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“Fat, Swollen, and Bloated is NO way to go thru life!” August 29, 2014

Posted by fitmontclair in Abdominal Training, Fat Loss, Fitness, Fitness in Montclair, Group Exercise, Health & Exercise, Injury Prevention, Montclair, Nutrition, Organic Food & Farming, Women's Health.
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Click here for Expo details including: Sponsors, Classes. Presenters, and OVER 150 Vendors!!

Hi Everyone!

Just wanted to let you all know about the upcoming Gluten Free & Allergen Free Expo!

The Expo is Sept 6th & 7th at the NJ Meadowlands Exposition Center.

 Expo badge        I have been chosen as an official blogger for the event; I will be contributing pre and post- event blogs covering all the great products, presenters, and developments from the expo. You can get event day updates, interviews, pictures, and video by following the ADVANCED FITNESS CONCEPTS  Facebook page or following me on Twitter!





See the SPECIAL LINK at the end of the post to get a 20% DISCOUNT ON TICKETS FOR THE EXPO!

  So by now you must be wondering what the Expo has to do with the title of this post, “Fat, Swollen, and Bloated is NO way to go thru life!”. Well if you have ever been diagnosed with a food intolerance, sensitivity, or allergy (they are all different!) you already know the answer:  EVERYTHING!

To start, you must understand and BELIEVE that nutrition has the MOST POWERFUL effects on your body – MUCH MORE THAN EXERCISE EVER HAS OR WILL.  It comes down to some simple concepts: 1) “You are what you eat” & “you are what YOUR FOOD EATS!” 2) “you can’t build something from nothing”, and 3) the simple fact that the more times you perform an activity the greater impact it has on you!

Results of correct nutrition AND avoiding food allergens!

Results of correct nutrition AND avoiding food allergens!

 We are going to explore and reveal the effect of nutrition on: the muscles of the abdominal wall, abdominal distention & bloating, a little bit on low back pain, and the seldom discussed but EXTREMELY important concept of delayed food allergies & intolerances and how they affect your efforts in the gym , your overall appearance & body comoposition goals, digestion, and even mental function.

The results of poor nutrition AND consuming food allergens!

The results of poor nutrition AND consuming food allergens!

When it comes to building lean muscle (which raises metabolism and decreases body fat), you can’t build muscle on poor nutrition; nutrition also affects mental function & concentration – ever try to study / solve problems when hungry or after too large a meal, and lastly, you only workout 2 -5x week on average, but you eat (or should eat) 4 -7x per day, making nutrition the most powerful tool you posses for changing your appearance because the more you perform an activity, the greater the number of chances to change your appearance positively or NEGATIVELY! (notice I am not  talking about sports performance, professional weight lifting etc all of which have technical & training aspects that are beyond the scope of this post, I am focusing solely on appearance). I will also not dispute the concept of reducing calories, moving more and losing weight as a result. However most people DO NOT want to lose weight, they want to lose FAT!!! – THERE IS A BIG DIFFERENCE!


SKINNY FAT!! -“Thin does NOT guarantee healthy….”

Low calories for too long decreases your metabolism, hormone output and eventually REDUCES muscle tissue while INCREASING fat stores resulting  in the “Skinny fat” body typeyou weigh less, are a smaller size BUT HAVE HIGHER LEVELS OF BODY FAT and are usually weak & lethargic – think skinny women with flabby “grandma arms” and lots of loose skin i.e “Skinny FAT!”  High amounts of stress and processed foods greatly accelerate this process.

Avid aerobic exerciser!

Weight is a number on the scale. It is a composite of: bone, muscle, fat, water, blood, organs, nerves, and connective tissues. Of those listed you only want to lose FAT!  The right nutrition combined with proper exercise (NOT aerobics – they decrease muscle, water and in some cases bone) will favor a body composition of more lean muscle and lower body fat – provided you are not ill or suffering hormonal imbalances (another topic beyond this post).

