Virginia Beach Personal Trainer NASM Certified,Life style and weight management specialist,Fitness Nutrition Specialist and IMPACT group fitness trainer, NESTA Certified.
The Next Step: Fueling Your Body: by your Virginia Beach Personal Trainer
You have taken the first step in improving your health. By reading this article you are telling me that you are ready to make a change! Let me guide you on your journey to a healthy happier you! The next step is to consider ways you care for your body. After all, it’s the only one you’ll ever have. To look and feel your best, exercise is not enough. It’s important to provide your body with the nutrition it needs. This is especially important if you’re trying to lose weight.
I’m not talking dieting here. Instead, look at it as evolving your eating habits gradually.
Soon, all of these small changes will create an overall lifestyle change.
Combined with your fitness program, this lifestyle change of healthy eating could get you looking and feeling better than you ever have. What follows is information I’ve collected from experts on healthy eating and weight loss that might be helpful to you.
An Overview of Healthy Eating
The list below is where we’re headed, but you don’t have to make all of these changes at once. You might start with keeping a food diary for a week to get a realistic picture of what you eat.
- Eat fresh, natural, high-fiber foods
- Avoid processed foods filled with trans fats, chemicals, sugar, and preservatives
- Eat every 4 to 6 hours instead of every 2 to 3 hours. Become a fat burner instead of the sugar burner.
- Eat breakfast within one hour of waking up to jump-start your metabolism. Stop eating 3 hours before bed.
- Choose whole grains over refined (white) grains,if at all.
- Balance your meals with a complex carbohydrate, lean protein, and healthy fat*
- Drink 8 to 12 glasses of water a day (or about half your body weight in ounces)
- Maintain a consistent diet on weekdays and weekends
- Don’t eat mindlessly while watching TV
- Limit sugar
- Sleep 7-9 hrs per night otherwise you interrupt important hormones like leptin, Ghrelin, and insulin,that alter your eating routine.
Remember, it takes about one hour of exercise to burn 400 calories.
*Complex carbohydrates: fresh vegetables, fresh fruits, whole grains, cooked beans,wild rice, quinoa. Lean protein: skinless turkey and chicken, grass-fed beef, lamb, pasture raised eggs, organic dairy, freshwater white fish, broiled or baked salmon, water-packed tuna, fresh raw nuts. Healthy fats: olive oil, grass-fed ghee and butter,chia seeds,coconut oil, flaxseed oil, wild salmon and sardines, pasture raised eggs,walnuts, red palm fruit oil,and avocados. Choose organic as often as possible.
Shopping for Groceries
Before you head out, read the labels on items and toss out anything containing partially hydrogenated oils and trans fats.
- Always shop on a full stomach
- Plan at least some of your meals so you can shop from a written list
- Avoid the middle aisles; that’s where the highly processed foods are
- Remember to get healthy snacks you can take to work
- Pay with cash so you won’t be tempted to buy more than what’s on your list
Eating the Omega-3 Way
Omega-3 fats have been shown to reduce inflammation, which helps prevent heart disease and arthritis. They’re also essential to the brain and may offer other important health benefits.
- Raise your intake of omega-3 fatty acids by eating the following: fatty fish (wild Alaskan salmon, tuna, trout, herring, mackerel, sardines, kippers), walnuts, green leafy vegetables, flaxseeds,and chia seeds.
- Eat at least seven servings of fruits and vegetables every day.
- Choose fish, grass-fed lean red meat over fatty.
- Cook with extra virgin coconut oil, organic (preferably grass-fed) butter, Ghee, extra virgin olive oil,organic canola oil, or avocado oil. Avoid these oils: corn, soybean, safflower, and cottonseed.
- Cut out, or at least cut back on, margarine, vegetable shortening, deep-fat fried foods, commercial pastries, prepared snacks, and convenience foods
- Snack on almonds and other unsalted nuts
Yes, you can go out to restaurants without sabotaging your healthy habits. Just keep these tips in mind.
