When looking to change our body shape and drop some weight or indeed put on some weight it all comes to our diet and food choices. We need to feed the body the food it loves to have a healthy body not just to work efficiently but also to look smoking hot on the beach.
Constantly eating and not feeling full is almost always a sign that what you are feeding your body is not in line with its actual needs.
We must eat in line with our own individual goals, but in this day and age, there are many restrictions and limitations when it comes to finding the ‘perfect’ nutrition plan.
From religion to culture to allergies to likes/dislikes and to dietary requirements there is a lot of things that can get in the way of the perfect meal plan – but saying this there has been massive steps forward in the variety to our foods.
We only have to look down the aisles of our local store, and we have everything from gluten-free, sugar-free, vegan inclusive, protein-based, vitamin full, and we are only talking about a loaf of bread!
Food shopping now is a minefield – we want to feed our body with the nutrients it needs as well as try to lose weight while also trying to actually enjoy our diet – a lot of things to try and get right at once!
There is a very fine line between enjoying our foods – and going OUT OF CONTROL.
I know you’ve done it – had a bad day at work so went to have a few calorific beverages, followed by a few more and then a takeaway pizza followed by Ben and Jerry’s while sitting on the sofa.
Is there anything wrong with this?
Absolutely not – Ben and Jerry’s is unbeatable and anyone who says they don’t like it is a lair, but doing this week after week and night after night will soon catch up with you and your waistline let alone your insides.
So in this article we are gonna break down everything there is to know about foods, food types, the do’s and the don’ts and try and make some sort of sense out of this absolute jargon that is posted daily on the internet.
I’ll give you a clue, when it comes down to it losing weight really doesn’t have to be that difficult!
- Why am I Constantly Eating and Not Feeling Full?
- Enough About Micronutrients Less Hit Some Macronutrients Up!
- Processed Food – Don’t Settle For Less
- Insulin Production – The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly
- How to Read Nutrition Labels – This Skill Can Save Your Life!
- 5 Top Tips to Summarize All the Science
- In Conclusion
Why am I Constantly Eating and Not Feeling Full?
Now this is something I hear A LOT, and it comes down to what we are actually putting in – and I don’t want to sound like your mother but have you been eating your vegetables …..?!
Wholesome, nutritious foods are 100% the way to go, but I get we can’t live off bowls and bowls of spinach without losing our sanity, but we can find a balance.
The main reason we are not feeling full is that we are filling your body with empty calories, this is basically foods and drink that are high in calories but have zero nutritional value and will not fill us up.
So yes they taste good and possibly make us forget our horrible boss, but they are not satisfying our hunger hence why you keep consuming them.
Unfortunately, the pint of beer that didn’t even touch the sides is 250 calories – just 2 of those is a female’s recommended 1/3 of their entire day of calories (roughly).
The other downside is these empty calories foods and drinks have got very little vitamins, minerals, and essential nutrients.
As sciency and boring as that sounds we need these little beauties.
We have got a really hard-working body. It can repair itself from illness and injury, even injury we inflict on ourselves when workout out, but it needs these to help with that process – we all have that one friend who gets ill all the time right?
The first place we need to look is their diet – 90% of the time it will be pretty weak and lacking in the vitamins, minerals, and nutrients found in all the healthy stuff.
Our body depends on micronutrients and if we don’t get a certain one it can be a big problem – if we don’t have a balanced diet it can sometimes be fatal, without sounding dramatic this is a definite possibility.
We all watch the news, and some of us are closer to it – countries that struggle with widespread poverty, hunger, and starvation are malnourished, missing the nutrients our body needs to survive, but on the flip side, we have people overeating one food group.
We are all on a diet in some way – we all just assume a diet means being healthy, for me I hate the word diet, but that’s something for another day!
If you eat takeaways every night then technically you are on a high fat and carb diet or the I don’t care diet – either way.
Everyone in some sense of the word is on a diet and possibly eating too many of one macronutrient compared to another – for example, if you did eat takeaways each and every day, then you would be very high fat and high carb – lacking the vitamins and nutrients found in fresh fruit and veggies.
If you were vegan a few years back, you might have had a protein deficiency because you didn’t eat meat or dairy which is an excellent source of protein – but these days and all the advances with foods this is now not an everyday thing.
Now some people will take a multivitamin that you can purchase in a tablet form which is definitely a step in the right direction, but we can make it so much better with eating actual foods.
Unprocessed, whole, not out of a tin or packet – these types of foods are the absolute best when it comes to upping our vitamins, nutrients, and minerals.
We are talking about foods right off the tree, out of the bush or off the vine, your proper farm grown stuff that your great grandad used to grow. Proper old school because this day and age everything comes in a packet and made for us – what happened to getting our hands dirty?
Then we have the food straight from the farm, off the fishing rod or as close as we can get, you can’t get it any fresher than that, but this is the full product and completely unprocessed.
Now the one downside to fresh, whole, unprocessed foods is it does not come cheap, plus it may not be available in your area, unfortunately we are in the day and age where fresh farm shops and butchers are few and far between with the rise in takeaways and convenience foods, so finding these foods in our area can be complicated and not cost-effective.
But if we plan, prepare and shop around the fresh foods can 100% be affordable!
Due to its freshness, it can go out of date quite quickly – if it’s got an expiry date that is less then a week, then you know you are heading in the right direction.
So with a little bit of planning then we won’t be wasting and feeding it to the local wildlife – that’s when it can turn expensive.
No matter your situation – here is a starter list of foods that are super high in nutrients, minerals and vitamins and with it being freshly picked (practically) you know they are full of healing powers 😉
Excellent Sources of Vitamins and Minerals
- Vegetables (especially green leafy vegetables)
- Legumes (beans)
- Nuts & Seeds
Excellent Sources of Amino Acids
- Lean Meats
- Milk Products
Now some of these foods may already be a part of your daily routine, and that’s impressive, but some you may not have tried before or wanted to stay away from for whatever reason.
My advice to you is to make small changes – now if you are eating loads of takeaways and eating processed foods all day every day then me asking you to change that for spinach and chicken – you’ll politely tell me where to go.
So make small changes – add in a couple of these at a time – maybe an extra portion of broccoli to your evening meal or a handful of nuts and seeds to your morning cereal.
Gradually adding it will make the change gradual and we are more likely to stick to it in the long run, then as we get used to those ones we can try some others.
You may not enjoy them all, it would be astonishing if you did, so experiment but maybe don’t try steak for the first time in a restaurant – that stuff will cost you a fortune!
Enough About Micronutrients Less Hit Some Macronutrients Up!
Similar word but completely different in terms of what we are talking about – macronutrients or macros for short are broken down into 3 categories.
You have carbohydrates, fats, and my personal favorite protein.
You need all 3 as part of your daily food and all within a certain amount to make up a balanced diet but that comes down to your own individual goals.
Let’s break each one down so we know what each one does and where we can find it.
Our body uses protein for so many different things but most importantly for creating new tissue, the building and repairing of muscles, speeding up body functions and when necessary our immune system uses protein to reinforce the healing process.
Most importantly protein in foods keeps you fuller for longer.
21 different amino acids are in a complete protein, 9 of which the body is not able to produce on its own so we get them from high protein sourced food and drinks some of which include –
- Animal Meat
- Milk Products
These are all whole unprocessed forms of protein!
This day and age we can boost our protein levels through other sources such as protein shakes and bars – typically used in the fitness industry but also used by people who need to up their protein levels for various reasons.
The word carbohydrate refers to various forms of sugar, and our body breaks down these carbs for our cells to use as forms of energy.
We can break down carbs into Simple carbs and Complex carbs, they each have their own role, but again it comes down to your individual goal as to which ones you will be consuming more of or in what quantity.
Simple carbs break down and enter the blood the fastest and boost our blood sugar levels whereas complex carbs break down slower releasing sugar into the blood slowly over time.
This slower process gives us the feeling of being fuller for longer and not having sugar highs and coincidentally crashes that simple carbs can do.
