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- I love to eat, and I bet you do to, but for someone who is trying to shape their body while eating everything in sight, it can make it very difficult to achieve their goals. With a proper balance of diet and exercise, achieving that goal is much easier, plus you'll feel better and more energetic physically and mentally in the process.

Start with good eating habits..
  What you eat and how often is very important to a well balanced mind and body. Research done on diabetics confirms the fact that eating every 2-3 hours is one of the best ways to stabilize your blood sugar levels. When your blood sugar level is stable you energy level will increase and will be more consistent throughout the day. Most people will notice an increase in mental focus and a decrease in stress when their blood sugar levels are balanced. (Believe me, like many people, I am no joy to be around when I miss a meal.) If you do the math, eating every 2 hours or so equals out to roughly six meals per day. If you currently experience severe food or hunger cravings then you are a prime candidate for increasing your meal frequency.

Consuming the right foods will boost you metabolism..
 Studies have proven that consistently eating foods rich in protein will accelerate your metabolism so that you actually burn more calories throughout the day, the reason for this is the "thermic effect". The "thermic effect" is the amount of energy your body expends while digesting foods and protein has the highest thermic effect.
The building blocks...

- Fruits & Veggies - Cruciferous vegetables: Arugula, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, collard greens, kale and watercress all contain powerful anticancer substances. Eat at least three or four servings of cruciferous veggies every week. Whole grains: Whole wheat, oats and quinoa all contain insoluble fiber to benefit health and prevent constipation. Beans: Eat your beans, particularly soybeans, which contain protease inhibitors that are thought to slow tumor growth. A daily serving of beans is an excellent source of protein. Onions and garlic: Vegetables in the allium family, which includes leeks, scallions, chives, shallots, onions and garlic, increase the activity of an enzyme thought to protect cells from cancer-causing free radicals. Citrus fruits: The oil of citrus fruits, found in the peel, is rich in limonene, which has potent anti-tumor properties.

Protein -

 Soy- Soy protein is derived from plants or Soy beans. It's benefits are far greater for women rather than men because some raw soy products contain substances known as phytoestrogens. Phytoestrogens have the same biological activity as estrogen. In the Orient, soy foods are used to help control the symptoms of menopause. Also, the FDA recently approved a health claim that soy protein may reduce the risk of heart disease and lowers your cholesterol level.

 Soy Protein isolate on the other hand, has the highest concentrations of amino acids, all three branched chain amino acids (BCAA) as well as Glutamine and Arginine. These critical amino acids help bodybuilders spare muscle during the cutting/diet phase of their training.

 Whey- Throughout history, whey protein has been used to soothe burns, to inspire vitality and to cure various illnesses including jaundice, infected lesions of skin, gonorrhea, epilepsy, and more. Today, science is proving the power of whey to be far greater. From being a great foundation for building strong, lean muscles and healthy bones, to lowering cholesterol and assisting in cancer prevention, whey protein can make a difference in every stage of life. Proteins are the basic building blocks of life. Protein, and only protein, provides your body with the amino acids it needs to build, repair and rebuild muscles. Protein also provides the necessary components to keep your immune system healthy, make hormones, enzymes, skin, hair, nails, organs and blood. What is Whey protein? Whey is a byproduct of cheese making that contains vitamins, minerals, protein, lactose and traces of milk fat. Most commercial whey supplements are derived from cow’s milk, which is comprised of 6.25% protein: 20% in the form of whey. Whey protein supplements utilize the concentrated protein, eliminating the lactose and milk fat. Whey is a complete protein, meaning it contains all essential and nonessential amino acids, which are vital to your metabolism, and to making your body function properly for good health.

 How much do I need? Several factors play critical roles in how much protein your body needs. Age, size (height and weight), metabolic rate, exercise level, stress factors (work, health status, viral or bacterial infection), your amount of sleep, and the quality and quantity of foods you eat, all play a role in determining your protein requirements. Extensive research into human metabolic rates and how they are affected by age, activity and stress have been prepared over the last decade by leading physicians in hospital settings.See the table below for estimates of your protein requirements based on your personal lifestyle/training goals.

Lifestyle/Training Goal
Daily Protein Needs
Stressed 0.45 - 0.7g/lb bodyweight
Trauma Recovery 0.9 - 1.4g/lb bodyweight
Dieting 0.35 - 1.0g/lb bodyweight
Endurance 0.7 - 0.9g/lb bodyweight
Power & Speed 0.9 - 1.1g/lb bodyweight
Strength & Bodybuilding 1.3 - 1.6g/lb bodyweight

  If you are serious about building muscle, then it is imperative that you consume enough protein to support new growth, otherwise you’re not taking full advantage of your workouts.

