Preparing for Life After Cohen

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I’m about a month away from graduating from my Cohen program (woohoo!!!!). I’ve been so thankful not only for the loss of the weight but also for the habits I’ve developed and knowledge I’ve gained while on the program but I know the real battle is still up ahead — when I’m maintaining my weight out in the real food world. I’ve been on the hunt for helpful advise to make my post-Cohen food life still as healthy and intelligent as possible so I picked up Tosca Reno’s book (The Eat-Clean Diet Recharged) at the Dallas airport on the way home from our trip.

I loved it! Okay, so Tosca can come across obnoxious at times but I loved the principles she put out in her book. Most of them reaffirms Cohen principles, too! I guess healthy eating can be founded on these basic tenets:

1. Drink lots of water (Minimum of 2 and try not to go beyond 3 liters)
I invested in a 22oz bpa/bps-free glass bottle to help me consume more water and keep track of it as well. As long as I refill my bottle 4 times – I know I’ve had enough water for the day. Putting a cap on how much water we drink and how fast we drink it is just as important as drinking enough water since washing away electrolytes (called water intoxication) can be just as bad for our body. Read what livestrong has to say about it here.

2. Eat more fruits and vegetables! Limit starchy complex carbs!

I enjoy discovering new fruits and vegetables now. I’m excited to be able to eat avocados, berries, broccoli, kale, malunggay and other superfoods that were non Cohen compliant.

3. Try to schedule regular meal times, eating small but often

Apparently, our body really needs to follow a schedule in order to regulate our blood sugar levels. Having a stable blood sugar level throughout the day helps curb hunger pangs and cravings. When our meals are too far apart, our blood sugar crashes and then after eating, our blood sugar spikes. A spike in our blood’s sugar levels make us feel weak and want to eat more! Eating more often and regularly (3-hour pattern for example), keeps our sugar levels stable all throughout the day.

This seems contrary to Cohen principles which make us space out our meals every 5 hours so that we don’t mix our proteins, but since snacks are allowed every 2.5 hours, I think eating small but often can still be done during Cohen!

4. Sleep!

It was a major discovery for me to learn that we burn fat most efficiently while we’re sleeping! Who knew! Apparently, once we sleep and around 7-8 hours after our last meal, if our liver is working right, we will burn 60% of our calories from fatty acids and 40% from glucose — all stored fat and not our muscles! Amazing!

5. Shop the Perimeter of the Supermarket

All the good stuff that our body really needs are located around the perimeter of the supermarket — fresh fruits, vegetables, seafood and meats. Everything in the center of the supermarket — we need to put our eat-clean-and-healthy game face on so that we can resist all the sugar and starch-laden temptations!! Limit shopping time in the middle aisles and stroll longer through the fresh sections of our favorite supermarkets!

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