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Grant Roberts

Grant Roberts is recognized as one of Hollywood’s most successful trainers/nutritionists and lifestyle coaches. Roberts received international acclaim following his work with actress Hilary Swank who captured an Oscar® for her performance in the Clint Eastwood film - Million Dollar Baby. Grants clients include Academy Award® winning actors, leaders of industry, world champion athletes, he is a consultant to the US military.

Voting to Consume Less Sugar? The Eyes Have It

Written by Grant Roberts. Posted in Unified News

A University of Alabama research team published a study in the journal Appetite suggesting a novel way to influence consumers to think before grabbing a soda or sugar sweetened beverage (SSB).

The research team attempted to show consumers just how much added sugar they would be consuming with the visual aid of sugar cubes.

This “concrete representation” of an otherwise abstract calculation such as “70 grams of sugar” reduced consumption in an experiment said lead researcher John Milton Adams.

I have long purported that food labeling and front of package health claims are largely confusing to consumers and must be revised and submitted an example to the FDA. Many problems exist within the nutrition facts area, not the least of which is the units of measure. Americans simply do not have a good understanding of the metric system. Suggesting any amount of sugar in grams is largely meaningless to American consumers a point illustrated by the researchers who conducted an experiment with 109 consumers who admitted to consuming soft drinks.

The subjects were not informed of intent of one of the experiments, instead they were led to believe it was a test of their abilities to convert numbers, such as miles to kilometers, US dollars to Euros, and a specific group was asked to tally the number of sugar cubes in sugar sweetened beverages. They were told that one cube contained approximately 2.5 grams of sugar. Following the tests each of the students regardless of group were allowed to chose a soft drink as a reward of their participation with a wide array of choices ranging from a bottle of water to a can of Sunkist orange drink featuring 85g of sugar.

69 percent of the students who completed the equations that did not involve sugar cube conversion chose a sugary beverage. While 48 percent of the students who did calculate sugar cubes opted for a sugar sweetened drink.

In a separate experiment sugar-sweetened beverages were displayed behind an illustrative sugar cube pyramid, along with a sign that read “This beverage contains x grams of sugar. This is what x grams of sugar looks like.” On an alternative day cans were displayed with a sign providing no sugar cube reference instead simply stating “This beverage contains x grams of sugar.”
It turned out the sugar cube pyramid had influential power. Those who simply read the information without the sugar cube reference were nearly three times more likely to choose a sugary drink than those who viewed the sugar cube equivalents.
I would suggest that illustrating sugar cubes per serving is an intelligent easily discernable visual aid that may reduce added sugar consumption.

Added sugar is not an essential nutrient and an unnecessary and potentially addictive additive we can all live better without. It is an uncontested fact added sugar provides absolutely no health benefit whatsoever and is a problematic empty source of additional calories (energy) only.

While much debate exists over front of package labeling and I have read some disturbing industry reports illustrating how healthy claims and logos primarily manipulate consumers to spend more with little or no impact on improving healthy choices.
I propose that mandatorily illustrating added sugar with the equivalent number of sugar cubes displayed on the front of packaging based on uniform realistic serving sizes categorically by food or beverage type would prove useful to educate and assist consumers to reduce added sugar consumption.

© 2014 – Copyrights Grant Roberts All Rights Reserved

Canadians Are Not So Sweet

Written by Grant Roberts. Posted in Unified News

More big nutrition news from the Canadian Heart & Stroke Foundation. About or A-boot (pronunciation) three months ago Canada’s Heart & Stroke Foundation announced it was discontinuing its low fat diet promoting health check program stating “Health Check is no longer the right program for the time.”

While technically speaking the Low Fat Diet Experiment was never right at any time, the genesis of the low fat debacle I addressed in The Fat Waist of TIME. Regardless, The Canadian Heart & Stroke Foundation is further embracing empirical evidence and has just released an official Position Statement on Sugar.

The Heart and Stroke Foundation recommends that an individual’s total intake of free sugars not exceed 10% of total daily calorie (energy) intake, and ideally less than 5%.

Individuals who consume greater than or equal to 10% but less than 25% of total energy (calories) from added sugar have a 30% higher risk of death from heart disease or stroke when compared to those who consume less than 10%. For those who consume 25% or more of calories from added sugar, the risk is nearly tripled.

Highlights of the statement report:

Sugar is a carbohydrate that provides energy to the body; it has no other nutritional benefits.

Added sugars are those added to foods and drinks and include glucose, fructose, sucrose, brown sugar, honey, corn syrup, maple syrup, molasses, fruit puree and juice etc. These sugars provide extra calories but few or no nutritional benefits.
Fruit juice, either as a beverage, or as a sweetener added to other foods has less nutritional value than a piece of fruit and is high in sugar.

How much added sugar do Canadians currently consume?

The short answer is too much. On average more than 13 per cent of our total calories come from added sugars and this is a conservative estimate. Sugar- loaded beverages are the single greatest contributor of sugar in our diets. These include soft drinks, sports drinks, juices, energy drinks and hot and cold specialty teas and coffees. One can of pop contains 40 grams, or 10 teaspoons of sugar.

How does sugar affect our health?

Consuming too much sugar is associated with heart disease, stroke, obesity, diabetes, high blood cholesterol, cancer and cavities.

What does the Heart and Stroke Foundation recommend?

Canadians are consuming too much added sugar, especially in foods that have little or no nutritional value such as sugar-loaded beverages. The positive benefits of consuming vegetables and fruit are clear.
The Heart and Stroke Foundation recommends that Canadians decrease their consumption of added sugar to no more than 10 per cent of their total daily calories. This does not include sugar that occurs naturally in fruit, vegetables, milk, grains and other foods.

For an average 2,000-calorie-a-day diet, 10 per cent is about 48 grams, or 12 teaspoons of sugar. One can of pop contains about 85 per cent of the daily added sugar limit.

The Canadian Heart & Stroke Foundation reported the single largest contributing category of added sugar is sugar sweetened beverages (SSB’s) and that a typical can of soda or sweetened fruit drink (355ml) contains about 10 teaspoons (40grams) of sugar, representing the approximate maximum amount of 10% of energy and provides no health benefit.

The CH&SF provided the following data:

• The total volume of SSBs available to Canadians is 3.5 billion litres, the equivalent of 110 L per person per year or over 300 mL per day.29 A standard sized soft drink can is 355 mL.

• As children get older, they consume more sugar from soft drinks. Boys’ average daily consumption of regular soft drinks is 68 grams at ages 4 to 8 years and increases to 376 grams at ages 14 to 18 years. Among girls the increase is from 47 to 179 g.30

• A tax of 5 cents per 100 mL on SSBs would raise $1.8 billion in tax revenue annually.29

• Worldwide it is estimated that 180,000 deaths annually are attributed to the consumption of SSBs, including 133,000 from diabetes, 44,000 from cardiovascular disease, and 6,000 from cancer.

