There are many types of eating plans or “diets” which most people like to call them. Whats the best eating plan for you ? Knowing how the body works will help you choose the best way of eating for you, assisting you in your health and weight loss goals.
Activity level and way of eating must become permanent and a lifestyle change. Most people are not willing to totally committ their selves to this, and any weight loss plans fail. It is up to the individual as to whether or not they are successful in their health and fitness goals. Here we will look at some factors which play into different eating plans that are seen, along with general guidelines for healthy eating. This should help you determine the best eating plan for you.
Types of nutrition programs
Your average everyday eating plan usually consists of many processed foods and fast foods. Although many fast food places have tried to turn to making some healthy choices, many times it is still hard to follow a strict eating plan when eating out. This is one reason why so many people fail at their weight loss goals, since it is more practical to use food services instead of taking you own meals.
Many things which should be avoided such as simple sugars like soft drinks, candy, some breads, and other simple sugars is almost impossible to do so. On average, the majority of calories comes from carbohydrates. This is not good since the majority of these carbohydrates come in the form of simple sugars. The only foods that are made of complex carbohydrates which are good for you are whole grains, as well as vegetables. All other forms are that of simple sugars which is what packs on the pounds when you eat to many of them.
Overall, weight loss or weight gain comes down to the simple calculation of if you eat more calories than you burn, weight gain will occur, while if you burn more calories than you consume, weight loss will happen.
Although this is true, the percentage of calories which comes from carbohydrates, protein, or fat is also important. The bodies first choice of calories is carbohydrates. When no carbohydrates are left, the body goes into a process which turns fats and proteins into the form of glucose or carbohydrates. This is were weight loss occurs. Because fats and even proteins are used for fuel, you want to be sure that you have at least enough protein to maintain the amount of lean mass that you have while losing fat mass.
As mentioned before, since most carbohydrates come in the form of simple sugars that are found in soft drinks and candy which are unhealthy, the majority of carbohydrates should come from other sources such as vegetables or grains. Since it is hard if not almost impossible to get many carbohydrates from these sources only, the overall percentage of carbohydrates in your eating plan is going to be low.
At one point it was even thought that the fat in foods made a person fat. Although a gram of fat does have the highest number of calories in it when compared to carbohydrates or protein, this is not true. It is more so the high dose of simple carbohydrates which make a person gain weight. Since only a specific amount of glucose can be stored in the muscle, when this limit is exceeded, the body converts what is not needed into body fat for later use.
One type of eating plan or lifestyle that many people choose is that of being a vegetarian. There are different forms of being a vegetarian. This includes a vegan in which nothing but vegetables are consumed, as well as forms were either eggs or dairy products are used.
Vegan: This type of eating requires that different sources of protein be consumed in order to get your daily amount of protein needed. The majority of proteins consumed by a vegan must be a combination of more than one source. This is true because the only complete proteins come in the form of meats or dairy products. The proteins consumed here are more incomplete proteins and must be combined with other sources in order to make a complete protein.
Ovo Vegetarian: This type of vegetarian does not only eat vegetables, but in order to get protein easier, things such as eggs are consumed. Although protein is consumed easier this way, there are still specific amino acids which make up complete proteins that should be considered.
Lacto-Ovo Vegetarian: This type of vegetarian not only has an intake of eggs with vegetables, but dairy products as well. Concerning your total protein intake, this is the best form of vegetarian to be since it makes getting the amount of protein needed much easier.
Protein is made up of what are called amino acids. A complete protein has all of what are known as essential amino acids. A complete protein has all the essential amino acids needed to make it complete, while an incomplete protein still needs specific amino acids. Although it is possible to make complete proteins through combining different sources of vegetable proteins, it is much easier if other sources such as dairy and eggs are used. When using only vegetable sources, precise measuring must be done in order to get the correct amount of specific amino acids. Here is a general description of complete and incomplete proteins and what can be done to make an incomplete protein complete.
Many times people think that calorie counting is needed in order to lose weight. This may be true to a certain extent, but at the same time, only using the portion size should help as well. If you are not losing weight, just decrease the portion size. Most of the time, it is thought that three square meals a day is the best option. This is what has been taught to most people, but consuming smaller meals throughout the day is actually more healthy. It means having a small snack between meals such as a shake or protein bar. It is best if you consume either 5 or 6 smaller meals a day, eating them 3 to 4 hours apart. This will also assist in keeping your blood sugar levels normal. Here is a general description of a good eating plan, including percentages of calories from each source, as well as an example of a meal plan for one day.
When you are designing your meal plan and calculating the grams of protein, fat, and carbohydrates needed each meal, you should remember the following:
Protein: 1 gram = 4 calories
Carbs: 1 gram = 4 calories
Fat: 1 gram = 9 calories
Average meal planning (3 meals/day)
Total Calories 2,400
Meal 1 800 calories
Meal 2 800 calories
Meal 3 800 calories
Smaller meals throughout the day
Meal 1 400 calories
Meal 2 400 calories
Meal 3 400 calories
Meal 4 400 calories
Meal 5 400 calories
Meal 6 400 calories
These are some general guidelines on healthy eating habits, whether it is through a normal eating plan of general foods consumed, or if it is through the use of only specific foods such as with a type of vegetarian eating plan, or other diets such as Atkins, paleo, or south beach.
Any of these eating plans are healthy, but as stated before, it should not be a diet which is only temporary, but more of a lifestyle change. This includes changing both eating habits along with activity levels. When put together these two factors should assist you in losing the weight needed and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.