Tuesday, 24 June 2014

What Is The Best Diet For Weight loss?

The subject of 'what is the best diet for weight loss', is akin to asking "where is the holy grail?" and will happily have us all skipping along from one craze to the next.  In my research I have found over 570 different diets (no I did not just make that number up). There is the high carb diet, 18 pound in 4 days, baby boomer, the low carb diet, zen anti diet,  blood type diet, fat smash diet, the ketone diet, the grapefruit diet,  crash diet, the zone diet, low GI diet, the Mediterranean diet, paleo diet, swank diet, acacia berry diet . . and so on and so forth ad infinitum or, ad another person writing another diet in vain hope of it reaching the bestsellers list and earning lots of money from the masses.

Check out how many results are out there on Google for 'quick fix weight loss'  FOURTEEN MILLION!!! 

I would love to be sitting here on a high pedestal able to state I have never been drawn into trying a fad diet, but, there would be about as much truth in that as if I were to tell you I never tried this breathing craze either.  At some point, most overweight people will look for the quickest route to the results they want, preferably, the quickest route with the least effort in the shortest time frame. So popping a magic pill or eating a miracle berry promises to have the right amount of immediacy and results requested. 

It would be a fool and their keyboard that states fad diets don't work, as, without question, some of them do, and I would be so bold as to state some people not only lose the weight but keep it off forever.  Here is the kicker  . . . those people are NOT in the high numbers the quick fix seekers so desperately want to read in the column marked 'Success Stories' in fact, they are very few and far between.

The first thing to understand is there will not be many out there who got to their overweight state in a matter of 12 weeks.  For most of us, we got to our overweight state over the years.  One year we started putting on a couple of pounds here and there and it didn't really matter that much, then we got a little too blasé about the fact that eating the junk was only putting a bit on here and there . . then BAM we are trying on clothes from a couple of years ago that make us feel like we have just picked up a pair of kids jeans by accident, never mind the zip doesn't go up, getting them over the thighs is a joke!  Let us now look at the the very important tidbit (non edible) of information we need to get into our psyche:

“It took a time to get this out of shape, it's going to take time to get back into shape . . . there is no quick fix”

Let us think on another little subjectola for a minute too.  When you read nearly any weight loss diet book they have one thing in common.  The subject of 'exercise' will also pop up.  I am not now casually wandering into the 'which exercise programme is best' lions den at this point as the answer is pretty much the same as the answer to which diet is best . . . and here it comes.

“There is not a one size fits all, either in diet or exercise.  It is what you enjoy and can stick to”

Just because there is not a definitive answer there are however a couple of things for you to ponder on, that have, without a shadow of a doubt, aided me.

Some finds on the way to the grail . . 

First, I would dearly love for the word 'calorie' to be deleted overnight from everyone's memory.  That word is over used and not researched enough.  For one thing . . a calorie is not burned by a human as they don't actually exist (put that in your pipe and smoke it).  A calorie is just a scientific experiment to found out how much heat is needed to, quite literally, burn certain food stuffs.  They even have specially fancy ovens called calorimeters that is just a metal chamber .. which we as humans are not!

Let us replace the word 'calorie' with 'nutrient'.  Instead of counting these stupid non existing things, we should be ensuring our bodies are happily getting the nutrients they need.  By so doing you will notice that the foods that give us the bad skin, asthma, eczema, sleep apnea etc.,  and make us gain considerable weight, are not the nutrient dense ones.

The stupidly, ridiculously simple way to get a healthier leaner body, is to eat things that don't come with a label in order for you to know the content.  When you go into a green grocer you don't have to check whether the apple you are about to buy is full of homogenised fat or salt, or whether it has hidden 'E' numbers in it.  Why?  Because you know instinctively it is 100% natural as you are getting the WHOLE food.

Yeah, yeah we can all go into the rant of "well what about pesticides!"  REALLY?  You want to do that whilst you are looking at the petrol/diesel receipt, eating your fast food burger which you have just picked up in a drive through after putting all your Styrofoam encased foods into plastic bags from the out of town supermarket in your vehicle?  REALLY??  Step away from that argument right now!  Try finding out about how our bodies natural systems can actually cope with it . . if that is too much for you, buy organic.

