Author Archives: Born Again Fitness.Com
It is important to use the right fuel… both for cars and for people. For instance, one could put aviation fuel or diesel fuel into a gas burning automobile engine and it would burn for a while the wrong fuel… but the engine would be damaged because it would be damaged by excess heat and/or byproducts of inefficient combustion. Similarly, the human body needs correct food to run run correctly. The body obtains water, fiber, nutrients and fuel from the food we eat. Each of these is critically important. But, of prime importance is the “fuel” portion of food. The body can only burn two types of fuel: Sugar or fat. Although either fuel will work, FAT is the best energy source. It is the the fuel we should primarily utilize in our bodies because it does far less damage to our bodies than does burning sugar/carbohydrates.
FAT BURNING KEY CONCEPTS:
1. Creating energy, by burning fuel, is necessary, but it is destructive to our bodies, just like burning gasoline or diesel is necessary, but destructive to the engine of the automobile.
2. Fat is a more efficient energy source (releasing more than twice as much energy than is released by burning sugar).
3. Along with containing a greater density of energy, fat, when burned for energy, releases far fewer free radicals (damaging elements) than does burning sugar (for the same amount of energy)
4. Summary of fat versus sugar:
■Sugar burns very fast and produces a lot of wasted energy in the form of damaging free radicals.
■That’s why our cells were designed to burn sugar only temporarily in times of great exigency, when the damage from free radicals is not as important as dealing with the emergency.
■If our bodies had been designed to primarily burn sugar as a fuel, then we would store sugar cubes within our bodies, but we don’t, we store fat. We store only minor amounts of sugar (in the form of glycogen) – enough to last for 30 to 60 minutes of exertion.
■Sugar causes glycation (alteration of our proteins)
■Fat – greater energy is furnished for the amount of material burned
■The amount of free radicals released as byproducts of energy creation is less.
■Fat can come directly from food eaten or the body can get fat from our stored fat. This is very important, because we need to be able to be active even if we haven’t been able to eat in the last few hours.
Unfortunately, most people’s cells have been ‘conditioned’ to burn SUGAR, with a whole host of resulting bad consequences.
■The bodies of sugar burning people (the majority of people over the age of 35) have large pantries of stored fat, but the cells of their bodies ignore that fat and look only for sugar. If there is no sugar available, such as when a person is sleeping, then the body will dismantle bones and muscles and convert those proteins in sugar to be burned for energy. This is the major cause of loss of muscle and osteoporosis as we get older.
■This unhealthy situation is the result of the hypothalamus (energy controlling gland in the brain) signaling the cells of our bodies to ONLY burn sugar, instead of fat.
■This is the result of leptin levels that have gone so high (above 9.0 ng/ml) that the hypothalamus has become unable to understand the leptin signals
■Leptin is a messenger molecule made in fat cells that communications to the hypothalamus how much fat is stored in the body to the hypothalamus.
■Unless leptin levels go lower and stay between 4.0 ng/ml and 9.0 ng/ml, people will find that they continue gaining fat over the years until their fat cells become resistant to leptin and insulin. Then they will become diabetic because they will no longer convert excess sugar to fat. Leptin levels are THE KEY to everything regarding body fat management.
■When leptin levels are above 9.0 and the cells of the body ultimately do become leptin and insulin resistant, that person will then find it difficult to keep their blood sugars at normal levels and will begin to age much more quickly and soon become diseased.
Changing Back Into a Fat Burner One of the wisest health habits anyone can adopt is to lower the leptin levels and repair the damage done to the hypothalamus so that it will instruct the cells of the body to burn fat instead of sugar. In simple terms, the way to do this is as follows:
1.Eat generous amounts of good fats
2.Eat sufficient amounts of protein
3.Eat high amounts of vegetables
4.Eat less than customary amounts of carbohydrates
5.Eat very little sugar
Born Again Fitness.com
Why women should lift heavy weights.
Most women today still believe the myth that they will look like ‘The Incredible Hulk’ if they lift weights heavier then 10lbs. I’m here to tell you that if your goal is fat loss then you need to ditch the high rep, light weight workouts you have been performing.
