This post was originally posted on 180 Nutrition on June 13, 2013.
Christine shares her journey with us, from being overweight with ill-health. Then turning to low fat vegetarianism and then vegan diet with continued poor health. And from there completely changing her diet by eliminating sugar and extra carbohydrates, and re-introduced natural healthy fats, including butter and coconut oil. She is now a picture of health!
If you have any questions for Christine, you can follow her on Facebook here.
In this weeks episode:
Why being a vegetarian didn’t work for her [03:12}
How much fat can we actually eat? [10:12]
Can you feed your children a high fat diet? [13:36]
How 5 x olympian champion Clint Robinson turned to a high fat diet & is in the best shape of his life [15:50]
Why a high fat diet will not only improve your health but your waistline [22:28]
and much more…
Stuart Cooke: Christine, I was scanning your book again last night and just…stunned.
Christine Cronau: Really?
Stuart Cooke: Stunned. I only wish that I could…I almost feel like I’m alienating my friends when I talk about this stuff, because it makes so much logical sense and, you know, we live and breathe it, and, you know, we look great for our ages, got boundless energy, and, you know, doing great things, and I can see all of my friends and family are kind of riddled with issues and just look tired, burnt out, and, you know, eating the way that they’re supposed to be eating, you know, according to the government, and they just look at me like I’m a lunatic when I suggest other things.
Christine Cronau: No, that’s extremely common.
Stuart Cooke: (Laughs.) So we’re probably going to be touching on questions…
Guy Lawrence: Well, guys, this is actually recording, so we might as well keep rolling with it, because that was almost the perfect introduction, so for anyone that doesn’t know who we are, I’m Guy Lawrence. This is Stuart Cooke, and we’re joined with the lovely Christine Cronau. Thanks for joining us, Christine.
Christine Cronau: You’re very welcome.
Guy Lawrence: So, we’ll keep going. Can you go back to the start for us then and how you came to the conclusions with your book promoting a high-fat diet, because I think it’s knowledge that everyone should be , absolutely, aware of, and tell us a little bit about your journey, how you came to that conclusion.
Christine Cronau: Well, basically, my story is actually very common know. I was a low-fat, vegetarian, healthy diet and, unfortunately, instead of making my health better, it made my health worse, and I ended up with chronic fatigue and a list of ailments as long as my arm, and, basically, after doing some research and going to a very knowledgeable nutritionist, I found out that it was actually my healthy diet that was making me sick.
Now that was quite frustrating, so I actually spent the next ten years researching the entire thing, and what I found was the majority of the health messages we receive are incorrect. So that’s why I actually wrote The Fat Revolution and my other books, because I actually now feel obligated to share what I know.
Guy Lawrence: When you talk about your, in quotes, “healthy diet” at the time, what was it? What were you eating?
Christine Cronau: Well, basically, I was having a high-fiber cereal in the mornings with soy milk, probably a banana as well. I was having a lot of bran, rice, lentils, all the things that they tell us are low-fat. Lots of whole grains. I reduced my butter intake. I reduced my saturated fats, and, basically, replaced them with things like avocado or peanut butter or something like that.
Guy Lawrence: Okay and how long were you eating like that for? Was that, like, over a period of years?
Christine Cronau: Yes. It was about five years, and I did spend a period of that time vegan, as well, so probably about a year-and-a-half I was vegan, so I didn’t have any dairy products at all. Also, I ate loads of vegetables, so all the things that they typically tell us are healthy for us, I was eating a lot of that.
Guy Lawrence: Yeah, right, and, I guess, we asked XXNoraXX [0:03:26.2] this question a few weeks back when she was on the podcast, basically, why is the low-fat diet so pushed as…and it seems like conventional wisdom is everyone should be eating a low-fat diet for their health, I mean…
Stuart Cooke: That’s right. Even the World Health Organization, you know, the big guns out there are saying, “You must eat like this to live a long fruitful life,” and it just seems, now, that it isn’t the case at all. Why do you think this is happening?
Christine Cronau: Well, unfortunately, basically, the advice that we’re given to avoid heart disease, to avoid diabetes, all those bits of advice we receive from conventional health authorities will actually give us those very diseases that they’re telling us those diets will help us with, and, unfortunately, it’s because it’s a huge money scam. It’s a billion-dollar industry. All this low-fat dogma makes a lot of people a lot of money.
So you have everything from the food industry right through to the drug companies, so cholesterol-lowering medication is one of the, it’s THE biggest selling prescription medication in the world.
Guy Lawrence: Yeah, right.
Stuart Cooke: Yeah.
Guy Lawrence: Follow the money.
Christine Cronau: That’s exactly what it is and so that’s why even though repeatedly over the years they’ve repeatedly tried to prove the diet hypothesis, but every time it’s come up the opposite, but they’ve never, besides that, they’ve never actually shown people that it’s not true because it does make a lot of money.
