- It’s time for stage one of the complete diet reset. Days 3-6
- Putting the three apex upgrades into action
- The list of superfoods for getting total nutrition
- What foods you should now avoid or moderate
The stage is now set to make the changes that will usher in easier fat loss, better energy, less stress. And they are mindnumblingly simple. We’ve made the kitchen game way too complicated in recent years, and now we have the chance to hit the reset button. This is the apex diet, a throwback to the ancestral way of eating that brought us to the top of the food chain.
After a few days of getting the master habits into play, we’re now poised to make some sweeping changes. Out goes the fluff, the toxins, the triggers, and in come the nutritional powerhouses.
If you haven’t set foot on Days 1-2, I’d start there.
Assuming you’ve already kept those food diaries, prepped your meals, avoided the snacks, and set-up a feeding window, you may as well buckle up and jump into Day 3. This is where it starts to get controversial. I’m going to ask you to make a few changes that will go against the tried and tested 1960’s health guidelines.
They haven’t worked, in fact they’ve achieved the opposite. Which makes them downright dangerous. So we’re going to do the sensible thing and reverse the big-food sponsored template.
Over this guide, I’ll lay down those simple changes, but also expand on what foods you should be adding or chopping. Stage one itself is not designed to be too dramatic, it’s only a gentle shift towards the apex way of eating. This isn’t the final stop, at least not yet.
Bringing Back The Superfoods
If you try to jump into a diet, and get quickly swamped by low energy, nagging hunger, and mood swings, you’ll probably assume your calories are too low. While that’s certainly possible that it’s too much too soon, the culprit is more likely to be nutritional inadequacy. Unlike what many think, cutting calories doesn’t have to come with all these nasty side effects. If you play your cards right, you can feel stronger for your efforts.
Here’s how you go about it. Make sure that the majority of your calories are loaded with extra nutrition. Get the maximum bang for your back. Which leads us perfectly to the idea of superfoods. Highly nutrient dense sources that offer up a huge array of essential macronutrients, vitamins, and minerals.
Let’s look at the main contenders.
Low bioavailability – Their cellular structure is extremely different to our own, meaning the body will struggle to effectively absorb nutrients. To offer up an example, iron absorption in soybean is a terrible 0.84%. If you’re going to try and get your daily iron quota for plants alone, you’re going to run up a deficiency.
Poor source of protein – Then there’s the fact that plant sources are lower down the protein quality ladder. The macronutrient that makes your body tick, and the chief weapon of any successful nutritional programme. Plants have a combination of poor bioavailability and an amino acid profile with missing chunks. Not to mention certain popular plant protein sources, like soy, will come with potential health risks in high doses.
Antinutrients – Making matters worse, most plants also contain toxins that block the absorption of critical nutrients. Oxalates, found in the likes of kale and spinach, prevents calcium absorption. Phytate, which comes with nuts and brown rice, blocks iron, zinc and calcium. Fiber itself impairs the digestion of minerals. This can make certain plants a net negative source of nutrition, even cancelling out the nutrition of whatever meat accompanies the salad bowl.
Inflammation – Rounding off the doomsday booklet, the wide array of toxins found in plants can cause inflammation in numerous ways. This is effectively the emergency response of the body. When you get plunged into this state, the digestion and absorption of food get shuffled down the priority list.
For these reasons, I think it’s safe to make a sweeping statement and wipe plants off the superfood list.
Now come the animal products
High bioavailability – Compared to plants, who split from our evolutionary chain over 1.5 billion years ago, animals resemble us far more closely. As a result, animal cells convert to our own with far better efficiency. To bring iron absorption back into the frame, eating beef results in an 8% conversion rate.
Complete source of protein – Animal foods come with all the essential amino acids, completing the protein profile. Not to mention many of them are high in protein to begin with. A 100 gram portion typically gets you at least 20 grams of protein.
Great source of saturated fat – Ruminant meats and grass-fed butter are also high in saturated fats, that ingredient that’s been the scapegoat for heart disease and diabetes since the 1960’s. Which is a shame, because it’s a great appetite suppressant, energy booster, and a rich source of the fat-soluble vitamins.
