Category Archives: Dieting & Weight Loss

Welcome to the diet and weight loss section. Here, you’ll find detailed diet plans and
weight loss diets that can help you shed extra pounds with ease. Learn the best diets
to lose weight without feeling hungry or losing energy, as well as simple diet tips to
help you get better, faster results from your weight loss efforts.

Learn about the best weight loss programs and how to incorporate them into your
lifestyle, as well as the most effective ways to combine diet and exercise for weight
loss. Learn about the top foods for weight loss, easy meals for dieters, and even the
worst weight loss foods that should be avoided at all costs.

Protein Shake

5 five-minute protein shake recipes

Protein

Everyone knows the best way to get your protein fix is through real food such as lean meat, eggs and salmon. But demanding jobs, insane workouts and maintaining a social life can mean a lack of time for food prep.

Enter the protein shake.

Quick, easy and crammed full of the good stuff, a protein shake is the perfect solution for time-starved muscle-fiends. These simple yet satisfying shakes can all be knocked up in under five minutes and will quickly get to work, fueling your workouts and repairing your muscles.

The choice of protein powder you use is up to you. Whey protein is the most popular – it has the bonus of being a complete protein and gets rapidly absorbed. But if you’re a vegan on a mission to get muscular, you’d be better off sticking to plant-based protein powders such as soy or hemp.

Once you’ve picked your powder of choice, simply whack all the ingredients in your blender, blitz, and sup away.

Pure Protein Power
2 scoops protein powder
1 cup whole milk
¼ cup tepid instant coffee
2 tbs peanut butter
Ice

The combination of protein powder, whole milk and peanut butter = protein overload. Or a whopping 65g per shake, in more scientific terms.

The coffee is not only a treat for your taste buds, but the caffeine hit will give you an extra surge of energy, making this a perfect pre-workout shake.

At around 600 calories per shake, it’s great for those on a bulking diet. If you’re watching the calories, opt for skim milk and go easy on the peanut butter.

The Green Monster
1 scoop protein powder
1 tsp chlorella powder
2 cups kale
½ banana
1 cup frozen berries
1 cup water
Ice

This beast will help turn you into The Hulk quicker than you can say, “You wouldn’t like me when I’m angry!” Filled to the brim with essential vitamins and powerful antioxidants, you’ll feel better by simply looking at this green marvel.

Kale is the ‘It Girl’ of the vegetable aisle at the moment, but not without good reason. Just one cup gets you serious bang for your buck where RDAs are concerned: 9% calcium, 206% vitamin A, 134% vitamin C and a staggering 684% vitamin K. Plus it’s stuffed with minerals copper, potassium, iron, manganese, and phosphorus.

As well as the nutritional benefits of this super smoothie, it also packs a serious protein punch at 35g. And with around 300 calories, it’s perfect for those looking to cut body fat.

Chocoholics Anonymous
1 scoop chocolate protein powder
1 cup milk
1 banana
1 tbs peanut butter
½ tsp cinnamon
Ice

“I am a weightlifter, and I am a chocoholic.” Go on say it.  There’s no need to feel ashamed.

Whip up one of these badboys to satisfy your chocolate cravings and hit your daily protein needs.

As well as the chocolatey goodness, it also includes the humble banana, which has enjoyed some seriously healthy claims to fame over the years. It is said to protect against type 2 diabetes, aid weight loss, improve the nervous system and help with the production of white blood cells. Ooo la la!

With around 35g of protein and 485 calories, we reckon this delectable shake would make a pretty tasty, guilt-free pudding.

Tropical Delight
1 scoop protein powder
½ cup pineapple
½ cup mango
½ tsp coconut extract
1 cup orange juice
Ice

Sure, you might have forgotten what sunshine feels like, your flip-flops are collecting dust and you’ve got more need for thermal underwear than sunscreen, but it doesn’t mean you can’t pretend!

This tropical delight will send your taste-buds straight to the Caribbean, with its sunny blend of fruits and vitamin D overload. With only 310 calories but a hefty 30g of protein, this skinny shake is perfect for those looking to lean out for their summer holidays.

Note: novelty cocktail umbrella mandatory.

