Are you confused about nutrition? I understand why. Every day it seems like there is a breaking news story telling you what you should or should not be eating. It is so frustrating! They use a catchy title (like the one I used ) to get your attention and then they unload information that may or may not be true. The media is sabotaging your diet because they tend to take one study about a food item or diet and promote it like it is the holy grail.
Take for instance the debate between low-fat/high carb versus low carb/high fat. At one time low fat/high carb diets were all the craze and now low carb/high fat diets are the new thing. The media is constantly vilifying one food item and glorifying another. Living in these extremes can create a poor relationship with food.
Food is not the enemy!
Carbs are not the enemy!
Fat is not the enemy!
Even calories are not the enemy!
So what is the enemy? Would I be too “Zen-like” if I said there is no enemy?
A healthy, nourishing diet includes all the macronutrients- carbs, protein and fat. Is there an optimum amount of each? Maybe. It depends on activity level, individual metabolism and genetics. I encourage my clients to include a little fat, protein and carbs at each meal. This will help prevent blood sugars from spiking and provide sustained energy throughout the day.
So what is important in a healthful diet?
Focusing on the quality of the diet will help you maintain your health and avoid unwanted weight gain. Including more whole foods and eliminating processed foods tends to be a good bet. For instance include lean proteins such as fish, chicken, and lean cuts of beef instead of more processed proteins such as sausage or pepperoni. Include complex carbohydrates such as brown rice, and quinoa instead of refined carbs like white rice, white bread, pastries. Focus on including more healthful fats such as olive oil, avocado or even butter instead of margarine or vegetable oil. And of course make sure to include fruits and veggies Even though the media likes to single out some of these as being a “superfood,” all fruits and vegetables carry some benefit.
Focusing only on macronutrients such as carbs, protein and fat can get you into trouble. For instance, if you are on a low fat diet and replacing the fat calories with refined carbohydrates such as pretzels, crackers and sherbet then this might be detrimental your health in the long run. If you are on a low carb diet and replacing the carbs with sausage, lard, and T-bone steaks then this could also have long-term consequences.
Focus on the quality of the diet and not the latest news story.<—Tweet this
There is always going to be the next superfood or new diet to try. But remember, sticking with whole foods and eating a variety of different nutrients never gets to be old news