If there’s one person you want to follow on social media to see their daily photos, it’s Matthew Perry. The celebrity chef and restaurateur behind popular eateries Bar Tartine and Sqirl has over 500,000 followers on Instagram where he shares his personal life lessons, including his weight loss story. In September 2018, Perry announced that he had lost over 200 pounds and had kept it off for over a year. Inspired by his dramatic weight loss, we decided to interview him about his strategies for shedding those remaining pounds.
How Did You Become So Attracted to Fasting?
I first became interested in fasting when I saw a documentary on Netflix about the history of food and drink in America. It traced the evolution of cuisine from Colonial times until today, and how certain foods have become staples while others have nearly disappeared. The film went in-depth about certain foods that have been lost along the way, like the hot dog and the humble hamburger. It also highlighted the way some foods have become so popular that we’ve made them into an art form – the blooming of modern-day burgers and crushes on avocados and lemon grass alike.
After watching that documentary, I was inspired to try fasting. But rather than stopping my daily routine and going cold turkey on food, I decided to ease into it. So I started by taking a couple of day-long hunger strikes here and there, believing that if I could go a whole day without eating, surely I could go a couple of hours. The results were spectacular; I felt great and had boundless energy. After a couple of weeks, I decided to commit to a full 24-hour fast. I wanted to see what would happen if I didn’t eat for a full day. Would my friends and family even notice? Would I be able to keep my body weight down? Would I even lose any weight? I started feeling giddy about the possibility of not gaining any weight at all. It was then that I realized how much I enjoyed the feeling of going a whole day without eating. So I’ve been vegan (again) and egg-free for the past year and a half and I haven’t looked back.
How Has Going Vegan And Freerunning Changed Your Life?
One of the biggest changes that came with going vegan was the increase in my energy levels. I went from feeling drained and lethargic to feeling like I could tackle the world. Naturally, that made me wonder if there was more I could do to increase my energy levels, and it occurred to me that dairy and eggs are among the major sources of energy for humans. So I started paying more attention to what I ate and how I exercised, and I noticed that my energy levels soared whenever I ate vegan and exercised regularly. I realized that since I already enjoy running and I like to eat vegan, why not combine the two? The research supports this too. A study from the United Kingdom found that vegans who rode their bikes for 30 minutes twice a day gained nearly as much weight as those who ate meat and dairy but didn’t exercise.
I also discovered that being vegan was more convenient for me as a busy chef. Wherever I am, I can always find a vegan option. Even when I travel and don’t have access to a supermarket, I can usually find a restaurant that serves vegan food. So you can see how being vegan has made staying in shape much more convenient for me. It’s also great for the environment. A 2015 report by the Global Vegan Market estimated that by 2025, over 75% of the world’s population will be vegan. That’s a lot of animals whose lives will be saved and a lot of resources that won’t be consumed by farm-raised animals.
How Did You Manage To Lose So Much Weight?
When I decided to lose weight and go raw, I didn’t quite know what to expect. I figured that going vegan meant that my body would start generating more energy, which would translate to me feeling better and being able to eat what I want when I want. So when I didn’t experience these effects, I was a little taken aback. But then I remembered that my body was still adapting to the new lifestyle, and I wasn’t in a rush to judge it yet.
While I was adjusting to my new lifestyle, I lost weight steadily. I first cut out white foods like bread and pasta, which tended to be the most calorie-dense in my diet. Then I started reducing how much I ate out and avoided takingaways, and within a few months, I’d lost about 20 pounds. Now, a year later, I’m still vegan but have adopted a more relaxed attitude towards food. I’ve found that what works best for me is a combination of calorie-counting and portion control. I make sure to eat plenty of vegetables and fruit, and try to avoid foods with added sugar.
Most people think that when they reduce their food intake, their body will start generating more energy. But this isn’t always the case. If you’re used to eating a lot of sugar, then cutting back on the sweets can actually make you feel lethargic. If you’re eating a diet rich in fruit and veg, however, you’ll start to notice that you’re feeling more energized. It takes some time for your body to get used to the new diet and for your metabolism to adjust, so be patient.
Why Do You Think Fasting Was So Effective For You?
Cutting out foods that you know are bad for you is one of the best ways to lose weight. This is especially true if you’re cutting out highly-processed foods like white bread or pasta. These are foods that you know are bad for your health, yet you still want to eat them. When you cut out bread and pasta, you automatically cut out a lot of the calories that you would normally consume in these foods. The same is true of other carbohydrates, like potatoes. If you’re avoiding these foods, you’re sure to lose a lot of weight because you won’t be getting any empty calories from them. These foods have a high glycemic index, which is a measure of how rapidly they are absorbed by the body and how much they raise your blood sugar levels. Foods with a high glycemic index include white bread, pasta, rice, potatoes, and certain types of candy. They also have a high glycemic load, which is the glycemic index of the food multiplied by the amount consumed. For example, if you eat one slice of white bread, your blood sugar level will rise by 15 mg/dl, and if you eat two slices, this will rise by 30 mg/dl. It’s these types of foods that make you fat, and when you cut them out, you’re more likely to shed the extra pounds. According to research, if you want to lose weight, reduce your food intake and increase your activity. It may also be a good idea to try an oral hypoglycemic or an appetite suppressant to reduce your carb cravings and increase your energy levels.
Do You Think You’ll Ever Go Back To Being Vegan?
I’ve been vegan for over a year now, and I’ve discovered that it’s not necessarily sustainable for everyone. Not only is it often hard to find foods that you can’t buy or grow yourself, but you also have to be dedicated to a diet that does not include animal products. I enjoy being vegan, but I don’t see myself as a veganist. The world is a huge place, and there are so many different foods that you can eat. Just because I don’t wear leather shoes does not mean that I don’t enjoy a good hamburger. If I could have my cake and eat it too, I would definitely choose veganism over vegetarianism, as I feel that it gives you more freedom in the choices that you make. As I get older, it’s definitely going to be more difficult to stay vegan, as there are many foods that I crave that are not available in a vegan diet. I’ll have to find a way to satisfy these cravings while still sticking to my diet. In the meantime, I’ll continue to support and encourage those who choose to go vegan.