If your workout calls for reps of 30 or more you are setting yourself up for a very different hormonal response than if you were to lift heavier weights. You’re essentially training for endurance by doing endless reps with light weights. This causes your body to increase the stress hormone cortisol and epinephrine, but it does not release the fat burning hormones like GH, testosterone and lactic acid which is a chemical messenger in the fat burning process. Performing these types of workouts day after day does nothing for muscle building and actually strips muscle from your body. If you’re not challenging your muscles you are not giving them a reason to grow.
If you really want to accelerate your fat loss you must challenge your muscles, lift heavy, move quickly from movement to movement and do more in less time. If you are performing a movement that calls for 10 reps, you need to choose a weight that causes you to hit muscle failure by rep 10. Choose compound movements for upper and lower muscle groups and perform them in a circuit like fashion. Take no more the 60 seconds between sets and train for no more than 40 minutes, this time would include your warm-up at the beginning. Be sure to mix up the movements, reps, etc. every few weeks to continue to challenge your body and avoid muscle adaption.
Don’t be afraid to challenge yourself and dispel some of the myths that are out there. Women are just as capable as men to get in the gym and crank it out. Remember , if it doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you.
Born Again Fitness.Com
You can eat an unlimited amount of vegetables from the list below (use organic whenever possible). Your vegetable intake should be twice the amount of fruit intake.
- Average serving size = ½ cup
- No dried or canned vegetables; frozen OK
- Fresh juices made from vegetables are also allowed
- Most vegetables may be steamed for four minutes or stir fried over low heat; however, for best results, consume ½ of your vegetables raw
- Fresh herbs and spices are optional
(Steam for 20-30 minutes
or until soft)
Broccoli or brocciflower
Cabbage (all types)
Peppers (any color)
Squash (acorn, butternut,spaghetti)
(if purifying, only ½ per day)
(if purifying, only ½ per day)
Lettuce and Greens
Red and green leaf
- Average serving size = 1 tsp. | Servings: 4-7 teaspoons per day
- Should be cold-pressed and unprocessed
- Use high-quality oils, such as:
Extra-virgin olive oil
Flaxseed oil (Keep refrigerated, do not heat)
Grape seed oil
Real butter (can use during post-purification; organic/raw is preferred)
- Drink a minimum of 8 glasses (64 oz.) of spring water a day
These fruits are just a sampling. Keep in mind that you should eat twice as many servings of vegetables as fruits–fresh or frozen only, no dried or canned fruit (use organic whenever possible).
Average serving size indicated
Apples, 1 medium
Apricots, raw (3 medium)
Bananas, ½ per shake
Blackberries, 1 cup
Blueberries, 1 cup
Cantaloupe, ½ medium
Cranberries, 1 cup whole
Grapefruit, 1 whole
Guavas, 1 whole
Honeydew melon, ¼ small
Kiwis, 1 whole
Kumquats, 1 whole
Lemons, 1 whole
Limes, 1 whole
Loganberries, 1 cup
Mangos, 1 whole
Mulberries, 1 cup
Nectarines, 2 small
Oranges, 1 large
Papayas, 1 small
Peaches, 2 small
Pears, 1 medium
Pineapple, ½ cup
Plums, 2 small
Pomegranates, 1 whole
Raspberries, 1 ½ cup
Rhubarb, 1 cup
Strawberries, 1 ½ cup
Tangerines, 2 small
Tomatoes, 1 medium
Lentils or Wild/Brown Rice (measure carefully)
- Average serving size = ½ cup cooked
- 1-2 servings of lentils or 1 serving of wild or brown rice per day
Please note: Lentils have a higher protein content and less carbohydrates than rice. For ideal weight and blood glucose management, choose lentils more often than rice.
- Average serving size = 3-5 oz. cooked (Roughly the size and thickness of your palm).
- Total servings: 2-4 per day, with 1-2 servings being fish
Fish should be deep sea fish (e.g. salmon, cod, or sea bass), not farm raised
Select lean meat (chicken) that is organic, free range, antibiotic free, and hormone free, if possible.
