“A table, a chair, a bowl of fruit and a violin; what else does a man need to be happy?” – Albert Einstein
The more time you spend distinguishing fitness facts from fallacies, the clearer it becomes that a majority of those giving nutrition advice in the lay press are clueless posers. I’m repeatedly amazed how these “gurus” somehow manage to sneak their way through in a jungle full of misinformation by making ridiculous claims without any scientific support to back them up, and get heralded as visionaries in spite of leading people astray with their woo-woo practices.
I am, of course, referring to snake oil salesmen and saleswomen who exploit the system and make a fortune out of other people’s misery by telling us that losing an ounce of fat or getting stronger is impossible without this, that or the other supplement, or by declaring how a low-carb diet is superior to all other nutritional plans, irregardless of the person’s goals, activity levels and body composition.
In addition, as you leaf through the morning newspaper before rushing off to work, you can ever so often count on crossing paths with an article where the “fat loss expert” advices against certain foods or food groups – such as eggs, red meat, saturated fat etc. – because they’re “bad for you”.
Recently, a lot of fuss has been made about fruits and how they supposedly can make you fat.Continue Reading
With all the giant strides taken in science and technology during the past few decades, you’d think we would have progressed in our knowledge of food as well.
If anything we have regressed. People have become so out of tune concerning nutrition that they need guidance from others as to what consitutes “healthy” food, an alarming trend clearly evidenced by the recent decision of Walmart to add a label on their products indicating what you should put in your mouth and what not.
“The label, ‘Great For You’ will be placed on the front of various food products, urging customers to go for the healthy option, rather than the foods without the ‘Great For You’ icon. According to Walmart, the label will be seen on Market-side items, Walmart Great Value products, and also fruits, vegetables, and nutritious food choices, hopefully resulting in healthier eating by shoppers.” (1)
This news is saying a lot because most people would probably call the U.S. the idiot and obesity capital of the world. And you can bet your sweet ass that when America resorts to actions like this one the rest of the Western nations will follow suit.
As a consequence people rely more and more on “authorities” to dictate to them what they should be doing, in opposition to everyone educating themselves up to the point where they can make sound, intelligent decisions based on facts they’ve gathered like a human being with an inkling of cognitive prowess should.
Nevermind that following the advice of self-proclaimed gurus or government officials can be as fucked up as Edward Scissorhands masturbating to a porn flick featuring a crew of Thai shemales, talking seagulls and Leslie Nielsen as Dracula.Continue Reading
Recently, carbs have become public nemesis numero uno.
Let’s correct things once and for all.
Carbohydrates are optimal fuel for the body. They are being used as energy to carry out daily activies and exercise.
Now go ahead and minimize your carb intake for the next month. I’d be more than surprised if you still had the energy to barrel through your workouts with the same vigor as Jack Black destroys leftovers backstage at the Oscar’s (assuming you’re not training like a total wimp). Not to mention you’re prone to getting weaker and losing muscle, which is about as smart as climbing inside an oven and getting roasted alive like that Obi character did in Saw 2.
And since inevitably someone reading this is bound to wittily remark how they’ve lost XX kilograms ever since dropping carbs from their diet…
The reason you got fat in the first place is not because you ate carbs, it’s because you ate too much of EVERYTHING and failed to burn enough calories through proper training to lose or even maintain weight.
Carbs are not the enemy. Your lack of self-discipline is.
For years dietitians, government health authorities and a whole array of other more or less perplexed individuals have been vilifying eggs, shouting on top of soap boxes how you should limit egg intake (usual recommendation: to 1 whole egg/day) unless your aim is to commit nutritional suicide by catapulting your cholesterol levels, clogging up your arteries and finally dropping dead after years of agony as a direct result of horrendous egg overconsumption, making everybody under the sun confused as hell and scared shitless in the process.
In fact, I can still acutely remember how eggs were bullied in my household as I was growing up, too.
When I asked my mom “why can’t I eat more than one egg today?” with an 11-year-old’s infinite curiosity, she merely replied with “because it’s bad for your cholesterol”, most probably without even being aware of any scientific evidence behind her reasoning, thus ending that particular discussion abruptly and letting hearsay prevail.
Fortunately, as we grow older and (hopefully) engage in the habit of questioning “conventional wisdom”, we discover that our parents are not the magically intellectual creatures with super powers we once in our little minds had them pegged as.
Sure, they did a good job for about three minutes it took to conceive you, then gave birth to you, provided you with food, shelter and clothing when you couldn’t take care of yourself and (hopefully again) gave you a beating to remember for the ages if you were acting outta line, if only to remind you that nobody likes a bratty kid.
Nevertheless, our parents do have their flaws as well. And more often than not they’ll absorb and pass on false nutrition information just like everybody else, because they “read about it in a paper”, “heard it from a colleague” or the most fatal one – “everybody knows that it’s true”.Continue Reading
The other day we laid the foundation for fixing your nutritional habits.
Now that we have gotten the basics down, it’s time to dig deeper and uncover what the food we eat consists of.
