Fitness and health can be a very confusing subject matter, in fact just the other day I received a text message from a student of mine that was clearly a result of his frustration and confusion. He stated that one particular aspect of this discipline made him very confused and that was the nutrition part. He stated that everyone had an opinion about how he should eat for health and muscle-building and as a result he was paralyzed in his decision-making process of what and how to eat. I don’t blame him, there is so much information out there and it all proclaims that it is the best for everyone. No wonder he was so confused and couldn’t figure out what to do.

In light of that, what then is the best approach? Is there even one? This post will endeavor to give you some clarity on this subject that so many people argue over along with their political views and religious beliefs, as if this subject were written in stone somewhere and that all humans should follow its information.

Thankfully things do not have to be complicated when it comes to nutrition and unless there is some health issue that is a limiting factor, things don’t have to be that limiting with the exception of some sport such as body-building and its offspring (physique etc.)It doesn’t have to be extreme!

Which brings me to my first thought on this rant: If you try to be extreme, you may be able to maintain it for a while but you will most likely crash and burn in the long run and end up worse than before. To me this is a huge reason why people end up “yo-yoing” up and down in weight and fat levels. They simply cannot maintain the level of intensity of the diet program and or they become a complete jerk and up judging other for not being as “hardcore” as they are. So be wise and avoid extreme diets, unless it is for an extreme health situation along with being supervised by qualified professionals that are licensed to do so!

So that is step one as with anything in fitness, nutrition doesn’t have to be extreme to be effective. Along the lines of that you also don’t need to eat things that you don’t like to be healthy! In other words, if you as I hate lima beans and Brussel sprouts, there is no need to join in on a program that is based on those foods. Instead there are plenty of awesome green vegetables that I do like and I eat them instead. You can do the same in your nutrition and find the things that are good and that you like in order to better adhere to your program and be successful.

Next, there is no research that proves that one program is better than the next and that guarantees that you will lose fat on it. Rather following a structure program gives you guidelines that you can follow thus resulting in change from the standard American diet to a healthier one and a leaner you.

So it isn’t about Atkins, Paleo or any other diet for that matter, it is simply finding the one that you can stick to and get results thereby as you go along. In fact personally and with my clients, I don’t recommend any one program, but a lifestyle change of finding the things that are healthy and that they enjoy and then having them make small changes as they go along.

This in my experience leads to better long-term results and a finding how you personally tick and how to maintain the changes. Of course this way takes a bit more work and introspection along with a need for patience. But as I tell my clients, “you didn’t get unhealthy overnight, it took time. But if you make the consistent changes needed to get to your goals, you will lose the weight and or get ripped faster than it took to be the opposite! So get to work friends and enjoy your life, enjoy your fitness and health!

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