The 5 S’s of Wellness

Dr. Bill Sears, a family physician and head of the Dr. Sears Wellness Institute, has a fascinatingly simple guide to wellness, which he recently shared on Dave Asprey’s podcast Bulletproof Radio.

Sears, who’s been practicing a food-centric approach to family medicine for nearly 50 years, calls it the 5 S’s: seafood, salads, smoothies, spices and supplements.

In practicing this approach, Sears’ goal for his patients (and himself!) is chiefly to avoid spikes in blood sugar, while of course eating natural, nutrient-rich foods. He says it’s important that while using the 5 S’s as a guide, you also “eat twice as often, half as much, and chew twice as long.”

Sears, like Asprey, is a fan of fat–the right kinds of fat–and it’s great to hear them wax poetical on the podcast about how beneficial fat is, and how much it has been ostracized from American diets (not by experts, but by the sugar industry, as was widely reported late last year). Sears points out, for instance, that mother’s milk is 50% fat, and yet for decades fat has been shunned, as sales of disease-causing sugar have soared.

The real culprit, Sears says, is not just sugar but carbs, especially the refined and processed kinds (think: white flour or fried tortilla chips). This type of food, Sears says, causes blood sugar spikes just the way candy does.

By focusing on complex carbs that are absorbed more slowly (think: sweet potatoes) and pairing those carbs with fat, protein and fiber, we avoid those inflammation-causing spikes, which Sears says affect every organ in our body.

And when Sears says “smoothie,” he’s not talking the deceptively sugar-packed kind found at national chains like Jamba Juice, which can contain anywhere from 25 to 85 grams of sugar per smoothie (25g is the recommended daily allowance for sugar!)

Sears’ smoothies contain more fat than anything else: nut butters, avocado, coconut oil, plus berries, spices and a base like green tea. He makes a 64 oz batch of it at the beginning of the day and sips on it all day. Sounds like a plan!

Learn more about Dr. Sears’ work here, and check out his book Primetime Health: A Scientifically Proven Plan for Feeling Young and Living Longer.

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