Make The Easy Choice

Hello, team, Christopher Lawrence here with I’m wearing my sweater ’cause it’s a little bit chilly in my house. My spouse likes to keep the temperature at minus 17 in winter and minus 20 in the summer. So I’m cold. But that’s not what we’re here to talk about today. What we’re here to talk about is what I like to call make the easy choice.

So what this is about is when we are faced with a food craving, especially in a cultural situation, the, it’s so easy to give into that. And this isn’t about eating 100% correctly, 100% of the time without making any mistakes ever, forever, for the rest of your life. Although, I have met a couple of people who are pretty close. I’m not one of those people. So what do we do instead when we’re trying to change our food habits and work on behavioral modification for our food, maybe it’s also exercise, anything health-related? We wanna implement something called make the easy choice. So I’ll give an example. During the holidays, during the holidays, sometimes when I’m around family, when I say sometimes, I mean a lot, when I’m around family, I can find it very difficult with all of the spread of food. Like there’s food on the table all the time, nonstop, so it’s really easy to overconsume and get too much of even the right kinds of food. And it’s really easy to overconsume on the kind of food that might be incorrect for my body and my physiology, which would be anything with sugar. You too, just in case you were wondering. So it’s really easy to overconsume on that stuff. But so then, what do you do when you’re in that situation? Well, here’s what I do. It’s really hard for me to make the decision when it’s in front of me and I’m already hungry and it’s sitting there and it still smells good. I mean, I’m not gonna lie. Like, you know, some smells for me, it’s like I have no desire anymore, it smells gross to me. But some smells, they still get me and I want that food, even if I don’t even feel hungry. So where’s the easy choice in that case? Well, in that case, I might actually bring my own food, which I have done before. I’ve got a new salad, which for me is a traditional Christmas salad. It’s got some cranberries in it. It’s very, it’s, I don’t know, it’s just, it’s lovely. And so I might bring some of my own food and say, “That food over there, I’m not allowed to have,” because that’s a statement that works for me. You might also use, “I’m choosing not to have it,” or, “It doesn’t support my health,” or, “It’s not in line with who I wanna be,” or, “It’s not in line with my value system.” That food isn’t for me. This food is for me, right? And so that has helped me before. And even if I can’t bring my own food, even that kinda thinking seems to help.

I also try to fill up with the main meals. So I’ll make sure that it’s like, okay, with the main meal, this will eliminate my need for dessert because I’m gonna make sure that I get everything I need with that. I also play with timers. Like, I’m not gonna eat for 2 1/2 hours. And when that 2 1/2 hours comes up, I’m gonna grab a small or reasonable sized handful of nuts. And those are all easier choices for me than walking in without a plan. So the easy choice in that case is walk in with a plan. Walk in with my own prepared food. Walk in having already selected the kinds of food that I’m gonna eat that day. That’s an easy choice. I gave another example of this in another video where I talked about if I get gas on Friday nights, I am probably going to get a bag of chips on that Friday night. So the easy choice is to get gas on a Thursday morning or a Wednesday evening, some time of day that isn’t a trigger for me. Why are Friday nights a trigger for chips when I’m at the gas station? I don’t know. But they are. So instead of overanalyzing that and freaking out about it and saying, “What’s wrong with my stupid head,” I just say, “You know what, that’s just the way “that I’m built right now.” And I could overanalyze that and try to change it, which would be going against the grain of a habit that’s been there for probably close to 20 or even 30 years. Can you believe that I’m 40? ‘Cause I can’t. And you better not either believe that I’m 40. Anyway. Yeah, so, you know, where’s the easy choice? And the easy choice might be getting in front of where that behavior happens. That’s where the easy choice is.

So I hope that’s super helpful. Oh yeah and one more tip. Sometimes the easy choice for me is actually doing meal prep. If I get all of my meal prep done, you know, the night before or a couple of days before or even for the whole week, which is rare for me, I tend to do it a day or two in advance, but if I get it all done, then that’s the easy choice. And when that food is prepared, I feel compelled to eat it. ‘Cause I’ve got a plan, I don’t want it to go to waste. It’s really hard for me to stray from it actually. So that works for me. It’s an easier choice to come with a plan and prepared food than it is to, you know, kinda walk into my workday maybe, walk into the office and not have a plan for food and kinda just wing it. That is never good news with me. Some of you are perfectly fine with that. Not me. I use it as an excuse to eat garbage. And then I feel like what? Garbage. And then my body hates me because I’m treating it like garbage. Okay, that’s enough of that. Thanks, folks. Hopefully that was helpful. You can check us out,

Do NOT Rely on Motivation for Weight Loss

[VIDEO ARCHIVES] Habit Loops & How they Affect Food!!

Check out this video about food habits!

Hosted by Dr. Mike Breen of the Chiropractic Family Care Centre, and Certified Master Coach, Christopher Lawrence. Did you know that 95 to 98% of people who lose weight put it all back on within 12 months? Did you know that studies conducted in 2015 say that if you are “normal” weight in Canada you are now in the minority? This means that more than 50% of Canadians are considered overweight or obese. Because of this the weight loss journey can sometimes be discouraging, heart-breaking, and frustrating! Who should you listen too? Who has the right science and the right program? We have a proven track record of helping our clients lose weight and keep it off with the Healthy Transformations Weight Loss Lifestyle Program. What makes this program different is that we look at both the science and the behaviour of eating and food, this is currently not done by any of the other programs on the market. During our free seminars we will be revealing the 10 secrets to losing weight keeping it off both from a scientific perspective as well as the behavioural perspective. Finally two experts in the industry are combining physical and behavioural science to ensure you achieve the weight loss results you want for the rest of your life! • Attendees will get a clearer direction on what they need to do to lose weight and keep it off • They will find out what may be slowing them down, standing in the way, or stopping them from achieving the weight loss they need to see to live a healthy lifestyle • They will leave feeling empowered and ready to take action to achieve their weight loss goals Join us for our next complimentary info session. Times and location listed on our website:

[VIDEO ARCHIVES] "PLUMPkin" Season and it's Impact to Your Health

Check out this video from our archives!!

Losing weight can seem very tough. Sometimes you feel like you’re doing everything right, yet still not getting results. You may actually be hindering your progress by following misguided or outdated advice. Participants not only can expect to lose weight, but will also learn how food is the most effective treatment methodology for chronic disease. Also, participants will come to understand their own food behaviours and learn how to change their food habits to encourage sustainable results. Register at:

[VIDEO ARCHIVES] Deliberate Practice Healthy Transformations

Check out this video on deliberate practice from our video archives!!

Hosted by Dr. Mike Breen of the Chiropractic Family Care Centre, and Certified Master Coach, Christopher Lawrence. Did you know that 95 to 98% of people who lose weight put it all back on within 12 months? Did you know that studies conducted in 2015 say that if you are “normal” weight in Canada you are now in the minority? These means that more than 50% of Canadians are considered overweight or obese. Because of this the weight loss journey can sometimes be discouraging, heart-breaking, and frustrating! Who should you listen too? Who has the right science and the right program? We have a proven track record of helping our clients lose weight and keep it off with the Healthy Transformations Weight Loss Lifestyle Program. What makes this program different is that we look at both the science and the behaviour of eating and food, this is currently not done by any of the other programs on the market. During our free seminars we will be revealing the 10 secrets to losing weight keeping it off both from a scientific perspective as well as the behavioural perspective. Finally two experts in the industry are combining physical and behavioural science to ensure you achieve the weight loss results you want for the rest of your life! • Attendees will get a clearer direction on what they need to do to lose weight and keep it off • They will find out what may be slowing them down, standing in the way, or stopping them from achieving the weight loss they need to see to live a healthy lifestyle • They will leave feeling empowered and ready to take action to achieve their weight loss goals Join us for our next complimentary info session. Times and location listed on our website:

The Pod Life Podcast: Sugar Chronicles The Gummy Whores Part 2 of 2 – Ohmpire Productions

Check out part 2 of this podcast from our archives.

A podcast interview with Christopher Lawrence done by Ms. Opium for her podcast Ohmpire.  If you would like to learn more about weight and weight loss or experience anti-inflammation or a ketogenic diet, please check out 

Transcript for your reading pleasure…

Ms. Opium:  Hey everybody welcome back to the Pod Play, we are doing episode 2 of the Gummy whores and back for another visit is Christophertopher Lawrence. Christopher welcome back.

Christopher:  Thank you very much.

Ms. Opium:  Christopher has had an exciting event happened, since the last time we were together and we are very proud. Christophertopher got married,

Christopher:  Yeah I’m sorry I’m off the market.

Ms. Opium:  He’s off the market sorry everybody,

Christopher:  Actually I’m not sorry, I’m happy to be off the market but I’m sorry for all of you though. I’m just kidding.

Ms. Opium:  All of you people out there.

Christopher:  All of you who clearly knocking down my door.

Ms. Opium:  Here you go. So we are going to pick up from where we ended the last time. When we ended last session we were talking about self-control, so I’m just going to go right into the next question that I have. Can you in your own way define the difference between diet versus lifestyle?

Christopher:  So here’s how I see it. Diet is something that you do for a definitive amount of time. I guess it depends on the context of the word, so here I’m going to get a little bit chatty but I see it in the context that we are talking it’s for a definitive amount of time. Where lifestyle is like I don’t really question, this is what I do. This is the way I eat for the rest of my life. The other context of diet is just in its simplest form which is this is my diet; these are my food choices not as in diet losing weight. But as in this is my diet as in my food choices, so I don’t know if that makes sense.

Ms. Opium:  It does absolutely.

Christopher:  Yeah I think it’s more about making a lifestyle choice..

Ms. Opium:  Okay now my next question. Lifestyle and diet changes over the past half a century compared to what they’re like today.

Christopher:  Oh wow so I’ll do my best with this. Just over 40 years ago there was a guy named Hansel Keys, and he was funded by an organization called the Sugar Research Foundation or it might be the Sugar Research Council I think is what it was. He did a study that was basically saying sugar is not unhealthy for you, in fact it might healthy for you, He studied many countries I think it was over maybe 40, maybe 30 and his criteria was that fat makes you fat, and therefore there’s no problem with sugar. So what he published was punch lines from only 7 countries that he felt met his criteria, but it was bad science. It was bad science. So from that we got 40 years of low fat, reduce your fat, low fat products in grocery store. Then what did we do? We increased our carbohydrate consumption, also what happens with the flavour of food when you take fat out of it.

Ms. Opium:  There’s nothing left.

Christopher:  There’s no flavour, so what did we do to compensate for flavour?

Ms. Opium:  Yeah sugar.

Christopher:  We added sugar, so now its coming to light with good science and good research that fat in fact is required for the body. The USDA I believe it was US Department of Agriculture, every 5 years they do a study where they take multiple studies on food and food consumption, and everything and anything you can imagine.

