One of the biggest challenges people face when trying to lose body fat is managing their nutrition. And often it is knowing what and how much to eat that causes confusion when starting.
Calorie tracking through apps like MyFitnessPal or on a journal is an extremely effective part of fat loss because it provides the most accurate way of telling if you are consuming the right number of calories for your goal.
However, it is not for everyone, and there are some simple strategies that you can implement into your diet to lose fat if you do not want to track calories.
Number Of Meals
Dividing your meals up throughout the day is an easy way to monitor your food consumption. Generally, three meals per day with one or two snacks is a good basis to go off when on a fat loss diet. This of course can vary dependent on the individual but is a reliable starting point to build upon.
The next thing you should consider is the size of your meals. As mentioned before, the amount of food you should consume is dependent on many variables, but you can make good, rough estimates to get you going. A good estimate is to have a protein source the size of your fist, a carbohydrate source the size of the palm of your hand and then a significant portion of vegetables.
Removing Intolerant Food Groups
One of the best things you can do when you start your fitness journey or even just to improve your overall health is remove food groups from your diet that you are intolerant to. These foods cause higher levels of inflammation in the body, which leads to higher water retention and therefore makes you feel more bloated.
By cleaning up your diet, you will be able to see noticeable progress in the first one to two weeks due to the lowering of inflammation levels in the body and therefore less water retention. It will also reduce cortisol and improve energy levels, which can lead to better performance. Make sure you are adding in high protein options, more green vegetables, and more slow-releasing carbohydrates into your meals. This is a great starting point to get you off on the right track.
Increased Protein Intake
Protein is an important macronutrient that plays a crucial role in the process of muscle recovery and repair when you are looking to build more muscle or tone your body. It has ‘building blocks’ called amino acids that the body uses to build and repair muscles and bones, in addition to making hormones and enzymes. Protein is also essential for retaining the muscle you have already gained and can be used as an energy source. So, look to have 0.8-1 gram of protein per pound (lbs) of body weight and make this a consistent feature of your meals.
Another important part of your nutrition will be to add in plenty of vegetables into your routine. This will provide your body with an excellent variety of nutrients, vitamins, and minerals to stay healthy and strong. Furthermore, these foods are low in calories, meaning that you can be fuller and more satisfied without going over your required calorie intake for the day. This will help you avoid temptation to snack on other foods that are higher in calories.
Getting enough water in throughout the day is a huge determining factor in how your body will function, both in terms of health and fitness. Your body is 60% water, so it is vital that you stay hydrated. Water plays a big role bin fat loss because it also helps you feel full and satisfied throughout the day. Often when you wake up in the morning and you think you are hungry, you are dehydrated, so drinking water first thing will also help you delay your first meal if that is something you like to do. Drinking plenty of water also boosts your metabolism, the chemical process inside your body that turns food into energy, which is vital for efficient fat burning.
So, if you want to lose body fat consistently, you don’t have to track calories, although it is advised. These simple strategies that you could use at the start to get you going, such as the number of meals, portion sizes, increasing protein intake, including more vegetables, and hydrating better.
These changes, when done right, will improve your rate of fat loss and make the process much simpler and less overwhelming, which is key for consistent results.