Not only do we have complex carbs and simple carbs we also have starchy carbs and fibrous – just to make things even more confusing!
So whats the difference between these two….?
Starchy carbohydrates are complex carbohydrates because they are a chain of many simple carbs.
Unpacking these simple carbohydrates takes time and is what delays digestion.
These are great for giving you energy over an extended period of time, so if you are into bodybuilding or playing competitive sport and need that ongoing energy, these are perfect.
Excellent Sources of Starchy Carbohydrates
- Whole Grains (bread, tortillas, muffins, pasta, cereal)
- Quinoa (even with milk for breakfast)
- Sweet Potato (sweet potato pancakes are my favorite)
- Rolled or Steel Cut Oats
- Legumes (beans)
Fibrous carbohydrates are also complex sugars but, they don’t get broken down like any of the other carbs.
Fiber is so resistant to digestion that your colon breaks it down, and you pass the rest in your stool.
Anything that you can not digest does not get stored as fat plus fiber also benefits cholesterol, brain health, and digestion.
Excellent Sources of Fibrous Carbohydrates
Well that’s carbs and protein out the way – if you can take anything from the above it’s the list of foods – have a read through, and you can see which foods we should be sticking to. Which maybe we should watch out for when shopping around – but just like anything it comes down to us as an individual and our own goal.
Ready to continue ….?!
Ok – lets dive into fats.
Our body uses fat to keep warm, to absorb vitamins and as energy when it runs out of carbs – this is why you will hear people go on the no carb diet, or say carbs make you fat.
The body will use our body fat as energy if it doesn’t have any carbs to fuel the running of it but this can get very dangerous and can leave us low on physical strength, prone to fainting and get extremely hangry (angry because you’re hungry).
We can split dietary fats into three types, saturated fats, monounsaturated fats, and polyunsaturated fats.
Saturated fats that occur in nature can be consumed in moderation, but trans fat is something you will need to keep an eye on if you have high cholesterol.
Trans fats can cause a build-up of fat in our arteries which can be extremely dangerous and can lead to severe health issues, whole milk and fatty meats are the most common source of saturated fats.
Hydrogenated trans fats are the big no-no when it comes to being in your diet – if only they didn’t taste soooo good.
In 2013 the food and drug administration studied hydrogenated trans fats and delivered the devastating news that we should stay away from them – but in all seriousness, they have been linked with cardiovascular problems such as heart attacks, so if you’re wanting to run that marathon next year then stay away.
Most fried food contain these types of fats, you can find trans fats in takeaways, fast food, butter substitutes, baked goods and other processed foods – see what I mean – devastating!
But all is not lost because anything in moderation is a good thing but planning your meals will make us less likely to go for the convenience that these are.
Plus if you are making all your food, you know precisely which ingredients go into each meal – limiting your exposure to trans fats.
Now unsaturated fats are your ultimate ticket to the good life – eating fats and not getting fat – how good is that?
FYI fat doesn’t make you fat – it merely comes down to calories, but we will get to that later.
We can separate unsaturated fats into two categories Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, and the top nutrition boffins tell us that monounsaturated fats are healthy.
So balance is absolutely vital when it comes to our macros – so contrary to popular belief too much fat doesn’t make you fat BUT if it means missing out on the carbs and proteins, then this can have adverse side effects to our health.
Excellent Sources of Monounsaturated Fats
(good fats as they are most commonly known)
- Peanut Butter
- Olive oil
- Whole grain wheat
Polyunsaturated fats to are the best type of fats to lower bad cholesterol, this means our heart and brain jump with delight at all those extra omega 3 fatty acids – which is a good thing!
These type of fats can have the most positive impact on our health compared to all the other kinds of fats we have spoken about.
Excellent sources of polyunsaturated fats
- Fresh Tuna
- Sunflower Seeds
- Soybean oil
Now we might look at all these foods and first of all think –
How is it even possible to get all those into one day of food? And secondly, all this fresh food is extremely expensive, right?