All of the above is very relevant information, and a step n the right direction. Until three months ago the Canadian Heart & Stroke Foundation was pretty much a carbon copy of the American Heart Association, selling its Health Check logo to any food manufacturer willing to pay for the organizations endorsement of the low fat diet. We can only hope that the American Heart Association will follow Canada’s lead and stop profiting through the promotion of low fat foods that tend to contribute to obesity and furthermore embrace the Canadian organizations recommendation to limit added sugar.

In my next blog “Voting to Eat Less Sugar” I will report on an interesting study authored by the University of Alabama that suggests a novel visual logo to assist consumers in doing just that.

© 2014 – Copyrights Grant Roberts All Rights Reserved

Paleo By Comparison – Yesterdays Reason is Not TODAY

Written by Grant Roberts. Posted in Unified News

Lately it seems like all I am doing is refuting the media.

I was alerted to another media faux pas by a barrage of emails defending the Paleo diet following a poorly written article posted at Today Show Health section regarding superstar LeBron James’ leaner physique achieved by adopting a Paleo diet. Instead of praising King James the author and dietician inexplicably misinformed readers about the alleged perils of the Paleo / low carb diet.

What’s the difference between a Dietician and a Nutritionist? Most nutritionists will argue logic.

Dieticians are spoon fed a curriculum endorsing the USDA nutrition guidelines of a grain based low fat diet they blindly promote, representing the worst ongoing dietary experiment in human history. Despite the explosion of obesity, metabolic syndrome, heart disease and diabetes since publicly launching the USDA grain based, low fat nutritional guidelines in 1980, apparently the empirical evidence demonstrating the oversimplified theory we are getting fat because we are eating too much fat is just plain wrong is not convincing the powers that be (the powers that be are the cereal, processed foods and high fructose corn syrup manufacturers who fund skewed studies that dictate the USDA Guidelines).

Back to the article, as virtually every public commentary at the Today site stated (some less politely than others), the author is clearly unqualified to speak on the topic of nutrition.

She was somewhat correct in the basic premise of what a Paleo diet represents:
“Paleo proponents eat meat, fish, shellfish, poultry, eggs, vegetables, roots, fruits and berries — a diet believed to be similar to foods hunted, fished, or gathered by our ancestors. If you eat Paleo, you can’t have grains, dairy, or legumes (beans or peas). Sugar and salt are also no-no’s.”

A real Paleo diet is virtually impossible to follow today, since in its truest form, it would be seasonal and limited to the foods including insects of a geographic region. Modern day Paleo eaters typically consume fruits and vegetables that would not have existed in the Paleo era.

The author throughout the article continually contradicts herself commencing with the dieticians ridiculous mantra “if there’s one nutrition (I assume she meant nutrient) Americans don’t need more of on our plates, it’s protein. It’s recommended that 10 to 35 percent of your daily calories come from protein. Paleo encourages amounts of protein and fat beyond current federal recommendations.”

Wrong on both counts. Americans as a whole need more protein but specifically a complete protein, and Paleo meals do revolve around complete protein and total daily consumption represents an average of 35% of energy consumed in line with the so-called recommendations (however most dieticians I am aware of advise too low of an amount of just 10%)

Next to water, protein is the most abundant substance in a healthy body, in fact take away the water and as much as 75% of your composition could be protein. While the dietician food pyramid may not have much to say about protein – let me explain what a ridiculous oversight that is and just how critical a role protein plays in virtually everything about us.

Protein constitutes our muscles, ligaments, tendons, organs, glands, nails, hair, even certain enzymes, hormones and some body fluids including hemoglobin is comprised of protein.

Protein is absolutely essential for health and life, proteins act as enzymes, hormones and antibodies, they maintain fluid and ph balance, protein is an essential structural component of every cell in your body and make brain function possible… protein acts as a neurotransmitters or precursors of neurotransmitters – the chemicals that carry information from one cell to another.

Protein makes movement possible…every one of our muscles are composed of motor or contractile proteins that convert energy into animation pushing and pulling our bones to propel us. Structural proteins are what our bones, teeth, hair, and the outer layer of skin are made of. Enzymes and proteins facilitate chemical reactions that make the transport of vital materials like oxygen, vitamins and minerals possible

Immunoproteins are antibodies that defend the body from possible attack of bacteria and viruses protecting us from disease. Hormones are proteins that act as chemical messengers and regulate or balance functions. And last but certainly not least, protein determines and controls the activity of our genes…to what extent is still being uncovered.

Proteins are large, complex molecules that are not actually a single substance, but rather a collective name for a complex chain of smaller subunits called amino acids. There are more than a hundred thousand known protein possibilities in the body… Amazingly they are all made up of different combinations of just 20 amino acids each having a uniquely different structure and performing different functions in the body.

Protein in foods are available in animal and plant forms, protein from animal sources such as meats, eggs and dairy products are complete proteins. Vegetable proteins however are incomplete and lack some of the essential amino acid with the one single exception of soy. For this reason vegetarians are required to be eaten in combinations such as rice and beans to make a complete protein or alternatively consider taking a protein supplement.

In adults a protein deficiency may result in lack of vigor, stamina, mental depression, weakness, a weak or poor immune system, impaired healing and slow recovery from disease. In children it can be far more detrimental including abnormalities in growth and tissue development.

The dietician would also not make a very good defense lawyer for carbohydrates stating: “overloading on pasta, bread and potatoes can contribute to weight gain and diet-related diseases, such as heart disease and type 2 diabetes”

In fact carbohydrates categorically are non-essential and provide nothing but a source of energy. Yet the dietician overemphasizes this role also falsely suggesting 3 things people get wrong about carbohydrates.

She suggests that we “need” carbohydrates… when in fact categorically carbohydrates are non-essential. First of all lets make it perfectly clear, Paleo diets include carbohydrates, I am hopeful that the dietician realizes in her opening statement describing the Paleo diet that vegetables, fruits and berries are actually carbohydrates?

The author then speaks on behalf of science (in fairness she didn’t reference which century) using the dieticians reflex response to carbohydrates and the brain saying: “Science says: Carbohydrates are broken down into glucose, the important fuel needed by your brain, red blood cells, your entire central nervous system and even your muscles. When you skimp on carbohydrates, your body uses stored body fat to generate glucose. That may sound great, but eventually going too low in carbohydrate for too long causes your body to use protein from food and your muscles to create glucose.”
“And if you use fat and protein to create glucose, they can’t be used to perform their many functions. According to the National Academy of Science’s Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA), minimum daily glucose needs can be met by consuming 130 grams (520 calories) of carbohydrates. The Institute of Medicine recommends 45 to 65 percent of total daily calorie needs from carbohydrate.”

