Diet Guide for fat loss, muscle gains and disease prevention - Part 3: What to eat

In this 3rd part of the series about my diet for a more diverse gut microbiota, balanced nutrition, disease prevention, fat loss and muscle building, I will go through exactly what to eat. The benefits of each food will be discussed in separate posts, as one article is not enough to describe all the reasons behind my choices. This is merely a list, or table of contents if you will, of what’s to come.

Read Part 1 - Introduction

Read Part 2 - Benefits

What to eat - in order of priority for optimal health

  • Legumes / pulses and vegetables (including roots and tubers) - Should be eaten on a daily basis, as a main meal or a side dish. Legumes should be consumed more than any other food in your diet.
  • Herbs and spices - Along with adding flavor to your food, spices like turmeric have several health benefits (to be explored in later videos)
  • Fermented dairy (kefir, yogurt etc) - Can be eaten on a daily basis with your meals, 1-2 cups of kefir, 120-250g of yogurt. Dairy works synergistically with legumes for optimal gut health for disease prevention, such as insulin resistance / type 2 diabetes, and improving your metabolism significantly, so the combination is highly beneficial for fat loss.
  • Nuts and seeds - can be eaten daily, only a handful (10-20 almonds, 2 tablespoons of 100% peanut butter, 1-2 tablespoons of flaxseeds or chia seeds etc). 
  • Fresh fruits - can be eaten daily in moderation (1 big fruit, like a banana, apple, orange, or 2 small fruits, like kiwis, figs, passion fruit or 1 small bowl of fruit, like papaya, watermelon or a handful of berries).
  • Extra virgin olive oil for cooking or salads etc - 1-2 tablespoons a day
  • 5-10 olives every day 
  • Honey - 1 tablespoon a day
  • Whole eggs - 1-2 eggs, 2-3 times a week
  • Fish - once or twice a week (salmon, tuna, mackerel, cod, hake, sardines etc)
  • Chicken - once a week
  • Lean red meat, except pork - once a month
  • 100% dark chocolate - 10-20g can be enjoyed every day
  • Unsweetened herbal teas
  • Whole grains - These should be in moderation (once or twice a month), but some of these are highly beneficial for gut health, such as oats, barley, buckwheat, bulgur.


  • Opt for organic, grass fed, pasture raised, wild caught foods.
  • Stick to unprocessed versions of these foods, without added sugars, palm oils, excess sodium etc.
  • The above should be adjusted based on the individual and any current diseases: heart disease = less red meat, diabetes = less fruit and other carbs and so forth.
  • Too much of anything is bad for you. For instance, 1-2 tbs of honey a day can lower insulin and blood sugar levels in diabetics, but several more than that and it can become a real problem with the opposite effect. A handful of nuts are good for heart health, but a whole jar of peanut butter per day isn’t.
  • A combination of all these foods with balanced macros is best for a diverse gut microbiome and overall health. Don’t try turning this list into a vegan or carnivore version.
  • You can still turn obese with these foods if you overeat (although a lot harder to accomplish), or eat several meals and snacks all day (which raises your insulin levels), and you can still become malnourished if you don’t eat enough of them. Find a balance.
  • In order to get the best out of these foods for your gut health, avoiding the wrong foods entirely is a must. Stay tuned for my next post on what to avoid. A gut cleanse routine may also be needed if you’ve been eating processed foods, junk foods, processed sugar and processed meats for a long time.

I am NOT a doctor, personal trainer, registered dietician, nutritionist, athlete, influencer, nor at the end of my fitness journey. The content of this blog is based on what worked for me and is for informational purposes only, not a replacement for medical advice from a professional. Furthermore, we and our bodies are unique, so everybody is different. My results may not reflect your own. Any action you take upon the information provided by ZenGainz is strictly at your own risk.

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