This week I am giving tips for healthy weight loss. Today I will talking about what you should be eating.
Lately, you may have been hearing a lot about "whole foods," "eating clean," and avoiding processed foods. Basically what this means is that you want to eat foods as close to their natural state as possible. There for buying a bag of whole oats or steel cut oats is better than buying a box of cold cereal with oats as one of the ingredients. THINK before you buy and READ LABELS! If you do not know what an ingredient is, do not buy it!
The items I always purchase and eat include:
Vegetables & Fruits, preferably organic, seasonal and locally grown
Grains: Brown Rice, Wild rice, Quinoa, Steel cut oats
Legumes: Full of protein & fiber!
Nuts, Seeds and Nut butters: Stick to raw
Oils: Olive, grapeseed, sesame and flax oils
When purchasing packaged foods, there are some brands I trust over others because they have clean ingredients and no extras that I can't pronounce The brands that I stick with are:
Bob's Red Mill
Now, lets talk about how often people should be eating. Firstly, everyone is different. I do not know how your body is, what your day is like or your hunger. No one knows you better than yourself, so make a set of guidelines that will work best for you! For me personally, I do best when I eat every 3-4 hours. This breaks down to 3 meals and 1-2 snacks. In my last post I gave examples of what my breakfast looks like.
As for Lunch, its a balanced meal that includes 2 servings of vegetables, whole grains, (1/2 c. quinoa, brown rice, or a brown rice wrap), beans or lentils for protein and 1T. of a healthy fat like olive oil. Simple, easy and clean. Lunch is my biggest meal of the day because it is when my digestion is the strongest.
Dinner is similar to lunch except it is smaller and usually doesn't contain the whole grains. So dinner is mostly vegetables and legumes. I try not to eat dinner past 7pm. This is because I tend to go to bed early and I hate going to sleep on a full stomach.
Snacks should be small and just enough to keep your metabolism going and to hold you over until your next meal. Fresh fruit, small handful of nuts, celery with 1T of peanut butter or carrots with hummus make great snacks. I also like green juice or shakes for snacks.
Drink tons of water throughout the day! Try adding lemon juice to your water. Its a easy way to detoxify your kidneys and liver.
I am not telling you to count calories because that is tedious and unnecessary as long as you are eating clean, whole foods!! However, be aware of your portion sizes. We have been brainwashed to think that super-sized meals are better. You are one person, you don't need an extra large portion size unless you want an extra large behind. Instead of counting calories I use a little trick which allows me to keep my portions in check: I use two cupped hands to measure out vegetables, one cupped hand to measure out grains and the size of my palm to measure out proteins.
Now, go through your fridge and pantry and read labels. Do you recognize all the ingredients? Are the majority of your foods packaged and processed or are you eating whole foods? The more you pay attention, the easier it will become for you to get healthy and feel good!