Brainy Banana Berry Blast
1 scoop protein powder
1 banana
1.5 cup mixed berries
1 cup water
Ice

Got an exam or work presentation coming up? Knock back one of these brain booster shakes to get you geared up and ready to smash it.

Research suggests that berries are brain friendly in several ways. For one, they contain high levels of antioxidants, compounds that protect cells from damage by free radicals. They’re also reported to help slow down age-related memory loss.

Now where did I put those car keys…

With 30g of protein per shake and just 360 calories, a Brainy Banana Berry Blast is a top choice for refueling muscles and keeping trim.

Binge

OMG Can I Cheat Meal? When? How Often?

Let’s be clear about something first – binge eating is not a cheat meal! You can’t shovel pizza and hamburgers into your face for days and call it a cheat meal.

cheat meal

A cheat meal serves a purpose. It’s whole design is to prevent binging out on pizza, cookies, and burgers when you go crazy from eating your oats, veggies and chicken multiple times a day. Take the cheat meal. I will tell you from experience if you do not, you will break and binge eat everything in sight.

We often see your normal everyday average person obsessing about cheat meals without even knowing what their end goals are. Figure out what you’re working towards first. Are you wanting to:

  • compete?
  • bulking?
  • getting six-pack-abs?
  • losing body fat?
  • adding muscle? 

How often you should have a cheat meal depends on your goals. I would suggest starting with two per week. You may be able to drop it to one or up it to three if needed depending on how you are on the road to achieving your goals.

You will need to know at what extreme you are training. The good news is, for most people, you can, at times, just eat! Throw nutrition out the window for a meal here and there and just eat!

Most people are like myself. I don’t compete. I live the healthy life and just love to workout. It’s a way of life for me. That said, I’m not a machine. I like to indulge in unhealthy food from time to time. There isn’t a point in saying no to junk food all the time.

Others suggest to subtract the cheat meal from your weekly macros therefore cutting what you can eat the rest of the week. This doesn’t seem necessary for the average person unless you’re working at more of an extreme than most.

So go. Go have a burger and some fries :) Just stay on the track to reaching the goals you set for yourself.

meat

Saving Money (and Calories) On Beef

The price difference between extra lean beef and regular beef can be more than five times the cost! But I have good news you. You can buy the cheap stuff and reduce the fat content by as much as 50 percent.

First thing people respond with when I tell them about this is a question on the taste. Will it remove the taste of the ground beef? Yes it will. How much of it is up to you. This is completely obvious you’re going to lose a large percent of it if you’re going to wash away all the grease and strain your ground beef completely dry and not even bother to season it after. So play around with it and find what you’re comfortable with. I do highly recommend seasoning. Always season your food.

Let’s have a look at how beef is sold to begin with. It will differ a bit depending on what country you live in, but this gives you an idea anyway:

ground-242_640

Regular Ground: The least expensive of the bunch, but with the highest percent of fat. Normally it’s 70% lean and 30% fat. I can almost always pick this up for $1.20/lb. It’s almost always on sale.

Medium Ground: This type of ground beef is 80% lean and 20% fat. This is normally what I pickup. It’s usually going for around $1.99/lb.

Extra Lean: This one is 85% lean and 15% fat. $4.99/lb or so.

Super Lean: The most expensive of them all. In my area it can be around $6.99/lb. Super lean can not contain more than 10% fat. It is usually 90-96% lean and 4-10% fat.

So – with that said – when cutting calories super lean looks like the best way to go. But what if you can buy regular and still come out on top? I’m up for saving money any day of the week.

Step 1: brown ground beef in skillet over medium heat 8 to 10 minutes or until no longer pink. Stir occasionally to break beef into large pieces (about 1/4 inch)

Step 2: microwave 4 cups water on HIGH 5 to 6 minutes or until very hot, but not boiling (150 to 160 degrees F).

Step 3Step 3: drain fat from your from skillet pan using a slotted spoon

 

Step4Step 4: place the beef in a line mesh strainer or colander and set it on a sturdy bowl. Remove the beef crumbles to a large plate or other container lined with a few layers of paper towels. Let sit 1 minute; blot top of beef with more paper towels.

Step 5

 

Step 5: pour hot water over beef to rinse the fat. Drain 5 minutes.

