Gut Love Tip | Prep Week #1 Get Prepped 1.0

Part 1: What I Eat in a Day

Slide #1:

Introduction: Welcome to your first Gut Love Tip—weekly lessons aimed at giving you easy and practical gut loving habits to adopt into your every day routine.

This week, we’re talking all about Getting Prepped for your Kickstart because we all know failing to prepare is preparing to fail! 

Specifically, we are going to talk about what foods to eat and what foods to take a break from for the next 28 days…then I’ll share a few grocery shopping tips— without breaking the bank. 


Slide #2: What to Eat?!

Ok, first so what to eat?!

Your 28 Day Gut Kickstart is all about wiping the slate clean in your gut to establish the most anti-inflammatory state you can—without going crazy—like restricting yourself to just 5 to 10 foods or cutting out carbs! 

Basically: Eat real food—IN ABUNDANCE.  

Include foods your body was meant to thrive upon:

  • Lots of fresh, colorful veggies
  • Some starchy roots and tubers
  • Clean proteins—pastured chicken, grass-fed beef, organic turkey and wild-caught fish
  • Plant and animal fats—
  • Some colorful fruits—
  • No (added) sugar—
  • Lots of fresh, clean water

If it didn’t grow in the land, swim in the sea or roam the earth, it’s not real food. 

These are the simple foods your body was made to crave and digest (before Cookies & Cream Halo Top ice cream)…and are most often found on the outside edge of the grocery store or at the Farmer’s Market…

Slide #3: 80/20 

All with 80/20 balance of course—basically NO perfection…it’s something you’ll hear me talk A LOT about the next 28 days!…80% of the time eat real food. …20% of the time let life happen—on your birthday, eat the cake…one day choose the salad, the next a burger…and when in Rome, try the pasta!

In fact, I actually encourage you to include 1-2 non perfect foods daily into your diet—such as your morning cup of coffee…a piece of dark chocolate…some Skinny Pop popcorn if that’s your things…going out to dinner one night with a friend…1 to 2 imperfect things–as long as your gut is not super upset from it.  

Vitamin P – Pleasure – is a vital component to the gut healing equation…

The total purpose of the Kickstart is to find what foods simply make your gut feel really good—and by your gut, I also mean your energy levels…your skin…your hormones….without feeling like you are in jail!

Practice 80/20 Balance

Slide #4:

The milkshake study is a perfect example of this!

In the study, people were divided into 2 groups—the “healthy milkshake” group and the “indulgent milkshake” group. 

The healthy milkshake group was told they were drinking low-calorie Sensi-shake —with zero fat, zero sugar and only 140 calories.

The indulgent milkshake group was told they were drinking a sugary, fat rich milkshake with 620 calories.

In truth, BOTH shakes were they exact same shake—300 calories each.

So what do you think happened?

People who believed they were drinking the 600-calorie indulgent shake were more satisfied— their hunger-hormone levels dropped three times more than the low calorie shake people…and they also metabolized and digested their food better. 

Basically, if you’re not enjoying your food, then the next 28 days are going to feel like jail!

The 28 Day Gut Kickstart is actually TOTALLY sustainable

In fact, even though I am NOT on a diet at the moment at all, my daily meals are very much aligned exactly with what you’ll be eating too because I have found my sweet spot—my 80/20 balance for what makes my gut feel really good. 

Slide #5:

My daily meals look something like this:

For breakfast—a gut love shake—I do a paleo chocolate protein powder with coconut milk, a piece of fruit, nutbutter, cacao nibs, some sort of veggie like frozen cauliflower or greens. Simple. 

For lunch—it’s always a bowl or lettuce wrap—I have been crushing on chicken thighs lately topped with an amazing cilantro lime dressing or balsamic vinegar…baby bok choy or rainbow chard…roasted carrots or beets…summer squash…lots of yummy sea salt…

For dinner—the one meal I typically cook in a day—turkey burgers, salmon, cod, occasional ground bison—some sort of meat…cooked and cooled sweet potatoes, roasted beets and carrots, or Kabocha winter squash…sautéed kale or green beans or asparagus in some ghee…and top it with avocado ALWAYS.

