Eat SANE with SANESolution! SANE is a set of principles which means you can leave the dreaded checklists at home. Customize and optimize your sanity to meet all kinds of personal goals by eating SANE.

Eat SANE Enjoyably

When you eat with our program, there is no goal that is out of reach. So ask yourself about your personal goals when you’re evaluating your eating habits.

Not surprisingly at all, when you eat, the desire to eat non-SANE foods goes away and the proof is in our success stories!

eat sane

Do you think lethargy, lack of energy, or mild depression is normal before going SANE? That’s the everyday experience of most yo-yo dieters unfortunately but – fortunately for you, we have the SANESolution!

Eat SANE With Jonathan Bailor:

Some of Jonathan’s typical meals:

  1. Hard-boiled eggs with salt and hot sauce, a vegetable smoothie, and possibly a few desiccated beef liver tablets to meet maximum protein SANEity.
  2. A smoothie made with coconut flour, chia seeds, shredded unsweetened coconut, cinnamon, whey protein powder, vanilla extract, peppermint oil extract, some xylitol, non-dutched cocoa powder, unflavored gelatin, and guar gum. Add ice to make an ice cream-like treat.
A Calorie is NOT A Calorie

Bottom Line: A Calorie is NOT A Calorie In Real Life

Learn the exact foods you must eat if you want to finally lose weight permanently. Click here to download your free Weight Loss Food List, the “Eat More, Lose More” Weight Loss Plan, and the “Slim in 6” Cheat Sheet…CLICK HERE FOR FREE “HOW TO” WEIGHT LOSS GUIDES

A Calorie is NOT A Calorie Big Ideas

  1. A Calorie is Not a Calorie

    “Attacking the obesity epidemic will involve giving up many old ideas that have not been productive. ‘A calorie is a calorie’ might be a good place to start.” – R.D. Feinman, State University of New York

    Beyond battling our basic biology, calorie balancing is bound to fail us because a calorie is not a calorie. The difference in calorie quality is really important. That’s because the quality of the calories we eat influences our hormones. Those in turn determine our set-point. We can control our weight, just not the way you have been led to believe.

    The Calories In – Calories Out theory of weight control depends on the assumption that our bodies work like balance scales. Balance scales do not measure quality. On a balance scale, a pound of feathers weighs the same as a pound of lead. Quality is irrelevant. So on a balance scale, 300 calories of vegetables is the same as 300 calories of pasta. The only problem is that the body is not a balance scale.

    Let’s look at the issue another way. Breathing in smoke-filled air for thirty years does something different to our respiratory system than breathing in the same quantity of fresh air. In the same fashion, putting 2,000 calories of low-quality food into our fat metabolism system does something different than putting in the same quantity of high-quality food. Quality counts. Our bodies do not work like balance scales.

  2. Introducing the SANE Solution

    The quality of calories depends on four fascinating factors:

    1.  Satiety – How quickly calories fill us up and how long they keep us full
    2.  Aggression – How likely calories are to be stored as body fat
    3.  Nutrition – How many nutrients—aka protein, vitamins, minerals, etc.—calories provide
    4.  Efficiency – How many calories can be stored as body fat

  3. SANE vs. inSANE

    The more Satisfying, unAggressive, Nutritious, and inEfficienct a calorie is, the higher its quality. The more SANE it is. The more body-fat-burning hormones it triggers. The more it unclogs our metabolism and prevents overeating.

    The more unSatisfying, Aggressive, not Nutritious, and Efficient a calorie is, the lower its quality. The more inSANE it is. The more body-fat-storing hormones it triggers. The more it clogs our metabolism and encourages overeating.

  4. It’s SANE to Eat Large Amounts of the Right Food

    The more we understand the four calorie-quality factors, the more clearly we will see how eating more high-quality SANE food is the only practical way to burn body fat long term. When you stay full of SANE food, you will not have any room for clog-causing inSANE calories. When we are totally full from a super-sized SANE supper, skipping the sundae after isn’t a burden. It’s a blessing in disguise. By staying full of SANE calories, we clear our clog, drop our set-point, and enable our fat metabolism system to burn body fat for us automatically.

