The Nutrition Today and the Slow Carb Diet (Part 2: My Application in Everyday Life)

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You thought you cannot fall for spinach??

 

(Part 1 can be found here but this one can be separately read)

(Article reading time for an average adult:  approximately 9 minutes. Else you can read only the bold)

Through the previous week many of you complained that there were many main everyday foods prohibited. Let’s now look at the glass at the half-full perception and discuss what is allowed and how easy a diet with these allowances can become. The above picture is one of my typical breakfasts for six months now.Lentils, 3-4 eggs and approximately 1.5 cups of spinach. All the pictures seen in this article are personally taken. Every day I try to do 3 meals with ingredients from each of the following 3 categories presented. ALWAYS I eat no later than the first hour after awaking. Breakfast must contain at least 30 grams of protein. This quantity leads to a 20% increase in resting metabolic rate (the rate at which the body burns energy at rest). Also, each meal should contain at least 20 grams of protein. In need I suggest buying protein powder. This of course should not substitute food, but act as a supplement. If, for example, one morning you don’t have approximately 10 minutes time to prepare breakfast (yet this amount of time is needed) or for some reason you feel “full” from the previous day then you can grab a scoop of protein mixed with cold water.

 

MEALS

All meals should contain at least one food from each of the following 3 categories in any amount:

 

1.EGGS, FISH and MEAT

  • Chicken Fillet
  • Turkey Fillet
  • Salmon Fillet
  •  3-4 eggs, preferably organic (together with yolks that are particularly healthy). Cooked either as an omelette, or boiled or whatever way you prefer. In the omelette you can put a tablespoon of Mexican salsa.
  • Tuna (canned in springwater and not in brine which is very salty or sunflower oil) Also, it can be cooked in the oven.
  • Cod, Haddock or any other white fish.
  • Beef (you can buy sirloin and rebeye steaks from the grocery)
  • Pork (loins e.g.)
  • Organic Sausage
  • Bacon
  • Lamp
  • Liver
  • Cooked Ham

 

Ideally the meat should be grass-fed. It is much different from animals fed with grains and not moving in nature. Note you should not be concerned about cholesterol increase. Cholesterol has been repeatedly demonstrated experimentally that increases with the mixture of excessive carbohydrate foods with cholesterol containing foods. Foods with cholesterol and animal fat by themselves reduce cholesterol as paradoxical as it may sound. There is also no risk for arthritis with the amount of protein that is recommended if there is not any other existent problem.

 

2. LEGUMES:

  •  Beans. Dozens of different kinds. I wouldn’t prefer the red kidney as they contain more carbohydrates and less protein than others (but this is just a detail), can vary from producer to producer and is not absolute. Generally all the beans are allowed apart from the soya ones.
  • Lentils
  • Chickpeas (As a last resort because they typically have a few more carbohydrates than the other legumes. Tim Ferriss, the inventor of the Slow Carb Diet, prohibits them but I still do not know why since they do not differ greatly from other legumes)

 

All the above exist in cans and for cooking, too. If I want to cook them I boil a pot, put them in the fridge and I have enough quantity to serve for 2-3 days. If I choose a can (not baked! But in water simply put them in a colander, rinse with plenty of water and then put them in the microwave with olive oil, pepper, garlic powder, et c.) If you cook them: Soak them in water for 8 to 10 hours. Wash them before cooking. Then put them once or twice over high heat until the water reaches the boil temperature.  Rinse and wash them after each boil. Afterwards put them on low heat for about an hour or up to the point they are about to open.. In the first attempts, until accustomed, try figuring the appropriate times.

Many who follow this diet are complaining about the abundance of legumes and specifically beans. Personally I eat them pleasantly with the way I described above and by adding balsamic vinegar if I want. If someone has a problem with the gases I can suggest formulations that act against. Legumes can be put in salads, tuna, chicken and even melted and with seasoning.

 

3.GREENS and VEGETABLES:

  • Spinach. There are many good reasons to be eaten every day. Fresh spinach is incredibly reduced in size when boiled so at the first attempts put no less than 80g judging from the package even if it seems too much at first sight.
  • Greens
  • Broccoli
  • Chard
  • Peas
  • Cabbage
  • Lettuce
  • Tomatoes
  • Carrots
  • Celery
  • Avocado (no more than one cup or one meal in a day)
  • Green beans
  • Cauliflower
  • Asparagus
  • Peppers
  • Cucumber
  • Mix vegetables
  • Or any one of the other cruciferous vegetables

 

Many of the above are found both fresh and frozen. The latter are fine and very convenient because they expire much later and aren’t wasted (very likely).

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4 eggs Omelette (2 yolks), half a can of Red Kidney Beans and Spinach

From all the above I eat until I am full. I know that if I do not eat enough I will not lose weight because the body goes into a state of emergency and metabolism drops. Between meals if I happen to be hungry because in the former I hadn’t eaten well I make a mini meal with the same logic. If I have leftovers, I eat them at the next meal. If there is a question of time I do two good meals and a little one in the evening. Anyway, the theories that the Basal Metabolic Rate increases with many meals during the day are starting to be refuted as rather the opposite seems to happen. In the jungle where our evolutionary past belongs humans did not have the easiness of the frequent meals.

