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{epub download} It Starts With Food - Revised Edition Discover the Whole30 and Change Your Life in Unexpected Ways [PDF EBOOK EPUB KINDLE]. Dallas Hartwig, Melissa Hartwig It Starts With Food - Revised Edition: Discover the Whole30 and Change Your Life in Unexpected Ways epub. It Starts With. Unexpected Ways, PDF and EPUB It Starts With Food: Discover the Whole30 and Change Your Life in Unexpected Ways, PDF ePub Mobi It Starts With Food.

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It Starts With Food Discover the Whole30 and - Ebook download as PDF File .pdf), Text File .txt) or read book online. health and diet. It Starts with Food: Discover the Whole 30 and Change Your Life in Unexpected Ways pdf, epub, mobi. Par reid christine le jeudi, février {epub download} It Starts With Food - Revised Edition: Discover the Whole30 and Change Your Life in Unexpected Ways Ebook | Read online.

Copyright Dallas Hartwig and Melissa Hartwig All rights reserved No part of this publication may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, or stored in a database or retrieval system, without prior written permission from the publisher. It is not intended. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information in this book does not create a physician-patient relationship. Author photo by R. What is Food? Chapter 4:

My wife and I have had terrible seasonal allergies for several years. Now our allergies have all disappeared. We are off all allergy meds, which we used to take like candy. As for our four-year-old daughter, we are two weeks into her Whole30, and I am amazed to report that her allergy symptoms are virtually gone. No sneezing. No runny nose. After taking both pills and nose spray for much of her life, her allergy symptoms are better now than they have ever been. Brian C. Were pretty picky about this: Not three, not most all.

Well explain them in more detail in the coming chapters, but here are the basics. Promote a healthy psychological response. Promote a healthy hormonal response. Support a healthy gut. Support immune function and minimize inflammation. Before we get into each of the Good Food standards, however, we need some general background on food. Food is composed of a multitude of complex molecules.

Some provide energy, some provide structural components, some interact with various receptors and transmit signals to our bodies, and some are relatively inert. People sometimes oversimplify food, and say things like, I eat whole grains for fiber or I drink milk for calcium, but the reality is that all whole, unprocessed food is a rich, complex blend of nutrients.

We broadly organize these components into two major classifications: A micronutrient is defined as an essential compound needed only in relatively small amounts. A micronutrients purpose is not to generate energy but to serve a wide variety of important biological functions, including: There are hundreds of different micronutrients, but. Selecting foods with the right amounts and a wide variety of micronutrients is critical for our long-term health.

A macronutrient is defined as a group of chemical compounds consumed in large amounts and necessary for normal growth, metabolism, and other bodily functions. Macronutrients are used to supply energy and, in some cases, are used as structural components. In humans, the three macronutrients are carbohydrate, protein, and fat.

All carbohydrates, whether they come from a carrot, brown rice, or a PopTart, break down into simple sugars in the. Complex carbohydrates are simply a bunch of sugars linked together, and those chains of sugars are broken into their individual links upon digestion. Simple carbohydrates, specifically glucose, are a universal energy source that is easily used by most cells in the body.

Glucose is fuel for intense activity and fuel for your brain cells. This is why some people say that there is no dietary requirement for carbohydrate. Proteins are made up of long chains of amino acids, which are the building blocks for all sorts of biological structures.

The amino acids in proteins are necessary for building, maintaining, and repairing muscles, connective tissue like tendons and ligaments, skin, hair, and even your bones and teeth. In addition, most enzymes and many hormones in the body are actually proteins. Fats are either in free form free fatty acids or built into complexes. Fatty acids belong to one of three types or families: Fats allow you to absorb fat-soluble vitamins and essential nutrients from food, help to transport nutrients across cell membranes, and are critical to maintaining proper immune function.

Dietary fats are also the building blocks for brain tissue, nerve fibers, reproductive and stress hormones, immune messengers, and cellular membranes. Finally, fat is also an excellent slow-burning energy source, perfect for supporting lower intensity activity. The energy contained within each type of macronutrient is measured in calories.

Carbohydrates and protein each contain four calories per gram; fat contains nine calories per gram. Diet books and experts have long attributed weight problems to simply eating too many calories, and specifically, too much fat.

After all, fat is more than twice as calorie-dense as either protein or carbs! If only it were that easy.

While calories do count for something, good health depends on far more complex factorsand simply reducing calories or fat isnt the answer. The foods you eat exert a powerful psychological influence, stronger than any act of willpower. They influence your hormones, silently directing your metabolism. They affect your digestive tract, your bodys first line of defense.

And they impact. Your good health starts with the foods you eat. And determining which foods make you more healthy starts with our four Good Food standards. Healthy Hormones, Healthy You Chapter 6: Theyre in this order for a reasonbecause we think this is generally how things start going wrong.

First, you overconsume nutrient-poor. Overconsumption and the kinds of foods you tend to over consume then leads to hormonal, gut, and immune-system disruptionand all of the symptoms, conditions and diseases that may follow.

