Tag Archives: Diet and Nutrition

Eat Fat, Get Thin by Dr. Mark Hyman

Summary
  1. Dr. Hyman details very convincing evidence on why eating the right types of fats is the healthiest, most satisfying and most sustainable way to live a long and healthy life. Provides a great 21 day program to jump start your metabolism, lose weight, reverse chronic health problems, improve sleep and clarity of mind (recipes, supplements and other tips)
Key Takeaways
  1. Food is not just a source of energy or calories, food is information. It contains instructions that affect every biological function of your body
  2. Simply eating less and exercising more almost always fails in the long term as it puts the body in “starvation mode” which is unsustainable. Eating a diet high in healthy fats helps you lose weight without effort and feel satisfied the entire time which is what makes it so sustainable
  3. The quality of our diet is paramount – real, whole, fresh, unadulterated foods. Eating these real, nutrient dense foods help you lose weight without effort but also give you more energy and clarity without ever craving sweets, carbs or other junk food
  4. The importance of sleep along with this diet cannot be overstated. A minimum of 7-8 hours per night is vital for a healthy body and mind. If you’re used to sleeping less, force yourself to stay in bed for 7-8 hours. Your mind and body will soon learn that it is allowed to sleep and will use the opportunity to catch up on its “sleep debt”
  5. Biggest source of abnormal cholesterol is not fat but sugar
  6. Eating healthy fats helps prevent brain aging, dementia, diabetes, seizures, depression, autism, trauma, inflammation and helps improve sleep, clarity of mind, energy, mood
  7. The cornerstones of a full life are good food, movement, relaxation (de-stressing) and sleep. The last two may be the most important for a healthy, full life
  8. Healthy foods
    1. Non starchy veggies (unlimited) – broccoli, asparagus, green beans, spinach, Brussels sprouts
    2. Nuts and seeds – almonds, cashews, walnuts, pecans, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds (avoid peanuts)
    3. Great fats – olives / olive oil, coconut oil, grass fed butter, avocado / avocado oil, nuts and seeds
    4. Fish – salmon, sardines, anchovies
    5. Meat – grass-fed beef, lamb, bison
    6. Poultry – pasture raised poultry and eggs
    7. Dairy – grass-fed butter (avoid milk, cream, etc.)
    8. Fruit – moderate amounts of low glycemic fruit (berries are great)
    9. Beverages – water (at least 8 glasses per day), green tea, 1-2 cups black coffee (no sugar or artificial sweeteners)
  9. Avoid
    1. Sugar in all its forms – soda, juice, other drinks
    2. Artificial sweeteners
    3. Refined carbs – white bread
    4. Vegetable oils – canola, corn, soybean, safflower, sunflower
    5. Avoid chemicals and pesticides (by choosing organic)
    6. Dairy (besides grass fed butter)
    7. Gluten, flour and grains
    8. Alcohol – max 1 glass of wine at night
    9. Beans
    10. Processed foods of any kind (bacon, salami, hot dogs)
  10. Provides a 21 day program to jump start your metabolism, lose weight, reverse chronic health problems, improve sleep and clarity of mind
    1. Don’t worry about how much you eat during the program, rather what you eat
  11. Supplements
    1. High quality multivitamin and multi mineral
    2. 2g fish oil
    3. 2,000 IU vitamin D3
    4. 300mg L-Carnitine twice per day
    5. 30mg coenzyme Q10 twice per day
    6. 20 billion CFU Probiotics
    7. 1-2 tablespoons coconut oil (MCT even better)
    8. 2-5 g PGX fiber
  12. Other tips
    1. Keep a regular sleep schedule with about 7-8 hours total sleep
    2. Avoid screens within 30 minutes of sleep
    3. Relax through long walks, deep breathing, massage, steam or sauna
    4. 30 minutes per day of light to moderate exercise
What I got out of it
  1. Good and convincing read on why eating the right types of fats along with a lot of vegetables, healthy proteins and limitied/no sugar is essential for a healthy, long and balanced life
Resources – check out his website which has a ton of great recipes, PDFs and more

