INTERVIEW: An interview with Dr Phil Maffetone

Dr Maffetone is an internationally recognised researcher, educator and author in the field of exercise, nutrition sports medicine and biofeedback. He has published over 200 papers and is the author of 20 books. He travels and lectures extensively on these topics. He is widely recognised for his success in working with athletes, from multiple disciplines and has coached many professional athletes at the highest levels of sport.


Part One

It was such a pleasure to talk with Dr Phil Maffetone and I hope you all enjoy his pearls of wisdom as much as I did. He has been a huge influence in both nutrition and exercise research for many years and continues with publishing groundbreaking research. His latest research “Revisiting the Global Overfat Pandemic” is well worth the read and can be found here:

Dr Maffetone discusses:

  • His background and how he evolved into becoming an expert across so many health science fields
  • How he helps people to figure out how to do things themselves and what works for them
  • What it means to eat healthy
  • Why diets don’t work, and people continue to get fatter
  • Misleading information from the media
  • The problems of the heath industry and big food
  • The myth that eating fat makes you fat
  • The reversal of the anti-fat anti-protein movement over the last few years
  • Covid-19 and the increased risks when eating junk food
  • Vegetable oils in processed foods. How concentrated omega-6 and health problems promote inflammation and oxidation

Part Two

Defining Overfat and what it is:

  • How do we measure this, why does it matter
  • How excess abdominal fat is an imbalanced metabolic state and impairs health
  • The importance of healthy body-fat for good immune function and protection from infections, bacteria and microbes
  • The difference between health fat and sick fat
  • His research into defining overfat and the studies he has published in recent years
  • More than 80% of the world’s population are overfat. 91% in the USA. How this contributes to the number of Covid cases.
  • Covid-19 and co-morbidities – compromised immune system
  • Why revamping our terminology is important; defining overfat – not talking about weight – this is an important distinction to make
  • Why early diagnosis of disease is important.
  • How do we change the narrative?
  • Waist to hip ratio is the best way to determine if you are over fat
  • Taking responsibility for your health, aging well, continuing to improve
  • It’s not always easy – but it’s worth it.
  • Keeping it simple

Part Three

Dr Maffetone discusses:

  • Different body types, we aren’t all the same weight and same shape
  • Weight-to-height ratio supersedes, anthropometric measurements, age adjustments, gender and ethnic variability. Your either overfat or not, there is a clear boundary.
  • The importance of ageing well. The ability to keep adapting to our environment
  • Loss of muscle, particularly strength is a problem as we age, weakness is a real serious problem in the world. This affects older people as well as those who are inactive and endurance athletes

“Revisiting the Global Overfat Pandemic” is well worth the read and can be found here:

Part Four

Dr Maffetone talks about:

  • Kids and children getting overweight and health consequences for them
  • The future for overfat children, adult diseases at a young age, type-2 diabetes, NAFLD, cancer risks
  • Young people with hip replacements and chronic pain syndromes
  • Food is more than just calories and vitamins and minerals; contains essential phytonutrients.
  • The dangers of adding supplemental vitamins and minerals to highly processed and junk food
  • The problems with folic acid supplementation, the MTHFR gene and the risk of health conditions and mortality with unmetabolized folic acid supplementation
  • Failure to identify the root cause and properly address the remedies.
  • Eat real food

Part Five

Dr Maffetone discusses his philosophies around exercise:

  • Long-slow distance training
  • Fearing exercise
  • Importance of moving – sedentary lifestyle is a problem
  • The importance of staying active throughout the day
  • The dangers of exercise addiction. Sacrificing health for more fitness
  • Problems for the overfat athlete
  • Although professional athletes are breaking records, recreational athletes are slowing down
  • Problems with training on top of inflammation. Disrupted hormones, cortisol, we know what’s going on, why can’t we fix it?
  • Misunderstanding the concept of burning calories. The fallacy of eat less and exercise more. The concept of calories in calories out, doesn’t work.
  • What calories are your burning – fat or glucose?
  • How are you replacing your calories?
  • Heart rate variability and the benefits for monitoring training and recovery, use it as a coach
  • How to use heart-rate information is available on Dr Maffetone’s website

“Revisiting the Global Overfat Pandemic” is well worth the read and can be found here:

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