ep. 13 - Professional level nutrition, jars of pee, and why (many) supplements are bogus
April 21, 2022
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Doug: [00:00:00] If you feel you often lose control of your eating and your hunger, if you feel anxious or even afraid to enter your kitchen or go out to eat with friends. If you feel you can’t stop eating once you start, or you no longer want to be controlled by food and the emotions that surround it, lean in my friend and get inspired.
This is your wake up call to a life where food doesn’t control you. Where you’re comfortable with what you eat and where you can easily stop whenever you want to. This isn’t science fiction and it’s not another empty weight loss promise. This is hypnosis. And if you like this show, you’ll love my powerful hypnosis audio, The Binge Blocker Protocol. This hypnosis helps you stop out of control eating the moment you feel that urge. It’s a 15 minute audio that deals with the emotions behind compulsive eating. Once those emotions are out of the way, the urge to overeat goes [00:01:00] away with it. Once you get your binge blocker protocol, you can download it to your phone to carry with you whenever you might feel that urge. Whether in a restaurant, in your home or even at your workplace when those breakroom donuts are calling your name. Whether you call it a binge, overeating or simply losing control for a moment, this audio will help you resolve it. You can get your Binge Blocker Protocol by going to anywherehypnosis.com.
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Tony: If you were someone who’s just an active individual looking to finally lose some weight gain muscle that you should only be eating pizzas on Friday nights. Absolutely not. You should be including it throughout the week. Right. We’re talking about what is the difference that’s going to give this athlete a 1% advantage versus what are you looking long-term.
So when I would work with these athletes in the off season and have these conversations with them, I’m like, look, you can definitely count macros. You can definitely do whatever you want to do, but if you want to make this a long-term thing so that you’re not doing this every off season. So for example, the holidays just passed, I know this will be released sometime in March, as we spoke maybe later, right?
But if you want to keep avoiding this holiday weight gain and trying to get into the cycle of I’m going to be a new year, new me is by having that good relationship with food and understanding that you can include these foods. By you putting that barrier up. You’re putting yourself up for this binge cycle.
Doug: Welcome back to The Weight Loss With Hypnosis [00:04:00] Podcast. My name is Doug Sands, and I’m the hypnotist and the host behind this show. And this week I am so excited to welcome my guest, Tony Castillo. Tony is an amazing health expert and you’re absolutely going to love his energy and his personality, which really shines through in this conversation.
Tony’s practice is called nutrition for performance because Tony works primarily with athletes. And don’t worry if you’re just getting started in your athletic career towards that better health. Tony has a ton of great information for those just starting out. Now, Tony formerly worked with high level athletes before starting his own private practice.
Tony worked with the University Of Florida and then the Toronto Blue Jays as their resident dietician. Tony has his own history of weight as well, which you’re going to hear in just a moment. You’re also going to hear what really odd thing he keeps right there on his desk that caught me by surprise.
Tony is fantastic. This conversation was fun and very informative, and I’m [00:05:00] very excited to share this with you. He’s very relatable as well. If you’re looking for someone to help take you to the next level, Tony’s your man. With that, let’s dive right into the interview.
Doug: Welcome back to the podcast everyone. I’m so excited for this conversation today, today I am joined by Tony Castillo. Tony, thank you so much for joining me.
Tony: Doug, thank you so much for having me excited to talk to you, especially knowing what your background is, listening to the show for a little bit, getting some episodes in. So I’m excited to talk to you right now.
Doug: Yeah, this is going to be great. So Tony, would you mind telling my listeners who you are and what you kind of do?
Tony: Absolutely. So my name is Tony Castillo. I’m a virtual sports and performance dietician. So what does all that mean? Is that all right if I go a little bit into my story Doug, or should I hold off?
So growing up, I believe it was the age of 13. I remember my mom took me to a urologist. This is the doctor that helps with male [00:06:00] hormones. And at that moment, I had a lot of body images use. I had a man boobs and I was being made fun of in school. So I go see this urologist and urologist says, well, Tony, you have gynecomastia.
And unfortunately there’s only two ways to get rid of this. One is surgery, two is hormone replacement therapy. I’m so glad Doug, that I did not choose either of those routes. I was like, there’s gotta be something else. At the age of 13, I was like, man, that’s crazy. How can we only do these two things?
How is this what the healthcare system is? So I went through depressive states. I went to go see a psychologist and eventually, you know, as I grew up, I continued to gain weight. I was actually a football lineman in high school. I joined the band so then I became the overweight, typical band geek, and I think American pie was out.
So it’s all about being the band geek so, hey, that worked out for a little bit. But, I didn’t want to be that person anymore. So at the end of my high school career, I had a block off. Luckily enough I was very smart, not to toot my own horn. But a buddy of mine, he was a bodybuilder and he gave me a meal plan and a workout plan.
So I did it, lost the weight, felt great. Then that summer kept it going, then I went to college. And in college, I decided to do the exact opposite of [00:07:00] that meal plan, exact opposite of that workout program. I drink all the beer that was available and all the pizza, all the tacos, all the food that I could. And I gained the weight back.
And then that point on, I tried every diet that was popular at the time. So Atkins, south beach, I counted macros, I tried every protein powder, casein, whey, just because I didn’t know. Um, when I was in the gym, I hear all these things. I tried every pre-workout. I tried every fat burner. There’s actually a skinny tea.
I think it’s called ballerina tea that my girlfriend, now my wife at the time was using. It was marketed towards women. I was like, why is this not working for women? I was taking a behind her back. And all I had me doing was running to the bathroom as a laxative. And eventually, I finished my degree in biology and chemistry.
I had fluctuated yo-yo diet at that whole time. And I broke my foot dancing because I was under fueling. So that means not eating enough because I had tried so many diets. I was actually living on my fitness pal. That means I would literally time myself living in my room, walking down the steps to go to the kitchen and then timing myself back up and count that as calories burned, because I was just trying to get as many calories in as possible.
