2. Eat protein, fat, and vegetables
Each one of your meals should include:
a protein source
a small portion of complex carbohydrates, such as whole grains
To see how you can assemble your meals, check out:
this low carb meal plan
this lower calorie meal plan
these lists of 101 healthy low carb recipes and low calorie foods
Eating a recommended amount of protein is essential to help preserve your health and muscle mass while losing weight (5Trusted Source).
Evidence suggests that eating adequate protein may improve cardiometabolic risk factors, appetite, and body weight, (6Trusted Source, 7Trusted Source, 8Trusted Source).
Here’s how to determine how much you need to eat without eating too much. Many factors determine your specific needs, but generally, an average person needs (9Trusted Source):
56–91 grams per day for the average male
46–75 grams per day for the average female
Diets with adequate protein can also help:
reduce cravings and obsessive thoughts about food by 60%
reduce the desire to snack late at night by half
make you feel full
In one study, people on a higher protein diet ate 441 fewer calories per day (10Trusted Source, 11Trusted Source).
Healthy protein sources include:
meat: beef, chicken, pork, and lamb
fish and seafood: salmon, trout, and shrimp
eggs: whole eggs with the yolk
plant-based proteins: beans, legumes, quinoa, tempeh, and tofu
Low carb and leafy green vegetables
Don’t be afraid to load your plate with leafy green vegetables. They’re packed with nutrients, and you can eat very large amounts without greatly increasing calories and carbs.
Vegetables to include for low carb or low calorie eating plans:
Don’t be afraid of eating fats.
Your body still requires healthy fats no matter what eating plan you choose. Olive oil and avocado oil are great choices for including in your eating plan.
Other fats such as butter and coconut oil should be used only in moderation due to their higher saturated fat content (12Trusted Source).
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