True, but we need to think about our health first and foremost – we only have one body, and as cliche, as it sounds if we chuck junk into it week in week out we can’t expect it to run smoothly.
Think of it like a car – I would be a Ferrari! Bright red, soft top with a load exhaust, all the bells, and whistles.
Would I put the cheapest petrol that I found in the shop at half off because it has been processed through the factories, had a ton of additives added to it to last longer – yes it’s cheaper but how good is the quality? No!
We have this Ferrari, and I want to treat it the best I can so we would put the quality petrol found in the garage in it’s purest form.
We need to treat our body the same – we only get one so manage it correctly, we just seem to worry and care about our health when something goes wrong, and we have a bit of a scare, but by then it could be too late.
We can eat extremely healthy on a budget, and a few ways to do this are by planning our meals, shopping around at different stores to find the best prices, and making batch meals that can be used in the following couple of days. Making sure they all include the macros we need, proteins, fibrous carbs and unsaturated fats.
Reports show that 1 gram of protein or carbs equals 4 calories and 1 gram of fat equals 9 calories. To be honest, it doesn’t matter about the little numbers, it matters about those numbers at the end of the day – the total amount of calories and macronutrients.
Here’s a fact for you – Macro in Greek means large – our body needs a large amount of these macros in a consistent variety to let our body run and work as efficiently as possible.
Now we have spoken all about unprocessed foods – how effective they are and how they must be part of our day to day meals.
But what’s the problem with all the processed foods that we are tempted with?
With their attractive price tag, and they just taste sooooo good.
We will all be tempted by the ‘junk’ food which is highly processed sometime during our lives – what would you rather eat on a hangover – a salmon fillet with spinach or a fast food takeaway and a noodle cup?!
I know which one I would rather!
So back to the question, what’s the problem?
Processed Food – Don’t Settle For Less
Processed is not the same as prepared foods and basically means the food companies have added salt, sugar and other additives to improve the taste or appearance, but most importantly these companies add additives to preserve the best before date of the product.
This allows for extra shipping and distribution time without taking any time off the best of the product when it finally reaches the shelves.
So it’s said if we find a product with a 6 month best before date or a product that has 6 days we can tell which one has had the more additives added to it!
Over the years food companies have tried preserving foods with different chemicals, but studies later showed that these were actually harmful to humans.
It has now been banned by the government for any sort of chemical to be used in food products, however, this is an indication of whether this artificial food preservation promotes healthy eating.
Saying this though there are many artificial preservatives currently approved by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration), but there is a lot that our body doesn’t need, and these can be harmful, and an overuse of these would mean our body would need to time and energy to detoxify itself from them. There is no detoxifying drink that can overcome it all.
There is, however a more significant problem with processed foods, the way most of the processed foods are prepared, damages or even destroys the nutrients that were once in the food product.
So consuming these products means we are missing out on essential nutrients that were once apparent but due to the processed process (lol) it can eliminate them.
When you eat nutrient deficient food as part of our consistent diet, malnutrition is much more likely – continually eating highly processed foods means you are missing out on a HIGH number of nutrients, and shockingly enough, this type of eating is only one step up, nutrient-wise, from not actually having enough food to eat.
That for me is the scariest fact not because of the malnutrition but the fact a lot of people make a choice to consume these foods regularly when they could make small, simple changes to get some nutrients into their diet and help their body live that bit healthier.
There are many forms of processed foods, but one, many of us will be familiar with is pasteurised milk products, for example, ‘dirty’ milk, needs pasteurising to kill harmful bacteria but the issue with this process is it also kills helpful bacteria and nutrients – to be honest, I’m not too keen on drinking ‘dirty’ milk – don’t know about you.
So we need to look out for unpasteurized dairy – we should never cut this out of our diet as milk is an excellent source of protein but looking out for the unprocessed kind will be so much better for our health.
Unfortunately, when it comes to the whole processed food argument it does just come down to one simple thing with the food companies – it is a lot cheaper to mass produce low nutrient food and preserve it for a long as possible.
Saying this though there is some attempt to add some nutrients back in, but nowhere near the scale of whole, unprocessed foods.
