How is the Malibu Diet different from other diets?

The Malibu Diet eliminates the 3 major things that are causing weight gain (and chronic disease): cholesterol, oils, and artificial ingredients (colors/flavors/sweeteners/preservatives).  When you eliminate these unhealthy things, which can’t even be considered “foods,” the pounds start dropping off effortlessly and your energy level skyrockets. Unlike other diets that are temporary ways to lose weight, the Malibu Diet is healthy and sustainable for the long-term.  Other diets require willpower, but on the Malibu Diet you can eat whenever you feel hungry as long as you observe the 3 rules. Malibu Diet is all about having a lean, healthy, summer-ready body all year and for life, without feeling deprived.

What are the typical caloric needs for women and men and how often should people eat?

A 40 year old 5’4” female who is lightly active needs about 1,600 calories per day to maintain an ideal weight of about 110 lbs.  A 40 year old 5’9” male who is lightly active needs 2,200 calories per day to maintain an ideal weight of about 150 lbs.  It’s best to eat every 3 hours from 7am to 7pm with a 12 hour fast from 7pm-7am.  If you divide these calories by five times per day, each meal should average 320 calories for women and 440 calories for men, but a typical restaurant entrée can be 1,200 calories or more, even up to triple this amount, at all the well-known chain restaurants.  If you follow the Malibu Diet’s rules of no cholesterol, oil, or artificial ingredients, you can have a filling meal within the reasonable calorie range.

The CDC say that today’s average American woman is 5’4” and weighs 169 pounds, and the average 5’9” man is 196 pounds.  Nearly three-quarters of American men and more than 60% of women are obese or overweight, not to mention nearly 30% of boys and girls under age 20 are either obese or overweight.

What is the key to Weight Loss?

Fiber is the key to weight loss.  Fiber is what fills you up the fastest with minimum calories and maximum nutrients that your body needs for good health. It is shocking that less than 3% of Americans get the minimum recommended intake of fiber. Unlike protein which is found in all foods that we eat (plants and animals), fiber is found only in plant foods – vegetables, fruits, beans/legumes, starches, whole grains, nuts/seeds. If you are not eating enough plant foods, you are fiber and nutrient deficient which can lead to many health problems, the most obvious being constipation with the current laxative business being a $15 Billion per year industry.  Currently 94% of the calories being consumed by Americans come from fattening meat, dairy, and processed foods with only 6% of calories coming from healthy vegetables, fruits, beans/legumes, starches and whole grains.

What is the difference between Macro & Micro Nutrients?

Your body absorbs two types of nutrients: Macronutrients (carbohydrates, fat, and protein) and Micronutrients (vitamins and minerals).  Macronutrients are your body’s direct fuel with carbohydrates being the body’s primary and preferred source of energy.

Why are Carbohydrates the most important nutrient and the body’s primary source of energy?

Carbs are what the body uses first for energy. That is why athletes “carbo load” before their activities. Complex carbohydrates are the perfect nutrient because they are naturally packaged together with protein and fat in the right ratios, as well as fiber, water, vitamins and minerals – everything you need to be healthy, hydrated and energetic – all from one macronutrient.  Complex carbs are the only nutrient that is hydrating to the body.  Fats and animal protein are dehydrating and can cause muscle soreness and cramping when you are active, or even if you are not active. The reason simple carbs are not healthy is because they’ve been refined with the fiber stripped away so they are 100% sugar with no nutrients.

How much Protein do we need?

According to the World Health Organization, we need only about 5% of our calories to come from protein.  Your lean body mass (ideal weight) and physical activity level are what determine your protein requirements (just like your calorie requirements).  If you are eating enough calories per day to maintain your ideal weight, then you are getting enough protein. It’s important not to exceed your daily limit for protein just like it’s not good to go over your daily requirement for calories.  When you go over your limits, you start gaining weight and may suffer other health problems.  Meat, eggs, fish and dairy contain way too much protein.  For example, a ¼ pound hamburger patty is about 50% protein.  A single egg is over 50% protein.  Greek yogurt is over 80% protein.  Tuna is 93% protein!  This is very bad, not good.  Meat and dairy products provide way too much protein (23-93% depending on the product).  Animal protein has been proven to cause cancer.  50% of American men and 33% of American women get cancer in their lifetime.  The reason fewer women get cancer is because they eat less food in general.

Why is protein the least efficient source of energy?

When the proteins you eat are digested, they are broken down into individual amino acids that  contain nitrogen.  This means that even after protein is digested into amino acids, it must go through more steps to have the nitrogen removed.  This happens in the kidneys.  Once the nitrogen is gone, the amino acids are converted into glucose or fatty acids (sugar or fat) that the body can then use for energy.  Due to all the extra steps, protein is the least efficient source of energy. Excess protein forces your kidneys to work harder to detox your body and can cause kidney stones, chronic kidney disease, and kidney failure.  If you’re eating excess protein, it is stored as fat.  (Fat cells are where the body stores toxins, so the more extra fat you have, the more toxic you are.) Nothing you eat is stored as muscle.  The only way to tone or build muscle is to work the muscles through exercise and resistance training.  When you are working out, your muscles require complex carbohydrates for hydration and energy.  If you eat protein before exercise, it dehydrates the muscles and can cause muscle soreness and cramping.  If you suffer from muscle cramping, that means you are eating/drinking too much protein and not getting enough complex carbs for hydration.

Why is it best to avoid eating fat?

