Updated: Mar 26
What Should I Eat To Lose Weight...
Let’s start by determining for how long you want to lose weight. If you want to simply lose weight but not fat, you can start by cutting carbohydrate intake and dehydrate yourself and lose 5 pounds in a week. You can also fast and lose weight. Or you can follow a diet for 3 months and lose some weight. Believe me, any of these methods will work. But the important question is: for how long?
I think it all depends on how long you are willing not to drink water or to live without the energy carbohydrates provide. Or it depends on how long you are fasting or following a diet that does not fit your lifestyle. Remember that the real problem is not the extra weight you are carrying. The real problem is your lifestyle. If you are looking to lose a couple of pounds only for a special occasion, a short-term solution may be fine, but I am not sure if your body, health and appearance will be at their best.
Now, if you are looking for healthy, energetic, effective, lasting weight loss results, you may want to take into consideration a lifestyle change where weight loss happens without you even needing to pay attention to what you should or should not eat. Instead, you want to learn what we are made to eat and what foods are made for profit.
If you study our past, you will discover and learn a lot through our existence. We did not know a lot, and we probably fed ourselves only from plants and fruits. This is the best food our body can digest. However, as we evolved, we started trying new things, such as hunting and creating cooking methods and using oils when cooking.
Nevertheless, we got worse about our food intake when we got busy making money and focusing on work. We take time away from cooking, preparing our foods and even from eating. Therefore, we start buying processed foods that are full of chemicals with no nutrients. These days, many companies are saving money by keeping their products on shelves longer. They don’t want to lose profit, and they want to sell their products. Consequently, they find the way to do. It is by taking the nutrients out and adding chemicals, as I mentioned.
The real reason human beings eat is because we need nutrients to have energy, survive and repair our bodies. Nutrients are found in whole foods, which are perfectly made for us to digest them (or we are perfectly made to digest such foods). The truth is that when we started to refine foods and break them down from their natural state is when we started having problems. For example, sugar has created so many problems in society, such as diabetes, tooth decay, metabolic problems and obesity. It is the same thing with refined flour, and if you start researching vitamins, you find out that the same thing is true.
Let me tell you what I have learned about the body. There are enzymes in the body that are in charge of digestion. These enzymes break our food down into a simple state. Imagine your house being 300 years old, and it is falling apart. All the components of the house are old and some are rotten. You hire a construction crew to basically take the house down and build a new one. Of course, if you want the house to last another 300 years or more, you want to buy the best materials that you can find. Otherwise, you may need to replace them often.
This is the same thing that the enzymes are doing in your body. The enzymes are breaking down all the food that you are eating into specific nutrients, and they are rebuilding your body by taking the old cells down (taking the old house down and building a new one). Your body is regenerating every second even though it takes 7 years to completely finish every single cell. So what you eat is super important not only for weight loss but for your health as well.
By now maybe you are making some conclusions about what foods you should avoid and what foods you should be eating. Nevertheless, let’s get more specific about it. Let’s talk about what you should be eating and avoiding.
Let’s start with what you should be eating. Now before you get all excited about the foods that are going to help you lose weight, keep in mind that the foods that you avoid are as important as the ones that you should be eating. I know that by starting eating the right foods, there will be no space for the bad foods. It helps if you learn about bad foods and be conscious about it.
Make no mistake about this. There is no diet that says that veggies are bad. I think it’s one of the only things that doctors, diet practitioners and other professionals agree on. Veggies are the key for weight loss and a healthy life.
Veggies have all the nutrients you need to survive, to heal, to exercise, to sleep, to have a clear mind, healthy skin, healthy sight and healthy bones and anything you can think of. There is no whole food more dense in nutrients and healthy than veggies. If you do some research it will confirm this. However — and this is not to contradict anyone — it seems that some people do need meat to have a higher quality of life. I read in the Bible that two men were invited to eat what the king eats to stay as strong as the other soldiers, and they refused, asking to eat only veggies. These two men were the strongest of the army. However, I also read that one of Jesus’ disciples had a fish ready for Jesus.