If you want I could tell you how eating only one piece of cake a day is fine.  How lathering butter on toast has recently been found to be good for you.  Eating 20 rashers of bacon a day is a new breakthrough in weight loss or eating your body weight in nuts and avocados is absolutely fine as they are natural beasts.  The main point I am making here is people love hearing good things about their bad habits.    

If you want to lose the weight for good, you need to change the way you eat FOR GOOD.  You cannot expect to lose weight over a short period of time, go back to your old way of eating and keep the weight off.  As Albert Einstein famously said:

"The definition of insanity: is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."

I found out what works best for me, through testing different foods, what bloats me, makes me tired, gives me wrinkles overnight, makes it hard for me to breathe, makes me depressed/angry and all of them aid in my weight gain.  

The main culprits for me were: wheat (bloat, wrinkles, breathing), caffeine (mood swings/depression), chocolate especially dark chocolate, (severe headaches, from happy to sad in the blink of a wrapper), processed food (tired and wrinkled), cereals (bloat), processed sugar (mood swings, energy troughs).  Don't just take my word for it . . test yourself.

Starving yourself slim is not an option either.  All under eating does is seriously screw up your metabolism and then a few weeks/months down the line allows you to watch your weight not only come back, but come back with friends!  Been there . . done that.

STOP LOOKING TO BE "...ETARIAN", "...IST" or an "...ER"

We go looking for answers to our dietary dysfunctions and find a lot of sense in many communities out there that are '.....eterians' '....ists' or "...ers". There is however many a pitfall to becoming part of these communities if you are not careful.  You have to be the BEST '....eterian' '.....ist'  or "...er" be it vegetarian, fruitarian, paleoist, raw foodist,  low carber, zone dieter etc, not only that, but these groups will turn on their own like some strange demented pack.  One wrong food stuff mentioned, if you want something out of bounds . . that's it daggers at dawn, and not the sort for eating with!    You are then not allowed in their gang anymore.  Just call yourself a healthy eater and stick with it!  No food is to be banished you just have to know what food does to YOUR body, YOUR health and how YOU feel when you eat it.

If you want to lose weight and be fitter and healthier forever, think of this as a lifestyle change, not a 'Get Slim Quick' scheme.  As with most things in life, the more you enjoy something, the more time and effort you put, the better the results will be.  I have found that I am not alone in the fact that wheat products bloat me like a puffer fish that has been poked with a stick, processed sugars make me feel lethargic, big cooked meals make me want to sleep; whereas fruits and veggies just leave me feeling satiated and energised.

Another consideration for you.  Have you ever noticed how most people that are unfit or overweight look grey especially smokers?  It is down to a lack of oxygen.  The more fresh water we drink,  fresh fruit and vegetables we eat, the more exercise we do, the more oxygen is put into our bodies (if you want things to 'burn' you need oxygen).  The more processed foods we eat, the more stimulants we consume (be it coffee, cigarettes, drugs, booze etc), and the less we exercise the more our bodies are depleted of the oxygen we actually thrive on.


If you really want to do this shizz, get your facts right.  Learn about nutrition and forget about calories.  Eat nutrient dense foods. Drink plenty of water. Eliminate the processed crap.  Find out what foods your body reacts badly to.  Experiment until you find a food plan you really enjoy that you can stick to.  Avoid pills, potions or anything that is dehydrated that you have to rehydrate to consume . . just eat the fresh stuff!  Find a training plan you enjoy that gets your heart rate up, intervals for the win.  

As with food, you DO NOT need to be out there spending money on the next craze in exercise.  Body weight exercises are free and have worked for time immemorial.  The more muscle you build, the more fat your body will rid itself of.  Oh and before I go . .no you can't spot reduce fat.  If you want a flat tummy or to get rid of your bingo wings, you have to exercise and your body's own little computer will decide where the fat goes from first, so don't believe that crock!

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