Gut Instincts from Matt Colby
How do you eat for life, fat loss, and muscle? Simple.
Eat like an animal.
This kind of animal:
Animals eat foods found in nature.
Regardless of your current nutritional knowledge, the first thing you need to change is your attitude towards food.
In order to eat for life, fat loss, and muscle; you have to eat for purpose, instead of eating for pleasure.
Eating for purpose means you eat quality food because your cells need the nourishment to flourish.
Eating for pleasure means snacking or eating ice cream when you are sad and bored because it makes you feel all better inside.
You aren’t 5 anymore, you are an adult. It is time to accept responsibility and be accountable for the foods that you cram into your pie hole.
Before we continue, lets make sure everyone has a basic understanding of the 3 major macronutrients in food:
- Carbohydrates– these are your sugars. If you are fat, over consumption of these is likely to blame(That and an overall lack of physical activity.).
- Protein – these are needed to make most of everything in the body and are absolutely needed for muscle growth.
- Fat – these often get blamed for making people overweight, however avoiding dietary fat is a big no-no. Fat is used in every cell(the brain is ~60% fat), it helps transport vitamins(A,D,E, and K), and it is needed to make sex hormones.
What to eliminate immediately from your diet:
- Sugar, especially High Fructose Corn Syrup
This alone will immediately reshape your body. Most people consume sugar from the moment they wake up, till the moment they go to bed. This chronic consumption of sugar raises insulin in the body and leads to insulin resistance. You want your body to be the opposite, insulin sensitive. When you are insulin sensitive, carbohydrates are preferentially sucked up by your muscle cells.
Insulin resistance = bigger GUT.
Insulin sensitivity = bigger GUNS.
Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye grains. It is therefore in all flour, unless specifically stated “gluten-free.” It is estimated that one out of three people suffer from gluten sensitivity. “Symptoms include bloating, abdominal discomfort or pain, diarrhea, constipation, muscular disturbances, headaches, migraines, severe acne, fatigue, and bone or joint pain”(source).
This one was the toughest for me to eliminate. Alcohol is terrible for the body. Reasons to quit drinking: alcohol lowers testosterone and raises estrogen(turns men into women), it has empty(useless) calories which are stored as fat, it ruins the proper gut bacteria balance, it ruins sleep, it depletes needed vitamins and nutrients, it kills your liver, and it is a poison(source).
- Processed Foods
Foods that have a shelf life of 1,000 years aren’t real foods. Don’t be fake. Be real. Eat real shit. Read more about the toxins in processed food.
What you should be eating.
Out of all of the diets I have tried, I believe a paleo diet to be the most sustainable and easiest to follow in today’s society.
A paleo diet is one that includes eating all of the meats, vegetables, and fat to your heart’s content. Eating paleo is the only diet that gave me abs.
I highly recommend adding these two foods immediately: Organ Meats and Probiotic Foods.
- Organ meats – US Wellness Meats sells frozen organ meat sausages that are delicious. If you don’t have access to grass-fed organ meats locally, then I recommend ordering from US Wellness Meats.
Organ meats are a great source of highly bio-available nutrients. They are like multivitamin supplements on steroids. Liver contains a better nutrient profile than most vegetables.
Carnivores also love organ meats. Wolves are known to eat the internal organs of their prey first. They instinctively know that these organs are the most nutrient-dense(source).
If eating liver, brain, or heart doesn’t sound appealing, don’t give up yet. There is still hope. They make convenient glandular supplements like this Grass-Fed Beef Liver Capsule. Just read these glowing reviews:
“By krissi on June 20, 2014
These are fantastic… I earnestly tried to get all of those seriously nourishing organ meats into my diet but I just couldn’t get it down on a regular basis…I’m about finished with my first bottle, about to start my second… considering that my husband and I have no outside help raising two young, wild and crazy boys that wake up at the crack of dawn and are a full time job in their own rights, I have deadlines that often keep me up when I really should be sleeping, I’m nursing a baby that never seems to get full, I maintain my household, cook most of our meals from scratch and I’m still kicking with enough zest to write a review about how wonderful these are… that’s evidence enough for me that they are helping tremendously with my energy levels, stamina and overall good mood.
