It’s important to address these GI basics before thinking you need any advanced protocols.
The biggest culprits I see in my coaching practice is improper stress management, poor chewing and rushed eating! Focusing on these “low hanging fruit” lifestyle changes can make dramatic impacts!
Next is HCL insufficiency, bile salt insufficiency, enzyme insufficiency, and a lack of dietary fiber (Insoluble vs Soluble). Stomach acid is essential for proper digestion, especially protein and supports the absorption of essential nutrients, such as, Zinc, Copper, Iron, Calcium & B12. Not only does it help with digestion but it plays a vital role in protecting the body from harmful pathogens. 🙅🏻♀️Stop: Taking stomach acid suppressors, skipping meals and eating a low protein diet! ✔️Start: Addressing chronic stress, eat a nutrient dense diet, improve your gut / brain connection with mindful eating practices. 🧘♀️ Lack of digestive enzymes production which are vital to properly break down the food we eat, can lead to slower transit time and poor nutrient absorption. This can result in feelings of bloat, constipation, acid-reflux, and gas. 🙅🏻♀️Stop: Rushing your meals and slouching around after eating. ✔️Start: Supporting stomach acid production, chew your food properly (20-30 Times) and address any underlining gut inflammation. Bile release is crucial for the emulsification of fats, so that they can then be properly broken down and absorbed. You won’t get the all the benefits of these healthy fats if they are not properly broken down. 🧈 🙅🏻♀️Stop: Restricting fats or consuming too much of the wrong kind, like vegetable oils & fake butter ✔️Start: Getting enough healthy fats in your diet and support stomach acid production Finally, a healthy and balanced gut flora supports our body to proper digest food and protects from harmful pathogens. 🙌🏻 Complete digestion = more optimal nutrients! 🍽
All nuts, seeds, grains, and legumes contain anti-nutrients that require neutralization. Nuts and seeds contain enzyme inhibitors that actually block digestion – and this can potentially cause negative effects on the body. Grains and legumes contain phytic acid that robs the body of super important minerals such as magnesium, calcium, copper, zinc, and iron. The overall impacts are negative because of the frequency and quantity in which these foods are present in the modern diet.
Soaking grains, nuts, seeds, and legumes generally involve adding the food to a bowl, covering the food in the bowl with water, adding a neutralizer, letting the food sit at room temperature for a while, and then draining.
If you decide to eat grains, legumes, nuts, and seeds, always make sure to follow the guidelines below to prepare them for optimal nutrition (bio-availability) and health.
I do not recommend eating these foods all day every day, because even when soaked it can still be quite rough on the digestive system for some.
Quinoa: Place 2 cups of quinoa into a large mixing bowl and cover with 6 cups of filtered water. Stir in 1 tbsp of apple cider vinegar, fresh lemon juice, or whey. Cover and leave the bowl at room temperature for 24 hours. Drain, rinse and cook as usual.
Rice + Millet: Place 2 cups of grain in a large mixing bowl and cover with 2 cups of warm filtered water. Stir in 2 tbsp of apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, or whey. Cover the bowl and leave at room temperature for about 7 hours. Drain, rinse and cook as usual.
Oatmeal: Place 2 cups of grain in a large mixing bowl and cover with 2 cups of warm filtered water. Stir in 2 tbsp of apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, or whey. Cover and leave the bowl at room temperature for about 7 hours to 24 hours. Drain, rinse and cook as usual.
All Other Grains: place 2 cups of grains in a large mixing bowl and cover with 2 cups of warm filtered water. Stir in 2 tbsp of apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, or whey. Cover and leave the bowl at room temperature for 12-24 hours. Drain, rinse and cook as usual or dry in a dehydrator.
Kidney-, Navy-, Black-, Pinto-, White Beans: Place 2 cups of beans into a large mixing bowl and cover with warm filtered water. Stir in 2 pinches of baking soda. Cover and leave the bowl at room temperature soaking for at least 18-24 hours. Every 7 or so hours drain the beans, rinse the beans, and cover with warm filtered water again, and stir in another 2 pinches of baking soda.
Drain, rinse and cook in a large stockpot, dutch oven, or a slow cooker.
Garbanzo -, Fava Beans, Split Peas: Place 2 cups of beans into a large mixing bowl and cover with warm filtered water. Stir in 2 tbsp of apple cider vinegar or lemon juice. Cover and leave the bowl at room temperature to soak for at least 24 hours.