They look at all the studies that have happened in the last 5 years, and they compare and even beyond, and they compare them to each other. They say what is the best science and what are the most common themes. Just last year or the year before the USDA removed the upper limit on fat completely. So the 3 previous studies or previous years I can’t remember which, it was and you can find this report, it’s actually not hard to find.  I’ll have to tell you to Google but it’s actually over 500 page report, where they’ve gone and done all this research.  Basically what they’ve done is they said, and they only look at pure reviewed journals by credible sources. They look at fundings, who’s funded this by pharmaceuticals, was it funded by food manufacturers, or   is this a third party sort of independent study. So they look at all of this stuff. They’ve been increasing the percentage of daily fat intake over the last 3 or 4 years, and then last year they came out and said there is no upper limit. There is no maximum amount of fat that you can eat, that we would consider unhealthy, and they do not differentiate between saturated and non-saturated fats. Basically what they’re saying is the impact is so minimal compared to everything else that’s happening in our bodies, because of sugar and inflammation, that you should just start consuming fat period.

Ms. Opium:  Wow.

Christopher:  That’s what they said. So here’s a really interesting fact that you can take back, or your listeners can take with them. Hang on I lost my thought, that’s okay it will come back to me I promise.   It always comes back I just need to give it a minute, but there’s a really interesting fact in there and I can’t remember what it was, so you have to keep listening.

Ms. Opium:  Stay tuned more on fact.

Christopher:  For more on fat.

Ms. Opium:  Okay that is really interesting.

Christopher:    They basically remove the upper limit on fat. Oh it was about heart disease that’s what it was. So here’s what we say, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, means that we need to reduce cholesterol, i.e. lower your fat consumption. They’re not finding a credible correlation between I shouldn’t say zero, but basically they’re not finding a direct correlation between consumption of fat and cardiovascular disease, and they found the same with salt. So yes salt in excess certainly, but actually salt is not your enemy either, it’s okay. Salt is not as concerning as sugar is, not even by a long shot. If you can get your high glycaemia carbs down, that is how you’ll prevent inflammation, how you’ll prevent heart disease or other types of inflammation. It’s not just these.

Ms. Opium: Wow that’s crazy.

Christopher:    It is crazy. So 4 years of bad science and science build up science.  So you get one study and it’s like oh here’s new, so all other science after that has to reference the original study, until somebody can prove otherwise and now they’ve taken the time. They’re like actually this doesn’t make sense. And exercise when you talk about the last half century of exercise as it relates to weight loss. There is zero or virtually zero correlation between exercise and weight loss.

Ms. Opium:  Really?

Christopher:  Really.   So we kill ourselves at the gym, exercise is still good. It’s incredible, it’s required, its part of two things. Range of motion and strength, those are the things that we lose. So we want to keep our range of motion, something like yoga, swimming, something that uses your whole body, i.e. obstacle course racing and strength, I do obstacle course racing because you get a bit of both. I use my body in different ways and I require strength, so that one gets both for me. But those are the two things that you need to exercise for, exercise is good even just simple walking.  I think sometimes people go way out of their way to kill themselves. I have a personal rule by the way. I do not work out unless it’s fun, if I’m not having fun I don’t do it anymore.

Ms. Opium:  Yeah that’s a good rule.

Christopher:  Yeah why not, any exercise is better than nothing.

Ms. Opium:  It’s true.

Christopher:  So I do things that are fun for me.

Ms. Opium:  And I’m a freak of walking, I have to get my steps every day.

Christopher:  Yeah good and that’s it takes right. The one thing we say about exercise a lot is consistency will trump time and intensity every time. So what I mean by that is when you look at the longevity of your life, 10 minutes of deliberate act of walking, sort of getting your arms moving, walking every day is better than say two or three times at the gym of intense workouts, every 6 weeks and then you stop for 8. Consistency trumps time and intensity any day, in terms of longevity of life or anti-aging.

Ms. Opium:  There’s a happy thought for everybody who hates working out.

Christopher:  Yeah that’s right totally, exactly.

Ms. Opium:  Okay so next question. In today’s society how do you maintain a healthy lifestyle?

Christopher:  I’ll narrow your question down a little. I think what I’m hearing in there is that there’s an implication that it’s difficult to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Ms. Opium:  Yes it is with all of the pretty pictures, fancy ads, watching this, watching that, everything at your fingertips.

Christopher:  Yeah totally right culturally we are really not set up for it. I think it comes back to habits and planning, having the habit of planning. I know this sounds really strange but willpower doesn’t last a long time, and so we use a lot of education to reinforce cause you want to reinforce the knowledge, so that’s the first thing. If you don’t know then you need to know. The second thing is don’t rely on will power because it doesn’t last very long.

Ms. Opium:  That’s true.

Christopher:  Especially when we get close to the end of the day. So by the time you get to the end of the day you’ve used up your sort of decision making power, so it’s no surprise that people… we have a visitor here.

Ms. Opium:  Whoffington Post is joining us.

Christopher: Whoffington post is here in the studio and he is dying to get out. There he is Mr. Whoffington himself.  Yeah and lots of […]. So what were we saying I just start to focus on the dog.

Ms. Opium:  We are talking about will power, end of the day.

Christopher:  Yes. So I think one of the biggest things, so education is a key piece I think. Then the second piece is awareness, so being aware of your habits. What do you currently do, almost to the minutia. Like I know when I walk in the house at the end of the day. I know for a fact if I do not have a meal prepared, when I walk in that door, or if I cannot prepare something in five minutes or less, I’m going to go to consume something. So for me it’s no longer junk, but I might like eat a whole bunch of nuts or something. When really all I need is the meal itself. So I do a couple things to plan and this would be the third thing, is to pre planning. So I  do my planning when I’m in my optimal state which is usually in the morning, usually at the beginning of the week and you’ll notice this, I’m not the only one. Usually by the end of the day we start to be a little more forgiving with our choices, by the end of the week Friday comes and it’s like oh I’m just going to eat whatever I want. So what I say is plan it and do that when you’re in your optimal state. So early in the day and at the beginning of the week, as best as you can. So in the morning I will sit down and if I haven’t plan at eth beginning in of the week, I’ll say okay I know I’m getting close to the week or I’m getting tired or whatever. So then I’ll say okay what I need is to know is exactly what we’ll eat tonight. So what’s in my fridge right now that I can put together in 5 or 10 minutes or less, and if I see oh it’s going to be a busy week I’ll cooking in advance, so I don’t have to think about it. I can just throw it in the pan or microwave if you have a microwave, and heat it up and then you don’t have to make a choice, the decision was already made. So its sounds kind of boring and un-motivating, uninspiring, but the truth is its really empowering when you get to the end pf the week and you say wow that worked. That’s when the motivation sort of hits you again; you’re like wow I made good choices this week.

Ms. Opium:  Awesome.    I don’t do that I don’t.

Christopher: Do the preplanning. Choices. I’m sure you make some good choices in your life.

Ms. Opium:  Whoffington Post I did. Okay this is a personal question, what are your top 5 evil foods?

Christopher:  Zesty cheese Doritos right out of the gate, not even Nacho cheese Zesty cheese Doritos. They are fluorescent orange, there’s not a colour in nature that is represented by the colour of this. When I consume those although it’s been a long time, last time I did I actually got sick to my stomach like literally, like I think I eat too many. I’ll go to Costco and get the family size bag and I’ll  just eat until I’m sick of them, usually a day and a half and then I’m done, like the bag is done. So zesty cheese Doritos is number 1, chips is number 2, and then probably chocolate is number 3. Some people are savour your sweet, I like to balance it out, I’ve had a lot of savoury. I should top this off with a chocolate bar or three. And then we’re probably getting it so those 3 and we’re probably now getting into more sort of carb heavy takeout meals. So pizza is probably one, and then Chinese food would be the other. Pizza is high glycaemic but Chinese food is basically everything coated in sugar.

Ms. Opium:  It’s true.

Christopher:  I should know we say that. There’s options right, they do have like stir fried vegetables and stuff where they don’t put sugar in and that kind of thing.

Ms. Opium:  Don’t they?

Christopher:  It depends where you go, it depends where you go.

Ms. Opium:  Yeah.

Christopher:  I don’t want to paint the entire Chinese food industry with one brush. There are some healthy because there are places out there that are coming very conscious. Look this is what the majority wants but we want to cater to people, who wants Asian style food but have a sort of conscious eating.

Ms. Opium:  That’s very true. Do you feel there is a benefit to food journaling?

Christopher:  Yes usually, but actually I want to go back. What are your top 5?

Ms. Opium:  Oh lord.

Christopher:  Is it gummies?

Ms. Opium:  Depending on the day so it would be gummies, liquorish, chocolate, chocolate covered jujus.

Christopher:  You can’t just have like chocolate with the juju at the same time in your mouth; it has to be chocolate covered jujus. I agree it’s a different food category.

Ms. Opium:  Totally has to be cold in the front of the fridge, and then I guess chips would be my 5th one.

Christopher:  Chips eh.

Ms. Opium:  Yeah, yeah.

Christopher:  You really like the sweet stuff.

Ms. Opium:  Oh yeah, it’s bad, it’s really bad. See just talking about it it’s like mm.

Christopher:  I’m thinking about it now. And also remember its destroying your body, and will give you early onsite dementia.

Ms. Opium:  You know what I’ve been trying to put it that way, so that I don’t stock up and have the chocolate in the freezer and all that kind of stuff just because I know it’s bad.

Christopher:  Yes totally and for the other things are sweet but more healthful.

Ms. Opium:  Cherries at this time of year.

Christopher:  Yes and actually I think I […] frozen cherries.

Ms. Opium:  Can you?

Christopher:  Yeah you can. I think we get ours from Costco and I like them, because I pop one in my mouth and it’s almost like when they’re thawed just a little bit and the ice on it. They have like moisture some of the moisture start to flake off, and when I put it in my mouth it’s almost like having the texture of candy coated. Like ice and sugar or something.

Ms. Opium:  Interesting.

Christopher:  I mean cherries would still be higher glycaemic but it’s certainly better than a juju or chocolate bar, and if you throw in a couple nuts with it then you’re balancing it out a little bit.

Ms. Opium:  Oh yeah see there I go. I can throw some chocolate covered peanuts in.

Christopher:  Yeah totally, nut chocolate covered peanuts. Peanuts are not a nut, they’re legume.

Ms. Opium:  Oh right yeah. They’re bad for you aren’t they?

Christopher:  Peanuts are funny because they’re not a nut it’s a legume, but when you look at your fats peanuts go I can’t explain this well, but I know they’re sort of two streams that fat goes down, and peanuts go down the bad one.

