Day Diet Review: Does It Work for Weight Loss

Day Diet Review: Does It Work for Weight Loss?

The first thing you need to do is decide what your goal is. If you are trying to lose weight, then you will want to eat a low calorie diet. You may not have any problem with eating only 500 calories per day if that’s all you’re aiming for. However, if you are trying to gain weight, then you’ll probably need to eat more than that.

So how much more?

Well it depends on several factors such as your body composition, age, activity level and so forth.

You might be wondering why you would ever want to go above or below those limits. That’s because there are some things that will affect your ability to stay within them and others that won’t. For example, if you are overweight and sedentary, then you won’t be able to maintain those limits. On the other hand, if you exercise regularly and are active, then your body will burn up more energy and thus be able to consume more calories without getting fat.

Now that we’ve got our basic idea out of the way let’s get into the nitty gritty details of what exactly goes into a day diet plan. First let’s talk about how the structure of each meal.

Breakfast

Because you’ve fasted (or at least gone a long time without eating) for at least eight hours, your body has already begun to metabolize its stores of glycogen. In fact, this is one of the reasons that people recommend fasting for weight loss programs because your body will begin burning its own fat as soon as you start eating again.

You should try to eat a breakfast that is high in carbohydrates and low in fat so that this process can begin quickly. It may help to think of it as “feeding your furnace.” (I know I just said that you shouldn’t think about food as much, but this is an exception.) You want to get something with plenty of carbs and very little or no fat so that your body has the nutrients it needs to burn off its own fat stores.

Some good choices for breakfast would be:

Grapes (only eat the ones that you like because you’ll be eating quite a few! They’re also good because they naturally come in their own containers)

Fruit cups (watch the sugar content, however. This is very simple to do by just checking the nutrition label and avoiding anything over 15g of sugar per serving)

Bagels (once again, check the label for things like fat and sodium content. There’s nothing worse than loading up on carbs only to get a big fat load of something you don’t want!)

Bread (try to get the ones that are just the starch and not much else. Some companies make “zero fat” breads that are pretty good. If you can’t find any at your local store, try the Internet)

Sweet Potatoes (not only are these great sources of carbohydrates, but they also have plenty of vitamins and minerals. You can prepare them in a number of ways too.)

Yams (same as sweet potatoes)

There are tons of other good things you can eat for breakfast. Most of the common fruits are good. Cereals are all right too, but watch out because some of them can have a lot of sugar, so make sure you check the label. You can even eat those cold cereal bars if you need something quick.

Just as long as you remember the basic rule: Fats should be kept as low as possible and the carb/sugar content should be high. It would also be a good idea to try to eat something that is not only good for providing energy, but also contains some calcium and other important minerals.

After you are finished eating, you need to head directly to your final destination (work or school). The reason for this is because you need to get going right away. As I mentioned before, your body has already started using up its stores of glycogen and needs to begin using its fat reserves instead. So the quicker you get to where you are going and start doing whatever it is that you have to do, the quicker your body will begin burning fat.

Now, even though you are eating a high carbohydrate breakfast, your body still may not immediately switch over to burning those carbs instead of the fat in your body. It may continue burning the fat it has already pulled from your fat stores for a little while. It all depends on how much fat you have and how much of it your body wants to burn right now.

How long this process takes depends on many different factors. Some people’s bodies react to food better than others and some have higher metabolic rates than others. It also depends on how much food you’ve eaten, when you last ate before that, what else you’ve eaten in the past few days, etc. So everyone is different.

Don’t expect to see instant results, though you may if you’re extremely lucky.

It may take anywhere from a few hours to a full day of constant activity before you burn through all the fat your body wants to get rid of. But don’t worry, as long as you keep eating that high carb breakfast, you shouldn’t go into negative energy levels or eat away at your muscle tissue. The body has many different reserves to use when it is really determined to reach its goals.

One way to tell if your body is burning fat for energy instead of carbs is to look at your urine. If it is very dark yellow, that means that your body is burning fat as fast as possible. If you start to see some darker colored urine, but are still expending a lot of energy (moving around a lot, working hard, etc), then your body is probably burning a combination of fat and carb calories. If you start to see some lighter colored urine, especially if this is accompanied by a loss of energy (and in some cases cramping or other signs of low energy), then your body is burning more carbs than fat and you need to eat some more carbs.

You may be wondering at what point you should eat more carbs, and when you should just continue expending the fat. Well, generally, you should try to eat some more carbs whenever your urine gets lighter in color. I would advise eating a high-carb meal (see below) whenever your urine color gets close enough to clear, or if you feel like you are suffering from low energy levels.