These chapters will lay the groundwork for the discussion on food, and make it that much easier for you to understand why well be asking you to remove certain foods from your plate. Well also wrap up each of these four chapters with a summary to make it easier for you to refresh your memory when we do start talking about food. Prior to the Whole30, I recognized that I had severe difficulties dealing with food cravings and knowing when to stop eating.

Cheat meals turned into cheat feasts and cheat weekends. My frustration with controlling my cravings and urges skyrocketed. Daily I asked myself, How can I get these urges under control? Why do I feel like I need these bad foods?

Where should I go for help? Whole30 is the answer.

I havent felt the deep desire to binge since Ive submerged myself into this program. I dont feel like I have to struggle to make decisions when. The way I eat now is how I honestly desire to feed myself. Aubrey H. Surprised that were leading off with psychology and not calories, energy, or metabolism? Stay with us, because we suspect this section is going to resonate with you. As a rule, we think the foods that are good for your body should also not mess with your mind.

And we think the psychological effects of your food choices are perhaps the most important factors to consider during your healthy-eating transformation. How many times have you tried a new plan, bought new foods, and stuck to the new menu for a few weeks, only to fall right back into your old habitsand old waistline?

Every time youve tried to diet, we suspect. Want to know why your previous efforts have failed? Dieting doesnt work. But you knew that already, didnt you? Calorie-restrictive plans have been found to help folks lose weight, but only in the short term. Most folks cant sustain their new dietary habits, and after a year or two, the vast majority end up gaining back even more weight than they lost.

Kind of a bummer, right? The truth is, simply reducing your calories isnt likely to change or alleviate your food cravings, even if you do lose weight. And well show how your cravings, habits, and patterns are critical to your longterm success. In addition, creating healthy dietary habits isnt just about restricting or eliminating certain foods. You already know that fast food, junk food, and sweets arent good for you.

You know you shouldnt eat them if you want to lose weight, get off your medication, or be healthier. Yet you continue to eat them. You struggle with food cravings, bad habits, compulsions, and addictions.

You know you shouldnt, but you feel compelled to eat these foods. Sometimes, you dont even want them, but you eat them anyway. And you have a hard time stopping. All of which makes you feel guilty and stressedand more likely to comfort yourself with even more unhealthy food. Were here to tell you: Its not your fault. You are not lacking willpower.

You are not lazy. And its not your fault that you cant stop eating these foods. Now were not trying to say that the choices you make arent your own or that you dont have any responsibility for your current health status or waistline.

But what you have to understand is that these. They are designed to mess with your brain. They are built to make you crave them. They make it hard for you to give them up. And until you know their dirty little secrets, you will never be able to leave these foods, and your cravings, habits, and patterns, behind.

We are going to spill their secrets. We are going to help you understand why you crave the foods you do and explain how these unhealthy foods trick you into eating them.

Then well show you how to outsmart your cravings once and for all. Cravings arent merely about your behavior related to the food in questiontheyre about your emotional motivation and the conditioning habit that is created with repeated satisfaction.

You dont even have to be hungry to experience cravingsin fact, theyre more closely related to moods like anger, sadness, or frustration than to hunger.

In addition, your capacity to visualize the food and imagine its taste are strongly correlated with craving strengthso the more you fantasize about indulging, the less likely you are to resist.

Specific food cravings can turn into poor eating habits in just a few days, leaving us stuck in a cycle of relentless urges, shortterm satisfaction, and long-term guilt,. To effectively change our relationship with food and maintain new, healthy habits forever , we need to understand what is behind our cravings, habits, and patterns. It all starts with biology and nature. For example, bitter tastes signify toxic foods while sweet tastes signify a safer choice. Thanks to nature and our biology, our brains have been hardwired to appreciate three basic tastes: When we came across these flavors, neurotransmitters in our brain would help us.

These important signals from nature helped us select the foods best suited to our health. But there is one very important point to keep in mind with respect to these signals from nature.

They werent designed to tell us which foods were deliciousthey were designed to tell us which foods were nutritious. In nature, pleasure and reward signals led us to vital nutrition. The trouble is that in todays world, the ancient signals persist but the foods that relay them are anything but good sources of nutrition. And that creates a major disruption in our bodies and in our brains. Over the last fifty years, the makeup of our foods has dramatically changed.

Food scientists caught on to the fact that our brains respond strongly to specific flavors such as the aforementioned sweet, fatty, and salty , and armed with this knowledge, they began to modify our whole foods. They sucked out the water, the fiber, and the nutrients, and replaced them with ingredients like corn syrup, MSG, seed oils, and artificial sweeteners, colors, and flavors.

All of this with the specific intention of inducing cravings, overconsumption and bigger profits for food manufacturers. Theyve turned real food into Frankenfood. These foods light up pleasure and reward centers in the brain for a different reason than nature intendednot because they. The effect is a total disconnection between pleasurable, rewarding tastes sweet, fatty, and salty and the nutrition that always accompanies them in nature.