Ms. Opium:  Interesting. What about pistachios? I don’t ever see pistachios on the list of?

Christopher:  That’s a good question I eat pistachios.

Ms. Opium:  I love them.

Christopher:  Yeah me too and cashews too I like.  The sweeter nuts right.

Ms. Opium:  Of course.

Christopher:  And then Brazil nuts, I eat them but I don’t particularly enjoy them.

Ms. Opium:  Those are what I go for  […]. The chip craving if I have to eat, I go for those.

Christopher: Yeah the saltes.

Ms. Opium:  Okay back to this is really good, back to the food journaling.

Christopher:  Right. Yes here’s what I think is helpful. I think food journaling is helpful for some people. I think some people where there is sort of pre-existing history of food tracking, maybe due to anorexia or bulimia and that kind of thing. Sometimes food journaling can exasperate or re-introduce that history, not for everybody but for some people. So I would say if you have   a history of that you’re certainly going to check with somebody.

Outside of that I think food journaling is an incredible idea, from the perspective that one it brings awareness, two when you plan and then you track how you’re doing on that plan so I’m going to eat this today, and then you go back and say here’s how I did. Food journaling can be a simple as I had my 2 meals and my 3 snacks, or however you choose to consume food throughout your day. Food journaling I think can be very beneficial but we also know that there’s something to the tracking piece that seems to sort of evoke this internal accountability. And I think sometimes you have to refresh it and I know it sounds funny, it can be really big and it can be simple but you might just be like, oh I’m on like a 2 week kick of increasing my greens. I’m not a big fan of challenges if they don’t, like what are you doing it for, but if it’s to sort of refresh. A simple as it sounds sometimes when I go through my food journaling phases, and I will go on and off with them but when I go through mine sometimes, new stationery makes all the difference because I’m motivated to use the stationery.

Ms. Opium:  Yeah it’s true.

Christopher:  I like different colours and different pens and stuff. It doesn’t work for everybody and maybe it seems cheesy but listen if I can actually fake myself to doing it because I already have the habit of new fancy fun stationery. The utilization of that is by tracking food, then I’m actually creating a food habit based off of stationery in my new stationary habit. So I’m trying to fake myself into creating something new. I find it very helpful I love new stationery.

Ms. Opium:  I do too, can’t keep me out of staples.

Christopher:   I know, staples is almost boring to me now I’ve seen so much of it. I want like…

Ms. Opium:  Something new?

Christopher:  Yeah totally.   We need more funky green stationeries to be like that, they’re kind of like gone downhill since  […] or don’t.  That’s my personal opinion, great stationery means you stay away from the stupid cheesy jokes, you start to look like San Francisco. You remember that store from the 80’s and 90’s? You need to put that aside.

Ms. Opium:  Let’s go back to stationery.

Christopher:  Go back to awesome stationery; oh my God it’s amazing.

Ms. Opium:  You mentioned the word habit and this isn’t in my list of questions, but now I have to ask it because I have another podcast series called “Two Bitches on a Bench”,

Christopher:  I’ve heard part of it actually.

Ms. Opium:  Oh, oh.

Christopher:  I loved it.

Ms. Opium:  There was one session we were talking about habits, and the question came up isn’t everything a habit.

Christopher:  Yes.

Ms. Opium:  Isn’t everything a habit?

Christopher:  everything is a habit.

Ms. Opium:  Yeah.

Christopher:  Yeah everything or nearly everything is a habit. The way you walk, the way you talk, how you eat, how you chose to eat, how you drive, even the way you think is all habitual.

Ms. Opium:  So you can break a habit?

Christopher:  No. You cannot break a habit no. So here’s what we understand. There’s a great book and I might have mentioned this last time, it’s called “The Power of Habit” by Charles Duhigg.  It’s totally worth a read he’s also got one called “Smarter, Better, Faster” I think. I think that was my 23:18, also that’s one of these elite athletes doing that kind of thing and elite corporations that kind of thing. But the power of habit is worth everybody reading. So you cannot change a habit, however cause once that nero plasticity is in there like once that nero pathway is in there, it is the way it is however you can change what you do with it. So can I give you sort of the anatomy of habit as according to Charles Duhigg?

So let’s give credit where credit is due, its Charles Duhigg stuff. So here’s what we have, think of it as a loop and in this loop you have 2 which is the trigger, this is the thing. So for me it’s like I see the bag of zesty cheese Doritos, sometimes just seeing it is enough of a trigger. Sometimes its stress, sometimes it’s the time of day, sometimes I’m craving social interaction, so that’s the queue. Could be an emotion, doesn’t matter, any kind of queue. Smell, sight, touch, taste, or emotional feeling, where you are, who you’re with can be a queue. You hear about this all the time with people who are like, it’s like I don’t smoke unless I’m drinking. You hear that and it’s like, well then drinking is the queue. Or it’s like I don’t drink unless I’m with these people, those people are the queue. So you have a trigger, the trigger leads to the behaviour. So you come down a circle a little bit at least to the routine, so its queue routine reward. Queue is first, routine is second in the loop, and routine is the behaviour, the action that you take. So with the zesty cheese Doritos I go I grab the bag, I take the counter I pay for it and I usually open it as soon as I get in my car.

Ms. Opium:  Yeah.

Christopher:  I have the first chip and then the pay off, so that’s the last thing in the loop. So you have the pay off or the reward. So queue, routine, reward, according to Charles Duhigg’s work, and the reward is the pay off. It’s the thing you get from doing this behaviour, so I eat the chip and aww I feel better somehow, and if that reaction is strong enough it goes back to the queue. So what that means is that because I have that sensation with it, the second that I see those chips again or I get stressed again, I’m going to know that I can get that pay off.

Ms. Opium:  Right.

Christopher:  So the stronger the reward the more likely the queue is to lock in. where the craving comes in is between the reward and the queue, that’s where cravings start. So if the reward is strong enough you form a craving, and that loops back to the queue. So here’s the thing, the queue is pretty much in there for life. So when I see zesty cheese Doritos there will always be an instance, in time I may not even notice it. Just like driving I don’t really notice how I drive, I’m just driving. Like most people on earth unless you’re a brand new driver, or maybe you’ve been in a car accident, or a near miss. Then all of a sudden you become aware of your driving again. There’s a clue to that in terms of how we change a habit okay, so it all comes back to that example. So that will always happen but the queue will never change.

If what I’m looking for when I go to get zest chees Doritos is relaxation, or maybe I’m looking for a sensation, or maybe I’m looking for a break, or I’m looking for socialization because we use food for weird things, that will never change either.  I still need that pay off. So for me to go for a run instead of eating zesty chees Doritos, probably won’t do it because if what I’m looking for is relaxation, a run isn’t going to do it and this is what people think they should do. It’s like oh I’ll just do this instead, you can. You should replace the behaviour, the routine part, that’s the piece you can change. But what you change it with has to give you the same reward that eating the chip did.

Ms. Opium:  Interesting.

Christopher:  Okay. So that’s the piece you can change, is the behaviour piece. Make sense?

Ms. Opium:  Yes.

Christopher:  So like here’s ways that we can put in interventions, like the driving. If you’re a new driver it’s not habit, you’re aware of everything that you’re doing right.

Ms. Opium:  Yeah.

Christopher:  Let’s say you’re a seasoned driver but you get into an accident, or you have a near miss, doesn’t it make you more aware of what you’re doing?

Ms. Opium:  Yeah.

Christopher:  You’re like oh I may increase my following distance. I’m going to be really careful about the people around me. I’m not driving for myself anymore, I’m driving for all of them, and it snaps you back to reality.  That’s what we can do with these things. So sometimes we do it in a gentle approach where we take a phase approach, or sometime we do something really extreme.  Like the next time you go to buy chocolate covered jujus. You might stand at the teller and say, I’m about to pay for chocolate covered jujus really loud and I’m saying it out loud to embarrass myself because the pain of doing this every single time is going to make me not want to do it, so I apologise for the interruption. How often are you going to want to buy chocolate covered jujus, if that’s what you have to do?

Ms. Opium:  Never.

Christopher:  Probable never. So if you could even make a deal with somebody that that’s what you’re going to do, and they’re going to hold you accountable and it probably has to be for a long time like a year, maybe more. And you make that deal with somebody where it’s like and it requires honesty. I mean if you’re going to lie to them, you’re lying to yourself; there is no point you have to know.  But you can make that deal with somebody and I wouldn’t make it with family, or your best friend. You got to make it with somebody where it’s going to feel like if I lie to them or don’t tell them, it’s going to be a big deal.

You know it’s interesting you probably wouldn’t do it, or you do something like you cut a check to somebody who you want to be accountable to. Like for you what would be the dollar value that would be reasonable, that would be worth for you to not eat jujus anymore? These are just tactics, we’re talking tactics now.

Ms. Opium:  Probably a couple hundred dollars.

Christopher:  So let’s say a $1000 then. We are talking about your health and you probably spent more than $1000 on crap food. And maybe you spent more than a $1000 on health related stuff in your life that maybe if you didn’t eat the junk, you wouldn’t have needed to do in the first place, would that be fair to say?

Ms. Opium:  Oh Absolutely.

Christopher:  Yeah. And not because you’re you but because you’re human in North America and this is what we do.

Ms. Opium:  You know me.

Christopher:  Yeah totally I know a little bit. So if you were to cut a check and you were to sign it, and we were to make it out to charity like the KKK.

Ms. Opium:  Oh.

Christopher:  And you were to give that check to somebody to hold for you in a safe, somewhere safe, maybe even a safety deposit box and you had to be accountable to them, not even yelling in the grocery store, but to not buying chocolate covered jujus. Maybe there’s even people around you that are going to report it if they know, and you set yourself up for success where your boss, your co-worker, you told them all. I’ve done this, I’ve given a $10,000 check to the KKK which is sitting in a safe, and your job is to call this person. Should you see me with any of these then I need to self-report, and then if it happens that person sends the check in.

Ms. Opium:  Yikes.

Christopher:  You get a tax receipt.

Ms. Opium:  Embarrassing tax receipt.

Christopher:   Right like that’s the point. It’s so painful for you to do that now, that you’ll probably never do it again in your life.

Ms. Opium:  Yeah wow.

Christopher:  You see what I’m saying?

Ms. Opium:  Yeah.

Christopher:  And you need to do it long enough that you establish the habit.

Ms. Opium:  Right.

Christopher:  Get you establish the habit so probably not 6 weeks, cause we know you could do 6 weeks, probably close to a year, maybe 2, maybe 5.

Ms. Opium:  Maybe 5.

Christopher:  Right and then you get your check back.

Ms. Opium:  Yeah oh Lord! Yikes maybe I will do that.

