The Truth About Carbs & Sugar (part 1)

carbs, low carb diet, paleo low carb, glucose, diabetes

Humans have a long, fascinating journey on this planet. Carbs and sugar are totally normal, healthy, and a natural part of this journey. Here’s why you shouldn’t freak out about them.

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New Year 2013

because ppl seek quick fixes and short cuts,
trends will come and go every year.
nothing new in these ‘headline’ stories  ..careful  don’t get suckered into shiny new things that you;re not missing and have nothing to do with your health/fitness
Eugene Sandow image
didn’t use iPhone Apps or Protein Powders to get fit
Jack Johnson
Forged Elite Fitness before it was cool
The press abused and discredited him, He received death threats, and was incarcerated because his wife was white, but for over a decade, nobody could beat him. ‘He humiliated his opponents, holding them up and kept them from being knocked out so he could keep beating on them. Johnson made a mockery of most of his opponents and angered white America with his defiant “in your face” antics.

Because stupid fitness/diet trends come and go each year, every year, forever, and they almost always suck, I have pout together this short list with better ideas.

In about 6 months, the vast majority of new year dieters & gym goers will begin the downward spiral. You know how all these people are joining the gym/health clubs right now? Roughly 60% will dropout.

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A Call for Compassion (and Action)

By now you are aware of what happened in Connecticut on Friday. My clients & friends in CT all have children (many in elementary school) just minutes from this town … they’re all OK thankfully, but this could have been any one of us. My heart is still heavy; there will be 26 funerals this week before Christmas. This is just so sad and so close to home.

This event should make every parent everywhere come together and address the real issues at hand. We really need to come together. Instead, some took advantage of the moment to spew their political or religious ideology. Distracting the conversation, clouding the truth.

Similar to health & weight loss, everyone is now an expert on topics they know little about. The media had it’s standard speculation-fest and vampire-like sensationalism. CNN immediately blamed the wrong person. KMART exploited the moment to promote products. The NRA was silent, then took down it’s Facebook & Twitter page.

A heated ‘gun rights’ debate ignited and will now be at the forefront of our collective discussion for awhile. This is a good thing, because it needs to happen. Is it too early to talk about gun laws or is it already too late?

1) Mental Health

Often overlooked, yet integral to human health & wellbeing, it is something only a few of us discuss in nutrition/fitness. Yes, we need to talk about gun laws, but people need to mourn first, and we really need to talk about mental health and community.

It is normal to grieve and mourn. And when the parents are ready to speak, we must listen carefully. Don’t jump the gun sharing opinions and politicizing tragedies.

Don’t speculate untill we have answers, but the shooter so far has been described by friends/relatives as a loner, a social outcast. He may have been autistic and brilliant, but remote. Like physical health, there are several elements to the causes & consequences of an incident like this, so: don’t jump the gun and get all heated up untill you’ve done more research and more information becomes available.

The salient points are many, don’t blame one thing (like guns, meds, media or god). Think holistically and focus on practical solutions.

Mental illness is stigmatized in this culture; many are afraid to talk about it and people don’t get the help they need, especially children. It’s common knowledge that our healthcare system is broken, but few people know anything about mental health. While people waste precious hours of their lives watching TV, they could be reading, learning, sharing and uplifting. This world – every nation, religion, culture – can benefit from more compassion, empathy and education on mental health. And it starts with each one of us.

Solutions are not out of reach. Read a book, raise your voice, listen carefully, practice and encourage compassion. Pay attention.

Compassion: a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering.

2) Gun Laws
Instead of jumping on the ‘ban all guns’ vs. ‘need more guns’ argument (both fauty assumptions), we need a mature discussion based on FACTS. I’ve had weapons my whole life, I was on the rifle team in military school, I played with Chinese stars, Samurai swords & nunchucks since I was 8 years old. I grew up with handguns and shotguns (in Florida in the 80’s, btw). At 16 I renounced violence and embraced vegetarianism for it’s principle of non-violence. I’ve been through several natural disatsers and near death experiences. I’m not against responsible gun ownership. But most of the rhetoric about gun control is coming from a oversimlified, paranoid perspective and based in fear.