- Prepare by broiling, baking, roasting, or poaching
- No cured, smoked, or luncheon meats
At some point we all make a bad decision, do something that harms another person, or cling to an outdated belief. When we do, we strive to reduce the cognitive dissonance that results from feeling that we, who are smart, moral, and right, just did something that was dumb, immoral, or wrong.
Whether the consequences are trivial or tragic, it is difficult, and for some people impossible, to say, “I made a terrible mistake.” The higher the stakes whether emotional, financial, or moral, the greater the difficulty.
Self-justification, the hardwired mechanism that blinds us to the possibility that we were wrong, has benefits: it keeps us from torturing ourselves with regrets. But it can also block our ability to see our faults and errors. It legitimizes prejudice and corruption, and can keep people from changing disastrous behavior that is costly to them and society.
We are all capable of believing things which we know to be untrue, and then, when we are finally proved wrong, impudently twisting the facts so as to show that we were right. ~ George Orwell
Courtesy of Montecito Wellness
- Tips on what to eat to lose belly fat rapidly and naturallyDo’s
- Try to drink every day 2-3 liters of water (including teas or natural juices); preferably drink bottled water, not mineral water.
- Reduce salt quantity from your food and also salted foods.
- Try to eliminate sodas, not naturals and with a lot of sugar; replace those with natural juices without adding sugar.
- Eliminate from your meals snacks, sweets; replace those with fruits. If your need to eat sweets became overwhelming and obsessive, you can eat sometimes just one piece of chocolate, or a small piece of cake, but never more than a piece (small piece).
- Replace the pork with fish and chicken. Prepare the meat on Teflon; grilled with spices: thyme, basil, oregano, allspice, soy sauce. I found very tasty recipes, but not fat and at the same time the pleasure of eating. Track my articles and you will find recipes simple, tasty and nutritious (the secret is the spices that give flavor to food).
- Do not ever eat meat combined with potato or pasta! Use gaskets based on vegetables, mushrooms, salad and sometimes rice.
- Reduce foods high in fat. There are many foods with fat; sausage, cheese, nuts etc…
- Do not take every day snacks, crisps, biscuits, wafers. Replace these fruit snacks.
- Drink milk only for breakfast or evening, especially: sweet cheese diet, diet yogurt, kefir, buttermilk.
- If you used to eat meat, give up salami, sausages and frankfurters. They contain many additives (E numbers) that weight.
- If you still want to eat meat, choose lean ham muscle Prague or file, and prepared traditional products. Consume these products in small quantities occasionally.
- One day a week I recommend you to try eating only fruit and fruit juices and vegetables. It is a method of detoxifying the body and provides vitamins.
- Fill out this diet with natural products that are true melting fat; Herbal nutritional supplements are very important for detoxification diet and vitamins and minerals.
- Positive attitude and confidence that will succeed are very important
VITAMIN B COMPLEX DEFICIENCY:
Vitamin B complex comprises a number of vitamins that exist as a family. They should not be taken individually. In this modern era, millions of people suffer from a deficiency of vitamin B for several reasons, chief among which are:
- Stress: emotional, physical and spiritual
- Processed foods in the diet: these are not real foods and so they tax the body
- Refined sugar. The average person consumes at least 140 pounds of sugar a year which robs the body of its vitamin B stores
- Drugs: both recreational and prescription drugs deplete vitamin B
- Toxins: poisons in the environment and personal care products deplete vitamin B complex
- Malnutrition. Most people are malnourished because they are not eating the right kinds of foods
- Cooking. Most people do not eat enough real, raw foods, so vitamin B is killed or so depleted that people are not getting enough of it in the diet
DO YOU HAVE ANY OF THESE SYMPTOMS?
