When I work with people like this, I think that for any chance of new and improved eating habits to stick is to focus on good foods first, NOT calories. If they don’t change the foods they eat early in the process, they probably never will. Good foods lead to early weight loss without explicitly counting calories because they have a higher thermic effect and because they are calorie-sparse for their volume. (Calorie counting can become important later, when weight loss plateaus or for stubborn metabolisms/appetites.)
I first have them learn to read labels and eliminate everything with high fructose corn syrup and hydrogenated vegetable oils. Next, they eliminate white flour. I also want them minimizing food from restaurants. It is difficult at best to get healthy, diet-conscious meals from restaurants even when you know what you’re doing.
Most people who are overweight are eating tons of processed crap and/or are eating out a lot. All those foods create a diet that is high in carbs, high in fat, low in protein. And the fats are never good fats, so they are getting lots of high-GI carbs, lots of saturated fat, lots of omega 6 fats, but little fiber, omega 3s, and monos. Following the 4 simple rules (no HFCS, no hydrogenated oil, no wheat flour, no restaurant food) usually leads to some rapid weight loss.
I have also found with regular people whose motivation to control diet to change their body is fairly low, it is a mistake to try to get them to eat 6 times a day. Honestly it is not going to make a difference for your brother to eat 6 small versus 3 larger meals a day. People find prepping 6 meals is too much work and takes too much time in the day. What I do is insist upon 3 good meals especially breakfast. I tell them they can eat “snacks” a couple times a day if they are hungry.
Next I educate them about good foods – basically just real unprocessed foods – and get them on a low-carb diet. The transition is easier because they have already reduced carbs drastically for a couple months by eliminating processed junk.
By the way, one of the first friends I helped with this diet change, I had him get blood work done before the diet changes and every few months thereafter. He had all kinds of people telling him that “all that fat” (almost all from olive oil and nuts) was going to raise his cholesterol and give him a heart attack. After 3 months, his LDL dropped hugely, his HDL had never been higher, and his triglycerides dropped dramatically. His blood pressure even dropped and he was able to go off his meds for it.
I wrote up my own articles to educate my friends and then clients just as a learning experience for myself, but I think that Precision Nutrition is an excellent resource to help people really change their eating habits. Doesn’t it include video of how to shop for groceries or something like that? People really NEED that level of detail if they are going to change their eating habits permanently. The only thing is that I would tell my brother (if he asked me!) that the meal frequency is ideal but not necessary. I don’t want meal frequency to be a sticking point of compliance because it is the least important thing for people needing to lose weight.[/quote]
this was fantastic - thanks so much!
well - i wasn’t going to make HIM count calories— i THOUGHT i would do it myself, figure out what his macros should be on my own, and then from THERE, come up with foods for him-- does that sound alright?
Otherwise - I’m just throwing foods at him ya know? And while I want him to lose weight, I don’t want to do anything too drastic - he’s about 5’9 and 185 lbs - and says he thinks he would be comfortable in the mid 160s…I am ALMOST afraid of not giving him ENOUGH food - if that makes sense-- since I come from a figure competitor background…
that was some great advice though…keep it coming! i am learning so much! thanks!