Activated Charcoal

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What is It, How It Works, and What It is Used For

You make activated charcoal by burning a source of carbon such as wood, debris, or better yet, coconut shells. The high temperature removes all the oxygen and activates it with gases like steam. What is produced is a highly adsorbent material with millions of tiny pores that capture, bind, and remove poisons, heavy metals, chemicals, and intestinal gases which have thousands of times more weight than the charcoal itself. The porous surface has a negative electric charge that attracts positively charged unwanted toxins and gas. Toxicology studies show activated charcoal to be harmless to human health.

  • General detoxification – Toxins from low quality, processed food, and environmental pollution are real problems. It is important to help your body eliminate them to promote a healthy digestive system and brain. Chronic exposure to toxins produces cellular damage, allergic reactions, compromised immunity, and more rapid aging. Regular use of activated charcoal can remove unwanted toxins from your body, leaving you feeling renewed and more vibrant, often in minutes! Gut toxins quickly become brain toxins if you don’t eliminate them. Whether or not you are feeling under the weather, activated charcoal helps unwanted bacteria move through your system faster before they spread and multiply, helping you feel better faster.
  • Relieve digestive issues, gas, and bloating – After digesting foods like beans, the decomposition process from bacteria in your body creates byproducts like gas or diarrhea. Activated charcoal enters the digestive tract and counteracts this process by binding to byproducts and alleviating these digestive issues.
  • Antidote for drugs, chemicals, and poisons – Charcoal is an age-old remedy for counteracting poison in the body. If you ingest poisons such as bleach, fertilizer, or even alcohol, taking a single large dose of activated charcoal helps your body flush out the poison faster. Activated charcoal adsorbs most organic chemicals, many inorganic chemicals, drugs, pesticides, mercury, and even lead, before they harm your body. If you’re poisoned, go to the emergency room! But, there’s no reason you shouldn’t start binding a poison right away.
  • Rid bad breath, body odor, and skin ailments – Activated charcoal is often used in body detox products and skin products that help relieve insect stings, mushroom poisoning, poison ivy, cholera, bites, and inflammation. Body odor and bad breath is usually a result of toxins leaving the body, which is why taking activated charcoal greatly helps rid bad breath and body odor.
  • Anti-Aging properties – Studies show activated charcoal prevents many cellular changes associated with aging, adrenal gland, and kidney function. Famous Gerontologists discovered its powerful anti-aging properties in a study showing activated charcoal to increase the average lifespan of older test animals by approximately 34 percent. Activated charcoal slows the rate at which the brain becomes increasingly sensitive to toxins as you age, which makes for better cognitive functioning. It also builds a better defense mechanism by improving the adaptive functioning of essential organs like the liver, kidneys, and adrenals.
  • Better heart health – Activated charcoal helps lower the amount of total lipids, cholesterol, and triglycerides in your blood, liver, heart, and brain. In a study where patients with high cholesterol took grams of activated charcoal, three times a day, patients showed a 25% reduction in total cholesterol and doubled their HDL/LDL cholesterol ratio Studies examining microscopic tissues show a daily dose of activated charcoal helps prevent abnormal hardening (sclerosis) in heart and coronary blood vessels.

How to Use It to Detox Your Body and Feel Noticeably Better

Because activated coconut charcoal is mainly used to remove toxins from the body, it is great to use for the following purposes:

  • Take it when you eat out at restaurants or eat low quality foods like processed junk foods
  • Take it with bad coffee – it won’t fix the problem, but it helps
  • It is particularly helpful to take when drinking alcohol
  • Take it if you suddenly feel moody or tired
  • Opening a capsule on your toothbrush does amazing things for stained teeth
  • Use during pregnancy to bind toxins
  • Helpful for jet lag

Taking activated coconut charcoal on a daily basis is a great way to help you thrive in an overly toxin-filled environment. It is best to take it between meals and a few hours after using any vitamin or mineral supplements, as it may interfere with the absorption of these into your body. Be sure to take it away from prescription, which won’t enter your body when they bind to charcoal.

https://www.bulletproofexec.com/the-strangest-way-to-detox/

Intermittent Fasting – Q&A – Women, 8 Exercise Training, Post-Workout, Cycle Diet

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Intermittent fasting and women

Q: I’m a bit confused. Some people say I should do 16 hours of fasting, while others say that you now recommend 14 hours for women?

