The “Silent Killer”

Yes believe it or not but lack of movement is labeled as the "silent killer".  If you really look at your daily activity you might find a big majority is "sitting" .Yes we have become a screen viewing society and many just lack movement with a combination of poor nutrition is a DEADLY combo. As you are aware, I’m sure, people who work in an office tend to sit down ALL DAY LONG, and even if they have worked out in the morning (like at your boot camp), they still might be very sedentary during the day.  Here’s a typical example:  Get up and go to Steve’s boot camp with your day starting at 4:30a.m. If you look at your life schedule with children.  It could be even more lack of activity.  Driving children to their activities and sitting and watching general we have become even more inactive the more involved our children become.  On the go makes us even more open to grabbing food on the go and foods with preservatives. glfnutrition   4:30a.m -5:00 – SIT in car on way to Good Life Fitness 5:00-6:00am -- Boot Camp at Good Life Fitness 6:00-6:30am – SIT in car going home 6:30-7:30 – ready for work 7:30-8:00 – SIT to go to work 8:00-11:30 – SIT at work 11:30-12:30 – lunch (SIT most of it) 12:30-5:00 SIT at work 5:00-5:30 – SIT on the way home 5:30-bedtime – dinner, SIT to read/watch tv/help kids with homework, e.t.c.   That’s 11 hours of sitting, not including the sitting time after 5:30p.m. Lack of activity...YES belly fat and flat butt syndrome:)  Amazing when you really break down your daily activity like above. GOALS:  Get up and move around through out the day.  How about a ergonomic desk that allows you to stand?  How about taking a walk or better yet go to the gym over your lunch hour?  How about go for a run/walk when your children are at their practices?  Your daily goal is 10,000 steps per day!!Share it! Facebooktwitter

How Is Your Fitness Going In 2017

OVER 55 million people start on their fitness goals January...BUT over 80% fail in 6 weeks...BUT do we really ever fail?!?   Hopefully you have NOT joined a health club and signed a 1,2, or 3 year contract:) How is your year 2017 going? Like many we are all doing our best to push ourselves when we workout. I have been witnessing many in the gym with a new level of motivation to meet their 2017 goals. But that warm bed, on a winter morning, is a hard one to part with mentally and physically. Yesterday, we received tips on avoiding the food cravings….how about we determine the tips for MOTIVATING ourselves to Work Out and to overcome that craving to stay in bed or relax on the couch? And just like food cravings the same applies to our workouts, “The magic number in fitness transformations is 12 weeks! If you can stay dedicated for this period of time you will notice remarkable changes. In the fitness world the statistic shows a 65% failure rate around 12 weeks.   On a brighter note…remember nobody fails in fitness. You will work on your fitness EVERY single day of your life!” glfsixtyfive The top ten motivators that have worked for me: 1. Set goals that will motivate YOU and write them down. Read it daily, these goals will be very powerful for you when you are working out and keep you moving forward. 2. Tell a friend and provide them with your written goals….what’s better than having more accountability. 3. Get a Workout Partner or find someone in the gym that pushes you to give it your best and makes you want more or will keep you coming. 4. Know any one that may think you can’t do it…..prove them wrong and enjoy the look you get as you progress. This could be a huge factor for you to not decide to miss workout. 5. Motivate yourself with the programs you like to do or that work best for you. We like the path of least resistance. If it isn’t something you like or challenging you will find a million reasons to do something else. 6. Think of your work outs as opportunities or as small tasks. It can be mentally easier to motivate yourself to commit for 30 or 60 minutes, one day, one week or one month. 7. Set a schedule that is convenient and works for you. Always have the attitude to not alter that schedule for something or someone, this is my time! 8. Think positive. You will have some challenging days and you may experience some awkward moves and discomfort. Focus on what you can do; it will improve because you desire to make it work for you. Workouts should make you happy! 9. The euphoria after an intense workout. At first you may feel dogged, maybe beaten but eventually it is the GREATEST feeling when you recognize that you put it all out there, you gave your best and that is the ultimate satisfaction! Enjoy this emotional high it is a motivational boost. 10. You want it, you need it and most of all you DESERVE to be healthier and fitter!!Share it! Facebooktwitter

