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Have Embarrassing Questions You Need Answered? Ask the Poo Doctor!

ask poo doctorSANE’s very own Poo Doctor dives into questions dealing with poop (like, what does my poop mean?) phlegm, smells of all kinds, sex, colors of our bodies and more. What we’re all wondering to ourselves – Poo Doctor answers! Check it out!

13 True False Questions

  • True or False?
    • Don’t buy any prepared food that lists things like sugar, fructose, corn syrup, or anything among the first four ingredients.  We should be able to find some lower sugar versions.  This includes finding sugar-free things like ketchup, mayonnaise, salad dressing — things like that.  Avoid partially hydrogenated foods and look for more than two grams of fiber per 100 calories. TRUE. Science is clear that these things do not make you healthier or happier (as do postbiotics 😉 but more on that later!).
    • Snack on a small handful of nuts. TRUE. Replacing popcorn, pretzels, chips, etc. with nuts instead will provide you with healthy fats, fiber, and some protein. Or better yet – grab yourself a reliable blender and try some of our smoothies.
    • If you’re going to indulge, choose fat-releasing foods such as honey, a hard boiled egg, part-skim ricotta cheese, dark chocolate, yogurt, etc. FALSE.  This list of foods doesn’t make sense nor do they seem related.
    • Enjoy high-calorie treats as the accent but not the centerpiece.  (i.e. “The fruit is the crown and then the jewel is the ice cream” or “Cut down on chips by putting on tons of salsa.”) TRUE, but we need to think less in terms of calories and more in terms of nutrient density. We can’t just look at the amount of calories.  If it’s high in calories and low in nutrients, then yes, it should definitely be an accent.
    • Eat cereal for breakfast five days a week. FALSE. This claims that studies find people who eat cereal for breakfast every day are significantly less likely to be obese and have diabetes than people who don’t.  It’s saying that there is a correlation between people who eat cereal for breakfast and incidents of obesity and diabetes.  That does not mean that eating cereal for breakfast helps you to become obese or diabetic.  Those eating cereal may be less likely to get diabetes because they’re not eating donuts for breakfast every day but it didn’t compare them to someone who’s eating green smoothies and eggs or something like that.
    • Switch to ordinary coffee.  TRUE. It’s true that coffee with less sugar, cream etc. is better for you, but it doesn’t mean that coffee itself is beneficial for you.
    • Eat water-rich foods and you’ll eat fewer calories overall. TRUE. However, don’t eat water-rich foods because calories are bad; eat water-rich foods because they are going to have more nutrients relative to calories.
    • Bulk up your meals with veggies. You can eat twice as much pasta salad loaded with veggies like broccoli, carrots, and tomatoes for the same calories as a pasta salad sporting just mayonnaise. TRUE, we should eat more veggies. It is FALSE that we should still need to include grains since we know that vegetables are more beneficial.
    • Avoid white foods.  Important to cognitive health and even impacting your brain-gut-hormone axis! So we’re talking about white flour, added sugar, also white rice and white flour but it says, “However, you should eat plenty of whole grain breads and brown rice because a Harvard study of 74,000 women found that those who ate more than two daily servings of whole grains were forty-nine percent less likely to be overweight than those who ate the white stuff.” FALSE. What this study showed is that whole grains are better for you than refined grains.  i.e. Smoking one pack of cigarettes per day is better for you than smoking two packs but that doesn’t mean it’s objectively good for you. Also, cauliflower and egg whites are two white foods that are perfectly good for you.
    • Try hot sauce, salsa, and Cajun seasonings because they provide lots of flavor with no fat and few calories. TRUE. All natural salsa, hot sauce, etc., are not only a great way to add flavor, but they have been shown to help speed up metabolism and help you sweat a little bit, which also helps to eliminate toxins. However, we don’t need to use them because they have no fat and few calories.
    • Eat fruit instead of drinking fruit juice.  TRUE. Fruit juice is as bad for you as soda and fruit is better for you than soda.  Fruit is definitely better for you than fruit juice.
    • Drop your milk type and cut your calories by twenty percent.  So if you drink regular, go to two percent.  If you drink two percent, go to one percent or skim. TRUE, but only because it is better to get your fat calories from whole food SANE sources rather than from full fat milk.
    • After breakfast, stick to water.  At breakfast, go ahead and drink orange juice.  But then, throughout the rest of the day, focus on water instead of juice or soda because that’s still only 90,000 calories a year or twenty-five pounds. TRUE, but like many of the other statements, the “why” is wrong but the “what”, (a.k.a. “focus on water, green tea — things like that — rather than sugary beverages”), is correct.

