Nutrition, Videos

Studies: High Carb vs High Protein Diets for Mood, Depression, and Anxiety | Serotonin + Tryptophan

Today I’m sharing studies on how diet affects your mood, through tryptophan and serotonin. Specifically, I’m talking about how eating a high protein vs high carb diet affects your serotonin levels, and therefore mood, depression, and anxiety! (This is a follow up to my last video on dietary tryptophan & mood)

Here’s a link to the video page, or you can watch it here:

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Links mentioned in the video:

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Welcome!

Hey there!

I’m Miche, and I’m a recovering dieter.

After years of yo-yo dieting & weight gain, I figured out how to stop the cycle, lose the fat, and gain muscle!

So I’m here to share advice on how to eat without rules or restriction and reach your goal body, using scientific research from nutrition & psychology.

…and share recipes, too!

 

Weight loss isn’t about eating less.

It’s about eating differently.

Losing weight, and especially maintaining it, is about what you eat, and how you go about eating it.

I know, this completely runs against conventional wisdom. But hear me out.

Conventional wisdom doesn’t consider the actual scientific research on how weight loss works.

I do: I’m a PhD!

I got my PhD in 2021, and I run studies on nutrition & memory–and apply science to my daily life!

There is a lot of great research out there on how to lose weight, and be happier & healthier… but most people don’t know about it, because it’s hard to access & understand.

So I break it down by writing posts & filming videos so you can apply scientific findings to your life!

 

Intuitive Eating, Videos

Video: Dieting Distorts Your Memory for How Much you Eat – Scientific Study

People who diet, have food rules, or count calories may be lying to themselves. In today’s video, I go over a study looking at how much dieters vs nondieters eat during a “taste test”, and how they compare at estimating how much they ate.

Here’s a link to the video page, or you can watch it below:

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Study links & links mentioned in the video:

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Intuitive Eating, Videos, Weight loss advice

Video: How to deal with cravings when trying to lose weight (or eat healthier)

Are your cravings getting in the way of you losing weight (or eating healthier) while eating intuitively? In my latest video I’m giving you 6 pieces of advice for how to figure out when to give into your cravings, and when to go for the healthier option instead.

Here’s a link to the video page, or you can watch it below:

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Study links & links mentioned in the video:

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Intuitive Eating, Videos

Video: Emotional Eaters have Different Hunger Hormones: Tips to help

Stress is a major cause of overeating–especially if you’re an emotional eater. In today’s video, I’m going over studies on how stress affects our hunger hormones, and how your hunger hormones actually act very differently if you’re an emotional eater… and science-based advice for what you can do to help with emotional overeating!

Here’s a link to the video page, or you can watch it below:

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Study links & links mentioned in the video:

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Intuitive Eating, Videos

Video: How to maintain a lower weight with intuitive eating (and lose more weight) | 5 tips

A lot of intuitive eating bloggers, coaches, etc. believe we can’t do anything to influence our “natural weight” that we’ll maintain at with intuitive eating. They tell people who are overweight that they should just accept that that’s their natural weight and not even try to aim for a healthy weight. But based on the research, I disagree.

(I do, however, 100% agree with self-acceptance and self-love at every weight, and that you shouldn’t have to aim for a healthy weight if you don’t want to.)

See my how-to guide for what intuitive eating is & how to start doing it!

In today’s video, I’m sharing 5 factors that will determine what weight you’ll maintain at (and how much you can lose) with intuitive eating, 4 of which are within your control.

Here’s a link to the video page, or you can watch it below:

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Intuitive Eating Scale mentioned in the video:

One side version of IE scale

Study links & links mentioned in the video:

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Nutrition, Videos

Studies: Foods that improve your mood (+ depression and anxiety symptoms)

Today I’m sharing something a little closer to my personal research interests (given that I’m getting my PhD in psychology/neuroscience): how your diet can affect your mood! In the video I quickly cover tryptophan, the amino acid that has antidepressant-like effects, and go over a study directly looking at how people’s symptoms of depression, anxiety, and overall mood are affected by being put on a high vs low tryptophan diet. 

And the list of high-tryptophan foods from the study is below!