Type of ground beef1 lb raw calories after cooking1/4 lb raw calories after cooking
Regular (30% fat)880220
Lean (20% fat)876219
Extra Lean (15% fat)859214
Super Lean (7% fat)680170
Regular (30 % fat) Drained & Rinsed620155
Tea

How To Prepare Green Tea Correctly

Green tea has been all the buzz lately. But are you unsure of how to make it? There is just a bit more too it than adding hot water.

Choosing your green tea is probably the most difficult step of the process. Loose tea may feel more authentic according to some. Others prefer teabags. Teabags would be the most simple and wildly available in most stores.

tea1Brewing the green tea needs to be done correctly or you’ll find yourself with a bitter or flavorless tea.

Boil the water until a simmer. Remove from heat and wait 30-60 seconds before using it to let it cool a bit.

Pour it over a heaping teaspoon of loose green tea leaves and let it steep.

Strain out the leaves after three to five minutes.

 

Put the freshly made green tea into a pot after rinsing the pot with hot water. This is done to avoid the tea from cooling too fast from the pot.

TeaPour the tea into cups a third at a time because the first pour of tea is not as strong as the last. Pouring a full cup directly from the teapot does not provide the best taste. The top is weak and the bottom is strong.
Fill each cup a third of the way. Now go back and fill the second third in each cup. Finally, fill each cup all the way.

This is referred to as, “cycle pouring.”

 
Pour until the last drop because the last drop will have the most rich taste and fragrance. The second round is called “Nibancha” which is more of a mild and light flavor.

Coffee

Does Caffeine Help To Lose Weight?

Coffee

You’ve surely noticed one of the primary ingredients in many fat burners, diet pills, and appetite suppressants. You’ve undoubtedly heard the constant back and forth from the worlds greatest minds. Well, does caffeine help to lose weight?

The short and sweet answer – yes! It’s so popular among these supplements because it does two things. Not to mention it does them well. For the price of coffee or tea, you can’t go wrong.

Caffeine is a stimulant. Check your pre-workout supplement. It’s probably in there. This means you’re ultimately going to be more alert and have more energy temporarily.

li·pol·y·sis
Noun
The breakdown of fats and other lipids by hydrolysis to release fatty acids.

Caffeine boosts your metabolism slightly and helps you burn fat by kickstarting the process of lipolysis. This doesn’t mean you’re gonna start shedding pounds from a cup of coffee, but every bit helps.

So the next question becomes, how much caffeine should you take and in which form? 

Unfortunately there is no answer for that. It depends on how your body reacts to caffeine. Some users will get jittery and become crazy with energy after a single cup. Others can have five or six and still feel calm. You’re just going to have to experiment yourself.

If you’re like me and you feel immune to caffeine fast, try cutting it completely from your life for a couple weeks. This way you clear it from your body and break your dependency from it. When you start back with it, you’ll find you do not need as much to get going again.

Caffeine can do much more harm than good

Soda

Drinking a lot of cappuccino, sodas, energy drinks, ect? Well you’re doing much more harm to yourself. Best get your calories from foods. It’s much more healthy and you’ll feel better after. Try sticking to black coffee, tea or caffeine pills. These are the safest forms. Adding milk, cream or sugar to your coffee increases calorie intake.

Feeling your heart race? Getting too jittery? Better consult your doctor before going on. You’re best to stay safe and get all the facts. You could be in a high-risk category for ingesting caffeine.

Ripped Abs

The Ultimate Interval Training Workout to Get Ripped & Shed Fat

As the fitness revolution kicked into gear in the 1970s, training methods were fairly simplistic and unscientific. The idea that ‘more is better’ was very much the leading ideology amongst both runners and weightlifters, with athletes of the era trying to squeeze in as many reps, sets, or hours on the treadmill as possible.

Today, the leading data on exercise science couldn’t paint a more different picture of what is and isn’t effective. The ‘long, slow burn’ style of exercise is all but completely out of the picture, with most athletes opting for high-intensity interval training as an effective, efficient, and simple way to maintain their fitness level and physique.

