Eat It! (2022) offers a sensible, fact-based and reassuring weight-loss program for those of us who are tired of chasing the latest diet trends. You’ll find sound advice and a guilt-free approach to shedding pounds and eating sensibly.
Introduction: Learn how to lose weight without feeling trapped and unable to enjoy life.
Paleo, keto, low-fat, high-fat, low-carb – who knows? If you’ve tried to shed a few pounds over the past few years, there’s a good chance you’ve tried one or half a dozen of the different diet plans out there. Most of them claim to have some sort of logical approach to weight loss, but many of them are simply trying to sell you apps, cookbooks, fancy drinks, or pricey memberships.
Jordan Syatt and Michael Vacanti have years of experience helping hundreds of people lose weight. Their successful track record has led them to becoming in-demand personal trainers, with clients like the entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk. They’re here to tell you that you don’t need to cut carbs or fat from your diet. And you don’t need to worry about what’s on the menu at the next holiday gathering, either. Their plan is so simple you might not believe it. But it works every time.
In these summaries, you’ll learn
- why you should probably be eating more protein;
- why losing weight is both simple and far from easy; and
- why keeping your eye on the 80-20 ratio can be a key to success.
Weight loss isn’t a straight line.
Welcome to summary to Eat It! If you’ve made it here, that means you’re probably interested in losing weight, or maybe just improving your relationship to food. That’s fantastic. It means you have some level of motivation and desire, which is important. As you probably know already, weight loss isn’t easy. If it was, there wouldn’t be a hundred different diets out there and millions of people looking for a plan that works for them.
For this reason, it’s important to start by setting some expectations. Having misguided expectations is one of the biggest roadblocks to losing weight. People lose a few pounds early on, then they put on a pound, or plateau a bit, and that’s it. They give up. They figure it’s not working so why put yourself through the ordeal?
So here’s the first point to remember: Weight loss is not a straight line. Generally speaking, there are different weight loss patterns, but they all have spikes or plateaus. None of them feature an unbroken decrease in weight. There’s a good reason for this. It’s called homeostasis. This is a built-in condition all bodies have where our internal systems are constantly working to keep us the same tomorrow as we are today. This includes how much we weigh. So it’s completely natural for your weight to spike from time to time while you’re on a weight-loss program.
Perhaps the best expectations to set for yourself are monthly averages, not daily or weekly. If you stay on track you can expect to lose an average minimum of 1-2 pounds, or an average maximum of 6-8 pounds.
The other thing to keep in mind is that there are many reasons a body puts on weight, and many of them are unrelated to body fat. One of the most common reasons is water retention. This brings us to another fact: carbs don’t make you fat. But carbs do lead to water retention. Think of it like a slice of bread soaking up some water. This is basically what goes on in your body when you eat carbs. And it’s also why people quickly lose weight when they start a zero-carb keto diet. They’re not losing body fat, they’re losing water weight. And they’ll put those pounds back on as soon as they start eating carbs again.
Even something as simple as what time of day you weigh yourself – and how long it’s been since you’ve had your last poo – can influence the number that shows up on your scale. The point is, don’t let a small increase in your weight cause you to give up. Instead, set your expectations appropriately and know that weight loss isn’t a straight line.
In the sections that follow we’ll take a closer look at what the right track might be for you, and how you can start your own weight-loss program today.
Losing weight comes down to calorie intake, and adhering to the 80-20 rule.
When’s a good time to start losing weight? Is it after the holidays? At the beginning of a new year? On your next birthday? No. It’s right now. If you wait for the perfect conditions to arise, you’ll be waiting forever. There’s always an excuse to delay. So, you must simply make a commitment and take the first step. Let the positive results that follow be your motivation to continue.
Fortunately, the path is simple. But let’s face it, it won’t be a walk in the park. In other words, it’s simple, but it isn’t easy.
Losing body fat requires only one thing: a calorie deficit. That’s it.
A calorie deficit means that every day you burn more calories than you consume. It doesn’t matter if you’re eating fatty foods, lean foods, carbs – a calorie is a calorie. This might sound crazy, given the amount of diets out there that would appear to suggest otherwise, but it’s absolutely true. As the authors say, “All calories are created equal.” If you stay under your calorie limit, you’ll lose weight by burning fat. It’s that simple.
