Everywhere we turn we are told about how to stay healthy and what the best diets to follow, with greatly differing advice from the various people that you speak to, whether it is mom or your GP.
The LCHF diet and the Atkins diet are both examples of low-carb diets that have soared in popularity and have been tried by thousands of people all over the world. For a while now these diets have been widely hailed as a breakthrough in healthy living, but as more research has been done and results examined, there is more and more confusion about whether or not a low-carb diet is good for you longterm.
If your ultimate aim is to lose weight without losing muscle, in fact, if your aim is to gain muscle, then a sensible eating plan that takes into account all of your body’s needs is what you need.
Fad diets can have a short-term impact on your weight, but long term they can leave you feeling under-confident as your goes up and down. Experienced dieters will be familiar with yo-yo dieting and will constantly be on the look-out for the latest celebrity diet or quick burning diets. Could there be a diet out there that keeps you satisfied and is balanced enough for you to lose weight without you feeling constantly hungry?
We think there is and it is called the Gracie diet.
The Gracie’s is a family of male athletes from Brazil, who have a passion for mixed martial arts (MMA). The Gracie brothers are highly respected in the world of MMA and they helped set up Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) as well as Jiu Jitsu. The Gracie diet pioneer, Carlos Gracie is the brother who kicked off MMA and he also noticed a clear link between how our bodies performed in relation to the food we eat and the amount of good nutrition in our bodies.
Carlos noted a connection between good nutrition and high physical performances from athletes he observed. Gracie was never a qualified nutritionist, but he had plenty of on the job experience and in many ways was an expert on sporting performances in relation to the food athletes consume.
Balancing your diet
The Gracie diet’s primary goal is to encourage a balanced diet. The diet focus primary on you eating whole foods, so as much food as possible gives you complete nutritional benefits. The Gracie is not scared to defy the usual rules of dieting as it encourages you to eat three meals a day at 4-5 hours apart.
Snacks on this diet are a big no-no, as this would interrupt with the strict food plan. If you follow the diet and consume the correct combination of food types you will discover that snacking is not required as you stay full for longer.
Main Food Groups
- Group A- Meats, vegetables, seafood, oils, fats and greens
- Group B- Most starches
- Group C- Cheese, fruit and sweet foods
- Group D- Acidic foods
- Group E- Raw bananas
- Group F- Milk
The food plan is fool-proof and is so easy that everyone is able follow without confusion. If you are pregnant it is not recommend without consulting your doctor first of all. You may still be able to follow it, if you add certain foods that you will need whilst pregnant.
Younger people benefit from the diet more, with those over the age of 40 requiring some extra guidance.
All for one and one for all
The real difference with this diet is the simplicity of the instructions that you need to follow. It is easy to keep track of everything that you are doing and there is no need to carry a bible of what to eat and what not to eat everywhere you go.
The Gracie plan offers a gradual change to your diet making it more likely to be a change that will be implemented for the rest of your life. The most important rule in the Gracie diet is learning which food combinations to eat alongside each other and what combinations to avoid.
The best practical advice for this diet comes from another of the Gracie brothers, Rorion. He decided to write a book about the diet in terms of how it would work for the everyday person, with simple hints and tips to boost your weight loss and keep you as healthy as possible at the same time.
Grace says, “The book has a very gradual approach on how to implement the changes making it very easy for anyone to adapt, and we also provide support through our site where you can find an interactive list of foods that show you what combines with what.”
What are the rules?
Rules, rules, rules, they word itself sounds depressing right? Well, think again, as the Gracie diet makes following rules fun, well almost.
- The diet encourages you to eat until you feel 80% full, so that you do not over-eat. By never letting your stomach feel too full, you are ensuring that your body is getting all of the nutrients that it needs without feeling like your tummy is about to explode as you ate too much. There is nothing worse than feeling like you have eaten too much, so anything that takes away the blotted feeling is good in our books.
- A second big rule, other than being careful about food combinations, is the importance of fasting for twenty-four hours once a month. By fasting for a day you can boost your weight-loss and allow your body to naturally cleanse itself. The fasting aspect is one of the reasons that pregnant women cannot follow the Gracie diet, so do be careful if you are. When you regularly add a day of fasting to your Gracie diet it allows all of the impacts of modern day living, like toxins and additives, to be illuminated from your diet and leaving you feeling fit and fresh.
Does it really work?
The biggest question you will have is, “ Does this diet actually work?”.
As with any diet, the Gracie diet will not necessarily work for very man and women, as our bodies are all different. Whilst the diet is easy to maintain, it may not be suitable for everyone and you should never stick to a diet that is making you feel worse than you did before you started it, this will not boost your confidence at all.
Those looking for scientific evidence that any diet works will be sorely disappointed as there is never 100% assurance that a diet will ensure weight-loss, no matter what anyone tells you. What this diet does it to make your life simple in the hope that by sticking to expert advice, you have a very good chance of living your weight-loss dream.
How it works:
The Gracie’s insist that:
“In order for any diet to be validated, it should be tested or followed for 30 or 40 years. So that by then, one can see the actual result it has produced. Most diets do not go through this endurance test and that is why they become ‘fad diets,’ in other words, they come and go. The Gracie Diet has been in use for 75 years and it has transformed the lives of thousands of people around the world.
Uncle Carlos lived until 94 and my father until 95. In fact, the last time I visited my father in his ranch in Brazil, he was 94 and 6 months, he gave me a hug and a kiss and said, ‘Rorion, let’s go on the mat, I want to show you a new choke I have been working on.’ The Diet not only gave them both, long fulfilling lives, but they had a good quality of life as well.”
It is up in the air as to whether exercise or diet is the best when it comes to losing weight and whether or not the two have to be done in conduction with one another in order to chive the best results.
Medical and nutrition experts will have differing views, some which you will agree with and some that you will think that it cannot be true. Carlos Gracie, of course, thought that if you had to pick between exercise and diet, that he would certainly pick his diet each and every time.
His brother Ronion also has great belief in his family’s plan and knows the diet alone will keep him and all that follow it in good condition. It seems that belief in the diet and belief in one’s own body is the key to making the diet a success.
According to Carlinhos Gracie, “Healthy nourishment modified an entire family” and these are the words that many Gracie fans adhere to in their search for the perfect diet to suit a modern, healthy lifestyle. We think that this diet has legs and will last much longer than some of the other fad diets that are popular at the moment.