The Psychology Of Fitness

Mindsets, Body Types and Everything In Between

Best Methods for Fat Loss and Health – Diet

This is the first in a series of posts focused on the Best Methods for Fat Loss & Health.  Since I think Diet is more important for Fat Loss than Exercise (yes, both are important), I will start with Diet aspects.

The order that I will put them in, is in order of “Effectiveness” meaning that I will list the best method first and so on, down until the end.  I may also talk about why some of these methods won’t always work “Best” for everybody and I will keep the conversation towards diets only.  I think certain diets with certain supplements work best, but that’s not what I’m talking about here.

# 1 – Mediated Response Testing (MRT) followed by the LEAP protocol.  Many people have not heard of Mediated Response Testing, but basically this test allows for 113 common foods and 37 food additives to be tested by taking a sample of your blood.  Based on your white blood cell response and size of your red blood cells in response to these foods, they are listed in one of three categories: Red, Yellow, and Green.  Obviously, the green categories tell you which foods are safe for you and is the category which you have shown a low-reactivity response to.  The yellow category, you’ve shown a higher-reactivity to and may need to avoid those foods, while all the red foods should be off limits.

This test is great for people with migraines, IBS, seizures or people that get sick frequently.  The reason for this is often-times our immune systems and digestive tracks are beat up from constantly being exposed to foods that cause negative reactions in the body.  Since most of your immune system is in your digestive track, by negatively effecting digestive track you are over-taxing your immune system also.

Many people with this test are surprised to find that foods they eat everyday or have rarely ate are the most common culprits.  By eliminating these foods many of the symptoms that the individual has had for years, typically disappears.

If you are to go on a Fat Loss diet, this test should be standard.  It’ll tell you what foods to avoid and therefore will no longer be causing your body to feel as though it’s under constant stress from the offending foods.  This allows your body to control the amount of cortisol your body releases in a more normal fashion.  By doing this, it becomes easier for you to not only feel healthier, have more energy (and hence motivation to move), but also to lose body fat.

The problem is that the test itself costs about $500, isn’t available without a doctor’s prescription and is often times, very hard to follow, unless you have a very strong desire for change and are willing to truly commit to the changes you need to make.   In other words, for most people, it just isn’t realistic because many people would rather suffer than give up their favorite foods, which leads me to…

#2 – An Elimination Diet – Many people trying to lose fat would be better served by some sort of elimination diet.  My favorite to recommend is a diet that consists of only these things for 3 weeks:

A – Fruits
B – Vegetables
C – Organic Meats preferabbly and very lean meats as a substitute
D – Rice (brown or white) – up to 3 servings per week
E – Sweet Potatoes
F – Potatoes – up to 3 servings per week
G – Organic Butter
H – Organic Cocunut Oil
I – Organic Olive Oil
J – Water

After three weeks, add the eggs in for 2 days, and see how you feel for the next 2-3 days.  If you feel fine, you can have eggs 2-3 times per week.  So on with nuts and beans.

This diet works simply because you are getting rid of a load of useless sugar, transfat and calories while adding nutrient dense foods to your diet.

# 3 – High Protein, moderate fat, low carb diet – This is best done on a 3 -1 – 2 -1, 7-day rotation.  In other words, Sun, Mon, Tue (3) will follow this plan, Wed (1) you will up the carbs, Thurs, Fri (2) you will follow the plan and Sat (1) you will once again up the carbs.

For most people, this diet will work effectively, as you will probably be consuming less calories, feel more satiated due to the higher protein and most high protein diets (around 30% of total calories) have proven to be the biggest indicator of whether or not the diet works.  The problem most people have on this diet is that they don’t have strong enough digestive systems (don’t produce enough HCl in their stomachs or are deficient in key digestive enzymes) to properly break down the protein and therefore don’t feel good on the diet.

# 4 – Intermittent Fasting Diets – These work best for people who are busy and don’t want to obsess about eating all the time.  There’s a myth that in order to lose weight, you must eat 6-7 times per day.  The truth is this:
A – People that need to eat that often are bodybuilders.  They eat this often in order to preserve muscle best or simply be able to consume the amount of food they are trying to consume.  Since they have a lot of muscle, eating this much, helps them control their insulin levels and helps to mitigate the protein they ingest into the muscles and not into fat stores.
B – Eating this way was popularized by the need to control “blood sugar” and hence the cravings we get when we don’t eat every 3-4 hours.  The problem with this is two fold:  1 – You should not be getting “cravings” every 3-4 hours.  If you are, then you’re eating to many damn fast-acting carbs and not enough protein.  2 – It doesn’t take other hormones into consideration, when trying to lose fat.
C – When eating more often, your body has decreased cortisol levels.  This is normally a good thing…but if your main goal is fat loss and you’re not a bodybuilder or someone already slim, then eating fewer calories matters more.  The reason for this, is that with intermittent fasting, you have slightly increased adrenalin levels which will use up more stores for fat.  You also effect leptin in a more sensitized manner allowing more fat to come off or stay off.  The key, though, is to ensure that you’re working out large muscle groups at least 3 times per week with heavy strength training.  You should realize that this is not an ideal system to put on muscle and you should give yourself enough time during the “fasting” portion of not eating.  The best way to do this is to either follow a system of either, every other day or something of 16 hours of not eating, 8 hours of eating.  In other words, make sure your intermittent fast is actually long enough to be considered a “fast.”  Go to LeanGains.com for more information about intermittent fasting.

On Friday, I will put up the other 6 methods that I think are best for people to lose fat/weight with.

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