Q: Isabel, tell us a little a bit about yourself, and what you do.
A: I am a NJ based Holistic Nutritionist and Exercise Specialist. I have a private practice in NJ and when I’m not seeing clients in my office I am writing books, newsletters, articles or speaking on the principles of healthy nutrition for weight loss and disease prevention. Basically, doing my best to communicate what true health is to the world.
Q: Isabel, I just finished your ebook, The Diet Solution, and get the sense of an interesting and diverse background. Can you tell a bit about yourself?
A: The Diet Solution Program is really a culmination of my search for answers to my own weight loss and health problems. I can remember going on my first “diet” in the 7th grade. You name the diet and I tried it. Not until I found the true answers to weight loss and how to keep it off was I able to finally reach my own ideal weight and level of health that I enjoy today.
It was also my mother’s and my grandmother’s struggle with obesity and type 2 Diabetes that led me to research how blood sugar affects our ability to lose and gain fat. As I studied Diabetes more and more, I found that the same principles that could be used to control a diabetic’s blood sugar were the same principles that all people needed to use to lose fat and keep it off. Once I figured this out, I was almost amazed at how easy the answer was the whole time and couldn’t believe all of the past unhealthy plans I had attempted with no success.
Q: How did you happen to get into the Nutrition industry? What were the deciding factors?
A: As I continued to work on my own health and weight struggles, I became fascinated by the human body. I was truly amazed by the discoveries I had made in regards to weight loss and blood sugar control and could not believe that this information wasn’t main stream. Even worse, I could not believe that doctors and food companies were actually recommending the exact opposite of the information that I had discovered to be the only way to lose weight. This led me to be as passionate as I am now about communicating this exact information to the world.
Q: What was your inspiration for The Diet Solution? Did you follow some other diet or fitness guru’s before your own ideas developed?
A: Writing the Diet Solution Program was inspired by seeing hundreds of clients in my private nutrition practice in New Jersey. All of the nutrition principles that I would teach my clients was a combination of several books, classes and seminars that I had read or attended and grabbed the best principles taught in each. I knew there had to be a way to put all of this great information together in an easy to read, easy to follow program. Don’t get me wrong. Actually putting the information together and laying it out in a way that would be easy to understand by all people was not an easy chore. But once it was complete, it really was a culmination of 15 years of research and study.
Q: Getting into the diet and nutrition industry can have a ton of positive benefits – has there been a downside at all?
A: No, I wouldn’t call it a downside. But I will say that I do encounter a lot of resistance to my not very mainstream ideas. I tell people “If you have been following the same nutrition and diet principles with no results, isn’t it time to take a new approach?” When people see the kind of results my clients get, they realize that a new approach may be the only way they will successfully lose weight.
I battled my own weight since I was a teenager and through my own mistakes and struggles, I found the only way to really lose weight and keep it off was through a natural foods approach. And by no means does that mean a tasteless, bland food approach. I mean the stuff good ol’ Mother Nature provided us with in their delicious forms.
About The Diet Solution Program…
Q: people need is another “diet program.” How is your nutrition program different and who would be a perfect candidate for your nutrition program?
A: My nutrition program is the best way and the only way most people should be eating. It is not some crazy fad diet, nor is it some extreme crash diet. It is how everyone should be eating on a daily basis, as mother-nature intended. What most people don’t realize is, if we ate they way our ancestors ate centuries ago, we would all be lean and healthy. It is the over-commercialized and toxic processed foods in our countries that are keeping everyone so overweight and unhealthy. Does it really seem healthy to sign up for a diet program that makes you buy their food and only their food? Or to nourish your body with fake powders and bars? That’s really not how are bodies were designed.
Q: It looks like the ebook is getting great reviews – what has been the response so far?
A: The response has been incredibly positive. People have been emailing me and telling me what an eye opening experience it has been for them. They also just couldn’t believe how simple weight loss could really be with all the right tools and information on hand. After the first 2 weeks, people tell me they have lost weight that they have been struggling with for years. I get an overwhelming amount of ‘thank you’ notes in my email inbox everyday.
