Ep.22 – Practical SANE Eating

Jonathan: Hey, everyone. Jonathan Bailor and Carrie Brown coming back at you after, I think, our first ever sabbatical; Carrie was doing some things, I was doing some things, we missed a week – but now we’re back, we’re better than ever, we’re energized, we’re invigorated. Carrie, how are you feeling?

Carrie: Well, I missed you!

Jonathan: You missed me?

Carrie: Well, I missed the crazy two hours in the studio! I missed Elmo.

Jonathan: I have his shirt on, which consists entirely of Elmo.

Carrie: It’s a very fetching shirt, Jonathan.

Jonathan: Fetching – that’s actually the word I thought of when I saw it at the store. I was like, “That is a fetching shirt.” That’s why I purchased it.

Carrie: Now, you see – this is why I missed you!

Jonathan: Actually, I went into the store – and this is a true story. I go into the store and I was like, “Sir, excuse me. Where can I find your fetching shirts?”

Carrie: “Your most fetching shirts.”

Jonathan: “Your most fetching shirts.” Yes.

Carrie: And he points you to Elmo.

Jonathan: He did.

Carrie: What a sound dude.

Jonathan: Yes, very sound, very sound. So speaking of sound decisions, today we are going to start on very practical eating steps; specifically five steps. I’m not sure how many of the five we’re going to get through in today’s podcast, but certainly we will continue podcasting. So you will hear five steps; I cannot tell you when. We’ll see how it goes and we’ll start with Step #1 in a moment, but I want to first start out by a quick disclaimer – Carrie can chime in here – that is, the very common assumption we hear when people first hear about SANE eating is that switching over to this healthier lifestyle means spending a lot more money and spending a lot more time on food and we’re going to spend a lot of time over the next couple of podcasts dispelling those myths because it can be true; however, with some tips we’re going to share with you, you do not need to spend any more money or any more time on food when you’re going SANE.

Carrie: That’s absolutely true.

Jonathan: One of the ways that’s true is we try to focus on making things as practical as possible, so while growing your own vegetables and buying organic food and buying local and buying wild caught fish – those things are all great! That’s 100% A+! If you can do that and if you have the time and the money, that’s fantastic! But that’s not what we’re going to be talking about here because again we’re going for, I’m going to assume everyone has maybe 20 minutes per day to spend on food preparation and maybe $10 per day per person to spend on food and we’re going to go within those constraints, so making it work in real life. Sound good, Carrie?

Carrie: Yup.

Jonathan: The other thing that I want us to keep in mind is we’re only going to go through five tips here. Certainly in future podcasts, I’m sure we’ll come up with other stuff to talk about but one tip that I love to give people just out of the gate – and this is something I learned from a self-help guy. He was really popular in the ‘70s and ‘80s, not so much anymore or maybe he is, I don’t know. His name’s Wayne Dyer and he said in one of his books, “Don’t major in minor things.” I always thought that was so profound. I think it really applies here because if you go and you read the newspaper or you read a magazine, there’s always these little ‘this chemical’ or ‘this random thing’ or ‘this nutrient’ or ‘this phytonutrient’ – which are all interesting – but, folks, if we’re still eating starch and sugar and if we’re not consuming double-digit servings of non-starchy vegetables and we’re not consuming three or more 30-gram servings of nutrient-dense protein per day, that little stuff doesn’t matter at all. We’ve got to focus on the big things because having a clogged metabolic system and carrying abundant excess fat around our body is going to do more harm than all of those things combined.

Carrie: All the little things.

Jonathan: Combined times ten! I mean, I just can’t tell you how much taking care of these big things makes the little things go away. Just to put that into perspective, Dr. Philip Wood at the University of Alabama at Birmingham states plainly that obesity increases risk of disease as much as 20 years of aging does. I think that’s just a profound way to look at things. If we are currently clogged, we are essentially putting ourselves at risk. We basically tacked on 20 years of age to our body and if we can undo that metabolic damage, we will essentially subtract 20 years of aging off our body. So, certainly we can worry about sprinting once we’ve started jogging, but let’s start jogging first. Sound alright, Carrie?

