"Insulin and Body Weight" with Dr. Scott Connelly, a CrossFit Journal preview video [wmv] [mov]
What Is a Zone Diet Block?
One Zone diet block contains 1 mini-block of each macro nutrient: carbohydrate, protein and fat. But they don't weigh the same.
1 mini block of protein = 7 grams
1 mini block of carbohydrate = 9 grams
1 mini block of fat = 1.5 grams
Seven grams of protein, 9 grams of carb and 1.5 grams of fat form 1 Zone diet block. One block of Zone food offers a balanced 40-30-30 ratio.
With the Zone diet block method there's no further need to count each gram of macro nutrient. Dr. Sears and other zone nutritionists offer ready-made lists of the weight of one block food. For example, we know that 1 oz. chicken breast equals 1 block of protein, 3 cups of cooked broccoli is 1 block of carb, and 1/3 tsp. olive oil equals 1 block of fat. To create a 4 blocks Zone meal we just have to multiply quantities of each macro nutrient by four.
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A Short List of Food Blocks
1 mini-block proteins 1 mini-block carbs 1 mini-block fats
One-and-a-half ounces of calamari half an apple three olives
One ounce of chicken breast, skinless 3 apricots one-third tsp. almond butter
One quarter of a cup of cottage cheese, fat free one quarter of cup black beans one tbsp. avocado
One ounce of sardines half a cup blueberries one-third tsp. canola oil
Two ounces of shrimp four cups broccoli, raw one macadamia nut
Two egg whites three cups cabbage, shredded & boiled one-third tsp. olive oil
One-and-a-half ounces clams one-and-a-half cups eggplant one tbsp. olive oil (1 part) & vinegar (two parts) dressing
One and a half ounces of cod half a cup grapes half a tsp. peanut butter
One ounce of turkey breast, skinless two cups mushrooms, boiled six peanuts
A half patty soy burger
(also check the nutrition label) half a cup of onion, chopped & boiled one-third tsp. peanut oil
One patty soy sausage
(also check the nutrition label) two tomatoes half a tsp. tahini
The selection above contains some of the most favorable foods from Dr. Sears' list. Proteins that also contain amounts of fat (pork, duck, bacon) are considered unfavorable. Carbs that are derived from processed grains, such as bread or pasta, are not recommended. Zone nutritionists recommend using pasta or white rice as a “condiment” for our meals. Saturated and polysaturated fats are also unfavorable. (Butter, cream, lard or vegetable shortenings are not recommended.)
Here are block examples:
Here is a block calculator: