By far, the most popular nutrition program right now is the Ketogenic Diet, or Keto for short. Physicians and health professionals everywhere have reported extensively on the many benefits that can be achieved by following this process. Is it easy? For many who consume a lot of carbohydrates, your answer would be no. However, after you reach the point where your favorite carbs are no longer a habit, and you begin to see and feel the benefits, it becomes much easier. Many report feeling healthier than they’ve ever been. While others are proud to show their before and after photos, as well as positive reports from their physicians regarding previous health conditions.
The keto diet is a low-carb, high-fat diet. It lowers blood sugar and insulin levels, and shifts the body’s metabolism away from carbs and towards fat and ketones by 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
A ketogenic diet may provide many health benefits, especially with metabolic, neurological or insulin-related diseases:
- A ketogenic diet can help you lose much more weight than a low-fat diet. This often happens without hunger.
- The ketogenic diet can boost insulin sensitivity and cause fat loss, leading to significant health benefits for people with type 2 diabetes or prediabetes.
- 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
Foods to Avoid: Avoid carb-based foods like grains, sugars, legumes, rice, potatoes, candy, juice and even most fruits.
- Sugary foods: Soda, fruit juice, smoothies, cake, ice cream, candy, etc.
- Grains or starches: Wheat-based products, rice, pasta, cereal, etc.
- Fruit: All fruit, except small portions of berries like strawberries.
- Beans or legumes: Peas, kidney beans, lentils, chickpeas, etc.
- Root vegetables and tubers: Potatoes, sweet potatoes, carrots, parsnips, etc.
- Low-fat or diet products: These are highly processed and often high in carbs.
- Some condiments or sauces: These often contain sugar and unhealthy fat.
- Unhealthy fats: Limit your intake of processed vegetable oils, mayonnaise, etc.
- Alcohol: Due to their carb content, many alcoholic beverages can throw you out of ketosis.
- Sugar-free diet foods: These are often high in sugar alcohols, which can affect ketone levels in some cases. These foods also tend to be highly processed.
Foods to Eat: Base the majority of your diet on foods such as meat, fish, eggs, butter, nuts, healthy oils, avocados and plenty of low-carb veggies.
- Meat: Red meat, steak, ham, sausage, bacon, chicken and turkey.
- Fatty fish: Such as salmon, trout, tuna and mackerel.
- Eggs: Look for pastured or omega-3 whole eggs.
- Butter and cream: Look for grass-fed when possible.
- Cheese: Unprocessed cheese (cheddar, goat, cream, blue or mozzarella).
- Nuts and seeds: Almonds, walnuts, flax seeds, pumpkin seeds, chia seeds, etc.
- Healthy oils: Primarily extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil and avocado oil.
- Avocados: Whole avocados or freshly made guacamole.
- Low-carb veggies: Most green veggies, tomatoes, onions, peppers, etc.
- Condiments: You can use salt, pepper and various healthy herbs and spices.
No matter your culinary taste, there are plenty of ketogenic recipes online that will undoubtedly become a family favorite. There’s everything from burgers and chili, to tacos and enchiladas, to delicious mediterranean dishes.
Next week in Nutrition Corner, we’ll explore some sample Keto Meal Plans and tips for eating out. Stay tuned, and watch for our ACTIVZ blog posts for a deeper look!
Remember to always check with your physician with any health concerns before changing your diet.
We’ve discussed how your unique genetic code can influence how your body responds to different foods. Now, we’ll take a look at how your body type, or body genetics, is the foundation of the “house” in which you live. Custom building your house to your satisfaction requires that you understand what strategies or building plans will work best. You can enhance or redesign your body with this understanding.
First, there are various reasons and purposes we exercise; for overall health, athletic performance, physical therapy, and to get our bodies in shape. For most, it’s to get our bodies looking good, rather than overall health. All exercise is good for our health, and to get moving is the first goal, whether it’s walking, dancing, or circuit training (full body training, alternating upper and lower body exercises), done consistently, you will find reaching your health goals much easier to reach. Athletic training has its own goals and strategies. For those of us who want to get our bodies in the best shape possible, there’s more that goes into the equation.