A: Females do 14 hrs fasting by default. The fast typically lasts 16 hrs, and is usually initiated in the evening. So in practical terms you might have your last meal some time between 8 and 10 pm in the evening and break the fast around noon on the next day.

But for women my default approach is to actually start off with 14 hrs and see how they do on that before eventually moving them to 16 hrs. When you look at the studies on gender and fasting, you tend to see that women may have slightly more adverse reactions to fasting than men, such as some degree of irritability and increased attention to food cues. 16 hrs is hardly prolonged fasting, but I like to play it safe, so that’s why I have female clients fasting for a shorter time at the beginning.

Intermittent fasting and regular meal patterns: mixing it up

Q: What’s peoples experience with intermittent fasting on the week days and a “regular” diet on the weekend or something like that? I think that would fit my schedule perfectly, especially since i am much more active on the weekend and play sports/do cardio sometimes multiple times and very spread out.

A: Eating on regular intervals each day has it’s benefits. Breaking the pattern may screw a bit with the ghrelin pulse. Ghrelin is a hunger hormone which rise in anticipation of a meal and is in tune with your day-to-day meal pattern. This is also part of why you can go for 16 hrs without getting hungry once you get used to it.

Practically, this might mean that it could be a bit harder to get back to fasting when you break the pattern (weekends). On the other hand, I’ve done it personally many times and I haven’t experienced any problems at all. Fasting is still very easy after a day of more regularily spaced eating. It might take several days of a new meal pattern before a new ghrelin pulse pattern develops, so go ahead and try it.

http://www.leangains.com/2009/11/questions-answers_23.html


As a general rule of thumb, if you drink something with less than 50 calories, then your body will remain in the fasted state. So, your coffee with a splash of milk or cream is just fine. Tea should be no problem either.


I believe in strength training and compound movements. I think 99% of the population could get in the best shape of their life with only eight exercises: snatch, clean and jerk, squat, bench press, deadlift, pushups, pullups, and sprints. If you did those exercises and did them well, then that’s all you would ever need.

Here’s what I’m doing right now…

I train three days per week and I pick one exercise that is my primary goal for each workout. For example, tomorrow will be squat. My only goal is to have the 5 sets of 5 reps be the best form with the best weight I can do for that day. Anything else that I do after that is just bonus time. This gives me flexibility if my schedule is tight (it often is) and leeway to add something in if I have extra energy. For example, I might add some pullups onto the end of tomorrow’s squat workout.

When it comes to training volume and intermittent fasting, you’ll want to keep a few things in mind. First, when fasting it’s very possible that you can get better results by exercising less. This can either mean less frequently or less intensity. Most people will be on a calorie deficit while intermittent fasting, so it’s usually a good idea to exercise less rather than more.

That said, some people will want to train a lot and are still looking for ways to get lean and shed some fat. If this is the case, then you need to eat a lot (and I mean a lot) during your feeding window. For a brief period, I did intermittent fasting while training on an Olympic weightlifting team and I can tell you that I had to be very committed to eating to make it work. If you don’t eat a lot then your body is going to struggle to recover from intense training.

In my experience, I have never had trouble when doing strength training while fasting. As long as you’re getting good nutrition within the 24 hours before and after training, you probably have nothing to worry about when it comes to training fasted.


I workout before work at 6:30am and I’m looking to do a 16/8 fast. My last pre–training meal is at 8pm and my first meal after training is at about 1pm. Could this work or should my post–workout meal come sooner after working out?
—Neville K.

