Saturday, November 26, 2011

Get More Sleep To Lose Body Fat

You'll see what I mean by bad news at the end.

Everybody knows that if you want to lose body fat you need to pay attention to diet and exercise. However, there's another factor that hardly anybody talks about...sleep. As a culture, Westerners get much less sleep today than their ancestors did. You can blame a lot of that on the blessing of electricity. What happens when you go to bed too late and what is "too late"? I'm guilty of this so don't think I'm perfect. I need to work on this. 

Is this you?

Any competitive athlete will tell you that they can feel the difference between 8 hours of sleep that starts at 9pm compared with 10pm compared with 11pm. When you push your body hard, you recover much better if you get to bed early. Why is this? Eve Van Cauter PhD is a world authority on the endocrine system and circadian rhythms. Put her name into Google or PubMed and you'll find dozens of her studies clearly showing the unpleasant influences that sleep deprivation has on hormones and other physiological parameters. Side note: hormones play a critical role in how much muscle you build and how much fat you lose. I repeat: the better your hormone profile (affected through sleep, diet, training, stress, etc.), the more fat you will lose. 

A colleague of mine in California, Chris Maund, spent over 3 years gathering information on this topic before writing a review of literature entitled "Sleep, Biological Rhythms and Electromagnetic Fields". His conclusion after spending all those months reviewing literature? Very simple...if you wish to get lean and feel physically recovered from day to day you need at least 8 hours sleep and you'd better be asleep by 10pm at the latest. This is partly because getting to bed later than this adversely affects your natural secretion of growth hormone. You only get one pulsed secretion of growth hormone every 24 hours....if you're not in bed early that pulse is significantly diminished in size.

You are probably aware that most people feel better and lose body fat when they cut gluten from their diet. What you might not realize is that all grains are problematic for most people...not just the classic gluten containing grains. 

Why is this? Partly it's because there is a lot of confusion over which grains contain gluten and which ones do not. Many "gluten free" people continue to eat oats and quinoa because they have been told these two are gluten free. There are two major problems with this logic.



The first problem is that most people feel better, have more energy and less body fat, when they eliminate ALL grains INCLUDING oats and quinoa. Chris and his wife Janet have seen many clients over the years who were unable to get rid of their symptoms (and body fat) until they cut oats and quinoa from their diet. This is partly because oats and quinoa do contain a form of gliadin which does cause significant health problem in many people. Gliadin is the relevant offending sub fraction of gluten.When someone says "I'm gluten intolerant" it's more accurate to say "I'm gliadin intolerant". 

The second problem is that all grains - even rice and corn, which are truly gluten/gliadin free - are simply delivery vehicles for huge amounts of carbohydrate. Most people do not do anywhere enough exercise to burn off the carbohydrates that they get from their daily grain consumption. Unless you are doing at least 60 mins of HARD exercise every day, you should cut ALL grains from your diet and get your carbohydrates from vegetables.

So the bad news is you might need to go to bed earlier (myself included ;) and you might need to eliminate, or at least cut back, grains from your diet. But the good news is you'll feel better, become healthier and lose more body fat...I know you like hearing that :)

Your friend,


PS. We're considering opening up more North Vancouver boot camp class times. Currently we have M, W, F at 5:45 am, 11:30 am, 5 pm, 6 pm, 7 pm and Saturdays at 10 am. Would you be interested in a 7:00 am, 9:30 am and/or 12:30 pm (noontime) class?

PPS. Make sure you give these people a big high 5 next time you see
them as they each referred their friends to our program and because
of our referral incentive program got some serious rewards:

Allison - referred 1 friend - gets $100 off next month of training
Mich - referred 2 friends  - gets $200 off next month of training
Aly – referred 1 friend – gets $100 off next month of training
Tania – gets half off program
Rob and Sonja –  gets half off program
Kristen H. - gets half off program

Thanks for bringing your friends out! And this is not all of them

Hey by the way, so that you can get on this list and get free
training and save like these did, encourage your friends, family
and coworkers to come out for their first session at no cost to try
it out and if they choose to sign up, they’ll get $50 off whichever
program they choose and I will totally hook you up with our referral
bonuses of giving you 50% (half) off for EACH person you refer
that joins. Not bad if you ask me.

Janet Alexander
A 25-year veteran of the Health and Fitness Industry and commited endurance athlete, Janet draws her experience from a varied career base, including teaching, sales and marketing, advertising and design as well as working with clients requiring sports performance and orthopedic rehabilitation. Janet is one of the Senior Faculty at the C.H.E.K Institute, co-owner of The CHEK Studio, Inc. in Encinitas, CA where she works predominantly with golfing athletes and their coaches including PGA and LPGA professionals.

Chris Maund
Chris Maund is a member of the C.H.E.K Faculty and has been teaching for the C.H.E.K Institute since 1998. Chris has a bachelor's degree in Physical Education and Sports Science from Loughborough University in England. He has written a thesis to satisfy part of the requirements for C.H.E.K Practitioner Program entitled "Sleep, Biological Rhythms and Electromagnetic Fields". Chris is a strong believer in the value of massage therapy and studied Paul St John's Neuro Muscular Therapy program. An experienced triathlete, he was a member of the British National Squad from 1989-1992 before emigrating to New Zealand in 1993. Chris has a wealth of experience working in a wide variety of rehabilitation and sports conditioning scenarios.

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