Ultimate Physique Rules #4 ~ Healthy Eating Makes You…
Healthy Eating Makes You…Damn healthy and will make you better looking.
So let’s talk about what “Healthy Eating” entails. If you’ve been keeping up with the Ultimate Physique Rules, then you know that you should be:
#1 – Eating Only Natural, Whole Foods
The next step with these rules is to figure out how to breakdown those calories. Obviously 1,500 calories per day of all sugar is not going to give you the same bodily response of all protein (Neither is a good idea, btw).
With that said, there are SO many different equations that deal with fat loss and protein requirements that it seems almost impossible to go through all of them.
What a majority of the research and tons of anecdotal evidence point to on protein intake, is a difference between what is “needed” (typically very low) versus what’s optimal in losing fat and helping with satiety (typically much higher).
For men, 1 – 1.5 grams of protein per desired bodyweight will typically yield the best results. For women, the requirements are a little less: .8 – 1.2 grams of desired bodyweight. In other words, if you’re a guy who weighs 180 pounds and wants to lose 10 pounds (weigh 170 pounds), you would want to aim for 170 – 255 grams of protein per day. On the other hand, if you’re a woman that weighs 150 pounds and wants to get down to 135 pounds, you would want to get about 108 – 162 grams of protein per day.
Another possible equation in determining your protein intake could be to simply have 30-35% of your total caloric intake be from protein.
With last week’s Ultimate Physique Rule of taking your body weight x 11, you can determine what your daily caloric intake should be. For that 150 pound woman, she should be consuming about 1650 calories. 30-35% of her total caloric intake is about 500-575 calories per day. Which, at 4 calories per gram (500/4) would equal 125 -144 grams of protein per day.
As you can see, there’s some overlap in both equations and you can really use whichever is easier for you to figure out.
After figuring out your protein requirements, you would then determine the amount of grams of fat that you would consume daily. Typically any fat intake 20% or higher is a good number to start with as fat will be more satiating than carbs. I personally like 30% of calories to come from fat sources when trying to lose fat.
Going back to the original example of the woman consuming 1650 calories per day, you would start by subtracting her protein calories. In the example, she would be consuming 108 – 162 grams of protein, with protein being 4 calories per gram. This means, she would be consuming 430 – 650 calories per day from protein.
This would leave her with 1000 – 1220 calories (1650 minus either 430 or 650 calories) to split between fat and protein. If fat takes up another 30% of her caloric needs (at 9 calories per gram), she would be taking in about 500 calories of fat per day or 55 grams of fat per day.
She should also be taking 6-12 grams of fish oil per day, which would result in her having about 45 grams per day from food sources. This fat would come from nuts, oils and butter used for cooking along with the fat that’s naturally present in her protein sources, such as meats.
This would leave her with about 500 calories a day for carbs, which at 4 calories per gram, totals 125 grams of carbs per day. Most of these carbs should come around her strength training session. This can be broken down by including 40 grams pre-workout, followed by 40 post workout and having the other 40 come from vegetable and nut sources the rest of the day or from her 2 meals following her strength training session.
So what does this mean from an actual eating perspective. This means that she should be having at least 3 meals per day and at least one snack. Each meal and snack should include a complete protein. At 1650 calories, she should be striving to eat about 450 calories at the three meals and 300 at the snack or 400 at each meal and break it down into 2 snacks of 200 calories.
From there, you would create 2 meal plans to get this plan going.
If you’re following the first rule of eating only whole, natural foods, this plan can easily come together fairly easy.
Here’s an sample meal plan for someone at 150 pounds, trying to lose fat.
Breakfast: 5 egg whites, 1 egg with 5 ounces organic blueberries, 3 capsules of fish oil.
This would include 30 grams of protein, 10 grams of fat and 25 grams of carbs. This totals 120 calories from protein, 90 from fat and 100 from carbs. Totaling 310 calories.
Snack 1: 1 Serving of cashews (or any other type of nut) – 200 calories. 17 grams of fat, 6 grams carbs and 5 protein.