Carrie: Sounds great! Could I also – maybe this is a good point for me to just point out that for a lot of people who were doing the ‘eating less and exercising more’, you’re going to find that this isn’t an increased time suck. You’ll actually spend less time on producing SANE food than you were doing lots of exercise which never got you anywhere. So for those of you who are in that ‘exercising more’ phase, you’re going to have all of that extra time back if you spend some of that spending time in the kitchen. The results of ‘less exercise and better food’ is going to be dramatically more than you’re getting currently.

Jonathan: Excellent point, Carrie! Let’s be fair here. Certainly going SANE does take more time and effort than eating garbage and sitting around all day, but having a heart attack and being diabetic isn’t very fun, either.

Carrie: And it also costs a lot of money.

Jonathan: It costs a lot of money and a lot of time!

Carrie: Just talking for me personally, I’d much rather spend an extra 200-300 bucks a month, if that’s what it takes, eating fantastic food than getting a bill for a $50,000 surgery. I mean, I know it’s hard sometimes, when you’re paid month-to-month, to think in terms of that kind of length, but I’d much rather spend 300 bucks a month now and never get that $50,000 bill.

Jonathan: Another way to put that, Carrie, because I love that point is there’s very few ways that you could spend $300 and benefit from that 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. I don’t care how much I like my Elmo shirt, I wear it maybe once every other week. Maybe. However, when you feel better, when you look better, when you think better, the cost per minute of that is so dramatically low! As Carrie said, this may take a bit more time and a bit more money than doing nothing, but relative to the common approach, it is dramatically less expensive and dramatically less time-consuming, so we can all do it.

Carrie: Yeah. I think, as the same way as you look at the whole SANE program, you have to look at the big picture, not the [Indiscernible 07:20]. You have to look at the big picture.

Jonathan: Absolutely! Again, for folks who want to do more advanced things, once we establish that base, maybe we’ll have some podcasts on advanced techniques, but again, we’re not a country that necessarily needs to figure out how we can go from 16% body fat to 14% body fat; we’re a country that needs to figure out how to go from being overweight and obese to not doing that and to not have to dedicate our entire lives to staying slim, but rather establish a set of habits and a way of eating which enables us….

Carrie: Just keeps us there naturally.

Jonathan: That may seem like too good to be true, but again, let’s remember 90% of us avoided obesity and 99+% of us avoided diabetes without dieting and without going to a gym up until the 1970s.

Carrie: Right.

Jonathan: So, this isn’t some crazy thing. We just basically need to again go back to what we did before we had these problems. so we focus on the big things. As Carrie said, this is going to take dramatically less time and dramatically less money than the standard approach, so let’s talk about step 1 and this will come as no surprise to anyone we’ve talked about it ad nauseam, but let’s really call it out here and talk about some ways to implement it.

Step 1 is to eat so many non-starchy vegetables and so much nutrient-dense protein that you are too full for starches and sweets. I know Carrie’s got lots of commentary here because I’ve known Carrie for a few months now and she’s truly transformed. I mean, Carrie, I think you’ve mentioned this in some early podcasts, but why don’t you refresh the listeners on your inSANE culinary history and sort of just tell us a little bit about that story because it’s fascinating.

Carrie: Yeah, well, I became addicted to chocolate at age 3, was a budding pastry chef whipping up stuff by age 10 in my mother’s kitchen, and then I actually went on to National Bakery School and became a pastry chef and I spent the best part of everyday either up to my elbows in chocolate or covered in ground almonds or sugar or wheat or any combination of the above and was actually the top student in the country. I took it pretty seriously. I cooked for the Queen, worked as a pastry chef in Australia and Canada and worked as a chocolatier in London – so made chocolates all day long. Yeah, that’s my background. And here I am!