Wide array of nutrients – Proteins and fats aside, many of these animal foods contain high amounts of vitamins and minerals that stretch across the RDA profile. You could eat beef and beef liver alone, and be in perfect health for it. Not even scurvy.
Low inflammation – Animals, especially grass-fed ones, contain very few toxins. There can be a few exceptions to that rule. The lactose and casein in milk can irritate some people, and chicken and pork can come with excessive amounts of Omega 6 from grain feed. Which is partly why I’d drop them from the superfood menu.
So animal foods have to be classed as the superfoods in the apex diet. Here are my recommendations, based on how many of the superfood boxes they tick on their nutrient profiles.
- Highly bioavailable nutrients
- Wide array of essential nutrients
- Energy source (protein, fats, or both)
- Low inflammation
In order to make sure we a big dump of extra nutrition, Stage One will start off with a 300-gram portion of one of the following superfoods.
- High Fat Beef
Steak is the first on the list, as it’s easy to get in large amounts. There are plenty of people who live on steak alone, and it’s flexible with the budget. Grass-fed ribeyes may be in your wheelhouse if you have cash to burn, and ground beef makes a perfectly good option if you prefer to be careful.
Alternatives – High-Fat Lamb or Bison
- Beef Liver
This is as close as we get to a natural multivitamin, with sky-high amounts of Vitamin A, B12, and even Vitamin C. You don’t even need much at all, hence why I’m breaking the 300g portion rule for this one. I fully endorse this as a weekly essential. But be warned, it’s an acquired taste.
Alternatives – Lamb Liver
- Pastured Eggs
For those still squeamish about the ethics of red meat, eggs are the next best bet. Just as long as you can scope out the pastured ones. Grain-fed hens make for terrible quality eggs with high amounts of Omega 6.
The apex diet is wide open for pescatarians. Salmon has high amounts of the B vitamins, Vitamin D, as well as the crucial brain-boosting Omega 3.
Alternatives – Sardines, Mackerel
- Goats Cheese
You might be surprised to see dairy in here as it can be a trigger food for some. But if you have the milk digesting genes, you might as well make use of them. Goats milk in particular is less problematic than cow-based dairy.
Alternative – Feta cheese, Butter
Cut The Carbs – Eliminate Sugar
Now we’re into the much simpler process of just making sure certain foods don’t manage to sneak their way on the plate. Or end up in an innocent snack. Over Stage One, we’re making a significant shift towards the overarching goal of carb moderation, and quelling the chaotic sugar spikes. The sweet stuff is out.
This doesn’t mean you have to ditch carbs entirely, you’ll still be able to get your fill from starches like rice and sweet potato. We’re only eliminating the obvious sugars that happen to double as completely inadequate sources of nutrition. This is the fluff in the western diet that needs purging.
Even fruit juice. Where excessive amounts of fruit are squeezed to make glasses of pure sugar. Fructose, which incidentally doesn’t bother with hunger signals, enabling you to continue eating and drinking as much as you like.
Most processed foods will contain some type of sugar, especially the ones that pose as healthy ‘no-sugar’ products. Always read the label.
Wipe Out The Inflammatory Oils – Eliminating Factory Fats
Finally, you’re getting rid of the factory fats that serve no purpose other than to add boatloads of inflammation and toxins. Worse, they also tend to stick around in metabolically active fat depots.
This is a non-negotiable part of any healthy diet, let alone the apex diet.
Unfortunately, they’re not always going to served up straight in a bottle, with ‘vegetable oil’ plastered across the front. Vegetable oils are everywhere. In processed foods, in restaurants, and a ton of ‘healthy’ products.
Here are the classic suspects to watch out for.
And with that, you’re set to embark on Stage One, where the real meat of the Apex Reset can begin.
I’ll be taking this reset on myself, and posting more guides and meal ideas in the process. If you have any questions, don’t wait around, just fire your questions over to my email or social media.
You can subscribe to my newsletter to get all the updates across the reset.