Tom Bilella, DC, CCN, CNS
Tom Bilella, DC, is director of the Nutrition Treatment Center in Red Bank, NJ. Tom is an energetic, captivating, thought-provoking, and sought-after speaker. He has spoken nationally and internationally on topics such as anti-aging, metabolic syndrome, weight loss, sports nutrition, and other important health topics. His audiences have included the New York Giants, Villanova University, Seton Hall University, and Rutgers University. In 1995, he was the NPC Natural New Jersey Bodybuilding Champion.
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6:05 How Dr. Tom Got Into Fitness: As part of his exploration into nutrition, he began bodybuilding. In 1995 he was South Jersey All Natural bodybuilding champ. He learned a great deal about nutrition and self-discipline.
7:24 Dietary Strategies He Used for Bodybuilding: He used a sophisticated macronutrient program. He manipulated his protein/carb ratios. It was about 40% protein, 40% carbs and 20% fat. Calories were high, but he had a fast metabolism back then. Now, however, he does a ketogenic diet for about 2 to 3 weeks every 3 months. He finds that it brings down belly fat and builds lean muscle. A 5 week ketogenic diet is used with clients in his practice. For many people it is a great way to lose weight.
9:08 Dr. Tom’s Work with Professional Athletes: Dr. Tom was the team nutritionist for the New York Jets. He introduced nutrient timing, macronutrients, all organic foods, pulled out the soda and ice cream machines. He thinks it is more than a coincidence that the team did very well that year. He still works with a number of athletes, professional, collegiate, and high school, as a personal consultant and through his practice in New Jersey.
11:58 How Does He Use Nutrient Timing? Football players and other athletes are often not meeting their caloric needs. To build muscle, you need to consume more calories in a day than you burn. Dr. Tom believes in nutrient timing: energy phase, anabolic phase and growth phase. While you are working out, working your muscles, you are consuming a glucose electrolyte solution with branch chains and glutamine. You are almost recovering as you are training. It delays fatigue and increases performance. They start with a pre-exercise snack. Energy phase – fuel the muscle. Anabolic Phase – Individualize and fine tune carbs to protein ratio. You want to spike insulin, reduce cortisol; drive carbohydrates and protein into your muscle. Growth Phase is from workout to workout.
15:40 Which Carbs Should We Consume? Dr. Tom likes the more slow releasing carbohydrates, the super starch for athletes and for people looking for recovery. You can use dextrose, sugar or juice. Use a high quality protein. Whey protein has the quickest release and is usually best for recovery. This is to be consumed within a 30 minute post workout window. You need to quench the cortisol. Insulin is the number one anabolic hormone in the body. In order to build lean muscle mass, you need to spike insulin. If you are looking to lose weight, you use a different strategy.
17:39 Muscle Building Strategies for Women: Examine caloric and protein intake. Many times, increased protein is needed. Workouts should entail fewer and slower reps in a good cadence. He recommends a 4-4-4 program: four sets per body part, four work sets, and 4 seconds concentric/4 seconds eccentric. There needs to be enough time between workouts to have a full recovery. Each muscle group requires a different amount of time for recovery. Quads may take 6 to 7 days to fully recover. Biceps and triceps can recover in as little as 48 hours. High quality creatine should be part of women’s strategy as well.
21:58 The Importance of Time under Tension and Eccentric/Concentric: You will build more muscle on the release of a motion than the initial motion. A slow 4 second flexion and 4 second release of flexion eliminates the use of momentum and fully utilizes the muscle. If there is no locking at the top or bottom of the rep, it ensures pure tension on the muscle. Slow and controlled is the best way to break down muscle tissue. If you feed it, you will get a better anabolic response and that is hypertrophy.
23:36 Best Exercise Model for Health: Everything is individual. There is no perfect workout. There is no perfect exercise. There is no perfect food. The key is that you are dynamic in your training.
25:38 Switching Exercises: Vary how you work out muscle groups. When you hit a plateau with a muscle group, take a break for a few weeks or approach it using a different means. You need to make it variable for your nervous system and for your muscular adaptation system. Changes should be seen within 12 weeks.