In nature, sweet tastes usually came from seasonal raw fruit, rich in vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients. Today, sweet flavors come from artificial sweeteners, refined sugars, and high fructose corn syrup. In nature, fatty tastes usually came from meats, especially nutrient-packed organ meats. In modern times, fats come from a deep-fryer or a tub of spread.

In nature, precious electrolytes like sodium came from sea life, or from the animals we ate. In modern times, salt comes from a shaker. Do you see the problem with this? Modern technology has stripped the nutrition from these foods, replacing it with empty calories and synthetic chemicals that. This means we are eating more calories with less nutrition. Persistent biological signals lead us to overeat sweet, fatty, salty foods while keeping us malnourished. These Franken-foods are ridiculously cheap to produce.

They unnaturally electrify our taste buds. They contain little, if any, nutrition. And they mess with our brains in a major way. A supernormal food stimulus arouses our taste receptors more intensely than anything found in nature. Candy is far sweeter than fruit. Onion rings are fattier and saltier than onions. Sweet-and-sour pork is sweeter, fattier, and saltier than actual pork. And Franken-foods like Twinkies and Oreos outcompete any taste found in nature, which is, of course, exactly why we prefer them.

These supernormal stimuli are like the Las Vegas Strip of foods. But entirely contrived. Not at all realistic. Totally overwhelming. And if you take a good, hard look in the light of dayi. But the over-the-top flavors found in these foods and the extra-strong connections they forge in your brain make it hard to stop eating themand make natural, whole foods look bland and boring by comparison.

You may be thinking, If these foods taste so good that I cant stop eating them, maybe I should just stop eating foods that taste good. But that just sounds miserable to usand flavor restriction would probably be just as unsuccessful long-term as caloric restriction!

Thankfully, this strategy is wholly unnecessary. The problem isnt that these foods are delicious. The problem is that these foods are supernormally stimulating in the absence of nutrition and satiety. They are the essence of empty caloriesfoods with no brakes. They sound the same, but biologically speaking they are two separate and distinct concepts.

Satiety occurs in your digestive tractspecifically, in your intestines. When youve digested and absorbed enough calories and nutrients to satisfy your bodys needs, hormones signal to your brain that I am well nourished now, which decreases your desire for more food.

Satiety cant be fooled or faked, as it is dependent on the actual nutrition in your food. But since. Thats where satiation comes in.

Satiation is regulated in the brain and provides more timely motivation to stop eating. Its based on the taste, smell, and texture of food, the perception of fullness, even your knowledge of how many calories are in a meal. As you eat, you perceive various sensations This is delicious, I shouldnt eat the whole bag or Im getting pretty full , all of which send your brain status updates to help you determine whether you still want more.

But unlike satiety, satiation is an estimate dependent on your perceptions, not an absolute measurement. Ideally, the brain would signal us to stop eating when our bodies have sensed that weve digested and absorbed enough nutrition to support our health. In this case,. Lets use the example of a prime rib dinner. Prime rib contains complete protein, the most satiating of all the macronutrients, and naturally occurring fat, which makes protein even more satiating.

As you eat your prime rib, youll find yourself wanting prime rib less and less with every bite. The first bite was amazing, the second fantastic, but by your tenth bite, the texture, smell, and flavor are less appealing. And by the twentieth bite, youve had enough, and you no longer desire the flavor or texture of the meatso down goes your fork. This is satiation. Prime rib also takes longer to eat than processed food as you actually have to chew and swallow , which gives your brain a chance to catch up with your stomach.

As you eat and start to digest the meat, your body recognizes that the dense nutrition in. This sends a were getting nourishment signal to your brain while youre still working on your plate, which also reduces your want for more food. This is satiety. This scenario plays out differently for foods lacking the satiation factors of adequate nutritioncomplete protein, natural fats and essential nutrients. Lets compare prime rib to a tray of Oreos. Oreos are a highly processed food containing almost no protein, saturated with sugar and flavor-enhancing chemicals, and filled with added fats.

As we eat the Oreos generally at a much faster rate than prime rib , they move through us quickly and dont provide enough nutrition to induce satiation or satiety. So unlike the prime rib, there are no brakes to decrease our want. We want the tenth Oreo just as much as the first.

And we never stop wanting more because even. So we eat the whole darn package because satiety cant be fooled. In the case of Oreos, the only reason to stop eating is when our bellies are physically full, and we realize were about to make ourselves sick from overconsumption.

Those arent brakes at allthats just an emergency ejection seat. This processing removes any nutrition once found. The final concoction we cant really call it food at this point offers a staggering variety of over-the-top flavor sensations in every single bitebut your body knows there is no nutrition there, so you continue to want more food, even past the point of fullness.

If we stopped right here, wed have made our point. Clearly, these foods violate our first Good Food standard by provoking an unhealthy psychological responseheck, they were designed to do just that!

Unfortunately, theres more. Chronic consumption of these foods doesnt just affect our taste buds, our perceptions, and our waistlines. Reward circuitry is integrated with parts of the brain that enrich a pleasurable experience with emotion, making it more powerful, and easier to remember. The combination of pleasure, reward, and emotion pushes you toward rewarding stimuliincluding food. The foods in questionsupernormally stimulating without adequate nutrition to invoke satiation or satietytell the brain to release dopamine, the neurotransmitter associated with the pleasure center.