So I had a distorted body image because I still wasn’t happy with my body. I was having a disordered eating because I thought if I counted my [00:08:00] calories or did these diets, or did clean eating, this was the only way to be successful. And I was never happy with my body. So I broke my foot, as I stated. And I was in a deep state, like depressive state.
And my wife’s like, Hey, come look at this. I’m going to go to an open house. Will you go with me? I said, sure. And there was a degree on nutrition, Doug. And I was like, what is this degree in nutrition? To be open honest with you, I thought you could just work at a gym, get a weekend certificate and bam, you’re a nutritionist. Which it does happen, there’s nothing wrong with that. But I was like, what is this? So I looked and there was a lot of biology, there was a lot of chemistry and I was like, man, I got both of those bachelor’s so looks like I have some pre-recs. I took my first nutrition class, absolutely fell in love, Doug.
I did my masters in nutrition. From there, I went to go work at the hospital setting to become a dietician. And I absolutely loved working in the hospital, but I knew it wasn’t for me. Reason being is I remember, one of the consults I went on by myself. I go into a room. And this man just had heart surgery, he had a tube coming out of his chest with blood. And the first thing he said to me is like, you’re a food guy? I’m like, well, I guess you could say that. He’s like, well, get me some effin, Mac and cheese and fried chicken. And I was like, wow. Okay. I mean, you just had heart surgery. He’s like, yeah, exactly.
I [00:09:00] just had heart surgery so I can eat whatever I want. Now I have a brand new heart, and I knew that exact moment that, that was not where I wanted to be. It’s like, how is that you have so much pain, literally you have a tube coming out of you with blood and you don’t see the change you need to make? Then I wanted to go work with athletes because I want to go work at the university of Florida because I knew that athletes are the population of active individuals with people I wanted to work with.
Why? How do they get these bodies? We always see them in these commercials, eating all the foods. Is it that they’re doing steroids in the back, is the supplements that they’re taking? None of that was true, Doug. They just had a great relationship with food. They understood when to perform. Now. Some of them did have eating disorders and disordered eating, and they tried every supplement like you and I, but they understood the ones that perform their best, how to utilize that food as fuel.
So from there, I went to go work with the Toronto Blue Jays major league baseball team, and I saw what it took to be an elite athlete and what it took to fuel like an elite athlete. And it’s 162 games so it’s a very long season. So yes, there was fried chicken from time to time. There was pizza from time to time.
It’s about including the foods you love to the [00:10:00] players love. And also being that both my parents are from Dominican Republic, speaking Spanish with these baseball players, being able to bring my own cultural insight on rice and beans and talking to some of the Venezuelans and then bringing in arepas, talking to some of the Mexicans and bringing in actual tacos and not the things we think of taco bell and then being so surprised that we’re able to bring some of these foods, Doug.
And then from there, I decided to work in private practice because I knew I wanted to help more people in the same mission that I had, and the same passion I have, which is helping active individuals and athletes finally lose the body fat, increase their muscle mass and increase their performance overall and feel happy with their body without having to do any restrictive diets, without having to do any of these woo-woo supplements.
And really just being happy where they aren’t performing at their best. So that’s a very long introduction about who I am, what my mission statement is and how I got here. So thanks for listening, Doug.
Doug: Yeah. There’s so much that I’d love to explore in that. One of the things that stood out to me right away was that you mentioned, when working with these major sports teams that, you did include fried chicken and pizza.
And we think of these athletes, as you know, I heard a story [00:11:00] of a basketball player who, every single meal was regimented down to, the amount of salad that he was eating. And I’d love to hear your take on including the things that we want to eat, because oftentimes when someone asks me, can you hypnotize me to never want chocolate again or never drink soda again?
It’s like theoretically, yes, but that’s kind of just creating a ticking time bomb situation. And then you fall off the wagon and everything just blows up in your face. What is your take on that?
Tony: Absolutely, Doug. Just not only for my personal journey, but also from full time clients I’ve worked with. Knowing that when you restrict something it’s going to lead you to binge it, even if Doug does his best to make it so that you never want chocolate or soda again, you’re gonna want it. And it’s just this cycle. So for example, I’m working with a professional boxer right now. So his weight is very specific to a sport. So we do a lot of weight manipulation things. However, right now, we’ve constructed a plan where we’re weighing everything out because he has certain metrics he needs to meet for his upcoming match.
And this is when it’s important. So more in competition, it’s different than being in the off season. So it’s about period icing nutrition. So there are points in time where things do need to be [00:12:00] regimented. But depending on the sports. So for example, with baseball, it’s 162 games. No one is eating the same food regimented for 162 games.
As much as people think that having that meal plan or being hypnotized and told that you don’t eat chocolate anymore, you’re going to want it. And the only thing you’re doing is holding yourself back from further results. You’re holding yourself back from being happy with who you are. So the things we would do is we’d include those foods.
When we knew they had an off state. Now in baseball, you only got two days off a month. So those two days when we had a longer trip, we would include pizza on the way home. So we knew they’d be able to recover that next day and not have these highly inflammatory foods, because we are trying to get them to win in a world series.
So it’s not about getting rid of those foods, it’s being strategic with them. So knowing when to put them in. Now, does that mean, If you are someone who’s just an active individual, looking to finally lose some weight, gain muscle that you should only meet in pizzas on Friday nights? Absolutely not. You should be including it throughout the week.
Right. We’re talking about what is the difference that’s going to give this athlete a 1% advantage versus what are you looking long-term. So when I would work with these athletes in the off season and have these [00:13:00] conversations with them I’m like look you can definitely count macros. You can definitely do whatever you want to do, but if you want to make this a long-term thing so that you’re not doing this every off season.
So for example, the holidays just passed I know this will be released sometime in March as we spoke. Maybe later. Right. But if you want to keep avoiding this holiday weight gain and trying to get into the cycle of I’m going to be a new year, new me, is by having that good relationship with food and understanding that you can include these foods. By you putting that barrier up, you’re putting yourself up for this binge cycle.
