Best diet plan for men to lose weight demands commitment and discipline, and you must be able to stick with your diet plan. There are several diet plans on the market that work well for men.
If you are a man and want to lose weight, there is no one-size-fits-all diet plan to help you. After all, we are all different people with different tastes and body types. The most important thing is to find a diet that you enjoy, which helps make your weight loss permanent.
What Meal Plan is Best for Me?
When it comes to meal plans, we are all a little different. There is no such thing as a one size fits all approach. The best meal plan for you is one that you can stick to. Here are a few things to check while deciding what meal plan fits you best.
- Pick the meal plan that includes foods you enjoy eating. You shouldn’t feel forced to eat. A meal plan that doesn’t fit your food preferences can make it hard to follow. You will not get the desired results unless you can consistently stick to the meal plan.
- Choose a meal plan that is compatible with your health. For example, a meal with foods that make you feel bloated or tired is not recommended.
- No matter what meal plan you choose, a calorie deficit plan is the most widely accepted approach to weight loss. Opt for a meal plan that keeps your calories within your personalised range.
The Best Weight Loss Eating Patterns for Men
Losing excess fat and reaching a healthy body weight may benefit men’s health in numerous ways. For example, a healthy body weight may reduce your risk of many health conditions, including heart disease, diabetes, certain cancers, and liver disease
Losing weight may also help improve sexual dysfunction, mobility, depressive symptoms, and men’s overall quality of life
However, losing weight the right way is critical. Although restrictive fad diets may cause short-term weight loss, they’re never the right choice for long-term weight maintenance.
Rather, you should focus on finding a healthy, sustainable plan that nourishes your body, meets your specific needs, and can be followed long term — perhaps for life.
Research shows that the most effective weight loss strategies for men involve dietary modifications alongside increased physical activity and other behavioral changes — not diet alone
1. High protein diets
Increased protein intake has been shown to promote healthy weight loss. Protein is the most filling macronutrient, meaning that adding it to your meals and snacks may help you feel satisfied.
Furthermore, numerous studies reveal that high protein diets are more effective for weight loss than standard protein diet.
High protein diets have also been found to preserve muscle mass during weight loss, which helps maintain resting energy expenditure — or the number of calories you burn at rest.
What’s more, research suggests that men who follow high protein diets are more likely to maintain weight loss over time than men whose diets are lower in protein.
The amount of protein you need depends on many factors, including your body size, activity level, and age.
Most high protein diets provide at least 0.6 grams of protein per pound (1.3 grams per kg) of body weight, which is notably higher than the current Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) of 0.36 grams per pound (0.8 grams per kg) of body weight.
Foods to Include
- Meats: Chicken, turkey, lean beef, pork
- Fish: Salmon, sardines, haddock, trout
- Eggs: All types.
- Dairy: Milk, cheese, yoghurt
- Vegetables: Green pea, Sweet Corn, Spinach, Avocado, Mushrooms.
- Fruits: Guava, Avocado, Jackfruit, Kiwi, Apricot, Blackberries, Raisins.
- Legumes: Kidney beans, chickpeas, lentils
- Nuts and Seeds: pumpkin seeds, peanuts, almonds.
Foods to Avoid
- Refined Sugar: candy, baked goods, and sodas.
- Refined carbohydrates: bread, pasta, and white rice.
- Saturated Fats: butter, ghee, palm oil, cakes, biscuits, fatty cuts of meat, bacon
2. The Mediterranean diet
The Mediterranean diet, which is rich in whole foods like vegetables, fruits, beans, and fish, has been linked to a variety of health benefits, including a reduced risk of heart disease, weight loss, and weight maintenance.
A 12-year study in 32,119 people — 9,662 of whom were men — associated strict adherence to the Mediterranean diet with a reduced risk of excess weight and obesity, as well as smaller waist circumference and a lower risk of belly fat .
Other studies bolster these findings, tying the Mediterranean diet to weight loss and a reduced risk of heart disease and diabetes.
What’s more, the Mediterranean diet may protect against prostate cancer, the most common type of cancer and second leading cause of cancer death among men in the United States.
3. Whole foods, plant-based diet
Most people can benefit from following a whole foods, plant-based (WFPB) diet, including men who want to lose excess body fat.
WFPB diets are not the same as vegan diets, which exclude all animal products.
Instead, WFPB diets include small amounts of animal products like fish, eggs, cheese, chicken, and yogurt, although they’re primarily based on whole plant foods like vegetables, fruits, and beans.