Dopamine motivates your behavior, reinforces food-seeking wanting and energizes your feeding. It gives you that rush of anticipation before. Youre daydreaming at work and start thinking about your favorite cookie from the downtown bakery.

Youre visualizing the taste, the smell, the texture. You start to get excited and happy at the thought of picking up cookies on the way home.

You want those cookies. Thats dopamine talking. On the way home, you stop at the bakery, pick up a dozen cookies, and take your first bite before youve even pulled out of the parking lot. Of course, because that cookie is supernormally stimulating, but lacking in nutrients that satiate, you dont stop at just one. Immediately, the brain releases opioids endorphinsthe bodys own feel good compounds , which also have a rewarding effect.

The release of opioids brings pleasure and emotional relief, releases stress, and generally makes you feel good. Over time and with continued reinforcement, those dopamine pathways begin to.

This preemptive dopamine response and the memory of the reward youll experience when you indulge makes it all but impossible to resist the urge to satisfy that craving. Your want has turned into a need. The kicker? You dont even have to be hungrybecause its not about satisfying your hunger. Its about satisfying the craving. After just a few trips to the bakery, your memory circuits tell your reward circuits that the cookie will bring you joy.

Dopamine promises satisfaction, if you only give in to your urge. You cant resist, so you eat the cookie s and your endorphins help you feel good for a while.

And so the vicious cycle serves only to reinforce itself until you have developed a habitual responsethe. Automatic cravings do not sound psychologically healthy to us. We dont need a scientific study to tell us that many people eat when theyre stressed to distract themselves from the situation and help themselves relax.

The trouble is, chronic stress whether it stems from anxiety or worry, lack of sleep, over-exercise, or poor nutritional habits is driving usvia our biologyto overeat. Stress affects the activation of reward pathways and impairs your attempts to control your eating habits.

Did you catch that? Stress makes it even harder for us to resist our cravings. When you are under stress, the urge to pleasure eat eating for reward is strongand you are far more likely to overeat.

Stress also causes you to change the type of foods you eat, moving away from healthier choices towardyou guessed ithighly palatable foods that are sweet, salty, and high in fat. Who craves grilled chicken and steamed broccoli when theyre stressed?

And when you finally, inevitably, indulge, one thing is true: Eating sugary, salty, fatty foods makes you feel less stressed. This works via the same old mechanism weve been talking aboutdopamine and opioid pathways in the brain.

We experience stress, we eat the cookies, and we really do feel better. This creates two problems, however. The first is that, during stress, these strong opioid and dopamine responses in the reward center of your brain promote the encoding of habits. Future stress triggers you to remember the relief you experienced the last time you ate those cookies. Memories of these responses are stored in your brain and you quickly establish a learned behaviora want for more cookies.

Which means that the next time youre stressed, youll find yourself automatically reaching for the cookies. So as a result of the stress-related habits youve created, you may find yourself reaching for the cookies. Remember, cravings are strongly tied to emotion. Over time, as your brain continues to create new links between cookie and feeling better, the associationand your wanting for moreonly continues to grow stronger.

The last nail in your stress-cookie coffin: The stressed brain expresses both a strong drive to eat and an impaired capacity to inhibit eating. You may not even want to eat the cookie, but because your ability to not eat it is impaired, you sort of have to.

You tell yourself youll have only one, but under stress, youll probably end up eating the whole bagwhich, in turn, makes you pretty stressed-out. Its a vicious cycleand you probably didnt even realize you were stuck in it. Of course, we cant always eliminate stress in our livesthat half of the equation may, unfortunately, be here to stay. Our only recourse is to concentrate on the other half by eliminating the foods that play into this unhealthy stress response.

Not coincidentally, theyre the same highly processed, supernormally stimulating, non-nutritive foods that have been causing us trouble all along. Its all the same story. You may even be a little bit mad at the way some of the things youve been eating have manipulated you into cravings and overconsumption.

And we bet if we said, Lets kick all of these sneaky, tricky foods off our plates. Theoretically, that is. Theres just one small problem with this plan. These unhealthy foods are really hard to give up. First, its difficult to radically change your diet when you have so many powerful emotional associations with the foods youre eatingespecially if youre eating as a coping mechanism, instead of from hunger.

Second, these foods are designed to be hard to give up. Through the misuse of biological and natural cues, our modern technology has made these foods supernormally stimulating, rewiring the reward, emotion, and pleasure pathways in our brains to create an artificial demand for more.

And when we tell you which foods are the worst. You may panic. You may think, No way can I do this. You may say to yourself, I cannot live without [fill in food]. We assure you, you can. And you will. Well walk you through it. And when youre done, three things will happen. First, you will once again be able to appreciate the natural, delicious flavors including sweet, fatty, and salty found in whole foods. Second, the pleasure and reward you experience when eating that delicious food will once again be closely tied with good nutrition, satiation, and satietyyoull be able to stop eating because youre satisfied, not just because youre full.

