The Opera Bro Guide to Flexible Dieting - Chapter 4. Why People Stop Dieting

Why People Stop Dieting


Usually when people jump off of a diet it’s because of a few basic flaws of the Diet itself:

  • The Diet Makes Them Hungry

  • The Diet Has Too Many Rules

  • The Rules Aren’t Very Clear

  • The Diet Is Too Restrictive

  • The Diet Doesn’t Taste Good


When any of these things come into play, the more will power is required of the individual. The purpose of flexible dieting is to eliminate as many obstacles as possible and require the least amount of willpower from the dieter. The ideal diet is one you can stay on indefinitely. No cheats, no yo-yo dieting, no “I’ll just do this until I’m tired of trying.” Forever. Sounds daunting, right? I thought so too, but before I knew it a year had passed and I didn’t feel the need to cheat even once.


Through the course of this book I’ll explain all of the rules and hopefully make them simple to understand and implement. But first, let us tackle the top thing that makes diets fail. “The Diet Makes Them Hungry.”


How to Beat Hunger: Protein and Fiber

The amount of calories you consume is not necessarily related to how satiated you will feel. Although a calorie is a calorie, depending on the food and the macronutrient composition, different foods will do different things during digestion and be used in different energy pathways. In terms of basic chemistry a carbohydrate obtained from oatmeal will do have the same result on your body composition as a carbohydrate obtained from gummy bears. However, where one is made of gelatin, sugar and a little bit of magic that will digest very quickly and 50 grams of carbs can be obtained in a handful, the other is a complex carbohydrate that will digest a lot slower, can be cooked enough times with water to fill a large bowl and contain only 30 grams of carbs. One will fill you up a lot more than the other. This is a very basic principle of food, volume, and basic hunger control that should be observed.

If you refer to the reasons why people jump off of diets I listed, hunger is at the top:

  • The Diet Makes Them Hungry

  • The Diet Has Too Many Rules

  • The Rules Aren’t Very Clear

  • The Diet Is Too Restrictive

  • The Diet Doesn’t Taste Good


The unfortunate part is that dieting is at its very core a means of managing self starvation. I hate to refer to it in this way because it’s a very negative way of thinking about something I consider necessary to the pursuit of a leaner/healthier body. However, it is necessary to face the realities of dieting, one of which is that we need to eat less in order to utilize the fat stores on our body as energy. Because we are replicating a controlled starvation situation, it’s important to have the primary purpose of our diet to not be hungry. The two tools we have against hunger in the absence of a hypocaloric diet are Protein and Fiber.



To be the most successful you can possibly hope to be with this diet you need to develop strategies on how to get your protein in for the day. You need "go to" foods, meals, snacks and add ons that will help you hit your protein goals. Many use whey or casein protein powder in order to hit these higher protein requirements, but after the initial hunger blunting effects, liquid protein doesn’t generally hold people over. So I recommend to only use liquid nutrition whenever your schedule won’t allow you to get in solid food, or if you simply don’t have the appetite to hit your baseline amount of calories and macronutrients.

Here are a few suggestions on some cost effective high protein sources. Again, this list is by no means comprehensive. There are thousands of sources of proteins, so much that you could fill up an entire book with that information by itself. These are protein sources that I’ve acquired a strong taste for and are a part of my everyday diet.


Animal Sources        Protein Per Serving Size

Egg Whites             5 grams per 25 grams

Greek Yogurt             23 grams per 1 Cup

Fat free cottage cheese     14 grams per ½ cup

Chicken Breast         20 grams per 4 ozs

Can of Tuna             26 grams

Sardines             19 grams per container

Eggs                36 grams for 6 eggs


I’m also very aware that there are many people who are vegan and/or vegetarian. Although many would state that it’s impossible to build strength and size without animal based proteins, anecdotal evidence alone proves this to be a false statement. I’ve worked with vegans and vegetarians and I haven’t had any issues in helping them grow stronger or leaner. Whenever they see the protein requirements of the diet they are initially worried. Once I’ve shown them the following list and recommend a decent vegan based protein powder, their worries cease.


Vegan Sources        Protein in Grams, Serving Size

Lentils             10 grams for 35 grams   

Kidney Beans         7 grams for 130 grams.

Chick Peas             6 grams of protein for ½ cup

Black Beans             7 grams of protein for ½ cup

Hemp Seeds             10 grams of protein for 3 tablespoons

Pumpkin Seeds         6 grams of protein for 3 tablespoons

Chia Seeds             4 grams of protein for tablespoons

Brown Rice             9 grams of protein for ½ Cup

Quinoa             12 grams of protein for ½ cup

Sesame Seeds         2 grams of protein for 1 tablespoon



I’ve already discussed about how much fiber you should consume, but now I will list it’s positive affects towards keeping you healthy and on your diet.

