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I just look at carbs and they make me fat

Sound familiar?

Now, I'm all for a balanced approach to food.

Because I don't want your life to be run by food.

^^^ I can't eat this and can't eat that...

If you want something, you can have it.

BUT

That said....

Low(er) carb diets

or

Low(er) fat diets

Can be strategically used to help get rid of the jelly belly and tone up the bingo wings.

And here's a quick and simple LOW(er) carb pizza

AKA

The 'Fruci Fit' Meatza (perfect for Saturday night when Germany play Italy in the football)

Ingredients:

* 370 g lean beef mince

* 1 egg

* Pinch of salt, pepper and Italian herb seasoning

* 250 g of passata (or any tomato based sauce)

* 120 g of low-fat mozzarella

* Toppings of choice (e.g. mushrooms, peppers, olives, tomatoes...)


Method:

1) Mix the beef, egg, salt, pepper, and italian herb seasoning in a bowl to make 'the base'

2) Flatten out 'the base' into an oven tray

3) Cook at 180C for 10-15 min (until meat is no longer pink)

4) Drain the juice (and leave to sit for 5-10 mins)

5) Top with the tomato sauce, mozzarella and toppings of choice

6) Place back in the oven until the cheese has melted

7) Enjoy! (important)

Per half the Meatza:

Protein: 55 g

Carbs: 13 g

Fats: 18 g

Calories: 434

'Syns': 0 (lol)

Are you going to try it?

Matt

PS. Do you know the 8 things only those who've tried a low-carb diet will understand?

Check it out here:

www.frucifit.com/8-things-whove-tried-low-carb-diet-will-understand/

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Emotional eating, my struggles, and having an eating disorder…

New job?

Birthday?

Good day?

Pass me the Pimms and ice cream.

Long day?

Stressed?

Had enough?

Pass me the Pimms and ice cream.

But where does this come from?

Well, a 2016 study from Aston University reported that:

Parents who use overtly controlling feeding practices, such as using food as a reward or a treat...

Could be UNINTENTIONALLY teaching their children to rely on food to deal with their emotions.

They found that if children were restricted 'bad' or 'treat' foods just for special occasions at 3-5 years of age...

Then they were more likely to eat snack foods when they were 'mildly stressed' at ages 5-7.

And it reminded me...of me.

You see, growing up I was surrounded by 'dieting'.

I remember picking up a Weight Watchers book on the side and reading about 'points', 'good' foods, and 'bad' foods.

So from a young age, I was already thinking that certain foods were bad and shouldn't be eaten.

Now, on some level, you could argue this is a good thing.

But, in my case, I took it to the extreme.

^^^ And developed an eating disorder...

And I'll be honest.

Still today, I probably look forward to eating more than most people do.

But this probably couldn't be defined as the 'emotional eating' we're talking about here.

Because my knowledge of nutrition allows me to build a programme that is fit for my lifestyle and nutrient needs so that I can feel full, enjoy my food, and not feel like I have to 'give up' foods or ever feel guilty

^^^ even if I do overindulge.

So, what's the answer?

Let kids eat what they want?

^^^ Could be pretty dangerous in today's society, right?

We know that emotional eating in adult life is linked to eating disorders AND being obese.

So, it's evident that we need more research on how best to educate children about food to prevent this.

One strategy is to give children a glass of water when they fall over and hurt themselves as opposed to, say, a chocolate bar.

^^^ which was found to be common

My 2 pennies worth?

To not be so 'black and white' with nutrition.

^^^ Because I've been there and it's tiring.

To take the pressure off.

Have a philosophy.

^^^ A set of ideas and values that determine the nutritional programme.

But know that they're NOT fact.

They cannot be said to be right or wrong or more valid than any other way...

Until YOU explore them.

Which is exactly what we do on my body transformation programme:

Put you back in control, develop positive relationships with food, and CREATE the nutrition plan that works for you so you can finally put an end to the vicious ...

Diet ---> Weight Loss --> 'lost willpower' ---> Weight Regain ---> REPEAT yoyo cycle!

Speak soon,

Matt 'Pimms o'clock' Fruci

PS. Got a recipe you don't want to miss coming up. Great for low-carb fans (not that carbs are bad...)

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Is the birthday cake culture making you fat?

Oh go on...

It's Jane's birthday cake.

There's only slice left.

'Oh, OK then..."

It happens...