—NEXT ACTION—
Think in terms of what is optimal for you, not just what is “better” than terrible.
Eat more vegetables!

SANE Soundbites

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  • 4:06 – 4:31, “The science is universally clear that sugar, fructose, and corn syrup do not help you to be happier and healthier.  To the extent that you can avoid those things, just like to the extent you can avoid cigarette smoking, you’ll be happier and healthier.  The same thing applies to sugar, fructose, and corn syrup.  We now know fiber, without a shadow of a doubt, does help you to live a better life so looking for more fiber is helpful.”
  • 5:04 – 5:36, “Take my existing standard American diet of sixty percent processed junk food that causes one out of every four of us to be diabetic or pre-diabetic and causes a seventy percent obesity rate and just start eating way more almonds on top of that”, that’s not a good idea.  But for example, increasing your intake of healthy fats and fiber and some protein as a snack rather than snacking on chips or popcorn or pretzels, thinking about it as a replacement — definitely agree with it.”
  • 10:06 – 10:23, “For example, so you could take a strip of bacon.  You could saute it two strips of bacon with a bunch of kale and you’re using that — same thing like butter or lard or tallow or any of these kind of concentrated fats, using them as an accent to bring out the flavor in vegetables can be very, very helpful.”
  • 16:16 – 17:09, “Water-rich foods are more satiating so they will help you to avoid accidentally over-eating.  If you look at the foods we have a tendency to overeat, they are dry.  They’re things like bread and pastas and chips; whereas things that are water-rich or things like, if you put them in the blender, you wouldn’t get a powder — so we don’t think of things like meat and fish as water-rich but they actually are.  Seventy percent of a pork chop is water.  You don’t realize that.  I mean, look at your body.  Your body is ninety percent water.  Vegetables, proteins, whole food fats — these are rich in water.  I’m not suggesting that you eat water-rich foods because calories are bad; I’m suggesting you eat water-rich foods back to the earlier point about nutrient density because these foods are going to have more nutrients relative to calories and we live in a culture where we have a surplus of calories and a shortage of nutrients so we need to shift that in the other direction.”
  • 17:50 – 18:34, “The reason we get full from a high level — well, there’s two reasons from a simplistic level.  One is, the physical impact that food has on our digestive system — meaning, it physically fills us up.  Then there are hormonal issues that need to take place.  That’s kind of the difference between feeling full and feeling satisfied.  Like, you could eat a lot of vegetables and still not get the feeling you get when you eat a little bit of chocolate because one is causing fullness but not satiety; the other is causing satiety but not fullness.  So we need to have both happen.  Vegetables are the best way to help fill yourself up.  You then need to eat healthy proteins and healthy fats to trigger sustained fullness and satiety.”
  • 18:56 – 19:18, “There’s really no reason ever to eat grains in place of vegetables.  I mean, that’s a little bit like — but that’s the trade-off a lot of people make is, we can have debates until the cows come home about whether or not grains are good or bad but I think we can all agree — and it’s just measurably true that vegetables are more beneficial for your health than grains so why would you ever eat less of them to eat more grains?”
  • 20:05 – 20:39, “The quote from this research says that one Harvard study showed 74,000 women, those that ate more than two daily servings of whole grains were forty-nine percent less likely to be overweight than those who ate the white stuff.  The conclusion they’re drawing from that is you should eat more whole grains.  What that study showed is that whole grains are better for you than refined grains.  I bet if they did a study on people that smoked two packs of cigarettes per day against one pack of cigarettes per day, they’d find that the people who smoked one pack of cigarettes per day got less lung cancer.  The recommendation, I bet, wouldn’t be everyone should smoke one pack of cigarettes per day.”
  • 21:55 – 22:06, “All natural salsa, hot sauce — not only are they a great way to add flavor but they have been shown to help speed up metabolism and do a bunch of other great stuff in terms of helping you sweat a little bit, which also helps to eliminate toxins.”
  • 23:19 – 23:54, “Milk is right in the middle category of SANEity.  Milk is not super nutrient-dense.  There’s also some people have issues with dairy.  Personally, if you’re going to eat fat, the fat-founded milk is not an optimal source of fat.  Is full fat milk terrible for you and should you drink skim milk because fat is bad and calories are bad?  No, that’s not the reason.  I would recommend drinking skim milk if you have to drink milk because I would much rather you get your fat calories from whole food SANE sources rather than from full fat milk.”
  • 24:48 – 25:02, “I think what we’ve found here is, there are a lot of things that were on that list that were really good and that were right in helping people not eat processed foods, drink more water, eat more vegetables.  But there’s little things that are thrown in there that are throwing us off.  They’re throwing us off as a society.”
  • 25:11 – 25:58, “For me, it’s the mental distinction between “better than” versus objectively what I should do because so much of what you hear — especially if you’re listening to this show, you’re already health conscious.  What some of this information is saying is it’s like, “To go from an F to a D, do this” but then people hear that the recommendation of what would make you a D is good.  But a D isn’t good.  It’s better than what most people might be doing.  Again, whole grains are better for you than refined grains but that doesn’t mean they’re good so we always want to look in terms of what is optimal for us, not just for what is better than terrible, if that makes sense?
  • 26:07 – 26:26, “Focus on what’s optimal.  I mean, there’s so much good.  My mother used to always tell me that there’s so much good in life that we don’t have room for the bad stuff.  Again, whether it’s the vegetables, our “Is quinoa better for you than white bread?”  Yes, absolutely.  But vegetables are better for you than quinoa so why not just eat way more vegetables.  That would be — my stretch goal is just eat a lot of vegetables.”

