There is a mysterious place where the mind and/or body work at peak efficiency. Athletes, writers, and musicians call this place "the zone". In his best-selling book, Enter The Zone, Dr. Barry Sears explains how dieters can enter "The Zone", too – by eating meals that are hormonally sustainable.
What does that mean?
Here’s a brief explanation. The Zone Diet is often referred to as the 40/30/30 diet. "40/30/30" refers to the ratio of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats consumed during a meal. According to Dr. Sears, 40% of your daily calories should come from carbohydrates, 30% should come from protein, and 30% from healthy fats.
What Is The Magic Behind 40/30/30? How Does The Zone Diet Work?
It’s not magic really. Dr. Sears states the 40/30/30 ratio is the optimum ratio for stabilizing glucose (blood sugar), promoting physical and mental well-being, and for shedding unwanted pounds.
The science behind this ratio is a balancing act between two major metabolic hormones — insulin, which causes extra calories to be stored as fat, and glucagon, which encourages fat burning. The Zone Diet also encourages your body’s eicosanoids (the molecules that control inflammation) to become balanced as well. Studies have shown that chronic diseases such as obesity, type II diabetes, and cardiovascular disease respond to this hormonal, anti-inflammatory approach to dieting.
One of the best things about the zone diet is that there are no strict restrictions on any one food source. That means you don’t have to totally give up the foods you enjoy the most. And, once you successfully enter "The Zone", weight loss will be gradual but permanent.
The Zone Diet Online
Dr. Sear’s book, Enter The Zone, is available from Amazon, but there are two informative and helpful websites that can guide you towards “the zone”.
The Formula Zone site was created by Cale and Karen Bergh, two extremely successful lifelong Zone Dieters. You’ll find over 3,000 Zone friendly recipes as well as helpful online tools to help you make smart, balanced food choices.
The Glycemic Impact Diet, found at eDiets.com, offers a meal delivery plan that is based on the Zone Diet formula. This diet is great for anyone struggling with sugar cravings, mood swings, and low energy levels.
While on the Zone Diet, it’s important to remember you’ll be shopping and cooking just like you normally do. The cost depends largely on the types of meals you want to prepare. Since no “special” foods are required, you shouldn’t see a huge increase in your grocery bill, though you will want to have fresh fruits, vegetables, and lean meats on hand.
The American Heart Association warns against getting too many calories from protein because of the dangerous amounts of saturated fat. However, Sears states that his diet isn’t a “high protein” diet as he supplies a specific formula based on body mass and activity to determine how the amount of protein you need each day.
The Zone Diet has a huge following simply because it DOES work. Celebrities such as Jennifer Anniston and Tom Cruise have been reported have followed the Zone Diet. If it all sounds too complicated, it’s really not. After awhile, balancing your meals according to the 40/30/30 ratio becomes second nature. So if you’re ready for a slimmer and healthier body right now, you’ll want to give the Zone Diet a try.