So yes, I do agree that some of these baseball players, they do have things laid out to the ground. And I do think that that will help in competition, but it talks about how long is this competitive series? When are you giving yourself a break?
Because all athletes take breaks. I don’t care who you are. If you look at, I think the series was on Netflix, with Michael Jordan and Dennis Rodman had load management. So he went out to Vegas for a week and his teammates knew he was going to Vegas to do some other things. I can’t comment what they were.
I was not there. I was much younger at that time. And I don’t think Dennis Rodman would want a child around him at that time. But, load management, how to manage these things, right? So if you are [00:14:00] someone who is so uptight and not understanding how these athletes worked, how the active individuals are, you’re the only one putting yourself in a corner.
And when we coach clients, you have to understand where they are and where they’re going.
Doug: And you’ve mentioned that healthy relationship with food, and that’s such a crucial part of having that easy relationship with food where it’s not a struggle anymore. So many people that I work with, at first, they have this compulsive, I have to eat mindset and oftentimes people, you know, they attempt to get over that themselves.
And that was my own story. I kind of worked through that myself. I was as you were, I was the overweight kid and when I got into high school, I slimmed down because I found sports, but I still did not have that healthy relationship with food. It had gone from food controlling me, to me trying to control the food instead.
And I was so rigid that I would be terrified of gaining weight if I had a single bowl of ice cream with friends or something. And so I’d love to hear your take on having that relationship with food, even if on the outside, we appear to be healthy.
Tony: Doug. I’m so glad you asked that because it just brings up this, when I was working at the university of Florida, [00:15:00] I remember this swimmer who couldn’t gain weight.
And in my head I’m like, oh my God, that’s like the easiest thing. How could this person not do it? And now I was already in my head being judgmental, but we had a frozen yogurt machine. And my goal was to ensure that his dessert every night was frozen yogurt with cereal top with it. And I’m like, man, how can I get to this level?
What do I need to do? Obviously he was training. He was an Olympic athlete, so he was obviously training a lot more than I. I have the athletic ability and time for, so am I telling people to train more? Absolutely not. That is not my goal, and that is not my scope. But the one thing we can do to be healthy and eat healthy and have that appearances is by practice.
Practice, doesn’t make perfect. Practice helps make things permanent. So, what does that mean? There’s even days where I eat foods and I’m like, oh man, am I doing the right things? And I might wake up the next day and I feel a little bit bloated. But it’s knowing that it’s okay. It’s normal for the body to fluctuate.
It’s not supposed to always be in a downward trend. It’s not always supposed to be in an upward trend. It’s always supposed to be oscillating. Why? Because your body’s trying to survive. So having that good relationship with foods and things I teach my [00:16:00] clients is, you know, including those foods throughout the week.
Right? Someone who has something with, let’s say a chocolate, I bring them some chocolate options, show them that they can have it, when they can have it, when they should include it. Right. So being smart about it and making sure that they feel okay with it. I remember one client also as well, that was saying, if it’s not stapled to the cabinets, I’m going to eat it at night.
So it’s also looking at how they’re eating throughout the day, because what’s causing them to have this unhealthy relationship with foods is that they’re not eating throughout the day. They’re not drinking enough water throughout the day. So ensuring you’re doing those two things as well, because so many people go out and they play sports like yourself, Doug. And they feel like they have this great grasp on it, but then they get to that meal and they almost look at it as if, is this okay to eat?
Right. So giving our clients that, okay to eat, almost freezing them of it until they’re able to do it on their own. So I think one, is just including those foods and two, understand that it’s okay to have it. Just like one salad isn’t going to make you the best athlete in the world, pizza night is not going to make you the most overweight or obese person in the world.
It’s just, how are you with those habits? How consistent are you with what you’re [00:17:00] trying to do?
Doug: I think that’s such a great point and thank you so much for sharing that Tony. And one thing that you said that really struck me was this idea of our weight is oscillating. So many times people are like, I want to get to 150 pounds and when I get there, I’m never going above that again.
Whereas, as I understand that our weight is fluctuating literally all the time, like, we might weigh 152 in the morning, 158 in the evening, just depending on our water, what we’re actually eating. And, what would you say to someone who is struggling with that idea that our weight might go up and down, especially, you know, we’re recording this just after the holidays. It’s a winter season for many like myself. I know you’re in Florida now, but who are many are living in the colder areas right now?
Tony: So, first it’s getting in our chain. Why does weight oscillate? Right? As you said, hydration. So if you drink throughout the day, I remember my cousin was just over this weekend and she’s like, oh, I went on your scale and weigh yourself.
I’m like, why would you do that? It’s like five o’clock at night. You’ve eaten pizza. You had pasta. You’ve been drinking water, like this is, I wouldn’t say the worst time, but you’re not going to be happy with what you’re weighing. It’s going to be a false weight. Just like if someone is trying to gain weight, if they weigh [00:18:00] themselves at that time, they’re going to be like, oh man, I gained eight pounds today.
And then they weigh themselves in the morning like, I lost it all. Right. So it’s trying to be consistent with what time you weigh yourself. So why does the weight fluctuate? So, number one, we can only store carbs in two places. Your muscles, and then your liver. So if you have a higher carb meal at night, you’re just going to store it and remember carbohydrate hydrate water.
So you’re going to have water weight, right? So having carbs, having a salt to your meal will help retain water in your body. So we’ll see the weight typically fluctuate up, depending on what you eat and how much exercise you’re doing, if you’re doing a new exercise, if you’re sore, that’s muscle inflammation.
So it’s going to try to hold onto those nutrients and hold on to that hydration because it’s trying to repair what you just tore. So we typically see a higher weight, so that could be some of the reasons why. It could also be that you haven’t gone to the bathroom. If you try to include more fruits and vegetables, you’re going to have a higher fiber, so higher stool in your gut.
So these are just some quick hits on why your weight might be fluctuating up. Now, how to break that? What I like to call the relationship with the scale, because one thing we do with our clients, we do send them a scale. We want them to track muscle mass and we want them to track body fat, not just weight. Because weight [00:19:00] doesn’t tell the whole story.
