HCG Phase 4 - Maintenance
Baking With Natural Sweeteners Conversion Table
|sweetener||to replace 1 cup of white sugar, use||liquid||note|
|agave nectar||3/4 cup||reduce 1/3 of total||lower oven temp by 25 degrees|
|barley malt syrup||1 1/2 cups||reduce slightly||-|
|birch sugar (xylitol)||1 cup||-||does not work well in breads or hard candies|
|birch syrup||1/2-3/4 cup||reduce slightly||-|
|brown rice syrup||1 1/2 cups||reduce slightly||good for hard or crunchy baked goods|
|date sugar||2/3-1 cup
(adjust to your taste)
(adjust to your taste)
|reduce by 1/4 cup; if no liquid, add 3 Tbs flour for each 1/2 cup honey||lower oven temp by 25 degrees|
|maple syrup||3/4 cup||reduce by 3 Tbs||add 1/4 tsp.baking soda|
|maple sugar||1 cup||-||add 1/8 tsp.baking soda|
|stevia||1 tsp||add 1/8 cup||you may have to experiment to get the ratio right|
|Sucanat||1 cup||-||add 1/4 tsp baking soda|
Most syrups work well in moist baked goods, but will soften crispier baked goods like biscotti or cookies. Experiment with these conversions, as they may vary from recipe to recipe.
Phase 4 - the rest of your life!
When you start Phase 4, this is the way you will eat for life! You will never look at food the same way again. You will not feel the urges to eat the wrong foods, and you won't be hungry all the time. You will be able to eat a normal, healthy diet of reasonable portions of clean, healthy foods, and maintain your weight. You'll even be able to indulge from time to time! If you gain, just correct the next day by dropping back into Phase 3 eating or do a steak day until you regain your last injection weight. Your metabolism will be higher, so you won't gain as easily. This is *NOT* a license to eat Wendys' Triple Burgers and Starbucks lattes every day, you WILL GAIN if you do this.
You'll notice that you're more alert, move easier, have better sking, hair and nails. Exercise will be much more appealing in your new, slim body, and you'll find you wish to maintain it the way it has become!
Phase 4 is for the rest of your life (unless you are doing more than one course of the protocol). This phase is basically Phase 3, expanded by carefully adding back healthy carbs one at a time until you learn your body's limits to maintain your new weight. Everybody has an upper limit of carbs. You will need to find yours. So monitor your weight as you add back complex healthy carbs. Add them one at a time, and let 2 days pass to ensure you don't gain. Note the carb level, and eventually you'll get the top limit. This upper limit is different for everyone.
What are Healthy Carbs?
What are healthy carbs you ask? An excellent question.
First of all, lets talk about carbs for a second. What are they? They are composed of one or more of 3 things: sugar, starch and fiber. When you look at a food label, you'll see carbs listed, and they break it down into sugar and fiber. What is left after you add up theose two is starch. We all know that sugar can be bad when too much is consumed, and that fiber is what keeps us regular, but what is starch?
Starches are long complex chains of simple sugars. This is why they are often called “complex carbohydrates”.We used to think that complex carbohydrates did not raise blood sugar as quickly or as much as sugars, but research now shows that some starches are actually more glycemic than some sugars. Think about this: for sugar sensitive people, starch is *worse* than sugar! In this sense, they are not “complex” for very long at all. People who are sensitive to sugar should avoid most starchy foods as well, since most starchy foods are rapidly broken down into sugar. This is one of the reasons Dr. Simeons was so down on starches in Phase 3. And why we need to keep our starch intake in Phase 3 and Phase 4 mostly in the lower starch vegetables, rather than eating lots of grains and beans (high in starch)
What about fiber? Fiber is also known as roughage. It is the indigestible part of plant foods that pushes through our digestive system, absorbing water along the way and easing bowel movements. Fiber is made up of non-starch polysaccharides, such as cellulose, dextrins, inulin, lignin, chitins, pectins, beta-glucans, waxes and oligosaccharides. The word fiber is misleading, because many types of dietary fibers are not fibers at all.
There are two broad types of fiber, soluble and insoluble. Soluble dissolves in water, while insoluble does not. No fiber can be digested. However, soluble fiber changes as it goes through the digestive tract, where it is fermented by bacteria. Soluble fiber absorbs water, and as it does so becomes gelatinous. Insoluble fiber goes through the digestive tract without changing its forms.