As a side note, if it helps, I’m 40 years old and I’m not on any medication for anything…I had no postpartum after delivering my second baby at home and shed my baby weight down to less than I weighed in my senior year in high school. I feel fit, full of energy and I can wear a size 24 or 25 (0-2) in most jeans and slacks (I was at a size 27 or 28 (6-8)). I highly recommend these, the x-factor high vitamin capsules and a good probiotic – they can do wonders for your overall health!“
“By Daniel on October 2, 2014
This stuff makes me feel like a sexual tyrannasaur when i take this and lift weights.”
Woah, stop the press. Did he just say that?
Yep…He sure did. The man said a “sexual tyrannosaur.” Known to most by its scientific name – the Sexxosaurus Rex.
All jokes aside, you don’t just use the term “sexual tyrannosaur” lightly. For “Daniel” to write that, you know for a fact that this liver pill had him feeling some type of way! Now, excuse me for a minute while I go order a year supply of this Sexxosaurus shit.
- Probiotic rich fermented foods – Probiotics are live bacteria and yeasts, mainly located in your gut, that are good for your health. Fermented foods contain these probiotic cultures, which serve to expand and strengthen your own gut biome. These foods include: sauerkraut, kimchi, kefir, kombucha, KeVita, and more.
My favorite fermented food is Kefir Milk by Lifeway <Single Bottle or 6-Pack>. It is known as “the champagne of dairy.” Since it tastes like a drinkable yogurt, it can be used in any instance where regular yogurt would be used. I love it and find it hard to stop drinking. My body can not tolerate milk at all; however, Lifeway Kefir is 99% lactose free and it doesn’t give me any of the problems that drinking regular milk does. These regular milk problems include upset stomach, acne, and mucus.
KeVita also makes a great tasting probiotic drink. It differs from kombucha and milk kefir because it is water-based. They use a proprietary blend of probiotics with their specific KeVita probiotic kefir. The Strawberry Acai flavor is my favorite. I could easily drink these all day. They taste best after doing a sprint workout. There seems to be some kind of synergy. I spectate it is the lactate in the KeVita<KeVita Drinks>. Leave a comment below if you have experienced this yourself.
Probiotic literally means pro-life. Kefir and KeVita are both amazing and delicious sources of beneficial gut bacteria. Read more about the importance of your gut bacteria and how to optimize it(coming soon).
Interesting fact: the gut bacteria l. plantarum is shown to increase levels of BDNF(source).
“…research has emerged indicating that Lactobacillus plantarum C29, isolated from the traditional Asian food kimchi, can increase hippocampal brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) “
Protip: L. plantarum is found in both Kefir Milk and KeVita.
And as we learned in How to Defeat Victim Mentality, BDNF encourages neuroplasticity and promotes anti-depressive actions.
***All Vegetables are acceptable.
My top 3: Garlic, Onions, and Romaine
- Garlic and Onions are both great sources of allicin. Allicin is a potent immune system enhancer. They are also good sources of silica, selenium, sulfur, and much more(source). Also, garlic can be used to increase testosterone(coming soon).
“…garlic alters hormones associated with protein anabolism by increasing testicular testosterone and decreasing plasma corticosterone in rats fed a high protein diet.”(source)
Black garlic <1 pound and 5.5 ounces> is another hidden gem. Black garlic is regular garlic that has been fermented. This fermentation results in higher antioxidant levels and a surprisingly sweet taste. Yes. Garlic with a sweet taste, and minimal odor. This stuff is too good to be true. It is a must-try. When I have these in the house, I find myself eating clove after clove as if they were candy. Mm.