Guy Lawrence: Yeah. I mean, when I look back on my health journey as well, you know, I remember thinking back, especially in my teens and early 20s, I would eat a low-fat diet and when I first started to hear that you should be eating, you know, a high-fat diet, that’s going against conventional wisdom, it really…my belief systems didn’t want to agree with it or think about it at all, but I guess the one thing that I’ve learned is to try these things for yourself and see how your body feels and then apply it, and that’s why we’ve come to the conclusion today and the beliefs that we have and what we do, you know, but I think it can be very difficult starting off to get your head around it at all, and the more we delve into it, the more we seem to be going, “What is everyone doing?”
Christine Cronau: Yeah, absolutely. It is hard to get your head around it. It was hard for me to get my head around it, because I’d been indoctrinated all that time with the low-fat theory, so it seemed wrong. The first time I heard about it, I thought, “That’s got to be wrong. It couldn’t possibly be the case,” but I kept going back. I kept researching, and what I found was it wasn’t wrong, and, in fact, this low-fat theory is doing us a world of harm.
Guy Lawrence: Why do you think there are dieticians out there that are still promoting, you know, calories in, calories out, low-fat diet…?
Christine Cronau: Simply because that’s what they’re taught, and, fortunately, there are a few out there who are doing their own research and their own investigations and so they’re finding this out themselves, and there are many doctors, nutritionists, naturopaths, all kinds of people who are investigating this and they are educating people in the right way, but, unfortunately, the education of the dieticians and all the other health professionals receive about nutrition is incorrect, so they’re just telling people what they think is right.
Guy Lawrence: I get that. I completely get that. I keep coming back to, you know, the thoughts of what my grandparents ate. You know, that time. Things just seemed to be more simple then. It was, you know, meat and veg, they used to be dripping on toast and cream and cheese and just simple foods, and they’re living long and fruitful lives and now we just seem to be…things seem to be very different. We’re getting sick. We’re not living that long, but yet we have all the tools to tell us that this is what we should be doing. It just doesn’t seem to be working.
Christine Cronau: I think that’s why people are so open now. If we had started this movement ten years ago, we probably would have been lynched or something like that, but now people are open to it, because they can see. They’re tired of making the same mistakes over and over again. It’s not working.
They’re tired of following the conventional diet and it doesn’t work, so now they’re open to the fact, “Hang on. There must be something wrong with what we’re doing.”
Guy Lawrence: Yeah. , absolutely. , absolutely. I just want to make a note. Stewie, you’re frozen on the screen, but it’s not a bad-looking capture.
Stuart Cooke: Oh. Well as long as it’s caught me on a good side, I’m quite happy…
Guy Lawrence: You’re not smiling, but you’re not frowning. Oh, there’s a little frown there. Anyway, leading on from that, from your experience, Christine, how much fat can we eat?
Christine Cronau: Well, this is one that surprises a lot of people, because once they hear the idea that fat might be okay for them, then they think, “Well, surely, there must be some kind of limit.” Well, actually, surprisingly, there’s not, and that’s because fat is the only food that uses our fullness hormone, CCK, and so when we don’t eat fat that’s when we over eat, because we never get full. We never feel satisfied.
So, that’s why you can sit down and eat a whole box of Tim-Tans or some other sort of carbohydrate-based food and, you know, keep eating, but, when you eat fats, it’s a completely different story, and, in fact,, you can try a little experiment yourself at home by having a nice pork chop with that thick rim of fat on the top, don’t cut any of it off, all the cracklings, and, if you had plans for dessert, you’ll quickly change your mind, because you’ll feel really full, and that’s what fat does.
Guy Lawrence: It satisfies your hunger.
Stuart Cooke: You’re talking about the meat, as well, Christine. Quality of meat. Is that something we should be mindful of? Are we looking at, kind of, organic meats and, you know, kind of, fresh and local cuts? Would that be something that would affect the quality of the fat at all?
Christine Cronau: It does, and, in fact,, it’s really important to have grass-fed meat or organic meat is all grass-fed, so the best meat you can get is organic. The next best is free-range, and, of course, we store our toxins in our fat, so it is important to get a good source, and the other thing that happens is, if we’re not eating grass-fed, so we’re eating grain-fed meats, then we get far more omega-6s than we should.
So that omega-6, omega-3, you know, most people have heard about that balance, that the balance is out these days. We need to get more omega-3s, so that is something that affects that balance and, also, other nutrients, like vitamin K2 is only in grass or pasture-fed animals, including eggs, dairy, meat.
Stuart Cooke: Right. Okay. Yeah. Interesting, yeah, something to be aware of, because I know it’s a hot topic, as well. Thinking about fat, is there anybody that you wouldn’t recommend following a high-fat diet, and I say that because we have a member of our family has had his gall bladder removed, and he’s very, very wary about eating fat because he says, “Well, I need my gall bladder to help me process the fat and without it I’ll get sick,” so I just thought we’d push that one your way.
