In today's day and age we find ourselves constantly finding new ways to eat healthy and move more. As a personal trainer for 8+ yeas now, you would be surprised on how many new exercises I have seen and have done. Also on how many actual diets I have eaten. For exercises I've done CrossFit, Weightlifting, Powerlifting, Bodybuilding, Zumba, Yoga, Pilates, Stretching Classes, HIIT Classes, Running Classes, I've even tried Beachbody. For diets I've done, vegetarian, vegan, low carb, no carb, low fat, Atkins, then to the extreme, 5,000 calories a day, high protein, high carb, high fat, and then the one I'm on currently, intermediate fasting.
Now, I'm no expert when it comes to diets. There are MANY people that are much more qualified than me to talk about diets. BUT! From experience with all these diets, I think I might have a good understanding of most of them. Today though, I want to talk about how I think I found the perfect diet. Not one that your mother is on or that famous person on Instagram is doing or the one that this guy randomly came up to you and said "Hey, I have a 30 day metabolic phasing challenge that will change your life forever!". Do you know what that means? I don't.
This is why diets can get confusing. I mean the only reason why I made this blog today was because the other day I saw on a magazine that Dr. Oz was talking "metabolic windows and how you can get a better metabolism today!" Keep in mind, Dr. Oz is a cardiothoracic surgeon, not a nutritionist. He means well though! He has a huge following and he just wants his followers to find a better healthier way of eating. Which is what I'm trying to do too! Just in a different way.
I decided to dig a little deeper into his article. He was talking about how "eating less is a big myth" which is true to a point. I think he's talking about when people that really restrict their calorie intake to well below what we should be eating. When it comes to eating less, if you eat over 1,900 calories a day but only burn 1,200 calories a day, you should probably eat less. Having a extra 700+ calories a day adds up and if there's about 3,500 calories in 1lb of fat and you eat 700+ extra calories a day for 7 days, that be 4,900 calories extra a week. Which is almost a pound and a half of extra fat. See how we can over eat so easily?
Then he talks about "unlocking your fat stores" which he says to incorporate leafy greens and more fish protein to help with your pH level in your body and help promote amino acids for muscle growth. I'm almost certain that every protein after being digested into the blood stream is converted into amino acids to help muscle growth, not just fish protein. He's mostly just trying to hint that we should all eat more fish because it is good for us! Fish is one of the leanest proteins you can have and have amazing studies showing if you eat just 1 or 2 helpings of fish a week can make you a little more healthier.
He also says that we can "stop eating bland food, eat rich food because it's what the body and mind need" but then shows a diet with egg white, spinach and mushrooms. Now I love bland foods, I have oatmeal every morning, but to most people, not all, they would think egg white, mushrooms and spinach is very bland tasting compared to a rich food like a breakfast burrito. Of course the egg white, mushroom and spinach is probably around 300 calories (educated guess) and the breakfast burrito could be upwards to 600 to 700 depending on what is all in it. He's just trying to show someone that might have a breakfast burrito every morning to maybe try out this recipe instead. Down in the article Dr. Oz goes over more diets and how to better your metabolism. When I got done reading the article, I said to myself "well this is just a balanced diet". Nothing more, nothing less. That's what the average person has a issue with.
Here's a great example of a balanced diet. Dr. Nowzardan on 600lb life, he tells his patients to have a restrictive balanced diet, low carb and low calorie. He tells them to eat roughly 1,200 calories a day with low carbs, usually under 100 carbs. His patients that follow his guidance, lose so much weight within a few months. I'm talking 50-100 lbs within a 2 month period. It's amazing. Now for the average person, they'd say "How can they lose that much weight in a small period of time but I can't lose a pound in a month!?" Well they have a lot of weight to lose. They go from eating 5,000 to 6,000 calories A DAY to 1,200 calories a day. Also, they go from not moving at all, to moving. Then people are like "I move all the time! Why don't I lose weight". The people on 600lb life have 450lbs of fat on them. Take 450lbs and walk around with that all day every day. I guarantee you will lose weight if you do that. Please don't do that though, that is very dangerous.
When you hear "balanced diet" you think eating vegetables, eating carbs and eating protein at every meal. So ask this question, are you actually eating a balanced meal every meal? Are you having your serving of protein, vegetables, and fat at every meal? If you answered no, then which meal is it? Which one today could you work on adding some extra protein or carbs or fat or veggies? If it's lunch, then focus on making more healthy choices for lunch instead of completely changing your diet all together. When changing your diet completely we tend to dread it, rather than enjoying it. I use to struggle with lunch for a long time. I wouldn't eat it, I would just work through it and then eat a huge dinner. I started to wonder why I was so tired towards the end of the day and I couldn't focus at all. Finally I decided to just have a protein smoothie with a cup of spinach in it. I started to feel a little better. Then I switched out the shake to try some chicken and spinach salad. I started to feel better and started to get in the habit of packing my lunch for work as well! It was a slow process but eventually I did it! We get caught up on wanting to get skinnier faster and losing 10lbs today rather than tomorrow. We want things now and that's just not how the body works. If you lose weight too fast on a diet plan, 9 out 10 times, you'll gain that weight right back after your start eating your normal diet again. Just try a balanced diet. Don't go for "lose weight fast" diet plans, they aren't sustainable.
Looking back at both Dr. Oz and Dr. Nowzardan, they both promote different ways to have a balanced diet. Both doctors mean well, Dr. Oz has a little more fluff, where as Dr. Nowzardan is a little more straight to the point. If you ever watched 600lb life, you can see he doesn't mess around. All in all, they would always tell you to eat a well balanced diet. I mean look at those diet pills "patients that took this pill had great results with a balanced diet." Even the diet pills can't hide the fact you have to have a balanced diet to see results. Also, if someone is telling you to take a certain diet pill, 100% of the time, they have some sort of affiliate with that diet pill company and get money for promoting it. Please don't fall for these traps. Diet pills don't work. It's been proven.
If you want to follow a perfect diet, try this one. (Depending on how many calories you burn throughout the day but this is a good guideline)
1,200 - 1,500 calories a day (for women)
1,800 - 2,000 calories a day (for men)
80 - 100 grams of Protein a day (for women)
120 - 130 grams of Protein a day (for men)
80 - 100 grams of Carbs a day (for women)
90 - 120 grams of Carbs a day (for men)
30 to 40 grams of Fat a day (for women)
45 to 55 grams of Fat a day (for men)