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Friday, March 28, 2008

Weight Loss Roundup

A year ago on this blog, I was talking about vegan protein sources, vegetarian fitness, night time eating and how it applies to weight loss goals and changes in your diet to make it better.

Here are the posts from last year at this time:

bill pearl vegetarian

Being a vegetarian requires a full understanding of the role nutrition plays in achieving your fitness goals.

There is a direct relationship between nutrition and physical performance in workouts or sports. Hard physical activity requires an increase in nutritionally dense calories and also due to sweating a higher fluid intake. Therefore you need to carefully plan what you eat and drink.


- guest post by Tom Venuto

Eat breakfast like a king, eat lunch like a prince and eat dinner like a pauper.

This maxim can be attributed to nutrition writer Adelle Davis, and since her passing in 1974, the advice to eat less at night to help with fat loss has lived on and continued to circulate in many different incarnations. This includes suggestions such as:

"Dont eat a lot before bedtime"
"Don't eat midnight snacks"
"Don't eat anything after 7pm"
"Don't eat any carbs at night"
"Don't eat any carbs after 3 pm"
and so on.

... read more about

Most individuals do not eat like they are supposed to. Out of those individuals 95% of them don’t realize that by making 10 simple changes to their eating lifestyle they can improve their diet by 90% along with improving their health and overall well-being.

Apply these changes to your diet today and you too will be experiencing an increased benefit to your health, probable weight loss, a leaner body, and likely improvements to your blood profile. This all equals a longer healthier life.

... read more about

Hoodia, the appetite and thirst suppressant of the South African aborigines has been tested as a dietary aid for persons wanting to stay on a weight loss diet plan. The natural supplement has been proven to help individuals eat less in a natural and safe manner. However, like any diet aid, Hoodia suppressive qualities will only be truly beneficial if a healthy diet is also implemented.

While I don't outright suggest that Hoodia is required for weight loss, I get a lot of questions about appetite suppressants and if hoodia is safe or not. I did some digging (a lot of digging) and wrote

About the photo: I interviewed Bill Pearl on the premier edition of my internet radio show back in 2003. Bill is a 5 time Mr Universe and trains every day at 4:00 am even into his seventies. Bill has been vegetarian for over 35 years and looks just fine if you ask me. The top 5 interviews from my radio show are available at Fat Loss Insider Secrets, including the interview with Bill.

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Friday, March 21, 2008

How To Build Muscle Fast

how to build muscle fast

muscle gaining secretsI've been reading more about , the debate about VitaMix vs BlendTec blenders as well as strength training. It's been a vegetarian nutrition sort of day for me.

Jason Ferruggia, suspected vegetarian body builder / strength trainer (I'll do more research on it) had this to say in an article about how to build muscle fast

Jason FerruggiaProductive mass building workouts are centered on one concept and one concept only; progressive overload. You have to consistently get stronger and lift more weight and do more reps if you ever want to get bigger. Doing the same thing repeatedly will get you absolutely nowhere and is a complete waste of your time.

Also, you need to be sure that you are using big, compound exercises like squats, deadlifts and chin ups with heavy weights. Don’t waste your time with isolation exercises and pumping techniques that do nothing to help you build muscle fast.

Next, you need to be sure your diet is in order. This means that you are eating copious amounts of food every 2-3 hours. Going longer than this without a meal will impede your progress and you will never get huge. You should be focusing on organic whole foods such as grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds for the majority of your calories. The rest of your intake should be made up of clean sources of protein like eggs and fish.

I'm liking what I'm reading about him. We both agree on milk not being designed for humans, and he eats in vegetarian restaurants, so I'm suspecting that more research will turn up a whole foods diet filled with vegetarian nutrition.

Asked this question: What is the single most important thing you can do at the gym to ensure that you will continually get bigger and stronger?

He answers: It’s very simple. The most important thing you can do each and every single time you go to the gym is try to set a PR (personal record) on every lift you do. That’s it. What this means is that you should always be trying do either do more reps with the same weight (within reason, any sets above 12 on most upper body exercises and 15-20 reps on lower body exercises will do nothing to stimulate muscle growth) or more weight for the same number of reps. Doing the same thing that you have done in a previous workout will do absolutely nothing to help you get bigger and stronger.

THAT is something I don't do enough of, what about you?