6-Week Male “Shred” Transformation Champions

    Congratulations To All Of The Winners Of The 6-Week "Shred" Transformation Challenge!!!  AMAZING Results In ONLY 6 Weeks!!!!! eliasfirstplacewinner ty2ndplacewinner baker3rdplaceShare it! Facebooktwitter

Setting Attainable Goals

I am a HUGE believer in shooting for the stars BUT so many people fail to recognize the importance of short simple daily goals and crossing those off for long term fitness success!!  Good Life Fitness personal trainer Bryant Travis gives his tips on setting fitness goals! goalsreach  
Tip of the day: Goals!! Goals are important in anything that a person does. Without goals there is no direction. Without direction a person will often find themselves “spinning their wheels.” This is true with fitness. Without a goal little will be accomplished or maintained for the long term. Whether you want to just lose 5lbs, run faster, bench 300lbs, compete in bodybuilding, etc goals are needed in order to map out a path to success. Set S.M.A.R.T. (specific, measurable, ...attainable, relevant, time) goals for 1week, 4weeks, and 12weeks to help you be successful in whatever you choose to do.   Bryant Travis- Good Life Fitness personal trainer/nutritionist  
For more information or to schedule a FREE fitness consultation send Bryant an email at  OR call Good Life Fitness (402)434-4444
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Fitness And Nutrition On The Road

Hitting the workouts and the nutrition obstacles when traveling can really cause a major setback on your fitness success!  Check out a great article by one of my former clients Shannon Montanye. It is that time of year again.  The kids are almost out of school for the summer, and that usually means one thing:  traveling for summer vacation.  You say to yourself, “I’ve been doing great with my diet and exercise at home, how am I supposed to keep it going while on the road?”  It just so happens that I have a few suggestions that might help. During most of my career, I have been a corporate and a charter pilot.  As opposed to an airline pilot, who actually has a flight schedule, pilots who work on the corporate and charter side of flying really don’t have schedules at all.  Trips are constantly popping up at the last minute, and once you get to a destination, the dispatcher always has another place for you to fly.  Before you know it, you’re pushing the Federal Aviation Administration’s maximum of a 14-hour duty day.   With that kind of a day, one may ask “when do you eat and workout?” Many of the guys that I flew with would go all day without something to eat.  There just wasn’t time to grab anything.  Some resorted to going through the stocks of junk food and Cokes on the airplane or the vending machines at the airport, but seriously, what kind of nutrition is that?  I started carrying my own food with me.  I would carry it in a small, soft-sided cooler with enough healthy meals and snacks for the day.  If I was on a multiple day trip, I packed food in my luggage for the following days. When I started carrying my “mule pack,” as one of my customer service reps called it, believe me, the guys wasted no time in making fun of me.  “Oh there’s Shannon carrying her lunch purse!”  Yea, and at the end of that 14-hour duty day, when they were starving half to death because they hadn’t eaten all day, who was laughing then? Here is a list of some of the things that I carried with me: 3oz packages of tuna 3oz packages of salmon Cups of unsweetened apple sauce Nile Spice brand soups (like cup of soup, but all natural and without additives) Clif Builder’s Bars Whey protein powder (don’t forget your shaker!) Homemade trail mix (I used ¼ cup of Ezekiel Cereal, 1 oz almonds, and a SMALL box of Sun maid Raisins) Oatmeal Dried fruit Bottled water (It is important to drink lots of water when you’re just sitting around or you’ll be a bloated sea cow by the end of the day!) When looking at these items, one can see that there is a little of everything from most of the major food groups.  Fruits, veggies, protein, and whole grains.  All of these foods are great to have while on the run, simply because they don’t require refrigeration.   As far as the soup and oatmeal goes, remember most airports do have a Starbucks, which means hot water!  Another important point to be made is this:  don’t worry about getting this stuff through security at the airport.  I’ve traveled many times with these items when flying on the airlines, and it all passed.  Liquids they do have a problem with, food they do not. As far as international travel is concerned, you will have to check with your airline to see what will be acceptable and what will not be to bring into that country.  I’ve been to numerous towns and cities in Canada, Mexico, and Colombia, and as long as the food was packaged (bought from the store in a package) they didn’t seem to have any issues with that.  None of the three countries seemed to have a problem with my homemade trail mix either. Sometimes, we (I and my other crewmember) would get to stay at our destination for a couple of days.  If that was the case, we always tried to stay at a hotel that had refrigerators and microwaves in the rooms.  Hilton properties are particularly good about having those items in their rooms.  If we managed to stay at a hotel with refrigerators, one of the first things we did was go to the grocery store.  Non-fat, no sugar yogurt and skim milk were always on the top of my list.  Ladies especially, you need to make sure you get your calcium! If you do choose to eat out, choose a restaurant that serves fish and chicken.  My fellow crewmembers and I frequented Outback, Texas Roadhouse, and Lone Star.  I could get my grilled chicken breast and plain sweet potato, while the guys, who didn’t have the strict diet that I had, could have their steaks.  In other words, there is something for everyone at these locations. On the topic of exercise, more and more hotels are including good workout facilities within their establishments.  Hilton Garden Inn, Westin Hotels, and Crowne Plaza Hotels, in my experience, have the best facilities.  New cardio equipment, free weights, cable machines, medicine balls, etc.  If your hotel doesn’t have a nice facility, ask the front desk clerk if they have workout passes with any of the local gyms.  A lot of the time, they will either have free passes for hotel guests, or the hotel will have an agreement set up with a particular health club for a reduced-rate day pass.  You just have to present your hotel key to the employees at that health club. I have one final suggestion.  Let yourself live a little at least one day and one meal of your vacation.  If you happen to be in Southern California, have that burger (In N Out Burger), in Florida, have the fried grouper sandwich at St. John’s Seafood, and in Memphis, have some of that awesome BBQ!  And don’t worry, no one will tell Steve that you cheated on your diet.Share it! Facebooktwitter

