Friday, August 16, 2013
Just Eat Healthy & Feel Better- Simple as That!
Too many people are easily influenced by diet trends and what diet or cleanse is currently popular in the fitness community. I am a firm believer that diets such as Paleo or Virgin make people feel better because they are cutting out junk that they used to eat, and replacing it with more healthy foods like vegetables. There is no reason one needs to cut legumes or beans out of their diet (as the Paleo diet has you do), since they have been long touted as one of the healthiest foods on earth. Most people are not getting fat from eating too many lentils, but more likely, the ice cream or cookies that you have eliminated while on the Paleo diet is the reason you are losing weight and feeling better.
Certainly, if you have a gluten or dairy allergy, by cutting those foods out of your diet you will feel much better. However, if you do not have an allergy or intolerance you will most likely feel much better if you just swap the bad with good: ice cream and pizza for low-fat plain yogurt and quinoa. By swapping junk foods with healthy foods, you will have more energy and be able to lose weight easier- no trendy diet involved! Most likely, you are not meeting your food group requirements: ALL whole grain products, TONS of vegetables (I’m talking more than 2 solid cups/day), lean proteins, fruits, and non- or low-fat dairy…and that is the real reason you are not functioning optimally.
My Recommendation: I find that people are too focused on avoiding certain additives or GMO’s, so that they forget about all the other stuff they are consuming that is doing the real damage. While at home you may be only eating organic Whole Foods products, but what is really making you feel lethargic or causing you to gain weight are those mini candy bars at the office and eating out a few nights a week. Of course, I advocate trying to eat as close to whole, real, natural foods as you can… but don’t become obsessed with avoiding certain additives or GMO’s (unless you have a valid ethical or well-supported reason) if you haven’t fully evaluated all the foods you are consuming on a regular basis. Look through your diet and try to identify what junk you can cut out. Replace that junk with vegetables and you will feel better, guaranteed! J