How Not to Die by Michael Greger

Summary
  1. Great resource on what foods to eat more of and avoid and how to minimize risks of certain diseases.
Key Takeaways
  1. First part is about how to minimize risks of most common diseases like heart failure, cancer, etc. Great resource if any of these illnesses are relevant to you
  2. Beans
    1. Black beans, black-eyed peas, cannellini, chickpeas, edamame, peas, kidney, lentil, miso, pinto, tempeh
    2. 3 Servings
  3. Berries
    1. Acai, barberries, blackberries, blueberries, cherries, grapes, cranberries, goji, raspberries, strawberries
    2. 1 Serving
  4. Other Fruits
    1. Apples, avocados, bananas, dates, figs, lemons, limes, mangoes, peaches, pears, plums, pomegranates
    2. 3 servings
  5. Cruciferous Veggies
    1. Arugula, box choy, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, collard greens, horseradish, kale, mustard greens, radishes, turnip greens, watercress, spinach, swiss chard (avoid alfalfa sprouts)
    2. 1 serving
  6. Other Veggies
    1. Artichokes, asparagus, beets, bell peppers, carrots, garlic, mushrooms, onions, purple potatoes, pumpkin, squash, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, zucchini
    2. 1 serving
  7. Flaxseeds
    1. Golden or brown (milled)
    2. 1 serving
  8. Nuts and Seeds
    1. Almonds, Brazil nuts, cashews, chia seeds, hazelnuts, hemp, macadamia, pecans, pistachios, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, walnuts (walnuts especially)
    2. 1 serving
  9. Herbs and Spices
    1. Allspice, barberries, basil, bay leaves, cardamom, chili powder, cilantro, cinnamon (ceylon), cloves, coriander, cumin, curry powder, dill, garlic, ginger, horseradish, lemon grass, marjoram, mustard powder, nutmeg, oregano, paprika, parsley, pepper, peppermint, rosemary, saffron, sage, thyme, turmeric, vanilla (1/4 teaspoon turmeric per day at least)
    2. 1 serving
  10. Whole Grains
    1. Barley, brown rice, buckwheat, millet, oats, popcorn, quinoa, rye, teff, whole wheat pasta, wild rice
    2. 3 servings
  11. Beverages
    1. Black tea, chai tea, vanilla chamomile tea, coffee, earl gray tea, green tea, hot chocolate, jasmine tea, lemon balm tea, matcha tea, almond blossom oolong tea, peppermint tea, rooibos tea, water, white tea
    2. 5 servings
  12. Exercise
    1. Biking, dancing, skiing, hiking, juggling, trampoline, basketball, tennis, swimming, yoga
    2. 1 time per day – 40-90 minutes
  13. Supplements
    1. 2, 500mcg Vitamin B12 at least once per week
    2. 2,000 IU Vitamin D3 per day
    3. Iodine rich foods (seafood, sea vegetables, dark green vegetables, nori,
    4. 250 mg pollutant free long chain omega 3’s daily (algae)
What I got out of it
  1. Extremely thorough book, good tips on nutrition, supplements, lifestyle. Gives a very thorough account on what to do specifically for certain diseases such as heart conditions, diabetes, cancer, etc. If you or a loved one suffer from any of these, definitely take a closer look at this book.

