My apologies for getting this post up so late, but I assure you that I have not strayed and have been on Step 2 for a few weeks now. So, with no further delay, it’s time for Step 2 of the Metabolism Miracle Diet. After a strict eight-week rehab period, I’m ready to reintroduce plenty of carbs back into my diet. Step 2 of this diet is all about looking at ways you can boost your ability to burn fat and how you can reintroduce carbs to your menu and still lose weight.
Carbohydrates are the fuel that your body needs to run properly, so you can’t do without them even if you feel like you never want to eat carbs again thanks to all the weight you have already lost on this diet. This step reprograms your body to process carbohydrates in a controlled way, while you continue to burn fat and lose weight. So, eventually, I’ll be able to eat delicious meals with all the carb fixings again without piling on the pounds.
Diane Kress gives very clear instructions on how to reintroduce carbohydrates the healthy way, while continuing to lose weight, and rediscover the joy in eating the many carbohydrate choices that fit this program. In this stage of the diet, I’m going to continue to eat all of the foods that I ate freely in step one, but I will now add lots of small servings of low-impact carbohydrates.
How to Follow Step 2
First of all, as with the first step of the diet, you can enjoy all of the foods you already have been freely. Remember to continue to keep portions to sensible sizes, otherwise you will throw off your weight loss.
Here is just a reminder of all the food you can continue to enjoy:
Healthy fats: Light (reduced fat) butter; lighter (reduced fat) margarine; light mayonnaise; light double and single cream; half-fat crème fraiche, half-fat sour cream; oils; olives; avocados; nuts; seeds.
Lean proteins: Lean meat; skinless poultry; fish and shellfish; reduced-fat cheese; low-fat cottage cheese; eggs; natural peanut butter (no added sugar); nut and seed butters; tofu; unsweetened soy milk; other soy products.
Allowed vegetables: Artichokes and artichoke hearts; asparagus; eggplant; green beans; bean sprouts; broccoli; Brussels sprouts; cabbage; cauliflower; celery; turnips; cucumbers; dill; pickles; onions; greens (kale, spinach etc.); leeks; mushrooms; okra peppers (all varieties); lettuce and other salad greens; radishes; sauerkraut; tomatoes (maximum 1 per meal); tomato salsa; tomato juice; vegetable juice.
Free extras: You can eat and drink the following items whenever you like – as long as you check their labels first, to be sure they contain zero carb grams:
Sugar-free jelly; sugar-free chewing gum; sugar-free jam; sugar-free ice pops; bouillon/stock consommé; soda water; diet fizzy drinks; sugar-free tonic water; coffee; tea; flavored waters; lemon and lime juice; mustard; vinegar; herbs and spices.
In step two, foods from all four of the above groups can be combined with controlled amounts of low-impact carbs. These foods will allow your body to slowly adjust after the eight-week detox and prevent it from overreacting to the reintroduction of carbohydrates with excess insulin, which could make you put on weight. By cutting out carbohydrates from your diet for the past eight weeks during step one, your liver was intentionally starved of carbs. When you begin step two of the program, a carefully measured amount of low-impact carbohydrate will gently enter your bloodstream and your liver will begin processing it again. But whereas in the past your liver may not have been processing your food effectively, this time you can start to control it.
By eating a specific amount of carbohydrate (11 to 20 grams at a time) no further than five hours apart, you will take control of your blood sugar. In this step, once again there is a wonderful, simple formula to check that the portions of foods such as bread, crackers, cereal, yoghurt and ice-cream you are eating all stay within the 11-to-20 gram window. To ensure a slow release of energy, make sure that what you eat has 2g or more of fiber per portion (check their labels for details).
How to Calculate?
To make sure that the low-impact carb food fits into your 11-to-20 gram allotment, check the nutrition facts label on the back of the packaging and subtract the dietary fiber figure from the total carbohydrates per portion.
