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807: Shrink Your Fat Cells & Fix Your Metabolism – With Dr. Benjamin Bikman

TMHS 729: 10 Fat Burning Foods & How To Use Them

Food has an incredible ability to nourish our bodies, act as an important foundation of our traditions, and bond us with others. And depending on what your personal wellness goals are, food can be a powerful tool to help you improve your health. If you want to lose fat, there are some specific foods that can support your metabolism and make fat loss easier.

On this episode of The Model Health Show, we’re going to dive into 10 foods that promote a healthy metabolism, optimize satiety hormones, reduce inflammation, and ultimately aid in fat loss. You’re going to hear the science behind each food, as featured in my new book, Eat Smarter Family Cookbook. You’ll also going to learn how each of these foods is utilized in the cookbook, and which recipes you can use to add these powerhouse foods into your diet.

My mission with the Eat Smarter Family Cookbook and this episode is to help transform family culture and help make healthy eating more automatic. I hope this episode can give you the awareness, knowledge, and empowerment you need to upgrade your food choices and improve the health of your family. Enjoy!

In this episode you’ll discover:

  • How eating avocados can lead to a reduction in abdominal fat.
  • Why dietary fat gets a bad rap.
  • The link between consuming almonds and insulin sensitivity rates.
  • How eating white fish can help optimize hormones.
  • The metabolic benefits of lean fish.
  • How cherries can help reduce inflammation.
  • What anthocyanin is.
  • The numerous health benefits of turmeric.
  • How consuming eggs can improve your metabolism.
  • Why eating a protein rich breakfast is optimal.
  • The anti-obesity effects of consuming sea vegetables.
  • Why kimchi can help reduce fasting blood sugar levels.
  • The history of cultured foods.
  • How (and why!) to incorporate more sweet potatoes into your diet.
  • The connection between olive oil, satiety hormones, and fat loss.
  • My mission with the Eat Smarter Family Cookbook.

Items mentioned in this episode include:

Thank you so much for checking out this episode of The Model Health Show. If you haven’t done so already, please take a minute and leave a quick rating and review of the show on Apple Podcast by clicking on the link below. It will help us to keep delivering life-changing information for you every week!


SHAWN STEVENSON: Welcome to The Model Health Show. This is fitness and nutrition expert, Shawn Stevenson, and I'm so grateful for you tuning into me today. This is an incredibly special episode. Today is the national release of the Eat Smarter Family Cookbook, now available at bookstores everywhere. This is an incredibly powerful combination. It's been a labor of love, to say the least, of science and a love of food. And on this episode, we're gonna be diving into 10 of the most science-backed foods that help with fat loss, and more importantly, how to actually use them. All of the science that we're going through today is featured in the Eat Smarter Family Cookbook. It is a cookbook like none other. Not only does it have 100 delicious, easy-to-make recipes, but it is also the first cookbook that has over 250 scientific references, and it's laid out in a beautiful, entertaining, engaging and fun way so that everybody can understand the science. And it's one thing to know why these foods matter, but it's another thing to actually make them into delicious meals, and so that's what we're blending together. So please, if you have not done so already, run out to your favorite bookstore, grab your copy, help to be a part of this movement.


SHAWN STEVENSON: And of course, you can pick this up from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, any of your favorite book stores online, but be a part of this movement right now. Let's go ahead and dive into these 10 fat-burning foods and how to use them. But this is an important caveat before we get started; there aren't any foods that burn fat on their own, but there are specific foods that alter our metabolism that make fat loss easier. That is the goal, that is the mission. Today, we're going through 10 of the most science-backed foods that support fat loss, starting with the first one on our list, avocados. A randomized controlled trial cited in the journal, Current Developments in Nutrition, found that adding avocado to the diet of test subjects over the course of a three-month study period led to a significant reduction in abdominal fat. So eating avocados helped the test subjects to lose more belly fat. Another recent study, this one published in the Journal of Nutrients, had study participants replace some of their dietary carbohydrates with some avocado instead.


