Did you know that you can balance your hormones by balancing the things you put in your mouth? I don’t mean weighing your food or putting them on the scales of justice – although you should justify what you do eat based on how you will feel physically and mentally POST consumption rather than pre-consumption. This is about balancing the types of foods you eat. Proper food combining play a major role in the types of hormones that are released in your body, and thus affect the way the body operates on a day to day basis.
The western diet basically tells our bodies one thing hormonally: GROW. If the foods we eat are combined and proportioned rightly, they stimulate the correct amount of growth needed for health and wellness better than any synthetic growth hormone ever could. However, if you eat like the average American, you are eating a diet that gives virtually stimulates overgrowth, granting no chance at being healthy nor having a “magazine-like” body. And we are not talking Cosmo, People or Muscle Media, we are talking Shape or Women’s / Men’s Health or any other magazine that depicts people who at appear healthful. You see the average American eats roughly 50% of their calories from carbohydrates, and most of them come in the form of processed grains, sugar and corn syrup.
If you compare this to our ancestor’s diets, you will see a large difference in both the amount and the type. About 25-40% of our ancestors’ diet was comprised of carbohydrates, and those were pretty much exclusively fruits and veggies. This plays a huge role in our hormones and our size. Now, it is safe to say that nobody wants to be overweight, but from a physiological perspective, it sure seems like that is the goal. Not only are we eating tons of these processed carbohydrates, but it is also the way that we eat them. You see different hormones are released based on the food combinations that we choose.
How our Food Combining Affects our Hormonal Response
Let’s take breakfast for example, one of the key components to a healthy lifestyle. The typical American breakfast consists of cereal, pastries, pop tarts, packaged waffles, bagels or toast right? We’re not sure how main stream media switched the good old fashion steak & eggs to a sugar slap first thing in the morning, but it has happened. Eating like this creates an incredible hormonal imbalance within the body. It is just like a punch to the pancreas, telling insulin to be released and telling the body to grow, grow, grow. We would have never eaten that high of sugar content or anything remotely like these foods in our hunter gather days. And remember how similar we are to our ancestors. Our genes haven’t changed much if at all in the last 40,000 years.
You may be wondering what you should eat for breakfast. We have some ideas.
How to Keep Our Hormones Balanced
Carbohydrates are going to spike our insulin no matter what; however, we can curb that spike to some degree if we eat some protein and fat along with the carbohydrates. It is best when we eat a balanced diet by consuming protein, fat and healthful carbohydrates together at every meal. This is the basis for The Zone Diet prescribed by Dr. Barry Sears. Where we at Bonfire Health differ from Dr. Sears is when it comes to quality of food. He goes into this somewhat, but we want you to focus on eating natural foods (from the earth, not processed) as well as balancing the macronutrient content (protein, carbohydrates & fats).
By eating healthful carbohydrates (fruits & veggies) you will dramatically decrease the insulin released. This decreases your body’s message to grow and store fat. By going a step further and eating a small portion of lean protein (grass-fed beef, turkey, chicken…etc) and fat (avocado, nuts, seeds) along with those carbohydrates, you will in fact be balancing your hormones, which will help you get healthy, get fit and move you towards a healthier lifestyle!