One of the biggest areas of confusion in the fat-loss arena is food combinations. Over time, the way you combine your foods can have a huge impact on sustained fat-loss AND overall health.
There’s a lot of debate about how to combine foods, but I’ve always focused solely on keeping blood sugar and insulin stable throughout the day. When insulin levels are consistently “spiked” it’s pretty much impossible to use fat as fuel. But if you learn how to keep blood sugar stable, you’ll enhance your body’s ability to consistently burn off belly-fat. Additionally, keeping blood sugar balanced will improve your overall health, well being, and help you avoid cardiovascular diseases and even epidemics like diabetes.
So strategic food combining can help you burn more fat AND increase your energy levels in a big way.
Here are 3 simple food-combining rules you can use for FASTER fat loss:
1. NEVER eat carbs by themselves
Remember, almost all “impact” carbs (starches and certain fruits) tend to spike insulin higher and faster than other foods. Like I mentioned above, this creates a fat storing environment inside your body because it’s nearly impossible to burn fat in the presence of high insulin. So always combine your impact carbs with some type of lean protein.
2. ALWAYS have some type of high quality complete protein in every meal
Consuming protein in every meal will keep your body in a consistent anabolic (muscle preserving) state. Protein also provides your muscles with a steady stream of amino acids to help assist in repair and growth of lean muscle tissue. Also, the thermic effect of protein will help prevent metabolic slow down and burn more calories (in other words, your body will burn more calories digesting and breaking down protein than it will digesting and breaking down fat and carbohydrates). So by consuming protein frequently throughout the day you’ll naturally burn more calories. I also find protein helps fight off the cravings. There are a few exceptions to this rule, like a detox or cleanse, but 90% of the time you should be eating protein in every meal…especially if you’re an exerciser.
3. LIMIT fat intake when eating starches or fruits (impact carbs)
By keeping fat intake a little lower in meals that contain starches and/or fruits you’ll avoid insulin AND fatty acids being present together in the blood stream. Remember, insulin is a “storage” hormone. So if you eat an impact carb, which spikes insulin higher and faster than most other foods, with a bunch of friendly fat — the insulin will potentially store the fat you just ate.
So impact carbs + too much fat = potential fat storage.
A good rule of thumb for combinations is:
• Protein + Carbs (limit fats to under 10 grams)
• Protein + Fat (limit carbs to under 10 grams)
Always remember veggies are pretty much unlimited and under most circumstances they don’t count as “impact” carbs. This doesn’t mean 15 or 20 grams of friendly fats once in a while with an impact carb is going to make or break your plan, but make sure you’re aware of these guidelines.
But following these 3 simple rules is only half the equation. You still have to exercise, stay hydrated and get adequate rest too. I know you’re smart enough to realize this, but a good reminder always helps. 🙂