All You Ever Wanted To Know About Nutrisystem
Are you tired of reading all the lies about losing weight? Learning the truth can be refreshing and enlightening, even if it's not really what you want to hear.
It's time I came clean and shared exactly what I know as a nutritionist and researcher about what is causing weight gain and what you can do to reverse the trend. I spill the beans and tell the truth about why you're overweight and why it's so hard to get back in shape.
You've Been Lied To
I might as well start by letting you in on a huge secret. You have been lied to by the government, the media, the weight loss industry, the food industry, the pharmaceutical industry and in some cases, even your own doctor!
The big secret is that none of these entities wants you to be fit and healthy.
The truth is that fit and healthy people don't make any money for the above entities I just listed. There's no profit in natural health, so "they" don't want you to know how to be healthy, naturally.
OK, that's the big one dragged out into the open. It's the forerunner for what I am about to tell you about in the bulk of this article.
I'm not getting into conspiracy theories or hypothesizing on who "they" are. And I'm not saying anyone should start protesting or marching or doing any of that crazy stuff.
It doesn't get anyone anywhere and causes more problems than it ever solves. So let's get back to reality and getting real.
It doesn't take a whole lot of mental effort or physical hardship to do some reading, researching and general digging around to unearth some pretty obvious truths about diet and how it affects our health. I already know a lot but I needed to know more.
So I went out and found out what else I needed to know. It didn't really surprise me and it shouldn't surprise you when I share my findings.
The saying, "you are what you eat" is truer than ever. But that short saying misses out an even bigger truth that should get added to the end, "...but it's what you don't eat that really counts."
There are some things that are just downright very difficult to avoid:
We all know our air is polluted, but we have no choice but to breathe it if we want to live. We all know our water is polluted, but without water, we'll die.
How many of you know that a lot of our food is also polluted?
How many of you know that you can choose what you eat and what you don't eat?
How many of you are exercising that choice?
The Truth You Don't Want to Hear
Not many people want to hear that the onus is on them to be healthy or to be unhealthy. Who among you is comfortable with taking responsibility for your own health?
I'm talking to you!
The buck stops here and "here" is your mouth.
You decide what passes your lips and gets into your body via your mouth. You can choose to stay in the dark and just keep eating all the food that you buy at the store.
Or you can wake up and look at what you've been swallowing. I mean really look at it and see what's in it.
Here's a quick personal story: No one ever wants to go shopping with me for food.
I'm a total pain in the backside when I get in the store. That's because for every item I pick up off the shelf, I stop and read its label to see what ingredients are in it.
Then ninety times out of a hundred, I'll scowl and dump it right back where I got it from!
What are some of the things I see in that list of ingredients that makes me so mad?
- High Fructose Corn Syrup/Starch (HFCS)
- Sugar (sucrose; fructose)
- Aspartame (NutraSweet, Equal) - E951
- Sodium Saccharin - E954
- Monosodium Glutamate (MSG) - E612
- Flavor Enhancer
- Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil
- Flavor; flavoring
- Color; coloring
Here are some less common but highly avoidable substances found in foods that make me mad:
- Mannitol - E950
- Sorbitol - E420 (Sorbitol Syrup - E421)
- Potassium Bromate
- Sulfur Dioxide - E220
- BHA; BHT - E320
- Sodium Nitrate; Sodium Nitrite
- Sodium Sulfite - E221
- Food dyes: Blue - E133; Red - E124; Yellow - E110; Yellow Tartrazine - E102
It goes without saying; I will not buy any product that has any of the above additives in their list of ingredients.
The big problem for most people is that most food and drinks products on the shelves contain one, some or many of those additives. And people load up their shopping baskets with all that stuff and feed it to themselves and their kids and they wonder why they're overweight and sick all the time!
Time to Wake Up
When the realization hits, it really is a lot like waking up from a deep, hypnotic sleep. It's like we've been kept stupefied all our lives so we blindly buy and eat and drink all this produce without realizing the harm it is doing to us.
How obvious is it when you see that a food contains high levels of sugar or sugar substitutes is going to make you gain weight? Pretty darn obvious, right!
Yet we blindly eat and drink so much stuff that's loaded full of sweet empty carbs and wonder why on earth we are getting fatter and fatter!
When we're awake and aware of what's going on, we start to question what is in our food and start to make fact-based choices on what to eat and what not to eat. When we switch on our brains and start to work things out for ourselves, it becomes pretty plain what changes we need to make.
All of a sudden, you realize you don't need someone like me telling you what to eat and what to avoid, because it's so obvious!
Step Back in Time
The answers to good nutrition and maintaining a healthy body weight can be found in the diets of our grandparents and great-grandparents. Go back 60 or so years or so and you'll see there were no unhealthy fast food restaurants and very few processed food items that you could buy.
Likewise there were no commercial meal replacement diet programs like Nutrisystem because there was no need for them!
Most all the food that was eaten was bought in its original form (whole foods), prepared and cooked on a stove. That food tasted great, too!
It still tastes great when that style of cooking is done today.
I personally buy all my produce fresh from a local organic market. I'm not vegetarian, but I don't eat much meat. Just the odd piece here and there as a treat and when I do, I make sure it comes from animals that were grass-fed and ranged free in pastureland and not pumped full of antibiotics and growth hormones before being sent to slaughter.
You can choose what you eat on ethical grounds too, but for me it's not so much about ethics as about health. Here's why:
When you buy meat that comes from regular farms, it contains a lot of contaminates and toxins because of the way the animals were reared. Those toxins get into your body when you eat that meat!
I prefer to avoid as many toxins as I can, hence my own personal choices.
