Monday, January 9, 2017

Fasting and Food - Part I, What should I be eating?

"Hi, thanks for adding me to the group. I started 16:8 fasting. Does this look like a good eating plan? This is what I'm eating:
  • 1200 pm - protein shake
  • 12:30 pm - gigantic salad with chicken or fish
  • 3:00 pm - light snack of Greek yogurt
  • 6:00 pm - dinner, another gigantic salad with chicken or fish
I see some form of this post in the Facebook group (Fierce Fit Fearless 2.0) just about once a week. There is no cut-and-dry answer to this. Without knowing some key pieces of information, there is no way to answer this question.
  1. How old are you?
  2. How tall are you?
  3. How much do you currently weigh?
  4. What do you think is a realistic goal weight for you?
  5. What are your goals - Fat loss? Muscle gain? body re-composition? Other?
  6. What is your BMR?
  7. TDEE?
  8. Tell me about your fitness program - do you lift?
  9. What do you do, how much of it do you do and how often do you do it?
Answer these questions and then, and only then, can we can get started with your meal plan.
 
The first problem with the above meal plan description is that it lists no real information. How much chicken or fish are you eating? What else will be in your salad? What kind of salad dressing are you using and how much of it?
 
THE MEAL PLAN IN QUESTION: 
 
12:00 pm - protein shake - I'm going to assume this is a traditional, low-carb whey shake - 125 calories, 20g protein (if made with water)
 
12:30 pm - gigantic salad with chicken or fish (~300 calories unless fat free dressing used, then 120 cal plus any fats added)
  • 4 ounces of chicken or white fish = 104 calories / 26g protein
  • salad ingredients - negligible calories unless including beans, beets, avocado, or cheese
  • Oil and Vinegar dressing - ~100 calories per tablespoon. Let's be honest, probably at least two tablespoons were used on this gigantic salad = 200 calories pretty much all of it fat (22g)
3:00 pm - light snack of low fat Greek yogurt - 130 calories, 12g protein, 6g carbs, 2g fat
 
6:00 pm - dinner, another gigantic salad with chicken or fish 26g protein, 22g fat (300 calories)
 
Total for the day:
72g Protein (288 calories)
46g fat (414 calories)
6g carbs (plus carbs from veggies) let's round up to 50g, 200 calories
Grand Total of this day: 902 calories (maybe round up 100 calories for veggies, so 1002 calories).
 
Do you think this is a healthy meal plan? I'll save you the trouble of thinking about it. No. It's in no way a healthy meal plan for any sized adult woman.
 
So, the next question is, what can be done to make this meal plan more acceptable?

 
RECOMMENDED MEAL PLAN
 
12:00 pm - lunch - 424.5 calories / 37.5g protein, 13g Carbs, 23.5g fat
Break your fast with actual FOOD. It does wonder for hunger and satiation. Here you have your gigantic salad with:
  • 5 ounces of chicken or fish =  32.5g protein, 150 calories
  • 2 cups romaine lettuce
  • 5 cherry tomatoes
  • a half of a cucumber
  • a half an avocado 10.5g fat, 6g carbs, 1.5g Protein = 117 calories
  • a handful of black beans (1/4 cup) = 4g Protein, 10g Carbs, 57 calories
  • O/V dressing with 1 Tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil plus 2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar, a splash of water and some spices thrown in. (13.5g fat, 119 calories)
1:00 pm - snack - 256.5 calories / 30g Protein, 10.5g Carbs, 10.5g fat  
Protein shake w / Fairlife 2% milk and 1 tablespoon almond butter
 
6:00 pm - dinner -  424.5 calories / 37.5g protein, 13g Carbs, 23.5g fat
  • 5 ounces of chicken or fish =  32.5g protein, 150 calories
  • 2 cups romaine lettuce
  • 5 cherry tomatoes
  • a half of a cucumber
  • a half an avocado 10.5g fat, 6g carbs, 1.5g Protein = 117 calories
  • a handful of black beans (1/4 cup) = 4g Protein, 10g Carbs, 57 calories
  • O/V dressing with 1 Tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil plus 2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar, a splash of water and some spices thrown in. (13.5g fat, 119 calories)
8:00 pm - snack - 256.5 calories / 30g Protein, 10.5g Carbs, 10.5g fat  
Protein shake w / Fairlife 2% milk and 1 tablespoon almond butter
 
This day includes a grand total of: 1,362 calories, 135g Protein, 47g Carbs, 68g Fat. Obviously the carbs are slightly higher, but I usually don't count high-fiber green type of veggies in my counts.
 