Jill Shemek Figure Competitor Champion

Combining hard work and dedication, Jill transformed her body in only 12 weeks!!! Congratulations to Jill Shemek on your fitness success!!   NOW offering customized personal training and contest programs at Good Life Fitness!! Sign up below for a FREE fitness consultation!!           Share it! Facebooktwitter

16 Tips To Help Fight Off Food Cravings!

Top 16 ways to fight off cravings! Understanding your cravings can be the key to your success. Have you ever craved a certain food that you have no reason why you want it? Or have you gone through periods where you will eat the same food every day? I can totally relate to this. There was a period where for some reason I wanted banana bread every day. I love banana bread but for some reason I wanted it every day? Why I do not know? Crazy huh?!? Understanding and determining what is a want or what is a need is the key to your success in fitness! Cravings can totally derail your progress and alot times we call this "falling off the wagon". It is not uncommon for people to fight off cravings to succeed to their fitness goals, but when the goal are met...the cravings will overtake the person and they will "fall off the wagon". The magic number in fitness transformations is 12 weeks! If you can stay dedicated for this period of time you will notice remarkable changes. In the fitness world the statistic shows are 65% failure rate around 12 weeks. On a brighter note...remember nobody fails in fitness. You will work on your fitness EVERY single day of your life! I wanted to share 16 key tips to fight off those cravings and to help you stay on track!
  1. Increase your water intake. Take your bodyweight x .66 for daily oz intake.
  2. Never skip meals. Skipped meals will increase your cravings for quick fix foods (processed carbs).
  3. Eat real food..avoid all liquid calories. More bang for your buck.
  4. Switch your dinner plate over to your salad plate. Sometimes our eyes are bigger than our stomach.
  5. Develop a circle of friends with the same fitness goals..more accountability.
  6. Increase your fiber intake. Daily goal is 35 grams of fiber per day.
  7. Eat slowly. Allow each main meal a 20 minute time span to complete. Chew slowly.
  8. Never skip breakfast. Choose a lean source of protein with a low glycemic carbohydrate ( 3 egg whites with a serving of Old Fashioned Oatmeal).
  9. Avoid diet soda's. Carbonated beverages will leave you feeling bloated and empty feeling.
  10. Brush your teeth after each meal.
  11. Drink green tea throughout your day to help stabilize your blood sugar.
  12. Avoid habits that place you in bad situations. Watching T.V after supper. Become more active. Change your habits. No Facebook at 9p.m:)
  13. Increase your green vegetables with your main meals.
  14. Avoid stimulants and appetite suppresants. They only mask the problem without solving them.
  15. Be prepared with healthy low calorie snacks. Raw unsalted almonds are a great alternative.
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Top 10 Fat Burning Foods