Third, you will never again be controlled by your food. Sweet, fatty, and salty tastes send pleasure and reward signals to the brain. In nature, these signals were designed to lead us to valuable nutrition and survival. Today, these flavor sensations are unnaturally concentrated in food, which is simultaneously stripped of valuable nutrition.

This creates food-with-nobrakessupernormally stimulating, carbohydrate-dense, nutrient-poor foods with all the pleasure and. These foods rewire pleasure, reward, and emotion pathways in the brain, promoting hard-to-resist cravings and automatic consumption. Stress and inadequate sleep only reinforce these patterns. Reconnecting delicious, rewarding food with the nutrition and satiety that nature intended is the key to changing these habits.

I have cut my diabetes medications in half, and my blood pressure is in the normal range too. All of my pain, stiffness, soreness, and puffiness is gone and I lost twenty-five pounds. The Whole30 has changed my life. Alan H. This is probably the most science-y section of the whole book, but as promised, well use a lot of analogies and examples to make the science easy to understand.

Were also going to simplify things quite a bit, because you dont need to understand how everything works to know how to apply it. Lets start with some basics. They are secreted by cells in one part of the body and bind to receptors in another part of the body. Think of a courier carrying a message from one person to another. Hormones have many roles, but one essential function is to keep things in balance. Essentially all biological processes have regulatory mechanisms designed to keep. Think of the thermostat in your house.

The furnace kicks on to keep the temperature above the lowest point set, but as the temperature rises to the top end of the range, the thermostat turns on your fan or air conditioner.

Much as your thermostat keeps your house within a healthy temperature range, hormones work in delicate, intertwined ways to maintain homeostasis in your body. Hormones also respond to any external factor that tips the scales out of balance. To go back to our thermostat analogy, opening a window in wintertime will push the temperature in your home off balance. The act of opening a window sends a message Its getting cold in here!

When the. When you eat and digest food, various biochemical components of the food trigger multiple hormonal responses in the body. These hormonal responses control the use, storage, and availability of nutrientswhere they go and what happens when they get there. Different nutrients cause different hormonal responses, but all of those responses are intended to correct the shift in balance caused by the influx of digested food particles.

Insulin, leptin, glucagon, and cortisol. These four hormones along with many others form a complex, elegantbut not indestructibleweb of feedback loops that influence all body systems.

They all interact with one anothers functions, behaving like a team in the body. These hormones are neither bad nor good in the right amounts. Things get ugly, however, when youve got too much or not enough of any given hormone.

Lets start with both insulin and leptin, as its hard to separate these two. An anabolic building, storing hormone secreted by the beta cells of the pancreas in response to ingestion of energy, most notably from carbohydrate.

Insulin facilitates the moving of. Chronically elevated insulin levels are correlated with leptin resistance and indirectly related to elevated cortisol levels. Insulin is about as close to a master hormone as you can get. It acts on virtually all cells in the body and directly controls or influences energy storage, cell growth and repair, reproductive function, and, most important, blood sugar levels.

Insulin unlocks a one-way door into cells so they can store or use nutrients. Insulin effectively stores all macronutrientsprotein, fat and carbohydratesbut its secretion is most closely tied with carbohydrate ingestion.

When we eat carbohydrate, it is broken down in our bodies into simple sugars and then absorbed into the bloodstream.

This leads to a rise in the amount of circulating blood sugar glucose. To be optimally healthy, our blood glucose levels must be kept within a normal rangenot too low, not too high.

Remember, just as in the thermostat analogy, normal is pretty much synonymous with healthy. In the case of regulating blood sugar, your pancreas is the primary thermostat, and insulin is like your air conditioner, keeping blood sugar levels from remaining too high.

A rise in blood sugar is sensed by beta cells in the pancreas, which then secrete insulin into the bloodstream. Insulin signals cells in the body to pull glucose out of the bloodstream and move it into storage, bringing blood sugar levels back to a normal, healthy range. Elevated insulin levels also have a satiety function, reducing hunger. If you have a healthy metabolism, when you eat a healthy meal, your blood sugar levels rise moderatelynot too much, and not too fast.

When blood sugar increases, the pancreas dispatches just enough insulin to communicate to the cells exactly how much blood sugar needs to be stored. Insulins message is, Store these nutrients. The cells, which are sensitive to the insulin message, hear the request and respond appropriately by pulling blood sugar out of the bloodstream and storing it, thereby returning blood glucose levels to normal. Insulins management of blood sugar serves a very important function, as chronically elevated blood glucose levels are highly damaging to many body systems, including the liver, pancreas, kidneys, blood vessels, brain and peripheral nerves.

Got that? Chronically high levels of blood sugar hyperglycemia are harmful, so managing blood sugar is critical for long-term health. Once cells have taken glucose out of the bloodstream, that glucose can either be used for energy or stored for future use. The primary place to store glucose is in the liver and muscles, as a complex carbohydrate called glycogen.

