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Number One Diet Mistake

Everyone who knows me knows how I love to harp on protein intake. I advocate getting at least 1 gram per pound of your bodyweight in protein for best results. Study after study proves that this is the fastest route to getting toned and burning fat. And, if you are trying to lose weight, you need more protein, not less. And yes, this literally means if you weigh 300 lb. you need at least 300 grams of protein for best results.  

Studies are fine and dandy, but there’s nothing like real-world results to prove beyond a shadow of a doubt how important protein intake is. I unfortunately spent almost two weeks in the hospital this past month after having abdominal surgery. Here is what happened to me: I spent 10 days on an IV that just provided a little glucose and some electrolytes such as sodium and potassium. This solution provided some calories, but no protein at all.  This ‘diet’ is very similar to when people who go on liquid fasts such as ‘The Hollywood Juice Diet’ or ‘The Master Cleanse.’ At the end of the 10 days of no protein my weight had gone from 126 lb. to 109 lbs! When I weighed 126 I was 17% bodyfat, with 21 lbs. of fat and 104 lbs. of lean body mass. When I emerged at 109 lbs. I was still 17% bodyfat but with 19 lbs. of fat and 90 lbs. of lean body mass—almost all my weight loss was lean tissue. Sure I was skinner, but my metabolism was slower, my face was sunken, my stomach was flabbier, and my limbs were sagging and limp instead of shapely and toned. This isn’t what we envision when we think of weight loss, now is it?

Obviously I didn’t have much of a choice to go through this starvation, but you do have a choice and can choose to feed your body what it needs to thrive. If you are determined to do a ‘fast’ for some reason, make sure you supplement with 1.5x your bodyweight in grams of protein with a protein powder. As long as you consume adequate protein, even if the rest of your diet is too low in calories, your body will spare lean tissue and burn through bodyfat for energy. Protein is the ONLY nutrient that has this property.

If you are trying to lose weight, you will find that by taking enough protein, your weight on the scale won’t drop as fast, but your body will look light years better, and people will think you’ve lost more weight than you have. Your metabolism will be much higher as well.

I can tell you right now that if you cut out or cut down on protein you WILL lose weight rapidly. I just lived it, and I have seen it happen to other uninformed souls who just weren’t aware of how devastating no protein is for a body. A pound of muscle contains just 600 calories whereas a pound of fat contains 3500 calories. The scale will drop fast if you let your body shed the muscle, but it’s a fake victory because you won’t end up with the healthy attractive body that you ultimately want. Isn’t that what we all want—not the lowest number on the scale, but the best appearance and function?

Make sure you are consuming 20-40 grams of protein 4-5 times per day. If you don’t, you WILL pay the price and there is NO way around it. So eat up!

This article was provided by Home Exercise Coach
For more information on Home Exercise Coach, check out their full profile here.
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