Interval training caught on in the 1990s, with research from Professor Izumi Tabata leading the movement for several years. Professor Tabata was a Japanese coach that worked with some of the country’s best ice skaters. He was tasked with maximizing their performance during training sessions by running simple sports experiments.

One of Tabata’s experiments involved pitting two groups of speed skaters against each other in training. The first group would train for twenty seconds at maximum intensity before resting for ten seconds, repeating the process for four minutes.

The second group was asked to train for a longer period of time at a far lower level of intensity. Tabata tracked the groups by monitoring their VO2Max level. When the experiment came to an end, the group involved in interval training had a far higher rise in VO2Max than the control group (a 7ml/kg/min vs. 5ml/kg/min increase.).

Tabata’s research pushed other scientists to explore high intensity interval training as a way to improve athletic performance, with similar results. Experiments run by researchers at McMaster University in Canada and the University of Birmingham both produced similar results, indicating a major advantage to interval training.

How Interval Training Works:

Unlike fixed intensity training, where you’ll train at a constant intensity level for a long period of time (for example, running on a treadmill for thirty minutes), a high intensity training workout involves switching back and forth between exercises at or near maximum intensity and very low intensity exercise.

A great example of this is switching back and forth between sprinting at your fastest speed, and walking at a moderate pace. The goal is to push your body to the limit for a short amount of time before backing off temporarily and allowing yourself to slide back down to a more comfortable intensity level.

You can do high intensity interval training on a treadmill, mixing sprinting and low-speed walking; on a bicycle, mixing low-speed spinning and outright sprints, and on any other type of cardiovascular equipment. Some athletes even apply high intensity interval training to their weight routine, often for an exercise like kettlebell swings.

Why Interval Training is Effective:

Whether you’re a newbie to exercise or an experienced athlete, interval training can help you drastically improve your performance. One of the biggest reasons that high intensity interval training is so effective is that it works your body on an aerobic and anaerobic level – two forms of training that are otherwise thought of as exclusive.

In a recent study, scientists found that 2.5 hours of high intensity sprint training was the equivalent of 10.5 hours of low intensity endurance training, in terms of benefits gained from the training session. Because interval training pushes your body close to its limits for short periods of time, it produces a noticeable metabolic increase.

As such, interval training can help you burn more calories in a far shorter amount of time, improve your cardiovascular performance far more efficiently than the typical long distance training prescribed by many old fashioned trainers, and increase your results from exercise in a shorter amount of time.

Recent studies have also suggested that interval training is more effective than long distance cardio for reducing the risks of heart disease. A 2011 study performed on young athletes showed a clear reduction in heart disease and obesity risk factors.

Sample Interval Training Routines:

Tabata-Style Fat Burning Routine:

Professor Izumi Tabata was one of the first promoters of interval training. As one of the leading sports scientists in Japan, he tested his theories first hand on athletes in the country’s speed skating team, pushing them to complete high intensity training sessions before major events.

The Tabata Protocol calls for 20 seconds of high intensity exercise (exercise at 170% of VO2Max) followed by 10 seconds of inactivity. This is repeated for four minutes in eight complete cycles. Tabata found that this short four-minute training session was equally as intense and effective for his athletes as a far longer low intensity session.

Tabata’s training protocol is perfect for sprinters and cyclists. Step onto a treadmill or head to a local park and time yourself using a stopwatch. After every 20 seconds of intense exercise, stand still or sit down to regain your breath. Then repeat until the four minutes is up – it will feel like a lot longer than it really is.

This style of training is recommended for experienced athletes that understand how their body functions and are very aware of their limits. A less intense version of this training protocol is also possible, this time called the Timmons Protocol.

Timmons-Style Fat Burning Routine:

The Timmons Protocol calls for a far longer workout, in which athletes use a bicycle to pedal for two minutes of low-intensity exercise followed by a twenty second burst of intense, high-speed training. This continues for nine complete cycles, giving a total of three minutes of intense exercise and eighteen minutes of low-intensity training.

Both Tabata and Timmons’ protocols can be applied to any form of exercise. If you don’t like to run, use a stationary bike and switch between spinning and sprinting. If you don’t like to bike, hop in a swimming pool and switch between two speeds. You can even apply these principles to weight training or bodyweight exercises.