Right? So going somewhere, there are some gyms that offer those body compositions. So you can actually see how you are changing, right? Because so many times we think, oh, I’ve lost weight and success, but you’ve lost muscle mass and you can’t lift as much. So when we look at that long-term health and sustainable results, that’s actually the opposite of what we want.
So sometimes the biggest wins are maybe looking at other things. So, is your clothes fitting different, right? Did you do better at your workout this week? Are you hitting some PRS or personal records? Were you able to include some foods that you haven’t been able to include them forever? One of the biggest things I remember, my client, she said she didn’t even look at the scale, but she was able to go eat a burger, French fries, and a chocolate shake, which she hasn’t had in years because she was told that’s what’s going to make her fat.
She went in, she had it, Doug. And she didn’t eat all of it. Not because I told her not to, but because she was almost like, oh, this doesn’t have that power on me. So again, so that scale fluctuation is also having the power to understand that this is just like a bank account. There’s going to be money going in and money going out.
So if money goes out, you know where it went, right. The bank will say it went this way. So that’s how you [00:20:00] have to look at us. It’s just a objective measure. That’s it like right there. Bam. That’s it just move on with your day and never be upset, but tracking, I think does give you control on where it’s going up or down, but you’re looking at the overall trend.
Doug: I love that metaphor. And also talking about what you said, having that food, giving that food power over you. I think that’s such an important point talking about restriction diets. For me personally, when I tried to first lose weight, I was like, I can only eat whatever it was like ice cream, like once a week or once every two weeks.
At that point, my mind was creating a habit of thinking about it all the time. And it was just as you said, giving it power over myself. And if I had it, you know, twice in a week, I would feel so terrible. Whereas, when I did allow myself to have it, I would have way more than I actually needed.
Doug: And I think that’s such a really important point to talk about. And one thing that you mentioned, salt, I’d love to know as someone who works with athletes, there’s so much. You know, give and take in our modern health information about what is good and what is bad.
I’ve heard people say, don’t have as little salt as [00:21:00] possible, and I’ve heard people who say that it’s all bogus. And I’d love to hear from your take, from your experience and your education. What is your take on salt?
Tony: I really wanted to, I mean, one of the biggest things I talk about with my clients is hydrator dihydrate.
So I think we’ve got to talk about hydration. And if you’re okay, if you’re going to be watching on YouTube. And if you’re listening to this on a podcast, right, like make sure you turn on YouTube because I’m about to pull out some jars of pee. So when I was invited to give a presentation from a friend of mine to some fifth graders, like how do I keep fifth graders intrigued?
So I said to them, I had these jars of pee on my desk, Doug. And almost every fifth graders jaws dropped. Because they wanted to see what I was going to pull out. Obviously, this is not urine. Sorry to ruin it for everyone. Um, this is water lemonade, we have some apple juice and some diet soda here. So why do I bring this up when talking about sodium?
So when it comes to sodium levels, we want to ensure, depending that you don’t have hypertension, you don’t have any other family history, when we’re talking about salt. A lot of the food that is processed being that it could be sausage or things that are boxed or bagged, they may have already added salt.
However, we’re talking about [00:22:00] active individuals. So people who train at least four times a week. They definitely need salt. Especially athletes because they’re sweating it out. So the reason I showed you the pee, was because when we look at someone who thinks that when they pee clear, they think they’re actually doing well.
That actually means you don’t have enough electrolytes. That means you don’t have enough sodium, potassium, magnesium and chloride, also known as table salt for sodium and chloride, potassium, magnesium. So cause you sweat them out. So having that clear pee actually could mean that you are over hydrated. Does that mean you pull back on water?
Absolutely not. That just means maybe add salt to your meal. Again, depending on your past history. You want it to actually look like lemonade. So you want it to be like a light straw color. When we see it like apple juice, that actually means you need to add some more water. So a great way to add some fluids and some electrolytes.
Now, if it’s completely dark, which I have seen, we could definitely talk about that. I always recommend people to add electrolytes and most likely go see a doctor cause you do need to get some fluid and IV fluid if it looks almost like diet soda. Now, in regards to, should you be adding salt to your food?
It really depends on your activity level. And also if you are a salty sweater. So if you’re someone who sweats and you get [00:23:00] sweats in your eye, it stings. It could also be like a line on your cap, that little like white line some people get, that also means that you are a salty sweater.
It could come on your shirt, come on your boxers for males. Females, can go on their sports bra. So if you have that salty line and I’ve even seen people who get salt crystals from their sweat. So those are the people that you actually need to include salt and ensure that they’re getting enough salt, especially around workouts. Because if they don’t, this could actually be a reason why they’re cramping.
I once had an athlete who was urine was completely clear and we’re like, dude, you’re just putting water in these cups. He’s like, no, I swear I peed to it. So we tested it and he was having full body cramps all the time. And the simple switch was just to add sodium, so salt to his drinks, and his cramps almost immediately stopped.
Does that mean cramps are only due to hydration or electrolytes? Absolutely not. It is one of the many factors that plays into cramping. So again, as a dietician, we just like to check our boxes to ensure that it is not a hydration nor electrolyte. It could be something neural going on. But again, when it comes to that salt in addition to it, it really depends on, are you a [00:24:00] salty sweater?
Are you someone who gets enough salt throughout the day. And how is your urine color? How is your hydration? And I think a lot of mainstream people, number one just don’t drink enough water. And two, do rely on a lot of salted foods. So it may not be that they need salt. However, someone who’s training a lot and you’re getting oughta cramps.
It could be an area of opportunity for you.
Doug: Yeah. And that reminds me of, so I do a lot of long distance hiking. This summer, I did a couple of months on the PCT and while I was hiking through California, I had that where, you know, the water was just evaporating, but I would have salt crystals left on my face.
And I noticed, every single night I was just desperate for salt. And that brings up a really interesting question. At that point I felt I could really trust my taste buds and say that, I actually do need salt. How much can we trust what our taste buds like telling us what our body actually needs versus what our taste buds like, just because our brain wants, the really sweet sugary things?