Christine Cronau: That’s a common concern, but we still need those fats, and, in fact,, we can still that fat without the gall bladder. What we need to do is eat three meals at exactly the same time every single day, because it will actually produce the bile you need to digest those fats, and as long as it knows what’s coming, so that’s why the regularity, it’s really important for people that have no gall bladder, then you can , absolutely, produce the bile.
Guy Lawrence: Wow, that’s a really good tip.
Stuart Cooke: That’s a fantastic tip. That’s going to go down well, especially with this particular member of my family.
Guy Lawrence: Talking about children, again another hot topic, children are notoriously fussy. Some don’t like eggs and butter. Some have dairy intolerances, as well. What are your thoughts around that? Any guidance, I guess, for all those out there with kids and wanting to push them into the right way of eating.
Christine Cronau: Well, the interesting thing is that the modern diet has actually made our kids fussy. It’s actually a symptom of malnutrition. If their fussy eaters, it means that they’re not getting any nutrients, and that’s one of the things that happens. So, it’s a process, so just gradually introduce those proteins and fats. Now the most important thing you can get into your children is quality protein and fat.
Even if they’re fussy about vegetables, don’t be concerned about it, because a majority of their nutrients are coming from those animal proteins and fats, and I know that that’s something that will shock you, but it’s , absolutely, the case, that the reason that modern diets are weak in nutrition is because they’re not getting the things that they need from those animal proteins and fats, so eggs and butter are, you know, kings when it comes to nutrients all the children are missing out on the vital nutrients that are helping their brains grow, their skeletons develop, all that sort of thing, so it’s essential to start getting those into them and as soon as you change their diet even a little bit, get some of those fats into them, they’ll stop being as fussy.
Stuart Cooke: Right. Okay.
Guy Lawrence: So, what would you feed the typical five-year-old for breakfast then? I don’t have kids, I’m just curious.
Christine Cronau: Well, I’d give them something like fried eggs. Now, most kids will still eat fat. They actually enjoy fat, and that’s because we crave fat. It’s part of our constitution to crave fat, and that’s because we need it. So it’s pretty easy, normally, to get fat into kids, unless they’re really, you know, sort of, haven’t had a lot of good nutrition for a long time. Fried eggs are fantastic for children.
Stuart Cooke: Okay.
Guy Lawrence: There you go. Right.
Stuart Cooke: Right. I’ll put that to the test tomorrow morning.
Christine Cronau: Okay!
Stuart Cooke: I’ve got three hungry daughters, and we’ll give that a go.
Guy Lawrence: There’s a topic I really wanted you to cover as well, Christine, after reading your book, and that was probably my favorite chapter now on Clint Robinson and his story. Can you just, you know, tell us a little bit about his story? Because we, myself and Stewie, we CrossFit, we exercise, you know, we’re pretty passionate about it, and I know a lot of people that would be listening to this do as well, and I thought Clint’s story was just fantastic. Could you just share that with us?
Christine Cronau: Yes,. He’s a fantastic example, especially if people are concerned about athletics or performance. That question comes up a lot, you know, “What about a low-carbohydrate, high-fat diet with my performance? How’s that going to go?” Because there’s a huge myth out there that we need to burn sugar for energy, and that’s completely nonsense.
Clint Robinson is a fantastic example because he actually, he’s a five-time Olympian, and after his first Olympics, his health started to decline. His health started to decline, and he spent a lot of time and energy investigating it, and, like he said, most people would have given up, you know, that sort of their career. It’s over.
Because we’re used to athletes these days really only having a pretty short career, because they start getting tissue, you know, degeneration, all kinds of stuff like that, so, but he really wanted to keep going, so what he found was that he actually changed to a diet like this. He was lucky enough to end up at the same place that I did and so completely changed his diet. He detoxed and started a low-carb, high-fat diet and he, basically, was able to have the second half of his career, and he’s forty now. He’s competing at the world championship level.
Guy Lawrence: He’s a kayaker, right?
Christine Cronau: Yes,.
Guy Lawrence: Was it Kayaking?
Stuart Cooke: Yes,.
Guy Lawrence: He’s been to the Olympic five times.
Christine Cronau: Yes,.
Guy Lawrence: That’s a long span.
Christine Cronau: It is, and, in fact,, when I was struggling after I changed my diet to low-carb, high-fat and really still struggling with the whole idea, you know, “Have I done the right thing? Is this really going to work?” I actually saw him in his fifth Olympics and I knew his story, because I went to the same nutritionist that he did, and, so, when I saw him it , absolutely, inspired me to keep going, because he looked amazing. He obviously had bounds of energy, and, in fact,, his blood markers and my blood markers, you know, when I was, had my chronic fatigue, so, you know, to see that recovery in him, it really inspired me to keep going.
Guy Lawrence: Yeah, absolutely, and for anything athlete that’s listening or watching this, check him out, I mean, just read that chapter in your book. It’ll make you think twice about what you’re putting into your body for peak performance as well.
