Living in the Weight Gain Loop

Many nutritionists and health educators, more often than not, encounter individuals who struggle with maintaining a healthy, happy lifestyle. Most people do very well following a recommended diet protocol once they’ve committed to take the plunge. Problems seem to arise when the excitement runs out, weight-loss plateaus and confusion sets in about how to move forward with a diet that has left us hungry, bored and feeling restricted. Take the New Year’s resolution, for example. On January 1st, how many times do we make a pact to never drink another iced salted caramel mocha, but two months later inevitably find ourselves back at the coffee shop? Or, we enthusiastically head straight to the gym on New Year’s Day, only to be labelled a “resolutioner” by the diehard gymmies, as they take bets on whether you’ll make it to February. It’s apparent that we haven’t quite cracked the code as to why we continually fall back into old habits and behaviors. Some studies suggest focusing more on the prevention of obesity in the first place, given the lack of success at long-term weight reduction. Perhaps endlessly searching for the “next best diet plan” has taken our focus off the real issue.

I think we can all agree that when life is going well and positive things are happening, we make better decisions by default, especially with regard to our diets and how we treat our bodies. It’s almost as if we’re excited to eat well and have endless energy to stay the course. However, when life is routine and monotonous, or maybe even takes a turn for the worse, we use every excuse in the book to justify our backwards tumble into old habits and behaviors. It seems that we continually make progress toward losing weight and conquering addictions, only to end up back where we started. So what is the missing link?

Statistics show that only one-third of Americans are very happy. Interestingly, two-thirds of adult Americans are overweight or obese. Might there be a connection between truly living a fulfilling life and the ability to maintain a healthy weight and lifestyle? The answer to that question may be fairly obvious. However, equally as obvious, yet more elusive and difficult to attain, is real and long lasting fulfillment in every area of our lives. When we get lost in the day-to-day, we stop growing. When we stop growing, we lack the motivation to even ask for more out of our lives. Ten years pass by and we’re still struggling with our finances, careers, relationships, health and families.

To gain perspective, pretend that one day you woke up with a horrible stomach virus, but, also that same morning, you had an appointment to sign a million-dollar business contract. Would your extreme nausea (among other things) even remotely stand as a barrier between you and signing that contract? Better yet, when a firefighter rushes into a burning building to save a child, is he thinking about his messy divorce or impending cancer diagnosis? Of course not! What is it that the future millionaire and firefighter both possess in these particular cases? How are they able to push through negative personal circumstances to accomplish the task at hand? Although both situations are a bit different in that one is earning a large sum of money and the other is saving a life, the answer to the question is still the same – they have purpose. They both have a personal mission that drives them to overcome their current physical limitations. A certain drive exists that provides the energy to move forward no matter the circumstances. On the contrary, when we live our lives in a day-to-day, robotic routine, we have no energy or desire to push through challenges. We tend to concentrate more on our own limitations and have a real lack of desire for all that life truly has to offer. When we operate from a “just need to get through the day” mentality, how can we possibly feel inspired to maintain a healthy weight and happy outlook on life? When we’re happy and motivated, we make better decisions by default.

The endless pursuit for health and happiness will, no doubt, take a frustrating turn when we go from diet plan to diet plan without taking an assessment of our real desire. Do you wake up every day eager to begin a new creative process that will make a difference in the world, or do you do whatever needs to be done to get yourself to Friday? Each one of us possesses an individual master plan that can positively affect the lives of others in some way. The secret is to awaken a desire for that true purpose, that personal master plan, and link to it on a daily basis. Does your current job link to your master plan? Does your relationship? Your friends? That cookie? That cup of coffee? Asking these questions can provide a fantastic reference point and a great place to start. No energy is greater than being on a path that inspires you to wake up early in the morning. Inspiration will serve as a solid foundation and a motivation reservoir that provides the strength to withstand dieting ups and downs and the ability to live the exciting, purposeful life you were meant to live.

Who Wants More Out Of Life?

Answer:  Not too many people.

One thing that I’ve noticed while working with individuals is that, at one point or another, desire seems to decline.  And, it’s not just desire to lose more weight…it is a desire for many things in life.  For one reason or another we’ve been hard-wired to believe that achieving comfort is the end goal.  Unfortunately, that comfort zone is the EXACT place that supports our growing lack of desire and keeps us settling for mediocrity.

