When it comes to eating healthy, you can find a ton of information and advice out there. But let's be real, a lot of it revolves around strict diets, counting calories, or pushing specific dietary choices.
In this blog post, we're taking a different approach—one that's all about embracing abundance and getting plenty of protein. By understanding the basics of healthy eating and making these principles a part of your everyday life, you'll nourish your body with the right stuff, keep your energy levels up, and feel amazing overall.
Healthy eating should be a joyful and satisfying experience. Instead of focusing on what you should avoid, shift your mindset towards abundance. Fill your plate with a variety of whole, nutrient-dense foods that nourish your body. Think vibrant fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, and healthy fats. By embracing abundance, you ensure a well-rounded intake of essential vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
Prioritize Whole Foods:
In a world filled with processed and convenience foods, it's important to prioritize whole foods whenever possible. Whole foods are minimally processed and retain their natural nutrients and fibre content. They include fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts, and seeds. By choosing whole foods over processed alternatives, you provide your body with a wide range of nutrients, support digestion, and promote overall health. I always say, try to eat foods that don't have an ingredient list.
Opt for High-Quality Proteins:
Protein is a crucial component of a healthy diet. It provides the building blocks for our muscles, supports cell repair, and aids in the production of enzymes and hormones. When selecting proteins, opt for high-quality sources such as lean meats, poultry, fish, eggs, dairy products, and plant-based options like legumes, tofu, and tempeh. Including protein-rich foods in your meals and snacks can help regulate appetite, promote satiety, and support muscle recovery and growth.
Include Healthy Fats:
Healthy fats are an important component of a nutritious diet. They provide energy, support brain health, and help absorb fat-soluble vitamins. Incorporate sources of healthy fats such as avocados, nuts, seeds, olive oil, and fatty fish like salmon into your meals. While fats are calorie-dense, they contribute to satiety, making you feel fuller for longer. Remember that moderation is key, as fats should be consumed in appropriate portions to maintain a healthy weight.
Practice Mindful Eating:
In our fast-paced world, it's easy to rush through meals without paying attention to what and how much we're consuming. Mindful eating involves being present and fully engaged with your food. Take time to savour the flavours, textures, and aromas of your meals. Eat slowly and listen to your body's hunger and fullness cues. This practice not only enhances your enjoyment of food but also promotes better digestion, portion control, and an overall healthier relationship with food.
Water is often overlooked, but it is essential for overall health and well-being. It aids in digestion, regulates body temperature, and helps transport nutrients. Aim to drink an adequate amount of water throughout the day and listen to your body's thirst signals. If you find plain water boring, infuse it with fresh fruits or herbs to add flavour. Limit sugary beverages and opt for water as your primary source of hydration.
Healthy eating is not about deprivation or adhering to strict rules. It's about embracing an abundance of whole foods, prioritizing high-quality proteins, and finding a balance that works for your body.
Tips for Sustainable Healthy Eating
Now, achieving optimal wellness through healthy eating doesn't mean you have to be perfect all the time. In fact, adopting a rigid approach can often lead to feelings of deprivation and an unsustainable relationship with food. That's where the 80/20 rule comes in—a flexible and balanced approach to nutrition that allows for enjoyment and flexibility while still prioritizing healthy choices.
What is the 80/20 rule?
The 80/20 rule suggests that you focus on making healthy choices about 80% of the time while allowing yourself flexibility and indulgence for the remaining 20%. This means that the majority of your meals and snacks should consist of nutrient-dense whole foods while leaving room for occasional treats or less-nutritious foods that you enjoy.
Remember, the 80/20 rule is a flexible guideline, not a strict rule. The key is to find a balance that works for you and your lifestyle. By focusing on making nutritious choices 80% of the time and allowing yourself some flexibility and enjoyment the other 20%, you can cultivate a sustainable approach to healthy eating that supports your overall well-being.
How to Eat for Optimal Wellness
In addition to focusing on the types of foods you consume, the way you eat can also contribute to optimal wellness. Paying attention to the order in which you eat your food can enhance digestion, nutrient absorption, and overall satisfaction. Here's a guideline to help you make the most of your meals:
1. Start with Vegetables:
Vegetables are packed with essential vitamins, minerals, and fibre. By starting your meal with a generous serving of vegetables, you ensure that you prioritize these nutrient-dense foods. Not only do vegetables provide valuable antioxidants and phytochemicals, but they also help create a sense of fullness and satiety. Fill at least half of your plate with a colourful variety of vegetables, including leafy greens, cruciferous vegetables, and vibrant options like bell peppers, tomatoes, and carrots.
2. Include High-Quality Protein:
After enjoying a portion of vegetables, it's time to incorporate high-quality protein into your meal. Protein takes longer to digest than carbohydrates, providing a sustained release of energy and helping to keep you feeling full for longer periods. Include lean meats, poultry, fish, eggs, legumes, or plant-based protein sources like tofu or tempeh. These protein-rich foods not only support muscle repair and growth but also contribute to a balanced and satisfying meal.
3. Add Complex Carbohydrates:
Once you've consumed vegetables and protein, it's time to include complex carbohydrates in your meal. These carbohydrates provide essential energy and fiber, promoting digestive health and sustained satiety.
By paying attention not only to the types of foods you consume but also to the order in which you eat them, you can optimize your wellness. Starting with vegetables, followed by high-quality protein, and then complex carbohydrates helps ensure that you prioritize nutrient-dense foods, support balanced blood sugar levels, and promote optimal digestion.
When you incorporate these fundamental principles into your lifestyle, you can achieve optimal nutrition, sustained energy levels, and overall well-being. Remember, healthy eating should be enjoyable, sustainable, and tailored to your individual needs. So go ahead, nourish your body with nutrient-dense foods and embrace the power of abundance and high-quality proteins for a healthier and happier you.
See you guys next week