What is the GI and is low GI of any relevance

What is the GI and is low GI of any relevance

What is the GI and is low GI of any relevance

This is something we all have come into contact with ..have a  look at your breads, your pastas ,even your noodles its a topic  often spoken about yet not many people have a cooking clue(excuse the pun) about GLYCAEMIC INDEX(GI).

Glycaemic index = how a food affects your blood sugar levels in comparison to glucose(your bodys main source of energy)ie glucose= 100 (the highest value)on the scale.

Low GI=anything under 55..a value under 55 basically means it breaks down slower and gives you a more sustained release of energy whereas a value of say 90 would be from quick release carbohydrates which spike your blood sugar and give a short lived energy boost and possibly an energy slump afterwards.

Adding protein, fat or fibre to a carbohydrate will lower the GI of a meal by a couple points

Do yourself a favour and look up the GI of common foods you eat just to get an idea

There is now also something called the GL or glycaemic load which basically shows the effect of food on your blood sugar but taking into account the amounts required to spike blood sugar levels significantly

Ie carrots have a high GI because of the carbs they contain but they do not contain large amounts of carbs and therefore you have to eat a  rather decent amount compared to what you usually would to spike your blood sugar significantly therefore their GL is better than say rice

Glycaemic load=percentage of carbs per portion x glycaemic index

GI=effect of say 50g of a food on blood sugar levels compared to glucose

Consistently  high blood sugar levels(similar to that of diabetes)can affect your energy levels,your nerves, your cardiovascular health and your eyes just to name a few since it actually has a wide spread and knock on affect which is a whole nother article on its own)


Alcohol and fitness?!!

Alcohol and fitness?!!


The hidden calorie

Now this is a topic close to home for me as like many men out there  I really enjoy my beer  at the end of a long day but I do realise it negatively impacts my performance and dietary choices if I have more than one beer or so.

Moderate alcohol consumption has some cardiovascular benefits but excessive drinking is harmful to your health and carries a whole bunch of negative effects…the result is your body produces toxic metabolites, dehydrates and is robbed of precious electrolytes and vitamins particularly your b vits (not to mention the excess empty calories)

Why fitness and excessive alcohol consumption don’t mix:

Decreased protein synthesis…decreased recovery *

Dehydration and electrolyte loss…temporary strength and endurance loss

Fatigue and loss of motivation

Alcohol depletes vital vitamins..contributes to fatigue and poor performance

“Messes with blood sugar levels…leading to poor dietary choices (I mean after a couple drinks who the hell wants to eat a bowl of quinoa or a carrot…you want a burger and fries with all the little extras”

*Alcohol and protein synthesis: alcohol consumption has a negative influence on protein synthesis i.e. protein synthesis slows after a good couple toots.

What type of alcohol is best? The drier(less sweet) forms of alcohol are the more diet and fitness friendly

*don’t forget alcohol itself contains empty calories now if there is sugar added in over and above those calories it’s very easy to consume enough calories equivalent to a whole another meal and beyond

Eg: spirits such as brandy, whisky, vodka etc. on the rocks or with soda water are the most calorie friendly as they contain almost no carbohydrates and mainly just alcohol

Dry wines esp. red wines are not exactly low calorie but a single small glass can be beneficial for your health due to its antioxidant content(resveratrol amongst others)

Alcohol types to avoid (you will be amazed at how quickly the calories add up)


: Spirits “dashed “with sugary soft drinks

Sweet wines

Those Premixed fruity coolers






The easiest and most effective way to keep calories at a meal at an acceptable level is to use what i call “fillers”+ a glass of water with every meal

The portion of food being no bigger than the palm of your hand and then add fillers(this will vary according to your calorie requirements related to physical activity aswell as your goals )and

Now foods which I call fillers are those foods that contain very little calories and easily fill up the plate so the eyes and the belly can be content.

Examples: apples, carrots, green beans ,lettuce ,tomato, cucumber ,bell peppers,celery,rocket,broccoli,cabbage,cauliflower,beetroot,cabbage,mushrooms,zuchinn,radishes etc..These are just a few I can rattle off right now but there are many more foods like this

The first three I find easiest to use as fillers with every meal e.g. half an apple and some green beans

Or a carrot and half an apple

*remember to eat slowly

*6 small meals a day is ideal as opposed to 3 large although not always practical (it requires planning)

*always have glasses of water with your meal(lots of different views regards this and digestion but lets not get pedantic here

*eat when you are hungry not out of boredom, if you are bored get off your ass and do something

HIIT training -the lean machine maker



Many people struggle to lose those last  few extra pounds even though they are moderately active and keep an eye on what they eat .I have found high intensity interval cardio to be the most effective and convenient(in terms of time spent working out) way to get rid of those few extra pounds..Normally people spend hours running cycling and walking at a moderate intensity

Now keep in mind moderate intensity exercise falls within the FAT burning range meaning that while exercising you will be burning fat in order to produce energy for your workout. The fat burning range is a point where the workout is not so demanding that the body has to look elsewhere to supplement the calorie deficit because fat just cannot be converted into energy fast enough or too mild that minimal fat is burnt.

