There are endless diets that claim to make you healthier, prevent cancer, revitalize your body, and get you back into your old jeans from high school. Everything from “juicing” to Atkins will miraculously save us from obesity and literally change who we are.
Sounds like a lot to deliver, right? How can we tell what’s actually true about dieting and nutrition? What advice will benefit us the most in terms of health and longevity? It appears that most of us have forgotten that natural, wholesome, fresh food is indeed what helps us keep strong, energetic, and healthy. Sadly, many people buy boxed, packaged foods that are “low-calorie”, “reduced fat”, or “sodium-free” thinking they are healthy choices.Here’s a bit of advice to get you to see the bigger picture of what you eat and why dieting nutrition is so confusing.
Back to the Basics
Remember the food pyramid? While the platform has changed somewhat over the years, the basic premise is still the same. Fill your diet with plenty of lean meats, dairy, whole grains, legumes, and various fresh fruits and vegetables so your body can obtain all the essential building blocks it needs to perform its best.
Stick to “Real” Foods
Stay away from foods that are “sugar-free” or “zero calorie”, these aren’t real foods. Try to eat foods that are closest to their original form in nature. For example, instead of eating a bag of potato chips, eat of vitamin-packed baked potato instead. A potato is real, the chips are processed. If it’s not a real food, simply don’t put it in your cart when shopping for groceries.
Don’t Get Caught-Up in Eye-Catching, Colorful Food Packages
When you are grocery shopping, always take a list of the foods you wish to buy, and don’t stray from that list. Also, your list should ideally only contain fresh, wholesome foods. While some foods in your cart may be imperishable such as beans, brown rice, or nuts, the majority should be quality proteins along with a wide variety of fresh veggies and fruit (not canned or frozen).Eating a rainbow of real, fresh food is the quickest way to get your weight down and overall health back on track. You are what you eat, remember? Going back to the basics of food in their most natural form is the key to good nutrition and health. Common sense will also help you determine what’s good for you. Which is better: An actual golden, crisp apple – or an apple fruit pie? Food is supposed to energize your body, not make it feel worse.