“For someone who consumes 2,000 calories, that’s 900 to 1,300 calories daily.”

Ok. So which is it? 520, 900 or 1,300 calories worth of carbohydrates… and what source or are all carbohydrates created equal?

Don’t worry not only is this dietician confusing, so is the following three (3) italicized excerpts from the USDA text book on the subject wrongly suggesting and contradicting itself when stating “the brain is the only true carbohydrate-dependent organ” since the section specifically includes the following about fat or protein providing brain fuel:

“The minimal amount of carbohydrate required, either from endogenous or exogenous sources, is determined by the brain’ s requirement for glucose.The brain is the only true carbohydrate-dependent organ in that it oxidizes
glucose completely to carbon dioxide and water. Normally, the brain uses glucose almost exclusively for its energy needs…”

Then goes on to explain how fat can fuel the brain:

When glucose production or availability decreases below that required for the complete energy requirements for the brain, there is a rise in ketoacid production in the liver in order to provide the brain with an alternative fuel. This has been
referred to as “ ketosis.”

Or alternatively how Protein can power the brain.

“The required amount of glucose could be derived easily from ingested protein alone if the individual was ingesting a carbohydrate-free, but energy-adequate diet containing protein sufficient for nitrogen balance.”

The author also spoke on behalf of science saying: “ Science says: It’s about calories. Eating foods low in carbohydrates won’t guarantee weight loss unless you’re cutting the amount of calories you consume daily. A recent review of 19 studies published in PLoS One found that overweight or obese subjects lost similar amounts of weight after following diets that were low carbohydrate (less than 45 percent of total calories) or balanced (45 to 65 percent of total calories).”

First of all, calories don’t exist; they are a unit of measure. Humans don’t burn calories, we burn ATP derived from nutrients and different macro nutrient sources (protein, fat or carbohydrates) yield very different hormonal responses and outcomes. The study she sites is highly flawed, does not measure body composition change (fat loss), instead relies on weight and the antiquated Body Mass Index which tells us nothing. Perhaps what is most egregious is the study defines a low carbohydrate diet containing as much as 45% of energy from carbohydrates. 45% is not low! A Paleo consumption is approximately 10% carbohydrate. Regardless nothing in the reference study provides any accuracy regarding nutrients consumed or outcome.

Lastly, the author tells us once again that: “Science says: Whole grains like oats, brown rice and even popcorn are rich sources of fiber”

Fiber does actually provide some health benefits such as balancing glucose from the over consumption of … you guessed it carbohydrates, so why not just consume a fiber supplement – fiber has no caloric energy so you can consume buckets of fiber if you chose and the percentage amount of carbohydrates you would be eating is zero since the measure she is intent on using is calories.

Fiber is part of the complex carbohydrate group unlike other complex carbohydrates, fiber is so complex that it is indigestible and therefore is calorie or energy free. Fiber is found in all plant foods mainly in the peel, stalk, skin, germ and hull of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, nuts and seeds. You know … the good carbohydrates that Paleo diets provide in ample amounts.

© 2014 – Copyrights Grant Roberts All Rights Reserved

Fat Waist of TIME – Part Two

Written by Grant Roberts. Posted in Unified News

In Part One, I applauded TIME magazines change of “heart” regarding their position linking dietary fat to obesity and heart disease. I referenced how in 1961,TIME magazine actually contributed to the obesity epidemic by featuring physiologist Ancel Keys, the pseudoscientist behind the low fat diet advice. Keys used media attention and a falsified study he authored to convince the American Heart Association (AMA) of his grossly oversimplified theory that Americans are getting fat because they are eating too much fat; the basis of Keys infamous Seven Country Study that he excluded fifteen countries worth of non conforming data to Keys desired outcome.

The AMA supported Keys and in turn influenced the USDA to publish, promote and perpetrate the low fat diet experiment embodied in the iconic food pyramid found in doctors’ offices, schools and adorning processed food packaging.

Unfortunately the low fat advice remains well en”grained” to his day, however I appreciate that after fifty-five years of gullibility TIME has finally acknowledged the low fat hypothesis was wrong. Sadly, Keys influence as it pertains to TIME magazine publishing false and misleading information adversely contributing to the obesity crisis didn’t end with his fabricated low fat and cholesterol recommendations. Keys’ is also directly responsible for oversimplifying how we measure obesity in this country.

In July 1972, Ancel Keys published a paper in the Journal of Chronic Diseases, resurrecting and renaming the Quetelet Index to the Body Mass Index (BMI) as a method to measure obesity.

I have written extensively on the inaccuracies of BMI and the absurdity that the most technologically advanced nation on Earth continues to measure obesity incorrectly with an antiquated linear height and weight chart conceived in 1835 that to this day excludes women and children and does not in any way measure body fatness.

I am clearly not a fan of Mr. Keys yet I will acknowledge that while he did state BMI might prove appropriate for population studies (it does not), he did actually cite that BMI would not be inappropriate for individual evaluation (it isn’t). This message was unheeded and BMI due to its simplicity has become ubiquitous as a global measure of individual obesity despite the fact that BMI it is 48% and 25% inaccurate in women and men respectively. PLOS ONE Study

TIME magazine once again fell victim to Keys misinformation with the 2009 cover story The Myth about Exercise, authored by John Cloud who suggests exercise won’t help you lose “weight”. If you have read my blogs or heard me speak publically you know that I do not personally use the term weight-loss, or measure success by scale weight or BMI because each provide absolutely no verifiable information about body composition and what exactly is being lost or gained (water, excess fat or lean muscle).

In the spirit of Ancel Keys, Mr. Cloud likewise oversimplifies data and attempts to mold generic terms like “weight” “exercise” and “calories / calorie balance” to fit his theory. The article is pretty much a contradiction and a complete waste of words aside from the acknowledgement that exercise is good for you.

Cloud describes himself as a habitual exerciser who has generally maintained a body weight of 163 pounds his entire adult life yet still has a fat gut that hangs over his belt when he sits. He acknowledges some benefits of “exercise”: “Sure. It does plenty. In addition to enhancing heart health and helping prevent disease, exercise
improves your mental health and cognitive ability”.

A study published in June in the journal Neurology found that older people who exercise at least once a week are 30% more likely to maintain cognitive function than those who exercise less. Another study, released by the University of Alberta earlier this year, found that people with chronic back pain who exercise four days a week have 36% less disability than those who exercise only two or three days a week.