The same goes for vegetables and fruit, which I eat a lot of. I don't want my vegetables to contain traces of pesticides and other chemicals that farmers routinely spray on their crops. Those poisons get into the body and cumulatively do a lot of damage!
Here's a quick tip on toxins:
Now I'm a nutritionist and I do know a lot about human physiology as well as how food is metabolized in the body, but I'm not a medical doctor. So what I'm about to tell you comes from my own research into things and what I found. You can easily do the same!
The liver is a very important organ in the body, because it is responsible for processing sugars and filtering toxins to stop them getting into the bloodstream and causing damage. Sugars get converted to glucose, which of course we use as fuel for energy.
Too much sugar causes an insulin response and the excess gets stored as visceral fat. Visceral fat also contains the toxins filtered by the liver.
If the liver gets damaged or its function is impaired, the filtering process is not as efficient and some of the toxins can find their way directly into the bloodstream. That is not good for our health, obviously.
Certain additives in processed foods, such as MSG (see above) are toxic to the liver and scientific studies have shown that when these additives are ingested, the liver performs less and less effectively. An underperforming liver coincides with higher amounts of fat being stored because sugars can't be processed optimally.
Result: Weight gain.
Visceral fat excretes hormones that block our ability to know when we're full after eating. So we keep eating and cause more fat to be stored. Some of the hormones it secretes also cause us to crave high sugar carbohydrate-rich foods, so we unconsciously snack on sweet treats through the day, causing even more fat to get stored.
We also drink a lot of soda and other canned drinks that contain sugar substitutes that worsen the problem by overwhelming the liver with the kind of sugars it doesn't know what to do with (HFCS - see above) and sends it all to fat storage.
Can you see the vicious spiral we are riding toward obesity and ill health?
The result for many people is hospitalization to treat any number of medical conditions that have manifest directly because of what they have ingested. The end of the line is the cemetery when medical science has done what it could but ultimately had to admit defeat!
Do you know what is waiting for one out of every four Americans down the line if we all keep eating and drinking these products?
You read that right. According to the latest statistics, one in four Americans is expected to get cancer at some point in their lives (Google it if you don't believe me). That's a quarter of the population. Imagine that!
Worse is that there are predictions those figures will keep rising to one in three over time. A third of all people getting cancer! What in the name of all that's good are we doing to ourselves?
Diabetes and cancer are the two most prevalent medical conditions associated with obesity and we all know where cancer will have us ending up!
However, it doesn't have to be that way.
Like I said above, you have a choice. It's your choice to make, no one else's. You get to choose what passes your lips every day. Or what doesn't.
Let's start with the weight problem and stop thinking about cancer for now. Common sense tells me that if the weight problem can be avoided, so can all other weight-related diseases.
So let's start there.
Start with what you are allowing to pass your lips every day. Look at every item of food or drink that you are about to consume and look at it critically.
Read the label. Ask these questions:
- What does it contain?
- What do those ingredients do to my body?
- Will it make me gain weight?
- Is it healthy?
If you don't know what certain ingredients and additives do to your body, you owe it to yourself to find out, don't you?
There is so much information available online these days, there really is no excuse for remaining ignorant. I'm going to get tough with some folks:
Instead of wasting a half hour having your brains turned to mush by social media, use that time to educate yourself about food. It could save your life!
Don't rely too heavily on the medical profession to help you if you get sick (that's my opinion and that of many of my friends and acquaintances, by the way).
Doctors are trained to prescribe meds to treat the symptoms of your illnesses. We all know that. However, those meds don't necessarily beat the illness. They just make it more comfortable while your own body heals itself.
Many pharmaceutical drugs treat symptoms of illness. They do not necessarily treat the root cause of those illnesses!
Remember, there's no profit in healthy people.
Would you rather be healthy and keep your money to enrich your life and the lives of your family? Or get sick and pay it all out for medications and drugs that may not even work?
Your choice, again!
The way to be healthy is to eat healthy. Food can be medicine or it can be poison. The sensible choice is to avoid the poisons, is it not?
You can be pretty safe in assuming that just about everything that is sold on the food shelves at the store in packets cans and jars are the poisons. Read the labels and if you see anything you don't know or anything you do know and know to be a toxin, scowl and put it back on the shelf!
I know organic produce costs more than the stuff in the supermarket, but if it means you get to live longer in a healthier body by eating it, what choice are you going to make?
I usually sacrifice something I don't really need to be able to afford the more costly organic vegetables and fruits I do need. If it means going without the bottle of wine, the yummy dessert, the labor-saving packs of frozen stuff etc, it's worth it!
I eat less than I used to. I put less food on the plate and got myself accustomed to it. It wasn't hard at all.
You can even eat fewer meals during the day and be perfectly fine. One very powerful technique I use regularly is something called intermittent fasting.
What that is means I eat my last meal of the day before 8 o'clock in the evening and then don't eat again until breakfast the following day (usually around 8am). That means I just fasted for 12 hours and it helps my body to detox little by little each time I do that.
Some days, I skip that last meal and go from lunch at around 1pm all the way to breakfast the next day. The longer intermittent fast causes more toxins to be flushed and I burn more calories than I consume.
If you are worried about going for 12-18 hours without food, don't. It's really not very long and you will not suffer any ill effect whatsoever. Just remember to drink plenty of water throughout that time to stay hydrated.
OK, that's enough for this article. I think I've shared enough with you to give you what you need to start to turn things around for yourself from a health perspective and help you to start reducing your excess weight naturally if that's what you need to do.
Most importantly, it should help you to maintain a healthy weight for the long term.