Christine Cronau: I think that’d be right and, for example, he talks about not using those sugar gels and all those, you know, energy boosts that we use in athletics today, you know, carbohydrates burn off so quickly whereas fat is long-sustaining energy. It just makes all the difference. So, really, if you’re running an event, you don’t want to be carb-loading, you want to be fat-loading.
Guy Lawrence: Yeah, absolutely. You mentioned the Kenyans I remember when I came and I watched you talk last year as well. Can you just tell us a bit about the Kenyan runners as well? That blew me away.
Christine Cronau: Yeah, well, basically, you know, in our Western society we’ve taught athletes to carb-load before a race. They do it the night before a race and they also do it just prior to the race, and the Kenyans do the opposite, which is probably what gives them the amazing endurance that they have. So, obviously, not every Kenyan is going to be following their traditional diet, but their traditional diet is milk, rice, and meat. They don’t even eat vegetables at all.
Guy Lawrence: Wow.
Christine Cronau: It’s actually a very high-fat diet. It’s around 66 to 70 percent of their calories is fat.
Guy Lawrence: Yeah, right, and nobody is going to argue that they can’t run.
Christine Cronau: No, no, no.
Guy Lawrence: That’s for sure. Yeah blood as well. That’s interesting. All right, so, we’ve got some Facebook questions as well, because we put out a, on our Facebook last week, basically, and we had a heap of great questions come through, so we thought we’d start and roll out a few of them.
The first one would be from Renee Young. She asks, “When transitioning to a high-fat, high-protein diet from a high-carb diet, do you recommend gradually increasing fat or just go straight to the high-fat diet?’
Christine Cronau: Well, in most cases, it’s best to transition and take it a little bit at a time, because if most people went from where they’re at on a low-fat diet to eating the amounts of fat that I eat, they would feel sick.
Guy Lawrence: Right.
Christine Cronau: Because perhaps their gall bladder atrophied. It doesn’t have to do anything, so it’s not used to those amounts of fat coming through, so what we need to do is slowly bump up the fat and then eventually you’ll get to the point where you’re actually wanting it all the time.
Guy Lawrence: Fantastic.
Stuart Cooke: Very good point.
Guy Lawrence: Renee sure had some guidance with that. We’ve got another one from Margaret Jessinska and it’s something I’d like to know, too, “I’d like to know how many meals Christine eats each day. She often puts pictures of big meals with lots of butter on her Facebook page. I imagine she couldn’t fit in three meals like that each day, so does she only eat one or two meals a day?”
So, essentially, I guess people want to know what you eat in a day.
Christine Cronau: All right. Well, that’s a good point and probably the saying is very appropriate, the saying that says, “Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, and then dinner like a pauper.” What we need to do is have a nice dose of protein and fat in the morning and another good dose at lunchtime, and then a light dinner at night because then we’re not going to bed with a full load in our stomach and that’s quite hard on our digestive system and, also, for our detoxing time at night and, also, if you’re trying to lose weight, it’s not right to go to bed with a big meal in your stomach.
So, basically, I have two big meals every day and then at probably around 4:00, normally, I’ll have a snack, like a fruit salad with cream. Something like that.
Guy Lawrence: When you mentioned, because you just mentioned about losing weight as well, does any amount of fat make you fat?
Christine Cronau: No. It doesn’t. Although, I should clarify that and say that I’m talking about saturated fat. I’m talking about real fats. Polyunsaturated fat is a completely different story, but, yes,, real fats do not make you fat. It’s , basically, fats aren’t stored in the body like that. They’re used in the body, but they’re not stored in the adipose tissue. The thing that makes our body store fat is excess carbohydrates and sugar.
Guy Lawrence: And our insulin production, right?
Christine Cronau: Yes,, basically, we eat the, basically, we produce our insulin when we’ve got glucose in our blood and that insulin takes the glucose to our cells where we need it, into our brain, and also our muscles, places like that, but if we’re eating, we can only store or use a very small amount of glucose at any one time, which means if we eat more than that, we have to store the rest as fat. That’s how it works.
Now, this is a normal, you know, function for our body. It’s nothing bad and it was essential in times of famine, so when we had times of famine, of course, we used those fat stores. The problem is we have access to way too many carbohydrates these days, so we produce more and more insulin, so we store more and more fat, and, of course, eventually the body gets sick of this, because it’s a very unnatural process. It gets tired, so it stops producing insulin and then we have type II diabetes and, as an interesting side point, if we can’t get that glucose into our brain, then our brain cells die, then we have Alzheimer’s.
So, no matter what we hear in the media, this disease is completely preventable, as are most other modern chronic diseases.
Guy Lawrence: , absolutely.
Christine Cronau: It’s all about the excess sugar and carbohydrates. That’s it.
Guy Lawrence: You’ve kind of answered the next question. I’m just looking at it here from Laura Amy. She says, “What is your single biggest recommendation for people who come into this diet for weight loss and health improvement purposes? What is the best way to see results quickly?”
