Choosing the Right Diet Foods

When you follow the guidelines of TNT, low-carb foods will form foundation of your diet. That's because they won't raise your levels of insulin (a hormone that tells your body to store fat) or glycogen (the carbohydrates stored in your muscles, referred to as your "carb bucket" below). This tactic also regulates your appetite, allowing you to eat as much as you desire, without overeating.

Keeping high amounts of carbs out of your diet lets your body burn fat at its highest potential, while protecting metabolism-boosting muscle. The TNT Diet also helps to stabilize your blood sugar and reduce your body's internal production of saturated fat. Both of these results are extremely effective for decreasing your risk for heart disease. Even better: The guidelines in are simple; just follow the five nutrition tactics below.

The Nutrition Tactics

1. Choose liberally from the low-carb foods below. Feel free to eat any combination of these foods—along with the approved condiments and beverages—until you feel satisfied, but not stuffed. These "restrictions" sound too easy to work, but study after study has shown that eating this way promises more dramatic fat loss than any other approach—and without the need to count calories.

2. Try to consume high-quality protein at every meal. Eating protein ensures that your body always has the raw material available to build and maintain your muscle, even while you lose fat. Protein also helps to keep your metabolism stoked. That's because your body uses more calories to digest and process protein than both carbohydrates and fat combined.

3. Don't fear fat. Fat is a crucial factor in helping you control the total number of calories your body craves. That's because fat is very effective at helping you feel satisfied. Remember, your body is designed to burn fat. And you control the fat-burning trigger by eating foods—specifically, the foods below—that keep your insulin and glycogen (the stored carbohydrates in your muscles) levels low.

4. Indulge on vegetables. When our friend and colleague, Richard Feinman, Ph.D., professor of biochemistry at SUNY Downstate medical center, in New York City, polled more than 2,000 low-carbohydrate dieters, he found that, on average, those who were most successful consumed at least 4 servings of low-starch vegetables a day. That's a list comprised of almost any vegetable other than potatoes.

5. Avoid sugar and starch. The list of foods to avoid includes bread, pasta, potatoes, beans, rice, fruit, milk, candy, regular soda, and baked goods—as well any other foods that contain grains, flour or sugar. The reason? These are the foods that either raise blood sugar and insulin levels, or replenish glycogen—all of which inhibit your body's ability to burn fat for energy. You might be surprised to see fruit and milk on this list, but it's not because either is unhealthy—they simply provide too many glycogen-replenishing carbs, in the form of natural sugars.

Low-Carb Foods

High-Quality Protein:

Beef
Cheese
Eggs
Fish
Pork
Poultry
Whey and Casein Protein

Low-Starch Vegetables*

Artichokes
Asparagus
Broccoli
Brussels Sprouts
Cauliflower
Celery
Cucumbers
Mushrooms
Onions
Peppers
Spinach
Tomatoes
Turnips
Zucchini

Natural Fats

Avocadoes
Butter
Coconut
Peppers
Cream
Nuts and Seeds**
Olives, Olive oil, and Canola Oil
Sour Cream

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