Hard work and determination are the key factors in achieving fitness success! I truely believe many people are missing the "Shred" foods to help them really push to see maximum results! At Good Life Fitness/N-10sive Boot Camps we are a goal oriented facility that strives in educating people how to achieve results with proper nutrition and the correct caloric intake for their activity. I wanted to share with you several Top 10 Fat Burning foods courtesy of Tom Venuto. Top 10 Natural Starchy Carbohydrate And Whole Grains 1. Oatmeal (old fashioned) 2. Yams 3. Brown rice (a favorite is basmati, a long grain aromatic rice) 4. Sweet potatoes (almost same as yams) 5. Multi grain hot cereal (mix or barley, oats, rye. titricale and a few others) 6. White potatoes 7. 100% whole grain bread or sprouted bread 8. 100% whole wheat / whole grain pasta 9. Beans (great for healthy chili recipes) 10. lentils Top 10 Vegetables 1. Broccoli 2. Asparagus 3. Spinach 4. Salad greens 5. Tomatoes 6. Peppers (green, red or yellow) 7. Onions 8. Mushrooms 9. Cucumbers 10. Zucchini Top 10 Lean Proteins 1. Egg whites (whole eggs in limited quantities) 2. Whey or Casein protein (protein powder supplements) 3. Chicken Breast 4. Salmon (wild Alaskan) 5. Turkey Breast 6. Top round steak (grass fed beef) 7. Flank Steak (grass fed beef) 8. Lean Ground Turkey 9. Bison/Buffalo (lean game meats) 10. Trout Top 10 Fruits 1. Grapefruit 2. Apples 3. Blueberries 4. Canteloupe 5. Oranges 6. Bananas 7. Peaches 8. Grapes 9. Strawberries 10. Pineapple Share it! Facebooktwitter

Secrets To Blast Stubborn Belly Fat

One common phrase I like to use is "your abs are created in the kitchen...not the gym":) With this being said over 90% of getting the life long dream of the ripped six pack or blasting stubborn body fat is nutrition. What if I told you that many are missing the second piece of the puzzle of how to properly train the abdomen in order to see the benefits of proper nutrition? In the fitness world there are two types of people. Person 1 is a person who thinks, "as long as I get my body fat super low, my abs will be ripped", this specific person skips ab training throughout the week or is inconsistant. Person 2 is the type of person who does countless repetitions of abs, participates in all ab classes, and can perform a million reps easily, but lacks in effort of really trying to lower their bodyfat to levels that will expose all of their hard work. The key to blasting stubborn body fat is actually becoming person 3. This person combines both methods together and will notice remarkable changes with consistancy of nutrition and frequencey of training the abdomen. What person are you? If you are person A then you need to dial in on your ab training and if you are person B then you need to focus on fat burning nutrition. Here a few key points to remember when training your abdomen. 1. Lower the repetitions. If you can crank a million reps out for the abs that is awesome but you might be missing the other key element. High reps will build your endurance but cross training with lower reps, longer contractions, and even add a little weight for extra resistance. 2. Do not train the obliques with weight. If you are looking for a narrow waist avoid doing side bends with weight as this will develop the obliques. Train Smart And Expect Success! Steve Share it! Facebooktwitter

Did The Low Fat Craze Cause America To Get Fat?