Because of the emphasis on whole plant foods and the exclusion of highly processed foods, WFPB diets are rich in fiber and other beneficial nutrients. Plus, WFPB diets have been shown to promote weight loss.
For example, in a review of 12 randomized controlled studies, people who followed plant-based diets — including several that included some animal protein — lost significantly more weight over an average of 18 weeks than those assigned to non-plant-based diets.
Choosing a WFPB diet may also help men reduce their risk of chronic illnesses, such as certain cancers, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and mental conditions.
4. Low carb diets
Low carb diets are one of the most popular eating patterns — and for good reason.
Such diets vary in carb content, from the very low carb keto diet to more flexible, moderate carb diets. Low carb eating patterns have been shown to boost weight loss and improve other aspects of men’s health.
In a small, 8-week study in 34 older adults with obesity, those assigned to a low carb diet that provided less than or equal to 10% of calories from carbs lost 3 times more visceral fat than those assigned to a standard low fat diet.
The low carb diet group also lost nearly 8% more total body fat and retained more muscle mass.
Because men are likelier to have more visceral fat than women, any diet that targets this harmful type of body fat may greatly improve men’s health and reduce disease risk.
Many other studies have demonstrated that low carb diets of varying carb contents encourage weight loss, improve blood fat levels, and decrease blood sugar levels.
Research suggests that diets that are more moderate in carbs are easier to maintain long term than very low carb diets.
Because one of the most important factors in choosing a diet is the ability to follow it long term, a more moderate carb approach is likely the better choice for sustainable weight loss.
Foods to Eat
- Meat: Beef, lamb, pork, chicken breast.
- Eggs: Omega-3 rich or pastured eggs.
- Vegetables: Spinach, broccoli, cauliflower, carrots
- Fruits: Apples, oranges, pears, blueberries, strawberries
- Fish: Salmon, trout, catfish, haddock
- Nuts and seeds: Almonds, walnuts, sunflower seeds, nut butter
- High-fat dairy: Cheese, butter, heavy cream, yoghourt
- Fats and oils: Coconut oil, butter, olive oil and fish oil
Foods to Avoid
- Sugar: Soft drinks, fruit juices, candy, ice cream and other food items with added sugar.
- Refined grains: Wheat, rice, barley and rye, bread, cereal and pasta.
- Trans fats: Hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils.
- Highly processed foods
- Starchy vegetables
5. High fiber diets
Fiber not only helps you feel full but also benefits your health in many other ways, which is why fiber-rich diets are a good choice for weight loss.
Studies consistently associate high fiber diets, including Mediterranean and plant-based diets, with a healthy body weight.
In a recent, 6-month study in 345 people — 46% of whom were men — those who followed a high fiber diet were most likely to lose weight. On average, every 10-gram increase in daily fiber was tied to a 5-pound (2.2-kg) decrease in body weight.
High fiber intake may also help reduce visceral fat and protect against several chronic illnesses in men, including heart disease.
6. Diets that focus on energy and nutrient density
Energy density refers to a food’s calorie content per 100 grams, while nutrient density refers to a food’s micronutrient content in relation to its calorie load.
Foods that are energy-dense and nutrient-poor include french fries, sugary baked goods, sweetened beverages, and candy.
Foods that are low in calories but dense in nutrients include vegetables and fruits. Eating more low calorie, nutrient-dense foods is strongly associated with weight loss and healthy weight maintenance.
Yet, high calorie, nutrient-dense foods like nuts, seeds, avocados, egg yolks, and unsweetened full fat yogurt are important for a healthy diet, too. Balancing these foods with low calorie, nutrient-dense foods like veggies and fruits is a smart way to maintain a healthy body weight.
Try eating low calorie, nutrient-dense foods during every meal and snack. For example, add a handful of spinach and chopped red pepper to your morning egg scramble, then sliced vegetables or fruit to your afternoon snack.
7. The paleo diet
This restricts grains, legumes, refined sugars, and some dairy products. Its main premise is to reduce your intake of highly processed products and focus instead on whole, nutrient-dense foods that are rich in healthy fats, protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals.
Some evidence suggests that this diet is effective for fat loss, which is no surprise since it excludes or limits many foods tied to weight gain, including processed grain products, sugary baked goods, and soda.
A review of 11 randomized studies ranging from 2 weeks to 2 years found that, on average, people who adopted the paleo diet lost 8 pounds (3.5 kg) more than those following other eating patterns.