Easy peasy!

Ultimately, as you can see, I get all food groups in and I get lots of energy—and balance on your plate is essential—proteins, fats and carbs! 


Slide #6:

Like a plant that needs water, sunshine AND rich soil to survive and thrive, you need all 3 basic macronutrients—plus water— to thrive too. 

For example—sure, you can get carbs from chicken breast as your body coverts protein into glucose, but is it ideal? Nope. 

Of course, you can consume some fat—like 0.5 grams—in an apple, but is it a preferred source of fat? Nope. 

And no need to count calories regularly but I do know that I can eat more than some guys I meet with as patients regularly—when you eat gut loving foods, your metabolism fires up!

For more specifics on what proteins, fats and carbs to choose from, check out your Kickstart Nutrition Blueprint Guide!

Part 2: Pantry Sweep: Not Right Now Foods

Slide #1:

As for what “not” to eat…I really hate the words “bad foods”—food does NOT have morals —it’s not good or bad, and if you eat a piece of pizza or a bowl of oatmeal, it does NOT make YOU a bad person!

If it happens, just roll with it—hope you enjoy it—and move on!

So now that we’ve set the record straight…the KEY experiment during your 28 Day Gut Kickstart is to pump tons of gut-loving anti-inflammatory nutrients into your gut biome so you can better determine how you feel…

Slide #2: How Do You Feel?

For example, is the reason you feel bloated because you drink diet Coke with Splenda in it every single day? Or is it because you really are bloated? 

Are you constipated because you’re barely eating 1200 calories per day—not eating enough—or is it because you’re actually constipated due to something like leaky gut? 

Do your best to give yourself the opportunity to let your gut be your true guide…

Slide #3: Foods to Avoid

As for foods to avoid for the next 28 days…

You probably already know the usual suspects:

  • Processed or Refined Foods. As a general rule, if it comes in a bag or a box, don’t eat it. This also includes Processed Sauces and Seasonings. Soy sauce, tamari, and hot sauce which often have sugar, soy, gluten, and funky additives.

  • Hydrogenated Seed Oils. Soybean, corn, safflower, sunflower, cottonseed, canola, etc.—these are oils used alot of times in restaurant foods.

  • Sugar & Artificial Sweeteners. Limited stevia included—most is super processed.

  • Sodas, Diet Sodas & Alcohol. All forms.

Slide #4: 

Aside from these guys, however, there are a handful of other foods you’ll find listed in your Blueprint to press “pause” on. I call these “Not Right Now” or “20% Foods”—just occasional if at all— and they include the top 5 most allergenic and moldy foods:

  • Beans & Grains 
  • Dairy
  • Nuts and Peanuts
  • Nightshade Spices—like chili powder, paprika, curcumin
  • Eggs–namely the whites

Why not these?!

Slide #5:

  • Grains & Legumes. Including both gluten and gluten-free grains like corn, rice, lentilpasta, quinoa, chickpeas and beans. This is because these foods contain indigestible compounds—specifically Mycotoxins (molds), Phytates and Lectins—meant to protect them in the wild from predators and weather (like “steel armor”).

    When we eat lots of grains and don’t properly prepare them, it’s like we’ve swallowed a steel pinball from a pinball machine—our body has a hard time breaking it down.

    In fact, Phytic Acid (from Phytates) in grains is actually called an “anti-nutrient” because it also prevents the absorption of vitamins and minerals found in grains in the first place.

    Grains and beans are NOT innately bad, especially when you learn to properly prepare them to remove the phytates and lectins…but since they are such a wild west, we will come back to them after 28 days during reintroduction.

Slide #6:

  • Dairy. Upwards of 70% of people are lactose intolerant. Keep dairy foods, like cheese, conventional yogurt, milk, cream & any dairy product that comes from a cow, goat or sheep to a minimum to distill any inflammation. Exception grass-fed butter and ghee.