The shooter had hundreds of rounds of ammo, high powered clips and the assault weapons that were obtained legally. Keep in mind gay marriage and marijuana is still illegal in most states. Our priorities as a socety – and the whole world recognizes this – are totally screwed up. Our culture is broken. But nobody needs an arsenal of assault weapons for ’sef-defense’.
  • Bushmaster .223 assault rifle,
  • Sig Sauer 9mm,
  • Glock 9mm,
  • .45-caliber Henry repeating rifle,
  • .22-caliber Marlin rifle
  • .30-caliber Enfield

Collecting assault weapons because you fear the end of the world (Doomsday Preppers) is not a hobby, it is a thought disorder.

When rational people demand BETTER gun laws/restrictions, WE ARE NOT TRYING TO TAKE YOUR GUNS AWAY. We are addressing one imoprtant factor in this issue. It is easier to get guns than it is to get a driver’s license in some states.

Better regulations can include child-proof safety lock, loading indicator, background/criminal record check, advance registration/waiting period, Social Security Number, competency test, vision test, limits on purchases, mandatory education & safety training, for example. This is common sense.

When it comes to gun violence, rather than resorting to emotion, fears or speculation, we can look at the science, which gives us better, more rational answers.

In the US, stricter gun laws = less gun violence, get the facts:

Twelve facts about guns and mass shootings in the United States

Twelve facts about guns and mass shootings in the United States

The gun ownership and gun homicides murder map of the world

‘In general, guns don’t induce people to commit crimes. “What guns do is make crimes lethal’

‘Conclusions. Although our study cannot determine causation, we found that in areas where household firearm ownership rates were higher, a disproportionately large number of people died from homicide.’

‘15 of the 25 worst mass shootings in the last 50 years took place in the United States. America is an unusually violent country. But we’re not as violent as we used to be…’

Americans constitute one of the most heavily armed societies in the developed world, with 40% of households containing guns. U.S. homicide rates are two to ten times higher than in other developed countries.

- Where there are more guns there is more homicide

- Across high-income nations, more guns = more homicide.

- Across states, more guns = more homicide

This is a call to action so we can get a grip on this problem. It starts with us practicing more compassion, not getting irrational with wanna-be-Rambo or apocalyptic fantasies..

Here is one way you can help:

Demand A Plan to End Gun Violence

3) God & Religion

This is the best article I’ve found thus far, written by clergy: Dealing With Grief: Five Things NOT To Say And Five Things To Say In A Trauma Involving Children

The religious fanatics took to the airwaves & interwebz to push thier ideas ‘if prayer wasn’t taken out of schools, this wouldn’t have happened.’ The human waste project known as the Westboro Baptist Church started tweeting and plans to picket. The mother may have been involved in an extremists survivalist group.

To my religious readers, I care less about what you believe and more about your extremist brethren with big mouths. I implore you, hold your brethren accountable.


It will probably never end, but WE CAN REDUCE HARM IN THIS WORLD when you care and make an effort.

What can WE do?

  • STAND UP for what’s right. STOP playing small and LET THE WORLD HEAR YOUR VOICE.
  • STOP people (make them accountable) when they are being insensitive assholes.
  • LOVE more than you think you can.
  • TEACH your children to not laugh at the suffering of others and turn the garbage TV off.
  • TEACH your children to not bully and don’t tolerate bullying in their community.
  • STOP tolerating ignorance & bigotry in your community.
  • INSPIRE & EMPOWER those around you, especially children, let them know they are LOVED and ALLOW them freedom to express their own unique awesomeness.
  • At your holiday parties, have fun responsibly AND discuss solutions for human health & wellbeing. All of you already have a positive influence on others in your community.
  • Do not support mainstream media that sensationalizes death/destruction and fuels fear.
  • Every child should learn jiu jitsu. Self-defense and (self-control) is NOT violence. Extremism leads to violence.
  • Leanr the facts and get political active on these issues, take a stand. It works.

Human health & wellbeing extends far beyond food & fitness. There are more important issues that we need to discuss. Stigmatizing mental illness, a lack of concern for others wellbeing and fear of speaking out are all too common. This is a call to action to be bold, practice compassion, cooperation & express the morality which resides in your heart.

In times like these, it helps to reflect with gratitude for our loved ones & community. It helps to mourn, then take action. My deepest condolence goes out to these families in Sandy Hook and all families of innocent victims everywhere.

As far as your diet or health go, don’t freak out or panic over the holidays. Check out secrets of centenarians, to help balance your perspective.

If you want to be inspired, please take 5 minutes to watch this: It’s Always Now


Parnets and fitness/healthcare professionals, please read this:

Replying to my pro-gun friends -

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The Diet-Haunted World

The holidays are upon us, which means one thing: everyone reading this knows someone who is about to start a diet.