What's even more astonishing is that this meal plan is actually way too low on calories for the majority of women out there. If you're under 5'4" tall and need to lose more than 15 pounds, this is probably a great low-carb meal plan for you - esp. if you're over 35. If you're taller, younger, and/or need to lose more than 15 or so extra pounds of bodyweight to reach a healthy BMI (not including Figure-type goals in here), you will need to significantly increase your calories.
 
To bump up calories, I recommend going with a 10-hour feeding window and a 14-hour fast, which allows for one more meal. Include some potatoes/yams and more protein and you're looking at a great day of eating!
 
 
 
 
 

3 comments:

Also Jenn said...

I'm going to be brave and post this for everyone to see (instead of private message) in hopes that it helps out someone like me.

How old are you?- 27
How tall are you?- 5'6
How much do you currently weigh?- 235
What do you think is a realistic goal weight for you?- 170-135
What are your goals - Fat loss? Muscle gain? body re-composition? Other?- weight loss, fat loss to start
What is your BMR?- 1858 CALORIES/DAY according to http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/bmr_calculator.htm
TDEE?-2224 calories/day and 1779 calories/day for goal weight of 170 at a sedetary lifestyle and the recommend weight loss according to https://mytdee.com/
Tell me about your fitness program - do you lift?- currently have no fitness program. Work full time (desk job), 2 small children and no energy at the end of the day to even walk (that was my laziness speaking; I know there is always time to walk if I make time for it)
What do you do, how much of it do you do and how often do you do it?- n/a

Jenn said...

Dear Also Jenn,

First, congratulations on having the courage to post your statistics. Taking an honest look at yourself and your life isn't always easy. I can imagine how tired you are by the end of the day. Taking care of two children would be enough for many people, but you also work full-time. I get it.

I know it's not easy to find energy at the end of the day to exercise, so let me save you some trouble. You can't exercise away a bad diet. The first thing you should do is begin weighing and measuring your food and prepping meals for when you're not home. I find it's easy if you make extra dinner each night and portion out one or two containers to take to work. This accomplishes two things: 1, you have healthier dinners because you're thinking about what you should be eating and 2, you now also have one or two healthy lunches that are portioned properly.

80% of your fat-loss goals can be accomplished through a clean diet with the proper calories/macronutrients. If you're not exercising yet, I'd recommend a 40% protein, 30% carb, 30% fat diet to start.

Doing the math for you, at 1700 calories per day, that comes out to:

170g protein
128g Carbs
57g fat

Eating that much protein is not easy, so you have to look for lowfat sources that won't blow your other macros. Whey protein shakes are great once or twice a day as they add at least 25g protein each; lowfat small-curd cottage cheese isn't bad once you get used to it; lean cuts of beef and pork as well as any white fish. Salmon is good also, but you have to account for the fat. You also have to eat it in 4-5 servings or else you'll feel like a stuffed pig.

Once you start seeing the pounds melt off through a dialed-in nutritious eating plan, you'll see that you'll have more energy and may naturally start moving more. Take the kids to the park or play in your yard - you'll all benefit from the added activity.

Good luck!

Anonymous said...

Hello Jenn
I am looking into intermittent fasting and would like to get an idea of how I should incorporate it into my lifestyle.
Background Information
Age:31
Height:5'0
Weight:180 (muscular build)
Ideal weight:150-140
My goals are: weight loss, lean muscle mass, overall improved functional fitness.
Current workout lifestyle:I workout 5 days a week mon-fri for 1hour which includes minimum 20 minutes of cardio daily and HITT, and 1 day incorporating weights as I bulk quickly. My main issue is snacking and snacking on the wrong things.
Additional Information:i have a hypothyroid disorder.

Search This Blog

Fierce Apparel

Text Ads

Mobile Ads

$value) { if (strpos($param, 'color_') === 0) { google_append_color($google_ad_url, $param); } else if (strpos($param, 'url') === 0) { $google_scheme = ($GLOBALS['google']['https'] == 'on') ? 'https://' : 'http://'; google_append_url($google_ad_url, $param, $google_scheme . $GLOBALS['google'][$param]); } else { google_append_globals($google_ad_url, $param); } } return $google_ad_url; } $google_ad_handle = @fopen(google_get_ad_url(), 'r'); if ($google_ad_handle) { while (!feof($google_ad_handle)) { echo fread($google_ad_handle, 8192); } fclose($google_ad_handle); } ?>