The author instead fixates on scale weight; saying exercise will not help you to lose weight, and may in fact be responsible for people gaining weight. “Weight” is not the issue. Scale weight can increase with exercise due to increasing lean muscle mass. Muscle is much denser than fat, improves metabolism, skeletal structure, prevents injuries the list goes on. Neither weight nor BMI are acceptable methods to define health or exercise success. Most athletes weigh more than non-exercising people due to muscle density. What is important and not discussed is body composition, specifically the ratio of fat to lean muscle.

When discussing exercise, the author remains vague but seems to focus his efforts and his inaccurately measured expenditures on cardiovascular type exercise, which in itself is problematic, overdoing cardio does not contribute to fat loss, instead when the limited resource of glycogen stores needed to propel muscle aided by oxygen in the muscle are depleted, the next source of energy used is predominantly protein derived by breaking down muscle tissue (gluconeogenesis), not fat.

Weight training is by far the superior method of exercise to improve body composition (lean mass to fat mass ratios). While an important component of health, cardiovascular training as the name implies conditions your heart and respiratory system and does not build lean muscle or create shape. As noted above it can breakdown muscle tissue while sparing fat loss… the reason why commercials featuring treadmills and climbers mislead viewers by focusing on “burning calories”?

To further explain the idiocy of measuring exercise success by calories burned – the benefits of exercise should never be measured by calories. A calorie is a fictitious unit of measure that describes the amount of heat produced if you incinerated a nutrient in a metal oven called a calorimeter. The human digestive system is far more complex than a metal oven and nutrients are absorbed and break down at different speeds and elicit a variety of hormonal and chemical reactions that determine whether the nutrient will be used as energy, build a material such as muscle and or fat or pass through. Counting calories makes even less sense than saying the weight of the food you eat, equals the amount of weight you will gain, at least momentarily the latter is true.

Regardless Cloud references calories and the calorie balance theory (calories in versus calories out) continuing his vague, nondescript and unreliable theories. The calorie balance myth is another topic I have written on extensively. Humans do not burn calories, we burn ATP derived from nutrients and all foods are not created equal. If people who exercised specifically with a goal to “burn calories” actually knew how few “calories” or the amount of nutrient derived energy was actually consumed by exercise they likely wouldn’t do it. Despite the calorie counting mechanisms on cardio machines are generic and grossly inaccurate, what most people don’t realize is that during an exercise session if you hypothetically burned 250 calories, if you had instead opted to stand beside the machine instead of exercising on it you would likely have consumed more that 200 of the units, because the body is always at work maintaining function and using energy, exercise contributes very little to energy consumption, but has many more long term health benefits.

Perhaps strangest of all, the author seems to suggest that it is normal to use exercise as an excuse to “reward yourself” by gorging on junk food post exercise. If this is a habit of the author it seems likely that he is focusing his exercise efforts on long in duration cardiovascular activities which will deplete glycogen stores and break down muscle tissue, fat will not be accessed as a fuel during the activity and post consumption of “junk food”, all of the sugar consumed in excess of capacity to refill glycogen stores in the muscle will be sent to the liver to be converted to, and stored as fat. This likely explains the fat waist the author can’t get rid of.

To summarize, most of what people have been told about exercise and nutrition for the last half century is dead wrong. We need to metaphorically acknowledge that the world is not flat and change our perspective of the universe. To combat excess fat we need to change the message, beginning with the mind set “that exercise is good for you”. The belief structure and phrase we need to adopt is not… that exercise is good for you but instead it is that it is bad for you if you don’t. Regardless of age, gender, ability or present condition it is time to embracing the life enhancing body mind and spirit benefits of a comprehensive healthy lifestyle.

* Forking Right is a trademark of Grant Roberts Inc.

© 2014 – Copyrights Grant Roberts, All Rights Reserved

Health Check…Out: Canada

Written by Grant Roberts. Posted in Unified News

This may be one of the most revolutionary nutrition news stories of the past thirty-four years depending upon how the Canadian Heart & Stroke association changes their nutritional recommendations. If you are awaiting part two of my recent blog: Fat Waist of TIME – Part One consider this part 1.5.

Before publishing the Fat Waist of TIME – Part One article, I forwarded a copy to a colleague who works for the Canadian Heart and Stroke Foundation, an organization very similar to the America Heart Association. On June 18th I received a return email with a Media Release link and the message “I think you are going to be happy”.

See News Release:

Because of this changing landscape, Health Check is no longer the right program for the time.”

 To summarize my original blog, I suggest the current obesity epidemic is principally the fault of an oversimplified hypothesis that we are getting fat because we are eating too much fat, conceived by a dubious scientist name Ancel Keys, who was featured in TIME magazine 1961. Keys published a paper recommending the benefits of a low fat diet infamously known as the Seven Country Study. It should have been called the Twenty-two country study but Keys deleted / ignored data from fifteen other countries that contradicted his desired outcome.

Long story short, Keys convinced the American Heart Association, who in turn influenced the USDA to publish the first Nutritional Guidelines in 1980 which led to the unprecedented rise in obesity and related diseases from the nations adherence to the low fat recommendations largely influenced my cute logos of happy hearts and check marks insinuating the packaged food was an endorsed and trustworthy healthy choice.

I explained why the grain based diet is particularily problematic and that grain remains the primary active ingredient of choice to fatten any mammal be they factory farmed humans or cattle. At the end of the blog I acknowledged the welcomed leap forward with TIME magazine reversing its position on the demonization of fat, in the  June 23rd 2014 edition.

I ended the Part 1 of the  blog with a note of skepticism regarding the American Heart Association, thinking they would be reluctant to admit any error in judgment or change its position because the organization also makes a lot of money selling the Heart Smart™ logo to any takers.

Other than the providing a check made payable to the American Heart Association – Heart Smart Program products are required to meet the following low fat requirements, virtually unchanged from Ancel Keys recommendations decades ago:

Heart-Check Food Certification Program Nutrition Requirements

To my great surprise the Canadian sister organization Heart & Stroke Foundation that also sells a Health Check symbol in favor of low fat foods has announced they will be discontinuing the low fat program due to “changing landscape” stating “Heart Check is no longer the right program for the time.”

I immediately responded to the Heart & Strokes comment section hoping to encourage the Canadian public:

Heart & Stroke Foundation – You Are My Hero!

Finally an organization has displayed the courage to say the Emperor has no clothes.

I recently wrote an article on the originating cause of the current obesity epidemic:

The low fat diet advice – the soon to be former health check program has been promoting without any credible scientific evidence of support, is in fact the primary reason.

Your statement that you will direct new funding for innovative nutrition- focused research encourages me. Please accept my invitation to provide you mountains of empirical science based research on the solution to the obesity epidemic and related diseases through nutrition and lifestyle management.

