Giving OMAD a try – Day 2

OMAD 1

Actually yesterday was my second day of using the one meal a day (OMAD) intermittent fasting protocol. In two days I lost 4 pounds, had lots of energy, and ate a couple really big meals. So I was pretty determined that after I had fasted for 23 hours I was going to make sure I got in a lot of calories. The first day I ate just about anything without regard to the quality of the food, but the second day I was more selective having fish, lima beans, almonds, some high protein peanut butter, and a small plate of raw vegetables.

Well now it is Monday and I’m back to my 18:6 protocol, which is 18 hours of fasting and then eating lunch and dinner. The reason I did not continue with OMAD has more to do with being social and wanting to eat lunch with my co-workers than any real major downside to a 23 hour fast.

Overall I would rate my OMAD experience as a very positive experiment, one that I will probably do on weekends to stay trim and enhance the cleansing effect of fasting. To be honest I got pretty hungry after 20 hours or so, and I often felt cold, but my energy levels were high and my mood was very good. The only concern I would have and this may not be a big deal since my experiment only lasted two days is losing 4 pounds. I would worry that if I did this daily I might not be able to take in enough calories to maintain my weight.

As I mentioned my energy levels were high, allowing me to do yoga in the morning, weight training in the afternoon, and I even got in a 3 mile walk the first day when the weather permitted. Remember this doesn’t have to be an all or nothing proposition, like me you might decide it just doesn’t fit into your lifestyle during the week to skip lunch with your friends or co-workers. Don’t agonize over it; you can always go back to OMAD on the weekend. I just might try something a bit more radical next weekend like a 48 hour fast and see what happens.

Sorry I can’t help myself.

Namaste

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Giving OMAD a try – Day 1

OMAD 1

Since the last time that I wrote about intermittent fasting I thought it would be fun to give one meal a day (OMAD) a try. This is day one, and I have decided to eat around 5 or 6 p.m., having eaten last night at about the same time. OMAD is really just another form of intermittent fasting where you fast for 23 hours and then have one hour window for eating. So why would I go from two meals a day to one meal a day?

All the benefits I mentioned in my last post are still true with OMAD. In fact they are all enhanced, which is why I am trying it. I’m particularly interested in gaining greater energy and mental clarity along with a longer detox period for my body. There are a lot of studies that show a strong relationship between fasting and longevity, so it is yet one more reason to give this a try.

Here is a short video on some of the benefits of OMAD.

This isn’t the first time I’ve done a 23 to 24 hour fast, but I’m going to give it a try for a week or so and report back on my results. In the past I was pretty hungry at about 21 to 22 hours of fasting. If you decide you want to try this, please be advised that you should already be following an intermittent fasting protocol where you are eating two meals a day. I wouldn’t advise going from the traditional three meals a day to one without first getting used to some form of fasting.

As of this moment I have 8 more hours before my next meal. I’ll report back tomorrow and let you know how I feel and how my body and mind are adapting to this new approach to intermittent fasting.

Namaste

 

Health benefits of common nuts

common nuts

The focus of this post will be on the health benefits of some of the most commonly consumed nuts including almonds, cashews, peanuts, pecans, pistachios, and walnuts. Nuts are a great source of protein, fiber, vitamins,  minerals, and essential fats. Everyone can benefit from eating nuts, but especially those of you who are eliminating meat and dairy from your diets. Of course not all nuts have the same nutritional profile, and this will be something we delve into, hopefully providing you some guidance or at least an understanding of the differences between these commonly consumed nuts. Let’s look at each of these nuts for their overall benefits and nutritional data:

Almonds

This is a calcium rich nut that is great for your bones especially if you have eliminated dairy products from your diet. Almonds have a high amount of vitamin E making them good for your skin, and the outer skin on the almond has flavonoids that help protect your heart.

Nutritional Data: 1 ounce (23 whole nuts) of raw almonds contains 6.02 grams protein, 14 grams of fat163 calories, and 3.5 grams of dietary fiber.

