This month we added part 2 to budget foods for abs, with the follow up budget foods for abs: Customized diet plan. And it was there where we explained how to go about improving the quality of your diet.
Why would you want to improve the quality of your diet?
Because you literally are what you eat…
”Change is one of those guaranteed constants”
That statement holds true for everything in life. Everything changes. The current becomes the old. The old die to make way for the new. Sorry to sound like a depressed FitBuzzer, but it’s true. And the same holds true to how your body works when you consume food. As you read this… old cells in your body are dying and new cells are being created from the foods you eat. Therefore, as the saying goes… you are what you eat. Which is why when you eat trash, you’ll look like trash. And when you eat well, you’ll well… look well. Which is why it’s pretty important to take that fact seriously. Because it’s not only the short term affects you have to worry about. It’s the long term affects too, all of which we discuss in the plan.
Improving the quality of your diet
I already talked about how most big chain supermarkets will spam your brain full of foods with unregulated labels such as “antibiotic free,” “hormone free” and ”low fat” all in order to get you to buy. And a more recent concern is the labeling of foods that have been labeled natural, yet have actually been genetically modified. The real affect of these GM foods has yet to be fully confirmed or researched as yet. The main thing we do know is that most of those foods will end up as processed foods on your plate, which of course leads to a lower quality food score. But in order to really improve the quality of your food just take it back through history, to where it first came from.
“Did this food come out of the ground or off of a tree/plant?”
If yes = Natural A rated food source.
Or ‘‘Did this food source walk, swim or fly once upon a time?”
If yes = Natural A rated food source
The life of an An orange
Let’s start from nutritionally bad to nutritionally good.
- An Orange = A Rated food source (Grown from the roots of the earth) – Also a great post workout food source too. (Most fruits are).
- Unsweetened Orange jam/jelly = Tastes great on that sliced bread. But it is now a B Rated food source, because the orange has been processed. It’s no longer ALL natural.
- Orange juice = Has been processed further, even less natural. Now a C rated food source.
- Orange juice + sugar = Naturally this will lower the once A rated orange to a now D rating.
- Orange meringue = More sugar. More fat. Heck, this once fine orange has now ended up as an F rated food source (Which isn’t all bad actually. Remember the rules of the Budget foods for abs diet plan?)
Now, we have mentioned this before. But the majority of your calories should…
1. Come from A rated food sources
2. Come from slow digesting food sources
That is the main way to gauge how natural the foods in your diet are. However, you also need to know where and how to buy these foods and what to look out for.
How to avoid GM or unregulated labeled foods
Now if course, it is important to add variety to your diet. However, for the most part your diet will need to be clean. The the only way to be sure that your diet truly is all natural is by buying certified organic foods (Learn more about that here ). There are 2 ways which you can do this.
#1 Do more of your shopping at a health food store – You’ll find a ton of natural foods with a lot of variety to match compared to your high street supermarket
#2 Demand labeling for genetically modified foods – Alternatively you could contact the FDA and demand for this in your state. The agency will be accepting comments on the ‘Just Label It’ petition until February 18.
I could dig deeper into this topic, but for now, that covers the basics on how to ensure that the foods that you eat really are natural.
You want to get mean and lean, right? Of course you do. And that will be the goal for many Fitbuzzers. Especially those that became a strong part of the original Facebook fan page, which led to the creation of this website.
You may have also been told that ‘starchy’ (e.g. white potatoes) carbs are the enemy on the goal to getting lean. Which of course, is not true. And you’ve heard me say that before (Man made/processed carbs are the enemy). We have stated that most of your diet should consist of slow digesting carbs, and today we’ll go into detail to why that is.
The Low Glycemic Index and Carbs
The reason it is so important to measure a carbohydrate’s impact on blood sugar is because of its influence on insulin production. Insulin is a hormone released by the pancreas in response to changes in blood sugar levels. The faster carbohydrates are digested and converted to glucose, the faster insulin is produced to stabilize blood sugar levels, using the glycemic index as a measure. Below we list the benefits of consuming mostly slow digesting carbs, which in most cases will be low on the Glycemic Index and a more natural A-rated food source (Remember, you really are what you eat. Fitbuzzers will NOT look like s**t… got it? Good! :)).