Another downside to this processing of the whole foods is with the added sugar, salt, and fat in ingredients it means we can overdo it in one macronutrient meaning we are missing out on other macros that we need to keep us healthy and running just like your Ferrari!
These days we will find a lot of companies will add the extra salt, sugar, and fats on to their labels – they aren’t trying to hide it – but when do we ever really understand what is written on those food labels anyway…?!
All in all an increase of consuming sugar, fats, and salts can lead to long-term problems such as weight gain which can lead to joint issues plus high cholesterol and with the higher sodium content this can lead to low immune response meaning a higher risk of illness.
Its all rainbows and unicorns in the world of processed foods isn’t it!?
But we all know that these foods are and will be part of our diet for centuries to come.
They key here is moderation – enjoying them as part of a well balanced, macronutrient diet.
Here is a list of processed foods that we want to stay away from – the FDA would love that 😉
Processed Foods to Avoid
- Refined (White) Flour
- Refined (White) Sugar and Fructose Corn Syrup
- Reconstructed Lunch Meat
- Sodas and Energy drinks
- Pasteurised Milk Products
Now, this may seem like a huge deal, and if we let ourselves fall to the temptation of the above foods regularly, then we need to be ready to experience some uncomfortable health issues.
But we can fix this – we can help ourselves – and we can give the health service a break.
All it comes down to is your choices and making the right decisions when it comes to your everyday diet.
Insulin Production – The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly
Insulin has many jobs and can be talked about a lot when it comes to our health – most commonly mentioned when talking diabetes, but insulin itself has one primary role.
Our digestive system breaks down carbs into glucose molecules, and glucose enters your blood.
Insulin allows the glucose to pass from our blood to our cells for nutrients and fat storage, basically normalizing your blood sugar levels.
Some of our body’s processes shut down while insulin is working in our blood, so our body can actually burn fat OR store fat, but not both at the same time.
You will probably know someone who’s insulin levels that can go up and down, meaning their blood sugar levels can be quite sporadic which is treated with an insulin shot or other forms of treatment.
The Good of Insulin
Doctors and scientists have found beta cells in our pancreas, and these are responsible for the production of insulin.
Our pancreas delivers insulin into our blood, which is what happens when we eat carbohydrates.
The insulin in our blood opens up a door in our cells which lets those glucose molecules walk through and get used as energy.
Still with me 😉 ?!
The process may seem pretty dull, but when it comes to blood sugar and insulin, no news is good news.
For most of us, it’s wise to take it easy on food that hikes up glucose and thus prolongs insulin levels in the blood.
A lot of these foods also create a tendency to overeat, they taste good, so we eat more – simple as that, but the boost it gives our sugar levels also makes us want more. So we want to be careful regarding how much we eat as for the 75th time, keep it in moderation!
The “Bad” of Insulin
Now we have all heard of diabetes. Doctors diagnose type 1 diabetes when our body does not produce enough insulin on its own, this is where something has caused damage to our beta cells in our pancreas.
Doctors will then prescribe insulin therapy to normalize blood sugar levels, this is usually through a shot or another form of treatment.
Fact number 2 – In 2016 the FDA approved the first artificial pancreas, It’s an implanted machine, and it measures blood sugar levels and delivers insulin as glucose rises.
Another rare condition of the pancreas is hypoglycemia, which is when blood sugar drops too low as a result of too much insulin in the blood.
Going into a calorie deficit can be dangerous for those with hyperglycemia and its when the two mixed together can be very dangerous.
Those with the condition will usually have a chocolate bar or energy drink nearby in case of this happening but in it’s worst case the person can end up in a coma.
Doctors also see very low blood sugar in diabetic patients that overdo it on insulin therapy.
A more rare cause of hypoglycemia is a tumor in the pancreas.
A pancreas with enlarged insulin-producing beta cells kicks insulin production into overdrive.
When your blood sugar levels are very low, keeping it up by eating is a form of therapy.
The Glycemic Index measures the effects of specific carbohydrates on blood sugar levels.