Did the low fat craze of the 80's cause America to get fat? This debate could go for years but many of the leading experts think so! If you look at the growing epidemic of obesity in America and sadly our youth could the low fat high sugar substitutes be a factor to blame? As an expert in the fitness world for almost 20 years I think we have many factors that are linking to today's issues. Could we link to the production of high fructose corn syrup, food engineering, pesticides on crops, technology advancements, or the American society trying to make things simpler and easier? In fitness I have personally noticed a major change in the way people exercise. People are looking for the quick instant gratification results and many turn to the latest gimic or fat loss fad for the answers. Many of our founding fathers of this country or our pioneers of the body building world realized hard work and dedication produced results! Please enjoy this special article below that goes in depth of this heated debate. During the 1990s, the low-fat craze changed the way Americans eat, and yet they got fatter than ever. By 2001, one-third of the American population was overweight. Here, nutritionists Marion Nestle, Walter Willett and Jeanne Goldberg, journalist Gary Taubes, and Dr. Dean Ornish, author of Eat More, Weigh Less debate the reasons behind the disparity between the low-fat message and America's obesity epidemic, and assess whether a low-fat diet is still the way to go. Chair, Nutrition Dep't., New York University; author Food Politics: How the Food Industry Influences Nutrition and Health In the late 1980s, there were two major reports that came out, identifying dietary fat as the single most important change that needed to be made in order to improve diet and health. And the reasons for that message were that some of the fat was saturated. The idea was to reduce saturated fat, but the assumption was that it was too complicated to explain all that, and that if people just reduced their fat content, the fat content of their diet, they would be improving it. What nobody realized -- or at least I certainly could never have guessed -- was that the food industry would substitute vegetable fats for animal fats in such a profound way, and would also substitute sugars for fats, and keep the calorie content of the products exactly the same. The best example is the Snackwell phenomenon. Snackwell cookies were advertised as no-fat cookies, but they had almost the same number of calories. And in fact if you go to the store today and look at Oreo cookies, they have a reduced-fat Oreo cookie that has, I think, six calories less than the regular Oreo cookie. It's lower in fat but it's higher in carbohydrates. Did consumers see "low fat" and miss the idea that you could get fat with other things besides fat? Yes. I think that the "low-fat" message was interpreted as, if you had a product that was low in fat, it was good for you, without thinking of calories. Remember, nobody wants to talk about calories. Nobody wants to. The minute you start talking about fat in its caloric context, then the issue of adding sweeteners back to these low-fat products becomes very obvious. It's the same thing now with the low-carb products. They still have calories. Just because it's low-carb doesn't mean it's healthy. Just because it's low-fat doesn't mean it's healthy. It's still going to have calories, and calories are what counts. … [Do you still stand by the low-fat advice]? Yeah. If you're going to lose weight, the easiest place to start is with fat, because it's got twice the calories of either protein or carbohydrate. So it's a great place to begin. The second great place to begin is with soft drinks and those juice drinks, because they add calories and no other nutrients. Chair, Nutrition Dep't., Harvard School of Public Health; author Eat, Drink, and Be Healthy This campaign to reduce fat in the diet has had some pretty disastrous consequences. ... One of the most unfortunate unintended consequences of the fat-free crusade was the idea that if it wasn't fat, it wouldn't make you fat. I even had colleagues who were telling the public that you can't get fat eating carbohydrates. Actually, farmers have known for thousands of years that you can make animals fat by feeding them grains, as long as you don't let them run around too much, and it turns out that applies to humans. We can very easily get fat from eating too many carbohydrates, and the public was really directed to only focus on fat calories, when we really have to keep an eye on calories no matter where they're coming from. With more fat-free products than ever, Americans got fatter. Right. The reality is that during this campaign for fat-free and reduced-fat products, actual fat consumption did go down, but Americans got much fatter during this period of time. Now of course lots of things were going on at the same period in time, but I think it's highly likely this focus only on fat calories to the neglect of carbohydrate calories has contributed to this epidemic of obesity. … What did you notice that seemed to clash with the low-fat dogma? When we began our studies back in the late 1970s, we expected that we would find a relationship between, say, fat intake and breast cancer, because that was almost an accepted relationship. But as the data started coming in over the years, we just did not find any higher risk of breast cancer among