There are two things required for sustained & lasting fat loss:
- A calorie deficit
- Hormonal/metabolic balance
Notice I said “sustained” and “fat loss”?
I chose those words carefully. Both quantity and quality of what you eat matters. Sometimes, but not always, eating better leads to eating less. However, it is important to understand eating “healthy” or “clean” is not a ticket to automatic fat loss. Those terms are not really definable anyway. What is healthy for one person may not be healthy for another.
To make sense of this it is sometimes beneficial to have simple model of where to start with both quality and quantity.
This method is but one place to start.
PROTEIN: why protein? Because it is the most satiating (short term fullness) and satiety producing (long-term hunger suppressing) macronutrient. It is also VERY well studied as a proven benefit to aid fat loss results and sustainability.
There is nothing wrong with fat or carbs. They are perfectly fine. The issue is they are not as hunger suppressing as protein and because of properties like density, texture and taste, they can easily be overeaten. Take a look at a standard serving of pasta, cereal, nuts or butter and you will immediately see what I mean.
The combination of these foods also pings the hedonic center of our brains enticing us to eat more at meal times and crave more highly palatable calorie rich foods at future meals.
By elevating protein, placing limits on fat/carb, and being mindful of not combining the two we can create an easy & fast starting place for our long term diets.
The final piece is understanding the metabolism is adaptable. Nothing you do will last forever. The good news is that hunger, energy, cravings and a slow down in results can give us great feedback as to what the metabolism needs. That will be different for each person. So then we learn to be metabolic detectives adjusting our calories up or down as needed to achieve calorie reduction AND hormonal/metabolic balance.
So increase your protein intake, decrease your fats and carbs and eat as much fruit and veg as you want. Give it a try, I dare you!
Written by Victoria Anne Dale