- Start your meal with a low-calorie salad or broth-based soup
- Choose skinless chicken, turkey, or fish instead of fatty cuts of beef,and pork.
- Have your meat or fish grilled, baked, or broiled, not fried
- Ask for sauces and dressings on the side
- Replace french fries with an extra order of veggies, small baked potato (no butter), steamed rice, or fruit
- Eat your usual portion and take the rest home
- Stay away from all-you-can-eat or buffet-style restaurants
- Avoid alcohol, or limit it to a light beer or wine spritzer
Why Not Sugar?
Too much sugar elevates the hormone insulin, which causes your body to store fat, especially around the belly. Sugar activates cravings, the more you eat the more you want! Avoid sugar and fat together in processed foods. Insulin increases in response to the sugar and triggers fat storing instead of fat burning. A recent report by the American Heart Association said Americans eat an average of 22 teaspoons of sugar a day. One teaspoon of sugar has 15 calories. One 12-ounce can of Coke has 9.3 teaspoons of sugar.
One teaspoon of sugar equals about 4 grams. Limit your sugar intake to 15-25 grams a day, about five grams at each major meal. That’s just under four teaspoons for the day, allowing you to enjoy a little of it while still eating healthy and losing weight. Also, try replacing sugar with a natural sweetener like stevia or Monk fruit extract,xylitol or erythritol.
Swap high-glycemic honey with low-glycemic coconut nectar. Swap white sugar in recipes with unrefined coconut sugar. These alternatives are low in fructose which is important, as excessive fructose intake is implicated in the development of Obesity and insulin resistance.
Why Whey Protein?
Whey enhances the body’s production of glutathione, our most important internal antioxidant. Glutathione increases the immune system’s ability to fight off toxic assaults from the environment and slows down the aging process. It’s hard to absorb as a supplement, but the body can make its own glutathione from whey.
Whey can also help you stay lean because it’s full of leucine, isoleucine, and valine, amino acids that preserve muscle and help it grow. In a weight-loss program, whey has been shown to result in greater fat loss than other proteins.
More Healthy Eating Tips
There’s more to healthy eating and weight loss than just the specific foods you eat. Here are a few more tips and tricks to consider.
- Keep all food hidden behind cupboard doors
- Get rid of foods that are too tempting, or store them where they can’t be seen
- Eat meals and snacks at scheduled times
- Plan to cook just after eating a snack or meal
- Don’t cook the kinds of food that tempt you to overeat, like pasta or pizza
- To lower the glycemic index of a meal, add healthy fat, low-fat protein, and fiber
- Prepare single servings of main dishes
- Use smaller plates and bowls
- Keep serving dishes off the table (except vegetables)
- Don’t eat directly from a package or take-out container
- Leave the table immediately after eating
- Develop an emotional support team
- Plan to maintain your weight, not lose weight, while on vacation or during the holiday
- Center your social events around sports or exercise, not eating
- Eat a small amount of food before going to a party or restaurant
- Volunteer to bring a healthy dish when invited for dinner
- Extend meal times to 15 to 20 minutes. Take small bites and put your fork down between bites.
It takes 15 to 20 minutes for your stomach to send a signal to your brain that you’re full.
For more tips and help on eating healthy to meet your goals feel free to contact me!
Quotes from Clients
“I have a love-hate relationship with you.” “This was the best investment I ever made.”
“My blood pressure has dropped to the point where I don’t need my meds.”
“I can now run up the steps, when before I couldn’t walk to the second story without stopping.”
“I don’t wake up with back pain anymore.” “I’m starting to feel tighter all over.”
“Thank you for helping me get into the best shape of my life and making it fun.”
Better Nutrition magazine, dotFit.com, Dr. Weil’s 8-Week Plan for Optimal Healing Power, Get
Lean magazine, MSNBC.com, The Omega Diet, and SparkPeople.com, WebMD.com.
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