From his bio: Jason Ferruggia is a world famous fitness expert who is renowned for his ability to help people build muscle as fast as humanly possible. He is the head training adviser for Men’s Fitness Magazine where he also has his own monthly column dedicated to muscle building.

Read more about his muscle building program

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Saturday, March 15, 2008

Reversing Diabetes in 2 Weeks

As you can tell from the recent videos, I'm spending my day watching health related content. David Wolfe was a recent speaker at Harv Eker's Extreme Health event and shares some of his thoughts on raw foods here in this video.

This is a trailer of a movie called Raw For 30 Days which I've never heard about, but I'm sure David Wolfe is involved.

A great quote from one of the participants after having reversed diabetes herself was:

I don't know why the doctors don't know about this!


Raw For 30 Days

by the fourth day they were off insulin completely
by the end of the 30 days their blood sugar had stabilized
and they have effectively reversed their diabetes

"Raw For 30 Days" is an independent documentary film that chronicles six McDonald's-munching Americans with diabetes who switch to a diet consisting entirely of vegan, organic, live, raw foods in order to reverse diabetes naturally. The six participants are challenged to give up meat, dairy, sugar, alcohol, nicotine, caffeine, soda, junk food, fast food, processed food, packaged food, and even cooked food – as well as go without their loved ones and many of their creature comforts – for 30 days.

Visit Raw For 30 Days, buy the dvd and support the project in getting the word out about reversing diabetes (at the very least).

At the end of the trailer of raw for 30 days, viewers are told that Woody Harrelson would be contributing an interview for the full length movie. Here is a clip of that interview with Woody.

Woody Harrelson on Raw Foods

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How Sugar Affects Our Body and Overcoming Cravings

Neal Barnard MD discusses the science behind food additions. Willpower is not to blame: chocolate, cheese, meat, and sugar release opiate-like substances. Dr. Barnard also discusses how industry, aided by government, exploits these natural cravings, pushing us to eat more and more unhealthy foods. A plant-based (vegan) diet is the solution to avoid many of these problems. Neal Barnard is the founder of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM).

Update: This post is poorly titled, I'm sorry, but it's already made it's way out to RSS readers.

It should be called "Overcoming Food Addictions"

Overcoming Food Addictions

Video length: 40 mins

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Wednesday, March 12, 2008

The Chubby Vegan

Got caught in a bit of a Google drift just now and found this video through Stumbleupon. The Chubby Vegan serves up the Triple Tofu Tower - Eat like an Omnivore!! ROFL!!

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Monday, March 10, 2008

Raw Food Diet vs Meat Diet

The effect of a raw food diet vs a meat diet over time. Storm, 100% raw since 1972, is the same age in this picture as Arnold Schwarzenegger, former Mr Universe.

Storm offers a 5 part course in the raw lifestyle for $299 over at The Guides

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Thursday, November 15, 2007

Benefits of Being Vegetarian - Part 3

benefits of being vegetarian
Part 3 in a series of "benefits of being vegetarian" in honor of this week of the Vegetarian Challenge put forth by Toronto vegetarian group to inspire non-vegetarians into trying the lifestyle and learning more about vegetarianism. Some benefits include reducing your carbon footprint, saving money, reducing cholesterol, lower blood pressure, improving sleep, reducing stress, reducing body fat etc. There are a lot of reasons to take on a vegetarian lifestyle.

Today's benefit of being a vegetarian:

You can snack all day long and never crack 1200 calories making weight loss easy and effortless

There are virtually NO calories in vegetarian foods and it’s impossible to eat too much or gain weight.It’s the same reason that there are no bodybuilders that can gain muscle being vegetarian and why vegetarians all look so scrawny.

Completely not true

It’s not only possible to gain muscle choosing a vegetarian lifestyle, it’s easy to keep it as well.

Toby Maquire gained enough muscle eating a vegetarian diet to get the physique Spider Man is known for. The director said “He had become a sledgehammer of an action star.”

Christian Bale weighed 220 pounds during the shooting of his movie “Batman Begins”. Oh ya, Christian is a vegetarian.

Vegetarian Bodybuilder Bill Pearl

vegetarian bodybuilder bill pearl

Most impressively, 5 Time Mr Universe Bill Pearl, who trains 5 days a week into his late 70’s, has been a vegetarian since he was 39.

