Stephen Cabral, CPT/CSCS is the author of Fatlossity as well as founder and director of FitLife by StephenCabral.com. The Diet.com video contributor has been an active member of the fitness and personal training community for over 10 years. His passion has led him all over the country in pursuit of continuing to further his education, certifications, and health & fitness philosophies.

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Fit Life with Stephen Cabral

by Stephen Cabral, Fitness Professional
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Lately, I've been getting a ton of emails from people looking to customize our fat loss nutrition plan while maintaining a vegetarian cuisine.

And, since the tips I'm giving my online and studio clients can be applied by anyone I thought you deserved to see them as well!

Even if you aren't a vegetarian the information I provide in the attached short email below will explain why some people never have any energy or can lose weight.

Plus, I've spent many months as a strict vegetarian over the past couple of years, so understand both sides of the equation especially as it relates to heath and weight loss...

< Vegetarian Diet Tips Email >

Hi Janet,

Thank you for the email and we have a lot of vegetarians on our nutritional plan.

We suggest substituting eggs, cottage cheese, Greek/Icelandic yogurt, or fish where you see meat. Also, if you don't eat eggs or fish you can easily use tempeh, miso, natto, chick peas, black beans, navy beans, lentils in their place (for a protein). 

The issue we find with some vegetarians is that their energy levels suffer when they do not include enough protein (amino acids) in order to compensate for their activity levels during the day.

Plus, many vegetarians eat too many starchy carbohydrates without any healthy fats or protein at a meal, which leads to serious fluctuations in blood sugar levels leading to increased cravings for more starchy carbohydrates and sugar. This is a self-perpetuating cycle that lends itself to increased body fat and lean muscle catabolism. 

Remember, that it is almost impossible to lose body fat and maintain energy levels when blood sugar levels have been spiked (through the consumption of sugar/starch based foods) and a high level of insulin is present in the blood.

Insulin is a fat storing hormone
, and therefore, when it is turned on body fat is not being burned (sugar is).

This is why we suggest centering your 3 main meals around a protein (vegan, vegetarian, or animal based) and vegetables, as well as eating 1-2 snacks consisting of a yogurt (less than 8g sugar), some nuts, etc.

Fruit is acceptable after competing Phase 1 of our fat loss nutrition plan, and is best eaten for breakfast (before a protein), and after your workouts, since these are the times fruit will be best utilized by your body without being turned to fat.

In time you'll figure out exactly what works for your body
and energy levels. The result will be a healthy and lean physique with plenty of energy lasting all day!

Looking for more fat loss information?

Click here for Stephen's video on How Lose 5 Pounds in Less than a Week!

Committed to your success,

Stephen Cabral, CSCS, CPT, NS
Voted "2011 Personal Trainer of the Year"
Author of Fatlossity, Lose5in7 Weight Loss System
Health Consultant for MTV, Men's Health, Women's Day, NutritionData, Dietcom, SELF

@ 10:13am ET on September 11, 2012
Remember that some people thrive on a vegetarian diet while others feel lethargic or just plain lousy... It all depends on how your body type oxidizes sugars, fats, and protein - and how you structure your meals!

@ 11:39am ET on April 1, 2013
Raw vegetarian diet in shape of fresh fruits and green vegetables are more effective foods for the healthy weight loss.
Take fresh fruits juices in breakfast, green vegetables salad in lunch, and vegetables soups in dinner to control your weight.


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