Michael Pollan

Eating Has Consequences

I recommend never putting ANYTHING in your mouth and body that you are unaware of its history, farmer not formulater, and its consequences.

Where to go from here with that notion: Read In Defense of Food and other Michael Pollan books, watch Food Inc, FRESH The Movie, Forks Over Knives, Food Matters, countless others, NEVER EVER EVER EVER shop at super markets, go to local farmer's markets (they're so much fun) or local food co-ops and actually talk with the farmers there who are selling THEIR food, don't buy packaged foods that contain anything over 4 or 5 ingredients, eat a plant based diet, and always eat organic- and no it's not more expensive if you are educated on how to shop. Often times you can get great organic plant based foods delivered right to your door without spending a dime extra. It depends on your area.

I Got FRESH!

Sweet! I got my copy of FRESH The Movie in the mail! I first saw FRESH at the Gene Siskel theater in downtown Chicago. That's a cool theater in itself and on top of that a really interesting movie to watch too was icing on the cake. If you haven't seen this yet let me know. I own licensing rights for private in house screenings. This movie is about new thinking regarding what we're eating and how you can get involved in the sustainable food movement. Take a look at the trailer below...

"FRESH is a bracing, even exhilarating look at the whole range of efforts underway to renovate the way we grow food and feed ourselves." -Michael Pollan

Food Fight OR Chemical Warfare?

Originally this post started off on Facebook as a simply mention, then rant, then migrated over here to my blog because I felt more people should be reached and that I hope you will be so motivated for a diet cleaning.

This is VERY interesting. Here's our discussion:

Me: They gave out Jello Pudding Cups to all the kids at church today and Brayden didn't accept it. He went around telling all the kids it was sugars, chemicals, and that it would make them sick. I'm a proud Papa. :) _____________

Then a couple friends mentioned that he'll have some explaining to do when the other kids get served processed crap for lunch in school and he brings real food with him.

I said: Good! And I'm sure they'll want some of his when he's eating sushi, zucchini/ squash spaghetti and grass fed meat balls, grain-free pizza, vegetable casserole, and lots and lots more with so many colors a rainbow would be jealous. :) _____________

Then a Facebook Friend actually asked, probably joking of course due to the nature of our discussion, if he could have the pudding cup that was intended to go to Brayden.

I said: NO you can't have the one they were going to give him. I don't poison my friends. In fact my 5 year old niece was there and had one in her hand when she came out. I swiped it out of her hands, passed it off to Brayden and he went and tossed it in the trash. We then told her that we don't eat things like that unless you don't care about getting sick, gaining fat on our tummies, and dying sooner than we should.

She, like most everyone else who consumes such food-like substances, was so fixated on "but I like it and it's yummy" that she was upset. TOO BAD!!! I see myself as a hero for her today because that's one less bit of crap that will be going into her body.

Brooke YOU ARE WELCOME! _____________

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Michael Pollan
www.thedailyshow.com

Some of my Facebook Friends then commented on how Brayden's lunch sounds soooo good and that they wish that more schools would serve healthier choices to the kids. Well here's the bottom line: Processed food-like substances is super cheap. Plain and simply why they do it... and frankly it's too bad that it has to be like that. Every day, every meal, every bit is poisoning whoever consumes it, but all they care about is filling bellies as inexpensively as they could. _____________

In case you are wondering just why I am so fanatical about what goes into my son's, my own, and my wife's body; here are the ingredients for that particular product:

Skim[pasteurized] Milk, Water, Sugar, Modified Food Starch, Cocoa Processed with Alkali, contains Less than 1% of Cornstarch, Salt, Sodium Stearoyl Lactylate (for Smooth Texture)Sodium Alginate, Calcium Phosphate, Natural and Artificial Flavor, Artificial Color, Yellow 5, Yellow 6, Vitamin A Palmitate, Vitamin D.

Let me as you, anything in there jump out at you and MAKE you want to eat that "yummy" LOOKING Jello pudding cup? Hmmm... really? ______________

Nothing will happen unless people become educated on exactly what we are putting in our bodies.