  • Promotes fullness and satiety

  • Slows gastric emptying

  • Decreases nutrient absorption

  • Improves glycemic control

  • Decrease blood cholesterol

  • Decreases mineral absorption

  • Affects insulin sensitivity via fermentation to short-chain fatty acids


As you can see, to neglect having fiber in your daily diet would be depriving yourself of a great deal of health benefits that will ultimately make an appearance in your body composition. So now we’re left with the question of where to get in my daily requirements of fiber? I’m personally a big fan of fruits and vegetables and feel that they are a very simple way of obtaining these baseline goals. It’s easy to grab a piece of fruit on the way out the door or to open up a bag of spinach in a bowl. Put a chicken breast on top, toss in some strawberries and balsamic vinegar and now you’re a hot shot professional chef! Pat yourself on the back, show it off to your friends on instagram.

Here is a small list of fiber sources that I like, that are low calorie and easy to work with. Meaning: easily added to other meals, doesn’t take much to make it taste good, very convenient.


Fiber Source            Grams of Fiber, Calories, Serving Size

Lentils                16 grams of fiber, 230 calories for 1 Cup

Artichoke             10 grams of fiber, 65 calories for 120 grams

Broccoli            6 grams of fiber, 64 calories for 180 grams

Raspberries            8 grams of fiber, 64 calories for 1 cup

Blueberries            3.6 grams of fiber, 84 calories for a cup

Strawberries            4.4 grams of fiber, 69 calories for 1 cup 1/2

Pears                5.5 grams of fiber, 103 calories for 178 grams


In general, beans are a great source of fiber and contain between 11-20 grams (on average.) They are easily stored (dry or canned), and can be prepared with relative ease.

I’m generally a cheapskate and like to get my fiber from foods I can pick from a vine or grow from the ground. However, things such as Quest Bars by Quest Nutrition are an easy way to get in a large amount of fiber when you’re not able to get to a store and are easily portable, storable, and won’t go bad anytime soon. They aren't exactly economical, but they are high in fiber and protein (17-20 grams of protein and fiber in a bar on average), and some people really enjoy the taste. I recommend that you try one out. They can be found at vitamin shops, GNC’s and even some grocery stores. If you like them, you can purchase them in bulk on amazon for a lot cheaper.


Pro Tip: Giant Strawberry Smoothie

If you’re a fan of fruits and veggies I strongly suggest that you invest in a freezer and frozen veggies. This is much better for storage and convenience and will end up saving you a lot of money. Plus there is nothing more disappointing than wanting to eat some delicious strawberries and you pull a tray of it from the fridge only to discover that half of it is covered in mold. Also, frozen fruit is far superior for making smoothies, which should become a large part of your life from now on. Not only are they delicious and filling, but they are simple to make. Here is a strawberry smoothie/gelato that I love. And by love, I mean I made this every day for 5 months straight. It’s that good.


Frozen Strawberries (2-5 cups)

Greek Yogurt (1-2 Cups)

Stevia (To Taste)



  1. Blend 1-2 Cups Greek Yogurt with stevia (sweeten to taste)

  2. Slowly add the amount of frozen strawberries you’d like until it reaches the consistency you desire.

More Strawberries = Thicker/Ice cream like consistency

Less Strawberries = Lighter/Smoothie like consistency


For a delightful, sweeter finish, add fat free whip cream on top.


Macros for Smoothie that contains: 1 Cup Greek Yogurt/2 Cups Frozen Strawberries

Calories: 220 Calories

Protein: 23 grams

Carb: 35 grams

Fat: 0 Grams

Fiber: 6 grams


This recipe is the perfect way to hit a protein/fiber goal while not wrecking your calorie balance. And on a hot day it will make your insides feel like it took a nap in an ice machine while everyone else looks like they fell asleep in the sun. And you can easily fill half a blender and all of your belly with this much food. Game, set, match.

Now that we’ve ensured that we don’t feel like we’re starving, let’s mark that off of our list...


  • The Diet Makes Them Hungry

  • The Diet Has Too Many Rules

  • The Rules Aren’t Very Clear

  • The Diet Is Too Restrictive

  • The Diet Doesn’t Taste Good


However, eating isn’t just about being content, we have to think about our palette. Oats and broccoli are nice for giving you a full belly, but we have to think about the taste, otherwise we’ll give up just as soon as we started...


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Until Next Time,

Lift Big, Sing Big, and Look Great Doing It.

The Opera Bro

Posted on January 8, 2017 and filed under Tutorials, Books.