Christine Cronau: Well, yes,, my biggest tricks are to reduce the excess sugar and carbohydrate and to increase the natural fats, like butter and coconut oil, especially, and, also, the animal fat from grass-fed animals.
So, what was the second part of that question?
Guy Lawrence: “What is the best way to see results quickly?”
Christine Cronau: Oh, yes,, quick results. So, if you want really quick results with weight loss, I assume she’s talking about, then you want to drop the carbs as low as possible for a period. So that’s the quickest way to get your body back into a fat-burning state.
What happens is our body is naturally in a fat-burning state all the time. We burn fat for energy, but, when we’ve got too much sugar in our system, our body switches over to sugar-burning and one of the reasons it does that is because sugar, the body recognizes this is a dangerous state for the body to be in, so it’s trying to burn off that sugar as fast as possible.
The problem is we keep putting the sugar in, so it keeps staying in that sugar-burning state. So, if we reduce that sugar dramatically and go on a really low-carbohydrate diet, then we force the body to go back into fat-burning.
Guy Lawrence: So, you’re talking about ketosis, Christine. Is that a state that you’d be in with the amount of fat and the reduction in carbs that you choose?
Christine Cronau: I have actually been in that state for the last 12 years.
Guy Lawrence: Wow.
Christine Cronau: And the interesting thing about it is that I actually, because I was quite big, I actually went super low-carbohydrate for a year because I really wanted to improve my health.
Guy Lawrence: Yeah.
Christine Cronau: And so I didn’t eat fruit. I didn’t eat starchy vegetables. I was , basically, eating protein and fat. With a few grain vegetables and I did that for a year and after I went back on to my you know a few more carbs, so I ate potato. I ate sweet potato. I ate all that sort of stuff. I don’t eat grains but I eat plenty of other carb. I stay in that fat-burning.
Guy Lawrence: Is that right?
Christine Cronau: Yeah. So.
Guy Lawrence: So your body adjusts the longer you do it.
Christine Cronau: Yeah, and it doesn’t necessarily mean you have to do it for a year. Some people only do it for a small period. Now my daughter is an interesting example because she didn’t actually ever do that diet. She didn’t ever go low-carb, but she is always in that fat-burning stage as well and she used to have all kinds of stuff when she went to school.
She was eating sugar and wheat and all kinds of things. And she came to her own conclusion after a while of feeling thick, but she wanted to get rid of those things out of her diet and she just naturally went back into that state. So you know it is different for everyone it depends on what their health is like but that’s generally how it works.
Once you get your body back into fat-burning it will stay there unless you go back to a high-carbohydrate, high-sugar diet.
Guy Lawrence: There you go. Do you know if a glass of red wine will knock you out of ketosis?
Christine Cronau: No. Well if you are first trying to get into it. Then I would stay away from all those things, but , absolutely, now I can drink wine. I can, you know, have a tequila. I can do whatever I want.
Guy Lawrence: Good on you. Yeah.Yeah.Yeah.
Christine Cronau: As far as, as long as I am not going back to sugar eating and all that sort of stuff. You know I have my big baked potato with butter and sour cream and bacon and things like that. All of that stuff, and fruits, I love fruit. I can have desserts that are sweetened with, you know, a moderate amount of natural sweeteners, yes,, I stay in that fat-burning stage.
Guy Lawrence: So, so would the way that you eat your food keep you in that state? Talking about potatoes, you like potato and cream. If you are adding lots of fat to a carbohydrate would that change the way that your body then uses that fuel?
Christine Cronau: Yes, it absolutely does and, in fact, every time we eat carbohydrates we should eat it with fat because it actually slows down the digestion, so it spikes your glucose levels.
Guy Lawrence: Right. OK. Yeah. I guess it all makes sense. We had another question from Michelle Inns on the potato front. And she said, “My understanding is that sweet potato is considered to be a soup food, but obviously it doesn’t make the low-carb definition. Can I include it in a high-fat, low-carb diet?”
And she says that she has two five-year-olds who are addicted to bread so she is looking for other ways to fill them up.
Christine Cronau: Absolutely. That’s a perfect thing to give to children instead of bread. Load it up with butter as well. You know, make it really delicious, but, absolutely, especially for children. The only time I would avoid sweet potato or potato or any of those starchy vegetables is if you are trying to get into that fat-burning state, if you are trying to lose weight quickly, or if you have got a health condition like candida or cancer, for example. Cancer feeds on sugar. So if I had cancer I would, absolutely, be reducing, I would get rid of every sort of natural sugar from my diet and starve the cancer.
So if that is something you are trying to achieve like that then you stay away from starchy vegetables, but, for the general person, especially children they are fantastic.
Stuart Cooke: Yeah. No, absolutely. I keep thinking about my kids, you know, and how they eat and what we are trying to do in pushing new foods, but I am thinking that, you know sweet potato, butter, really fatty and make it super tasty and just kind of transitioning that way.
Guy Lawrence: Where do you source your butter and cream from, Christine?