Drain, rinse and cook in a large stockpot, dutch oven, or a slow cooker.
Lentils: Place 2 cups of lentils into a large mixing bowl and cover with warm filtered water. Stir in 2 tbsp of apple cider vinegar or lemon juice. Cover and leave the bowl at room temperature to soak for at least 7 hours.
Drain, rinse and cook in a large stockpot, dutch oven, or a slow cooker.
Soaking Nuts & Seeds
All Nuts And Seeds: Place 4 cups of raw, shelled nuts into a large mixing bowl. Cover with filtered water and stir in 1 tbsp of Celtic sea salt. Cover the bowl leave it at room temperature to soak.
♦♦ See the chart below for specific times.
Drain and rinse the nuts or seeds and place them in a dehydrator. | Alternatively spread the nuts or seeds on a large baking sheet lined with unbleached parchment paper and dehydrate them in a warm over (under 150 ˚F) for 12-24 hours, you want them to have that crunch. I usually let the nuts dehydrate overnight when I use the oven. |
♦ Almonds: 8-12 hours ♦ Brazil Nuts: 4-6 hours ♦ Cashews: 3-6 hours ♦ Flaxseeds: 8 hours ♦ Hazelnuts: 7-8 hours ♦ Hempseeds: do not soak ♦ Macadamia: do not soak ♦ Pecans: 4-6 hours ♦ Pepita/Pumpkin Seeds: 8 hours ♦ Pistachios: do not soak ♦ Pine Nuts: do not soak ♦ Sesame Seeds: 7-8 hours ♦ Sunflower Seeds: 2-4 hours ♦ Walnuts: 4 hours
Sprouting Grains, Seeds, Nuts & Legumes
There are four simple steps to sprouting grains, legumes, nuts, and seeds.
Step 1: Using a large bowl soak your grains, legumes, nuts, or seeds in water. Make sure that the water is double the amount of the item being soaked. Leave at room temperature for the specified amount of time listed below. If you desire you may rinse and change the water halfway through the soaking time.
Step 2: Drain the liquid, rinse, and fill the bowl back up with fresh water. Next, drain the liquid at an angle to create a humid environment (use a mesh lid on a mason jar). The goal is to keep the kernels moist until they sprout a bud. This happens when the kernels are exposed to light and moisture.
Step 3: Repeat step 2 every few hours, but at least twice daily.
Step 4: In 1-4 days, your sprouted grain, nut, bean, or seed should be ready to use.
Your workout may be where you “feel” like you’re getting results, but it’s actually proper nutrition + your workouts that plays a larger role in the results factor.
🍌Nutrient timing is purposely choosing foods around your workouts that will nourish and support your cells for the upcoming physical activity.
It was found that the net protein balance was greater when consuming the protein + carbs before exercise rather than post exercise.
What does this mean? You get a greater anabolic response (protein synthesis= growth) when consuming pre-workout nutrition compared to post workout nutrition. You get more amino acids into your muscles both during and after exercise when consuming pre-workout nutrition.
💥 PRE-WORKOUT NUTRITION💥:
•Ideal pre-work meal is mostly carbohydrate based.
•20 minutes to 1 hour before exercise:
Simple carbohydrates from fruit like dates, raisins or banana, or a coconut water can give you quick energy. Or a small serving of yogurt with fresh fruit. My favorite is the adrenal elixir with some collagen. AIM for: 6 G protein & 35 g carbs minimum
Examples: Oatmeal+ collagen with fresh fruit or greek yogurt, rice cake with jelly and dates, sweet potatoes and eggs with fruit.
❓What about protein before workouts? There is evidence that consuming protein before a workout is beneficial, and while these recommendations include protein, you could increase the amount in your pre-workout meal–experiment with anywhere between 6-20 g and see what works for you!
❓What about eating a high fat meal before a workout? Fat is the most complex fuel for your body to break down and absorb, and while it’s important for overall health, I recommend consuming low-to moderate fat intake with your pre & post workout meals.
💪POST WORKOUT NUTRITION 💪
Eating post workout within the right time frame following your workout plays a huge role in your recovery and training progress. And when it comes to fueling after exercise, I bet there’s little surprise that women are different than men. Here are a few things to keep in mind if you’re trying to maximize your recovery: 👇 . 💪 Women’s metabolism comes back down to baseline within 90 minutes after exercise whereas men might take 3-18 hours, depending on the exercise.