Read the Transcript

April: Hello and welcome to another episode of the SANE Show. I am April Perry here with Jonathan Bailor. How are you, Jonathan?

Jonathan: What’s up, April? I am doing well. We are rocking and rolling. Despite some initial technical difficulties, we are here and we are recording.

April: We will make it happen to be here for the SANE Show listeners and I cannot wait to interview you today and ask a series of questions about — we’re going to do some True or False questions. Are you feeling up for that?

Jonathan: Uh-oh, True or False. True, I am ready for that. True.

April: All right. Essentially we’re going to talk about some conventional wisdom that’s found — I’m just not going to say where I found it; it’s in a popular magazine — that essentially if you Google how to lose weight, this is one of the top articles that shows up. We’ve talked about some of the parts of the article but actually put together exactly what is being taught about food. Some of it, I think you’ll totally agree with but some of it, I do not think that you’ll agree with but I want to know why because it gives quotes saying doctors have endorsed this or studies have shown so sometimes we get a little bit confused. Any initial ideas on what we’re talking about today?

Jonathan: Oh, for sure. Well, the whole “doctors have agreed to this” — one thing just I really can’t fully understand is that if you search for “Is meat good for you?” on the Internet, you will find a hundred doctors that say yes and a hundred doctors that say no so you can pretty much find a doctor that will say anything unfortunately. I mean, that doesn’t mean don’t trust doctors but I don’t think you could find one single issue related to health that you couldn’t find a doctor to agree with and another doctor to disagree with. Let’s just keep that in mind as we get started here.

April: I’m really glad that you brought that up. Before I get going with these True or False questions, in case someone’s new to SANE or maybe just doesn’t know you yet or is maybe wondering “Do I even trust this guy Jonathan?”, then what would you say helps people to trust what’s being taught through SANE Solution when there are doctors who support and science that supports what you’re teaching but obviously not every scientist or medical professional out there would. Why should people believe you?

