Practical Nutrition Means Fitness Success and Longevity
The subject of nutrition is always controversial. And it seems like every week there is a new study or diet in the news. Who wouldn't get confused?
I think I can clear up a few things. First, and this is important, someone with serious health problems or who is grossly overweight should schedule a doctor appointment and a complete physical examination. In some instances, your physician may refer you to a dietitian or nutritionist.
Don't skip that first step.
In spite of diet controversies you may hear, there are many accepted principles that most fitness experts agree upon. Make them part of your lifestyle and you'll do just fine. Add a practical exercise program to your life and a healthy body weight and good physical fitness will result.
Ten basic dietary principles
1. You cant out-exercise a poor diet is almost a cliche in the fitness field. But it is true. At some point all those over sized portions of fast foods will show up on your waistline and in your coronary arteries, no matter how many push-ups you do.
2. Sugar (the "white death," as it has been called), sugar foods, and sugary drinks are bad for you. Of course someone will say, But a little sugars okay, in moderation. Well, maybe. But look, theyre empty calories and sugar sends your insulin soaring. Of course a slice of birthday cake at a party isn't the end of the world. But don't kid yourself. Getting sugar out of your diet is a huge plus.
3. Processed foods (generally stuff that comes in a box or bag) are only a few steps behind sugar in the its bad for you nutrition department. In addition to processing out most of the valuable nutrients, the manufacturers of processed foods usually add sugars of some sort and/or hydrogenated oils. Read the labels. Often claims of Low fat mean added sugar. A marketing gimmick.
4. Dont eat any product containing hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils. They are Trans fats and are dangerous to your well being.
5. Cold water fatty fish such as salmon, sardines, and trout is good for you. Its that omega-3 oil that is so valuable. Dont like fish? Ask your doctor about a fish oil supplement. Try Vital Choice Alaskan Sockeye Salmon Oil Supplements, a top of the line product. It is a mistake to sacrifice purity by purchasing a poor quality fish oil.
6. If you eat beef, look for grass fed, which produces omega-3 fats. It is healthier animal fat than that of grain fed cattle.
7. Keep animal fats to a minimum. Eat lean meat and low-fat or nonfat dairy products.
8. Get most of your carbohydrates from fruits and vegetables Mix the colors for a healthy variety.
9. Establish a portion control eating method that makes sense to you. Portion control is the single most important factor in maintaining a healthy body weight and body-fat percentage. Personally, I like the hand measurement trick I explain in my books. Basically, it means dividing meal plates into thirds: 1/3 protein; 1/3 vegetables; and 1/3 fruit or whole grain of some sort or legumes . . . plus a little healthful fat.
Each component third is roughly the size and thickness of the palm of your hand, and no larger than your clinched fist. However, if the vegetable portion is a loosely composed salad, double the serving size.
The fat serving say olive oil in a salad dressing, or avocado slices, some nuts or olives should be about the size of your thumb.
10. Grazing beats gorging when it comes to nutrition. Three smaller meals per day, plus two or three healthful snacks, result in an even energy level without insulin/blood sugar spikes, and youll more efficiently burn fat. For convenience, healthful shakes can serve as snacks.