I want to focus on those that have: soft, bloated abdomens i.e. “pooch bellies” & ”beer guts”,overall swelling & fluid retention and those that can’t seem to lose abdominal fat even though they have a normal hormonal profile and are considered generally healthy. In many of these cases you are suffering from either food allergies or intolerances.  By constantly consuming foods you are allergic to you produce swelling in the body, abdominal distention due to inhibition of the deep abdominal muscles, and an inability to decrease body fat in the abdominal region.

Many foods can cause mild to severe reactions and I do not mean skin reactions (although they are possible) some signs that you are consuming foods that you can not digest and are allergic to or intolerant of : abdominal swelling / distention, joint pain, headaches, elevated heart rate, lethargy or falling asleep, mental confusion or “brain fog”, nausea, gas, indigestion, diarrhea – any reaction that is not considered normal or healthy. The faster and more severe the symptoms, the greater the allergy or intolerance to a food.

Now many of you are saying this is B.S. and you eat everything and never get any symptoms but are still fat & swollen – it is because your allergy / intolerance started when you were an infant (most infants are born with the nutritional intolerance of the parents, especially the mother) and you have become desensitized to the foods effects over time i.e you no longer sense the reactions to the allergy  / intolerance or regard them as abnormal.  Over time you come to believe that being lethargic, achy, bloated , mentally sluggish is your NORMAL STATE! A great way to prove this is the “challenge test” – you take a suspected food out of your diet for 2 weeks (NO CHEATING!!!) and then you add it back in, and if you have any of the symptoms listed, you are allergic / intolerant of the food. The difference being the severity of the reaction, intolerances are mild, allergies are severe reactions, in between the two are delayed or “hidden” food allergies that are always inflammatory conditions involving the immune system – these tend to cause the most abdominal bloating & swelling.

As always I don’t expect you to take my word for any of this, so here are 2 links to some excellent books written by medical doctors:
The complete guide to food  allergies & intolerance – Jonathan Brostoff, M.D.  

   “Your hidden food allergies are making you FAT!! – Rudy Rivera, M.D.

I also highly recommend the work of Eric Serrano M.D. and Jonny Bowden, Phd.

So besides the a fore mentioned negative physical effects of food allergies,  I want to  explain  how these food allergies directly affect the appearance of the abdominal wall. The greatest inhibition to muscle contraction is “pain”!! When you have pain in your body, you alter the way you move your muscles to avoid pain ex. limping – this is pain inhibition.

The next important concept to understand is that it is a documented medical fact that the body DOES NOT distinguish between pain & inflammation. What this means is that the brain experiences pain & inflammation as the same sensation and RESPONDS IN THE EXACT SAME WAY TO EACH STIMULUS.

We have known for almost 100 years that the organs in your body share the same nerves as the muscles to communicate problems,. Here’s an example: when you have a heart attack, you experience pain in the muscles on the left side of the body, not in the heart itself, this is because the organs don’t have a well developed neurological pathway for communication. This is known as a viscerosomatic reflex and is key to understanding how nutrition effects the appearance of the abdomen.

Image above: Viscerosomatic and Somatovisceral Reflexes. Due to the organization of the spinal cord, pain sensations from skin, muscles and other tissues external to the viscera are delivered to the grey matter of the spinal cord via spinal nerve roots. Visceral sensation is delivered to the gray matter via sympathetic nerves. Upon entering the spinal cord at Lamina I and V, pain impulses from spinal nerves (skin, muscles, ligaments, etc.) converge with pain impulses from viscera and are sent to the brain via a common interneuron. It is because of the convergence upon a common ascending interneuron that pain perception at the cortical level is often not localized to the specific tissue responsible for generating the pain impulses. It is this mechanism that is responsible for the commonly experienced musculoskeletal pains secondary to visceral pains such as left arm pain during heart attack (Ref. Correlative Neuroanatomy 20th Ed. J. deGroot & J.G. Chusid. Pub. Lange 1988)

For a more detailed explanation of this please refer to:

Symptoms of Visceral Disease – A Study of The Vegetative Nervous System and It’s Relationship to Clinical Medicine – Francis M. Pottenger, Sr. M.D.

