Sept. 2013
Diet and Weight Loss
by Rick Wood BS, CSCS

Diet & Weight Loss...First of all, you have to ask the right questions to get the right answers. Do you want to lose weight or do you want to lose fat? Fat, right? OK! Do you want to lose fat and maintain strength, muscle, and tone? Good! (if you anwered "no", quit reading)

Downsize your meals and multiply frequency! In other words, eat more often! Eating is not the enemy! Of everything I know, I know this one for sure! Cutting calories in and of itself does not cut it! You should think about eating more often first and foremost, secondly about donwnsizing the portions. The focus should be eating less at every meal and eating twice as many meals! I have heard so many nutrition experts make the all encompassing statement of simply eating less. Eating less? Well, that always leads to eating less often- inevitably skipping meals! Fat loss goes so far beyond eating less! The human body is much more dynamic than the rudimentary "calories in" vs "calories out". Let's lock some of these experts in a closet to test their fat loss theories. Fat loss is not about restricting calories. If you go in the closet as a fat pear, you will come out as a skinny pear. The absolute worst thing you can do to slow down your metabolism is to not eat!

Can you picture yourself in this scenario? Meals have been skipped. Coffee for breakfast. Lunch? Well, I don't need to eat quite yet... Finally the inevitable, "I've gotta eat!". You are so hungry that you eat too much. It ends up being just one big meal for the day. Your body can only use so much and the rest is stored as fat. No matter the quality, too much of even super healthy meal is stored as fat.

Conventional thinking asks, "How in the world can eating more often lead to fat loss? I'm eating once or twice a day and I this is what I've got!". When you skip meals your metabolism slows (starvation mode) and a fat storage enzyme called lipoprotein lipase increases in amount and activity in your body. Now this detestable little enzyme exists to store your food as fat. As more and more time goes by between your meals, the higher the concentration of this fat enzyme.

Still fighting the concept? Concede this... You understand that thirst is not a proper indicator of hydration. Once you're thirsty, you are already dehydrated. Do you wait and wait all day and finally chug a gallon of water? It's the same thing... don't wait till you're hungry to eat. Your body has been eating its own muscles all day. Lots of small healthy snacks (Mini Meals)! When you eat perfect, you will never be hungry.

A big double whammy effect that I see is people missing meals, (whether intentional or not), and then swinging through the drive through for a burger and fries. Making bad food choices coupled with that enzyme's enhanced ability to store fat is a huge double whammy! The best thing you can do is eat 5-6 small meals a day. Of course, six cheesburgers a day will make you fat! I am talking about healthy carb/protein meals. This will give you balance your energy, no ups and downs, and keep you from being hungry. Mini Meals should be quick, easy snacks. Something you could eat while working or during everyone elses coffee or cigarette break. Something like a yogurt, half a turkey sandwich, a small salad with a little chicken... any of these little meals will fuel your metabolism to burn hotter and tell your body it doesn't need to store fat.

There are so many healthy and tasty alternatives, you just have to prepare ahead of time. If it's there, you'll eat it. The biggest hurdle is the prep, this I am also sure of! Your Mini Meals have got to be ready before it's time to eat. If you don't conciously shop accordingly and cook extra ahead of time, this will never work! Once you try lots of small meals, your body will tell you, this is the way to do it! Regardless of your goals, you must get your body on the extreme opposite of starvation mode! Fat loss, muscle gain, toned, healtier, stronger... It might not make sense but regardless of your goals, it's all about small frequent meals. This I am sure of!

Eating Strategies