This week’s episode is going to blow your mind because I am going to expose one of the many ways you have been brainwashed. And stay tuned until the end because we have a little challenge for you!

I talk about how Edward Bernays, Sigmund Freud’s nephew, brainwashed the nation into believing that bacon and eggs are breakfast.

Think about breakfast. What foods come to mind? Specifically, what proteins?

For me, it’s bacon, eggs, sausage, and dairy products. You never hear someone talking about the great chicken breast on a diner’s breakfast menu!

And if you’ve ever traveled internationally and looked at a breakfast menu, you’ve undoubtedly found that there is an American Breakfast option which tends to be comprised of eggs, bacon, potatoes, and toast.

So how did Bernays do it? And why? Listen to the full episode to find out.

Oh yea, and we are a company of top-shelf coaches so if you want someone to help you navigate this notoriously difficult time of year so you can start 2019 on the right foot head to beyondmacros.com/services to learn more and set up your free initial call to learn about what we offer.

This show is brought to you by us, Beyond Macros, a nutrition coaching company that helps you make a sustainable transformation through realistic habit changes rather than restrictive dieting.

Make sure you are subscribed to the show on iTunes or wherever you get your podcasts, if you enjoy the show, please leave a rating on iTunes, and if you want to get leaner, stronger, and perform better by learning how to count macros go to beyondmacros.com/worksheet

In This Episode:

[01:51] About that brainwashing and why it applies to you.
[02:32] About Edward Bernays.
[03:15] How the field of public relations was created.
[04:47] What foods come to mind when you think about breakfast.
[05:15] How and why Edward Bernays pulled it off.
[08:03] Why it’s difficult to think outside the box of bacon and eggs.
[08:41] What the American breakfast is really based on.
[09:13] The challenge to think outside of bacon and eggs for breakfast.

Read Full Transcript:

Read Full Transcript

Welcome back to the Beyond Macros podcast, we are THE sustainable transformation nutrition coaches and our show will help you make your transformation that lasts with episodes about nutrition, movement, and the all-important art of inner work.

This week’s episode is going to blow your mind because I am going to expose one of the many ways you have been brainwashed. And stay tuned until the end because we have a little challenge for you!

Before jumping in, a quick shout out to Beyond Macros client Dave Packman. David was burning the candle at both ends when we started working together, and in the process of creating his sustainable transformation, he managed to cut from 78kg to 67kg and qualified for this year’s American Open in weightlifting. You can learn more about David’s transformation on Instagram or on the transformations page of our website. This is what he had to say about his experience.

[pacman testimonial plays]

So about that brainwashing. I bet you think it doesn’t apply to you, and that I am going to expose something all the other gullible Americans have fallen for. But I’m sorry to tell you, this little nugget of propaganda started a generation or two before you were born..

You see, at the turn of the 20th century a really big, bad thing happened. The world went to war. And President Woodrow Wilson wanted to spread the message that America was not fighting out of imperialism, but to bring the gift of democracy to the world. And he needed someone to spearhead the effort.

The man who got the job was Edward Bernays, Sigmund Freud’s nephew. Bernays was a careful student of his uncle’s work in understanding the human Psyche. Bernays efforts to spread the slogan that the war effort was about making the world safe for democracy was wildly successful both at home in the US and abroad. The whole country rallied around these efforts.

After the way, Bernays realized if the messages he was spreading using principles he learned from his uncle Sigmund Freud were wildly successful for wartime messages, they must also work just as well during times of peace. And after the war, the field of public relations was born with this idea in mind.

By understanding the way people’s minds worked, Bernays crafted campaigns to nudge the public opinion in any direction that would be beneficial for his clients. The amazing, and terrifying feats of controlling public opinion that Bernays pulled off included a coup d’etat of the Guatemalan government. The United Fruit company was one of the largest and most influential companies in the world, and their massive profits were built on exploitative practices in Central America. When a leader came to power in Guatemala who swore to put an end to the suffering of his people by returning lands to peasants and instituting a minimum wage, the United Fruit Company hired Bernays to find a way to turn public opinion against Arbenz. At the time, the red scare and fear of communism made this an easy task. Bernays led a campaign smearing Arbenz as a communist who was threatening Democracy so close to the US border. A CIA-backed coup ensued and Arbenz was replaced with a United Fruit friendly authoritarian figurehead.

The same man who managed to overthrow a government by understanding how to sway public opinion is the man who has brainwashed Americans to believe that bacon and eggs are breakfast.

Think about breakfast. What foods come to mind? Specifically, what proteins?

For me, it’s bacon, eggs, sausage, and dairy products. You never hear someone talking about the great chicken breast on a diner’s breakfast menu!

And if you’ve ever traveled internationally and looked at a breakfast menu, you’ve undoubtedly found that there is an American Breakfast option which tends to be comprised of eggs, bacon, potatoes, and toast.

So how did Bernays do it? And why?