- Romaine is an affordable nutritional powerhouse. It is suprisingly high in protein, calcium, vitamin A and K, Omega 3’s, B-vitamins, minerals(magnesium, zinc, potassium, and more), and it is low in the anti-nutrient oxalic acid. With the easy trick I teach you in my book, you will reap all of the benefits of this amazing vegetable in a simple, pain free way.
Cruciferous – Broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, cabbage, etc. Cruciferous veggies are great sources of I3C, DiM, and Sulfur. I3C reduces ESTROGEN in the body (source), and DIM promotes estrogen metabolism.
***Starchy veggies – Carrots, sweet potatoes, and potatoes contain higher amounts of carbohydrates than most veggies and consumption of these should be monitored depending on your dietary goals.
Contrary to popular belief, even Iceburg lettuce is healthy. It contains the same vitamins and minerals of its darker brother Romaine, just less of them.
All fruit are acceptable, but should be eaten on workout days only. Make sure to eat the whole fruit and not just the juice. This way the fiber is still intact and blunts the insulin spike.
“Hormone-free, organic, grass-fed, antibiotic-free, pasture-raised, cage-free” are all words you should be trained to spot. It is very important because toxins are stored in fat. If you are eating a high fat diet you want to minimize toxin exposure(coming soon). All meats are fair game.
- Grass-fed butter – Kerrygold or Organic Ghee
First, let it be known that regular ol’ grain-fed butter is vastly inferior to grass-fed butter. Oh and don’t even get me started on margarine…
Grass-fed butter contains high levels of CLA, Vitamin K, Vitamin A(which gives it the bright yellow appearance), it has an equal Omega 3 to Omega 6 ratio, and it is the best source for Butyrate.
Butyrate is a very interesting short-chain fatty acid that has implications of being anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, a gut function enhancer, and a great source of energy.
Normally butyrate is produced by beneficial gut bacteria from dietary fiber. However, grass-fed butter is actually the best food source having 3-4% butyrate. They also make a Sodium Buyrate Supplement which I have yet to try, but it is on my list. The recommendation is to take it before bed. Some reviewers state that butyrate gives them “better digestion, deeper sleep, and more energy.”
- Organic coconut oil – There are so many uses for coconut oil. I firmly believe that you are a big dummy if you don’t have a jar of this in your house.
Coconut oil has a higher burning temperature than olive oil, making it superior to use when cooking. It also is loaded with Medium Chain Triglycerides(MCT) which go straight to the liver and are avaiable for instant use as energy. MCT’s boost metabolism(source). It also makes a great moisturizer and sexual lubricant. 😉 And if you did not already know, you can put the lime in the coconut.
- Organic red palm oil – Red Palm Oil is the highest natural source of Vitamin E. Also high in Vitamin A, this stuff can add a pleasurable twist to your favorite recipes. I use it in my sweet potatoes. You can find my sweet potato recipe in my book.
- These sweeteners are acceptable in moderation: honey, xylitol, and erythritol
Xylitol and Erythritol are both sugars found in fruit that do not cause tooth decay and do not affect blood sugar.
- Get protein from the meats you eat.
- For quick protein, I blend pasture-raised eggs with some honey and use it as my post workout drink – Rocky style.
- Spring water. Be very picky about what water you drink. Read Drugs In Our Drinking Water. No bueno.
- The best water to drink is one that you have never heard of… Hydrogen Water(coming soon).
Hydrogen water is water that has high levels of elemental Hydrogen(H2). This confers an extensive host of health benefits. The most convenient way to drink Hydrogen Water is with Lourdes Hydrogen Water Generator.
Note. You’ve probably noticed that I provide many links to Amazon. I do earn a small commission on these products when you buy them through my links. This money helps fund my website and my research. However, most of these items here can also be found at your local Whole Foods or Earth Fare. I encourage you to search for them there first. End note.
How often should you eat?
