My question is in regards to food combining diets and their effectiveness. I have read books stating that proteins and fats should only be eaten together, and carbs should be eaten separately because of the different digestive processes that occur. Also I've heard proteins should be eaten pre workout and carbs post workout. Is this really the best way to eat for weight loss and decreased body fat?
Read 20 books on any diet related topic, and you will be likely to end up with two things:
- 20 differing opinions
- A high level of confusion
Based on my clinical experience and having worked with hundreds of patients with digestive disorders and athletes at the elite level, I summarize this way:
- Don't mix starches and proteins together. Starches require an alkaline environment to digest, while proteins require a very acidic environment to digest. Mixing the two often causes incomplete digestion of both. Worse yet, starches, being sugars, will ferment and rot when tied up with proteins, particularly animal source foods (anything with eyeballs!). This will often cause gas formation and intestinal discomfort. The same rule applies to mixing fruit and animal foods with the exception of raw papaya and pineapple. These fruits have proteolytic (protein digesting) enzymes in them and can actually help digest animal foods... BUT you must NOT cook the fruits if you want this benefit or the enzymes will be ruined, and you will get nothing but sweet food and fowl farts!
- Root vegetables are treated the same as fruits and starches – starches being such items as bread, rice, pasta, etc.
- You CAN mix above ground vegetables and animal foods and will rarely have a problem, unless the person eating them is enzyme depleted. If they have challenged digestion eating above ground vegetables and animal foods, try squeezing half a lemon into a glass and drinking it half way through a meal. If it improves digestion, the person needs to supplement with good digestive enzymes.
As for your question regarding what to eat after training:
- I only allow my athletes to eat in accordance with their metabolic types. Even snacks must contain the right ratio of carbs to proteins and fats, or hormonal stress results from the food/snack. Not good.
- Eat exactly according to metabolic type before training and allow 30 to 60 minutes to perform initial digestion so the athlete is not uncomfortable with food in the stomach. After training, I allow the athletes ONE additional serving of any REAL FOOD carbohydrate. So, for example, a protein type could eat one additional carrot with their post workout meal. This will give mild elevation of insulin, yet will not cause significant enough blood sugar fluctuation to result in the release of cortisol to trigger stored glycogen release from the liver.
In my opinion, the whole concept of athletes needing to eat a bunch of carbohydrates is the product of commercial marketing and manufacturing. One need only study nature and the history of man to see the obvious truth here: Do you think Eskimos drank Gatoraid before paddling a kayak for hours or trekking cross country? Do you think Native North American Indians prepared for long hunting trips or battle with white men by eating handfuls of blueberries? If I trained and fed athletes the way much of modern sports nutrition theory suggests, I believe I would have gone out of business long ago.
Observe, read, think and be successful!