Now I have qualified as a personal trainer I feel I need to experiment with a few different diets to better advise my clients. There are so many contradictory views and reports on diet and so many different diets, such as low fat, low carb, paleo, weight watcher, slimming world, ketogenic, intermittent fasting, that I have decided to use myself as a human guinea pig and test a few of them out.
In the most simple outlook we need to have an energy balance, or deficit if we want to lose weight. If our calories in are less than our calories out then we’re winning, right?
Hmmm maybe not, what makes up those calories is actually so important! My BMR (Basal metabolic rate) is around 1440, so if I was looking purely at calories in versus calories out I could have 5.5 mars bars (260 calories each), which would give me the energy I need to go about my normal bodily functions. However, obviously, this would not be nourishing my body, I wouldn’t be getting a sensible ratio of macros or vitamins, just to name a few! It would also sky rocket your blood sugar levels causing insulin to be released.
My point is, is that whilst calorie counting and diets like slimming world and weight watchers are good to keep people on track with their points or syns, it is actually really important to think about what you’re actually putting into your body.
At the moment, I eat ‘clean’ and follow probably a mostly paleo diet, which cuts out starchy carbs such as pasta, rice, bread. I do allow myself to eat sweet potatoes, and I love them!! I also still eat dairy, not an awful lot but a little, which is not allowed in the paleo diet. So throughout 2018 I am going to experiment with a few other diets, first I am going to begin with intermittent fasting.
This involves only eating in a certain time slot in the day. I will be fasting for 16 hours per day, however this includes when I will be sleeping, so it’s not actually too bad. I will be eating food between 12pm and 8pm. During this time, I will eat what I would usually eat throughout the day but I need to get it in within those 8 hours.
I think this time frame will work best for me as I will be able to have my lunch at work, workout straight after work and then have dinner afterwards. The only time where I think I will find it difficult is when I work out in the morning. I get up at 5am and will train, then have to wait until 12 to eat something. However, I will see how it goes!
According to the Dietician Robbie Clarke, Intermittent fasting has the following health benefits.
- Blood levels of insulin drop significantly, which improves blood glucose control and facilitates fat burning.
- Blood levels of the human growth hormone increases, which helps facilitate fat burning and muscle growth.
- The body undergoes important cellular repair processes – such as removal of waste products from cells.
- Decrease in triglyceride and LDL cholesterol levels, which are all associated with a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
- Beneficial changes in gene expression, related to longevity and protection against inflammation and disease.
I will start my first of my diet challenges today, 6th January, for 30 days! I will update my blog weekly with my progress.