What you eat daily, reflects in everything you do because without sustenance, you’re unable draw the energy to be creative, productive, nor have the mind alertness you need to feel healthy. The hard part about eating right is that there's no one plan that suits everyone. There's no simple prescription. .. . .
The only way to find what works for you is to experiment with what you eat and find something sustainable that makes you feel energized and free from mental and physical tiredness. Two things are certain for everyone though, the more sugar and processed foods you eat, the less energy you will have, and the greater your visceral fat you will have Looking after your health for a long and happy life is about researching and devising a formula for a sustainable way of eating healthy, moving your body regularly, resting well, and reducing the amount of stress in your day.
Food Provides Energy
When you're hungry, a hormone produced in the stomach (called ghrelin) interacts with the neutron-transmitter NPY in the brain, signalling to you that your body's energy levels are low and you need food. NPY lives in the hypothalamus, a part of your brain that controls your energy levels, memory, and emotion. In the context of food, the hypothalamus is like a 24-hour bouncer looking out for your energy, keeping constant tabs on when you need your next meal.
Your brain is switched on with glucose and functions best when you eat but, you want to make sure that the food you eat actually wholesome and provides nutrients your body can use as fuel. Regularly eating high-carbohydrate or high-sugar foods like When you're hungry, a hormone produced in the stomach (called ghrelin) interacts with the neutron-transmitter NPY in the brain, signalling to you that your body's energy levels are low and you need food. NPY lives in the hypothalamus, a part of your brain that controls your energy levels, memory, and emotion. In the context of food, the hypothalamus is like a 24-hour bouncer looking out for your energy, keeping constant tabs on when you need your next meal. white bread, potatoes, and chocolate, muesli bars, etc will only cause a rapid rise in glucose levels followed by a crash in energy. This energy crash happens because of a spike in the release of insulin, a hormone that tells your body to absorb as much glucose as it can. What’s worse, is when you eat more food that's high in carbohydrates and sugar, your body requires greater amounts for it to feel full. To maintain consistent energy levels, you should aim to eat food like beans, fish, and most types of vegetables because of their slow glucose release into your bloodstream. Further, if you take in more food energy than your body uses, then your body stores this excess energy as fat. If you take in less food energy than your body uses, your body relies on the fat storage for needed energy. Clearly this lack of balance has a lot to do with regulating your weight. More input energy than output energy and you gain weight. Less input energy than output energy and you lose weight. This makes a prescription for gaining or losing weight pretty simple. If you want to lose weight, eat more nutritious food, sensible serve sizes, and exercise daily.
Our Love Affair with Junk Food
We have more food and food products available to us today than ever before, and the trend fails to reduce in momentum. Foods range from raw, fresh, natural, man made and genetically modified but it’s the man made, highly processed foods that I would like to draw your attention to.
Recent research indicates that continual intake of food that are high in fat, trans fats, salt and/or sugar overrides your body's ability to tell you when you're full. So the more unhealthy food you eat, the more you desire it so is born, our love affair with junk food.
If you’re craving sugary, high salt (like potato chips) calorie dense foods as part of your everyday diet, then you are most probably lacking nutrients and vitamins. If you’re feeling lethargic, short tempered, foggy and generally lousy, then you may feel anxious about where to start jour journey to wellness, or you may have already lost your motivation to help yourself.
If you are struggling with controlling your weight then there’s a good chance that some of your food and beverage choices are low in nutritional value, which will play a major role in storing fat on your body. It’s time to ask yourself, what is the true purpose of food including beverages? The answer is that they are to provide nutrients to our cells and organs so we function with energy and remain healthy.
Diets Guarantee Failure
I’ve always said, “no-one will ever not lose weight on a diet, no matter what the diet is.” The reason for that is that when you go on a diet, you immediately alter the food and beverage intake habits that you have been on for a period of time, and replace them with better food choices, or even worse – you may choose to eat far less food, and therefore you initially start to drop in kilo’s.
But this style of dieting will always fail because too many people change their current habits with the mindset that when they reach their target weight, they will go off the diet. But I ask, “then what?” You go back to the habits that are instilled within you, and all your weight, if not more, creeps back on. It’s a roller coaster ride, and it makes the diet industry billions of dollars a year.
If you truly want to sustain a Healthy lifestyle, try my following tips:-
1. Cut Sugar and Starch (Gradually)
Eating too much high-sugar and high-carbohydrate food and beverages offers you an immediate feel good high, but beware as it throws you into an energy slump and makes you feel guilty very soon after. The challenging part about trying to cut these foods and beverages is that nearly everything available from our supermarket isles and off the menu at restaurants, contain huge amounts of sugar or carbohydrates/starches.
Start to reduce your intake gradually and aim for no high sugar or high starch foods for four days a week. After two weeks, move to five days a week. Repeat this cycle once more so you're at seven days a week of healthy eating, allowing for non-guilty treats on a weekend (or similar)
2. What Size Is Your Plate - Portion Control
Our breakfast bowl and dinner plate today, is much larger than they were 50 years ago. It seems that everything is becoming super-sized but if you keep in mind that your actual stomach is the size of your fist, you will realise that we actually do not need as much food as we have conditioned ourselves to have at meal time.
Try and become familiar with the following:
• Now stick out your thumb and take a good look at the length and width. Your thumb determines your fat portions. You need just 1 thumb serve a day
• Turn your hand over and make a fist. Your fist determines your fruit portions and your carbohydrate/ starch portions
• Turn your hand over and take a look at your palm. That’s the almost circular part, minus the fingers and thumb. Your palm is your serving for protein portions.
• Now cup your hands together. A cupped hand determines your vegetable portions
The evening meal is where too many people complain they overeat, so aim to have no more than 3 single choices on your plate ie: 1 x Palm, 1 x cupped hand, followed by or including 1 x first.
3. Never Skip Breakfast
Breakfast is an important start to your day so skipping breakfast may increase how much food you end up eating at lunch or mid afternoon when you start to feel a slump. For breakfast, aim for something high in protein like 2 eggs cooked to your liking with a ¼ avocado and a sprinkle of turmeric, or organic oats with berries and 1/3 cup coconut milk, or make some wholesome savoury muffins which could also double for lunch with a peppermint tea. These options will keep you feeling alert and full for hours.
See my Savoury Muffin recipe here www.louiseskeen.co