26:29 Data Collection & Heartrate Monitors: Dr. Tom’s patients wear heartrate monitors and train in the proper zone for fat burning. He finds that data collection is great for keeping his patients motivated. He is also a functional medicine and nutrition practitioner. He does blood work, runs vitamin/mineral analysis, food sensitivity tests, and everyone gets a body composition test. It is a great way to track patient’s fat/muscle ratio. It helps with compliance.
27:35 The Right Workout Program: Dr. Tom agrees with Dr. Teta. The right program should do two things. It should improve body composition and it should improve blood chemistry. The perfect diet is never found. It is created.
28:51 Impact of Deadlift and Squats on the Spine: When you put the bar on your back, you are compressing your discs. You have to have core stability, good posture, and good biomechanics. Many, if not most, of us do not have that. You need to consider the risk/benefit ratio.
31:09 The Successful Ketogenic Diet: In the ketogenic diet, you are shutting down the glucose and you teach your body to adapt to burning fat. It can be a lynchpin for people to start burning fat. The average person loses 18 to 22 pounds in 5 weeks. If you are over 50, it is a little slower. Dr. Tom uses the Transformation 360 program. The program uses real food, using nutrition packs of protein, carbs and nutrients between meals. It gets people on the right track for eating once the program is completed. Ketosis has the added benefit of bringing on a state of euphoria. The ketogenic diet is not for everyone.
34:10 Strength Retention on a Ketogenic Diet: With the ketogenic diet, you should not do a lot of training. Dr. Tom recommends 30 minutes per day, 3 days per week, keeping it mild to moderate. Working out can prevent ketosis. He observed that, while in ketosis, his heartrate is lower during the same expenditure of energy. Your body is more efficient at utilizing energy.
35:58 Compliance Strategies: Your discipline with determine your destiny. Dr. Tom discovers the real reason why his client wants his help. He asks his clients to make 5 good food decisions per day. They can make 2 bad ones per week. Since two of those decisions are their shakes, they only need to come up with 3. Also in his formula is the allowance of 4 to 6 drinks per week, four maximum for women and small men and 6 maximum for big men who are used to drinking. He asks his client for a list of 5 people who would benefit from the client’s program success and gets them to link those 5 decisions to the 5 people who would benefit. The 3-by-3 5-by-9 means you should have eaten 3 clean meals by 3 pm and 5 clean feedings by 9 pm.
40:19 Cheat Meal Strategies: He wants his clients to carefully plan their cheat meals and not be ambushed by them. He advises that cheats be completed in a one hour window to minimize insulin spike and fat gain. It is a cheat meal, not a cheat day.
41:44 Dr. Tom’s Legends Club: Dr. Tom’s goal is to end the dominance of pharmaceuticals in our lifetime. The Legends Club is an educational program for clinicians who want to improve productivity, capacity and their skills. To end the drug era, clinicians need to see many people each day. The pillars are staff, marketing, money and time. He does a webinar program every two weeks and he does a live strategy call every week with live Q & A. A link to the program is on Dr. Tom’s website, drtombilella.com.
44:37 Dr. Tom’s Morning Routine: When he gets up at 5:30, he drinks purified water, often with apple cider vinegar. He does deep breathing outside in natural light. He drinks his greens and his fiber together. He then drinks organic coffee with whey protein and coconut oil. He has a daily hand written task/goal list. He tries to have all of his emails dealt with before he leaves the house. A few times a week, he leaves notes to his wife and daughter. He tries to stay off the grid on Sunday, but he still does his task list.
46:18 Task List: The simple act of creating a task list has been found to make your life more efficient. Dr. Tom incudes things that he wants to happen, not just what he plans to do. He feels that just putting it out there in the universe makes it more likely to occur. He believes that writing these things down is special and powerful, a way of telling the universe what you want.
51:35 Dr. Tom's Favorite Herb, Nutrient, Botanical, or Whole Food Substance: Dr. Tom chooses the B-complex family. He does lots of vitamin/mineral testing and it seems that most people are deficient in some member of the B vitamin family. B vitamins help the body release energy from food and many other important things.
48:47 Dr. Tom's Elevator Pitch: We know that when we get fat, we are at high risk for serious health problems. Every doctor and school in the country should have a body composition analysis machine connected to a national database. If you keep your percentage of body fat (not BMI because it is not accurate) in a healthy range you should get a reduction in your taxes and your insurance. You should be rewarded for being lean.