Nutritionist Esther Blum

We interviewed Esther Blum, author of the bestselling books Eat, Drink and Be Gorgeous: A Nutritionist’s Guide to Living Well While Living It Up, Secrets of Gorgeous, and The Eat, Drink, and Be Gorgeous Project for tips on diet and exercise.
Esther Blum is a Registered Dietitian and Holistic Nutritionist practicing in Connecticut. Esther is the author of the bestselling books Eat, Drink and Be Gorgeous: A Nutritionist’s Guide to Living Well While Living It Up, Secrets of Gorgeous, and The Eat, Drink, and Be Gorgeous Project.

Esther Blum is a Registered Dietitian and Holistic Nutritionist practicing in Connecticut. Esther is the author of the bestselling books Eat, Drink and Be Gorgeous: A Nutritionist’s Guide to Living Well While Living It Up, Secrets of Gorgeous, and The Eat, Drink, and Be Gorgeous Project. She is sought after by national food and beverage brands as a spokesperson, regularly leading Satellite Media Tours, and maintains a busy private practice.

Widely respected as an industry expert, Esther was voted Best Nutritionist by Manhattan Magazine, and is featured in the 2011-2012 edition of Sutton Who’s Who in Healthcare.

 

What foods can we eat for fat loss?

Eating and exercising for fat loss are not necessarily the same as eating for longevity (though it’s certainly a good starting point if you need to improve your health). Eating for longevity means choosing whole foods that are rich in antioxidants and fiber (such as flaxseeds, kiwis, and pomegranates), and ones that have cancer- or disease-fighting benefits (such as Brussels sprouts, broccoli, and winter squash). Eating for fat loss encompasses a diet that controls carbohydrate intake, blood sugar response, and the hormonal effects of food. In a fat-loss diet, high-glycemic carbs are usually consumed within 30 minutes after exercise.

What types of exercises should we be doing for weight loss?

When clients come to me for weight loss, their story is often the same: “I eat healthfully and exercise but I still can’t lose weight!” Change is hard, but it’s also a good thing to keep things fresh by breathing new life into old, stale routines. The women I see in my practice tend to rely heavily on cardio to keep themselves in shape, yet they are frustrated at seeing little to no change in their body shape. Ladies, we all need to lift heavy weights to create hormonal changes within our bodies. Lifting heavy weights raises the body’s levels of testosterone, human growth hormone (HGH), and di-hydroxy-androsterone (DHEA). This in turn boosts the body’s natural ability to burn fat for a full 24 hours after your workout! Bear in mind that eating healthy, whole foods must accompany your workouts, lest you sabotage all of your gorgeous efforts at the gym.

What is the best type of workout to be in great shape?

I go to the gym and see the same people there day in and day out, doing the exact same routines for years and not changing their bodies one bit. What a waste of valuable time! An effective gym workout is done for 1 hour at most, three or four times per week. In addition, avoid prolonged cardio that keeps your heart rate continuously elevated at 60 to 85 percent of your maximum heart rate; this type of cardio is extremely detrimental to fat loss, because it raises cortisol levels in the body. Cortisol is a stress hormone that helps the body store fat while simultaneously burning muscle—especially around your midsection. To help build endurance and keep your heart fit, try high-intensity interval training (HIIT) for 20 to 30 minutes at a stretch, and no more than that. You will burn twice the body fat during your workouts, and the effect will last throughout the entire day. A 5-minute warm-up can be followed by five rounds of 1-minute sprints, with 30 to 60 seconds of rest in between. Then cool down for 5 minutes. Sprints can be done on a treadmill, bike, or elliptical trainer; with a jump rope; or even as fast laps in a pool. Still not convinced that HIIT will be effective? Look at the physique of a marathoner versus that of a sprinter and tell me who has more muscle!

What tips do you have for looking gorgeous?

Sleep Is a Fat-Loss Nutrient.  Let’s face it—hormones are one helluva dominatrix when it comes to ruling our bodies. Night after night of abuse (like sleep deprivation, for example) and you’ll be feeling that whip crack your booty, all right! Sleep is critical in controlling fat storage because of the role it plays in regulating our hormones. Two hormones in particular rule the roost with appetite regulation: ghrelin and leptin. Ghrelin says “I’m hungry” and leptin says “I’ve had enough.”