Once your body has been deprived of the vitamin B complex due to reasons stated above, it begins to show symptoms (signs) of altered, diminished or poor health. This is because the vitamin B complex (within foods, not vitamin pills) is responsible for such a wide variety of activities, including cellular differentiation, transmission of nerve electricity, health of nerve cells, heart pulse rate, muscular contraction, digestion, brain function, thought processes and energy production. Without adequate vitamin B complex from foods, you can experience one or more of any one of these symptoms:
- mental problems
- heart palpitations
- heart arrythmias
- chronic fatigue
- chronic exhaustion
- paranoia, vague fears, fear that something dreadful is about to happen
- ADD (attention deficiency), inability to concentrate, irritability
- feeling of uneasiness
- thoughts of dying
- easy agitation, frustration
- inability to sleep (insomnia)
- tingling in hands
- tingling fingers and toes
- crying spells, inability to cope
- soreness all over
- and so much more.
CHRONIC VITAMIN B DEFICIENCY
Vitamin B deficiency can sneak up on you, because it doesn’t have to create serious health problems right away. In fact, medical researchers have discovered that very often there can be no detectable signs according to scientific instrumentation, that you are experiencing a deficiency. For example, “memory impairment due to vitamin B12 deficiency can precede blood symptoms of deficiency by years. Evidence that vitamin B12 deficiency accounts for some cognition deficits in older people comes from a study that revealed abnormal short-term memory in more than two-thirds of clients with pernicious anemia…The researchers recommend that a diagnosis of senile dementia should not be made, even in the absence of anemia, until vitamin B12 status is determined biochemically.” (Hamilton, p. 476) This means that it is possible that certain mental disorders can be directly attributable to vitamin B complex deficiency, and it is easier to first start replenishing stores of vitamin B complex than to begin treating difficult mental illnesses with drugs, therapy or psychological counseling.
When vitamin B deficiency becomes chronic (long-lasting), other problems can occur, including troubles with your adrenal system. The adrenal glands serve many purposes, but in relation to this topic, they are the back up system for making energy. When there is a chronic lack of vitamin B complex then the adrenal glands are called upon to produce quick energy by injecting certain hormones like adrenaline into your system so that you can cope with life. If this goes on for a long time, then the adrenal glands become impaired or worn out, leading to even more health problems.
WHAT YOU CAN DO TO HELP YOURSELF
There are a number of things you can do to prevent and overcome vitamin B complex deficiency:
1. Stop taking vitamin pills and switch over to Standard Process Whole Food Formulas products. These products are made only of foods and not parts of foods or isolated vitamins. They won’t add to your problems the way vitamin pills can, and they are not toxic the way vitamin pills can be.
2. Stop eating refined sugar.
3. Stop eating artificial ingredients. Read all labels on your foods and if there are names of chemicals, don’t eat them. Switch to organic foods.
4. Reduce stress through a regular exercise program, meditation, counseling and/or hobbies
5. Stop drinking coffee; switch to organic decaffeinated coffee or organic green tea
6. Eat more vitamin B-containing foods — oats, barley, wheat bran, avocado, salmon, Brazil nuts and others.
7. Be patient. It took a while to create a vitamin B deficiency, so it takes a while to reverse the problem; with severe cases it can take a year or so, with milder cases it can take just a few days.
8. If you have a friend or relative with a mental or emotional disorder, think of the possibility of a vitamin B complex deficiency and then make suggestions for adjustments in their diet and take appropriate whole food formulas.
9. Always coordinate all of your health and treatment plans with all of your practitioners.
Ring in the NEW YEAR with a NEW YOU
Sign up NOW to take the Fit in 4 Challenge and you could win ONE FULL YEARS WORTH OF FREE TRAINING from BORN AGAIN FITNESS!
**two runner ups will receive $50 gift cards towards Born Again Fitness services!**
How it Works
- Participant registration is open until Jan 10th 2012 at midnight. Contest is open to both existing Born Again Fitness clients and new clients!
- Fit in 4 will run from Jan 15th 2012- Feb 15th 2012
- Participants will receive the following upon registration
- 4 weeks worth of specified workouts
- 4 weeks of detailed nutrition
- 4 weeks of supplementation guidelines to maximize success
- Detailed weekly training split
- Cardio implementation
- Participants will be evaluated on their progress weekly through photo submissions
- Winner will be determined by who makes the most progress within the four week contest time frame
- Contest cost is $99 (one time fee only)
- Invite your friends to join you on this journey to better health!