And it came up in a strategy meeting last week when a client was going through her typical diet:

"I get up and try to have some weetabix with fruit for breakfast.

Lunch is normally some chicken with a bit of salad. Sometimes some potatoes.

And for tea I'll have some fish or meat with vegetables and some potatoes."

Sounds OK, right? <<< But, surely they're eating more than that?

"What about in-between your meals? Any snacks?" - I ask...

And THIS is often the culprit.

No, not the coffee (it's never her fault)

But that vanilla sponge...

Those few biscuits.

That bag of crisps.

The chocolate bar.

^^^ And it's not that we shouldn't enjoy cake and chocolate, as Paul demonstrated HERE .

But it's the fact we're MINDLESSLY eating this stuff.

We're hardly aware of our snacking.

We just do it because it's there.

You could say it's out of control.

A habit that we can't seem to kick.

And this was brought to attention by Professor Nigel Hunt from the Royal College of Surgeons.

"For many people, the workplace is now the primary site of their sugar intake and is contributing to the current obesity epidemic and poor oral health"

Now, I agree with this...but only to an extent.

Here's why:

YOU CAN enjoy your favourite foods, lose weight and fit back into your favourite clothes.

^^^ and I actually encourage you to eat your favourite foods AKA 'syns'...

Because it's not that you:

'have a slow metabolism so you can't lose weight'

"are different"

'have a sweet tooth"

"don't have the willpower"

Rather, it's because you're not assessing.

Which means you're simply guessing.

And accepting that you:

1) Have no willpower and can't control your cravings

2) Have failed because you've eaten a slice of cake

So here's a task for you today:


Note down everytime you snack and answer these questions:

1) Am I actually hungry?

2) If yes, was it because I went too long without eating and ended up just grabbing anything to get a quick sugar fix?

3) How do you feel after eating this and 2 hours later? Mood, energy levels, bloated, feeling full?

Start to understand how different foods are impacting you!

Let me know how you get on.

Matt

PS. if you're looking for a healthy alternative, try these brownies: https://frucifit.com/resist-cakes-starbucks/

Or how about a 3 minute cake for when you're really needing that quick fix: https://frucifit.com/3-minutes-ill-show-satisfy-sweet-tooth-without-opening-ben-jerrys/

PPS. Don't say I never spoil you...

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Is soya yoghurt OK?

So, last week I wrote about whether low fat yoghurts are full of sugar (You can read by clicking here)

But I've since had many questions about soya yoghurt.

Some asking me whether soya can interact with birth control...

^^^ You'd probably need to have A LOT of soya to experience this or be very sensitive to it.

Although soya may increase estogren levels, I actually had a soya and almond yoghurt last week and I haven't turned into a woman (yet)...

Others were saying that surely soya yoghurt is a healthier altogether?

And it comes back down to YOU.

Do you have a problem with dairy?

Do you get bloating?

Gassy?

Well, maybe you need to find an alternative?

The good thing about soy is that the quality of protein is nearly as high as dairy (not quite, though).

Mmeaning that it will help keep you full and promote a more toned look.

It also has a health claim:

'Diets low in saturated fat and cholesterol that include 25 grams of soy protein a day may reduce the risk of heart disease.'

The cons?

* Well, it seems that overconsumption MAY have an impact on reproductive health

^^^ Seriously lacking consistent findings, though. The Japanese eat a ton of the stuff and they seem to be doing OK...

* It's not as nutritionally complete as dairy.

Which brings me on to tonight...

England vs Iceland

And I can't help but have a soft spot for Iceland.

Not just because they're the (MASSIVE) 'underdogs' <<< and that they provide bargains for your freezer...

But because the Icelanders inspired some tasty, nutritious, and filling yoghurts!

They make an efficient, nutritionally balanced snack that'll keep you going and stop you craving those Malted Milk biscuits (an old favourite of mine)...

Iceland may not be as 'nutritionally complete' as England in terms of quality players.

But they still got the 'points' they needed to go through.

Moral of today:

Whether you eat dairy, soya, almond, or coconut milk / yoghurt....

It's your overall intake (or points tally in football) that counts.

Sure, you may need to optimise the types of foods you're eating to ensure you're nutritionally balanced and not taking in a loads of foods that are making you tired and bloated.

And this is all part of the process:

That is, making sure you have optimal levels of the food groups to help you feel satisfied, full of energy, and confident in your new, more fashionable summer wardrobe.

