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My dad said eating healthy is less expensive than medical bills.
What new and healthy food can I serve this week?
You R What U Eat
by Stephanie Harren, Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist (CFNS)
Food is one of the most important aspects of our daily lives, after all without it we die. If you really want to become fit and healthy you’re going to have to have a mind shift about food. The “average” person sees food and eats it. But to learn to be truly healthy you will need to think differently and act differently when it comes to food.
Have you really considered what not eating healthy is doing to your body? The foods we eat have a direct correlation to how our body functions. Disease, fatigue, lack of mental focus/clarity- just to name a few, can all be traced back to the foods we put into our mouths.
Protein is found throughout the body and is needed for fighting illnesses, building and repairing tissues, producing enzymes, carrying nutrients, creating new cells, maintaining fluid balance, transporting oxygen, and as a source for energy.
Quality proteins include: lean chicken, very lean beef, fish, quality powdered proteins, low-fat cheeses (otherwise considered a fat), Greek yogurt, and eggs.
Carbohydrates are the major source of energy for your body. They provide fuel for the central nervous system and the muscular system. Carbohydrates are not the enemy. Refined carbohydrates like white flour, sugar, processed foods, white rice, etc. are those you need to limit or eliminate.
- Increase your intake of fruits and veggies and make them your main source of carbohydrate intake.
- Watch you intake of whole grains, beans, and root vegetables. Find out what the right portion of these carbohydrates is right for you.
- Reduce or eliminate refined carbohydrates including white flours, refined sugars, and processed/packaged foods.
Quality Carbohydrates include: fruits (watch portions), veggies (unlimited), starches-potatoes, beans, grains-whole wheat, rice, corn, and quinoa.
Fats are needed in your diet to help you absorb fat-soluble vitamins A, D, and K. They not only promote normal growth and development in children but they cushion the organs, provide a layer of insulation under the skin to help maintain normal body temperature and also provide energy.
Good sources of fat: olive oil, coconut oil, nuts/nut butters, and avocados
All these major nutrients work TOGETHER to help your body perform adequately. They must be consumed in adequate amounts that are determined by height, age, weight, and activity level AND it has to be able to fit into your CURRENT lifestyle. No one person will have exactly the same nutritional requirements as another. This is why cookie cutter programs often do not work. Finding a good nutritionist or certified fitness nutritionist will help you along your journey.
4 simple ways to get started
- Eat every 3 to 4 hours
- Eat protein at EVERY meal and snack.
- NEVER eat carbohydrates alone, pair it with a protein.
- Choose one day out of the week to be more relaxed about food OR 3 meals/week that you will relax (I call these PI-personal indulgences)
Breakfast-Smoothie (choice of fruit and spinach with quality protein powder), 6 almonds
Snack-Apple and stick of low-fat string cheese
Lunch-3-4 oz. chicken breast, choice of veggie (unlimited amount) w/2 tsp. butter, ¼ cup brown rice
Snack-1 cup grapes w/ 2 oz. chicken breast
Dinner-Taco salad (3-4 oz. extra lean ground beef), 1 taco shell crumbled, ½ oz. light cheese, 1 tbsp. light sour cream all on a bed of lettuce (not iceberg) and tomato. Top it off with salsa
Practicing good nutrition is one way we show respect for ourselves…..providing it demonstrates respect for those we love.
Have you had your nutrition today?