If you’ve ever wondered what is the best meal plan, or diet to follow you are in luck! I’ve got the answer right here. But first, let me explain what the word “diet” means. The original meaning of diet is this: “the kinds of food that a person, animal, or community habitually eats.” Pretty self-explanatory, right? Your diet is WHAT you eat. But throughout the years it has come to a different meaning. It has now been developed into a WAY of eating, most notably a way to lose weight. Probably around 99 % of the time when I hear someone say the word “diet” they are referring to eating less food in order to lose weight. In my book, that’s not the correct use of the word, but since the dictionary has adopted it as a definition I can’t really argue that anymore… what I can do is inform people on how to use the word, and also how to improve nutrition so they don’t have to use the word diet!
Back to the point, What is the perfect diet? Are you ready? Here it is… there isn’t one. Well there you go. Good luck finding out what works for you!
Just kidding, I couldn’t leave you in the dark like that! So, there isn’t one specific diet that works better than others. There are a plethora of diets out there that can/will help you to lose weight. For example, carb cycling works, IIFYM (If It Fits Your Macros) works, Atkins, Paleo, even the Twinkies diet works. Yes that says Twinkies…and if you do it right you could eat nothing but Twinkies and lose weight. You will look like garbage, but you will lose weight if you get your calorie numbers in the right range. All kinds of diets will help you to lose weight, IF they are lower in calories than you are burning. Burn more calories than you eat, and you lose weight. It’s like science or something…
The real trick is finding a diet (a way of eating) that works for you, and that you can sustain. You can’t do the Twinkies diet forever and live a healthy life because you would get about zero nutrients from your food (if you can call it that). Finding something that works for you doesn’t mean you won’t have to make some sacrifices along the way. For example, drinking booze. People tend to have a hard time giving up booze. I’m not saying you have to give it up forever. But, if you’ve got a goal to reach then why in the world wouldn’t you give up one little thing for a while to reach that goal? Guess what, you’d save some money too… But, just because you gave it up for a while doesn’t mean you can never have it again. If I was doing a bodybuilding show I would probably give up my favorite food of all time (buffalo wings) for a while in order to reach my goal, but it wouldn’t be forever. I would definitely get some after the show! Sacrifices may become a necessity if you want to reach the goal. You just have to decide which one is more of a priority. Do your personal health goals mean more to you, or do those wings and drinks? It’s up to you, but your choices mean you don’t get to complain because you aren’t getting results. You chose it, remember?
As far as a meal plan or diet goes, I like to suggest carb cycling or IIFYM because while you still have to eat a majority of healthy foods like lean meats and fruits and veggies, these give you a little bit of wiggle room to add a fun snack in here or there. As long as it fits into your calorie or macro numbers. But, sometimes it is difficult for people to sustain keeping track of things (if you really want the success you’ll do it, but that’s for another post). The goal is to find something that you can sustain, for a long period of time, like forever… that won’t stress you out and won’t make you go on a crazy eating rampage. It may take a month for you to figure out what works for you, or it may take years for you to find what works. Everyone is different in how many calories they need, what their goals are, and how their body functions on different nutrition. Some people are geared towards needing more carbs (mostly athletes), or fats, while others need more protein (bodybuilders, women, ok everyone needs more protein). Cookie cutter meal plans don’t work the same for everyone, you need to step into the lab (kitchen) and get to know your food and how your body responds to it. If you don’t ever make that link between your body and the fuel you feed it, you will never reach the success you want. Could you run a gas-powered lawn mower with electricity? Nope. Does your TV remote work with the wrong size batteries? Nope. You have to find the right fuel source and way of eating for your body to work properly towards reaching your goals.
So what is the perfect diet? The perfect diet is the one that works for you. It’s the one you can keep doing, forever. It may be completely opposite of what your spouse does, or what your best friend does. But that’s OK. They don’t have the same body as you, and they don’t have the same goals as you do. So why would you want to do the same thing as them if it doesn’t work for YOU? That’s right, you don’t. And if you don’t know where to start, lean meats, fruits, and veggies are a great place to look. But, your personal trainer may have a few tips for you to look into. It won’t hurt you to ask them. Actually, it’ll help you.