Jonathan: Here she is! Here’s what’s the cool thing, folks, and Carrie, you can correct me if I’m wrong, you’re still leveraging your culinary talents, but you’ve essentially done this – you’ve enjoyed so many non-starchy vegetables and so much lean protein that your tastes and your cooking style has changed and it hasn’t been a deprivation-type of experience; it’s been more of just a substitution and ‘yeah, I’m too full and I don’t want these things anymore’ experience.

Carrie: It still shocks me when I think how I don’t want to eat cupcakes anymore. It’s still weird for me, but that is so because I’ve spent so much of my life focused on creating beautiful pastries and stuff that just taste really, really good. Now my focus has switched completely to how I can make things that taste that good and are as emotionally satisfying and satisfying for the taste and for satiety but are SANE. So my focus has switched completely over to how I can get the same results as I used to get as a pastry chef, but in a completely SANE way so that all of us who just love really good food and really enjoy food are not going to lose out on that because we choose no longer to eat wheat and grains and sugars and all of that stuff. It’s very exciting for me!

Jonathan: It’s very exciting and I love that! The whole philosophy of substitution is really, I think, an empowering philosophy when it comes to a lifestyle change. For example, if we wanted to quit smoking, it usually doesn’t work as well if you just try to stop smoking. That’s hard. Generally, it has to be replaced with something – nicotine gum, nicotine patch. You do something else to replace that behavior. That’s what we have to focus on in our minds and Carrie’s done so well and her recipes are just such a perfect example of that. I like to call it just sanitizing our life or SANEitizing our life.

For example, I love chocolate. I love it! I’m a chocoholic. My entire family has a massive sweet tooth. I promise you I do not ever feel deprived because I buy 25-pound freakin’ bags of pure, un-Dutched cocoa and I have come up with so many wonderful ways to make SANE versions of a chocolate pudding or chocolate-type cupcakes and it’s amazing! Using things like almond flour, coconut flour, like flax seeds, the cocoa, nut butters. The thing that I love about SANE eating is it really doesn’t close off any doors. I’m yet to encounter a dish that is just a complete no-op.

When we talk about eat so many non-starchy vegetables and so much protein that you’re too full for starches and sweets; well, what do you do with spaghetti? Well, instead of spaghetti noodles, you make spaghetti squash or… What’s the other one that you’ve been doing?

Carrie: Squash noodles.

Jonathan: Squash noodles. Or you can use these health noodles or there’s another Japanese style of noodle which is just fantastic! When we think in terms of substitution, I think that’s very empowering, I think that’s very uplifting, and I think we just have to get away from this ‘deprivation, starvation, restriction’ mindset. It’s not productive.

Carrie: You know my problem now?

Jonathan: What is it?

Carrie: I cannot produce enough recipes. My brain is continually coming up with all of these ideas and I just cannot get to the kitchen 24/7 and I just can’t do it fast enough, but I do have people. I have a bunch of stuff coming. I actually ran a little survey on my Facebook page over the last couple of days and I’ve been asking, ‘What do you need?’, ‘What are you struggling most with?’, ‘Is it lunches that are difficult?’, ‘Is it breakfast?’, ‘Where’s the gap for you?’ and I got some great responses, so I’m going to start trying to tailor towards where the biggest need is or where people are finding the hardest thing for them to fill, the hardest place for them to make substitutions.

Jonathan: Absolutely. One area, in the meantime or in addition to that, that’s very helpful is, as I think we touched on earlier, a SANE lifestyle is not mutually exclusive with other lifestyles. You could be SANE South Beach or SANE low-carb or SANE vegan or SANE kosher or SANE whatever – it’s just eating satisfying, unaggressive, nutritious and efficient foods and if we want to custom-tailor that, we can. The reason I say that is, for example, the Paleo community or the diabetic community or the low-carb community, if you wanted to find a SANE version of X and you typed into any search engine ‘Paleo X’ or ‘low-carb X’ or ‘sugar-free X’, there’s so much out there already for you. So I hope no one feels like, “Oh my God! I just can’t start on this because it’s not all laid out.” A SANE lifestyle is not the only lifestyle that suggests that we avoid grains and sugars. Even people who disagree, like the extreme vegans and the Paleo people, they still all fundamentally agree that unnatural fats, grains, and sugars are bad for you – refined grains, at least. So, lots of options there. The key thing, folks, is that we have to focus on eating a lot of the right kinds of foods.