Here’s a link to the video page, or you can watch it here:

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High-tryptophan foods:

  • Nuts like cashews, walnuts, and almonds
  • Legumes like soybeans, peanuts, and chickpeas
  • Seeds like sesame, pumpkin, and sunflower
  • Grains like oats, wheat, rice, and corn

Links mentioned in the video:

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Videos, Weight loss advice

Study: Weight Loss on Vegan versus Mediterranean Diets

The media LOVES to talk about how great the Mediterranean diet is for health, weight loss, etc. compared to the standard American diet.

But honestly, pretty much anything is better than the standard American diet (aka the Western diet).

Very few studies have looked at the Mediterranean diet compared to other non-Western diets, but a new study came out recently comparing the Mediterranean diet to a low-ish fat vegan diet for health and weight loss. In this video, I go over the weight loss aspects; specifically, how much people lost in 16 weeks on each diet, without eating less or exercising more. 

Here’s a link to the video page, or you can watch it below:

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Links mentioned in the video:

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Recipes

Easy Creamy Tofu and Pea Curry (aka Matar Paneer) – Vegan, WFPB

 

As life gets busier (between quarantine ending and closing on a house), my BIGGEST cooking goal these days is to come up with super simple recipes that are both healthy and easy to make in bulk. And my latest favorite creation that fits the bill is this super simple tofu & pea curry!

It has all the creamy, comforting goodness of the authentic Indian version (called Matar or Mutter Paneer), but without any of the cheese, cream or oil. The only source of fat in this recipe, in fact, are cashews! (And if you want to get fat free with it, you could omit the cashew cream. But then… it wouldn’t be creamy anymore. 😉 )

And bonus, this version is high in protein!

This recipe is super simple, because the ONLY chopping required is cubing the tofu–everything else is just chucked into the blender.

I also cook this in bulk by doubling the recipe below (cooking times are the same)–it takes me about 30 mins of prep time for 8 meals’ worth of food!

Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 1 – 16oz block super firm tofu, cubed
  • 1.5 cups frozen peas
  • 1 white or yellow onion
  • 1″ ginger
  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 1 green chili pepper (can also use ~1 tbsp canned)
  • 3/8 cup water
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds (or sub powder)
  • Half a 15oz can tomato sauce (or pureed fresh tomato)
  • 1 + 1/4 tsp coriander
  • Heaping 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp salt, more to taste
  • 1 tsp cayenne powder, or to taste*

Cashew cream:

  • 2/3 cup raw cashews, soaked
  • 1/2 cup water

*This will depend on the chili you use. When I use my spicier homegrown chilis, I omit the cayenne. If you use canned mild chilis, you’ll probably want to keep the cayenne in.

Directions:

  1. Add the onion, ginger, garlic, chili pepper, and 3/8c water to your blender, and blend until smooth. Let sit for a minute or two before opening it, as the chili will be airborne for a moment!
  2. Meanwhile, saute the cumin seeds with a splash of water until they start to turn brown, 1-2 minutes. Add the pureed onion mixture, and boil for 5 minutes.
  3. Stir in the tomato sauce, coriander, turmeric, and salt, and boil for another ~5 minutes.
  4. Add the cubed tofu and peas and stir them in gently, just as much as needed to combine everything, so as not to break the tofu.
  5. Set the Instant Pot to cook on high pressure for 2 mins, and let it release naturally for 10-15 minutes. (For stovetop version: simmer, covered, for 15 minutes, or until the peas are tender but not mushy. Stir it occasionally.)
  6. While the curry is cooking, blend the cashew cream ingredients, and set aside. Once the curry is done cooking, gently stir in the cashew cream.
  7. Serve with rice, paratha, or naan, and enjoy!

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Intuitive Eating, Videos

Video: How is Intuitive Eating Different from Overeating?

I got a good question on a recent video, asking where the line is between intuitive eating and overeating. Given that intuitive eating involves eating whatever you want, whenever you want, as much as you want, I can see how from the outside, it would just seem like constant overeating!

But in fact, intuitive eating is one of the BEST ways to prevent overeating, and there’s a lot of great research backing it up. (See my how-to guide for more details, and to start eating intuitively)

In today’s video, I go over why overeating and intuitive eating are completely different.

Here’s a link to the video page, or you can watch it below:

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Study links & links mentioned in the video:

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