The paleo diet tends to be more filling than traditional low fat eating patterns and may promote healthy blood pressure, blood sugar, and triglyceride levels. The paleo diet may help men lose excess body fat and improve certain markers of metabolic health, such as blood pressure, triglycerides, and blood sugar levels.
Foods to Include
- Vegetables: Cauliflower, Broccoli, Brussels sprouts, Sweet potatoes, Cabbage, Spinach
- Fruits: Apples, Berries, Melon, Grapes, Bananas, Citrus Fruits, Peaches
- Nuts and Seeds: Walnuts, Almonds, Cashews, Hazelnuts, Pine nuts, Pumpkin seeds, Chia seeds
- Meat: Lean meat, fish, chicken, turkey, pork.
Foods to Avoid
- Grains: cereal, crackers, rice, pasta, bread and beer.
- Legumes: beans, peas, lentils, tofu, soy foods, and peanuts.
- Processed Foods: refined sugars, salt, refined vegetable oils and artificial sweeteners.
- Sugar and high-fructose corn syrup: Soft drinks, fruit juices, table sugar, candy, pastries, ice cream
8. The MIND diet
The Mediterranean-DASH Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay (MIND) diet combines parts of the Mediterranean and DASH diets. The DASH diet is often used to reduce high blood pressure.
The MIND diet emphasizes foods that aid brain health, including berries, olive oil, nuts, beans, green leafy vegetables, and fish. It also recommends limiting potentially harmful foods like sweets and fried foods.
The MIND diet has not only been shown to significantly reduce the risk of brain conditions like Alzheimer’s disease but also may help men lose weight.
It’s rich in fiber, healthy fats, and low calorie, nutrient-dense foods like berries and leafy green veggies. It also encourages the use of olive oil, which is associated with healthy body weight maintenance.
9. Intermittent energy restriction (IER)
Intermittent energy restriction (IER) is an umbrella term that encompasses both intermittent fasting and time-restricted eating.
Whereas intermittent fasting involves 16–48-hour periods of little to no food intake, time-restricted eating limits food intake to a specific time window, usually 6–10 hours of a given day.
Some evidence suggests that IER improves blood sugar regulation, blood pressure, inflammatory markers, triglyceride levels, and weight loss.
There are many types of IER, including 16-hour energy restriction, 2-day fasting, and alternate-day fasting.
A review of 27 studies ranging from 2–24 weeks found that people who followed IER patterns lost 0.8–13% of their baseline body weight. The review also found that IER improved blood sugar control.
However, the researchers acknowledged that most of the studies were small. Thus, further research is needed.
All the same, some research suggests that IER may boost men’s strength during resistance training and aid mood and fat loss in older men.
10. Vegetarian diets
Vegetarian diets are high in plant-based foods, including veggies, fruits, legumes, and whole grains. Some versions, such as ovo-vegetarian and lacto-vegetarian diets, include animal products like milk or eggs.
Research strongly associates vegetarian diets with a healthy body weight and weight loss.
A review of 3 studies that included 20,975 men tied plant-based diets rich in whole plant foods and low in animal foods to less weight gain over a 4-year period.
In a study in 10,064 adults, those who followed vegetarian diets consumed 419 fewer calories per day, on average, and ate more legumes and nuts than non-vegetarians. Both of these factors are associated with healthy weight management.
Healthy vegetarian diets should be low in refined foods, including highly processed plant-based foods like sugary desserts, sweetened beverages, and fried foods.
7 days meal plan to lose weight
Day 1 Diet Plan
Breakfast: Triple berry medley smoothie
- ½ cup blueberries
- ½ cup raspberries
- ½ cup strawberries
- ½ banana
- ½ cup high-fiber cereal
- ½ cup low-fat plain Greek yogurt
- 1 cup 1% or skim milk
- 1 scoop whey protein powder
- ½ cup ice cubes
Blend until smooth.
Lunch: Tropical chicken salad
- 1 large cooked chicken breast, shredded
- ¼ cup low fat cottage cheese
- 1/3 cup pineapple, 1/3rd cup mango
- 2 Tbsp chopped water chestnuts
- 2 cups spinach
- 1-ounce almonds
- A few slices of avocado
Serve with high-fiber whole-wheat crackers.