Tony: See, that’s a tough question, Doug. Uh, it really depends what other factors are going on. Right? one thing that we can think about, so I don’t know what your listeners think about this, but for example, [00:25:00] alcohol. When you drink alcohol, it actually tells our body, it gives us a false sense of hunger. So it releases enzymes in our stomach because when we drink alcohol, it stops processing carbohydrates, fats, and proteins, and it starts trying to get rid of that alcohol because alcohol is considered a poison.
Now, Doug, let me just say I drink alcohol. I understand what it does to the body, but the body perceives it as a poison. So it wants to get rid of it as quickly as possible. So it’s not going to be burning fat. It’s not going to be building muscle. It’s going to say, get rid of this alcohol.
So why am I bringing this up? Because typically after a night of drinking, the one thing you want to have is something fatty and salty. Reason being is because your body feels like however long your drinking lasted, it feels like you haven’t given it any food, even if you’ve eaten during that time. So it makes you want to get some that has the most bang for its buck.
So that’s where it’s going to ask for a burger or pizza or taco bell, put the plugin, let them sponsor you. That’s why we may look for these foods because we have this false sense of hunger because our body says, oh, you haven’t eaten anything for, let’s say four hours because that’s when you’ve been drinking.
So that may not be a time to listen to your body, versus if you have been working out a lot and you notice that you’ve been sweating [00:26:00] out salt. And you haven’t had salt for a week and you really want like a salty food. Absolutely. There was even a dietician who I worked with, collaborating with. He told me the story, he was working with a youth soccer team and he could see that they were just dehydrates.
So he was actually adding salt to their drink mixes. And the youth athletes didn’t even notice that there are salts in it. And that’s how depleted they were of that sodium. So you should be able to listen to your body to go for those foods. It’s just, how much are you listening? Are you overindulging in that food?
And that sounds like, oh, you know what? I could really go for a pizza. And all of a sudden you’re a pizza box in and it’s empty. And you’re like, oh my gosh, what happened? Right. Not saying you can’t have pizza, just saying, you know, how much are you listening to your body? So I do feel like there is a range that you can listen to your body.
Absolutely. But it’s also understanding what else is going on? Why are you having these overindulgent moments? Is it because you’re restricting them so much, that it’s causing you to go for a whole chocolate bar that you have to eat in your car? One of the biggest things I heard was someone, this woman I worked with, she told me she used to use her finger as a tool.
And I’m like, what [00:27:00] do you mean? So, yeah, it was my favorite utensils. She was like, I would eat a whole pint of ice cream before getting home, throw it away at the trash can so no one knew I bought it. And number two, no one knew I ate it. And I was like, wow, that’s so powerful to think. Number one, that she shared it with me and two, that when we listened to just, why didn’t you just take it home, have that ice cream.
And sometimes we’re judged by others. So the environment we’re in can control what we eat. And sometimes we don’t listen to our bodies because of what others are saying or what we think they’re saying, what stored we’re playing in our head of what we think they’re saying. So, I do believe there’s validity to listening to your body and what it wants.
However, it’s also taking that moment and knowing, and being fully aware of the reasons you want it. So, for example, for you wanting salty foods after hiking the PCT, absolutely. You need to replenish the sodium you lost.
Doug: Yeah. And talking about that relationship with food. What really struck me, what you said about alcohol, I did not know that alcohol creates those false hunger signals. For me personally, when I was in college, I struggled with my eating and that was one of the biggest reasons that I did not drink very often because I felt as soon as I [00:28:00] drank, I lost control and I thought it was just because of the inhibition.
I’m sure that was part of it.
It’s both, Doug. All right.
Doug: And I’m glad to say that it’s not really that much of an issue anymore because I have that better relationship with food. And I guess where I’m going with that was, I wanted to ask, what would you say to someone who is rigid about their eating?
Who says, I cannot drink because I’m going to lose control and binge, or I cannot have ice cream. and if I do, I have to be extremely secretive about it. What would you say to someone who has that very clear cuts idea of what eating is.
Tony: Doug, many of the people I work with and even myself had that clear cut vision where it was Monday morning until Friday afternoon is I was strict.
I could tell you what it was in college. It’d be wake up, workout, not eat anything, have a protein shake, then have coffee to block my hunger till about noon, where I would have a salad with chicken not eat anything until dinner was just like chicken and veggies again. Up until that Friday afternoon where I’d be like, oh, it’s happy [00:29:00] hour.
Let’s go grab some beers. And I would eat everything under the sun. Feel that guilt, wake up Sunday morning, still smash a pizza, smash a whole burrito, smash a burger and fries, and then meal prep for the week because that’s how it was going to happen. And I didn’t understand why I wasn’t getting results because I had to have the cheat days because that’s what the bro science told me.
And it turned into a cheat weekend. So when I work with someone and they have these challenges where they feel like they have to be rigid. That they have to have that ice cream in secret. I asked them, you know, what makes you say that? What is pushing you towards that? Is it the environment you’re in? Is it that you feel like someone’s going to judge you if you do that.
And I start to have them break that up. So maybe we include a pizza night that week. Maybe we have them go out for ice cream, with a loved one. Maybe we’d have them go to an ice cream shop. And sometimes it’s scary, Doug, but it’s about breaking our barriers. And one thing I tell my clients and we work on with my clients is, we have the comfort zone, the stretch zone and the stress zone. So I was asking him, where is your comfort zone? Where’s your stretch zone? Where’s your stress zone. If they go to the stress zone, we don’t do it because that’s never going to happen again. I like to push them a little bit, push them to their [00:30:00] stretch zone so they can come back.
And now that is a new comfort zone. So a quick analogy, someone who’s a couch potato, their comfort zone is to walk and get the mail. A stretch might be walking a mile and the stress would be having them go run a marathon. Right? So eventually as they continue to practice, maybe that mile now becomes a comfort zone.