Now, this doesn’t mean you should just eat your calories in donuts and ice cream every day. That could lead to all sorts of health problems. But it does mean that you can still enjoy your favorite foods in moderation.
In fact, the authors have found that the best way to ensure that their clients stay on track is to allow for some leeway. When regimens are overly strict, it can cause people to think that they’ve failed with the slightest misstep.
In their experience, the authors have found the 80-20 rule to be the perfect way to keep people focused on long-term success. All this means is, if you’re hitting your daily goal 80 percent of the time, you’ll be fine. You’ll still lose weight and hit your target goal. Just remember, no one got fat from a day, a week, or even a month of overeating. Serious weight gain happens from the effects of a sustained lifestyle. So if you venture off the path for a while, don’t give up. Say it with me: DON’T GIVE UP! Just dust yourself off, get back on track and focus on staying under your daily calorie limit at least 80 percent of the time.
Now, what is your calorie limit? And what kind of foods will give you the best results? Let’s find out in the next section.
To lose weight, stay under your calorie limit and prioritize protein.
Okay. We’ve covered the importance of setting accurate expectations. And we’ve covered the importance of being consistent within an 80-20 framework that offers some leeway. Now, let’s get into the nitty gritty of food and nutrients.
To start with, let’s get your daily calorie limit sorted out.
This couldn’t be easier. Simply pick your desired weight – your goal body weight – and multiply it by twelve. So, if you would like to weigh 175 pounds, then your calorie intake should be around 2,100 calories per day.
The only other thing to keep track of is your protein intake. (We’ll get to the reason why in a second.) This is super easy to remember because your protein target is once again directly related to your target weight. If you’re aiming for 175 pounds, your daily intake of protein should be around 175 grams.
Again, so long as you’re eating under 2,100 calories a day, it doesn’t really matter what you eat – you’ll be at a caloric deficit and therefore you’ll lose weight. But that isn’t a green light to eat 2,100 calories worth of junk food everyday. Instead, what you want to aim for is a flexible diet, made up primarily of healthy, nutrient-rich foods, such as fruits, vegetables, beans, lentils, lean meats, good fats, whole grains, and enough water to stay hydrated.
When considering the best nutrients to help you lose weight, we need to look at the four macronutrients: protein, carbs, fat, and alcohol.
Here’s a helpful rule of thumb:Protein contains four calories per gram.Carbs also contain four calories per gram. Fat contains nine calories per gram.And alcohol contains seven calories per gram.
Now, even though a calorie is a calorie no matter where it comes from, anyone looking to lose weight should put a priority on protein. This is because protein will make your body feel fuller with fewer calories. And when it comes to metabolism, protein is the champion because you burn more calories digesting protein than any other macronutrient. But, perhaps more importantly, it is also crucial in building muscle and increasing strength.
Creating muscle isn’t an absolute necessity when it comes to losing weight, but it is extremely beneficial. Here’s another bit of nutritional science: The more muscles you have, the faster your metabolism is. While one pound of fat will burn around three calories per day, one pound of muscle will burn around six calories per day. In other words, as you build more muscle, you’ll also be speeding up the weight-loss process and the number of calories your body can burn in a given day.
That said, don’t listen to the so-called experts in your social media feeds that tell you to avoid carbs and fats. Carbs and fats both have important roles to play in overall health. Carbs are vital to giving you energy. Think of carbs as the food that will fuel your workouts and make it possible to become stronger, more muscular, and more toned.
Dietary fats are also an essential nutrient. If anyone tells you that you should try and cut fats from your diet altogether, don’t listen to them. Unfollow! Block! If you didn’t eat any fats, you would cease to live. Period. They’re considered essential for many reasons, not the least of which is keeping your hormonal health in balance.
Could many of us stand to become healthier by reducing the amount of carbs and fats we eat? Yes – which is why the authors want to emphasize the importance of protein over carbs and fats, especially if you want to lose weight. To that end, the authors have created a priority list to help you better understand the kind of foods you should be focusing on day-to-day.
