When it comes to fat loss, your nutrition is where many of you are currently getting it wrong. Keep things simple and follow the instructions 'as they appear on the tin'.
Firstly, make sure you're supplementing your daily diet with a quality multivitamin. For fat loss and health, everyone should supplement with a high quality fish oil too, to get the essential omega 3 fatty acids that we all need more of. More and more research is showing that fish oil increases fat oxidation (i.e. fat burning). Get both these supplements at your local supermarket or health store.
To lose excess body fat you need more protein and fats in your diet. Carbohydrates need to come from vegetables and fruit, while grains should be a small after thought in your meal plans.
Include a portion of protein, fats and vegetables every time you eat. Supplement vegetables for fruit at breakfast. Increasing these elements will allow you to lose excess fat far more quickly and prevent you from eating too much. Without starving yourself to death, you can obtain and maintain a lower body fat percentage by sticking to this formula.
Always eat breakfast. For protein and fats, add nuts or seeds to your meal choices, to give you a good mix of the two. Alternatively, choose an organic brand of quality peanut butter to mix into your porridge oats or spread onto your high quality toast. Add a small portion of fruit, ideally berries (very good anti-oxidants) or chopped apple.
If eating savoury or cooked foods, gain your protein and fats from Omega 3 organic eggs, organic bacon, or smoked salmon. If in doubt, buy a pack of seeds (linseeds, sunflower, sesame, pumpkin) and sprinkle a spoonful into or over your food, or drizzle a little olive oil.
For lunch and / or dinner you have no end of protein choice: chicken or turkey breast, lean steak, pork chop, fish (canned or fresh), eggs, cottage cheese, ricotta cheese, and natural yoghurt. Steer clear of deli meats, battered meats or fish, and any fried meat. Never go without your protein. For quality fats opt for avocado or a quality oil dressing.
A good example for lunch would be a chicken and avocado salad pitta or a large greens salad with avocado, chicken, tomatoes, mushrooms, cucumber, and kidney beans.
Dinner should always follow a set rule; meat or fish with plenty of vegetables. The more colour, the better. Add a very small amount of grains if you feel that you need them. 1 tablespoon should be enough (but no more than 2).
As much as possible, discard processed foods, high sugar or salt snacks and baked goods. When eating grains, go for organic, wholemeal or whole wheat options, and keep them to a minimum. Look at your plate - if the grains outweigh the protein or the vegetable content, put some back or push them aside. Replace them with more vegetables or more protein.
As for fats; if in doubt, drizzle some olive oil over your food to meet your quota. I said 'drizzle'... Other good fat choices include eggs, salmon, trout, sardines, nuts (not coated in yoghurt or chocolate), seeds, some butter on vegetables, avocado, guacamole (yes, it's good), olives, tahini, hummus, and the fat found naturally in meats.
Now that we've covered your main meals, let's talk about snacks. Try these for size:
Celery stick with a dollop of peanut butter
A handful of quality nuts - macadamias, brazils, pecans, walnuts - any choice, except white peanuts.
Sliced apple spread with peanut butter
2 oatcakes topped with cottage cheese
Baby carrots dipped in hummus (go easy on the amount of hummus)
Eat these mid morning and mid afternoon, but only if you feel hungry.
And to finish, following your workout you must always consume some protein, with or without carbohydrates. With your energy stores depleted, this is the one time that you can afford to be a little naughty with your carbohydrates, provided that you are eating quality protein as part of the deal. Tempt yourself with a 'little' quality chocolate, a couple of biscuits or something else a little naughty - but in a small amount!
The best protein option would be a whey protein powder. YES, this is a supplement, but with people having to eat on the run, this is the perfect solution to a quick hit of protein. It is NOT a bodybuilding fuel designed to make you muscle-bound! Whey is one of the purest forms of protein available. Every workout should be followed by a whey protein shake. This will ensure that protein is instantly available to the muscles that you just worked so they can properly recover and grow. The alternative protein source would be a simple glass of milk, but the beauty of whey protein is that it comes in sachets. Simply mix it with water in a shaker and you have an instant light meal in your hand. NO excuses for going without your protein 'fix'!
So, there you have it, the key to fat loss in your diet. Followed to the letter these actions will guarantee results, if you are ready to make the effort. Otherwise enjoy having Auntie or Uncle Fat to stay indefinitely... Be wise. Help them pack their bags now!
Simon Dainton is a Certified Personal Trainer and founder of Fitstreet Personal Training in the UK. His Programs of Lifestyle change guarantee clients results, combining effective exercise, nutrition and lifestyle adjustments. For more information and to learn more about getting healthier,
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