    “…for the vast majority of people, being overweight is not caused by how much they eat but by what they eat. The idea that people get heavy because they consume a high volume of food is a myth. Eating large amounts of the right food is your key to success…” – Joel Fuhrman, Doctor and Author

    Sound too good to be true?

  5. It’s InSANE to Claim “A Calorie is a Calorie”

    Whether a calorie is high-quality or low-quality depends on where it fits on the SANEity spectrum.

    High-quality calories are on the healthy end of the SANEity spectrum. They areSatisfying, unAggressive, Nutritious, and inEfficient. They fill us up quickly and keep us full for a long time. They provide a lot of nutrients, and few of them can be converted into body fat. Even better, they trigger the release of body-fat-burning hormones, clear clogs, and lower our set-point. In short, they are SANE.

    Low-quality calories are just the opposite. They are on the unhealthy end of the SANEity spectrum. They are unSatisfying, Aggressive, non-Nutritious, andEfficient. They trigger the release of body-fat-storing hormones, cause clogs, and raise our set-point. In short, they are inSANE.

  6. Eat SANE and Lose Fat

    In all of the studies that follow, everyone ate the exact same quantity of calories, but one group’s calories were of much higher quality (were much more SANE) than the other groups’:

    • University of Florida researcher J.W. Krieger analyzed eighty-seven studies and found that those people who ate SANE calories lost an average of twelve more pounds of body fat compared to those who ate an equal quantity of inSANE calories.
    • C.M. Young at Cornell University split people into three groups, each eating 1,800 calories per day, but at different levels of SANEity. The most SANE group lost 86.5% more body fat than the least SANE group.
    • In the Annals of Internal Medicine, F.L. Benoît compared a reduced-calorie inSANE diet to a reduced-calorie SANE diet. After ten days the SANE diet burned twice as much body fat.
    • Additional studies by researchers U. Rabast (1978,1981), P. Greene (2003), N.H. Baba (1999), A. Golay (1996), M.E. Lean (1997), C.M. Young (1971), and D.K. Layman (2003) all show that people who ate SANE calories lost an average of 22% more weight than those who ate the exact same quantity of inSANE calories.
  7. Calories Aren’t All that Matter… Ask Anyone Taking Insulin

    “Insulin has profound metabolic effects in the determination of body weight…” – B. Dokken, University of Arizona

    The critical effect hormones have on body fat has been well known in scientific circles for a long time. Especially the hormone insulin. Three quick examples:

    • A study in the journal Diabetic Medicine found that giving patients the hormone insulin “is associated with weight gain,” specifically, “an increase in trunk [belly] fat mass.
    • The journal Diabetes and Metabolism reports: “Most studies report an average 13.2 lb. weight gain during the first year following the initiation of insulin therapy.” The journal went on to conclude that when it comes to taking shots of the hormone insulin “weight gain seems mandatory.”
    • In the journal Diabetes an aptly title study “Intensive Insulin Therapy and Weight Gain in IDDM (type 1 diabetes)” revealed that after only two months, “Body weight increased ~6 lbs. with intensive insulin therapy as a result of an increase in fat mass.”
  8. But Are You Exercising Enough?
    Note that there’s no mention of “eating too much” or “exercising too little.” That’s because calories aren’t all that matter. Hormones matter a lot. Hundreds of millions of diabetics have proven this for years. And that’s why long-term fat loss and robust health isn’t about eating less of a hormonally-poor traditional diet and doing more hormonally-irrelevant traditional exercise. These techniques may mask our hormonal breakdown, but they do not fix it.
  9. Forget It
    Forget counting calories. Long-term fat loss and robust health isn’t about eating less of a hormonally-poor traditional diet and doing more hormonally-irrelevant traditional exercise.
  10. Remember It
    Focus on eating more hormonally-helpful SANE foods, and doing less, but hormonally-helpful eccentric exercise. Eat more and exercising less–smarter. Sure that seems like the opposite of what we’ve been told to do, but isn’t it about time to get the opposite of what we’ve gotten?
Learn the exact foods you must eat if you want to finally lose weight permanently. Click here to download your free Weight Loss Food List, the “Eat More, Lose More” Weight Loss Plan, and the “Slim in 6” Cheat Sheet…CLICK HERE FOR FREE “HOW TO” WEIGHT LOSS GUIDES
Simplifying Nutrition Labels

