5. High-protein diet
What it is: At least 25% of daily calories from protein.
Pros: The most consistently beneficial of all diets here, study after study shows that upping your protein intake can help significantly reduce body fat and build lean muscle. For example: Guys who ran sprint intervals, did resistance training, and ate a diet of 2.4g of protein per kg of bodyweight per day (roughly 1g per lb of bodyweight) gained 1.2kg of lean muscle and lost almost 5kg of fat in just four weeks, according to a study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. If you cut calories but eat high protein, the macro can help prevent your metabolism from plummeting and help keep hunger at bay, since protein is so satiating. The study analysis also confirmed that eating a ton of protein stuff doesn’t cause you to gain weight or harm any internal systems, despite myths.
Cons: With the focus on protein, it’s easy to forget you need to eat enough fat or carbs to fuel your workouts, so keep an eye on your energy levels and other macros. And that’s the only real downside. The only other con the study analysis found: High protein is so effective in making you less hungry that it might hurt your efforts to gain weight.
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