I’ve received numerous emails from my subscribers asking me the following question:
“If I want to lose body fat or get six pack abs, should I give up eating ice-cream
or chocolate (or any other junk food) for good?”
Not at all. You can still eat ice-cream or chocolate and yet lose fat. How? Read on
and see what the fat loss expert, Tom Venuto @ burnthefat.com has to say about it.
EXCERPT #2 FROM THE “SUPER LEAN” SEMINAR
How to lose fat by eating pizza
Super Lean Seminar
Burn the Fat, Feed the Muscle
QUESTION: “We’ve got a question here which is going to be useful for everybody,
because probably everybody listening has their favorite foods that they don’t want
to give up. For example, I love chocolate. A caller wanted to know, “Is it possible
to get a flat stomach and six-pack abs and single-digit body fat while still
enjoying your favorite foods like chocolate or pizza?” What’s your take on that,
ANSWER: “Of course it’s possible. You just have to eat small enough portions of
chocolate or pizza so you’re still in a calorie deficit. In fact, you could eat 100%
pizza and 100% chocolate diet and still lose weight. Heck, if a guy can eat 100%
Subway and lose weight, why not 100% pizza?
All you need is a calorie deficit. Of course, I DON’T recommend you eat a100% junk
food diet because that’s going to have a negative impact on your health. I’m just
trying to make the point that fat loss revolves around having that calorie deficit.
We have some diet book authors, some of them who even have bestsellers on the top of
the charts right now, who are spreading the same myth that diet gurus have been
spreading for decades; they’re saying calories don’t count. That’s total B.S.
Calories in versus calories out is stating the first law of thermodynamics, but
apparently we have a group of people who claim to have figured out a way to avoid
the laws of physics.
There’s actually an explanation of why they say that though. What these guys are
usually trying to do is to give you a list of eating rules which makes it almost
impossible to overeat. You could say that they’re “tricking you” into eating less. I
wouldn’t say that’s necessarily a bad thing. If the foods you choose spontaneously
make you feel fuller on less calories, I might even argue that’s a good thing.
But they’re misrepresenting how it works because there’s a huge difference between
saying “don’t count calories” and “calories don’t count” but they’re lumping them
together as if they were the same thing.
Do you see the difference between those two statements? If anybody listening doesn’t
see the difference, then make sure that you get the difference, because it’s huge.
Suppose I tell you that the only thing you can eat is lean proteins (like egg
whites, chicken, fish and green salads and other vegetables), lean plus green and
I’ll also let you take in some essential fats and oils, to make sure you get all the
Then suppose I say, “Don’t count calories; you can eat as much as you want.” I bet
you’re going to have a really hard time eating in a calorie surplus, because I’ve
removed food groups that are dense in calories, like starches and grains and sugars.
But does that mean that calories don’t count? No. It means that instead of counting
calories you were given a bunch of eating rules that usually curb caloric intake
“Calories don’t count” is one of the worst myths out there because if people don’t
understand the calories in versus calories out equation, they’re not going to be
able to get past the plateaus that we just talked about and they’re going to start
thinking there’s a cause and effect relationship between specific foods and gaining
They’re going to figure, “Eating pizza equals getting fat.” It doesn’t. They’re
going to think that eating chocolate equals getting fat. It doesn’t. It’s not a
cause and effect relationship where “junk food” automatically turns into fat. Eating
too many calories equals gaining fat.
Now if you take a pizza and you load that thing up with triple cheese and sausage
and pepperoni and olives and just stack the calories in there, then you have a very
calorie-dense food. Even though no food in itself makes you fat, calorie-dense
foods, if you eat them frequently, are more likely to give you a calorie surplus.
Or some foods stimulate your appetite or don’t keep you full for long, so you end up
eating more of other stuff later, and again, you’re likely to eat in a calorie
The bottom line? As far as your favorite foods go, my philosophy is that depriving
yourself completely of your favorite foods is a great way to make yourself miserable
and to be almost certain that you fall off your diet very quickly. My philosophy is
allow yourself your favorite foods as long as you acknowledge that calories count
and you obey the law of calorie balance.
This is one reason that I don’t prefer the full day off the diet or the free for all
cheat day, because some people might interpret that loosely and they may almost feel
obligated to see how much food they can eat and how much they can shove down their
throats. They say, “Hey, it’s cheat day, so I have to cheat real good. I don’t want
to miss out on this!”
They end up in a huge surplus and if they go so far over on the cheat day, when it
all averages out over the week, they’re even and they haven’t lost any body fat.
Your best approach is to know your calorie target, or at least the ballpark, and
inside that calorie target, give yourself a compliance rule.
One that works really well for me and for my clients is 90% compliance. I give you a
list of clean foods like the ones that I mentioned before that include high nutrient
density foods with all the essentials and I say, “Eat these 90% of the time. The
other 10% of the time, eat whatever you want.”
If you look at it from this perspective, then you can see that there’s no such thing
as forbidden foods. For most people, in the long run, any diet that gives you
flexibility is going to work better than a diet that demands 100% “clean eating.”
This is not only my personal belief, it’s also well supported in the clinical
nutrition and behavioral psychology journals.
I hope you have benefited from this excerpt. I may post one more tomorrow if I have