Just about everyone has their own “scientifically researched” nutrition advice.
I’m a member of a few online groups and I regularly see these suggestions for diet advice:
Cut out dairy and gluten
Don’t eat sugar
Don’t eat carbs
Go vegan or vegetarian
Seems like all you need to do is cut something out to lose weight. FINALLY, an easy answer for weight loss.
Not so fast!
Unfortunately those little snippets of diet advice are not a one size fits all diet strategy. When you’re an actual nutrition coach, who works with real humans, anecdotal recommendations don’t cut it.
There are very few people who have mostly healthy diets, consistently maintain good eating habits, and are only sabotaging themselves with one specific type of food.
Most people are starting with a less than ideal diet that isn’t working for them. Taking a diet like that and just cutting out a food group doesn’t make it healthy.
It might support weight loss for a little while because you’re literally just avoiding food. But that’s not sustainable.
You’ll end up bored, unsatisfied, and ultimately still overweight and feeling guilty.
An Alternative Method
What if you looked at dieting as an opportunity to have a healthier perspective about changing the way you eat, while supporting fat loss?
You can focus on adding nutritious foods to your diet instead of focusing on cutting foods out. This type of focus creates lasting habits that don’t perpetuate or encourage this common cycle:
If, instead, you work on changing the quality of your overall diet, you can slowly adjust your approach without the typical deprivation of most diets.
Here are some foods to add to your diet in order to accomplish this:
Have several veggies on hand, washed, cut, and ready to eat.
Plan your vegetable for each meal and have enough.
Women should have a fist of vegetables at every meal; two fists for men. Work your way up starting at an amount you can tolerate.
Find protein dense food to add to your diet like: red meat, chicken, fish, eggs. (If you are vegetarian/vegan you can find protein dense plant sources as well.)
Have protein at every meal!
Aim for a palm sized portion for women; 2 palm sized portions for men, at every meal. Work your way up starting at an amount you can tolerate.
Seek out foods with unsaturated fats like: healthy oils, seeds, and nuts. Sample several until you find ones you like.
Aim for 1 thumbs worth for women; 2 thumbs worth for men at every meal.
Think potatoes, wild rice, full flake or steel cut oats, quinoa, barley, amaranth, millet.
Season and flavor them so they taste good. Bonus if you use some healthy fats to make them more flavorful!
Unprocessed means foods that are in as natural a state as possible, and haven’t been through a factory that alters the way they are consumed.
“Wait, won’t eating more make me gain more weight?”
Typically if you eat less processed foods, they are more dense and lower calorie. In other words, you’ll feel fuller longer and consume less calories.
If you are consistent in consuming less calories, you will lose weight. Consistency is key here.
To promote consistency, focus on one thing at a time. If you choose to amp up your veggie intake, work on that for the first few weeks before adding anything else.
It’s hard to change your eating habits for the long-term, but not as hard as maintaining a diet that sets you up with an unrealistic approach on how you’ll eat for the rest of your life.
That’s why we created our free ebook, “Forever Fat Loss: 12 Habits for Lasting Change.” This is not a typical weight loss program that offers quick, but unsustainable, results.
Instead, this ebook takes concepts like the ones in this blog and gives you clear direction and manageable steps you can take to become successful at losing weight and keeping it off.
If an approach like that appeals to you, you can download your ebook here.