Christine Cronau: Well, I try and get organic dairy where I can. We have a fantastic place that we buy butter. We go to the West End Markets in Princeton where theres a butter and cheese stall. Brilliant French men who make cultured butter and it is the best deep rich yellow color so you that know it’s got all those nutrients in it. And , basically, you know organic cream from somewhere like Ray Organics or any other whole foods shop like that is fantastic.
Guy Lawrence: Are any of these products available in the Woolies or Coles?
Christine Cronau: There are organic dairy options in Woolies and Coles. I would try and stick to the brands like Ivy Homes, something like that. That is a little bit more natural because they are going to be XX?XX [0:29:41.5] correct a lot less. So you know some of the bigger brands, even if they are organic, they are going to be ultra-pasteurizing that milk. So you want to kind of stick to the more natural brands if you can.
Stuart Cooke: So it is almost like a back to basics, as natural as we can get it.
Christine Cronau: As natural as you can get it, absolutely.
Guy Lawrence: That’s great. Katrina Brooks asks, well, we have kind of covered this but, “Is red meat good for us?”
Christine Cronau: Well, I assume that this question is coming from the perspective that, you know, that there is always a lot of press about how meat is acid-forming or it causes cancer, all that sort of stuff. And all that stuff is absolute nonsense. So, for example, the big study that came out last year, and it was all over the news, it was on TV, it was on radio, about how meat is cancer-causing, well, if you actually have a look at that study, what they did was they made a list of what those people were doing.
So, the people who were dying early of cancer and heart disease, they were slacking more, they were exercising less, vegetables, they were doing all these things, and one of the things that they were doing was they were eating more meat, therefore, their conclusion was, meat is cancer-causing.
You know, if I was the scientist, and I came up with that conclusion, I would be embarrassed. That is, absolutely, incredible, but the problem is that these scientists are funded to find certain things that back up certain premises, so that’s what they do.
The thing about the internet these days is we can actually look at those studies, look at their results, and then see their conclusion and see if it matches.
Stuart Cooke: Yeah, we can find out for ourselves.
Guy Lawrence: Yeah, absolutely, and the other thing to consider with meat as well, obviously, is if it’s the quality, if it’s been humanely raised and slaughtered where a lot of meat isn’t.
Christine Cronau: Yes, absolutely. That’s a consideration, but natural meat is, absolutely, good for us and, in fact, it’s got amazing nutrient value.
Stuart Cooke: No, I have read that. I’ve read that there are X amount of vitamins and minerals in meat that will surpass any other food group pout there.
Christine Cronau: Absolutely.
Stuart Cooke: I’m starting to understand that more. You touched in your last comment as well, Christine, you touched on exercise, and this isn’t a Facebook question, but I am, I thought I’d throw that out there. What are your thoughts on exercise for weight loss?
Christine Cronau: Well, this is an interesting one as well, so, everyone is sort of given the idea that we have to, you know, throw ourselves in the gym to lose weight, but of you go to any gym and have a look at the people on the treadmill and then come back six months later, the ones that are still there, you have a look at them and they’ll still look the same.
That’s because, if we’re prompting our body to store fat, then no amount of exercise is going to help us. It’s that simple. What we have to do is address the diet and, you know, I love exercise for all kinds of reasons. It’s fantastic for your energy. It’s fantastic for, you know, strong bodies. It’s fantastic for all kinds of things, but, when it comes to weight loss, it’s absolutely unnecessary.
Guy Lawrence: If you fix the diet, right?
Christine Cronau: Yeah, you’ve got to fix the diet, absolutely. It will make you look muscley and toned, but here’s another example, so you might be somebody who’s doing a lot of exercise, but you’re storing fat. You won’t see those toned muscles. You’ll have all that fat there, so if you adjust the diet…there’s some people that have exercised their whole life that have always looked overweight, but as soon as they address the diet, they suddenly look amazing and you can see the results of that exercise then.
Guy Lawrence: Yeah. No. I get that completely, and I’m also of the mindset that, you know, the more we exercise, we go out there and flog ourselves on the treadmill; we’re really going to work up a hunger as well.
Christine Cronau: exactly, that’s one of the reasons this is a huge XX?XX [0:33:56.4] If we exercise, we have to put more energy in, so that’s exactly right, and the people, you know, you see, you know, on weight loss shows where they advocate, you know, reducing their calories to probably 1000 a day and doing just magnificent amounts of exercise, well, they’re starving. They’ll lose weight, because they’re starving, but, you know, I think most people are aware now that if we starve to lose weight, that that weight loss comes, you know, that weight comes back with a vengeance afterwards.
Guy Lawrence: I also think as well from my experience as working as a fitness trainer, it’s very easy to misinterpret health and fitness. They’re actually two very different things and I’ve seen a lot of fit people that eat very unhealthy, and I, and the long term effects of that, my belief is that you’re just putting more stress on the body, because your nutrition is bad and you’re compounding it with a form of stress, which is exercise.