If stored in the liver,. However, glycogen stored in muscle cells cant be emptied back into the bloodstreamit stays there, to provide fuel for your muscles. Which is good, because your muscles can do a lot of hard work! When your gas tank is full, its full. It cant get any bigger, and you cant make it any fuller.

Your bodys carbohydrate fuel tank, however, isnt very bigyou can store only enough glycogen to maintain hard, continuous activity for. And because carbohydrate is fuel for intense activity, you dont tap into your glycogen stores in any meaningful way while youre sitting at your desk at work, watching television, or puttering around the house. In other words, its really easy to fill your tank up with carbohydratesbut if youre not doing lots of high-intensity activity, youre not really using much fuel!

Your hormonal troubles start with overcarbsumption: To begin with, a constant excess supply of carbohydrates will tilt your metabolic preference toward burning whats most. If there is an overabundance of sugar, the sugar takes precedence over fat as a source of energy in many metabolic processes, and stored fat doesnt get burned for energy. If less fat is being burned for fuel, then it accumulates, and body fat levels tend to increase. In addition, all that excess glucose poses a storage problem in the body.

If theres space available in the liver and muscle cells, theyll happily uptake glucose. However, if those cells are already full of glycogen, they will politely decline any additional nutrition essentially putting up a No Vacancy sign. When there is no room in the liver and muscle cells, the body shifts fuel storage to Plan B.

You will not like Plan B. When the liver and muscle glycogen stores are full, the liver and your fat cells. These two processes combinedthe preferential burning of carbohydrate over fat for fuel and the creation of triglycerideslead to increased body fat and increased triglycerides and free fatty acids in the blood, neither of which is desirable or healthy. And this pileup of sugar and triglycerides in the blood pushes another hormone, leptin, out of balance.

An energy balance hormone that is secreted primarily by fat cells and is released in proportion to the amount of fat stored. Leptin tells the brain how much body fat is stored and regulates both energy intake and energy expenditure to. Overconsumption of nutrient-poor, supernormally stimulating carbohydrates leads to chronically elevated triglycerides and blood sugar levels, which promotes leptin resistance and an increase in fat storage, accompanied by greater insulin resistance.

Leptin is sometimes referred to as a satiety hormone, because higher leptin levels help to keep us full and satisfied. Leptin levels follow a normal daily cycle tied primarily to your eating schedule. Since you dont eat while youre asleep, leptin is pretty low first thing in the morning.

This triggers the secretion of appetite-stimulating hormones and is one of the reasons we wake up hungry. When youre done eating for the day typically after dinner , leptin levels are higher, helping you stay full and satisfied until bedtime. However, leptins primary job is to regulate your big-picture hunger and activity.

Body fat is not a bad thingits what allows us to survive long periods of food shortage or to not eat for a few days when we have the flu. But our bodies are pessimists. Our DNA always expects, despite the surplus of readily available energy right now, that food will run out soon, and so the only way to survive this coming famine is to store some energy as fat.

Its as natural as breathing. Maybe youre thinking, Why hasnt my brain caught on to the fact that food is everywhere these days? The fact is, for thousands of years, we worked hard for the food we. Were back to ancient signals in a modern world, where the brain continues to send biologically appropriate messages to ensure your survival, despite the fact that you are now living in a wholly unnatural food landscape. As fat is a storage depot for energy, it is important for your body to have a way to measure how much energy fat is available at any given moment.

Fat cells do this by secreting leptin, as a way to communicate to your brain whether you are too fat, too lean, or just right. Based on leptins critically important message, your brain constantly gives you subconscious directions, which drive your food-seeking behavior and physical activity levels.

If you have very little body fatperhaps too little to survive a potential food shortageleptin levels are low. The relative absence of leptins message tells the brain, I dont have enough body fat!

Your brain then tells you to eat more and move less, which serves to change your behavior until your body fat is within a safer range. You become hungrier and probably eat more , your metabolism slows down thanks in part to changes in your thyroid hormone levels and you start to gain body fat. As body fat continues to accumulate, leptin levels rise, and your fat cells start to send more messages to your brainOK, weve got enough energy stored now!

If that message is properly received i. Although its much more complicated than this simple summary, this energy-balance system is naturally designed to keep your body fat levels just right. The trouble starts, though, when the foods youre eating promote an unhealthy psychological response, leading to chronic overcarbsumption. Shall we recap? When you chronically overconsume foodwith-no-brakes, it floods your system with glucose.

With sugar in such large supply, it is burned first for energywhich means fat takes a metabolic back seat and accumulates. This leads to a buildup of triglycerides in the liver, and increased glucose and triglyceride levels in the bloodstream. But how does this lead to problems with leptin? The excess glucose and triglycerides in the bloodstream make their way to parts of your brain and start impairing your brains. This leads to a condition called leptin resistance.

Accumulation of visceral fat fat stored in and around your organs is enough to promote hormonal dysfunction, including leptin resistance. We call these folks skinny fat: Leptin resistance is like a hormonal conversation gone haywire.