- Low GI means a smaller rise in blood glucose levels after meals.
- Low GI diets can help people lose body fat and increase lean muscle mass.
- Low GI diets can improve the body’s sensitivity to insulin.
- Low GI diets can improve the ratio of insulin to glucagon.
- Low GI foods can help replenish carbohydrates stores after exercise.
- Low GI can prolong muscle endurance and energy levels.
- Low GI can improve diabetes control.
- Low GI foods keep you feeling fuller for longer.
Using the glycemic index as a measure, carbohydrates that are digested faster have a higher GI because they cause a greater increase in blood glucose and insulin levels. You will of course want to avoid high insulin levels, because insulin suppresses fat utilization and promotes fat storage. The quick increase in blood sugar caused by high GI carbs can also have a negative impact on performance. What we at Stay-Fit Buzz call getting ‘zapped’.
Avoid getting zapped
By now, you’ll understand how to go about living the Stay-Fit Buzz lifestyle. The fun part of that is being able to snack on D-F rated foods because of the caloric deficit you created. However, when doing so, you’ll want to avoid getting zapped. Which is Stay-Fit Buzz terminology for the scientific term known as hypoglycemia.
What is hypoglycemia?
Hypoglycemia happens when you eat a lot of high GI carbs. This will spike your insulin levels to above normal levels. Resulting in low blood sugar levels, and this is where Hypoglycemia occurs. If this happens to you, you may experience the following
- Anxiety Fatigue
- Light-headedness (“delirium”),
- A coma (But this is only in extreme cases)
Nothing will hinder your progress more than getting zapped, and will affect your ability to train insane (Max capacity). If this does ever happen to you (Feel weak and dizzy with cold sweats), just consume some carbs. But in general, you’ll want to avoid getting into a
hypoglycemic state. What we like to call, getting ‘zapped’. Eat mostly low GI index foods most of the time to avoid this. That’s one of the reasons why nutritional timing is important, and why it’s a staple in the Stay-Fit Buzz diet lifestyle.
Stay Fit Buzz Glycemic Index table
The following table is a list of all the carbohydrate based food sources, in the form of popular brands that you’ll find them in. Most of their caloric content comes from the carbohydrates and they provide proportionately very little protein or fat.
1. Eat mostly slow digesting carbs (Other than when you workout).
2. Only eat foods with a higher GI for your left over calories when following the Stay-Fit
Bug lifestyle diet.
And to then, eat a food source that’s higher in protein and/or fat. When these carbohydrates are consumed with these other foods, they will then have a lower glycemic value. The following carb foods are broken down into high, moderate, and low GI classes. Keep this in mind when looking up the glycemic index of specific “junk foods.”Their glycemic index may seem suitable from a GI standpoint, but they may fall short in many other areas ,with inadequate protein content and high levels of saturated fat. Try to limit your selections to moderate and low whenever possible. It is these foods that you can add to your diet. (Sorry… LIFESTYLE).
When looking up GI values, you may run into conflicting GI values when looking at various sources. This may seem very confusing, but there is an accepted and reasonable explanation for this. Different methods of processing used by particular manufacturers can lead to significant differences in the rate of carbohydrate digestion by the human body. Also, there may be botanical differences in the type of food being tested. Rice can be from anywhere in the world, and one “white rice”may contain more amylose than another. Amylose is digested more slowly than amylopectin, which is another starch found in other white rice. The take away? Don’t be a fanatic about GI values. Just use everything as a gauge to understanding how and which foods will affect affect your results when you consume them.
Why you should eat carbs AND protein with every meal?
Because insulin and glucagon are both influenced by blood sugar levels. High-glycemic carbohydrates foods such as Poptarts(tm) sugar cause insulin levels to be high and glu-cagon levels to be low. Since insulin promotes the increase in body fat and glucagon mobilizes and burns body fat, this obviously isn’t the metabolism you will want. Lower glycemic carbohydrates, especially when they are consumed with protein, shifts the levels of these two hormones, lowering insulin and slightly raising glucagon. This is the correct and ideal “hormonal profile”for effective fat burning. And of course, for the life of the FBA lifestyle, more lean muscle mass and therefore… abs! Just be consistent by making this a habit.