Right. And that marathon becomes a stretch. Versus someone who’s a marathon runner, comfort zone for them is probably 10 miles. A stretch is probably going for a 20 mile run. And then a stretch stress would be like an ultra marathon. So a 50 mile run. So again, it’s how we can make the client, you know, that client centered approach, right?
Like how do we help them reach their goals? And having them understand that this is about them and their journey and being restrictive isn’t what’s going to help them. What’s going to help them is opening up about their food and their food challenges. And I think what we really do teach them is how we can include it and how it’s not going to affect the results.
If anything, it’s going to make the results better and more sustainable. And have them reflecting on what have they done in the past. And how’s it gotten them here, which is where they don’t want to be anymore.
Doug: I love that idea. The comfort, the stretch and the stress. It reminds me of working with clients to get those small wins.
So many times people are stuck and they think, you know, I [00:31:00] cannot make this change because my goal is to lose 200 pounds by the summer or whatever it may be for them. And I’m like, okay, we can work towards that, but why don’t instead we start with losing two pounds by like the end of the month.
Why don’t we start with these small goals to build up some momentum. And I think that’s a really powerful point of that. And there’s a one thing, I kept coming back to in my mind. Inflammation, you’d mentioned this a couple of times and I never really noticed my inflammation until I was on the trail.
And I started it, you know, when I get to town, that was the first time I had to be able to eat whatever I wanted. And so I’d have pizza and ice cream. And I remember one time I smashed an entire half box of Oreos for a meal.
Doug: My body just needed the calories at that point, but anyway, I noticed the next day I felt terrible.
Like I had knee pains, I had foot pains and I’m sure you see this a lot with athletes who are using their bodies extensively without extensive rest. I’d love to know, for listeners, they’re not quite at that level. Most of them. I’d love to know, what are some of the signs of inflammation?
What are some things that inflammation causes and what should people [00:32:00] know about inflammation to manage it in their lives?
Tony: One thing that probably is gonna surprise some listeners that inflammation is good. Why is that? The body’s going to adapt. So we think about muscle inflammation. If you’re not having your muscles get inflamed, they’re not going to adapt and get bigger.
You’re not going to get stronger muscles. And yes, you may be looking to lose weight, but if we don’t get that muscle up, we’re not looking at the longevity of life. So some inflammation is actually good. Inflammation gets a bad rep. So the way I love to talk about inflammation as an analogy that one of my interns actually brought to me.
I thought, man, that’s such a great analogy. I’m gonna start using it. So what you want to imagine is if you are in a forest and you see a fire, you have a team of firefighters. That’s going to go put out that forest. That’s good inflammation, right? Inflammation is fire. And the firefighters are your body fighting that inflammation.
Now, if you have a forest, like what was going on this summer? I’m in California. I hope everyone’s okay. But thinking about 20 fires in a spread out forest, you don’t need only one firefighter team. That’s not going to help. They can’t get to all 20. So your goal is to have as many firefighter teams to fight off that inflammation.
So, when we think about inflammation can come in various ways. [00:33:00] Like you said, knee pain, it can come from any joint and tendon pains. It can also come from gut pain. So I’ve had people who have constant for lack of better work bowel movements, watery stools, they also have a lot of nausea, so inflammation show itself in various ways.
Now, it could also come from intolerances from certain foods. Now, when it comes to what you should be doing to really fight that inflammation, it depends what kinds you have. There’s a ton of things. It’s always about food first. So I always tell my clients, like before you go buy this supplement, what are the foods you’ve been eating?
Because what we do see is a lot of people eat a lot of these highly processed foods. And again, I eat Oreos. I love Oreos. I have Oreos in my back. So I’m not trying to negate Oreos. But some people do just smash boxes and boxes, and some people can’t even keep it in their house. And it’s just that constant food.
So it’s just Oreos plus a microwave meal, which again, there’s nothing bad with that. But if you do that every day and you don’t have any fruits and vegetables that help with that, you’re going to end up with a very inflamed body. So, some things I tell my clients is always include a fruit and vegetable on your plate, whether it’s breakfast, lunch, dinner or snack.
[00:34:00] All right. Always making sure you’re hydrated. So that way your body can run at full force. That way you have enough fluids running through you. So when it comes to that inflammation, you want to make sure you’re just optimizing your body by making sure you have enough of the correct nutrients.
Doug: I like that. Yeah.
And thank you so much for diving into that, Tony, and coming in a little bit full circle, there was one thing in your story very early on in this podcast that you mentioned, the struggle with hormones, and I see clients for PCOS, polycystic ovarian syndrome, and, I’d love to know.
What were the things that you realized? You said you had those two options. What were the things that you realized looking for that third option? And what would you say to someone who is in that place? You know, they’re feeling hopeless about dealing with their weight gain from hormone issues?
Tony: Absolutely. So we work with a lot of people that have PCOS, and it’s definitely a lot of the hormones that plays into it. There’s a lot of other things that go into it as well. And so many people go to this hopeless because they’ve tried everything. They’ve tried every supplement. They heard every guru, but they’ve never really invested in themselves.
So I would say investing in a coach, investing in someone that actually knows how they can help you. To give [00:35:00] you an example, I had a type one diabetic. Absolutely. I know how to work with type one diabetics. I work with them, but that is not my expertise. So I refer them to someone else. Why? Just not my passion.
So make sure you have someone that’s passionate and understands what you’re doing and how they can help you get out of that. Because a lot of people are like, oh, I’m hopeless. I’ve tried everything. It’s like, have you worked with someone who’s an expert in what you are looking for? Right. So for example, I’m not a postpartum coach.
I’m not helping someone. That’s trying to lose the postpartum weight because, well, that’s just not who I love working with. Now, if it’s someone who is an athlete and they are trying to change that postpartum, great, you fit my mold. But it’s not someone who’s never worked out their life. They’ve gained all this weight now.
They didn’t know what to do. And again, it’s not that we can’t help them. It’s just, what is our passion and how can we really provide the best results for them.
