Ask the Coaches: How Do I Stop Dieting & Lose Weight

Written by Tim Skwiat

eat slowlyQ: I’ve decided to NEVER “diet” again! I’m sick and tired of getting on and falling off the dieting wagon. In fact, I just recently joined a weight loss group online, but after reading their 14-day plan, I thought, “This sounds too much like A DIET!” I’m not gonna do that to myself again.”

A little background…I’m 56 years old, work out on a regular basis, and don’t eat processed food often, but for the life of me, I cannot get rid of this muffin top! I am not “overweight” per se (at 5’6”, 150 pounds), but the muffin top is annoying.

Ultimately, my question is: How do I stop dieting, start thriving, and lose this muffin top once and for all?

-Patty R.


Hi, Patty!

Thanks so much for sharing your question. It’s a great one, and even though it’s sounds like you’ve struggled a bit, the fact that you’ve pledged to never “diet” again is a huge step to achieving and maintaining your goal.

We can often get down on ourselves for what we view as past “failures.” However, every experience that we have is a learning experience—an opportunity. For instance, what were the types of things that led you to fall off the wagon?

You see, you likely already have all the information and experience that you need in order to achieve your goals. It’s just a matter of working together to find the formula that works best for you.

That last part is really important. You see, the truth is that the “best” diet is the one that you can stick to. I know, I know, I can feel you rolling your eyes, but it’s true. How can you begin to find what works best for you? The following Habits of Highly Effective Nutrition Plans are a great place to start.3

Habit 1: Eat slowly and mindfully

For fat loss, there are two habits that you’ll need to master, and when done consistently and combined with good food quality, these two simple tools are typically enough for almost everyone to lose fat:

• Eat slowly
• Eat until just satisfied, about 80% full

Slow eating helps you tune into your body’s hunger cues, and along those lines, it makes your body the boss. You don’t have to rely on external methods (e.g., calorie counting, weighing/measuring food, points, etc.), and subsequently, you gain control.

Editor’s Note: 8 Healthy Foods That Cause Flab

Perhaps most importantly, slow eating is a tool that you can use any time, anywhere, and no matter what’s on your plate or who’s around, you can always eat slowly. If you can master the art of eating slowly and mindfully and learn to sense into (and listen to) your physical cues, you will be well on your way to becoming a nutrition ninja!

Habit 2: Eat protein-dense foods with each meal

When it comes to improving body composition, optimizing protein intake may be one of the single most important dietary changes that one can make. Protein-dense foods increase satiety, improve appetite control, and increase calorie burn. On top of that, high-protein diets have consistently been shown to be more effective than normal-protein diets for decreasing body fat and increasing calorie-burning muscle mass.

What protein sources are best? Glad you asked. Here’s a list of our Top 55 High-Protein Foods, and you can download it completely free.

Habit 3: Eat vegetables with each meal

Mom and grandma were right: Veggies are good for your health and your waistline. Studies show folks who eat more veggies tend to do a better job of losing fat and keeping it off. Veggies have a low-energy-density, which means that you can consume a relatively large volume comparative to their calorie content.

While most people recognize that vegetables are packed with important vitamins, minerals, and fiber, their true super powers may lie in their phytonutrients, which give fruits and veggies their vibrant colors and possess potent fat-fighting, anti-aging, and antioxidant properties. Along those lines, it’s a good idea to consume a variety of vegetables each day, trying to include as many colors as possible each day:

Greens: various leafy greens, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, asparagus, zucchini
Reds: tomatoes, red bell peppers, red cabbage
Oranges: carrots, orange bell peppers, various squashes, pumpkin
Whites: onions, garlic, parsnips, cauliflower, yellow squash
Purples: eggplant, purple cabbage, beets

Habit 4: Carbohydrate intake should match activity levels

For fat loss, most people will do better by reducing carbohydrate intake, but it doesn’t mean that a low-carb diet is necessary. Rather, a controlled-carbohydrate diet seems to work best.

Generally speaking, most people will do best with some carbs, with appropriate adjustments made for activity level and body type (e.g., insulin sensitivity). In other words, the more active you are, the more smart carbs you’ll need; on the other hand, sedentary folks, especially those who are trying to lose fat, typically need fewer carbohydrates.

