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Eating for Energy

Weight Loss – What’s Food Combining, Food Sequencing, and Fiber Got to do with it?

By Yuri Elkaim, BPHE, CK, RHN


Remember how you feel after a big turkey dinner at Thanksgiving or Christmas? I’m sure you’re like most people who feel more than full and ready for a nap upon finishing the last bites off your plate!

So, why is it that you feel this way and how does that play a role in weight loss?

Well, first, let’s clarify some imperative principles regarding optimal nutrition.


RULE #1: Digestion is Master

The first rule of thumb is that digestion is the master! If you’re digestive process is impaired for whatever reason, you may feel bloated, tired, lethargic and definitely not eager to move around. In fact, your body can expend up to 80% of its total energy trying to digest an overzealous meal that is sitting in your stomach for several hours.

The other reason why good digestion is so important is that ingested food needs the appropriate amount of time at each step of the digestive process to be broken down and efficiently absorbed. Normal transit time for a meal moving through your digestive tract is roughly 24 hours. I was astonished to discover that for a large portion of well educated corporate individuals, their transit times extended into 9 days! This is absolutely terrible since it means that the meal they just finished eating will not leave their body until 9 days from now.

Are you one of these people? Can you imagine what must be happening to all that food stuff as it just sits in your colon? If you guessed feeding rapidly multiplying deadly bacteria, fungus, mold, and yeast then you’re RIGHT!

One of the best ways to aid the digestive process is through proper combination and sequencing of the food you eat.


RULE #2: Eat Fruits on their Own or 20 minutes Before a Meal

Ever eat a substantial meal only to follow it with fruit for dessert? How did you feel? Probably bloated, gassy, and tired right!? Well, the reason that it's important to eat fruit by itself is that fruit actually contains adequate digestive enzymes to digest itself – this can be good on an empty stomach but not so on a full stomach. When fruit is added to an already full stomach it ends up digesting itself and its sugar content begins to ferment.  The fruit has nowhere to go (because it is blocked by the previously eaten food) so it just sits in your stomach creating discomfort. 

Eating fruits on their own or before a meal can aid the digestive process and allow for better nutrient absorption. It will also prevent you from feeling as tired after a meal.  However, do your best to avoid them after a meal.


RULE #3: DO NOT Eat Starches with Animal Protein

Consider eating a plate of pasta with meatballs. Here’s what happens:

The digestion of starches begins with the alkaline salivary juices (in the mouth) and an enzyme known as amylase. Conversely, proteins are broken down beginning in the stomach and its highly acidic gastric juices and the enzyme, pepsin.

What do you think happens when you combine these foods? Better yet, what do you think happens when alkaline salivary juices and acidic gastric juices are combined? That’s right – they neutralize!

What this means is that by combining both starches (carbohydrates, except vegetables) and animal proteins, both of their respective digestive juices neutralize one another. As a result, neither food is properly digested (especially the protein). Both will sit for hours in the stomach and suck your body’s energy in an attempt to help the digestive process.

Once again, you want to promote a smooth and efficient digestive process. Efficient digestion leads to better nutrient absorption and less energy drain.


RULE #4: Fiber + Water = Improved Digestion

One of the easiest and most effective ways of improving your digestion and decreasing the time it takes to eliminate waste from your body is to incorporate fiber and water to a greater extent in your diet. On average, Americans only consume 10-15 g fiber/day. Compare that to the recommended amount of a minimum of 25 g/day.

Fiber helps clean and clear the colon and add bulk to your stool. In combination with water it one of the best ways to rid your intestinal tract of excess food.

By incorporating the recommendations into your nutritional lifestyle you can look to feel much more energetic, feel less bloated, and look much healthier. Furthermore, eating according to these guidelines will help you lose weight. How so you might ask?

Well, consider that every time your digestive process is impaired your body can end up spending 80% of its energy on digesting the meal that you’ve just eaten. When this occurs the last thing you feel like doing is going for a walk or even being lightly active. How many times have you eaten a meal only to feel tired and lethargic thereafter?

The point is this. By not feeling energetic throughout the day you lack the motivation and drive to move and/or exercise. Your body is simply too tired from trying to digest the garbage that has been put into your body.

So remember, if you want to lose weight eat right by attending to the above recommendations in order to facilitate proper digestion.

When digestion flows excess weight goes!


Learn how to improve your digestion for weight loss today - click here to read Eating for Energy!

Nutrition Expert, Yuri Elkaim and his groundbreaking raw food book, Eating for Energy, have helped thousands of people in over 80 countries regain control of their health and weight. Watch his new You Tube Video and discover a delicious GREEN smoothie recipe that will alkalize your body while keeping you energized and nourished. For more on his revolutionary healthy eating book visit


© 2007 Yuri Elkaim, BPHE, CK, RHN