Doug: I was going to mention, having that point of hopelessness and being ready to reach out to an expert.
A lot of times, people come to me and they say, I’ve tried every single other thing. And now it’s finally time to try hypnosis. And I was like, at first I was a little offended by that, but I realized that, you know, this is actually working in my favor because they realized like it’s time to make [00:36:00] the change. Like there at that point of threshold where they can actually say, something has to change and it has to be me that makes that change. And what is your take on that? How do you see that in your own practice?
Tony: I see it all the time.
Right? We both do. I was recently converting with someone on Instagram. She’s like, oh, I’ve worked with a certified personal trainer and a certified nutritionist and it just didn’t work for me. So I dove deeper into, what’s your diet history. When have you taken a diet break? You know, when people say they’ve tried everything, I think that they pigeonhole themselves because they have never really tried what works for them.
They feel like they have, so when someone’s ready to change, I think that’s the best time to really get things going and it can happen at any moment in time. Most of the time we hear that January’s the best time, but I’m going to be here to tell you, Doug, is probably not. It’s typically that March, because they’ve tried in January, they’ve tried again in February and now they failed twice.
They don’t know what to do. They either look for someone that actually gives them that sustainable results, or they keep doing the same thing over and over again until they find someone that does help them change. So yeah, I completely agree with you. You have to be ready to change, right? When they have that hopelessness, some people aren’t ready.
They say they are, but when they get to pen to paper, they just [00:37:00] shy away.
Doug: Yeah. And talking about working with an expert, what does your process look like when working with clients?
Tony: Absolutely. So, myself and I have two other dieticians that work on the team. We do one-on-one coaching every week for 12 weeks.
They go through a one-on-one coaching with us. We do one hour calls. So it’s zoom call for the first one. After that, it is a 30 minute zoomcall. After that they get access every week to a module series that talks about carbs, proteins, fats, hydration, and we personalize it on those coaching calls with them.
We also have a community where all of our clients are talking to each other, sharing recipes and talking to their dieticians. For example, we just spoke about how in the cold weather, how they can hydrate. And I’m gonna tell you right now, Doug, I’m not the right person for that because I’m always in a hot weather.
So, when I worked with athletes that did work in cold climates, some things I did mention were like hot teas and also making sure to have soups or broth, right. These things that you can heat up and drink. It may not sound as appetizing, but when you’re in the middle of a playoff game and it’s snowing out, some hot broth goes very well, especially when there’s sodium in it.
Now, some of the things that other dieticians that’s part of it, [00:38:00] right? They have two other dieticians on the team. They said, get more fruits and vegetables in and making sure you have time to put water. So, that’s what it looks like. You not only get myself, but you also get two other dieticians on the team and I can give suggestions on how you can meet your goals.
And we’re all looking at it and we all get together, the dieticians and myself, to see like, Hey, you know, how is Jane Doe’s progress? We’re seeing that she’s doing really well, or she’s struggling here. What are your ideas? What have you seen on her plate approach? Right. And it’s not a macro based approach.
It’s more of a plate based approach. We want to make sure all of our clients have a good nutritional foundation. And from there, if they do feel like they do need some macronutrient coaching, we can take them to that next level. But I think it’s more of understanding how does nutrition affect their body? And I think too many people throw macronutrients out because they think that’s, what’s going to help them.
When a lot of people don’t even understand how to eat.
Doug: Yeah. And I think that point that you mentioned about community is a really important point of the entire process. And I love that you’ve got a community that is supportive and you’ve got three different health experts in that. So many times when I’m looking on Facebook, going through these groups about losing weight or eating healthy or managing their health, it’s an echo [00:39:00] chamber, but it’s a negative echo chambers. Someone says, you know, I tried to lose 20 pounds and it didn’t work. And someone says, oh, I also had that same struggle. And it’s just reinforcing that. Whereas it sounds like in your program, they’re reinforcing the benefits of that. And looking at who you work with, what would you say the demographic is that you typically work with?
Tony: Oh, so I typically work with active individuals and athletes. So anyone between their twenties and row about sixties that works out at least four times a week, that’s looking to change your body composition. So it means gain muscle, lose body fat, increase performance.
I’ve had some people that do, for example, orange theory. I had one client and she was just not able to get her muscle mass up. And she was doing in bodies to get that feedback. And she actually had an injured shoulder. So we actually looked at her protein intake. We looked at her carbohydrate intake.
We looked at her fat intake. We looked at her hydration. We looked at our recovery. We looked at what she was eating before workout. And after about a month working with us, she started to feel her shoulder brunch. She was lifting more than before. Of course she was doing other things like physical therapy. But she was able to actually gain muscle for the first time in over a years because she trusted an expert. Then we’ve had people, for example, that [00:40:00] had the PCOS. So we had people that were trying to lose weight and they’ve tried everything. They’ve tried every bodybuilding.com website.
They’ve tried every macro calculator. They tried everything on their own. But they finally decided to work with an expert and they actually started to see body composition changes. And one of my favorite things is that we want our clients to graduate. So they learn things through their program and I’ve had clients graduate anywhere between six to nine months. And they come back not to work with us, but to let us know that they’re able to keep those results.
Right. So I think that’s one of the best things I’ve seen.
Doug: That’s so powerful. And for those who perhaps are just starting to get back into exercise, maybe they were active in high school or college, but now they’re trying to get back to that, you know, working out three to four to five times a week. What advice would you recommend?
Tony: Ooh, hydrate or diedrate. Making sure they got at least half their body weight in water. And then one thing I have my clients do is I have them weigh themselves before and after workouts. Reason is for every pound you lose, you actually need to rehydrate with 24 ounces of water. And a fun little story, when I was working in the university of Florida, we had a football player that lost 10 pounds in a practice. So that means he needed 240 ounces just to [00:41:00] rehydrate to where he was the day before. Though, let me tell you that did not happen because drinking two gallons of water overnight is not going to work for anybody because then he’d be urinating, and sleep is very important.
So we just made sure the next day we really focused on him getting his electrolytes in.
