The Zone Diet

The Zone diet is a dietary program that has become popular quite recently. The Zone diet centers on the actual ratio of calories that are being consumed for every meal. In this diet, the 40:30:30 ratio of calories takes effect when it comes to consuming carbohydrates, proteins and fats respectively.

This diet, which was popularized by Barry Sears in his various books, is not primarily considered as a diet for losing weight although it can be used to achieve such means.

The Zone diet takes its name from the term that Sears has used in his books for the proper hormone balance in the body. This is the phase where the body’s insulin levels are not too high or too low and the glucagon levels are not too high.

During this stage, the body is said to release specific anti-inflammatory compounds with effects that are heart and health friendly similar to that of aspirin but without the side effects such as gastric bleeding. Sears believes that this phase can be triggered by consuming carbohydrates and protein at a 40:30 ratio respectively. This is what Sears refers to as the "Zone".

When the body is in the "Zone", the human body is said to achieve a caloric balance that is considered as efficient that does not require the body to store up excess calories as fat. Sears believe that the body cannot store and burn fat at the same time the body some time to switch from one to the other. Being in the "Zone" enables the body to burn fat with weight loss made possible when the body starts to make use of stored fat for energy.

The Zone diet, as suggested by Sears, also runs contrary to the low-fat rationale that other diets adhere to. Sears believes that low fat diets tend to increase the body’s production of the hormone insulin which causes the body to store more fat. Sears suggests that fat consumption in the Zone diet is essential in order to burn fat.

The Zone diet is said to be beneficial for people who want to avoid cardiovascular diseases, diabetes and other similar conditions. The Zone diet can be considered as a low-carbohydrate diet plan where protein intake does not dominate that of carbohydrate consumption.

In the Zone diet, most of the energy derived by the body still comes from carbohydrates rather than protein or fats. Caloric consumption is also placed in high regard with the said diet that should not go above 500 calories for every meal and 100 calories for snacks. This is said to be the measure for making the body stay in the "Zone".

The Zone diet is said to be easier to maintain than other types of diets in that the diet does not forbid eating meals or snacks during a day. The Zone diet focuses on trying to control the body’s insulin production in order to ensure efficient energy burning of the body. Not only that, adherents to the Zone diet say that following such a dietary regimen will lead to improved health, energy as well as mental clarity.