One Spirit Medicine: Ancient Ways to Ultimate Wellness by Alberto Villoldo

Summary
  1. One Spirit Medicine helps restore mental, physics, emotional and spiritual well being through vision quest, diet, nutrition and stress management
Key Takeaways
  1. Spirit is the invisible world where we are all one and interconnected
    1. Disease comes from imbalance between spirit and harmony
  2. LEF – Luminous Energy Field, an aura that we all give us and is made up of our ancestors, diet, trauma, diseases, thoughts, beliefs and more. The link between the visible and invisible world we all inhabit
  3. Gut is second brain and extremely important to take care of it
  4. Must detox gut, body, brain before can upgrade
    1. Avoid GMOs, corn, soy, grains, sugar
    2. Fasting, even just 6pm to noon the next day, intermittent fasting) helps a lot
    3. Autophagy – cell death, the recycling of cell waste is so important and can speed up the process through exercise, fasts, diet, detox and eating enough phytonutrients
    4. Recommends 1 day of fasting every 3-4 weeks
  5. Become “prey” once we fear something
    1. Fear is the deadliest emotion as it blinds us to love and opportunities
    2. Beliefs cause stress and fear, not people or situations
  6. In today’s world, over stimulation leads to an over active fight/flight response
    1. Must build in times of complete relaxation. Every hour, day, week, month and year take some time out to just reflect and be grateful
    2. Importance of day dreaming cannot be over exaggerated
  7. Lessening fear of death opens you up to love and to better handle life, see the big picture
  8. Personal myths, the limiting stories we tell ourselves, are omnipresent and play a much bigger role in our lives than we realize. They shape our beliefs, values and thoughts which end up shaping our lives
  9. Death is simply a transition from our “particle” (local) to “wave” (omnipresent) state
  10. Medicine Wheel
    1. South = serpent = life force = instincts. Afraid of change, being vulnerable
      1. Don’t be tethered or blinded by the past or because of other’s perceptions of you.
      2. “Male or female, when we finally let go of who we think we’re supposed to be and shed our fear of disapproval, we open our eyes to the new opportunities we encounter. We’re no longer afraid to be curious, to ask questions, to take risks.”
    2. West = Jaguar = Divine Feminine. Confrontation, acceptance and welcoming of death
      1. Inner confidence, balance and power leads to “defeating” death by ensuring continuity of consciousness (knowing our nature is outside of time)
      2. Complexity and harmony lead to health (heart rate variability)
      3. Acceptance of death leads to a fuller life as we know how fleeting and precious our time on this Earth is
      4. “It takes courage to stay with fear and breathe into the emotion rather than run away from it or try to subdue it. But when courage becomes bravado, it can be our undoing…”
      5. Initiation of death is a lifelong process
    3. North = way of the sage = stillness, which comes from stopping of desires
      1. Stillness is not an end in itself but allows us to see entire nature of creation, the bigger picture in all our lives
      2. “…reality is an illusion, albeit one we are jointly re-creating in every instant…We come to realize that the universe mirrors back to us perfectly our beliefs, our intentions, our sincerity. What is is the product of the map of reality you carry inside you. If you want to change your experience, you need to change the map.”
      3. Only when still can we extract the universe’s wisdom
      4. Allows us to rise above ourselves and time to clearly see the results of ours and other’s beliefs and actions
      5. Non-action often takes more strength/maturity than action
      6. Find stillness in the pause between breaths
    4. East = Eagle = journey of the visionary, rebirth
      1. Ability to see big picture while simultaneously zooming in on important details
      2. Appreciate each moment in all its wonder – every second is sacred
      3. “I” is not separate from anyone or anything as we are all one, united
      4. All collectively dreaming together. Accepting this gives you power as you realize you can change it
      5. Once you meet future you, what you want to become, you can embody those qualities today and take a step to realizing that future reality
      6. 4 noble truths – there is suffering, attachment/desires cause suffering, giving up attachment (even to life) eliminates suffering, follow the 8 fold path
      7. Must lose your self to find your self
      8. Man a paradox – infinitely small yet infinitely vast. Nothing, yet everything
      9. Can’t fight demons, must welcome them or they will simply persist
    5. Vision quest the last step of the journey
      1. Sit in a natural setting, sitting with the elements and put your body under mild physiological stress through fasting
      2. Purpose is to discover in the wilderness that you are a citizen of the earth, a child of nature, at one with all creation
      3. Fast to awaken the body’s self-repair systems and stimulate production of stem cells in the brain and every organ in your body
What I got out of it
  1. Spiritual read which goes over the importance of a good, balanced diet, nutrition, fasting, managing stress, taking breaks, finding stillness, accepting and realizing we are all one