There's a quick and easy litmus test that I like to use: If you cannot go out and hunt it, gather it, pick it, and with minimal processing consume it then don't eat it.

The ONLY way this will work to tell them that we don't want this poison is that we must fight the corn and soy lobbyists in Washington. YES it does go that direction whether you want to believe it or not. Will it ever end?

Another one of my Facebook friends posted this the other day and it really is scary to see the direction big food industry is and is continuing to go.

30 Day Challenge: I Wanna Be A Veg Head!

30 Day Challenge

 

Through the month of April, in honor of the spring season, we are going to celebrate VEGETABLES!  Your challenge for the next thirty days is to eat a variety of vegetables, including trying new veggies that you have not eaten before.  Each week turn in the attached sheet (or you can e-mail it to Lisa Garon) to share what new veggies you have tried, the variety of veggies you have eaten and your favorite way to prepare them.

Rules:

  • You must eat 4 different vegetables a day.
    • Example: A salad with lettuce, carrots, and cucumbers and a side of steamed broccoli.
    • You must eat a variety of 8 different vegetables for the week.
      • Example: A salad consisting of 3 vegetables, steamed broccoli and cauliflower, raw carrots and celery, and a baked yam.
      • You must eat 1 new vegetable a week (This could be a vegetable you may never have eaten or one you have not eaten in a very long time).
        • Example: Kale or Turnips
        • Tiers & Rewards...

          • Tier 1: there must be a variety of 12 vegetables for the month.
          • Tier 2: there must be a variety of 16 vegetables for the month.
          • Tier 3: there must be a variety of 20 vegetables for the month.
          • Vegetables may not be bought canned or frozen.  They must be purchased in the fresh state. Organic is best.
          • By May 1st, all your sheets must be turned in.
          • All participants will receive prizes…
            • Tier 1 participants will receive a copy of Food Rules by Michael Pollan
            • Tier 2 participants will receive a copy of Food Rules by Michael Pollan and a Kettlebell Necklace.
            • Tier 3 participants will receive a copy of Food Rules by Michael Pollan, a Kettlebell Necklace, and a Synergy Kettlebell Training T-shirt.

Below is a list of just some veggies you can choose from, but of course there's many more:

Artichoke               Eggplant                Onions

Arugula                 Endive                        Parsley

Asparagus               Fennel                        Peppers

Bok Choy               Frisee                   Radicchio

Broccoli                 Kale                    Rhubarb

Brussel Sprouts         Kohlrabi                Root Vegetables

Cabbage                 Lemon grass                  Radish

Cauliflower              Lettuce                 Spinach

Celery                  Mushrooms             Squashes

Chard                   Mustard Greens         Tomato

Collard Greens          Okra                    Tubers

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What Really Is Fresh?

The term "fresh" has been linked to higher quality in the minds of many consumers and therefore the restaurants use this as a selling point even though the product may have been previously frozen and serving certain species with proper freezing is against their "regulations".

When I consider what I'm going to eat, and serve to my family, I think about where my food came from, who handles my food along the way of getting it to me, and lastly how many steps away from nature my food is when I consume it. If it is more than 3 steps I stay away from it. I prefer 1 step if I can get it. An example of one step is purchasing my food directly from the farm itself.  2 steps is the farm to the store and then to me.  3 steps is farm, to quick processing plant, to the store and then to me.

When I say 'quick processing' I'm meaning something like the Edens Organics canned beans, raw nuts being sorted for quality and then bagged for sale, almond butter processed into the state it gets jarred and sold, Kombucha tea, grassfed meats (but I hope to be hunting my own in the very near future), and my maca root & cacao powder by Navitas Naturals. These are but a few exceptions that I make when purchasing my foods. They are still organic and as close to nature as they can be without jeopardizing both quality and integrity of natures gifts to us.

As for finding this info out... well that can be pretty easy. Just keep eating simple and follow the rules I've mentioned above. Beyond that feel free to delve deeper into where and who your food comes from. To help there are a couple movies that do this. The first is pretty popular and has been recently featured on Oprah. She had Michael Pollan on and talked all about him, Food Inc., and his newest book: Food Rules.

