You know, that duck in your head that quacks pretty much all day long, telling you how much you suck and just how worthless you are.
We’re all ducked. Some of us have ducks that are louder than others, going out of their way to really duck with us.
The duck is part of the human machinery. You can’t dodge it. You can’t duck it. But you can turn the ducking volume down on it.
I should know. My duck used to quack at full blast. From the moment I woke up until I fell asleep, those negative, self-defeating thoughts raced through my mind. In fact, sleep seemed to be my only reprieve for the quacking. That is, when my duck wasn’t keeping me up all hours of the night.
Another of one of life’s certainties is that there will always be people — sometimes even those who are supposed to support you the most — who will do all they can to keep you down. They go out of their way to sabotage your diet and exercise program. They do all they can to tear you away from your significant other. For some reason, they can’t seem to be happy for you no matter what awesomeness may be occurring in your life.
That’s a hater.
Yet, little do we know that our biggest hater may be, in fact, that three-pound noodle between our ears.
Last night, I decided to pluck one of my favorite books, Life Unlocked: 7 Revolutionary Lessons to Overcome Fear, off the shelf. In it, author Dr. Srini Pillay breaks down the science of fear and why even though we know what we want, we just can’t seem to act on it. We get stuck.
This reminds me of a Facebook status update I posted a couple of months ago, in which I asked my peeps what they would do if they were guaranteed to succeed. The responses were some of the most amazing aspirations I had ever read. Yet, when I later inquired about why they were not pursuing these inspiring endeavors, the almost-unanimous response was fear.
But where does this fear come from?
The human brain is quite the survivalist. Although we have developed higher order functions like speaking, thinking, and, of course, blogging, our brains still possess primitive forces remaining ever-vigilant for signs of danger or threat. It is these latter forces that may lie at the root of what I call the game of start-stop-start-stop-only-to-start-again-and-stop-again when it comes to moving toward our goals.
It’s definitely not as easy as calorie-in/calories-out. That seldom works from anyone in the long term!
Why? Well, because your body is super smart and wants nothing more than to ensure your survival in times of famine (either real or self-induced).
Since it’s the giving season (isn’t it always?), here’s a section on the forgotten fat loss hormone leptin from my ebook The Dark Side of Fat Loss. The only thing you’re missing are the really cool graphics that go with the text.
If you’re not much of a reader, you can watch the video instead.
Chapter 2: It’s All About the Hormones
The Dark Side knows that dieting makes you fat.
It knows that every time you go on a diet, you end up heavier than you were when you started. This is no coincidence. It’s just basic human physiology with a dash of logic.
Your weight gain is not a simple matter of overindulgence and indolence, but of survival and miscommunication. You are NOT a gluttonous sloth with a predisposition for stuffing your face all hours of the day while planted firmly on your backside. There is a perfectly good answer as to WHY you eat too much and move too little. It’s just that no one bothered to tell you until now.
The answer is not one of psychological defect — you just want to be fat — or thermodynamics, but of hormonal imbalance.
Getting All Hormonal
Hormones are the chemical messengers that tell your cells what do. Since your body is made up of 50-75 trillion of these cells, you certainly want to be sure that they get the right messages and do the right things. Your health depends upon it.
Hormones do it all. They are what make you a man or woman. They put you to bed at night and wake you in the morning. They govern your heart rate and blood pressure. They calm down your anxieties and relieve depression. They help you digest your meals. They control your sex drive. They fight stress and infections. They regulate your blood sugar. And they are also responsible for the burning and storage of fat. Any and all attempts to lose fat without first restoring the proper function of the fat-burning and fat-storing hormones will be in vain. Hunger and hardwiring trump willpower every time.
Many volumes and literally hundreds of thousands of pages have been written on how hormones impact human physiology, function, and fat storage. In fact, the human body contains more than 100 different hormones. This stuff can get pretty darn complicated! So in this chapter, we will cover the basics. If you wish to go deeper down the hormonal rabbit hole, please refer to the recommended materials and scientific references at the end of this chapter to further your understanding.
While we’ll keep it rather simple here, I guarantee these fairly basic concepts will go well above and beyond anything you’ve ever heard or read before regarding how your body burns and stores fat. I even recommend you break out a pencil and paper for note-taking. As you take notes you’ll likely end up with a messy sheet of paper with arrows pointing from each hormone to several others, demonstrating their interdependency. This hormonal interplay exemplifies the extraordinary balancing act your endocrine (hormonal) system must perform in order to keep your body’s fat burning furnace fired up.
The interdependency among hormones is both a gift and a curse. Like dominoes, when one hormone falls out of balance, others soon follow. Imbalances can be a matter of excess or deficiency. In other words, you don’t want too much of a hormone and you don’t want too little.
