• Evelyn Flamenco (B.S Degree in Nutrition and

Strategies for Altering Body Mass and Composition.

Updated: Jun 24

Weight and body fat composition are topics of great interest to athletes, coaches and to those interested on improving their general health and fitness. A healthy weight allows performance improvements , reduce the risk of injuries and promotes an optimal immune system. Similarly minimal levels of body fat (approximately 5% for males and 12% for females) are associated with good health. Therefore, targets of body fat should be recommended on an individual basis according to personal needs, more as a range than a specific number.

One can reduce body fat, lose or keep weight, increase muscle mass and boost metabolism. First, is necessary to set a realistic goal for weight and body fat, for example: "I will lose 2 pounds and 1% of body fat per week. I start my program on November 6 of 2020 and I will be able to wear that lovely black dress that I haven't wear in months" and then we can establish flexible and achievable dietary goals (small changes make a big difference). It is important to remember that an extreme low calorie diet will slow down the metabolism in healthy individuals; is preferred to create a deficit of 10-20% of normal intake (for instance, if you usually consume 2000 Kcal, you can start reducing 200-400 Kcal per day); one way to do this, is substituting energy dense snacks like candies, chocolate bars, cookies, nuts, etc. Dietary fat shouldn't be eliminated beyond the recommended levels (20-35%) because is essential for health and ultimately for great performance during your workouts. Fitness enthusiasm and athletes should increase the intake of whole grains, beans, legumes, cereal, fruit and increase vegetable servings to five and more. It is also essential to maintain adequate levels of protein and calcium as meeting daily drinking water requirements.

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