I am however concerned about your opening statement. It’s OK, you can say you made a mistake, and I wish you would be honest with the Nation. For the past 15 years you have sold a logo for profit promoting low fat foods that actually contribute more than any other category to metabolic syndrome, obesity, diabetes and heart disease.  Yes, you can say you didn’t know any better and you were simply following the Governments (industry influenced) guidelines. Take a stand. Admit it and take pride in the fact that you finally recognized the blatantly obvious error in nutritional judgment – that fat is unquestionably an essential component of daily nutrition and healthy body composition.

I earnestly implore you – you have my unconditional support to reverse the nutrient order and promote a truly healthy diet based on delivering the five (5) essential nutrients (water, protein, fat, minerals and vitamins) in optimum amounts while encouraging the appropriate limited consumption of non-processed carbohydrate choices.

To anyone reading my comment please second the motion to the Heart & Stroke Foundation to accept my offer; together we can lead the way to a healthier Canada by following a unified lifestyle.


Grant Roberts


© 2014 – Copyright Grant Roberts, All Rights Reserved



Dr. Oz: Infomercial Host or Nutrition Expert?

Written by Grant Roberts. Posted in Unified News

Heart specialist Mehmet Oz, host of the popular daytime info-show “The Dr. Oz Show” appeared before the Senate and was reprimanded by Claire McCaskill chairman of the subcommittee: Protecting Consumers from False and Deceptive Advertising of Weight-Loss Products.

“The scientific community is almost monolithic against you in terms of the efficacy of the three products you called ‘miracles,'” said McCaskill, continuing “I don’t get why you need to say this stuff when you know it’s not true. When you have this amazing megaphone, why would you cheapen your show?…With power comes a great deal of responsibility.”

Oz admitted to using “flowery language” butadamantly stated, “If you see my name, face or show in any type of ad, email or other circumstance,” Oz testified, “it’s illegal”.

This unfortunately is not the first time I have heard Oz state he doesn’t do endorsements a false statement and I called him on it back in 2011. The fact is, he did make a personal endorsement on his show, accepted a million dollars and lent his face to the Weightwatchers promoting the Transformation Nation Challenge. What does a million dollars buy, apparently a dedicated episode hosted by Dr. Oz Show and use of his image on the front page of the Weightwatcher website. Oz further negotiated that contestants could onlyregister for the challenge by weighing in at a Weightwatchers facility and registering their personal information at the Dr. Oz owned and operated Sharecare website.

I wrote but decided not to publish a blog exposing the inaccuracies of the Dr. Oz /Weightwatchers show and instead attempted to have a face to face with him as a guests on my Los Angeles based Unified Lifestyle Radio Show. Despite numerous attempts I did not get a response from the Oz camp, however Weightwatchers did accept the invitation and attended in studio. During the show I explained why the Transformation Nation Challenge was counterintuitive andelucidated my concerns regarding the oversimplified, wrong and even dangerous advice Dr. Oz shared to convince his viewing audience to participate. Oz actually stated, site unseen that everyone in America, obviously including men and women with body issues, bulimia, anorexia etc. that they needed to lose ten percent (10%) of their total weight. The Weightwatchers representative reluctantly agreed to my points which I gratefully acknowledged by publically offering my services free of charge to attend the corporate headquarters to improve the program and replace the Body Mass Index system they use with an accurate method to measure body “transformation” success.

First look at my unpublished 2011 Oz/ Weightwatcher blog

I chose formerly not to publish the blog because I hoped to speak directly to Oz and provide him an opportunity to defend his position. With no response, I then invited his writing and business partner Dr. Michael Roizen as a guest on my show. Dr. Roizen graciously accepted the invitation and we enjoyed a wonderful, enlightening and informative show that ultimately contradictedthe teleprompter messages of Oz.

To answer my own opening question: Is Dr. Oz selling out … or does he just not know any better? I believe it is the latter. Physicians in this country spend little educational time on the topics of nutrition; nutritional products, the true benefits of exercise or other preventative measures to any significant extent.

I have no doubt that Oz is a qualified cardiothoracic surgeon however that does qualify him to address a nation as a nutrition, fitness or supplement expert.I know more than most what a heart is and how it functions but I wouldn’t perform surgery on any individual or an entire nation for that matter. I would greatly appreciate if Oz would return the favor and refraining from prescribing snake oil based ‘miracle’ products.

It is about time congress pulled back the curtain to expose the publically perceived great and powerful Oz is just a heart surgeon reading off a teleprompter day in, and day out between photo shoots for the magazines, billboards and bus panels adorning his image.

Do I think Oz is dangerous? Yes. Read my blog on the appalling Dr. Oz’s “The Most Underperformed Surgery You Should Be Getting” Bariatric Surgery Show.

Do I think he is intentionally deceiving the public? No. I think he secretly hopes or falsely believes the contents of his teleprompter is correct,but I do find this excerpt of his testimony to Congress regarding the products he promotes concerning: “ I recognize that often times they don’t have the scientific muster to pass as fact.”

Oz clearly understands the heart, now he just needs to find a brain and the courage to share the truth based on empirical evidence instead of hype.

Watch the full Hearing here

Hope & Fear

The focus of the hearing was to find determine ways to protect consumers from false and deceptive “weight-loss” products.

Hope: An incredible opportunity exists to create positive change with the careful use of words. Dr. Oz has assumed a remarkable platform inheriting the Oprah timeslot. If he, congress and others simply eliminated the use of vague words and language such as“weight-loss” in favor of fat loss the ramifications would be remarkable. Necessity would demand we abolish BMI and accurately begin measuring body composition, targeting excess fat loss and establishing healthy percentages of body fat and lean metabolically active muscle tissue for men women and children, truly measuring success in the war against the obesity. Body composition testing would in turn establish the empirical evidence proving what nutrients and supplements actually work at the same time exposing fraudulent products, their manufacturers and promoters,

Fear: That The Dr. Oz show will actually do the opposite and manipulate this public scolding to shift blame to opportunists and appoint Dr. Oz as a direct to consumer infomercial host endorsed by Congress. The writing is on the wall, Sen. Richard Blumenthal, implausibly asked Oz if he would be willing to create a master list of brands he feels work, instead of general ingredients that may work for “weight loss” that leave consumers poking around the Internet.

“I’ve been actively looking at that,” said Oz. “With your suggestion and support, I think I’m going to do it and I think it’ll do a lot to drain the swamp that we’ve created around this area.”

For Congress to inexplicably ask Dr. Oz to provide a ‘master list’ of name brands minutes after admonishing Oz for his lack of understanding behind the science of the base ingredients, for lying and fraudulently promoting ‘miracle’ products is shocking. Dr. Oz is not a nutritional expert nor is he qualified to provide a “master list”. For Congress to allow a talk show host to self regulate would only further empower Oz and generate revenue for the commercially driven network show.