One thing that I always get asked is ’ten servings of non-starchy vegetables’. That’s what I consider to be a baseline if you want to experience what a SANE lifestyle can really do for you. Certainly five is better than four, and seven is better than six, but I’d really encourage everyone to shoot for that double-digit number. Carrie, let’s talk about ways we could do that.

Carrie: I have a question. Help us understand when you say ’ten servings’, what’s a serving?

Jonathan: Good question. When it comes to non-starchy vegetables, generally you can go by the label on the bag. So if you buy a bag of spinach, a serving is whatever the bag says a serving is. It’s hard to say because certain vegetables are denser than other vegetables. I mean, a general rule of thumb is if it’s a green, leafy vegetable, two heaping cups is a serving. If you were to cook spinach, for example, a half cup of cooked spinach is a serving because it just compresses down; carrots – one big carrot is a serving; a pepper would be a serving – things like that. But the key thing….

Carrie: …. is lots!

Jonathan: Lots! Also, if you have any questions, just go on the internet and say, ‘what is a serving of a cucumber?’ This isn’t some sort of proprietary Smarter Science of Slim information. Labels on foods are useful, the internet is very useful; there’s a lot of information out there that we can leverage and I find there to be two keys that make this vegetable consumption much, much easier. The first is: three plus servings at every meal. If you don’t eat vegetables with breakfast and then you only are going to eat lunch and dinner, you can very easily say, “Well, how the heck am I going to eat five servings of vegetables at lunch and five servings at dinner?”

Carrie: I know. Make a Carrie soup.

Jonathan: Make a Carrie soup is one option.

Carrie: You will get five servings right there!

Jonathan: But if you can with breakfast, do like an egg scramble or something like that or a smoothie, which we’ll talk about, with a bunch of vegetables. Lunch is easy because people generally do salads or you can just bring a bunch of carrots and other types of vegetables with you. Raw is always a good option. Dinner is again not challenging. Just fill your plate up and if you don’t hit ten, that’s okay, but the reason I recommend ten is, I don’t want us to be eating other things instead of vegetables. Don’t eat five servings of vegetables so that you can have rice. If you eat five servings of vegetables and you eat a bunch of protein and you’re too full to eat anymore, that’s okay, but don’t skimp on the vegetables so that you have room for inSANE food. It’s very important to crowd out the inSANE food.

Carrie: It makes it easier to not want the inSANE food at the start by being too full. You’ll find, as I have, I’m sure, that as you go along, when you stop eating it, you no longer get the cravings for the inSANE food and that’s a biochemical physiological thing. Once you stop eating it and you stop poking that button, you actually stop the cravings, which makes it a lot, lot, lot easier to not want it in the first place. Then it just becomes easier and easier to fill up on the non-starchy vegetables and the protein because you’re not craving all this other stuff.

Jonathan: Absolutely! That’s sort of awesomeness #1 of consuming all those non-starchy vegetables. It fills you up too much for inSANE foods. But the other reason – and this is the reason I press on ten servings – is by consuming that many vegetables, I like to say you are basically taking in a therapeutic amount of nutrition. If you want your body to burn fat and be healthy, remember we talked about we want to avoid our body thinking we’re starving because when our body thinks we’re starving, it slows down, it burns muscle tissue, so what we want to do is we want to create an environment in our body where our body is flooded with nutrition and is flooded with protein so that it doesn’t burn off our existing muscle tissue and maintains our metabolic rate and we’re too full and all these kinds of things. So again, getting all those vegetables in – think about it kind of like this two-part analogy – if eating starches and sweets is a bit like touching a hot stove, it burns your hand. There are two steps to repair your hand or your broken metabolism. Step 1 is to remove your hand from the stove so it stops burning – that is, removing the starches and sweets. Step 2 is applying an ointment and maybe a bandage so that your hands can heal. By taking in this abundance of nutrients, we are giving our body the fuel it needs to heal. So it’s not enough to just eliminate the negative, we must replace it with the positive.

