Last week we talked about the different food groups and why we need them: Protein, Complex Carbs (starches), Fruits (simple sugars), Vegetables (fibrous carbs), and good Fats. We also talked about avoiding all those refined and highly processed junk foods.
Perhaps a simpler way of looking at it is like this—make sure that every meal includes a source of Protein, Starch, and Fruits or Greens. This common sense approach has worked with hundreds of Biggest Losers. Then you just need to make sure your portion control is operating.
Remember, women should never go below 1,200 calories/day and men should never go below 1,800 calories/day. This is the minimum calories you need just to keep your body operating properly. Your activity level will add to the number of calories you need.
Over the years, I’ve observed that most women can comfortably lose weight on between 1,500-1,650 calories/day. This is often quite a bit more than they were eating before. Guys tend to comfortably lose weight if they stick to around 2,200-2,400 calories a day. Speaking from personal experience, I can tell you that most guys are over-eaters!
Here are some healthy, balanced meal ideas that many of our successful Biggest Losers have used. Each has a serving of Protein, Starch, and Fruits or Greens.
Adjust for the calories that you need. The 400 calorie meal size works out perfectly for women on a 1,650 calorie diet if they’re also having three 150 calorie snacks. If you’re a guy, you’ll need to add a little bit to get up to 500-600 calories/meal. If you have any questions or special concerns, check with your health care professional!
Sample 400 Calorie Breakfasts:
• ½ to ¾ cup whole grain Cereal, 8 oz Skim or Soy Milk, and a Medium Banana.
• 1 piece of whole grain Bread with a little butter and honey, a small low fat Yogurt, and some fresh Fruit.
• 2 eggs, 1 piece of whole wheat Toast with butter, ½ cup fresh fruit.
• 1 serving of Oatmeal, 8 oz Skim or Soy Milk, and some fresh fruit.
Sample 400 Calorie Lunches:
• 1 cup whole wheat Spaghetti & Meatballs and ½ cup Green Beans.
• 6” Chicken Teriyaki Sub loaded with veggies on Honey Oat bread.
• Grilled Chicken and Spinach Salad with fat free dressing.
• ½ broiled Chicken Breast, ½ cup frozen Bean Medley, 1 piece whole wheat Bread with butter.
Sample 400 Calorie Suppers:
• 3 oz baked Chicken, ½ cup Baked Beans, Mixed Salad with fat free dressing.
• 3 oz Meatloaf, ½ baked Sweet Potato, ½ cup fresh Green Beans.
• 1 cup grilled Chicken and whole wheat Pasta, Mixed Salad with fat free dressing.
• 3 oz fresh or frozen Fish, ½ cup long grain wild Rice, frozen garden Bean Medley
• 3 oz smoked Pork Chop, ½ baked Potato w. a little butter, Mixed Salad with fat free dressing.
Sample 150 Calorie Snacks:
• Small low fat Yogurt and ½ cup Red Seedless Grapes, or Banana or other fruit.
• Meal Replacement Shakes
• ½ small box of Raisins and ¼ cup of Cashew Pieces.
• ½ cup low fat Cottage Cheese and ½ cup Fruit.
• Several pieces of real (not processed) Cheese & several whole wheat Crackers .
• Protein Bar
• ½ cup fat free Frozen Yogurt and ½ cup fresh Strawberries.
• Yellow Delicious Apple and 1 tbsp Peanut Butter.
This week’s Biggest Loser was Jeremy Whitaker, who lost 2.6% of his body weight and 6.6 lbs. Second place was a tie between Ashlee Hiatt and Nicole Shaughnessy, both losing 1.9% and 3.4 lbs and 2.9 lbs respectively.
The group also graduated from the weight machines this week, so in next week’s article, I’ll cover their first free weight routine for you. Feel free to contact me through Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/tomdolanfitness if you have any questions or comments.