Christopher:  Maybe right. You got to get serious if you really want to change it. Now that’s an extreme example but how extreme is it this whole sugary addiction thing. This whole addiction whatever we want to call that, how extreme is that?

And how badly do you want to change. Because here’s the thing that we know about people, if they want to change they will find a way. So sometimes not always, sometimes an immediate pain is one of the best ways of motivating ourselves.

Ms. Opium:  Interesting.

Christopher:  Yeah and then a big reward maybe at the end too.

Ms. Opium:  I might have to think about that, that’s interesting. My next question was about physical activity but you already answered theat.

Christopher:  Perfect.

Ms. Opium:  So great. Next question is we are getting into ketogenic now. What does the ketogenic model means to you?

Christopher:   I want to be really careful because this has become a fad now, so I’m really glad that it’s become known in society, let me first say that. Let me also say there is an incredible amount of social media and media extremism, for ketogenic diet where people are consuming way too much period. So let me tell you what I understand it to mean, and I would call it keto lighter or moderate keto. If you eat this way you will reduce inflammation, and if you have weight to lose you’re going to lose weight.

So the way I understand it is that you reduce the consumption of carbohydrates, so in layman’s terms it’s about putting your body in ketosis and you can test this with ketone strips. You can get them from any drug store, you can see if you’re in ketosis okay.  You don’t want too much though, if the strip turns dark purple or black or whatever, you’re using it too fast. You kind of want it to be in the middle. The idea behind this is that you have a higher fat consumption, moderate protein consumption, and then low carbohydrate consumption. So when I say low carbohydrate consumption I’m not talking like Atkins, Atkins was on to something. He was high protein and low carb, and again it was executed very poorly. But people walked around thinking that they could consume bacon for a meal, that’s not what we are talking about here, and even with bacons you got to be careful because the second you get like a maple flavoured or this flavour, there’s probably sugar in it. Most bacon actually has sugar, go look at the ingredients.

Ms. Opium:  I guess yeah.

Christopher: It does most does, even if it’s not maple flavoured. It’s amazing how they…

Ms. Opium:  It’s how they cure it right?

Christopher:  Yeah totally. So sometimes in the curing it’s like okay lets be real here, how much sugar is actually in it  by the time, cause there’s a lot of fat.  So that’s the idea is that you want to have more fat, moderate protein, low carb. Protein does still provide a glycaemic reaction.

So what we are trying to do is keep your blood sugar levels and your insulin levels even as possible. We do not have to resort to extremism, so this would be like having a palm sized piece of protein on your plate, and lots of greens. When I say reducing carbohydrate what I’m really talking about is reducing high glycaemic carbohydrates. Most people will never eat as much greens or vegetables as they need to in their diet. Our program as you know we focus on the 160 grams of leafy greens, high quality leafy greens, a lot iceberg but things like spinach or other mixed greens. Go and measure 160 grams of leafy greens and then add 5-7 servings, about a cup worth of other vegetables, not potatoes not carrots, but things like broccoli or cauliflower, things like that because potatoes are starch and so high glycaemic, and carrots are pretty close to being classified as one. They’re doing a lot of work with carrots right now, so you want to focus on cucumbers things like that. You want to put those things in and look at how big your bowl is and that’s how many you need to eat every day. So even though its quote and quote low carbohydrate, most people are actually still if they do it a ketogenic diet properly, they’re actually consuming more in terms of chewing more carbohydrates, than they did before in terms of chewing because greens don’t weigh very much.  Most people we find have a hard time even consuming that amount of greens and vegetables.

Ms. Opium:  It is a lot.

Christopher:  It is a lot right. But we know that people who have primarily plant based diets, so this doesn’t necessarily mean vegetarianism or veganism, but people who have primarily plant based diets actually have longer lives, and more healthy lives and less inflammations. So we are talking low glycaemic, even fruit and vegetables the stuff.

Oh you usually have 6-7 servings of fruit a day, it’s like well not if you’re eating keto. Fruit is still a good choice because there’s nutritional value, but if you want to go keto fruit anything that’s high starch, high glycaemic will pull you out of ketosis. So you even want to limit the amount of fruit that you’re having, it’s not bad for you and you can get everything you need from vegetables anyway. So high, high vegetables which are low glycaemic vegetables. Did you know by the way white bread has a glycaemic index of 100, and Russet potato has high glycaemic index of 120 or 150?

Ms. Opium:  What!

Christopher:  Yeah. So some potatoes are worse than white bread for you.

Ms. Opium:  Wow.

Christopher:   I know yes. In terms of glycaemic index potatoes still have some nutritional value, but if you can get it in other places you don’t require the potato. Isn’t that  […]?

Ms. Opium:  Yeah that is, it’s like oh  […].

Christopher:  Did I answer your question?

Ms. Opium:  Yes you did.

Christopher:  Hopefully effectively.

Ms. Opium:  Yeah you did.  So just before we have to wind this up because you were kind of leading into, can you talk to us a little bit about your program?

Christopher:  Sure yeah. So the program that I run I run it with Dr. Mike  […]. He’s got over 30 years of nutritional experience, he’s a doctor of chiropractic medicine. What people mistake is that chiropractic is just about spine and spine health. It’s actually about the whole body and the functionality of the body. So they get a lot of nutritional stuff and Mikes been doing this for a long time, and so Mike focuses on the food science and I focus on behavioural science. Our program is 12 months long which people think is absolutely nuts to have it at 12 months.

The reason why its 12 months is because we know that we can get people to lose weight. It doesn’t matter if you use Weight Watchers or Dr. Bernstein’s, it does not matter. Anybody can lose weight that we know, what doesn’t happen though is that they keep it off. If you look at scientific research it’s close to like 95-98% of people who lose weight, will put it back on. That’s in clinical studies, in real life it’s probably like 70 of 80% of the people who lose weight will put it back on. So our program is 12 months long so that we can continue to focus on habits and habit change because it’s a lifelong thing. There are some people who want more, and actually our very first group said that they wanted additional support, so we do have a follow up program of people who want access to that as well. But the first step is really getting in there; we meet twice a month for an entire year for 90 minutes.

Ms. Opium:  Oh Lord.

Christopher:  Yeah it’s a big commitment, but you know your health is a big commitment and if you want it change, why not change permanently.  We usually get people who are at the end of their journey, 2 people who have tried 2, or 3, or 4 things. We very rarely get people who come in and say this is my first time losing weight, trying to lose weight. Usually they’ve tried multiple times, multiple programs, different things and they just can’t sustain it, and so what we focus on is correcting eating and establishing behaviours that lock that.

Ms. Opium:  Interesting.

Christopher:  Yeah.

Ms. Opium:  Great okay well thank you for sharing, and thank you for joining me for a second podcast.

Christopher:  Thank you.

Ms. Opium:  It was exciting.

Christopher:  Yes.

Ms. Opium:  And I’d love to have you back again and we can talk about another subject. I’ve got some ideas in my head.

Christopher:  I would love to.

Ms. Opium:  Excellent. Well thank you again and thanks listeners.

Christopher:  Thank you, thank you listeners.

[ARCHIVES] The Pod Life Podcast: Sugar Chronicles The Gummy Whores Part 1 of 2 – Ohmpire Productions

Check out this podcast from our archives!

A podcast interview with Christopher Lawrence done by Ms. Opium for her podcast Ohmpire.  If you would like to learn more about weight and weight loss or experience anti-inflammation or a ketogenic diet, please check out 

Transcript for your reading pleasure…

Ms. Opium:  Hey, everybody welcome back! It’s The Sugar Chronicles, Episode 6 on The Pod Life. We are broadcasting from Calgary, Alberta and this episode we have a very special guest. He is the most awesome Life Coach, Christopher Lawrence, of Change My Life Coaching. Christopher is a Life Coach, a Health Coach; a Career Coach the list goes on and on, so let’s get started.

Okay Christopher, so let’s get started on our questions. I am just going to talk a little bit on how we met. Christopher and I met in a building that we both used to live in and we met through my very special little doggie Bentley at Woofington Post. Christopher is a Life Coach and he provided me life coaching, also the co-founder (correct me if I am wrong) Healthy Transformations in Calgary along with Dr. Mike Breen, going to talk about that a little later.

So when we first met with Healthy Transformations, I came to an information session and I let you look at my food journal, do you remember what you said to me?

Ms. Opium:       I don’t remember what I said to you. What did I say to you? By the way you missed a part of the story. Part of the story is that I actually tried to steal Bentley from you.

Ms. Opium:       That’s true, yes you did

Christopher:     Woofington Post forever. No I don’t remember what I said to you

Ms. Opium:       You looked back at my food journal, and you sat back in your chair and you said “Oh my God Ms. Opium how are you not dead”.

Christopher:      Yeah, now I remember, as soon as you said I sat back in my chair, I was going to say how are you not dead

Ms. Opium:        Yes you did. So that leads us into addiction

Christopher:      Yeah

Ms. Opium:        Can you give us an overview, general overview of addiction?

Christopher:      Yeah, I’ll do my best, I am not a scientist by any means what I have is my personal experience with addiction. And so what I understand addiction to be is something, and this is very layman, but it is something in us that takes control of us, it is something that we either live for or by. And there can be addictions that are very positive and leads us towards some great results and some that leads us towards maybe negative things or incorrect choices.

And so addiction kind of takes over, it’s the thing it’s on your mind, it’s often on your mind when that thing that you are addicted to you are not getting you are thinking about the next time you are going to get it.

Ms. Opium:         That’s very true, that speaks very loudly to me, so with respect to what we are here to talk about today, what’s your philosophy on food addiction?

Christopher:      Oh, it’s interesting, I am glad you use the word philosophy because there is a difference between science and philosophy; and so when it comes to food addiction, geez that’s a loaded question. I will try to keep it as simple as possible, but my philosophy on it is we require food to eat or to live, there is no question we require it. We are going to eat if we want to not to survive but thrive, right.

Ms. Opium:        Right

Christopher:      As it relates to addiction, I would say that we have habits, maybe and some of those habits may be out of control that leads us to consume foods that would not be correct and when we are doing that consistently, my philosophy is that perhaps it has taken over, the food choice has taken over.

Ms. Opium:        Okay, so if I am making this a bit personal for me

Christopher:      Yeah totally, this is your journey

Ms. Opium:         Because I am not a huge food addict, as you know, I can do without food, if it was possible

Christopher:      Sure

Ms. Opium:         I would have to ask you, and I don’t know if I am gonna use the right words here but, does sugars addictive qualities warrants it as its own type of addiction.

Christopher:      It’s so interesting that you say that because I was actually listening a podcast about this, like why not classify sugar as a drug, right.