I personally really, really, highly recommend making green smoothies. Some people – it depends on where you live in the country – for some people, they’re like, “Oh, yeah, green smoothies. We’ve been doing green smoothies for years.” Some people are like, “Green smoothies! What is that?!” But I’ve got to tell you, folks, if you’re trying to consume ten servings of non-starchy vegetables, many of which are green, leafy vegetables, if it is at all possible for you to get access to a good blender, you can make this so much easier. It sounds a little odd, but I promise you, when you try it, it really doesn’t taste that bad. I’m going to give you the general recipe for any green smoothie. You take a bunch of green leafy vegetables; the most common options are spinach and Romaine lettuce. If you want to get adventurous, try kale but it’s not as tasty as spinach or Romaine lettuce. Nutritionally, it’s wonderful; but you might want to start with spinach and Romaine lettuce. Then add either oranges or strawberries; those are great nutrient-dense, relatively low-sugar fruits. And potentially some vanilla whey protein powder. So you’ve got greens – lots of them, you have only as many strawberries or as much orange as you need to sweeten it up, and then you’ve got a bit of whey protein powder. By doing that, you can create a portable, no cooking needed, can put in a refrigerator or carry around with you in a water bottle, can drink in your car, 3-5 servings of non-starchy vegetables in a shot and they’re raw, which just makes it even better for you!

Really, folks, this is how I eat 90% of my vegetables. If you really want to go wild, there’s really, really nice blenders you could purchase that make this a lot easier. I have a Vitamix. A lot of people really like Vitamix. There’s another brand called Blendtec, which is really good. A more affordable option is the Ninja – that’s about 100 bucks. Green smoothies – I got to tell you – super, super convenient and when you think about the amount of time and effort we put into some other areas of our life, spending 5 minutes whipping up a green smoothie that frankly tastes pretty daggone good, I think, is somewhat reasonable.

Carrie: I am cognizant of the fact that that is maybe strange and a big jump for people who have been living a normal life eating food. What I would suggest for those people who just see that as too big a jump is maybe add the smoothie – add half a smoothie to a more normal SANE breakfast.

Jonathan: Absolutely.

Carrie: Like, have your omelet or your scrambled eggs and add the smoothie on the side, so you’re not making this huge jump from a plate of food to a green smoothie.

Jonathan: Carrie, I’m actually really glad you brought that up. I didn’t mean to suggest that people would be, “Stop eating food. Just drink everything.” For example, in my day job here at Microsoft, it’s very difficult for me to sit down and eat a big plate of food. It just doesn’t work for me. However, I can carry around with me a shaker bottle very easily. Would I prefer to eat a delicious salad? Absolutely! But it’s just not available to me. So this is less of a ‘do this because it’s better’ and more of a ‘do this because it’s extremely convenient’.

Carrie: Right. I just wanted to make sure people understood that this isn’t an ‘Oh my God, I can’t do this if I’m not drinking this enormous green smoothie in the morning’ or ‘smoothies don’t work for me’ or ‘I just can’t get my head around them’. Well, it’s perfectly fine to not have a smoothie and to have an omelet filled with the spinach or the veggies or whatever. I’ve got several omelets up on my website to give you some ideas. The point is, we’re trying to help you make SANE eating work in your life. It’s not just a ‘this is the way to do it’. If you’re going to keep on, if you’re going to actually be able to live it, it’s got to be something that works with your lifestyle. For some people, smoothies are going to be the way to go. For other people who maybe have more time or just don’t want to drink their food, there are other options. Find out what works for you. We’ll give you a bunch of ideas and you can mix n’ match to make it work with your lifestyle. I think this is what we’re trying to do.

