You cannot watch TV, listen to the radio or go on the internet, without seeing some ad trying to convince you to eat something, for various reasons, like it tastes great, it’s good for your health or it will help you lose belly fat.
How many times have you seen an ad telling you not to eat? Or, to make sure you are hungry before you eat? Almost never, right? Did you know, there is nothing better you can do for your health and weight than going for a prolonged period without eating (fasting) and letting your body go hungry before eating? There is no food on the planet that can help you lose weight and improve your health more than fasting regularly and eating only when truly hungry most of the time. Yet, you hardly ever hear about it. Have you ever wondered why?
The answer has a lot to do with the fact that no one makes money if you are not eating! Think about it. Most of the information we receive today is, directly or indirectly, from someone trying to sell us something. For example, everywhere you look there are advertisements. On TV, in Magazines, the radio, on billboards or on the web, everywhere. It is estimated that the average person comes across thousands of ads every day. A big percentage of those ads are from food companies trying to persuade you to eat their food by telling you how good it tastes or how good it is for your health. The milk industry promotes how good milk is for you, the meat industry promotes how good meat is for you, the vegetable industry promotes how good fruits and vegetables are good for you, etc. Food companies are promoting all the benefits of the foods they are selling so they can persuade you to buy more of their food. Food companies alone spend billions per year on advertising.
My question? Who makes money when you don’t eat? No one! Since no one is making money from you when you don’t eat, who would be interested in promoting the benefits of fasting or not eating? Very few people.
I am not saying food companies don’t care about their customers’ health or that there is anything wrong with advertising. They have a product to sell and if something does not benefit their product, they are not going to promote that solution. At the end of the day, it is not their job to promote a solution that they don’t benefit from. They are in the food business, not the weight loss business.
People interested in promoting this healthier idea are people like me who are truly committed to giving information in books or have websites that connect directly with the consumer and do not rely on paid sponsors to make income. Our loyalty lies with our clients and our ideals because our clients pay our salary and we know if we want our clients to keep coming back, we need to give them the best information possible.
Unfortunately, our advertising budget can’t compete with the billions of dollars the food industry spends on advertising. This can be a reason why you hardly hear about the benefits of letting your body go hungry before eating.
Most nutritionists don’t teach the important role, hunger and fasting play in health. When I was in college, I remember all the nutritional courses I took, and not a one talked about the important role of letting your body go hungry before eating. All the courses talk about calories and the type of foods we should be eating or avoiding. As a matter of fact, they taught us that going for too long without eating is really bad for weight loss. There was no discussion of the extensive historical evidence pointing to the long-term benefits of fasting.
Why most colleges and university don’t emphasize the benefits of fasting and letting the body go hungry before eating, I can only speculate. The only conclusion I can think of is that there is something holding them back. My guess? Could be the interests of the food industry. They donate millions of dollars to universities and colleges every year for research and sponsorships, scholarships and grants.
Think about it. It is not in the best interest of the food industry for people to eat only when hungry because they will end up eating less food. The food industry, through the millions of dollars they spend on lobbying, has a tremendous influence on the government’s nutritional recommendations. The food industry would only, wisely, spend their research time and money on projects that will directly benefit them. Do you think the universities and colleges teach things that could disprove a big donor’s product or mission? Of course not.
A great book to read about the food industry and the great influence it has on the way we eat today is the book by Marion Nestle “Food Politics”. You will be surprised when you learn the amount of influence the food industry has on our government and our educational institutions.
Bottom line? The food industry has great influence over the government and the educational institutions and any information that would hinder the sales of food gets ignored or generally suppressed. Most educational institutions don’t emphasize the benefits of fasting and eating less often. Most nutritionists who get their information from those institutions may not be very aware of the benefits.
I am a firm believer in the value of education. Sometimes structured education, like colleges and universities can put blinders on people. I think that is what has happened with most nutritionists and why so few of them teach the importance of fasting and letting your body go hungry before eating.