So by now you are probably asking “What the hell does this have to do with my bloated abdomen?” – answer, “EVERYTHING!!”

When you eat an offending food, you can’t properly digest the food and the small intestine becomes inflamed i.e. it reacts as if its in PAIN!!!. This pain sensation is treated as a viscerosomatic reflex and we get pain inhibition of the muscles shared by the small intestine, which just happen to be the muscles of the deep abdominal wall!!

So, we eat foods that we are allergic to, we get a viscerosomatic reflex followed by pain inhibition of the abdominal wall i.e we “shut off” the deep abdominal muscles. the result? a soft, weak, inhibited abdominal wall that protrudes forward!!! The more pain we have, the worse the inhibition. Many of these foods along with stress & alcohol  also cause  “leaky gut” syndrome which promotes capillary leakage of fluid into the spaces between our cells, this is a PRIME cause of the rippled, dimply appearance of cellulite!!  Here’s a picture to help explain this:

Pay attention to where the nerves cross in the spinal cord. The deep abdominal muscle (transverse abdominus), the pelvic floor and the multifidus (low back stabilization muscles)  all SHARE the same nerves!

Food allergies / intolerances NOT ONLY shut down the abdomen but the low back stabilizers as well – RESULTING IN LOW BACK PAIN IN MANY PEOPLE THAT IS NOT CURABLE BY DRUGS, SURGERY OR EXERCISE!!! In these people, the only way to turn on and strengthen the low back & abdominal muscles is TO CLEAN ALL THE OFFENDING FOODS OUT OF THEIR DIET!!!

I know many of you may be in disbelief, especially if you think you have incurable back pain but remember what Sir Francis Bacon said:

If we are to achieve results never before attained, we must attempt methods never before tried.”


Many of you must be wondering by now “what are the foods we allergic to?” –  Well it is very individual and requires blood and or “challenge” tests – Which is a whole separate post in itself. But for now here are the 3 most common food allergies in the USA:  Gluten (found in most breads, pasta, cereal, and NON-grass fed beef ), Pasteurized Dairy, and SOY !!! (Soy is NOT A HEALTH FOOD!!)

I am sure many of you have a hard time dealing with a wheat / gluten allergy any and run into questions and objections from family and friends who falsely believe that wheat and other grains are healthy and have been part of the human diet for thousands of years.


What they fail to realize is that the ancient wheat from biblical times is NOT what we are eating in the world today:

We are eating a genetic variation that causes many of  the serious illnesses plaguing society today including: Cardiovascular disease, Diabetes, Alzheimer’s, Arthritis, Metabolic syndrome, Dyslipidemia, and Cancer!

Watch these videos by William Davis, M.D. Cardiologist and founder of the “Track your Plaque Program” for tracking arterial plaque and REVERSING IT with nutrition!!





Pasteurized dairy products, even if organic are NOT a health food! The pasteurization destroys the active enzymes needed to digest the dairy (a BIG reason for the rise in lactose intolerance!) The high heat from pasteurization (even WORSE with ultra-pasteurization) leaves you with an indigestible product devoid of critical nutrients. It is well known that if you cannot digest a food it leads to abdominal swelling, bloating, capillary leakage, and viscerosomatic reflexes that inhibit  the deep abdominal muscles leading to further abdominal distention and low back pain!

Pasteurized infant formulas often lead to increased mucus and clogged nasal passages, this forces the infant to open their mouth to breathe. Once mouth breathing becomes their dominant form of respiration they begin to develop a forward head posture due to weakening of the neck muscles from a constantly open jaw which sets them up for a life time of chronic head & neck pain.



