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Critique My Cutting Diet


GOAL: Lose as much fat as possible while maintaining muscle. Then it's bulking from there - but i've gotta lose the fat :).

Hi guys, i'm new here at T-Nation. A little about me - I'm 19 years old, around 5'9" and 186lbs. I've lifted on and off for a few years now. I've decided that it's time to get serious and make my goals and dreams come true. I know next to nothing about nutrition so i've been reading and studying on this site and others like crazy recently.

Among the articles i've read are "Nutrition for Newbies" part 1 and 2. I've descovered that my daily caloric needs to maintain my weight while lifting 5 times a week is 2,800 calories. So using the articles I've read, I've made up the diet detailed below.

I will also be incorporating the basic bodybuilding fundamentals (just so you know) - TONS of water, 7-9 hours of sleep, and a multi-vitamin.

Here is the cutting diet that needs all of your advice and critiqing.

Calories| |Calories from fat| |Fat Grams| |Carbs(g)| |Protein(g)|

Protein Shake(1 scoop + 1cup skim milk) 200 10 1 16 32
1 Banana 105 5 0.5 27 2

Tuna (1 can) 120 10 1 0 26
Walnuts (1/4 Cup) 200 180 20 4 5

Chicken (6oz) 180 60 6 0 31.5
Eggs (3 whole) 234 143 16 1.5 19

Celery (2 medium stalks) 12 3
Peanut Butter (2tbsp) 190 140 16 7 7
Tuna (1 can) 120 10 1 0 26


Protein Shake(1 scoop + 1cup skim milk) 200 10 1 16 32
1 Banana 105 5 0.5 27 2

Eggs (2 whites only) 112 45 5 0 15
Walnuts (1/4 Cup) 200 180 20 4 5
Ground Turkey (6oz) 195 27 3 0 39

Totals: 2198 Calories(825 from fat) 91g fat 105.5g carbs 241.5g protein

Some questions I have:

Would it be beneficial to take Flax Seed Oil capsules on this diet? And if so, how many? (mine are 1,000mg per capsule)

Do I have too few of carbs in this diet? In the "Nutrition for Newbies" it states that carbs are only really needed in the morning and directly after a workout. And I've read a few people saying that you should have less than 50g of carbs/day while cutting but someone was also saying that I need much more than the 105.5g of carbs in this diet????

Is there too much fat in this diet? According to the "Nutrition for Newbies guide" I should be getting around 1080 calories from (energetic nutrients) which after the carbs that i've got....leaves fat?

Any advice would be much appreciated!


That looks fine if the 6:30 shake is PWO. Try adding some HOT-ROX Extreme in there. If you just discovered T-Nation you should poke around for a few hours and discover some of the many great cutting and fat loss plans written by the site contributors. The Velocity diet is the most popular attm. John Berardi's Get Shredded will get the job done. My personal favorite is the Carb Cycling Codex by CT.


I second this. Try to find a diet and stick to it is key. Carb cycling is good for a fat loss with minimal muscle loss over a longer period of time, which sounds like its good for you. Depending how much fat you have to lose, you could also do a ketogenic diet. Diet looks good, and yes, depending on your body type and carb tolerance, your carb intake should be minimal and fat intake high. Also, you need atleast maintenence levels of protien. I also think you should throw some HOT-ROX ex in. deffinately worth the money!


Wow a poster who's done his homework and not cutting from being atrociously underweight. This is refreshing.

Looks about right to me OP. I don't really have anything to add


Thank you both for your comments. I'll have to try and find out some info on the carb-cycling diet. Pardon my ignorance but what is PWO and HOT-ROX Extreme? I think i've got about 20-30 lbs to lose...but i'm not sure. My current goal is to lose ALL of the fat or most and get below 10% BF - then I can start bulking. I know it varies with every body but i'm just looking for the very BEST and most effective diet I can go on to burn it all off.

My willpower is rock solid when I set my mind to something - so i'll have no problems sticking to even the blandest of diets without salt or seasonings.

Also, I posted this diet routine on another site and I was told that there is WAY to much fat in this diet. What do you guys think?

I'll post a picture of myself after work if that will help determine what would be best for me.


Thank you for taking time to look at this thread. Your body looks amazing bro....that's where I want to be some day.

I've got 2 things that i'd like your opinion as well as other's on.

Is there too much fat in this diet?

Would I benefit from using Flax Seed Oil Capsules?

I really appreciate the post :).


Milled flax seed is better than the capsules. Just buy it and put two tablespoons in your morning shake.

HOT-ROX extreme are sold on this site. They are a thermogenic (raises your internal temperature and metabolism) with caffeine to enhance fat loss Biotest is the brand that makes all of the nutritional supplements and they are very high quality (if not the best).

PWO is post work out.


PWO - Oh ok, good catch. I just updated my post so that it says when my workout is, which that shake IS PWO. I'll have to look into the milled flax seed.

While we're on the topic of 'HOT-ROX Extreme'. A friend of mine gave me a full bottle of Nutrex Lipo-6 which he claims is the best rated fat burner ever. I've done some reasearch and the reviews look pretty positive.

