Nothing can be achieved in a day; it needs time and patience along with dedication. So give your body the time it needs to achieve significant and lasting results. For example, most people want to build muscle mass and reduce body fat at the same time. Efficient muscle-building requires a positive calorie balance (more calories are consumed than burned) and fat loss a negative one (fewer calories are consumed than burned). Theoretically, you can do both at the same time, but neither one very efficiently. That’s why it is essential to set priorities.
Ideally, you want to combine a healthy and well-balanced diet full of vitamins, minerals, and water with exercise – from your everyday activities to endurance and strength training.
No Crash Diet
So, how to achieve an ideal figure with the proper diet? First, do not run behind crash diets because they cause you to lose muscle mass and lower your basal metabolic rate, which you need to sustain the body’s vital functions. When you finish a diet, your body ends up accumulating even more calories in the form of fat as a reserve for the next lean time. However, your goal should be long-term fat loss. That’s why it is better to lose ½kg to a maximum of 1kg per week and maintain weight loss.
Carbohydrates are essential for many metabolic and brain processes and contain (with a few exceptions) plenty of vitamins and minerals. Plus, they are the primary source of energy for people who are always on the run. Thus, it’s more about eating the right carbohydrates at the right time than eliminating them from your diet.
Carbohydrates like bread, cereal, rice, pasta, potatoes, couscous, quinoa, etc., should mainly be consumed for breakfast or lunch – preferably ones with a low to medium glycemic index or whole-grain products. They keep you feeling full longer, provide more vitamins and minerals, and steady your blood sugar levels.
The choice of carbohydrates and the times between meals are essential for preventing your blood sugar from fluctuating. This is because high blood sugar levels cause your body to release more of the hormone insulin. Insulin stores sugar and fat in your body cells while at the same time preventing fat loss. However, after an intense training session, eating a snack containing carbohydrates and protein is a good idea.
For dinner, some good examples of low-carb meals would be grilled fish fillet with steamed vegetables or an omelet with fresh herbs, tomato, and cucumber, particularly if you exercise in the morning. If you worked out hard in the late afternoon and you didn’t have any carbohydrates afterward, then you can eat a small portion of carbs.
Every meal should include a source of protein because protein is essential for building and maintaining muscle. Combining animal and plant protein sources increases the biological value (BV). Studies show that eating protein can also help you lose weight and belly fat while increasing muscle mass and strength. Make sure to get enough protein, but don’t overdo it. A daily protein intake of 1.2-1.7g per kg of body weight is optimal for “body forming.”
It’s essential to make sure certain fats are left out of your diet. But it’s also just as important to make sure some fats get in. Good fats are essential to your diet and can make you healthier when balanced with other nutrition. They help you absorb vitamins, make you feel full, so you don’t overeat, speed up your metabolism, and help regulate your blood sugar. They can also lower your risk for obesity and diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart disease.
Most fat is consumed in the form of hidden fats. 1g of fat contains more than twice as many calories as 1g of carbohydrates or protein. You should therefore opt for lean meats and low-fat dairy products. Get your healthy omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids from high-quality vegetable oils, nuts, and avocados, as well as a fatty (saltwater) fish once a week. You can also eliminate fat by choosing low-fat methods of preparation like boiling, steaming, or grilling.
Fruit and Vegetables
Don’t forget the “5 a day” rule: Every day; you should eat two portions or a handful of fruit and at least three portions of vegetables – the more colorful and varied, the better. If you are not so fond of fruits and vegetables, then make a refreshing smoothie and have. Since fruit is rich in fructose, you should not eat more than two portions per day. The best time to eat fruit is at breakfast, as a “dessert” after lunch, or as an energy boost before strength training.
Studies have shown that fluid intake is one of the most critical factors influencing sports performance. The regular consumption of zero-calorie drinks can also help boost your metabolism. But check before having zero-calorie drinks as many of them contain sugar. They also come with additional calories, making them an unsuitable source of refreshment. Better options are water, mineral waters, fruit teas, and herbal teas, which can be more exciting by adding lemon, lime, or mint. The daily recommended fluid intake is 35-40ml per kg of body weight, although you can drink more when temperatures are high. You also have to consume 1.5 times more fluid to replenish the fluids lost due to sweating during your workout.
The intermittent fasting diet has been used for thousands of years in various cultures. It has become one of the most popular diets today, thanks to an endorsement by the scientific community. It is based on eating patterns that cycle between periods of fasting and eating. The best part of this diet is that you don’t need to eliminate your favorite foods. Among many of its health benefits, it also helps you lose weight.
There are a few different approaches, but the two most popular are 16:8, which calls for restricting all the day’s meals into an eight-hour window and fasting for the remaining 16 hours, and 5:2, where five days of the week are spent eating normally and two are spent fasting.
Why would someone opt for this way of eating versus a standard diet, such as low-carb or low-fat? Some say fasting has loads of health benefits. The research so far proves the benefits of Intermittent fasting to the extent that it is worthwhile to lose weight, manage your blood sugar, and slow down the aging process.
What’s the reason for its popularity? First, it seems a lot easier for some people and simple to follow. Traditional lifestyle changes tend to rely a lot on calorie counting or point watching or rules, and for some people — especially people with busy lives or who feel pulled in a lot of directions — that feels like a lot of work and effort. So for this, where they have to do nothing but skip a meal, it’s just a lot easier for them to maintain.
Keto is a high fat, moderate protein, very low-carb diet, with a macros target of about 70% fat, 25% protein, and 5% carbs (70:25:5).
A keto diet is especially useful for losing excess body fat without hunger and improving type 2 diabetes or metabolic syndrome.
Foods to eat
Examples of foods that you’ll eat in abundance on the Keto diet:
- Fish and seafood
- Low-carb veggies
- Low carb dairy; Cheese, plain Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, etc
- Nuts and seeds
- Healthy oils
- Unsweetened coﬀee and tea
Examples of foods that are allowed in moderation:
- Dark chocolate
- Non-glycemic sweeteners
But before starting any kind of diet, consult your doctor and check if that diet suits your body or not.
Indeed, it is true that a body in shape is made in the kitchen. So, watching what you are eating and an overall healthy first lifestyle can make you look fit and fabulous!