We get lost in the day to day, not even conscious of our robotic nature.  We wake up, grab coffee, drive to work, drive home, make dinner, and go to bed.  A few weekend parties and a couple of vacations are thrown in the mix to add a little short-term enjoyment, but inevitably those little “escapes” lead us right to that collectively feared and dreaded Monday.  Why is it that everyone so strongly dreads Mondays?  Monday, as a day of the week, cannot be “bad”.  The only reason why it gets such a bad rap is because it is that particular day that slaps us in the face and shows us exactly how we are NOT doing what we came here to do… and it stinks!  What we really fear and dread is being a robot.

One thing that is for sure is that EVERY SINGLE human being on this planet is here, in this lifetime, to achieve their TRUE POTENTIAL and make the world a better place for one another.  No doubt we all have different starting points, obstacles and challenges, but it is finally facing and overcoming those starting points, obstacles and challenges that will wake up our desire and allow us to start asking for more in life.  As I always say, if we don’t start asking for more… this is as good as it’s EVER going to be.

A couple of really good questions to ask yourself are:

  1. What am I here to achieve in this lifetime?
  2. How can I make a difference in this world?
  3. How disgusted am I with where things are today?

Even though we think we are, most of us are not disgusted enough with where we are today, because if we were, we’d surely start changing no matter how hard it appears to be at first.  As Rav Berg says “change is what happens when the pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of changing”.  It is imperative that we get ourselves to a place where it’s painful to stay the same.  Asking yourself the questions listed above are one sure-fire way to set the wheels of change in motion.  Ask those questions and you will most certainly begin looking forward to Mondays.

5 Most Common Diet Misconceptions

I have been thinking lately about the biggest diet misconceptions I find amongst my clients.  By diet misconceptions I mean those lifestyle habits that we have been told, at one time or another, are good for us but are really sabotaging any possibility of losing weight and feeling really good every day.  They are hard habits to break because, in our heads, the old advice somehow make sense and is comfortable.  One thing that is evident, however, is that we’re not losing weight and feeling good every day.  Quite the contrary, actually.  For so long we have put up with being overweight, having zero energy, getting colds every other week, stomach viruses, headaches, allergies, acne, anxiety, infertility, depression, lack of desire, medications…you get where I’m going.  When is enough, enough?  Below are the top FIVE common misconceptions that seem to pop up with the majority of my clients.  Now, will making these modifications to your lifestyle change everything in your world tomorrow?  Maybe not… but it will be a step in the right direction.  We have to take that first step with the biggest underlying issues to give us a good, solid foundation to start from.  Here we go!

1. Skipping breakfast:

If I hear “well… I’m not hungry, so why should I eat?” one more time, everyone reading this blog will hear me scream!  I understand that you’re not hungry until 10am… but that needs to change!  Right now…the daily diet is backwards.  The bulk of our meals are eaten at 7pm when it should be at 7am.  Odds are you may feel a bit queasy making the transition to eating early… but that will only last a short time (a week or so).  Not eating breakfast is equivalent to sitting in a car, turning the key, but there’s no engine.  Without breakfast… we have no engine (aka metabolism).  Wake up and eat – PROTEIN!

2. Avoiding healthy fats:

One of the biggest mistakes we make is thinking that eating fat makes us fat.  Eating SUGAR makes us fat.  Actually, eating healthy fats like those from avocado, salmon and olive oil are a necessary part of losing weight.  Low-fat/no-fat equals sugar, salt and chemicals.  What you feed your body, your body will burn for fuel.  So, if you constantly feed it sugar (carbohydrates), that’s what it will burn – never reaching the stored fat.

3.  Reducing calories:

Our bodies store fat by nature.  Yep, we have FAT STORING bodies.  This is a survival mechanism that saved our lives many, many years ago when food was much scarcer.  When food wasn’t readily available, we were able to survive because our bodies held onto the fat.  Today, we’re not so food deprived, but we’ve been convinced that eating less will shed the pounds.  To the contrary, eating less will cause our bodies to go into survival mode and store fat.  There’s even such a thing as “non-caloric weight gain” where we eat nothing and gain weight – (this is a blog subject on its own).  When we eat the right foods, every two to three hours, hormones will balance and we can begin burning fat.

