Without any doubt, nutrition is the hardest part for most people to master! On a scale of 1-10 (10 being completely healthy) how would you rank your nutrition? Nutrition truly is 80% of your success equation. Think of it…have you ever caught yourself in a mindset such as the following: “I workout so that I can eat whatever I want!” Chances are that you have had those thoughts or some very similar. Don’t worry you are not alone, BUT you are wrong! The old cliché’ that “you are what you eat” could never be more true. Think about it just for a moment…your body LITERALLY (yes literally) becomes what you feed it day after day. Your bones, skin, hair, body fat level, organs, and essential fluids are ALL a direct transformation (chemically) of the foods that you consume.
With this in mind, can you possibly make the argument that nutrition is merely an inconsequential part of your physical make-up? Of course we know this not to be the case. The problem is that most of us do not eat as healthy as we should…and we know it! From processed foods to artificial sweeteners, we are bombarded daily with choices that may or may not be healthy for us. This may be a source of confusion for you as you try to live a healthy lifestyle.
Knowing how important nutrition is to your overall success, how do you sift through all of the fad diets and all of the hype to get to the truth? Is dieting the answer? According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) at any given time two-thirds of all American adults are on a diet to either lose weight or prevent weight gain. Of those, 29 percent are men and 44 percent women. Yet only 5 percent of these dieters will be successful at keeping the weight that they lost off! Can you believe that? That means that 95% of all diets fail! That is why we believe in long term change! You must change your nutritional lifestyle. You must change your nutritional habits. You must change the way you view foods and the roles that they play in your life.
Step #1: Form a Crystal Clear Vision:
This is a step that nearly everybody overlooks! Without a vision, you cannot make a goal. Without a goal you do not have a TARGET! So simply saying that “I want to eat better” will NOT work, my friends! Be very specific about the types of foods you will and will not consume on a daily basis. Going a step further you need to define what you want to look like and how you will get there. Make your road map…you will be glad that you did.
Step #2: Assess Your Current Nutrition:
Remember that you can break down everything that you eat into 3 main categories, namely carbohydrates, protein and fat. Your carbohydrates should be complex, low glycemic and high fiber! Your protein selections should be lean, skinless, and add variety such poultry, beans, fish, and extra lean meats. Try to go with grass-fed beef instead of regular. Your fat should come primarily from unsaturated plant sources such as Extra Virgin Olive oil or Coconut Oil. Keep you’re saturated and trans fats to a minimum.
Step #3: Control Your Blood-Sugar:
You can accomplish this by paying attention to your sugar intake and be sure to minimize the crappy processed foods such as white breads, pastas and sugary foods. The more processed it is the FATTER you are getting period…I hope I made my point. I get tired of people trying to justify their crappy food choices all in the name of satisfying their “sweet tooth.” That is all fine and dandy until we realize that our blood sugar is out of control, and when our blood sugar is out of control, so is our waist line…that is why 60% of us American are either obese or overweight, because we fail to control our blood sugar.
Remember the more natural and fibrous our carbohydrate selections, the better. Give the glycemic index a shot to help you out. Mendosa.com is a good place to start.
Step #4: Find a Customized Calorie Range and stay in it!
Too many of us leave this to chance! What ends up happening is we justify the little things we eat and we mentally do not count them. The problem with this behavior is that those “little things,” such as the Hershey Kisses that you eat intermittently throughout the day start to add up…big time!
A great place to start is www.myfitnesspal.com it will take you through the simple steps of finding a calorie range that is customized for your needs.
Step #5: Pound the Veggies!
This is one of the most overlooked and taken for granted nutritional practices in America. We simply do not consume enough veggies. The average adult should be consuming a minimum of 3 servings of veggies per day, and 4-5 is much better. We fall short as we only average 1.5 servings as a nation…pathetic! Time to get back on track!
These simple – but often neglected – nutritional principles will take you a long way in finding a healthy and sustainable lifestyle.
Life is good!