Jonathan: Absolutely! When it comes to getting those vegetables, I think an interesting subject to cover is the source of vegetables. So, there’s fresh vegetables, there’s canned vegetables, there’s frozen vegetables. Fresh vegetables are obviously a good idea. Frozen vegetables are also a great idea. In fact, certain examinations have shown that in some cases, frozen vegetables can actually be better for you than fresh vegetables because frozen vegetables are often frozen immediately upon being picked whereas a fresh vegetable may not actually be that fresh. Like, it may have been flown across the country and it may be kind of…

Carrie: It may have sat in the store for a while.

Jonathan: It may have sat in the store for a while, so please don’t feel bad about buying frozen vegetables. They’re a fantastic option! Fresh is great as well and if you can pick them yourself, that’s even better. I would steer away from canned vegetables. The process that takes place there does tend to de-nature the nutrition a bit, so if you can, stick to fresh or frozen. Deeply-colored vegetables also – as a general rule, the deeper the color, the better. I mean, cauliflower is not deeply-colored and still fine for you, but green, leafy vegetables are great! Then, things like carrots, peppers – again, the deeper the color, the better.

Another good thing to think about – we always talk about non-starchy vegetables. It’s pretty easy which vegetables are starch and which vegetables aren’t, but if it becomes a bit confusing, one general rule is that non-starchy vegetables can be consumed raw, starchy vegetables can’t. You cannot eat corn off the stalk. You cannot pick a potato and eat it. You can’t do that with starchy vegetables. Non-starchy vegetables – carrots, lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes, kale, spinach – those can all be consumed raw.

Carrie: Okay, that’s a really good way. I remember once reading that if it grew underground, then it was likely to be starchy or over ground, it was good; but carrots are the perfect example of how that rule doesn’t work. But the raw rule…

Jonathan: Yeah. The raw rule, I think, is a good one and when possible, generally speaking, the less we cook food, the better. Of course, it doesn’t mean you want to cook undercooked meats and things like that, but the more you cook a food, the more it de-natures it and when you have to choose cooking options, think gentle cooking methods. For example, anything that involves water – if you boil or braze – that’s going to respect the nutrient content more than if you heat a pan up to 500 degrees and throw something in it and it burns. That’s going to destroy the nutrients a bit. Again, those are more detailed things. Just focus on consuming a lot of fresh or frozen deeply-colored vegetables that you could consume raw. Protein is next, Carrie.

Carrie: Alright! We love protein!

Jonathan: Because again, we’re swapping in those non-starchy vegetables. Protein is sort of constituent #2 of the SANE lifestyle. Remember, the general rule of thumb is protein is we want to always consume protein in 30-gram servings or greater. You don’t need to eat like 100-gram servings – that’s too much – but between 30 and 55, depending on your size, and you want to do that at least three times a day. If you’re very hungry often, you can do it more. You can do it up to six times a day, but 30 grams of protein minimum, three times a day minimum. The reason that matters – we already talked about things like healing the body and keeping you too full; but there’s also some really new and compelling research showing that consuming protein at these 30-gram quantities changes or facilitates what’s called muscle protein synthesis in our body, which most people don’t know. Well, we know this intuitively, but our body is constantly regenerating itself. Like, our cells die, our skin falls off, our body is constantly breaking itself down and rebuilding it. To do that, we synthesize protein. We synthesize new tissue in our body and we actually do that with about 250 grams of protein per day. That doesn’t mean we need to eat 250 grams of protein per day. In fact, unless we’re a 300-pound linebacker in the NFL, that’s going to be too much protein. But if we consume between 100 and 200 grams of protein in 30-50 gram doses, we stimulate what’s called muscle protein synthesis. We allow our body to regenerate itself effectively and that also burns an immense amount of calories, which helps to contribute to unclogging ourselves, lowering our set point, and we’re fundamentally rebuilding a healthier version of us literally. We’re literally creating a healthier version of ourselves, which is cool!

Carrie: I want that.

