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Transform Your Body and Health with Author, Speaker and Coach Jason Atkinson!


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Quick Start Keto Guide

Here’s a new episode I recorded for beginners or for those who need a refresher course on the basics. Please share this link with your friends and family members who are new to this lifestyle. There is so much bad advice out there!

I have a degree in health science education and put this program together for free to help people understand how to do this in a safe and sustainable way.

If you want to schedule a free 30 minute coaching session to customize the plan to your individual needs visit the Coaching tab in the main menu.

Click here to download the FREE BONUS PDF with show notes from today’s episode.

Never miss an episode! Subscribe by email or directly on Soundcloud  Tunein Podomatic or Castbox 

 

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The Holistic Approach with Dr. Colter

This week Dr. Colter returns to the show to share his insight on what it takes to achieve true health and wellness. I also announced the winners of the RSP Nutrition contest. Here’s an article from Dr. Colter’s blog that explains why a total lifestyle approach is essential to success.

Who doesn’t believe the ANSWER to weight loss , is PRIMARILY found in FOOD. Although this seems to make common sense, in reality, it is a MAJOR MISTAKE! Let me prove this with a simple analogy. If a person wanted to get an “A” in HISTORY or MATH (as a FINAL AVERAGE GRADE,) would: abstaining from […]

via UNDERSTANDING WHY FOCUSING ON “FOOD” ALONE WILL NEVER ACHIEVE LONG TERM WEIGHT LOSS — All About Healthy Choices


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Melissa McCourey RSP Nutrition Interview

Today’s guest, Melissa McCoury is a NASM certified trainer, figure and bikini competitor and all-around expert on anything pertaining to performance nutrition. She answers some questions about intermittent fasting and how to use a cyclical ketogenic approach to accelerate your results. Follow @fitfirstlady_rsp on Instagram now for a daily dose of inspiration!

We’re partnering with RSP Nutrition to give away 2 bottles of Quadralean and 2 bottles of RSP L-Carnitine to 4 lucky winners. Winner will be announced next Friday 8/4 on the podcast and on my Instagram account. Melissa and I will judge the best answer to the question “What else could RSP stand for?” Be creative, be funny but keep it clean. (😊 Remember the game you used to play with letters on license plates while traveling on the highway?) Most creative answers win!


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Fat Burning Comes Full Circle

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From an evolutionary standpoint, it makes no sense whatsoever to think that the human body would immediately begin to break down hard-earned muscle after going only a few hours without “refueling”.

If this were the case, our hunter-gatherer ancestors would have become weak and unable to hunt or otherwise procure food in the face of a relatively short term famine. So instead we developed the ability to store excess calories from food in our adipose tissue as fat along with the ability to access that fat for energy when needed due to a temporary shortage of food.

The truth is the idea that we need to be eating almost constantly is more a creation of the food manufacturing and marketing industry than actual human physiology.

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Most experts now agree that the window between “eating opportunities” has decreased from 4 1/2 hours down to about 3 hours over the past few decades.

The way this plays out in everyday life is millions of people hitting the fast-food window or vending machine for “something, anything” to suppress the sensations of hunger lurking around every corner. Millions of kids come home from school and eat Poptarts, cereal, granola bars, or whatever to “keep their energy up” or “help with concentration”.

On the more health-conscious side of things, I was one of those who honestly believed that eating a combination of protein and carbohydrates every three hours would speed up the metabolism and keep you in an anabolic (muscle building) state. I used this approach to lose over 50 lbs and even taught it in my lectures and used it to guide the progress of my clients.

But there is a better way.

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The fact is, once your metabolism has become adapted to burning fat for energy (even dietary fat) through nutrition and training it allows you to go longer periods of time between meals without sacrificing performance or energy and allows you to easily burn stored body fat for fuel.

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The “hammer and chisel” I’m talking about is a whole-food, nutrient dense diet that is higher in fat / moderate in protein and / lower carbohydrate,  combined with combined with a regular exercise program.

There is so much information overwhelm going on right now in the health, nutrition and wellness space surrounding these very concepts. This is what prompted me to begin writing on the subject. I have no agenda in mind other than helping people to get healthy and stay healthy.

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My experience is that the best ideas travel from one person to another just like they did thousands of years ago. If you’ve had a good experience with these concepts like I have and you want to help get the message out about making positive health changes, share something to help others!

 


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What’s on the Menu for Burning Fat?

macronutrientsRight now, the world of nutrition science is converging on a few new and novel ideas. Some of the most popular trends at the moment are paleo, primal, ketogenic, carb-cycling and intermittent fasting, just to name a few.

