How To Find The Most Suitable Diet Plan For You
Whether you’re a complete beginner to the vast and complex world of dieting or you’ve tried several diets and they just aren’t cutting the fat, this article is for you.
If you’re new to dieting then you’ve probably already come across a never-ending portal of different plans, regimes, workouts, nutritional programs, and hundreds of websites trying to convince you to pick their diet as it guarantees results. Well, this is just not how a diet works.
How To See Success When Dieting
Firstly, it’s important to remind ourselves of what the word ‘Diet’ actually means. A diet is simply the act of monitoring the number of calories, fats, sugars, carbohydrates and other nutritional elements, such as vitamins & minerals we chose to consume on a daily basis in order to achieve a goal. It’s that simple.
Even when you’ve found the right diet for you, many people still fail to see results when they chose a plan because they follow it word for word, calorie for calorie.
It’s important to remember that a diet is simply a guideline you should be following in order to achieve the desired goal. Just because you’re being told to eat 1200 or 2800 calories a day, does not mean you should follow this blindly.
Secondly, you need to ask yourself why you have chosen to follow a specific diet?
Are you trying to lose weight, gain weight, build muscle? Are you lacking protein or essential vitamins? Do you need more fiber in your diet? Or, are you just looking to improve your overall health?
This is a crucial step in finding a diet that will work for you and if you don’t know the answer to this question, no diet will give you the results you’re trying to achieve.
Should I Follow One Specific Diet?
Absolutely not! This is one of the main reasons people either give up completely or find it extremely difficult to stick to a diet. Most dieting plans will force you to only eat certain foods, restrict your calorie intake to match that of a rabbit, and also make you feel eternal sinful for eating anything other than carrots and lettuce.
A diet isn’t supposed to raise your stress levels or give you anxiety just by simply looking at a pizza in the supermarket. It’s supposed to complement an overall healthy lifestyle that leads to happiness and wellbeing.
If you dread the thought of following your diet plan every single morning when you wake up then it is not going to work for you. This is ultimately the same as having to go to a job you hate every single day, you’re going to resent it and at the end of the day, you won’t want to keep doing it.
A diet is not a quick fix, it’s a change in your lifestyle that should last a lifetime. So it’s extremely important to consume food you enjoy.
What Should My Daily Calorie Intake Be?
Every diet will tell you how many calories to consume on a daily basis and they tend to only focus on this aspect of your nutrition. You should be looking at every aspect of your nutrition.
This also includes protein, carbohydrates, sugars, fat, saturated fat, fiber, salt and all of your essential vitamins & minerals such as vitamin C, iron, zinc and vitamin A, to name just a few.
This is where you’ll need to carry out some research of your own, and, it’s a trial and error situation but don’t let that worry you. It can take some time to find the right balance to suit your body and lifestyle. There is no ‘one size fits all’ here.
For example, the daily guideline amount of calories for the average male is 2500kcal, for a woman, it’s 2000. The key word here is, ‘average’.
If you took 10 people of various height, weight and build, all with the same goal of losing weight, they can’t all just eat 2500kcal or 2000 kcal, respective of gender, and expect the same result.
You need to calculate your weight and height, as well as take into account how active you are when deciding what your daily consumption levels should be for each aspect of your diet plan.
If you have a fairly active job or exercise during the week but you’re trying to lose weight, you still may require more calories than the average person as your body still needs to be able to provide fuel for essential bodily functions.
It’s all about balancing what your body needs versus what your body actually uses on a daily basis.
How Do I Do This?
It is crucially important to make sure you keep track of your food and there are two ways of doing this.
Firstly, search for, ‘Nutritional intake calculator’ on google to find a tool for this or use an app such as MyFitnessPal. Not only will these tools help you calculate your daily nutritional requirements, they will help you keep track of them very easily.
Secondly, listen to your body! Your body is your best friend and personal coach when it comes to helping you maintain your diet. You may have a target of 1800 calories for the day but you find yourself short by 200 calories, it’s late at night and you’re just not hungry, then DO NOT EAT.
Your body is telling you, “Hey, I’ve had enough for today, I don’t need anything else”.
On the flip side, maybe you’re trying to build muscle and have a high target of 2800 calories and you’ve already consumed this but your body is still telling you to eat. Then guess what you should do, EAT!
However, make sure you are eating the right food. If you’ve been filling up on food that lacks all of the other essential items you need such as fiber or protein, then your body could be hungry for these and not calories.
Should I Take Weight Loss Supplements?
Supplements are a great way to top up your vitamin, protein and mineral levels. They are also super easy to consume and relatively cheap so you should definitely look into this area of dieting.
To help you find some effective fat burning products, we have compiled the following lists:
- Our top 10 best rated fat burner pills
- Our top 10 best rated weight loss shakes
- Our top 5 best rated appetite suppressant pills
What Food Should I Eat When Trying To Lose Weight?
Regardless of the diet you decide to follow, you should always try and eat natural foods, by this, we mean foods that have not been heavily processed.
Processed foods tend to contain high amounts of saturated fat and refined sugars that are generally unhealthy for the body and difficult for the body to digest.
Ultimately, you need to spend more time in the fresh produce aisles and less time in the frozen foods section. However, frozen fruits and vegetables are completely fine in their natural form.
The most important aspect of choosing any diet is to first figure out what your goal is. Once you have this information, then you need to find several diet plans that will help you achieve this goal.
Remember at any point, you can always change your goals to suit your needs, and if you hate the diet you’re following, then change it. This is supposed to be a flexible and easy method of becoming healthier, however, it can also be very testing at times so you need to be patient.
Having more than one diet plan at your disposal will give you a huge variety of foods to consume, meals to prepare and numerous ways to ensure you reach your daily nutritional goals whilst still powering your way through to your targets.
You need to eat for your body size and type so calculate the following daily amounts relative to your goal: calories, protein, carbohydrates, sugars, fat, saturates, fiber and salt. Use a fitness app to do this.
Whatever diet plan you decide to follow, make sure you eat a variety of balanced foods and stay away from processed foods as these can be high in saturated fat and sugar.
Most importantly, listen to what your body is telling you. If after a week or so you start to feel fatigue or experience digestive issues, then look at changing the foods you’re consuming.
Remember, it will take time for you to find the right diet that works for you, as well as adjust to it. This is a lifestyle change and you need to be prepared for that.
If you’ve chosen a diet that promises certain results in a fixed period of time by forcing you to eat foods you can’t stand then you won’t stick to it and you’ll most likely fall back into the same bad eating habits that caused you to seek out a diet in the first place.
Eat healthy foods you love, consuming the right amount of nutrition for your body type and body goals, and you can make any diet work for you.