Beyond Training: Mastering Endurance, Health and Life by Ben Greenfield

Summary

  1. Greenfield lays out a detailed training regiment section, recovery section, nutrition section, lifestyle section, brain section, and conclusion which ties it all together
Key Takeaways
  1. Provides extremely detailed diets, supplement recommendations, workout regiments, etc for vegans, plant based, old, young, female, male. (I cannot include all the detail in these regiments so if these highlights pique your interest, I recommend reading the book)
  2. Extreme long distance endurance sports can lead to heart issues
  3. Beyondtrainingbook.com for extra resources
  4. Doesn’t really believe in the different training zones and that they each burn a unique fuel source
  5. Discusses how to test yourself to figure out your personal zones
  6. Much more beneficial to spend most training time below threshold and a small portion much above – HIIT or polarized training
  7. Over speed / under speed, EMS, restricted / hypoxia, cold thermogenesis, passive / active heat training, isometric (super slow) training, compression gear, upbeat music (180 bpm music), binaural beats (Thomson CDs), mind alive light therapy, grease the wheel (specific and Frequent exercise, Tsatsouline) good training regiments
  8. Recommends 0.3-0.7 gram protein per pound
  9. Recommended supplements – creative, carnitine, citraline, beta alinine, amino acids (master amino pattern), concentrated greens (super greens as a meal replacement)
  10. Power = fast strength. Works nervous system more than muscles, fine tunes strength
  11. Explosive plyometric movements such as death jumps or single leg hops very effective for power (minimum ground contact time)
  12. Best supplements for nervous system production include omega 3 fatty acids, amino acids, choline, green tea extract and complex b vitamins
  13. Mobility so important and Active Release Therapy, dynamic stretching and traction are great way to improve mobility
  14. Bone broth, ginger, fish, glucosamine sulfate and antioxidants help mobility from a nutrition standpoint
  15. Balance very important for efficiency and avoiding injury. Avoid EMF, minimalist footwear, balance on one leg
  16. Vision gym helps train eyes for better balance
  17. Very easy to overtrain if doing intense exercises. Allow 36 hours to truly recover and avoid plateaus
  18. Rest wise a great tool to track which phase of exhaustion and recovery you are in
  19. Diminishing returns and often damage done after 90 minutes of exercise
  20. Top stress management techniques – deep breathing, mindfulness meditation, Yoga, tai chi, coherence, hobby outside of exercise and normal routine, and sleep
  21. Ideally get 7.5-9 hours of sleep plus a 20-60 minute nap per day
  22. Sleep supplements – potassium citrate, MCT oil, somnydra, apple cider vinegar with honey and water, REM caps by Hammer, inner peace caps, tyrosine + 5HTP
  23. Jet lag hacks – grounding, exercise, melatonin, no caffeine
  24. Doesn’t recommend fretting about calories once you have an idea of how much you eat. For the average athlete he recommends a diet of 20% carbs, 65% fats and 15% protein
  25. A big proponent of the ketogenic diet (body burns fat instead of carbs). This takes some time for the body to get used to but leads to great health, energy, focus. If want to try the ketogenic diet, aim for a diet of 80-90% fat calories, 10-15% protein and 5-10% carbs (eaten at night)
  26. Gut discomfort has some main contributors – gluten, fodmap (foods which leave a lot of residue in the gut such as garlic, onion, fruit with high fructose, beans, wheat, dairy), low enzyme activity, insufficient gut bacteria, too much gut bacteria, yeast/fungus/parasites
  27. Should detox once per year at least – eat clean, avoid stress, sauna, sublingual glutathione spray, greens supplement (chlorella and spirulina), activated charcoal, avoid alcohol, 3 day fasts
  28. Reduce hangover – electrolytes (unsweetened coconut water), cystine, curcumin, bone broth
  29. Avoid before a race – fodmap foods (wheat, dairy, high fermenting foods like apples and pears), excessive caffeine (more than ~ 150mg), artificial sweeteners, high amounts of fiber, heavy foods like sweet potatoes
