Standard American Diet vs. Live Lean Diet

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Standard American Diet: Check Out What Happens To Your Body

On today’s episode I want to talk about what happens inside your body when you eat the SAD diet way (meaning the Standard American Diet) versus eating the Live Lean way.

Unfortunately in today’s society it has become “normal” to have bad nutrition habits.

To these people, it’s normal to not care about what’s in the food, or how much sugar and calories are in it.

All that matters to them is, if it tastes good, if it’s fast and convenient, and if it’s cheap.

Now lets compare that mindset towards food to the mindset of the “odd balls” who actually care about what they fuel their body with.

In particular, these people care about the ingredients used in the meal, they consider in the calories, the protein, the fat, and the carbohydrate breakdown of the meal, and they are willing to invest a little bit more into their food.

They do this, because they realize, healthy food is not an expense, it’s an investment in your long-term health.

Let me share a quick personal story during my early Live Lean days.

I can’t count how many times during my early journey that I was ostracized by my friends every time we went out to eat.

They’d order a big plate of deep fried saucy chicken wings and french fries.

Then when the waiter would ask me what I wanted, I was always ashamed to order a steak and salad.

Yes, for some reason, a steak and a salad wasn’t considered “guys food”.

It got to the point where I took so much heat, that I distanced myself from most these social outings.

I’m sure a lot of you have done the same thing.

Now it’s not to say I was a food snob, because I just really don’t care what other people eat, you do you, and it also didn’t mean I had to stop having a social life.

As I progressed with my journey, I learned to either ignore the comments or just simply schedule my weekly cheat meal around those times out with friends.

Now, lets get back to the step-by-step comparison of how your body and hormones reacts to today’s Standard American Diet vs. the Live Lean way of eating.

Once again, when I say a standard american diet meal, I’m talking about a plate primarily filled with refined carbohydrates, like a bowl of cereal in the morning.

Here’s what happens inside your body when you eat a Standard American Diet meal like a highly processed, carbohydrate rich cereal:

  • STEP #1: CARBS EUPHORIA:

Once the carbohydrates make contact with the tongue, the tongue senses the sugar which initiates the release of endorphins, causing a short-term sense of satisfaction, calmness, and euphoria.

  • STEP #2: THE SUGAR ENTERS THE BLOODSTREAM VERY QUICKLY:

Since your blood can only handle a minimal amount of glucose in the bloodstream (approximately 1 tsp), the pancreas then releases a large amount of the insulin hormone to help remove the excess.

  • STEP #3: INSULIN STARTS STORING SUGAR IN THE CELLS:

Insulin removes the excess sugar from the bloodstream, a percentage gets burned for immediate energy and a limited amount is stored as short-term energy in the form of glycogen in the muscles and liver cells.

  • STEP #4: SAY HELLO TO THE FAT STORING ENZYME:

Yes, a fat STORING enzyme called LPL is stimulated by the release of the excess insulin. This LPL enzyme then has the potential to convert the excess sugar that has not been used for immediate energy or stored as glycogen, into STORED BODY FAT!

  • STEP #5: YOUR BLOOD SUGAR LEVELS RAPIDLY DROP:

Since the sugar has been quickly removed from the bloodstream, your blood-sugar levels rapidly drop, which causes irritable and depressed feelings as well as sluggishness, and more cereal cravings!

  • STEP #6: YOU EAT MORE REFINED CARBS:

To bring back the short-term sense of satisfaction, your body craves more refined carbohydrates (i.e. cereal) to raise blood-sugar levels again. Then the whole fat gaining cycle starts over again.

Here’s what happens in your body when you consume a Live Lean approved meal comprised of healthy protein, complex carbs with lots of fiber, and healthy fats:

  • STEP #1: A HEALTHY AND BALANCED ENDORPHIN RUSH:

Once the carbs make contact with the tongue, the tongue senses the sugar, which releases endorphins making you feel calm and satisfied. The sugar and amino acids (from the protein) slowly enters the bloodstream, including the amino acid tryptophan, which is an initiator of the appetite control brain chemical serotonin.

  • STEP #2: THE SUGAR SLOWLY ENTERS THE BLOODSTREAM:

The pancreas releases a regulated amount of insulin that transports the sugar and amino acids into the muscle cells for repair and into the liver cells.

  • STEP #3: SAY HELLO TO THE FAT BURNING ENZYME:

In addition to insulin, the pancreas also releases an insulin antagonist hormone called glucagon. This release of glucagon also stimulates the release of the fat BURNING enzyme called HSL. The HSL enzyme initiates the release of FAT TO BE BURNED as a primary source of fuel.

  • STEP #4: BLOOD SUGAR LEVELS ARE BALANCED:

Blood-sugar levels are now stabilized and you’re burning fat as a primary fuel source. You also begin to feel energetic, with a sense of well-being.

  • STEP #5: YOU FEEL SATISFIED FROM YOUR MEAL:

Your hormones are properly balanced, you continue to burn fat for energy, and you feel full and satisfied until your next meal.

So people always ask me:

  • How do I, at 37 years old, stay lean 365 days a year while being a new dad and an entrepreneur?
  • Why can I minimize cravings while still enjoying the occasional pizza?
  • How do I keep my energy levels balanced even when I am not getting as much high quality sleep?

The Answer Is Simple:

Yes, working out and sleeping is important, but your relationship with food is king.

The hormones in your body do not get enough attention in the fitness industry or the media since they play a huge role in fat loss and muscle gain.

Sure, anyone can lose weight. But the real trick is losing body fat and building lean muscle.

Living Lean is not about just losing weight on the scale to become a skinnier fat person.

Living Lean is about losing unhealthy body fat and building lean muscle to get stronger and healthier, so you can not only look healthier, but feel healthier, while creating a fast and healthy metabolism.

So if the Live Lean way sounds like a better way to eat, I highly recommend you join our group coaching platform, called Team Live Lean.

This is where we share weekly meal plans, including video cooking recipes that are quick, healthy, easy, affordable, and delicious to make.

You’ll also get a monthly workout program, access to our private Facebook accountability group, and so much more.

Commit to invest in your body, your food, and ultimately your health. Trust me, investing in yourself will be the best investment you can make, and will minimize all those potential health care bills later in life.


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Brad Gouthro is the founder of Live Lean TV, a media company focused on helping men and women “Live Lean” 365 days a year. Brad’s programs and content have helped millions of people all over the world learn how to get in shape, and more importantly, sustain it for life.

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