You Can Lose Weight on a Fast Food Diet
Eat fast food and lose weight. Sounds like a scam, right? But it’s not. It is very possible. Why would anyone want to try a fast food diet to lose weight? Fast food is greasy, fatty and unhealthy. True! But it is also fast, convenient and with the never-ending promotions and coupons, fast food is cheap. With today’s hectic, multi-tasking, “on” all of the time lifestyle, we are tempted to find ways to save time. Plan meals for a week? Are you kidding? Cooking after working long hours? I don’t think so. For many, fast food, for worse (not better) is a go-to meal option.
Credit: Charlotte Astrid: http://www.flickr.com/photos/47526043@N04/4497292636I’ve been there and done that. Every day it was the same story. I’d get up in the morning and make solemn promises to myself that “today I will eat better.” I was confident and ready. Not being an early morning eater I didn’t eat before going to work (bad move). "I’ll grab something healthy mid-midmorning," I thought. Well between work emergencies and meetings I couldn't run to the bathroom, let alone eat! I would finally eat because I was one breath away from fainting from hunger and by that time was so ravenous, thoughtful food choices were out of the question. It was one vicious cycle. I have gained weight eating fast food and I have been able to lose weight eating a fast food diet. In fact, I lost 10 pounds in a month eating nothing but fast food and here's how I did it.
What Can You Eat on a Fast Food Diet and Lose Weight?
You can eat anything you want on a fast food diet and lose weight. I’m not talking about grilled chicken sandwiches or salads either (though those are great choices). You can eat hamburgers, french fries, hot dogs, breakfast sandwiches, fried chicken, tacos, submarine sandwiches and more.
Is a Fast Food Diet Healthy? Who Should Try It?
Let’s not pretend that eating fast food is healthy. It’s not. It just isn’t. But that hasn’t stopped us from eating it. In fact, there are many people who call themselves fast food addicts. “Super Size Me” is a movie documentary about a man who ate nothing but McDonald's for thirty days. One of the many side effects was the cravings he developed for it.
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If you’re going to try the fast food diet to lose weight, it should be used a means to an end. That is, to lose weight or to jump start the weight loss process. It is not a sustainable life style for optimal health. It is an option for those who need or want to lose weight, whose diets already consist of fast foods. It is a way to jump-start the weight loss process and hopefully transition to healthier eating. I would not encourage people who don’t eat much fast food to try this. If you’re already eating healthier whole foods, then find a weight loss method that builds upon that. I would also discourage kids from trying it because of the nutritional needs of growing bodies which are lacking in a fast food diet. The fast food diet is for people who are already used to eating fast food.
One "benefit" of the fast food diet for me is that by the end of thirty days, not only had I lost Credit: Darwin Bell: http://www.flickr.com/photos/53611153@N00/305631303/10 pounds, I had grown very weary of (grossed out by) fast food. I was actually craving healthy food which was the perfect way and time to transition to a healthier whole foods diet which is the best way to eat.
Why Does the Fast Food Diet Work?
Eating a fast food diet to lose weight works because it is based on one universal principle of weight loss. Regardless of the type of weight loss program used, we lose weight when we burn more calories than we take in. That’s it. There is no getting around it. In order to lose a pound of weight we need to burn 3500 fewer calories than we take in. There is no secret fast food diet menu or particular foods that will help you lose weight faster. Depending on your starting weight, expect to lose 1-2 pounds per week. The way you will do this on the fast food diet is to make food choices that meet your calorie goals to lose weight.
Seven Steps to Losing Weight on a Fast Food Diet
1. Establish a Baseline: I think it’s important to be very aware of what you are eating so that you can break any negative patterns that have developed. Keep a journal during this process. For a few days or a week before you begin the fast food diet, record everything you eat (and drink) along with the calories. We are often surprised by just how many calories we are ingesting. Keep track of how you are feeling when you are eating. Are you actually hungry? Stressed? Happy? Sad? Use that information to help you figure out your triggers.
2. Establish a Calorie Goal: Determine how many calories a day you will eat on the fast food diet to help you lose weight and stick with it. If your goal is to eat no more than 1200 calories a day, make your fast food (and beverage) choices around that number. Spread out the meals so you are not eating the calories all at once (which is easy to do if you select the wrong items).
3. Plan Your Meals Ahead of Time: Many of us get into trouble because we don’t plan what we are going to eat, and when we get hungry, we grab the worst of what is available. If you plan your meals ahead of time you can avert this. Try not to wait until you are starving before you eat. But if it happens, planning ahead can lessen your temptation to “blow” your calories. Use tips and books like “Eat This, Not That,” to make it easier to select better choices.
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4. Add Veggies to Your Diet: Put some “health” in that fast food diet by adding some vegetables. For example, add a side of broccoli with your fast food dinner meal.
5. Take a Multi-Vitamin: Since we already know that following a fast food diet to lose weight is not the healthiest, take steps to make sure your body is getting the vitamins it needs.
6. Drink (a lot of) Water: Not only is water good for you, it will help you fill full and flush toxins from your body. Water can also replace empty calories you are consuming from other sources like sodas, juices and sugary teas. If you drink a lot of soda and find that you are having a hard time giving it up, you may have a soda addiction. If so, think about kicking that habit for a healthier you.
7. Exercise: It’s good for long-term health and strength. It burns calories and
can speed up weight loss. If you haven’t exercised in a long time, start slow. Even walking five to ten minutes is a great start. Add more time until you get to at least thirty minutes. Your body will thank you.
Fast food is everywhere in America, but it doesn’t have to make you fat. If you're on the fast food merry-go-round and need to lose want to lose weight you can. Try the fast food diet if you like. Lose weight. Transition to healthier options. Feel good!
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