Jonathan: For the same reason that, for example, doctors a hundred years ago recommended smoking. It wasn’t because they were bad or malicious; it might just be because they didn’t yet know the deeper science underneath smoking. Just to be — I mean, this is in no way, shape, or form an attack on doctors or anything. When I was a personal trainer, I wasn’t taught by my formal education what I spent the past fifteen years researching because, for example, a lot of it has to do with neurobiology and when you’re studying personal training, you don’t get taught neurobiology. For example, just really, really quickly getting into the actual questions, guess how many nutrition classes you need to take to get an MD in the United States?

April: Three, maybe.

Jonathan: Zero. You do not need to take any formal nutrition training because a family physician is not a nutritionist. That’s not their job. So we should just try to keep that in mind.

April: Okay, all right. We’re going to go ahead and we’re going to jump into these now. I don’t have them in any particular order. That’s kind of the order they came in so we’ll just go for it. Okay, true or false — don’t buy any prepared food that lists things like sugar, fructose, corn syrup, or anything among the first four ingredients. We should be able to find some lower sugar versions. This includes finding sugar-free things like ketchup, mayonnaise, salad dressing — things like that. Avoid partially hydrogenated foods and look for more than two grams of fiber per 100 calories. That’s kind of three all in one.

Jonathan: One hundred percent true. That is absolutely true and it’s fantastic. The reason it’s true is because the science is universally clear that sugar, fructose, and corn syrup do not help you to be happier and healthier. To the extent that you can avoid those things, just like to the extent you can avoid cigarette smoking, you’ll be happier and healthier. The same thing applies to sugar, fructose, and corn syrup. We now know fiber, without a shadow of a doubt, does help you to live a better life so looking for more fiber is helpful.

April: Okay, awesome. Number two, snack on a small handful of nuts. Studies have found that overweight people who ate a moderate fat diet containing almonds lost more weight than a control group that didn’t eat nuts. Maybe once or twice a day, bring nuts. Thoughts?

Jonathan: If you need to snack, snacking on nuts would certainly be a better option than snacking on sugar or starch — one hundred percent. Whether or not just adding nuts to the way you’re currently eating in and of itself — like, a takeaway someone might have from this is “take my existing standard American diet of sixty percent processed junk food that causes one out of every four of us to be diabetic or pre-diabetic and causes a seventy percent obesity rate and just start eating way more almonds on top of that”, that’s not a good idea. But for example, increasing your intake of healthy fats and fiber and some protein as a snack rather than snacking on chips or popcorn or pretzels, thinking about it as a replacement — definitely agree with it. True.

April: All right, awesome. All right, true or false — if you’re going to indulge, choose fat-releasing foods. Now, I was kind of wondering what a fat-releasing food was. Some of the ones that they list here are honey, hard boiled egg, part-skim ricotta cheese, dark chocolate, and yogurt. Those are fat-releasing foods. I had never heard of that. True or false?

Jonathan: Well, I don’t know if I’ve ever heard honey and eggs used in the same sentence in terms of having similar health benefits.

April: First time for everything, right?

Jonathan: Yes. The idea that honey has just — I see your notes here — has sixty-four fat-releasing calories in one tablespoon. Eggs have just seventy calories in one — I don’t know what a fat-releasing calorie is. I’ve never really heard of that before. It kind of reminds me of, if you actually do a quick search on the Internet for sugar advertisements, back in the day — like, the ‘60s and ‘70s — there were ads just to buy sugar. This was the low-fat craze. One of the ways that sugar was advertised — I’m talking pure table sugar — was it was just marketed as pure energy. So it was just like, “Sugar — it’s a great source of energy.” This, to me, honey is, it sounds like, yes, that’s sixty-four calories of just pure sugar energy. I don’t think that’s fat-releasing energy. In fact, there’s quite a bit of science that shows that sixty-four calories of honey promotes fat storage. I would say that the egg is totally different. I’m not even sure how those are in the same sentence.

April: What about the ricotta cheese?

