Thursday, March 31, 2011

Meal Planning

To have success in anything, you need to have a plan. It saves you when you are hungry. Staying on target is easy when a list is already created and no thought is needed. Which is good for me as when I get hungry, my brain stops working and simply chants FEED ME until I put food in my mouth.
The Body for Life diet is not complicated. It is basically eating very clean (i.e. little to no fats and no sugar). It also eliminates coffee. Okay, so Jason is not totally sold on tossing out our morning java, but we will see what happens.
So here is the list of what we can eat:
Quality Proteins - Any lean meat - skinless chicken and turkey breast, lean cuts of red meat, fish and shellfish that are high in protein and low in fat. Other options are low-fat cottage cheese, beans (legumes) and egg whites or egg substitute.
Quality Carbohydrates - Potatoes (regular, sweet, or even yams), steamed brown rice (sans the butter), oatmeal, barley, pasta, yogurt (nonfat), fruit, and whole-wheat bread (1 - 2 slices max and no sugar).
Vegetables - Every veggie is on the table including corn and carrots!
Healthy fats - Saturated fats are outlawed, unsaturated fats are welcome in moderation. The key to knowing if a product containing fat passes is to leave it on your counter. If after a few hours it still has its solid shape (butter and shortening), it is to be left alone. A few exceptions to this rule is palm and coconut oil as they both contain saturated fats. Basically, read the label or if still in doubt just wait till your cheat day! Good fats include sesame, safflower, canola and olive oil. Keep it limited to one Tablespoon per day.
Now, the hard part comes - eating six times per day! It is recommended to incorporate protein shakes into the diet. I already do, I love my GNC soy/whey complex. It is delicious in chocolate! Do not go more than three hours without eating, maybe even set an alarm. Imagine, an alarm to eat! Ha ha. My body will let me know, I am sure of that!
Portion sizes - There is no counting calories in this diet, it is all based on portion sizes. A portion is roughly the size of your clenched fist or the palm of your hand.
Balance - Incorporate one protein with one carbohydrate in every meal. Add a portion of vegetables to two meals daily.
WATER - You need no less than 80 ounces per day! (10 - 8oz glasses)
Take a basic multi-vitamin.
What I don't see on this diet is milk and cheese. They contain the natural sugar called lactose but also are high in fat content. Yes, they have the lower fat versions but they actually contain more sugar than the whole milk varieties. Ummm, fun times ahead!