How to Do Less Math and Eat More Food: Simplifying Nutrition Labels

Simplifying Nutrition Labels Overview

Learn the exact foods you must eat if you want to finally lose weight permanently. Click here to download your free Weight Loss Food List, the “Eat More, Lose More” Weight Loss Plan, and the “Slim in 6” Cheat Sheet…CLICK HERE FOR FREE “HOW TO” WEIGHT LOSS GUIDES

Have you ever wondered what the vitamin and mineral percentages on nutrition labels actually mean? Ten percent of vitamin A. Hmmmm. Is that good or bad? Ten percent for a child? Ten percent for an adult? Ten percent for a woman? Oh gosh, I thought I was grocery shopping not taking a math test.   These are wonderful questions to ask, because otherwise we may assume double-digit percentages mean the food is nutritious, and sadly, that’s frequently false. For example, let’s say you want to mix it up a bit during your next trip to the grocery store, and are looking to boost your calcium intake. You spot some goat’s milk, and consider giving it a whirl. You grab the carton, flip it around and see this label: 30 percent calcium. Traditionally you may consider this a “good source” of calcium. But is it? Should you give the good old goat a go? Maybe.

The Top 10 Big Ideas Simplifying Nutrition Labels

  1. How Many Calories Will I Eat Along with That Nutrition?

    If I told you that 10 doughnuts are 10 times as nutritious as one doughnut, why would you think I was bonkers? Because you know that while you will get more nutrition in 10 doughnuts than you would in one, you will also get 10 times more low-quality calories, and that’s not worth it. You know that when looking at nutrition we have to also look at the number calories coming along with the nutrition.

    Consider the goat’s milk. We get 30 percent calcium in 150 calories. Let’s put that into perspective in terms of nutrition per calorie. If we moved a few aisles over and picked up some collard greens, we would see that we get more than double that amount of calcium in 150 calories, plus a startling amount of other vitamins and minerals. But what about vitamin A? 150 calories of the milk gives us 10 percent. 150 calories of collard greens gives us a whopping 665 percent. Vitamin C? 150 calories of the milk equals four percent. One hundred and fifty calories of the collard greens gives us 295 percent. You can see that considering nutrition per calorie changes the game a bit.

    Nutrition isn’t about the percentages you see on nutrition labels, it’s about those percentages relative to the calories in the food. That’s why 10 doughnuts aren’t more nutritious than one, and why we may now decide to go with the greens instead of the goat.

  2. What Am I Trying to Do?

    The percentages we’re talking about have to do with “Daily Values” that were developed during World War II to prevent soldiers from dying. Avoiding death is a much different goal than optimal health and fitness. Unless you are satisfied with simply dodging death, making food choices based on “percent of Daily Value” may not be particularly useful for you. A more useful approach might be to ask…
  3. Do I Really Need a Nutrition Label to Know if I Should Eat This?

    In the not too distant past nutrition labels were dramatically less common–and so was obesity, diabetes and heart disease. In fact, the most nutritious foods available frequently don’t have nutrition labels on them. For example, fresh vegetables, seafood, meat, and fruits, etc.

    What if, instead of doing math, we just ate food? I’ll define food as things we find in nature. What if the primary reason nutrition labels exist is because unnatural food-like products are so far from whole food that we have no way of knowing whether they are slightly unhealthy or extremely unhealthy without doing complex math? What if we said that generally speaking, if it doesn’t exist in nature, we would be better off eating something that does exist in nature?

    My vote: More real food, less complex math.

