There’s so much nutritional information out there, and there have been so many fad diets over the years: Low-Fat, Low-Carb, The Grapefruit Diet, Keto, Paleo, the list goes on and on. It can be really overwhelming.
Fortunately, there are really only 5 things you need to know in order to look and feel better. Now I'll be the first to admit, there's nothing trendy or sexy about this list. But it's withstood the test of time. And unlike most fat diets, it'll still be true 10 or 20 years from now!
HERE WE GO:
- Every meal or snack should contain PROTEIN
- Have COLOR AND VARIETY with each meal (veggies/fruits)
- Aim for at least 30 grams of FIBER each day
- Make sure that most of the fats in your diet come from EFAs (3-6-9)
- Eat mostly WHOLE, UNPROCESSED FOODS
Because animal proteins (meat, fish, poultry, eggs, and dairy) contain amino acids combinations similar to humans, they are easily absorbed by our bodies. Therefore they are considered high-quality proteins.
On the other hand, plant-based proteins (beans, nuts, legumes, and vegetables) often have limited amounts of some amino acids. It was once believed that you needed to eat a combination of certain plant foods at the same time to make the protein source “complete”. However, we now know that intentional combining of plant foods is not necessary.
Your body can absorb all of the essential amino acids from plants IF YOU:
- Consume enough calories to maintain a healthy weight
- Eat mainly unprocessed or minimally processed vegetables
- Limit processed and refined junk food
- Do not base your diet on fruits alone
2. COLOR and VARIETY
The phrase "eating a rainbow" of fruits and vegetables is a simple way of remembering to get as much color variety in your diet as possible in order to maximize your intake of a broad range of nutrients.
There are 2 different types of fiber:
- Fruits (citrus fruits, strawberries, apples)
- Plant leaves/stems/skins
- Whole grains
4. ESSENTIAL FATTY ACIDS
Most experts agree that you should increase your consumption of omega-3s and decrease your consumption of omega-6s.
Eat MORE from this list (OMEGA 3s)
- albacore tuna
Eat LESS from this list (OMEGA 6s)
- corn oil
- sunflower oil
- peanut oil
- sesame oil
5. WHOLE, UNPROCESSED FOODS
Life can be crazy, and there are many great bars made with organic ingredients. Eat them when necessary. But when given the choice between a bar and a piece of salmon, we recommend going with fish!