After years of study and practice I’ve determined there are no hard and fast rules to any of this. (They’re more like suggestions actually). A healthy diet is more of a result of what you don’t eat rather than what you do eat. The common factor in all of the popular diets I just mentioned is this:

Eat Real FoodThere you have it! I know this is a revelation for many people but food isn’t the problem, it’s the solution.

The real problem isn’t excess calories. It’s not even excess sugar or fat or any other nutrient. The real problem is excess manufactured foods. When real food is taken out of its natural state, whether ground up powder-fine as with flour or having tons of sodium or other preservatives added as with canned foods, it’s the same effect.

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At one time, I would have devoured a whole pizza without giving it a second thought.

When I first began my journey from being obese to attaining a healthy body weight.  My initial changes were things like substituting a protein shake for my nightly bowl of ice cream or other sweet indulgence. This was a step in the right direction. I started measuring the sugar I put into my coffee instead of just mindlessly pouring it in. Later, I replaced the sugar with honey since it’s a natural product and is absorbed more efficiently. Now I don’t sweeten my coffee at all. I put MCT oil and butter in it and drink it black just before my morning workout to jump start my fat burning for the day.

I have eliminated whole categories of foods, for example abandoning soft drinks completely. (I haven’t had a soda in over five years and I don’t miss it at all.) I cut back on all types of fast food and completely eliminated anything from McDonald’s menu in particular. Here’s why:

Screenshot_20170525-113321Recently, I’ve also ditched all flour and grains from my diet completely. These types of changes are not for everyone. No, I don’t suffer from IBS, Celiac or any other inflammatory condition. I just believe that the health risks of consuming grains outweigh the benefits.

So what’s left after making these changes?

Variety of fresh fruit and vegetablesThe foundation of my diet (and any truly healthy diet in my opinion) is vegetables. Tons and tons of vegetables. Along with a few fruits, these provide loads of fiber, vitamins and minerals. Plus, they fill you up without all the extra calories or negative effects of processed foods.

10401886_413228245485337_2640373231153992868_nI eat meat as a source of protein along with eggs and some dairy, mostly because of the demands from weight training and other forms of exercise. I don’t count grams or macronutrient ratios anymore because I think doing this probably leads to unnecessary over consumption of these foods but I get an adequate amount to rebuild and repair muscle tissue and maximize nutrient intake.

betteravacadoFinally fats! (I saved the best for last.)😁When people first hear about approaches like ketogenic or high fat diets, their first thought is something like “Yeah! All the cheese and bacon I want!” Well….not exactly.

The best sources of fat are from plants. These are things like olives, olive oil, tree nuts like almonds, pecans, walnuts and macadamias, coconuts and of course my beloved avocados! I don’t think a little butter or cheese will kill you but I don’t eat a stick a day either.

Some healthy fats can be found in animal sources too. For example, omega 3 fatty acids from fish are great for heart health, brain health, circulation and as an anti-inflammatory for reliving aches and pains in the joints. Also, the fat from grass-fed and free-range animals contains less omega 6 fats and higher amounts of omega 3’s than those fed a grain based diet.

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Which leads me to my next point. Not all plant-based fats are healthy either. Commercially produced industrial seed oil such as soy, corn, and canola are rich in omega 6’s and are highly inflammatory in the human body. This brings us back to where we began. “Fake foods are the real problem.” and you can quote me on that!

You may also enjoy reading:

Origins and Evolution of the Western diet: health implications for the 21st century Loren Cordain, S Boyd Eaton et al. from The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 

This is the original research paper that sparked the current interest in ancestral health practices and popularized what has become known as the “Paleo” movement by proposing that coronary heart disease and other metabolic conditions are due to excessive consumption of Industrial Era foods (such as cereals, refined grains, added sugars, refined vegetable oils, fatty meats, salt, and combinations of these foods) rather than being based solely on excess saturated fat consumption as was previously believed.

 


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Training for Maximum Fat Burning

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When people ask “What’s the best type of exercise to burn fat, weight training or cardio?” my standard response is “Both!” You see, different types of activity rely on different energy “pathways” and so they affect our metabolism differently.

Moderate-intensity activity such as walking, hiking, cycling, etc utilizes a mix of glycogen (stored carbohydrate) and fat to fuel performance. If you are following a lower-carbohydrate eating plan the muscles will burn fat more readily once the glycogen stores have been depleted. (This is why I recommend doing weight training first before a cardio session.)