Nutrition contains all kinds of different minerals and vitamins but what really is of interest to us in the realm of body recomposition are macronutrients – proteins, carbohydrates and fats.
Each of these three macronutrients are equally important and should be consumed in moderation.
Contrary to mainstream nutrition advice, don’t make the mistake of cutting carbs/fats drastically for longer periods of time… this will only hinder your progress.
Now let’s talk proteins…
Protein is essential to the structure of red blood cells, for the proper functioning of antibodies resisting infection, for the regulation of enzymes and hormones, for growth and for the repair of body tissue.
When you’re training with weights, you don’t make your muscles bigger. In fact, you actually cause microscopically small tears in muscle tissue. This damage can only be reversed if enough building blocks in the form of healthy nutrition – especially protein – are available.
As you notice, weightlifting can only give the stimulus that is needed for muscle growth. Then, by eating quality foods in the right quantities, your body will repair this damage, making your muscles bigger and stronger.
So far no scientific consensus has been reached on “optimal” daily protein intake. Depending on whom you quote that amount can deviate quite radically.Continue Reading
As you know by now, quality nutrition is at least as important as training when it comes to getting ripped.
You can’t out-train a bad diet.
A quick look at the calendar tells us is that time of the year again when people commence yet another journey towards a beach body look for the summer, only to fail miserably and quit by March while remaining a sucky, disgusting lardass.
In my mind there’s no friggin’ excuse for why you shouldn’t come out of the winter looking like a lean beast, dominating shit like Genghis Khan, all ready to fight and fuck your way to awesome.
Lately I’ve been told that finding solid, simple advice on how to eat properly is as rare as a good hair day for Donald Trump, so I came up with this 5 part series that should alleviate all your questions and headaches regarding eating proper foods.
There are countless books and articles devoted to nutrition and physique improvement out there, so obviously we won’t be descending too deep down the rabbit hole but merely reading this series will put you ahead of 98% of the population.
Now let’s get going…
First we need to cover some basics… just bear with me as I lay out the theoretical aspects. It’s essential to understand the “why” and ”what” before one can successfully devour the “how”.
I think it would also make sense at this point to underline that when I talk about a “diet”, I refer to its primary definition – “food and drink regularly provided or consumed”.
You’ll never read or hear me advocating mainstream dieting techniques and tactics which tell you to eat like a pigeon and completely starve yourself, leaving you weak, fat and frustrated… scams like that just don’t cut it with me.Continue Reading
Training and dieting are simple concepts complicated by idiots trying to make excuses or sell you something.
Unfortunately, said idiots are far too often found in the mainstream dishing out advice without bothering to check their facts or question outdated beliefs. You’ll be hard-pressed to find a topic as thoroughly chewed to bare bones as nutrition, yet not a day goes by that some eager asshole somewhere claims to have found THE ULTIMATE diet, writing a book on it and ripping off a considerable bunch of lazy and naive sheeple with the logic of a 3-year-old who believe anything worthwhile could be accomplished without true effort on their part.
There’s an overabundance of training and nutrition info out there, many sources saying completely contradictory things. Whom should you listen to?
Nonetheless, legit advice is still out there. The trick lies in learning how to filter through the many layers of crap surrounding the truth.
But that’s merely the starting point. You need to be willing to put that knowledge to work, fighting your way through trial and error in order to finally reap the rewards.
Personally, out of all the lies we’ve been subjected to fitness wise in the past couple of decades, the one about eating every few hours has got to be the foundation for most frustration – what with all the careful planning, preparing, packaging and timing of every meal I went through in the past.
How come we never bothered to stop and think about the validity of this theory for a sec? Instead, we kept on repeating a misbelief like friggin’ parrots until everybody was convinced it had to be true.Continue Reading
We’ve all read the instructions regarding proper diet setup in various health & fitness magazines: “You need to eat frequent meals every 2-3 hours to keep your metabolism jacked at all times and prevent muscle catabolism.”
And I gotta admit, had you asked me for my take on this piece of advice a year ago, I would have told ya exactly the same.
Hell, everybody was and still is touting 6 meals per day as the only way to shed bodyfat.
But there’s one piece of the puzzle that trumps information presented on any message board, magazine or TV show.
I guess the fact that I was constantly spending time in the kitchen planning, weighing, preparing and eating meals every couple of hours for months on end turned out to be the proverbial final straw which pushed me to seek alternatives better suited for my lifestyle. That, plus the increased habit of turning down invites to social gatherings since I didn’t want to be carrying Tupperware boxes everywhere I went.
After all, as much as I’m keen on learning about all things nutrition and fitness, I don’t want to be possessed by them.
This led me to discover Intermittent Fasting, through which I broke free of the mental prison where food was keeping me locked away behind imaginary restrictions.Continue Reading
I came across this quick ‘n easy recipe last week. Nothing fancy but the combination of banana, lemon juice and thyme on toast brings up the taste a notch or two above your typical bread & butter sammy, making this one a pretty darn good choice for a bite at breakfast.
What you need:
2 slices of toast bread
1 tablespoon honey
slices of ham or turkey
1/2 lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon thymeContinue Reading