Jonathan: I want that, too. The key thing to keep in mind – don’t eat a snack with 15 grams of protein. Like, get 30 grams of protein, otherwise it’s just going to be…. This is oversimplification, but if you eat 20 grams of protein, it’s just 80 calories – that’s not technically true, but stick with me here – whereas if you eat 30, that is going to be literally treated different by your body based on the blood concentrations of certain amino acids. It’s very cool stuff and very empowering stuff. What do you think, Carrie?

Carrie: I think that’s wonderful! However, not to scare people, any improvement people make towards a SANE lifestyle is good. I’m coming from the place where I’ve been on the dark side, which you haven’t.

Jonathan: It’s very true.

Carrie: Baby steps. If that’s what it takes to get you all the way there, baby steps. Any improvement is goodness.

Jonathan: Yup. The good news, though, is that a lot of people don’t struggle to eat food.

Carrie: Right.

Jonathan: So the guidelines we’re giving you here, it would be very easy to say, “Oh, I can’t eat a whole chicken breast with all those vegetables I just ate. I’m just going to eat half of one.” No. I want you to intentionally eat the full chicken breast.

Carrie: Yum!

Jonathan: Don’t make it harder than it needs to be, but also don’t be afraid of food because literally, I tell you, it’s not hard to eat and we’re just pointing out the foods to eat and to eat in mass and to enjoy and that’s pretty exciting stuff to me! I haven’t heard too many ‘diets’ where that’s their message.

Carrie: I’m a huge proponent of the ‘eating more and enjoying’ bit of that message. Jonathan, thank you.

Jonathan: I just want to give folks a couple of quick recommendations on protein sources in terms of cost as well. So we already talked about that with vegetables. You can go frozen if you want to. With both the vegetables and protein, buy them in bulk. These are key things to buy in bulk. If at all possible, don’t buy them packaged. Buy them when they’re just in bulk sections at your grocery store or go to a bulk grocer, like a Costco or a Sam’s Club, and buy these things in bulk because it will literally…. The cost of going to a Whole Foods and purchasing lamb and some spinach in normal quantities versus going to a Costco and buying the exact same thing will literally be three times cheaper at Costco. I’m not exaggerating! You’re talking less than half the cost! So, that’s really important. When it comes to buying protein, because this is often perceived as the most expensive part, we have very cost-effective ways to do this. Canned protein is fine – so, canned salmon, canned tuna, canned chicken – all of these things are totally fine, totally good options; the things like Greek yogurt and cottage cheese; you can find frozen turkey burgers and frozen salmon burgers where the ingredients are essentially like salmon or turkey and seasonings.

Carrie: Right.

Jonathan: Those are just incredibly convenient and again, basically canned meat is fine, canned fish is fine, and if you buy fish and meat in bulk or just when it’s on sale, it’s really not that expensive, but if you just go to your local specialty store and buy whatever at the regular price, it’s going to be kind of costly.

Carrie: There’s ways to maximize your shopping so that it doesn’t cost as much as you might think it’s going to.

Jonathan: Exactly. Then when you find things that you like – like potentially some of Carrie’s recipes or some other examples you find on the internet – the general rule of thumb is triple what would be a normal serving of non-starchy vegetables and double the serving of the protein and call that a meal and you will likely be very, very, very, very full and then just repeat that.

Carrie: Except if they’re my recipes, my portion control is crap and so I make what I think is going to be for four and then explode halfway through. But that’s good, right?! I eat till I’m full.

Jonathan: It’s absolutely good. So a couple of good things – just some quotes here, some science to wrap us up, and then we’ll start next week with Step 2. So we only got through one step today.

Carrie: It was a good step!

Jonathan: It is a good step and we actually covered a bunch of things in there! Oh, sorry, while we’re on this one step, people often ask me about protein powders, so let me quickly cover those and maybe we’ll spend more time on this in another podcast. In terms of just the protein quality, whey protein is from what’s called biological availability, meaning, how easily your body can make use of the protein. Whey protein is the way to go. It’s also incredibly cost-effective. It comes in wonderful flavors. Just be careful about the brand of protein powder you buy. Good protein powders will have at least a 10:1 protein-sugar ratio, meaning, if a serving of a protein powder has 25 grams of protein and 10 grams of sugar, it’s crap. It should have 20 grams of protein and 2 or less grams of sugar. Don’t be fooled. If you’re going to your local grocery store, they have these ‘protein powders’ which are like Slimfast shakes or Special K diet drink, which has often more friggin’ sugar in it than it has protein. Just watch out for that.