I don’t want my blog to be misunderstood. My intentions are not to offend anyone but to answer a question I get asked a lot as to why such an important healthy habit has been completely ignored by most mainstream nutritionists.
Founder of the Live Your Way Thin System.
Yes, you read correctly, weight gain is a blessing and here is why. Just because someone is thin, that does not make them healthy. I know plenty of thin people who had heart attacks and strokes. The problem is that many thin people, or people who do not have a weight problem, wrongly believe, that because they are thin that means they are also healthy, so they don’t watch their diet and don’t exercise. All of a sudden, they have a stroke or a heart attack and then is when they realize that they are not as healthy as they thought. If they survive, then is when they start exercising and watching their diet.
You can look at weight gain as a clear signal from your body that you are engaging in behaviors that are bad for your health. This is why you should consider weight gain as a blessing because your body is giving you a heads up that you are doing something wrong and that you should change course. A thin person, unfortunately, does not get that message from their body until is too late. Personally, I would prefer if my body gave me a heads up that I am doing something wrong, so I have a chance to change before it’s too late.
Stavros Mastrogiannis: A world leader in sustainable weight loss and the creator of the Live Your Way Thin System. “A simple and practical approach to sustainable weight loss and great health”
You can ask 10 weight loss experts what, is the best way to lose weight and you will get 10 different answers. So, who should you believe and why? The unfortunate truth is that most likely, all 10 are wrong and here is why. Most weight loss experts have focused so much on creating the perfect diet or the best exercise program that would deliver the fastest results, they forgot that a diet that no one can follow, long-term, or an exercise program that no one can stick with, is not very effective. Just look at all the weight loss programs on the market today. For example, look at the P90X. Is P90X an effective workout program? Absolutely, it’s a very effective program… if you can stick with it! The problem is that very few people can actually stick with it. I personally know over 50 people that have bought the P90X but out of those 50 people only one was able to go through the whole program, everyone else burned out within the first few weeks.
So, my question is, how effective is a workout program that most people can’t do? Same thing with all the diets. Can you see yourself counting calories or point for the rest of your life? Can you see yourself constantly being vigilant of everything you put in your mount? If you are like most people, the answer is no. But that is exactly what all popular diet programs ask you to do. No wonder we are losing the weight loss battle.
The best weight loss program is that one you can live with for life! A good way to tell if, with a particular weight loss program, you will be able to achieve sustainable weight loss is to ask yourself this question. “Can I see myself doing everything the weight loss program is asking me to do for life?” If the answer is no, don’t even bother starting because any weight loss results you will achieve with that program will be temporary.
Sustainable weight loss and great health are only possible through permanent changes in your daily habitual behaviors.
About Stavros Mastrogiannis:He is a sustainable weight loss coach and has been working in the weight loss field for over 25 years. He is the owner of Live Your Way Thin LLC, a personal training, and coaching center in Danbury CT and he is the creator of Live Thin Stay Thin System. A simple and pragmatic approach to sustainable weight loss and great health.
Many people believe and, many nutritionist would tell you, that if you skip a meal or if you go for too long without food, your metabolic rate will slow down and you will overeat at your next meal.
Both of those statements are wrong. First of all, in studies of people who have fasted for a day or have skipped a meal, reported eating only slightly more than they would ordinarily eat, when they finally had a meal after fasting or after skipping the previous meal. Also, research has shown that even extreme fasting for three days in the row, will not slow down the metabolic rate. J. Webber and I. A. Macdonald, “The cardiovascular, metabolic and hormonal changes accompanying acute starvation in men and women,” British Journal of Nutrition, 71, no. 3 (March 1994)
Many people also find letting their body go hungry very uncomfortable. That is true, but thediscomfort is temporary, the benefits are permanent. Think of it as a withdrawal. If you are a coffee drinker, you know what happens if you don’t drink your coffee. You get a headache, because your body goes through a caffeine withdrawal. This is temporary and manageable. You see, most people have never felt true hunger because they eat all the time, so when they take a break from eating they go through some discomfort similar to a withdrawal. The good news is once your body adjusts, you will not believe how good you will feel and how much more energy you will have. I know, because I have been through it myself. It definitely worth the minor discomfort you may go through. Remember, with any habit you try to break, you will go through some discomfort. Developing the habit of allowing your body to go hungry before eating, is probably one of the best habits you can develop and the benefits to your health are tremendous.