The number one priority is the foods you like. More specifically, the nutritious foods you like to eat. The ones that don’t contain massive amounts of calories, leave you feeling full, satisfied and energized. Don’t eat cottage cheese if it makes you want to barf. Maybe go for Greek yogurt instead. If tofu isn’t your jam, maybe salmon is? Eat what you like, because no one lasts long on a diet that is full of food that makes you unhappy.
Priority number two is calories. Stay on track and stay under your daily calorie limit. It should go without saying that keeping track of your calories is key to success.
Priority number three is protein. If you only pay attention to the first two priorities, you will lose weight simply by being at a calorie deficit. But hitting your protein goal will help you lose weight more comfortably and more efficiently.
The fourth and final priority is carbs and fats. This is at the bottom of the list because, in terms of losing weight, as long as you’re paying attention to all the other priorities, it doesn’t really matter how much carbs and fats you’re eating. As long as you’re under your calorie limit and hitting your protein goal, you’ll be all set.
Having said all that. It doesn’t hurt to add a little exercise to your regimen, does it? In the last chapter we’ll take a quick look at the best workouts you can do to help you lose weight.
Strength training is the best exercise for losing weight.
At the risk of sounding like a broken record, we’ll just say it one last time: All you need to do to lose weight is maintain a calorie deficit. If you do this everyday, at least 80 percent of the time, you will lose fat and lose weight.
If, on top of this calorie deficit, you prioritize protein, you’ll be losing weight more efficiently. If, on top of maintaining a calorie deficit and prioritizing protein, you exercise on a regular basis – then you’ll really be burning fat and losing weight at your maximum potential.
As we’ve already mentioned, if you can add muscle while losing body fat, your body and your metabolism will become better conditioned and more efficient at getting you to your goal. Protein is the best food you can eat to help you build that muscle. And since strength training is the best kind of exercise for building muscle, it stands to reason that this is the best workout you can do to help promote weight loss.
So, what does an optimal strength training regimen look like? The authors offer six-steps that you should keep in mind when working out.
First: Focus on full-body exercises. Don’t just do a series of bicep curls and call it a day. Instead, do exercises that hit groups of lower body and upper body muscles all at the same time. Squats and lunges are great for the lower body, and chin-ups, shoulder presses and rowing are all fantastic for the upper body.
Second: Don’t forget to rest between sets. In order to develop muscles and become stronger, you need to let your body rest and recover. So, a good upper body workout for you might be three sets of ten chin-ups. In between each set, take at least a two-to-four minute break. The less experience you have, the longer the rest should be. So start with four and work your way up to a two minute rest.
Third: Practice good technique. Lifting weights is a great way to build muscles, but don’t start lifting if you don’t know the right technique. Professional trainers and video tutorials are great resources to help prevent an emergency room visit.
Fourth: Consistency. Try to hit the optimal mark of doing three to four sessions a week, each one lasting around 45 to 75 minutes. Don’t try to make each one amazing. If one out of five is perfect, and three are mediocre, and one is crap – that’s okay. Just don’t think you’re going to make progress by doing some occasional squats.
Fifth: Make it Progressive. The term progressive overload is all about pushing your limits in every session. This is how you build muscle and gain strength. Don’t just stick with the same weights and the same amount of repetitions every time. Instead, make progress, push yourself, do more.
Sixth: Take rest days. Don’t overdo it. If you’re lifting weights every day, you’re likely doing more harm than good. Just as you should rest between sets, you need to let your body recover after a full workout. Do not forget this. Proper recovery is key to building muscle and increasing strength.
So, there you have it. All you need to do now is calculate your calorie limit and protein intake by choosing your desired weight goal. The authors recommend keeping track of your weight and counting your calories in the first months. There are plenty of online resources out there to help you with that. But if you don’t like the idea of stepping on a scale everyday, don’t worry. You know your body. You know how your clothes fit. You know how you feel everyday. You’ll know when you’re getting results, and you’re sure to feel better about yourself when you begin hitting your goals consistently.
The most important thing to remember from all this is:
To lose weight by losing body fat, you simply need to maintain a calorie deficit. To do this, take your goal weight and multiply it by twelve. This number should be your daily calorie limit, and you should aim to be within this daily limit 80 percent of the time. You can eat the foods you like while on this diet but you should prioritize proteins, which will help you to feel full with less calories and build muscle which will benefit your metabolism.