Next week we’ll be focusing on insulin, and answering questions such as…
- How does insulin affect performance?
- Is insulin needed for muscle growth or does it just store fat?
- What are some of the other negative effects of insulin?
- What is insulin resistance?
Here’s one final tip.
It’s all about Body composition.
You often hear people say that muscle weighs more than fat. Muscle does not weigh more than fat. It simply takes up less space than fat. Which is why two people of equal height and body weight may look completely different from each other, because they have a different body composition. And again, we’ll be covering this next week. Which is something we have not yet covered in the Lifestyle Diet… yet.
You always hear about carbs being the enemy on the quest for fat loss and getting lean. But that simply is not true. And the people you hear it from either lack knowledge on the subject, or have picked it up from inaccurate sources. Because there are various things to consider when consuming carbs.
– The type of carbs
– The time of day you eat them
– Slow or digesting kind
– The food sources they came from (Think in terms of the quality of that food – more on that here)
And the picture above contains carbs that will make for an ideal breakfast snack or lunch. Here’s why…
We’re talking about the salads/veggies on the left here. These are fibourous carbs. Fiber in general is great for controlling blood sugar levels and helps aid in the quest for fat loss. But the reason why salads make for great carbs is because they lack caloric density. This basically means that you can eat a ton of salads and vegetables without having to worry about piling on the pounds. Because it will take consuming A LOT of veggies to even make a small dent to your daily maintaincae calorie levels. And it’s also not very likely that you would want to either, as with most A-rated foods (aka the best food sources for optimum fitness and health), they’re pretty tasteless. And that’s why they also make for a great side dish to a A-rated protein stacked meal. e.g
A rated (Proteins)
• Egg whites
• Non-fat cottage cheese
A rated (Fats)
• Flaxeeds (with oatmeal that you ate for breakfast earlier)
• Fish oil (In capsule form with your meal)
A rated (Carbs)
• Brussel sprouts
• Green Beans
• Collard greens
• Green and red peppers
• All other fibrous carbs, green vegetables or salad vegetables
We wouldn’t usually put fruits here as they’re a fast digesting carb food source and make for a good post workout food in order to spike your insulin levels at that much needed time. However, the majority of your lifestyle diet should consist of natural A-rated foods. A-rated simply because if you eat the best, you’ll look the best and if you eat trash, you’ll eventually look like trash. And fruits such as berries may be sugary. But they’re also relatively low on the glycemic index and most important of all, they’re ALL natural. And it’s always a good idea to add some variety to your diet, just like our caveman ancestors.
So instead of adding refined sugars to your oatmeal or whatever it is you decide to have for breakfast (hopefully mostly A-rated foods :)). Just make it a habit to eat/add some fruit instead to boost the taste. But only make this a habit later on in the journey, especially if you’re the insulin resistant or hypoglycemic type.
Forget about the tea that you see in the picture. Just trade it in for Jasmine Pearls Green Tea. This is something we spoke about in the special foods for fat loss video.
It smells like just like Jasmine flowers (… mmmm). Jasmine Green Tea goes down very well. The premium Jasmine Green Tea lies with Jasmine Flowers, with new flowers being brought in 7 or 8 times a season. Watch out for the knock offs though. You can tell if it’s a knock off because it will be sprayed with a Jasmine scent or include some small flower petals in the bag. Fake!
If you previously signed up to the Fitbuzzer email updates, you would have received a bonus content email explaining why you shouldn’t treat your diet like a typical diet. And at the end of 2011, we kick started that series with the Fitbuzzer requested budget foods for abs. And from there on you can learn exactly how to apply the above in an interesting ways to match.
Remember, you can kick start your profile and automatically upload your progress pictures => HERE. Let the FBA motivation continue! 🙂
This article was written by Shaun Sinclair. Shaun Sinclair is a former pro track athlete and original Founder of Stay-Fit Buzz. And also played a key role to the creation of FBA (Which inspired the creation of this website) from the Facebook Fan Page.
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