Wholefoods and how you can EAT your way to better health! Part 1*

Wednesday, 2 March 2016, By Alicia Jovcevski

Sometimes we tend to focus more on the exercise component of our health, rather than focusing on educating ourselves on what we should be eating.
Becoming educated on how to fuel our bodies to benefit our health and wellbeing is key, when trying to make a lifestyle change for the long-term.

If everyone could limit the amount of exercise in their week AND look and feel better about themselves without having to do much, which option would you choose?

Here is a key tactic - if you adopt more of a wholefood eating approach, this will do wonders not only for your inner-health but also your outer body as well!

Over the years and through my lengthy journey in wanting to look and feel better about my health, I have learned through various health and fitness journeys (whether it be for fat-loss, muscle gain, losing post-pregnancy weight or just increasing my general fitness overall), the key to looking, feeling and performing at your best, both mentally and physically, is to eat "better" quality wholefoods. And in-turn, the health benefits for your waistline and overall wellbeing come tenfold.

In short this means, limiting the use and inclusion of processed/canned + jarred foods in your diet and cooking with and consuming foods that are closest to their natural form…

What is a "whole food"?
Wholefoods are foods that are closest to their natural state. Foods that are unprocessed and untouched by nasty preservatives.  This means they give us more nutrients than packaged or processed foods.

What are the types of wholefoods we should we eat?
Wholefoods include unprocessed fruit and vegetables;
Wholegrains (brown rice, oats, rye, buckwheat and quinoa);
Beans and Legumes (including lentils, chickpeas and kidney beans); and nuts and seeds.
Wholefoods of animal sources include: eggs, small whole fish, seafood, poultry and red meat such as beef, lamb, pork and veal.

Eating foods that have not been processed ensures you consume the maximum amount of nutrients in the correct proportions. Many nutrients in food work together to ensure the healthy functioning of our bodies. Eating food in its natural state ensures we benefit from these synergies.

Consuming these sorts of foods also regulates and aids normal bodily function; it helps the body with excreting waste more efficiently, reduces bloating and water retention and even gives you a clearer mind and more energy.

So what are some "better options" for foods commonly consumed with little nutritional value?

  • A skinless chicken breast cooked with fresh ingredients instead of chicken nuggets processed with added fats, flavourings, and preservatives.
  • A baked potato with chopped green onions and dash of light sour cream instead of a bag of sour cream and onion potato chips.
  • Fresh seasonal berries with home-made granola (recipe available on Vision Virtual Training!) instead of raspberry jam on toast/pastries or pre-packaged breakfast bars.
  • A breakfast smoothie made with fresh blueberries, Greek yogurt, and a frozen banana instead of a blueberry muffin with little nutritional value.

The commonality among pre-packaged foods is that they are filled with preservatives, sodium, hidden fats and sugars which go unnoticed to the un-trained eye. Hence why it is far better to know exactly what you are putting into your body!

"If you had one car that had to last you the rest of your life.. How would you treat it? Like a Combi-van or like a Ferrari?"

You can't hide nasty trans fats and refined sugars in a fresh bunch of carrots now can you?

We are all human and we cannot be perfect 100% of the time, so when occasion calls for a convenience packet of stir-fry veggies, or a dash of bottled- tomato sauce, just remember this golden rule:  If ever you are in the supermarket and you read the back of a food label and are unable to identify a particular ingredient listed - as a general rule, don't eat it!

If you look at many of the infamous Nutritionist/Chef's approaches to food, they all have one thing in common; they strongly believe in cooking with wholefoods, from natural ingredients.

*Disclaimer: Individual results vary based on agreed goals. Click here for details.

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