And here’s some more actionable advice: Fend off hunger with zero calorie drinks and brushing your teeth!
It’s okay and natural to experience some lingering hunger, especially in the early stages. But if you’re feeling the overwhelming desire to go over your calorie limit at the end of the day, there are some tips on how to work through it. First, get to know your calorie free beverages, like seltzer, coffee, teas, sodas, and certain diet juices. Also, no one knows why – it’s one of life’s mysteries – but brushing your teeth is a reliable way to settle down those nagging cravings.
About the author
JORDAN SYATT is Gary Vaynerchuk’s personal trainers. Jordan is the founder of Syatt Fitness, an online fitness coaching businesses. He has helped hundreds of clients in the gym and thousands more online to get leaner, stronger, and healthier, and to develop a better relationship with food. Along with co-author Mike Vacanti, Jordan cohosts the How to Become a Personal Trainer podcast. Their work has been featured all over the world and across the media, including CNN, Huffington Post, Business Insider, Men’s Health, Men’s Fitness, and other outlets. Jordan lives in Dallas.
Jordan Syatt | Instagram @syattfitness
MICHAEL VACANTI is one of Gary Vaynerchuk’s personal trainers. Mike is the founder of On the Regimen, an online fitness coaching businesses. He has helped hundreds of clients in the gym and thousands more online to get leaner, stronger, and healthier, and to develop a better relationship with food. Along with co-author Jordan Syatt, Mike cohosts the How to Become a Personal Trainer podcast. Their work has been featured all over the world and across the media, including CNN, Huffington Post, Business Insider, Men’s Health, Men’s Fitness, and other outlets. Mike lives in Minnesota.
Mike Vacanti | Instagra @mikevacanti
Health, Nutrition, Diets and Weight Loss, Weight Loss Diets, Exercise and Fitness, Success Self-Help
Gary Vaynerchuk’s personal trainers explain how you can enjoy your favorite foods without guilt while losing weight, getting stronger, and improving your health.
Some “experts” say, Don’t eat carbs because insulin makes you fat. Other “experts” say, Don’t eat fat because fat makes you fat. Others say, Don’t eat protein because protein makes you fat. Some even say, Don’t eat fruit because sugar makes you fat. So the logical conclusion would be not to eat anything at all . . . except for the other “experts” who say that makes you fat because it’s starvation mode.
Who should you believe? Who is right? Who is an ignoramus? And who is just trying to make a quick buck? It’s confusing and difficult to know who to trust, but by the end of this book you’ll realize you don’t need to eliminate anything from your diet. You can enjoy all your favorite foods (in moderation) while losing fat and achieving your goals.
The issue is the “in moderation” bit. That’s not a fun or sexy sell. And most people are far less likely to spend their money on “moderation” when a half-naked Instagram influencer is advertising that you can lose 50 pounds in 24 hours while stuffing your face full of cake! That said, considering you’ve got this book in your hands, you must be tired of the lies and deception in fitness marketing and are ready to understand the truth.
Let’s dive in.
“Jordan and Mike knocked it out of the park. They managed to strike the perfect balance of simplicity, comprehensiveness, and actionability. This is absolutely what the public needs to read to gain an evidence-based understanding of how to get in shape without the frustrating, unscientific fads that are rampant in the fitness industry.” – Alan Aragon, nutrition researcher and educator
“No-BS clarity and essential education in a world rife with misinformation. A must-have for any fitness enthusiast.” – James Smith, physical trainer and author of How to Be Confident
“Finally, a book that celebrates eating without fear while still hitting your personal goals! Jordan and Mike have written a book that’s a joy to read, filled with knowledge and humor. You’ll want to keep it handy so you can pass it onto your friends. Gone are the days of deprivation and guilt; this book is all about living a balanced, joyful, and happy life. As a life-long foodie, I can’t begin to express how happy I am that these guys have written a book that highlights the importance of celebrating life through food!” – Laura Vitale, host of Laura in the Kitchen
“Jordan is a beacon of evidence-based information, and he provides it in a palatable, practical, easy-to-understand way for the average person. I cannot recommend the quality of his work highly enough. He’s one of the good guys.” – Layne Norton, PhD, physique coach and natural professional bodybuilder and powerlifter