Take your nutrition to a level which you can maintain, step by step
In anticipation that not everybody can or want commit fully to a sugar free life why not take it to a level which suits you and your circumstances. The following 6 levels describe what changes can be applied to make a difference.
#1 Use plenty of healthy fats
Healthy fats: Omega 3&6 oil in 2:1 ratio
Why: The body needs ESSENTIAL FATTY ACIDS (EFAs) to “drive”. Every cell, tissue, gland and organ is dependent upon the presence of EFAs. Our biggest organ, the skin, requires plenty of EFAs (from the inside). The body can’t produce them, they must come from an outside source. Omega 3/6/9 oil made with health in mind provides the body with all EFAs. Do not heat it (e.g. frying) otherwise the molecules get destroyed and the oil turns toxic. Use plenty as it is a foundation and not a supplement.
How much: Here is a guideline based on “Udo’s Choice”, an oil blend high in Omega 3,6 and 9. Use ca. 15ml per 25kg bodyweight per day. For example if your weight is 75kg you use 45ml “Udo’s Choice” per day. If you are an athlete it is ca. 28ml per day and per 25kg bodyweight.
Health benefits: Reduces inflammation and joint pain, increases bone strength, has positive influences on HDL, LDL, total cholesterol, blood pressure etc. If you have skin problems such as Acne the EFA’s oil intake will reduce the inflammations in your skin!
What is wrong with regular oils?: In a profit and long shelf life driven industry fats such as regular oils are subject to high heat (e.g. 245°C for 1 hour) and aren’t protected from light and air. Heat, light and oxygen changes fat molecules from natural and healthy to unnatural and toxic. The body can’t break them down for usage and has to store them instead. One day the storage cupboard (here the cell) is full and can’t take on more of the toxins – that’s when the alarm bells start to ring and the body tries to find a way out of the misery with strategies we call illness.
Recommendations: Udos Choice Oil, a carefully blended mix of the finest organic Omega 3, 6 and 9 varieties of Essential Fatty Acids, is a premium-quality healthy oil with a pleasant, light nutty flavour. I purchase Udos Choice Oil online at Bodykind.
If you live in Germany you can also get the Balance 3 Speiseöl from Egle. Wherever you live, you will be able to find an Omega 3/6 oil in your local health food shop.
#2 Avoid most fast food
Fast food: all take away you can order over the phone, get at a fast food chain, or ready to eat meals from the supermarket with the exceptions below.
Exceptions: From my experiences there are two takeaways which suit the sugar free bill when ordered not on a daily basis. First it is a hot Indian meal; you only order the main meal (not the nan bread, rice etc.). Opt for a good Indian restaurant which uses good and fresh ingredients. A spicy hot meal contains rarely sugar. When ordering I always ask that the meal should be without any flour or sugar. The second option is a Döner Kebab, which is very well known and loved in Germany but also available in England and of course its origin Turkey. Basically you eat the Döner with salad and a hot spicy dressing without bread.
Why: Fast food is too high in carbs, too low in protein, contains transfats and lacks nutrients.
Instead: Cook/prepare your meals from scratch. That my sound daunting for students or people with an overloaded schedule, however it is possible. It’s so convenient to pick up the phone and order something? It’s all a question of good organisation. Make a meal plan for one week and go shopping for all ingredients needed that week. When meal time approaches you then have everything you need at home. Cooking itself doesn’t take longer than waiting for the pizza boy. Keep it simple and use lots of herbs and spices. There are plenty of video clips and recipes online of Jamie Oliver, Riverford Organic, Marry Berry and similar to get inspiration and an appetite for good home-made food.
#3 Avoid cows milk products
Why: Cows milk is counterproductive if you want to increase your calcium intake. Amongst other things, it is highly mucus forming. When consuming cows milk the intestinal membranes can get clogged up by an almost impermeable coat of mucus, restricting absorption of nutrients including calcium, magnesium and zinc needed to form bones and keep a healthy skin. Detailed information here: The Milk Controversy
Instead: Have goats and sheep’s milk/cheese/yoghurt. Overall lower this alternative dairy intake. If you have skin problem such as Acne avoid all dairy products completely.
#4 Stay away from comfort food
Comfort food: sweets, chocolate, biscuits, crisps, cakes, fizzy/energy drinks …
Why: Comfort food is too high in carbs (sugar) and contains a huge amount of empty calories (no nutritional value). This type of food is not eaten because of real honest hunger!
Instead: Replace the occasional treat or need with raspberries, nuts, 90% chocolate, goat/sheep yoghurt, cream, piece of goat/sheep cheese, slice of cold meat…Have raspberries, either cold (available frozen) or hot, mixed with plain! goat or sheep yoghurt or cream and seasoned with cinnamon. A piece of 90% chocolate is also fine. Nuts with less than 5% carbohydrate content are a healthy and tasty alternative. I love to roast the nuts with spices such as cardamom, chili or cayenne pepper. As natural sweetener you can use Stevia. I order my Stevia supply online at Stevia-Trade, but you can also find it at Amazon.
How: Observe where and why you get “the urge” for comfort and ignore the silent “pick me” calls from the sweet shelves in shops and petrol stations. Instead of fizzy drinks choose still or sparkle water, added with a piece of fresh ginger to the bottle for taste. Be aware that sugar is an addiction like alcohol and cigarettes and efforts in reducing/abstinence is a challenge like climbing Mount Everest.
#5 No draining breakfast
Draining breakfast: cereals, muesli, weetabix, porridge, bread/toast and everything else high in starch and sugar.
Why: All these as “healthy” advertised products are far too high in carbohydrates. Compare the carbohydrate contents of your cereals with chocolate or biscuits (see label for Nutrition Information) and decide if your cereals are healthy or comfort. For example the carbohydrate content based on 100g in a Snickers bar is 54.3g – Kellogs Cornflakes has 84g, Quaker Porridge Oats 60g. The carbohydrates are not used up over the next few hours as you either sit in a car or at a desk but aren’t constantly exercising. Your insulin rockets and your body transforms the excess carbohydrates into fat. This is the basic building block for obesity and a variety of chronic diseases.
Instead: Have a boosting breakfast made of starch-free vegetables, olives, proteins (egg, goats/sheep cheese or yoghurt, meat, tofu) and a good omega 3/6/9 oil.
#6 Cut out starchy food
Starchy food: bread, pasta, rice, potatoes, fat-reduced products
Why: It is not the fat that makes us fat – this is a long refuted logic from the 80’s, but the excess of carbohydrates, so called undeclared fats. Starchy food is high in carbohydrates and is not essential for our body. Even an athlete can achieve excellent results when avoiding all starchy food and keeping to the other rules/levels. Most packaged products (including sausages) are packed with refined starch. Fat-reduced products, e.g. low-fat yoghurts are also high in starch.
Instead: Most starchy food are side dishes and not necessary for a meal. Just have meals without these fillers and increase your portions of vegetable (low in starch), fresh proteins and healthy oils (omega 3/6). The low fat products are marketing illusions which you can easily replace with the original versions.