Higher-intensity activity like running or higher-repetition weight training uses more glycogen (carbohydrate) for fuel but it also pushes the body to make more adaptations resulting in a higher level of fitness along with  increased cardiovascular capacity, improved ability to utilize oxygen, improved blood pressure, reduced insulin levels, and more.

The best mix I’ve discovered when it comes to cardiovascular exercise is something called H.I.I.T or High-Intensity-Interval-Training.

It sounds complicated but it’s really not! It simply involves alternating bursts of higher effort with lower-intensity or recovery periods.

My standard pattern is 5 rounds of 5 minute cycles going from lower to higher intensity effort on an elliptical machine. I increase the resistance level each minute. On every 5th minute I try to push my heart rate to about 75%-80% of my max.

Another secret to maximizing fat burning during exercise is to keep the intensity to a level that allows you to breathe through your nose. Once you reach a level that requires you to breathe through your mouth you have crossed from aerobic (with oxygen) to anaerobic (without oxygen) and are more likely to require glucose from stored carbohydrates or worse, force your body to break down your hard earned muscle tissue and turn it into glucose!

The majority of effort needed to transform your physique  and improve your health can come from dietary changes and a few key supplements. It’s not necessary to go so hard in the gym that you don’t enjoy your workouts. Put these tips into practice and take your workout to a whole new level!


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Wake Up and Smell the FAT Burning!

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If you’re like most Americans you’ve spent a lifetime training your body (and being trained) to use sugar as a primary source of fuel. The problem is not only does eating that way spike your insulin creating cravings for sweets, but it also keeps you from burning fat efficiently.

The secret is out! You have to eat fat to burn fat. In the fullness of time, the idea of a high-carbohydrate, low-fat diet turned out to be a really bad idea. It all started in 1977 when the McGovern Report was issued showing a low-fat diet as preventative for heart disease. It further escalated in 1992 when the USDA Food Guide Pyramid was introduced showing “6-11 servings of bread, cereal, rice and pasta” as the basis of a healthy way of eating. An entire generation of Americans was indoctrinated to this nonsense and it shaped food policy for decades.

“Sweets” are all the way at the top of the pyramid, mixed in with fats and oils and a word of caution: Use Sparingly. Ironically, flour-based products impact blood sugar levels just like cookies and candy (even though they don’t taste sweet) while fats and oils of the right type are actually health promoting!

foodPyramid

In response to the announcement that fat was unhealthy and carbohydrates were now the best choice. The multi-billion dollar food industry began churning out “fat-free” versions of everything. When we pulled the fat out however, we put tons of sugar in its place. This led to an epidemic in obesity, diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and related conditions (Metabolic Syndrome) unlike any in history.

NEWS FLASH: Just last year the USDA revised the guidelines and for the first time in 25 years they completely removed all restrictions on total dietary fat and set limits on total sugar intake!

Why wasn’t this more widely publicized? Isn’t this absolutely earth-shattering news? Here’s a link to an article from The Harvard School of Public Health which summarizes the major changes. It’s much easier to read than the USDA website itself.

Here are a few Fast Facts About Fat:

  • Dietary fat does not promote the release of insulin, a fat-storage hormone produced by the pancreas in response to carbohydrate, and to a lesser degree, protein intake.
  • The purpose of insulin is to transport glucose (blood sugar) into the muscle cells to be used as energy, into the liver as glycogen which is used as fuel for the brain or into fat cells (adipose tissue) to be stored as, you guessed it, body fat.
  • When total carbohydrate intake exceeds energy and immediate storage demands it is stored primarily as body fat.
  • High amounts of refined carbohydrate intake keep insulin levels elevated effectively locking the stored body fat into the adipose tissue.
  • Over time, muscle (and adipose) tissue become “resistant” to insulin and will not allow more glucose to enter. Left unchecked, this can eventually become Type 2 or “Adult-Onset” Diabetes.
  • The easiest “treatment” is reducing overall carbohydrate consumption, especially simple ones like those found in sugar and flour-based products.
  • The effect of insulin is blunted  somewhat when carbohydrates are consumed with adequate protein and fat.

Recommended Resources:

Mark’s Daily Apple (Mark Sisson)  What Does it Mean to be Fat-Adapted?

Dr. Joseph Mercola: Anti-Obesity Report Calls for High-Fat Diet Recommendations

Dr Mark Hyman MD : 10 Reasons Why You Should Eat Fat to Get Thin

Free Bonus: Eat Fat Get Thin 80 Page Beta Test Manual PDF

Dr Robert H Lustig: Why is a Calorie NOT a Calorie? (Video)