4.  Avoiding healthy, dietary cholesterol:

Once again, we’re back to sugar.  Eating SUGAR causes high cholesterol.  The body makes all the cholesterol it needs on a daily basis.  So, for simplicity’s sake, if we get 10% of our daily cholesterol from say, eggs, the body will make the other 90%.  It’s a perfect process until excess sugar and high insulin levels get in the mix.  Increased insulin sends a signal to over-produce cholesterol, so in actuality, that’s where the problems set in.  Reducing the insulin load will turn off that cholesterol alarm and consuming it (from healthy sources) will reduce our need for its production.  As I always say… don’t be afraid to eat the yolk – that’s so not the problem!

5.  Sugar/carb consumption denial:

I am, by no means, an anti-carb pusher.  Carbohydrates are necessary for survival, among many, many other good things.  We run into problems when the bulk of our diets consist of carbohydrates…and the majority of them are processed.  For instance, I will have a client that eats oatmeal and a banana for breakfast, watermelon & pretzels for snacks, a wrap and chips for lunch and lasagna & wine for dinner.  Odds are that I will hear them say that they do not consume that many carbohydrates – when really, the whole day was a sugar frenzy!  Over time, it’s this sort of diet that contributes to high insulin levels and the cascade of issues that transpire because of it.  Issues such as diabetes, obesity, Alzheimer’s, ADHD, high cholesterol…you name it!  Excess sugar is indeed the enemy.  We need to give healthy fats and cholesterol a well-deserved break from the chopping block!

Sun Exposure: Avoid or Enjoy?

Summer is on its way (although that remains to be seen here in Cleveland) and this time of year usually brings about all kinds of questions regarding sun exposure, sun screen and vitamin D.  So here’s what I know:

It seems to be a double-edged sword.  We are told to limit our sun exposure for fear of skin damage and cancer, but spending time in the sun is really how our bodies make sufficient vitamin D.  So where does the line cross?  What is safe and at what point do we need to cover up?

First of all, it’s a lost cause to ever think that we can get adequate vitamin D from our diets.  That will never happen.  Supplementing with vitamin D3 is a great alternative during the winter months, but still remains a close second to actually being in the sun.  Our bodies can make 10,000-25,000 IUs of vitamin D from exposing bare skin to sunlight, particularly the ultraviolet B (UVB) rays.  So how do we know when we’ve made enough vitamin D?  The rule of thumb that the Vitamin D Council recommends is that sufficient vitamin D is made in half the time it takes your skin to turn pink.  Meaning, if you’re light skinned and it takes about a half hour for your skin to turn pink, then you have made your daily dose of D within the first 15 minutes of being in the sun.  The darker the skin, the longer it will take.

Let’s also consider the sunblock issue.  From information I’ve gathered, it really sounds like we put way too much stock into sunblock without truly understanding how the products work and how to properly use them.  We automatically assume that the higher the SPF, the longer we can stay in the sun.  In theory that seems fitting, but not necessarily in reality.  There seems to be a lack of studies validating that higher SPFs truly reduce the risk of sun damage and cancers, however, we still trust that slathering on the SPF 50+ will allow us an entire day of damage-free sun.  The high SPF business is a lucrative one, so you will indeed be persuaded into thinking that higher is better.  That doesn’t appear to be the case.  Here are a few things to consider before making your decision this summer:

  • Chemical content:  the higher the SPF, the higher the amount of chemicals used in the product.  These chemicals have been found to cause allergic skin reactions and hormone disruption.
  • Proper application:  lower SPFs work just as well as the higher versions if applied correctly.  We tend to use them sparingly and fail to reapply.  Sunblock needs to be applied generously and reapplied every 2 hours to hopefully be as effective as the manufacturer claims.  (and they contain less chemicals too!)
  • False sense of security:  with higher SPF’s we’re made to believe that we can extend our time in the sun, without reapplying.   High SPF’s wear off just like the lower ones do and what we’re left with is a day of sun exposure without protection.
  • Avoid products with vitamin A:  retinyl palimate is a form of vitamin A that may speed up the development of skin tumors when applied to skin in the presence of sunlight (NTP 2012).

What I do for my kids:

  1. Allow them to play in the sun.
  2. Supplement with vitamin D3 when not in the sun.
  3. Use a sunblock with the least amount of chemicals, including retinyl palimate (I use products that are recommended by EWG).
  4. Use a lower SPF sunblock with both UVA & UVB protection.
  5. Re-apply sunblock every 2 hours and apply generously.
  6. Cover up & shade is always best when possible.