Minerals

Potassium – 200 mg
Phosphorus – 137 mg
Calcium – 75 mg
Magnesium – 76 mg
Iron – 1.05 mg
Selenium – 0.7 mcg
Zinc – 0.87 mg
Manganese – 0.648 mg
Copper – 0.282 mg

Vitamins

Vitamin B1 (thiamine) – 0.06 mg
Vitamin B2 (riboflavin) – 0.287 mg
Niacin – 0.96 mg
Folate – 14 mcg
Pantothenic Acid – 0.133 mg
Vitamin B6 – 0.041 mg
Vitamin E – 7.43 mg

 

Cashews

A great source of protein they are also rich in iron and zinc, which makes cashews a great choice if you’re following a vegetarian diet. Containing generous amounts of the mineral magnesium, which is thought to improve recall and delay, age-related memory loss.

Nutritional Data: One ounce of raw, unsalted cashew nuts contains 5.17 grams of protein, 13 grams of fat157 calories and 0.94 grams of fiber.

Minerals

Potassium – 187 mg
Phosphorus – 168 mg
Calcium – 10 mg
Magnesium – 83 mg
Iron – 1.89 mg
Sodium – 3 mg
Manganese – 0.469 mg
Zinc – 1.64 mg
Copper – 0.622 mg
Selenium – 5.6 mcg

Vitamins

Vitamin C – 0.1 mg
Vitamin B1 (thiamine) – 0.12 mg
Vitamin B2 (riboflavin) – 0.016 mg
Niacin – 0.301 mg
Pantothenic Acid – 0.245 mg
Vitamin B6 – 0.118 mg
Folate – 7 mcg
Vitamin E – 0.26 mg
Vitamin K – 9.7 mcg

 

Peanuts

Surprisingly the lowly peanut rivals many of the most nutritious nuts chosen by the USDA. This nut is heart-healthy overall, and contains resveratrol, the same flavonoid sought from red grapes and red wine.  Peanuts have the highest amount of protein, the third least calories, and the absolute highest amount of Folate (folic acid), a water-soluble B-complex vitamin that is rare in nuts .

Nutritional Data: One ounce of dry roasted peanuts contains 6.71 grams of protein, 14 grams of fat166 calories and 2.3 grams of dietary fiber.

Minerals

Potassium -187 mg
Phosphorus – 101 mg
Calcium – 15 mg
Magnesium – 50 mg
Iron – 0.64 mg
Sodium – 2 mg
Manganese – 0.591 mg
Zinc – 0.94 mg
Copper – 0.190 mg
Selenium – 2.1 mcg

Vitamins

Vitamin B1 (thiamine) – 0.124 mg
Vitamin B2 (riboflavin) – 0.028 mg
Niacin – 3.834 mg
Pantothenic Acid – 0.395 mg
Vitamin B6 – 0.073 mg
Folate – 41 mcg
Vitamin E – 1.96 mg

 

Pecans

The pecan is a heart-friendly nut that is packed with plant sterols, valuable compounds that are effective at lowering cholesterol levels. Pecans are also have high levels of antioxidants which helps prevent the plaque formation that causes hardening of the arteries. The pecan is also rich in oleic acid, the healthy fat found in olives and avocado.

Nutritional Data: One ounce (19 halves) of raw pecans contains 2.6 grams protein, 20 grams of fat196 calories and 2.7 grams fiber.

Minerals

Potassium – 116 mg
Phosphorus – 79 mg
Calcium – 20 mg
Magnesium – 34 mg
Iron – 0.72 mg
Manganese – 1.276 mg
Zinc – 1.28 mg
Copper – 0.34 mg
Selenium – 1.1 mcg

Vitamins

Vitamin C – 0.3 mg
Vitamin B1 (thiamine) – 0.187 mg
Vitamin B2 (riboflavin) – 0.01 mg
Niacin – 0.331 mg
Pantothenic Acid – 0.245 mg
Vitamin B6 – 0.06 mg
Folate – 6 mcg
Vitamin A – 16 IU
Vitamin E – 0.4 mg
Vitamin K – 1 mcg

 

Pistachios

Packed with antioxidants,and are the only nut that skyrockets in lutein and zeaxanthin, the only two carotenoid antioxidants that accumulate in the retinas of our eyes. Pistachios also have the most selenium, an anti-inflammatory trace element that aids our immune systems and helps prevent viral infections and cancer. While I love all of these nuts this is by far my favorite just because it tastes so good.

