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THE VARIETY DIET

I was reading People Magazine's section called "What I Eat in a Day" featuring fitness competitor Tamra Judge, who is 49 and eats an astounding 4 meals, 3 protein shakes and 2 snacks each day. So nine times a day she is consuming food, or every 1.5 to 2 hours. The meals include a pre- and post-workout breakfasts as well as lunch and dinner and snack staples such as nut butter and yogurt. In the picture she looks a bit on the full side. No wonder. It says the total calorie count for this veritable feast comes to 2,700. She's 5'4 and probably weighs 120 lbs, which means she needs about 1700 calories to maintain her body at rest and burns another 1000 calories exercising. She admits to eating the same food every day, focusing on meal preparation to keep her on track and rarely indulging in alcohol. This is good advice. But I think it's better not to snack between meals. Let the stomach empty itself before filling it back up. Otherwise you're spending the entire day digesting, and digesting requires a lot of work!

In the spirit of something new, here is what I like to call the Variety Diet to try on for size. Days 1 and 2 are high protein, days 3 and 4 are high fat and days 5 and 6 are lighter cleansing days. On the seventh day you can rest, meaning eat what you want. If it's good enough for God, who purportedly took only six days to create everything under the sun including the sun, then taking it easy some is good for you too.

Day 1/2

Hot chocolate with stevia (use water rather than milk)

Protein Shake with chia seeds, raw vegan protein powder, banana and berries

Lunch of tempeh, 3 whole eggs, 4 oz fish with sliced bell pepper, tomato and cucumber

Dinner of 2 cups cooked broccoli and 1 cup to 1.5 cups lentils

Dessert: 1 serving protein powder mixed with water

Day 3/4

Coffee with 1 tbsp coconut oil and stevia

Breakfast of sliced cucumber, tomato and bell pepper with 1 whole avocado

Lunch: 1 steamed sweet potato with 2 cups steamed green beans

Dinner: 1 cup quinoa with 1 tbsp coconut oil and 1 cup steamed carrots

2 bananas with nut butter or raw nuts for dessert

Day 5/6

Black tea

As much juicy fruit as you want until noon. Examples include melons, apples, oranges, grapes and pineapples

Large salad with avocado and olive tapenade; 1 to 1.5 cups kidney beans or garbanzo beans

Dinner: 2 cups asparagus or other green vegetable with 1 tbsp coconut oil for flavor; 1 cup quinoa

Fresh fruit for dessert

Day 7

Off but go easy on the junk food.

This plan boasts enough variety to keep you stimulated. The common feature of each day is raw food only until noon, and a focus on fruits and vegetables.


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