While eating nearly any food raw is always the best bet for weight loss purposes, most people don’t automatically think of meats that way. Traditional Japanese sushi is raw fish like salmon or tuna, sometimes shark combined with rice, seaweed, carrots and other varieties of vegetable. Rocketnews, a news source that provides Japanese and other Asian news to English speaking countries has made available an article all about why sushi has such a long history, and in an area known for lean and long lived people.
What comes as more of a surprise here, is to hear that steak is among the list of meats we should be eating more toward the raw state than well-done. Scientists have discovered compounds called glycotoxins that form when we brown or blacken certain foods, steak among the top, which increase risks of age-related dementia, obesity and diabetes. This was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences just last year as researchers from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in the US provided concrete links between diets high in glycotoxins to dementia, obesity and diabetes in both people and in mice.
Though the act of consuming a raw piece of steak may sound repulsive, people all over the world have been drinking a raw egg in a morning shake for many generations with very little reported adversity. Though you can eat meat raw, which is supported by raw foodists across the globe for the benefits offered, you don’t need to consume it raw to avoid glycotoxins. Being sure to cook it just above the temperature needed to kill potential bacteria (Medium-Rare: 145F/63C) is enough, then remove it from the heat as the steak will continue to cook via internal temperature as it sits. Any lower risks e-coli, as with any raw meats. By eating as the raw foodists do, they consume no heterocyclic amines, which are chemical compounds that form when you cook the meat over an open flame, leading to glycotoxins. It’s also easier to digest than cooked meat according to multiple studies including one by the Molecular Nutrition and Food Resarch Journal in 2006 because it loses 6% of it’s amino acid content after cooking, making it harder for our own acids to break down during digestion.
While on a diet, picking foods that are going to result in weight loss are the key to success, but you also want to ensure you’re not cutting out things you really do enjoy either. For instances like this, follow tips like these offered by The Globe and Mail’s Ask a Health Expert. Even if eating raw or nearly raw meats isn’t quite your thing, a lot of good can come from choosing raw foods in other areas. Fresh vegetables from farmers markets, as well as organic milks, free range eggs, and meats can greatly impact your weight loss goals. Cold water fish has been shown to have a large impact on good health as well.
The other option available but harder for those who enjoy their meats to go with is a completely vegetarian diet that consists of uncooked and unprocessed vegetables, nuts, fruits and seeds. A CNN report outlines the dramatic transformation of a woman now half her original size by switching her diet. Andrea Giancoli, a registered dietitian and spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association says everyone could stand to eat more fruits and vegetables. She does say there might be a nutritional downside to a vegetarian diet, like deficiencies of vitamin B-12, iron, zinc and the Omega-3 fatty acids found in fish. These can be supplemented if switching to a raw vegetarian diet is for you, but keep in mind there are plenty of options out there like eating alkaline, going pescatarian (eating vegetarian with the exception of fish for the powerful Omega-3’s) and many other variations.
Regardless how you choose to eat, making better choices to stay healthy is never the full picture for weight loss solutions, and usually always requires a bit of movement throughout the day. Be sure to check with a physician to determine your level of health to begin any exercise plan. There’s a few other tips you can use right away that will help you achieve your weight loss goals even faster than switching diet and exercise alone. Here’s one for every day of the week to get you on the right path:
- Hide that food scale. We all know what we should be eating and how much generally. When you go out, order two small appetizers instead of an entree if you know they come large. If you have pasta, avoid eating the bread to cut down on starches. There’s no reason to have to weigh food incessantly to be sure you’re eating the right portions, just make wiser choices.
- Hide fruit at work. We all get a craving to snack before quitting time at work, which is usually when we reach for that chocolate bar or other snack that’s not so good for us. By hiding our favorite fruit in there, we have a healthy alternative that will fill us up, and not make us feel guilty later. You get peckish around then due to a cortisol spike in the body, which is natural and proven you should eat during those spikes to maximize your metabolic potential.
- Purchase a 4×4 inch container, or one designed for a sandwich, and when you’re out or at a buffet, fill it up. It’s impossible to overeat no matter what you place in there short of full fat lard.
- Brush your teeth after supper and floss. By cleaning your teeth and gums, you have an overall clean sensation that feels great and makes you less likely to eat again after doing so. Eating anytime after 7pm at the latest is usually a bad idea anyway in terms of your metabolism, and anything eaten after then is usually stored as fat, unable to be burned away during sleep.
- Take a photo of yourself. Put it on your refrigerator, or anywhere else you’ll see it daily. Be your own reminder for why you are choosing better health every day. Anytime you’re feeling low on willpower, just take a glance at where you once were and you’ll find yourself back on track.
- Beware hidden calories. There are many things we don’t automatically assume have calories, or just don’t think of during consumption like wine, juice, or other alcohols. Typically, the higher the alcohol content, the more calories it contains.
- Leftovers! Since you’ll be making so many great things for suppers, the best lunch the next day is to bring it in your 4×4 container. You know it’s healthy, and you cannot overeat using the container, it saves both time and money.