  30. Eat before a workout or race – blended and juiced foods, moderate caffeine (.5mg per lb or about 1 small cup of coffee), some carbs (like 100g or 2 cups of white rice with some sea salt and MCT), fats (like MCT, coconut oil/butter), hydrolyzed whey protein or bone broth (something easier to absorb that steak/eggs)
  31. Eat during a race – moderate amounts of slow release carbs with easy to digest fats (super starch and MCT/coconut oil), easy to digest protein (hydrolyzed when protein or collagen) and avoid refined sugars, fodmaps,
  32. Good resources – mountain rose herbs, magnetic clay, upgraded self, nutiva coconut products, Amazon prime for bulk food items (sardines, coconut oil, nori wraps)
  33. Lifestyle hacks
    1. Detox home of mold, fungus, EMF (mop surfaces, vacuum with hepa filter, dehumidifier, oscillating fan, toxins in carpeting, ceramic tiles ideal, EHAP mold tests, coca pulse test to see which foods are hurting you, “how to bio hack a home” by Greenfield, Zapped booked, airplane mode on phones, biomat sleep pad, hara pad, lessemf.com, excessive fluoride in water can be removed with reverse osmosis filters, structured water filter, shower head filter (KDF)
    2. Vtamin c / d / e  and antioxidants help with excessive chlorine, choose natural house cleaners and detergents (lemon, baking soda and white vinegar – mountain rose herbs and earth easy great resources), limit use of plastic bottles, metal exposure (dentists biggest exposure and can remove with binding through iodine, magnesium, chlorella, metal free spray), radiation (recover quicker with magnesium, omega 3, iodine), cosmetics (dirty dozen of cosmetics, toothpaste, soap)
  34. Most time saving workouts – quick workouts, workout indoors, minimize offseason training, have a simple home gym, workout alone, super slow weight training, bike to work, include the family in workouts, cross train with friends and family, “greasing the groove” (do something often but never too intense, i.e., 5 pullups every time you walk by the pull up bar)
  35. Productivity tips – use “bucket” days instead of to-do lists (only do a certain activity on a given day), eliminate tv, no newspaper or news, eat simply, outsource (craigslist, fancy hands, elance, 99 designs, task rabbit, hoot suite), chunk emails and don’t give away address too often, “push” only email on phone, remove distractions, learn how to say no, avoid snacking, aggregate content, doing the toughest thing first, clear mind by outsourcing your brain (Evernote, buckets, etc.)
  36. Brain tips – avoid sensory overload, fix your gut, eat more high quality fats (MCT, omega 3, coconut oil, avocado, olive oil), restore neurotransmitter imbalances, fix HPA issues (hypothalamus, pituitary and adrenal glands) by destressing, avoiding excessive exercise, decrease inflammation (curcumin a potent anti inflammatory), increase sleep length and quality
  37. Brain hacks – nootropics (vitamin D but daily sunlight can’t be beaten, vitamin K2, fatty acids, MCT oils, caffeine (100 mg or about 1 cup coffee), l-phenyl alinine, creatine, carnitine, Alpha lipoid acid, huperzine), light therapy (limit blue light in the evening, morning sun exposure, binaurals, transcranial direct current stimulation, pulse electromagnetic frequency (PEMF – earth pulse for example), neurofeedback (upgraded self brain trainer, journey to the wild divine game, em wave 2), brain aerobics (sudoku, crossword, must have novelty and variety), chewing gum (peppermint), aerobic exercise, music (listening and learning),
  38. 10 rules for becoming an ancestral athlete – change your lens (health vs. performance of any new exercise, supplement, diet, etc.), be uncomfortable (many things in life benefit from volatility and pain), be comfortable (make sure to rest and recover), work (constant movement is essential – long walks, pull up bars in office, etc.), optimize fertility, eat natural foods, detox a couple times per year, use new tech and science to your benefit, keep a clear head (doing one thing at a time and do a great job, the first time), worry less
What I got out of it
  1. Extremely detailed read on how to train, eat, rest, recover and reach your potential. There was way too much to cover in this book and if you’re interested in serious training, recovery, nutrition, etc. this book is definitely worth reading in its entirety

