Monday, May 23, 2011

1 Food Tip to Increase Metabolism and Fat Loss

Last week, I included an article on planning a day of eating the night before, including breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks or pre and post workout meals.  You can find that article HERE.

This week, I would like to take the time to add my two cents to that article.  You see, on a consistent basis, people make one of the biggest mistakes without being aware of it (and it's SO simple to correct); even when they write down their meal plans and food journals, most nutritionists, dieticians and trainers ignore this. 

What could be so impossibly hard to miss, that dieticians, nutritionists and trainers ignore this? 

To help illustrate this point, let's paint a picture of the average client of mine:

They wake up at 7am (lucky!). 

They go to sleep at 11p (night owl, you!). 

That's 16 hours in their day, and their meal distribution looks like this:

8:30/9a small breakfast on the run (200-300 calories)
12p lunch (salad, or soup or wrap, 250-400 calories)
4p snack (whatever's available in the office, 200 calories)
8p dinner (meat/poultry/fish + veggies, 300-500 calories)

Couple patterns they won't tell me/that I notice (still not getting to my point yet, waiiiiit for it!):
1) Breakfast needs to be sooner
2) They're lying (really?  My clients eat 1000-1600 calories a day?  They'd all be supermodels by now)
3) Dinner is usually ordered in or they go out.  (That means there's bread on the table...)
4) Meals are not planned (when you're hungry and it comes down to the brain or the stomach, stomach always wins)

And FINALLY, the moment you've been waiting for: MY POINT!

The percentage of calories eaten in the first 8 hours of the day should exceed the percentage of calories in the last 8 hours of the day. 

Think about it, and these other observations:
  • you shouldn't eat past 9pm (that means no Cherry Garcia or Chubby Hubby)
  • you should have your meals largest to smallest (breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, dinner like a pauper)
  • you have officially 'fasted' 12 hours if you eat at 8pm and then eat breakfast at 8am the next day
  • your metabolism is highest in the morning, and your body is primed to accept nutrients after the 'fast' (break the fast, get it?  To illustrate this point, I used to tell clients (for cheat meals) to have pancakes for breakfast versus pasta for dinner
  • one of the primary needs for your body is protein (especially if you're working out) and most portion sizes of unplanned meals are NOT large enough to satisfy your requirements
So, you still can't plan out your meals?  Try these solutions to increase your protein intake and get more calories in the first 8 hours of your day and less calories after the halfway point:

Breakfast on the run (deli): get 4 scrambled egg whites (16g protein), turkey or ham (at least 8g of protein) and spinach.  NO TOAST!  If you think you'll be full soon after breakfast, ask for some salsa on top, or even add spinach and some cheese (unless avoiding cholesterol) in to the scrambled eggs

Lunch on the run (salad and soup): double protein (chicken, tuna, salmon) in a salad with as many vegetables as you like.  Also add in a serving of nuts, choosing from almonds, pecans, sunflower seeds, and legumes if you can (kidney beans).  If having a soup look for a lentil version. 

Chipotle option: double meat, add guacamole, no rice, black or pinto beans, salsa, no cheese, no sour cream.  Make it work!!

Snack: as mentioned before in my article on snacks and shakes and bar ideas, this can be placed in between breakfast and lunch or between lunch and dinner, depending on where your workout is.  No workout?  Smaller snack, and less carbs. 

Dinner: lean meat (grass fed), organic poultry, lean, wild fish, with an assortment of vegetables.  As many as possible actually.  A salad works here, as does 'fake' mashed potatoes (mash up cauliflower after it has been well-steamed, add in salt, pepper, and some 0% fage yogurt) and you will be full until you break the fast. 

Questions, comments?  Let me have em!!!

-Coach Kev

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