GUT CHECK – Reference list supplied by the FTC to spot false claims


* Forking Right is a trademark of Grant Roberts Inc.

© 2014 – Copyrights Grant Roberts, All Rights Reserved



Fat Waist of TIME – Part One

Written by Grant Roberts. Posted in Unified News

The latest issue of TIME magazine features a change of heart article on fat with the subtitle “Scientists labeled fat the enemy. Why they were wrong” – By Bryan Walsh.

When it comes to the accurate reporting of why humans get fat, TIME magazine has a less than stellar record dispensing fact from fiction. As Mr. Walsh points out, fat has been unjustly vilified for decades, however to suggest that all scientists agreed in principle with the low fat diet would be inaccurate. Instead the architect of the worst dietary experiment in history was the creation of pseudoscientist Ancel Keys aided by the American Heart Association, TIME magazine and the USDA.

Keys fathered the oversimplified message that we are getting fat because we are eating too much fat. He began manipulating data in 1953 via a study that should have been called the Twenty Two Country Study. However when Keys discovered that the majority of countries did not align with his hypothesis, instead of seeking and publishing the truth he ignored fifteen countries worth of data and published the infamous Seven Country Study that formed the basis of his propagandist report linking the alleged consumption of dietary fat to obesity and coronary heart disease.

I guess the 1950 Middlesex Study evaded Mr. Keys which demonstrated that of the three macronutrients: protein, fat or carbohydrates via a 1000 calorie (presumably energy deficient diet), the group that consumed fat experienced the greatest “weight loss” (body fat / body composition testing was largely unavailable), while the group that consumed carbohydrates actually “gained weight” on a 1000 calorie diet.

Regardless Keys would convince the American Heart Association (AHA) that all fat (butter, red meat, animal fat, eggs and dairy) should be considered “artery clogging” and avoided in the diet. TIME magazine would shine the media spotlight on Ancel Keys featuring the physiologist on the cover of the January 13, 1961 edition.

  The AHA would then persuade the United States Dept. of Agriculture (USDA) and Health and Human Services (HHS) to jointly promote the     dangers of fat by publishing the first Dietary Guidelines for Americans (1980) that is federally mandated to be revised every five years “based on the latest science”.

Inexplicably the USDA Food Pyramid, now called My Plate despite the correlating evidence of unprecedented rise in obesity, diabetes and heart disease as a result of adherence to the low fat diet, the message remains largely unchanged to this day.

Alternatively any scientists such as myself have been arguing the counterpoint for decades that you cannot categorically label all fats as “bad”.

All forms of fat are not created equal. Fat can be found in both animal and vegetable sources, providing the most concentrated source of energy in the diet. Because dietary fat is concentrated it takes longer to digest, so fats provide a long lasting sensation of fullness. In addition to providing energy, fats act as a carrier for the fat soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K. and further aids the absorption of vitamin D; makes calcium available to bones, and converts carotene to vitamin A.

Hormonally speaking, when fats are eaten and proteins are present, the pancreas releases another protein based hormone abbreviated CCK that acts a neurotransmitter sending a message to your brain that your stomach is full. So from a physiological and psychological perspective fats make us feel content and full as opposed to the quick processing and potential craving cycle associated with the insulin response of carbohydrates.

Fat is an essential component of nutrition and body composition, without fat you will die. Yet, Keys, the AHA, USDA and until now TIME propagated a negative Pavlov-ian like response to the mere mention of the word fat.

I recently wrote an article published in a fitness professional magazine entitled: WHO Are You Calling Fat?

I answered the question in the opening paragraph: “You. You are fat. Your clients are fat, and as a matter of fact so is your mother. The real question is why are we so offended by the mere mention of the word fat?

Like it or not, fat is the third most abundant ingredient in a healthy human body. Fat surrounds and protects our organs, insulates and regulates body temperature and provides a concentrated source of stored energy; even our brains are 60% fat.

We as fitness professionals must become the voice of reason”… (See full article)

From a dietary perspective, all fats and oils whether of vegetable or animal origin are some combination of saturated, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids, technically a fourth category of polyunsaturated fatty acids exist; man made trans fatty acids (also known as hydrogenated fat). Of the four categories some are inherently better than others with the single exception of man made trans fats; these man made fats should be avoided entirely. (FDA Considering Ban article)

The essential category of omega 3 & 6 fatty acids must be consumed daily to support optimum health and furthermore should be delivered in balance with an optimal ratio of 1:1. This is yet another problem directly attributed to the low fat diet advice. Omega 6 is found abundantly in processed grains while omega 3 is deficient based upon the USDA recommended diet. The simplest explanation of the need for balance is that omega 6 is pro-inflammatory while omega 3 is anti-inflammatory and thus the obvious need for homeostasis.

The demonization of saturated fats is completely unjustified with no evidence to support the argument they cause heart disease. One need only ask the obvious rhetorical question; if man has evolved and subsisted on a diet high in saturated fat for more that 3.5 million years, why now is it suddenly killing us? Could it be that researchers failed to consider the recent addition of man made trans fat that were abundantly added to packaged foods to extend shelf life? Or that cattle for example are now factory farmed and laden with antibiotics and hormones and fed unnatural grain based diets to increase fat and yield instead of healthful naturally raised grass fed beef balanced in omega 3 & 6.

What I find most surprising about the AHA / USDA low fat – grain based diet advice being dispensed is that the public has failed to recognize that aside from providing guidelines on how we humans should eat, the USDA also serves the agriculture industry to insure their profitability providing the virtually identical nutrition recommendations knowing unequivocally the best method to fatten ANY mammal quickly and cheaply is to feed them copious amounts of grain – not fat.

The good news is TIME magazine and other publications are finally embracing the incontrovertible evidence that fat in our diets is not the singular cause of obesity.

The bad news is the American Heart Association may be less forthcoming as they make a small fortune aiding food manufacturers to advertise, promote and sell low fat foods by selling their Heart Smart™ logos to any low fat food manufacturer who will pay for their endorsement.

The ugly truth is until we the public demand that an independent third party of science based nutrition experts with no ties to industry instruct Americans what actually represents a healthy diet, the USDA will continue to be influenced and dispense duplicitous and vague advice in favor of the food industry over individual health.

Stayed tuned for Part 2 – Where I illustrate it is TIME to change their exercise advice.

* Forking Right is a trademark of Grant Roberts Inc.

© 2014 – Copyrights Grant Roberts, All Rights Reserved



Chipotle’s Business Going Under Due to Grass Fed Beef

Written by Grant Roberts. Posted in Unified News

ChipotleChipotle Mexican Grill’s business is going under… down under in search of grass fed beef suppliers to keep up with demand and I have to say in my very best Aussie accent “Good on ya mate”.