Jonathan: Ricotta cheese — again, it says part-skim ricotta cheese has just thirty-nine calories in a one-ounce pack of fat-releasing calcium. I guess I don’t know — there is no such thing as fat – so there are things that cause your cells to release fat. For example, there is the hormone, insulin, that’s a fat storage hormone. Then there is a hormone called glucagon, which is essentially the opposite of insulin, which can sometimes trigger some of the opposite things. Protein is generally thought of as it helps to release glucagon; it helps to increase satiety; it helps to cause a more thermogenic or fat-burning effect in your body. Honey is not high in protein so I’m not really sure how that is included in this list. I would personally just throw that part of the magazine in the garbage can. That one doesn’t make much sense to me.

April: All right. It’s going to bring a whole lot of stuff together. All right, true or false — enjoy high-calorie treats as the accent but not the centerpiece. They’re saying things like “Put a spoonful of ice cream as the jewel on a bowl of fruit” or “The fruit is the crown and then the jewel is the ice cream” or “Cut down on chips by putting tons of salsa — things like that” or “A little bit of cheese with a lot of fruit or salad.” True or false?

Jonathan: True, for sure. People might be a little bit surprised by this one but another way to describe something that is high-calorie — so what we need to think about is less in terms of calories and more in terms of nutrient density. These things where we say “high-calorie treats”, we could actually phrase that differently and we could say “low nutrient-density things” because, for example, ice cream has a lot of calories and very few nutrients. However, there are things like eggs which have a lot of calories — kind of — and a lot of nutrients. I mean, for example, an egg, gram for gram, has way more calories than spinach but an egg is nutrient-dense, calorie for calorie, relative to ice cream.

April: Okay.

Jonathan: So we can’t just look at the amount of calories. We would have to say, if it’s high in calories and low in nutrients, then yes, it should definitely be an accent. But if it’s high in calories and high in nutrients, then, for instance, like, an egg – eggs could be the centerpiece of your breakfast.

April: Okay, so for example, bacon is not high in nutrients.

Jonathan: Correct.

April: Correct? So I could have a little bit of bacon and maybe a lot of eggs and a lot of spinach.

Jonathan: Yes. Or a great example with bacon specifically was, you could use bacon as an accent with kale. For example, so you could take a strip of bacon. You could saute it two strips of bacon with a bunch of kale and you’re using that — same thing like butter or lard or tallow or any of these kind of concentrated fats, using them as an accent to bring out the flavor in vegetables can be very, very helpful.

April: My kids love that actually. All right, true or false — eat cereal for breakfast five days a week.

Jonathan: False.

April: I knew you were going to say that. Here’s what it says. It says studies find that people who eat cereal for breakfast every day are significantly less likely to be obese and have diabetes than those who don’t.

Jonathan: This one’s easy. Let’s spend some time on it because it shows how science is misrepresented. It gives a great example of how science is misrepresented in the media. This says studies that find people who eat cereal for breakfast every day are significantly less likely to be obese and have diabetes than people who don’t. Okay. So that’s saying that there is a correlation between people who eat cereal for breakfast and incidents of obesity and diabetes. That does not mean that eating cereal for breakfast helps you becoming obese or diabetic. One is a causal statement; the other is correlative. What I mean by that is, for example, it’s becoming more and more sunny here in Seattle because it’s approaching summertime. I’ve noticed a lot more people are wearing sunglasses. Now, we could say that, “Wow. Everyone wearing sunglasses sure has made it sunny outside.” That is, of course, false. Wearing sunglasses does not cause the sun to come out. Higher incidences of sunglass wearing correlates with more sunshine.

Now, this becomes even more nuanced when it comes to health behaviors because you could imagine that people — we generally see that human behavior clusters. What I mean by that is, if you see someone, for example, who — let’s take a very extreme example — someone who, for example, takes illegal drugs. That’s probably not the only unhealthy thing they do in their life. They probably may do a bunch of other unhealthy things. Someone who might set aside time to prepare and eat breakfast, they may do a bunch of other things in their life where they sort of consciously set aside time to do things that they think might be healthy. For example, they might have lower incidence of obesity and diabetes despite eating cereal every day; not because they eat cereal every day. Maybe those people are also more likely to be more physically active. Maybe they’re more likely to do a bunch of other things that would contribute to their health.