I try to eat my biggest meal of the day post–workout. Usually this meal comes within an hour or two of working out. In my experience, this is what has worked best for me.

That said, Neville’s situation is a good lesson on choosing your goals. If fat loss is the most important thing for you, then I would probably stick with the 1pm meal. The primary benefits of fasting come around 12 to 16 hours after your last meal.

If training heavy, bulking up, and gaining muscle is at the top of the list, then I would probably scrap the intermittent fasting and get a big meal right after working out. In other words, it comes down to your priorities.

If you are in Neville’s situation and your post–workout meal comes in the middle of the workday, then it can be easy to find yourself caught up in the day’s affairs and running to the nearest Subway at the last minute. It’s probably a worthwhile investment of your time to plan out your meals in advance so that you can be sure that you can refuel with high quality nutrition after your workout.

http://jamesclear.com/reader-mailbag-intermittent-fasting


  • For best results, cycle what you eat.

Intermittent fasting works, but I didn’t start cutting fat at a significant rate until I added in calorie cycling and carb cycling to my diet. Here’s how it works…

I cycle calories by eating a lot on the days that I workout and less on the days that I rest. This means I have a calorie surplus on the days I train and a calorie deficit on the days that I rest. The idea behind this is that you can build muscle on the days you train and burn fat on the days you rest. And by the end of the week, you should have done both.

Additionally, I cycle carbs by eating a lot of carbohydrates on the days that I train and few carbohydrates on the days that I rest. This is done to stimulate fat loss. I eat high protein all the time and moderate to low fat on most days. Cycling carbohydrates has also led to additional fat loss.

For me, this is when the intermittent fasting seemed to pay off the most — when I coupled it with calorie cycling and carb cycling.

  • Losing fat and gaining muscle can both be done, just not together.

If you’re looking to lose fat and build muscle mass, then the combination of intermittent fasting, calorie cycling, and carb cycling that I have mentioned here is one of the best solutions you’ll find.

You see, it’s basically impossible to gain muscle and lose fat at the same time. To lose weight, you need to burn more calories than you take in. You need to have a net calorie deficit.

To build muscle, you need to eat more calories than you burn. You need to have a net calorie surplus.

It should be fairly obvious that you can’t have a net surplus and a net deficit at the same time. For example, you can either eat more than 2,000 calories or you can eat less than 2,000 calories … but you can’t do both at the same time. This is why it’s basically impossible to lose fat and gain muscle at the same time.

However, if we get away from the small timeframes and start thinking about our diet over the course of a week or a month, then we start to have more options. For example, let’s say that you workout 3 days per week. You could organize your eating routine to have a calorie surplus on the days you train (i.e. gain muscle) and then a calorie deficit on the days you rest (i.e. lose fat). That way, by the end of the week, it’s possible for you to have spent 3 days gaining muscle and 4 days losing fat.

  • When fasting, I have made more gains by training less.

I’ve recently began testing a new hypothesis for strength training, which I call “Do The Most Important Thing First.”

It’s as simple as it sounds. I pick one goal for the workout and do the most important exercise first. Everything else is secondary. For example, right now I’m working out Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. I do two sessions each day. Upper body in the morning. Lower body in the evening. But I’m only doing one exercise each time (pushups in the morning) and squat or deadlift in the evening. If I feel like it, I’ll finish my evening workout with kettlebell work or bodyweight stuff (handstands, front levers, and so on).