Tears of a Clown

For a large scale fast food operation to make the conscious decision to serve hormone and antibiotic free grass fed beef is a milestone. Previously Chipotle served what the company termed ‘responsibly raised’ antibiotic and hormone free feedlot raised (grain fed) beef. According to Chipotle’s Founder and co CEO Steve Ellis when the US supply (approx 45 million pounds) could no longer service demand when the Chipotle chain more than doubled in size growing from 800 stores to more than 1,600, the company started blending Australian naturally grass fed beef and I could not be happier.

A Giant Leap Backwards

Cows are not designed to eat grain. Cows are designed to eat grass. The reason why red meat has such a bad nutritional reputation is a direct result of feeding grain to fatten cattle. Before factory farming, shipping cows to feedlots for profit, cattle were naturally grass fed beef providing a perfect food – complete lean protein, rich and balanced with the essential nutrients.

Ellis hopes to persuade US beef producers to shift away from feedlots and return to grass fed programs of the past. “There is no question that parts of the US are ideal for raising beef cattle exclusively on grass. Many American ranchers are doing this on a small scale, and in the coming years we hope that American grass fed beef becomes the standard in our restaurants.”

Why Americans Are As Fat As Cows

In North America the overwhelming majority of livestock are factory farmed in feedlots raised on a diet predominantly of low fat corn and wheat grains, the identical ingredients you will find in your grocers cereal isle.

“Really” Fed Up ! History Re-Pizza’s Itself

Written by Grant Roberts. Posted in Ask Grant

I was recently interviewed for commentary following a screening of the documentary Fed Up and posted my responses on this blog site. I have since received questions and comments that I sincerely appreciate and wish to clarify.

The most common remarks from readers pertain to packaged foods and supplements. Indeed, ideally in a perfect world eating real fruits and vegetables derived from rich non-over farmed soil, without the aid of chemicals, pesticides and fertilizers. Grass fed non-hormone or antibiotic laden beef along with chicken and fish raised on natural diets…

Unfortunately, we do not live in a perfect world and while living outside of the “box” is the optimum lifestyle, the reality is it is very challenging. Consider cereal, it is generally speaking a highly processed insulin spiking convenience food with little to no nutritive qualities – low in protein and fiber.

Read: Not So Special K

It is important to remember that convenience foods can also be healthful and supplements can be beneficial to insure the essential nutrients are delivered.

For example when considering designer cereal or other foods, insure each serving provides a complete protein coupled make low glycemic carbohydrates with ample amounts of fiber to reduce the elevation of insulin / blood sugar.

I think things have changed a lot since “Honest Abe Lincoln” founded the USDA in 1862; he did so to help farmers acquire seeds and the information to grow crops. Today, I would guess the prime directive of the USDA would be to support the $500 billion plus annual sales of agricultural products …at all costs…including the individual consumers health.

Sadly, history does re-pizza itself. The Fed Up movie poster sports a pair of F & U candies under the tag line “Congress says pizza is a vegetable” in reference to a not so proud moment in American history on 11/15/11 where congress accepted the USDA’s submission that with enough pizza sauce, pizza could be classified as a vegetable to meet the lobbyist driven highly profitable to food manufacturers school lunch standards.[You didn’t enter a valid video URL. Please try again.]

Despite the idiocy that tomatoes are a fruit and not a vegetable, this is not the first time the USDA has abused sugar sweetened processed tomato products. Thirty years earlier during the Reagan administration, the USDA reclassified ketchup as a vegetable. After public outcry the decision was eventually reversed.

I guess it is time the public start crying… again.

© 2014 – Copyrights Grant Roberts, All Rights Reserved


Fed Up – Movie Review by Nutrition & Exercise Expert

Written by Grant Roberts. Posted in Unified News

Super Trainer Grant Roberts weighs in on Fed Up, the newly released documentary hyped as the film the food industry doesn’t want you to see, that further promises to explain how everything you thought you knew about food and exercise over the past 30 years is dead wrong.

If you who don’t know who Grant Roberts is you certainly know his bodies of work. Best known for transforming actress Hilary Swank for her Oscar winning role in Million Dollar Baby, Grant remains one of the worlds most sought after and respected lifestyle experts, his clients include the Hollywood elite, world champion athletes and leaders of industry. You may even have one his apps; nearly 3 million users enjoy his free apps Restaurant Nutrition and WeightTracker or follow his Unified Lifestyle™ blog.

Q: A dominant theme in Fed Up was the alleged inaccuracy of the prevalent advice “eat less and exercise more”, as a trainer what is your opinion?    

 A: I couldn’t agree more, I have been campaigning against this common misnomer since it began. My greatest worry as a fitness professional is not what I say, I am more concerned about what you hear. The over simplified message “eat less and exercise more” is dangerous because it can easily be interpreted to mean if eating less is good then starving oneself must be better and likewise if exercising more is good, then exercising incessantly must also be better. We see this counterproductive theme glorified of “weight loss” television shows that result in the loss of water and muscle, not fat commencing a roller coaster ride of frustration and unsustainability.

Q: What advice should we follow?

A: I promote a Unified Lifestyle. To achieve optimum health and manage body composition the science is clear, seventy percent of the solution is based upon optimum nutrition, and nutrient timing meaning what, when and how much of each essential nutrient to eat, the remaining thirty percent of the equation includes a well designed exercise program, managing stress, balance, considering organ and brain health, rest and recovery, accountability and of course education.

Q: Does Fed Up adequately explain the cause of the obesity epidemic?

A: I applaud the effort. The challenge of dispelling a decade’s worth of well-established myths and misconceptions in one hour and thirty minutes is a daunting task. However to answer the question Fed Up didn’t actually define what obesity is; and only indirectly touched on methods to accurately measure the condition.

Q: Can you please elaborate?

A: You can’t gauge success unless you establish a baseline. I personally never use the term “weight loss”, the critical point everyone including the experts interviewed need to understand is the fact that America does NOT have a weight problem. America has a FAT problem, and the terms are not synonymous.

Establishing a baseline is of paramount importance to achieve success individually, and as a nation. The first thing we must demand is change regarding how we measure obesity. It’s ridiculous that the most technologically advanced country in the world continues to use the antiquated and completely inaccurate system Body Mass Index (BMI). Conceived and unchanged since 1835, BMI is an oversimplified linear graph that the American Medical Association, the Center for Disease Control and the USDA rely upon yet they all admit that BMI does not measure body fatness. Inexplicably the height and weight chart doesn’t even differentiate gender because it was never intended to be used by women or children, or gauge obesity for that matter. Originally BMI was nothing more than an observation by a mathematician of a correlation between young male soldiers in the Belgian army 179 years ago.

