There is no diet that will do what eating healthy does. Skip the diet. Just eat healthy.
As we have started getting closer to Miss South Carolina, people have begun to ask me about my diet. Diet is a huge part of cutting fat and building muscle, but some of the questions I’ve gotten have been hard not to laugh at. Some of my favorites have included:
1. Will you be taking water pills to ensure you lose your water weight?
No. 2/3 of my body is water because my body needs water. I have no intentions of dehydrating myself to win a pageant. In fact, I won’t even be turning down water on swimsuit day. Why? The human body (including mine) needs water. I think this is especially true considering I plan on dancing for my talent, which tends to lead to me sweating out at least a gallon.
2. Do you intend to start replacing meals with baby food?
No. I have seen people do this, and I think you could do it safely if you were really careful. However, intaking a 90 calorie can of pureed banana (containing just 1g of protein with 19g of sugar) seems like a waste of those calories to me. I would much rather drink a protein shake or eat a piece of chicken. Low calories, less carbs, less sugar, plus I’m full and feel like I have energy to stay active. Also note that I got my calorie information off of My Fitness Pal, so it seems clear that plenty of people do use this method. To each their own.
3. So you cut out carbs, right?
No. Carbohydrates are an essential fuel source for any high energy routine, and in case you didn’t know, I like high energy workouts. Our body enters ketosis (burning fat as fuel) once we run out of carbohydrates. The problem with fat as an energy source is the amount of time it takes to break it down. I’ve tried lowering my carbohydrate intake, and it leaves me feeling sluggish and beat down. I tend to eat high protein and low carbohydrates naturally, but I could never cut carbs out entirely. Carbohydrates are not the enemy.
There are healthy ways to lose weight. To some extent, I rank decreasing carb intake among them, but it’s all about balance. No food is “evil” or a “miracle”. It’s about balancing intake and exertion in a way that keeps you energized but doesn’t leave a ton of leftovers.
What is my diet plan for Miss South Carolina? I can honestly say I haven’t changed my eating habits much. I eat around every 3 hours (not only is this good for your metabolism, it’s also the only way I’m not hungry) but try to intake small portions each time. I eat a lot of high protein foods (which goes back to decreased carbohydrates) like eggs and chicken or even protein bars. I also try to incorporate a protein shake as a snack or sometimes even as a meal each day. I don’t let my body get hungry, though. The minute I get too hungry, I’m going to go running to the nearest Clemson bar for a quesadilla and french fries.
Figure out a way to incorporate healthy eating into your daily life. Don’t jump on the latest diet trend. I can promise its results won’t have a lasting impact on your life, and your body probably won’t feel its best. Keep a watchful eye on eating suggestions that involve cutting water. Although losing water weight makes the number of the scale go down, it does not decrease your fat percentage or actually make you healthier. Find foods you love that also love your body, and exercise portion control. I hate the American clean plate mentality, and I promise it won’t kill you to have leftovers for tomorrow.
Create a sustainable diet plan for yourself. Incorporate foods you enjoy; eating shouldn’t become a painful chore. Remember to limit your portion size. Accompany your healthy eating with an active lifestyle. Try things like biking or even walking in a local park. 30 minutes a day will change your life. Plus, if you have a sustainable healthy life, you will be completely prepared to walk on a stage in a swimsuit and heels if the occasion ever arises. You won’t even have to make drastic changes to get ready!
Happy eating! #APerfectFit