Also mouth breathing leads to overstress of the adrenal glands for mouth breathing excites the sympathetic (“flight or fight”) nervous system on a constant basis. We are only designed to breathe through an open mouth during times of extreme emergency; we are supposed to breathe through our noses during normal daily activities! There are fibers for the para-sympathetic (“rest & digest”) nervous system in our nose that are stimulated with proper breathing allowing for reduced stress levels and hormonal responses. Ever wonder why Yoga, Tai Chi, and Qi Gong make you breathe through your nose, well now you know!

NOTE: The horrible forward head posture plaguing society is NOT normal, it is not inevitable, and CAN BE AVOIDED and CORRECTED!!  More in a future post….

Now at one time pasteurization may have been necessary due to unsanitary conditions but those conditions have not existed since the early 1900’s. Raw organic dairy products are EXTREMELY healthy and many supposedly lactose intolerant people can digest them. I know this is probably  new  & shocking to many of you, so I am going to recommend several books, websites, and articles with all the information you could ever want including the Mayo clinic milk cure -where medical doctors used raw dairy to treat a number of illnesses with great success!!

To learn the truth about dairy and all the problems associated with pasteurization the following books are a GREAT resource!




(This book should be the gold standard text for every nutrition program in the country but that would put the processed food manufacturers out of business!! –Did you know the very first University nutrition program was funded by General Mills?)

it is important to note that it is not always a dairy allergy or intolerance that prevents you from digesting milk; a primary congenital lactase intolerance is rare and due to a mutation, most people have a lactase deficiency . Often dairy intolerances & allergies are  SECONDARY TO GLUTEN ALLERGIES  & INTOLERANCES i.e. The intestinal inflammation from the gluten sensitivity destroys the lactase enzyme on the microvilli that lines the intestines resulting a lactase deficieny making in hard if not impossible to break down the lactose in dairy!

 (Raw, unpasteurized dairy STILL has the active lactase enzyme in it – thus aiding in digestion of dairy products EVEN IN SOME WHO CAN’T DIGEST PASTEURIZED DAIRY….)

There is ANOTHER serious problem with an inability in many to digest lactose…

When you eat pasteurized dairy and can’t digest it, you create opioids in the body i.e. opium like molecules that act like morphine  on receptors in the brain. They make you feel relaxed, euphoric and crave more of them. This is why when you have a bad day you often crave ice cream. You can’t digest the pasteurized dairy in the ice cream which creates opioids that make you feel “better”…. further fueling the vicious addictive cycle! 

Of course by now you think I am really nuts and can’t be right. Sorry, but here are some references and there are plenty more!!

“Certain foods appear to stimulate the release of opiate chemicals within the brain. These are chemical cousins of morphine and heroin. They are not as strong as illegal drugs, but appear to be strong enough to keep us coming back, especially when we are stressed, tired, angry, or alone. Not every food does this. The groups that do are sugar (and sugar-fat mixtures, such as butter cookies, as well as foods that produce sugar rapidly), chocolate, cheese, and meat –Dr. Neal Barnard

The peptides from gluten [gliadorphin] and casein [casomorphin] are important because the react with opiate receptors in the brain, thus mimicking the effects of opiate drugs like heroin and morphine.Dr. Charles Parker

Opioid activities and structures of casein-derived exorphins: these two peptides carry information by finding and binding to brain receptors which ordinarily respond to endorphins. The message is go to sleep, feel bad, but go back for more. There are also a large number of regulatory peptides feeding back to brain control centers to form the brain-gut axis. A stop signal to the brain when enough food is eaten would be important for appetite control and may be defective in compulsive eaters.Stephen J. Gislason MD

To sum it all up: Many people cannot digest PASTEURIZED dairy – this leads to abdominal swelling, bloating etc. It also lead to the formation of opium like molecules that cause an addiction within the brain to these foods which in turn  leads to craving them so as to keep a constant release of the opioids. The food companies have turned the country into quasi-opium addicts and the corporate scientists & doctors know this! (NOTE: The opiod production and FOOD ADDICTION also occurs in many who CANNOT DIGEST GLUTEN!!)


The “Ploy of Soy” – The 3rd of the BIG 3 food allergens….