Q: What is the biggest benefit of following your nutrition program and does it come with meal recipes and meal plans?
A: The biggest benefit of my nutrition program is that it is made up of all real food. It also recommends that you eat good healthy portions of food and that you should NEVER be hungry. If you are walking around hungry, you are doing something wrong. You are most likely starving your body of the nutrients and whole foods it needs.
I have done all the hard work for you. I have put together all of the healthy principles into easy to follow meal plans, no matter what your starting point is. I have also included 61 of my favorite meal recipes so that you can always keep your nutrition program delicious.
Q: Why did you decide to write The Diet Solution Program when there is more than enough nutrition info out there?
A: I decided to write the Diet Solution for that exact reason. People are being bombarded with nutrition information and either one of two things is happening: They are either being grossly misinformed with information that is the complete opposite of what is the truth or they are so overwhelmed with all of the good information and they just don’t know where to start. What I did with The Diet Solution was take all of the BEST information out on the market today and compiled it in an easy to understand, easy to read and easy to implement program. Basically, took the best of the best and saved my readers hundreds of hours and hundreds of dollars in research
and trial and error.
Q: What is your advice for someone just starting your Diet Solution program? Can anyone do this? Absolutely anyone can follow and succeed on The Diet Solution Program. My mother started following the program at 63 years old after a kidney transplant. In 6 months, she lost 40 lbs and has never been healthier or felt better in her life. Not only has she lost a significant amount of weight, but she has greatly reduced the number of medications she was previously taking. If she can do it, anyone can do it!
A: I would start by incorporating one principle at a time. People get very overwhelmed and think they need to completely overhaul their life all at once, but this is not true. My own nutrition changes took almost 3 years. Now you may incorporate these principles sooner than I did, but remember that getting to your health goals at a pace that is do-able for you is much better than not doing anything at all.
Q: How does “meal planning” fit into the weight loss equation?
A: Meal planning is extremely important especially when you first change your current eating habits. If you find out that you feel best on a meal plan that contains protein in each meal, you must plan accordingly. This often intimidates people and makes them feel like “it is too much work”. But the whole thing really does become second nature. You finally know what you need each day to feel good and lose weight and you just naturally gravitate towards those foods. To make it a much simpler process in the beginning stages, I provide several days worth of detailed meal plans in my book, so my readers and my clients know exactly where to begin, without having to do the exact meal planning themselves.
Q: If there was one Diet Solution secret you could share with everyone what would it be?
A: Just one? Oh that’s tough. I guess it would be to learn your metabolic type and follow an eating plan that is specific to that type. Without this information, you may actually be following a healthy eating plan but one that is not specific to your metabolic needs. If it’s not what your body needs, you will not see the results you’re after.
Q: Any exciting new plans for the future?
A: Of course. We are now in the process of recording The Diet Solution Program as an audio program so that you can listen to the entire book in the car or on the go.
I am also in the process of putting together The Diet Solution for Children and The Diet Solution for Diabetes. Lots and lots of exciting projects in the works.
About Misconceptions With Food…
Q: You clearly state that soy is NOT a health food. Does this go for everyone including those people who want to gain muscle?
A: This goes for absolutely everyone, but especially for those who want to build muscle. I would even say the effects of eating soy will contribute to the exact OPPOSITE hormonal changes in your body that you want if building muscle is your goal. This is because most soy products on the market today contain phytoestrogens. These phytoestrogens mimic the effects of estrogen in the body and have been shown to decrease the testosterone levels of rats, monkeys and other animals, including humans. It has been known for quite some time that soy lowers testosterone to the point that there is an old Japanese wives’ tale that says women punish straying husbands by feeding them a lot of tofu. Now what do you think that means?
If building muscle is your goal, definitely stay away from any protein powder or protein bar that contains soy or soy protein isolate. Make sure to read labels carefully as it is in more products than you think.
Q: When choosing a protein powder, should I really be concerned about artificial sweeteners harming my body?