Nutritional Data: One ounce of dry roasted pistachio nuts (no salt) (49 kernels) contains 6.05 grams of protein, 13 grams of fat, 162 calories and 2.9 grams of dietary fiber.

Minerals

Potassium – 295 mg
Phosphorus – 137 mg
Calcium – 31 mg
Magnesium – 34 mg
Iron – 1.19 mg
Sodium – 3 mg
Manganese – 0.361 mg
Zinc – 0.65 mg
Copper – 0.376 mg
Selenium – 2.6 mcg

Vitamins

Vitamin C – 0.7 mg
Vitamin B1 (thiamine) – 0.238 mg
Vitamin B2 (riboflavin) – 0.045 mg
Niacin – 0.404 mg
Pantothenic Acid – 0.145 mg
Vitamin B6 – 0.361 mg
Folate – 14 mcg
Vitamin A – 74 IU
Vitamin E – 0.55 mg
Vitamin K – 3.7 mcg

 

Walnuts

With their superior antioxidant content walnuts are useful in the fight against cancer. A good source of mono-unsaturated, heart-friendly fats, and studies show they help to lower the bad form of cholesterol (LDL). The Walnut is also rich in omega-3, so they’re a great alternative if you don’t eat oily fish.

Nutritional Data: 1 ounce (14 halves) English walnuts contains 4.32 mg protein, 18 grams of fat185 calories and 1.9 mg fiber.

Minerals

Potassium – 125 mg
Phosphorus – 98 mg
Calcium – 28 mg
Magnesium – 45 mg
Iron – 0.82 mg
Sodium – 1 mg
Manganese – 0.968 mg
Zinc – 0.88 mg
Copper – 0.45 mg
Selenium – 1.4 mcg

Vitamins

Vitamin C – 0.4 mg
Vitamin B1 (thiamine) – 0.097 mg
Vitamin B2 (riboflavin) – 0.043 mg
Niacin – 0.319 mg
Pantothenic Acid – 0.162 mg
Vitamin B6 – 0.152 mg
Folate – 28 mcg
Vitamin A – 6 IU
Vitamin E – 0.2 mg
Vitamin K – 0.8 mcg

While there are differences in the nutrients derived from these nuts, there is also a many similarities and they all provide a healthy dose of potassium and phosphorus, generous amounts of protein, the good kind of fat, and much needed fiber. So instead of reaching for that bag of chips or bowl of ice cream, grab a handful of cashews, almonds, pecans, pistachios, walnuts, or peanuts. You will feel so much better about what you are putting in your body, and you will find nuts are both a delicious and satisfying treat.

Munch on my friends.

 

References:

http://www.health-alternatives.com/nut-seed-nutrition-chart.html

http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/howto/guide/health-benefits-nuts

http://voices.yahoo.com/6-best-healthiest-most-nutritious-nuts-chosen-usda-7227788.html?cat=5

http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/heart-disease/in-depth/nuts/art-20046635?pg=1

http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/go-nuts-your-diet

http://healthyliving.msn.com/health-wellness/the-best-and-worst-nuts-for-your-health-1

Day 4 of the Vegetarian diet

vegetarian-diet-health-benefits

A long long time ago I blogged about my terrible diet that consisted of pizzas, hamburgers, ice cream, and a variety of other foods that had an absence of fruits or vegetables.  I always suffered from the work out like a maniac and eat like a pig syndrome.  So for the last 4 days I have stopped eating all forms of meat.  I have allowed myself some cheese, milk, and yogurt and most of the other things I have eaten has been vegetables and fruits.  It has only been 4 days so the jury is out as to any long term affects of following an lacto (milk) octo (egg) vegetarian diet, but I do have a few observations to share.

vegetarian week

Let me make it clear I don’t despise meat it is just that I loved it so much that I tended to eat very little vegetables and almost zero fruits.  This obsession with animal protean was really limiting the consumption of other good foods and my diet was not really great, although I did a pretty good job limiting the amount of simple carbohydrates I consumed.  As I seem to have a problem with moderation I just decided to eliminate the meat which would force me to consume more fruits, vegetables, nuts, etc.  Here is what I found out:

  • I feel lighter
  • I don’t gorge myself anymore and don’t feel so bloated
  • I swear my stomach is shrinking at least a little
  • The additional fiber is doing wonders for my digestive system
  • I feel like I have more energy

Not bad for 4 days.