Lunch: Salad, loaded with carrots, cucumbers and other “denser” vegetables, along with 6 0z of grilled chicken breast, 3 grams of fish oil, 1 teaspoon of olive oil. 20 grams of fat, 25 grams of carbs, 36 grams of protein. 420 calories.
Snack 2: Pre-workout snack – 1 medium sized apple, 2 ounces of chicken (left over from lunch) – 12 grams of protein, 25 grams of carbs. 150 calories.
Workout ~ 45 minute strength training workout
Post-workout shake: Protein powder in water – 25 grams protein, 100 calories.
Post workout meal: One medium sweet potato, 4 0z of Salmon and as much broccoli as you’d like, cooked with minimal oil. 10 grams of fat, 30 grams of protein, 30 grams of carbs. 340 calories.
Total intake for the day: 1540 calories.
Breakdown of Macronutrients: 138 grams of protein, 57 grams of fat and 110 grams of carbs.
Typically, you would want to shoot for slightly under your calorie target because unless you’re vigilant, it becomes very easy to add a couple of hundred calories by underestimating what you’re putting in the foods.
It’s very easy for a “medium-sized” apple to really be a large apple or a “medium sweet potato” to be a large sweet potato, which both would add anywhere from 50-100 extra calories. If you put a tablespoon of olive oil instead of a teaspoon, that could quickly add 200 calories to your afternoon salad. If you were to have a steak instead of salmon, that would add another 100 calories.
In other words, it’s very easy to accidentally and unknowingly add hundreds of calories per day. I see this all the time and then the person complains that the diet isn’t working.
Really, it’s not the “diet’s” fault, but the amount of extra calories that the person is unknowingly adding – even if they’re measuring their food.
The key with sticking to this diet is that you have to make smarter choices. If you’re hungry after dinner, eat grilled chicken and veggies. Another option would be to eat Kimchi – it’s low in calories, great for intestinal health and bitter enough that it kills your appetite long enough to fall asleep. Besides those two option, if you’re under your calories for the day and get a craving that needs FOOD you can either have a protein shake in water or have a tablespoon of almond or natural peanut butter. It’s sticky and is actually pretty satiating for the volume of food.
The bottom line is that if you can make three days of food menus like this – two for the week, and one for the weekend, you should be able to stick to your diet and continue seeing progress week in and week out.
There was a lot in this post, but it basically comes down to these 7 things:
1 – Calories are King – Respect the overall amount.
2 – The ratio of calories from the food is important. It’s important because you want to eat foods (macronutrients) that will keep you optimally satieated or full, while providing the nutrients your body needs.
3 – You must create a plan that fits into your lifestyle. This is so important and is easily the most under-rated aspect of any diet. Doing so is the difference between sticking to a diet or continually “falling off the wagon.”
4 – You should really limit your food options. When you have a mindset that you can “eat a little bit of everything” you typically do, and end up not respecting the first rule. Also, when you eat a lot of crap foods for the calories, you tend to miss a bunch of micronutrients that tend to make you hungrier in the long run.
5 – If you’re counting calories, you most likely will underestimate your caloric intake. In order to fix this problem, aim slightly under the total amount and you should be fine. To help you keep track of your calories, you can use the free calorie counter at FitDay.com. Or you can use one of the best paid ones at CalorieKing.com. Are there other calorie counters out there? Sure. Use whatever you feel comfortable using and is most convenient for you.
6 – Eating this way isn’t “sexy” but at the end of the day, you will be a lot better off and should look “sexier.” The key is to follow this plan on a consistent basis (along with smart training).
7 – Remember the Basic Equations:
Total Calories ~ Bodyweight x 11.
Here’s the breakdown of those calories:
Protein: Men ~ 1-1.5 grams per pound of desired bodyweight.
Women ~ .8 – 1.2 grams per pound of desired bodyweight.
Fat: 30% of Total Calories at 9 calories per gram.
Carbs: Take up the remainder of the calories, which should be consumed primarily around your workouts.
If you have any questions, please leave a comment or email me at John@PersonalResultsTraining.com