The results have been very good. I’ve seen improvement each and every week over the last three months. It’s worked so well that I’m starting to think that it has very little to do with fasting, but instead is just a better way of training. I’ll write more about this in the future, but I wanted to note it here because when I compare it to the previous way I trained while fasting (snatch and clean and jerk three days per week, plus squat or deadlift), I seem to be making more progress.

http://jamesclear.com/the-beginners-guide-to-intermittent-fasting

eating paleo – main points

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Eat only things that occur naturally:

  • Meat – GRASS-FED, not grain-fed. Grain causes the same problem in animals as they do in humans.
  • Fowl – Chicken, duck, hen, turkey…things with wings that (try to) fly.
  • Fish – Wild fish, as mercury and other toxins can be an issue in farmed fish
  • Eggs – Look for Omega-3 enriched eggs.
  • Vegetables – As long as they’re not deep-fried, eat as many as you want.
  • Oils – Olive oil, coconut oil, avocado oil – think natural.
  • Fruits – Have natural sugar, and can be higher in calories, so limit if you’re trying to lose weight.
  • Nuts – High in calories, so they’re good for a snack, but don’t eat bags and bags of them.
  • Tubers – Sweet potatoes and yams.  Higher in calories and carbs, so these are good for right after a workout to replenish your glycogen levels.

Keep it simple: Try to get a really good protein source with each meal (eggs, steak, chicken, fish, pork) with each meal along with some vegetables or fruit. That’s it.  If you’re having trouble getting enough calories daily, add some healthy fats to the equation: avocado, a handful of almonds or walnuts, almond butter, olive oil, etc.

Now, fruit does have quite a bit of sugar in it, and nuts have quite a few calories…so if you are following the Paleo Diet but not losing weight, check your fruit and nut consumption and see if you are loading up on those at the expense of vegetables and healthy protein.


GRAINS – No-No.

Back in the day, grains weren’t part of our diet.  

Grains are composed of carbohydrates, and those carbs are turned into glucose (a type of sugar) in our system to be used for energy and various other tasks to help our body function – any glucose that isn’t used as energy is stored as fat.

Grains contain gluten and lectins. 

  • Gluten is a protein found in things like rye, wheat, and barley. It’s now being said that much of our population may be gluten-intolerant. Over time, those who are gluten intolerant can develop a dismal array of medical conditions from consuming gluten: dermatitis, joint pain, reproductive problems, acid reflux, and more.
  • Lectins are natural toxins exist within grains to defend against consumption! Grains have evolved to keep themselves from being eaten by us. These lectins are not a fan of our gastrointestinal tract, prevent the tract from repairing itself from normal wear and tear. This  can cause all kinds of damage.

No Sugar

The Paleo Diet also almost completely eradicates sugar. Unless you’re getting your sugar from a fruit, forget it.  Sugar causes an energy spike and crash in your system, turns to fat unless it’s used immediately, and wreaks all kind of havoc on our bodies.

So, no grains, no sugar, no processed foods. Many studies have shown that an incredible number of diseases and lifestyle issues can be reversed with these three simple changes.


Low Carb

Our bodies are designed to operate on a lower amount of carbohydrates than what we’re used to eating, so less carbs isn’t an issue.  When there is an absence of carbs (which is how we’re USED to operating), our body will take stored fat and burn THAT for energy in a process called ketogenesis.

So, less carbs = less glucose in your system, which means your body will have to start burning fat as your fuel source. 

Get carbs from vegetables, sweet potatoes, and fruit.  Why is that?  These foods are naturally occurring in the wild and don’t need to be processed in any way (unlike grains) in order to be consumed.

The other great thing about vegetables is that you can eat as many of them as you like and you’ll never get fat.  They’re incredibly nutrient dense and calorie light – six servings of broccoli (and who would eat 6 servings at once?) has 180 calories and only 36 grams of carbs.  A single serving of pasta (and NOBODY eats just one serving of pasta) has 200 calories and 42 grams of carbs.


Dairy?:

Dairy’s a tough one, as most Paleo folks tend to stay away from it – a portion of the world is lactose intolerant, and those that aren’t usually have at least some type of an aversion to it.  Why is that? Because no other animal in the entire kingdom drinks milk beyond infancy.  Hunter-gatherers didn’t lug cows around with them while traveling – milk was consumed as a baby, and that was it.  As with grains, our bodies weren’t designed for massive dairy consumption.