💪 We need to eat protein (aim for 25-30 grams with 5-7 grams BCAAs) with a bit of carbohydrate as soon as possible after exercise – especially if you’re doing a depleting exercise like cardio. Ideally, aim to eat within 30-45 minutes after finishing your workout.
💪 If you delay calorie intake, you stay in a breakdown state. In short, your body won’t start repairing until you take in some food.
💪 Even if you eat enough in the rest of your day to meet what your body needs, not eating post-workout acts the same as not eating enough.
Fuel for what you’re doing, and fuel for the recovery that your body needs afterwards!
✅ Schedule it in & Commit When time is your biggest challenge when it comes to exercise, then knowing what you’re going to do and when you’re going to do it is very important! At the beginning of each week, schedule your workouts like you schedule your meetings or appointments. Create a plan, know what you’re going to do and when you’re going to do it, and commit! You can even have an alternative day to make up your workout if something does happen.
✅Morning or Earlier in the day workouts. Plan your workouts in the morning or during your lunch breaks. This way you dedicate that time for you before the day slips away. Being busy throughout the day usually leads to fatigue by the end of the day and can make commitments to workouts later in the day harder.
✅ Boost Your Daily Activities Try giving some of your daily activities a boost to get your movement in. Take advantage of every situation. This can be parking a little farther from the grocery store, taking the stairs instead of the elevator, walking while chatting on the phone, or walking during meetings that you do not have to participate in.
✅ Change Your Mindset Around Movement Movement should not be looked at as an activity that you dread or that takes over your life. We want to view movement as a GIFT to yourself not a chore. If you wake up and think “I don’t have time to workout today” you’re most likely not going to find the time to get it done. If you wake up thinking of it as a priority and how much better you’re going to feel after its done you are more likely to find the time.
✅ Make It Enjoyable Do something that you actually enjoy. It’s easier to get something done when you like the activity. Focus on what makes you feel the best, helps you to reach your goals, and is rewarding for your mind and body.
Change of any kind intimidating and it may seem like you have a long way to go in achieving your goals…
Here are some tips for hacking consistency:
1️⃣Focus on 1-2 habits that you can easily commit to start. Get into the groove with them. Next, build one or two habits on top of those, this concept is called habit stacking.
Example: Two daily habits could be eating protein with almost every meal and getting 7-8 hours of sleep each night. Next you could focus on drinking water first thing before coffee and adding in a morning stretch routine.
Building on habits is what creates a routine.
A routine is what creates consistency. Consistency is what creates results.
This is why fad diets, 30 day challenges and 75 hard is a waste of your time. If it’s not based around your own individual health markers, lifestyle and goals, if it’s not teaching you about your own biofeedback and empowering you—You’re likely not gonna stick with it.
2️⃣Focus on what’s being added in and improved. Adding in more protein, more fruits and veggies, more movement etc. (not what’s being taken away or restrained.)
3️⃣However your path looks like on the journey to feeling better it should be rewarding and tied to deep personal meaning and intrinsic motivation.
4️⃣Self-Efficacy is the name of the game- building belief in oneself over time, creating a foundation of knowledge that is a sustainable lifestyle.
Consistency is everything— if what you’re currently doing is too difficult to stick with, it’s not YOU. It’s your approach.
From a health standpoint, intermittent fasting is useful – especially for the general population who are not very active and struggling with metabolic diseases.
⚠️ However, if you’re adding intermittent fasting on top of exercise, you aren’t gaining any extra benefits.
❗️ In fact, if you’re a woman, adding intermittent fasting on top of exercise can be harmful to both your performance and your health. ❗️
💥 Women are more sensitive to kisspeptin, neuropeptide that’s responsible for sex hormones and endocrine and reproductive function. Diets such as intermittent fasting and keto disrupt kisspeptin production.
Intermittent fasting and keto both disrupt kisspeptin production. When our brain perceives we have a deficiency in nutrients, especially carbohydrate, we have a marked reduction in kisspeptin stimulation, which not only increases our appetite, but also reduces our sensitivity to insulin. This is why research shows intermittent fasting is more likely to cause impaired glucose intolerance in women, but not men.
