What Is The Best Diet For Weight Loss?
I recently did a video on this topic and loved sharing my thoughts on this. It’s an important topic and I encourage my clients and audience to ask as many questions as possible, because no two bodies or health situations are the same. I encourage people to question their symptoms in a non-judgemental way and investigate what the ideal path is for them to take in order to achieve great health.
Sometimes achieving great health includes weight loss.
I never encourage losing weight as a sole means of feeling self-worth or successful when it comes to being healthy, but rather as a piece of the equation.
As a holistic personal trainer, I often work with clients who want to become stronger, leaner, gain more energy, have more endurance and improve their mood…All AMAZING goals! Though none that can be achieved solely through working out. We must compliment each person’s wellness regime with a tailored nutrition protocol in order to achieve long-lasting and true results.
We are smack dab in the middle of the Age Of Information. Though information doesn’t always lead to wisdom. The difference between the two is when someone gains information (watching a video, reading a book etc) they simply know of something. When someone has wisdom, they have actually become or experienced practicing what they know.
That’s where the real change happens. When the information someone gains is put into practise and tested until it becomes a deep ‘knowing’. For example, I often hear from clients how frustrated they are because there’s “So much information out there!”
This can be very scary. A little bit of this and a dab of that can bring people two steps forward and one step back.
But when someone takes the time to learn about their own specific symptoms, needs, genetic predispositions etc., and then puts a well-planned protocol into action, magic happens.
It is then that people are able to understand what they specifically need in order to feel balanced, well and dialled in.
Less franetic energy and more strategic confidence…know what I mean?
So how does one begin this strategic and confident plan? First, I’d recommend consulting a healthcare practitioner that specializes in your health concerns. In my opinion, it’s imperative that you get coaching from someone who is up to date on reading, research and is passionate about helping with that health concern. Not many pracs have the time (or passion) to research many different health issues. We tend to focus on one or to things so that we can give the best help in that situation. Then we refer out to anyone we know can help with situations we don’t specialize in.
In my FB Live vid, I talked about a 5R approach to weight loss. The 5R (or sometimes 4R) protocol is something many practitioners use to address rebalancing the body in a systematic way. We often see this used with a candida or gut healing program but today I’m using it to talk about a healthy way of approaching weight loss. Check this out…
Remove – Remove the foods that cause the most inflammation and upset in the body; those include gluten, dairy, refined sugars and alcohol. By doing this step first, we can get a clear picture of whether those are the culprits that are lending to weight gain and weight/water retention, or, if nothing shifts after 2 weeks of that diet, then we can begin to investigate other potential triggers.
Replace – Replace your cupboards, fridge, freezer and pantry with foods that nourish your body and give energy versus taking energy away just by having to process and break down the foods. For example, a homemade grain-free granola with nuts, coconut, seeds and maple syrup with nut milk poured over top will give the body healthy fats, protein and fibre which it can use to detoxify, build hormones and sweep the gut clear of debris – though a boxed and processed cereal that contains processed sugar, gluten and poor quality ingredients can actually take the body a lot of energy and resources just to digest and can lead to inflammation, poor gut health and sluggish liver detoxification (keep in mind, the liver is the main decision maker of whether fat will/can be metabolized or not!)
Reduce – Reduce the amount of self-judgement, negative self-talk, and shame surrounding where you are on your weight loss/health journey. There is nothing good that comes from that frame of mind. No success, no positive change and no freedom! Once you can recognize if there are any cyclical negative thought patterns or beliefs about yourself that are keeping you stuck, try thanking yourself for the awareness and begin questioning what you can do about it so you can break free from an unhealthy (and unhelpful) mindset. This can also include participating in workouts that are not a right fit for you. I see too often people who engage in high intensity workouts that are driving their cortisol through the roof, leading to adrenal exhaustion and lending to weight gain, weight retention, burnout and disappointment. It’s key to know what the appropriate workout is for you at every stage of your life and healing journey.
Repair – Repair the body. Those symptoms you’ve been experiencing (and ignoring) often don’t go away on their own. Consider investigating their meaning and putting energy into healing. We don’t want to leave those symptoms unaddressed as when we do so, we often learn what genetic predispositions were there waiting to be turned on. Hindsight is always 20/20, and I’m in the game of prevention rather than putting out fires.
Repopulate – At this stage we can start to talk about potential therapeutic diets. What’s a therapeutic diet you ask? Well, I’d say it’s a way of eating that is ruling out a major food group in order to keep symptoms at bay and experience great levels of health. For example, the ketogenic diet is all about eating high amounts of good quality protein, fat and specific fibrous vegetables. You won’t often see starchy carbs in that diet, so that’s ruling out a lot of foods! Rice, beans, quinoa, potatoes etc. This diet is ideal for those who don’t tolerate carbohydrates well, and that can be for many reasons. Maybe they’re diabetic, insulin resistant or don’t produce much amylase, the enzyme responsible for carbohydrate digestion. This can be a genetic issue that is predetermined by our AMY-1 gene, and there’s not much you can do about that except for support you digestive system the best that you can. Though, sometimes this isn’t enough for people to avoid candida overgrowth, IBS symptoms or ever-mounting weight gain. This is where we can experiment with therapeutic diets such as the keto diet, which encourages the body to use fat as its fuel source vs carbs/glucose. I’ve personally seen a TON of success when people use this diet at the right time and in the right way.
Other therapeutic diets are the low FODMAP diet where we restrict specific natural foods from the diet from all food groups (except animal protein). This can help to avoid IBS symptoms, and improve digestive function. Though, I would only use that at a specific time in a gut healing protocol and for a specific amount of time. I do not recommend it as a long term way of long-term eating because it starves the healthy microbia in the gut from a lot of their preferred fuel source, prebiotics.
There are many many types of diets that can support great health, and my point in this blog is to remind you that not every way of eating is for everyone. We can hurt ourselves by trying to force our system to adapt to a way of eating that isn’t meant for us.
Break free from the madness of self-diagnosing. Put your faith in a coach that you trust and admire, and try letting go of patterns that no longer serve you.
What’s the best diet for you to lose weight? The answer lies in the questions…And the questions are different for each person. And I welcome questions! Feel free to reach out anytime to book a complementary consult to learn if I may be the right health coach for you.
I look forward to that convo,
Cassandra Hope, RHN + Holistic Personal Trainer