Gone are the days (hopefully) of diet fads. For example, juice or soup fasts, eating only once or twice a day, cutting carbohydrates completely, eating only fruits and vegetables… The list goes on! The industry has evolved and people are starting to educate themselves, trying to understand what makes a good diet. For that, there are nutritional courses – such as Trifocus Fitness Academy’s Specialised Nutrition Course (click here to learn more) that you can do to educate yourself. But for now the question on everyone’s lips is: what does a good diet look like?
Tip #1 For A Good Diet: Balance
Restrictive dieting usually works for a while. However, then, it leads to weight gain. In an article entitled Low Calorie Dieting Increases Cortisol, researchers Janet Tomiyama, Traci Mann, Danielle Vinas, Jeffrey M. Hunger, Jill DeJager, and Shelley E. Taylor is stated that:
“Prior research has demonstrated that dieting, or the restriction of caloric intake, does not lead to long-term weight loss. This study tested the hypothesis that dieting is ineffective because it increases chronic psychological stress and cortisol production – two factors that are known to cause weight gain. Further, this study examined the respective roles of the two main behaviors that comprise dieting – monitoring one’s caloric intake and restricting one’s caloric intake – on psychological and biological stress indicators … [The result was that] restricting calories increased the total output of cortisol, and monitoring calories increased perceived stress.”
In addition, having a restricted diet is not healthy. Restricting yourself from certain foods could mean that your body is not getting in all the nutrients in requires to function optimally.
Tip #2 For A Good Diet: Include All The Food Groups
A good, healthy diet that is going to help you get results you want includes all the food groups. Eliminating one or more food groups from your diet could lead to low levels of essential vitamins and minerals your body needs.
Tip #3 For A Good Diet: Stick To Healthy Portion Sizes
Portion control is extremely important when it comes to following a healthy diet. Says Kyrstin Draney, dietetic intern at Meredith College, this is important because of the following:
“Usually, when we have an uncontrolled portion, we have uncontrolled amount of calories available to us, which can be dangerous. A review published in 2013 stated that larger plates of food can lead to us eating up to 45% more than what our average intake would be1. That’s a lot! Most data and studies support the claim that we will almost always eat more if we are offered larger portions.”
You should work out the exact amount of carbohydrates, fats and protein your body needs. Then split that up into five or six healthy, balanced meals every day.
Tip #4 For A Good Diet: Make Sure You Have Variety
A diet that is filled with variety is always easier to follow than eating the same thing every day. Add variety to your diet by trying different ingredients and recipes.
Tip #5 For A Good Diet: Include All The Vitamins and Minerals
It is extremely important that you consume enough macro- and micronutrients your body needs to function optimally throughout the day. You may even need to supplement with vitamins and minerals if you are deficient in a certain vitamin or mineral. Medical experts agree:
“Vitamins and minerals are essential nutrients because they perform hundreds of roles in the body. There is a fine line between getting enough of these nutrients (which is healthy) and getting too much (which can end up harming you). Eating a healthy diet remains the best way to get sufficient amounts of the vitamins and minerals you need … Every day, your body produces skin, muscle, and bone. It churns out rich red blood that carries nutrients and oxygen to remote outposts, and it sends nerve signals skipping along thousands of miles of brain and body pathways. It also formulates chemical messengers that shuttle from one organ to another, issuing the instructions that help sustain your life … But to do all this, your body requires some raw materials. These include at least 30 vitamins, minerals, and dietary components that your body needs but cannot manufacture on its own in sufficient amounts.
Vitamins and minerals are considered essential nutrients. This is because acting in concert, they perform hundreds of roles in the body. They help shore up bones, heal wounds, and bolster your immune system. They also convert food into energy, and repair cellular damage.
A healthy diet is balanced. It should be worked out specifically for your needs and requirements, likes, dislikes, medical conditions – if you have any – daily calorie needs depending on your activity levels, and sometimes even your blood group. However, starting with the basics is always the best. Educate yourself by completing a nutritional course, which will help you put a healthy diet together for yourself. Understanding nutrition is a great skill that you can implement in your everyday life, and that can even improve the lives of those around you, like your children.