Wednesday, January 16, 2008
Think of Food As Fuel
Eating a healthy, or clean diet is more important than the exercise put in by an individual when it comes to losing weight or body fat. Think of your body as a well-working machine. If you feed your machine the cleanest fuel, it will perform better - faster, stronger, and more efficient. I tell my clients to think about the food that they are putting into their mouth, and if their choices are not getting them closer to their fitness goal, then don't consume it: simple as that. I would venture to say that diet is almost 70% of the weight loss battle, where as exercise is 30%. You should have a good idea about what types of food are considered "clean" foods for which to fuel your body and which ones are unhealthy foods. (If not, there is probably a good chance that you are not losing weight because of this reason.) Remember that it is human nature to overestimate the amount of "good" food that a person eats and underestimate the number of total calories that a person eats in a day. You can try out this theory by keeping a food journal for a week. You might be amazed at just how many calories you are eating in a day, or how few you are consuming. One of the biggest problems that people have is that they don't eat enough, or frequently enough.
Most of my clients don't eat enough of the food that is going to get them lean or they are uneducated about the nutritional value of most foods. Some big tips for how to eat clean is to keep a balanced diet of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. A good split in a 2000 calorie diet would include a breakdown of 40% carbs, 30% protein, and 30% fat. If you want to lose 1lb a week, you must eat 500 calories less than you burn for 7 days and a total of a 3500 calorie deficit equals 1lb lost. You must always eat breakfast, and if you are going to eat carbs, try! to eat them at this time of day, and around the time of your workout.
Try to eat 5 to 6 small meals a day, each meal consisting of 200-300 calories. Increase the consumption of high density, low calorie foods such as vegetables. I always have some lean protein and veggies for dinner, which is completely filling and satisfying. Limit the amount of sugars you eat, while also watching your consumption of alcohol. When I say limit, I mean keep these servings to about 1-2 a week. Trust me, if you cut them out, after a week or two your body will not crave them anymore. Increase the amount of water that you drink and, the biggest thing of all; you don't need to starve yourself in order to lose weight. The best 'diet' is one that is not called a diet, but that is seen as an overall healthy food menu that includes all your fuel types in moderation and in proper proportions. Moderation is key and yes, there is such a thing as "too much of a good thing"- so, watch your portions!
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