Im writing again about my food as my stuff on my profile is a little old. I also offer nutrition plans in 6 week increments to get you on the right path.
My food consists of different things depending on what part of the year it is. I have Nationals in less than six weeks so I am pretty minimal right now and don't reccomend this "diet" for the everyday person.
For a main tenance and maintain some semblance of leanness all year I do promote clean eating. This means nothing processed (except on a cheat meal, no ones is a saint of course) . I eat whole foods, rarely use protein shakes to be honest and try to keep my carbs and sodium to a minimum. I know some say low carb is bad, blah blah, blah but the simple fact is no one can seem to pinpoint just how many carbs a day is needed to keep your brain fuctioning and your energy level decent. Im aware everyone is different, but I keep my "grains and starches" to probably under 50 grams day. I do carb cycle, this means no carbs for a couple days then I carb up. Its hard to explain why I do this, but its always worked for me in maintaining lean. I use the term no carbs when referring to grains of potatoes or oatmeal. I of course, have vegetables, but thats a fibrous carb and doesnt count for much in the whole "carb" quota. I don't believe that skipping vegetables just to be totally carb obsolete is necessary.
My carb foods are pretty simple . I eat cream of rice (yes a white carb , oatmeal, ezekial bread, brown rice, white potatoes, whole grain pastas and minute rice has a new whole grain medley with millet, quinoa and barley thats pretty damn tasty.
I'm not much of a diet cheater, but I go for the worst like a mcdonalds mcdouble. Its probably about every couple of months. I can eat several of those !! I know, its awful stuff, but after some time you just get a craving to grease up the system.
I dont avoid all fats. I eat peanut butter and mayonaise too. I don't seek out food that are labeled low fat. I think they put other worse things in it to make up for the lack of sheer taste. Pick your evils !! Without fats, you skin will be drier and you will probably notice you hair starts to suffer as well. Its important to be able to read what your body needs or you will do more harm that good depriving yourself. And I never go without cream in my coffee. I would surely go insane....
For proteins I am huge on fish. Its low calorie and high protein. I also have chicken, ground turkey and yes...BEEF. When dieting for competition I had to add 4-6 oz of beef due to extreme tiredness. I attributed it to anemia and added in the beef, a few days later I was fine.
For veggies I will eat most all of them. Veggies are super low calorie and I have at least a cup at about 3 of my meals.
For extra stuff you can get creative depending on what you will or will not eat. I make sort of a poor mans chili, using stewed tomatoes, green beans or other veggies, kidney beans, and ground turkey. Salsa actually contains only about 10 calories per 2 tablespoons, so feel free to dump some on there !!! Also, throw in a bit of whole grain pasta and make it a nice soup in the winter.
Breakfast is eggwhites and oatmeal. Liquid eggwhites are available in any grocery store and are much cheaper than those fancy bodybuilding eggwhites. Its the same exact thing, only sold in quarts. Once a week or so I will throw in a yolk...cus I love the yolks, just dont eat them much in my prep.
For snacking you have to find stuff that can satisfy. I usually turn to rice cakes with peanut butter (and jelly sometimes). The crunch is pretty damn good.
Ive also taken up on eating Greek yogurt. I hated yogurt before I discoved Greek. Totally good and 14 grams of protein and only 140 to 160 calories. I will use them as a meal and feel like I did something bad when I in fact didnt
Other snacks can be almonds, baby carrots,apples....I find most things with a crunch that you can eat slowly and savor help satify hunger pretty well. Green tea with spearmint and a boatload of splenda makes you feel better if you crave eating bad stuff late as well....its kind of soothing.
One more thing....to control sweet cravings I do buy Halls Vitamin C drops, the sugar free variety. Only 5 calories each and they just help distract you with their seet tart kind of taste. Plus packed with vit C, you cant go wrong there.
Hope some of this helps. In the beginning its important to be pretty strict with dieting, but after awhile when you are on target, you can afford to cheat a little more often...but you will probably find the cheats you think you wanted, dont taste as good to you as they used to. Mine was crunchy cheetos....now just salty and fake tasting to me. I was disapointed !!!
For the most part, try to avoid stuff that was altered by humans. Thats where the problems lie....look at our pets, they were not fat until they ate man made dog food. Processed food is full of fillers to make it cheaper and to make you feel full, but so little nutritional value in it. You dont need to go all organic. It would be nice, but way too expensive for me. I do the best I can with what I have, thats all you can do.