I had a client come in last week asking to help her with weight loss and getting leaner so she can maximize her efforts at the gym, and allow her to compete in fitness competitions this April. After reviewing her food logs, it looked like a few things may be contributing to her carbohydrate/ wheat heavy meal plan. You may also find this to be one of your issues!
The first issue I found was that breakfast was a bit too late. This is common with many people where they sleep in during winter months, and eat breakfast when they get to work. It is convenient, but this sets you up for eating more food as you feel hungry most of the day. The body goes into its conservation-like mode and tricks you into being hungry more frequently trying to catch up from that missed meal. Although it may not seem like a big deal to eat at 8:30 when you got up at 6, that delay of 2.5 hours makes you more hungry all day. You snack all day even though you really don’t want to. Try to eat breakfast within an hour of waking up, or within 30 minutes after your early morning workout session.
Second, it might be what you are eating that sets you up for eating more. Those who eat wheat
based breakfast (i.e. toast with eggs, wheat based cereal with milk, bagel, etc) tend to eat more throughout the day. Why? Although wheat is touted as a healthy grain, it can spike your blood sugar more than other grains. If you read The Wheat Belly, it indicates that blood sugar rises are higher with wheat consumption vs. other grains or even a regular potato!
In The Wheat Belly, Dr William Davis writes: ” The amylopectin A “complex” carbohydrate of wheat, …, raises blood sugar to sky-high levels. … Two slices of whole wheat bread raise blood sugar higher than 6 teaspoons of table sugar. (And, no, it does NOT mean eat white bread!)”…
” If you eliminate the foods that trigger exaggerated blood sugar and insulin response, you eliminate the cycle of hunger and momentary satiety, you …are satisfied with less.’ Wheat IS that food that triggers huge blood sugar swings and creates the endless need to keep eating ‘carbs’! Eat some bagel now, eat a sandwich later, grab a handful of pretzels in between or a danish. Oh those donuts were calling my name!…it just keeps going. All day you spike drop, spike drop the blood sugar. Like a yoyo.
I had one client years ago, who could not get to his ‘racing weight’ until we eliminated wheat. With wheat being a staple in a cyclists and most athlete’s diets, he would start with a bagel after training, then could not stop eating wheat based ‘carbs’ until he had consumed the whole bag of bagels. Then his daughter’s cookies then more crackers and cookies until he went to bed. Once off the wheat, the endless addiction to ‘carbs’ stopped. He was able to eat normally. And he was able to reach his race weight easily.
After a clients first week, she has reported that she is more satisfied with her gluten/wheat free breakfast. She is also less hungry having breakfast at home rather than eating at the office! I will try to keep you posted on what happens after our next session. All interesting things for you to consider when you cannot reach your weight goals. It might be as simple as timing of breakfast or changing what is for breakfast!
For more information about wheat free nutrition plans, or other nutrition plans for athletes, please visit www.n-im.net. Or if you have a question and need an answer, email me and I will write about it in an upcoming post!