This post will answer the question of what to eat, how much and when to eat it.
First question what to eat?
The answer maybe more simple than you initially realize but just because it’s simple doesn’t mean it’s Easy. Eat vegetables, fruit, whole grains, and lean meats. Stay away from BAD processed foods, a good rule of thumb with this is if you can’t find it naturally occurring in nature then don’t eat it. Some exceptions apply to this rule and they are on the Healthy processed foods list which I will show you in just a second.
When you are making eating healthy a part of life you are going to need some variety. If you don’t you will get board of the same old food and revert back to the crap you were eating before. I know because I have done this myself. Variety is the spice of life so spice things up a bit and try things that you have never eaten before.
Some of those things might include:
- Bok Choy
Make a list and go to the store ready to try something new.
How much to eat?
This is different for everyone so you need to know that this is just a rule of thumb and you need to do your own trial and error phase to see what works for you.
- Take your body weight and multiply it by 10 this number is your Resting Metabolic Rate or RMR
- Use your RMR and multiply by 20% this will give you your Daily Activity Burn or DAB
- Add the RMR and DAB together and you have the number of calories required to maintain weight.
Example for a 170 pound person:
170 X 10 = 1700
1700 X .20 = 340
1700 + 340 = 2040
2040 would be my caloric need to maintain my current weight. Remember this is if you are not working out. If you are working out then add 600 calories to this number to maintain weight.
I took to above calculations from the P90X diet guide.
Remember not all lifestyles are created equal and everyone has their own rate of metabolism so try it for a couple weeks to see what your results are and adjust accordingly.
MyFitnessPal.com is a free resource you can use to track what you are eating. It is a great tool that has a large database of food that is quick and easy to pick from.
All of the fitness programs that I recommend come with a nutrition guide that will give you step by step directions on how to structure your diet. It is a complete nutrition guide and is one of the reasons I recommend them so highly.
When to eat?
Eat when you are about to get hungry. Your body is like a furnace that needs to be fueled regularly. Three meals a day is not enough by a long shot. You need to be eating at least five meals a day. Six is best. If you start to feel hungry then it is too late. Your body is already out of fuel and your internal furnace will stop burning as much. Your metabolism will slow down to try and hold onto the food it has left, turning it into fat. Your weight loss could slow to a stop and you will be left wondering why you are not getting the results you want. Now you know to eat often so this won’t happen to you. Six small meals a day is the best way. When using this approach do not over consume calories as you track them using myfitnesspal. Find foods that have little to no calories to fill your stomach. Shakeology is a useful tool that helps me stay full.
Six meals a day seems like a lot but you can make plans and prepare your meals ahead of time. Get things that you can snack on that are good for you. Take items from the Healthy processed foods list to help supplement what you need when you are in a hurry or can’t prepare a meal ahead of time.
Healthy Processed Food List
- Shakeology: A healthy whole food supplement that you can use as one of your six meals. It has all kinds of great exotic super foods in it that are impossible to find, except in Shakeology.
- P90X Protein Bars:Has a decent amount of protein in it which is good however the sugar content is a little high so just take that into account when you are planning your meals for the day.
- Greek Yogurt: If you have never had this before the flavor may take some getting used to. It’s a little on the bitter side but is still good for you. Try to avoid the ones that add sugar to it.
- Nuts: A variety of nuts is great to have on the go. They are a great source of fatty amino acids which you will need in your diet. This item is less processed then others but it still applies to this category.
- Tuna: Make sure to get the kind in water and not oil. Take some crackers and some low fat cheese and you got yourself one heck of a healthy snack.
Having a healthy lifestyle is not a diet, it’s a way of life. Take the time to give your body what it needs when it needs it. Prepare your meals ahead of time and listen to what your body is telling you. Eat when you’re about to get hungry and use supplements to make your life easier.
Have something you would like to add? Let me know in the comments below.