Who Will Benefit The Most From High-Intensity Interval Training?

Not everyone benefits equally from interval training. While athletes will notice huge gains in their performance, bodybuilders and physique athletes looking to lose body fat without risking muscle loss may be frustrated with interval training. While high-intensity training is great for weight loss, it often doesn’t preserve muscle mass.

Likewise, elderly people or new athletes that aren’t accustomed to high intensity training are best to ease themselves into an interval training routine. The Tabata-style training protocol calls for maximum exertion for short periods of time – an effective yet draining training method that may be too intense for newbies.

For the most part, high-intensity interval training will benefit anyone looking to lose body fat and improve their athletic performance. Combined with a good diet, a high-intensity interval training program can help you reduce your body fat while keeping as much of your lean muscle mass as possible.

rape-seed

Is Rapeseed Oil Good For You?

Rape Seed Oil Facts

  • Low in saturated fat
  • High in mono-unsaturated fat (Good Fats)
  • High in Omega 3,6, and 9

Known in as ‘the British olive oil,’ rapeseed oil is rapidly becoming one of the top ‘healthy’ cooking oils amongst fitness enthusiasts and doctors. With a tiny amount of saturated fat and a high monounsaturated fat content, rapeseed oil seems like the perfect cooking oil for health conscious people.

Rapeseed oil’s biggest advantage is in its fat breakdown. While oils from tropical fruits and animal fat are high in saturated fat, rapeseed oil has a very low saturated fat content and large amounts of healthy monounsaturated fats. Compared to olive oil – another healthy cooking oil – rapeseed oil contains half as much saturated fat

The high monounsaturated fat content of rapeseed oil makes it a versatile and tasty cooking oil. Olive oil, long considered the gold standard for healthy cooking, loses its flavor and burns easily at high temperatures, making it a poor choice for fried foods.

Rapeseed oil, on the other hand, loses little of its structure or nutritional value when heated to high temperatures. This makes it a great choice for deep fried or pan fried foods that need to be cooked at a high temperature, as well as dishes that require a more delicate taste than olive oil, which spoils quickly when heated.

Beyond its consistent and frying-friendly taste and chemical structure, rapeseed oil has numerous long-term health benefits. It contains large amounts of healthy omega 3, 6, and 9, all of which are known to reduce ‘bad cholesterol’ levels and encourage a high level of cognitive function.

Rapeseed oil’s advantages are numerous, and its downsides minimal. Slightly more expensive than other cooking oils, a bottle of rapeseed oil typically costs a fraction more than the same container of olive oil. Critics claim that its ‘nutty’ taste is a turn off for diners, although the oil’s distinctive taste has earned it many devoted fans.

These include celebrity chefs such as Jamie Oliver – a former staunch supporter of the now ubiquitous olive oil. Thanks to its health benefits and versatility as an all-round cooking oil, rapeseed oil is growing in popularity amongst leading chefs and health gurus.

Whether you’re roasting potatoes or preparing a salad dressing, rapeseed oil is one of the more healthy choices on the market. Boasting large quantities of omega 3, 6, and 9, as well as a sizable serving of monounsaturated fat, this versatile and heat-friendly oil deserves a place in every kitchen.

References

Featured image was taken from kentishoils.com

Healthy Food

5 Foods That Help You Lose Weight

Did you know that you can lose weight without cutting back on certain foods? While the ‘common sense’ approach to weight loss has been to cut back on all food, a range of new scientific studies have suggested that certain foods inspire your body to burn more calories than they contain.

Known as ‘superfoods,’ these nutrient-dense foods are so packed with nutrition that they can inspire massive reactions within your body. From tasty fruits that contain a powerful fat burning hormone to easy-cooking vegetables that improve your body’s immune system, read on to learn more about five good weight loss foods that can help you burn fat.

1.    Salmon

Don’t let salmon’s reputation as a ‘fatty’ fish put you off including it in your diet. This delicious fish may have a high fat content, but its large quantities of omega-3 fat will do more to help your waistline than to hurt it.

Omega-3 fatty acids are one of the slowest nutrients to digest in your body, allowing them to slow down the digestive process of other foods. Eating salmon alongside an otherwise unhealthy meal will reduce your body’s production of insulin and help to keep the meal’s nutrients from being stored in fat cells.