 

The next video you'll see is about the follow up video to Food Inc. It's called "Fresh the Movie" and is a big eye-opener as well. It's coming out soon and is only available in select theaters and viewing places. Synergy Kettlebell Training is working on acquiring a viewing license so that we can have special showing in the Chicagoland area. Check out how cool the movie "Fresh" is gonna be and it definitely gives you something to take home.

 

Another great movie, that you can rent at Blockbuster, is King Corn.

Roller Coaster Comfort Zones & Blatant Honesty

Over the past few weeks I've been talking with my clients, my family, and especially myself about getting too comfortable in our own lives and actions. When this happens we can fill a rut with ourselves and the almost impossible task to move forward becomes so challenging because we fill our lives with said comfort. I just wanted to say something real quick about comfort. It is habit for us to live in our zones of comfort and it can be next to impossible to escape them. We do the same workouts, eat the same crappy foods, listen to the same boring music, and wake up every morning knowing our days are gonna be filled with the same overall scenes. Because we're humans we enjoy repetition and we enjoy knowing what our next move will be. When we can predict our outcome since we do the same things over and over and over again it becomes our routine.

Based on my own personal study and research, alongside countless others such as Ori Hofmekler, Mark Sisson, Brad Pilon, and Michael Pollan to name a few, I have found what, when, and how I recommend to be the best for overall optimal health, well-being, energy, ongoing detoxing in a world with constant toxins, fat loss, lean maintenance, allergy reduction, anti-estrogenic effect, increased libido, better sleep, and the list goes on. If you follow everything precisely as recommended results happen. BUT leaving comfort zones is the biggest struggle to overcome.

Keep one thing in mind, no one successful has ever gotten that way by remaining comfortable. In order to grow, find success, achieve results, and become who we want we must become uncomfortable. Yes fear is always present, but the rewards are far greater than the sacrifices made.  I'll be brutally honest for  a moment, cause you all know me to not hide behind anything, LOL... I've been doing this long enough to know when a client is not following as they should nutritionally in their daily eating habits. When they do, they experience results. When they don't, they blame me and my program or not working as expected. This couldn't be further from the truth, but happens all the time. Why do you think people jump around from gym to gym, fitness program to fitness program, diet to diet? Sure there's A LOT of crap out there, but I know mine is one of the best. That is my ultimate goal for you to experience. Ok so without anyone thinking I'm being elitest or vain here in that my program is the be all to end all please understand that I don't think that one bit. What I do realize and know for a blatant fact is that my program works, has worked for hundreds of clients over the years, and my nutritional program works right alongside it. A human body is a human body and most respond well to similar needs with minor tweaks and necessary mods along the way. As long as the appropriate fitness & nutrition protocols are consistently followed, results happen. This does require a jump outside your comfort zone. Sure you can stay there and see results, but they will honestly be no where near what you can experience if you jump outside it.

In my Synergy Kettlebell Kamp and private training program I strongly encourage all my Kettlebell Klients to keep a Daily Food Diary so that they instantly are perpetuated outside their zone of comfort. I want them so uncomfortable that they have to make changes. Heck when that happens they're happy Klients aren't they? They come to me to experience change and if I allow them to follow right down the same path they were in before joining my Total Fat Blasting & Get Stronger program then they will simply stay as they were. That's NOT the plan.

Our 14 Day Fat Blast Nutrition Program will accomplish 3 main things. 1. Make you aware of what you are consuming. This is extremely important. Food is used for 2 main things: Fat or Fuel. 2. Make you accountable to your program as a lifestyle rather than an up and down diet. 3. Make you leave your comfort zone and experience your real results.

Stay in your rut and be comfortable. Leave your zone and feel the pain of a little physical discomfort, but never again feel the mental discomfort of seeing an unsatisfactory image in the mirror, feel how tight your pants are, see your belly bulge, feel your soft arms, see your energy plummet half way through the day, or feel your age set in each and every day.