As a personal trainer in the 90’s, we were taught to train our clients the same, barring any health for physical issues. As I learned and experienced more, I found myself not agreeing with that strategy. One of my clients saw the results I was achieving by the program I used, and asked if she could work out with me. She became my workout partner for a while, yet became frustrated that she did not achieve the same results. What I realized later, is that we weren’t molding the same “clay”. Her body type was different than mine. She had different strengths and weaknesses. Her body’s shape, or genetic type, caused her to respond differently to the same workout I was doing.
The Pear Body Type
- Narrow shoulders
- Straight waist
- Lower-body weight in hips, thighs, and buttocks
- Wide pelvic and hip structure
- Need to reduce lower body
- Need to build muscle mass in upper body
The challenge for the pear body type is to redesign the body by filling out the chest/bust and adding width to the shoulders while isolating, toning, and firming exercises to the lower body area.
The Apple Body Type
- Upper body stores fat around waist, upper back, and arms
- Lower body is undersized
- Thin buttocks and legs
- Abdominal area out of proportion and protrudes
- Need to shape and tone upper body
- Need to build hips, thighs, and buttocks
The challenge for the apple body type is to build the upper and lower leg muscles while shaping and toning the upper body. The apple will need to concentrate on the abdominal or core muscles also.
The Banana Body Type
- Lacks pleasing lines and shapeliness
- Pelvic bone, ribs, and shoulders equal width
- Wide waist
- Need to firm and tone muscles
- Need to elongate thighs
- Need to tone buttocks
The challenge of redesigning the banana is to firm and tone muscles to incorporate an hourglass shape. The banana should concentrate on the abdominal or core muscles, and try to elongate the thighs and tone the buttocks.
No matter what exercise program you choose, get moving. Understanding your body type will help you strategize in your training. Most personal trainers have this knowledge imbedded into their brains by now, and can help you get the shape you want. However, you can also take this knowledge to “Google”, and find exercises that specifically address each issue. I work out at home with little equipment, and no machines. It can be done. Motivation and time management is key, no matter where you train. First, find out your “why”, and define it. Write it down. Then, get moving!
Reference: “Blood Types, Body Types, and You”, by Dr. Joseph Christiano
Blood Type Nutrition – Part 2
Last week, we began our Nutrition Corner series with an open look at how our unique genetic codes can influence our food choices to be like medicine to our bodies, or create possible havoc in our systems.
This week, we’ll dig a little deeper, and give you some examples. If you do not know your blood type, there are several ways you can find out. If you’ve given blood, they will have your record. If you’ve had a baby, it’s on record. If you’ve had any surgery, you can request your blood type from the hospital. Another way is to purchase an at-home blood test kit. Dr. Christiano sells them on his sight, or you can find them at your local medical supply and pharmacy. I’ve preformed this test with all of my children, and is a simple finger prick.
Keep in mind, as I list examples of some beneficial and avoid foods for the different blood types, some have more “forgiving” systems, allowing them to enjoy some of the foods on their avoid list. An example of this is my own household. I and my son are blood type O. My two daughters are blood type A. Where blood type O’s can metabolize animal protein easily, blood type A’s typically do not. One daughter would prefer a full plate of vegetables with no meat if I let her, and sometimes experiences digestive issues when eating meat. My other daughter has a system not as sensitive, and can enjoy more animal protein. I’m not in the practice of forcing my daughters to become vegetarians or vegans. However, I am at least aware of how their bodies best function, including their brains for school work. There is also a list of Neutral Foods for each blood type, meaning they are good for your body, not like medicine, but not harmful to your system. For the purpose of your own gradual test phase, I’ll only list Beneficial and Avoid Foods.
Remember that my recommendation is to choose two from your Beneficial List you are not currently eating/drinking, and add it to your diet. Choose two from your avoid list your currently are eating/drinking on a regular basis, and removed them. Do this for two weeks, and pay attention to how your body responds.