Go to www.bornagainfitness.com to RSVP NOW!
Post Workout Meal Nutrition – What To Eat After A Workout
The post workout meal (the meal you eat after a workout) is probably the most important meal of the day for anyone who cares about nutrition or wants to build muscle, lose fat or improve their body.
However, it’s also the meal that confuses people the most.
There are just so many different recommendations for what to eat during this meal, how much of it you truly need, and what foods are best to get it all from that it tends to drive people crazy.
Not to mention, there’s also the many shakes and supplements available, the trouble fitting it in with the rest of your diet, and just not even knowing if you should eat anything at all after you’ve worked out.
Well, the truth is that once you understand what your body needs (and doesn’t need) after your workout, how much is needed, and what the best sources are to get this nutrition from, the post workout meal will probably become the simplest meal of your day.
So, let’s clear up all of your confusion once and for all…
What You Should & Should NOT Eat After a Workout
Simply put, aside from water (which you should already know you need), your post workout meal needs to contain 2 things, and it needs to not contain 1.
You should be eating protein and carbs. You should NOT be eating fat.
More on the protein and carbs you need in a minute. First, let’s start with a quick explanation of why you shouldn’t eat fat after a workout.
Many times throughout this website I explain why fat is NOT a bad thing (when it’s the “good” fat) and why it is an important part of everyone’s diet. However, there just happens to be a certain time when fat (good or bad) wouldn’t be ideal to eat. This of course is in the post workout meal.
Why? Well, fat slows down digestion. In this case, it would be slowing down the digestion of protein and carbs. As you’re about to find out, this is the exact opposite of what you want to happen.
How Long After My Workout Should I Eat My Post Workout Meal?
Uh, pretty much as soon as you can.
I don’t mean put-down-the-dumbbells-and-start-eating. It doesn’t need to be quite that soon. However, there is this “window of time” that exists after your workout during which it would be the most beneficial for your body to receive its post workout nutrition.
Typically you’d want to try to get this meal into your body within 1 hour. If possible, within 30 minutes would be even better. I personally have my post workout meal about 5-10 minutes after my workout.
Seems impossible right? I mean, how can I do it so fast if I’m at the gym? I’ll explain that a bit later.
First let’s find out what type of protein and carbs you should be eating during this meal, and how much of each is best…
Post Workout Protein
Now that you know that time is of the essence when it comes to your post workout meal, this part is going to make a whole lot of sense.
See, eating this meal soon after a workout is important, but just because you are putting the food into your body quickly doesn’t actually mean the food is being digested and absorbed by your body equally as quick.
So, while chicken, meat, fish, and eggs are all fine sources of protein that I personally eat daily, they aren’t the ideal type of protein for the meal after your workout.
These foods are solid foods, and the protein in solid foods digest pretty slowly. You may have eaten a high protein food in your post workout meal, but by the time the protein is digested and finally ready to be used by your body, a whole lot of time would have passed. So…
What Protein Source Is Best?
This is why the ideal source of protein to eat after your workout is whey protein powder. Just mix it with some type of liquid (most often water) and you got yourself a drinkable source of protein.
A whey protein shake will be digested by your body much quicker than a solid food for two reasons:
- Liquid meals digest faster than solid food meals.
- Whey protein is the fastest digesting form of protein there is.
This is what makes whey protein pretty much the official choice of most people as their post workout meal protein source.
How Much Protein Should I Eat After A Workout?
As for how much, try to consume between 0.15-0.25 grams of protein per pound of your body weight (so a 175lb person would shoot for between 26-43 grams at this time). People who are VERY overweight should use their target body weight instead of their current body weight when doing this calculation.
Which Whey Protein Powder Should I Use?
I personally use and highly recommend Optimum Nutrition’s 100% Whey. It’s high quality, tastes amazing, and mixes easily. It’s the best selling whey protein there is.
Post Workout Carbs
After protein, the next equally important part of your post workout meal is carbs. I know carbs are the nutrient people are most afraid of these days, but honestly, they’re really not scary (or “bad”) at all.
