Wondering what simple steps you can take to improve your diet and improve your health? Here are 7 simple nutrition tips which can help you have more energy, and experience better health starting today.
- Eat Whole Foods
Eating whole foods doesn't mean they have to be “whole" when you eat them. Instead it refers to the form they were in when you obtained them. Your body was designed to use foods in their natural form and cooking can deplete essential nutrients. Instead of getting your next meal from a box or a can, add some cut fruits or vegetables to your meal for an easy first step towards eating more whole foods.
- Limit Processed Foods
Processing refines out many nutrients and natural compounds which would have been in the whole food ingredients. By removing natural fats and other naturally occurring compounds, processed foods last longer on the shelf and the box you buy today will taste exactly the same as the one you buy a year from now. This is good for business, but not so good for nutrition. Processing also adds chemicals to preserve, control consistency, add flavor, smells or textures to enhance the sale of the product. None of these are things that your body needs. The abundance of processed foods is being cited as a major factor in the obesity rates which are rapidly rising in “industrialized" nations. Processing breaks down the food leading to faster absorption of sugars and starches and rapid blood-sugar fluctuations.
- Drink Clean Water
Clean water is free of chemicals, and infectious agents (bacteria, viruses, other organisms) and should contain levels of beneficial minerals and trace elements as found in natural water sources. Over-filtered and distilled water, may accelerate bone mineral loss but can also help the body naturally detoxify itself when used appropriately.
- Use Dietary Supplements
Dietary supplements should supplement, not substitute the benefits of a good diet. This means that the job of a high-quality supplement is to “fill in the holes” that are common in the diet of just about everyone in our modern world. Choose wisely though. Most supplements are of a very low quality. Only use food-based dietary supplements that are backed by a quality assurance program which uses independent laboratory testing to ensure you’re getting the nutritional support you’re paying for.
- Limit Your Animal Protein
Increased portion sizes provide far more animal protein than a person can handle in a entire day. Animal proteins lead to build up of uric acid and other toxins in the kidneys. While your body can manage these toxins (within reason), limiting portion sizes can enhance health and will not deprive you of essential dietary amino acids.
- So No To All Trans Fat
According to new studies, there’s no amount of trans fat which is ok for your body. This isn’t about limiting trans fat from your diet. Eliminate it all. No amount of trans fat is good for you.
- Say Yes To Carbs…As Long As They Are The Right Ones
Your body doesn't need any refined carbs (for example, while flour, white rice, white sugar, etc. ), but your body needs fresh fruits and vegetables every day. At least 50% of your calories should come from these whole foods. For a great shopping tip, buy as many colors of foods as possible. The colors come from different nutrients so the greater the color variety, the better your nutritional support.
Dave Saunders is a nutrition consultant and national speaker. You can read more about health and wellness at http://www.glycowellness.com and http://www.glycoblog.com .