SHAWN STEVENSON: After analyzing their biomarkers, the scientists found that calorie for calorie, adding in some avocado improved their blood glucose levels, increased levels of satiety hormones, PYY, it's a pretty young thing, this is peptide YY, and GLP-1, and improved overall levels of subjective satisfaction for the test subjects and reduced their hunger for longer periods of time. There's something special about that wrinkly-skinned fruit. And isn't it interesting how a high fat food can become so beneficial for fat loss? This speaks to this profound but misunderstood fact that fat in food and fat on our bodies are two completely different things. But it gets confused because of semantics. All right. The meaning of words. But this is very similar to a phenomenon with the word like bat.


SHAWN STEVENSON: So there's a bat that is used in a sport to hit a baseball, and there's also a bat that can allegedly cause a pandemic. All right. There's two totally different things when we're talking about a bat. So the same thing holds true for fat. Fat in food and fat on our bodies are two totally different things. But because of semantics and because of marketing, we've been led to believe as a culture that eating fat in food is inherently bad for your waistline. Now, there's also a key distinction because the fat found in ultra processed foods is very different from the fat found in real whole foods in its natural state, like a natural fatty thick avocado. All right. Now, there's one thing to know about the power of an avocado and to be able to... Some people just like to just eat the avocado straight, maybe dab a little salt on it or something like that. But what if we can turn this into an absolutely amazing food experience, take that avocado and turn it into something truly special? Well, this is what we do in the Eat Smarter Family Cookbook. You learn about the science and these benefits so that you can eat for a purpose. If your purpose is improving your metabolic health and helping your body to be able to burn fat more efficiently, I've got you covered.


SHAWN STEVENSON:  And there are little emojis that indicate the benefits, so if a particular food, if we got some science indicating its benefit for cardiovascular health, you're gonna see a little heart emoji next to it, you're gonna see the muscle emoji for the metabolic health, you're gonna see a little sleep emoji if it helps to improve sleep quality. The list goes on and on. So you'll see those emojis because we have an emoji culture, so I'll speak in that language. All right. Because everybody's invited to this party. So you'll see that in the chapter that's dedicated to eating for a purpose in these 40-plus foods that are most science-backed foods for improving our health. Now, you're gonna go to the recipe section and you're gonna see those same emojis when these foods are included, so you know that this recipe is gonna help with my heart health, it's gonna help with my metabolic health, it's gonna help with my sleep quality, it's gonna help with my mental health and my mood. We've got the science on all that as well. Now, using this avocado, we've got some incredible recipes that we've perfected. One of them is avocado fries. Avocado fries.


SHAWN STEVENSON:  They are incredible. All right, so with that being said, if you're watching the video version of this episode, you're gonna see some of these recipes on screen. You're gonna see the sexiness of these recipes and how beautiful they are. But we're big foodies in my family, and we're all about taste and flavor, and enjoying the experience of eating good food. Because this is something that we evolved doing. Humans are driven to eat things that taste good to us, just like every other species. That's why certain animals eat certain things. Yes, food scientists have manipulated our desire to eat tasty things, but this does not negate that there's nothing wrong with loving food, enjoying food, and enjoying the process of eating together with the people that you care about, which the Eat Smarter Family Cookbook is very rich in that science as well, looking at social science and how our relationships in our family, and eating together with people that we care about impacts our health outcomes. So we're gonna see the avocado and its fat-burning potential in avocado fries, the Smarter Cobb Salad. And also, it's highlighted in the Speedy Super Food Guacamole. This guacamole is different. It's gonna knock your socks off, I promise you.


SHAWN STEVENSON: So, that is our first food of the 10 most notable fat-burning foods and how to use them. Moving on to number two. Number two is almonds. A study cited in the Journal of Research in Medical Sciences put study participants on matching reduced calorie diets for three months, with one interesting difference. One group included almonds in their diet, while the other group did not. After the data was compiled at the end of the study, the folks who included almonds in their diet lost twice as much weight and had a greater reduction in their hip-to-waist ratio than those in the almond-free group. Almonds are truly special. The researchers noted also that there was a greater improvement in insulin sensitivity and satiety hormones in the almond group. Again, putting people on matching calorie diets, but having almonds in the diet within those calories, did something remarkable for the metabolism. That's what this is all about when looking at these fat-burning foods. It's not about the food itself burning fat, it's altering our metabolism in a beneficial way. How do we highlight almonds in the Eat Smarter Family Cookbook? Just a couple of the ways are the Smarter Granola Bars that we have in the book that kids absolutely love.