Speak soon,

Matt 'pretty much on birth control' Fruci

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These fats are great for you but you should probably know more about them

“I eat great. Lean meats, eggs, beans, loads of vegetables, fruit, and healthy fats like olive oils and almond butter.

But I don’t like fish and I’ve heard it's good for you.

What would you recommend?”

^^^ A question I got this week in a strategy meeting with a client.

And from this moment I couldn’t help but notice the:

‘High in omega 3’ statements on foods in the supermarkets

^^^ I’ve seen this on chicken, eggs, liver.

Have you seen it on any other products?

And it’s no wonder the food manufacturers are jumping on the ‘omega 3’ bandwagon.

It’s been ‘approved’ (unlike all those ‘diet’ shakes) to reduce your risk of heart disease.

Plus, other benefits include:

* Reduced blood pressure

* Reduction in depressive symptoms

* Decreased inflammation (could help digestive issues like bloating)

* Reduction in joint stiffness

* Improved memory (I would still advise writing a shopping list)

* Improved muscle recovery (helping you get that toned look)

* Reduction in ADHD symptoms in children

* Potential reduction in risks of diabetes

But there are a few issues here:

“I don’t like fish”

Well, you now have 2 options:

1) Supplement with fish oil, omega 3 (about 1 g per day and no more than 3 g per day), krill oil, or algae supplements (especially good if you are vegan)

2) Choose products with higher omega 3 content

^^^ I saw Chicken ‘fed a diet rich in omega 3’ in Waitrose just yesterday

So, does it matter if you like your oily fish like salmon, mackerel, and sardines?

NO!

But here’s another issue:

“Is it OK to get my omega 3 from linseeds and flax?” (plant based sources)

Now, in terms of getting the benefits I described above…

The answer is NO.

Because the omega 3 in flax or linseeds is actually different.

It has to be converted to the form found in oily fish.

And unfortunately, our body does not do this very well at all.

So you won’t get the same benefits taking flax oil than you will from oily fish…

^^^ yep, those overpriced seeds in the health foods isle may not be as ‘super’ as you think.

“But what about if I eat loads of ‘healthy’ fats like avocados, olive oils, and nuts anyway?”

Well, that’s great.

But, you are likely to be high in omega 6 (which are more PRO inflammatory fats…but still needed by the body).

In fact, the average diet today is ‘too high’ in omega 6 compared to omega 3.

^^^ Particularly with the increased use of vegetables oils for cooking and reduction in fish intake.

And fixing this imbalanced ratio COULD help to overcome several inflammatory issues.

So, is that you are allergic to kidney beans, wheat, gluten, dairy, brazil nuts, and tomatoes

^^^ As a kinesiologist told one of my clients by touching their hair…(which reminds me about a time I was asked whether I’d like to promote a product which was basically tea…claiming it could cure all sorts of stuff…more on that another day).

It may just be as simple as optimising your nutrient intakes and developing a bespoke nutrition plan that fits your lifestyle (so you can stick to it…and not waste a load of money and time on…a cup of tea).

Just like we do on my body transformation programme.

Matt

PS. Will tea and coffee soon have omega 3 in it?

PPS. I'm off to prepare my coffee (and homemade pancakes....recipe to come, don't worry) for the Dragon Boat Race today. Wish me luck!

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The Big Brother Diet…

Ever lost your phone or laptop?

Or had them stolen?

Well, there's a handy piece of free software you can get called Prey (Prey Project).

It basically acts like a remote and takes pictures of the potential 'theif' (important for police use)

And allows you to lock the screen / prevent information from being stolen.

A client of mine recommended it to me.

And it reminded me of a response I got the other day after an online check-in:

"Big Brother...It was OK"

Because here's the thing:

I can see the exact type and amounts of foods they're eating.

And just this alone...

Can help you make better food choices.

But not just this.

We start to piece the puzzle together.

^^^a bit like England 'try' to do in the football...

We start to know our BEST team (or foods...I can get carried away with the football)

When we are full of energy

In control (we're not run by the SEEfood diet)

Losing fat...

and getting that 'toned' look.

It then becomes clear on HOW we get there...

* Improving your sleep?

* Not being deficient in Vitamin B which helps us get energy from our food?

* Knowing about possible food intolerances that make us feel bloated, tired and fat?

* Eating enough protein?

* Drinking enough water or fluid?

* Eating breakfast?

* Or perhaps NOT eating breakfast? (controversial....)