- Carbohydrates - Getting enough calories is important, but so is getting the right kind of calories. Carbohydrate, stored in the body as glycogen, is the predominant energy source for muscle-building exercise. The harder and longer you work out, the more glycogen your muscles require. Once your muscles are depleted of glycogen, you have no more energy to continue your workout. There are different ways to figure out your carbohydrate needs, but the bottom line is that with at least 500 to 600 grams of carbohydrate per day, your muscles will stay packed with glycogen. One method is to base your intake on 3.6 grams per pound of body weight (8 g/kg). At 4 calories per gram of carbohydrate, this means about 504 grams per day or about 2,000 carbohydrate calories for a 140-pound person, and 720 grams or 2,900 carbohydrate calories for a 200-pound person. A second strategy for computing your carbohydrate needs is based on a percentage of total calories. When total energy intake is below 4,000 calories a day, getting 70% of those calories from carbohydrates will ensure the muscle power and endurance required to strength train. With a diet above 4,000 total calories a day, a lower percentage of calories can be obtained from carbohydrates, as long as you take in at least 500 to 600 grams of carbohydrate.

 For middle aged persons, therapies that might restore youthful carbohydrate metabolism include 200 mcg of chromium 3 times a day, 3 to 6 grams of conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), and 250 to 500 mg a day of alpha-lipoic acid. All three supplements are effective in improving insulin efficiency and sensitivity. Alpha- lipoic acid is being touted as the "new insulin-mimicker" in many gyms. In several studies involving type II diabetics, alpha-lipoic acid was shown to increase the body's utilization of blood sugar. A greater uptake of blood sugar by muscles could lead to enhanced glycogen synthesis and ultimately greater gains in lean muscle.

Eating to lose weight

  The first nutritional demand of your body is energy. Without adequate energy, your body will convert muscle protein into energy to feed your brain, nervous system and red blood cells.These particular tissues do not possess the metabolic machinery to burn fat. They only burn carbohydrate. When your intake of carbohydrate falls below these tissues demand, the body begins to convert tissue protein into carbohydrate to meet their need. The net result is a loss of muscle tissue.

 Yes, the scale may say you have lost "weight", but you have lost the very tissue that burns fat. Muscle tissue burns 70% of the fat in your body; so losing muscle sacrifices your ability to burn body fat.

 In fact, the "weight" you lose on a diet can represent up to 10 to 20% of those pounds in muscle loss. This poor dieter will not only regain this weight, but then some. All because they have compromised their ability to burn body fat.

 Aging also causes muscle loss. So does inactivity. Have you heard of the saying "Use it or lose it"? .

 Inactivity leads to muscle loss and muscle loss causes a lowered capacity to burn fat, so you wear more of it.

 The bottom line is this: At any time, or for whatever reason, you lose your muscle; you lose your capacity to burn fat. Diets, aging and inactivity all lead to a decreased amount of muscle weight and an increased amount of fat tissue.

Never fear. You can, at any time in your life, rebuild your muscle and teach it to burn fat.

 Exercise is your friend - Aerobic exercise rebuilds your muscle and teaches it to burn more fat. Eating right gives you the nutrients you need to make that muscle. The food pyramid outlines how to eat to get the nutrients you need, so let us deal more specifically with energy needs and where that energy needs to come from.

 In order to burn just the fat and not the other lean tissue in your body, you need to meet your minimal energy requirement.If you want to maintain your current weight, this level is found by multiplying your weight by 15.

 If you want to lose weight, multiply your ideal weight by ten. For example, if your ideal weight is 140 pounds, your minimal energy requirement is 1400 calories.

 Next, you need to factor in the calories needed for exercise and activity. Very active people (those who exercise 3 hours or more a week) need to multiply their minimal requirement by 1.5. Moderately active individuals (those who exercise 1 to 3 hours per week) need to multiply their requirement by 1.2.

 For those of us who move, let's cite an example: if you take 4 hours of aerobics classes per week and your ideal weight is 140 pounds, you need 2100 calories a day to keep your muscle and burn the fat.

 Now, where does that energy need to come from? It makes sense that if you want to burn the fat on your body; you do not want to be eating it in your food.

 Let's be perfectly clear about this. There are only two fates of fat in your diet: Fat is either burned by your muscle or it is deposited in your fat cells. If you are wanting to lose body fat, the solution is simple: Eat less and burn more.