To illustrate this concept of too much or too little, let’s consider the amount of water you drink. If you drink too little, you become dehydrated and your body begins to shut down. If you drink too much, you can throw off your electrolyte balance – a condition called hyponatremia – and end up in the ER. Neither situation will lead anyone to believe that water is bad for us. The problem resides in its excess or deficiency.
Sheesh, for something that’s marketed to do a body good it sure has quite a few skeletons in its closet.
Before we dive into this controversial topic I should say that I won’t be able to answer your questions as to whether what I am about to write – and what you are about to see in the video below – has anything to do with the raw milk you may consume, since I do not know the source of such milk.
The best thing for you to do is ask your dairy farmer if his/her cows are A1 or A2. There is testing available to determine this.
I first learned of the relevance of A1 and A2 milk during my radio show with Jordan Rubin a few months ago. Listening to him speak about it, I knew that it was certainly a topic of great importance. However, I didn’t quite grasp the magnitude of it until I pulled Keith Woodford’s Devil in the Milk off of my bookshelf this past weekend.
The video below is just the beginning of what Woodford so scientifically outlines in The Devil. It is almost unbelievable how a single alteration in a string of amino acids can quite possibly lie at the root of so many serious health problems including heart disease, type I diabetes, multiple sclerosis, autism, schizophrenia, and more.
As unbelievable as it may seem, Woodford leaves little doubt that A1 milk has a hand in these conditions.
I hope this video doesn’t freak you out too much. I highly encourage you to take action and learn more about this topic. Woodford’s book is a great place to start. I’ll see what I can do about getting him on the radio show.
Please leave your comments and questions below. I will answer as many as I can.
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It seems like just yesterday when I first sat down to write a book. That was almost seven years ago. It was a survival guide for college students looking to avoid the Freshman Fifteen. I got about 6 or 7 chapters deep, and for some reason I just stopped writing. I always said I would go back and finish it but I never did.
Then, a couple of years ago I began writing a new book. This one was called Why You’re Fat, Tired, and Sick. Same thing happened. I got about 50 pages into what I thought was some of the best writing. But I couldn’t finish. There was some kind of block on my brain that would not allow me to finish what I had started. It was the epitome of self-sabotage.
My dream of becoming an author goes back to my childhood. My Mom and Dad took reading and education very seriously. I can recall being 6 or 7 years old and getting books in the mail about Abe Lincoln, Louis Pasteur, and The Civil War. As a treat, Mom would take my brother and I on trips to the library. And as I got older I would always find myself wandering around the local Walden Books store absolutely mesmerized by the many shelves of books, titles, and names. I knew that one day I would have my own book – that I would one day become an author.
Today is that day.
Writing a book is not easy. As my writing coach Luke Shanahan says, writing is like a heavyweight boxing match. It’s long. It’s grueling. And it will knock you out in a split second if you don’t keep your guard up.
The last 5 months have been an all-out war. I took plenty of lumps and learned a lot of lessons. My respect for authors has grown exponentially. Writing is a lonely, arduous process. It will kick your butt all over the ring. But like Rocky Balboa says in one of my favorite movie scenes, “you take the hits and keep moving forward.” Once the fight is over and the final bell rings, the triumph of finishing far outweighs the punishment taken.
The biggest lesson this journey has taught me is that there is seldom a goal that can ever be reached without the help of others. In the past, my failures were not only due to an inappropriate mindset but also a lack of teamwork. I had been trying to do everything by myself. Life doesn’t work that way.
Between every round of a boxing match, the boxer returns to his corner where his team awaits to give him the advice and encouragement he needs to keep moving forward.
The Dark Side of Fat Loss isn’t just my book. Yeah, my name is listed as the author, but it would have never come to being without a strong team. I owe these people so much for their hard work and tutelage. The people in my corner included:
* Luke Shanahan – Writing Coach
* Carrie Medeiros – Graphic Designer
* Dr. Marla Brucker – Peak Performance Coach
* Stephanie Matos – Research
* Allyson Drosten-Brooks – Underground Cookbook Coordinator
* Brett Klika – Author, The Underground Workout Manual
* David Sinick – Marketing
* Karl Cossio – Web Design
* Andy Anderson – Underground Workout Manual video filming/editing
* Denise the VA – Underground Workout Manual assistant
* Evelyne & Nathalie Lambrecht – Proofreaders
* The Real Foodists from around the world who submitted recipes/videos
The people above were the difference between winning and losing. I am very grateful for everything they put into this project.
As elated as I am right now, it is not over yet. Yeah, I know I’ve got this fight won, but the final bell has yet to sound. That happens tonight at 5pm PT/8pm ET on UW Radio when we launch DSFL, make the website live for orders, and take you on a journey to The Dark Side.
Thank YOU so much for your support. Without you – the readers, listeners, and viewers – none of this would have ever happened.
My dream will come true. In a matter of hours, I will become an author.
In the meantime, I’ll just keep dancing around the ring with my arms held high.