Toxic Food Cravings
The first step of the Pound of Cure program is the Metabolic Reset diet. It is, in essence a detox plan. Most Americans eat processed, sweetened foods at almost every meal. The daily consumption of these foods hijacks your metabolism, bringing it to a grinding halt. These foods also raise your set point, increasing your hunger and slowing your metabolism. Processed foods also work to sabotage your willpower by increasing your hunger and cravings for toxic food.
These toxic food cravings are what drive potato chip and soda pop sales, fill the lines of drive-through-windows across the country, and pack the seats at “family” restaurants that specialize in high-calorie, sweetened, and salted foods at a reasonable price. The most effective way to eliminate these toxic food cravings is to address them as what they are – an addiction. Our biologic response to these foods is very similar to what happens after we use tobacco, alcohol, or drugs. The same centers of the brain are triggered and the same needs for larger “doses” with prolonged use are developed.
A Nutrient Dense Diet
The Metabolic Reset Diet represents a perfect Pound of Cure diet. The focus is on eating a nutrient dense diet – foods that contain lots of nutrients and very little calories. The backbone of the program mandates that you eat one pound of vegetables every day, ideally more. At the end of the two weeks on the Metabolic Reset Diet, you will discover that you can eat heartily at any time of the day without suffering from the emotional ups and downs and hunger cravings that their previous diet caused and still lose weight.
The approach that I recommend to my patients is a slow, gradual change in your lifestyle. If you follow TheThe Metabolic Reset Diet for two weeks, you will eliminate the majority of your cravings for processed food and will be in a position to make good food choices as you move through the remainder of the program.
By slowly changing your eating behaviors over time in a methodical and meaningful way, you will develop the eating habits that are necessary to not only lose the weight but also nudge your metabolic thermostat downward so that your weight loss is maintained.
Lower Your Body Fat Setpoint
Long term weight loss success lies in learning how to lower your body fat setpoint. The Metabolic Reset Diet is different from traditional restrictive diets that limit your calorie intake and rely on self-imposed periods of starvation that will never result in durable weight loss.
It is only by changing the quality of your diet that you can hope to lower your body fat setpoint to a healthier weight. This can only be done slowly, over time, utilizing a diet that is rich in nutrients, unlimited in portions, and makes no attempts to thwart your hunger drive. Over the period of a year or even more, the excess fat will disappear as your body fat setpoint is reset to a healthier weight.
When we look more closely at our body fat setpoint, we find that there are built in sensors in our body that determine whether we are on the starved or overfed side of our set point. These sensors are located primarily in our stomach and small intestines. We are able to change to the signals being sent back to our brain by our stomach and small intestines by eating a nutrient dense diet. It’s important that it is the types of food, not the amount that is important.
First and foremost, the Metabolic Reset diet was designed to encourage the intake of large amounts of food that lower your body fat setpoint. It will also point out those foods that we’ve been convinced make good diet choices, but actually work to raise our body fat set point. Because of the slow and gradual effect of food on your set point, your long term success can only be determined over seasons or even longer.
If you manage to eat large amounts of natural, set point lowering foods, and limit your consumption of processed, set point raising foods to only a few times a week, you will nudge your set point down a little bit every day. Only by lowering your body fat set point can you hope to lose weight without experiencing binge-inducing hunger and weight loss plateaus from a slowed metabolism.