You can eat as many or as few times as you like.
It has been proven that whether you eat 2,000 calories between 8 meals or 2,000 calories between 2 meals, it has the same net result(source). In other words, eat when it is convenient for you.
If you’d rather eat frequent small meals, then do it. If you’d rather eat only a couple large meals, then do it. It doesn’t matter.
I have tried both ways and I find eating fewer meals to be better for me. Digestion requires a lot of energy. I like to do my work in the morning and working on a full stomach prevents me from performing at peak mental acuity. In other words: when I am full, I can’t work fool!
How do you remedy this?
Adopt an intermittent fasting(coming soon)way of life. I.F.(intermittent fasting) involves a 14 hour(females) or 16 hour(males) window where one consumes no food. This is great for a couple reasons:
1) Your body begins to burn body fat as fuel. Hello six-pack.
2) Fasting raises Human Growth Hormone(coming soon)levels (source). HGH is touted as the youth hormone and for good reason. It is anabolic(increases muscle growth), gives you more restorative sleep, improves recovery, lowers body fat, and much more(source).
3) The lack of food to digest translates into more energy devoted to powering your mental faculties. This means more focus, more creativity, and more motivation.
The I.F. lifestyle leaves you around 8 hours to consume your food. The biggest meal should be after your workout, to build the beast.
NOTE: I don’t count calories.
I simply eat when I am hungry. After all, following your instinct is what being a beast is all about.
It should also be noted that your food composition is determined by your goal.
Example. If your goal is to gain weight, then you will have to eat, eat, and eat some more. To gain weight you will have to be in a calorie surplus, so this is an instance where counting calories will be important.
On the flip side, maybe your goal is to lose weight. To me, losing weight actually means losing fat. Unless you are in a sport where the number of pounds you weigh matters, then you should not be concerned with your weight.
You should be concerned with your physical appearance, and you should always be proud of your hard work. You want to look in the mirror and see yourself smiling back.
Muscle weighs more than fat. Judging your progress by weight is therefore misleading because it is very likely that you lost fat, but gained muscle. Sometimes you can even gain weight.
However, if you gained weight because you lost fat and gained muscle in its place, then you will LOOK BETTER!
If you follow my guidelines (natural diet, exercise, and intermittent fasting) you will not have to stress about counting calories because your body will form to your ideal body composition on its own.
Now you know how to eat for life, fat loss, and muscle.
If you are looking for a comprehensive, in-depth, and easy to follow guide on how to lose fat, gain muscle, and extend your life then check out my e-book: Going 100. Inside the book I cover unique recipes, meal plans, tips, tricks, and formulas to designed to quickly and directly help you achieve your goals. You won’t be disappointed.
P.S. There are people with very strong opinions that you don’t need supplements or any of that to be “healthy,” and I agree. You should always aim to receive all of your nutrients from food first. However this is not always possible and that is where supplements can fill the void.
Also, think about this: supplements can serve the purpose of taking you beyond the normal standard of “healthy”and into a realm of high-performance that food-derived nutrients simply can’t keep up with. For example, the antioxidant PQQ is present in many fruit. Studies have shown that PQQ can stimulate mitochondrial biogenisis(the creation of mitochondria – the powerhouses of our cells)(source). However to obtain the amount of PQQ necessary from food sources would require eating an absurd amount of fruit. In this case, it just makes sense to supplement with PQQ instead of going bananas with all of that fruit. Article on enhancing mitochondria (coming soon).
Again, it all depends on your goals. It depends on what you are seeking to accomplish. Personally, I am not fine with being normal. I am not ok with being average. I am constantly trying to improve myself in one way or another. Complacency bores me. I am passionate about progression and my blog reflects this. I hope to lead you, and anyone else interested, on a journey of self-improvement and to open your mind to the possibilities.
Until next time,
Photos by: Marcelo Rabelo, Meitang, OzRock79, Mmagallan, and Thea0211
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