We also see similar things with vegetarianism and veganism. It’s not a knock against vegetarianism or veganism but an individual who’s a vegetarian is someone who has said, “I am going to consciously make food choices” so there’s a very good chance that that person is probably going to consciously make a bunch of other choices related to their health and when we see better health outcomes for them, we can’t say it’s because they’re vegetarian. It could be inspite of them being a vegetarian. Does that make sense?

April: Well, I think that’s interesting too is they’re talking about making oatmeal or Total or grape nuts — something high in fiber; low in sugar. Yes, people who are eating oatmeal every day usually don’t eat oatmeal every day because you just think it’s like the most tasty thing you’ve ever had. I think also this isn’t comparing them, explaining what the other people were eating. For example, they may be less likely to get diabetes because they’re not eating donuts for breakfast every day but it didn’t compare them to someone who’s eating green smoothies and eggs or something like that.

Jonathan: That’s exactly right. Just the description we have is “eat cereal for breakfast five times a week.” Like you said, someone who eats plain steel-cut oatmeal five days a week for breakfast — that’s a perfect example of that person who I described who’s probably doing a lot of other stuff to try to be healthy. So we have no idea if it’s that oatmeal or if they’re actually healthy inspite of eating that oatmeal.

April: Okay, love it. Okay, true or false — switch to ordinary coffee. They talk about how fancy coffee drinks from trendy coffee joints often pack several hundred calories because they have full milk, whipped cream, sugar, and syrups so just have a regular coffee with skim milk as a fraction of those calories. What do you say?

Jonathan: Yes. As described there, I would say that that is true. The same thing applies to — so now, this is another important distinction. The same kind of logic applies to alcohol where there’s a difference between, for example, saying, “It’s better to drink straight vodka than to drink vodka with a bunch of sugar and other craziness added to it. That’s true. That doesn’t mean that vodka’s good for you or will help you to lose weight. Same thing saying “Switch to ordinary coffee” is not — what people might hear when they read that is that “Drink more coffee. Coffee’s healthy for you.” That’s a different statement and I’m not agreeing or disagreeing with that.

April: It’s like “Drink smaller slurpees.”

Jonathan: Exactly. I mean, I think that we can all agree that if you have to choose between having a glass of water and a glass of water with sugar poured into it, the glass of water’s better for you. So if you have to choose between a glass of coffee without sugar and a glass of coffee with sugar, the glass of coffee without sugar’s better.

April: Okay, good job. True or false — eat water-rich foods and you’ll eat fewer calories overall. The body of research out of Penn State finds that eating water-rich foods like zucchini, tomatoes, and cucumbers during meals reduces your overall calorie consumption. Thoughts?

Jonathan: Well, definitely half of it is one hundred percent true. One of the three factors that determine whether or not something is SANE — the four underlying characteristics — satiety, nutrition, aggression, and efficiency — is water, protein, and fiber. There’s a bunch of other research out of the University of Washington. A researcher by the name of Drewnowski who shows that water-rich foods are more satiating so they will help you to avoid accidentally over-eating. If you look at the foods we have a tendency to overeat, they are dry. They’re things like bread and pastas and chips; whereas things that are water-rich or things like, if you put them in the blender, you wouldn’t get a powder — so we don’t think of things like meat and fish as water-rich but they actually are. Seventy percent of a pork chop is water. You don’t realize that. I mean, look at your body. Your body is ninety percent water. Vegetables, proteins, whole food fats — these are rich in water. I’m not suggesting that you eat water-rich foods because calories are bad; I’m suggesting you eat water-rich foods back to the earlier point about nutrient density because these foods are going to have more nutrients relative to calories and we live in a culture where we have a surplus of calories and a shortage of nutrients so we need to shift that in the other direction.

April: I like how this article mentioned that you won’t get the same benefits by just drinking the water because your body processes hunger and thirst differently but you need to actually eat these water-rich foods.

Jonathan: That’s exactly right, yes.

April: All right, so then I think the next one is pretty much a given but true or false — look up your meals with veggies. You can eat twice as much pasta salad loaded with veggies like broccoli, carrots, and tomatoes for the same calories as a pasta salad sporting just mayonnaise.

