You are not alone if you find yourself confused about the perfect diet for reducing body fat. In light of the obscure nutrition recommendations from the government and outrageous claims from food marketers, sane and simple advice about how to eat for fat loss is hard to come by.
What’s the solution to all this nutrition madness?
You need an individualized nutrition approach that speaks to your energy needs and genetics, but that is based on science. This article will give you ten completely doable nutrition tips for getting the body you desire.
Tip #1: Eat a diet with high-quality protein.
Planning every meal around whole protein sources such as organic meat, eggs, dairy, and wild fish will provide the largest nutrient content per calorie. Protein foods will also keep blood sugar steady and are very satiating because they lead to the release of gut hormones that reduce appetite and keep you full.
Tip #2: Eat an antioxidant-rich diet to reduce inflammation.
As great as protein is for avoiding hunger, studies suggest diets rich in protein may lead to more oxidative stress. There are plenty of delicious foods that will increase blood antioxidant capacity and alleviate free radicals that cause inflammation. Coffee, chocolate, tea, whey protein, blueberries, pomegranates, blackberries, avocados, olives, coconut oil, colored peppers, kiwi, eggs, and almonds are just a few nutrient-packed foods to include in your diet.
Tip #3: Eat leafy green & cruciferous veggies at every meal.
Leafy greens and cruciferous veggies are filling, provide fiber, and help the body to safely metabolize excess estrogens for better androgen balance. Try kale, collards, Swiss chard, cabbage, arugula, bok choy, broccoli, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts.
Tip #4: Don’t be afraid of dietary fat.
Dietary fat is satisfying and it provides bioavailable vitamins and minerals that are necessary for peak health and a cranking metabolism. Higher fat diets also allow for higher androgen hormones, which are linked to lower body fat.
Tip #5: Remove processed foods from your diet.
Most processed foods are engineered to trigger food intake and make you eat more calories. Processed foods also have a lower thermic effect than whole foods, meaning that if you eat a processed meat sandwich with white bread, your body will burn fewer calories digesting it than if you ate the same amount of calories from chicken breast, rice, and sweet potatoes.
#6: Avoid alcohol, juice, soda, and sports drinks. Stick to water, tea, and coffee.
Sugar-sweetened beverages have zero nutritional benefit and they are the greatest provider of calories in the American diet. But these drinks don’t just provide empty calories. They have little impact on satisfying hunger, so people can consume large quantities without reducing appetite. Meanwhile, alcohol is notorious for lowering food inhibitions so that people choose unhealthier food options and overeat. Avoid the misery by sticking to water, tea, and coffee.
#7: Eat foods that improve insulin sensitivity with higher carb foods.
Certain foods increase insulin sensitivity and improve the body’s ability to store the carbs you eat as muscle glycogen instead of as fat. Vinegar, healthy oils (coconut, olive), spices (cinnamon, turmeric), and acids (lemon, lime) all have been shown to make your body more sensitive to insulin.
#8: Eat more fish oil, nuts & seeds but fewer vegetable oils.
American’s intake of vegetable oils (canola, soy, corn, etc.) has skyrocketed over the past 100 years. Our intake of soybean oil alone has increased 116,000 percent since 1909! Vegetable oils are very high in omega-6 fats, which are associated with diabetes and increased body fat. Instead, eat omega-3 fats in fish oil, walnuts, and flaxseeds for a more balance fat intake.
#9: Favor plants over grains.
Favoring vegetables instead of grains is an easy way to fill you up and increase nutritional density, but with fewer calories. Grain-based foods, whether it's good bread, crackers, rice, or cereal are very easy to overeat and they tend to crowd out other more nutritious foods.
#10: Never slash calories.
Are you always hungry while dieting? It’s possible your calories are too low. Stop obsessing about calories and eat more. Focus on getting plenty of veggies, healthy fats, and quality protein to promote satisfaction and fullness.