Lyn-Genet has helped thousands of clients with long term positive changes in their health, weight and vitality. One of those clients was me – over 3 years ago. Her focus is on creating internal harmony using the precepts of The Lyn-Genet Plan, an anti-inflammatory diet. The Plan reduces chronic low grade inflammation which is the basis for premature aging, disease and weight gain. Aging is a state of inflammation when systems start to slow down. In addition, as we age digestive enzyme productions slows down. We start to produce less stomach acid and saliva all of which aid digestion. ‘Trigger’ foods we used to be able to break down easily when we were younger become more difficult to digest. We then unfortunately develop food ‘sensitivities’ which affect multiple systems which then alter weight and health.
I am very thankful to Lyn-Genet for giving me awareness into my body chemistry and how to know when my body enters a reactive state and how to determine which food caused the issue. I still use her methodology to this day to determine if I am digesting a given food properly.
Lyn-Genet has been featured on The Dr. Oz Show, Fox News, USA Weekend, More Magazine, and Crain’s NY and is the author of a new book, The Plan: Eliminate the Surprising “Healthy” Foods That Are Making You Fat–and Lose Weight Fast.
Q. What is your nutritional philosophy? Did this evolve over time as you saw more patients?
A. People are in shock when I tell them that a 100 calorie “healthy” food like green beans or oatmeal can cause two pound weight gain, hasten the aging process and exacerbate health issues. How does this happen? The simplest answer is inflammatory response, but what exactly does that mean and how can you be so affected by a healthy food? The Plan always had a food-based detox as its core. The idea was to cleanse the body and reset the palate so one would crave less sugar and salt. Of course once you put the body on a healing path for a few days you naturally crave healthier foods. Here’s where it got interesting though. Following traditional ideologies I was taught that to do a cleanse it’s best to not include animal protein but to instead introduce “healthier” foods like beans. So I did but I saw that more often than not clients would have huge weight gain in reaction to these foods and their individual health issues would flare. This happened approximately 85% of the time, so I switched to another ‘healthy’ food – salmon — and ended up with the same reaction, but with salmon the effects of weight gain and poor health would last a couple of days. I had been studying inflammatory response for a few years and made the connection that perhaps these foods were triggering an inflammatory response. It was the only thing that made sense. I started to track and monitor how often individual foods were causing this inflammatory response and the reactive food list was developed.
Q. How are weight and health affected by food sensitivities?
A. Histamine, an important part of our immune system, is automatically triggered when an inflammatory food is introduced. Histamine causes immediate water retention by causing capillaries to dilate and allowing them to leak fluid.
To control this histamine response the body produces cortisol. Cortisol and hormones such as progesterone and testosterone use the same building blocks; the more cortisol that is released the more your hormonal balance is negatively affected. The body is producing cortisol at the expense of progesterone and testosterone. These hormonal fluctuations disrupt water balance, metabolism, thyroid health, healthy sex drive and immune response. Elevated cortisol produces glucose which leads to increased blood sugar levels. This will start to affect yeast growth, altered gut flora and could be a reason behind the incredible rise in the US with Type 2 diabetes. Altered gut flora leads to weakened immune response as the balance of our intestinal bacteria is thrown off. Remember that 60-70% of our immune system is in our guts!
Q. Can all of this happen from just a cup of green beans?
A. Absolutely! In addition this inflammatory response can easily last 72 hours so you can see how just a few “healthy’ foods a week can cause that scale to go up year after year no matter how many calories you count and how much you exercise!
Q. How do you find your reactive foods?
A. By doing a safe and food based detox with our list of least reactive foods and then slowly reintroducing the foods YOU love. The Plan is a method that allows you to systematically test foods and know which foods work for your unique chemistry. You will discover which foods make you feel vital, healthy, full of energy and lean. The most amazing part of discovering your healthy foods is rediscovering the body’s amazing ability to self-heal and how rapidly you can lose weight.
The first 3 days of The Plan detox contains well over 7,000 calories for women and over 9,000 calories for men and average weight loss is 5-8 lbs. How is that possible? You’ll quickly learn on The Plan that calories mean nothing; all that matters is how easily your body can digest foods. The “cleaner” your foods are the more food you can eat and the better you feel.
Q. Your plan is largely based on the individual. How do your clients go from eating a highly processed diet to learning to cook on your plan?
A. Our clients actually get to pick and choose which foods they test- that’s why we call it the anti-diet. We want you to eat like you, but only better informed! So if oatmeal doesn’t work for your chemistry, we encourage you to test another hot cereal! If you’re reactive to tomatoes but are fine with wheat and dairy then have a white pizza.
In the beginning it can be tough work but the ultimate goal is to keep the way you eat but with smarter choices. Once you uncover your friendly foods we say to cook in big batches – it’s the only way you can navigate cooking, working and daily life. So set aside one day where you can relax, listen to music and prep for the week. We actually have the prep for days 1-3 of The Plan down to 75 minutes!
After this point, you can test restaurant food. The same weight and health benefits you receive from a food should be replicable in a restaurant. For example, if you eat salmon at home and every time you lose half a pound you should be able to replicate that result when eating out at a restaurant. If, however, you gain weight you know one of two things are possible – the restaurant either used too much sodium or used salmon that was farm raised. The bottom line is to not eat at that restaurant again! Keep testing restaurants until you find one where you lose half a pound just like you do at home.
Q. Why did you write this book?
A. I wrote The Plan because there are so many different new concepts to wrap your head around. Calories mean nothing. Your weight is just your chemical response to food. We wanted to make the book accessible so we toned the science down a bit and just let the methodology be the focus. Of course if you want to understand the chemistry and the science it’s fascinating and we have plenty of information on our website. The book walks you through the basic ideology and then goes straight to the heart of the matter, taking you through days 1-20 of The Plan where you get to test the foods you love and see how they react with your body chemistry.
You can read an excerpt from The Plan
here. Lyn-Genet will be interviewed on the Dr. Oz show on Jan 7 and there are many more stories to come from other publications in the coming months so stay tuned for more information!
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