Go back 500 years. What did we eat? Mostly we ended up with meat and greens. So in present day terminology we ended up with protein and some green vegetables. Sugar and fat sources were few and far between.
Zoom forward to the present day. Now what do we eat? Sure, meat and vegetables are still common, but sadly they are being outcompeted by things like trans-fatty acids and sugar. It’s hard for the human body to adapt quickly to such an enormous change in our diet, so instead it continues to do what it was built for; It stores the fat and sugar away so that when we can’t access these compounds so readily we have tons saved up. Sadly, we can always access fat and sugar readily, easier even than healthy foods, so our body just keeps storing it away. Perhaps one day evolution will fix this problem, and our bodies will learn that fat and sugar are in abundance, and we can just excrete most of it. That day has not yet come.
So what does this mean for us? It means that our body thinks it’s doing us a favor by making us obese. It thinks that one day we are going to need all this energy when we can’t get food for a month. There are specific molecules in the body that stimulate the re-uptake of fatty acids from the bloodstream if they are not utilized for energy, just so we don’t waste any. Our body is a well-oiled machine for making us fat.
Now here’s the trick; eat like you lived 500 years ago. Build your diet around protein and vegetables. Carbs have a bad rep, and people ignorantly avoid them, thinking they will lose weight. Well you will lose weight, but it isn’t necessary. It’s all about moderation.
Let me give you a sample diet that will allow you to shed pounds but stay full and satisfied.
Breakfast: 1. Bowl of cereal (cheerios, corn flakes, etc.), apple, orange juice.
2. Oatmeal with brown sugar, fruit, orange juice.
Brunch: Protein shake (10-30 grams depending on exercise level). Keep in mind the body can absorb only a finite amount of protein, so taking 100 gram shakes is just a waste of money.
Lunch: Here’s the trick. If possible, have your large meal at lunch instead of dinner.
1. 2 baked fish filets, spinach with feta dressing, carrots with dip, eggs with ketchup.
2. You can easily replace the fish with chicken if you’re not a fish fan. Also, mix some pork or other red meats in there from time to time to keep iron levels high. The eggs I wouldn’t recommend every day, but perhaps every other purely for their high cholesterol level. They do contain HDL cholesterol, and this is quite good for you in moderation.
Pre-dinner: If you’re hungry now, which most people aren’t because of the big lunch, have a special-K bar, or perhaps a Fiber plus bar. They are low calorie (90-150) and quite filling and healthy. Also, a handful or almonds or peanuts is tasty and filling too. Keep in mind that often times a big glass or tasty water can quench your hunger.
Dinner: Have a sandwich. Turkey, ham, throw some cheese on there, whatever. Go nuts. Multi-grain bread is a good call.
Snack: I would avoid eating after 7:30 or 8, but if you must, have some carrots and dip. They are complex carbs and won’t spike your glucose levels.
What is the theme in this diet? Complex carbs, avoiding simple sugars, high protein (fish, chicken, eggs, protein shakes), and low fat.
Try this out for a month and see what happens. I guarantee you’ll be happy; lose some weight and enjoy a tasty, happy diet.