Serve to Win by Novak Djokovic

Summary

  1. It wasn’t a new training program that took me from being a very good player to the best player in the world in just 18 months. It wasn’t a new racquet, a new workout, a new coach or even a new serve that helped em lose weight, find mental focus and enjoy the best health of my life. It was a new diet. (gluten-free, low sugar, low alcohol)
Key Takeaways
  1. Start by eliminating gluten for two weeks. After that, eliminate the excess sugar and dairy in your diet for two weeks and notice how great you feel
  2. Must also learn to change the way you eat – sync your food with your body’s needs – what it wants, when it wants. Combine the right diet with proper stress-control techniques will improve the function of your body and mind, becoming more relaxed, more focused and more in control of your life
  3. To truly accept your powerlessness is truly liberating
  4. Keep an open mind and never stop searching for a new, better way of doing things
  5. Wakes up, drinks a glass of water, stretches/yoga for twenty minutes and then eats breakfast
  6. ELISA test is the most accurate way to test for food sensitivities
  7. To be your very best in a given field, you must be well versed in many different areas – meditation, classical music, nutrition, yoga, etc.
  8. Eating the right foods not only fuels your body optimally but it makes you more patient, focused, clearer thinking and positive
  9. Keep it simple – vegetable, beans, white meat, fish, fruit
  10. Need more calcium if avoid dairy / lactose intolerant – broccoli, tuna, salmon
  11. How and when you eat are just as important as what you eat – eat slowly and consciously
  12. Drink primarily room temperature water, never ice water as that takes blood away from the muscles and to the digestive tract
  13. Before eating, give a quick “thanks” for the food you eat, don’t watch TV or listen to music – just eat. Between bites, put down the fork and focus on chewing slowly
  14. Eat most of your protein at dinner
  15. Eat two TBSP of honey every day (he does manuka honey in the morning, aim for raw honey at least)
  16. Aim to eat carbs and proteins separately as eating both slows down digestion
  17. A little bit of wine is fine and drink a lot of tea (licorice tea, ginger lemon tea)
  18. Don’t be afraid to accept your own truth, to change, to analyze. Put questions in perspective. Try to be objective but not skeptical. And stay positive. That energy will fill your body and literally improve your health, fitness and overall performance
  19. Meditates for 15 minutes per day  – focus on breathing, being in the moment – goal is to find calm, focus and positive energy
  20. Mindful meditation and/or yoga is helpful before bed
  21. Aim to get some natural sunlight as soon as possible after you wake up
  22. Dynamic stretching warm up (10 – 20 reps of each)
    1. Jumping Jacks
    2. Walking high knees
    3. Walking high kicks
    4. Burpees
    5. Lunge with side bend
    6. Reverse lunge with backward bend
    7. Low side to side lunge
    8. Inverted hamstring (yoga pose “T”)
    9. Inchworm
  23. Yoga (30 seconds each)
    1. Rabbit (child’s pose)
    2. Cat (similar to Ferriss cat vomit ab exercise)
    3. Dog (downward facing dog)
    4. Cobra
  24. You practice in order to remove possibilities and replace them with probabilities
  25. Make the changes. Enjoy the process. But don’t let the changes be your goal. Let them be your gateway to bigger, better goals
What I got out of it
  1. Really interesting book on how Djokovic made one seemingly small change which helped transform him. Love his dedication to his goal

Grain Brain: The Surprising Truth About Wheat, Carbs and Sugar – Your Brain’s Silent Killers by Dr. David Perlmutter

Grain Brain

 

Summary
  1. Dr. Perlmutter argues that excessive carbs, especially modern, gluten-containing grains and other sugars, are wreaking havoc on our health and our cognitive performance and can lead to increased risks of neurological and age-related diseases
Key Takeaways
  1. Gluten and modern grains are destroying your brain
  2. Recommendations – eat more veggies, brush your teeth, sweat and exercise regularly, rest a lot, don’t smoke, laugh more, avoid all gluten, limit carbs to less than 60g per day where most of your calories are coming from high-quality fats and proteins (grass-fed, local, etc)
  3. Believes shift from high-fat, low-carb to low-fat, high-carb diet is causing many of our modern diseases such as chronic headaches, insomnia, anxiety, depression, epilepsy, schizophrenia and ADHD
  4. Much more intricate and intertwined relationship between what we eat and the health of our brain than recently thought
  5. Brain disorders often reflect poor nutrition and other lifestyle habits
  6. Inflammation a key indicator of disease throughout the body
  7. Often don’t realize the negative effects gluten and carbs can have on the brain as there is no direct physical manifestation and often takes a long time to show up
  8. Two biggest myths today – low-fat, high-carb diet is good and cholesterol is bad
    • Cholesterol is one of the most important players to reduce brain disease, increase longevity and maintain brain health and function
    • Higher cholesterol levels linked with higher performance in verbal fluency, attention/concentration and abstract reasoning
  9. Interestingly, the human dietary requirement for carbs is virtually zero; we can survive on a minimal amount of carbs, which can be furnished by the liver as needed. But we can’t go long without fat.”
  10. Key Brain Supplements – DHA, resveratrol, turmeric, probiotics, coconut oil, alpha–lipoic acid, vitamin D
  11. Exercise spurs the generation of new brain cells as well as build new networks. Makes neurons more nimble and able to multitask
  12. Deep and consistent sleep extremely important
  13. Outlines a 4 week program in order to institute a gluten-free diet and other healthy habits
What I got out of it
  1. Not that I ate a lot of gluten before, but this has cemented it for me. Dr. Perlmutter advocates for <60g of carbs per day, no gluten, as many veggies as possible, majority of calories from high quality fats and protein and repeat. Certainly not always easy, but definitely simple

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Worthwhile Podcasts

Dan Carlin – Maybe the most engaging podcast I have ever listened to. His lengthy series on the Eastern Front in WWII, WWI in general, fall of the Roman Republic, the Mongols are incredible. Dan is a master story teller and its almost impossible to stop listening to him recount these violent and gruesome times in history. Even if you don’t care about history you will find these podcasts enjoyable and worthwhile.

