This is a really difficult question to answer as many people who know me, know that I am DIETNOSTIC.
I do not believe that there is one best diet or nutrition approach for fat loss because everyone has different tastes.
However, outside of that boring answer, here are the main things you need to think about and I will recommend a well balanced diet at the end.
1. All diets get you to lower your energy intake.
It's as simple as that. Taking in less energy than you need is the master regulator for fat loss and sustainable weight management.
It is not about hormones or cleanses or detoxes etc, it is your ability to lower your calorie intake in as healthy a manner as possible in order to release fat from your fat cells, mobilise it and use it for energy.
2. Your nutrition plan must focus on whole foods.
Lowering your calorie intake is tough. Your body will fight you every step of the way. Your brain plays a huge part in this and it will start a cascade of hormones throughout your body whose job is to tell you to eat more and get back to your weight.
You can control the release of these hormones by eating the right types of food.
Your body wants to protect you and lowering energy intake means it thinks that you are starving and not getting food, so it will try to hold on to fat and and slow everything down to do so.
In order to fight these hormones and resist the urge to eat a block of chocolate when you get hungry, you should eat whole foods because they make you feel full between meals and they tell your brain that you are getting enough nutrition.
Highly palatable, processed foods can often override your bodies normal biological feedback mechanisms and make you feel like you want more.
The brain is getting the message that it's getting calories but not nutrition so it wants more.
The good thing about focusing on whole foods is that you get to include:
The fat loss plan should not make you eliminate food groups as all of them have healthy components that contribute to your fat loss physiology.
If you want to learn more about the brains impact on your diet and weight loss, read this book:
3. It must be a plan that you can comfortably do for the next 5-10-20 years.
There is no point in going extreme and restricting food groups. You are not going to do that forever, despite your best intentions after reading your latest wellness magazine at the weekend.
Ask yourself - "Can I confidently see me doing this way of eating for the rest of my life?" and if you cannot answer with a confidence level of 9 out of 10, forget about it.
I think that one of the best plans to follow is the good old fashioned Mediterranean Diet.
Perhaps the world's healthiest diet, the Mediterranean Diet is abundant in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes and olive oil. It features fish and poultry—lean sources of protein—over red meat. Red wine is consumed regularly but in moderate amounts.
I am pretty sure that is as good as it gets.
It is well proven and has been around for many years and is not a fad approach but we seem to forget this simple approach to fat loss because everyone is slamming the low carb mantra down our throats.
Balance - consistency - practical - and long lasting should be the approach you take and this is as good as any I have seen.
Thanks for your questions.
Email any questions to firstname.lastname@example.org and I will do my best to answer them with blog posts and email.