Are you struggling to lose weight? These easy meal plans can help you eat healthily and shed weight, even without fad diets and extreme fitness regimes.
Unless you are a fitness freak or blessed with good metabolism, weight can easily become an issue. With over 40% of the world population being overweight, it is not surprising that many of us struggle with weight loss.
To ensure healthy weight loss, one has to follow both, eat right and exercise. Exercise needs to be a part of your lifestyle if you want to stay healthy. However, even if you do not enjoy exercising or don’t have the time for it, a little shift in your eating habit can help you lose weight.
If you have chosen a diet, your meal can be planned according to it. Lose weight without hassle with the following meal planning tips.
What Diet To Choose?
There are various types of diets available these days, some of which can be followed for a short time for extreme weight loss. However, most of these diets are very restrictive and can have severe repercussions.
Some diets might help you in the short term but can have huge side effects during and after following them. Since the type and degree of these side effects differ from one person to another, it can become hazardous to stick to them.
The following are some examples of such diets:
- Keto Diet: This famous diet follows a very low-carb, moderate protein, and high-fat meal plan. It pushes our body to burn fat and use it as the primary source of energy. However, this diet may not be suitable for everyone or if you have some weakness or prior illness, it can cause severe damage to your body. If you fail to have the right amount of minerals you need while on this diet, it can make you ill.
- Paleo Diet: This one is the diet people used to follow during the Paleolithic period before they started farming and growing crops. You are not allowed to eat grains, dairy products, etc. following this diet, which may increase the risk of calcium and vitamin D deficiency.
- Mediterranean Diet: Very similar to Keto, this diet also restricts carbs. However, it is certainly healthier than Keto, as you only eat healthy fats like oily fish and olive oil. However, this diet may cause the deficiency of some vitamins and minerals such as vitamin B6 and iron.
Every nutritionist will advise you to follow a balanced diet. While you would prefer to limit the intake of unhealthy carbs, a diet such as a macro diet can help you lose weight without damaging your body.
If you plan your meals well with these Macro-Friendly Recipes and include all the essential macronutrients, you can lose weight and also stay healthy.
Choosing Your Calorie Intake
If you look up your daily caloric requirements on the internet, the most basic result would be following a 2000 calorie diet. However, if you get little or no exercise and tend to eat plenty of unhealthy sugars, it can make you gain weight and lead to health issues like diabetes and heart disease.
When following a macro diet, you reduce the calorie intake but still get the macronutrients needed to stay healthy. Even if you have to eat less, but make healthier food choices, you will stay full and fit.
Before starting a diet, you have to choose how many calories you want to take, which will depend on how much weight you want to lose. However, if your diet is limited, you need to be careful otherwise it can lead to weakness, low blood sugar, hypotension, and an impaired digestive system.
Planning Your Meals
For someone with a sedentary lifestyle, the most common calorie intake is 1200 for women and 1500 for men. You can increase or decrease(Not recommended) the quantity depending on your level of physical activity. This diet focuses on the three primary nutrients, carb, protein, and fat.
You will find many macronutrient calculators online that can help you understand how much of these nutrients you must take. Once you figure out your required percentages of each nutrient and calories you can spare on each, you will achieve the right meals.
A common percentage division for calories is 35% for healthy carbs, 35% for lean proteins, and 30% for healthy fats. If you eat three meals a day, you must divide these quantities to ensure you are fulfilling each macronutrient requirement.
Some may find this time-consuming, however, being aware of what you eat and choosing your meal wisely can help you lose weight and stay healthy.
Three-Meal Macro Diet Plan
You want to start with energizing food but do not go for unhealthy sugars. Choosing complex, whole-grain carbs such as oatmeal or brown bread is a better option.
Choosing to eat healthy fats like nut butter or avocado is perfect for breakfasts. You can add some healthy proteins like eggs or cheese, or similar vegan options. Try this breakfast burrito, pan breakfast hash, or overnight peanut butter oat.
Make your lunches high on protein and veggies, so you can stay full for longer. Leafy veggies have a low-calorie content but are high in fiber, so will be a good choice for lunches. Choose healthy carbs like whole-wheat pasta or buckwheat noodles, but eat them in moderation.
Restrict your red meat to two times a week and increase your healthy fish intake. Try this copycat Bobbie or this instant pot lemon chicken.
Try to eat your dinner early and at least three hours before you go to sleep. Eat fewer carbs and a moderate amount of protein and fat. A light supper will make you feel more energized, especially if you plan to stay 80% full. The fuller you are, the more sleepy you will feel.
Meals such as fish sticks and tartar or slow-cooked lean beef stew has plenty of healthy protein which can help you stay full.
Snacks, Desserts & Beverages
If you can afford to lose calories on snacking, you can choose healthy snacks like carrot sticks, nuts, or homemade fruit juice popsicles. Since you already know how many calories you can spare, you can get creative and make your healthy snack at home. Try not to snack on unhealthy convenience store treats like chips or cookies.
Avoid calorie bomb coffees shakes you get in chain cafes. Try to drink fresh fruit juice or sugarless teas. Make your coffee at home and carry it to work, this will save you both calories and money.
If you want to eat desserts, do not eat them after dinner. Try to pair them with your lunch instead, or eat it as a smaller fourth meal between your regular meals. Choose healthy homemade desserts, like chia seed pudding or cashew chocolate truffles.
By putting some thought and energy into planning your meals and choosing to eat healthily, you can lose weight and stay fit. Figure out how many macronutrients you can eat while staying healthy and choose a better lifestyle that aids your weight loss.