If you cannot eat three eggs at breakfast, you can substitute them with turkey bacon, organic sausage, pork bacon, ham, chicken or anything else from the first category in order to complement proteins. You will not feel hunger for at least 4 hours. That’s because you did not squeeze your blood with a sack of sugars  which will be burnt quickly and at 2 hours’ time it will have brought cravings and sleepiness. You can also drink protein powder as aforementioned. Breakfast is very important!

 

An example of lunch could be:

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Lentils, Chicken and Tomatoes in organic Greek Olive Oil

Some days I mix a can of tuna with beans, spinach and lettuce and after adding olive oil, lemon juice, balsamic vinegar and spices, I eat the half for lunch and the other half in the evening after I reheat it but not much so as not to spoil the lettuce. Of course you can mix other vegetables, too.

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Tuna, Spinach, Black-eyed Beans and Lettuce

Do not be afraid of the binge day and let yourselves absolutely free, there is no reason for any restrictions. For best results start the day with a normal “slow carb” breakfast, stay for 1-2 hours and and later enjoy unrestrained whatever you like unlimitedly!

At home I have no other nuts than almonds to make almond milk and Brazilian nuts that increase testosterone and have selenium which is hard to find in food. But do not consume more than 4 a day because we do not want the hyperefficiency of selenium and especially its adverse effects. The reason I don’t have nuts is that although they are very nutritious they contain too much fat. If you can hold on to a handful a day feel free, if not, better throw them away. They can easily become the single cause of the destruction of your efforts.

A good idea is almond butter and tahini (a tablespoon at bedtime or smeared in celery, for example). Fats, except that they are useful as a source of energy,they, also, help in a relaxed sleep. Together with magnesium if possible.

Frying with olive oil, macadamia and coconut oil in particular is absolutely safe and you do not have to worry at all, unlike commonly thought. The bread crust should only be missing.

I, as well, suggest flaxseed meal on salads or with the protein powder mixture. It is rich in omega 3 fats, perhaps the most useful substance for the human body. At the same time the omega 3 supplements could be really useful. After all said, they favour fat burn.

If you have to eat out no problem. Just with the main course rather than pasta, rice or potatoes you can ask for vegetables or legumes.

If you find yourself in the airport obtain some nuts that can hold you for up to twelve hours. At many airports they serve salads with chicken and other vegetables. Better to remain hungry for a few hours rather than spoil your pace because of the carb-dominated society.

If you want to take your lunch at work you can cook meat and vegetables from home and take them with you in a glass container together with a can of beans. At work you can season them with salt, olive oil, pepper et c after reheating them in the microwave.

One thing that must also be paid attention to is the fallacy of the scale. Especially if someone works out. There is a possibility while the balance remains stable or decreases slightly you would notice the clothes much wider. The reason is that you may have lost fat and the same amount of mass has been replaced by muscle mass. That’s why the safest way to measure the effects of diet is body fat measurement.

Of course someone may follow a vegetarian diet but he will be struggling to meet his protein needs. Also, vegetarianism is challenged a lot as a healthy way of eating because by excluding meat from everyday diet the body is deprived from necessary nutrients.  Moreover, humans have always been hunting for meat as their evolutionary history reveals.  Why else should risk their lives in these activities day by day? However, from what I personally understand and  Ferriss supports, too, a vegetarian diet is recommended for only a period of time .

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Black-eyed Beans, Green Peas, Beef Steak, Kalamata Olives and American Mustard.

As regards to legumes is the only food that that I have noticed the scientific community having objections against. Indeed there are several issues that legumes may favour fat gain such as the issue with leptin resistance. On the other hand there are good arguments in favour of them.

Personally I had started to do the stricter ketogenic diet whose main differentiation with the “slow carb” was the absence of legumes. Simultaneously, it was recognizing the damage the dairy products cause so they were suggested with restriction. At that time I had noticed a performance decrease in training which was solved with the slow carb diet, which introduced the legumes and the carbs from them. I do not know if it is the ideal diet as it may be good in the long-term to switch to the so called paleolithic diet which excludes legumes and is generally based on eating according to the environment that humans have evolved from, the jungle environment. Therefore it can be considered as the optimal diet. For sure the slow carb diet, although, is a very good diet with proven results.

When we say slow carbs we do not just mean that they have a low glycaemic index alone. Other carbohydrates such as cereals and milk have low glycaemic index, too. The problem is the insulin response they create which is high with cereals and all white carbohydrates. The influx of sugars in the blood causes insulin secretion which transports the sugars to the muscles and in any other part of the body that works with glycogen(this is how sugar is stored). The excessive influx of glucose in the body causes excessive secretion of insulin and this is opposed to weight loss. Note, also, that glucose is ultimately bread and pasta, too. They are just long parts of sugars called polysaccharides which then decompose into simple glucose molecules- monosaccharaides and that’s why they are characterised by low glycaemic indices. The problem is that they result in a similar insuline response with the high glycaemic index carbohydrates. So if you keep the bread in your mouth for a long time it becomes sweet. Apparently the high carbohydrate diet is the number one cause of type – b diabetes.