  4. The more fiber the better

    If you have two options to choose from, all other things equal, the one with more fiber will burn more fat and boost your health better than the one with less.
  5. The more protein the better

    Protein is the most satisfying of all the macronutrients and has consistently proved to be a fat-loss super star. But remember, not all sources of protein are the same. You will soon learn why and what to do about it.
  6. The less sugar the better

    Sugar is toxic. Sugar is addictive. If the word sugar, or anything like it (see below) appears on the label, run…your life and long-term happiness depend on it.
  7. The fewer ingredients the better

    Food doesn’t have ingredients. Food is an ingredient. It is a beautiful and perfect whole substance that kept us healthy and fit for the entirety of human history. If it’s not broke, let’s not break it.
  8. The more vitamins and minerals per serving relative to calories per serving t

    If we don’t eat these essential substances, we get sick. It’s a simple as that. Micronutrient sufficiency is one of the most important and least appreciated aspects of optimal health.
  9. If it include sweeteners, hydrogenated anything, or starch, try to avoid it.

    Don’t get fooled by fancy naming. Sugar by any other name is at least as harmful as sucrose (table sugar). Also, “hydrogenated” means poison. Not really, but practically 🙂
    Agave Nectar
    Barley Malt
    Beet Sugar
    Brown Sugar
    Buttered Syrup
    Cane Crystals
    Cane Juice Crystals
    Cane Sugar
    Caramel Carob Syrup
    Castor Sugar
    Confectioner’s Sugar
    Corn Sweetener
    Corn Syrup
    Corn Syrup Solids
    Crystalline Fructose
    Date Sugar
    Demerara Sugar
    Diastatic Malt
    Ethyl Maltol
    Evaporated Cane Juice
    Fruit Juice
    Fruit Juice Concentrates
    Glucose Solids
    Golden Sugar
    Golden Syrup
    Granulated Sugar
    Grape Sugar
    High-Fructose Corn Syrup
    Honey Icing Sugar
    Invert Sugar
    Malt Syrup
    Maple Syrup
    Muscovado Sugar
    Raw Sugar
    Refiner’s Syrup
    Rice Syrup
    Sorghum Syrup
    Sucrose Sugar Syrup
    Treacle Turbinado Sugar
    Yellow Sugar
  10. Simplify: If You Can’t Find It Directly It Nature, Steer Clear

    Doesn’t it just make sense that the only foods available for us for 99.8% of our evolutionary history are what we should be eating? Life is complex enough. Let’s simplify where we can.
Learn the exact foods you must eat if you want to finally lose weight permanently. Click here to download your free Weight Loss Food List, the “Eat More, Lose More” Weight Loss Plan, and the “Slim in 6” Cheat Sheet…CLICK HERE FOR FREE “HOW TO” WEIGHT LOSS GUIDES
menopause and weight loss

A SANE Approach to Aging, Menopause, and Fat Loss

A SANE Approach to Aging, Menopause, and Fat Loss

by Catherine W. Britell, M.D.

I remember when our sons were little, they’d occasionally come in with a sad face and a story about a teacher punishing them for something they didn’t do or having been repeatedly fouled in a basketball game and the referee never calling it. I’d always tell them something like the following:

“You know, sweetie – life is never fair; but YOU are absolutely AMAZING! You are so smart and so talented and so good that you will do wonderful things!”

In many ways, it’s wonderful to be a “mature woman”. As much as I miss my children, it’s great to be able to pursue my own interests now that they’re on their own. I love that my job has evolved to doing that which most inspires and delights me. And who misses those monthly cycles? Not me for sure! It’s great being the same person every day! Yet, there are some things about growing older and losing your hormones that, frankly, seem a bit unfair.

Learn the exact foods you must eat if you want to finally lose weight permanently. Click here to download your free Weight Loss Food List, the “Eat More, Lose More” Weight Loss Plan, and the “Slim in 6” Cheat Sheet…CLICK HERE FOR FREE “HOW TO” WEIGHT LOSS GUIDES

If you are getting into the SANE program after menopause you may face some unique challenges. You may find that you are not achieving the results that others seem to be realizing, despite “doing all the right things”. You may hop on the scale each morning to the same old number; going up or down a couple of pounds depending on how much salt you ate the previous day or two; but not budging overall. Your clothes fit about the same as they did last month. Your husband loves what you’re cooking for supper, and may be losing pounds and inches despite his eating granola and fruit for breakfast and a sandwich and dessert for lunch. “Collateral weight loss” on the part of husbands is very common. It’s UNFAIR, and often adds to your feelings of helplessness and defeat (ever try a paleo diet before?)