Jonathan: Again, the mechanism — excuse me, the recommendation, I agree with; the mechanism, I disagree with. It’s true. The reason we get full from a high level — well, there’s two reasons from a simplistic level. One is, the physical impact that food has on our digestive system — meaning, it physically fills us up. Then there are hormonal issues that need to take place. That’s kind of the difference between feeling full and feeling satisfied. Like, you could eat a lot of vegetables and still not get the feeling you get when you eat a little bit of chocolate because one is causing fullness but not satiety; the other is causing satiety but not fullness. So we need to have both happen. Vegetables are the best way to help fill yourself up. You then need to eat healthy proteins and healthy fats to trigger sustained fullness and satiety.

April: Okay. What you’ve changed for me is — this is saying you can have a one-to-one ratio of grains to veggies. I just totally replaced my grains with veggies and did a ton more and then filled up with protein and so that’s been awesome going SANE.

Jonathan: That’s the key point there, April, is there’s really no reason ever to eat grains in place of vegetables. I mean, that’s a little bit like — but that’s the trade-off a lot of people make is, we can have debates until the cows come home about whether or not grains are good or bad but I think we can all agree — and it’s just measurably true that vegetables are more beneficial for your health than grains so why would you ever eat less of them to eat more grains?

April: Yes. So you can make your choice but if you’re thinking that you have to have grains, that’s one of the things that you really taught me — is that I can have bread or I can have pasta or rice but if I just want to replace it totally with vegetables, my body isn’t going to go into this shock or I’m not going to lose out on any nutrients because I didn’t eat the grains.

Jonathan: Exactly.

April: All right. Then here’s true or false — avoid white foods. So we’re talking about white flour, added sugar, also white rice and white flour but it says, “However, you should eat plenty of whole grain breads and brown rice because a Harvard study of 74,000 women found that those who ate more than two daily servings of whole grains were forty-nine percent less likely to be overweight than those who ate the white stuff.”

Jonathan: Okay, so there’s a couple of things here. The first — we already talked about this but the quote from this research says that one Harvard study showed 74,000 women, those that ate more than two daily servings of whole grains were forty-nine percent less likely to be overweight than those who ate the white stuff. The conclusion they’re drawing from that is you should eat more whole grains. What that study showed is that whole grains are better for you than refined grains. I bet if they did a study on people that smoked two packs of cigarettes per day against one pack of cigarettes per day, they’d find that the people who smoked one pack of cigarettes per day got less lung cancer. The recommendation, I bet, wouldn’t be everyone should smoke one pack of cigarettes per day.

April: Well, the thing is, when I had read this before meeting Jonathan Bailor, I would’ve said, “Wow. If someone from Harvard studied 74,000 women — that’s a lot of women — then they must know what they’re talking about and I should eat two servings of grains a day.” That’s what I would’ve thought so I’m really glad you clarified that.

Jonathan: The key thing is, you would’ve been fine to think that but this is misrepresented to us in the sense that the way it is presented is that whole grains are objectively beneficial. What this study showed is that whole grains are better for you than refined grains. Just like I said, it might sound ridiculous but smoking one pack of cigarettes per day is better for you than smoking two packs but that doesn’t mean it’s objectively good for you.

April: Yes.

Jonathan: That’s the key thing. But there are some white foods that are good for you. Cauliflower, for example, is a white food and it’s good for you.

April: Egg whites.

Jonathan: Yes, and egg whites. But if you had to pick one color to eliminate, it would probably be white food.

April: Okay. You’ve got a color issue. All right, true or false — try hot sauce, salsa, and Cajun seasonings because they provide lots of flavor with no fat and few calories.

Jonathan: I don’t agree with the ‘why’ but the ‘what’ I agree with, yes. All natural salsa, hot sauce — not only are they a great way to add flavor but they have been shown to help speed up metabolism and do a bunch of other great stuff in terms of helping you sweat a little bit, which also helps to eliminate toxins. Absolutely yes.

