4 Pro Tips that make ANY Diet Work

Time to make your diet work for you.

These 4 pro tips can be applied to any type of diet. If you are plant based or pescatarian, enjoy intermittent fasting, paleo or the carnivore diet, or even just want to eat healthier in a way that is relevant and meaningful for you, then these principles are what you need.

Marcus-Filly-TrainingSource: Functional Bodybuilding

They have been brought together by Marcus Filly, a former CrossFit Games athlete and the owner of Functional Bodybuilding.

Pro Tip 1: Repeatable and Sustainable

If you hard on a diet for 3 weeks, then stop. Then it wasn’t a long term success. You might have lost 5lbs of water and 2lbs of body fat, but as soon as you stop then you will, most likely, go back to old habits.

This is why it is important to find foods that you like and only apply a level of self-discipline that is within reach and sustainable for the long term.

A successful diet is one that you can do for years.

Pro Tip 2: Control Caloric Intake

All successful diets have one thing in common. That diet helps the dieter control their calories. That means that the diet puts the individual in a position where they are either in a caloric deficit (weight loss), surplus (weight gain) or calorie balance (maintenance).

Fasting, for example, removes a window of time from your day that could otherwise be spend consuming calories.

Gluten free removes a category of foods containing calories from your diet.

The key is to make sure that you have a clear understanding of why these rules are helping you control your calorie intake.

The habits from the diet should help you control the number of calories you consume every day. You should know why the diet helps with that process.

Pro Tip 3: Supports Building and/or Maintaining Lean Muscle Mass

Muscle is a key driver of metabolism. It will dramatically impact how many calories you burn over any length of time.

When you have more muscle mass you will generally be stronger and be more likely to be active and move. The combination of movement and quality diet is essential for long term success.

Pro Tip 4: The Diet Addresses Food Quality

Food delivers both energy (calories) and nutrients (minerals and vitamins). Most people focus on the energy component as this has the greatest impact on weight loss and weight gain, especially in the short term.

However, if you become undernourished due to poor quality food with low nutrient density then over time your energy level, mental sharpness, and overall mood can suffer.

sandwich representing a sustainable nutritional approach 5 Foods that EVERYONE Should Have in their Diet

Getting focused on food quality also has to happen at some point during your nutritional transformation.

So Where Should I Start?

The following tiered list describes the order of importance in terms of implementing successful processes in your nutrition and dietary habits.

  • Tier 1: Focus on Quality
  • Tier 2: Get rid of packaged processed foods
  • Tier 3: Protein is the priority
  • Tier 4: Consistency
  • Tier 5: Hand Portions (the amount of each macronutrient you need to look, feel and perform at your best)
  • Tier 6: Weight and measure foods
  • Tier 7: Refine your macros

Start simple and only move onto the next stage once you have mastered the stage at which you are currently at, but want more results.

This also works the other way as well.

For example, if you were spending a lot of time and effort weighing and measuring all your foods, but suddenly you have new baby and that time needs to be prioritised elsewhere. You can move back down the tiers to using hand portions. The results won’t be as precise, but you will still maintain a good quality diet that can support your health, weight, aesthetic and performance goals.

Take Control

These tips from Marcus Filly will help you take control of your nutrition. Very few people arrive at bodies that look and feel great by accident. Take control and get the results that you want.

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If you want to jump to a specific section that check out the timestamps below.

  • Intro (0:00)
  • Vivo Ad (00:37)
  • Key 1 (01:36)
  • Key 2 (02:15)
  • Key 3 (03:06)
  • Key 4 (03:36)
  • Where to Start (04:19)
  • Tier 1 (04:25)
  • Tier 2 (04:38)
  • Tier 3 (04:52)
  • Tier 4 (05:14)
  • Tier 5 (05:51)
  • Tier 6 (06:09)
  • Conclusion (06:44)

What are Calories?

Calories are a measure of the energy content of food and beverages. They represent the amount of energy your body can obtain from consuming and metabolizing these substances. When you eat or drink, your body breaks down the carbohydrates, fats, and proteins in the food to release this energy, which is used to fuel various bodily functions and activities.

The unit of measurement for calories is typically the kilocalorie (kcal), although it is commonly referred to as just “calorie.” One kilocalorie is equal to the amount of energy required to raise the temperature of one kilogram of water by one degree Celsius. In nutritional contexts, you will often see calorie values listed on food labels and used to describe the energy content of different foods and drinks.

Nutrition and healthy foods The Best Way to Eat to Lose Belly FatSource: Deposit Photos

Calories are essential for maintaining the body’s basic functions, such as breathing, circulating blood, and regulating body temperature. The number of calories a person needs can vary depending on factors like age, gender, weight, activity level, and overall health. If you consume more calories than your body needs, the excess energy is stored as fat. On the other hand, if you consume fewer calories than your body requires, you’ll lose weight because your body will tap into its energy reserves (stored fat) to meet its energy needs.

It’s important to note that not all calories are equal in terms of nutrition and health. The source of the calories, the macronutrients (carbohydrates, fats, and proteins) they come from, and the overall quality of your diet play a crucial role in determining how these calories impact your health and well-being. A balanced diet that provides the right nutrients and calorie intake is essential for maintaining good health.

What is Caloric Intake?

Caloric intake refers to the total number of calories a person consumes through their diet and beverages over a specific period, usually a day. It’s a fundamental concept in nutrition and plays a crucial role in determining an individual’s overall health, weight management, and energy balance. Understanding and managing your caloric intake is essential for maintaining a healthy diet and achieving specific health or weight-related goals.

