Best Diet for Pilots?


Well-Known Member
I lost 50 lbs over two years. 5'9". I was 195 now I'm 145.

Bring almost all my own food. Don't count calories but am aware of what I eat. When eating out I traditionally get a turkey burger with salad and balsamic vinaigrette dressing. On a 4-day now and I won't buy a thing out.

Exercise is important when losing weight. Do weights skip a day do cardio. Hard cardio not this walk for an hour stuff. 20-30 mins is all you need. Aim to burn around 500 cal.

I don't do low carb but have reduced the carbs that I eat. IE don't eat all pasta. At home we will have wheat pasta but cook broccoli/zucchini/tomatoes and put it in the pasta as a "filler". Normal serving of pasta is 56 grams, aim for around 45, then fill with veggies.

I have a sweet tooth, that is my downfall, but it can still be done even while eating sweets. Everything in moderation.

Low carb is no way to live. Your body needs carbs. It's energy. I suppose it's fine for a short time period. But sustainable long term? Personally I don't consume alcohol.

Just had my blood pressure two days ago. 98/59 heartrate 51. Cholesterol 124. I eat a dozen eggs a week!
That’s awesome. What do you pack for the road?


Well-Known Member
Here are the big changes I made. Do them in order, as you may find it difficult to do all at the same time. Shoot for 80% compliance.
1. Cut out sugar. I do enjoy the occasional soda or ice cream cone here or there, but it's only as a treat, and maybe once a week. Hell, I don't even put sugar in my coffee.
2. Cut out dairy. Really, cow's milk doesn't provide the nutrition to humans that it does baby calfs. It contains a lot of unnecessary calories, and for men, there's a pretty strong link between caseins and prostate cancer.
3. Cut out refined carbohydrates. These have the tendency, just like sugar, to spike your insulin levels. Bad juju for weight loss, bad juju for the potential for diabetes, and bad juju for cardiovascular health. Cut out bread, cut out pasta (I know pasta is tough to do... I love pasta. Change it out for spaghetti squash). Stop eating wheat thins because they're "low fat."
4. More plant-based meals. As part of #3, my dinner sides are usually something like kale and acorn squash. Those take up 2/3rds or more of my plate, with meat being the smallest portion. In fact, I'm trying to cut even that back and add more veggies. Opt for a big salad for a meal (with healthy dressing) when you can. Leafy green veggies are best.
5. Drink water, tea, or black coffee. Lots of calories and sugars in other types of drinks. I guess some people would say to cut out coffee too, but we're pilots; it'll never happen. :)
1, 2, 3, and 5 are easy to accomplish on the road, assuming you're shooting for 80% compliance. They really are. #4 is a bit trickier, particularly with meals served on the jet, but do your best.
Using the above, I've been able to maintain 190 lbs (I'm 6'0) without really trying, and I previously always had big weight fluctuations (at one point I weighed 240 lbs). Also, at my last *real* physical, my LDL cholesterol was 105, with an HDL (the good cholesterol) of 74. Triglycerides were a gentleman's 37 (<150 is normal). :)
It can be done, fellas. Make some adjustments, and stop counting calories or starving yourself (you'll never stick with it). Eat until you're full, but eat the right things. Don't think of it as a "diet," think of it as "This is how I eat now."