Nothing flashy and no secrets, but here are 4 basic rules to follow for optimal results.

 

 

 Rule #1 – Low Carbohydrate Breakfast     

   I would more consider this to be a no-carbohydrate breakfast, but you are going to  consume some accidental carbohydrates through green, leafy vegetables. Breakfast should contain 3 elements; A protein source, an efficient fat source and as mentioned above, a green, leafy vegetable.  

   Protein Source: This can be a wide variety of sources, but this is when I generally choose to consume my higher fat yielding protein sources. Examples being; whole eggs, ground beef, ground chicken or ground turkey. Depending on what your caloric goals are then even something as calorie dense as bacon or turkey bacon may be an option.  

   Fat Source: When I say an efficient fat source, I’m referring to medium-chain triglycerides. These are fats that act more like a carbohydrate in the sense that they can be easily accessed for readily available energy, by being burned in the mitochondria. The benefit is the efficient energy source, without the insulin response that would be caused by a carbohydrate. There are only two dense sources of MCT’s. These are coconut oil and Palm Kernel Oil. Based on the quality, taste and availability, i would suggest coconut oil. The easiest way to consume this is to cook your protein source in the oil. If for some reason you need another option, or you caloric demands require a higher fat content, then I will often times add coconut oil to my coffee.  

   Green, Leafy Vegetable: The importance of this is two fold. The first being the high fiber content. It’s extremely important to consume an adequate amount of fiber when having a high fat meal, for digestive purposes. The second reason is the vitamin and micro-nutrient content. It’s important for brain and overall body function to consume these in the early part of your day. The most ideal sources would be; spinach, kale, arugula, and broccoli. You can also get away with things like green beans and green peppers. The reason I want you to keep your vegetables green in morning, is because colored vegetables will often contain higher carbohydrate and natural sugars. 

  The reason this is my #1 rule, is when you don’t intake carbohydrates in the early part of your day it creates what is called metabolic flexibility. This essentially is your body having the option to choose ether carbohydrates or fats to use as fuel. When you intake a high amount of carbohydrates with your breakfast, you take that option or “flexibility” away from your body and make carbohydrates the primary option. The other benefit of avoiding carbs with breakfast is an improved insulin sensitivity the rest of the day, meaning your bodies ability to utilize carbs with less insulin release from the pancreas. The last benefit, although potentially minor, carbohydrates decrease the bodies natural levels of growth hormone. This hormone is essential for recovery, muscle repair, overall health and fat loss.   

 

 Rule #2 – Don’t Mix Sugars and Fat

    To explain this we need to touch on a very brief overview of insulins role in nutrient absorption. Insulin is a hormone released in the pancreas, that regulates the amount of glucose in the blood. To bring this into nutritional terms, insulin allows your body to use sugar (glucose) from carbohydrates for energy or to be stored for future use. To apply it and simplify it one step further, insulin helps shuttle nutrients to where the body will use them or store them. So if we take that information and apply it to in taking fats with sugars, basically you have an almost guarantee of storing every gram of the fat you consumed while sugar was present….Which leads into rule #3.   

 

Rule #3 – Avoid Artificial Sweeteners

    Artificial Sweeteners are commonly found in beverages, sauces and food condiments and the place that bothers me the most, “natural health products”. The most common forms of artificial sweeteners are acesulfame k, aspartame, neotame, saccharin and sucralose. Also, if you see dextrose or maltodextrin avoid the product. Although the first 5 listed do not yield any calories, they still cause an insulin response similar to sugar. So if you apply that in the same context to rule#2, it can result in increased fat storage.   

 

Rule #4 – Eliminate Trans-Fats   

  From the point I am writing this, 5 European countries have banned Trans-Fats. It won’t be long before the rest of the world follows suit, so why not jump on board now and save your body any more added damage. Trans Fats are industrially created in a process that adds hydrogen to liquid vegetable oil to make them solid. The danger in a nutshell, is Trans Fats, lower your HDL (good cholesterol) and raise you LDL (bad cholesterol), increases your risk of heart attack and heart disease, among other potential health issues. Trans-Fats should be kept less then 1g per day, but ideally you should be able to stay closer to 0.