“You are what you eat” a classic saying we’ve all heard before but it’s also one of the most truthful phrases you’ll come across. But what is an unhealthy diet? What’s a healthy diet? There is so much confusing and false information out there provided by the government, companies and by various people online that it’s no wonder obesity levels are rising and people are more confused about what to do than ever.
As far as the Government is concerned, with their ‘eat well’ plates, peoples nutrition is poor because they’re not eating enough dairy, meat, grains and fruit sugars. But this is wrong. People don’t need to eat more, they need to eat less. Less of the toxic, processed, disease promoting foods and MORE of the nutritious, mineral and vitamin packed, health promoting foods.
As far as I’m concerned unhealthy diets consists of:
A large consumption of cooked and microwaved foods. If your diet consists of mainly microwaved and cooked foods this isn’t the way to go towards good health. Cooking and microwaving all your food destroys the nutrition in foods.
A lack of fresh fruit and veg
A low water intake and a high intake of fizzy drinks/coffee/caffeinated energy drinks. The amount of sugar in fizzy drinks is shocking and it will go straight to your stomach. They will also dehydrate you, which most people mistake for hunger, which can lead to overeating. You must limit the consumption of these fizzy drinks and caffeinated drinks and increase your water intake. Your body will thank you for it.
Very high consumption of sugars and processed carbohydrates. Again consuming these foods leads to fat storage so it's really important that you limit the consumption of them.
Eating foods high in chemical food additives such as MSG and sweeteners such as Aspartame and Sucralose. They're toxic to the body and there is growing evidence that they can cause many cancers. They're a man made, unnatural product and should be avoided. Natural sweeteners such as honey and stevia should be consumed instead.
Consuming high levels of fried foods or foods cooked at high temperatures - this destroys nutrients while also creating carcinogenic compounds (which can cause cancers)
Eating foods made with many modified, unnatural ingredients, such as hydrogenated oils, refined sugars (you lose all the vitamins and minerals when a food is refined) and long life milks. Again, they're poisonous to the body and nutrient void and should be avoided for optimum health.
Those are just some points to consider when analysing your diet and when you’re aiming to eat healthier foods.
Now, what is a healthy diet? A healthy diet consists of a diet rich in nutrient packed foods such as fruits, vegetables, nuts, lean organic meats, fibre, minerals and vitamins as well as maintaining high hydration levels. We need to limit the foods above and avoid making the mistakes above. As a society we simply need to eat LESS of the highly processed, nutrient dead foods and MORE of the nutritious high fibre, high protein and high nutrient based foods. A couple of quick points to remember to ensure your diet is healthy:
Eat naturally. Try to avoid consuming ready meals and processed foods which contain a lot of added ingredients. The less ingredients a product has the more natural and healthy it will be.
Choose organic foods. Which contain more vitamins & minerals and less pesticides and chemicals.
Consume more fruit and veg. This ensures you get enough fibre, vitamins and minerals in your diet which is essential for good health.
Eat good fats. We need fat in order to properly absorb the nutrients in our diet and for proper hormone function. Don’t avoid it, just make sure your consuming the right kind of food, which you can get through food sources such as nuts, avocados, oily fish, eggs and olive oils.
Consume enough protein in the form of lean meats/plant protein sources that aren’t factor farmed and full of chemicals and hormones.
Drink enough water. Your body can’t function properly if it’s dehydrated and it also has a tough time burning fat. Water is used in the process of breaking down fat for energy. If you’re not drinking enough your body isn’t going to prioritise fat burning. You will also feel more full and are less likely to binge when your hydrated.
Read food labels. It will educate you on what’s in your food and allow you to make more responsible choices.
So, I hope these points have helped you in trying to understand what is a healthy diet and what is an unhealthy diet. Nutrition is over complicated nowadays. You don’t need to go on a diet. You don’t need to buy the latest weight loss supplement. You don’t need to starve yourself. You need to eat more of the good stuff, less of the bad stuff, exercise and drink lots of water. Simple!
If you’d like some more information about transforming your body and creating nutritional and exercise habits you can implement for life feel free to message me or book in for a free consultation with me where we can just have a quick chat about your fitness goals. Speak soon, Jamie.