Wendy Powell

More Fat, Less Sugar & No Diet Drinks

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Fat isn’t the problem, but sugar, stress, processed food, not enough good fats and not moving might be.

We Need Fats. Good Ones.

For years we were fed the ‘low fat’ mantra of losing weight – there was something so simple about it: fat makes you fat. This was entirely misleading We need fats, natural, healthy fats like those in nuts and seeds, oily fish like mackerel or salmon, avocados, eggs, and good olive oil.

HOW TO EAT YOUR GOOD FATS

Fish: Salmon, mackerel herring, sardines, and tuna – all are a great source of Omega 3 essential fats. But if you don’t think you’re going to manage to get 4 portions of oily fish down you every week, take a good quality fish oil supplement, or good old cod liver oil! You’re looking for ‘Omega 3’s’ – Most of us have more than enough Omega 6’s in our diet (found in sunflower oil, sesame oil, dairy, and eggs), so it’s the 3’s you need more of.

Seeds: The easiest way to get the good fats from seeds is to grind them up. Otherwise, unless you do some serious chewing, those good fats will just pass right on through… The best ones for Omega 3 are Flax (also known as linseed), hemp, pumpkin, and walnut. Add in a few sunflower or sesame seeds and use a coffee grinder to churn them up. Keep them in a sealed jar in the fridge, and add a tablespoon a day to your breakfast or a salad.

Other good fats:

Olive oil: Look for the words ‘cold-pressed’ and ideally your oil should be in a dark colored bottle (to protect it from light damage). Buy the best you can afford and never cook with good olive oil – it’s a waste as it ruins both the goodness and the taste! Cook with coconut oil instead and be generous with your olive oil in salads, poured over warm pasta and in soups.

All of the above fats will help keep you lean and healthy as well as help you regulate a host of other helpful processes in your body.

CUT THE SUGAR

There’s the obvious sugar, in cakes, fizzy drinks, and desserts, but there’s also a lot of hidden sugar you may not even know you’re eating.

Sugar increases the levels of insulin in your body and that makes your body store fat, especially around your middle. It makes your body really, really good at storing fat.

Of course, other effects are increased blood pressure, higher cholesterol, increased risk of diabetes and heart disease and premature ageing.

On the other hand, when insulin levels fall within your body, you use fat for fuel. (Something you do want your body to be good at).

HOW TO EAT LESS SUGAR

The obvious sugar is easy to identify and cut out (or down), but the hidden sugar in our diets is much harder. There is hidden sugar in everything from packaged meats like ham or sausage, to crisps, ketchup and cheese spread.

So you have to get a little more attentive to the labels on your food: anything that ends in ‘ose’ is sugar. Dextrose, fructose, glucose, it’s all sugar. And if you see HFC (High Fructose Corn syrup) then definitely try to avoid.

DON’T FRUIT AND FRUIT JUICE CONTAIN LOTS OF SUGAR?

Fruit does contain natural sugar, in the form of fructose, BUT in whole fruit and vegetables (note ‘whole’ – if you consume just the juice then you’re missing out) it is mixed with vitamins, enzymes, phytonutrients, minerals, and fibre. All this goodness offsets most downsides of eating whole fruit in moderation.

It’s not fructose itself which is a problem, but rather the massive doses of added fructose we consume in other, unnatural, processed foods – soft and fizzy drinks are the worst culprit here – they are packed with added fructose and this is what you need to avoid at all costs.

Go easy on fruit juice too (pure water should be your thirst quencher of choice) and if it says ‘fruit drink’ or ‘contains real fruit juice’ then it probably has as much, or more, added sugar/fructose than the fizzy soft drinks!

WHAT ABOUT ‘DIET’ DRINKS AND FOODS?

Diet drinks obviously contain artificial sweeteners in place of sugar or fructose, but very often those additives can have a similar effect on your insulin levels, producing the same fat-storing effects as real sugar. Sweeteners (artificial or otherwise) stimulate appetite and place strain on your kidneys and liver that have to process them. Very often the psychological effect of consuming large amounts of diet drinks seems to be that we ‘make up’ the calories elsewhere and consumption has less effect on weight control than you might imagine.

Processed foods are not only devoid of fiber and nutrients, but – and often the ‘diet’ processed foods are the worst! – they are also packed full of added fructose.

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19 comments

Wendy PowellMarch 15, 2017

Miranda. Mutu Food is designed to be guidelines for women looking for assistance and guidance with their postpartum nutrition. It’s not something you must abide by, it’s optional. Thanks for your comments. 🙂


Mirinda MikesellMarch 9, 2017

Okay, but even if it does, this program is not only for women who are immediately postpartum and a lot of research speaks about the problems of dieting that seeks to eliminate a certain thing. Limiting and being aware of sugar intake is, of course, necessary but should it really be in terms of “having something we shouldn’t” as an absolute or should it be “being vigilant and aware of what and how much we are consuming? Sugar, even processed sugar, can do anything to either damage or repair the core muscles nor can it do anything to the tiny muscle fibers that were damaged and/or destroyed during pregnancy. Some DR’s can only be truly repaired by surgery. That’s how damaging pregnancy can be on the body. diet and exercise can help to reduce but most, especially the more sever, are never going to be back to what they were pre-pregnancy and that’s what women are looking for. I don’t think telling them that never eating a candy bar is going to help. Eat the candy bar if you want to but read the label and decide about meals in the future. If you make that candy bar your lunch or a snack, do you need to eat the whole thing now? What are you going to eat the rest of the day? What about tomorrow? etc. Again, if it’s easier for people to just not have it around, go for it, whatever works for you but I think others shouldn’t have to feel like failures or like they’re doing something they shouldn’t or that they’re choosing a candy bar over their health because they enjoy chocolate.