Things change all the time. Wonder why? That's life. We're not supposed to get into ruts. We're supposed to challenge ourselves and be better. Sometimes you just don't know how to do that. I have some ideas. I can help and will.

Find out more here about the 14 Day Fat Blast Nutrition Program and how you can drop at least 9lbs inside of 14 days... guaranteed.

An Estrogenic Look At Soy & Who Eats It

Soy, and mainly soy food products such as soy milk, tofu, miso, etc., is probably one of the absolute worst foods (ahem I should say processed foods) you can eat; however edamame- which is the actual untouched soy legume is perfectly fine because it is in its raw state like any bean and legume. When it is processed it's chemical biproducts from the soy isoflavones become extremely estrogenic to the human body and it actually is viewed to be a toxic poison by our systems.

People then will say: "Ok, but what about the Japanese who eat it all the time."  Well that's not entirely true. They also eat twice as much, if not more in healthy fats from wild caught seafood. Americans are told to do the opposite and eat "low fat" which then directly interferes with good health. Additionally mainland Japanese are not too far from being in sync with the U.S. health issue epidemics of diabetes, cancer, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, etc.  The coastal Japanese are the ones who eat far, far less soy products and far more of wild caught fish (which keep in mind has about 85% more omega 3 than its farm-raised counterparts) and other healthier foods. Researchers at Wake Forest University School of Medicine conducted a few studies and have found that farm-raised tilapia and catfish contain less than one-eighth the amount of omega-3's that are found in farm-raised salmon or trout. Additionally, and this is where a real health concern can come in, is that the tilapia and catfish also had much larger amounts of omega-6 acids than the salmon or trout which throws off the natural ratio. When Omega 6 is consumed in greater amounts it can have negative health potential.

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Dr. Gabe Mirkin states that: "A crucial part of a healthful diet is the ratio of omega-6s to omega-3s. Your immunity is supposed to be good for you by killing gems before they can harm you. However, if your immunity stays active, it starts to attack your own body to increase risk for heart attacks, certain cancers and even asthma and some types of arthritis. Omega-3 fatty acids produce prostaglandins that turn down your immunity to help prevent inflammation and the health problems it can cause. Omega-6 fatty acids promote inflammation. A major explanation for the high heart attack rate in North Americans is the high ratio of omega-6s to omega-3s in the diet that contains lots of omega-6s from vegetable oils and low amounts of omega-3's found in fish and seeds."

Let's get back to mainland versus coastal Japanese for a moment. There is a big difference in what these two groups of people eat even though they reside in the same country. Look at the Asian folks who migrate over here to the U.S.  It doesn't take long for them to suffer the same adverse health issues as American born citizens.

Food industry feeds us a lot of ongoing propaganda regarding many of their money making foods. Let's look at the 'drinking wine is healthy due to the antioxidants' one. Now what they don't tell you is to get said antioxidants, which by the way you can easily get by eating berries and other fruit, is that you must cut through the wine's sugars, calories, pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, and fertilizers all used when farming the grape crop and all of which contain MSG, and last but not least is the extremely, extremely estrogenic and toxic alcohol within the fermented fruit. They don't tell you that part do they? Nope.

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Before you gasp and think that I'm such a radical because I'm saying to never drink alcohol simply consider the exact health benefit or non-benefit the substance actually provides. Everyone can make their own choice in that case, but there are always risks and consequences no matter what you put in your mouth- good or bad.

Stick close to nature as possible. When you stray too far or manipulate it too much you will always experience something negative- small or great. Nature has a balance in it for a reason. I encourage you to educate yourself on the food industry propaganda and overall what and where exactly your food comes from and does to your body. Michael Pollan has great resources and books. Read "In Defense of Food" and "Omnivore's Dilemma" and these will shed some real light on that subject. Let's always continue to enlighten ourselves and our community.

We should never sacrifice anything for convenience when it comes to our health and our body. It takes effort and work. There is no way around that. What you put into something is exactly what you get out. If you work hard on your health both in exercise and nutritionally only then will you truly experience great results.