Slide #7:

  • Nuts & Peanuts. Studies showing that nut intolerance may affect a whopping 20 to 50% of people. Similar to grains, peanuts and nuts also are higher in lectins and phytates and can get kind of stuck in the gut…

Slide #8:

  • Egg Whites. Eggs are a great source of protein, but can be inflammatory for some people, especially if they have a leaky gut or underlying autoimmunity. This is because the egg white contains a compound called lysozyme—an enzyme that is resistant to digestion by our digestive enzymes….take a break for 28 days, with the exceptions of eating pastured egg yolks—scrambled or raw— or whole eggs cooked into recipes or condiments like paleo mayo—as these tend to be less reactive.

Slide #9:

  • Nighshade  Spices. Pause the hot sauce, chili powder, cumin, paprika, red pepper flakes, etc are also higher in lectins and therefore just a bit tougher for the gut to break down. 

Remember, these are not FOREVER…

Because, the good news is when your gut is back to better health then you can try these foods again and see how your body reacts.

Again, check out your Kickstart Blueprint for all the deets, including recommendations if you you follow a plant-based diet.

Part 3: Meal Prep Hacks

Slide #1:

    • Failing to prepare is preparing to fail

  • Nourishing your body is NOT hard. Stop telling yourself it is.

  • Eating food at home doesn’t have to equal cardboard rice cakes or dry chicken and broccoli. The Dorito Effect has jaded your taste buds.

  • Meals don’t have to be gourmet. Simple. Protein, fat and fiber + sea salt & broth.

Slide #2: Top 6 Hacks (to make healthy eating sustainable) 

  • Plan It.
    Spend 5-10 minutes to think through the week before hitting the store. Take inventory of what you currently have in house, and make a list of the foods you need.

Slide #3:

  • Keep it Simple.
    No elaborate recipes are necessary—even if you like to vary it up! Use seasonings, spices, herbs and condiments to help dress up any ol’ staples. Buy a 2 to 3 different types of meats for the week, 2 to 3 starchy veggies, 1 to 2 fresh fruits and lots of different greens and let the basics shine with varied tastes and flavors: Example:  Curry chicken (chicken + coconut milk + sweet potatoes + curry powder + greens + ginger);  Beef stir fry (grass-fed beef + broccoli & carrots + coconut amino + sea salt and pepper); Hash (ground turkey + butternut squash + greens + cinnamon + sea salt + yellow onions); Pizza casserole (spaghetti squash + tomato sauce + grass-fed ground meat + goat cheese + mushrooms + italian seasoning + nitrate-free pepperonis)


Slide #4:

  • Schedule 1-2 Hours for Weekly Prep.
    You don’t have to spend hours cooking for the week. Simply aside at least 1 to 2 hours most one day to do a small “bulk” prep of some basics, such as whipping up 2 to 3 protein options to have on hand and 2 to 3 bulk veggies.

Slide #5:

  • Then…Prep as You Go.
    No pressure to cook everything at once per week. Set aside just 10-20 minutes every day or two while you’re home to assemble and cook an ongoing arsenal of batch cooked roasted veggies, sweet potatoes, chicken, burgers, fish, etc. without the burden of spending an entire day in the kitchen. Pro Tip: Use a Crockpot or Insta-Pot. Throw any meat + veggies + bone broth into your pot in the morning for dinner at night.

Slide #6:

  • Make Extra.
    Cook 2 to 3 extra servings of your evening meal to make breakfasts or lunches a no-brainer—leftovers.

Slide #7:

  • Stick to a Daily Meal Template.
    Follow a template for breakfasts, lunches and dinners consisting of the same type of meal, but with different foods within the meal. For example: for breakfast choose between a Gut Love Shake or Protein & Greens, for lunch have a Gut Love Bowl or big Gut Love Salad, and for dinners, get creative—use evenings to experiment with a recipe or different flavors.

Slide #8:

  • Keep “Grab & Eat” Foods on Hand for “in a pinch” moments. Check out the list here.

  • P.S. Lazy Chef Option: Order Up. If your life is not conducive to meal prep or you simply want a NO thought solution to at least one meal per week, take the thought out of it by signing up for a meal delivery service like Pete’s Paleo, The Good Kitchen or Trifecta Nutrition. You can also look into local area chefs and meal delivery services who can customize meals or provide “AIP” (autoimmune paleo) meal options. 
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