Menopause and Fat Loss

I’m here to tell you this: Life is unfair; but you’re smart and amazing and wonderful and you will make this work. But it will take longer and you will have to work harder than your younger or male counterpart.

First, it’s good to understand the “how” and “why” of your “mature woman” uniqueness when it comes to building muscle and burning fat. When sex hormones decline, there is a change in important fat-regulating hormones including ghrelin, leptin, insulin, and adiponectin . Ghrelin controls hunger/satiety signals and food intake. Adiponectin is involved in lipid and lipoprotein metabolism . Leptin is implicated in satiety and also in the generation of oxidative stress in blood vessels. Both leptin and adiponectin are involved in insulin sensitivity and pathways related with the occurrence of metabolic syndrome in postmenopausal women and the development of coronary artery disease. All this often translates to abdominal fat gain, a tendency toward metabolic syndrome or diabetes and an increase in cardiovascular disease.

Furthermore, aging and hormonal change make it more difficult to build muscle. After menopause, it has been shown that there is denervation and dropout of Type II muscle fibers, and muscle composition tends to change to predominantly Type I fibers. So, for older women, the metabolic changes that we would like to induce by strengthening Type II muscle fibers are more difficult to achieve. This seems to be made worse when there is lower intake of protein and Vitamin D; but generally does not seem to be made better by adding hormone replacement therapy.

So, what IS the strategy for losing fat and gaining muscle, increasing metabolism, energy level, and feelings of well-being for the post-menopausal woman?

Eating SANEly is the first and most important step. A SANE diet will reverse many of the fat-controlling hormone changes described above. But we probably can’t afford as many “cheats” as our younger or male counterparts. For example, that glass of wine with supper perhaps ought to be saved for a special dinner out once a month or so. And beer…not worth it. And fruit, as much as we love its beauty and natural health benefits, probably needs to be relegated to a berry or orange-slice garnish once in awhile instead of a serving or more per day. Even low-sugar fruit often has enough fructose to get in the way of our losing fat. The other thing that’s useful is taking a look at our actual fat intake. Although many delicious fats are somewhat SANE, we need to remember to keep those in balance with lean protein and non-starchy vegetables. Our tendency, when we grab a handful of nuts now and then, put a pat of butter on the veggies, or include egg yolks and cheese with our fritatta, is to overbalance our diet in favor of delicious fat, when we add that to the occurring fat included in the meat and fish in our meals. As good (and indeed, necessary) for us as fat is, it’s also easy to overdo with this tasty food, and find that too many of our calories are fat-based.

Natural Remedies for Menopause and Weight Loss

Also, we need to do everything we can to help our fat metabolism along. Don’t forget the fat-burning properties of green tea!

As far as exercise goes, we know that we can minimize Type II muscle fiber loss by USING them! So, we need to follow through with our eccentric exercise program. Even then, we need to keep as generally active as we can all day long in order to keep our metabolic level as high as possible.

How about hormone replacement therapy (HRT)? Well, there are conflicting reports on whether HRT will have much if any beneficial effect on the fat-regulating hormones or building muscle. The status of other information on the health effects of HRT is still somewhat murky; with the exception of perhaps increased incidence of stroke with HRT. If you’re considering HRT, you need to carefully discuss the pros and cons with your personal physician. Overall, at this point, it doesn’t look as though HRT will have a significant effect on weight loss and body composition.

How about plant-based hormones? Reports on the efficacy of black cohosh preparations (i.e.,Remifemin) and soy isoflavones with or without black cohosh (i.e.,Estroven) on relieving menopausal symptoms vary. With soy there are some significant adverse effects. Additionally, hypothyroidism has been reported with high soy intake when iodine intake is low. So far, there is no consistent data on whether supplementation with phytoestrogens has any effect on post-menopausal body composition or fat or glucose metabolism. Again, consult with your personal physician about the advisability of taking phytoestrogens supplements.

