Create a Fat-Burning Diet


 

 

It may sound surprising, but training is the easy part of the fitness equation. Not that all that effort and sweat isn’t challenging. But at most, that takes an hour of your day, maybe a little more. Once that’s done, you have 22 to 23 hours left in your day to manage, including –if you’re doing it correctly –five to seven meals.

 

 

The results you see can be affected in the way you prepare those meals. You need to accomplish three key goals. The first one is to provide your body with the nutrition it needs to run optimally. Second is to give your muscles the building blocks they need to recover. And third is to refuel yourself enough to have the energy to train hard and thrive throughout your day, but not so much as to stock your body’s fat stores.

It’s a tall order, to be sure, but a relatively easy one if you have solid information in hand. Here are a few “rules” to follow as you create your own fat-burning diet:

 

  1. Get Your Protein
  2. Cycle Your Carb Intake
  3. Watch the Fat
  4. Crack Down on Cravings

 

Get Your Protein

You want to aim for a least 1 gram of protein per pound of bodyweight per day. At meals, you’ll look to wholefood sources like meat, milk, eggs and soy. If you are vegan you’ll look to beans, soy, nuts, and quinoa. For snacks and around workouts, you can lean on wholesome protein powders, bars, and yogurt smoothies.

 

 

Cycle Your Carb Intake

Whole grains, fruits and vegetables certainly have their place in a well-rounded diet, but that place is the key: You’ll want to cycle your carb intake by stacking carbs earlier in the day so that they’re burned off before bedtime. For breakfast and lunch, you want to go higher carb. For later meals, you want to go low carb and higher protein. That’s because in the morning, you’re restocking you energy stores and giving your body what it needs to make it through the day. Carbs later in the day, however, may end up getting stored as fat when you sleep –i.e., stay inactive –for six to nine hours. Plan your meals so that you choose whole grains over non-whole options (except after workouts), eat fruit only in the a.m., eat fibrous vegetables freely, and limit, but don’t omit your starch-oriented veggies like white potatoes and corn.

 

Watch the Fat

Limit your fat intake to 0.5 gram per pound of bodyweight per day. Get the majority of your fats from fish like salmon and tuna, as well as avocadoes, walnuts, almonds, olive oil and other excellent sources of healthy monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats.

 

Crack Down on Cravings

You’re well on your way to your dream body, exercising regularly, watching what you eat, and then it hits you: the craving!

Something sugary or carb-y or crunchy –whatever it is, you can’t get it out of your mind. You know giving in will momentarily halt your progress, but the urge to eat it is so strong, you almost don’t care. You try to justify it to yourself. You struggle. You complain. You cave.

Although it’s quite common for women to attribute cravings to various stages of menstrual cycles, experts disagree over the role estrogen and other hormones play. However, one thing is clear: Food cravings can have emotional and physiological triggers.

Insulin is the most profound hormone that has an impact on cravings. And its release can be triggered via stress. Stress produces cortisol, and in an effort to counteract it, the body will produce insulin, which drops blood sugar. What’s the result? Your body demands that you stabilize your blood sugar immediately via eating a high-carbohydrate food.

The best defense against food cravings, experts agree that is, a good offense: Keep your blood sugar stable via eating small meals of whole, natural foods high in protein, healthy fats and fiber every few hours. Also, supplement with a good multivitamin and essential fatty acids, such as the omega-3s found in fish-oil capsules, because the body can’t produce those on its own.

 

The Premise

What you eat and how often you eat may help you to see results faster. Eating regularly throughout the day, revs up the metabolism which encourages you to burn more fat calories. You may even burn several calories when resting.

If you do not eat regularly, your body may feel that it is in a starvation mode, and start storing the food you eat as fat. So in a sense your body will be in preservation mode, making it that much harder to burn calories.

Do not skip your breakfast, even if you don’t like to eat it. Some of the people I have talked to who are overweight say that they hate breakfast, and do not eat in those hours. One woman told me recently she only drinks soda for breakfast.  A well-balanced breakfast is an important meal of the day as it helps to kick-off your metabolism. Combine that with eating throughout the day along with exercise and the weight should just fall off. There may be days you don’t exercise, and you may still burn calories due to how often you eat small well-balanced meals throughout the day.

Only eating breakfast and a large dinner with nothing –to –very little in between; is not great either. This is just the other end of the spectrum of someone who doesn’t eat breakfast. Your body will still behave in the same, if not worse manner as it would if you had skipped the breakfast. Your body will at some point feel deprived, and start storing food as fat.

If you seem overwhelmed as to how to start, try cutting back a little of your potion sizes of what you already eat throughout the day; in that way you won’t feel deprived. Believe it or not…that actually works. You won’t see magnificent results, but you may notice little changes. Try to inculcate more of the wholesome well-balanced meals. For example, if you don’t like to eat during the breakfast hours, try something like yogurt instead of eggs at first; until your body gets used to the idea. Eventually you should start eating more of the healthier foods and less of the other; and it will jump-start the fat-burning process.

You Can Do It! :-)