So if you eat meat or don’t eat meat, make sure veggies comprise the majority of food you eat. In other words, think about eating at least 50% veggies in your lunch and dinner. Everyone can eat veggies, and make sure you eat them if weight loss and being healthy is your goal.
There is a myth about fruits. Many people think that eating fruits will make them gain weight because fruits are high in sugar, which makes people fat. While it is true that sugar contributes to obesity, sugar in fruits comes in a natural state and with other nutrients needed by the body.
When we eat fruit we eat more than sugar. In fact, the highest percentage of an apple is water. Have you seen a dehydrated apple? After what is left, we get also fiber (which it helps with weight loss), minerals, vitamins and sugar. However, the sugar that is left needs to be broken down and used as energy almost in the same moment. Also, it is difficult to overeat fruits. Try to eat 10 apples in one sitting and let me know how it goes.
On the other hand, refined sugar is already in its simplest state, and it can be overeaten. The body does not really need to digest it, and it goes straight to the liver, becoming fat to be stored. In addition, this type of sugar is everywhere in the processed food industry: bread, chips, frozen foods, pickles, salads, dressings, dried meat, beverage, canned foods, and anything you can think of that comes in a package. This is another way of overeating sugar. This is the real cause of obesity.
I have not met an overweight person who eats only fruits. I have even met a couple of fruitarians who are very skinny. Fruits are like a vegetable with a sweet flavor. You determine the logic for me. Is it better to eat a pastry made of refined flour, sugar and other ingredients than a fruit? You should be eating fruits for all their nutritional value and weight loss benefits as well.
Meat is a contradictory topic. Many people have done research on this topic that leads to a conclusion that humans fare better without meat. However, many of these studies are done with treated meat and animals that are grown with hormones and other harmful chemicals.
I think one of the problems with our society now is that our animals are treated with so many chemicals to make them bigger and profitable. In addition, when the animal is dead, the meat gets treated even further for preservation and also for profit. Furthermore, nowadays people are most likely eating predominately meat in their diets (bacon with eggs for breakfast, hamburger or a Philly sandwich for lunch and for dinner steak and potatoes). My grandfather is 100 years of age, and he is very healthy, skinny, still walks, sweeps, showers alone and gets up at 4 a.m. to do his home chores. He eats meat in his diet. But the meat that he eats is not treated like in America.
Maybe I am only defending my point of view of eating meat because I do eat meat. As I mentioned before, I think the best diet is vegetarian. I have tried to become vegetarian, and every time by the third week I run out of energy, and I feel tired no matter what I do.
I think because of my level of activity and my training, meat is something that my helps me with my energy levels. Also, I believe that we all have been raised in different environments. Just like some people are able to eat grains and others are able to eat legumes, I think many people are able to digest meats better than others. If you study many cultures you find out that they eat according to their environment, and some cultures are completely different than others. For example, people in many Asian cultures eat a lot of rice and never have an overweight problem until they arrive in the U.S. In the U.S., the second generation of these Asian families struggle with overweight problems if they adopt the American diet. My family in Chiapas, Mexico, would eat meat every day — chicken, beef and fish — and never had a health problem until they adopted the Western diet. However, they combine everything with veggies and grains.
However, like I said the problem with society now is that we eat too much meat with harmful chemicals in it.
These are my recommendations about eating meat: First, find the best meat and invest your money in it. Don’t be cheap when it comes to food. That means find people and companies that raise animals in a humane way, without hormones and antibiotics. Also, make sure that the animals eat what they’re supposed to eat; for example, cows eat grass instead of corn. Next, don’t make meat the main ingredient on your plate. Veggies should be the main ingredient, and meat should be only a complement, the smallest percentage. Keep in mind that you can survive without eating meat, and if you are better without it, there is no need for you to eat it.