A: Artificial sweeteners have been found to be one of the most toxic substances we can put inside our bodies. Besides the fact that it causes brain and metabolism dysfunction, they clog up your liver to a point where it can not fully function.
Why is your liver so important? Your liver is not only responsible for eliminating toxins from your body but it is also responsible for metabolizing fat. If it is so busy processing through artificial sweeteners (a harmful toxin), it will not spend a sufficient amount of time processing through the unwanted fat you are trying to lose.
Believe it or not, I have had clients give up Diet Coke and lose up to 10 lbs in 2 weeks!
Q: Why are artificial sweeteners so bad if they supposedly have “zero calories”?
A: Zero sugar foods are actually much worse than sugar containing foods. Artificial sweeteners (like aspartame, sucralose, and saccharin) are poison to our bodies. Whenever the body reads an ingested food as a potential danger, your liver comes to the rescue to help ward off any danger these foreign substances may cause. People who eat and drink “diet” foods and “diet drinks all day, are overwhelming and taxing their livers. Your liver is crucial in the weight loss/fat burning process. So if your liver is taxed and not working at optimum, it becomes near impossible to lose any weight.
This is why I give my readers many alternatives to sugar free foods and sugar containing foods. There are natural alternatives that are ideal replacements for any of these diet foods, without the potential harm to the liver.
Q: In your program, you talk about good dairy and bad dairy. Any tip you can provide before I buy any more dairy?
A: Dairy is one of the leading reasons most people can not lose weight or, worse yet, are constantly gaining weight. The
shocking truth about dairy is that it is only healthy in its raw form. All of the pasteurized dairy in the supermarkets
today are really keeping people fat and making them fatter. Besides the countless amount of research that has been done
showing us how healthy raw dairy is, the proof is really in the thousands of people and children that are overweight or
obese and drinking several glasses of pasteurized milk each day.
Q: Eating organic food is really expensive. Is it worth the extra cost or completely over rated? Will it really make a difference in building muscle faster and losing fat quicker?
A: The answer to this question takes us back to the function of the liver. The pesticides, antibiotics and hormones that are being added to most foods are clogging up our livers. Again, a clogged up liver can not burn fat. And worse yet, will continue to store fat. Yes, organic food may be a bit more expensive. But most of my clients notice their grocery bill is the same once they eliminate the expensive cereals and “so called” expensive diet foods they were eating before.
Q: Do you think fat burning pills are helpful in the weight loss process?
A: I think people really don’t realize the severe damage they are causing their bodies with fat burning pills. Whenever you attempt to artificially spark your metabolism with harmful pills, you are essentially creating a “lazy” metabolism. When you go off these pills, your metabolism is too lazy to do anything. Almost every person I know who has taken fat burning pills complains of gaining even more weight when they attempt to get off of them. Of course this happens. Their metabolism is now “on vacation” and not sure if it will ever come back as strong as it was before.
The best way to spark your metabolism is to eat good amounts of healthy protein, fat and carbohydrates all day long. This is what your metabolism was designed to do: metabolize healthy food into energy and muscle for the body to utilize.
Q: Are there really certain foods that are toxic to our bodies? How do we know which foods to look for?
A: The amount of toxic chemicals that are now added to our foods is actually quite frightening. The same pesticides that are designed to kill bugs are all over conventional produce and these pesticides go into our bloodstream when we eat these sprayed fruits and vegetables. The 2 worst forms of chemicals are hydrogenated oil and high fructose corn syrup. Hydrogenated oil is a toxic change in oil to make it more shelf stable, hence keeping foods like packaged cookies, cakes and most processed foods in the stores longer to make maximum profit by these companies. My program teaches people exactly which chemicals they must stay away from if they want to finally lose their excess weight (and often times, these chemicals are exactly what’s keeping them from achieving their desired goals).
About Your Physiology…
Q: How important is it to eat based on your metabolism and eat the right foods for your metabolism? Do you touch on this in your program?
