I like to eat, and I like to be full!
This weight reducing diet is what helped me lose a good portion of the weight I have dropped over the last few years. This diet is not for everyone, and has some conflicting theories to traditional diet plans. I personally feel that this weight loss diet is a good way to learn about caloric density of food, to train yourself to eat more meals throughout the day, and is the perfect supplement for those of us who can eat like it’s our job. (For some of us..it is our job)
Basically, this diet plan involves being able to eat larger volumes of food, as long as the food has very low caloric density. To put this into perspective, place a 100 calorie slice of pizza next to 100 calories worth of celery, and you will see the difference. Again, in my opinion, I like the idea of eating food until I am full, not eating a specific amount of calories per meal. However, you will have to do work upfront to understand which foods will fit into a low caloric density category:
- Non-starchy vegetables
- Lean meats and seafood
- Broth based soups and sauces
- Fruits with high water content
High caloric density foods would be items like:
- Fats, oils, butters
- Candy and soda
- White flour or high starch based foods
This diet also promotes relatively high fiber content which can slow down how fast your body absorbs calories. Brown rice, whole grains, and certain fruits will allow you to stay full longer, which makes timing your meals much easier. Any doctor or nutritionist will tell you that a diet lower in fat and calories with an increase of lean protein, vegetables, fruit, and whole grain is a winning combination.
There are of course a few tidbits of info I am going to bring up which have helped me along the way that everyone might not agree with.
- First of all, SALT CONTAINS NO CALORIES! You can argue all day long, but salt itself has negligible caloric density, and since you will be eating a low fat diet (fat being flavor) I recommend using salt to compensate for this. Yes, salt with increase your water weight, but that is not FAT and can be flushed out with physical activity. There are of course other health concerns involving a high sodium diet, but physical activity can counter act those negative effects.
- Which brings up my second point, physical activity. Starting out, you wont be running marathons, but as time goes on you should be increasing your physical activity as you become more ‘fit’. At the same time, you can start to slowly transition from very low caloric density foods and incorporate other items like nuts, healthy fats, and caloric dense fruits. Once you build up your ability to burn calories, you can start being a little more lenient on your diet.
- Fat is fat is fat. Yes I know that olive oil is more ‘healthy’ than butter HOWEVER when speaking about caloric density, they are the same. Fat contains 9 calories per gram if it’s olive oil, corn oil, safflower oil, avocado oil, butter or margarin. Starting out, you will want to limit your overall fat intake. Once you increase your physical activity, you can then start incorporating these healthy fats back into your diet, as well as reducing some salt intake since fat is the greatest thing to happen to food since bacon.
- This diet is not designed for you to drop 10 pounds in a day. You need to stick this out and try to lose 2 or so pounds a week. This is much easier to do while also being full. This is also not the type of diet to weigh yourself every day. The good part is you get to eat a large volume of food…the not so good part is your weigh will fluctuate more day by day.
- This diet is made to fight boredom. Many people eat for comfort, boredom, or out of habit. If thats the case, grabbing those low caloric density foods is perfect compared to grabbing that bag of chips. Loading your fridge with fresh veggies and low-calorie dressing (SALT SALT SALT) make them a convenience food as well!
There are some fundamentals of the Atkins diet that can apply here as well, but I do not believe in a carbohydrate free diet. The nature of humans is to use fat AND carbs as energy, but choosing the right carbohydrates at the right time is key.
If you like being full, enjoy finishing your plate, not necessarily following a calorie counting diet, or are a boredom eater, this might be the diet plan for you!
Please feel free to comment with questions other useful information!