Fat is calorie-dense at 9 calories per gram, while carbs and protein have 4 calories per gram. Fat, in addition to being high in calories, contains no micronutrients that your body craves for good health.  For example, if you eat a processed food that is 170 calories and 80 calories come from fat, those are 80 empty calories with no nutrition. Those wasted calories equal a small apple which provides much more nutrition bang for your buck.  Animal fats and vegetable oils contain about 120 calories per tablespoon and coat your arteries with gunk which causes lethargy (not energy).  If there’s a greasy, oily residue in your pots and pans, on your plate, or on your fingers, that is also going into your body.  A mind-boggling 90 million Americans have fatty liver from eating too much fat and refined sugar.  The liver is what detoxifies the body, so you need it to be in top working condition!  Also, a mind-boggling 600,000 gallbladders are surgically removed from Americans every year from eating too much fat. Once your gallbladder is gone, you are not able to digest fat anymore, so it’s best to avoid eating fat in the first place.

Why do some people have slow metabolism? 

Food is fuel, and “metabolize” means to change food into energy that can be used by the body.  People don’t have a slow or fast metabolism — it depends on the foods we eat. Some calorie sources rev our metabolism while others cause it to stall.  Namely, carbohydrates speed up our metabolism, while fat and excess protein cause metabolism to slow down because of the extra steps the body has to go through to try to use fat or protein for fuel.  Carbohydrates are the body’s preferred and primary fuel source and that’s why athletes “carbo load” before performing their sports.

What are the FDA’s Top 8 Allergens?    

The FDA’s Top 8 Allergens are, in order: milk/dairy, eggs, fish, shellfish, tree nuts, peanuts, wheat and soybeans.  Everyone always brings up wheat gluten as an allergen, but no seems to call attention to the top 2 allergens — dairy and eggs – which cause many allergic reactions such as asthma, hives, eczema, psoriasis, acne and more.  Wheat is down on the list and unless you actually have celiac disease, there is no reason to avoid it except that massive amounts of pesticides are used on wheat, so you must choose organic wheat products.  These chemical toxins are also heavily used on tree nuts, peanuts, and soybeans, so it could be these toxins that people are actually allergic to and not the products themselves.  If you buy organic versions, you may find that you don’t get an allergic reaction.

What should we know about digestion and the gut?

Nothing impacts your overall health more than what you put in your body. The health of your gut has everything to do with your physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing.  The gut is the starting point for inflammation and disease, or for good health, depending on what you eat and drink.  The only foods that are healthy and anti-inflammatory for the digestive system are organic, fiber containing foods.  These foods keep your colon clean and healthy.  Foods that come from animals contain no fiber and are inflammatory to the digestive system causing everything from heartburn and constipation to much more serious diseases including IBS, IBD, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, colon cancer, and autoimmune diseases, among even more inflammatory diseases that affect other parts of the body.

What should we know about Vitamin D “The Sunshine Vitamin” and sunscreens?

On the plant-based Malibu Diet, your skin is naturally protected from the sun because the diet is anti-inflammatory, hydrating, and full of antioxidants. It provides the body with an abundance of powerful phytonutrients that will help you fight free radicals so you’ll tan instead of burn. A tan is the body’s natural protection against sunburn. Getting some sunshine exposure is what triggers the hormone Vitamin D in your body.  This is healthy and helps protect you from cancer.  The fairer your skin, the less sun exposure you need for Vitamin D; the darker your skin, the more you need.  Sunscreens contain toxic chemicals that are classified as carcinogens and should be avoided.  Vitamin D supplements have also been proven to be toxic.  If you need sun protection, you should choose protective clothing first.

According to the CDC, the highest rates of melanoma (skin cancer) occur in the coldest and cloudiest states – the top 10 being Delaware, Vermont, New Hampshire, Wyoming, Oregon, Montana, Iowa, Washington, Utah and Maine.  Sunshine exposure is what triggers the hormone Vitamin D in your body and is healthy, helping protect you from cancers.

What is best to drink?  

When choosing what to drink, remember the 3 rules and check labels: No cholesterol; No artificial colors/flavors/sweeteners; No oils which are 100% fat with no nutrients.   The reason we drink should be for hydration, but man-made beverages are actually acidic, toxic and dehydrating.  The only healthy, hydrating choices are natural and include water; green or herbal teas, hot or iced; fresh pressed green juices; and dairy-free smoothies made with fresh or frozen fruit.  These beverages are all alkaline, hydrating and good for your body because they are full of antioxidants, micronutrients and electrolytes.

All other beverages not mentioned are acidic and damaging to the body, so it’s important to eliminate or minimize them.  Even plain old carbonated water is acidic with a pH between 3-4 (the same as acid rain!)

What will I eat on the Malibu Diet?

Malibu Diet allows you to eat all the foods you love – just in the plant-based versions.  You can enjoy a huge variety of dishes from veggie burgers, wraps, tacos, burritos, quesadillas, pizza, subs, BLTs, sandwiches, stir-fry, stuffed peppers, stuffed potatoes, chili, stews, casseroles, lasagna, pasta dishes, pasta salads, noodle or rice bowls, soups, salads… the options are endless so you never have to feel deprived.

There are so many plant-based meat substitutes on the market now that cut out the unhealthy cholesterol and add healthy fiber to your diet. You can get plant-based versions of burger patties, hot dogs, chicken nuggets, fish fillets, sandwich meats, etc. – pretty much anything you might miss when making the switch to a plant-based diet.