women who consume more fat in the diet. And the same was true for colon cancer and for heart attacks and risk of type 2 diabetes. In fact, the percentage of calories from fat in a diet has not been related to any important health outcome. Amount of fat has no relationship to coronary heart disease? The amount of fat had no relationship to risk of coronary heart disease, but the type of fat was extremely important. So the advice we were getting was not just misleading but dangerous? Right. The evidence that we accrued really suggested not only that the type of advice that people were getting was not useful, but it actually could be dangerous, because some people were eliminating the very healthy types of fat that actually reduce heart disease rates. Certain fatty acids can dramatically reduce the incidence of cardiac arrhythmia? One of the important findings, not just from our studies but several trials conducted by other people in Europe and also some careful animal studies, have very clearly indicated that some types of fatty acids in the diet, in particular the omega-3 fatty acids, can actually reduce the heart arrhythmias that really cause people to drop dead in the street. We call that sudden death. And that's very important because some people were eliminating those critically important fatty acids from their diet because they were told that all fat is bad. ... If you're American and overweight, won't you be put on a low-fat diet? If you're overweight and living in the United States, and you go to a hospital and see a dietician, almost for sure, you're going to be put on a low-fat, high-carbohydrate diet. What's your view of that? The problem is that that's really the wrong diet for an overweight person. Because the person is overweight, in general they're going to have quite a bit more insulin resistance and much less well able to tolerate low-fat, high-carbohydrate diet. But fats have twice the amount of calories per gram as carbohydrates. Doesn't it make sense to push the low-calorie diet and therefore a diet low in fat? There's been a very simplistic idea: Just because fats have more calories per ounce than carbohydrates, we should be eliminating fats or reducing fats to control our total caloric intake, in other words, to help control our weight. What's really important though is how satisfying a diet is, because we have very complex mechanisms that control our total intake of calories, and it's become pretty apparent that if we have a high-carbohydrate diet, particularly high refined carbohydrate, it makes it much more difficult to control our total caloric intake. That's probably because when we eat refined carbohydrates, we get these swings in blood glucose and insulin that lead to hunger between meals; whereas if we have a diet that's somewhat higher in fat, we tend to be more satisfied over the long run. Journalist, author "What If It's All Been A Big Fat Lie?" (New York Times Magazine, July 7, 2002) The obesity epidemic starts between 1976, say, and 1986. We're fairly confident about that because there're these series of National Health Examination surveys, and we know that in the third NHANES survey, obesity rates are still 14 percent. Up until about 1980. Yeah. Basically, up until about 1980, the obesity rates in this country are 12 to 14 percent. And then somewhere in that period between the late '70s and late '80s, they shoot up to 22-25 percent. That's known as the obesity epidemic, and the idea is: What explains it? From my fat research, I already knew that there were two major changes in the country during that period. One was, high-fructose corn syrup came in as sort of the primary caloric sweetener in America, which was my personal bias. I thought that it was high-fructose corn syrup because I'm allergic to high fructose corn syrup. … The other theory was that we started pushing the low-fat diets during this period. Starting in 1977, the government started telling all Americans to eat less fat, and starting in the mid-'80s, we started producing these low-fat products that in effect replaced the fat in the yogurt or the cookies or the whatever with carbohydrates. We went from being a country that ate about 40 percent of their calories in fat and 45 percent carbohydrates, to 34 percent fat and that much more carbohydrates. Conceivably, this belief that set in, that carbohydrates could be eaten to excess and wouldn't cause weight gain, that they were both heart healthy and the ideal diet, might have had some effect on weight. I just went off to try and find out what the answer was. I didn't know when I went in, and the more research I did, the more it became clear that this argument, this hypothesis, the alternative hypotheses that carbohydrates cause weight gain, had validity. Didn't mean it was true. Just meant that it had validity. It could be true, and if it could be true, then the way you would check is to put people on low-carbohydrate diets. You go and look at the low-carbohydrate diet idea, and lo and behold, there's Robert Atkins, who's been pushing low-carbohydrate diets for 30 years, and people swear by them. I had my former experience where I knew that at least for me, I knew it was very easy to lose weight on this diet. I found out while I was doing my reporting that there had been five studies recently done, clinically controlled trials comparing high-fat, high-protein diets like Atkins to low-fat, low-calorie diets of