What follows is the basic outline if our nutrition plan. This is if course individually tailored to each person but is pretty much where we start with anyone wanting to cut fat or improve their overall health.
Influences – standing on the shoulders of giants
I make no secret of the places and sources I get my information and inspiration from. These are the places that I have found have the solid science backing and have had best effect on me and my clients. You will recognise parts of these different approaches in my writing and I am forever grateful for all they have provided. These include ‘the 21 day sugar detox’, ‘the smarter science of slim’, all things paleo but especially Robb Wolf and Mark Sisson’ work, the Atkins diet, intermittent fasting especially the principles of Martin Berkhan at leangains and more recently ‘Carb Backloading’ and ‘Carb Nite’ by Kiefer.
These are all great resources, often free to access and I highly recommend you check them out.
Induction Phase aka The Hard Part
This is where the hard work begins and pretty much ends. You need to break your sugar and starch addiction. I know addiction is a strong word but its true I’m afraid, refined sugar is one of the most addictive substances on the planet, and modern dwarf wheat has also been shown to be addictive.
Now before you start to panic this is 28 days, just 4 weeks and then we may introduce some of these foods back (some, not all)
So for 28 days there will be no:
• Sugar of any kind, including natural sugars like honey or agarve
• Bread or wheat based products
• Potatoes (White or Sweet)
• Pasta or Rice
• Soda (sugary or diet)
• Fruit Juices
• Bananas, grapes, apples or pears.
So what’s left?
As much Meat, Fish, Poultry, and Veg as you can eat. Whole eggs, butter, cheese and Greek yogurt. A small amount of fruit (except those mentioned) 1-2 portions a day preferably berries. Nuts & seeds in moderation, and fat in the form of olive oil, coconut oil or butter from grass fed cows (we recommend Kerrygold)
As I said the purpose of this is to break your cycle of addiction to processed, refined and sweetened foods, however, the secondary purpose is to reduce yours bodies reliance on Glucose as a primary fuel source and allow it to become more efficient and using fat instead. A third purpose is to improve your insulin sensitivity and begin the process of repairing your bodies natural hormonal balance and returning your metabolism to its more natural state.
Fat loss phase
Once you have completed your 28 days it is time to begin what for some will be the main phase of their journey, and no doubt be the most memorable.
Now we get to reintroduce some of those foods in moderation. The way we need to work here is to introduce these foods back slowly and monitor how they effect your body and fat loss. It’s not just about weight though, you need to be mindful of how these foods make your body feel. Eat some bread following a 28 day restriction and you will no doubt feel bunged up, bloated and generally terrible, enough to put you off for a long time, however, adding back in the fruits we removed and you’ll have no issues.
So we can add back the fruit (whole fruit never juice), white rice, and potatoes. These should only be included in your evening meal, the aim here is to keep your carbohydrate consumption to a minimum throughout the day and then add them back in for dinner. I know this sounds against everything you’ve ever been told but well it’s science and it works. The good thing about this is that this is generally the family meal so it makes it easier to eat with the family and not feel like your missing out.
The trick here is to monitor how you look, feel and perform as you add these foods back in. We are trying to gauge your tolerance for these starchier foods and how your body responds to them. So if you don’t feel good after eating them, then don’t, or if your weight loss begins to slow then just have a little less until it restarts.
Basically there is none of that here during any phase, no weighing and measuring of food and no tracking of Carbs/Protein or fat, so long as you stick to the allowed foods then there is absolutely no need to do any of this, at least not for the vast majority of people.
Falling off the Wagon
We all have bad days or times when we ‘fall of the wagon’ some of these are planned and in some cases required by the program, however, this is not worth worrying about. As I said we all make mistakes and have slips but its how we respond to these that will have the biggest effect. You can either let it ruin your whole day/week/plan or you can just say “ooops” and move on, jumping straight back on the wagon so to speak. It’s the latter that will of course yield the results, this is a long term health and wellness plan, a marathon not a sprint.
Maintaining – the Rest of your life
Once you have reached your fat loss goals you can start to enjoy more of the foods restricted, again it’s all about moderation and mindfulness. Your body will have retired its natural hormonal function now, you’ll get hungry when your body needs fuel and you’ll get full when you’ve had enough. Listen to your body and it will keep you on track so long as you stick to your healthier eating habits you will be able to maintain your loss indefinitely.