If I wanted to lose weight and increase my overall health, this is what I’d do:

1 – Reframe my goal – If I wanted to lose weight, I’d actually reframe my goal as “I want to improve my body composition irrespective of my overall weight”  This means less body fat and more lean tissue (which is bone, muscle and connective tissue).

The actual weight on a set of bathroom scales is quite misleading because it doesn’t give me a clear indication of my health in relation to weight.  I could be 100kg and 40% body fat (VERY high) or I could be 100kg and 10% body fat (lean).  I need to know what my weight is composed of to get more accurate information.

2 – Measure my hip to waist ratio  – As well as looking at overall body fat percentage as a marker for optimal body composition instead of weight, I’d measure my hip to waist ratio.  (circumference around my hip bones and belly button)  This number should be 80% or less for women and 100% or less for men.  For example if I have a hip measurement of 100cm and a belly button measurement of 80cm I have a ratio of 80%.

Greater measurements than listed above are signs of an inability to metabolise the sugar in my diet. This is linked closely with diabetes/pre diabetic state and infertility!

3 – Convert my body into burning fat for fuel instead of glucose (sugar) – I’d take out all starch for a time, probably 2-4 weeks (potatoes, rice, breads, pasta etc) and increase the amount of dark green leafy vegetables.

As well as doing this I’d be adding extra oil to salads, butter to melt over steamed vegetables or coconut oil in my smoothies.

Over this period my body would start to become accustomed to using the fat for energy instead of sugar (in a process called beta-oxidation) and so would more readily access stored body fat for fuel in between meals, like over night for example.  I’d also benefit from not over eating. Due to the sustainability of using fat as energy, there’d be no “sugar crashes”

4 – Limit the amount of protein that I eat – Eating more protein than my body needs for essential repair and maintenance will actually increases my risk of cancer, so what better reason!

However if thats not enough then knowing that excess protein consumption actually converts into sugar through a process called gluconeogenisis should be another reason.  This is one of the issues with the widely popular but problematic Atkins diet when done for the long term (too much protein and questionable protein sources).

So How Much Is Too Much?

I’d opt for eating 1 gram of protein for each gram of lean body mass I desired.  For example, if I’m 100Kg and I wanted 10% body fat (therefore 90% lean body mass) I need 90grams of protein to sustain healthy metabolic functions.

5 – Ensure the quality of the fats are high – I would choose to burn fat as fuel instead of carbohydrate/sugar but I would be extremely mindful where these fats were coming from.  I would not be eating any vegetable oils that are heated but use a good quality olive oil for dressing salads.  I’d use butter, ghee, lard or duck fat for cooking at higher temperatures because they don’t tend to go rancid as easily as vegetable oils.  That is, they’re stable fats, which is a good thing!.

6 – Move daily I’d move everyday and choose exercises that balance my body rather than focusing on short term aesthetic goals.  I’d make sure that I chose a version of the following every week to achieve the perfect blend and target all muscle groups functionally: pushing, pulling, bending, squatting, lunging, twisting and gait (walking, jogging or running) with body weight strength being a large part of what I’d do.

7 – Focus on improved health – Similar to the above I’d make sure that I was always choosing diet and lifestyle elements that bring my body into balance not “trash me” for the sake of completing a work out, just because its my “workout day” for example.

8 – Follow all the holistic lifestyle principles – Probably most importantly I’d make sure I was getting lots of quality sleep (between 10pm – 6am), hydrating with sufficient quality water with a pinch of celtic sea salt added and practice practical mediation daily (something like walking mediation to and from the tube station for example).

Thats what I’d do and I’d encourage you to do the same if achieving optimal weight in a healthy way is your goal.

Please take my formula and apply it if you like:-)

Best wishes

Adam