Doug: Gotcha. Thank you for sharing that, Tony. And do you have any uncommon advice that you give to clients that perhaps runs against the grain of what others here?
Tony: That’s a good question. I would say, the advice I give is backed by science. And I think so many people throw that out without actually having the backing. So what do I mean? I’ve had clients that go through the program, they watch a module series and they fact check me. So, one thing I teach about is something called the carbon fiber ratio and they’re like Tony, here’s like 20 papers that I found on pub med based on what you’re teaching.
I’m like, thank you for sharing that. Why are you sharing that with me? They’re like, I just wanted to make sure you weren’t, you know, fibbing me and I’m like, well, I’m glad you did, but here’s all these other papers you can look up to. So I think a lot of people claim that they’re doing evidence-based things when they never read that paper in their life, or they’ve never gone through it.
So I think that we see a lot of these things, especially on social media, nowadays, that people consider themselves experts. And when they haven’t really gone in and done the [00:42:00] dirty, and it sounds like gone and read the papers and understood how they can explain it to a client. So I think what sets me apart from others is that I actually have the backing of science behind me versus just saying, Hey, I did it on my own and that’s really it.
Doug: Yeah. and I think that’s such a really important distinction to say that this practice actually has that backing, that understanding behind it. And looking at your own practice. Do you have any resources, tips, or tools that you’d like to give listeners. Maybe like a giveaway or point them towards a book.
Tony: So I have a 17 page guide on how to optimize your nutrition that I just created in 2022 that I’m more than happy to share with you. I think when you sent me the job form, I did not have it ready. I literally just created it a few days ago. So I’m more than happy to share with you via email, if that’s okay.
Doug: Yeah. And listeners that will be in the show notes afterwards if you’d like to share more about it.
Tony: So that is going to be a 17 page guide. Just a better understanding of some of the things we teach to our clients. So it has a lot of the worksheets we actually give for our clients in the program.
It has a grocery list. It has a meal fueled timeline. It also has ideas for pre-workouts snacks. Post-workout snacks. Some ideas about animal-based [00:43:00] proteins and plant-based proteins, whatever that person’s looking for, what plates should be looking like, things of that nature through, we want to give them as much as possible.
Doug: Yeah. And I saw that on your job form that you’d mentioned something about supplements. Would you mind telling us a little more about that?
Tony: Oh, so one of my favorite topics to talk about, Doug, is supplements. And here’s the reason why. The two supplements I love to talk about is BCAA so branch chain amino acids, and fat burners.
Out of curiosity, Doug, have you ever taken a BCAA?
Doug: I have not.
Tony: Okay. If you had to take a guess where BCAA comes from, from the supplement form, where do you think they come from? Not the location, but like what source?
Doug: The first thing that pops into my mind, uh, plants.
Tony: It actually comes from bird feathers.
So most branch chain amino acids that people buy and drink are bird feathers, and they actually are very ineffective. So if you were buying BCAAs and using it, especially the ones that are touted for fat loss, you’re actually just drinking bird feathers, which is very fun. Now, the other thing with fat burners, how many calories on average does a fat burner, do you think burn?
Doug: I’m going to say it’s lower [00:44:00] than people expect. Maybe like 200 calories.
Tony: One Hershey’s kiss.
Tony: A day. So, if you were taking a fat burner, you’re pretty much tossing money down the drain, because you are literally just bringing away a Hershey’s kiss, which is nothing. Most of them don’t burn any calories, but the ones that actually do it’s a 21 calorie increase, which at the end of the day, go for a five minute walk and you will technically burn more calories regardless of who you are.
So don’t waste your money on supplements. I’m all about food. First. There are supplements that are effective that I do talk about with my clients. And again, I can’t give a blanket statement because that would be, you know, not the right thing to do. However, those two supplements are the two I always get questions about.
And I was like throwing that little fact out about supplements.
Doug: Yeah. Well, thank you so much for that, Tony. And finally for listeners who wants to learn more about your work, to get that guide and to perhaps work with you, where can people find you? Absolutely. So you can find my website nutritionFP, which stands, for performance.com.
Tony: You can find me on Instagram at coach underscore Toni T O N Y Castillo C A S T I L L O. You can also find my Facebook page, just look up team NFP. And if [00:45:00] you have any questions, feel free to just shoot me a message on the DMs in Instagram, send me an email, which is email@example.com. Or you can find me on this podcast with Doug, uh, and shoot us a message and any questions you have more than happy to answer.
Doug: Fantastic. All those links will be in the show notes or the description if you’re watching on YouTube. And finally, Tony, do you have any parting words of wisdom for our listeners?
Tony: Hydrate or diedrate. That’s the big one, Doug. I appreciate you. Thank you so much for having me on. It’s been an absolute pleasure, man.
Doug: Absolutely. Thank you again, Tony.
I had an absolute blast talking with Tony today.
And I hope that you had a blast listening in. I also hope that you gain some incredible knowledge because I know that I did. There were quite a few things in this conversation that surprised me. So if you gained a nugget of wisdom from this conversation, I encourage you to subscribe, click the plus sign or the bell if you’re watching on YouTube, because there are so many more podcasts coming your way. Now, Tony and I put in our time. So I ask that you take just a couple of moments of your time to [00:46:00] help us out. You can click subscribe on whatever podcasting app you’re using. And while you’re there, I encourage you to leave a review. You can even leave a review on this specific episode.
This is especially helpful if you’re viewing on apple podcasts, because apple podcasts help to promote our show, depending on how many reviews that we get. So to help people find this excellent information and help them change their lives, just like you are changing yours, I encourage you to leave a review. even if it’s just a one-word five star review on apple podcasts, that’s fantastic. And I cannot tell you how much that helps us out.
Thank you again for listening in or watching this if you’re watching in on YouTube and I look forward to seeing you at the next one.
My name is Doug Sands and I help compulsive and emotional eaters, to end the obsession with food and make peace with it, often in as little as two sessions.
Let’s go out there and continue making your health, the journey that you want it to be.