Websites Referenced

http://www.vitamindcouncil.org/about-vitamin-d/how-do-i-get-the-vitamin-d-my-body-needs/

http://www.ewg.org/2013sunscreen/whats-wrong-with-high-spf/

Omega 3 and 6 Basics

Essential fatty acids or EFA’s seem to be one of those subjects that leave more people baffled and confused than any other.  Rightfully so, the information that’s out there is either for rocket scientists to decode or there are 1000 different opinions to sort through. Lately, most people have been asking me about omega 6 fatty acids and if they are “bad”.  Some of you know by now that I really use nature as a gauge.  For instance, the other day my daughter asked me why Fruit Loops aren’t good for you – so I, in turn, asked her if they grow on trees.  Omega 6 is found in the oils of safflower, corn, walnut, soy & sunflower, to name just a few – which are obviously found in nature.  So right there is the indicator that the fat itself is not “bad”.  The questions around omega 6’s should probably be more like:  how does omega 6 affect me, can it ever be harmful to my health and how does it relate to that other fat we hear even more about – omega 3?  Here are my thoughts:

In primitive diets, the ratio of omega 6 to omega 3 was about 1:1.  Today, due to the factory food industry using more omega 6 oils in processed foods, the ratio has become more like 20:1.  Here’s where things start to break down.  To simplify a VERY complex process, these EFAs are the catalysts for many functions within the body.  For instance, the movement of calcium in and out of cells, muscle contraction and relaxation, blood clotting, hormone regulation, fertility and inducing labor and cell division and growth.  There are two pathways into these functions – one that initiates with omega 6 fatty acid and a second with omega 3.  One way to shut down an entire functional pathway is to have a ratio of 20:1 in your diet.  When we consume 20 times the amount of omega 6’s, it robs the omega 3 pathway of its ability to function, which in turn begins a cascade of malfunction.  In addition, you may also have heard that omega 6’s are inflammatory and omega 3’s are anti-inflammatory.  There actually is validity to this… but the two work together.  It’s very much like estrogen and progesterone or calcium and magnesium.  There’s always one side that appears to be more of the bad guy, but it’s not really so.  They are complementary and one cannot exist without the other.  As always, balance is key, but when we’re heavily weighted on the inflammatory side, we set the stage for a whole host of issues.  Since awareness is very important in the healing process, the next time you grab a box or bag of food, check out the label.  Is it made with “healthy” sunflower or safflower oil?  Again, not necessarily “bad” oils, but notice how much you are consuming on a daily basis relative to the omega 3’s.  A perfect ratio always exists in nature, so no need to worry if 100% of your diet consists of whole foods.  But in the real world that’s rarely the case… so we have to do what we can with what is available.  Here are a few suggestions to regain some EFA balance:

  1. Remove ALL transfat (commercial vegetable oils & oils that say “partially hydrogenated”).
  2. Try reducing your intake of processed foods across the board.
  3. Start taking note of the amount of omega 6’s in your diet.
  4. Increase intake of omega 3 foods: seafood, flax oil, eggs, pasture-raised meats, nuts, dark leafy greens, cod-liver oil.

Reference

Enig, Mary and Fallon, Sally (January 2000).  Tripping Lightly Down Prostaglandin Pathwayshttp://www.westonaprice.org/know-your-fats/tripping-lightly-down-the-prostaglandin-pathways.

So…Should I Eat Fruit Or Not???

OK, I get A LOT of questions with regards to fruit.  It seems as though there is much confusion around whether or not to eat a little, a lot, or even at all… and I can completely understand why.  We’re constantly told to eat whole foods and fruit is definitely a whole food.  So what can be wrong with it?  My answer to that question is “nothing”… unless you’re trying to lose weight.  It really helps to look at when foods are locally available and in season (truly in season, not shipped from New Zealand).  Typically when we think of fruit, we think of summer.  Traditionally, when eating seasonally was our only option, fruit was only available in the summer months.  There was a brilliant method to what we now see as madness – fruit was a sugary, summer food that enabled our bodies the opportunity to bulk up for the upcoming winter when food, in general, was much scarcer.  It was part of our survival mechanism!  Flash forward to today and we get fruit shipped in from all over the world, 365 days a year.  Fruit is lumped into the same category as vegetables and we’re told to eat it all day long.  We have to remember that our bodies have not evolved all that much from the time when we were hunting and gathering.  Metabolically, the same rules still apply, but we’re living in a much different world.  We now have 24/7 access to absolutely any food our hearts desire and our bodies are, fortunately or unfortunately, responding the only way they know how.  Bottom line, fruit is amazing.  It contains vitamins, fiber, anti-oxidants – all important to live optimally.  However, if the goal is to begin burning fat, fruit should be consumed on a much lesser scale, if at all, in the beginning of your weight loss process.  Two rules to follow if you do eat fruit during weight loss:  One, always eat it with a protein; and two, default to the lower glycemic load fruits like berries, cantaloupe, kiwi and cherries.  Fruits such as pear, watermelon, apples and bananas raise your blood sugar at a much faster rate and could possibly sabotage your fat burning efforts.  Once you have reached or are closer to your healthy weight, the ratios will change.  For now, put the focus on colorful veggies, fish & meat from healthy animals.  You really can’t go wrong!

