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What’s Sleep got to do with it?

Yesterday, our family was having a conversation about sleep.  Our 16 year old son, figured that there’s no difference between going to bed at 10pm and getting up at 6am or going to bed at 1 or 2 am and sleeping in until 10 or 11am, in fact if you calculate the number of hours you’d be in bed sleeping you’d actually get more following his weekend preference!  He also figured that my comment of ‘you get better sleep before midnight’ must be one of those ‘mother myths’!

Hmmm… what could I say? Good thing I had my iPhone & I could ‘google’ for some answers immediately!

Thanks to the internet I have found more than enough information to pass along!  Dave keeps reminding me that blogs are not research papers or long articles.  So today I’ll try to give you nuggets instead!

  • People cannot long survive without air, water, and sleep. –Thomas Szasz, M.D.
  • Sleep (or lack thereof) can affect your mood, your mental alertness, your work performance and your energy level.  Even your relationships with others are affected
  • If you deprive yourself of sleep you are harming your health and you’ll pay for it in the long run.
  • Sleep will help with fat loss
  • Sleeping doesn’t have any calories!!
  • Two main hormones responsible for appetite and feeling full: Ghrelin & Leptin.  When sleep is restricted ghrelin levels go up and leptin levels go down increasing your appetite for high calorie, dense foods leading to increased belly fat.
  • Top two rules for waking up refreshed: get enough hours of sleep for your unique body (7-9 hrs) and wake up at the same time every day.
  • Generally, the more sleep you receive before midnight, the better you’ll feel in the morning.  The Centre for Integrated Healing says, “From a complementary medicine perspective, an hour of sleep before midnight is worth 2 hours of sleep after midnight, because sleep before midnight optimizes melatonin production.”
  • Here are twelve secrets for getting more good-quality, restful sleep.
  • Relying on coffee or energy drinks to help keep you awake or give you energy will eventually overstimulate your endocrine glands
  • Sleep is critical in balancing out your cortisol (stress hormone) levels.  Cortisol causes you to store fat & burn muscle – the exact opposite of what you want.
  •  A test study was done with 15 people following a very strict diet and a specific nightly sleep requirement. One group slept 51/2 -6 hrs a night and the second group slept 81/2-9 hours a night.  Their results?  Both groups had similar weight loss however when they compared body composition analysis the group receiving less sleep had lost more lean muscle compared to the group who slept longer who lost a greater amount of fat.

One final thing!  In answer to my son’s comments I went to Wikipedia & found the following graph & information.  It is an overview of the biological circadian clock in humans.  Perhaps my comments were not a ‘mother’s myth’ after all!

🙂 Christine

PS Make an investment into your health – get your sleep!

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I’m finished Phase 2….now what?

A lot of you have either reached Phase 3 or are nearing it so I thought I’d talk about how to enter Phase 3 successfully! First of all I want to congratulate you on sticking to protocol and completing Phase 2! Way to go…you are now half-way through the Spray It Away Program. Now onto part 2…! This Phase is extremely important to your overall success in losing weight. It is during this Phase that you reset your metabolism, your hypothalamus and your new body weight set point. During this phase you may also find that your body continues to re-shape & re-sculpt!

Please make sure that you’ve read the Phase 3 Guide before you get to Phase 3. You want to know what to expect & you want to be ready for this new phase. One of the keys to success in any area of your life is to know where you are going & how you will get there. Preparation therefore is crucial. So… read the journal & perhaps talk to others who have already made it to Phase 3 before you!

First of all you will need to know how many calories your body needs to maintain your new weight so use the calculations in the journal. You may find it helpful to also read Dave’s Blog for October 2nd – P3 Daily Calorie Needs Remember that according to Dr. Simeons, NOBODY will be eating less than 1500 calorie during this stabilization & maintenance phase – even if your calculations say otherwise. And… No… you will not need to count calories for the rest of your life! This is a learning and experimental time-period for you. You will be getting used to what works best for your unique body.

For the first two to three days in Phase 3A you will continue to eat from the 500 calorie protocol list of foods(or 800 protocol if you are following that one). Then begin to increase your proteins (ie – triple). You may now add lots of new fruits & new vegetables to your diet (feel free to mix them now) making sure to follow the Food Guide Instructions in the Journal. Some people may want to gradually ramp up to their calorie intake within the first week, while others may simply want to go to their allotted caloric intake immediately. It’s up to you. Listen to your body but make sure that you are at your caloric needs within the first week.

Now you may begin to slowly add new items into your daily diet. The key is to begin adding them in quite slowly–so you can see if they affect you negatively or positively. You may now begin to eat all kinds of proteins, fruits & vegetables. Now you can begin cooking with butter & oils. You may add in dairy items – see how milk, plain yogurt, cheeses affect you. Do you gain if you start eating nuts & seeds or nut butters? Perhaps you might want to try almonds–see how your body reacts to them by way of how much of an increase/decrease in weight etc. This is a very experimental time and can be a lot of fun. Don’t get too worried! If you gain the next morning look back at your journal & see if you can spot why. Then back off the new item & perhaps try again later. Our daughter found that some dairy products affect her weight. This does not mean that she will never eat them again…she is now aware and so every once in a while she will have a ‘no dairy day’.

You may find it very beneficial to use an online calorie counter. There are many good ones out there. I have chosen to use the free version of MyNetDiary.com. Not only does it calculate my calories easily but it also tracks my ratio of proteins to fats to carbs. Especially during Phase 3A (the Stabilization period) I have found it crucial to keep my protein percentages high. I usually run my proteins around 38-40%, fats a little lower and my carbs the lowest. Dave finds his body works best keeping his protein around 40-50%. Again…every BODY is unique!

Always remember the rule that during the first 3 weeks (Phase 3A) you will not be eating any sugars or starches. Once you get to Phase 3B SLOWLY begin to add in starchy items such as breads, grains, some vegetables and now you can also begin adding in sugars such as honey, agave syrup, etc. Watch what your weight does & deal accordingly. If you ever go 2 lbs above your LSW (last spray weight) be sure to perform a Steak Day (you can also read about it in Dave’s Steak Day blog)

Happy stabilizing everyone!

🙂 Christine

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P3 – Steak Days

Well good morning Sprayers!!

Over the past few days as I have transitioned into Phase 3 my weight was creeping up from my LSW (Last Spray Weight).

Yesterday morning when I weighed in I was 2.5 above my LSW. You know what that means – STEAK DAY – and it does have to be done that SAME DAY.

For the whole day I just drank my X2O water, took my Vitamist vitamins and waited until supper time.

On steak days I get pretty hungry by late afternoon so I usually have my STEAK about 5pm.

Now after doing many, many steak days over the past year and a half I have learned something very interesting. Most of my friends would lose 1.5 to 4 lbs on a steak day and I always seemed to only lose about 1 – 1.5 lbs. This was a mystery to me until one day when doing research I found that there is a group of people who gain weight easily when eating red meat and that was those with TYPE A blood. I went and got my blood tested and sure enough I was TYPE A.

Then I looked at the reasons why a steak day worked and it was a high protein, high fat portion that seemed to have this effect on the body.

There was one other meat that was not a red meat that I thought would fit the bill for this “steak day” and that was salmon. High protein and high fat (compared to other fish).

I have used my SALMON DAY instead of a STEAK DAY for the past 6 months with great success.

Today I stepped on the scale and was down 2.5 lbs right back to my LSW. Bingo.

Another tip from 5 rounds of experience.