"Eat real food, mostly plants. Not too much"
Diet or exercise?
Diets are often about restricting food and calories. These fail after a very short time, usually with immediate weight gain (the opposite of what we're trying to achieve).
Instead, choose dietary change (see below).
Exercise to lose weight? - Don't bother
It doesn't work. Exercising burns calories, but it increases appetite to match. Exercise is brilliant for hundreds of other reasons and you should move your body every day, but that part won't give you weight loss on its own. If you are too heavy to move without pain - choose a dietary change first.
The things that will help you shed those pounds are the things that will help your body do it for you. The body storing fat is under control of hormones. Insulin is the most important one. This hormone regulates the sugar (glucose) in your blood stream. If you have too much sugar swimming around, this will be stored as fat.
If you have a healthy amount of carbohydrates (sugars) in your bloodstream, your body will burn the fat all on its own. We need to give our body the right conditions for this.
Eat well, sleep well, move well and you will feel fuller and your body's hormones will restore you to a healthy shape. There are some things which help you achieve this. Some things many people do aren't very helpful - don't do those ones.
Lose weight by dietary change:
Do not diet, do not calorie count.
Decrease carbs, specifically wheat and sugar.
You do not need to avoid eating fat. Fat adds flavour to our cooking and helps us to feel full.
Eat more veggies, the greener the better.
Lots of eggs, fish and anything that eats grass (or feeds on plankton. GREEN food contains lots of chloroplasts, which are really good and then get in to YOU)
Animal fats and dairy = good. Vegetable fats like margarine = avoid. Olive oil is great.
Get more good quality sleep. Eight hours for most of us. If you under sleep, you will gain weight, risk being mentally unwell, decrease your libido, increase your cancer, heart attack and stroke risks and seriously damage your immune system.
More moving makes a huge difference to your wellbeing, immune system and mental health but not really weight loss. So DO LOTS, but not to lose weight, that needs you to lower your insulin levels and that means cutting the carbohydrates (which you really don’t need).
You can eat cake (eg. on birthdays and Christmas - when did this start happening every week?). Just be aware that everything that goes in the top end is either a good thing or something to think twice about doing.
Eat beans and legumes (peas / lentils). Don’t go for nuts and seeds so much, they tend to fill an animal’s fat stores, ready for hibernation. And your's.
You can't go wrong with fresh produce. Salads are awesome. But eat a max of two pieces fruit a day, these are too sugary for your plan (and NO fruit juices).
Eat fewer carbs
Eat no wheat, no refined sugar and increase your intake of fresh produce.
There is no need to restrict dairy or dairy fats, nor olive oil or eggs.
Meat and meat fats is ok, eat anything that eats green stuff (fish and sheep, some cattle herds). Dialling back the alcohol could help too.
There no need to wolf your food. Your food should look good on your plate, be full of flavour and taste great. Cultivate the habit of savouring each delicious mouthful. This helps us to not over-eat (which is very easy with the ultra-refined foods we scoff down). Enjoy your food and stop when you're full. If your meals contain lots of fats and protein, they will keep you full until your next meal.
If you eat well and eat whole food each meal, you won't need to snack. We've got very used to snacking, so weaning off this may take a few weeks. If you must, limit yourself to a small handful of nuts or a small piece of fruit.
Don't buy food where you buy petrol - there is nothing good for you in there. Don't go shopping when you're tired or hungry - you are less likely to make good choices. Try online deliveries of the healthy food you need for the week.
Fruit is full of sugar
Drink no fruit juice and eat a max of two pieces of fruit a day. Fruit is full of natural sugar - this makes you fat, just like the stuff in a packet. The 'natural' message is marketing to confuse you. Arsenic, cyanide and rotten meat are also perfectly natural, but you wouldn't feed these to a loved one (I hope).
Eat a hearty breakfast. Do not calorie count, nor weigh yourself. You do not need to - if you eat healthy whole food, you will lose weight so the calorie counting is not the place to focus. It's going to work if you have sensible portions of good food.
Focus on eating fresh produce every day and cutting all the carbs you can. If in doubt think; would my Great Grandmother recognise this as food without any labelling? Aim for nothing out of a packet or tin and aim for nothing which doesn’t go off in a few days. Eat nothing which says it’s low in cholesterol or is heart healthy - this is out of date guidance and a marketing ploy. No margarine or vegetable oils (olive oil is good, butter and lard are fine).
Heart healthy has been killing us and making us fat
The advice for the last 30 year was that fat bad, healthy carbs good. It might be well meaning but probably entirely wrong and may have come from dodgy science funded by the sugar industries in the 1960s and 70s. Your health is much more at risk by being big than the fats in your bloodstream.
Your body fats have omega three and omega sixes in it - these come from your diet. If your diet is too heavy in one, that will be the main one in your body. You are aiming for an equal balance. You have probably got closer to 1:40 ratio (of 3 to 6). Six is bad: causing cancer, dementia and heart disease - three is good and helps reverse these diseases.
Cutting carbs and therefore your insulin load will make the difference. This will stop your fat cells from filling. Cut all white carbs now. Cut all white food apart from cauliflower - this is great, makes a great potato substitute and can be dry roasted or in olive oil for a tasty spin.
Can I eat brown grains - NO. They are still carbs. Better than white but will make you fatter.
Anything heart healthy? - STOP it.
You do not need to eat fruit every day. Once in the season when it grows in your garden is plenty.
Do I need vitamins or supplements? - NO, eat proper seasonal produce and you'll get more than enough.
Why we eat (too much). Andrew Jenkinson
Why we get fat. Gary Taubes