Dinner: Shrimp stir-fry
- ½ lb cooked shrimp
- ½ bag mixed frozen stir-fry vegetables
- 2 Tbsp low sodium soy sauce and salt and pepper to taste
Toss all ingredients together in wok. Serve over ½ cup cooked brown rice.
Day 2 Diet Plan
Breakfast: Spinach, onion, and feta cheese scramble on whole-wheat English muffin
- 2 eggs + 2 eggs whites
- 2 Tbsp low fat feta cheese
- ¼ cup Vidalia onion, chopped
- ¼ cup fresh or frozen spinach
- 1 high-fiber whole-wheat English muffin
- Salt and Pepper to taste
Lunch: Tuna fish roll up with Minestrone soup
- 1 cup Minestrone soup
- 1 can of tuna (canned in water)
- 2 Tbsp low fat mayo
- 1 tsp whole-grain mayonnaise
- Sliced tomato and lettuce
- 1 whole-wheat high-fiber wrap
Dinner: Garlic chicken
- 1 large chicken breast
- ¼ cup whole wheat bread crumbs
- 1/8-cup skim milk
- ¼ garlic clove
- 1 tsp Tabasco and lemon juice
Combine all ingredients in plastic bag. Toss chicken in bag and coat. Bake at 350 degrees for ~20 minutes. Serve with: ½ cup whole-wheat couscous and 1 cup zucchini/summer squash medley.
Day 3 Diet Plan
Breakfast: Peanut butter & banana sandwich
- 2 slices whole-wheat bread (with at least 4g fiber per slice)
- 2 tbsp. peanut butter
- 1 sliced banana
- 1 tsp drizzle honey
- Toast whole-wheat bread
Spread peanut butter and top with bananas, drizzle with honey and enjoy.
Lunch: Chicken pizza with roasted veggies
- 1 large chicken breast
- ½ cup tomato sauce
- ¼ cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
- 1 cup chopped vegetables (broccoli, mushrooms, eggplant, zucchini)
- 1 tsp red pepper flakes
- Salt and pepper
- Non-stick cooking spray
Spray baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray. Place chicken breast and vegetables on sheet, and season with salt and pepper. Spray vegetables with non-stick cooking spray, then spoon tomato sauce on top of chicken. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 min or until chicken is cooked through. When 5 minutes left, top chicken with cheese and let melt until finished cooking
Dinner: Crunchy baked tilapia
- 6 ounces tilapia topped with 3 tsp Kellogg’s high-fiber bran cereal, baked
- 1 cup sautéed high-fiber vegetables (asparagus, broccoli, carrots)
- 1 small baked sweet potato
Day 4 Diet Plan
Breakfast: Strawberry oatmeal
- 3/4 cup cooked oats
- 1 scoop strawberry protein powder (or other flavored powder)
- 1 cup of sliced strawberries
- 1/2 cup of banana
Lunch: Chicken and red onion quesadillas with side salad
- ¼ cup red onion, thinly sliced
- 1/3-cup balsamic vinegar
- 1/4-cup low-fat cheddar cheese
- 1 large boneless chicken breast, cooked and shredded
- 2 high-fiber whole-wheat tortillas
Combine onions and vinegar in bowl and marinate for 5 minutes. Drain the onions and set aside. Spray a large skillet with non-stick cooking spray, and heat over medium heat. Add onions, and cook until onions have softened, about 5-7 min. Transfer to bowl and set aside. Place tortillas in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat (they will overlap). Warm for about 45 seconds on each side.
Sprinkle cheese on each tortilla. Cover cheese with the shredded cooked chicken and top the chicken with the marinated onions. Fold the tortillas in half, press gently with a spatula to flatten, and cook for about 2 minutes, until the cheese begins to melt. Flip the quesadilla and cook for another 1-2 minutes, until the second side is golden brown. Serve with side mixed green salad and 1 tbsp. light dressing
Dinner: Spicy chicken sausage and whole-wheat penne
1 low-fat chicken sausage
1 cup chopped mushrooms and red pepper
½ cup whole-wheat penne
¼ cup tomato sauce
1 tsp. red pepper chili flakes
Spray skillet with non-stick cooking spray and sauté pre-cooked low fat chicken sausage, mushrooms, and red-bell pepper in pan. Toss over cooked pasta and tomato sauce. Service with side mixed green salad and 1 tbsp. light dressing.