Caloric intake can be broken down into three main categories of macronutrients, each providing a certain number of calories per gram:

Carbohydrates: Carbohydrates provide around 4 calories per gram. Common sources of carbohydrates include grains, fruits, vegetables, and legumes.

Proteins: Proteins also provide about 4 calories per gram. Good sources of protein include meat, poultry, fish, dairy products, and plant-based sources like beans, tofu, and nuts.

Fats: Dietary fats provide the most concentrated source of calories, with approximately 9 calories per gram. Sources of dietary fat include oils, nuts, seeds, avocados, and fatty cuts of meat.

To maintain or achieve a certain weight, individuals need to balance their caloric intake with their caloric expenditure. If you consistently consume more calories than your body expends (through basal metabolic rate, physical activity, and other factors), you will gain weight because the excess calories are stored as fat. Conversely, if you consistently consume fewer calories than your body expends, you will lose weight because your body will use its energy reserves (stored fat) to meet its energy needs.

The recommended daily caloric intake varies from person to person based on factors like age, gender, weight, activity level, and health goals. Health professionals and nutritionists can help determine an appropriate caloric intake based on an individual’s specific needs and objectives, whether it’s weight maintenance, weight loss, or weight gain.

What are Macronutrients?

Macronutrients are the essential nutrients that provide the majority of the energy (calories) in your diet. There are three primary macronutrients, each of which serves specific roles in the body and is required in relatively large quantities for proper health and functioning:

Carbohydrates: Carbohydrates are one of the main sources of energy for the body. They provide 4 calories per gram. Carbohydrates can be found in a wide range of foods, including grains (such as bread, rice, and pasta), fruits, vegetables, legumes, and sugary items. They are broken down into glucose, which is used as a primary source of energy for the cells.

Proteins: Proteins also provide 4 calories per gram. They are essential for building and repairing tissues, as well as for various bodily functions, including the production of enzymes and hormones. Protein sources include meat, poultry, fish, dairy products, eggs, legumes, nuts, and seeds.

pumpkinSource: Anna Shepulova

Fats: Dietary fats provide the most concentrated source of energy, offering around 9 calories per gram. Fats are important for energy storage, cell structure, the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E, and K), and various bodily functions. Sources of dietary fat include oils, nuts, seeds, avocados, fatty fish, and animal products.

Balancing your intake of these macronutrients is crucial for a healthy and balanced diet. The recommended distribution of macronutrients in your daily caloric intake can vary depending on factors like your age, gender, activity level, and health goals. A common guideline is to get about 45-65% of your total daily calories from carbohydrates, 10-35% from protein, and 20-35% from fats.

It’s important to note that the quality of macronutrients matters as well. For instance, choosing complex carbohydrates over simple sugars and opting for healthy fats (such as those found in avocados and olive oil) over saturated and trans fats can significantly impact your overall health. Additionally, proteins from lean sources like poultry, fish, and plant-based options can be healthier choices compared to high-fat animal products.

Your specific dietary needs may vary, and it’s advisable to consult with a registered dietitian or healthcare professional to create a personalized nutrition plan that meets your individual requirements and health goals.

Why is Protein Essential for Muscle Growth and Human Health?

Protein is essential for both muscle growth and overall human health due to its vital roles in the body. Here are the key reasons why protein is important:

Muscle Growth and Repair: Proteins are the building blocks of muscles. When you engage in physical activity, especially resistance training and exercise that places stress on your muscles, you create small tears in muscle fibers. Protein is necessary for the repair and growth of these muscle fibers, which is how muscles become stronger and larger over time.

Enzyme Function: Many enzymes in the body are proteins, and these enzymes play a critical role in facilitating chemical reactions that are necessary for various bodily functions. Enzymes are involved in processes such as digestion, metabolism, and energy production.

Hormone Production: Proteins are involved in the production of important hormones that regulate various functions in the body. For example, insulin is a protein hormone that regulates blood sugar levels, while growth hormone and insulin-like growth factors (IGFs) are involved in growth and development.

Immune Function: Antibodies, which are proteins, are a crucial part of the immune system. They help the body defend against infections and diseases by binding to and neutralizing harmful substances like viruses and bacteria.

Transport and Storage: Certain proteins transport essential molecules, such as oxygen (hemoglobin in red blood cells) and iron (transferrin). Other proteins store important nutrients, like iron (ferritin) and calcium (calbindin), until they are needed by the body.

Cellular Structure: Structural proteins help maintain the integrity and shape of cells and tissues. Examples include collagen, which is found in skin, tendons, and cartilage, and actin and myosin, which are essential for muscle contraction.

Nutrient Absorption: Proteins play a role in nutrient absorption in the digestive system. Carrier proteins help transport nutrients like vitamins and minerals across cell membranes.

Satiation and Weight Management: Protein can help you feel full and satisfied, which can contribute to better appetite control and weight management. It has a higher satiety value compared to carbohydrates and fats.

Maintaining Lean Body Mass: Protein is crucial during weight loss or calorie-restricted diets because it can help preserve lean body mass (muscle) while losing fat.

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Wound Healing: Proteins are essential for the formation of scar tissue and tissue repair after injuries or surgeries.

It’s important to ensure that you consume an adequate amount of protein through your diet to support these vital functions.

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The recommended daily intake of protein varies depending on factors like age, sex, activity level, and health goals, but a general guideline for most adults is around 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day. Athletes and individuals looking to build muscle may require higher protein intake.

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Overall, protein is a fundamental component of a balanced diet, and it is critical for maintaining good health, supporting muscle growth and repair, and enabling various physiological functions in the body.

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