A #superfitmum in-waiting recently asked me what she should eat in order to overhaul her diet and ready herself for her imminent gift and to safeguard her going forwards against those malevolent and co-joined human-bashing twins: obesity and ill-health.
In short, like probably 85% of the population, she’s trying to lose a little weight.
Dads, Mums, Grandparents, children, hell, even dogs are getting fatter these days. It’s a battleground out there and the carbs and sugar and fructose corn syrup are winning.
I took her straight into a meeting room and, before drawing up a blueprint on the whiteboard, quizzed her about her current diet.
Asked what she ate for breakfast she said,“coffee and raisin toast.” Ding ding.
Lunch? “A salad wrap. Or pasta.” Urrrrrrr-urrrrrrrr.
Dinner, I asked tentatively?
“Cereal,” she replied proudly.
Breakfast and lunch I can kind of get. Because I’ve been there. Five whole years, five whole years….coffee and toast got me paying visceral fat for five whole years, to paraphrase Kanye West.
I didn’t try giving up because I didn’t think I could.
That’s what those processed, empty carbs do to you, man – they f*ck with your mind.
So what did I do?
The only thing an addict can do when faced with such a hurdle. I went cold-turkey on them at breakfast. Ditched the leeches in five days. One of the proudest experiences of my whole life. Certainly one of the biggest breakthroughs.
No toast for me in four months or more.
So breakfast can be hacked and hacked well.
Lunch went about the same but slightly healthier. Tuna, rice and beans – actually a pretty good, healthy combo and perfect for city slackers on a budget. I ate this for around five years, too. Every damn day.
I ditched this about a week after the toast.
Now I don’t really eat lunch because breakfast keeps me going until around 3pm with a few handfuls of nuts to snack on.
The purpose of this sermon is not to blow smoke up my own ass. I don’t need a blog to do that.
It’s this: I have a highly addictive personality and I’m extremely routine and habit driven. I don’t just thrive on order and certainty, I require it to exist.
If I can ditch five year old habits; habits that I thought and feared were deep-rooted and entrenched, then anyone can.
I mean it.
So, if all tweaking your diet to achieve a weight-loss and health goal (by substituting one delicious food with another) requires is a slight change in habits and shopping patterns, take it from me: it’s absolutely worth it.
Try it for one month. You’ll be okay.
I’m proof enough that food really does f*ck with our minds. I’ve read plenty of books about people going vegan or paleo or ketogenic and their lives being transformed. Yet I didn’t think it could apply to me or I was too scared to try it. Why? I have no clue. Probably self-sabotage.
And after five years I finally made a change and it felt great and was easy and I lost fat and got ripped. Hey presto, huh?
Making the change was easy (in the end). But not making the change was also easy. Actually, it’s easier not to change. That’s why it took me five years.
So you keep doing what you’ve always done and you get what you’ve always got and that’s the end of the story, right? But that’s not a life well lived.
I implore you to give it a try, especially if you have weight loss / improved health aspirations.
Here are the basic ground rules I laid out to my friend. Do this for 30 days and come back to me. Bear in mind I’m no dietitian or nutritionist. I’m merely replaying what has cracked the code for me.
Hack breakfast and you’re on the way to winning the battle. Regardless of your goals, whether they be weight gain or weight loss, it’s hard to go past the combo of eggs and green veggies. Here’s why:
- The eggs fill you up and are full of protein
- The green vegetables are, well, green vegetables. Delicious and nutritious. If you need coaching on this…uh, get off my site [Just kidding. But not really]
The beauty of this breakfast is that you can overlay other, delicious stuff on top. I like bacon, sausage, cheese, smoked salon and avocado for extra, satiating fats that fill me up all morning.
But if you want to lose weight and can’t do anything else for 30 days, do this. IT WORKS.
Toast is banned at breakfast time. Which kind of sucks. But you won’t miss it after a week or so. I don’t.
Chances are you might not need this, given your sensible breakfast but, in case you do, try:
Nuts – fill you up tidily. Are quite cool.
Fruit – Tastes nice. Satisfies sugar cravings.
Whatever you have for lunch now, sub in a salad every day for the next 30 days. At a push, stick with the tuna, rice and beans combo. But try the salad.
This means when you hit the food court you don’t make a beeline for those delicious Asian noodles. By all means, try the sushi. But not the fucking noodles, okay? And no Mexican, either.
Salad – think Beetroot, sweet potato, pepper, chicken, feta, walnuts, green leaves
Tuna, brown rice and beans
No bread / pasta / Asian food-court food
Full fat milk
This was the one meal I always managed to do right. Chicken and roasted vegetables or some variation on this theme. Thankfully, there are lots of variations so it needn’t become just a chicken and broccoli grind night after night.
Think four different vegetables chopped up in one half of a roasting tray (sweet potato, zuccini, red pepper (or capsicum to Antipodeans), celery, garlic (does anything taste better than roasted garlic?). Oiled and seasoned heavily.
In the other half, chicken fillet/s, seasoned and dusted in Chinese Five Spice, then oiled. Make a foil tent over the chicken and bung the tray into an oven at 180-200 degrees for 30-35 mins.
After 20 mins, take off the foil and give the veggies a move around to stop them sticking.
Remove the tray from the oven and transfer the chicken to a plate for resting. Cover with foil and rest for 5-10 mins whilst you’re serving the vegetables and pouring the wine (or milk). Serve the lot up with some hot English mustard.
So there it is – a (near) perfect day on a plate for a food generalist i.e. someone who isn’t bulking. If you were to follow this diet every day for 30 days and exercise moderately, I have no doubt that you would lose weight and improve in all manner of physiological and biological metrics.
There is no need to fear missing out on taste or flavour because this diet can be constantly varied to prevent boredom.
The biggest challenge in following this diet (in my experience) will be the need for a little discipline when it comes to grocery shopping and not succumbing to weakness in restaurants or after a beer or two.
Give it a go. Just once.
If you have any diet hacks that can help me on the straight and narrow, I’d love to hear them, either in the comments section or directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
And please share this with any others Dads who could use some pointers.
Get My One Pan Keto Feast Breakfast Recipe
This breakfast has changed my diet completely. I have to share it with you.
We Run A Spam-Free Ship