Leptin decreases your appetite after you’ve eaten, and it promotes calorie burning. Obese people have high levels of leptin, but their bodies may be less sensitive to its effects. Ghrelin is the hunger hormone, which tells you that you need to eat. Ghrelin also contributes to stress eating, and you can blame it for your high-calorie food cravings and the abdominal fat you’re storing. It’s no surprise that eating meats and nuts in your meals controls ghrelin, while eating sugary snacks will spike it. And, research from the University of Chicago says sleep deprivation increases ghrelin, decreases leptin, and increases the incidence of obesity. In other words, a few extra hours of shut-eye are imperative in fighting the battle of the bulge.

What foods can I eat to make my skin glow?

1. Wild Alaskan Salmon.  It is loaded with DMAE, omega-3s and astaxanthin- a potent antioxidant to protect your skin from hyperpigmentation.  It will give your facial contours beautiful tone and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles within hours of consumption.

2. Healthy fats like avocadoes and raw nuts and seeds.  They will lube you up from the inside out and will help your skin glow from hydration!  Fats will stabilize your blood sugar for hours after you consume them, ultimately controlling the inflammatory response from food that can cause skin to look red and ruddy.

3. Dark, green leafy vegetables.  Eat them raw, steamed, or freshly juiced. They will detoxify your liver, clean out your intestines, and help balance out your body chemistry.  This will help address dark brown undereye circles, which are often a sign of poor liver detoxification.

GORGEOUS GIRL SMOOTHIE:

Here is a recipe for my favorite detox smoothie of late, which tastes absolutely delicious!  Buy organic ingredients for optimal results:

1 cup frozen blueberries

1 cup vanilla almond milk (40 calories)

1 bunch fresh spinach

1 scoop chocolate whey protein

1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder

Blend together at high speed for 10-15 seconds in a high-speed blender or Vitamix.

What are some foods we should stay away from?

The white stuff will make you fat and wrinkled faster than you can say “Twinkie!” Sugar, flour, breads, white rice, and even milk can fatten you up due to their ability to spike insulin levels rapidly and help you store your food as fat (low-calorie or otherwise).  Couple that with a diet rich in transfats and hydrogenated oils and you’ve got the perfect storm for a metabolic mess.  The beauty about the body, though, is its remarkable ability to recover and heal itself once you eliminate these foods from your diet.

More About Esther Blum

Esther Blum is a Registered Dietitian and Holistic Nutritionist practicing in Connecticut. Esther is the author of the bestselling books Eat, Drink and Be Gorgeous: A Nutritionist’s Guide to Living Well While Living It Up, Secrets of Gorgeous, and The Eat, Drink, and Be Gorgeous Project. She is sought after by national food and beverage brands as a spokesperson, regularly leading Satellite Media Tours, and maintains a busy private practice. 

Widely respected as an industry expert, Esther was voted Best Nutritionist by Manhattan Magazine, and is featured in the 2011-2012 edition of Sutton Who’s Who in Healthcare. Esther has appeared on the Today Show, the ISAAC show, ABC-TV, FOX- 5’s Good Day NY, Fox News Live, CW11 morning news, Martha Stewart Radio, Lime Radio, and Bloomberg Radio. A self-titled Food Fashionista, Esther is an in-demand authority frequently quoted in Time Magazine, The New York Post, The Los Angeles Times, In Style, iVillage, Martha Stewart Weddings, Bazaar, Self, Fitness, Marie Claire, Delicious Living, Time Out New York, Women’s Health, Body and Soul, Clean Eating, Health, Let’s Live!, and Health.

Esther has 17 years’ experience treating a myriad of conditions, including autoimmune diseases, acne, cardiovascular issues, prenatal and postpartum, hormonal imbalances, food allergies, heavy metal toxicity, PMS, yeast overgrowth, and countless other medical concerns. She has forged her own path as a dietitian who uses intensive diet therapy in conjunction with nutrients and herbs. This synergistic approach to wellness helps Esther’s clients restore health and balance in their lives.

Esther received a Bachelor of Science in Clinical Nutrition from Simmons College in Boston and is a graduate of New York University, where she received her Master of Science in Clinical Nutrition. Esther is credentialed as a registered dietitian, a certified dietitian-nutritionist and a certified nutrition specialist (CNS), a license of the American College of Nutrition (ACN)’s certifying arm, the Certification Board for Nutrition Specialists (CBNS). She is also a member of the American Dietetic Association, Nutritionists in Complementary Care, and the Connecticut Dietetic Association.

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