Grains and legumes...
Grain and legumes are a source of protein and carbohydrates that many people avoid because of a myth, just as it is with fruits. Many diets have discriminated against carbohydrates, and people have not taken the time to differentiate between good and bad carbohydrates. The body needs carbohydrates to function at its optimal level, especially if you are active. Carbohydrates serve as energy that no other nutrient can provide as quickly and efficiently. Grains and legumes are not the reason why people are overweight. Nevertheless, there are other carbohydrates that need to be avoided that I will mention later.
Oatmeal, rice, quinoa, beans, lentils and wheat are some examples of good grains...
If you noticed what I have mentioned are whole foods in the most natural state they can be. You can’t go wrong with whole foods. This is what you can eat to lose weight and stay healthy without a problem. It is time to talk about what to avoid.
Sugar never was a problem until men intervened to extract it from its natural state. The same happened with oils and carbohydrates and protein and vitamins. Now we not only refine our foods, but we alter it. Years ago we used to cure meats, vegetables and other foods with salt, vinegar and other natural substances to keep them from spoiling. As we evolved, we found (really the corporations found) other ways to preserve foods. We do this to economize and save energy, as we can use it to do other things.
Nevertheless, flavor, for many of us, has become our goal when eating. We are always looking for ways to make foods tastier. We end up eating what has more “flavor” than what taste appeals to us. This is why some restaurants are more popular than others.
As you probably know someone else concluded what I have concluded before I did. Many companies do not care about you and your health. They really care about money. No one wants to lose money, and many are willing to lie and hurt others for it. It sounds a little dramatic, but it’s true. Many companies have discovered how to create more food, keep it longer on the shelf and make it tasty, hence making a bigger profit.
Now companies (unlike your grandmother or mine) are using chemicals that hurt our health and make us hungrier so we can eat more, and it makes us overweight. So the first foods to avoid are processed foods.
Refined foods and beverages with added sugar...
These are not too different from processed foods. As I mentioned, our problem started when we refined our foods. Our foods are not whole anymore, and we don’t digest them as we are supposed to, and our body ends up storing them as fat and/or creating a disease. Of course, if sugar, flour and refined foods are not good for losing weight, you probably already concluded that added-sugar drinks such as soda, bottled juices and energy drinks are not good for losing weight.
Keep in mind that I am not here to dictate your life and tell you what to do. I am only passing information according to your desire to lose weight and be healthy. To make it possible, you need to take all into consideration and weigh the benefits of your dreams and your habits. Alcohol is a worldwide accepted legal drug that contributes to many problems including overweight.
Calories are the energy that we use in our bodies. When calories are not used, they are stored as fat. There are calories and empty calories. Calories are what you find in whole foods. For example, when you eat broccoli you are getting nutrients with calories. You are eating zinc, iron, potassium, calcium, vitamin A, C, B, and much more. All these nutrients have a role in the body, from creating new bones, to helping with your sight and digesting foods. They are useful, and this is the real reason we need them. However, alcohol has empty calories. There is not a single nutrient that benefits the body. In fact, it intoxicates the body. In addition, these empty calories go straight to the liver and get stored as fat.
Fast food restaurant...
Have you see the documentary “Food Inc”? There is basic and good information about how food is treated in fast food restaurants. It is very similar to processed foods. In fact, fast food restaurants use processed foods. These foods are raised with hormones and pesticides, and nutrients have been removed and chemicals have been added.
These are the foods that you should avoid to lose weight and stay healthy. If you do this there is no mistake you can make. Nevertheless, I also recommend you do a sensitive food test to find out if you are allergic to any healthy foods from any previous damage you have done to your intestines due to these harmful products.
How much weight you want to lose, how healthy you want to be, for how long you want to lose the weight and how you want your body to look is up to you. Choose wisely.
Custom Body Fitness is located in Glenwood Springs CO and Carbondale CO