You know, stress can be, obviously, beneficial, but it can also be, if it’s not treated with care, it can affect your body as well, so the one message I’ve always sort of tried to push is let’s look at this from a health aspect and then if you bring in the exercise it complements your health, and that’s a very easy, that gets overlooked so often, you know?
Christine Cronau: And, in fact,, the other problem with these people who are exercising their body but not eating correctly, they’ll start to get injuries as well and that’s because they’re connective tissue is breaking down, so what happens if we’re in a constant acid state, which we will be if we’re eating too much sugar anyway, then the connective tissue will break down, and that’s why we see so many athletes with injuries at young ages and, also, as people get older, even if they’re not exercising, you know, their knee goes or their shoulder goes and they think it’s part of old age. It’s nothing to do with old age, it’s the fact that your connective tissue is breaking down.
Guy Lawrence: It all seems so very simple, doesn’t it? I guess it is actually very simple, but, we’re here, we’re living in such a crazy world with mixed messages.
Stuart Cooke: We tend to complicate it.
Guy Lawrence: We’re getting it wrong. How about pregnancy, Christine? Any special considerations, I mean, that’s going to be such an important time for the development of, you know, for children. What are your thoughts on that?
Christine Cronau: Well, this is another thing. With pregnancy, often people have concerns that low-carb, high-fat diet might, you know, not give them the nutrients that they need, but, in fact,, our modern diet is extremely nutrient-deficient. Low-carb, high-fat diet is perfect for a pregnancy and growing a growing baby. So, you know, for example, there are some nutrients that we just don’t get anymore, like vitamin K2. It’s only found in animal foods and, basically, vitamin K2 is essential for the development of their brains, you know, it’s just , absolutely, essential and hardly anyone has it in their diet anymore, and probably the best source of vitamin K2 is quality butter, but it’s got to be grass-fed.
Stuart Cooke: Right, yeah, and I guess thinking about things like breast-feeding versus conventional formulas, because I was having a look at some of the ingredients in some of the high street formulas versus, you know, mother’s breast milk and colostrum and stuff like that and they’re worlds apart.
Christine Cronau: Yes the commercial formulas are just an abomination, really. It’s very unfortunate, so obviously breast milk is far more nutritious, but also you’ve got to be putting the nutrients into the mothers. That breast milk is giving those babies what they need.
Stuart Cooke: The mind boggles, like, my God, but the problem is as well, I mean, if somebody’s pregnant, you’re going to be getting advice from a doctor, that’s completely going against the information we’re talking about and…
Guy Lawrence: Doctors aren’t generally, I mean, they’ll go through medical school won’t they, but they don’t, isn’t a very small facet of that is actually based upon nutrition?
Christine Cronau: Yes,. I’ve heard that they have two nutrition classes throughout their whole education, so, no, number one is they’re not schooled on nutrition at all and number two is that the stuff they are told, obviously, comes from someone with a vested interest, so…
Guy Lawrence: That’s right, yeah.
Christine Cronau: They can’t be relied on, and, fortunately, there are doctors who are open and, you know, I’ve had quite a few readers who have come to me and said, “You know, I went back to my doctor and all my blood results improved and the doctor was blown away, could not believe it,” and then they mention the book that they’ve read, they mention The Fat Revolution, and, you know, some of them are quite open to reading that book and, you know, sort of considering it, which is great.
Any of the health professionals who are open to it, after a bit of investigation, they’ll find the truth, but they just need to be open to it, but, unfortunately, you get most people, for one, they don’t have the time, you know, they’ve sort of limited to this five-minute appointment. They don’t have the time to be doing their own investigation, so they just rely on what the foundation, the health foundation, is telling them and, also, what they’ve learned in medical school.
Stuart Cooke: Yeah, yeah, no, it’s a vicious circle, I think.
Guy Lawrence: We’ve got one more Facebook question, Christine, from a Katrina Kelly, and she says, “You’ve mentioned in previous posts about inflammation, infection, bloating. Are they related to over consumption of sugar or carbs or both?”
Christine Cronau: Absolutely.
Guy Lawrence: Yeah, I was going to say.
Christine Cronau: So, I mean, there are so many things we can talk about with all of that scratch. Grains are notorious for making us bloated. One of the huge myths that we hear is that we need to eat lots of insoluble fiber but that’s, absolutely, not true. And, in fact, all those excess amounts of fiber damage our digestive system.
So, what few people know is that the way that fiber makes us regular is that it actually tears holes in our bowel which then produces a mucus. And that mucus helps push everything through. And this is something that they have studied, but, unfortunately, the scientists think, “Oh that must just be how it works.”
But it’s not really a healthy way for a digestive system to function.
So if you look at cats and dogs, they don’t need fiber to be regular. If you look at babies, they just drink milk. They don’t have to have fiber to be regular and neither do we and so the problem is we stuff all this fiber in. We actually create fiber damage within our bowel.