Eggs: To Eat Or Not To Eat?

This is what I understand and believe to be true about the ongoing mystery food we call eggs.    As I always say, we need to first try as hard as we can to forget everything we’ve learned in the past.  The ongoing battle to decipher what’s real and what’s not real about the information we receive from the factory food industry, modern medicine, the government, the media and holistic health practitioners is mind boggling at best – and understandably so.  So…here we go!  Eggs are a whole food, from nature, meant to be eaten.  Everything in nature is perfect and contains the genetic information that matches up with our genetic information to promote optimal health– that is, until we add pesticides, herbicides, fertilizers antibiotics and genetically modified organisms to the mix… and that’s where it gets dicey.  For starters, be mindful of the chickens.  If you have access to a farmer or farmer’s market, the eggs are usually amazing!  By default, keep in mind that “you are what you eat” and that conventionally raised chickens consume those items I mentioned above and rarely ever see the light of day.  Secondly, unless you are allergic or sensitive to eggs (which is a whole other issue… and blog), to avoid them is absolute nonsense!  Eating healthy, dietary cholesterol, like that from eggs, does not cause high cholesterol – SUGAR AND EXCESS INSULIN DO!  Add to it smoking, alcohol, medications, stress, inactivity, calorie restriction and we have a cocktail of excess insulin which then results in excess cholesterol!  When we avoid eating cholesterol (which has been the rule of thumb for many years) an enzyme in the liver called HMG Co-A Reductase is triggered and begins overproducing cholesterol.  Cholesterol is a sealant and an important part of many functions within the body, but when given the instruction to overproduce, it contributes to artery plaquing, blocked arteries, high cholesterol numbers, stroke, heart disease, etc.  By eating dietary cholesterol we actually turn off the HMG Co-A Reductase mechanism (which, btw, is exactly what statins do pharmaceutically).

Bottom line, eggs may be one of those elusive foods that have been on the chopping block for many years (unfortunately).  One thing that isn’t a mystery however, is that as a society, we’re getting sicker and bigger.  We may not be able to change overnight, but we can start questioning the information that’s out there and, not to sound cliché, but really take control of our health.  If we stay exactly the way we are today…. this is as good as it’s ever going to get!

 

Calorie Restriction = Fat Storage

It’s very difficult to sort through all of the information we receive about weight loss, and not to mention the information on what we should and should not eat.  If I had a nickel for every time I’ve heard someone say “I’m barely eating anything all day… why can’t I lose weight???”  Unfortunately, at the end of the day, we’re still hungry, overweight and searching for answers. Typically the first thing I hear from my clients is that they have tried some sort of calorie restriction diet in the past and it’s the only thing that has ever worked for them.  What they aren’t taking into consideration is the amount of times they’ve had to use the diet because in the end, all the weight was eventually put back on. Therein lies the problem:  restricting calories is not a long-term solution.  There is a logical explanation for why that unwanted poundage seems to hang on and unfortunately we get distracted by our focus on calories.  The inability to lose weight is not a calorie problem, it’s a HORMONE problem.  Hormones receive information from the food we eat.  They are directly affected by what, when, and how much we consume.  While restricting calories our bodies enter into a starvation mode which sends a message to store fat, essentially to survive. Despite all of the information that has been beaten into our heads with regards to weight loss, WE NEED TO EAT AND EAT THE RIGHT FOOD TO LOSE WEIGHT. Calorie restriction may work in the short term, but it will inevitably lead to carbohydrate cravings that are so intense, even the strongest willpower will give in.  Once again we find ourselves back to our original weight plus FIVE additional pounds!  The goal is to train the body to burn fat, as oppose to its natural tendency to store it. The body will utilize whatever it is given for fuel and because of the Standard American Diet, that usually means carbohydrates (aka, sugar).  It cannot get to the stored fat because it’s busy dealing with the sugar overload!  To finally mobilize that fat storage, it is necessary to:

  1. Change the focus (meaning, forget everything you’ve ever been told).
  2. Truly gain an understanding of how certain foods effect hormones and the messages those hormones give.
  3. Get educated on what foods support the fat BURNING hormones and those that promote fat STORAGE.
  4. Implement the necessary changes to diet & lifestyle and understand WHY you’re doing it.
  5. Maintain the changes for the long term to ensure optimal weight & health well into the future.

Why Can’t I Lose Weight?

Click to enlarge image

MealPattern

Does this look familiar?  This is the pattern that gets us stuck while trying to lose weight and feel better.  Making adjustments to when we eat, what we eat and what we shouldn’t can make a huge difference in whether we’re successful in losing the pounds and regaining the health we’re meant to have.  Overtime, this type of daily diet will lead us to a cascade of issues due to the blood sugar/insulin roller coaster it facilitates.  This lifestyle sets us up for a state of insulin resistance, which is basically the cells of our bodies shutting the door on sugar. When the cells stop taking in sugar, what’s left in the blood stream gets stored as fat… and the process continues.  If you go to Google and type in “Insulin Resistance and”, the drop down will list – weight loss, Alzheimer’s, PCOS, pregnancy, diabetes, obesity, inflammation, metabolic syndrome and hypertension.  The list, unfortunately, can also include depression, ADHD, cardiovascular disease, cancer and many more.  I believe that having an awareness around this typical eating pattern and what it enables is central to healing and losing weight.  It’s frustrating to have to sort through all of the information we hear about nutrition and weight loss these days.  However, when we have a basic understanding of food and how the body processes it, we can then make the best decisions based on our own bodies, lifestyles and the changes we’re prepared to make.

ADHD: Where is it coming from?

ADHD has been placed into the category of a “waste basket diagnosis” which is defined as: “A diagnosis that may be based on fad, not proven to exist, not physiologically explained, or not described with specificity, and thus so broadly inclusive to the point of being scientifically useless”.  If your child is exhibiting the typical symptoms that have been associated with the ADHD diagnosis – inability to focus, hyperactivity, can’t sit still, the odds are your doctor will very quickly prescribe some sort of habit-forming amphetamine with properties similar to cocaine, AKA Ritalin.  This drug is currently being given to 7 million school children in the US, or nearly 1 in 5.  Here’s a list of Ritalin’s side effects from the US Drug Enforcement Administration:

Increased blood pressure, heart rate, respiration & temperature; appetite suppression; stomach pains; weight loss; growth retardation; facial tics; muscle twitching; euphoria; nervousness; irritability; agitation; insomnia, psychotic episodes, violent behavior; paranoid delusions; hallucinations; bizarre behaviors; heart arrhythmias & palpitations and psychological dependence.  Really?

To deal with these side effects, children will often be prescribed additional medications such as antidepressants and sleeping pills.  This is called polypharmacy and it is on a dangerous rise in children today.  For our kids’ sake, we cannot accept this waste basket diagnosis!  This is a disease of modern society and we have to start looking at the root cause instead of just medicating the symptoms.  It’s highly unlikely that your child was ever evaluated for food allergies or nutritional deficiencies when concerns of attention span and restlessness arise, however, many studies have been done proving that behavioral problems diminish and IQ levels rise when nutritional supplementation is administered, especially essential fatty acids (EFAs) like Omega 3s.  (BTW, eczema is a really good indicator of insufficient EFAs).  Lower IQ levels are associated with children that consume processed sugars, commercial breakfast cereals, sweets, etc.  Processed sugar facilitates the removal of vitamins and minerals from the body, feeds the pathogenic (bad) bacteria in our large intestine and suppresses our immune systems.  Excess sugar and out of control insulin levels are at the root of every modern disease from Alzheimer’s and ADHD to cardiovascular disease and breast cancer.  Let’s not underestimate the destructive power of processed sugar – or how much of it our kids are really consuming.

Some information in this blog was gathered from the book: “New Optimum Nutrition for the Mind” by Patrick Holford. One of my school textbooks and absolute favorite on the topic on mental health!!