SHAWN STEVENSON: Also, one of my favorite things just to snack on in general, is the smoky spicy mixed nuts. So those are just a couple of the recipes that highlight almonds. So these are cool ways... And any of these things, we can actually do ourselves. We can take these foods and utilize them in cool recipes and enjoy the process of getting well. All right, gonna move on to number three on our list of these top 10 fat loss foods and how to use them. Number three, and this food doesn't get a lot of love on the streets because its cousin gets all the love. A lot of people know about the benefits of fatty fish, but lean fish is on this list at number three. A study published in the Journal of Nutrition found that the inclusion of white fish or lean fish helps to optimize satiety hormones, and can be significantly more satisfying, literally looking at people's objective biomarkers, satiating than other dense protein foods. Another study published in the International Journal of Obesity put test subjects on a reduced calorie diet that included either cod, lean fish, salmon, fatty fish, or no fish. Even though the macronutrient content of all the diets was the same, simply including three 5-ounce servings of fish per week resulted in study participants losing over two additional pounds within four weeks. Again, same amount of calories, same macronutrient ratio, but including fish, did something extra for their metabolism.


SHAWN STEVENSON: There's something about it. Now, this is one of those foods that can become the run of the mill. You got some grilled tilapia, you got a little grilled white fish, could be a little boring. Couple of our favorite recipes in the Eat Smarter Family Cookbook, the Sheet-Pan Fish with Mayo Lemon Sauce. Ooh, it's good. It's good. It's good. Also, we've got a great dish, the white fish with kelp butter. So including some other beneficial superfoods that really help with supporting metabolic health and fat loss that we're gonna get to in a moment in the form of kelp and sea veggies. So, lots of good stuff here in this recipe. And this is one of the other things that we do, we stack conditions, we combine beneficial foods that again, are backed by science, multiple peer-reviewed studies. All right. There's over 250 peer-reviewed studies, again, included in this book. And what does the majority of data say? And the most special foods are the ones that are included in many of these recipes. So we're gonna move on to number four on our list. Number four is cherries. According to data published in the International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition, micronutrients called anthocyanins found in cherries have the potential to shrink fat cells. 


SHAWN STEVENSON: The researchers also noted that these cherry anthocyanins are able to reduce the expression of genes associated with inflammation. We're talking about nutrigenetics and nutrigenomics here, looking at how our food is altering our gene expression. And cherries … The nutrients found in cherries have some remarkable influence on healthy gene expression that reduces inflammation in the body. And we're looking at carrying excess weight or venturing into obesity, or reaching a state where our fat cells are essentially experiencing a state of inflammation, and this can send our immune system into a tizzy, essentially feeling or operating as though our cells are infected by carrying so much excess energy in them. Again, something that we did not evolve with. So we've got to address the inflammation, not just targeting the reduction of fat itself or shrinking those fat cells. We've got to address the inflammation, and cherries appear to hit on both of those notes. So, really special food. But I'm not talking about the cherry that's coming along in a cocktail. They're not in a cocktail. I'm not talking about those cherries or...


SHAWN STEVENSON: My grandfather used to get these chocolate-covered cherries, that was his little "guilty pleasure," those candy type cherries. We're talking about tart cherries and also varieties of sweet cherries as well. But as I said, the blacker the berry, the sweeter the juice. Sorry, the darker the cherry, the more anthocyanins. So, we want those dark cherries. How do we use cherries in the Eat Smarter Family Cookbook? One of my favorite recipes, I have this shake. Most often, actually, right now, it's one of my favorite things is the heart health smoothie. And you're gonna see why. It is delicious and packed with incredible nutrients. Also, the cherry frozen yogurt pops. You gotta make these. The kids love them. Kids absolutely love these, the cherry frozen yogurt pops. These are fun to make together with your kids, and they can be on hand in your freezer for whenever you're having a hankering for something sweet, and in particular, a frozen treat.