What happens when we layer exercise stress on top of the stress of denying our bodies an important fuel source? Stress hormones like cortisol rise even higher. As you keep increasing that stress, it keeps your sympathetic drive high and reduces your ability to relax. Your thyroid activity is depressed, which messes with your menstrual cycle. Your body also starts storing more belly fat.
So now you’re looking at disrupted menstrual cycles, higher anxiety and stress, impaired performance and often weight gain—pretty much the opposite of what you’re looking for!
The ketogenic diet has very similar effects on women athletes. We hear people rave about the increased mental focus with a keto diet. In men, yes. They have an increase in their parasympathetic (a.k.a. rest and digest) activity, so they can be more relaxed and present. In women, keto kicks up our sympathetic (a.k.a. fight or flight) drive, so we’re more anxious, more prone to being depressed, and we can’t sleep very well, which again hurts our hormonal health, performance, well being, and body composition.
Sometimes women will contend that these diets work so well for them. And they might for the first three months, because nearly any diet will yield some effects in the short term. The long term effects for women athletes, however, is endocrine dysfunction, increases in abdominal fat, more depression, and a backlash of subsequent fat gain.
Women athletes perform far better in a fed state. Women athletes need to eat.
💥 The long term effects of intermittent fasting with exercise for women athletes is endocrine dysfunction, increases in abdominal fat, more depression, and subsequent fat gain.
Fiber is an essential nutrient. However, many Americans fall short of the recommended daily amount in their diets. Women should aim for about 25 grams of fiber per day, while men should target about 38 grams, or 14 grams for every 1,000 calories. Your fiber intake is a good gauge for overall diet quality.
The idea that more fiber is always better is one of those persistent nutrition myths that has been drilled into us for decades. When someone decides to go on a ‘health kick’ they often start by loading up on the salads, vegetables, whole grains, seeds and legumes because fiber! Only to experience tons of gas, bloating, constipation and heartburn a few days in.
While adding ‘roughage’ to our diet is often recommended, there are some potential downsides to that:
👉 Harsh fibers can be very irritating for our gut, damaging the gut lining.
👉 Your body has to expend a lot of energy to move all this bulk that provides no energy in return.
👉 When too much fiber sits in the gut for too long, it can ferment, causing gas, bloating and acid reflux.
👉 Just think about it: is making something bigger really the solution when you are trying to pass it through a small hole?
This is not to say that all fiber is bad. But overdoing greens and grains especially when your gut is not in an optimal state can end up making you feel worse. I like to stick to more gentle fibers. These include fruit fibers and those from very well cooked vegetables. If your gut is in a good place, you can probably handle more fiber with less problems.
So why the raw carrot salad then? Raw carrots are unique in that they have their own defense’s against bacteria and fungi (ever noticed how much longer you can keep carrots in your fridge compared to other veggies?). The fiber in carrots can bind toxins produced by bacteria and carry it out rather than increasing the amount produced.
Fiber rich food sources are veggies like carrots, peppers, asparagus, bamboo shoots, cooked leafy greens like spinach, kale, chard, fresh arugula. Fruits like apples, berries, oranges, plums, prunes, and avocado.
When increasing fiber, be sure to do it gradually and with plenty of fluids. As dietary fiber travels through the digestive tract, is similar to a new sponge; it needs water to plump up and pass smoothly. If you consume more than your usual intake of fiber but not enough fluid, you may experience nausea or constipation.
By including certain foods, you can increase your fiber intake in no time.
For breakfast, choose steel cut oats (soaked overnight) with berries, served with a side of 3 eggs and sautéed spinach.
At lunch, have a sandwich or wrap on a sprouted whole-grain tortilla or sprouted whole-grain bread and add veggies, such as microgreens and tomato, or a side of homemade veggie soup!
For a snack, have fresh veggies or sprouted whole-grain crackers with hummus and cheese.
With dinner, try brown rice or roasted squash with sautéed veggies along with your protein.
The fiber argument is nuanced. We can’t really make blanket statements about fiber because it really depends on the type of fiber, the state of the individuals gut, what else they are eating, etc. The best way to determine your fiber threshold is to pay attention to how your body reacts and adjust as necessary.