Ms. Opium:        Yes

Christopher:      But that’s kind of a philosophical question, so I was actually listening another podcast about this. I believe it was Freakonomics, just within the last couple of months and so addiction has sort of different, like there are certain criteria and I am sorry I can’t remember them. But there are certain criteria that says this thing is the substance requires, and sugar has a couple of exit points out of that criteria as sort of scientist would look at it.

Like why is it you can sell illegal substance and this kind of thing, and it kind of show that sugar has a couple exit points, the question that is not being asked now is, should we redefine the criteria that makes (you know, I don’t know if this is anticipating one of your future questions), but I am going to be honest with you, I sort of feels that sugar should be treated like cigarettes and alcohol.

If we ban it it’s not going to do any good, but I do think that we need to look at, and you know this has huge social implications, right, like economic implication. There are companies that would go out of business because of choices like this; but maybe sugar needs to be regulated and controlled differently more than it is now.

If we are talking about health, I know that there are columnists out there that are going “oh my God don’t do that”, right. But, if we are talking about health, I think there is something to be said about having that and providing more nutrition education and sugar education.

Ms. Opium:        I agree.

Christopher:      Because if I can go back and rewrite elementary school curriculum. I would start with things like mindfulness, and I would start with things like it’s not too early to understand how interest works. You know like why did none of us know or understand what is happening on our credit card. I think that nutrition would be a much bigger part of it and not just nutrition education but asking questions, right.

I can’t tell you that I haven’t had a piece of cake since I have been sort of on this anti-sugar thing, because it is never anti-sugar. I can’t tell you I haven’t had one. But what I can tell you is when I do I understand the implications, I truly understand the implications, not “yeah I know what it is doing to my body” but I don’t really know.

No I understand the implications, and I choose to make a choice and I eat food with it that helps me counteract the effect of inflammation that comes as a result of sugar. So that’s a long winded answer to a very simple question

Ms. Opium:        Its interesting the scary nature of sugar, there is a very scary nature to it

Christopher:      Yeah, Like you talk about mood, right? Like you consume sugar and 20 minutes later you could be dealing with a completely different person and some people aren’t as affected by it, I am. Oh yeah, like if I eat enough sugar within 2 hours later I will be the most miserable person you have ever met and in my worst moments even depressive thoughts come up with it like it’s a very very powerful substance.

Ms. Opium:        And I think, for me, I never put my connection to my nature to be copious with the amount of sugar that I consume, now that I know that connection, I know that connection it’s like Oh!

Christopher:      I like that you use that word nature – I never connected my nature with the copious amount of sugar. I think what you are implying there is maybe sugar has actually defined some of my personality and some of my behavior. I would have to say in my history that is also true. I would have to say that absolutely when you go into the sugar benders, I would say for me that started when I was a little kid. I would go into the corner store every day with my allowance I would make it stretch over that room. I would start every day with sugar, every single day I would start with sugar.

Ms. Opium:        I am with you on that one

Christopher:      Yeah, totally right and you see the difference in it and you can feel it too.

Ms. Opium:        You can feel it, and I think like for me I have always been very high speed, I can just go go go go and since I have tried to cut down on sugar I find that I can’t go go go as much. At first, I was what’s wrong with me? and now I can make that connection it’s like I wasn’t really functioning properly, I was just going on sugar.

Christopher:      Yep, you know when you talk about eating sugar in the quantities that we have both done in our lives previously, yeah I mean it’s like somebody who is drinking 8 cups of coffee that’s beyond reason, you know like what is may be enough if you need.

Ms. Opium:        Exactly, so this also is very personal, can you explain the cycle of guilt and what I mean by that is eat a lot of sugar, sugary bad food whatever it is, candies, cakes, cupcakes you know, you just have that massive pig out session and then you feel guilty but to make yourself feel better

Christopher:      you eat more sugar

Ms. Opium:        Yes, can you explain that behavior

Christopher:       Yeah, I’ll do my best with it. It’s a really fascinating thing and I know that there is a lot of research on it and maybe not enough. But so I would like to go to the layman’s place with it because for me I have to make everything relatable, the science is interesting but I have to make it relatable to me and put in words that I understand, right. The way that I understand this to work is that you have the cue and there is a really interesting book, by the way, by Charles Duhigg called The Power of Habit and it’s well worth the read.

It talks a little bit about this kind of thing it talks about things like addiction and habits, really an addition is a habits that’s completely taken control of your life and so we have our cue that’s the trigger the thing that makes us want the thing

Ms. Opium:        Yes

Christopher:      Right, so we have a cue maybe the cue is I am feeling low today, the routine or the behavior, that triggers the routine or the behavior. So if it’s an emotion I am feeling low today, I know that the behavior is that I go grab a chocolate bar or a bag of chips or something like that so we are talking about sugar today, for me it’s also like junk food. So I go grab the chocolate bar or the bag of chips and then I get pay off and the payoff is I feel good for a little while; and when it comes to sugar this is the really sort of scary thing about sugar is that it happens fast, you can feel good really fast, right.

Which is also why some people are addicted to skydiving or going shopping or exercise because you can feel good very quickly, because that’s what we need, we need a payoff. One we have that payoff the next time we have that emotion of feeling down or low or whatever it might be, that starts the habit ball all over so that’s another trigger that leads to the behavior.

Here is the cycle of sugar we know at some point there can be for many of us an emotional crash or an emotional mood swing or a shift in the emotion and the emotion that usually follows the high is the one of feeling low

Ms. Opium:        Yes

Christopher:      Right, And so one if your triggers is feeling low and guilt, you just start it over

Ms. Opium:        You just start it all over

Christopher:      Literally just start it all over, it’s like a perpetual cycle whereas I feel like crap about this but I know that sugar makes me feel better, so I am just going to eat more sugar, so you just go through this, go through this and go through this again because your trigger is emotional guilt or it’s the emotional feeling low.

Which when you are coming off of sugar, what does it do it makes you feel guilty or makes you feel low, so that you go back to the thing that is quickest and easiest to pacify yourself. That a perpetual cycle so what we need to do is actually give you the same thing that sugar gives you which might be a bit of pick me up physically but I bet you has a lot to do with emotion, right. We need to give you the same emotional pay off that you get where it doesn’t trigger guilt or a low feeling and then you be looking for that same cycle again

Ms. Opium:        So based on that really what you need to do is find that payoff

Christopher:      Yeah

Ms. Opium:        That’s not sugar

Christopher:      Yeah, what’s another payoff, I think the first question actually, you know I won’t take credit for it actually, this is all Charles Duhigg’s work, this is my interpretation and understanding of it, okay; so I don’t want to take credit for that but the first question is what are the triggers? Right are there certain times of day, are there certain emotions, are there certain people that I am around, are there certain activities that I have just done something that triggers it.

For me it could be anyone of the above like I have an incredible day, I have one of the most successful day at work you know this is something I have well managed now, but I can still tell you that the cravings or something junkie comes up with the most incredible day, why? Because I associate that with celebration.

Ms. Opium:        Yes

Christopher:      Right I deserve this I have earned it I have earned this thing. Or I have the worst day even though this is well managed I have the worst day and so what do I choose? For me, I still go to food, right I still go to something junkie, right and I deserve this because it has been a bad day and I need some TLC and TLC is represented by food, that’s one example and that’s an emotional thing. I also know that filling up my gas tank at the gas station is a cue for me

Ms. Opium:        To go and get food

Christopher:       To go and get junk food, right and so I have to be very mindful of it and so I think the first question is what are the triggers? The second question is what am I getting by having this thing, this sugar? That’s the second question, what’s the pay off what am I actually getting. Because the trigger and the payoff cannot change. If what you are seeking is comfort or what you are seeking is to be pacified or what you are seeking is to be stimulated, that is what you are always going to seek. What we have to change is the behavior, so that is why we ask the question what is the new behavior that I can do that will give me the same pay off? And that is the third question, what’s the behavior, does that make sense?

Ms. Opium:        It makes total sense, and something that you said triggered another question, I am not sure about. When I go to get gas, I get gas and I go in and I am looking at all the chocolate bars and all that kind of stuff

Christopher:      You do Gummies?

Ms. Opium:        Yes

Christopher:      Can we call us Gummy Whores?

Ms. Opium:        Yes! Yes absolutely Gummy Whores! That’s going to be the name of this podcast

Christopher:      Gummy Whores, I love that. I don’t love it but I love the name.

Ms. Opium:        I do too. So I go in looking around and looking to see who else is in the store, if there is someone else in the store I won’t buy the candy because I don’t want somebody to see me, but I think we have talked about this before on healthy transformations; because I was a closet addict and even still the same now. If there is a cookie, there is cake or anything at work I will sneak it and I will sneak it into my office and have it when no one else is looking

Christopher:      Yeah, there is totally something about shame there; there is totally something about shame.

Ms. Opium:        Yeah,

Christopher:      Actually, it’s really fascinating that you say that because you and I both know that the person at the till is still going to see you, but it is almost like socially, you are like it is socially acceptable that somebody does just processing the transaction they see this all the time.

Ms. Opium:        They are not going to remember that that girl or that car bought that thing.

Christopher:      Yes, there are interesting association, can I add to your story?

Ms. Opium:        Of course

Christopher:      So when I was a little boy, my parents- I was living with my dad and my ex-stepmother at the time, she is no longer part of our family but they were a couple then; and they would get treats, right and you know how I feel about that word. Treat for me is no longer associated with food, it can’t be eat. If it is associated with food it has to be leafy greens or carrots or the ability to have healthy movement or a more sustainable lifestyle, right it’s a different word. But at that time treats were associated with cookies or cakey things or whatever it is and our parents would hide them in the closet.

Ms. Opium:        Really!

Christopher:      They would hide them in the closet and so growing up there was much sneaking of having treats of having this junk that felt really good, that totally triggered something for you, didn’t it?

Ms. Opium:        Yes it did

Christopher:      So it’s interesting, so as a direct association there is these Swiss rolls. Swiss rolls are like a chocolate cake with a crème wire that’s rolled up, so it’s rolled up

Ms. Opium:        Yeah

Christopher:      So there was a period probably about 10 years ago when I weighted much more than I do now, and I went through this period where I would see these Swiss rolls in the grocery store and I would buy them and I would like consume six of them.

Ms. Opium:        Because of being deprived?

Christopher:      Because of being deprived, but I didn’t even make the connection. It took me probably three years after the fact to go O my God I am totally eating these Swiss rolls because that. And there was an incident around Swiss rolls it wasn’t just, in that case it wasn’t just a sneaking thing but there was a specific incident around this Swiss roll where it was associated with trouble and shame.

Ms. Opium:        Interesting.

Christopher:      And so no I can have this now, I am an adult, I can choose to have this, and so I would have around five or six to make myself feel better. Interesting eh.

