

12-Reduction of inflammation.

There are lab tests to determine the values of some of these claims. Personally, I always get better mental clarity,

weight loss and reduced inflammation. Nothing feels as good as this. IF is definitely my friend. ;-*

Controlling a Voracious Appetite

The picture of above is from my vacation last year at Keystone, South Dakota. I took my lovely wife on her first helicopter ride and got a shot of this old abandoned mine shaft just a few miles away from Mount Rushmore. It was a great flight where we got a lot of pictures, but looking at this it makes me think of having a voracious appetite, a never ending craving for simple carbs and how it affects our bodies. Like modern day amateur explores who venture into these shafts just to find themselves hopelessly lost, the same happens when we consume too many simple carbs. You eat them and they end up hopelessly lost as fat in your body which you may or may never get rid of. Explorers may or may never be found in these old shafts.

I practice intermittent fasting on the 16:8 protocol and only eat high protein foods with zero simple carbs. I do eat carbs, but I only consume complex carbs and a limited amount on most days. By eating like this I am able to fuel my body for busy work weeks and grueling weight training sessions. I quit counting Weight Watchers Smart Points, yet I do still use their program. Only now I use it to count calories. I aim for 2500 calories a day, but usually find myself absolutely stuffed by the time I have consumed only about 1800 to 2000 calories. Hell, I used to eat that many in one sitting at fast food places which I now totally avoid too.

Following Weight Watchers on maintenance, I was still losing weight even after I no longer desired to lose weight once my body fat had reached ten percent. I have increased my caloric intake with more protein and am managing now to have stopped the weight loss. The good thing is I eat a ton of food, and never get cravings in between meals since kicking refined sugar entirely. It is quite simple, our bodies become addicted to sugar and it is hard to kick just like tobacco and alcohol are hard to quit. And the best thing is by having kicked sugar in it’s entirety, I do not feel like I am denying myself anything. Nope, I do no miss cake, cookies, soda pop or any kind of sweet treats. Honestly, none of that stuff tastes as good as feeling physically fit feels.

On Weight Watchers Connect and in my personal life , I have had folks inquire how I have had such good luck in losing weight. Folks ask me what can they do for themselves. First, none of this has been good luck, it involves hard work and having the mind set to commit to a life time of health and wellness over just losing weight. I am more than happy to help people towards health and wellness, but too many are not willing to give themselves 100% effort to improving their lives. I was talking to a lady at work the other day who asked my secret. After I told her, she said that maybe she would start sometime in the summer. Well guess what, procrastination and laziness is never going to get you where you think you want to be.Like being an alcoholic, I guess you just have to be sick of your own fat ass before being willing to commit to getting yourself healthy. I talk to folks personally and on social media about kicking simple carbs, refined sugar, and most refuse to give this up. Folks want their treats. But here is a reality for you, trying to control those sweets that loaded excess fat on your ass is like an alcoholic thinking they are on a good path to sobriety even when they tempt drunkenness with the occasional drink on the weekend. How many hard core drunks do you know that can do this on a sustainable level. Guess what, if you are addicted to sugar, those occasional treats can very well, and likely will, turn back into a daily thing if you have already displayed that you have no self control over them by getting fat in the first place.

If you have found yourself on Weight Watchers because you are over weight and have little control over sugar cravings, you have to be out of your blooming mind to think you have a realistic shot at not falling back in to the same old trap. Yes, some people are successful. No, Weight Watchers does not tell you to deny yourself. Yet, when you read Connect posts every day, that social media forum is plum full of folks writing about how they lost control These stories far outweigh the true success stories. If anyone is serious about losing weight and being healthy, you have to make a true commitment to yourself. By going half assed about it, the only one you are cheating is yourself. You can look around your world and find plenty of excuses and people to blame for how you are. But the reality is you had better first take a good hard look at yourself. No one is to blame but you if you are an otherwise healthy individual. And even if not, you had better look inwards before looking outward for blame. It is on you entirely.

The lifestyle I promote is not entirely of my own creation. It is a mixture of concepts that I have put together for myself and it works quite well. I am 54 years old, 174 pounds with only 10% body fat. My blood labs are excellent and my blood pressure is 110/68 with a 61 bpm resting heart rate. I use weight training programs put together by folks smarter than myself who have put in the research to best understand nutrition, rest and physiology for top level performance. I still use the Weight Watchers program to not only maintain weight, but also now to actually regain lost lean muscle mass from my weight loss phase. The information is all provided by Weight Watchers for me to work on my objective. I count calories and macro-nutrients which are provided on the app. I weigh in and track it every week just as I did during my weight loss phase of body re-composition. I use the app now even more diligently than I did while losing. It is hard work in the gym and a minor amount of time tracking my food consumption. Tracking is now just a matter of habit that takes me a matter of maybe a minute to accomplish. Weight Watchers gives you the tools for success. Even with all the butt hurt whining about Free Style not working, Weight Watchers has provided the information to make it work if you first seek it instead of just going off the basics with little to no understanding of what you are doing. Weight Watchers is promoting a high protein low carb lifestyle. Even if they do not straight out tell you that you need to kick simple carbs, all you need to do is look at and understand how the point system works to see where they are leading folks. If you are on Free Style and can not lose, it is solely on you. Maybe you should re-evaluate a weekend sweet treats and the stuff you might sneek in during the week when no one is looking. Maybe you have kicked the sweets, but eat like a glutton while ignoring the Weight Watchers Simply Filling concept. If you can not lose on Free Style, you need to go back and count how many calories a day you are consuming since after all, weight management and loss is still as simple as calories consumed against calories expended. Barring any true health and or hormonal issue, no one is a special snow flake.This program works, if you truthfully work it. People say that there is no one size fits all way to lose weight, to them I say bullshit. We used a one size fits all approach for fatties in basic training. Your diet is strictly controlled and you are put on a strict exercise regimen. No one fails this unless they are finding a way to sneak their Twinkies when no one is looking.

Weight Watchers is an excellent program for health and wellness. There are some who say it does not work for them, but these same folks are not only not being honest with others, they are not being honest with themselves. If you cheat yourself on a daily or weekly basis, you really need to evaluate yourself and not the program.

If you have read this far, thank you. Please feel free to comment if you like. No one needs to be worried about being PC on my blog as I will just give you full frontal honesty. If anyone disagrees with me, that is fine to voice it. I am full well open to honest dialogue with anyone, but know that here I am not going to pull punches as I would on Connect. I invite dissenting opinions as long as they are respectful in nature and not just trolling. Respectful as in no personal attacks on myself or others. But, know that I do not give a fuck if your language is as salty as my own.