The true definition of obesity is a medical condition of excess accumulated body fat to such an extent that it represents a risk to health and longevity. Neither scale weight nor BMI tell us anything about composition. A recent PlosOne study illustrates that BMI misdiagnoses 48% of women and 25% of men.

Q: How should we measure obesity?

A: The movie momentarily demonstrated a Dexa scan which is a sophisticated medical device that accurately measures total body fat and can also be used segmentally to illustrate high risk areas such as the midsection, potentially identifying metabolic syndrome which is the sign of a toxic and failing liver. Fed Up did a good job explaining the importance of liver health and liver function, an often-overlooked critically important organ that requires as much care and attention as the heart. Excessive consumption of processed carbohydrates are extremely problematic to the liver and lead to insulin resistance and excess fat storage.

A more cost effective method of measuring obesity is medial quality multi signal bio-impedance scale that are light-years better than scale weight or BMI.  Another simple and effective gauge is tracking waist circumference, the premise of my free app WeightTracker that converts the data into a reasonably accurate body fat percentage to establish goals and track progress.

Q: What were the strengths of Fed Up? 

A: Fed Up illuminated numerous important messages, perhaps most importantly that a calorie is not a calorie. I would have preferred the message that calories don’t actually exist. Calories are just a fictitious unit of measure describing the amount of heat produced when nutrients are incinerated in a metal oven, unfortunately humans don’t have cast iron stomachs therefore we don’t burn calories, we burn ATP derived from nutrients that elicit a myriad of drug like reactions upon digestion which should come as no surprise because food technically is the ultimate drug. The oversimplified and shockingly espoused mantra of calories in versus calories out, AKA the energy balance theory continually spouted by self-proclaimed experts is incredibly problematic. Food manufacturers take full advantage of the ambiguous message of calories much like magicians rely upon diversion.  A good example is the soda industry where the soft drink manufacturers have voluntarily formed an alliance to boldly print the calorie count on the front of the can. Think about that for a second, do you really believe they are trying to educate and encourage reduced consumption of their products, or alternatively are they trying to justify and encourage to you make a bad non-nutritive choice?

When you focus on calories instead of the essential nutrients we need to live, thrive and survive as in the example of the soda industry, and further endorsed by the USDA’s shameful recommendation Americans follow a diet of 2000 calories; the interpretation by the consumer is they can enjoy 2000 fictitious calorie units with no other consideration or consequences, therefore a measly 100 calories per 8 oz. serving of sugar water is within their budget and that precisely what big soda wants you to believe along with the full endorsement of the USDA.

I am also completely aligned with divulging the duplicitous nature of USDA, and exposing their causation of the obesity epidemic and the deplorable history of consistently failing to achieve healthy mandates and objectives. Instead of admitting wrong, the USDA continues to lie about relying on the latest science and continues to follow the very definition of insanity dispensing the same “low fat” advice for more than 30 years exacerbating the problem.

The USDA simply cannot serve two opposing masters, and as you might have guessed chooses to align itself with the deep pockets of industry over individual health.

Another point not addressed in the film is the fact the ambiguous USDA nutrition guidelines published every five years since 1980 is actually a get out of jail free card because food manufacturers are only referencing the lobbyist influenced USDA guidelines to promote and sell their products without repercussion.

I am also completely in accord with the message eat real food instead of processed foods like breakfast cereals a highly processed food used to effectively fatten feedlot cattle and humans alike. I concur wholeheartedly with the briefly recommended 10% of energy (calories) in the diet should be from the category of carbohydrates instead of the insanely high amount, as much of 65% recommended by the USDA. What I thought was missing was more emphasis on the essential nutrients water, protein, fat, minerals and vitamins in a healthy diet.

Q: Did Fed Up miss the mark anywhere else in the film?

A: It is easy to be critical, however overall Fed Up was informative. I am not convinced the average viewer will have a clear understanding as many of the topics were cursory, for example Fed Up briefly introduced bariatric surgery and noted how alarmingly frequent patients return to an obese state, but failed to show the absolute danger of this invasive procedure. Bypassing or removing the digestive tract has consequences on the ability to absorb essential nutrients. Reducing the stomach to the size of a thumb makes adequate hydration challenging and without a lifestyle change the elasticity of the stomach will eventually stretch out and an obese malnourished person will once again emerge.

The movie concluded with invitation to sign up and participate in a ten-day sugar free challenge.  While I concur reducing processed and added sugars is a primary first step to reduce obesity due to the inherent danger and the limited human capacity to utilize sugar, however I think the biggest mistake in the film is not informing participants what to expect when accepting and enrolling in Fed Up Challenge.

My point is this, I am sure you have seen the billboards and advertisements from “weight loss” companies promising you will lose twenty pounds in 10 days. What the participants are not told is the “weight” they will lose is primarily water – NOT fat.  The reason for this, which Fed Up does not share, is a simple one. Individuals accustomed to diets high in processed sugar retain a lot of water. Every gram of sugar can cause retention of up to three grams of water. Therefore when you cut out the sugar you see a dramatic flush and drop in water weight. The problem of course is the uneducated participant may be falsely jubilant believing they are shedding excess fat. They furthermore will likely be overly optimistic thinking the trend will continue expecting to lose another ten or twenty pounds over the next ten days, and when they don’t experience or see further substantial scale “weight loss” they may get frustrated, give up and return to old comfortable habits of sugar laden foods.

It is important to understand that safe and effective fat loss takes time. If you want to do the math calculate a healthy goal of two-three pounds of fat loss a week while preserving lean muscle tissue. Yes, the best method to achieve this is absolutely the low carb approach making healthy fiber rich natural carbohydrate choices equaling 10% of your energy intake. Center each meal around a complete protein with a target of 35% of daily energy, with the balance consisting of healthy fats predominately in the form of omega 3 rich foods or fish oil supplementation to create balance over the typical overwhelmingly high omega 6 imbalance in the average North American diet. Your total energy needs should be derived based upon your individual metabolic needs.

If that sounds complicated, a simpler approach is eat only real foods to your hearts content. This can be accomplished by living outside the box, consume nothing packaged or with more than one ingredient. Real foods don’t come with a nutrition facts label; they are the only ingredient, like meat, nuts, vegetables and fruit. Make an effort to choose grass fed beef and other meats raised on their natural diet. Consuming these foods take little effort to insure delivery of the five essential nutrients, water, protein, fat, minerals and vitamins. All meats are complete proteins and if grass fed or the natural sources will be rich and balanced in omega 3 & 6 fats. Carbohydrate choices of fruits and vegetables will naturally be rich in fiber, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.


Enjoy. FYI, that is the first principle of living a Unified Lifestyle, the foods we eat and the exercise program we follow are meant to provide us with and enhance our energy so we can enjoy life.


© 2014 – Copyrights Grant Roberts, All Rights Reserved




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