3 Ways to Increase Brain Performance on a Diet - OptimizeCEO - OptimizeCEO

Thomas DeLauer

Executive Body & Business Coach

Maintaining brainpower when you’re on a diet is one of the most difficult things to do and it’s often overlooked.

I’m Thomas DeLauer with OptimizeCEO and a lot of times my clients come to me and they say, “Thomas, I can’t go on this diet because I’ve got this big proposal coming up and I cannot possibly go on a diet and sacrifice the brain function.” That’s just one of the many examples I hear all the time.

The fact is, we’re busy people and going on a diet makes it so that our brains don’t function right. I’ve got to stop looking at it like going on a diet, but I also want to show you in this video my three simple hacks that you can use to increase your brain performance and your mental stamina when you’re on a diet because, let’s face it, you have to be able to focus on your business so you can bring home the bacon, so that you can eat the bacon, so that you can have the energy to go to the gym. Let’s dive right in.

The first one I want to talk about is eating coconut oil by the spoonful. I talk about coconut oil a lot. I say put it in certain foods, I say put it in your coffee, but I never really address flat out eating it by the spoonful and if you eat the extra virgin, non-refined stuff, it’s actually got a pretty good taste. It tastes like coconut so it’s palatable. Let’s explain why coconut oil is so beneficial to improving your brain function, specifically when you’re on a diet.

If you’re not eating consistently, your blood sugar can drop. When your blood sugar drops, your brain doesn’t have the glucose that it needs to function properly. The real reason that everything’s going on, the reason you get fatigued, the reason all that happens is you don’t have glucose to regenerate what’s called ATP, adenosine triphosphate.

You might remember it from biology class, but ATP is basically the energy system of our body. It’s the precursor to pretty much every movement, every activity, and every real impulse within our body. If you don’t have glucose, you don’t have constant calories, that ATP can’t be regenerated. What coconut oil does is coconut oil actually gives you a little bit of ATP. It actually helps generate ATP in a way that glucose normally would. When you’re dieting and you need something to eat really quick and you want to keep the carbs low, taking a spoonful of coconut oil can often give you a quick burst of energy.

The other cool thing is coconut oil is unique in that it doesn’t get transported of stored as regular fat. What happens when you consume coconut oil is it ultimately goes right to the liver and it bypasses a lot of other functions and it doesn’t have to utilize pancreatic lipase and it doesn’t have to utilize bile salts. In plain English what this means is that coconut oil is readily available for energy straight away, it doesn’t get stored as fat. Full disclaimer, if you eat a ton of coconut oil you will still get fat because it still has a lot of calories in it, but simply taking a couple spoonfuls of coconut oil throughout the day when you’re hungry is going to satiate you, it’s going to give you that energy, and it’s going to give you the mental surge that you need to make sure that you can get through your day.

The next one is adding some butter to your coffee and you’ve seen plenty of my videos where I talk about adding fats to your tea, adding fats to your coffee, or simply taking a little bit of fat with a caffeine pill. It makes a big difference, but the reason I’m talking about butter specifically, and it has to be grass-fed butter, that’s imperative, contains high levels of omega 3 fatty acids.

When we’re dieting, we’re subject to a lot more psychological stressors. For those of us that are in the work place or those of us that are having to answer to answer to other people or those of us that have a lot of tight deadlines, we’ve already got psychological stress.

I don’t know if you’ve ever noticed when you’re on a diet or you’re restricted from calories or maybe you forgot to eat, those stressors hit you way more. You ever notice as soon as you eat something you’re like, “It’s not as bad now.” That’s simply because your body is much more susceptible to that. Your body is perceiving that stress and it just amplifies it and makes it worse. Omega 3s will reduce the cortisol levels. They will make it so that your body can handle stress quite a bit better.

From a fat burning standpoint, it helps too, because those omega 3s and the butyric acid within that grass-fed butter helps stimulate the body to process fats better. You become more efficient at burning fat. Therefore, when you’re deprived of dietary fat, your body starts thriving on stored body fat. Double whammy. You get brain power and you get fat burning.

The number three thing that you can do to help boost your brain performance when you’re on a diet is take an ancient Indian herb called ashwagandha. Ashwagandha is mainly used to reduce stress and give a sense of well-being. It lowers your cortisol levels just like those other factors that I talked about, but ashwagandha has a couple unique characteristics. Ashwagandha boosts your serotonin levels. Your serotonin levels are those feel-good hormones. You need those when you’re dieting because when you’re dieting you need every little bit of possible hope you can get to feel good. Ashwagandha is going to definitely help you there.

The other thing that it does is it increases something called GABA. GABA is a neurotransmitter that can block receptor sites. It sort of acts as a blockade between nerve cells and the brain. In this particular instance, what GABA will do is it will act as a blockade to the receptor that cortisol would normally attach to. That blockade means that the cortisol that’s floating around in your body, even if you have produced it, isn’t going to really slam home that effect like it normally would. If you think about it, it’s really a natural way. You’re still producing the cortisol, your body’s still having the response to stress, but you’re almost conditioning your body to be immune to it a little bit. It’s like, “Hey, yeah, I recognize you’re there, stress, but I’m not going to get worked up about it. It really is an amazing thing if you try it right.

Here’s the thing, ashwagandha takes about a week to kick in. You kind of have to front load it. I recommend taking 600 to 1000 milligrams of ashwagandha and take it about a week ahead of time. Don’t expect an immediate result. You’re going to have to take it, let your body kind of incubate with it.

On that note, you’ve got three simple hacks that you can implement straight away to boost your brain performance while you’re on a diet so you can still bring home the bacon so you can still succeed in business but you can ultimately look your best because if you feel good and your brain feels good then you’re going to want to go to the gym in the afternoon, you’re going to want to eat right in the kitchen, and you’re going to have the energy to spend time with your family when you want to. Keep it locked in here and I’ll see you in the next video.