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Why diets FAIL and what to do about it!

Whoa so much confusion out there and so many people trying to complicate things even further! That’s why I was compelled to write this blog: ‘Super Fast Healthy Fat Loss Tips’, read on for some no-nonsense advice on shedding pounds of body fat! 

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For starters, some simple pointers to plan your meals by:

✔️Remove (most) grains from diet, stick to unprocessed, whole grains 
✔️️Remove refined starches
✔️Eat grass fed beef
✔️Eat line caught fish
✔️Get 6-8 hours sleep a night
✔️Drink filtered water
✔️Remember recovery is part of the process, rest days are essential
✔️Eat good fats
✔️Eat veg with each meal, 1/3 of your plate should be veg! 

If you are metabolically damaged, due to over- exercising and under eating for a prolonged period of time (or post physique comp) you need to start with light exercise e.g. walking, corrective exercise (Self Myofascial Release) and core stability work. Generally you need to establish your base calorie needs, your basal metabolic rate and total daily energy expenditure. Then figure out what your current goals are- body re-composition, performance in the gym or muscle gains and manipulate your macro ratios to provide the basis for attaining these goals. Sports nutrition (i.e. nutrition to improve or maintain performance) is NOT the same as nutrition to illicit body re-composition (i.e. reduction in body fat %). 
 
Do not fall prey of the ‘magic bullet’ mindset.  No, that pill you pop each day that costs you £40 for a two week supply will NOT melt away the extra pounds of fat on your abdomen, it will however, melt away the pounds from your wallet! No matter what the marketers or supplement companies claim, there is no magic pill. If there was the pharmaceutical companies would have patented it and the world obesity epidemic would be a distant memory. So would your spare tyre. But as yet we are stuck with what has worked for decades, no pills needed, just a balanced, healthy lifestyle with frequent exercise! 
 
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Supplementation is a highly unique and individualized modality.  With this in mind supplementation should be used sparingly to pique goals, not as a crutch for a poor diet, or to mitigate the effects of your sweet tooth! One size doesn’t fit all but typically people are zinc and magnesium deficient, especially when training on a regular basis. In addition, due to where we live, vitamin D deficiency is a real issue and supplementing benefits many people. I supplement with Vit D and after a recent blood test my doctor exclaimed that I was her only patient THIS YEAR that had adequate levels of Vitamin D in their system! And finally because of our largely carbohydrate and processed food based diet, many people are deficient in anti-inflammatory Omega 3’s and overloaded with Inflammatory Omega 6’s. Correct this imbalance by increasing your intake of oily fish or use a good, stabilized, Omega 3 capsule.  For more information on what supplements can help check out my earlier blog by clicking here.

If you decide to go down the low carb route for fat loss, don’t be surprised when you experience gastrointestinal problems upon reintroducing carbs to your diet.  This is common and a normal reaction as you have down regulated the production of the enzyme amylase (in its various forms) during your low carb diet. Amylase is the enzyme responsible for breaking down carbohydrates. When you abstain from eating carbs the production of this enzyme, amongst others, is down-regulated as they are surplus to requirements. That means that digestive support is needed when you are moving from a low carb diet to a moderate/high carb diet, the same applies in relation to moving from a low fat diet to a moderate/high fat diet, or moving from vegan to omnivore. In the absence of the digestive stimulus you’ll have reduced your ability to digest these foods so ease back into it gently and take a good broad spectrum digestive enzyme to help with breakdown.
 
And finally, if you want to lose weight (read body fat) reduce your stress levels!  Humans are designed for acute stress, we see a lion, we get a rush of adrenaline, we run (hopefully!) to safety. But modern life leaves us subjected to chronic low level stressors that reek havoc with our cortisol and adrenaline production and subsequently our fat stores and metabolic regulation. Find something that relaxes you (I love peeling potatoes!) and do this daily, ideally first thing in the morning or last thing at night to help you either get ready for the day ahead or chill out for a relaxing nights sleep. When’s the last time you took a bubble bath? Seriously? You’re diet and training may be on point, but if you don’t make time for yourself to rest, relax and recuperate then you’ll never loose those extra pounds.
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And a final finally- if all else fails and you’re struggling to figure out what you should or shouldn’t eat, do as Weston A Price said and stay away from the ‘Four white Devils’-

X Refined sugar
X Refined dairy
X Refined flour
X Refined salt

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And then do as I say- Drink plenty of water, exercise and if still in doubt give me a shout ??
 
Naomi McArdle MSc
PTI Tutor