Those are the first 26 words in the 100 word definition of world class fitness. The first 26 are about nutrition. One quarter of the entire definition is about the food we use to fuel our bodies. They are also first because they are the most important and for most people they are the hardest to follow.
I don’t usually receive too many excuses when I plan a workout. It may not be easy or they may not like it but they’ll do it because it will only last a few minutes. But if I tell someone how they should eat I get every excuse imaginable. We hold our food choices so sacred. This reenforces in my mind that as a nation we have an unhealthy relationship with our food. Some of us may even have an addiction.
Food is fuel, it exists to provide us with energy to survive. On a basic level that is all food is.
Eating for health, low body fat percentage and athletic performance are all basically the same, and the quote at the top of the page says it all. Getting Proper nutrition is not actually that complicated, but that doesn't mean it's easy.
Eat Meat and Vegetables
These two food groups should make up the majority of the foods you eat. They are put in the same sentence for a reason. They are equally important. Animal protein is great for your body and supports muscle growth, repair and body fat loss. Vegetables are full of vitamins and minerals that your body needs to run at optimal levels. Vegetables also support body fat loss.
Meat Examples: Beef, pork, chicken, fish, eggs
Vegetable Examples: Broccoli, spinach, asparagus, onion, green pepper
Nuts and Seeds
These little guys are a fantastic source of dietary fat. Your body needs dietary fat for energy and most people should use dietary fat as their primary source of energy. It’s unfortunate that “dietary fat” and “body fat” both contain the word fat. For future reference dietary fat does not make you fat. Do not avoid it. Learn to love it. You need it to burn body fat.
Examples: Almonds, cashews, sunflower seeds, avocado, olives, olive oil, coconut and coconut oil
Fruit comes after dietary fat in importance. You can do without it. You'll be perfectly healthy if you only eat animal protein, vegetables and nuts/seeds but sometimes it’s nice to have something a little sweet. This is when fruit is nice to have. It adds a little variety to the foods you eat and is relatively low on the glycemic index. Fruit and Vegetables are not interchangeable. The key here is “some” fruit, not mostly fruit.
Examples: apples, strawberries, peaches, cherries, pineapple
Little Starch and No Sugar
Depending on your goals you might be able to get away with some starch in your diet but most people should just avoid it along with sugar. These two items are at the root of our national obesity epidemic. If everyone would cut out starches and sugar, obesity would go down, cases of type-2 diabetes would drop drastically, and many of our medical issues would disappear.
These are the two items most people refuse to stop eating, and they are the main reason you can’t lose that extra body fat, you can’t get off that cholesterol medicine or you’re not performing as well as you would like in the gym.
Starch Examples: Breads, grains, potatoes, corn, dry beans
Sugar Examples: Table sugar, soda, juice, cake, pie, candy
A Better Future
Eating this way for only 30 days will drastically change the way your body looks and how you feel throughout the day. Give it a shot, it’s only 30 days.
I’m not even going to mention portion sizes. For the average person that doesn’t really even matter. If you’re eating mostly meat and vegetables then your body will let you know when you’re full.
Eat when you’re hungry. Stop when you’re not.
Now go move better.