If there is one area of confusion when it comes to nutrition I think this would be at the top. The problem is that most people THINK they know what constitutes healthier choices but in reality they don’t have a clue. You see overweight people putting low fat chewy granola bars in their shopping carts thinking it’s somehow better for them. While it might be a little better, it’s hardly enough to make any noticeable differences. Everything you eat either helps you or hurts you – it’s that simple. I will now explain the easiest way to tell whether a food is healthy or not.
Eat Real Food!
By real food, I don’t mean anything in a bag or a box. The more processed a food is, the worse it is for you. For example, what do you think is better – a baked potato or french fries? If you said a baked potato you’re absolutely correct. It’s not rocket science but the food industry likes to cleverly disguise junk food as being healthy. If you want to get lean, eat real food! I am talking about foods like chicken breasts, oatmeal, eggs, fruits and vegetables. Foods that only contain one ingredient are most likely real food. If you look on the ingredients list and you have trouble pronouncing the ingredients, that should be a red flag.
If Man Made It, Don’t Eat It
That was a saying by the late Jack LaLanne and it bears repeating. He also said, “if it tastes good, spit it out.” While that is a little extreme I think you get the picture. Jack LaLanne definitely hit the nail on the head and was way ahead of his time. When you see fit people, how do you think they got that way? Not by eating TV dinners that’s for sure. On the flip side, the next time you enter a fast food restaurant take a look at most of the physiques that are in there. The defense rests.
Balance is Key
Now I am not saying to go overboard with this. You can have the odd treat or cheat meal here and there. It’s what you do most of the time that counts. The more compliant you are to your eating guidelines the better your results will be. This post is just designed to steer you in the right direction and make you aware of what you’re eating. In other words, what’s good and what isn’t. After all, food is one of life’s pleasures and we shouldn’t have to deprive ourselves, starve, or feel guilty.
Lay a Firm Foundation
When dieting to get lean, this is where you want to start. Clean eating allows you to eat more food and still feel full. In other words, you get more bang for your buck. Not all foods are created equal and will trigger a different hormonal response. Eating a piece of chocolate cake is not the same as eating an apple. Quantity is important but it’s also the quality of your food that matters too.