In a fast paced world we all want equally fast results. The only problem is some results take time, such as altering your body’s norm. People will promise you that you can lose 20lb in a week or that you can drop 2 dress sizes by that wedding next week, but in all actuality, you are lining their pockets with money and you’re still not happy with what you see in the mirror. So I’ve decided to give some pros and cons of the top diets around now and then I’ll share what I follow.
The Mediterranean Diet-
- This diet focuses around using olive oils, beans, fruit, vegetables and fish while limiting red meat.
- The use of healthy fats is essential for the health of your heart.
- The diet recommends eating food from all the food groups
- Reduction of processed foods and a focus on fruits and vegetables
- Not specific to calorie needs per day which could cause weight gain
- Heavy reliance on oils, which is calorie dense
- Not good for weight loss
The Atkins/ Dukan / South Beach Diet
- There are 4 phases to this diet which go from strict carbohydrate restriction to allowing fruits and grains.
- In the first phase of the diet a big drop in weight will occurs from lack of carbs which equals losing water from the body
- Not sustainable due to the carb restrictions
- In the first 2 phases not all nutrients are present which could cause a nutrient deficiency
- Lots of rules and restrictions throughout the program
The Wheat Belly / Gluten Free Diet-
- Eliminate wheat and processed foods while limiting some fruits and vegetables.
- Like Atkins a drop in weight will be seen from the loss of water weight
- Eliminates processed foods and high fructose corn syrup
- Good for people with Gluten allergy
- Not sustainable due to all the restrictions
- People without a gluten allergy might lose the enzymes to process gluten therefore leading to gluten intolerance if off the Wheat Belly diet.
- Fruits are almost eliminated
- If a caveman would eat it, you can eat it. Heavy on lean meats, fruits and vegetables
- Low in sugar and naturally gluten free
- Limiting processed foods
- Can be sustainable
- Lacking calcium and vitamin D
- Same enzyme issue as Wheat Belly diet
As you can see people are just trying to make a buck by mostly reducing carbohydrates so people see a quick weight loss due to losing water weight. Honestly, are you going to look into a diet that says lose 10lb in a week or lose 10lb in 2 months?
Now I won’t lie, I am not above trying one of these fast acting diets in desperation because I didn’t know what else to do. I’d like to think I’ve gotten a little smarter over time and just started making better decisions with what I put into my body. For example, I think I eat fast food (McDonald’s, Taco Bell, Five Guys etc.) maybe once or twice a year. Cookies and ice cream are my favorites and I probably only have those maybe once a month depending on the season and my weight loss/gain goals. I might have ice cream a little more during the summer.
What I do is not revolutionary, it’s just a balanced diet. I stick to protein, fruits and vegetables and healthy fats. Right now since I am coming out of a cutting phase from beach season, fats and protein each account for 40% of my daily calories with carbs taking up the rest. Over the next month or so I’ll slowly be adding more sweet potatoes, rice, oatmeal and bread into my diet to gain some weight.
I’ll always have a piece of wheat bread even when I’m cutting just so I never lose the enzymes to break it down. I always have some sort of nuts in the house for a late night snack. I don’t eat as much fish as I’d like but I still haven’t found a good fresh fish place around me. For me, the big things are timing of what I eat and planning. My biggest meals surround my workout with the biggest meal immediately post workout with the occasional big dinner on a Saturday night with my wife. If I am going to be out of the house for more than a couple hours I always bring food or know where I can get healthy food while I’m out. I am not above eating cold chicken and rice in my car.
To me, the long term goal of being the face of Aesthetic Physiques and being an inspiration far out weight the urges to eat candy or indulge in something that is a quick fix. Don’t get me wrong I am tempted but I always try to keep on the straight and narrow with a little treat thrown in here and there to keep me on track.
When I wrote the Bonollo Diet, which should actually be called the Bonollo Process, I wanted to get more of the process to healthy eating than to prescribe a diet. Everyone knows what to eat but it’s how to like those foods which everyone struggles with because they are “bland”. Take it slow and make one good decision and try to identify mindless eating. The habit of eating in front of the TV is the biggest culprit of weight gain. Compound good decisions and your world will change for the better.
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