Dr. John Berardi runs PrecisionNutrition.com, a “nutrition coaching” website where members pay to access nutrition information, online support, exercise programs and more. Dr. Berardi boasts an impressive list of academic credentials, and he’s also worked with Olympians and professional athletes.
In this series filmed during a special presentation at CrossFit Marina, Dr. Berardi explains his coaching style and advises how to reach your clients and help them change their nutrition. In Part 1, Dr. Berardi discusses his background as a personal trainer and the evolution of his program, which he says was strongly influenced by “change psychology.”
Instead of advocating any one diet, Dr. Berardi says he works with clients from any nutritional background and coaches them on tenets all successful diets share. The most important tenet is food amount, which he says “will drive everything else body-weight-wise and performance-wise.”
“A negative energy balance is the way to drive weight loss,” he says. “I don’t care if you eat cardboard or vegetables or protein—if you eat less than you burn, weight will come off.”
In Part 2, Dr. Berardi continues discussing food amount and introduces the three habits he starts all clients with: taking fish oil and a multivitamin, eating slowly, and eating until 80 percent full.
He also explains the other two tenets: food type and food timing.
To create an individualized nutrition plan, his method is to categorize people by body type and adjust the food types in their diet according to what works best for their hormonal profile. For food timing, he takes advantage of post-workout nutrition and schedules the largest meal of the day after a workout.
Finally, Dr. Berardi answers audience questions about his nutrition programming.
For further reading into change psychology, Dr. Berardi recommends the following books:
Motivational Interviewing: Preparing People for Change by Dr. William R. Miller and Dr. Stephen Rollnick
Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High by Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, Ron McMillan and Al Switzler
Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard by Chip Heath and Dan Heath
The Blackmail Diet by John Bear
Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion by Robert B. Cialdini
The Power of Less: The Fine Art of Limiting Yourself to the Essential In Business and in Life by Leo Babauta
Additional reading: Q&A With Dr. John Berardi by Paul Southern, published June 27, 2011.