And let’s go even further on this. Our problem is the fat or the carbs? Imagine for example a 200g diet yoghurt containing 1% fat, so 2 grams of fat, but 5 teaspoons of sugar! This is estimated by the 10% of carbohydrates it contains. It has 20g of carbohydrates because the whole is 200g divided by 4g which is a teaspoon of sugar. You can do the same experiment with corn flakes.

How would then all the dietary fat not be stored when the glycogen depositories are full? And there also several other aspects in the body when this occurs. However, the truth is that the excess carbohydrates are not so much a direct cause of the accumulation of fat (in the sense that the leftovers are stored as fat) but an indirect one in the above manner.

With this diet I have put an order in the way that I eat. I have my meals planned, I know from which category to pick each time and be absolutely secure. My dishes are in an order and I do not binge around. The way I used to eat, especially since I had been living alone, was completely random. For this reason I usually swayed and ordered delivery. Plus I list the exact products I need to shop and buy from the grocery every two weeks. All this decreases the overall budget and there is hardly any excess of foods. I got used to calculate how much I need to order which sustains me up to the next order. The canned products and the frozen meats, fish and vegetables provide me with great comfort. I get supplies of meat from the butcher rather than the big chain groceries in the area and airtight and freeze them and, while I prefer fresh vegetables and legumes I also use canned and frozen which are not lagging very highly in quality compared to the fresh ones. Sometimes at noon I simultaneously cook meats and vegetables that I plan to eat in the evening. So in the evening I just need to warm what I cooked during lunch assuming I have already cooked or canned beans ready.

At the same time, even if some of the foods, including many vegetables, it is not our liking maybe this is irrelevant. After a time they might prove tastier than with the old way of thinking. I had never imagined that I would enjoy boiled broccoli seasoned with olive oil.

The difference above all is psychological. Hippocrates said let your food be your medicine. And it is assumed that the physical health is interconnected with the psychological. This whole detoxification of excess sugar and trans fatty acids offers both physical and spiritual well-being  The plethora of nutrients in the body with or without supplementation enhances the quality of life to a large extent. This unique feeling of the binge day. When you feel the beautified poison entering inside you and how it affects your relatively intact physiology because of your diet within the week. This diet in a sense is addicting you to health. Just try it for a week. Because it is health that all the proper advices should lead to and that’s why in the end all of them that don’t lead there are overcome.  Even as many diets come to publicity and as loyal (while suppressed) people as they are to them the most effective solution would be found – buried as it seems – just to the correct nutrition. And ultimately to be lean and healthy is not achieved otherwise than being by ideology and not by circumstances with semi-successful intervals with diets.

P.S. Feel free to inform me about your progress. I am really interested to learn!

Tip: If you really want to succeed you have to commit to something. This is how you prove you really want it and you are more effective. So, you can find a friend and make the agreement that you should send an email every night apart from the binge day with the word OK which means you followed the diet. Until you reach the goal you set. Every morning your friend wakes up and doesn’t see an email you will agree he/she has to charge you immediately an amount of money, not so high neither so low. Around 10 euros/pounds. This way you become more mindful with the diet (by having to remember to send the email) and you push yourself not to eat wrongly because you would lose money. Also, your friend  must return to you 80% of the amount he/she had charged you if you reach your goal. He/she can keep the 20% as an exchange for his/her help. This way you are always in the target of overcoming the loss even though you may had made some mistakes.

(Part 1 can be found here)

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Comments

  1. Breanna says

    Nice to see someone else on the slow-carb diet! I re-started today. The presence of the cheat day is SO NICE. I listed to a podcast by Tim Ferriss on “The Fat-Burning Man” show by Abel James last night, and I decided to restart the diet. It had worked for me in the past, but then I moved and relied on junk food for a while. Anyway, good luck to you! I look forward to seeing your results (and mine!). :)

    • says

      You got motivated with the podcast, Breanna! I can imagine… I, also, have a great tendency towards junk food but thanks to slow-carb I have reduced it. However, I love the binge day as well! I wish you start disliking junk food, too, now that you restarted. Have in mind that you will need at least one to two weeks to detoxify yourself from the carbs and as a result to have your cravings reduced so be careful in the beginning ;) Thanks for your reply, I wish you best of luck and I am also waiting for your results!

      Angelo

      P.S. I am going for check this podcast.

Trackbacks

  1. [...] I know very well that this is not the typical advice your nutritionist could give you. The Official American Health Association recommends a diet of approximately 65% of daily calories coming from carbohydrates and thus from many of the above “bad” foods. Their results are far from effective and you can search on-line about the obesity and diabetes levels in the USA. Then you can wonder if something is going wrong in the whole story and question their authority once again. At the same time – if you come across these facts for the first time –  by using these seeds of knowledge you can conduct your own research about the effects of high levels of sugar in the blood which come as a result of a high carb-diet. Also, I have written more specifically about them in these two articles: The Nutrition Today and the Slow-Carb Diet and The Nutrition Today and the Slow-Carb Diet (Part 2: My Application in Everyday Life). [...]

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