Leadership Fuel (Part 1)

It is hard to lead when you are tired, sick or overweight. The Standard American Diet (SAD), that is now spreading across the globe is the perfect diet if you wish to create less than optimal health. It is the diet of the non-leader (The couch potato). This series of posts is designed to eliminate all the misinformation about the SAD and provide the best of the best insights that we have discovered at CMC to make you more antifragile.

Although there has been a lot of press about nutrition and its effects on overall health and longevity, very little has been said about the connection between what you eat and the quality of your leadership and decision making. Of your ability to lead your life and lead your team.

With that said, we will explore a few easy things that anyone can research to see if it makes sense for them to begin doing. In the spirit of Kaizen, one small step is all we are after at this point.

One of the biggest areas and maybe the least obvious when it comes to nutrition is fat. This has become a three letter word that people try to avoid at all costs. Yet, we do so at our own peril. What we need to do is make the distinction between healthy fats and toxic fats.

Toxic fats
A toxic fat is something we definitely want to avoid putting in our bodies at all costs. Hydrogenated oils (could be considered a plastic) are not helpful. Soybean oil, canola oil, vegetable oil are all on the list. Just about any oil used in any fast food restaurant is in this category of oils to avoid. Avoid rancid oils (if the bottle is in clear glass or plastic, there is a high probability that it is rancid).

Healthy Fats
Healthy fats are those fats that fuel the body and fuel the brain. They are what we not only crave but need to function at optimal levels of performance. Here are my personal favorite healthy fats. They can be used every day to maximize your nutritional profile.

From the oldest known texts in the world, the Rig Veda: “Ghee is the first and most essential of all foods.” It took me years to learn to like the taste of Ghee. Now I love it and use it every day. You can cook with it (it has a high smoke point), add it to anything where you would use butter or use it to make Bulletproof® Whole Bean Coffee 12 oz. in the morning (highly recommended). The best ghee comes from grass fed, pastured cow milk. The best ghee on the market is: 100% Organic Ghee from Grass-fed Cows, 32oz

Coconut Oil
Coconut oil can be used for everything including skin care and hair treatment. It can be used as toothpaste and used for oil pulling to detox the mouth. Like ghee, it has a high smoke point and is perfect for cooking. You can had it straight to smoothies and use it for bulletproof coffee.  Here is a good one: Carrington Farms Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil, 54 Ounce

Olive Oil
This is an Italian staple. There is nothing like a tomato salad with fresh basil and high quality olive oil and a little salt and pepper. The key word is high quality. Olive oil has a low smoke point and it should not to be used for cooking (drizzle it on after the dish is already cooked). There are a lot of olive oils on the market that are less than stellar (many are cut with other oils). Here is one from California that you will love: Acropolis Organic Olive Oil (500ml) Brand: Acropolis

Krill and/or fish oil
Lots of research points to the need we have for Omega 3 fatty acids. It is curiously missing from the Western diet. That means supplements are required. One of the best sources is:  New Chapter Wholemega, Whole Fish Oil with Omegas and Vitamin D3 - 120 ct

Wild Caught Alaskan Salmon
This is the best fish ever. Get is fresh at Whole Foods or get it canned from Wild Planet. This is one fish that is low on pollutants and high on nutrition. Avoid all farm raised fish and especially avoid genetically modified salmon which was recently approved (ill advisedly) by the FDA.  Here is a good canned version: Wild Planet Wild Alaska Pink Salmon, Boneless & Skinless, 6 Ounce Can (Pack of 12)

Just like there is a lot of fake olive oil on the market, there is a lot of fake sardines being sold under the label of sardines. The real thing is a little known nutritional gem that fuels brain power. One brand we know that checks out is: Bela Olhao Sardines Lightly Smoked Sardine in Tomato Sauce, 4.25 Ounce -- 12 per case.

Nuts pack a powerful punch when it comes to nutrition. Get nuts sourced from reputable organic growers. Pistachios, Macadamia, Almonds, and Walnuts are all excellent sources. Yes, they have a lot of healthy fat and that’s a good thing. 

One of the best foods ever!  Loaded with healthy fats and other goodies.

Is this the end of the story? No. But you have to begin somewhere. From our experience, toxic oils can have the most devastating impact on health while healthy oils can have the most positive impact. We will look at another area of leadership fuel in the next post.