Normally, when youve accumulated adequate body fat, your fat cells send a message via leptin to your brain that says, Hey, weve got enough energy stored, so you should eat less and move more. But when receptors in the brain and other tissues become less sensitive to leptin, those messages dont get through. Your brain doesnt hear leptin say that youve got enough body fat stored. Which means your brain thinks youre too skinny.

Imagine that your brain is blind, unable to see your chubby reflection in the mirror or the creeping number on the scale. It needs leptin to give it the facts it cant see.

So until the brain hears leptin say, OK, were fat enough, the brain is going to keep telling you to eat more and move less, to ensure your survival. Remember, its pessimistic. And without that leptin message, your subconscious brain will continue to direct your behaviors as if you were too leandespite the fact that you know youre gaining too much weight.

You may see that youve gained some weight, and try to eat less but the brains directives are far more powerful.

In fact, a hallmark of leptin resistance is uncontrollable cravings after dinneryou try to eat healthy all day, but come 8 p. This isnt a lack of willpower on your partits your brain responding to leptins primal.

Leptin resistance means that you are gaining fat and swimming in leptinbut your brain is clueless, so it turns your metabolism down to conserve fuel, and tells you to eat more. And isnt this all too easy to do when supernormally stimulating, nutrientpoor, carbohydrate-rich foods are whispering in your ear?

Of course, overcarbsumption only promotes more sugar-burning for fuel, additional accumulation of body fat and the conversion of excess carbohydrates to fat , and even-higher triglyceride levels in the blood.

Which makes your leptin resistance worse. And takes us back to insulin. This is when insulins message to store nutrients is heard clearly by the cells, which remove glucose from the bloodstream and store it, keeping blood glucose levels from getting or staying high.

In contrast to insulin sensitivity, there is also a condition called insulin resistance. And Leptin resistance leads to insulin resistance. Lets recap: You chronically overconsume, because supernormally stimulating, nutrient-poor food has no brakes.

This makes you leptin resistant, which means your brain thinks you are too lean even if the mirror tells you otherwise. This leads your brain to tell you to eat more and move less, which promotes further.

You are now metabolically reliant on sugar for energy, you continue to accumulate fat in the body and the liver, and have excess glucose and triglycerides in your bloodstream. All of that excess glucose needs to be stored. The trouble is, jamming lots of energy into a cell causes damage. So to protect themselves from being overfilled, the cells become insulin resistant.

Once this occurs, the cells lose their sensitivity to insulins message to store nutrients: Since high levels of blood sugar are very unhealthy, the body really needs the cells to store that energyso it responds with an even stronger message.

Insulin resistance requires that the pancreas produce even more insulin, until the message is strong enough to force nutrients into the already-full cells. However, this force-feeding creates oxidative stress and elevated fat levels in the blood, which further damages the cells.

The damaged cells continue to try to protect themselves, further increasing insulin resistance and the cycle continues. The response to this damage is a cascade of immune responses, including the release of inflammatory chemicals, as well as immune cells that show up as first responders to help repair the damaged tissue.

This immune. At this point, you have excess glucose in a system that is insulin resistant. Blood sugar remains high because the cells are stuffed and resisting insulins message to store. This creates ongoing hyperglycemiachronically elevated levels of blood sugar. Which, as you recall, is very damagingspecifically to pancreatic beta cells, where insulin is produced.

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Chronic hyperglycemia first causes beta cell adaptation, to allow the pancreas to produce progressively more insulin to manage the excess blood sugar. The pancreas cant adapt forever, however. Eventually, damaged by ongoing hyperglycemia, pancreatic beta cells start to disintegrate. Yes, they actually die from toxic levels of blood sugar and the resulting oxidative stress.

At this point, you lose the ability to produce enough insulin to manage blood sugarwhich is how toxic levels of blood sugar and insulin resistance can lead to type 2 diabetes. However, there are consequences to your health long before you get to diabetes. Hyperglycemia chronically high levels of blood sugar is damaging, but hyperinsulinemia chronically high levels of insulin is profoundly damaging, and a clear risk factor for major lifestyle-related diseases and conditions, like diabetes, obesity, heart attack, stroke, and Alzheimers disease.

Chronically high levels of insulin are harmful, so managing insulin levels is critical for long-term health. When you are insulin resistant and, thanks to leptin resistance, you continue to overcarbsume , the pancreas needs to secrete ever-increasing amounts of insulin to pull glucose out of the bloodstream. Since your blood sugar regulation mechanism no longer works properly, all that insulin can pull blood sugar levels too far in the other directionwhat was too high is now too low a condition often referred to as reactive hypoglycemia.

Too low comes with its. To you, this translates as, Must. Your body doesnt actually need calories, but thanks to the messed-up messages your body is sendingyoure too lean, your blood sugar is too lowyou give in to the same foods supernormally stimulating and nutrient-poor that got you into trouble in the first place.

Its a vicious cycleand it could be worse. If you dont change your eating habits pronto, insulin resistance very well could progress to type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes occurs when because of the severity of insulin resistance and beta. This is very, very badespecially if your diet still doesnt change. Diabetes comes with its own list of side effects and related conditions: Tens of thousands of people die of complications from diabetes every year.