^^^ And empowering you to learn this about your body will ensure you can lose weight and keep it off, without giving up your chocolate or wine.

It's exactly why I've got a step-by-step guide on how to do this just for YOU (coming soon....)

And that's all I can say for now.

Speak soon,

Matt

PS. I'm Dragonboat racing tomorrow to help raise money for Prospect Hospice (and have a bit of fun...something that we ALL need to do more of as that's what life is all about!!)

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What happens if you ‘process’ processed food?

Apparently, you get a new class of 'healthier' and TASTIER chocolate.

^^^ Win, win!!

And that's why I love (food) science.

From making the food we eat more nutritious (by ensuring that the vitamin content is what it was at production)...

To making chocolate taste better and be LOWER in fat!

And you could say:

"Enjoy in moderation"

And I do agree with this (to an extent because I love the stuff and if I can eat more then I probably will...I'm human...)

But this 'moderation' stuff is harder said than done...

Particularly when you're dealing with kids and long-lasting habits

So, some researchers managed to reduce the fat content of Mars bars by more than 10%!

And in some cases, taste testers stated that the lower fat version actually tasted better.

Now, the 10% reduction in fat might not seem significant.

But you just have to look at our eating habits to know that this COULD make a difference

^^^ go down that sweetie isle, I dare you!

You see, ice cream, yogurts and even breakfast bars and 'healthy wholegrain' cereals...

Can contain chocolate.

and if we can reduce the fat by 10%

then one could argue that it may reduce our waistlines.

After all, overeating by just 100 calories a day COULD lead to 10lbs of weight gain in a year (on paper)

which shows the power of making, small and sustainable habits that:

'don't even feel hard'

^^^ As a client put it this week.

And that's the difference between a cookie cutter 'diet' and a bespoke nutritional strategy with your name on that adapts to your lifestyle and 'new', leaner body!

Have a great weekend,

Matt 'increasing chocolate consumption by 10%" Fruci

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How I resist the cakes in Starbucks…

I walk in...

Ready to get my morning coffee.

Usually an Americano.

But sometimes a latte.

So, I'm in the queue.

and unless I copy everyone else and just check Facebook and my emails

^^^ as you're doing right now 😉

I find myself staring at a Triple Chocolate Cookie, a Chocolate Caramel Shortbread, and...

a fudgy, chocolatey brownie...

Now, I might not be able to compete with the Triple Chocolate Cookie or Chocolate Caramel Shortbread...

But these Fruci Fit 'bean' Brownies certainly give the fudgy, chocolatey brownies in Starbucks a good run for their 'tax avoiding' money.

Ingredients:

* 240 g (1 tin) of drained red kidney beans (yes, you read that right...don't knock it until you try it)

* 80 ml of unsweetened almond milk

* 30 g of Gram flour (Chickpea flour...any will do but this is gluten-free)

* 15 g coconut flour

* 1 scoop of flavoured whey protein powder (I used cookies and cream)

^^^ You can substitute this for vanilla extract

* 5 g cocoa powder

* 5 g sodium bicarbonate or baking powder

* A dash of cinnamon

* 1 tsp apple cider vinegar

* 1 egg

* 30 g quark (low fat soft cheese)

Optional Toppings:

* 20 g chopped hazelnuts

* 25 g chopped dark chocolate (70%)

Directions:

1) Blend all ingredients (apart from the toppings) in a blender

2) Pour the mixture into a 'bread' tin sprayed with 1 kcal fry spray

3) Top with the chopped hazelnuts and chocolate

4) Place in the over for 20 mins or until you get a 'clean knife' at 180C

5) Leave to cool and serve!

And that's it...

I portion them into 3 servings, but it could do 6 (I'm just greedy and enjoy getting weird looks when eating a massive brownie on a train...)

These are great for when you're 'on-the-go' (so move over Belvita...)

Per serving (1/3):

Protein: 20 g

Carbs: 26 g

Fat: 13 g

'SYNS'...0

^^^ LOL

Speak soon,

Matt 'Syn FREE for life' Fruci

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Does THIS explain the sweet tooth?

There's always room for sweet.

And it's one of the reasons why I'm always looking for 'waist friendly' sweet recipes for us.

But why do we crave sweet foods?

Well, a recent study in the Diabetes journal may be on to something.

We know that as we age, we become less fond of sweet foods.

Think about when you were kid

Sweets, coke, cakes...