Wholegrain Bread Serving Size: 1 Slice
Total Carbohydrate: 20 grams
Dietary Fiber: 3 grams
20 – 3 = 17 net carb grams
At 17g net carbs, a slice of this bread fits into the 11-to-20 gram window, and you get 3 grams of fiber, so go ahead and enjoy it.
At lunch, you might decide to have some multigrain crackers with your chicken Caesar salad. To check how many crackers can you have and still be within the 11-to-20gram target range, look at the nutrition facts label.
Serving Size: 8 crackers
Total Carbohydrate: 24 grams
Dietary Fiber: 5 grams
24 – 5 = 19 net carb grams
Eight crackers fit into the 11-to-20 gram window, so go ahead.
What Are Low Impact Carbohydrates?
Low-impact carbohydrates are those which give a slow, steady release of energy as they are digested. If you are wondering what foods are Low Impact Carbohydrates, here is a list:
Low Impact Carbohydrates
Wholegrain English muffin
Wholegrain pitta bread
CEREALS AND GRAINS
Oatmeal (cooked with water)
Brown or wild rice
Wholegrain pasta (cook al dente)
Dry, sugar-free, high fiber cereal (check label for net carbohydrates)
CRACKERS AND STARCHY SNACKS
Wholegrain crackers (check label for net carbohydrates)
Plain or salty popcorn
Tortilla chips (check net carbohydrates and fiber content)
VEGETABLES AND LEGUMES
Frozen sweetcorn or 1/2 cob
Legumes such as kidney beans, lentils, lima beans, chickpeas, white beans, black beans, or white kidney beans
Peach or a nectarine
Unsweetened apple sauce
Clementine or tangerines
Dried apricot halves
Handful of pineapple cubes
MILK/OTHER DAIRY PRODUCTS
Skimmed or semi-skimmed milk
Small pot of plain or sugar-free fruit yoghurt
Once you introduce carbohydrates, you must keep eating them, or you will regain weight. For at least the next eight weeks or until you have lost all the weight you need to, you should choose all of your carb servings from the Low-Impact Carbs list. Once you enter step two, to keep your metabolism running smoothly you must not go for longer than five hours without eating an 11-to-20 gram net portion of low impact carbs. Remember that you are reprogramming your body. This is a vital period of transition. If you skip the transition and introduce carbs haphazardly, you will most definitely regain everything you’ve lost. So, during this step, you should try to eat a food from the 11-to-20 gram net carb list at the following times:
- Prior to exercising – if you exercise before breakfast- With breakfast, lunch and dinner.
- At snacks between meals if your main meals are to be eaten more than five hours apart.
- Right before you go to bed at night.
- If you wake up during the middle of the night (an 11-to-20 gram snack is recommended, but not required).
If the time between two main meals (ex: breakfast and lunch, or lunch and dinner) will exceed five hours, you need to have a mid-morning or mid-afternoon snack of an additional 11-to-20 carb grams to keep the liver on hold until you eat your next main meal. On the days when you do need to take the additional 11-to-20 grams as a between-meal snack remember you still need to consume your 11-to-20 gram carb dam at the next meal.
Why Only Low Impact Carb?
You may wonder why you can’t have a treat like ice cream or a cookie, if it fits into the 11 to 20 gram carb requirement. High-impact carbs, such as marshmallows and fruit juice, can cause a rapid rise in blood sugar and that is why they are not on the list. Avoid these items during step two to prevent your metabolism from returning to its old ways.
Step Two of the Metabolism Miracle is a nutritionally balanced diet that allows safe, long-term weight loss. Plan to stay in this part of the program for at least eight weeks, or until you have reached your desired weight. Unlike step one, there is no limit to the amount of time you may stay on step two. It’s vital that you eat in a careful and consistent way if you want to continue burning fat. Skipping or delaying meals regularly could make your body return to its old metabolic habit of over-releasing insulin and fat cells may expand.