So fiber is a sort of non-player in the food game. It helps us stay regular, and helps keep our digestive tract cleaned out, but doesn't affect our glucose levels. It is good, but in a benign way.
Are You Kidding Me? What's so bad about Carbs?
Carbs are not bad. However, there are many kinds, and eating the wrong kind can have long-term effects on your body, causing disease, weight gain, and eventually an earlier death.
A significant number of overweight people are both insulin resistant (IR), and leptin resistant. What does this mean? Well, in fact, most of us are likely to be somewhat resistant to insulin. It is just a matter of degree. The more processed and refined food that we eat, the more insulin we require to metabolize it (and this can happen over years of poor eating habits, or even 'healthy' eating that includes lots of simpler carbs). The more insulin in our blood, the less responsive our cells become. As we age, this continual exposure wears out our tolerance for refined carbohydrates and reduces our sensitivity to insulin. So we gain weight, our cells cannot process the insulin, and we produce more fat. And, if that isn't bad enough, when we become insulin resistant, we also tend to become leptin resistant as well.
What is leptin? Leptin is the appetite hormone. When you get resistant, your 'off' switch doesn't work as well, and you tend to eat too much. And just like in IR, this happens because of too much sugary processed food and other poor food choices. Can it be fixed? Absolutely! Again, it takes time and effort, and won't happen overnight. But you *can* do it.
Does the hCG Protocol help you reduce insulin resistance and leptin resistance? Yes and no. The 40 day low calorie portion of the protocol is too short to have much of an effect on long-term resistance.However, Phase 3 and Phase 4 can be *very* helpful in lowering resistance (or increasing sensitvity) to insulin, putting you on track to beat the system, even if you've been resistant for years.
In short, it takes time. Longer than one round of hCG (all phases). And maybe even longer than several rounds. It all depends on the degree you're resistant. And sadly, while doctors can determine *if* you're insulin resistant, they can't really tell you how resistant you are. There just isn't a test for that. So you may have to eat an anti-resistance diet for quite a while, possibly years before your body re-normalizes.
What? No COOKIES?
I can hear you wailing! I'm not saying you can't ever have a cinnamon roll again. I'm saying that you have to make intelligent choices, and be aware that just like a diabetic (and IR and leptin resistance *lead* to type 2 diabetes), your food choices can have a profound effect on your health. When you cheat, cheat intelligently. Don't eat a head-sized cinnamon roll and a stack of pancakes with extra syrup. Eat a *piece* of cinnamon roll, maybe some peaches or other fruit, and *one* pancake with a little syrup. Better yet, have eggs, bacon and a bit of fruit for your sweet fix. Life isn't boring when eating the Anti-Resistance way, but it does mean you must decide to *do* it, and stick with your choices!
Ask yourself: is a few chocolate chip cookies every week worth extending your insulin resistance and risk of diabetes for longer, maybe months or years? Really? If you answered yes, then you are in the wrong place, time to turn on the food channel and start collecting sugary yummy foods, cause dude, you're wasting your time here (and your money on the protocol).
Is this harsh? Yup. Let me ask you this: is diabetes harsh? Is DEATH harsh? Because we are talking about YOUR BODY. The only one you have. You can't trade it in, or get upgrade parts. You have to live with it til you die. And that time will be sooner if you don't feed it what it needs to be healthy.
However, if you are wavering or answered no, then you're on your way to health, a longer life, and less weight forever!!!!
So....What *DO* I Eat?
I recommend a meal plan consisting of breakfast, lunch, dinner, and a snack if you need it. Each meal should have no more than 10-15 grams of carbohydrates in the form of vegetables and fruits (and prohibiting “white” food altogether, such as bread, pasta, and sugar - NOTE: you don't see any grains here) and some protein. Each snack should contain only 7 grams of similar carbohydrates.
Healthy fats, or those rich in essential fatty acids (EFA’s), are also important in an insulin-resistance diet. EFA’s can be found in avocados, cold-water fish like salmon and tuna, flax seed, and eggs and can also be taken in supplement form. Use oils such as coconut and olive oil to cook your food. Try to eat clean foods, organic if available and affordable, and stay away from boxed, processed or other 'fake' foods. In other words, cruise the outside of the store, not the aisles! These are loaded with sugars and starches and will cause you to gain weight. These are the foods that *got* you here in the first place!!