BLOOD TYPE O EXAMPLE (Partial List)
Beneficial, Like Medicine to Your Body:
Meats: Beef, Lamb, Veal
Seafood: Cod, Halibut, Rainbow Trout, Salmon, Red Snapper, Tilapia, Whitefish
Beans: Adzuki, Black-Eyed Peas, Pinto Beans
Eggs/Dairy: Mozzarella cheese, Sour Cream
Nuts/Seeds: Flaxseeds, Macadamia Nuts, Pumpkin Seeds, Walnuts
Oils: Flaxseed, Olive
Vegetables: Artichokes, Avocado, Beet, Broccoli, Collard Greens, Kale, Onions, Okra, Red Peppers, Romain Lettuce, Sweet Potatoes, Pumpkin, Spinach
Fruit: Figs, Plums, Prunes
Juice: Black Cherry, Pineapple, Prune
Spices: Cayenne, Curry, Garlic, Horseradish, Parsley, Tabasco, Turmeric
Beverages: Green Tea, Seltzer Water, Water
Herbal Teas: Ginger, Dandelion, Milk Thistle, Peppermint
AVOID (Partial List)
Seafood: Catfish, Conch, Octopus
Beans: Brazil Nuts, Cashews, Peanuts, Peanut Butter
Oils: Corn, Peanut, Safflower
Cereals: Corn Flakes, Oat Bran, Shredded Wheat
Eggs/Dairy: American Cheese, Blue Cheese, Cheddar, Cream Cheese, Ice Cream, Parmesan, Provolone, String Cheese, Monterrey Jack, Ricotta, Yogurt
Breads: Corn Muffins, English Muffins, Multigrain Bread, Oat Bran Muffins, Wheat Bagels/Bread/Muffins
Vegetables: Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Corn, Eggplant, Potatoes
Fruit: Blackberries, Cantaloupe, Coconut, Honeydew, Oranges, Plantains, Tangerine
Juice: Apple, Orange
Pastas/Grains: Cornmeal, Duram Wheat Flour, Gluten Flour, Oat Flour, Semolina Flour, Soba Noodles, White Flour, Whole Wheat Flour
Spices/Condiments: Capers, Cinnamon, Cornstarch, Corn Syrup, Ketchup, Nutmeg, Black Pepper, Pickles, Vinegar
Beverages: Coffee (never tried this), Liquor, Sodas
Herbal Teas: Black Tea
BLOOD TYPE A
Beneficial (Partial List)
Seafood: Cod, Mackerel, Ocean Salmon, Rainbow Trout, Snapper, Sardine, Sea Trout, Tilapia, Whitefish
Beans/Legumes: Adzuki, Black, Black-Eyed Peas, Green Lentils, Pinto, Soy
Eggs/Dairy: Soy Cheese, Soy Milk
Nuts/Seeds: Flaxseeds, Peanut Butter, Pumpkin Seeds
Oils: Flaxseed, Olive
Breads: Ezekiel, Rice/Oat/Rye Flour, Sprouted Wheat
Pasta/Grains: Artichoke/Rice Pasta, Soba Noodles
Vegetables: Alfalfa Sprouts, Artichokes, Broccoli, Carrots, Chicory, Collard Greens, Garlic, Horseradish, Leek, Okra, Onions, Parsley, Pumpkin, Romain Lettuce, Spinach, Tempeh, Tofu, Turnips
Fruit: Apricot, Blackberries, Blueberries, Cherries, Cranberries, Figs, Grapefruit, Lemons, Pineapple, Plums, Prunes, Raisins
Juice: Black Cherry, Carrot, Celery, Grapefruit, Pineapple, Prune
Spices/Condiments: Blackstrap Molasses, Garlic, Ginger, miso, Mustard, Soy Sauce, Tamari
Beverages: Coffee, Green Tea, Red Wine, Water, Water W/Lemon
Herbal Tea: Aloe, Chamomile, Ginger, Ginseng, Hawthorn, Milk Thistle, Strawberry Leaf, Valerian
Avoid (Partial List)