The lignans in flaxseed have been touted to improve menopausal symptoms; but they probably don’t. However, flaxseed has other health benefits that shouldn’t be ignored, including decrease in inflammation, improved lipids, and improved blood sugar….all of those significant menopausal changes described above. We should probably eat as much milled flaxseed as we can without getting uncomfortable gas or diarrhea.

Those who have experienced menopause know that sleeplessness can be a problem. We know that lack of sleep raises serum cortisol, which will make fat loss extremely difficult under the best of circumstances. So, it’s really important to pay attention to this issue; perhaps limit caffeine intake, and develop a regular “settling down” routine before bedtime. Sometimes yoga or meditation can help with control of that “racing mind” that doesn’t seem to let us settle down at night.

So, a few concrete suggestions:

  • Be compulsive about eating enough protein (1 gram/lb up to 200 gm/day) and non-starchy vegetables (10 servings). Even if you’re not very hungry, your body will go into “shut-down” if you stop eating. Don’t forget mid-morning and afternoon snacks.
  • Use fruit as a garnish only.
  • Go VERY easy on the nuts, and monitor added fat carefully.
  • Minimize alcohol intake; and avoid beer or sweet liquors
  • Consider a vitamin D supplement of 2000 iU/day if you’re not out in the sun every day.
  • Maximize milled flaxseed intake. ¼ cup per day is good if tolerated.
  • Faithfully do the eccentric exercises and cycle-based HIIT as suggested in SANE.
  • Pay attention to “sleep hygeine” techniques to minimize hormone-induced sleep problems.
  • Try to be active each and every day. Get out in the fresh air when possible, move around, try to get a little sun every day, keep yourself socially engaged and intellectually stimulated.

So, it’s going to be a bit more of a challenge for those of us who are post-menopause to lose fat and gain muscle; but it is certainly possible, and the reward is well worth it: Adding YEARS to our LIVES, and more importantly, adding LIFE to our YEARS.

  1. Van der Schouw YT. Incidence and mortality of cardiovascular disease in postmenopausal women world-wide and relevance for preventive strategies. Climacteric 2009;12 (Suppl. 1):1–5.
  2. Walsh BW, Schiff I, Rosner B, Greenberg L, Ravnikar V, Sacks FM. Effects of postmenopausal estrogen replacement on the concentration and metabolism of lipoproteins. N Engl J Med 1991;325:196–204.
  3. Deibert P, Koning D, Vitoline MZ, Landmann U, Frey I, Zahradnik H-P, Berg A. Effect of a weight loss intervention on anthropometric measures and metabolic risk factors in pre-versus postmenopausal women. Nutr J 2007;6:31.
  4. Lobo RA. Metabolic syndrome aftermenopause and the role of hormones. Maturitas 2008;60:10–8.
  5. Lucas, Edralin A., et al. “Flaxseed improves lipid profile without altering biomarkers of bone metabolism in postmenopausal women.” Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism 87.4 (2002): 1527-1532.
  6. Gaspard U. Hyperinsulinaemia, a key factor of the metabolic syndrome in postmenopausal women. Maturitas 2009;62:362–5.
  7. Hroussalas G, Kassi E, Dalamaga M, Delimaris I, Zachari A, Dionyssiou-Asteriou Leptin, soluble leptin receptor, adiponectin and resistin in relation to OGTT in overweight/obese postmenopausal women. Maturitas 2008;59:339–49.
  8. Amy C. Soni, Molly B. Conroy, Rachel H. Mackey, Lewis H. Kuller Ghrelin, Leptin, Adiponectin, and Insulin Levels and Concurrent and Future Weight Change in Overweight Postmenopausal Women Menopause. 2011 March; 18(3): 296–301.
  9. M.L. Maltais, J. Desroches, I.J. Dionne, Changes in muscle mass and strength after menopause. J Musculoskelet Neuronal Interact 2009; 9(4):186-197
Learn the exact foods you must eat if you want to finally lose weight permanently. Click here to download your free Weight Loss Food List, the “Eat More, Lose More” Weight Loss Plan, and the “Slim in 6” Cheat Sheet…CLICK HERE FOR FREE “HOW TO” WEIGHT LOSS GUIDES