Tim Ferriss – In each episode Tim interviews a master of their respective craft and tries to dissect what sets them apart. I find them so appealing as he helps focus on and draw out actionable tips, routines or techniques we can all implement in our own lives.

Finding Mastery – Michael Gervais is a high performance psychologist and in this podcast he converses with a broad range of high performers and digs into their backgrounds, mindsets and how they think about mastery

Bruce Lee Podcast – Bruce Lee’s daughter, Sharon, is in charge of his legacy and recently started putting out some podcasts. They are short, deep and discuss various aspects of Bruce’s philosophy, martial art, background, etc.

Body by Science by Doug McGuff and John Little

Body by Science

Summary
  1. Genius often lies in simplicity. That is what we find in Body by Science by McGuff and Little. This is a powerful and easy to read book on how to get healthy and fit through very focused and specific exercises that take 10-12 minutes to perform and only have to be done about once per week
Key Takeaways
  1. Perform 5 exercises to failure within 60 – 90 seconds (what the authors call time under load or TUL) and hold for an additional 10 seconds and perform these exercises once per week. This should be sufficient time for your body to recover and bump up weights and/or TUL every session
  2. Research has found that the effects of free weights versus machines is equally effective (Nautilus and MedX offer the best machines)
  3. The Big Five Workout – Machines (click link for video tutorial)
    1. Seated Row – make sure to keep your wrists and elbows in line and pull to your lower sternum
    2. Chest Press – do not let elbows get too low – just about as far as they could go if you were doing the press on the ground
    3. Pulldown – arms in front of you, using an underhand grip, with hands a little narrower than shoulder-width and bring down to the top of your chest and hold for 3-5 seconds and “slump” into the contraction (bring shoulders down towards hips in a linear fashion). As handles are heading back overhead, imagine moving hands outward in a horizontal plain – loads lats more effectively
    4. Overhead Press – move arms overhead with hands in front of you rather than at your side and with palms facing each other. Be cautious of arching the back and putting it in a vulnerable position
    5. Leg Press – the farther the angle is from linear, the less resistance you are moving. Should start in a position so that your thighs are perpendicular to the ceiling with knees bent as close to 90 degrees as possible. When pushing out, do not completely lock your legs and do not grip handles too hard as this can drive up blood pressure necessarily high
  4. The Big Five Workout – Free Weights
    1. Bent over barbell row – shoulder width grip, overhand grip (palms facing you) and pull so that it touches your upper abdomen and pause briefly in this position
    2. Standing overhead press – shoulder width grip, palms facing away, do not fully lockout arms at the top and lower to your shoulders
    3. Dead Lift – bend legs imagining that you are sitting in a chair, arms perfectly straight with shoulder width grip, with palms facing you or and over/under grip
    4. Bench Press – do not lock out arms at the top
    5. Squat – set the safety pins of the rack so it matches with a 90 degree bend of your knees – this is your bottom position, slowly raise up and repeat for your TUL
  5. Low-intensity, steady-state (“cardio”) activity does not tap the fast-twitch muscle fibers that  possess the most glycogen. Consequently, the muscles are never emptied of meaningful levels of glucose, with the result that the circulating glucose has nowhere to be stored – except as body fat
  6. Strength training is actually the best way to train the cardiovascular system because…it actually involves and stimulates all of the components of metabolism
  7. The center of metabolic health…is not the heart and cardiovascular system; it is the muscular system…because that is where everything that results in positive adaptive change occurs
  8. Maintenance is regression!
  9. The problem is not burning too few calories; it’s putting too many calories down the throat. You cannot use physical activity to negate excessive caloric intake
  10. A natural diet and non-processed helps with thermic cost of digestion (eating lean means, fruits and veggies forces the body to consume more calories to digest this food) and keeps insulin levels lower
What I got out of it
  1. Often the best ideas are shockingly simple and straightforward and this workout protocol falls into this category. These workouts are feasible in nearly any gym and result in the desired gains in strength, health and fitness. This is a workout regiment that will work long-term for nearly anybody regardless of age, goals  or other circumstances. I’d highly recommend to at least try this out for at least a month (only 4 workout sessions) and see for yourself. Most importantly, this workout allows you to consistently build strength without compromising your body and reducing wear and tear and other stressors as much as possible.
  2. *Update – I have been following this program for the past 6 months and have seen a great increase and strength while only spending 15-20 minutes weight lifting a week. No injuries, have been able to build pretty much every week and expect to continue this program for a while.