We would literally have it all of the time if we could (is this actually due to a lack of knowledge of what the foods could do to us though?)

And we say that children today are having too much sugar? (debate for another day but is it actually because they move less?).

So, as we age, we actually don't get as much of a 'reward' in our brains from sweet food than when we're younger.

So believe it or not...

You probably crave sweet food less than you used to...

Or do you?

The researchers found that this wasn't so clear in people with higher levels of body fat.

They concluded that extra body fat not only impacts how we handle our food...

But also how our 'brain' perceives food as a 'reward' when we eat something sweet.

Could this be contributing to us feeling out of control around sweet food?

Does this explain that when low-calorie sweeteners are used in weight loss programmes with overweight and obese people...

They can actually outperform programmes that don't allow artificial sweeteners?

And it reminds me of a client of mine loved sugar-free jelly, putting Truvia (a natural sweetener) in their tea, and drinking sugar-free squash.

Because just by swapping:

A chocolate bar for sugar-free jelly

Sugar for Trivia

And drinking sugar-free squash...

is this ideal?

Maybe not.

But it was a MASSIVE step in the right direction.

She lost a ton of weight and toned up! (which according to the research may help improve how her body handles foods and how the brain perceives food as a 'reward')

So, how did help her lose weight?

It helped her overcome cravings.

She ended up drinking more water (with the squash) which meant she wouldn't mistaken thirst for hunger.

She consumed less fat and sugar from junk food.

And she knew she could still have chocolate and sugary foods if she wanted to...

As long as she structured her FLEXIBLE nutrition programme to suit it.

^^^ Which is the key to a sustainable nutrition strategy that helps you ditch the bloated stomach, fit into your favourite clothes, and still enjoy social events, chocolate, and wine!!

Speak soon,

Matt

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Are Low Fat Yoghurts Full Of Sugar?

I did another talk last week on nutrition (I don't know much about anything else...)

And I've noticed that this question comes up time and time again.

We were talking debunking food myths.

And a woman - confidently - raised her hand.

^^^ It was a bit like the kid at school who knows all the times tables...

"yes", I reply, encouraging the woman to 'debunk'.

"Low fat yoghurts are just full of sugar and full-fat are better for you", she said.

But like most things in nutrition

It depends on how you look at it!

Let's take (my favourite) yoghurt.

Greek yoghurt (I generally go for the Total brand or Waitrose own brand as it's pretty good and thick)

Full fat (per 100g):

Calories: 96

Fat: 5 g

Carbs: 4 g

of which sugar: 4 g

Protein: 9 g

0% fat (per 100 g):

Calories: 57

Fat: 0 g

Carbs: 4 g

of which sugar: 4 g

Protein: 10 g

^^^ So there's the same amount of sugar, but less calories and more protein in 0% Greek yogurt.

And it's the same with other brands like Skyr!

What about natural yoghurt?

Let's take Yeo Valley.

Full fat (per 100g):

Calories: 82

Fat: 4.2 g

Carbs: 6.5 g

of which sugar: 6.5 g

Protein: 4.6 g

0% fat (per 100g):

Calories: 59

Fat: 4.2 g

Carbs: 8.5 g

of which sugar: 8.5 g

Protein: 5.9 g

"Matt, there's more sugar" in the 0% fat yoghurt".

Yes, there is.

But, as Yeo Valley point out:

"No added ingredients. No added sugar. This yogurt contains only milk’s naturally occurring sugar (lactose)."

So, it contains more sugar (and protein) purely because..

Removing the fat from the yogurt means you need MORE of it to make up the 100 g tub.

So full fat Yeo Valley yoghurt contains about 30% more calories, 20% less protein, and about 25% more sugar.

And imagine this headline:

"LOW FAT yoghurts contain 25% more sugar"

You panic, right?

But what about if they went with:

"LOW FAT yogurts are packed with 20% more protein to keep you fuller for longer - and contain 30% less calories"

Low fat is back in, right?

And to top it off...

Muller Light yoghurts get a bad name

But they only contain 7.8 g of sugar per 100 g

(which is actually less than the natural Yeo Valley yogurt)

One thing to note...

I'm not referring to the Muller Light Desserts (they are pretty high in sugar...but after all, they're trying to mimic a dessert, not a yoghurt)

So, there you have it.

Don't believe the headlines

And READ the labels!

Matt "debunking the debunked" Fruci