In fact, they are an extremely essential part of your after-workout nutrition and play a key role in your post workout recovery.
Why? Well, carbs will be used by your body to restore muscle glycogen that was depleted while you worked out. If your post workout meal doesn’t contain carbs, your body may actually instead break down muscle tissue for this same purpose (which would suck). Carbs also create an insulin spike which helps to move nutrients into your muscle tissue quicker.
So, now that you know your body requires carbs after a workout, you’re probably wondering what foods they should come from.
Well, you know how there are supposed “good carbs” and “bad carbs?” As it turns out, this is actually the only time when “good carbs” and “bad carbs” switch roles.
Meaning, typical good carbs (oatmeal, brown rice, etc.) contain fiber and other nutrients that slow down its digestion. This is exactly what makes them “good” any other time of the day.
But by now you know the post workout meal is all about speed. And when it comes to speed, simple/high glycemic carbs digest faster than complex/lower glycemic carbs. Which means foods like white potatoes or white rice or a cereal like corn flakes are all good choices for a carb source after a workout.
However, just like protein, solid foods in general may not really be the absolute BEST choice at this time. Don’t get me wrong, they’ll still provide the same nutrition and get the job done. There just might be a better way.
And that’s where a little something called dextrose comes in. Dextrose is not a supplement… it’s actually just a type of sugar often used in sports drinks.
I know, I’m basically saying you should eat sugar. While that would be a terrible idea any other time of the day, your post workout meal is the one exception because your body is in a state where it is perfectly primed to handle these types of foods.
For this reason, dextrose has also become almost an official choice for a post workout carb source.
How Many Carbs Should I Eat After A Workout?
Most people should look to consume somewhere between 0.25-0.4 grams of carbs per pound of their body weight from dextrose (a 175lb person would shoot for between 40-70 grams). And once again, people who are VERY overweight should use their target body weight instead of their current body weight when doing this calculation.
Which Dextrose Should I Use?
I personally use and highly recommend NOW Foods Dextrose.
My Post Workout Meal
To finish this article up, here’s a full break down of exactly what I eat after a workout and exactly how I do it.
Before I leave for the gym, I put everything I need inside of a shaker bottle. A shaker bottle is just a plastic cup with a cover and some type of “blending” piece inside.
You just put something in it (like protein powder), add water, and shake it for about 5-10 seconds. It’s simple and extremely convenient for your post workout meal (or any type of shake).
So, I put in the appropriate amounts of whey protein powder and dextrose along with 5 grams of L-Glutamine (more about L-Glutamine), and 5 grams of Creatine (more about Creatine) and take a bottle of water with me.
After my workout I get into my car, open the shaker bottle, pour in the water, shake for 5-10 seconds and drink it on the ride home. The whole process takes less than a minute and the whole “meal” is finished in a matter of minutes if I take my time.
Be Realistic with Fitness
The desire to lose weight, look better and get fit, can grip men in frenzy of activity. Paying out for expensive equipment only to watch it gather dust because motivation has slipped is all too familiar. To avoid expensive failures don’t set high targets and make grand plans.
Wrap fitness into your routines
Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Where possible walk to pass on a message rather than sending an email. Reconsider labor-saving devices and go for manual instead of automated.
Buy a Pedometer
You don’t need to broadcast the fact that your fitness program has begun but you might consider buying a pedometer as a simple investment. Depending on the type you opt for this can provide you with feedback as to how much you are moving and even give a rudimentary idea of how many calories you are using up.
Involve others in your fitness plan
You may not be in a position to involve others but motivation is helped if you are part of a group or team. In a family setting, for example, you might want to consider buying everyone a pedometer.
How do you sit? If you’re someone who sits down and goes completely still for hours on end you are in self-defeating mode. People who sit and do hobbies burn up more energy (even modest amounts) than someone who does nothing. Even consciously moving your legs around or bouncing about to music is better than doing absolutely nothing.
Take an action audit
Many people have unrealistic beliefs about how much they really move around. Take a record of your activity levels over a week (be honest or what’s the point) and you might surprise yourself.