Day 5 Diet Plan
Breakfast: Berry parfait
- 1/2 cup low fat Plain Greek Yogurt + ¼ cup low fat Vanilla Greek Yogurt
- ½ cup blueberries
- ½ cup cherries
- ½ cup blackberries
- ¾ cup high-fiber cereal (suggested: Go Lean Vanilla Almond Crunch)
Lunch: Greek bowl
- 4-6 ounces cooked lamb, cut into cubes
- 1 tsp olive oil
- ½ tsp chopped fresh garlic
- ½ tsp oregano
- ½ red pepper, diced
- ¼ cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- 2 Tbsp low fat feta cheese
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 whole-wheat high-fiber pita
Combine all ingredients in bowl. Serve with whole-wheat pitas and Tzatziki sauce. Tzatziki sauce: ¼ cup plain Greek yogurt, ½ cucumber diced, lemon juice, minced parsley and dill, salt and pepper to taste
Dinner: Salmon with mixed vegetable quinoa
- 6 oz baked salmon, seasoned with salt, pepper, and fresh lemon juice
- ½ cup cooked quinoa with 1-cup sautéed mixed vegetables
Day 6 Diet Plan
Breakfast: Oatmeal blueberry pancakes (serves 6)
- 2 ½ cups old-fashioned oats
- 6 egg whites, beaten
- 1 cup skim milk
- 2 tsp oil
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ½ cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1 cup blueberries
- Non-stick cooking spray
Blend all ingredients (except blueberries) in blender until fairly smooth (normal pancake mix consistency). Then gently fold blueberries into mixture. Heat skillet to medium heat, then coat with nonstick cooking spray. Pour ½ cup batter onto the skillet to form each pancake. Cook, flipping once so that each side is a golden-brown color.
Lunch: Turkey chili rice bowl
- Non-stick cooking spray
- ½ cup lean ground turkey breast
- ¼ cup chopped onion
- ½ cup canned red kidney beans, drained
- ¼ cup chopped red tomato
- ½ cup water
- ¼ cup chopped green pepper
- 1 tsp chili powder
- ¼ cup brown rice
- Low-fat grated cheddar cheese (optional)
Cook rice as instructed, set aside. Spray small saucepan with non-stick cooking spray, and add ground turkey, onion and cook until turkey is brown. Add remaining ingredients and bring to boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer until chili is thick. Add rice and serve with low fat grated cheddar cheese if desired.
Dinner: Steak and potatoes
- 5 oz seasoned cooked skirt steak
- 1 small baked potato with 2 tbsp. non-fat sour cream and chives
- 1 cup steamed broccoli
Day 7 Diet Plan
Breakfast: Breakfast burrito
- 2 eggs + 2 egg whites
- 1/4 cup black beans, rinsed
- 2 Tbsp chopped red onion
- 1 small jalapeño, seeded, minced
- 2 Tbsp low fat shredded Mexican blend cheese
- 1 tsp hot sauce
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Non-stick cooking spray
- 1 high-fiber whole-wheat tortilla
Combine, onion, jalapeño, and hot sauce in bowl. Spray skillet with non-stick cooking spray and heat over medium heat. Cooks eggs and season with salt and pepper. Stir in black beans and cheese. Remove from heat and fill tortilla with egg mixture. Top with onion, jalapeño, and hot sauce mixture and roll into a burrito. Serve with salsa on side.
Lunch: Salad bar
- Mixed greens
- Mushrooms, tomato, broccoli, artichoke, beets, hearts of palm, asparagus, cabbage
- ¼ cup butternut squash
- 1 oz almonds
- 1 serving grilled chicken
Toss together with 2 tbsp. lite balsamic vinaigrette and serve with a few whole-wheat high-fiber crackers.
Dinner: Chicken tenders with tangy mustard dipping sauce
- ½ lb chicken tenders
- ½ tsp paprika
- 2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp pepper
- 1/3 cup sliced almonds
- ¼ cup high-fiber Kellogg’s bran buds
- ½ cup orange juice
- 3 tbsp. Dijon mustard
- 1 ½ tablespoons honey
- ¼ cup water
Preheat oven to your broil setting (around 400-450 degrees). In a shallow dish, mix together the paprika, salt, pepper, and almonds.Coat each chicken breast fillet with almond mixture and place onto a Pyrex dish that has been sprayed with nonstick cooking spray.
Place chicken in oven for about 15-20 minutes, turning once halfway through to brown on both sides. While the chicken is cooking, prepare the dipping sauce: In a small bowl, whisk together the orange, juice, mustard, honey, and water until sauce is smooth.