There are additional reasons that I am pursuing this lacto octo vegetarian diet, but some of those might sound like preaching, so for now I would rather talk about how it makes me feel versus some meat eaters vs. vegetarianism world view.  I would love to hear from others who have tried vegetarian diets.

Namaste

7 Nutritional Hacks

I just finished reading an article from my Twitter feed called “7 Nutritional Hacks” published by Bodybuilding.com.  Lots of good advice, but one thing that struck me was HACK NO. 5: DON’T BOIL YOUR VEGETABLES.  Now think about this it really makes sense, they are not saying eat them raw, but don’t boil the heck out of them leaching all the nutrients into the water.  They are suggesting in this article if you want to cook them you can saute them in butter or steam them, or if you must boil them then drink the water they were boiled in.  This all seems very logical to me, but now I must find a steamer that won’t turn my vegetables into mush, maybe the saute route would be better.  This is really about taking something that is good for you and making sure you are getting the maximum nutritional value and not pouring most of the good stuff down the drain.

Can anyone recommend a good steamer?

Read about the other 6 nutritional hacks at Bodybuilding.com

http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/7-nutritional-hacks-for-greater-health.html?mcid=twit05021814

 

Another favorite vegetable – The Lima Bean

baby-lima-beans

Last time I posted on the topic of nutrition I spent a little time talking about how spinach is a good choice for a vegetable, but I can’t eat spinach all the time.  Another big favorite vegetable of mine is the Lima Bean.  So again pulling out my Nutrition Data app and it says that 100 grams of Lima beans has the following nutritional makeup:

  • Calories 105
  • Total Fat 0.3g
  • Saturated Fat 0.1g
  • Total Carbs 19.4g
  • Fiber 6.7g
  • Sugars 1.4g
  • Protein 6.6g

I guess for me another revelation is how much protein you can get from some of these vegetables.  There is almost as much protein in 100 grams of Lima beans as there is fiber.  So if we convert grams to ounces and assume I ate about 7 ounces (200 grams) of Lima beans we find that I consumed 13.4 grams of fiber and 13.2 grams of protein.  Not bad for some baby Lima beans and very little sugar.  Yes I did throw in a little butter, salt, and pepper to make it all palatable.  I guess one could recommend Lima beans as a decent source of fiber and protein, and this is what continues to amaze me.  My quest to discover the fat, sugar, fiber, and protein content of vegetables will continue.  Something all you nutrition experts already knew, but including some veggies can boost your protein intake like I never would have imagined.

 

What am I eating?

eating-at-4am

You workout every day, doing strength training, cardio, yoga, pilates, you are reading motivational works, you take all the right supplements, spend time meditating, and still you feel like crap.  Maybe just maybe your diet needs some analysis.  This is exactly what I’ve been asking myself lately and I’m sure most of you are saying Joe come on your diet is at least 50% of the equation and you didn’t know that.  Well I think I realized that what I was consuming was not optimal, and in my own warped way I thought if I took the right vitamins and supplements it would fill in all the gaps and I would feel great.  Seriously there are days where I don’t consume a single vegetable or fruit, and I’m not sure that slice of tomato or pickle on my hamburger or that bag of fries counts.  Maybe that pepperoni pizza with a bit of tomato sauce and mushrooms counts as my daily allowance for vegetables; who am I kidding?

pan-pizza

Sure I throw in an occasional salad in every week, but that can’t overcome the other 6 days of the week where vegetables and fruits have been omitted from my diet.  Just last week I was at a Mediterranean restaurant and ordered the vegetarian feast, basically a buffet filled with various salads, bean dishes, humus, bread, pastas, etc. and after consuming a large plate of this good stuff I thought I was going to explode.  I’m not sure if my body was revolting against the foreign substances, but for the next 6 hours the gas was trying to escape from all orifices.  And while I try to limit sugar and simple carbs from my diet as much as possible I am in need of a diet overhaul.  So I am on a quest of start this diet overhaul and I mean now.  So I plan on putting together some future posts on how I have overhauled my diet, and what it does to my energy levels and overall well being.  I am open to any suggestions you may have.

Joe