EGGS: The protein found in eggs has the highest “biological value” of protein — a measure of how well it supports your body’s protein need — of any food. In other words, the protein in eggs is more effective at building muscle than protein from other sources, even milk and beef. Eggs also contain vitamin B12, which is necessary for fat breakdown. Even during all those years eggs were considered bad for you, I never saw it that way. Eating an egg or two a day will not raise your cholesterol levels.
BERRIES: Berries carry powerful levels of antioxidants: all-purpose compounds that help your body fight heart disease and cancer. The berries’ flavonoids may also help your eyesight, balance, coordination, and short-term memory. During the summer months plan on eating a cup of raspberries or blueberries a day. One cup has about 6 grams of fiber and more than half of your daily requirement of vitamin C.
ALMONDS: Almonds are one of the best sources of alpha-tocopherol vitamin E — the form that’s best absorbed by your body. Vitamin E is a potent antioxidant that can help prevent free-radical damage. A recent study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that those men who consumed the most vitamin E — from food sources, not supplements — had a 67 percent lower risk of Alzheimer’s disease than those eating the least vitamin E. Almonds are a great snack after a workout.
BEANS & LEGUMES: Pick whichever you like – Black, lima, pinto, navy. They are good protein, fiber and iorn sources, and low in fat. When people think of fiber they forget to think of beans as a great source.
Researchers in Australia, Indonesia, and Sweden studied the diets of 400 elderly men and women, and found that those who ate the most leafy green vegetables and beans had the fewest wrinkles.
SPINACH & OTHER GREEN VEGES: These foods have high nutrient content — especially vitamins A, C, and K; folate; beta-carotene; minerals including calcium and magnesium; fiber; and antioxidants. They have antioxidants and fiber that helps fill you up without loading you up with calories.
Snack on more vegetables – period!
DAIRY: Unless you are allergic to dairy, I am all for yogurt, cheeses, and other dairy products. Whey protein powder in the UltraMeal shakes is one of my favorites for weight loss. Three or more servings of dairy per day can reduce your risk of heart disease by 31 percent.
OATMEAL: I wouldn’t suggest everyday for breakfast. Don’t forget oatmeal can be a good pre-workout snack, or at night to avoid a late-night binge. Oatmeal contains soluble fiber, meaning that it attracts fluid and stays in your stomach longer than insoluble fiber (like vegetables). Soluble fiber is thought to reduce blood cholesterol by binding with digestive acids made from cholesterol and sending them out of your body.
Studies show that oatmeal sustains your blood sugar levels longer than many other foods, which keeps your insulin levels stable and ensures you won’t be hungry for the few hours that follow.
TURKEY: Turkey breast is one of the leanest meats you’ll pick, and it packs nearly one-third of your daily requirements of niacin and vitamin B6. Dark meat, if you prefer, has lots of zinc and iron.
PEANUT BUTTER: I know it’s high in calories but it has heart-healthy monounsaturated fats. For guys that means it can increase your body’s production of testosterone, which can help your muscles grow and your fat melt.
Avoid “classic” peanut butters such as Jif and Skippy – they have added sugar and trans fats. Purchase all-natural butters with one ingredient: peanuts.
OLIVE OIL: It contains monounsaturated fat – these prevent muscle breakdown by lowering levels of tumor necrosis factor-alpha. Buy the extra-virgin variety whenever possible; it has a higher level of free-radical-fighting vitamin E.
EXTRA PROTEIN POWDER: I add BioPureProtein from Metagenics to my protein smoothie shakes. In conjunction with my UltraMeal powder (Metagenics) or FitFood (Xymogen), it is a total meal replacement. I’ll say it again, the most powerful fat-burning meal is high in protein and low in carbs. The UltraMeal powder and the BioPureProtein shakes are high-quality protein that contains essential amino acids that build muscle and burn fat. It’s simple, it has the highest amount of protein for the fewest number of calories.