Increase activity levels
You could sit around for all your lunch break or you could move around. Feelings of fatigue are often the reasons why men don’t move around yet inactivity is the worst culprit for making you feel like doing even less. It may take a little effort to begin with but all you need to do is start.
Link activity to something you Like
Inactive people often find formal exercise boring and without much purpose. Break into this by linking movement with a positive outcome. I like getting home after a day at work so I might sometimes walk; I don’t do it all the time but its one of my options. I like a newspaper so instead of having it delivered I go out and get it.
Take a break
By this I mean an activity break. It can be a great way of trying out new ideas and can help kick-start fitness or just revitalize you.
Put that burger down!
Don’t use increased activity as an excuse to top up on sweet stuff or fast-foods. You won’t fade away as a result of increased movement but you may find that your system responds to increased exercise. Feeling that your appetite is increasing is a positive outcome and you should respond by eating what your body (not your head) is looking for. Drink water or fruit juice rather than more coffee or fizzy drinks, take more fruit and vegetables on board, experiment with good foods you may have previously overlooked or never even thought about. It’s not hard or complex and it will support all your other efforts.
Until next time,
Born Again Fitness
Translation: 3500 calories is equivalent to one pound. If you’re an “average American”, you could be eating anywhere from 12 to 15 excess pounds every month, adding fat to your body, increasing the pressure on your heart, and stressing your organs (not to mention the environmental impact of all this gluttony).
But why are we eating so much?
I decided to see what it would be like to eat the way the average American supposedly eats.
Breakfast: How about McDonald’s? That’s a typical choice for millions of Americans every day.
To be an average American, you need to eat at least 700 calories and up to 1300 calories at each setting. McDonald’s can help you with that. Another tip: it helps to drink your calories, so remember to wash it all down with a big slosh of soda or juice! Or a nice venti mocha will do the trick.
Lunch: I know Burger King is bad. I’ll go for Subway. Subway is fresh, so I’m sure whatever I eat there is going to be good, right?
Well, maybe if you get a 6 inch whole grain sandwich with vegetables or a salad. But according to Subway, the most popular Subway item in the world is thetoasted steak and cheese sandwich. This will give you a very generous 400 calories per 6 inch section. Don’t forget the chips and soda (an extra 300 calories!), and you’re easily on your way to 4,000 calories today! It’s nice that convenience chains are offering slightly more healthy options these days, but it’s still disingenuous counter-marketing to offer it along side the regular high-calorie fare. Eat fresh, indeed.
Dinner: Pizza and burgers are beloved American foods. Sign me up!
Carl’s Jr. says there’s only one thing that can “slay the hunger of a young guy on the move”. Hey, that’s me! I can even get their burger for breakfast. But wait, am I really that starving that I need to be slaying my stomach? The six dollar burger with a large Coke and a side of fries will round out my day with an additional 1,200 calories (give or take a few).
(Honestly, I’ve always thought it’s sort of sad that the most famous American foods – pie, burgers, pizza, hot dogs, French fries – are all junk foods. The French get cheese, wine and sauces, and Asia’s got vegetables down cold, but when it comes to cuisines of the world, we can sure be proud of our corn, salt, sugar and trans fat, all right.)
I thought it would be a little bit of a challenge to eat 4,000 calories, but thanks to the vast majority of what’s available at every restaurant these days, it’s actually pretty hard not to consume twice as many calories as you need – and that’s the whole problem. It shouldn’t require a degree in nutrition or hours of online research to know what’s reasonable to eat and what isn’t. Stopping in at Subway to eat lunch shouldn’t be an obesity challenge.
Of course, what really helps is all that soda! We each drink approximately 50 gallons of soda each year.We eat twice as many calories daily as we need by some estimates, and about 1,000 excess calories a day by more conservative estimates (seems a little more accurate to me, but then again…) Whether we’re overeating a lot or overeating a lot, it’s not healthy and it’s no wonder the majority of Americans are overweight.
That’s why I’m giving the Impossible Calorie Award to the Standard American Diet!