Naked Nutrition

I believe what we eat has a greater impact on our lives than you have ever imagined.

A healthy diet should be something everyone should strive to achieve. I say diet knowing that this word has been misused in the fitness and weightloss industry and in doing so is usually associated with restrictions, but I will use it in the following context . DIET – the kinds of food that a person, animal, or community habitually eats.

So what is a healthy diet?

A healthy diet is not about strict limitations, staying unrealistically thin, or depriving yourself of the foods you love. it’s about feeling great, having more energy, improving your health, and boosting your mood. A healthy diet will keep your body functioning optimally, keep your hormones balanced and as a result will have an impact on not only your physical health but also your mental health. Studies have shown that certain foods we eat or should reduce in quantity can directly affect Anxiety, depression and even OCD, add exercise and good sleep and you have a recipe for success.

A Healthy diet is as much about what you add as to what you take away. Portion control will play a part in your overall health and weight management, but if you stick closely to the foundations of healthy eating as described below this won’t be as big an issue as you might think as you should be adding low energy high volumes foods to your diet leaving you fuller and more satisfied . You can however check out my easy guide to portion sizes to get a better understanding of how much you should have on your plate.

Healthy eating doesn’t have to be overly complicated, if you stick to a few foundational rules, you’ll find it easy

Foundations of healthy eating.

Eat food that is as close as possible to the way nature made
Reduce highly processed food as much as possible
Eat a balance of protein, fat, carbohydrates
Eat from the 5 main food groups
Don’t forget fibre
Stay hydrated

Eat food that is as close as possible to the way nature made

Learn to cook, cooking can be easy and fun and in doing so you will have no problem sticking to eating real food. What I mean by real food? Real food is whole, single-ingredient food. It is mostly unprocessed, free of chemical additives, and rich in nutrients

Example potatoes, rice, fruit, vegetables, beans,eggs, poultry, meats and fish etc

Reduce highly processed food as much as possible

It is important to avoid heavily processed foods, such as pre-made meals (frozen pizza, microwavable dinners) or ready-to-eat foods like deli meat, crisps, fried chicken or store-bought cakes,biscuits and doughnuts. These products contain additives and preservatives and are often high in sugar and trans fats.

Most of these kinds of food are also high energy low satiety foods meaning they are high in calories but dont keep you full, so you end up eating more and putting on weight.

Eliminating all processed foods will probably not be an option for you, but you can make better choices for example wholemeal bread over white, white bread is highly processed whereas wholemeal bread is processed to a lesser extent and therefore the better option.

Eat a balance of protein, fat, carbohydrates

These are your macronutrients, the nutrients you need in large amounts and yes you need all of these for your body to function correctly. Some diets have you cut out one or more of these altogether, you will lose weight initially if that’s your goal but you will also but you will also be doing yourself damage in the long run. My goal is to live a long healthy life and feel strong, energetic and great while doing so, i hope yours is too.

Eat from the 5 main food groups

fruit and vegetables
potatoes, bread, rice, pasta and other starchy carbohydrates
beans, pulses, fish, eggs, meat and other proteins
dairy and alternatives
oils and spreads

Balance is the key word here, if you eat from the 5 main food groups you will have a balance of your main macronutrients protein, fat, carbohydrates, you will also get your fiber and micronutrients. These are your vitamins and minerals that are essential for optimal health.

Don’t forget fibre

Dietary fiber — found mainly in fruits, vegetables, whole grains and legumes — is probably best known for its ability to prevent or relieve constipation. But foods containing fiber can provide other health benefits as well, such as helping to maintain a healthy weight and lowering your risk of diabetes and heart disease.

Aids in achieving healthy weight. High-fiber foods tend to be more filling than low-fiber foods, so you’re likely to eat less and stay satisfied longer. And high-fiber foods tend to take longer to eat and to be less “energy dense,” which means they have fewer calories for the same volume of food.

Stay hydrated

Your body is made up of mostly water. It makes up nearly two-thirds of a man’s body and just over half of a woman’s.

Water is important in your body – from removing waste products in urine, to lubricating your joints, transporting nutrients around your body and controlling your temperature. It can even help make your skin look good.

How much should i drink? The basic guide for adults is 2 -2.5 liters a day or around 8 -10 glasses, but this is just a guide and there are other factors to consider.

Your age – as you get older your body stores less water and your kidneys don’t work as well as they once did.

The amount of physical activity you do – the more exercise you do, the more you need to drink.

The climate and your environment – you need to drink more if it’s hot and you’re sweating a lot or if you’re in a warm house or office with either central heating or air conditioning. Both air conditioning and central heating can dry the air.

If you’re pregnant or breastfeeding – you’re more likely to develop constipation, so you need to drink more.

On average most people don’t drink enough water so even if you just start to add 2 glasses of water a day it’s an improvement.

When it comes down to long lasting healthy eating it’s about making small changes at a time, you don’t have to overhaul your entire diet overnight, just by making a few changes based around the foundations above you will be well on your way to a healthier, fitter, more energetic and happier version of yourself and who doesn’t want that?

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