Food For Thought

Hello everyone! I hope you all had a fantastic Thanksgiving and are getting ready for a great Christmas and New Years Day.

I’ve had some new clients over the last few months and one of the most common things I’ve been seeing is confusion over what they should be eating. If you do a quick search for ways to lose fat you’ll find methods and terms like Paleo, Intermittant Fasting, Atkins, Low Carb, IIFYM (If It Fits Your Macros), South Beach, The Plan, and so many more I could quite literally go on for years.

The bottom line is that there are many ways to accomplish your goals as long as you follow some basic principles. I just want to go over a few of them so you can finish 2013 and start 2014 on the right track. I’ll just do them at random.

1. The best plan is the one you’ll follow. 

What good does it do to put together the “perfect” meal plan if it’s full of food you don’t like or just makes you completely miserable? Yes, if you want results you need to step out of your comfort zone, but be honest with yourself about what you’re willing and able to do. I’ve had people tell me they can’t lose weight because it’s too hard for them to eliminate bread. You know what I tell them? You don’t have to! There are other ways!

Now on the flip side, don’t expect to get much in the way of results if the only concession you’re willing to make is to eat just a few less french fries with your Big Mac each night.

2. How much protein? Here are some general rules about protein intake:

For weight loss, eat about 1 gram per pound of lean body mass per day. For example, if you weigh 200 pounds and are 25% body fat you have about 150 pounds of lean body mass, so you should eat about 150 grams of protein per day.

For weight gain, eat about 1 gram per pound of body weight per day.

For general maintenance I’d recommend somewhere in the middle depending on your activity and the type of exercise you’re doing.

Also, there really isn’t any set rule for how to break it up. Generally speaking the total is what matters.

3. Don’t eat processed junk (most of the time). Most people would do just fine with their nutrition if they simply stopped eating processed junk. If it’s made of chemicals or has trans fats, don’t eat it.

4. Eat good fats. Don’t be afraid of healthy fats. Many vitamins and minerals need fats to help break them down, fats can be used as a great source of energy, eating healthy fats also teaches your body to use fat as fuel. These are all good things.

Some good fat sources include:

Fish oil, olive oil, coconut oil, avocados, some cheeses, eggs (yes eggs. THE WHOLE THING INCLUDING THE YOLK), nuts, natural peanut butter.

Do be careful about amounts though, because even good fats contain a fair amount of calories.

5. If you’re trying to lose fat you have to restrict calories. Sorry. There’s no way around this.

6. If you’re trying to lose fat you have to feel a little hungry sometimes. Sorry. There’s no way around this.

7. Sugar doesn’t have to be the enemy. Would you like to be able to lose weight eating pizza and ice cream every Saturday night? I’ve had clients do just that, but the catch is that the rest of the week their diet is dialed in 100%. You can have those crazy indulgent nights if you want to (and sometimes it’s actually helpful) but they have to be part of an overall plan if you want results and the crazier those nights are the more dialed in you have to be the rest of the time.

Let me know what you think and if you have any questions. Have a great day!

Mitch Rothbardt, CPT, PN Lean Eating Coach, FMS
2861 Grove Way in Castro Valley
510-754-7113
MitchRFitness@gmail.com
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