What You Think You Know About Healthy Eating Might Be Wrong
Nutrition and diet info is everywhere! And it feels like each expert tries to lead you in their direction because they know best and their advice is going to help you, right?
Many of us have heard that a healthy weight and healthy eating is based on how much you eat. This has gotten way too much attention because while this DOES affect your weight and energy level, it's certainly not the holy grail of health.
Let's focus a bit more on the often overlooked (and proven) benefits of what you eat and drink and how you eat and drink.
The 'calories in, calories out' philosophy (i.e. how much you eat) is being drowned out with the research on other factors that may be just as important. Don't get me wrong, limiting calories, carbs or fat can certainly help you lose weight but that's simply not the only factor for long term weight loss and maximum energy for everyone.
When the intense focus on how much we ate didn't work in the long run, it wasn't really a surprise. We kinda knew that already, didn't we?
You can certainly still continue to count your calories, carbs and fat but don't forget to also pay attention to WHAT you eat.
Ideally, you need a varied diet full of minimally processed foods (i.e. fewer packaged and ready to eat foods). This simple concept is paramount for weight loss, energy and overall health and wellness.
Everyday, this is what we should aim for:
- a colorful array of fruits and veggies at almost every meal and snack. You need fibre, antioxidants vitamins and minerals
- enough protein. Make sure you get all those essential amino acids (bonus: eating protein can increase your metabolism
- Healthy fats and oils (not hydrogenated ones). There is a reason some fatty acids are called 'Essential' and its because you need them as building blocks for your hormones and brain, as well as to be able to absorb essential fat soluble vitamins from your uber- healthy salads. Use extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, eat your egg yolks, and get grass fed meat when possible.
Also pay attention to HOW you eat and drink.
Studies are definitely showing that this has more of an impact than we previously thought.
Are you rushed, not properly chewing your food, and possibly suffering from gastrointestinal issues? Do you drink your food?
When it comes to how you eat, let's first look at 'mindful eating'.
Mindful eating means to take smaller bites, eat slowly, chew thoroughly and savour every bite. Notice and appreciate the smell, taste and texture. Relax and breathe.
This gives your digestive system the hint to prepare for digestion and to secrete necessary enzymes.
This can also help with weight loss! Slower eating often means eating less. Did you know that it takes about 20 minutes for your brain to know that your stomach is full?
We also know that more thoroughly chewed food is easier to digest and it makes it easier to absorb all of those essential nutrients.
And don't forget about drinking your food.
Yes, smoothies can be healthy and a fabulously easy and tasty way to get in some fruits and veggies including leafy greens! But drinking too much food can contribute to a weight problem and feelings of sluggishness.
Don't get me wrong, a green smoothie can make an amazing nutrient dense meal and is way better than stopping for convenient junk food, just consider a large smoothie to be a full meal and not just a snack. And don't gulp it down too fast!
If your smoothies don't fill you up like a full meal does, then try adding in a spoon of fibre like ground flax or chia seeds.
We have covered a lot of information! In summary:
Consider not ONLY how much you eat, but WHAT and HOW you eat it.
Here is a recipe to try which can either be a snack or meal replacement.
Want more yummy Green Smoothie Recipes? Of course you do!
Sign up for my Green Smoothie Challenge! (Its FREE!)
I hope you join me for the challenge, its a great way to kick start our energy levels and get more fruits and veggies in our day!
Gaylene Gomez, NNCP, C.H.N.