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Worthwhile Blogs

Tim Ferriss – Most likely doesn’t need an introduction but best-selling author of 4 Hour Work Week/Body/Chef and biohacker extraordinaire. His podcasts are worthwhile too as he interviews famous and successful people and tries to extract what motivates them and sets them apart.

Paul Graham – Paul, co-founder of Y-Combinator, has one of the most fascinating blogs out there – discussing venture capital, human nature, trends, biases and more

Kevin Simler – Kevin’s blog, Melting Asphalt, is incredibly well written and covers a huge spectrum of topics from social status to religion. He takes a different perspective on some relatively common topics and it is fascinating.

Tim UrbanWait but Why? seems like a labor of love. Tim’s older posts are a bit goofy but I have found all worth reading. If you’re ready to tackle what is essentially a book in blog format, the 4 piece article on Elon Musk is fantastic.

Seth Godin – Best selling author, marketer, entrepreneur and public speaker sends out a short, daily blurb with some food for thought. Always quick and worthwhile

Shane Parrish – Entrepreneur and author sends out a weekly newsletter with fascinating insight into books, articles and other interesting reads. I have unashamedly adopted many of Farnam Street’s layout and goals. Imitation is the highest form of respect.

Maria Popova – Author and overall wisdom seeker, Maria sends out a weekly newsletter which also compiles and analyzes a mind-blowing number of books and articles. Her analysis is always fresh and beautifully written.

Kevin Rose – Entrepreneur mostly known for the founding of Digg, Kevin’s The Journal does a great job of compiling interesting videos, articles, tech breakthroughs, apps and more

The Bulletproof Diet by Dave Asprey

BP Diet

Summary
  1. Asprey lays out comprehensive diet/lifestyle on how to eat as much as you want of certain foods, feel great, lose weight, and have incredible focus and energy
Key Takeaways
  1. BP Coffee for breakfast
    • 1-2 cups organic, single source coffee
    • 2 TBS organic, grass-fed butter
    • 2 TBS MCT oil
    • Blend for 20-30 seconds
    • Can add cinnamon, cayenne pepper, stevia, pumpkin spice to add some variety
  2. 50-70% of calories come from very high quality fats (grass-fed butter, MCT oil, cacao butter, pastured egg yolks, grass-fed beef or lamb)
  3. ~20% of calories from high quality proteins (grass-fed beef or lamb, wild caught fish, pastured eggs)
  4. ~20% of calories from vegetables even this will compose the vast majority of the food you eat (avocados, asparagus, broccoli, cauliflower, bok choy)
  5. ~5% from carbs from fruits (raspberries, limes, lemons, blackberries, blueberries, strawberries)
  6. Lays out a list of supplements and other lifestyle changes in order to feel better, have more energy/focus, sleep better, etc.
  7. Cook foods as little as possible
  8. Follow the 2-week BP diet protocol and slowly incorporate suspect foods to realize how certain foods make you feel
What I got out of it
  1. I have been following the BP diet for the past year and a half with incredible results. The most important thing I have learned is which foods don’t make me feel good the consequences of eating these foods. I sometimes ignore this and drink some of my favorite beers or enjoy an amazing dessert but I do this consciously and on rare occasions knowing how I will feel later and even the next day or days!
  2. This diet gives you incredible energy and focus and the roadmap provides a spectrum for what foods will make you feel the best. This is by no means an all-or-nothing diet which are often frustrating and depressing
  3. Creates a system to follow so what foods to eat, buy and how to prepare them becomes automatic while still allowing for enough flexibility for you to experiment and try new, delicious recipes
  4. Limited exercise and still look and feel great

Read The Bulletproof Diet

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