Moodi Dennaoui- The ‘Diet Doctor’ and expert for Body Science lets us in on a not so secret fact. So my friends, put down the donut and read on…
It’s not unusual for people to take it a little easier when it comes to their diet and activity levels in winter. After all the days are shorter, the mornings are darker, and it’s cold so who wouldn’t prefer to indulge in a little comfort food or a sleep in?
But before spending hours slogging it out on the treadmill in a bid to get fit for summer, you may want to start by looking at your diet because in many cases, you diet may be what’s letting you down.
Studies have shown that having both regular exercise and a healthy diet is the best answer for long term weight control, however further research has suggested that your diet may be even more important than physical exercise.
The US National Weight Control Registry, established in 1994 by scientists at the University of Colorado and Brown Medical School, followed more than 10,000 Americans who had lost weight and kept it off for years. Just 1% kept the pounds off with exercise alone, 10% did it with diet alone, and 89% used both.
Here are some tips on how to get your abs for summer:
There are thousands of articles out there telling us about a million different types of diets, health tips and more that we could be following, but what they often don’t account for is reality. The truth is that we are all constrained by our lifestyle and resources such as time, likes and dislikes, money and willpower to name a few. A lot of generic recommendations don’t take this into account, which is why the public should take information with a grain of salt and make it work for them.
In this recent meta-study (published in the Journal of the American Medical Association,)’ they went out to find “which diet works best?” by looking at the results of 59 individual studies. These studies included various diets including low-fat, low-carb and so on. And yet NONE of these diets came out on top. In fact, there were no major differences between the diets, and success was completely dependent on what the individual could adhere to. In other words, if a diet is not practical and suitable for the individual, then it will not work.
Beware of Going Too Low Carb
Everyone’s metabolism is different and their bodies respond to different foods in different ways, however for many of us, if you stay on a low calorie diet for too long, your body will start to constantly tell you that you are hungry and the urge to binge will grow. Why? Because our bodies have a survival mechanism that involves the hormone ghrelin. If we are under consuming calories regularly, then our body starts STORING food rather them using it for recovery and progression.
Ghrelin, the “hunger hormone” is a peptide hormone, which affects the central nervous system. Besides regulating appetite, ghrelin also plays a significant role in regulating the distribution and rate of use of energy. When the stomach is empty, ghrelin is secreted. When the stomach is stretched, secretion stops.
Cutting out carbs will slow down your weight loss, therefore eating good carbohydrates at lunch will help to keep blood sugar levels stable and prevent bingeing throughout the latter half of the day. Carbohydrates are the brains fuel source so you really don’t want to deprive your brain of energy, especially during working hours.
I suggest including healthy carbs such as sweet potato, brown rice etc. into your breakfast or lunch OR if you want to cut down carbs for a few days per week, I would suggest having a ‘cheat meal’ once a week, but a healthy one!
Protein is important for building and repairing your muscles, but also keeping your metabolism fast. If you don’t have enough protein in your body, then your body will start to burn your muscle instead of fat, therefore leaving you without the results you were hoping for.
Good sources of protein include lean meat, fish, eggs, dark leafy vegetable, legumes, tofu, beans etc.
I also have Nitrovel and Hydroxyburn Lean 5 protein shakes throughout the day because they have high protein levels, low carbs paired with ingredients that boost your metabolism for a better fat burn.
EAT YOUR VEGETABLES
Eating natural whole foods, such as dark green vegetables are not only a great source of micronutrients, but they are also full of fibre, have a high thermic effect and are nutrient dense so they supply your body with everything it needs. Another great thing about vegetables is that they require a considerable amount of effort to digest so you are essentially exercising your insides without even moving, meaning that you can reach your fat burning target that much quicker!
FOODS TO AVOID
Try to avoid processed and packaged foods that generally take away from the digestive capability of the body. That means that your body requires little to no effort to digest and absorb these foods, reducing energy expenditure and increasing the likelihood of storing fat.
- Be Consistent Sure its ok to spoil yourself occasionally however its what you do more often than what you don¹t do that will ultimately determine how you look and feel.
- Eat small portions throughout the day every 2-3 hours. Sure it¹s what you eat per day in total that will determine how you look however if you want to FEEL good and not just look good, a constant influx of nutrients is your best bet!
- Part of achieving a lean physique AND maintaining it, is always ensuring you earn at least one meal a day.
- A one hour workout is 4% of your day. Sacrifice 4% of your day and get the most out of the remaining 96% of your day.