The Best Meal Plan For Weight Loss: Your Complete Guide
You've scoured the internet looking for the best meal plan for weight loss.
And of all the Cantina bars in all the galaxy, you chose this one. Well my friend, you've come to the right place. Because you're about to get exactly what you'd hoped for...and more.
You see, if you read every word of this article you'll discover way more than the best meal plan for weight loss. You'll gain clarity about what it really takes to finally lose weight and sculpt a leaner, healthier, stronger, and downright badass body.
Sounds good, right?
So what do you say? Are you ready?
Cool. Let's do this.
The Best Meal Plan For Weight loss
If you don't know who I am, my name's Simon. PhD in Star Wars, fine coffee drinker, and all 'round nice guy who sometimes says fuck (you have been warned). But you can call me Si.
That's me in the pic below.
Now you might be wondering why I chose to kick this one off with a gratuitous topless picture. Fair question.
Well, we've all fallen victim of the dreaded "Fitness Guru". The guy who promised to be the cure for all your problems. But in reality, delivered nothing and just left a gaping hole in your bank balance.
I feel your pain. So I want you to know, the information in this article comes from someone who's been there, done it, bought the t-shirt, then ripped the t-shirt off to take an all important picture for Instagram.
You see, I spent the majority of my 20's trying to figure out the secret formula. How to get the cover model physique with abs popping and an upper body to rival Batman.
And I'm pleased to say, I figured it out. It took me about 15 years, a lot of frustration, and a ton of wasted cash. But I got there.
And the best part is, I get to transform people's lives, through my online coaching programme by applying what I've learned over the years. Thankfully, my clients don't have to wait 15 years for results...
Here's a few awesome people I've worked with
Jacques wanted to drop body fat and build muscle. Who doesn't, right? So he joined my online coaching programme and we set about making it happen. Over the course of 12 weeks, he followed every piece of advice and nailed his transformation. And I think you'll agree the dude looks great.
Jose from sunny California was another guy who absolutely crushed it. He lost over 10kg and built muscle at the same time.
I'm showing you these epic transformations, not to blow my own trumpet, but to show you what's possible. More specifically, what you can achieve if you follow my guidance on creating the best meal plan for weight loss. Because these a real people who were in the exact same position you are now.
And if you want to see more transformations just like these, just go here.
So now you know this can work for you, let's talk more about the best meal plan for weight loss.
The Best Meal Plan For Weight loss: What You Eat vs How Much You Eat
No doubt you've heard some people say losing weight is all about what you eat. And confusingly, you've heard others say it's about how much you eat. So who's right?
In actual fact, the answer is pretty simple. But sadly a lot of people falter at this first hurdle because of inaccurate information.
The "what you eat" crowd will tell you certain foods are bad and should be avoided at all costs. Think donuts, pizza, ice cream, and foods like that. Apparently, it's these foods that will make you fat.
But here's the thing...
There's no single food that's inherently bad, just as there's no food that's inherently good.
"WTF?" I hear you cry. Let me explain.
You see, it all comes down to calories and how much of them you eat. You might hear this referred to as energy balance. Energy balance is simply a measure of how many calories you eat and drink versus how many you burn.
Burn more than you eat and you'll lose weight (a calorie deficit). Eat more than you burn and you'll gain weight (a calorie surplus). Simple.
"But Simon. I've heard people say a calorie isn't a calorie."
I've heard that too. But, they're wrong. And this 60 second video explains why.
But what about [insert diet name here]? Isn't that the best way to lose weight?
Keto, paleo, Intermittent Fasting, you've heard them all before, right? And you've probably tried one or two of them. Your social media is littered with fans of these diets claiming they have the best meal plan for weight loss.
So is there any truth to their claims?
You might not expect me to say it, but... These diets work!
But not because they're something magical. Going Keto and cutting out most of your carbs is simple way of creating a calorie deficit. The carbs aren't weight loss evil.
Likewise, Intermittent Fasting works when it helps you create a calorie deficit. Skipping a meal and eating within a certain period of time isn't weight loss voodoo.
The real secret to finding the best meal plan for weight loss is finding out what you enjoy. If that's Keto, great. If skipping breakfast works for you, that's great too.
Creating a meal plan that works for YOU is the most important thing of all.
And to prove it, let me introduce you to Hannah. For years, Hannah had been struggling to lose weight and followed every diet you could think of. From cutting out sugar, to low fat, to Slimming World. You name it, she'd tried it. So when it came to working together through online coaching we focused on getting things right for her. And judging by the pictures we did a damn good job.
The Best Meal Plan For Weight loss: How Many Calories Should You Have?
This is the next big question. If losing weight is mostly about how many calories you eat, how do you know how many to have?
Should it be 1200, 1500, or the government recommended 2000/2500 (female/male)? Is there such as thing as too few calories? Will you go into Starvation Mode if you don't eat enough?
Every answer seems to open up a new can of worms.
I set up Jamie's calorie targets using the exact same process I've laid out in the guide. And the results speak for themselves.
So Can You Just Eat Anything And Lose Weight?
Technically, the answer is yes. But would I advise it? NO.
Managing those calories is the most important part of the process. But that doesn't mean everything else gets thrown out like space garbage. Because nutrition is important.
After all, you want to be healthy as well as look good, right?
So here's where I like to talk about the 80/20 rule. Thankfully, it's pretty simple. All you need to do is make sure 80% of your diet comes from food filled with nutrients. Think fruit, vegetables, fresh meat, fish, and dairy.
This will make sure your body is getting the vitamins and minerals it needs in order to be healthy.
