High protein and low carb diets can be healthy and very effective for long term weight loss, but it’s not as simple as eating more chicken and less pasta!
To get the most out of a high-protein diet you must use other dietary strategies in order to improve your body composition.
You need to get enough fibre in every day, if you do not studies have shown that LDL cholesterol increase in a high protein diet that doesn’t contain adequate fibre. This is not a good thing for your health. The recommended daily intake of fibre for women is 25 grams a day and 38 grams for men. I personally would increase this on a high fibre diet, but start at that and see how you fair. Good sources of dietary fibre are: beans (all kinds); vegetables and fruit and avoid all refined grains — such as white flour, white pasta, and white rice — and replacing them with whole grains is a great way to boost the amount of fibre in your diet.
The best diets for body composition and health will come from diet high in fibre and protein that includes carbohydrates from only low-glycemic sources.
The BEST solution is to eat a high-protein diet that is high in fibre from low-glycemic vegetables and fruit. You want to avoid the carbohydrate-rich cereal fibres because they can persistently elevate insulin levels that lead to fat gain and diabetes. You may want to take supplemental fibre because the body will adapt very quickly to certain fibres, meaning that it’s useful to rotate the kind of fibre you take.
The second thing you must do to make a high-protein diet work is to reach a “threshold dose” of quality protein daily. For example, studies have been done that show the optimal protein threshold dose to lose the most fat and maintain muscle during weight loss is at least 1.5 g/kg of body weight of protein a day. This dose will stimulate protein synthesis, which will increase energy expenditure, raising the metabolic rate, and further supporting fat loss.
Remember ‘you are what you eat’ and you need to concentrate on the quality of protein that you are getting: free range eggs; organic meat; fresh farm produce. Now I know I will get a load of stick for saying that ‘not everybody can afford organic food’. However, do you smoke – look how much a packet of cigarettes is and how bad that is for you; a pint of lager is nearly £3.00, let’s say you only have 4 a week that’s £12; eating out costs a minimum of £30 a time; your sandwich, bag of crisps, fizzy pop and chocolate bar at lunch each day £4. I prepare all my own food, and eat six meals a day, all organic and free range (where possible) and my food bill each day is approximately £10. I buy in bulk from farm shops etc, don’t drink, don’t smoke ad only eat out once a week. So don’t tell me that you can’t afford to eat properly because it’s nonsense. Change habits, drink 2 pints less a week, make your own healthy lunch, stop smoking. You’ll be killing 2 birds with one stone, saving your bank balance,losing weight and getting healthier in the process. OK OK RANT OVER, back on track.
Another key to these type of diets is to ensure you are getting enough essential amino acids, about 30 grams a day. EAAs can help stimulate protein synthesis and favour fat burning in the body.
So in conclusion: make sure you have enough fibre going in each day from a variety of sources; eat low glycemic carbs, lots of vegetables and fruit and eat your threshold dose of protein with each meal.
So as you can see it’s not just quite as simple as eating less pasta and more chicken.