2.    Apples

There’s been an endless debate about the health aspects of fruit in recent years. Low carbohydrate enthusiasts have encouraged dieters to avoid them, while doctors and health enthusiasts have touted their vitamin mega-doses as reasons to keep them in your diet.

The reality is that both sides are right – at least a little bit. While fruits contain large doses of simple sugars, they’re also rich in fiber. In fact, apples contain so much fiber that they can quickly fill you up before a meal, preventing you from overeating.

3.    Oatmeal

Oatmeal is one of the world’s true dietary staples – a breakfast cereal that’s eaten by elite athletes and rushed office workers alike. While cereals generally aren’t a great choice for dieters, oatmeal’s low GI score makes it one of the best breakfast options.

Oats, served either as porridge or in a mixed cereal, provide your body with a long lasting serving of energy that doesn’t spike your blood insulin levels. Replace your favorite sugar-filled breakfast cereal with oatmeal to speed up your weight loss.

4.    Eggs

They’re bad, they’re good, and then they’re bad again. Eggs have been praised and scorned by doctors again and again due to their high cholesterol content. Scientists, however, believe that eggs are nature’s ‘perfect food’ due to their nutrient content.

Eggs contain a fantastic ratio of protein to fat, making them a great slow-burning fat choice for your morning meal. They also contain a large amount of vitamin D, which helps to support intestinal function. Add an egg to your morning breakfast without feeling guilty, but try to go easy on the cooking oil.

5.    Kale

Did you know that iceberg lettuce – long a staple food amongst dieters – contains no more nutrients than your average hamburger? Replace your lettuce with kale – one of the most nutrient-dense leafy vegetables – to massively enhance your weight loss.

Kale contains large amounts of fiber, making it one of the most important foods for improving your digestion. It’s also a very light food, containing just 30 calories per serving. Easy to cook and delicious, it’s the perfect side dish alongside a lean steak or chicken breast.

Low Carb Diets

There are many low carbohydrate diets that have gained popularity over the years. Low carb diets such as the Atkin’s Diet, the Zone diet and South Beach Diet have been highly publicized, with many celebrities endorsing the diet plans. If you are thinking of going on a low carb diet, you may be wondering what type of low carb diet you should undergo. A low carbohydrate diet restricts the amount of carbohydrates you eat and emphasizes on protein and fat.

HOW A LOW CARB DIET WORKS

Carbohydrates are the main source of fuel for your heart, brain and many other organs. Normally, the body burns carbohydrates for fuel, but if you are on a low carb diet your body burns its own fat instead. This is a different metabolic process known as “ketosis”. As a result, your body transforms itself from burning carbohydrates to burning fats, which can lead to a reduction of body fat and weight.

LOW CARB DIET PLAN

Low carb diets generally focus on high-protein food such as meat, poultry, fish, eggs and non-starchy vegetables. Foods that are high in carbs such as white rice,  pasta, grains, bread, beans, certain fruits and nuts, sweets and starchy vegetables are restricted. In fact, you may only consume 50 to 150 grams of carbohydrates a day. Some diets may restrict all forms of carb intake for the first few days then gradually add or increase carb intake as you progress.

A sample menu might consist of the following:

Breakfast: 1 poached egg with sausages, or 1 scrambled egg with tomatoes and mushrooms

Lunch: 1 medium sized grilled steak with stir-fried peppers, or steamed fish with cilantro and dressing

Dinner: Grilled chicken breast with steamed asparagus, or pork tenderloin with mustard sauce

DISADVANTAGES

Though the low carb diet promotes rapid weight loss and allows you to eat meat until your heart’s content, there are some disadvantages to this type of diet.  For starters, not eating enough carbs will lower your energy levels, which may leave you feeling tired and fatigued. Low sugar levels will also lead to crankiness and irritability. The reduction of fruits in your diet will also rob you of essential nutrients that your body needs.