Ms. Opium:         And now you’ve talked about that I can totally relate because in our household growing up candies, cookies and that kind of stuff was a treat a my mom used to, like if she baked cookies or there would be candies or something, she would count them before she would go out.

Christopher:      Oh wow

Ms. Opium:         And so it‘s like we could sneak one because she could miscount by one, but you couldn’t have two or more and after when you didn’t have mom watching over you it’s like I can have all, I can have it I can have all of it and I did

Christopher:      There is something about control there too, isn’t there, right totally.

Ms. Opium:        Yeah, yeah,

Christopher        As oppose to listen, our parents did what they did, and if we are going to blame them for the bad stuff we have to blame them for the good stuff too, right? It’s interesting that hindsight is always 20/20 and I think about this stuff, and I don’t have children, right but the one thing that I would do now, even just having this conversation with you is I would make sure that my children actually had access to these things but understood how to have a relationship with them

Ms. Opium:        Yeah, yes

Christopher:       I define relationship where you are mindful and make choices because we have a relationship with cookies and Swiss rolls now, right we do. It’s just an unconscious relationship rather than a conscious one and that the idea is to make a choice and teach along the way, yea that’s fascinating.

Ms. Opium:        Kind of trigger something for me

Christopher:      yeah yeah me too

Ms. Opium:        As we use the word philosophy again do you have a philosophy on self-sabotage?

Christopher:      Oh philosophy, I guess my soft philosophy is that it exists and I think I have in my line of work to meet somebody who hasn’t at some point in their life self-sabotage or doesn’t self-sabotage. And so I guess my philosophy or my self-loss on it is probably going to happen. The question is when it’s happening or just before it happens or after it happens, what do you do with it?

Ms. Opium:        Yes, yes

Christopher:      Right, it’s what we are doing with it is something that’s productive or mindful that creates awareness or does it go back to the shame and guilt cycle

Ms. Opium:        You see for me in that regard, it will be for me that day at work, I am getting low, and I know talking myself down the whole time. Then I will get hungry or whatever and then I have countless amount of cookies or candies and I go it works the same way so might as well blow my face with sugar, because what difference does it make? I might as well just keep going.

Christopher:      Right, exactly

Ms. Opium:         And then after that’s when the guilt happening and all that kind of stuff. So that leads to my next question, why do you think we repeat behaviors despite knowing better?

Christopher:      Yea, you know it’s funny, I don’t think knowing is enough, it has to be… so to answer your question why do I think we do it, I think it goes back to the habit cycle, honestly, I think it has to do with neuroplasticity that’s ingrained in you. And that neuroplasticity will probably never go away at this point in your life, which doesn’t mean that we can’t change. What it means is that we have to be aware that that’s our default mode. Our default operation or our modus operandi or mode of operation. That’s our mode of operation in certain circumstances.

What we want to do, is create a new mode of operation in those same circumstances so when these things come up, for example I know if I am conferencing, whether I am speaking at a conference or participant at a conference, usually I am doing both, if I am at a conference I am speaking and participating. Conferences are a trigger for me, it’s licensed, here I am I am at a conference and so because I know that about myself I must do a lot of pre-planning around food and food related behaviors. So I will sit down and say, if I go up to the buffet and see the following things what will I choose and I make my decisions before I go.

One other thing, I don’t know if it’s from Charles Duhigg’s book or another book that I read. We know that people who go to buffet there are people who over consume and there are people who make good choices. The people who make good choices sit further away from the food but they actually go and plan what they are going to eat before they pick up the plate, it’s a conscious decision

Ms. Opium:        Interesting

Christopher:      Where those say, I am gonna have that, I am gonna have that and I am gonna have that and it’s a choice, it’s a choice rather than just an action that we are going through, right. It’s a really fascinating thing. So now if I go to buffet, which oftentimes conferences are, I plan ahead and I say, there is almost always something healthy, not always but almost always, so I will look and say where is the vegetables, where is the protein, where is the…. And if I can’t find something I have meal replacement bars that fit within my lifestyle, right that I actually selected.   I would rather have the conference food because sometimes it’s more enjoyable and I want to participate in that.

Ms. Opium:        Right

Christopher:      For me it’s about the social aspect too and participating in the whole thing, getting value for the time and money that I have invested in it. But I will pull out a meal replacement bar and I almost have that or I keep nuts with me so these are some of my personal tactics to create that. So to create new… sort of going on a tangent, so I do hope that’s okay.

Ms. Opium:        That’s totally okay

Christopher:      So to create a new neuropath ways in your brain what you have to do is apply correct action, correct action means good food choices consistently over a long period of time. Sometimes we know that we are going to go back but as best as possible we have to keep getting back on the wagon and don’t stop getting back on the wagon, I won’t use the word try, right. We know that people who make attempts to quit smoking the more attempts they make to quit smoking the more likely they are to be nonsmokers in the future.

Ms. Opium:        Interesting

Christopher:      Yea it’s very fascinating, so what we want to do is keep applying it consistently for as long as possible. For me it comes back to planning, I have to plan if I don’t have a plan I am way off course, right and the planning gets easier you do this for a couple of years and then you just yeah

Ms. Opium:        It becomes a part of you

Christopher:      I am okay yeah, and especially planning for those times, there are times I have with some of my clients, but I haven’t done it personally for a long time, I did it for something else in my life. It’s like when I am feeling the following three things which are my biggest triggers so for me its high stress, maybe some depressive feeling, and overwhelmer or even a sense of self lowly things sometimes. If these three things show up and they show up in a big way, you know, I haven’t done this myself, maybe there are times I could use, this but I think it is useful for anybody. So I have clients who do this and they literally have cue card with five instructions on it saying you need to go and get greens and you need to put nuts on them and you need to put olive oil on them and maybe throw on some fruit, your favorite kind, that’s with a salad.

You need to do those things first and then you need to get out of the house and go for a walk with the dog, right, go do something enjoyable, right. Things that are non triggers for me, sitting down and watching a movie is always a trigger for bad food so that’s not on that list; right.

Call a friend, call my coach whatever it is and you go through this list, and you say once I go through this if I still don’t have what I am looking for I am going to do a little bit of journaling about that first and say what it is that I need? What I am actually looking for but I am not getting? and if after all that I still can’t get what I need then I will give myself permission to make a choice to have the junk food. It is a lot of work.

Ms. Opium:        It is a lot of work it sounds overwhelming.

Christopher:      yeah totally, which is why when we are in that moment it’s on a cue card so all I have to do is follow the steps

Ms. Opium:        I think I need to do that

Christopher:      Yeah, just follow the steps. And the reason why I use that example I am feeling strong feelings on this is because sometimes when we have the strong feelings, I don’t know; maybe this isn’t everybody certainly. But for those who experience it sometimes it can last for a period like days and so would just go on like a food bender with jog for days, the problem with that is it continues to perpetuate the feelings, a feeling like shit, excuse my French, you’ll have to bleep me

Ms. Opium:        No, we don’t bleep, so do you think that doing a cue card in that same method but fur the opposite, so today I doing great, I am feeling really good and I didn’t touch sugar and I write down all the things the triggers, yes I am having salad, yes I am having….

Christopher:      Analyzing the successes too, yeah why not.

Ms. Opium:        For me, I am one of those people that I have to have the positive reinforcements all the time instead, because I would automatically go negative so hearing this things maybe I should try it the other way.

Christopher:      yeah totally, why not, why not. I get motivating… the purpose of buying the cue cards, it could be a reminder in your phone it doesn’t matter the point is that you have something accessible that you can grab in an instant that you will remember to grab

Ms. Opium:        yeah

Christopher:      you know what’s interesting, you can go crazy with this where I came up with this was actually when I was experiencing extreme anxiety in my life. So I created a kit and inside that kit were things so it had a cue card of instructions but inside that was a kit of things that would help relax me right. Things that I could do in an instant so I put in my favorite music CD, I put in a piece of dark chocolate was in there I thought it comforting, a bag of peppermint tea. But to think of something like this when you are in that state, hey here is my reward box or here is my I am not feeling good kind of food support box and you go and open it and there is like some nuts in there and you know nonperishable stuff sometimes that’s harder to do because nuts goes rancid after a while.

But even like a gift certificate to a place that has healthy food that you love, that you can just go and access when it’s a bad day.

Maybe have five of them in there; and you have these cue cards, call a friend, go for dinner, take them here, if the friend won’t go, go anyways, bring it in as takeout. Do something while you are waiting for the food to come so that you are not sitting in your house thinking I have Oreos in the cupboard.

Ms. Opium:        So again going back for me, I’ve tried to stop buying sweet stuff at the grocery store, and so my thing is like I am having one of those really bad cravings like I want it I have to have it, and Safeway is right across the street from where I live, and right across the street from where I work. I can’t do it at work but at home I’ll purposefully put my pajamas because once I have my pajamas on I am not leaving the house, it’s like I am not going to get dressed

Christopher:      That’s great

Ms. Opium:        At work, I would just keep working, which it’s probably not the best idea but it is something I do to stop and also when I am at work I won’t go with a bag as I don’t want people to see me coming back with a bag with stuff.

Christopher:      Exactly. Listen at this point sometimes it is about whatever it takes. If that’s the thing whatever it takes use that motivation because the more consistently you can apply, coming back to the question, the more consistently you can apply correct behavior for longer periods of time and when you step off the path just step back on as soon as you realize it come back on.

Ms. Opium:        Yeah, I think that leads us into the next question, which you have kind of answered perhaps, how does one train themselves to get self-control or can they?

Christopher:      Hmmm

Ms. Opium:        Yeah, but do you every really, really truly get self-control because there could be normal things that triggers that you just……

Christopher:      Yeah, totally, I think… how are we doing is it still going?

Ms. Opium:        I think so; I am just going to check here. We are good

Christopher:      This is technology. How do you get self-control or can you? I don’t know if I have the right answer to that question, I know that there are people who have discipline that I don’t have

Ms. Opium:        Right

Christopher:      I think the word I would replace it with is practice and maybe it’s lifelong practice. Right so it’s less about about self-control and it’s about practice and I also have to know why, what is your reason for wanting to do this and making it so big that there is a possibility of not doing it becomes less optional. I think also when you look at self-control, it’s also, this actually came up as a topic in the group last night, the weight loss group that I host with Mike, is you have more self-control when you feel like you have choice and some people were like, what? Really? And I was like yeah knowing that choice exist yeah it’s actually an option. Because if you and I were to talk before you get the candy next time at the gas station and I said to you, you have a choice, which choice do you want to make, truly want to make?

Ms. Opium:        That would change my mind

Christopher:      it would totally change your mind in that moment, right. There is also something to be said here about having community, because we could write that out on cue cards and it would help but actually having somebody there would change that in an instant.

