The power behind Dr. Barry Sears’s Zone diet is that it offers people simple techniques to be used as part of their eating plan, which makes lower-calorie eating on a high-protein, moderate-carb plan simply easier to follow.
I’ve made a list below of a few of the techniques that I’ve used successfully to help “stay in the zone,” as Dr. Sears calls it, and keeping to a 40-30-30 ratio of carbs, proteins and fats:
Protein – Decide on the amount of protein you should have by comparing size (e.g. of a chicken breast) with the thickness of your palm.
Carbs – If it’s a “good” (high-fiber; low-glycemic) source of carbs, then the portion should equal the size of two fists, but if it’s a “bad” source (low in fiber; high-glycemic) the portions should equal the size of one fist
Fats – If the protein has fat, don’t add any. If it doesn’t, then choose nuts or olive oil.
Simple, right? Then, just eat frequently throughout the day by never letting five hours pass without a snack or meal. And you can generally apply it to a DASH-style, Mediterranean-style or Paleo-style diet.
The Zone diet ratio of protein/carbs/fats is all about keeping your body working efficiently while keeping blood sugar and calories in check. It’s not about being complicated or restrictive — which ultimately the greatest cause for diet failure because it leads to bingeing.