If you’re looking to lose a few pounds — and who isn’t? — you may have scanned the internet for the best new diet plans, or perhaps you’re just looking for a few recipes that don’t taste like dirty cardboard. What you probably find, though, is a whole lot of confusion. And when you get to the grocery store without a grocery list? Forget it! It’s enough to make you break down weeping in the ice cream aisle.
Some days carbs are good, some days they’re bad. Sometimes fat is the enemy; sometimes it’s the key to lasting weight loss. Then there’s Paleo, and Whole 30, and Atkins, and Jenny Craig, and Weight Watchers, and we could go on. What if we could find a diet that combines all the best ideas in one.
The Cruise Control Diet, named after its creator and author James Ward, goes back to basics. It’s about real, whole foods, made in your own kitchen. Unlike a lot of other diets, though, the Cruise Control Diet knows you’re human, and you’re bound to cheat occasionally, so that’s built in with the idea that an allowed cheat is far less likely to turn into a binge.
To keep the grocery store from ruining your day or your diet (“Yoli diet”), be prepared. Have a list either on your phone or on paper. Don’t deviate.
Before we dive into building a cruise control diet list, we should discuss what you shouldn’t eat.
4 things that are not on the cruise control diet food list
Instead of low-fat yogurt and dried fruit, go for the real thing. Photo: CC0 Public Domain via Max Pixel.
1. Low-fat yogurt
One of the biggest misconceptions in the multibillion-dollar diet industry is that fat is bad. Your body needs fat to metabolize a lot of vitamins, including the naturally occurring vitamin D in yogurt. When yogurt companies remove the fat, they usually add in more sugar, lots of it. Some yogurts have as much as 47 grams of added sugar in a single serving. That’s more than an entire cup of many ice creams.
If you want to save on sugar, add plain yogurt to your grocery list Greek yogurt, which averages only about 8 grams of sugar per cup. Opt for whole fat content to keep you full the longest.
2. Artificial sweeteners
Does anyone really like artificial sweeteners? The good news is that they don’t like you either, at least if you’re trying to lose weight. Studies show that artificial sweeteners can cause weight gain instead of weight loss.
When you want to indulge, indulge, as long as it’s occasional. A good, reasonably portioned sweet treat will curb your craving while an artificially sweetened treat can make it worse.
3. Dried fruits
Dried fruits are a calorie bomb without the built-in portion control, like fresh fruit. While they do provide fiber, with helps slow down their metabolism, fresh fruit has all that fiber and water, to help you feel full.
4. Fruit juice
Fruit juice does have all the vitamins of fresh fruit, but little else. Even freshly squeezed fruit is little more than sugar water.
The Cruise Control Diet
The Cruise Control diet emphasizes fresh veggies, fruits, and lean meat. Image: CC0 Public Domain Kaboompics via Pexels.
The best way to navigate the Cruise Control (or any) Diet is by focusing on what you can eat, and fortunately, it’s a lot. Vegetables are your friends, as are fruits, lean meats, whole grains, nuts, seeds, and beans.
Here’s a great starter grocery cruise control diet food list
- Fresh Salmon (preferably wild caught)
- Boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- Cod or other white fish fillets
- Fresh tuna
- Low fat ground turkey
- Low fat Pork loin
- Sweet potatoes
- Bell peppers
- Green beans
- Greek yogurt, full fat
- Vegetable stock
- Feta cheese
- Whole milk
- Oatmeal (steel cut is best)
- Wild rice
- Sunflower seeds
- Olive oil
- Coconut oil
- Maple syrup
- Herbs (preferably fresh) and spices
Stock up on spices and fresh herbs to create delicious and healthy recipes to get you through the entire week.
Kayla Soders is a Digital Marketing Strategist with a passion for food, fun and fitness. When she isn’t getting fit or eating, she can be found managing popular health sites (such as defendyourhealthcare.us), laughing at memes, or rolling her eyes at minor annoyances. She’s passionate (and a little crazy) when it comes to anything (or anyone) she cares about, with a “Work Hard, Slay Hard” mentality.