Should I save some money (at least at the moment) and try out the Lipo-6 or go ahead and get the HOT-ROX Extreme?


milled flax is great. Try to encorporate fish oil into your diet, it really helps and is great for you.

I dont know about lipo-6, but I have used HOT-ROX ex. It is extremely potent. I lost about 10 lbs of body fat and actualyl gained muscle in 1 month fat blitz. Yours is over the long haul, so encorporating one or 2 caps of HOT-ROX a day would work wonders.

I dont know why they think your fat is too high, but i think your diet looks great. Check out your macros, but in my opinion they should probably be in the ball park of 150g fat, 220ish g protein, and around 80g carbs, majority being PWO.


Thank you for posting. Would a few capsules of fish oil a day be ok? Also what are macros?

Thanks :slight_smile:


Indeed! Only, I would nix the walnuts before bed.

Personally, post-workout my pick would be oranges. Banana aren't the most diet-friendly fruit depending on banana size.

I say, you have two choices. Either be a bit more relaxed with dieting at first and then dial it in as gains start to decrease. Another option is to go hardcore for a couple of weeks (minimal carbs) and then loosen up a bit before your body starts to burn muscle.

Regarding stuff like HOT-ROX - I don't believe you need it until a certain point, it should be like your trump card, just like dialing in your diet (minimising carbs, lactose, etc). I am your height, started out a bit heavier, and lost what I estimate to be 6-7 lbs of fat in the first 2 weeks of my current cut. Would I have lost more if I'd used HOT-ROX, and avoided eating fruit the couple of times that I did? Probably. Would these things have affected my fat loss significantly? Doubtful. On the other hand, now I can kick it up a notch and continue to see good progress for longer.



I'm also trying to get as lean as possible before going on a bulk phase.

I would add some more veggies, particular with your snacks (i.e. add celery or raw bell peppers with your 10:30 AM snack).

I would also replace lettuce with either broccoli, spinach (any good green vegetable) or even cauliflower.

Also, don't be afraid to cut out the protein shake in the morning, and instead eat a sold whole food meal with the same macro's.

Otherwise, it looks solid. Good luck.


Deffinately agree with this. Solid foods make your body work harder to digest them, increasing the calorie expendature to process them, which means more calories burned.

Macros are the amount of fat, carbs, and protein you consume throughout the day. Micros are the vitamins and minerals such as calcium, magnesium, zinc, etc. in the foods.

You should absolutely add fish oil. Any amount added is better than none, however, for a cutting diet, a decent amount, depening on the person and goals, anywhere between 10-20 caps. A good starting point is like 6; 2 with breakfast, lunch, and dinner.


Thanks for taking time to read this thread. I just looked up the nutritional facts on oranges and discovered that they have almost the same amount of carbs as bananas. I did not know that, that was the reason why I chose the banana. I would actually perfer oranges to bananas - thanks for the tip :).


Thank you both for the tips and informing me on fish oil use and macros. Do you have any suggestions for a breakfast with similar macros as a Protein Shake + Banana or Orange?


Personally, I rotate whole eggs + 1oz feta cheese (23g of protein, 15g of fat combined), lean ground meats (24-36g of protein), and sardines (2 cans = 34g of protein, 14 grams of fat) in the morning.

I'll have whole eggs (3 scrambled with 1oz of feta cheese) with spinach + half a grapefruit + fish oil or sardines with veggies, and TBSP of hummus.

I always have veggies with breakfast, and either half a grapefruit or 1 small tangerine with any protein or fat I use.

The macros in the above the examples are obviously not the same as yours (higher fat content), but you could adjust fat content in later meals. Typically, I have anywhere from 90-110g of healthy fats a day.

I only have shakes around workouts.



Bell peppers are surprisingly high in sugar. What's wrong with lettuce?

Agree on the morning though.. Find sources of protein other than tuna. Salmon's good - VERY filling, and high in healthy fats. Actually I had salmon about 3 hours ago and am not at all hungry, even though the portion was small and I would be starving by now if I got the same calories from another source.


Fedor989 - really? I compared them here:



and bananas have considerably more carbs.

Anyway, doesn't matter since you prefer oranges :slightly_smiling: I believe it helps to eat them PWO because of the vitamin C.

Kujo, no disrespect, but I wonder how suitable your advice is for someone cutting. Hummus, a tangerine or 1/2 grapefruit with every meal, sardines and feta cheese would not be my own preference when it comes to lean eating. I would also advise you to get more protein in the morning, OP. It should be your biggest meal of the day, so logically it should have more protein than the other meals.


One full size red bell pepper has like 5 g of sugar. Personally, I don't think that's a big deal (they haven't hurt my progress), but I could see how it could be a concern.

Lettuce is pretty much just water, not really any nutrients. I would much prefer it be replaced with mixed green salad blend or broccoli.


I never said every meal. :). My example was strictly breakfast. I only have small serving of fruit in the morning, and PWO. The grapefruits I eat are small, and half is like 30 cals, 7g of carbs. 1 TBSP of the hummus I eat has 40 cals, 2.6 grams of fat, and 3g of carbs. I only eat like twice a week max right now.

I agree with your advice regarding banana's. If I had one at all (I've currently cut them out), it would be pre or PWO.