Ideal ratio of vegetables to meat for weight loss?

Answered on April 22, 2015
Created April 21, 2015 at 4:59 PM

Although I've been doing paleo for a few years, I started giving into convenience and started eating at Whole Foods. This must have been a good thing because I switched to primarily eating vegetables at the salad bar and secondarily eating chicken or fish from the hot bar, which is all paleo ingredients. My family is telling me my weight is dropping like crazy and I don't bloat up anymore. My waist stays consistent all day.

This makes me wonder if my protein consumption was too high when I used to eat at home. I would eat meats from Trader Joe's that were preservative free but probably had a lot of sodium. Sometimes I would sneak in some raw cheese too. When I think about it, I really didn't have a lot of vegetables.

When I go to Whole Foods, I sometimes feel for weight loss I should fill up on vegetables and only do a little bit of meat. But sometimes I crave chicken or fish as the main course. If I wanted to keep losing weight like I am, should I feel guilty for doing one meat-centered meal and then a salad meal? Or should I do vegetables primarily for both meals?


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1 Answers



on April 22, 2015
at 10:19 AM

Generally the rule is to go easier on the starches and higher on leafy greens, crucifers, etc.  Favor fattier cuts of grassfed/pastured meats.  It's likely you're eating CAFO meats (unless they're labeled pastured, wild, etc.), and it's likely at least some of those were treated with growth hormones or antibiotics to cause them to get fat, and some of that is left in the meat you're eating.  Generally the organic stuff isn't exposed to antibiotics and growth hormones, but not always.


You're probably better off making and bringing your own lunch from grassfed beef, bison, etc. and wild caught fish.  Stuff like farmed fish is high in PCBs and low in omega 3s and isn't any better than CAFO chicken.


That said, yes, limiting the amount of protein you eat will cause you to lose fat (and also muscle), so you'll go to a lower weight over time.  Any excess protein that isn't used for tissue repair will get converted into glucose and then gets converted to fat if it's not used.


Don't be afraid of eating more veggies than meat, many paleos eat more veggies than most vegans.  And that's not a bad thing. :)

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