In my interview with Bill Pearl, we discuss his vegetarian diet, how he trains and his history of being in 5 Mr Universe competitions. Bill pearl is probably the most famous vegetarian bodybuilder to date.

There is more than enough protein in a vegetarian lifestyle to provide amino acids for the building of muscle. Protein is abundant in all nuts, seeds and beans, as well as all vegetables and grains. I gained over 50 pounds of lean muscle on a vegetarian diet along with Sunrider whole foods.


Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Benefits Of Being Vegetarian Number 2

benefits of being vegetarian
This week is the week, I'm doing a series of Benefits Of Being Vegetarian.

Number 2 on my list:
You're The Freak At The Party


Normally something you would want to avoid, in this case, your eating habits and choice of food groups (or lack of food groups) is always reason for starting a conversation.

Kinda shy? Want to meet that hot chick or guy over by the snack table? Easy, just go up and say "I'm vegetarian - what kind of vegetables do they have here?"

One of two things will occur. You'll either get a smile from him or her or suddenly become outcast and kicked out of the party.

Either way, you started a conversation and are getting a lot of attention.

carrie underwood sexiest vegetarian
Now imagine a party with Carrie Underwood at that same snack table. Imagine saying the same thing again "I'm vegetarian - what kind of vegetables do they have here?" and you'll probably get a different response. Carrie was voted sexiest vegetarian in 2005 and again this year 2007. She may very well say to you "lets blow this party and go back to my place".

Slightly different response. Never be afraid to open your mouth and ask where the veggies are, you may meet the perfect woman.


Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Benefits Of Being Vegetarian

benefits of being vegetarian
In honor of the Vegetarian Challenge, I thought I'd start some "benefits of being vegetarian" and allow readers to add some of their own.

Today's "benefit of being vegetarian" :

Better Poo


As any vegetarian can relate to, all the fiber from a vegetarian diet contributes to extreme regularity.

My buddy dirk says "there's nothing like a good poo in the morning to start your day off right"

I agree


Monday, November 12, 2007

Vegetarian Challenge Week Starts Today

vegetarian challenge
Today is day one of the Vegetarian Challenge posed by Toronto based veg group. The idea was posed by Christine (One Smart Cookie) a member of my , who recently joined my girlfriends and mine Sunrider Group. She’s making changes in her eating habits and including more green smoothies, Sunrider foods and transitioning from a meat based diet to a vegetable based diet.

Christine found this vegetarian challenge website and then started a facebook group by the same name.

The Veggie Challenge offers prizes, a once a day email with meal suggestions and product recommendations to help keep you on track. From the testimonials on their website, there have been a number of people who have made the transition to vegetarianism based on this challenge.

One such testimonial from Wayne

I had been thinking about going vegetarian for a long time but it was this challenge that made me consider it seriously.
– Wayne, 30's, from meat-centered to mostly vegan

And another from a teen who shocked her family when she started eating better:

My family was absolutely shocked that I had decided to go vegan. They kept telling me that I wouldn't get enough nutrients and would die of malnutrition.
– Monica, teen, from vegetarian to vegan

It always amuses me that those who choose to eat more nutritiously are criticized by those who are simply guessing about it.

Trust me, when you eat more vegetables and especially more leafy green vegetables, you’re eating better than most people. Vegetarians are just as concerned about carnivores as carnivores are about vegetarians, however, in my opinion, vegetarians are better informed when it comes to nutrition, more so that Registered Dietitians even who still promote dairy products and are not aware of the importance of alkalinity or pH levels.

The Vegetarian Challenge lasts 7 days from Nov 12 through Nov 19th. For more information have a look at the Vegetarian Challenge website and consider joining the Veggie Challenge Facebook Group.

ps, expect more vegetarian nutrition information from me in the upcoming days, weeks, months and years


Thursday, November 08, 2007

Take The Vegetarian Challenge

vegetarian challenge
A member of my and brand new Sunrider, Christine has taken up her change in eating with a passion. Darlene and I first started coaching Christine a few months ago when she joined Sunrider and is now as familiar with Kale and brown rice as she once was with meat and potatoes.

Christine has put forth a challenge to eat vegetarian for a week, November 12th through 18th and is launching it though the Vegetarian Challenge facebook group.

