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Tag Archives: Nutrition

You Probably Don't Need to Cut Calories While Intermittent Fasting, Even If You Gain Weight



If you’re gaining weight while intermittent fasting (IF), it’s probably not because you need to cut calories – because unlike traditional diets, IF doesn’t require calorie counting or eliminating any one food from your plate in order to see results. The only exception is alternate-day fasting, in which you eat no more than 500 calories every other day, but this method usually isn’t effective in the long run, in part because it’s so challenging.

With any other method of IF – whether you’re fasting for 12, 14, or 16 hours at a time or some other variation – it’s best to evaluate the types of calories you’re eating before slashing any from your diet, Melissa Rifkin, MS, RD, CDN, a registered dietitian based in New York City, told POPSUGAR. High-quality, nutrient-dense foods will keep you from feeling deprived during your fasting window and from overeating later on, so fill up on fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and other fiber-rich foods, rather than sugary processed or packaged goods.

If you feel like you’re doing everything right but you’d still like to lose a few pounds, then yes, you may need to cut some calories. The good news is, IF tends to reduce calorie intake without much effort. After all, you’re eating for fewer hours during the day. “This explains why IF will likely lead to some weight loss in the short-term,” Melissa said. “However, current research doesn’t support any long-term weight management potential with IF.” In other words, you’re likely to regain that weight if you ever choose to stop fasting, unless you continue eating roughly the same number of calories.

Consider working with a dietitian to determine the number of calories you’ll need to lose weight and keep it off. Once that’s established, keep your pantry stocked with healthy foods. (This sample meal plan for IF will help you get started.) And finally, make sure you’re drinking plenty of water to avoid overeating. “We confuse thirst with hunger,” Melissa said, and dehydration can cause you to feel bloated or headache-y, which may prevent you from keeping up with other healthy habits, like your workouts.

A Dietitian Explains Exactly How Fats Help You Lose Weight, and It Makes So Much Sense


Poke bowls with salmon, avocado, vegetables, sprouts and ponzu dressing on marble background

If you’re old enough to remember when fats were bad – and low-fat and fat-free foods filled every pantry, cabinet, and refrigerator – the messaging today that they’re an essential part of any diet and may even help you lose weight can be confusing. We spoke with a registered dietitian and nutritionist to set the record straight.

“Fats actually play really important functions in our bodies,” Heather Shablin, RDN, LD, PTAG-CPT, told POPSUGAR. “Just to name a few, fats provide our bodies with energy and protect vital organs.” The body also needs fat in order to absorb essential fat-soluble vitamins, including vitamins A, D, E, and K, she explained.

Making them part of your diet can even aid in weight loss. It takes more time for the body to digest fat, which keeps you feeling fuller longer, naturally reducing your calorie intake. Beyond that, eliminating fats from your diet may slow your metabolism. One study found that those who followed a low-fat diet experienced the greatest decrease in both resting and total energy expenditure following weight loss. In layman’s terms, that’s the number of calories burned each day.

Heather explained that the key is choosing healthy fats and cutting out unhealthy ones. There are four main types of dietary fats: monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats (the “good” fats) and saturated and trans fats. The latter can raise your low-density lipoprotein, or bad cholesterol, putting you at greater risk for cardiovascular disease. So you have to be cautious about treating yourself to things like cookies, ice cream, chips, fried food, high-fat dairy products, and red meat.

However, it’s also possible to overdo it with healthy fats like avocado, nuts, and fatty fish – just as you can overindulge on other good-for-you foods, like fruit. “Having too much healthy fat will not help you lose weight either,” Heather said. “Having a well-balanced diet consisting of healthy carbs, lean protein, and healthy fats is the best way to achieve your weight loss and health goals.”

These Are the Low-Carb Snacks That Will Actually Keep You Full and Focused


We’re big-time fans of the midafternoon snack, but there’s nothing worse than eating something and then being hungry an hour or even minutes later. When we’re trying to eat healthy, that fear is only magnified. If you’re eating low-carb, for example, there are plenty of great snacks that are perfect for your lifestyle choices. The problem is that you can never be sure if you’ll be satisfied until dinner or if you’ll end up wandering the office looking for something, anything, to curb your cravings. Since nobody wants that, we’ve stepped in to help.