Moderate intensity sounds great right?!

Now let me explain why HIIT training is the way to go:

HIIT training involves alternating high intensity bursts of exercise alternating with low to moderate intensity recovery periods

To give a plain and simple example:

Sprints: run flat out for 10-15 seconds and then jog for 30-60 seconds

Elliptical: 15 seconds absolutely fast as you can go at a high resistance setting alternating with 30 seconds slow movement at the same resistance

Aim for about 20 minutes to half an hour depending on your fitness and goals (note much quicker than spending hours at the gym doing cardio)

*now obviously you can change the time variables according to your fitness, the main idea is to have a high intensity portion and then a moderate-low intensity recovery period (don’t stop moving)

The theory: HIIT training is very taxing on your muscles, nervous system and fuel reserves and what this results in is something loosely called the afterburn effect: where your body may not burn that much more fat during the workout as opposed to moderate intensity exerciseBUT HIIT training taxes your body so much that it boosts your metabolism and cumulative calorie consumption (workout+afterburn) is much greater than that caused by a simple moderate intensity cardio session

Personally when I’m training at a moderate level I do HIIT training2x a week and 1x a week some moderate intensity cardio for some distress and health reasons

#note if your just starting off on your health and fitness adventure start off light this is a very intense form of exercise and if u don’t respect it you will earn yourself a ticket to puke city

Low carb tummy friendly cauliflower mash

Low carb tummy friendly cauliflower mash

Low carb tummy friendly cauliflower mash

Ingredients: fresh cauliflower1/2 a head of cauliflower

Seasoning:salt or cook in  chicken stock if desired

Method:boil chopped up cauliflower until  a knife easily pierces through the pieces ,drain and place back on the heat and dry off the cauliflower (be careful not to singe the cauliflower)mash the cauliflower and add some olive oil or butter to taste if u wish to make it a little more decadent(completely optional)..dont forget to season with salt ..take off the heat when you are happy with the consistency

Cauliflower mash approx. 5g carbs and 25 calories per 100g

Potato mash: 17 g carbs and 77 calories per 100g

(calories not including calories from any fats added )


Training plateaus …Troubleshooting

Training plateaus




Gym started off really well? Making gains, losing weight and then…NOTHING

Sound familiar?

Your body has the incredible ability to adapt to just about any situation and it is important to keep your body “surprised” and not let it adapt too much to a workout…you have to constantly but gradually increase intensity ,weight and change up exercises and techniques to keep yourself out of a plateau

Aspects to consider:       nutritional aspect…         are you taking in too much or too few calories?

Intensity…                          is your workout intense enough or is it too intense and causing overtraining? Are you gradually increasing your workout load and intensity as you grow?

Workout timeline..           how long have you been on your current regime. The longer the more likely your body has adapted and you need to change things up

Stress …                                   stress can have a huge impact on your progress it is a catabolic process (meaning breaking down) the opposite of what you actually want

Don’t forget to consider any possible changes that you may have accidently applied without thinking about such…life can run away with you






3.       DEADLIFTS

The window period

The window period

It is important to remember that without proper nutrition your exercising may provide you with little visible benefit….you know the old saying 60% nutrition 40% exercise….well there’s an air of truth to that .A builder needs all his materials before he can build his house ..If he skimps and uses cheap low quality materials he will end up with a cheap low quality homestead. THE SAME GOES FOR YOUR BODY..What you put in is what you get out, simple as that.

If you Think about it? Your body breaks down your food and uses it for energy and to build things ,namely YOU..so? If you put in crap you are going to get crap end of story.

To put it short and sweet: your food literally  becomes you

Ok ok enough diverging..The window period?what is it ?…when you exercise you use calories and nutrients and obviously your body will need to replace these at some point, now comes the trick.. consuming a fast digesting high quality protein and possibly some carbs(to help replace lost glycogen) within an hour of working out will aid your body by boosting protein synthesis(muscles protein and enzyme formation etc.) aiding in recovery and repair

The concept  is that your body and all its hormones are primed to receive nutrients right after exercise because your body is looking to replace what was lost/damaged and therefore  build more in preparation for the next time you exercise (the effects of the window period gradually decrease when you pass the hour mark…its best to try and get it in right after your workout because it still has to digest before your body can utilise what you have consumed

Many people use a simple whey protein (isolate and concentrate mix) right after their workout..the jury is still out on those fancy and expensive engineered proteins with prominent pros and cons but the consensus seems to be that a simple whey does the trick..a nice way of getting in carbs is a medium sized banana(carbs and potassium )or some oats .

The correct  use of the “window period “is widely thought to be beneficial in promoting ,gaining and retaining muscle mass and reducing recovery time aswell as  in some ways support the immune system to some degree after intense training.

The concept makes sense and shows eating clever as opposed to just munching down Willy nilly seems to be the way to go..what do you think?.