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Overall, when it comes to choosing smart carbs, the emphasis should be placed on whole, minimally-processed foods that are slow-digesting and high in fiber, and when you do choose to add carbs to a meal (not necessarily every meal), the following are the best choices:

• Colorful, starchy vegetables (e.g., sweet potatoes, purple potatoes, winter squashes)
• Colorful fruits (e.g., berries)
• Other sweet/starchy fruits and vegetables (e.g., bananas, plantains, potatoes)
• Legumes (e.g., lentils and beans)
• Whole, intact grains (rather than foods made from processed flours), including whole or steel-cut oats; wild, brown, or red rice; quinoa, amaranth, or buckwheat groats; sprouted grains; kamut or spelt grains; maize; millet; and barley
• Other whole grain products (e.g., sprouted grains)

Habit 5: Eat healthy fats daily

Don’t fear the fat! Despite a bad rap, fat does NOT make you fat. In fact, similar to protein and unlike carbs, dietary fat is essential. You see, fat is necessary for normal cell, brain, and nervous system function, normal hormone production, and absorption of key fat-soluble nutrients (e.g., vitamins A, D, E, and K) . It also helps promote healthy blood sugar, increases satiety, and is a great source of energy.

A good rule of thumb is to replace less healthy fats (e.g., soybean, canola, corn, cottonseed, safflower, and sunflower oils), which are typically found in processed/packaged foods, with healthier fats such as:

• Raw nuts (e.g., walnuts, almonds, cashews) and nut butters
• Raw seeds (e.g., pumpkin, chia, hemp)
• Olives and extra-virgin olive oil
• Avocados and extra-virgin avocado oil
• Other cold-pressed, extra-virgin oils (e.g., walnut, macadamia nut, hemp)
• Butter and ghee (from pasture-raised cows)
• Fresh coconut, coconut milk, and extra-virgin coconut oil
• Fatty fish and shellfish (e.g., salmon, anchovies, sardines, oysters, mussels, herring, tuna, white fish)

I hope this is a helpful start, Patty. Remember, while extremely effective, these habits are just a starting point. The first habit is arguably the most important, and with enough practice, it can be the key that unlocks the door to finding out what works best for you. Once again, we applaud you for your pledge to not ever diet again, and we look forward to helping you every step of the way. Keep up the awesome work!

-Coach Tim

Bonus Tip:

How would you like to end frustrating, confusing, and time-consuming dieting once and for all?

Well, you CAN, if you just follow the simple ONE Day Diet meal plan that we are GIVING AWAY at this link: The ONE Day Diet (exactly what to eat)

At this link, we lay out the entire diet for you, showing you EXACTLY what to eat, meal-by-meal…no guesswork!

Just follow this DROP DEAD simple meal plan, and you’ll be on your way to a flatter belly in no time!

==>The ONE Day Diet

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  • Carol Greenwood

    I am almost a vegetarian and my boyfriend is vegan. It is hard to diet because I do not eat much meat. My mom years and years ago told me if I wanted to lose weight eat protein and vegetable and avoid the grains and starches. However, one of your coaches at Biotrust sent me many vegetarian recipes and about food that have proteins but she listed many grains too. Since, I accidentally deleted it from my computer. Can you send me alternate proteins other then meat. I do eat eggs lately and however I have high cholesterol and yet, the experts have changed their minds about eggs saying that although they are high in cholesterol it is safe to eat and doesn’t add to the cholesterol in the body. I do not know what to do. I do eat chicken but, it’s starting to sicken me from the thought of eating meat. What do I do? Can you send some ideas and foods ? I always thought that beans are starchy, Are they ?

    • Cristina

      Hello Carol. Thank you for taking the time to your story with us. We have put together some great resources that will provide you with a boatload of information to help you successfully reach your goals.

      Before I dig into those, I would like to first touch on some of your primary concerns. Obviously, we preach a high-protein diet because of the vast benefits
      that the scientific research suggests, from acute increases in feelings
      of fullness to long-term improvements in body composition and metabolic

      While there is also evidence that for some, following a lower carbohydrate meal plan may elicit favorable results in terms of weight loss, it may be challenging to do so as being a vegetarian, some of your main protein sources may be beans,
      legumes, and even quinoa.

      If you are looking for ideas for both you and your boyfriend, with his being vegan, I’m sure that eggs, fish, and all forms of meat are off
      limits. While soy protein is typically a no-no, some fermented tempeh
      would be a sound option. Perhaps even some tofu.

      To better address your inquiry as to alternate protein sources, I am going to provide you with various
      examples that will cover most folks in terms of availability, dietary
      restrictions, and budget.

      1. GREEK YOGURT. An 8 ounce serving packs a whopping 23 grams of
      protein. *Can also be used as a healthy substitute in recipes, dips, or
      even in a shake.