These 13 low-carb snacks will actually keep you full, and not just for 20 minutes. They’re packed with protein and fiber to keep your energy high and your cravings low; you’ll wonder how you ever lived without them. We like to keep snack stashes at home, at the office, and in our bags, and after reading this, it might just inspire you to do the same. Bonus: all these products are available on Amazon, so they can be at your doorstep in just two days. Happy snacking!

Everything You Need to Know About Plant and Animal Proteins, Explained


You’ve likely noticed the growing trend of plant-based eating—including everything from vegetarian diets to going completely vegan. But if building muscle is one of your health goals, you might be wondering how plant-based foods will affect your gains. Are plant protein and animal protein equal, or is one really better than the other? This guide will help you get a handle on the differences between the two.


To start, it’s important to understand the role protein plays in the body. In the most basic sense, proteins are the building blocks of life, and they’re found in every single cell in the human body. Protein is one of the three “macros” you often hear about (the other two are carbohydrates and fat) that together provide all of the nutrients humans need to function. It’s well known that protein is essential for building muscle. What you may not realize is that protein has many other key functions, like transporting molecules throughout the body, maintaining cells, supporting your immune system, and acting as enzymes to help your body function and run optimally.

But to understand the difference between animal and plant protein, you need to dive a bit deeper. All proteins are made up of amino acids: If you think of a protein as a brick wall, the individual bricks are the amino acids. Of the 20 different amino acids found in the human body, nine of them need to be obtained through the food we eat—the remainder occur naturally in our bodies. The debate over animal proteins versus plant proteins begins when looking at those nine essential amino acids.

Historically, animal protein has been considered the superior protein source. In a traditional westernized diet, the primary animal protein sources come from poultry, beef, pork, and dairy foods. These protein sources are considered “complete” because they provide all nine of the essential amino acids, and they’re the most similar to the naturally occurring proteins found in the human body. Humans are able to digest, process, and use animal protein very efficiently. In addition, animal proteins are often high in other essential nutrients that aren’t as common in plant proteins, like vitamin B12, vitamin D, the omega fatty acid DHA, heme-iron, and zinc.

Plant proteins (derived from vegetables, legumes, nuts, and seeds), on the other hand, are often low in some of the essential amino acids, or don’t contain all of the essential amino acids required to build protein. But plant foods also provide many nutrients that are not found in animal proteins, like vitamin C, flavonoids, quercetin, catechins, and many antioxidants.

When it comes to building muscle, though, animal protein reigns supreme. Research shows that plant protein is inferior when it comes to digestibility and muscle building. This is most likely due to the presence of an amino acid called leucine—it’s responsible for starting the muscle building process in the body, and plant protein sources often have a low leucine content. Regardless of what protein option you choose, make sure it’s high in leucine (around two to three grams per serving).

Bottom line: It’s all about balance and moderation, even if animal proteins have an edge on plant-based sources for muscle growth. If you opt for animal proteins, avoid processed meat and stick with high quality sources like eggs, fish, dairy, lean beef, and poultry—and make sure you get plenty of fruits and vegetables on your plate, too. If you choose a plant-based diet, make sure to consume a variety of vegetarian foods to get an adequate amount of amino acids and other nutrients.

For those athletes trying to decide between whey protein and plant protein for your post-workout recovery, you have a wealth of choices. Here are our recommendations:

Momentous Plant-Based Protein Powder
The Momentous line of protein powders delivers a 100-percent plant-based protein. It’s the highest quality plant protein source available on the market by far, and it combines the perfect ratios of pea protein isolate with rice protein concentrate to maximize the available amino acids. The flavor is unrivaled, and it’s NSF-certified, meaning it has been tested for banned substances and contaminants like lead.

OWYN Plant-Based Protein Powder
OWYN offers a plant-based powder that provides 20 grams of protein from peas, pumpkins, and chia. It also provides a full serving of organic greens, probiotics, omega-3s, and trace minerals.

Performance Inspired Plant-Based Protein
This powder provides 20 grams of multi-source plant protein combined with probiotics and fiber to help aid in digestion.

The Mediterranean Diet Weight Loss Solution The 28-Day Kickstar… 9781623159405

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Lot of 10 Diet Fitness Exercise Weight Loss Alternative Health Books *RANDOM*MIX

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