Losing weight while keeping your muscles requires patience and planning. But don’t worry, we’re here to help! Here’s our guide for how to maximize your diet for a shredded physique.
Focus On Fiber
Eating more fiber and cutting down on carbs are two of the most important things you can do on your journey to get shredded. Eating more fiber can lead to increased satiety, lower insulin levels, and greater weight-loss success. This is the major benefit of a low-carb/high-fiber dieting approach. This is something of a revelation for some weightlifters because traditionally they have been told to be carbivores. But over the past decade or so things have changed and sports doctors and fitness enthusiasts alike have begun to recognize the enormous benefits, both in terms of energy and fat-loss, of a reduced carb diet.
Don’t Skip Carbs Completely
No carbs at all means no ready energy. So it’s okay, and actually good, to increase your carb intake on days where you’re lifting hard or very physically active. The less impactful carbs that are found in sweet potatoes may be eaten one to two times per week and post-workout.
Eat More Protein
Everyone knows that protein helps your body build muscle. What everyone doesn’t know is that a high protein diet can also help you lose fat. It does this in two ways. First, by increasing your overall muscle mass, which your body requires more energy to maintain. Your body, in other words, burns more fat if and when it has more muscle mass. And second, eating more protein will increase satiety and decrease hunger.
Don’t Skip Meals
You can’t “save up” calories. People looking to lose weight sometimes take the dramatic step of skipping meals entirely. This is a bad idea. Your body needs food to burn more calories. It may sound counterintuitive, but it’s true. If you skip meals, your body thinks it’s starving, and the liver starts to produce more glucose and this results in insulin resistance. This is all a recipe for more fat storage when you do eat.
The Ideal Diet
Okay, so fewer carbs more fibers and proteins? Ah! Feeling confused. Let’s make this simple. Throw out that old food pyramid. Your diet should consist of 40% lean protein, 30% healthy fat (such as olive oil, nuts, and avocados), and 30% fiber-dense carbs.
Try Intermittent Fasting
Intermittent Fasting (IF) is another popular style of eating that has been around for centuries but has only made its way into the fitness world in the past couple of years. This way of eating is characterized by shortened time periods in which you consume your food followed by extended periods of fasting.
The most common style of intermittent fasting calls for 16 hours of fasting followed by 8 hours of “feeding.” Those using this style of eating often find it almost impossible to eat the same amount of food in the 8 hour window as they would normally. This, obviously, leads to weight loss and usually significantly more energy.
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