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Tip: The most effective strategy for fat loss

The One-Pack Diet

Here's just about everything we know about fat loss in one sentence:

Eat a subset of calories, choose quality foods that will keep you satisfied, powerful, healthy and hormonal Keep and check your diet with strength training, a little heart and lots of exercise outside the gym (NEPA).

That was & # 39; s. But yes, that's really a lot to unpack, right? We've unpacked this overcrowded suitcase here at T Nation for over 20 years.

Many people lose fat and endure it forever, but many people struggle for years. So what makes them different? Who is successful and who is not? A new study from the University of Vermont might have found the answer: those who monitor what they eat themselves will succeed.

The study

The researchers collected 1

42 people and had them participate in a so-called "behavioral weight control intervention" for six months, meeting once a week online with a dietician and having to run an online food protocol.

The participants who lost the most weight were the most consistent in recording their food intake – they counted the calories they consumed – their success was not related to how detailed their dietary records were, but how often they registered each day and how consistent they were

The researchers concluded that dietary self-monitoring plays a role in the number one predictor of success in fat loss.

14 minutes a day

This was also the first major study ever The question was how long it takes to keep a food log, needed in the first month Most subjects spend about 23 minutes a day to record their intake. After getting used to it, it took about 14 minutes.

Counting calories and macros can seem boring, and it can definitely be when you first start. With apps like My Fitness Pal, this is much easier today than it used to be. The time for the food-contaminated, yellow Legal-Pads is long gone.

  Food Log

What Newcomers and Pros Have in Common

It's the most boring advice you'll ever hear: keep a food record. But this advice is best for newbies and very experienced athletes.

Newbies have to do it for a while, at least, because they have no idea how much they eat. Reading labels and counting macros for a few months is like a fast paced college degree in nutrition. You will learn a lot.

Advanced lifters need to keep track of their intake if they embark on a strict diet, hoping to be competitive or simply ripped off for the summer. When your mind starts playing tricks for 10 weeks, these hard numbers will set you right.

There is no guessing and no fugitive diet that puts you in the single digits. If it's in your mouth, write it down. (Include your own dirty joke here.)

Count and Be Accountable

I think many people go too far. Some can be owned. However, there is no doubt that tracking your food intake works. And thanks to this study, we know that it lasts only 14 minutes a day, possibly even less with a fancy app.

One thing the researchers may have overlooked is accountability. Subjects in this study were held accountable – they knew that their dietitian could see their meal protocols.

Sometimes people who are struggling with fat loss (at least initially) need some irresponsibility. If you can do with it, you can keep your food and training protocol here at T Nation in our Training Logs forum.

3 proven habits that keep the fat away

The two keys to permanent fat loss


  1. University of Vermont. "Is the most effective weight loss strategy really that hard? New study shows self-monitoring of a diet lasts less than 15 minutes a day." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, February 25, 2019.

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