How to lose fat? What are the simple fat loss diet basics that have been proven to work time after time?
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“What’s the best way to lose fat and get leaner?”
It depends on who we ask and which diet “camp” they belong to.
First, you might see some BS marketing such as focusing on a very particular food (e.g. Just eat this magical food from the Amazon Forrest that contains this secret ingredient that shreds off belly fat in 10 days) or some supplement in the form of pill or powder.
The advertising for weight loss “tricks” is incredibly aggressive, marketers will do anything to get you to spend money on their “magic” product.
If we move away a bit and into what people are saying there’s confusion there as well.
Some will say it’s all about a 100% plant based diet, go vegan, eliminate animal products, no meat, no dairy and you can eat whatever you want. It will get you lean and healthy.
Then, you’ll hear “Paleo is the solution”. Avoid grains and dairy and go with a very high fat high protein diet.
Then there’s everything in-between.
The only way to make sense out of this whole mess is to take a step back and look at the overlapping principles between all the diets.
Since there’s no doubt that they’re people losing fat on vegan diets and also on paleo diets (Using these two as examples because they’re almost the exact opposite). And there’s also people who fail to lose fat on both approaches.
So instead of looking what’s different between the two approach to nutrition and food choices why don’t we look at what the successful people from both “camps” are doing and find the commonality?
Four core principles of fat loss nutrition:
1 – Caloric deficit. If your goal is to lose body fat, put your body in a negative energy balance. In practical terms, this means consuming fewer calories than your body is expending to “force” the body to mobilize body fat stores. A combination of a caloric deficit with a resistance training plan, sufficient protein intake, and healthy sleeping habits will ensure that most of the weight you lose is body fat and not muscle mass.
2 – Sufficient protein intake. There’s no doubt that higher protein diets seem to be work best for most people when they’re trying to lose fat. Eating about 1g per lbs of ideal BW in protein will not only keep you fuller but also allow your body to build and retain muscle mass.
3 – Set your daily carbohydrate/fat targets based on activity levels and personal preference. Research has shown that the ratio of carbs to fats in your diet doesn’t play that much of a role when it just comes to fat loss. Athletes doing higher intensity training will benefit from a moderate to high carbohydrate intake.
4 – Make the majority of the food you eat whole healthy unprocessed foods.
We live in an environment surrounded by extremely palatable high-calorie density foods. Our mind isn’t equipped to deal with the fact that we’ve engineered foods to be so tasty and irresistible.
Combining the ideal ratio of fat, sugar and salt with the perfect texture we’ve created foods that make it near impossible to stay within our calorie limit. And at the same time, we’re more sedentary and stress out than ever.
This combination leads to poor health outcomes, obesity and for most people a very hard time dieting.
Hope you enjoyed. Let me know in the comments below how you resonate with this!
Food Reward Hypothesis Series – Stephan Guyenet
The energy balance equation:
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