      2. COTTAGE CHEESE. 1/2 cup has 14 grams of protein. *Packed with Vitamin D and Calcium.

      3. SWISS CHEESE. A 1 ounce serving contains 8 grams of protein. *Again, excellent source of Vitamin D and Calcium.

      4. EGGS. 1 large egg has 6 grams of protein. Eggs tend to be the
      most budget-friendly source of protein. *Despite what many prominent
      health organizations might lead us to believe, it doesn’t appear that
      you should fear the yolk: Cholesterol is vital for a healthy brain, and when it comes to eggs,
      many of the beneficial nutrients (e.g., half of the protein, choline,
      B12, riboflavin, folate, and vitamin D) are in the yolk.

      The Myth About Eggs & Cholesterol

      5. STEAK. A 3 ounce serving contains 23 grams of protein. *Be sure to select a lean cut of meat such as top or bottom round.

      6. GROUND BEEF. A 3 ounce serving has 18 grams of protein. *Be sure to select lean ground beef with it being minimum of 95% lean.

      7. CHICKEN BREAST. A 3 ounce serving contains 24 grams of protein. *Skinless

      8. TURKEY BREAST. A 3 ounce serving has 24 grams of protein.
      *With both turkey and chicken, white meat is the healthier option over
      the darker meat.

      9. TUNA. A 3 ounce serving tops the charts with 25 grams of protein. Omega-3’s here! Bonus!!

      10. OCTOPUS. Surprisingly, this 8 legged mollusk is just as
      substantial in its protein content as that of the yellowfin tuna, as it
      also contains 25 grams of protein.

      11. HALIBUT. A 3 ounce serving contains 23 grams of protein.

      12. SALMON. Similar to the halibut, the salmon also contains 23 grams of protein.

      13. BIOTRUST LOW CARB PROTEIN BLEND. 2 scoop serving yields 24 grams of delicious protein.

      14. BIOTRUST LOW CARB PROTEIN BARS. 1 bar contains 20 grams of protein.

      15. BIOTRUST LOW CARB PROTEIN COOKIES. 1 cookie not only has 12 grams of protein, but 6 grams of fiber.

      Moving into things that may fall more in line with snack-type foods, or
      that contain higher levels of a mixture of healthy fats, and good

      16. BEEF JERKY. A 1 ounce serving contains 13 grams of protein.
      If you are concerned about sodium, then this may not be a good option
      for you. *or if you have fillings or dentures

      17. PEANUT BUTTER. Just 2 tablespoons of this golden treasure has
      8 grams of protein. Healthy fats galore. In moderation. *These days
      there are many variations of ‘nut buttters’- almond is my personal

      18. QUINOA. A 1 cup serving contains 8 grams of protein. Good carbs. In moderation.

      19. TEMPEH, NATTO, MISO. A 1 cup serving of miso, contains 32
      grams of protein. These tend to be rich in isoflavones and beneficial
      bacteria, and they tend to be more easily digested.

      In terms of canned protein, I understand that there have been some concerns expressed over canned goods, however provided you are mindful of the sources, the following would be acceptable proteins…

      20. ANCHOVIES. A 3 ounce can has 24 grams of protein.

      21. CORNED BEEF. A 3 ounce can also contains 24 grams of protein.
      *Not to be confused with corned beef hash. That stuff will kill you.
      Not really, but if you are going to eat it, don’t look at the label.

      22. LIGHT TUNA. A 3 ounce can contains 22 grams of protein.

      23. CHICKEN. A 3 ounce can contains 21 grams of protein.

      24. SARDINES. A 3 ounce serving has 21 grams of protein.

      25. BEANS, PEAS, AND LENTILS. While I typically would omit these
      due to them being more starchy/carbohydrates, As I previously mentioned, I understand that for some
      folks, these are important sources of protein if they are vegan,
      and omit most dairy and meat sources. Due to the protein and fiber
      combination, these foods are great at allowing you to feel fuller,

      This list is certainly not all inclusive of every protein available,
      however this is my personal “go-to” resource for protein sources.

      If I can afford fresh protein sources, that is ideal, however I know that is not always an option.

      As I said this is my personal list, and the following article is one that was recently posted here on the blog that lends itself to this discussion:

      Top 10 Protein Sources (Other Than Chicken)

      Additionally, this next article will be helpful in providing you with a foundation for good nutrition, and I would love for you to share your feedback once you have had a chance to explore it:

      Beginner’s Guide To Clean Eating

      It is important to be mindful that there isn’t a one size fits all meal plan that works for everyone. It is crucial that we pay attention to our bodies and how the foods we eat allow us to have sustained energy, while avoiding hunger and cravings, all while providing the right balance of nutrients.

      I hope I have been successful in addressing some of your concerns, Carol. I look forward to your contributions on our blog.