Meats: Beef, Lamb, Pork
Seafood: Anchovy, Bass, Catfish, Conch, Crab, Flounder, Frog, Halibut, Lobster, Mussels, Octopus, Oysters, Scallops, Shrimp, Squid
Beans/Legumes: Garbanzo, Kidney, Lima, Navy, Red
Eggs/Dairy: American Cheese, Blue Cheese, Buttermilk, Cheddar, Colby, Cottage Cheese, Cream Cheese, Gouda, Ice Cream, Milk, Monterey Jack, Parmesan, Provolone, Swiss
Nuts/Seeds: Brazil, Cashews, Pistachio
Oils: Corn, Cottonseed, Peanut, Safflower, Sesame
Vegetables: Cabbage, Eggplant, Mushrooms, Olives, Peppers, Potatoes, Tomatoes, Yams
Fruit: Bananas, Coconut, Mangoes, Melons, Oranges, Papaya, Plantains, Tangerines
Cereals: Cream of Wheat, Grape Nuts, Shredded Wheat
Breads: Seven Grain, English Muffins, Wheat-Bran Muffins, Whole-Wheat Bread
Pastas/Grains: Semolina Pasta, White flour, Whole Wheat Flour
Spices/Condiments: Capers, ketchup, Mayonnaise, Pepper, Pickles, Tabasco, Vinegar
Juice: Orange, Tomato
Beverages: Beer, liquor, Seltzer Water, Sodas
Herbal Tea: Black
BLOOD TYPE B
Beneficial (Partial List)
Seafood: Cod, Halibut, Mackerel, Ocean Salmon, Sardine, Scallops, Sea Trout, Sole, Tilapia
Beans/Legumes: Kidney, Lima, Navy Soy
Eggs/Dairy: Cottage Cheese, Feta Cheese, Frozen Yogurt, Goat Cheese, Goat Milk, Kefir, Milk, Mozzarella Cheese, Ricotta Cheese, Yogurt
Cereals: Oat Bran, Oatmeal, Puffed Rice, Rice Bran
Breads: Brown Rice Bread, Ezekiel Bread, Oatmeal
Pastas/Grains: Oat/Rice Flour, Rice Pasta
Vegetables: Avocado, Beet, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower Collard Greens, Eggplant, kale, mushrooms, Peppers, Sweet Potatoes, Yams
Fruit: Bananas, Cranberries, Figs, Grapes, Papaya, Pineapple, Plum
Juice: Cabbage, Cranberry, Grape, Papaya, Pineapple
Spices/Condiments: Cayenne Pepper, Curry, Ginger Horseradish, Parsley
Herbal Teas: Ginger, Ginseng, Licorice, Peppermint, Raspberry, Sage
Avoid (Partial List)
Meats: Chicken, Pork
Seafood: Bass, Clams, Conch, Crab, Lobster, mussels, Octopus, Oysters, Shrimp
Beans/Legumes: Adzuki, Black, Black-Eyed Peas, Garbanzo, Lentils, Pinto
Eggs/Dairy: American Cheese, Blue Cheese, Ice Cream, String Cheese
Nuts/Seeds: Cashews, Peanuts, Peanut Butter, Pine, Pumpkin, Sesame Seeds, Sunflower Seeds
Oils: Canola, Corn Cotton Seed, Peanut Safflower, Sesame, Sunflower
Vegetables: Artichokes, Corn, Olives, Pumpkin, Tofu, Tomatoes
Cereals: Corn Flakes, Cream of Wheat, Rye Seven Grain, Shredded Wheat, Wheat Bran
Breads: Corn Muffins, Gluten Flour Bread, Multigrain Bread, Seven Grain, Wheat Bagels, Wheat-Bran Muffins, Whole Wheat
Spices/Condiments: Allspice, Cinnamon, Cornstarch, Corn Syrup, Ketchup, Black Pepper, Tapioca
Beverages: Liquor, Seltzer Water, Sodas
Herbal Teas: Senna, Hops
Reference: Dr. Joseph Christiano, “Blood Types, Body Types, and You”.