SHAWN STEVENSON: All right, gonna move on to number five on our list of 10 fat-loss foods backed by peer-reviewed data. Number five is turmeric. Turmeric. Now, we often think about tumeric in the context of a spice, and yes, it absolutely is a spice, but tumeric is in the ginger family and it can be utilized in different dishes. And there are even people juicing tumeric out here, so there's many different juices, different combinations of juices that are utilizing turmeric because of all the benefits that are showing up in science today. But most notably, again, turmeric is used as a concentrated spice, often found in our spice cabinets.


SHAWN STEVENSON:  But the question is, are we actually using it? So what does some of the science say? First of all, of course, we know about turmeric's ability to reduce inflammation. For example, scientists at the Department of Neurology at USC found that one of the active ingredients in turmeric, curcumin, is able to help eliminate amyloid plaque and slow down the aging of our neurons, excavate heavy metals and reduce inflammation in our brains. Crazy. Crazy! Why does this matter? Neuroinflammation, namely inflammation in the hypothalamus or hypothalamic inflammation, and this is according to researchers at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, they found that hypothalamic inflammation or inflammation in the brain leads to more downstream accumulation of belly fat and insulin resistance. And then that insulin resistance and belly fat accumulation leads to more inflammation in the brain. We get into this vicious circle, and certain foods and nutrients, and certain spices like turmeric can come in here and break that vicious cycle and help to reduce inflammation. Another study published in the European Journal of Nutrition uncovered that compounds in turmeric can down-regulate inflammatory cytokines and up-regulate the activity of adiponectin and other satiety-related hormones. All right. So tumeric can actually target our satiety hormones. And additional data demonstrated that turmeric can also improve insulin sensitivity, reduce blood fats, and directly act upon fat cells.


SHAWN STEVENSON: Really cool stuff. Really powerful. But the question is, are we utilizing turmeric to the best of its ability? A couple of the recipes that include turmeric in the Eat Smarter Family Cookbook, a couple of my favorites are the turmeric sheet-pan chicken with sweet potatoes and chickpeas. All right. Beautiful dish. And also, the sauteed curried cabbage, the slow cooker chicken curry. If you're in a hurry, slow down and have some chicken curry. All right. So wholesome, so delicious. One of the staples in my family's kitchen. We love the slow cooker chicken curry, and I know you will as well. So lots of cool ways that we can integrate and add in some turmeric. But also, sometimes the concentration makes all the difference. So if you're really wanting to target some of these metabolic benefits, and in particular helping to reduce inflammation, this is a place where you might want to supplement as well.


SHAWN STEVENSON: And I'm a big fan of the Turmeric Complex, the Organic Turmeric Complex that has all these other incredible bio-potentiators, so your cells can use it better, that is carried by the incredible folks at PaleoValley. PaleoValley goes above and beyond. They've been a huge supporter of the Eat Smarter Family Cookbook as well, and doing some incredible giveaways for folks, and just incredible people. Truly do appreciate them. Check out their Turmeric Complex. And by the way, you get 15% off when you go to That's You get 15% off storewide. Highly recommend checking out their Turmeric Complex. This is one of the things, at least on a weekly basis, I'm utilizing the Turmeric Complex. So, big fan of that. Check them out,


SHAWN STEVENSON: Let's move on to number six on our list of the most science-backed foods for fat loss, our top 10. Number six on the list is the incredible, edible egg. Researchers at St. Louis University, and this was published in the International Journal of Obesity, by the way, sought to discover what happens with fat loss when you eat a high carbohydrate breakfast, which was in the form of a bagel, versus a high protein/fat whole food breakfast in the form of eggs, with the calorie count of the meals being the same. The meals are the same amount of calories, but different foods. The researchers did have the study participants decrease their overall caloric intake by 1000 calories a day in this study, but had different people use different macronutrient ratios for their first meal through different foods. Here's what they found after the eight-week study period. The study participants eating the egg breakfast lost 61% more of their body mass index. They had a 65% greater weight loss, a 34% greater reduction in waist circumference, and a 16% greater reduction in actual body fat percentage. Come on now. This is, again, calorie for calorie. There's something remarkable that eggs do for our metabolism. That's why this food is so special, and that's why it makes this list for us. Yeah, we can scramble up some eggs. That's cool. You could flip them over, over easy. Poach them. Many different diverse ways to use eggs. Omelet, I'mma let you feel these gains.