Nobody wants diabetes. In fact, nobody wants any of thisthe primary reliance on sugar for energy, the ongoing accumulation of body fat, ineffective hormonal messages, energy peaks and crashes, relentless hunger, long-term health consequences.

This is why a healthy hormonal response is one of our four Good Food standards, and why we. But theres more to the story. And we assure you, there is good news. First, lets discuss glucagon.

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A catabolic energy access hormone secreted from the alpha cells of the pancreas in response to the demand for energy, either as a result of activity or after several hours without eating fasting. Glucagon unlocks the one-way door out of storage cells like liver and fat cells , and allows you to access the energy youve previously stored. Chronic stress, protein intake and low blood sugar levels stimulate glucagon release.

Glucagons function is inhibited by elevated insulin and free fatty acids in the blood. Lets recap our three Gs before we move on. Glucose is one form of sugar found in food and is also the type of sugar circulating in the bloodstream. Glycogen is the stored form of glucose, found in the liver and muscles. Glucagon is the energy access hormone, which triggers the conversion of glycogen in the liver back into glucose and releases it into the bloodstream for use as energy elsewhere in the body.

Got it? There is normally about five grams a teaspoon of blood sugar circulating in your bloodstream at any given time. However, for. The science-y term for this is hypoglycemia. Since glucose supply to the brain is literally a matter of life or deathyoull go into a coma if blood glucose levels dip extremely lowyour body has multiple fail-safe mechanisms to ensure that doesnt happen.

One of these mechanisms works via a hormone called glucagon. Just as insulin is the air conditioner for safe blood glucose levels, glucagon functions as the heater, preventing blood sugar levels from falling too low and giving us access to energy weve previously stored.

When the body senses a dip in normal blood sugar levels, alpha cells in the pancreas release glucagon. Glucagon then tells the body to break down stored fat and convert stored liver glycogen and, if necessary, protein from your.

There is a caveat.

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Glucagon can tell the cells to release stored energyand use body fatonly when theres not a lot of circulating insulin. After all, if insulin is elevated, nutrients are being stored as fast as theyre being mobilizedor faster. Which means that when insulin levels are elevated even moderately , the net effect is more energy storage than energy access. When you are insulin resistant and eat a high-carb meal, insulin levels stay high and echo throughout the body for a few hours.

Between meals, when you should be tapping into your fat stores for fuel, you cantbecause insulin is still talking, and glucagon cant get a word in edgewise. Strike seventeen against dietary habits that chronically elevate blood sugar and, in.

The takeaway: Glucagon cant help us stabilize blood sugar and access fat for energy if insulin levels are chronically elevated. Were almost done, so hang in there. We just need to introduce yet another hormone related to overcarbsumption, insulin resistance, and stress. Say hello to cortisol. The stress hormone secreted from the adrenal glands to help the body recover from an acute fight-or-flight stress response.

It is secreted in response to low blood sugar, physical or psychosocial stress, intense and prolonged exercise, and sleep deprivation. Cortisol plays a key role in salt metabolism, blood pressure, immune function having immunosuppressive and.

It raises blood sugar by stimulating glycogen breakdown. Chronically elevated cortisol promotes insulin resistance and tends to elevate leptin levels. Cortisol has a circadian rhythm that coincides with the light-dark cycle.

Cortisol is highest just before waking, functioning as a get up and go hormone during the early morning hours. It mobilizes energy for activity and helps to fire up your nervous system so that you mentally feel more like Einstein than like Homer Simpson. Cortisol levels then decline rapidly as the day progresses, remaining low in the late evening and overnight, helping you to relax before bed and sleep well until morning.

This does not allow you to hormonally wind down in the evening, which promotes that tired but wired effect. Sending your brain daytime messages right before bed also upsets normal hormonal responses like melatonin secretion when youre sleeping, so you dont get adequate deep, restorative sleep.

That sleep, and normal cortisol rhythms, are important for memory formation and future access. Now, where did you put your highlighter? Cortisol secretion is tied to many factors like sleep, exercise, and psychological. One of cortisols jobs is to help glucagon keep blood sugar within a healthy range. When your body senses that blood sugar is too low like when you havent eaten for a very long time or if it crashes too fast as they tend to do following a blood sugar spike when youre insulin resistant , it reacts to that stressful situation by releasing cortisol.

Cortisol then prompts glucagon to get to work, breaking down energy stored as liver glycogen or muscle tissue and flooding it into the bloodstream as a response to your volatile blood sugar levels. The trouble comes when your actions dietary or otherwise tell your body that youre very stressed all the time.

This causes your adrenals to release cortisol all the time. And when cortisol gets rowdy, it creates all sorts of troublesome of which is going to sound awfully familiar. Being chronically underslept, constantly over-exercising, or experiencing chronic psychological stressa hallmark of modern lifecan all trigger unhealthy levels of cortisol in the body. But so can prolonged periods of not eating extended fasting , or eating too little excessive calorie restriction.

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