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Golds Gym’s Diaz shares thoughts on diet

PEOPLE always ask Gold’s Gym personal trainer Jerry Diaz which nutrition approach or diet he is following?

Is it Keto? Paleo? Low carb? Intermittent fasting? Or something else? In essence they are asking “What is the best diet?”

Throughout Diaz’s years of helping clients lose weight, there has never been one diet plan but a variety depending on the person.

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Alex Lauron, one of Jerry Diaz’s clients, makes a decision to purchase nutritional items for his diet program.  Contributed photo

“If I could pick just one diet approach, I would. Believe me, it’d make things a lot easier,” said Jerry Diaz in interview with Variety.

“I don’t believe there’s a single, absolutely, positively, without-a-doubt best diet for every person to follow, always and forever,” he added.

There are diverse factors when it comes to Diaz setting up an individual’s fitness and nutrition program that helps him determine the diet plan to work with. There is body type, dietary preferences and exclusions, budget, organic/conventional, nutrition knowledge, environment/community, and time.

“There’s simply no way I’d be able to help all the individuals make progressive improvements in their eating if I limit the approach to a single nutrition program,” stated Diaz.

“If a particular nutrition idea like Keto, Paleo or Fasting worked for you personally, that’s awesome. You should be happy you found something that helped you reach your goals. But to suggest that because it worked for you, at one point in your life, under a particular set of circumstances, now everyone else should follow the same program? Well, that’s just silly.” He added.

It is possible to be healthy and fit whether you eat mostly meat or mostly vegetables, mostly fat or mostly carbs, many times a day or just a few times, and so on.

When Diaz works with a client he must individualize their nutritional program approach. He makes sure to open to evaluating anything and everything that could work, even if they are willing to test new methods, even if they fly in the face of current beliefs or practices.

“Also, be humble enough to sometimes be wrong, even if you really like being right. Which I do.,” said Diaz.

When Diaz strongly believes in any particular nutrition religion he fixates on the food itself. But he loses focus on what is most important as a coach which is his clients and their individual physiological and psychological needs. Some people rather eat plant-based diets, others eat meat-based diets.

“The common theme is that we all practice what we preach, we all take health and fitness seriously, and we all monitor the results of our dietary choices closely while adjusting where it is necessary.” shared Diaz. “We respect each other’s choices and get along just fine. We’re more interested in exploring what works than we are being right.” He added.

But still you wonder, do all these different diets actually work? Most nutrition programs are more similar than different. “Choosing a single diet camp makes no sense. There is no such thing as one, universal best diet.” stated Diaz. When done properly plans like the Keto diet, Paleo diets and high carb diets all work. They raise nutrition awareness and attention; they focus on food quality, help eliminate nutrient deficiencies, help control appetite and foot intake, and they promote regular exercise. “When people start paying attention to their eating, they usually start thinking about physical activity too.” said Diaz.

In fact, many of the diet camps recommend regular exercise, which is a good idea since focusing on a single diet may actually interfere with establishing a consistent exercise routine. When a person exercises regularly they dramatically improve their ability to turn the food they eat into functional tissue.

So the best diet to follow is actually the one that is best for you. Get a consultation from a professional nutritionist or a dietitian to learn more about a specific diet program you plan on following. “That’s why I don’t really have a diet philosophy. Instead, I have a personal coaching process. One that helps clients find the best diet for them.” Another factor that Diaz considers is the lifestyle difference of each client which includes their family, stress level, work situation, income level, food availability, time availability and physical capability.

 “Hopefully you can now understand how different well-designed dietary philosophies — even when they seem oppositional and antagonistic on the surface — can all promote good health, body composition, and longevity.” Diaz added.