Ms. Opium:        It would

Christopher:      This speaks to self-control is interesting having community is incredible especially community where one has done something or come close to or is further along the path than somebody who isn’t, right. It is hard to have community with your best friend or your spouse if they haven’t already done it because you could end up in that place of “I don’t’ know”, “should we give in” “I don’t feel like it totally”, right.

Ms. Opium:        I don’t feel well

Christopher:      Totally right and we have those people. I don’t look for accountability in my best friend, I don’t look for accountability in my spouse I don’t look for it in my parents and if I had children I wouldn’t look for it from them either because there is too much history and too many rules. I look for accountability with a hired professional or from someone who gets what I am doing but they are a little bit arm’s length from me, not totally estranged but a little bit estranged, where it wouldn’t feel like a big deal to me. Community is important community can be two people

Ms. Opium:        yes, yes

Christopher:      It doesn’t have to be more than that and so when you talk about self-control, I don’t even know if I know what that means, like the word that comes up for me is discipline. But I have never… you know I feel like I have had tremendous success in my life and personal fulfillment but I don’t know if I have self-control. I would describe myself that way and so I think this is where that plays a role so certainly the words of “what do I really want here” is important. And we can ask ourselves that and I think it can be effective and I think also having a community, a single person that can actually ask that question, and say that. Eventually that person becomes us, right and eventually we talk about this. When something becomes a habit it doesn’t require self-control any longer and it doesn’t require motivation any longer, because it’s a habit we don’t think about our habits we just do them

Ms. Opium:        Right

Christopher:      And that’s why we use the word practice

Ms. Opium:        It is interesting because like when I think about it in terms of that, I am kind of an obsessive person like when I develop a habit I am obsessed over it. I try to break the habit of going to work early or working through lunch and I can’t. It’s like I noticed this is your time use it for yourself and then I think about the sugar thing, and I am like you are smart, you are intelligent and you know that’s wrong why can’t you change that habit into something good.

Christopher:      Yeah, because you can’t talk yourself out of a habit you have to behave yourself out of it, which is again I stepped off the path, get back on the path, right and get back on as many times as it takes until I get it.

Ms. Opium:        Yeah

Christopher:      And then there comes a point where it clicks, but sometimes for days, weeks months or years. They say it takes 21 days to change a habit so actually that’s not true, it can take as little as 21 days to change a habit or maybe that’s the median number or the average number but actually sometimes it can happen in an instant, right.

Ms. Opium:        Really

Christopher:      Oh yeah it can happen in an instant and sometimes it takes years

Ms. Opium:        That I can see, that I can see

Christopher:      Yeah, it’s not easier, but it can happen in an instant. I will give you an extreme example – let’s say somebody has a bad habit, let’s call it an incorrect habit somebody has an incorrect habit of not doing a shoulder check when doing a lane change; and that’s a habit, let’s say one day they sideswipe a car that is full of children and let’s say one of those children has to have an amputated leg because of the accident, do you think that person will ever not shoulder check again?

Ms. Opium:        No, that person might not want to drive again

Christopher:      They might not drive, but if they do, they will likely shoulder check for the rest of their life and they will probably be even over careful about it. That is how you can change something like that in an instant.

Ms. Opium:        So how do we change the sugar habit in an instant?

Christopher:      You know, that’s interesting there are lots of different tactics this is where maybe some Tony Robbins stuff comes in too right. I have got a great idea how about every time you feel like you are going to buy sugar, you yell at the top of your lungs. ”I am going to buy sugar even though I know, I shouldn’t be right now, it’s going to make me feel like shit but I am doing it because I feel bad about myself”. You would probably do that once or twice.

Ms. Opium:        I don’t know that I would even do that

Christopher:      You probably wouldn’t even do that right, but that’s also the question if all you had to do was do that five times in your life and you wouldn’t eat sugar again, would it be worth it

Ms. Opium:        Absolutely

Christopher:      Totally right, that is one way. The other thing that we can do too, I will draw on a Tony Robbins example, if you don’t mind. He tells a story there was a guy in one of his workshops that says “I love chocolate, there is nothing you can do to make me not eat chocolate in my life”. And Tony Robbins just says okay, let’s do this as a challenge and so what he said is “great do you love it so much that’s all that you are going to consume for the next three or four days”, he said ”there is nothing you can do to make me not eat chocolate”.

So he says “great, no water, no nutrition you are going to eat chocolate and everybody in this room that has chocolate are you willing to give it up to prove something to him to help him not want chocolate again in his life”. After two days of doing this he never wanted to look at a piece of chocolate again in his life.

Ms. Opium:        That’s interesting

Christopher:      Because he got so sick from it but he wasn’t allowed to consume water. Now listen for your listeners and for you, I am not recommending that, however if you make personal choice that that’s something that you want to do, listen it would probably change everything, right. You know, I think about people like these that seem extreme or I don’t know if it would work. Here is my comment what you are doing is extreme over years of your life, like this is dictating your sustainability of your life. We all know we are going to die, the question is do you want to spend the last 20 years of your life bedridden, or unhealthy or dealing with health issues versus okay I have gotten to the end of my life and I have died, right.

But I have had full mobility, full independence the whole time, right well thinking that far on isn’t motivating when you feel like crap and you are in the gas station you don’t think about these things, right

Ms. Opium:        Right

Christopher:      To me I look at this extreme thing and I am like geez is it really extreme when you look at the extremeness of eating this food over that long of a period of time; and then I look at the other side, I don’t know if it will work. I think back to like I have a couple of friends that smell of peach or peach smell makes them want to vomit. Because when they were younger maybe just graduating from high school, maybe they weren’t graduated yet. I am not sure maybe they were underage I can’t even remember, but they drank so much of it that they puked and puked and puked peach slops for hours and so they won’t even look at the stuff, even to this day and here we are like 20 years later.

And a I look at that I say geez maybe there is something to that, maybe there is something to consume in your diet, you know, gummy bears consistently with no fluid and no other nutrition for two … you know you can’t even think about it without being grossed out

Ms. Opium:        I know, I know

Christopher:      You know right, I can’t even think to myself in this moment you can imagine that but when you are in front of it, you can’t; and so maybe there is something to be said about doing that, I don’t know maybe it wouldn’t work, maybe it wouldn’t work. Maybe the key there is he also did not allow him to have water. The guy choose not to have water because Tony Robbins said maybe you won’t drink water, right, the guy also made a choice that is probably the main factor into it because water can sustain us a long time.

Ms. Opium:        Well maybe it wasn’t enough but I think of haven’t done lately, but my soft spot always used to be the marshmallow strawberries that came in the bag, there was Dare and there was McCormick’s and if I had McCormick’s I would eat them just like crazy and I would eat them until I was sick. As soon as I got all of that out I would go back I went right back to them

Christopher:      You would, that’s interesting

Ms. Opium:        But it probably was not a copious amount enough to …

Christopher:      And you might have needed to eat more, like even after you have done that, keep eating them and keep going. I am not recommending it; I think the point is that to change something in an instant you have to do something extreme. Something that really challenges you like some of my clients we are trying to get movement with them, and they have been stuck and segmented but they really want it, I would say what’s it worth to you, what it’s worth in dollars, like if you could do this what that be worth, they would be I don’t know, thousand bucks, okay great. So you are going to do this by this date and time which they have chosen a date and time and if you don’t then it’s a thousand dollars to a charity of my choice

Ms. Opium:        Well is that successful?

Christopher:      Often yes, we can’t do it with all clients. Some of the its often so much stress that they crash so we have to work with their performance model, but for many clients it is, yes and I have never had anybody that have to cut a cheque. I also tell them that the charity of my choice is going to be the KKK or …. But it’s going in their name. this kind of thing so use tactics, not all tactics work for all people some people require far gentler approach. Like put the real strawberry in front of you and put the candy strawberries and I know exactly the ones you are talking about because they are pink on the inside but coated a darker pink sugar on the outside and I know why McCormick versus Dare because the Dare ones have a bitter aftertaste.

Ms. Opium:        That is correct, you see

Christopher:      I know, so if you were to put a pile of those and to put a pile of real strawberries a gentler approach would be, I have choice.

Ms. Opium:        Yeah

Christopher:      And now that I see that I have choice right in front of me what will I do? So maybe if I am going to be in those moments and sometimes I am going to choose the candy strawberries when I am in the gas station or in the grocery stores or where ever it is, sometimes I am going to choose that. But when I am mindful, when I am in this moment after I am feeling inspired, maybe even right after this; maybe I will take the candy ones and I take the strawberry ones when I am feeling inspired and I practice it while I am fully conscious, right, because the gas station moment is going to come.

Ms. Opium:        It is

Christopher:      And so, if I can practice it in my good moments that will also lead to neuroplasticity. Because in your good moments you know you are going to reach for the strawberry and you might even pick up the candy one and you might smell it and you might squish it and then you set it right back down because you need another real strawberry and you will notice the difference. Right and it will become a noticing activity.

And then you would say what does it like to throw out the candied one, what does it feel like to throw that out? What is it like to throw out the fruit one and just experiencing what comes with it and noticing it?

Ms. Opium:        Are you interested now in what would come with it?

Christopher:      Yeah Yeah I am interested

Ms. Opium:         The candy one for me if I threw it out I would be aww aww my candy I feel bad if I threw out this real strawberry, I would be a mass of guilt on wasting food

Christopher:       See my reaction would be the same which is why I wonder what it would be like to practice that in real life as homework, to say twice per week, three times per week or five times per week even if I am eating candy the rest of the day. You know whatever you are doing now I know I am going to take some time to sit down and actually practice this and make a choice that feels helpful and sustainable to me. What is that like and just see how this translates into the rest of my life. But doing it with mindfulness like actually being aware it not just like here is a bowl of candy, here is a bowl of strawberries – I’ll eat the strawberries throw out the candies, and it’s over very transactional.

No sit down pen and paper, make some observations, what did I just notice and test yourself. Maybe you even take those candy strawberries roll it around, smell it, put it back down, have a real strawberry, do the same thing. Maybe you actually eat one of the candied strawberries. Notice how you feel when you have this choice in front of you without judgment, without the shit I made a wrong decision, shame on me.

No hold on I just ate this and I am experiencing feelings. Not I feel like crap, you say I am experiencing feelings of guilt and shame is not interesting and you make note of that and you just become observant with it, right.

Ms. Opium:        Hmm, I think that is a future podcast

Christopher:      Yeah that would be interesting actually.