In the 1920’s, the Beech-Nut corporation hired Bernays to help them sell more bacon. At the time, the typical American breakfast was a light breakfast consisting mostly of toast or a roll and Orange Juice followed up by some coffee.

The public relations genius Bernays knew just what to do. Convince the public that their light breakfasts were unhealthy and insert bacon as the solution to their problem. But taking out advertisements would not be trusted.

In the 1920s, people trusted their doctors and their journalists. So Bernays cryptically asked his firm’s in-house physician if he thought a heavier breakfast might be more beneficial than a light breakfast.

The physician mused that because your body uses energy during sleep and needs it throughout the day that a heavier breakfast would replace that energy and therefore be healthier. So Bernays asked this physician if he’d be willing to share in a letter to 5000 physicians asking them if they shared his conclusion.

4500 of those physicians responded affirmatively and a press release was sent out to newspapers across the country with the headline “4500 physicians urge a heavy breakfast to improve the health of the American people” and in that article bacon and eggs were suggested as a solution. Boom. Sales of bacon exploded and now you probably feel weird if you eat anything that strays too far from that norm at breakfast.

This happened in 1920. If you’re my age that means your great-grandparents saw this campaign and were the first generation to be indoctrinated with the idea that a heavy breakfast comprised of bacon and eggs was healthy. Your grandparents carried the torch. Your parents probably had more influenced by the dairy industry’s PR campaigns, and by the time you grew some teeth and started eating solid food, breakfast probably consisted of some combination of bacon, eggs, potatoes, cheese, cereal, and a glass of milk.

Even if your plate wasn’t too eggy eyes and a bacon mouth, think about breakfast burritos- bacon, eggs, potatoes, cheese, tortilla. Think about breakfast sandwiches- bacon or sausage, egg, cheese on an English muffin, bagel, or roll. You’ve been sent so many signals that breakfast is bacon, eggs, grains, and dairy that it’s hard to think outside that box.

And as a nutrition coach, I can tell you one thing for a fact. 80% of the time I look at someone’s food journal they are eating far less protein and wayyyyy more fat than makes sense nutritionally at breakfast because of this brainwashing.

The American breakfast is not based on health, it is not based on tradition, it is based on a PR campaign meant to boost the bottom line of a corporation. So now that I’ve made you aware and probably only have a few more days before some secret society erases me from history it’s my duty to pose this rallying cry to you.

Let’s all break free from the strings these puppeteers have been pulling since before we were born.

Let’s all construct the breakfast that makes the most sense for our bodies, our tastes, and gives us the energy we need for the day of revolution ahead!

Although I am only slightly kidding, about the revolution, I am serious about challenging you to think outside of your brainwashed breakfast box. I am calling you to try a breakfast that might be far outside your comfort zone. And I am here to give you some suggestions based on what some of my free-thinking clients have found works for them.

One possibility for all of you Australians heading into summer is a greens, fruit, and protein smoothie bowl. Think a lower sugar, higher nutrient acai bowl.

For all of us American meat eaters already experiencing this taste of winter, have you ever considered a breakfast soup? In Indonesia, they will eat a chicken broth, chicken and rice porridge.

What about what I call a “mother meets child scramble” where you toss some leftover chicken and vegetables in a pan and scramble them in some eggs and eat it with your favorite hot sauce?

And for all of us, why not try making some oatmeal with oats, your favorite protein powders, nut milk, fruit and spices like cinnamon?

There are so many ways you can increase the protein, decrease the fat, and improve the way you feel after breakfast without defaulting to dairy industry indoctrinated alternatives of greek yogurt or cereal with milk.

I’ve included a guide with 5 ideas in the show notes for this episode at beyondmacros.com/52 which you can download. And as promised, I have a challenge for you. I challenge you to start getting 40g or more of protein at breakfast with under 20g of fat and at least a handful of vegetables for the next month.

This simple focus can help you lose weight, eat enough protein early in the day to set the stage for building muscle and keep you satisfied for longer. It’s a no brain-wash-er.

To help you stick to that challenge, I am challenging you to post your bacon-free breakfast to your Instagram or Facebook feed or story, tag @beyondmacros, and consider using an unnecessarily long and witty hashtag like #beyondbernaysbaconbrainwashing to let people know you’re taking back control of your perception of breakfast! This is how we’ll know who is participating, and we’ll create an accountability group to help you hold to your new habits that will seem extreme in the eyes of the mind controlled sheep walking around without a clue about

If you are interested in watching a video showing Alfred Bernays bragging about his shaping of the American breakfast, head over to the show notes at beyondmacros.com/52. And if you want to dive even deeper, there is a free and fascinating 4-part BBC docuseries on Youtube called “Century of the Self” which illuminates the many ways in which Bernays influenced history.

I hope you enjoyed this episode. Make sure you’re subscribed to the show because next week we have an episode about how to be coachable and what to look for in a coach with Mike Bledsoe, CEO of the Shrugged Collective and creator of the Strong Coach program.

Thanks for listening, and I look forward to seeing you again next week!

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