I truly despise dieting.
Allow me to rephrase that – I despise the notion that you must starve, be miserable, and exist in a general state of deprivation, all in the name of losing body fat.
I also don’t like strict rules or guidelines because they clash with my personality. You’ll know what I mean if you read My Battle with Disordered Eating a while back. I don’t like spending much time thinking about my diet, and so I prefer simple tips that I can easily follow and tailor to my life.
Furthermore, most people experience negative emotions when they think about losing fat via diet. That’s why people exclaim, “Ugh. I have to go on a diet so I can lose this fat” instead of jumping up and down in excitement while fist pumping and screaming, “Whoo-hoo I get to go on a diet” and writhing with anticipation.
Heck, if dieting were that fun or easy, then most people would succeed in their fat loss endeavors.
Alas, it is not quite that easy; but I’m here to proclaim that it’s not that hard either.
I haven’t “dieted” in years even though I’ve gone through periods where I intentionally decreased my body fat by tweaking my nutrition; the same thing can be said for my clients, too. We just don’t diet.
If you sneer at the thought of traditional dieting, then I welcome you to implement these three easy steps that will allow you to control hunger and lose body fat. Those two goals, in my opinion, go hand-in-hand.
Step 1 – Eat More Protein
Center your meals around protein, first and foremost.
Protein is great at increasing satiety; meaning you’ll feel fuller and satisfied longer. For example, several years ago, I used to eat two giant bowls of cereal every morning for breakfast (this was high in carbs and low in protein and fat). However, within a couple of hours after eating, I’d be hungry again.
Nowadays I may eat a large bowl of cottage cheese with some fresh fruit (high in protein, low-moderate carbs, and low fat) for my first meal of the day, and I won’t even think about food until dinner time.
Sidenote: Right now, I typically eat a large bowl of cottage cheese or Greek yogurt with some fresh fruit in the early to mid-afternoon, and then eat my main meal at night, which is quite large. Keep that in mind as you read the rest of this article.
Therefore, a super simple trick for increasing satiety, and therefore helping you lose body fat because you won’t be ravenous all the time, is to center your meals around protein sources.
One of my favorite meals. Grass-fed ribeye steak. Yummy goodness.
Foods like grass-fed beef, pasture raised eggs and poultry, wild caught fish, and other natural sources work well. I also eat cottage cheese and Greek yogurt, but if you don’t tolerate dairy well, you may want to focus on the other foods previously mentioned.
Hunger Taming Test
Want to experience just how filling high protein foods truly are?
Here’s a simple hunger-taming test: Eat two cups of Greek yogurt, and maybe a cup of strawberries or other fruit just to add taste variety. This meal will only be about 320 calories total, which isn’t much. However, you’ll consume a whopping 46 grams of protein.
You can also try my High Protein Cheesecake Bowl – it’s high in protein, low in sugar, and is super easy to make.
Thirty minutes after you eat this mini-meal tell me how you feel. I’m willing to bet you’re not hungry. Give this a try and let me know what happens.
Okay. Eat more protein.
Got it? Good. Let’s move on.
Step 2 – Eat Your Veggies
Okay, step one was easy squeezy – just focus on eating protein. Step two is just as simple – eat your veggies.
Vegetables are good for you.
We all “know” we should eat more vegetables, but are you actually putting this knowledge into action?
After you load up your plate with some tasty protein, pile on your favorite veggies. If you don’t have “favorite veggies,” you need to start experimenting. I recommend having at least three veggies that you can always rely on, just in case you don’t feel like experimenting.
Some of my favorites are steamed asparagus with butter and fresh squeezed lemon juice, a baked sweet potato, or a stir-fry of fresh, seasonal, local vegetables. Some grass-fed butter is a simple trick for making vegetables much more tasty.
You may need to experiment a little, or a lot, to discover what your taste buds prefer, but it will be worth your while.
Sneaky Veggie Trick
I won’t lie. Sometimes I don’t feel like chewing on a salad for 20 minutes or munching on a stalk of broccoli. That’s when I like to use a little trick for getting in my veggies without sacrificing taste, or my jaw muscles.
Casseroles are a great way to accomplish this. For example, I absolutely love my Egg Casserole. It tastes amazing and is loaded with fresh vegetables like peppers, onions, zucchini, sweet potatoes, and whatever else I choose to incorporate.
The crock pot is another useful tool. All you have to do is throw in your favorite protein source (like a grass-fed beef roast), and toss in your favorite veggies (green beans, carrots, onions, and potatoes are a favorite combination) and you’re good to go.
So far we’ve discussed:
Eating more protein. Check.
Eating your veggies. Check.
But what do you do if you’re still hungry?
Step 3 – If You’re Still Hungry . . .
So what do you do if you implemented Step 1 and Step 2, but you’re still hungry?
Actually . . . you need to ask yourself – are you truly hungry? There’s a huge difference between being hungry and just wanting to eat more.
If you don’t want to refill your plate with meat and veggies, I suggest you eat fruit and/or other all natural foods.
One of my favorite combinations is apple slices and nut butter. Or sometimes I’ll just eat raw nuts, or maybe beef jerky. I don’t really care as long as it’s real, natural food.
You can also enjoy typical “forbidden diet foods” such as chocolate.
Have a sweet tooth? Then indulge in some 85% natural dark chocolate. Not only do you get to tame your chocolate craving, but you’ll get a kick of antioxidants as well (please note I said 85% chocolate and not a plain ole Hershey bar. I recommend sticking with 80% chocolate and higher as it contains less sugar).
One of my favorite chocolate bars.
If you eat a grass-fed steak, some asparagus, a baked sweet potato, and then finish off with an apple, I’m willing to be you won’t be the least bit hungry for a long time.
As I mentioned earlier in the article, I only eat twice per day, with the majority of my food being consumed at my evening meal. Yesterday, for example, I ate a large bowl of cottage cheese with an orange after my training session. My main meal at night consisted of my egg casserole and half a bar of the dark chocolate pictured above with a little natural peanut butter.
Why do I do this? No reason in particular. It just works for me and I enjoy it.
Additional Fat Loss Tip
Though you may want to tame your hunger and lose body fat, I strongly urge you to Let Go of the Fat Loss Mindset. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to focus on fat loss to experience fat loss. You shouldn’t focus on, and worry about, losing fat for extended periods of time. Check out that article for more information.
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