I would like to challenge everyone to eat vegetarian for the week of November 12-November 18th. Not only will you try new recipes without meat but you can try something different. It is a great opportunity to leave your ecological footprint and introduce healthy new food into your day! Have fun with it and share this with your friends. I'd love to hear how you feel about it, any recipes and how it might have made an impact on you!

Join the group, post your thoughts and results on the wall and for fun, add me as a friend.


Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Gorillas Eat Vegetables Shouldn't You?

gorilla's eat vegetables vegetarian
Gorilla's eat mostly vegetables and fruit and are one of the most powerful animals on the planet. The fact that they're vegetarian and of such immense size and strenght blows me away. There is still a lot of debate about whether humans should model Gorilla's and eat a plant based diet. The fact is that gorillas have a completely different digestive system than we do and that they can tolerate much more fruit because of their superior intestinal flora.

However, what we can learn from them is that they are a massive animal and they eat pretty much ONLY vegetables and fruit. There's power in that. I've said for a long time on this blog and in my writing the importance of having vegetables with each meal. Most recently a post about eating a salad with breakfast. Vegetables provide nutrients (albeit very few these days due to poor farming practices), much needed fiber and bulk and help us to eat smaller meals with less calories but yet feel full. This leads to a healthier colon and a safe weight loss. It's my belief that colon health is critical to a healthy body so increasing vegetables in your diet is a good idea.

I once wanted to be reincarnated as a Gorilla. They're just such a powerful and peaceful animal and subsist on mainly vegetables and fruit. I say mainly because the jury is still out on that, but I'm happy with a number something like 99% vegetarian and 1% other.

This post was inspired by James, the Painted Man. I heard that he had taken his children to the zoo the other day and noticed that the large animal subsisted on vegetables and fruit alone. He's been making modifications to his diet recently, dropping more weight and feeling better. From what I understand, he's now realized that vegetables can be quite beneficial.

Um, yep. Quite beneficial indeed. Based on what our ancestors used to eat, our diets are highly deficient in fiber. You may or may not agree with comparing your diet to that of the vegetarian Gorilla, but you can't argue that vegetables alone provide enough nutrition for a powerful being. Thanks James, for the inspiration yet again.

Mountain Gorilla

Swahili Name: Gorila or N'gagi
Scientific Name: Gorilla gorilla beringei
Size: Up to 6 feet tall
Weight: 300 to 425 pounds
Lifespan: 53 years in captivity
Habitat: Dense forest, rain forest
Diet: Vegetarian
Gestation: Vegetarian
Predators: Leopards, crocodiles, humans

Animals of this size need a lot of food, and the vegetarian gorilla is no exception. Although they eat a variety of plants, favorites include wild celery, bamboo, thistles, stinging nettles, bedstraw and certain fruit. These plants seem to provide sufficient moisture so that gorillas do not need water.

Guest writer from will be contributing articles for the about how to eat a healthy selection of foods while on a budget. I want to bust the belief that eating healthy is expensive. Stay tuned to former fat guy blog for lots of great content from Scott.

As for reincarnation, I'm more drawn to the Polar Bear now for other reasons I'll explain at another time.

Photo credit: New York Congo Gorilla Forest

Weston Price: Gorilla Diet vs Human Diet

beyond vegetarianism: correcting the vegetarian myths about ape diets


Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Vegan Nutrition

A vegan is one who refrains from eating all animal products, this means no meat, fish, poultry, dairy or eggs.

Many people turn to being a vegan for three main reasons:
ethical, environmental concerns and health benefits.

Ethical - Many vegans feel that it is wrong to unnecessarily kill and consume animals. They also point out that, in Western societies today, the animal product industries are not only cruel, but wasteful and totally needless. People don't really need to eat animal products to live, and many vegans feel that we should be caretakers, rather than tyrants, over the rest of the world's creatures.

Environmental Concerns - Animal product industries have been extreemly wasteful of the worlds limited resources.
Many vegans are very concerned about the lack of conservation and preservation inherent in the production of animal foods and goods. They believe that, as intelligent citizens of the planet, to forego animal products is their responsibility.

Health Benefits - Numerous health benefits are enjoyed by vegans, including significantly lower incidences of strokes, heart disease, osteoporosis, most forms of cancer, diabetes, hypoglycemia, constipation, hemorrhoids, diverticulosis, o besity, and asthma - all of which are major illnesses found in affluent societies.