the kind the American Heart Association was recommending. And in each case, the people on the Atkins diet had twice the weight loss, and their cholesterol profiles, if anything, got better than the people on the American Heart Association diet. So I felt confident saying: Here's an alternative hypotheses that has validity. Here is one set of tests from the hypotheses, that seem to confirm it. Doesn't mean it's true, but it seems to confirm it, and what now needs to be done is more studies. … Director, Preventive Medicine Research Institute; author Eat More, Weigh Less The knock on the low-fat diet is that in this long stretch of time while it's been popular, in fact, Americans are getting fatter. We're in a national obesity crisis. So some people would say -- in fact some people have argued -- that the low-fat diet, the popularity of it, has in fact led to this obesity epidemic. Well, that's silly, for one thing, and it's also based again on a half-truth. And a half-truth is that people say things like, "Well, Americans have been told to eat less fat, the percentage of calories from fat is going down, Americans are fatter than ever, therefore fat is not the problem." Actually, Americans are eating more fat than ever, but they're eating even more simple carbs. So the relative percentage of fat in the diet may be lower, but the actual amount of fat is higher than ever. The goal is to eat less fat and fewer simple carbs, and then you can do so in a way that enhances your health rather than one that may harm it. What's your best guess as to what has caused this obesity crisis which everyone's very concerned about now? I mean, you're having fat kids and type 2 diabetes, which used to be adult onset diabetes, now people are seeing it in adolescence. It's scary. Yeah. Diabetes in adolescence has risen 70 percent in the last 10 years. There really is clearly an obesity crisis, but it's silly to just blame low-fat diets as the cause, because they're not. They're part of the solution. The problem is that people get in good-bad ways of thinking: that all fat is good, all fat is bad; all carbs are good, all carbs is bad, when in fact there are good carbs and bad carbs, there's good fat and bad fat, and there's good protein and bad protein. And so an optimal diet is one that's high in the good ones and low in the bad ones. So let's take fat, for example. In the early '70s and '80s, a number of manufacturers said: Oh, we'll make low-fat foods, but they're very high in sugar: The Snackwell cookies, the Entenmann's cakes and pies and so on. I even had a patient once who was starting to gain weight on a so-called low-fat diet, and I said, "What are you eating?" They said, "Oh, I'm eating just one or two a day." I said, "One or two pieces of these Entenmann's cakes?" "No, one or two cakes at a sitting." They said, "Well, it's low fat. Why not? It can't be bad for me." But it was high in sugar. But isn't that just the problem? That someone like myself goes into a store or supermarket, and I see something that says "low fat." I think, "Well, of course. I'm going to buy the low-fat whatever it is." But then you think, okay, it means there's no fat in it, and you end up eating a lot of it. And now the pendulum is going the other way. We're seeing, if it says "low-carb," it must be good for you. So you can buy low-carb vodka, you know, or low-carb whatever. What people need to understand is that you want to find foods that are low in fat but also low in simple carbs, but not low in total carbs. Low in simple carbs, high in complex carbs. Fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, soy products are good for you. Okay. Low in animal protein, higher in the plant-based protein. It's a spectrum. It's not "all or nothing." And to the degree that you move in that direction, you're going to feel better, you're going to look better, and you're going to lose weight. So it's still a good thing that there are these low-fat indicators on products in the market? I think again people need to be more mindful of what they're buying, and to read the labels. … There was a New York Times magazine article, got a lot of press … "What If It's All Been a Big Fat Lie?" Gary Taubes attacks what he calls the low-fat dogma, and says that diets like yours have led Americans to be fatter, that you're part of the problem. The reason I spend so much of my time doing science is that the whole point of science is to help people resolve conflicting claims by saying: Show me the data. Now, we've spent 25 years conducting randomized control clinical trials, published in the leading peer-reviewed journals, like the Journal of the AMA, The Lancet, Circulation, New England Journal of Medicine, and so on. And what did we find? That when people eat this way, they lose weight and keep it off. Those who have heart disease were able to reverse it, and we were the first to be able to prove that. And more recently we're showing that even the progression of some of the most common forms of cancer, like prostate cancer, may be improved when people go on these kinds of diets. LDL cholesterol, the bad cholesterol, went down by an average of 40 percent. Now, when someone like Gary Taubes, who's not a physician, writes an article attacking, I say, "Show me the data." Now, the data that he talks about are purely circumstantial. He'll say things like, "Well, Americans have been told to eat less fat. The percentage of