SHAWN STEVENSON: All right, go on and on and on with the different typical ways, standard ways of eating eggs. Hard boil them, many different ways. But for me, one of my favorite dishes is the southwest chorizo scramble in the New Eat Smarter Family Cookbook. You're gonna love that one. Also, we have an incredible asparagus and olive frittata. Frittata. I didn't come from frittata life, all right? I didn't grow up like that. But being able to have these incredible flavor experiences and being able to use familiar foods in new and delicious ways, that's what it's all about. And also, the quick and easy deviled eggs, I think you're gonna really love as well. So let's move on to number seven on our list of the most science-backed foods that support fat loss. Number seven is sea veggies.


SHAWN STEVENSON: Sea veggies, aka seaweeds, aka sea vegetables are one of the most nutritious, truly wild foods that still exist today. Now, research cited in the Journal Food Science and Human Wellness asserts that seaweeds have anti-obesity effects that can improve metabolic rate and increase satiety. Specifically, the seaweed carotenoid called Fucoxanthin was found to boost the activity of uncoupling protein 1, that enhances the activity of brown adipose tissue. This is a type of fat that burns fat, while this nutrient simultaneously supports the reduction of belly fat from our waistline. That's special. Not many foods ever discovered have this kind of action in the human body. So I'm a big fan of sea veggies. I've had so many. There's literally hundreds of different varieties of sea veggies, by the way, and it's one of the most storied human foods. Cultures all over the world have utilized sea veggies for food, for celebration, for making things.


SHAWN STEVENSON: There's so many different diverse ways that humans have utilized sea vegetables. There's wakame, there's nori, there's dulse, there's kelp, there's sea palm. The list goes on and on and on. One of my favorite ways and one of the most popular ways actually are nori rolls often used for varieties of sushi. Now, something else special about the Eat Smarter Family Cookbook is that this is a cookbook that is family friendly. This is a cookbook that is inclusive of everyone. Everybody's invited to the dinner, everybody's invited to the table, regardless of their diet framework. So there are wonderful people who are taking a vegan or vegetarian approach, other folks taking a keto, paleo, carnivore. The list goes on and on and on. There's something for everyone here. Nobody is left out. And one of the most delicious foods that... I had no idea that it would actually turn out like this. This goes back years and years.


SHAWN STEVENSON: And I had to put this into this recipe book, because I used to teach cooking classes, and sometimes, we would "un-cook" and be able to use things like walnuts and make like a pâté and find a way that it ended up tasting like salmon. And so the faux salmon nori wraps is one of the recipes that's included in the Eat Smarter Family Cookbook. I'm telling you, it's going to trip you out on how delicious this recipe is, but also how much it tastes like a salmon nori roll as well. And so again, we're just inviting people in, being inclusive. This is a vegan dish, but also absolutely focusing on top tier, nutrient dense, science-backed foods for our health. One of those other ones is walnuts, by the way. And you'll learn about some of the science on walnuts in the East Smarter Family Cookbook.


SHAWN STEVENSON: But the faux salmon nori wraps is one way to utilize the sea veggies. Another one is the mushroom fried rice, which is fire. Fire. So good. If you're watching on the YouTube version, you get to see, again, some of these incredible recipes. And this is another absolute hitter. All right, moving on to number eight on our list of the most science-backed foods for supporting fat loss. Number eight is kimchi. While working at a university for many years, I got to work with people from all over the world. And one of the things that I began to accumulate knowledge on was how every culture had a cultured food. Every person from a different country had some form of a fermented, traditional fermented food as a staple in their culture. And so I was just like, that is so interesting. Why do humans do this? 