A: Eating the right foods for your metabolism is so important, that it is the difference between losing weight and not losing weight. We are all individual and so are our metabolisms. In order to pinpoint exactly which meal plan will work best, I have included a Metabolic Typing Test so my readers can determine exactly how they metabolize food and which foods are “fat burning” foods and which foods are “fat storing” foods. The results of this test have been a true “AHA” moment for thousands of people, finally, maybe for the first time, finding why they have not been able to shed their unwanted fat before.
What I teach in The Diet Solution Program is exactly what your body needs to maintain a lean and healthy body for a lifetime.
Q: Do you think people can lose weight on a fat free diet?
A: Definitely not. The no-fat craze clearly made most Americans (and many other countries) gain more weight than ever before. Why? Because the right kind of fat is essential to the body and without it, your body can not metabolize the fat you don’t want. So unless you feed your body the fats that it needs, it literally holds on to all the fat you don’t need (and don’t want!). Eating a low fat or no fat meal plan is a huge mistake. Not only will you not lose weight but you may suffer from many conditions such as asthma, diabetes, and heart disease.
This is usually one of the most eye-opening chapters for most of my readers. They can’t believe they need to eat fat to lose fat and are amazed when they see the results first hand. Now, of course, eating unhealthy fats (like the ones found in French fries and burgers) is not the right approach. You must focus on the healthy fats (again, as Mother Nature intended).
Q: After reading The Diet Solution I discovered that I am a serious ‘Protein Type’ – what the main thing I should do to increase my energy?
A: The main thing is not to be afraid of eating healthy fat and healthy proteins. Everyone thinks chicken breasts and egg whites is the only way to lose weight but, especially for a protein type, that is not the case. Actually a protein type may gain weight by only eating low fat proteins and a low fat meal plan. Someone like you needs whole eggs, dark meat poultry, beef, and healthy fats.
Q: What exactly is Metabolic Typing and why is it so important for each of us to know our metabolic type?
A: Metabolic typing is actually a very old science-based way to determine which foods respond best to your body. The best way to describe this method is: the foods that an Eskimo would eat are clearly different than the foods a native Hawaiian would eat. Why? Because their natural ancestors and their environment dictate how their bodies will process and digest food. So an Eskimo will need a meal plan higher in healthy fats to keep warm and a Hawaiian will need a meal plan higher in veggies and fruits to stay cool. Now, it is often not this simple. Each and every person’s metabolism responds very differently to all food and can vary greatly from person to person. For example, I feel my best and stay at my ideal weight when I eat higher fat proteins along with lots of vegetables where as many of my clients do better with higher amounts of natural carbohydrates and lower fat proteins. My book provides a detailed, easy to answer test to determine your own personal metabolic type and then tells you exactly which foods are the best fit for you.
Q: Can people lose weight by just starving themselves?
A: Back in the caveman days, there were periods of feast and famine. Our bodies have a natural ability to make sure we do not die of starvation. This mechanism in our bodies holds on to every bit of fat and every calorie possible to keep us from dying. This is obviously no longer a risk in most countries, but this mechanism is still present in our bodies. So when people starve themselves all day, the body sees this as a potential risk, and holds on to every calorie and fat gram it possibly can. This is why people become extremely frustrated when they “don’t eat all day” and still don’t lose weight.
I know it seems counterproductive, but the only way to truly lose weight and keep it off is to start eating. But not processed unnatural foods. Your body will respond best to natural, wholesome foods and LOTS of them.
Q: How do companies get away with selling products with harmful chemicals in them?
A: I hate to say this but most food and pharmaceutical companies are really only concerned with one thing: money. So if they were to actually teach people the real truth behind how to lose weight and take control of their health, most of the food products, supplements and medications on the market today would be completely unnecessary. Let’s be honest. No one is going to get rich selling apples, you know?
I think many of these companies are also feeding off people’s emotions. The more addicted they get people to their products and diet foods, the more money they will continue to make. But if you were to get someone to their ideal weight with natural foods like veggies, fruits and natural meats, there would be no food addictions to diet foods and chemicals, just good healthy eating.