Between Thanksgiving and New Years, most people will gain weight. Then come New Year, they will start a diet and FAIL. Going on a restricted diet to ‘improve health’ or ‘lose weight’ seems like a great idea and feels awesome at first, but often ends up disastrous. For many, it’s just a simple misunderstanding, but for others it’s fantasy ideal that pulls your strings with false hopes and fear of punishment. That New Year’s enthusiasm eventually wanes or gives way to anxiety, guilt, shame, body image distortion, compulsive behaviors and hormonal issues for what seems like an eternity in bodymind-hell. Many of these diet beliefs are false. Most of the diet Gurus are lying their asses off. Behold the Diet-Haunted World.

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White Devils & Witch Hunts

Mayor Bloomberg wants to ban sodas over 16 ounces in restaurants & other fun places because people are too damn fat! And fat asses need to be taught a lesson!

Mayor Bloomberg: We’re Simply Forcing You To Understand’

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Brooklyn Food Conference

I am speaking on a panel at the Brooklyn Food Conference this Saturday, May 12 from 2:00 PM -3:15PM.

Concepts and Controversies In Modern Nutrition

Traditional diets of the world—Paleo, Mediterranean, Japanese, French or Indian—offer healthy alternatives to the Standard American Diet, but they all have potential challenges. Discover a variety of solutions for *improving health and vitality* and learn why you should never diet if you want to lose weight.

Antonio Valladares, Fitness Expert, Certified Nutrition/Lifestyle Coach

Michele Jacobson, Certified Clinical Nutritionist and Author

2:00pm-3:15pm 6E16

They are expecting a big turn out. Workshops in cooking, local/urban farming, school projects, local/real food, farming, food politics and lots more.

Here is the schedule of workshops.

Brooklyn Technical

High School

29 Fort Greene Place,

Brooklyn, NY 11217

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Why Skinny Sucks

You want to know one of the greatest misconceptions in health as well as the single most destructive ideas I’ve encountered in the past 20 years? It’s not carbs, calories, crystal meth or cardio.

It is the preoccupation with being SKINNY.

Similar to red meat, sugar, salt, statins, cardio or dieting – most people have it all wrong. It’s not just a cute word or a harmless concept. There’s a whole sh*t storm of self-destructive ideas & eating disordered habits that are integral to it. It’s what you don’t know about it that’s most destructive.

Skinny starts out an oversimplified concept couched in cute, but most often ends in weight gain, slow metabolism (digestive issues, cold hands/feet, hair falling out) and infertility after years of interpersonal conflicts in self image & self worth. It’s twisted, not cute: skinny most often ends up making you fat.

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Red Meat Runnin’ Wild

I know you heard about it. Everyone did. It had a strong emotional influence on millions of people in less than 24 hrs. It lit a new fire under an old & sensitive topic. It swept the interwebz by tugging at your deepest fears and triggered some new discussions, heated debates but mostly reinforced long standing beliefs & prejudices.

No, I’m not talking about the Kony 2012 scam, although that was quite similar: we wanted to believe, there’s a scary boogie man, spooky, fear, death, etc. Kony 2012 fraud was the slickest BS I’ve seen in years, but this other topic is far more important.

I said before that if you want to get healthy or lose weight you need better ideas and you need to think differently. You also have to understand the media. And you have to know a little science – this is a problem because most Americans are science illiterate.

The latest ’study’ and media scare on red meat is a perfect example of faulty ’science’ and media hype.

This latest wave of hysteria helped solidify societies preexisting beliefs, taboos and eating habits with red meat, saturated fat and cholesterol. People also have emotional issues tied to food/diet, even money (meds) and other things directly connected. And red meat is a controversial or sensitive for some. So you can see how this latest red meat scare can be confusing and/or overwhelming for a lot of people.

Look at this screen shot.

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Paleo Summit

paleo summit

This is going to be epic!

My good friend Sean Croxton (Underground Wellness), has just put the finishing touches on the first ever online PALEO Health Summit.

Whether you’re hardcore into paleo, just getting started, don’t really know anything about it, or hate the hype — this event has something for you.

You get front row seats to top doctors, dietitians, authors, researchers and bloggers in the health & nutrition field – including several friends of mine – putting their knowledge to the test – and created The Paleo Summit.

It starts Sunday, February 26th and it’s FREE.

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