Also look into:

thePaleoSolution_QuickStart

http://www.marksdailyapple.com/primal-blueprint-101/#axzz3F7ItRGas

intermittent fasting

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Since the 1930’s, animal studies have been telling us that restricting calories improves health and longevity. For many decades, most believed that it was necessary to “starve yourself” to reap the benefits. Recent science has shown us, however, that you can actually trim your waistline, improve your biomarkers of health, and increase your longevity without the pain, suffering, and hunger that comes along with restriction. Intermittent Fasting works, too.

Fasting and feasting keeps us lean largely because it forces the body to metabolize fat for energy more efficiently. And by limiting spikes in blood sugar because there’s no incoming food to digest, your insulin sensitivity can improve dramatically. Another benefit of fasting and feasting: by eating less often, it gives the opportunity for our bodies to repair themselves, without being distracted by needing to digest food. The result is less inflammation, more muscle growth, and of course, more fat mobilization. Studies support that fasting then feasting, or having less frequent meals, doesn’t decrease your metabolism. And eating every few hours, including breakfast, doesn’t increase your metabolism, either. Hunter-gatherer meal patterns, with large dinners and little to eat during the day, seem more natural. That’s why skipping breakfast often comes so easily.

Some studies also show that breakfast boosts hunger throughout the day. I can vouch for that. I tend not to get hungry until I start eating. They’ve found that cortisol is the main culprit. It’s highest in the morning as a normal process of getting you to wake up and prepare you for the day ahead. Often called “circadian cortisol,” the urge to eat in the morning can actually be a response to cortisol flooding our system and not because we are actually hungry. Simply, when you have high levels of cortisol and eat, you’re likely to experience an insulin spike and a decrease in insulin sensitivity. That’s why you might be starving a mere 1-2 hours after breakfast

http://fatburningman.com/the-meal-frequency-fallacy/

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hormone holy trinity

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“Cortisol helps you respond to the scary effects of your everyday adventures by regulating the levels of other hormones, such as thyroid and estrogen.

Thyroid keeps you energetic, slender, and happy. Without enough thyroid, you feel fatigued, gain weight, go through life in a low mood . . . and libido? Fagettabout it.

Estrogen, which keeps you flush with serotonin, the feel-good neurotransmitter. Estrogen keeps your orgasms toe-curling, your mood stable, your joints lubricated, your sleep and appetite right, your face relatively wrinkle-free. Estrogen keeps the other angels, cortisol and thyroid, in balance.”

Excerpt From: Sara Gottfried, MD. “The Hormone Cure.” iBooks. https://itun.es/us/3QZyG.l

hormone imbalance

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“• High cortisol causes you to feel tired but wired, and prompts your body to store fuel in places it can be used easily, as fat, such as at your waist.
• Low cortisol (the long-term consequence of high cortisol, or you might have high and low simultaneously) makes you feel exhausted and drained, like a car trying to run on an empty gas tank.
• Low pregnenolone causes anomia: trouble finding . . . what’s that again? Oh, the right word. Low levels are linked to attention deficit, anxiety, mild depression, brain fog, dysthymia (chronic depression), and social phobia.
• Low progesterone causes infertility, night sweats, sleeplessness, and irregular menstrual cycles.
• High estrogen makes you more likely to develop breast tenderness, cysts, fibroids, endometriosis, and breast cancer.

• Low estrogen causes your mood and libido to tank and makes your vagina less moist, joints less flexible, mental state less focused and alive.
• High androgens, such as testosterone, are the top reason for infertility, rogue hairs on the chin and elsewhere, and acne.
• Low thyroid causes decreased mental acuity, fatigue, weight gain, and constipation; long-term low levels are associated with delayed reflexes and a greater risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

Excerpt From: Sara Gottfried, MD. “The Hormone Cure.” iBooks. https://itun.es/us/3QZyG.l