“This plan focuses on resistant starches and healthy monounsaturated fats to keep you feeling energized and satisfied all day long,” diet expert Marissa Lippert, RD, says.
By loading up on the right (delicious) food, you’ll be getting fuel your body will use rather than store as fat. “You’ll lose weight, blast fat, and actually enjoy what you’re eating without feeling like you’re on a ‘diet,’” Lippert says.
What’s more, the frequent, well-balanced meals and snacks will keep you constantly satisfied and give you more energy. Read on, and check out our first-week Mix-and-Match Meal Plan to get started.
Feel the burn
Fill up fast on slow-burning, supersatiating resistant starches like black beans, oatmeal, barely ripe bananas, lentils, and multigrain breads. This type of starch resists immediate digestion, passing slowly through your body to keep you feeling full for a longer period of time. Plus, it helps your body burn more fat and can even fight disease.
Aim for four to six servings per day (we’ve loaded your Mix-and-Match menu with ’em), and click here for more options.
Don’t fear fat
MUFAs (a.k.a. monounsaturated fatty acids) help you lose belly fat naturally, studies show. These healthy fats also reduce inflammation, which can keep weight gain at bay and even help lower cholesterol and disease risks. Some good sources: avocado, olive and canola oils, sunflower seeds, salmon, and nuts.
Keep in mind that a little goes a long way when it comes to calorie-dense MUFAs, so aim for two to three servings per day; visit Health.com/fgw for serving sizes and a complete list.
Eat like clockwork
Aim to have a meal or small snack every three to four hours to keep your metabolism revved up and those calories and excess fat stores burning off. The goal is 1,400 to 1,600 total daily calories, broken down this way:
Breakfast, 300 calories
Lunch, 400 to 450 calories
Dinner, 450 to 500 calories
Two snacks, 100 to 200 calories each