Now when you have control over your daily calories intake, it is time for us to focus on their quality. You need to be aware that 2,000 calories of real food aka vegetables, fruit or fish has not the same value as 2,000 calories that can be found in gingerbread biscuits.
Human body processes all nutrients in different ways. Each nutrient has a particular purpose. Therefore, your meals should be composed of following things:
FAT- Do not avoid fat. It is necessary to your body functions. Healthy fat such as nuts, avocados, almond butter, and olive oil should find their place on your plate. Let me now clarify one thing. The fat that is in food will not make you fat. A few “scientific” research harshly criticized fat in the last 50 years. Nowadays, almost any food that is considered to be “healthy” has “0 fat” or “low percent of fat”. Fat is unjustly demonized. I think there is no need to say that a number of people that are obese in our country are increasing every single day.
How come? Why are we fat? Carbohydrates, processed, refined or simple. The following video here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mNYlIcXynwE explains why too many carbohydrates results in gaining weight.
If this video arouse your interest in this topic, then take a look at Gary Taubes’ book Why We got Fat (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0307272702/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=nerdfitn-20&linkCode=as2&camp=217145&creative=399369&creativeASIN=0307272702) or read his article What if it’s all been a Big Fat Lie (http://www.nytimes.com/2002/07/07/magazine/what-if-it-s-all-been-a-big-fat-lie.html?pagewanted=1), that influenced me to change my views on health.
In order to lose weight, you will have to give up carbohydrates and replace them with other real food. If you really want to make change, start step by step, for example, include one change in your eating habits every other week. The goal is to achieve last-long results. Doing it slowly, without rushing, will surely be effective.
CARBOHYDRATES – When you eat carbohydrates, they change to sugar in the body, which provides energy to all bodily functions that then can be carried out. Carbohydrates are mostly found in fruits and vegetables. I think that grains do not contain so much of this nutrient. Those that you certainly want to stay away from are bad carbs (refined grains, processed carbs). Actually, your body can function just fine without that huge amount of carbs you are taking now.
PROTEIN– Proteins are the most important part of every meal. While working out, the body uses proteins, and rebuilds muscles. Try to take two grams per kilo/ one gram per pound of body weight. Bear in mind that upper limit should be about 200 grams. Proteins can be found in eggs, meat, quinoa, fish, and nuts.
High Glucose Level
So far, you have learned that your meals need to be balanced. Protein, fat, and carbs. When it comes to carbs, Glycemic Index (GI) and Glycemic Load (GL) will help us.
You must be wandering what are these..Let me explain
The Glycemic Index ranks carbs based on the effect they have on a sugar level. If you want to avoid diseases such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease consume low GI carbs since they won’t cause swings in glucose and insulin levels.
There is a GI scale, from 1 to 100. The quickest effect on blood glucose level is shown with 100, while 1 is the lowest effect on your sugar level. You need to eat food that has low GI. Nutrients will digest more slowly, therefore you will feel more energetic, and your body won’t ask for more carbs.
The GI does not determine portion size. If a milk chocolate has a GI of 43, and watermelon has GI 73, does that mean that you should only eat chocolate and forget about watermelon? Definitely not! Put it this way, GI number is based on 50 g of entire carbohydrates of particular food. 85 grams of chocolate will give you 50 g of carbs, and 680 g of watermelon can give you this amount of carbs.
And what about Glycemic Load? The food that has high glycemic load is sugar, processed carbs, in comparison to food with lower GL, fruit and vegetables. Are you confused? I will make it easier for you. Consume low GL food during days, and high GL before training. Your body will immediately burn them. Or if you want to rebuild your muscles, consume them after the workout, together with proteins.
Check the glycemic load of carbs you are eating
Carbs and Their Glycemic Load – http://www.glycemicindex.com/
Food above 20 has high GL, while food above 55 has high GI.
The Four Hour Body (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/030746363X/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=nerdfitn-20&linkCode=as2&camp=217145&creative=399369&creativeASIN=030746363X) by Tim Ferriss can explain you this.
And here is a useful tip for vegetarians and vegans. Load up on proteins, nuts, vegetables and fruits, and cut down on carbs and grains.
Although you are going to deprive yourself of certain foods, you are still a way ahead towards healthy meals. Weight loss and workout in combination with healthy eating and there you go!