Ms. Opium:        Yeah it would be

Christopher:       Cause I think you are going to do it yeah, and so when you do it you can talk without knowing that you have an audience, it could be the same people that are listening. I would like to know what happen

Ms. Opium:        Yeah, yeah I thing that is really interesting

Christopher:      And then what happens the next day when you are feeling stressed and you are at the gas station

Ms. Opium:        Yeah, well on that note a thought came to mind when you were talking about cue cards. I think for me what would be if I don’t have somebody to call or with someone, I think having a cue card in my bag, on my cue card what would have the biggest impact is all of the negative effects of sugar, what it’s doing to my body, 20 years bedridden, sick, hooked up to tubes all that kind of stuff or even drawing a little skeleton, right. That would probably be the impact on me.

Christopher:      Here is what I would say; you could have it in your bag which I think is a great idea, what if you should actually attach it to your debit/credit card, the thing that you actually use to buy the candy with. What if you were to attach it to that, now that’s interesting, or to your phone, you want to be too accustomed to it.

I’ll give you an example, as a businessman I am supposed to track my mileage, I hate tracking mileage but it’s a necessary evil, there is very few ways around it, I have asked my accountant and my bookkeeper if there is another way of doing this, haven’t found one yet. And so basically I have to and so I actually leave a post it on the passenger seat of my car that says mileage but I have to change that post it every six to eight weeks, sometimes I have to move it to another place in the car to keep it fresh. This is something that has taken me months to develop a habit. Habit I do well for a period and then start fall off again, but haven’t forgotten since I started doing this.

Sometimes, I just remember later, and I’m oh yes how many kilometers was that to get there. I should go back and put that in; and I make myself do it because it is very easy I mean, it’s a nominal amount you get from tracking mileage, it adds up over time but even if I remember the next day I make myself go back into my app and track the mileage. I make myself go back, I could just very easily say I am not going to do it, no totally.

When I was doing some of my foodstuff I might have a bag of chips or whatever, I would say I have had that and I can’t do anything about it is in me and I don’t want to develop bad food practices by purging it or anything like that, probably make myself eat something healthy after. Like I would just reinforce it with good food after.

Ms. Opium:        Like a salad

Christopher:      From a nutritional perspective, sugar helps it’s not ideal but I just try to make a correct decision as quickly after having the thing.

Ms. Opium:        So based on that, I have… I write my food down every day in a book that I have at home but this week I start putting it back in my fitness pal so that I can see the actually numbers. Because those numbers talk to me more than just seeing it here

Christopher:      Yes, tracking is one of the most effective ways in changing a habit, right. Tracking and planning- what did I plan and what did I actually do? Those two things are incredible combination. You throw that in with a little bit of community, I think it’s much harder to fail.

I also think there is something to be said about perception and hierarchy. When I have staff here, I had one staff member that wanted to quit smoking, I told her we were making it a part of her performance plan, this was very early on in her coaching with us.

Ms. Opium:        That’s awesome

Christopher:      Huge, huge results, and we checked in, we wanted to get to not just she is not smoking but she wanted to feel like a non-smoker, meaning she could actually say I am a non-smoker, right, she never identified as that before and so we checked it. There was very few slip-ups because what your boss is telling you, this is probably what you do.

Sometimes it’s a dollar value too, you know like if you were paying somebody $10,000.00 per month to fix this problem you would have it fixed very quickly.

Ms. Opium:        That’s very interesting, because I think if my employer said to me I would give you a whole Branford gift card if you quit sugar that would totally motivate me, totally motivate me.

Christopher:      Totally, but it would have to be for a sustained period

Ms. Opium:        Exactly

Christopher:      like a year or something

Ms. Opium:        And then how do you prove that on the other side

Christopher:      Well it’s a little bit on the honor basis, but I think people want to be honest anyway, like could you imagine going to your boss and saying, yeah I actually quit eating sugar when you know that you had 5 Oreos every week for the last 52 weeks

Ms. Opium:        No I couldn’t do that

Christopher:      Of course not

Ms. Opium:        Christopher I know that we are running short on time, I have a lot more questions for you and I would love to invite you back for another session.

Christopher:      Let’s do it, let’s totally do it

Ms. Opium:        Awesome because I want to keep going on this path but I also want to talk to you a bit about healthy transformations as well, you know for people out there that are curious and all of that the ketogenic model so definitely want to invite you back. Thank you for your time and we will talk again soon.

Christopher:      Sounds good

Ms. Opium:        Thanks everybody for joining us on Episode 6, The Sugar Chronicles – The Gummy Whores and thank you for joining in, tuning in, following us, continuing with us on our journey to overcome this sugar addiction. Lots more to come in The Sugar Chronicles and we will have Christopher back on a future episode very soon and give us the like, subscribe, comment, recommend, anything. Remember a new podcast every other Monday 7 p.m. mountain standard time.

Thanks again

[VIDEO ARCHIVES] Contemporary and Behavioural Science

Check out this video from our video archives!

Hosted by Dr. Mike Breen of the Chiropractic Family Care Centre, and Certified Master Coach, Christopher Lawrence. Did you know that 95 to 98% of people who lose weight put it all back on within 12 months? Did you know that studies conducted in 2015 say that if you are “normal” weight in Canada you are now in the minority? These means that more than 50% of Canadians are considered overweight or obese. Because of this the weight loss journey can sometimes be discouraging, heart-breaking, and frustrating! Who should you listen too? Who has the right science and the right program? We have a proven track record of helping our clients lose weight and keep it off with the Healthy Transformations Weight Loss Lifestyle Program. What makes this program different is that we look at both the science and the behaviour of eating and food, this is currently not done by any of the other programs on the market. During our free seminars we will be revealing the 10 secrets to losing weight keeping it off both from a scientific perspective as well as the behavioural perspective. Finally two experts in the industry are combining physical and behavioural science to ensure you achieve the weight loss results you want for the rest of your life! • Attendees will get a clearer direction on what they need to do to lose weight and keep it off • They will find out what may be slowing them down, standing in the way, or stopping them from achieving the weight loss they need to see to live a healthy lifestyle • They will leave feeling empowered and ready to take action to achieve their weight loss goals

[VIDEO ARCHIVES] What is Recidivism?

Please check out this video from our video archives.

Hosted by Dr. Mike Breen of the Chiropractic Family Care Centre, and Certified Master Coach, Christopher Lawrence. Did you know that 95 to 98% of people who lose weight put it all back on within 12 months? Did you know that studies conducted in 2015 say that if you are “normal” weight in Canada you are now in the minority? These means that more than 50% of Canadians are considered overweight or obese. Because of this the weight loss journey can sometimes be discouraging, heart-breaking, and frustrating! Who should you listen too? Who has the right science and the right program? We have a proven track record of helping our clients lose weight and keep it off with the Healthy Transformations Weight Loss Lifestyle Program. What makes this program different is that we look at both the science and the behaviour of eating and food, this is currently not done by any of the other programs on the market. During our free seminars we will be revealing the 10 secrets to losing weight keeping it off both from a scientific perspective as well as the behavioural perspective. Finally two experts in the industry are combining physical and behavioural science to ensure you achieve the weight loss results you want for the rest of your life! • Attendees will get a clearer direction on what they need to do to lose weight and keep it off • They will find out what may be slowing them down, standing in the way, or stopping them from achieving the weight loss they need to see to live a healthy lifestyle • They will leave feeling empowered and ready to take action to achieve their weight loss goals

The Problem with Hope: The Power of Personal Choice

Most people go through life feeling that they are not in control, especially as it relates to our food choices. In fact, it often feels like our food is choosing us and we find ourselves eating food that might not be part of our long-term health goals. Our life is filled with things we must do and our dreams and aspirations are filled with things we assume are not within our control. Life then becomes a series of things that happen to us. It’s not surprising to find using people hope to stay focused on health outcomes. They start with a weight loss program hoping to stick it. The truth however is that YOU are ultimately responsible for your outcome in life. For example, hope is what you need when your great aunt is sick in the hospital and there is nothing you can do about it… but with food, health and health related outcomes, you are in charge of it all by choosing what to do. Your choices in such matters ultimately determine your outcome. Just hoping is not enough, heck hope is at the bottom of the pyramid of success if you ask me. You cannot just hope that your desire to attain healthy weight will be fulfilled, you have to take strategic steps to achieve it.

Hoping for something can be likened to the same way a child wishes for extraordinary things and that’s not enough to inspire you to aspire for success. You can simply say ‘I have hope so it will happen’ with healthy and sustainable weight loss, doing the right things for your health will help you to achieve your desired goal. It’s just like saying ‘I hope to get this job’ then just showing up for an interviewed unprepared. Instead you put in work by researching the company, revamping your resume and then putting on your best dress.

Dr. William Glasser a leading researcher developed a popular theory known as the Choice Theory. This theory explains human behavior based on internal motivation. Dr. Glasser pointed out that our behaviours as humans are chosen as we continuously attempt to satisfy one or more of the five basic needs that are inherently part of our genetic structure. He pointed out that the only person whose behavior we can control is our OWN. He describes Total behavior has been made up of four different components namely; feeling, thinking, physiology and acting. Two of the components: thinking and acting are directly under our control while the other two can only be controlled indirectly by the way we choose to think and act. In essence, your ability to lose weight or maintain your health is often a function of what your lifestyle and choices in life. We have control over a number of things in life and we can utilize the power of choices to alter our personal perception. Of course, there are a number of statistics outlining the debilitating effects of cancer, heart disease, obesity and others. You simply can’t hope that you’re not affected by them, it’s imperative that you take initiative regarding the control you have over your health.

Do you get regular exercise? What about healthy eating? Do you regularly communicate your concerns to a doctor and get yourself examined? Apparently, we don’t have complete control over our genes, but do you? Recent research is showing that by considering what food you put into your body, along with other environmental factors, you CAN, in fact control the expression of your genes and YOU are in total control of caring for your body. Getting sufficient sleep, eating healthy food and staying active are all personal choices, things we have control over. In this case… hope is no longer required. So, when you are focussed on your health regimens stop saying “I hope I can do it” or ” I hope I will stick with it. Instead, regain your control.  Choose healthy food and start some form of exercise. You cannot simply rely on other people or circumstances around you to control your outcome. It’s never too late to take charge of your life’s choices.  Break the chains of self-defeating habits and attitudes.  Constantly challenge yourself to practice the power of personal choice and control. As you take back control of your life and choices; your health will improve and you will find yourself moving in the direction of a future you desire. And then hope becomes irrelevant for your desired health outcomes!


Christopher Lawrence is a Co-Founder of the Healthy Transformations program with Dr. Mike Breen.  He is also the Chief Value Officer and Founder of Change My Life Coaching and Co-Founder of Change My Business Coaching — a fast growing whole-life, leadership and business coaching company, and the only one of it’s kind.  He is also the author of “Go Beyond Passion: Discover Your Dream Job”.  Christopher is a Certified Master Coach Practitioner (CMCP), trainer and facilitator, and a passionate public speaker that truly cares about the success of each and every single person he comes into contact with. You can reach him at