Now that it's February, many of us have given up on our new year's resolutions. What seemed so attainable only a month ago is now just a faint memory. But before you stat feeling sorry for yourself, there's still time to turn it around. It's only a few weeks into the year, after all! And while it may seem cliché to say a new year is an opportunity to wipe the slate clean and start over, it's the best excuse we can think of to get in shape and make real positive changes that'll stick.
Without the right help and motivation, dieting can be difficult — especially if you've decided to do it on your own. But a little info, a few recipes, and a couple of success stories can go a long way, which is why we decided to speak with F-Factor founder Tanya Zuckerbrot, M.S., R.D., on how to make dieting doable. Unlike other weight-loss programs, the F-Factor diet gives you a chance to dine out, drink alcohol, and workout less all the while losing weight.
It's All About Fiber
Whereas other diets force dieters to take out fats and carbs, the F-Factor diet is all about adding fiber.
"Most diets are based on omission — to attain weight loss, certain foods like carbohydrates or fats, or ways of life, like dining out or drinking, are omitted," Zuckerbrot said. "The problem with this is that it leaves dieters feeling hungry, deprived, and dissatisfied. The F-Factor Program, on the other hand, is based on addition — you add fiber into your diet to lose weight, so there are no feelings of deprivation and denial, which often holds dieters back, ultimately causing them to fail."
In other words, instead of starving, dieters will finally have the chance to feel full — but the weight will still come off. This, Zuckerbrot believes, is the key to staying motivated.
"F-Factor is designed to fit seamlessly into peoples’ lives, so that they can stick to the plan. From day one on F-Factor, you can: Dine out and drink alcohol, spend less time at the gym, eat carbohydrates, and regular meals (breakfast, lunch, snack, dinner, and dessert) and still lose weight. These principles are counterintuitive to what we believe about weight loss, truly making it a liberating plan," Zuckerbrot continued. "Lastly, F-Factor is about education. It teaches people how to eat for life, and how to maintain their weight loss (which corrects the fundamental issue of fad diets). This last factor only adds to what makes F-Factor such a sustainable plan."
What Do You Eat on the F-Factor Diet?
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Participants on the F-Factor are to eat four meals each day, including breakfast, lunch, a snack, and dinner.
"The combination of fiber and protein keeps you feeling full for the longest period of time on the fewest calories," Zuckerbrot said. "The more full you feel after a meal, the less likely you’ll be to overeat at the next meal; and, therefore, the more likely you’ll be to lose weight."
F-Factor Diet Sample Menu
What would an example day on F-Factor entail? Surprisingly, it's not too different from what you're already eating. Here's what a typical day on F-Factor would look like, according to Zuckerbrot:
Breakfast – Nonfat plain Greek yogurt with ½ cup of high fiber cereal and 1 cup of berries
Lunch – Miso soup, Naruto roll, 2 hand rolls (no rice), and salad with ginger dressing.
Snack – “F-Factor Pizzas” – 4 high-fiber crackers topped with low-fat cottage cheese or mozzarella cheese, tomato sauce and a sprinkle of parmesan cheese, microwave until melted. (These are a big-time F-Factor fan favorite!)
Tip: By eating a snack 2 hours before dinner, you won’t go into dinner ravenous and are able to make healthier decisions.
Dinner – Steamed whole artichoke, filet mignon (women 3 oz, men 6 oz), steamed asparagus and a well-deserved glass (or 2) of wine or spirits on the rocks.
Wine and pizza? Now that's a diet we could work with! But wait — it gets better: There are also pancakes and waffles involved.
Sneaky Ways to Incorporate Fiber Into Your Diet
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If you're unsure of how to incorporate fiber into your diet, the F-Factor website has a variety of recipes to inspire you, from The F-Factor Diet book ($11, Amazon), which you can carry with you wherever you go.
"I love our high-fiber pancake and Step 1 Waffle recipes – made with just a few simple ingredients, this pancake packs in 19g protein and 16g fiber, for less than 225 calories, and can be made into something savory, or sweet," Zuckerbrot said. "It’s quickly become a staple recipe for my clients."
Weight Loss Without the Workout
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What can dieters expect to gain from the F-Factor diet? More than just weight loss, that's for sure. Increased energy, a flatter stomach, clearer skin, improved sleep, improved cholesterol levels, and better-managed blood sugar levels are just a few of the benefits of the F-Factor diet, according to Zuckerbrot.
"Ultimately, diet trumps exercise when it comes to weight loss," Zuckerbrot said. "I tell clients, let F-Factor be your cardio. People do cardio to create a caloric deficit, but cardio can stimulate appetite and impede weight loss efforts. Instead, create a caloric deficit by eating a diet high in fiber, like F-Factor. The reason this works is because eating fiber burns calories — fiber can’t be digested, so it revs metabolism. The more fiber you’re eating, the more calories your body burns at rest. I don’t know about you, but I’d rather eat fiber than spend more time on the treadmill."
Sounds like Zuckerbrot gets us completely! No wonder Megyn Kelly praises the F-Factor diet — and no wonder so many people are able to stick with it long-term. What do you think — worth a shot?