The point at which you should just keep burning the fat is when you have no more fat reserves left in your body.

How do you know when you’ve reached that point?

Well, you’ll start to get hungry all the time no matter how much you eat, and if you get much thinner. This is a sign that you need to either eat more or start expending more energy (or both).

If the activity you need to do is of long enough duration that it can’t be done while fasting (like a 2-day hike), then you may want to take some dietary precautions to prevent yourself from running out of energy and having your body decide to eat away at your muscles. The best way to do this is to eat smaller, more frequent meals. By eating a high-carb breakfast (at least 50% carbs by calories), a mid-day meal with some more carbs, and another high-carb supper (at least 50% carbs by calories), you’ll keep your energy levels up without eating away all your stored fat.

You may even find that eating every couple of hours is necessary for you. Just listen to your body and eat whenever you feel the need to.

If you’re participating in some sort of sport that requires a great deal of energy in a short period of time, then you need to eat more carbs than your body would normally need for the activity. Here again, if the event lasts at least 2 days, then you should eat normal breakfasts and dinners. Mid-day meals should be higher in carbs to supply your body with quick energy when you need it most.

Again, depending on the length of the event and your body’s reaction to the activity, you may need to eat more frequently than every few hours. Listen to your body and eat whenever you feel the need to, just make sure that you are taking in enough calories during this time. (And afterwards, too!)

The best high-carbohydrate foods that you can get are sugars, since they supply a lot of energy and don’t take up that much room in your pack. There are several different types of sugar, but the only ones you need to concern yourself with are: glucose, fructose, and sucrose. Glucose and fructose can be combined in a 1:1 ratio to form the sugar molecule sucrose, which is what table sugar is.

Other carbohydrates can also be turned into glucose and fructose for your body to use (as well as fat), but these three types of carbohydrates supply the most energy for their weight. The carbohydrates you eat are turned into glucose, which is then entered into your blood stream. From there, it is transported to your muscles (and brain) to be used as energy.

So, in return for all the great tasting food you can eat, you have to lug around extra weight in your backpack when hiking, right?

Well, that’s partly true. You do need to take in more food than you would if you were just doing daily activities, but you don’t need to carry as much extra weight as you might think.

First of all, let’s look at the types of food you can take with you on a multi-day hike that supply a lot of energy. These include: honey, granola, fruit leather, hard candies, chocolates, and jelly beans.

These are great for two reasons. One is that they contain a lot of energy, so you don’t need to carry many of them. The other reason is that they aren’t as messy as other types of food. You can just put them in small ziploc bags and then throw them in your pack.

Meals-Ready-to-Eat (MREs) are also good to bring on a hike. You can find a list of the contents and nutritive value for each type on-line. These are great because they not only provide a lot of energy, but they also don’t take up much room in your pack.

The thing is, MREs are heavy even before you put any water into them. (This is so they can withstand being dropped from a plane and not explode.) So you’re going to have to add water to them, which means extra weight for you to carry.

You can also just carry the contents of the MRE and nothing else. While this does save you from having to carry a lot of extra weight (provided that you can find something else to hold the food) it has one glaring drawback. They taste horrible!

What you want to do is take lightweight foods and combine them together to make full meals that are more appetizing to you. A good way to do this is by using the fact that foods contain different amounts of water. Some foods, like fruits and hard candies, only contain a small amount of water (5% or less) and some foods, like potatoes, vegetables, and grains, contain a lot of water (usually over 75%).

By combining foods you can come up with meals that not only taste great, but also have the calories that you need while still keeping the weight of your pack down.

For example, let’s say that you wanted to have mashed potatoes tonight. A cup of instant mashed potatoes only weighs in at 4 ounces, but you’re going to have to carry the water to rehydrate it, which is about 1.5 cups and weighs in at 8 ounces.

Sources & references used in this article:

High-protein weight-loss diets: are they safe and do they work? A review of the experimental and epidemiologic data by J Eisenstein, SB Roberts, G Dallal… – … reviews, 2002 – academic.oup.com

Beyond weight loss: a review of the therapeutic uses of very-low-carbohydrate (ketogenic) diets by A Paoli, A Rubini, JS Volek, KA Grimaldi – European journal of clinical …, 2013 – nature.com

Dietary fat and obesity: a review of animal, clinical and epidemiological studies by GA Bray, S Paeratakul, BM Popkin – Physiology & behavior, 2004 – Elsevier

Efficacy of dietary and physical activity intervention in non-alcoholic fatty liver disease: a systematic review by S Kenneally, JH Sier, JB Moore – BMJ open …, 2017 – bmjopengastro.bmj.com