Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Part I: Make it less complicated

When did eating become so complicated?
I  have a few childhood memories, mostly good, of food. 
I was never forced to sit at the table an eat my vegetables or clean my plate.  The only rule I remember from my mom was to you don't like something if you had never tried it before.  Much to my mother's surprise, both my brother and I wound up liking foods she never really expected (or wanted)  us to like, steamers & mussels come to mind. Although I had a very predictive response to brussel sprouts. I gagged the first time I ever put one in my mouth. A totally different story now.

I know this is not the case for every family.  I have heard horror stories about children being forced to sit at the table until they ate all their vegetables or cleaned their plates. I have even heard about children being served their dinner for breakfast because it was not eaten the night before. I understand we want our children to eat properly but we do not want to create disordered eating or create other food issues in the process.
Home is not the only place were we learn to have an unhealthy relationship with food:  teasing in the lunch room over what we brought to eat or didn't bring, magazines of the 80's & 90"s with their heroine chic models, weight watchers with their horrible slogan "nothing taste better than thin feels' or even my own my mother's " you have to be a little hungry to be a little thin"  I say BULL. Who said we had to be thin to feel good.
Food is fuel.  Food is life. without food we die and with food ...
Somewhere along the way, food became the enemy and a very complicated issue for a lot of people. We label food "good" and " bad" and punish ourselves for indulging. We need to stop giving ourselves such a hard time. Just like you don't want to be labeled as a person neither does your food want to be labeled. There is no such thing as good food or bad food. There is just food we eat more or less of.
As a fitness professional & health coach, clients come to me wanting to lose weight and with a little discovery, I find most of them do not eat enough overall food.  The second scenario there is they eat fabulous Monday through Friday lunch and then over-indulge through Sunday night.
Let's not even get into the crazy diets and the diet myths, people come to me with.   People, for the most part, think they are doing the right thing by restricting calories and working out. Ideally, our goal is never to gain in the first place. That not being realistic. Taking in the proper amount of nutritionally dense food should be the goal.  But how much food is that?
Let's start with basal metabolic rate ( BMR). Your BMR is an estimate of the number of calories you need to keep your body functioning normally.   If you were to do nothing but lay in bed all day.
For example, my BMR is 1223. Which means if I did absolutely nothing all day and ate 1223 calories, I would neither lose or gain weight and my body would function normally, meaning my heart would beat, my lungs would breathe and my body would not look for another source of energy.   Now you need to add an activity factor and decide if you are maintaining or losing weight. again me as an example working out 6-7 days/ week I could consume 2100 calories to maintain my weight.  click here to calculate your own

A healthy diet incorporates all food groups: protein, carbohydrates, and fat. each macronutrient has a specific function in the body and any diet that restricts any one of them may need a second look. 
Your body needs carbohydrates, they are the primary fuel source, proteins build lean muscles and fat helps absorb vitamins into your system.

 Part II coming soon... How Hard do I need to work?