In real life, in the real world, eating only 100% organic food can be next to impossible. But if you stay away from 'box' foods, and prepared foods and cook your own so you know the ingredients, you'll do well. KNOW YOUR FOODS. If it doesn't have a label, you should look up the nutrition on that food so you'll know what you're eating. Stop moaning, it was thoughtless eating that got most people overweight, this isn't forever. It is a class on how to eat, and once you know the rules, you'll be good for the rest of your life!
What Else Should I Do?
To keep the weight off permanently, here are some guidelines:
- Drink your water!! Keep up the 2 liters per day you drank during the VCLD and Phase 3. Water is critical to healthy functioning of your body, so don't slack off now that you're 'done' with the protocol.
- Eat organic food if you can. Do the best you can. You don't have to count calories or be concerned with fat, carbohydrates, protein, or sodium, except to keep a loose running balance of carbs (sugar and starch, not fiber) to keep moving towards normal insulin response levels.
- Relax, eat when you're hungry and stop when you're full. You should have more fat and and protein than carbohydrates, as that is what your body needs. I end up at around 50% fat, 40% protein and 10% carbs. This number is *not* set in stone, just what I do. It might serve you as a guideline to start with as you explore *your* bodies' needs.
- Mimimize fast food, regional or national chain restaurants. This food tends to be loaded with chemicals, sugars and starches. Much of it has been injected with sugar, MSG and other chemicals for preservation and or flavoring. If you must eat it, return as soon as possible to your clean eating habits to negate the effects of such food. Drink plenty of water to keep your system cleaned out and hydrated.
- Do a Candida cleanse. In Simeons' day Candida yeast overgrowth was almost nonexistent. Today, over 80% of the U.S. population has some degree of Candida yeast overgrowth. This condition creates massive food cravings, systemic inflammation, gas and bloating, depression, increased hunger, poor digestion, and fatigue.
- Clean your colon and liver and do a heavy metal cleanse. Since it is impossible for you to eat perfectly for the rest of your life, Periodic colon, liver and heavy metal cleanses are helpful to good health.
- Do a liver cleanse. Cleansing the liver will dramatically improve digestion, increase metabolism, and make permanent weight loss very easy.
- Drink at least a couple of liters of water daily. If your local water is city water, you might want to consider using purified water instead. Mine is from a well and contains none of the chemicals that city water has. This will keep the cells hydrated and continually flush toxins from the body.
- Walk for one hour, outside, every day. Make sure you have *some* sort of exercise program that gets you moving for an hour a day. Inactivity will lead to gaining weight. Your body is designed to *move*! After all, the meat won't bring itself to you to be eaten!!
- Eat! Always eat breakfast, eat something for every meal, and finish your dinner three and one-half hours before you go to bed. Avoid eating a huge meal as this overtaxes the hypothalamus.You should have your largest meals at breakfast and lunch, and dinner should be lighter to make sure you can digest it all before you go to bed and your digestive functions shut down for sleep.
- Eat lots of low-glycemic veggies with lunch and dinner (made with organic ingredients).At least half your plate should be veggies at every meal.
- Add organic hot peppers and cinnamon as often as possible.They help increase digestion and have a tonic effect on the system.
- Use organic virgin coconut oil as often as possible. I get mine from Tropical Traditions. Sign up for their newsletters and they'll send you weekly sales circulars.
- Use organic raw apple cider vinegar as often as possible. Get the stuff that has gunk in the bottom. This is the 'mother' and means the cider is alive and much more effective.
- Sleep eight hours per night; ideally, between 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. Losing weight or maintaining weight loss is impossible if your body isn't rested. Not being rested puts your body into a fatigue and stress state that will cause inflammation, poor digestion and ultimately weight gain.
- Drink organic Yerba Mate tea, chamomile tea, Wu Long tea, and green tea liberally. They help digestion and can encourage more weight loss if needed.
- Every day take a whole food supplement, probiotics, Vitamin E, and krill oil.
- Use stevia as your sweetener of choice. Honey is sugar. Agave nectar is sugar (and is also a trash food that is bad for you). Rice syrup is sugar. Added sugar is not what your body needs. If you want sweeter things, eat fruit, sweeten with fruit or small amounts of fruit juice or applesauce. AVOID artificial sweeteners such as Splenda and Nutrasweet like the plague. They promote insulin resistance and weight gain, and are poisonous to boot. Don't believe me? Google 'splenda dangers' or 'nutrasweet dangers'. Don't eat before you do, because it will make you sick. Trust me on this.