Aside from these, there are many more serious repercussions to having a low-carb diet. Since this diet contains a lot of protein and saturated fats, there is a risk for high cholesterol levels which might lead to a number of cardiovascular diseases. Kidney failure or kidney disease is also a danger because consuming too much protein may put too much strain on the kidneys. People having a high-protein diet may also excrete more calcium than normal in their urine. This can contribute to osteoporosis and kidney stones.

EXPERT ADVICE

If you are unsure whether a low carb diet is the right diet plan for you, it is best to consult your physician, who may best advice you on how to proceed.  Although this diet may promote quick weight loss, the long term consequences may outweigh the benefits.

 

cabbage soup diet plan

Cabbage Soup Diet Plan

There may be times when we need to go on a quick diet to shed off excess holiday pounds or to look good for a special occasion, or even to jumpstart a diet leading towards a long-term moderate eating plan. The Cabbage Soup Diet is perfect for this as it only lasts 7 days and promises a 10 to 15 pound weight loss within the week.

CABBAGE SOUP RECIPE

Although there are many variations to this much-circulated diet, the following recipe remains the most popular:

  • 1 large cabbage, shredded
  • 5 large carrots, chopped
  • 18 ounces canned tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 large onions, chopped
  • 2 medium-sized red or green peppers, sliced
  • 4 celery stalks, chopped
  • black pepper
  • 2 packs of any onion soup mix
  • ½ pound of green beans, chopped
  • Optional: any herbs of your choice such as mint, parsley, basil, cilantro, etc

Fill a large pot with water and bring to a boil. Pour all the vegetables into the pot and cover. Stir in the soup mix and continue boiling for 10 minutes. Reduce the heat and simmer until all the vegetables are soft. Mix in the chopped herbs and black pepper. Save a handful of herbs for garnish.

HOW TO DO THE CABBAGE SOUP DIET

The Cabbage Soup Diet is pretty straight-forward in its instructions. It promises that you can eat all you want, provided that you stick to what is allowed. During the entire 7 days you must have a bowl of cabbage soup for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Although the instructions call for cabbage soup for breakfast, lunch and dinner, you can actually eat as much as you want all day long. During the 7 days you may drink as much water and non-caloric beverages as you want, including cranberry juice, black coffee and unsweetened tea. Below are the other foods that you may eat along with the cabbage soup:

DAY 1: Any fruit that you want, except for bananas.

DAY 2: Baked potato with butter, any low-calorie vegetables except for beans, peas and corn.

DAY 3: Any fruit except for bananas and any low-calorie vegetables

DAY 4: 8 bananas and 2 glasses of skim milk.

DAY 5: 20 ounce of beef, skinless chicken or fish, 6 fresh tomatoes, and 6 to 8 glasses of water.

DAY 6: 3 beef steaks and unlimited vegetables.

DAY 7: 2 cups of brown rice and vegetables.

 

VARIATIONS

For those who find eating the same cabbage soup day after day to be boring, you can actually add a little variation to the recipe. For example, try altering the kind of ingredients you use. Use red onions and red cabbage for the first batch, then use yellow onions and green cabbage for the next batch.  You can also experiment with different herbs for extra taste. Adding a few herbs such as chopped cilantro, cumin and chilli powder will give it a Southwestern flavour, while basil, oregano and garlic powder will give it a twist of Italian. A little soy sauce, fish or shrimp  bouillion and bean sprouts will give it an Oriental flair, while curry powder and a bit of mint will lend it a Moroccan taste. If you want it to taste a little French you can add rosemary and thyme. The list is never ending if you use a little creativity.

HOW IT WORKS

The Cabbage Soup Diet is essentially a good-tasting fast, wherein you are consuming very little calories a day. Although the main star is the cabbage, it is really the low-calorie diet plan of 800 to 1,000 calories a day that makes you lose weight rapidly. The cabbage soup is merely to sustain your hunger during this 7 day period. You may lose up to 10 to 15 pounds on this diet, but the bulk of what you are losing will likely be water. Once the person resumes eating normally after the 7 days, the weight may be regained.

EXPERT ADVICE

Though some may call this diet a quick fix, if you are intent on trying it, you may want to consult with your physician beforehand. There is always the danger of feeling faint or light-headed when you are surviving on so few nutrients a day. People with medical conditions should check with their doctor to ensure they are fit to be on the diet.