The Ugly Side of Diabetes
Doctors diagnose type 2 diabetes when the cells in our blood have high insulin resistance the cause of this is frequent and prolonged elevated blood sugar and insulin levels.
Our cells develop a resistance to insulin when it is present in the blood for too long, too often this will also mean your body burns fat at a slower rate.
Let’s go back to our analogy about insulin opening doors in our cells for glucose.
Insulin resistance is when a sort of film develops around the cells and sticks some of the entries shut.
So now, some of the doors that insulin would open for glucose to walk through are stuck closed.
So then glucose builds up in the blood, and our cells don’t get as much fuel as they used to.
You’ll notice a significant decrease in physical strength and doctors diagnose hyperglycemia when glucose stays in our blood for a long time.
Early symptoms of hyperglycemia include excessive thirst and urination and can even lead to blurry vision and more frequent infections.
Over an extended period, the pancreas becomes overworked, and a tired pancreas no longer produces insulin in the amounts it once did.
So going back to our analogy about insulin opening doors in your cells, now there is less insulin to open the few entries that aren’t stuck, and even less glucose gets into your cells which means glucose then builds up even more in the blood.
Type 2 diabetes is prevalent in those with a predisposition to producing insulin at a slower rate.
These types of genetic predispositions are likely a survival adaptation, at one point in past generations, it helped sustain energy levels when food was harder to find.
Many factors can contribute to the diagnosis of type 2 diabetes and resistance in insulin, but it is usually down to an unhealthy diet, high in saturated fats and high in starchy, processed carbohydrates that have been consumed over an extended period of time.
Treatment for type 2 diabetes should always start with a lifestyle inventory.
It’s important to remember that living with type 2 diabetes does not have to take years off our lifespan and eating healthy will keep blood sugar and insulin levels in check.
Our daily meals are where a recently diagnosed type 2 diabetic should look to make changes making sure to include more protein, fiber, vitamin B12, and omega-3 fatty acids.
To add to the new colorful, vibrant meals, it’s also a good idea to get proper exercise and sleep, as well as cut out most alcohol consumption.
While we are recovering, our doctor may prescribe insulin therapy to normalize our blood sugar levels, like what of a person with type 1 diabetes would experience.
Our cells and pancreas will heal over time as a result of lifestyle adjustments, and once we have recovered, you can stop insulin therapy, but like most things, it’s down to your lifestyle changes and choices that can help with our long-term recovery.
Insulin in the human body can be confusing at the best of times but we try and make it as simple of possible to understand, our body uses it to both burn fat as well as store it. Insulin has many essential jobs so do not take it for granted or indeed ignore it.
How to Read Nutrition Labels – This Skill Can Save Your Life!
If like me you look at a nutrition label and it’s all just colors, numbers and a few percentages thrown in then we want a simple way to understand them.
We want to walk into a store and buy what we fancy but also make sure we aren’t lacking in all the nutrients that we have spoken about before.
The information on the labels can be beneficial but also crazy confusing, and if we can work out what numbers we need to take note of then shopping in a store, then that shopping experience will never be the same again.
The serving size on the label is critical information- and this is where many people slip up, we can very quickly just look at the calories and think that it’s okay but more often than not it will be the calories made up of an individual serving size.
For example, a 1-liter carton of orange juice can be broken down into 250ml serving sizes, and that’s what the calories will have on the front – so don’t fall for the serving size being the whole packet calorie wise.
But we need to be making sure we are within our daily calorie intake to make sure we are on to a winner concerning weight loss.
Roughly (I repeat – roughly ) 2000 calories for females and 2500 calories for men but naturally children and athletes can vary massively as well, so it’s vital to make sure you get your calories right for you.
If you aren’t sure how many calories you need to be consuming for your own goal be sure to use a calorie calculator!
As mentioned before – 100 times – we don’t want to malnourish our body as it can lead to long-term health complications so when checking out the food labels of your favorite foods, implement these tips first before purchasing –
Limit saturated and trans fats, especially if we are trying to lose weight or have high cholesterol.
