Most of the times when I meet people in social get-togethers and reveal my profession, their first response is “Wow! I need to lose 2 kgs, just tell me what I should be eating” (to which there is no one-line answer) or curious ones would prefer to ask “tell me what do you eat” (hoping that following my diet will make them lose some weight) or many food lovers would just hide-away telling me “please don’t watch my plate” Trust me it is annoying to be categorised as a member of the health world because people think all I do is either watch with a hawk eye of what they are eating in a party or I am secretly trying to cheat on my food. To be honest, all I am doing is trying to have some fun. For me rules don’t apply when it comes to a diet.
I always believe in guidelines of sports nutrition and an important one is that there are no good and bad foods. Food is an element of life which your body and mind control how, what and why you eat a certain food in a certain amount. For instance, a sugar laden drink post my workout is perfect for recovery, energy and rehydration, but in the middle of the day it’s an instant killer. It immediately gets converted to fats overpowering all my days, efforts.
In perspective, my job is to be an informed source about healthy food so I could be supportive towards your journey and assist you set a realistic goal. All I can try and do is help you with some nutritious guidelines. So here are some hints which can make you find your way to healthy and happy eating:
Break The Fast- Breakfast, is about so much more than weight loss. It jump starts your metabolism which slows down while you are sleeping and gets your body energized for the day. Put in the complex carbohydrates, proteins, vitamins, minerals and calories your body needs to get going (like eggs and toast or oats chillas or khakara and moong or fruits and milk).
Learn Your Body-Understand and remember the difference between hunger and appetite. Hunger is the need for food where as appetite is the desire for food (or anything for that matter). If you trust your body’s “hunger” cues, you will most likely eat when your body needs food and stop when it doesn’t.
Limit Fast Food-You can still eat fast food once in a while (typically that means once or max two meals a week) because sometimes you need to enjoy your cravings. Even if healthier options are available, are you really going to be happy with a salad when a plate of pizza or french fries are staring you in the face?
Don’t Skip Meals-Who makes smart choices when they are starving? Skipping meals not only slows your metabolism but also sets you up for destructive eating behaviours for later when you eat your way through the kitchen. Find an eating schedule that works with your body and life.
Drink Water-Staying hydrated is necessary for a healthy body and mind. Many times, we think we are hungry, but our bodies are really just thirsty. Keep a bottle with you at all times and sip throughout the day.
Eat More Veggies-I don’t need to tell you why vegetables are good for you. Do I?
Bottomline, don’t try to be perfect, be realistic. There is no ideal way to eat. Being too strict with your diet can lead to food unhappiness. If you are training or playing a sport, foods you think you cant touch, are foods you can actually include in your nutrition plan. So pick up a sport, think like an athlete, enjoy what you are eating, don’t deprive yourself. An occasional treat keeps you away from a binge and will teach you the magic of moderation.