Lesson 1: Only eat high quality vegetables.
At the intermediate level, I recommend that all of your vegetables be organic, and preferably locally-grown. Organic vegetable varieties will decrease your exposure to dangerous pesticides, and increase your nutrient intake as organics have been scientifically proven to contain as much as much as two to five times more essential nutrients compared to non-organic vegetables. Most people agree that they also taste much better. It is important to remember though that nearly any non-organic vegetable is better than no vegetable at all.
Lesson 2: Avoid all grains.
I believe that most people's health is improved by avoiding all grains. This also includes durham flour and semolina from which most pasta is made. You can obtain most of your fiber from vegetables, which is a far healthier choice. Additional foods to eliminate at this level are:
- Corn: It is best to avoid all corn products, including popcorn and corn chips. Corn is not a vegetable but a grain! Corn and corn products are often difficult to digest and can contain mold toxins. One in three people are allergic to mold, and even small amounts of exposure to these mycotoxins (fungal toxins) can cause a range of health problems, including cancer, heart disease, asthma, multiple sclerosis and diabetes. Please avoid all foods with corn listed in the first five ingredients.
Additionally and importantly, nearly all corn products in the American market contain genetically engineered corn, which has additional health hazards, besides those associated with regular corn.
- Potatoes: Potatoes will raise insulin levels beyond what would be considered ideal in most people. If you do not have problems with weight, high blood pressure, diabetes, or high cholesterol, they can be used with a protein meal. Try to avoid commercially prepared French-fries entirely. They are an extremely toxic food, as they contain 100 percent trans-fatty acids.
- Wheat: You should have avoided or at least limited all gluten and wheat products in the beginning phase of this program. If you finished that phase and seem to tolerate wheat and do not suffer with high insulin challenges, and are not a protein nutritional type, then you may reintroduce organic whole wheat products into your diet.
Lesson 3: Start using Nutritional Typing.
The purpose of the intermediate plan is to normalize your metabolic biochemistry, and that involves addressing your specific nutritional needs in a unique and comprehensive way. You'll correct your imbalances with the small number of regulatory mechanisms that manage the vast number of biochemical reactions taking place in your body.
Nutritional typing is a dynamic process that does far more than simply assign you to a broad, fixed category that roughly approximates your nutritional needs. It is a much more precise yet flexible system, consisting of a series of simple self-tests that enable you to tailor your diet with accuracy; that is, you'll know what foods are good for your,nutritional type -- you won't have to guess and see!
There are three general nutritional types:
Your nutritional type determines your individual nutritional requirements and dictates your individual responses to what you eat and drink. You see, foods and individual nutrients do not behave the same way in people with different Nutritional Types. That certainly explains why some healthy foods that make other people energetic (and slim) might make you unhealthy, sluggish, bloated, and heavier. And why, no matter how much you try to stick to foods you've been told are 'healthy', or even organic, you may still not feel as good as you'd like to.
Protein types do better on low-carbohydrate, high-protein and high-fat diets. A typical ratio might be 40 percent protein and 30 percent each of fats and carbohydrates, but the amounts could easily shift to 50 percent fats and as little as 10 percent carbohydrates depending on individual genetic requirements.
Carb types normally feel best when the majority of their food is carbohydrate. However, keep in mind that there is a major difference between vegetables, grains, and starches, yet they are all referenced as "carbs."
An added benefit is that since Nutritional Typing is not a static system, the process allows you to adjust your diet if your metabolism shifts. It is important to realize that your nutritional type isn't carved in stone. Generally speaking, eating a meal that is right for your Nutritional Type should produce marked and lasting improvement in your energy, your mental capacities, your emotional well-being, and leave you feeling well-satisfied for several hours. If you are already feeling good, eating should, at the very least, help to maintain your energy level. But if you feel worse in some way an hour or so after eating, such as:
- You still feel hungry even though you are physically full
- You develop a sweet craving
- Your energy level drops
- You feel hyper, nervous, angry or irritable
- You feel depressed
... then it might be due to an improper combination of proteins, fats and carbohydrates at your last meal. You might be eating the perfect foods for your metabolism, but having too much of one type of food in place of another can easily produce the symptoms listed above.
To get full details on this essential principle and to assess your nutritional type, I highly encourage you to read my new book, Take Control of Your Health, or take my free online Nutritional Typing test.
Lesson 4: Retrain your body's response to sweets.
If you are overweight, you have likely trained your hormone system to respond very aggressively to sweets. As soon as anything sweet hits your mouth your body will instantly release insulin. This occurs even when it does not need it, such as when you are using low calorie sweeteners. Pavlov proved this principle over 100 years ago.
He began to feed his dogs in association with the ringing of a bell. After a certain time the dogs were shown to salivate profusely in association with the ringing bell even when the actual sight or smell of food was not present. Pavlov regarded this salivation as being a conditioned reflex and designated the process by which the dogs had picked up this reflex classical conditioning.
You have also experienced this conditioning. You've developed a link between your taste buds and your brain that will cause your body to produce insulin the moment you eat anything sweet, even if it is not grains or sugar. This will sabotage your efforts to lose weight successfully, as you will keep on having cravings for sugar and grains.
Refined sugar can also cause a physical addiction, as it has been found to be far more addictive than cocaine -- one of the most addictive and harmful substances currently known. Researchers speculate that the sweet receptors (two protein receptors located on your tongue), which evolved in ancestral times when the diet was very low in sugar, have not adapted to modern times’ high-sugar consumption.
Therefore, the abnormally high stimulation of these receptors by a sugar-rich diet generates excessive reward signals in your brain, which have the potential to override normal self-control mechanisms, and thus lead to a very real addiction.
So what can you do?
One of the most important things you can do is to start intermittent fasting which will shift your body to fat burning mode and dramatically reduce your sugar cravings. This is a dramatically powerful tool with nearly miraculous results.
Additionally, re-educating your taste buds, and breaking the cycle of addiction will also help. To do this, it is essential to AVOID ALL sweets for a few weeks. Once you clean your palate of sugar and simple carbs, foods will taste better than ever. You can use this as an opportunity to explore the use of spices and organic foods, as they typically taste much better after you modify your body's response to sugar.
Energy psychology tools like the Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) can be enormously helpful in kicking the sugar habit if you find your cravings are hard to resist. You can use EFT to successfully treat a wide variety of emotional stresses, including the food cravings and emotional responses related to sugar and grains