You can find videos on Dr. Christiano’s website for a deeper understanding @ www.bodyredsigning.com
Blood Type Nutrition
Without a doubt, the nutritional plan most trending is the Ketogenic Diet, followed by the Mediterranean Diet, Vegan Diet, as well as several diet meal plans where you purchase their branded foods. We will look into all of these each week in this segment, covering the theories, benefits, requirements, menus, recipes, and resources.
It’s important to be well informed when making lifestyle changes for you and your family. Truth is, not one nutritional plan will be the best choice for everyone. There’s a reason for that. Our genetic codes are unique. What may work for one, may not work for another. This is often why someone may have great success with one program, while another gains weight, experiences issues with allergies, sluggish, brain fog, or digestion. All this, not knowing their bodies are reacting to their dietary changes. In making your educated choices for your nutritional needs, keep this in mind. Sometimes, drastic changes in our nutrition can cause a negative response, depending on our personal wellness level. Some of the best advice I received years ago in this matter, was to choose two or three changes, foods, or meals for couple of weeks, and pay attention to my body’s reaction. The reason for this is two -fold: A complete overhaul of our kitchen and lifestyle can be overwhelming and stressful. Secondly, our bodies have the chance to adapt to the positive changes we’re making. After two weeks, I could see and feel the benefits of the changes I had made, without suffering the undo stress of an overhaul. This made me want to learn more, and make the commitment to work towards a total lifestyle change.
Understanding now that our genetics does play a role in how well we respond to nutritional choices, let’s take a look at what actually happens. Enter what’s called Blood Type Nutrition. Coming from the body building and fitness world, I didn’t want to hear anyone telling me what I can and can’t have. I had already tried every extreme out there at the time. However, when my body began to crash, and no longer was responding well to anything, I listened to a doctor explain to me what was happening in my body. Fast forward over 20 years later, this “intuitive” eating is always my go-to, my nutritional foundation, no matter what is trending that I want to try. I can always look back at these genetic, biological truths if I’m experiencing something negative, or not achieving the results others are.
Taking from Dr. Joseph Christiano’s book “Blood Types, Body Types, and You”, providing your body with the best nutritional program for your specific genetics can greatly help you maximize your genetic potential.
BLOOD TYPES AND NUTRITION
Each blood type has different characteristics that allow it to eat, digest, and assimilate food best for that group. Type Os are blessed with strong stomach acid and powerful enzymes that can metabolize almost anything, even some for not recommended for them.
What happens when we eat food not compatible with our blood type? Agglutination happens, which can be explained as followed:
Your body has antibodies that protect it from foreign invaders. Your immune system produces all kinds of antibodies to protect you and keep you safe from foreign substances. Each antibody is designed to attach itself to a foreign substance or antigen. When your body recognizes an intruder, it produces more antibodies to attack the invader. The antibody then attaches itself the intruder and a “gluing” effect (agglutination) takes places. In this way, the body can better dispose of these foreign invaders.
When it comes to eating foods that are not compatible with your blood type, this “gluing” effect can take place in the digestive system, joints, liver, brain, or blood. If this pattern continues, this agglutination can cause havoc in your body systems. Agglutination of cells, or clumping, will eventually break down the function of that particular system and lead to health problems. This is why we may experience some obvious benefits from some nutritional programs, but eventually our systems reject it, or go backwards in progress.
In “Blood Types, Body Types, and You”, Dr. Christiano explains how foods that are incompatible for your blood type will slow down your metabolic rate, making it difficult to lose weight and possibly even causing weight gain. Dietary lectins are found in most foods. These lectins work either on behalf of an individual or against them, depending on whether the food is compatible wit their particular blood type. When a food with a dietary lectin is beneficial for the, it is because the lectins function as scavengers that remove debris and toxins from the various systems in the body—liver, blood, intestines, etc.
Foods with dietary lectins that work against the normal bodily functions of the individual are considered “avoid” foods, and should be avoided, or at most, as a treat, less is best. Overall goal would be 80/20, eating closest to your individual blood type.
On the other hand, eating foods compatible to your blood type is like medicine to your body, able to assist your body in detoxifying and healing all systems.
Stay tuned for our next ACTIVZ NUTRITION CORNER for more detailed information on Blood Type and other nutritional programs!
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