How to Eat Healthy?
What is healthy eating?
What is clean eating?
Where do calories come from?
What the heck is a calorie?
Here's a simple, easy to understand definition of eating healthy...
Our body needs fuel and it needs nutrients.
Fuel = Calorie
Calories come from Carbohydrate, Protein, and Fat. No where else!!! Only those three macro nutrients!
Nutrient = Macro/Micro
Micro nutrients are vitamins and minerals. They don't provide energy but they do provide the necessary items that make our body work and grow well.
Your body needs ALL three macro nutrients (carbohydrate, protein, fat) in order to function the way it was meant to.
Have some of all three at each meal.
Look at your labels and notice how much of each macro is there. Make this your first step. Work to have a portion of each macro with each meal/snack.
We need vitamins and minerals to keep our body's cells functioning properly so choose macro nutrients that contain a lot of micro nutrients. In other words....
Choose carbs, protein and fat that have a lot of vitamins and minerals.
I think we all know by now, today's foods do not contain as much nutrients as they did many years ago so find a high quality vitamin/mineral supplement that you can trust and add it to your diet. (Ask me if you want to know the best!)
You will be amazed at how good you can feel just doing these two things...
Eat all three macros at a meal and take a high quality vitamin/mineral supplement.
Currently, the USDA recommends somewhere in the vicinity of
I personally like to follow...
I change my macros depending on how active I plan to be. Remember, carbohydrates are meant to be energy and the typical human body uses over 1000 calories a day with just basic functions like breathing and digesting.
One step at a time...you can make changes that last a lifetime!
While I realize the American people eat way too many processed foods (primarily processed carbohydrates), I have at the same time watched so many people take this carbohydrate eating completely the opposite way and not eat enough carbohydrates.
There's a reason we are told to take two aspirin and not 1/2 and not four! It's because two are meant to take care of the average pain for a certain amount of hours. (You get the drift of the analogy)
Do you want to save money by only putting in 5$ worth of gasoline? You won't get very far! Same with carbohydrates.
How do you know how much to eat?
We'll talk about that next time!
In the meantime, if you are active you need a certain amount of carbohydrate for energy....I'm enclosing an article I recently read for some clarity.
..."More recently, studies have returned to investigating the influence of carbohydrate on fat loss and weight-loss maintenance in overweight and obese subjects. While some data support faster weight loss in carbohydrate-restricted diets, this result and the ability to maintain the weight loss only applies to those who can sustain the diet over time.
Every study has shown diminished athletic performance from a carbohydrate-restricted or KD compared to a carbohydrate-rich diet in athletes (Kleiner, 2015). Moreover, very-low-carbohydrate dieting has a profound influence on health, especially in highly active individuals and in women. Immune function (Gleeson and Bishop, 2000), insulin sensitivity, inflammation (Asrih et al., 2015), gut biome changes (Duncan et al., 2007), carbohydrate and brain activity (Rattray et al., 2015), and the peripheral metabolic pathway (Cooper, 2014) are all compromised when high demands are made on energy systems without adequate carbohydrate substrate availability. Under these circumstances physiological processes are suppressed by severely low energy availability, and measurement of total or resting energy expenditure will underestimate energy requirements (Loucks et al., 2011)."...
Your friend appears to be about the same size as you but why is it that she can eat more than you and still not gain weight???
It's very possible her body mass is higher!
Two women at 150 lbs.
Woman A is 20% body fat and 80% lean body mass
Woman B is 30% body fat and 70% lean body mass
Woman A is going to automatically have a higher metabolism and burn more calories daily than Woman B
Our body consumes calories while we sleep. Our body is also cleansing itself and rejuvenating and it takes energy to do so.
Lean body mass (muscle) works for you while body fat is just added weight to be carried around.
You might be surprised to find out what your lean body mass ratio is. It's important to know and important to have lots of it!
Here are a few reasons...
Invest in your future! Have your body composition analyzed and prepare yourself for a healthier you as you get older.
I've been asked many times over the years..."how much protein should I be eating?" And "how much protein is too much?" And "what is the best kind of protein?"
I've also been asked "what should I be eating to lose weight?" For three years now, I've leaned towards getting a balance of all three macros (carbs, protein, fat) (50/25/25) and also reading many studies and reports on how much protein should we be getting (.8g/kg body weight) and is it possible to eat too much? Will it ruin my kidneys?
While you should ALWAYS check with your doctor about your health I will say that based on my own research and the research of several doctors I've followed now...we all need more protein and most do NOT get enough!
That doesn't mean cut out ALL carbs!!!
BALANCE! BALANCE! BALANCE!
I'm going to include my notes from the latest lecture from Mitch Kanter, Ph.D.
I'm still preaching the following macros...
All three macros are NEEDED by the body to function minimally and optimally!!!
I can personally say I have experienced the difference between optimal protein and minimal. Give it a try!!
65% of US adults are overweight.
Children born in 2000 and later have a 1 in 3 chance of getting diabetes.
Mitch Kanter, Ph.D. Lecture on protein.
In the United States, we are currently eating approximately 65% + of our diet in carbohydrates.
I personally can vouch for a lot of people who eat more than that!
We need to add more protein to our diets.
Studies show, in general we can get by on 140 grams of carbs a day even if we are active.
Animal protein tends to be the highest quality protein, studies show. Eggs and milk being the highest quality.
Health benefits of more protein:
It can help treat....
Type 2 diabetes
(Ask me how)
Minimum vs. optimum
Minimum = what is needed to prevent
Optimum = what is needed to function
at your bodies best
RDA = recommended daily allowance (minimum)
RDA's are the lowest amount needed
to prevent disease.
The RDA for protein is .8g / kg of body weight (this is approximately 55 grams of protein a day for a 150 lb person).