SHAWN STEVENSON: Why have humans been doing this for so long? There's something remarkable about these fermented foods. And kimchi is one of the most renowned. Check this out. A peer-reviewed study published in the Journal of Nutrition Research found that eating kimchi led to a significant decrease in body fat, hip-to-waist ratio and fasting blood sugar for study participants versus those who merely ate the un-fermented form of that cabbage dish. So they took all the ingredients that go into making kimchi; the cabbage, the daikon, radish, whatever they might be, they ate that or they ate the fermented version of that. And when it was fermented, that's when the metabolic magic happened. Alright, so kimchi is that deal. How do we utilize kimchi in some delicious ways? This is one of the inclusions in the faux salmon nori wraps. Alright. We're intentional in these recipe designs.


SHAWN STEVENSON: Also, the kimchi cauliflower bowl. Ooh, it's good too. It's good too. So kimchi, just on its own accord, might not be something that's super attractive. How can we make it attractive? How can we make it delicious? That's what I would meditate on, focus on and find creative ways so that we can get these amazing foods into our bodies and enjoy the process, enjoy the process of eating well and being well. Moving on to number nine on our list of 10 of the most science-backed foods that support fat loss. Number nine is sweet potatoes. A recent study published in the Journal of Nutrients, specifically analyzed the inclusion of sweet potatoes on a macro-managed calorie-restricted diet. The participants who included sweet potato as part of their diet lost more weight and lost more body fat than the control group. Plus, the sweet potato group had a greater drop in glycated hemoglobin levels, that's hemoglobin A1C, a marker for risk of insulin resistance and diabetes.


SHAWN STEVENSON: So, poor metabolic health. That's special. And sweet potatoes are out here on the street. Sweet potatoes are out here, heavy. If you're in the know and you're about that sweet potato life, a lot of folks are, of course, just baking up a sweet potato, maybe mashing, smashing, that kind of stuff. Really basic stuff. But what we did, oh, you're gonna love this. You're gonna love this. My family, big fans of brunch foods, sweet potato protein pancakes. Yes, yes. Sweet potato protein pancakes, one of our favorite recipes. And this is something that obviously kids love. And it's one of those things that you could make a batch, you could freeze them up, reheat for your kids' breakfast, that kind of thing. Higher protein ratio. And again, intentionally so we can lower that glycemic impact, but also just the fact that this is the base as sweet potato versus a conglomeration of different grains that don't really have those kinds of nutritive factors to help to keep blood sugar normalized, that's what makes it so special.


SHAWN STEVENSON: So, it's intentional. Also, the sweet potato and red pepper hash with avocado is amazing. We got a sweet potato pie smoothie. I had to do it. I had to do it. I'm from the sweet potato culture, all right? That's where I come from. So having the sweet potato pie smoothie is a little wink to the delicious sweet potato pie vibes that I grew up with, but of course, incredibly nutrient-dense, real food based. And also, one of my favorite meals in the book, actually, is the harvest bowl with honey mustard. Alright? So, that includes some sweet potatoes as well. So, the harvest bowl. And actually, that's what I'm holding on the cover of the book, is the harvest bowl. Little shoutout to that. So that recipe is so special, again, it ended up on the front cover and me holding the harvest bowl with honey mustard.


SHAWN STEVENSON: All right, we're at number 10 on our list of 10 of the most science-backed foods for supporting fat loss. And this one is special. This one has been utilized for thousands of years, and our ancestors knew that there was something remarkable about it. And it's not just the food itself, but it's how it's used that can make all the difference in the world. And number 10 is olive oil. A recent study cited in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition revealed that consuming olive oil, a little more than a tablespoon, triggered the release of not one, but three of the major satiety hormones associated with enhanced fat loss. A separate double blind placebo-controlled trial had overweight test subjects consume a breakfast that contained about one and a half tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, or one and a half tablespoons of soybean oil as part of an overall reduced calorie diet.


SHAWN STEVENSON: At the end of the study, they found that test subjects given the extra virgin olive oil lost 80% more body fat than the folks that were given the soybean oil. Now, we know that the soybean oil itself might be causing some hormonal clogs, and you're gonna learn about certain food contagions in the Eat Smarter Family Cookbook as well, to protect your family from. But on the other end of the spectrum, really remarkable things happened with metabolic health when including olive oil. Inside the Eat Smarter Family Cookbook, olive oil is used in a variety of recipes, and notably for cooking purposes, but more notably for making amazing dressings and sauces. So you can actually maximize the benefits of that extra virgin olive oil. That means it's cold pressed, traditionally stored in dark glass, because it is sensitive to heat, sensitive to even light.