YOUR abs on SOY!

YOUR abs on SOY!

Continuing to look at look at the bloating, distention and abdominal swelling brought on by eating foods that we are allergic to or intolerant of the third primary offender is SOY! Despite the media focus on the supposed health benefits of soy, SOY IS NOT A HEALTH FOOD and there are numerous published medical studies that prove this!  Now before you scream and bring up Asian society, I am going to clarify several things: I am NOT including small amounts of ORGANIC miso, tempeh, and tofu – all of which have been fermented. By small amounts I mean 10 grams or less a day TOTAL – which is the NORMAL amount eaten in Asian cultures, and the fermentation allows for digestion of the soy. I am talking about the abundance of fake foods now made from soy (Soy: milk, cheese, meat, ice cream etc). This soy is regulated as an industrial product, receives a HUGE dosing of pesticides and is responsible for disrupting MANY hormonal profiles.  soy truth

REAL Soy – Organic & Fermented!



Think of it this way, why is it o.k. for post-menopausal women to take SOME soy or soy-isoflavones (the hormonally active component of soy sold as a dietary supplement) because they mimic ESTROGEN (which is low in post-menopausal women). WHY ON EARTH WOULD YOU WANT TO GIVE ESTROGEN TO YOUR CHILDREN??


Thanks for all the soy mom, Can I borrow your bra….

The medical research clearly states that: Soy infant formula stunts growth!; High levels of estrogen delays puberty in young boys and accelerates it in girls!!  So you get teenage boys with less muscle & strength development that is the norm for their age along with female fat patterning & breast development.  At the same time you get 8 year old girls with a menstrual cycle!

As always I have references for you, now you can go to Pub Med and search & read lots of boring research or you can read some very enlightening summaries and listen to a great interview with the country’s foremost soy researcher – Dr. Kaayla T. Daniel.

Dr. Daniel wrote the ground breaking book ” The Whole Soy Story” – Read it and you WILL NEVER TOUCH SOY AGAIN!

Here is a great audio interview with Dr. Daniel:  THE WHOLE SOY STORY

For those of you believe in and try to eat whole, organic foods – The Weston A. Price foundation is a phenomenal resource and has some great articles by Dr. Mary G. Enig and Sally Fallon on the dangers of soy, especially their tell all expose“The Ploy of Soy!”

This is a link to the WAPF soy archive page with MORE references and research to back up this blog post than I could ever wish for:  Weston A .Price Soy Archive

Here is a video on the truth about soy by Dr. Joseph Mercola:

And another from The Weston A. Price Foundation’s Sally Fallon:

The final things that are a MAJOR cause of abdominal bloating, swelling, and weight gain are prescription & OTC medical drugs – Read the fine print of the instructions and inserts that come with most drugs – abdominal upset, nausea, and weight gain are commonly listed as side effects!!


We must address the problem from the inside / out!!  If we desire  PERMANENT change!!

You cannot flatten the abdomen on the “Standard American Diet” – S.A.D.  because it is full of C.R.A.P.  That many of us are allergic to!

C arbohydrates full of Wheat & Gluten and other Allergens

R efined sugar

A dditives & Preservatives

P asteurized Dairy




It also makes you really think twice about who created the “Food Pyramid’ and more importantly WHY??? – But that is a topic for another day….


 So now we know why we need to avoid Gluten & Food Allergens; Come to the Gluten Free & Allergen Free Expo to learn how!!


 Click the banner for  20% OFF ADMISSION!


Thanks for visiting, and please contact me if you have any questions or need more info

 See you at the Expo!




ADVANCED FITNESS CONCEPTS "Using Science to Maximize Health & Performance"

ADVANCED FITNESS CONCEPTS “Using Science to Maximize Health & Performance”





P.S. You are all invited to join me for my new FREE workshop: Functional vs FICTIONAL “Is your exercise program helping you or HURTING YOU!”

At the Outdoor Living & Wellness Festival on Sept. 14th


outdoor 2

Click for details!












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