Food high in cholesterol that contains saturated or trans fats has ‘bad cholesterol.’
Always limit sugars, it is the only carbohydrates that we should limit.
Avoid high concentrations of sodium, especially for long periods of time because too much sodium increases your risk of illnesses.
So on the flip side of harmful here’s stuff that is helpful – this post isn’t all doom and gloom of don’t do this and don’t do that.
Some of the items on the labels are essential nutrients that we should seek after and get as part of our day to day diet.
Fiber is a healthy carbohydrate, try and include fiber in your diet as much as possible.
Protein is useful and essential for maintaining weight as well as energy levels – Fact number 3 – The average American diet is deficient in food containing complete protein.
Finally, our body needs vitamins and minerals in, so we want to include these as much as possible.
% Daily Value
The most confusing and sometimes most useless piece of information on a label is the % daily value,
The only bit really valuable is the micronutrients, these percentages are useful to consider.
However, the macronutrients recommendations aren’t suitable for everyone’s fitness and weight goal.
This is where it can be very generic and may not suit you, so it’s critical to get nailed down on our own personal goal and then we can look to adjust the macro %’s for us.
A Foot Note at the Bottom
The bottom of the nutrition facts label describes recommendations made by the FDA – the scientists when it comes to food and drugs – so we probably should listen to them.
We can see the difference between the recommended amounts for a 2,000 and 2,500 calorie diets for females and male, but again it comes down to our own individual goals, and in this day and age it’s not as black and white as that.
Finally, don’t forget the small chart at the bottom of some labels, this little table shows the number of calories in 1 gram of each macronutrient.
What is there to look for in the Ingredients List?
Complete protein! Examples are eggs, legumes, seafood, or lean meat.
Fewer processed carbohydrates like refined flour, refined sugar, and high fructose corn syrup.
Fewer nitrates and other artificial preservatives. It takes time and energy for your body to detoxify itself of these.
Now that we have mapped out the good the bad and the ugly of food labels we should be ready to make the right choices when it comes to the foods we make part of our everyday diet.
Get those food choices right, and we will be 100 times more likely to lead a healthier lifestyle free of diet-related health problems.
5 Top Tips to Summarize All the Science
We have mapped out all the science and broken each thing down, now we need just to go out and do it, so here are our 5 top tips that if we follow will have us feeling like that Ferrari in no time.
We have mapped out all the science and broken each thing down for us, now we need just to go out and do it, so here are our 5 top tips that if we follow will have us feeling like that Ferrari in no time.
- Eat plenty of nutrient dense food that you enjoy, nutrition is vital (in case we haven’t worked that out already!) to feeling full and eating healthy.
- Eat enough complete protein, fibrous carbohydrates, and unsaturated fats – these 3 macronutrients are absolute KEY!
- Avoid processed foods with empty calories because they can lead to overeating and malnutrition.
- Ask our doctor to check our blood sugar levels, mainly if our diet includes high amounts of processed carbohydrates.
- Use nutrition fact labels to pick out power foods with healthy ingredients. That’s the proper petrol to put in your car not the cheap, processed, swimming with additives that will lead you to break down 3 miles down the road.
BONUS TIP! Drink at least 60 ounces of water each day, dehydration can make us feel hungry so instead of reaching for the calorific food, drink some water instead!
Staying hydrated during the day and late at night helps to control snacking.
We all want not just to feel right but look good as well, but everyone is different, very different.
So we can’t get caught up in the generic numbers of calories and macronutrients – we need to consider what is best for us and our own personal goal.
We can very quickly lose motivation when it comes to healthy eating because the temptation of the junk food can be too much – but as mentioned – if you keep it in moderation there’s no reason why we can’t lead a healthy lifestyle, reducing the chance of illnesses and long-term health problems.
Plus there is nothing wrong a with a beer and packet of crisps here and there!
Finally, make sure our healthy meals are varied – as much as we can lose motivation with the temptation we can also get bored – very quickly – so keep it exciting and keep it varied to stop us from getting bored and falling off the wagon …… again!