SHAWN STEVENSON: It's the more sensitive, it's the Ralph Tresvant of the group of oils, the new edition of oils out there. All right? It is the most sensitive. And in particular, you're gonna love the Italian dressing. Ooh, we've been making that for... Man, it's been over a decade now. It's one of our favorite dressings. So good. The Smarter Honey Mustard Dressing, and also the SuperFood Pesto is going to literally knock your socks off. Make sure your socks are pulled on and secured. All right? Listen, this is very special, and I appreciate you so much for being on this journey with me. We've been doing the Model Health Show now for over 10 years, over a decade of my life, and thousands upon thousands of hours in study, in preparation, in filming, in recording, in teaching. And this is my third major book. And coming from where I come from, growing up in St. Louis and spending a lot of time with my family in East St. Louis and on the south side, north side, and living in Ferguson, Missouri for a huge chunk of my life and being in a glorified food desert and some environments that were very volatile and did not really have any exposure to anything that really resemble anything healthy. There weren't any gyms in my local area. It was just riddled with ultra processed food and fast food, and really just taking advantage of the citizens. And I just didn't know that there was a difference.


SHAWN STEVENSON: And so coming from where I come from, and to be able to have a book that's on store shelves around the country, is really special to me. And the fact that this is about family, and the person who really introduced me to cooking was my stepfather, and he was an executive chef and he passed away right before this book came out. And being in that environment, growing up during an epidemic of drugs, and him and his family members, many of my family members being inflicted with addiction and battling those things and having some injuries to his brain, he was on assisted living in an assisted living community for many years. And so this is so special to me because I'm on a mission to transform family culture and to help our families to feel empowered and to focus on changing the microculture inside of our households so that health can be automatic, so that healthy choices can be automatic rather than be a struggle. Because number one, we didn't know that there was a difference.


SHAWN STEVENSON: My family and I, we didn't know that there was a difference in food qualities and how they impact our bodies. We were just eating what was in our environment. So awareness was part of it, but also accessibility, because the culture, if it's surrounding you by things that are hurting you, and those are the only options you know, that's what you're gonna go to. So making it easy to make healthy choices, making it fun, making it so that it is a celebration, that's what this is all about. So truly, if The Model Health Show has been of value to you, I ask you from my heart to yours to go to your local bookstore right now or go to, go to Barnes & Noble, get your copy of the Eat Smarter Family Cookbook. If you've already gotten a copy, get a copy for somebody that you love. Give it as a gift. Make sure that these publishers, that these stores know that we mean business, that we're here to stand up for our families. Thank you. Thank you for being on this mission with me, and we're just getting started. I appreciate you. Thank you for seeing me. Thank you for being a part of this. And again, let's make this a movement. Run out, grab a copy, get a copy for somebody that you care about. We're going to create a tipping point. We're gonna make health normal.


SHAWN STEVENSON: Again, thank you so much. We've got some incredible episodes, incredible guests. We've got so many things in store for you. I'm so excited about what the future's holding. And this moment right now, this moment is about family. This moment is about celebration, it's about health. I appreciate you so much for tuning into the show today. Take care. Have an amazing day, and I'll talk with you soon.




SHAWN STEVENSON: And for more after the show, make sure to head over to That's where you can find all of the show notes, you can find transcriptions, videos for each episode. And if you got a comment, you can leave me a comment there as well. And please, make sure to head over to iTunes and leave us a rating to let everybody know that the show is awesome. And I appreciate that so much. And take care. I promise to keep giving you more powerful, empowering, great content to help you transform your life. Thanks for tuning in.

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  1. Thank you Shawn ! Looking forward to combining these foods with the 7 herbs you highlighted in a video back in 2014, as well as the information you have shared on HIIT cardio. I have been an avid listener since 2020. God bless you and your family. Thank you for everything !


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