This is lowest level needed to balance
nitrogen loss in the body (WHO Tech
Report 935, 2008).
Protein= a long chain of amino acids.
There are 20 amino acids that our
9 are essential and needed from
Vegetables and legumes have some amino acids but you need to mix and match them to get all 20 amino acids.
Animal products have complete (all 20 amino acids) proteins.
Protein is needed for building muscle, hair, teeth and nails, for energy and for nutrient signals. For connections of other nutrients.
Amino acids ALSO play other roles in our body.
Example: ARGININE builds nitric oxide.
Nitric oxide is a vasodilator.
It can lower blood pressure.
LEUCINE is involved in
mTOR is needed for protein
TRYPTOPHAN helps with
raising serotonin levels.
The minimal requirement (RDA) of LEUCINE is <3g/day (=about 30 grams of protein a day is needed to acquire this amount of leucine.
This RDA (minimal amount) simply
keeps us from getting ill/or for our
body to be able to at least function
The OPTIMAL amount of leucine our body needs to perform all the protein synthesis and insulin signal pathways is
8 g/day (=about 30 grams of
protein at each meal 90 grams
of protein a day)
Leucine is an indispensable amino acid.
Eating 30 grams of protein at breakfast gives you a 50% increase of protein synthesis for the day.
"Studies show that waiting until lunch to eat 30 grams of protein does not allow your body the protein synthesis it gets by eating 30 grams at breakfast."
Eating 30 grams of protein at each meal is what is needed for the average person to function OPTIMALLY in general.
Some FACTS to ponder on....
Protein promotes satiety
Suppresses food intake at next meal
Stimulates the intestinal "satiety
Inhibits ghrelin, a hunger hormone
High protein breakfast results in less
calories all day
A higher protein diet = more weight
loss over longer periods
Protein makes up 50% of bone
volume and 33% of muscle mass
Higher protein and higher calcium
equals higher bone density
Of the three macros, protein
produces the highest thermogenic
Bottom line...eating more protein burns more calories in several ways, helps us heal and helps us function OPTIMALLY!
Mind-body... what exactly does that mean?
Does it mean the body of your mind? Or does it mean the mind of your body?
My professional journal has a section in every issue called mind body spirit.
So, with every new issue I am sure to read this section as I gain a clear understanding of what mind-body means.
Mind body is not a Buddhist meditating on a mountaintop somewhere in the far east.
It's also not climbing into a complicated yoga pose and seeing how long you can hold it.
Mind body is also not sitting crosslegged with your fingers turned up while humming ohms.
While we do associate the words "mind-body" with those things listed above, mind-body actually refers to the process of directing your mind to think about your body on purpose.
Mind body connections
Mind body medicine
Mind body personal training
Mind body relaxation
Mind body meditation
Mind body visualization/affirmations
Mind body yoga/tai chi
And so much more
My first real experience with mind body work was December 2008. I had began to study the core muscles and breath.
I realized the more I had directed my clients to breathe on purpose with their movement and visualize the muscles working, they advanced very quickly to the next phase of training.
Now, I incorporate breathing on purpose in all my fitness classes and trainings. I make sure each client/participant has the experience of a mind body connection while exercising.
Do you realize how easy it is to walk down your stairway everyday and not realize your knee joints are taking the brunt of the force of landing each foot on the step?
Did you know that if you use your mind to activate the gluteal muscle you will actually save your knee joint from unneeded pressure and pain?
You can't strengthen gluteal muscles if you can't contract them or feel them on purpose.
Some of the first steps I take with a new client is connecting their mind to their individual major muscle groups, helping them to activate the muscle on purpose.
The success clients have is phenomenal to say the least!
Mind body...should become a lifestyle change for everyone!
Be mindful of your body, how it feels, how it works!
I've recently discovered I have an issue with product labeling. As I've learned to pay attention to what's in our food, I've also learned that the ingredient list is not always as clear as we think.
I've learned that a small bag of chips can say it has 0 grams of trans fat when in reality, as long as it's less than .5 grams per serving they can call it 0.
For example, a bag of chips with 10 servings in the bag says 0 grams of trans fat per serving, the ingredient list can clearly state it has hydrogenated oils (trans fat) and, therefore, we know it has trans fat!
Let's say it hypothetically has .4 grams per serving and we ate half the bag...that's two grams of trans fat right there! If this is what's happening in all of our food then we are being mislead and are actually still eating quite a bit of TRANS FAT!
Tonight I read an article about orange juice.
I had no clue that orange juice could be so processed. I've always told my kids I prefer not to buy it because it's mostly sugar. In my opinion they need to eat the orange.
Here is what I learned...
In general, oranges are picked and squeezed shortly after harvest. Then the juice is pasteurized at high temperatures to kill bacteria, which also kills some of the flavor. The juice is then stored in tanks for up to a year. The tanks have the oxygen extracted to prevent oxidation and nitrogen is added to the tank to preserve it but that also removes flavor.
When it's time to make the orange juice for sale, a company is hired to make a flavoring for the orange juice so that it tastes good. Basically, it's flavor has been removed because of all the processing and then technicians add flavor packets.
These flavor packets are highly engineered additives made from essential orange flavor volatiles that have been harvested from from the fruit and it's skin and chemically reassembled by scientists at leading fragrance companies.
These additives do not have to be listed on the ingredient list because they originated from the fruit.
Hmmmmm, this stuff is highly processed!
And don't get me started on ethyl butyrate...yes it occurs naturally in oranges but the natural part is mostly stripped during pasteurization and then high amounts added back to the orange juice in the flavor packets. High amounts of ethyl butyrate added chemically seem not as safe as naturally occurring!!!
Brenda L. Lewis
Working in the Health and Fitness Industry for over ten years now, I thrive on helping people