Mirinda MikesellMarch 4, 2017

Isn’t it more realistic to say “everything in moderation”? Soda every once in a while shouldn’t be a problem (even if it has the dreaded HFC) if you’re actually watching your intake. If you don’t have that kind of will power then sure cutting it out is the easier thing to do but to just use a broad brush and demonize “junk food” as evil rather than as something that should only be consumed in moderation should be fine as well. Especially if you’re already going to the trouble of reading packages for hidden sugars, being aware of the obvious sugars should be a cinch.

Wendy PowellMarch 8, 2017

Of course, every now and then we all have something we perhaps shouldn’t. In terms of postpartum recovery though refined sugars will hinder that recovery. By eating better we make the healing process easier and quicker.


Wendy PowellJanuary 29, 2017

Hey Reena. Making your own sauce is great as you know what’s going into it and there’s no nasty ingredients. A healthier alternative to pasta is Quinoa 🙂


Cruise Control DietSeptember 6, 2015

Appreciate this post. Will try it out.


RaycaAugust 11, 2014

I really don’t remember when the fat makes you fat belief started but back in the 50s, 60s, and 70s when diet programs started to find their way into the mainstream, fat was always the first to go. The reason –there’s nine energy units for every gram you eat. So diet authors including the medical establishment had people cutting out fat because it was just easiest to lower calories, not because of any unhealthy aspect. It is still calories in/out. There are about 10,000 studies that suggest strongly that saturated fat can wreak havoc on your body and cause disease. You will still find bodybuilders cutting down on fat as opposed to any other macronutrient. Obviously, most folks are not bodybuilders but they have always been trailblazers when it comes to diet and exercise. They have not changed their stance in many a decade on that aspect of diet. You should find what works for you. Nuts/seeds just allow me to maintain, not lose any weight. Just a little too much fat does the same. I rather stick to eggs, avocados and very, very small amounts of oil. Anything grinded is just being processed and extracting more of the phytic acid already protecting the seed. Not a big fan of that.


RaycaAugust 11, 2014

I really don’t remember when the fat makes you fat belief started but back in the 50s, 60s, and 70s when diet programs started to find their way into the mainstream, fat was always the first to go. The reason –there’s nine energy units for every gram you eat. So diet authors including the medical establishment had people cutting out fat because it was just easiest to lower calories, not because of any unhealthy aspect. It is still calories in/out. There are about 10,000 studies that suggest strongly that saturated fat can wreak havoc on your body and cause disease. You will still find bodybuilders cutting down on fat as opposed to any other macronutrient. Obviously, most folks are not bodybuilders but they have always been trailblazers when it comes to diet and exercise. They have not changed their stance in many a decade on that aspect of diet. You should find what works for you. Nuts/seeds just allow me to maintain, not lose any weight. Just a little too much fat does the same. I rather stick to eggs, avocados and very, very small amounts of oil. Anything grinded is just being processed and extracting more of the phytic acid already protecting the seed. Not a big fan of that.


Bea's mumApril 16, 2012

I have the same question as below. What are your views on (organic wildflower) honey – surely that has to have some positive health benefits?!

Wendy PowellSeptember 8, 2012

Raw honey is probably your best alternative, & Stevia – see our recommendations in the store here http://astore.amazon.co.uk/musy-21/detail/B005ZYXOLS


Bea's mumApril 16, 2012

I have the same question as below. What are your views on (organic wildflower) honey – surely that has to have some positive health benefits?!

Wendy PowellSeptember 8, 2012

Raw honey is probably your best alternative, & Stevia – see our recommendations in the store here http://astore.amazon.co.uk/musy-21/detail/B005ZYXOLS


sugar?April 16, 2012

Hi Wendy,
I read the online article which brought me to your wonderful site. Could you tell me how you feel about other forms of sugar ie. honey, agave, maple syrup, golden syrup, molasses etc. Do they have the same effect? Are they better? It gets very confusing when you hear sugar, processed refined sugar, all forms of sugar??


sugar?April 16, 2012

Hi Wendy,
I read the online article which brought me to your wonderful site. Could you tell me how you feel about other forms of sugar ie. honey, agave, maple syrup, golden syrup, molasses etc. Do they have the same effect? Are they better? It gets very confusing when you hear sugar, processed refined sugar, all forms of sugar??


NafeesaanjamMarch 14, 2012

Which coconut oil is best to use?


NafeesaanjamMarch 14, 2012

Which coconut oil is best to use? 

Wendy PowellMarch 14, 2012

Look for the same words on the jar as you should with all oils: ‘cold pressed’ ‘extra virgin’ & ‘organic’ if possible. I buy Biona from the healthfood store but  don;t know if that’s available where you are. Hope that helps!


NafeesaanjamMarch 14, 2012

Which coconut oil is best to use? 

Wendy PowellMarch 14, 2012

Look for the same words on the jar as you should with all oils: ‘cold pressed’ ‘extra virgin’ & ‘organic’ if possible. I buy Biona from the healthfood store but  don;t know if that’s available where you are. Hope that helps!


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