Today, I want to introduce you to one of my patients.
Louise is a patient of mine at the Sears Institute for Anti-Aging Medicine in South Florida. When she first came to see me, she was 100 pounds overweight and suffering from hypertension, inflammation and sky-high blood sugar levels.
Over the years, she’d tried to lose weight on other diets. And they all worked… for a little while.
But she always ended up gaining back the weight — plus more.
That’s because the minute you begin most diets, your body starts to work against you.
Louise was desperate to get healthy and get back to enjoying the things she loves to do — like traveling and taking her dogs on long walks. So I immediately started her on my Syndrome Zero protocol.
She started to notice improvements in her health almost immediately.
Her insulin production began to stabilize and her high blood sugar levels dropped dramatically.
Her blood pressure returned to normal and she was able to stop taking her dangerous hypertension drugs.
But Louise also wanted to lose weight and shed fat.
I didn’t put Louise on a “traditional” diet because these diets are doomed to fail. Most weight-loss “experts” will tell you that the only way to lose weight is to count calories and eat a low-fat diet.
They couldn’t be more wrong
Let me explain…
When you cut calories and fat, you end up consuming more carbohydrates. And when you eat carbohydrates, your body releases insulin. Too much insulin production overwhelms the insulin receptors in your cells and makes them insulin-resistant.
This results in dangerously high glucose levels and insulin spikes. This forces your body to pack on the pounds through a process called lipogenesis — the conversion of carbohydrates into fat.
Most doctors still only think of insulin as a hormone that regulates blood sugar levels. But there’s much more to it than that…
Insulin is also a “storage” hormone — triggering your body to store more and more fat from carbohydrates.
The result is Syndrome Zero and all of its pound-packing side effects:
- Your blood sugar levels soar
- You feel tired and can’t concentrate
- You’re hungry and have cravings
- You store dangerous fat around your middle
- You can’t lose weight no matter what you do
I immediately started Louise on a unique protocol to bring her body back into balance.
And the results were amazing. Within just days, Louise started to lose weight. So far, she’s lost more than 100 pounds and shed 31 inches.
And she’s never felt better or healthier.
I started Louise on my Primal Power Meal Plan. It’s very low in carbohydrates, very high in fat and moderate in protein. When you eat this way, carbs can’t trigger insulin.
Studies confirm that very low-carb diets improve insulin sensitivity. In one study of overweight women, a diet with less than 10% of calories from carbs improved insulin sensitivity. And a low-fat, high-carb diet made insulin sensitivity worse.1
But don’t confuse my meal plan with the popular ketogenic diet.
Both plans strive to get you to a state of ketosis. That’s the natural process that happens when your body doesn’t have enough starchy sugar for energy. So you end up burning fat for energy instead.
Ketosis has proven to be safe and effective in numerous studies. In one, participants lost an average of 22 pounds after weeks on a ketogenic diet. And most kept the weight off after a year.2
But here’s the difference between the two plans. The Primal Power Meal Plan focuses on foods that score a zero, or near zero on the Glycemic Index (GI). The GI measures how quickly foods break down into sugar in your bloodstream. High glycemic foods turn into blood sugar very quickly, causing your insulin to spike — and the pounds to pile on.
Here’s how the meal plan works…
Eat a Primal Meal Plan to Balance Blood Sugar and Lose Weight
- Eat foods that are zero to near zero on the Glycemic Index. I started Louise off eating foods that rate zero on the Glycemic Index. I’ll admit, this is the hardest part of the plan to follow. But you don’t stay on it forever. Zero-glycemic foods include items like cheese, eggs, meats, fish, fats and most nuts. Within a few weeks, you can start adding back in foods that rate low on the GI.
- Go super-low carb. Did you know your daily requirement of carbs is zero? You don’t need them at all. You can easily make carbs from fat or protein. Carbohydrates should never make up more than 5% or 10% of your total calories. The easiest way to start is by avoiding all processed foods. Also avoid grains, rice, pasta, beans and legumes and starchy vegetables.
And avoid vegetables that grow underground. Choose non-starchy vegetables that grow above ground. Good choices include kale, spinach, broccoli, cabbage and green peppers. Limit your fruit choices to berries that are lower in sugar.
- Choose the right fats. Fats should make up about 70% of your calories. But they have to be the right kinds of fat. Strictly avoid trans fats and vegetable oils like corn, sunflower, safflower, soy and canola.
Instead, choose fats like olive oil, coconut oil, avocado, butter, ghee and heavy cream.
- Eat the right protein. Beef, organ meats, fish, and eggs are your best sources of protein. If possible, eat grass-fed beef and wild-caught fish. Choose eggs from pastured chicken. Other good sources of protein include chicken, turkey, wild-caught salmon and other cold-water fish. Nuts and seeds such as almonds, peanuts, cashews, sunflower and pumpkin seeds also have plenty of protein.
To Your Good Health,
Al Sears, MD, CNS
1. Volek JS, et al. “Comparison of a very low-carbohydrate and low-fat diet on fasting lipids, LDL subclasses, insulin resistance and postprandial lipemic responses in overweight women.” J Am Coll Nutr. 2004;23(2):177-184.
2. Cappello G, et al. “Ketogenic enteral nutirition as a treatment for obesity: Short term and long term results from 19,000 patients.” Nutr Metab (Lond). 20129(1):96.