Which leads to the debate: "WHAT IS LESS?"

 Less is 30% of your calorie intake. To find this amount of fat in grams; multiply your caloric requirement by .3 and divide the calories by nine. For example, 2100 calories times .3 is 630 calories, divided by nine leaves 70 grams of fat.

 When you consider a "Double Western Cheeseburger" from Carl's Jr. has 70 grams of fat, you can appreciate the etiology of obesity in America. In fact, statistics show that one out of every three of us can qualify as overweight, so we have some work cut out for us in terms of the amount of fat in our diets.

Take a look at the foods below and see where you can substitute one food for another to lower your fat intake:

 Food Fat Grams  Food Fat Grams
 Ice Cream  34 Frozen Yogurt  0
 3 oz. Salami  30 3 oz. Ham  3
 1 Croissant  25 1 Bagel  1
 1 Tablespoon Butter  11 1 Tablespoon Sour Cream  3

 Remember, small substitutions can add up to big losses over a years time. Cutting out 25 grams of fat a day translates into a 25 pound body fat loss in a year. The best part is, you are still eating. Only this time, you won't be "wearing" your groceries!

Tips

 Those who are successful at losing weight make evolutionary changes with their diets, not revolutionary changes. Start by choosing those changes you can live with on a permanent basis. Then move on to change other habits. One habit at a time, you'll get there!

 - If you occasionally have a bad day and your diet goes out the window, don't worry !.-

  If you resume your diet by the end of the following day, you would have compensated for the day before, so really is not a problem.  Don't feel guilty! . In fact a diet free day once a in a while can be very refreshing .

Eating to build muscle

 Eating Habits- First off try to Include as much variety in your diet as you possibly can. It's recommended you consume five to six medium size meals during the day rather than two or three big ones. Try to Include a large amount of high quality protein in your diet and cut out as much animal fat as possible. Also, the lighter you cook your foods, the more nutrients will be retained. Its is also key to consume lots of natural carbs found in grains, breads, fruits and veggies. Multivitamin-multimineral supplements are also very important as they contain digestive enzymes (this will aid in protein synthesis). Avoid junk food and empty calories(sugar). Try to stay away from soda and beer as they are packed with empty calories. Whatever you do don't miss meals! Missing meals puts your body in a fat-storing mode. Don't add extra sodium (salt) to your food. Avoid excessive alcohol. Recent studies confirm that a glass of red wine a day is good for you because of the flavanoids, but avoid drinking excessively! Don't hesitate to splurge or treat yourself to a huge meal every now and then, just don't make it a habit.

  Most bodybuilders will agree that eating every 2 hours or so will give your body "balance", and by being consistent your digestive system and muscles will love you for it.

Here's an example six meal day:

·        9AM - : Eggs, whole grain toast, half a cantaloupe, one or two glasses of skim milk, and a multipack of vitamins & minerals. An excellent way to start the day.

·        11AM - :Yogurt (digestive enzymes), fruit, slice of whole grain bread

·        2PM - : Baked potato, broiled fish, steamed green veggies, one or two glasses of skim milk

·        5PM - : Tuna fish sandwich, a scoop of nonfat cottage cheese, a piece of fruit

·        8PM - : skinned, broiled chicken breast, brown rice, a green or yellow veggie or a large salad, glass of milk

·        11PM - : Protein shake before bed.

 

Take a look at the charts below, they are designed to give you an idea of what your target intake of protein, carbs, and fat should be as they relate to your specific goal:

Training day diet (based on a 200lb bodyweight) Carbs Protein
Fat

Meal 1

50
40
12
Meal 2
50
40
12
Meal 3
80
55
8
Post-Workout (within 10 minutes after)
30
5
0
Post-Workout 2
100
65
8
Post-Workout 3
80
60
10
Total Grams
390
265
50

Off-day diet (based on a 200lb bodyweight)

Carbs Protein
Fat

Meal 1

50
40
10
Meal 2
50
30
5
Meal 3
80
50
15
Meal 4
20
30
5
Meal 5
100
65
5
Meal 6
80
55
10
Total Grams
380
270
50
"Cutting" diet (based on a 200lb bodyweight) Carbs Protein
Fat

Meal 1

3
40
12
Meal 2
3
40
12
Meal 3
3
55
8
Post-Workout (within 10 minutes after)
3
5
0
Post-Workout 2
50
65
8
Post-Workout 3
20
60
10
Total Grams
82
265
50

 Protein -Please click here

 Carbohydrate -Please click here

 Eating to stay fit

 

 

References San Franisco Spine Center

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