To lose weight means you need to eat less, right? Not exactly. F45 sports nutritionist Kim Bowman, explains how important it is to eat the right foods – not just cut down on the wrong ones.
Restricting calories, typically promoted through ‘dieting’, has long been the answer to fat loss. But the problem with focusing solely on cutting down how much you eat is that what you eat, i.e. food quality, is often overlooked. This can lead to a yo-yo-style eating pattern characterised by temporary weight loss and weight gain a short while later.
Yes, training and watching what you eat are key factors in fat loss. But if sustained fat loss is the goal, it’s important to incorporate nutrient-dense, whole foods while eliminating processed foods (on top of portion control and regular training).
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The first meal of the day should include quality protein
Protein has shown to enhance the body’s fat-burning capability by contributing to feelings of fullness throughout the day.
Research has found that incorporating quality sources of protein in the morning, and throughout the day, such as egg whites, beans, or nuts can enhance the rate at which the body burns calories.
Incorporate plenty of fibre-rich foods to curb cravings
Dietary fibre found in whole foods including whole grains, veggies, and fruit is a key nutrient providing bulk and subsistence to our meals. It slows digestion and increases feelings of fullness, while also helping to balance blood sugar to curb cravings throughout the day.
Fibre-rich foods are digested at a slower rate compared to highly processed forms, which are stripped of their nutrients. Fibre intake can be increased by incorporating veggies at each meal and swapping processed snack foods for fresh fruit such as berries, apples, or bananas.
Aim to avoid processed carbohydrates, including refined sugar
Heavily processed foods with little nutrient value including french fries, potato chips, baked goods, and sugary snacks are major gut health disruptors.
In fact, these foods ‘add chronic inflammation’ to our body over time, which can become problematic for fat loss as gut health is essential to an efficient metabolism.
Swapping processed carbs and hydrogenated oils for whole, unprocessed quality foods is important for ensuring efficient uptake of macronutrients within the body.
Not only do whole foods contain plenty of dietary fibre for appetite control but they are rich in antioxidants (vitamins and minerals) which help to lower inflammation and optimise fat-burning capability within the body.
Kim Bowman is the F45 Nutritionist. Head here for more nutrition information.