Here are just a few of the many benefits of allowing our body to go hungry before eating:
- Makes your body more sensitive to insulin (great for preventing diabetes)
- Make your body more efficient at burning fat (great if you are trying to lose weight)
- Great benefits to your brain
- You will end up with more energy during the day. (Digestion takes up a lot of energy)
- Taking a break from food is the best way to detoxify.
If you would like see my complete 10 page report on the benefits of true hunger, please send me an email to email@example.com and write “Hunger Report” in the subject line and I will email you my complete report for Free.
Yes, you read the title correctly, nobody has a weight problem, what we have is a behavioral problem.
The first thing you absolutely must realize, if you want to achieve sustainable weight loss, is that you don’t have a weight problem or a fitness problem, what you have is a behavioral problem. Being overweight and out of shape is the symptom of your current habitual behaviors that you repeat on a daily basis with little conscious thought. Sometimes you are not even aware of them. Unless you eliminate the habitual behaviors that got you overweight and out of shape, and replace them with good behaviors, you will never be able to achieve sustainable weight loss. Just look at all the weight loss programs on the market today, that don’t help people make changes in their habitual behaviors but instead focus on helping people lose as much weight as fast as possible. Although most of them are able to deliver fast results, those results don’t last too long. Just look at the national statistics, over 95% of the people who lose weight regain the weight back. Why? Because they don’t help people eliminate the root cause of weight gain, which is their daily habitual behaviors.
To help you stay focused on the root cause of the problem, which is your habitual behaviors, don’t use the scale as your success indicator.
Let me explain what I mean by that. Most of us, when we’re trying to lose weight, use the scale as our success indicator. In other words, we weigh ourselves every week to see if the scale shows a lower number (which makes us feel successful) or a higher number (which makes us feel defeated). By doing this we focus on the symptom and not the problem. Instead, track on how you are doing on the healthy behavior you are trying to develop or the unhealthy behavior you are trying to eliminate.
For example: Let’s say you are working on breaking the habitual behavior of eating junk food Monday through Friday. You should keep track of the number of times you engaged in that habitual behavior Monday through Friday and each week try to eat less junk food than the previous week. So let’s say the first week you engaged in that habitual behavior 10 times. In other words, you ate junk food 10 times during the week, Monday through Friday. Let’s say the following week you engaged in that habitual behavior only 7 times. That means you made progress and you should consider that week a successful week regardless if you lost weight or not. Each week you try to do better on the behavior you are trying to develop or eliminate than the previous week. Before you know it, you will have developed the habitual behavior of not eating junk food Monday through Friday. Now, keep in mind that developing one new behavior does not mean you will start losing weight because sometimes you need to develop or change 3 or more behaviors before you start losing weight. You just keep reaping this process with each habitual behavior you need to develop or change and sooner or later you will have changed enough behaviors to lose the weight you want.
Another reason why you should not use the scale as your success indicator is that it does not tell you the full story. Sometimes you can do everything right, eat the perfect diet, do all your exercises, and the scale can still show you that you gain weight. This can happen for many reasons — eating salty food or a large meal before a weigh-in; for women, accumulated water weight during a menstrual cycle; or any number of other reasons. A person’s weight can fluctuate 3 to 5 lbs or more in one day. That’s why it’s more realistic and encouraging to focus on the behaviors you are trying to develop or change than the weight you are trying to lose. Besides, your habitual behaviors are the real problem, not the excess weight.
So if you want to maintain the right mindset focus on the behaviors you are trying to change in order to lose weight and get in shape and not the weight you are trying to lose.
At Live Your Way Thin the way we use the scale is to tell us if a client has changed enough habitual behaviors to affect their weight, we don’t use the scale as our success indicator.