Once you've got that nailed, the remaining 20% can be whatever the hell you like. So if you fancy a donut to celebrate Sue's birthday in the office, go for it. Or maybe you want a few squares of chocolate with a cup of cocoa while you chill out in front of the TV. As long as you have the balance right there's nothing to fear.
Essentially, as long as your diet doesn't resemble a 5 year old's birthday party, you'll be doing alright.
Are There Any Foods You Should DEFINITELY Avoid?
Scaremongering in the fitness industry is rife. And it's enough to make you want to rip someone's arm off like a crazed Wookie.
Apparently 'dairy is scary', red meat is giving you cancer, artificial sweeteners are slowly killing you, and sugar is the devil in food form. But this couldn't be more further from the truth.
Let's take dairy for example. The overwhelming evidence shows you have nothing to worry about. In terms of bone density, breast cancer, fracture, etc the evidence is actually very much in favour of dairy. You can find out more by listening to this extensive podcast I recorded.
And it's the same for sweeteners.
Arguments driven by misinterpreted studies and latched onto by mainstream media in pursuit of click bait headlines.
In practical terms, you wouldn't go far wrong by limiting refined sugar and processed foods. Although, note I said limit, not eliminate.
The Best Meal Plan For Weight loss: What Should You Focus On?
With the foundation of calories in place, you can start to turn your attention towards other elements of your badass meal plan for weight loss.
The first of which is protein.
A high protein diet has multiple benefits when you're trying to lose weight. here's just a few:
- It helps you stay feeling fuller for longer. Great for keeping hunger at bay.
- Protein requires more calories to digest, therefore increasing the number of calories burned each day (this known as the Thermic Effect of Food).
- It helps you keep your hard earned gains from the gym by reducing muscle mass loss. Just remember you need to keep training though.
So how much protein should you have?
The amount of protein you need depends on your goal. But the broad range is 1.8-2.7g per kg of total bodyweight. Although, you can go under that if your goal is only weight and fat loss.
And if you have a significant amount of body fat, then 1.8-2.7g/kg may produce an unnecessarily high recommendation. So don't be frightened to reduce it a little.
Start with this broad range and adjust to suit you.
Have you got any ideas for protein foods?
I'm glad you asked, because yes I do. And I've put them in a nice graphic for you (p.s my Instagram page has a bunch of these useful graphics).
Here's how to get 25-30g of protein from some common foods. Note that some are better than others. Ask yourself if you're really going to eat nearly 1kg of spinach...
Oh. And if all this talk of grams and calorie counting is leaving you overwhelmed then listen to this episode of the podcast. I think you'll love it.
Fruits And Vegetables
This one is a no brainer. Fruit and vegetables should make up a large part of your diet.
It will ensure you get all the vitamins and minerals your body needs to be healthy. And if you pick good, low calorie options, they'll help avoid feeling hungry too.
Just remember, they have calories, so you need to account for them. But it's much harder to overeat on broccoli than it is pizza. So be sensible with those food choices.
In this article there's some solid gold tips on making better food choices, including fruits and veg. Check it out.
Supplements are one thing you definitely don't need to focus on when it comes to weight loss. At least not when you're talking fat burners and the like. Because in 99.9% of cases they're a massive waste of your money.
But, I felt you might wonder, so here's a list of what supplements you need to pay attention to:
- Omega 3 - Unless you have oily fish in your diet on a regular basis, supplementing with Omega 3 is a good idea. Benefits range from weight loss, to blood pressure, and so much more. They're like the kings of supplements.
- Vitamin D - If, like me, you live in a country where seeing the sun is a rare occurrence, then your Vitamin D levels may be low. You can't really get enough from your diet, so supplementation becomes fairly essential. Vitamin D has links to strength increases, body fat reduction, bone health, and immune function. So while it might not be as 'sexy' as Thermo-Burn 4000. It does more and it's cheaper.
- Caffeine - Everyone likes coffee, so isn't awesome that caffeine can help with weight loss? It helps improve performance, and potentially suppress your appetite.
But that's about it. Sadly, there's no magic bullet. Your ideal meal plan for weight loss is largely going to focus on real food.
The Best Meal Plan For Weight Loss: When Should You Eat?
You may have heard that eating little and often stokes the metabolic fire. Or that skipping breakfast and following an Intermittent Fasting diet burns more fat. You've probably also heard missing a meal is bad because your body goes into Starvation Mode and clings on to your body fat for dear life.
Again, the fitness industry has done a great job of confusing you. So let's sift through the BS and unearth the truth nuggets.
Meal timing and meal frequency simply don't matter for fat loss.
It all comes back to core principle of ... ENERGY BALANCE. Because as long as you hit your calorie targets, you can have your meals whenever you want.
So whether you spread your calories over 3 meals, 6 meals, or 20 meals the result is the same.
Here's another sexy graphic to explain...
The Best Meal Plan For Weight Loss: The Bottom Line
The best meal plan for weight loss is not as complicated as you first thought.
It all starts with calories and making sure you're eating the right amount. Don't forget you can download a free guide on how to do that right here.
Once you have that in place, your focus should be one keeping protein high and getting plenty of fruits and vegetables. But leave room for the treats you love too. Just keep an eye on how much you're having.
After that it's about making your diet fit you.
Make your diet fit your lifestyle and not the other way around. A diet you can stick to long-term is infinitely better than a crash diet lasting a few weeks.
And to round this article off, here's a 1500 and 2000 calorie meal plan you can have for free...
Want More Great Fat Loss Articles And A Free Training Programme
If you want to be first in line for more great information to help you make breakthroughs with your nutrition, then get yourself on my mailing list. And as a thank you for doing that, I'll send you a free 4 week training programme.
If you want it, grab it here.
But for now, all I'll say is... Keep living the Lean Life and I'll see you soon.