Chapter 2 – Eat
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We are what we eat. And we’re eating serial killers.
We lack the capability to check ourself before we wreck ourself in our youth. We’re older now. We’re wiser.
You know what you did. You let it all go to hell. So unwreck yourself before you direct yourself into the ground. It’s time. In the weeks after you upgrade your eating habits, you feel an experience. From chips and fast food and candy and soda to eggs and sweet potatoes and berries and dark chocolate and great coffee and olive oil, your world changes. Life feels a little easier. You feel a little better. All the time.
- REDUCE SUGAR AND SIMPLE CARBS. Pick one high-sugar or high-carb food or drink (>=10g sugar or carbs per serving) to reduce or eliminate to reduce your insulin levels, fat storage, energy fluctuations, and hunger. Cut your serving size (8 oz instead of 16 oz) or frequency (once a day instead of twice) to consume less. Set a weekly or monthly reminder to repeat this with a new food or drink. If needed, replace these calories with fruit, vegetables, protein, fat, any better tasting natural food. If you “earn your carbs” by staying under 10% body fat (lean athlete exception), are at your ideal body weight with good metabolic markers, or have issues metabolizing extra fat or protein, skip this habit.
- EAT MORE PROTEIN. Eat 1g per pound of bodyweight in protein per day (ex. eat 150g of protein if you weigh 150 lbs) starting with protein at breakfast, bigger or more frequent portions, and protein supplements to add and maintain muscle. Protein can replace the calories lost from reducing sugar and carbs. Adding muscle is key to long-term health and performance. To add muscle, you need more protein.
- INCREASE NUTRIENT DENSITY. Eat more vegetables. Include one vegetable in every meal with a variety of colors and including leafy greens and cruciferous vegetables. Splurge on higher quality protein for one meal per week. Grass fed. Organic. Whatever. Experiment with finding higher quality foods. Go to a farmer’s market. Get a good peach, local berries, a perfect tomato. Go to a chocolatier, an olive oil purveyor, a coffee roaster. Have fun!
- REDUCE PROCESSED FOOD Pick one processed food or drink to reduce or eliminate to avoid incurring the wrath of modern food technology. Reread the suggestions under “reduce sugar or carbs” to do this.
- RESTRICT WHAT, WHEN, OR HOW MUCH YOU EAT. Choose one of these three options to aid fat loss or just to take a break from digestion.
- what you eat (ex. carbs, protein, fat, meat, etc) by eating less of it for a day, week, or month
- when you eat (ex. eating only between 12-6pm daily or fasting one day per week or month
- how much you eat (ex. eating 1000 calories instead of 2000) one to three days per week
When You Have An Hour
BATCH PREPARE MEALS. Use the first free hour researching meals you could prepare in a batch and eat multiple times in a week. Make a list you can easily access anywhere, particularly when shopping for food. The next time you see a free hour coming, get all the ingredients. Spend that free hour cooking. Maybe get a partner involved. Maybe go solo. Enjoy the food. Enjoy the extra time recouped for your next few meals.
READ FOOD RULES. Michael Pollan’s 140-page book might take an hour or two. Just read the rules and it takes a few minutes. It will help you develop the right mindset for eating in the modern world, even if you don’t agree with them all. Another book with good food and lifestyle tips is Blue Zones. You might not live to one-hundred after reading the book but it has good fundamentals for a happy healthy lifestyle.
Ways to Make Time
- Make a food shopping list.
- Buy the same thing every week for a few weeks .
- Make the same breakfasts and lunch every day. Change it up after a few weeks.
- Batch make meals (ex. make 5-10 servings at once).
- Partner with someone to make your meals.
- body fat %
- body weight
- grams of carbs or sugar per day
- grams of protein per day
- number of vegetables
- nutrient density – subjective assessment
- % of real food (real food / total food)
- times per week/month opting for “higher quality” food
- daily fasting window hours (ex. 8pm – 11am)
- days per week restricting what, when, or how much you eat (lose fat)
- days per week with surplus calories or protein (add muscle)
- mood after eating (stable or tired, hangry, irritable, headache)
Eat better, feel better. Food is nature’s medicine, my shaman told me. Crazy or not, we are our genes, our people, our experiences, and our food. Tip the snowball in your favor. To become a lean, mean, fighting love-machine, find the strongest, healthiest, happiest plants and animals. Instead of eating serial killers, become one. Assassinate the best foods. Shoot ‘em down. Scarf ‘em down.