In my previous blogs, I wrote about exercise and it’s effect on the human body. Today, I would like to focus on nutrition and the importance of a healthy, balanced diet.
Like many, before my personal training education and fitness career began, I was a little lost in the food department. The media had me thinking that I could go to the frozen section of any supermarket, grab a TV dinner and enjoy it without feeling guilty because it included some “vegetables and protein.” I’m not about to call it meat because, let’s be honest, Hungry Man Meals are fairly mysterious. BOY was I wrong. Little did I know at the time, I could have wandered over to the Farmer’s Market for something fresh and far more delicious.
Before I started at Drench, I really thought I was eating “healthy.” The problem with “healthy” is its definition. What does “healthy” really mean? Does it mean eating broccoli five times a day? Does it mean only eating chocolate chip cookies in the morning, so that you have time to burn them off? It doesn’t mean any of these things. In fact, as it turns out, it’s a fine balance - and a different balance for everyone.
What are the benefits to healthy eating?
Prior to delving into some tips on how to get started, I want to talk about some of the benefits of healthy eating. In addition to helping with your waistline, healthy eating can provide you with:
better cognitive function,
lowered stress levels (my fave benefit!),
and so much more!
There are a lot of misconceptions surrounding nutrition, one of the biggest being that healthy food probably taste bad. The reality is, it doesn’t have to taste like cardboard. In fact, it often tastes like gourmet food. There are so many options when it comes to healthy food, and lots of flavour and texture that you can incorporate into your meals. Spices are your best friend and they offer many health benefits, so don’t be afraid to play around! Take garlic for example. Some of the health qualities it offers include:
boosting the immune system,
acting as a source of antioxidants,
helping to beat inflammation,
preventing food poisoning,
How do I get started?
Healthy, fresh food is abundant and very accessible. There really are NO excuses! Start first by looking at your ingredients. A good rule of thumb is that if it comes in a box and the ingredient list makes you feel like you've forgotten how to read, you should likely put it back and find something else. While we always encourage you to enjoy things in moderation (pizza once in awhile really won’t kill you!), the first step really is about being more mindful of what you take in.
In my experience, a well balanced, sustainable diet dramatically lowers stress - and in this day and age who isn’t dealing with some type of stressor?! If you want to learn more about healthy eating or get started on a meal plan, we have in-house nutrition specialists at Drench who will work with you to set up a realistic meal plan and help you reach your goals!
At the end of the day, all I hope for is that this inspires someone out there to put down the tub of triple chocolate ice cream, and pick up a small bowl of fresh fruit or a cup of yummy tea instead. Healthy eating doesn’t happen overnight, but small steps really will make all the difference!
Stay healthy folks :)