And then it also creates a dependency on that fiber so you need more and more of the stuff. And it also causes constipation in some people as well, even if they are having all that fiber. So, unfortunately what happens then is that people try a low-carb, high-fat diet and if they’ve got a lot of fiber damage, which unfortunately many people do, their bowels will slow down.
And of course the skeptics will jump in and say, “Well, you know, terrible diet. You are going to get bowel cancer because it doesn’t have enough fiber in it.”
But it is not actually the diet; it is actually that fiber damage. So if there is only a little bit of fiber damage the low-carb, high-fat diet will actually improve your bowel because fat is extremely nourishing for the bowel, but if there is more damage then that has to be addressed because your bowels will slow down.
And we have to keep that moving both for health and for weight loss. Now I wrote a very a simple solution in The Fat Revolution so it will be good to check that out. Because that’s something very important for health, but one of the biggest side effects to that fiber is bloating and gas. And that’s because that insoluble fiber is fermented in the bowel by bacteria and the by-product of that bacteria is gas. There is no way around it.
Guy Lawrence: Right.
Christine Cronau: So, that is the bloating question. What were the other ones? Inflammation?
Stuart Cooke: Infection.
Christine Cronau: Infection. So, the other thing that happens is that if our pH is off, which is likely to be the case if we are eating a high-sugar, high-carbohydrate diet. We are living in this acid environment and unfortunately it is a breeding ground for pathogens, bacteria, all that sort of stuff and eventually that leads, we also have less oxygen available to our cells, this leads to disease. This leads to inflammation and of course eventually it leads to all those inflammatory conditions like heart disease and cancer.
Guy Lawrence: What’s your thoughts on an alkalized diet? Because a lot of vegetarian and vegans would promote that as well.
Christine Cronau: Well, this is a very interesting point. Back to the meat question, a lot of people say, well meat is acid-forming. Well, it’s actually not. That’s a big myth. Now the problem is that they look at meat before it goes in. They don’t look at what happens to it once it’s gone in. So, for example meat is around 5.5. You know, we want our bodies to be around 7, which is neutral. So meat is around 5.5 so it is slightly acid. And of course it acid, it’s full of amino acids. So we actually, you know, eat acids. That’s a normal thing for us to do.
And even a vegetarian would tell you that we need to eat amino acids because they’re essential. We also have essential fatty acids. So we are meant to eat that kind of acid. Now if we go down the scale a little bit more to something that is a lot more acid, like a lemon, lime, apple cider vinegar. Those are all around pure, extremely acid but of course you don’t hear anybody telling that if you eat those foods you are going to become acidic.
And that’s because those foods, those acids, actually produce bicarbonate in our bodies. And that bicarbonate alkalizes us. So the other thing is that proteins, amino acids, actually act like an acid sponge in our body. Now if you go to the other side of the spectrum and you look at some foods that are not acid, of course, there are the vegetables. They are alkaline when they go in and they stay alkaline, so they’re all good.
Then you go to something like grains and sugar. They are not acid when go in, but they are very acid forming in the body. They produce acid in the body. So, basically, this whole, you know, you probably hear about the acid/alkaline balance and a lot of those diets promote no meat and all that sort of stuff for that very reason, but actually it’s like saying if you eat a tomato you will turn red. It’s not what the food is before you put it in your mouth. It’s what happens to it in the body and, obviously, the people who say that do not have an understanding of what happens to those foods in the body.
So the best way to actually get a good pH and get ourselves back to a neutral pH is to eat a low-carb, high-fat diet and include lemon, lime, and apple cider vinegar in your drink first thing in the morning and if you are extremely acid, have a times a day. And that will put you exactly perfect, unless you’ve got breathing difficulties.
Guy Lawrence: There is another great tip.
Stuart Cooke: Did you hear that, Guy? What do I drink in the morning when I come around to your place to work?
Guy Lawrence: He always brings a lemon. Always. He is very good. Christine, that was awesome. I mean, you are an absolute wealth of knowledge and if anyone wants to know more I guess your website is the best place to come to start with.
Christine Cronau: Yes. They can have a look at the website and also if they join me on the Facebook page. I put some interesting information there every day and also I answer questions on there so they have any more questions about I have said today then jump on Facebook and ask me and I will answer those questions.
Guy Lawrence: Fantastic. Good on you. And I follow those Facebook updates everyday as well. I am constantly reading them. They’re great.
Christine Cronau: Oh fantastic.
Guy Lawrence: Yeah, good on you. Well look, Christine, really appreciate the time you have taken to join us today and I am sure many people are going to benefit from this when they listen to watch this and, hopefully, it will make them think about the next thing they eat on the table.
Stuart Cooke: Alright.
Guy Lawrence: Awesome.
Christine Cronau: Eat steak. It will taste great.
Guy Lawrence: Absolutely. Absolutely.
Stuart Cooke: Thank you so much, Christine. It’s been fantastic.
Christine Cronau: You’re welcome.
Guy Lawrence: Awesome. Thank you.
Stuart Cooke: Speak to you soon. Goodbye.