April: Okay, it says to choose them over butter and creamy or sugary sauces. What do you say about that? Because I know sometimes you say we could do a little bit of butter. Would it be better if we just did salsa or hot sauce or something?

Jonathan: Butter doesn’t have anything uniquely nutritional about it. Butter is useful if you want to — if it helps you to eat more vegetables, then it’s good. But to just say butter, in and of itself, provides some sort of essential nutrition that you will miss out on if you eat salsa instead is false. I mean, salsa provides you with more SANEity than butter does.

April: Okay, awesome. Okay, true or false — eat fruit instead of drinking fruit juice. They’re saying for the calories, in one kid-size box of apple juice, you can enjoy an apple, orange, and a slice of watermelon. Is that false?

Jonathan: One hundred percent agree. Fruit juice is as bad for you as soda and fruit is better for you than soda. Fruit is better for you than fruit juice — absolutely yes.

April: All right. Two more. True or false — drop your milk type and cut your calories by twenty percent. So if you drink regular, go to two percent. If you drink two percent, go to one percent or skim. What do you say about milk, people that are drinking milk?

Jonathan: Milk is right in the middle category of SANEity. Milk is not super nutrient-dense. There’s also some people have issues with dairy. Personally, if you’re going to eat fat, the fat-founded milk is not an optimal source of fat. Is full fat milk terrible for you and should you drink skim milk because fat is bad and calories are bad? No, that’s not the reason. I would recommend drinking skim milk if you have to drink milk because I would much rather you get your fat calories from whole food SANE sources rather than from full fat milk. So I agree, but for a different reason.

April: Okay, sounds good. All right. Last one. True or false — after breakfast, stick to water. It says, “At breakfast, go ahead and drink orange juice. But then, throughout the rest of the day, focus on water instead of juice or soda because” — I love this part – “that’s still only 90,000 calories a year or twenty-five pounds.”

Jonathan: Again, I agree with “don’t drink sugary nonsense” but the logic here is brilliant because now every American should be gaining twenty-five pounds a year, which means after ten years, every American should be 250 pounds heavier.

April: I knew you would like that one.

Jonathan: Yes. Again, the “why” is wrong but the “what”, aka “focus on water, green tea — things like that — rather than sugary beverages”, I agree with.

April: Okay. There we go. You’ve just done a great job going through and giving us the true or false because I think what we’ve found here is, there are a lot of things that were on that list that were really good and that were right in helping people not eat processed foods, drink more water, eat more vegetables. But there’s little things that are thrown in there that are throwing us off. They’re throwing us off as a society. So what would you say should be our next action, for those of us who are constantly looking through and receiving information like this?

Jonathan: For me, it’s the mental distinction between “better than” versus objectively what I should do because so much of what you hear — especially if you’re listening to this show, you’re already health conscious. What some of this information is saying is it’s like, “To go from an F to a D, do this” but then people hear that the recommendation of what would make you a D is good. But a D isn’t good. It’s better than what most people might be doing. Again, whole grains are better for you than refined grains but that doesn’t mean they’re good so we always want to look in terms of what is optimal for us, not just for what is better than terrible, if that makes sense?

April: Yes, I love it. So what would you say as a stretch goal? Just work more to actually eating the things that are good for us and optimal?

Jonathan: Yes, focus on what’s optimal. I mean, there’s so much good. My mother used to always tell me that there’s so much good in life that we don’t have room for the bad stuff. Again, whether it’s the vegetables, our “Is quinoa better for you than white bread?” Yes, absolutely. But vegetables are better for you than quinoa so why not just eat way more vegetables. That would be — my stretch goal is just eat a lot of vegetables.

April: All right. Any final words?

Jonathan: Eat more vegetables. That’s my final word.

April: All right, thank you so much. I think it’s really, really helpful. I love it that now when I find things online and I need help and I wonder, “Hey, this is really not making sense,” I know I can come to you and get the awesome answers. Thank you, Jonathan. Thank you for being with us here at the SANE Show. We love to hear from you. We love having you here with us on this podcast and wishing you the best. Have a wonderful day and, remember to stay SANE.

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