- Get sun on a regular basis.Your body *needs* Vitamin D to survive. If you live in a sunless area (like the Pacific Northwest) or are in a job that keeps you indoors, take a D3 supplement, 10,000 IU per day is the recommended amount. If you can get out in the sun, get at least 20 minutes a day (WITHOUT sunscreen) and you'll get your D for the day.
- Take digestive enzymes with food. They will help your body process.
- Limit carbonated drinks. I have switched to Zevia, a stevia and erythritol flavored carbonated soda. You can read reviews of them here. And I only drink those for a treat, not for an every day thing. The are much healthier than soft drinks, but still processed.
- Limit non-prescription, over-the-counter, and prescription drug use. The side effects of such drugs are long, and many are harmful. Obviously you may have to take some meds, but keep track of how you are feeling. Getting healthier, losing weight and rebalancing your body may reduce or even elminate your need for them!! As always, check with your medical specialist before stopping any medications.
The following items must be avoided at all costs as they will quickly and easily make you gain weight:
- No super highly refined sugars. These include high fructose corn syrup, corn syrup, sucrose, and dextrose.
- No genetically modified food (GMO). If it doesn't say 100% organic, it is probably genetically modified. This includes 99% of soy in the US. So no soy milk or other soy products made in the US.
- No artificial sweeteners. This includes NutraSweet, Splenda, aspartame, sucralose, and others.
- No partially hydrogenated oils.
- No monosodium glutamate.MSG is nasty stuff. It often hides in foods as 'natural flavorings'.
- No food with nitrites. (I haven't been able to resist this one, I *love* bacon.....)
- If possible, no meat, poultry, or dairy that is not 100% organic. Nearly all meat, poultry, and dairy that is not 100% organic is loaded with growth hormones, antibiotics, and other drugs. These absolutely cause weight gain and other physical and emotional problems.
- No farm raised fish. Look for packages that say 'wild caught'.
- No propylene glycol or sodium laureth sulfate. Make sure your shampoos, conditioners, moisturizers, soaps, lotions, and creams do not contain these deadly poisonous chemicals.
So Where is the Good Food?
This list may seem overwhelming and difficult to implement in real life. I can tell you it is relatively easy. The key is to shop in stores which carry the types of products that do not make you fat. Shop at your local farmers market, your local health food store, or stores such as Whole Foods, Wild Oats, or Trader Joe's.
You still must read the ingredient list on the label. Go into a major supermarket chain to do some investigating. Look at mustard, ketchup, and bread. Nearly every single jar of mustard had high fructose corn syrup in it! Every single bottle of ketchup had high fructose corn syrup in it! Most amazingly, every single loaf of bread had some kind of super highly refined processed sugar such as high fructose corn syrup, corn syrup, dextrose, malto dextrose, honey, molasses, etc. Some have several of these!
This is why obesity is an epidemic today. However, at Whole Foods you can easily find many brands of mustard, ketchup, and bread that do not have any high fructose corn syrup or any other super refined highly processed sugars. You see, it's not that mustard, ketchup, bread, or any other type of food is fattening, it is the ingredients and food processing techniques of that food that make it fattening! They are all available with 100% organic whole food, non-refined, real ingredients as nature intended. This kind of food actually tastes much better, is more filling, and much more satisfying than the man-made mass-produced counterparts that are sold by the large publicly traded international food conglomerates. Trust me on this, if you eat this way for 30 days, going back to the 'regular' food will taste bad!!
Still overwhelmed? Want to have guidance? Then put your name and email in the box in the right column to subscribe to my newsletter. You'll get lots of great information on how to eat for life and rebalancing, and you'll also learn about my upcoming programs. I am designing a 'done for you' online study program that will walk you through the maze of whole food eating, giving you menus, recipes and tons of tools, tips and direction on how to step into your new body and stay there!If you want one-on-one guidance to find your food and learn to keep your body healthy, then you can drop me a line or sign up for a free Discovery session to explore coaching. We'll explore your health, agree on goals for you, and work together to reach those goals, so you'll come out of your coaching experience, happier, healthier and lighter! Click here to learn more or to set up an appointment now!