The name "clean eating" says it all: there are “good foods” and “bad foods”.
Easter eggs, of course, are “bad”. The only antidote is something “good”.
Maybe it’s our Christian heritage but we all like the idea that we are sinners (“dirty”) and all that we need to find salvation is to be good (“clean”) but this mentality is the exact reason why people have little to no control nor consistency with their diet.
Let's face it: being forced not do things you really like is a great way to make you do it to excess later.
“Don’t eat the cookie” is essentially saying sayonara to the whole jar of cookies.
It’s also the reason why you have been exercising and dieting for years and never really getting what you want.
Every time you binge on eggs or eat too much cake the response is to swing to the opposite extreme and to take on a restrictive eating pattern, the fact it’s called “clean eating” makes it even better because we feel psychologically absolved for our sins.
Our bodies have been designed by evolution to survive conditions of scarcity.
That means that when our ancestors were roaming around Africa and there was a drought or lack of food, we survived. It also means that evolution favors people who can store body fat efficiently in the face of potential starvation.
One of the biggest areas of interest in health and fitness is the study of this process which is called epigenetics.
Once upon a time, we imagined that our genes decided what our bodies were like. However, we have learned that epigenetics, how our genes express themselves in response to how we live our life and our environment, is much more important.
When humans are under stress they require much greater levels of nutrients than when they are not stressed. The body needs more amino acids to run the immune and detoxification systems, it also needs more vitamins and minerals for the same jobs.
If that stress is taking the form of intellectual work the brain requires large amounts of fuel and if the stress takes the form of exercise the muscles also need more fuel too. So if you work in a job where are using your brain allot and you are exercising, you have much higher energy and nutrient demands than you realise.
So what happens when we put all of this together? How so how does your body change when you start to under eat nutrients and energy AND you are stressed from working and training?
Let’s think of it in a flow chart.
You perceive this as a craving, lack of willpower and then you over eat for a period of time —> Your body prioritises storing that energy as fat because it feels threatened with starvation.
Then you feel bad about your lack of willpower.
Now you feel bad about our bodies AND about our lack of will power—> And still you keep eating the "bad" food, until you feel so bad that you decide to “eat clean” but for realsies this time……..
Meanwhile, our body has:
Have you ever wondered why it seems SO EASY for lean people to stay lean and get leaner with what seems like less effort than everybody else?
They eat 'bad foods" and train less than you but get better quicker results?
We start to change our epigenetics when we deny our body nutrients for extended periods
we cycle through periods of simulated starvation (clean eating) followed by overeating.
This means that our genes express the characteristics of being less lean.
Your body becomes predisposed towards having more fat and less muscle.
So we get fatter, have less muscle, feel stressed, crave fast food and have low energy. On top of that our body starts to be predisposed to fatness on a genetic level
It’s crazy but all those things are the exact opposite of what we set out to do.
Does that mean that you should just eat junk?
Does that mean you should just eat an unlimited amount of food?
Does that mean we shouldn’t exercise any discipline?
It means that you need to eat the right amount of protein, carbs, fat and fibre for your body each and every day. We need to make sure the amount of macronutrients (macros) you eat matches your stress levels, exercise levels, and body composition goals. That’s what I do for the girls in The Sports Model Project. They get elite levels of leanness while eating food they like and enjoying the process.
The first step is working out the right level of macros for your body.
That's why I developed my Ultimate Macro Plan: It will give you a starting point for your journey that lets you have the body you want without restrictive eating patterns.
You can download it here
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It's the plan that all our girls are on. It's one of the keys to their success." button_text="Download Now" button_icon="cloud-download" circle="false" href="#" href_title="" target="" class="macro-download-button"]
Love and Light Hattie
#1 Miss World WBFF Fitness Diva