Diet culture places value on our weight and size over our health. it promotes messaging that tells us what foods are “good” & what foods are “bad.” it glorifies restriction & willpower and ignores our wellbeing. Diet culture is supported by a multi-billion dollar industry that pushes weight loss through every medium possible. Diet culture tells both men & women that they are not small enough, strong enough, or lean enough. DIET CULTURE IS HARD TO IGNORE. So, how can one be against diet culture but fine with a diet? it starts with terminology >> A DIET merely refers to the foods & drinks we habitually consume. a diet can be a specific, structured way of eating or just our normal daily intake. The term “DIETING,” is often where the idea of weight loss comes into play. Dieting is (usually) used to describe eating with the purpose of losing weight, which requires a calorie deficit. >> I am anti-diet culture because i believe that food is not meant to be associated with guilt and shame << I am anti-diet culture because i do not believe that reaching a specific weight, shape or size is ever more important than our physical or mental wellbeing. However, I do believe that it is ok to want to change your diet. It is ok to have aesthetic goals, especially when we can learn to work towards them in a healthy & sustainable manner. It’s to want to shift from old negative eating patterns and thoughts to new behaviors that leave you fueled and healthy. I believe that it is ok to want to look & feel your best & addressing your nutrition and relationship with food is often the best way to do so. Your diet is not bad. restriction, shame, guilt, & obsession are 💥
Reframing our thoughts is an important aspect of cultivating our healthiest best lives. ♥️
In recent studies, body appreciation & gratitude towards the body have been the central organizing variables within how to cultivate positive body image.
🤗Body appreciation has been defined as accepting, holding favorable opinions towards, and respecting the body, while also rejecting media, promoted appearance ideals as the only form of human beauty. (Avalon et al., 2005)
Many of us struggle with negative self-talk. We put ourselves down, criticize ourselves, and beat ourselves up… and some of us do it so much we don’t even realize we’re doing it!
Negative self-talk can become a habit, and it’s an important habit to break because the thoughts and words we say and think shape our reality. 🙅🏾♀️🙅🏻♀️🙅🏿♀️🙅🏽♀️🙅🏼♀️ Thankfully, studies have shown that using neutral or positive affirmations can help us rewire our brains and change our outlook! 🧠 ❓How❓ By disrupting these negative thought patterns and reframing them into statements that serve you better. Basically, by being deliberate with your self-talk!
Thank you @emmasmyth.nutrition for your graphic 🤎 ************************************** ✌🏼Link in bio to apply for my 8 week foundation coaching program, where we create optimal health and wellness through individualized fitness programming, mindset coaching and balanced nutrition! 💟
How many times have you been told take these supplements? A multi or prenatal? Maybe you were told to consume foods enriched with vitamins A + D?
Or perhaps you were “influenced” by some random person to take said supplements promising to boost immunity, heal acne, or aid in weight loss.
I know girl, i’ve been there.
I get it. These nutrients are important but ONLY if they are in balance with one another.
Supplementing in isolation, in abundance, in the incorrect ratios will create an imbalanced mineral shit storm in your body.
Cough, cough, multivitamins + prenatals.
Minerals are a game of cofactors, they all work in relation to one another + need cofactors to be utilized. If one is deficient another will accumulate. This is our bodies defense mechanism.
Zinc antagonizes copper as they compete for binding sites. If you are deficient in copper, iron accumulates.
Iron depletes vitamin E and we got enough of it floating around in our tissues, see previous posts.
Copper dysregulation is one of the most common things I see in my practice when hormone struggles are present.
Vitamin A in the form of beta carotene is not only hard to convert to retinol but it has an intimate relationship to vitamin D.
Calcium in excess to magnesium causes calcium to precipitate out of solution + contributes to calcium deposits, as well as magnesium deficiency.
Vitamin D in isolation causes issues with calcium metabolism (calcification), increases magnesium burn rate, decreases potassium, A + copper.
Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) is a derivative of vitamin C. This form depletes copper.
Multivitamins are never in the correct ratios, not nearly as bioavailable + typically synthetic.
Nature knows best + provides food in the perfect package with all the cofactors to support each nutrient, especially with the consumption of animal sourced foods. Bioavailability is 10 fold to supplements.
Foods to focus on: grass-fed meats + dairy, shellfish, eggs, roots, + fruits.
You want to be a nutrient-dense bitch, ditch the enriched. 💁🏻♀️👸🏻
For real tho, ditch the enriched foods, synthetic multi’s, + vitamins in isolation + work on getting your nutrients from food.