Vegan Protein Sources

Plant foods contain the very same eight amino acids as animal foods do, only in differing amounts. As long as you are getting enough calories from a healthy diet, plant foods can give you all the amino acids you need, by themselves or in combination with one another.

Here is a list of foods that contain all of the essential amino acids, meaning they complete proteins:

Grains - Brown rice, oats (cereals - oatmeal, granola, etc.) millet, corn, barley, bulghur, wheat (including whole wheat bread, pastas, cereals, flour, etc.)

Legumes - Green peas, lentils, chick peas, alfalfa sprouts, mung beans, and beans of all kinds (kidney, lima, aduki, navy beans, soy beans and products made from them; e.g., tofu, textured vegetable protein granules [Textured Soy Protein], tempeh, soy milks), peanuts, etc.

Greens - Broccoli, collards, spinach, etc.

Nuts and Seeds - Almonds, cashews, walnuts, filberts, pistachios, pecans, macadamias and nut butters made from these. Sunflower seeds, sesame seeds (including tahini butter made from ground sesame seeds), pumpkin seeds, etc.

Combining protein foods increases the protein absorption by about 30%, and thus variety is always the best strategy.

Bellow are classic vegan high protein combinations.
These combinations are meant to replace meat and dairy products. Two ample helpings of any of the following combinations average 15 to 35 grams of high quality protein.

Corn Tacos with Pinto Beans
Oat Bran Muffins with Soymilk
Brown Rice with Green Peas and Tofu
Tempeh Burgers on Whole Wheat Bun
Whole Grain Bread with Peanut Butter and Jelly Tofu Yogurt with Walnuts Tofu Cutlets with Green Beans Almondine Sunflower Pate & Sprouts on Pita Meatless (textured soy protein) Loaf with Tahini Dressing Noodles with Sesame Seeds Oatmeal with Sunflower Seeds Brown Rice with Almonds & Cashews Avacdo, Sprouts & Almond Butter on Whole Wheat Bread Corn or Wheat Flakes w/ Chopped Almonds & Filberts Chickpea Hummus (made w/Sesame Seed Butter) on Pita

as a special feature, you can listen to my (1.5 hours in length) where Harvey talks about vegetarianism, natural health, dairy products and his new book about the lymph system called Living Without Pain.

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Saturday, March 17, 2007

Vegetarian Fitness

Being a vegetarian requires a full understanding of the role nutrition plays in achieving your fitness goals.

There is a direct relationship between nutrition and physical performance in workouts or sports. Hard physical activity requires an increase in nutritionally dense calories and also due to sweating a higher fluid intake. Threfore you need to carefully plan what you eat and drink.

Your calorie intake needs to be balanced with your energy output and goals. If you want to lose you need to cut back on calories, if you want to gain you will need to increase calories. If your going in the wrong direction, adjust your calorie intake and/or activity levels, so you are moving towards your goals.

An important point for vegetarians to realize that they digest their foods more quickly than non vegetarians. This means you need to eat more often to compensate for the higher energy needs.

When engaging in fitness training workouts you do need to increase your protein intake, but remember excess protein that is not burned for energy will be turned into fat.

Best Vegetarian Protein Sources

It's easier than you might imagine to get plenty of protein from vegetarian foods. If you include dairy products and eggs in your regimen, look no further. These are good sources of protein. Stick to low fat dairy products to avoid excess saturated fats.

If you want to be certain that you are getting all eight essential amino acids, you should eat learn to combine foods to form complete proteins, such as:

Beans on toast
Cereal/muesli with milk
Corn and beans
Granola with yogurt
Hummus and pita bread
Nut butter with milk or whole grain bread Pasta with beans Pasta with cheese (e.g., lasagne, macaroni and cheese) Rice and beans, peas, or lentils Rice with milk (rice pudding) Split pea soup with whole grain or seeded crackers or bread Tortillas with refried beans Veggie burgers on bread

Note that these combinations don't necessarily have to be eaten at the same time; you can eat one several hours after the other and still benefit from the complete protein.

Complete protein can be gotten from eating soy based foods like tofu tempeh or sprouted legumes, and meat substitutes made from soy protein.

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