calories from fat is down, and yet Americans are fatter than ever. Therefore fat doesn't make you fat." Now, he knows better, because I've actually debated him as well. And it's a half-truth. The percentage of calories from fat is down, but actually Americans are eating more fat than ever. The only reason that the percentage is lower is that they're eating more fat and even more simple carbs. So the goal is not to say, fat is good, carbs or bad, but to say there are good fats and bad fats, there are good carbs and bad carbs, there's good protein and bad protein, and so an optimal diet would be low in the bad carbs but high in good carbs. … So something like this article, "A Big Fat Lie," this is just balderdash? This is provocative? This is selling newspapers? Well, it is provocative. It does sell newspapers. And you know, it tells people what they want to hear, which is also a good way to sell newspapers. It's like that scene in Woody Allen's movie Sleeper, where he wakes up a few hundred years in the future and finds out that chocolate and steak are good for you. … Professor,Tufts University Friedman School of Nutrition The fat story is really something of a small disaster in its evolution. And I think again there are multiple problems. One of them is the evolution of science. … [In] the original story, cholesterol was a big player, and dietary cholesterol was associated with blood cholesterol. Well, it turns out that dietary cholesterol occurs in so much smaller amounts, its effect on serum cholesterol is not nearly as powerful as the effect of saturated fat. Well, that story, American consumers understood that cholesterol was bad. And the food manufacturers put "cholesterol-free" on every vegetable product they turned out. And if one did it, the other had to do it, because that's competition. Then we learned, well, cholesterol wasn't the big player. It was saturated fat that really is the big player. From there we went on to types of fatty acids, and so we produce margarines with vegetable oils and the public begin to shift to margarines with vegetable oils. That's fine, and the whipped margarines have less saturated fat than the solid ones. And some of them have water whipped into them, and they have even less fat. But then we looked and said, "Oh my gosh. In taking out saturated fat, manufacturers are using trans fats, which behave in the body like saturated fat." So the message that got out in the media was, "Butter is better than margarine." And there are headlines from a few years ago that say that. Many, many headlines. And that was one where the consumers just threw up their hands and said, "Oh my God, again they've pulled a dirty deal." It turns out that they both behave pretty much the same. And "less fat, more vegetable oil" is really still the message, which we started with. It's still the same message. All baked goods would have trans fat? A lot of baked goods have trans fats, except those that are made with butter, you know, which have the saturated fatty acids. Manufacturers have tried very hard, and are trying very hard, to get the trans fats out of their products. But I can tell you that what we call organoleptic factors, which is a funny, elaborate word for talking about mouth feel and the sensory qualities, and the cookies made without trans fats, to the very sensitive mouth, don't taste the same. Some people will tell you they do, and those who are really super-sensitive tasters will tell you that they don't. I think a lot of this issue begs the question of a concept that Americans have a really hard time with. It's that concept of moderation. If we could eat two cookies and move on, we'd need a lot less of what I call this jiggering with the food supply. But we don't. We want to eat a lot of things, and a lot of what we eat, and a lot of variety. And that's the other part of the fat story, which is that fat does have twice as many calories per gram as carbohydrate. So about 10 or 15 years ago, somehow we got this notion that: Aha. If we take the fat out of foods, we will be able to reduce the total caloric intake, and people will be able to control their weight. And so industry got very busy making low-fat, reduced-fat, fat-free products. And they flooded the marketplace and they flew off the shelves. And guess what? A lot of them weren't very good, and so they died on the vine very quickly. The ones that were good, people ate in excess. They didn't look at the portion size. They didn't look at the calories. They just ate them. There's no free lunch. There were calories. Guess what? People didn't lose weight. They got frustrated and went back to eating the food they liked in the first place. What did [people think] when they saw "low fat, fat free"? "Low-fat, fat-free, good for me. These have got to be good for me if they're marked low fat." Of course in many of the foods, if you looked at the label of the regular and the low fat -- and you can still do this -- the caloric difference isn't all that much. In some cases it's more significant than in others, but the issue is that if you take out fat, you got to put something in. That something, surprise surprise, has calories. It's most likely carbohydrate, a little bit of protein, and those both have calories. So you can't continue to take everything out and have some flavor and texture left, and the calories in many of those foods were not very different. … Read more: it! Facebooktwitter