Carrie: You do have to read the labels. In fact, I would advocate for when you’re ready to go SANE or if you’re already there, read every single label. You pick something up, the trip from the shelf to the trolley, the cart, read the label. Half the time, it’s not going to make it into the cart because you’re going to realize how much sugar there is in there that you really don’t want to eat and it goes back on the shelf.

Jonathan: If you ever need any help, I don’t sell supplements – that’s not the business I’m in – but things that I find that I like, product services, I have a link on the Smarter Science of Slim website in the upper right-hand corner called the SANE Store, so you can see my recommendations around protein powders and where to get vegetables and things like that. Also, of course, you can jump in at any point in time in the Smarter Science of Slim Support Group on the website if you have a specific question like, ‘What about XYZ? Does that work?’ Feel free to jump in there. So, other protein powders that work – there’s a protein powder called casein. Whey is a milk protein derivative. Casein is also a milk protein derivative. Egg white protein powder is fantastic for you! For vegetarians, hemp protein, rice protein and pea protein are good. I would shy away from soy protein. We can get into ‘why’ later, but generally stick with the hemp, the rice, or the pea protein. Again, some good sources of that on the website.

Coming back with some science, let’s go to Harvard University. Let’s go to Dr. Willett who tells us, “Cutting back on carbohydrates, specifically starches and sweets, and replacing those calories with protein lowers the level of triglycerides that increase the risk of heart disease and also boosts HDL, the protective form of cholesterol.” One more from Dr. Layman over at the University of Illinois, “Diets with increased protein have now been shown to improve adult health with benefits or treatment or prevention of obesity, osteoporosis, type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and heart disease.” I tell you what, folks. If we could treat and prevent obesity, osteoporosis, type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and heart disease, we’d be pretty good to go! That just encapsulated like 80% of the things that kill us in this country!

Carrie: It’s all true. Not only that, but you’ll have a much funner time living.

Jonathan: And you will look better and even think better. Your mind will actually look better, so it’s all good stuff.

Carrie: I’m not sure I want everybody to think better. There are some people for whom that could be quite dangerous.

Jonathan: Your body fat will fall and your IQ will rise and your health will rise. It’ll be all goodness. Well, hopefully this was helpful, folks. Carrie, you have any final words for this week?

Carrie: No.

Jonathan: I will take that as a no. Alright, folks, well, thank you so much for joining us this week and we’ll be back next week with Step 2. Remember to eat more, exercise less but smarter. See you next week. Bye.

This week:
– Jonathan’s “fetching” Elmo shirt
– How not to major in minor things
– How SANE eating focuses on getting the big things right most of the time
– How to make our body work like it’s 20 years younger
– How living The Smarter Science of Slim actually saves you time as you will be exercising less—but smarter
– How SANE eating saves you a lot of money over the course of your life
– How Carrie went from inSANE pastry chef to the queen of SANE cooking
– How to make SANE substitutions for nearly every dish in the world
– How to think in terms of substitution instead of deprivation
– How to eat a therapeutic amount of nutrition
– How to repair your metabolism in two simple steps
– How eating non-starchy vegetables is dramatically easier to make yummy green smoothies
– How to make tasty green smoothies
– How frozen vegetables can often be just as good for us as many fresh vegetables
– How, generally, the deeper the color of the vegetable the better it is for you
– How non-starchy vegetables are easily identified as vegetables you can eat raw
– How the less we cook non-starchy vegetables the better
– How it’s important to eat protein in at least 30 gram servings
– How to inexpensively eat a SANE amount of protein
-How to best leverage protein powders