Thursday, May 23, 2013

who should you listen to?

Ok so I am going to talk about what is the most important topic in todays world of nutrition (in my opinion). I am going to write about the rule of what not to eat and what to eat. After countless conversations with people who are vegan, vegatarian, people who are on the Paleo diet, and the Atkin's diet along with people who just want to learn how to eat right the question and answer always is DON'T EAT THIS!?!?!?

Let's look at it from a health nuts percpective, and by health nut I mean someone who in their own sense believes they are educating themselves, eating right and staying healthy in their own way. My vegan and Vegatarian friends for instance who in many cases have a healthy vegetarian or vegan diet when they learn to combine proper foods try to convince me not to eat meat. The negatives of eating meat are there don't get me wrong. For starters due to the acid by products of digesting meat has been correlated to Osteoporosis, Alzheimer's and in the Nurse's Health Study II eating a meal with red meat a day was linked to breast cancer. So scientificly there is some truth to meat being unhealthy. My Paleo friends and Atkin's friends mention cutting grains because our bodies may not beable to digest wheat or grains, these products are high in carbohydrates and calories and because sugar is an addictive cancer causing product. These also can be seen as true statements. I have even heard some people say cutting out fruit from a diet should be done because fruits are high in sugar and low in certain nutrients. To top it off there is a diet specifically telling you what you can eat with what. The combination diet (aka the don't combine diet) is a diet telling you, you can't eat fruit with other foods, proteins with carbs or fats, but you should eat carbs with fats, and protein with your healthy greens, and I guess you can have carbs with lightly startchy veggies.

Let's look at it from a client's perspective. The number one question I have recieved is should I cut out soy from my diet? The negatives of soy are mainly thanks to Monsanto and those who chemically and hormonally alter the products. Soy is such a processed object that in the end all you have left is probably the fat in the soy that has lost all it's nutrients. That is also a arguing factor against the product. Soy is "high" in fat and cholestorol. Another question is about corn, potatoes, and the low nutrient dense carbohydrates. The arguments are different for each product. For instance corn is another product drenched in monsanto hormones and chemicals, Potatoes are low in nutrients and high in starch, peas are high in calories and carbohydrates, pasta also high in calories and carbohydrates. A huge fear of course with many people are oils, nuts, and anything high in fat. I had someone ask me if they should stop eating Salmon and other fish because of the fat content. The cons of eating fish are two main cons. The first con is the obvious which is that in many fish there is a large fat content which can lead to weight gain. The second con is the amount of mercury in fish.

There are so many negatives to eating foods but the truth is that to all these foods I have mentioned but  there are probably also just as many positives to adding these foods into your diet. Adding meat to your diet may prevent a vitamin B-12 deficiency. B-12 is only found in meat and that includes most sources of meat going from lean turkey meat to a delicious rack of lamb. Speaking of lamb did you know the meat and the fat content of lamb is considered one of the highest sources of iron and considered one of the best ways your body can absorb iron.  Grains and startches also have positives to them Grains consists of carbohydrates which is actually also a positive. Sugars that are created in the body coming from carbohydrates are considered the second source of energy after the immediate use of simple sugars that you are hopefully  getting from your fruits. Grains also consists of protien. Quinoa for instance is considered the nearest grain to 100 on the absorbtion scale. Another grain, Amaranth is a great source of Magnesium and Phosphorus. As for fruit if you have a great balance of all types of fruit you can get just nearly every micronutrient. Take one of my favorites, The avocado (yes it is a fruit). A medium avocado can be about 320 calories (give or take) and consist of 975 mg of Potassium. Considering all the salt Americans get in their diet a great amount of potassium is necessary to balance the two out.

I would like to answer the questions asked by friends and clients. 173 grams of a baked potatoe can consist can have about 27% of the daily recommended intake of Vitamin C. It also consists of Vitamin B6, Tryptophan, Potassium and other nutrients. So having a small baked potatoe every once in a while may actually benefit you. Side tip there are other root vegetables to consider and other types of potatoes that have different vitamins like a sweet potatoe containing beta-carotene or a turnipVitamin K. Mix up the type of root veggies. Here is a great recipe brought to you by

8 to 12 slender carrots, peeled and trimmed
8 to 12 baby turnips, peeled
6 to 8 fingerling potatoes, scrubbed and cut lengthwise in halves
1 or 2 large parsnips, peeled, trimmed, and cut diagonally into 1-inch-thick slices
1 or 2 medium onions, trimmed, peeled and halved, each 1/2 cut into quarters
1 or 2 large beets, peeled and cut into thick wedges
1 or 2 kohlrabi bulbs, peeled and cut into thick wedges
1 celery root, trimmed and halved, halves cut crosswise into 1-inch-thick slices
1 whole head garlic, separated into cloves, unpeeled
2 or 3 sprigs fresh rosemary, sage, or thyme
Freshly ground black pepper
Extra-virgin olive oil
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Put all the vegetables and the herb sprigs in a large baking dish. Season well with salt and black pepper, drizzle generously with olive oil, and toss them with your hands to coat them evenly.

Put the baking dish in the preheated oven and cook, stirring the vegetables occasionally, until they are tender and golden brown, about 45 minutes. Serve the vegetables from their baking dish or transfer them to a platter to accompany a roasted main course.

Read more at:

Pastas aren't exactly the easiest one to fight for considering the fact that pasta is my addiction but I can fight for it. Pastas are one of the top choices for runners and high fitness athletes for an energy boost like most grains. If you get multti-grain, whole grain, all natural, or other types of pastas made from natural non-white and less refined you can find many nutrients. A big seller today is spelt pasta which is haig in protein mangenese and phosphorus. Did you know that most pastas made by natural grains can consist of 6 grams of protein? Ya pastas and many grains consist of a good source of protein and fiber together. Now corn is known for being minimalistic in nutrients. Let me reassure you that even though it may not have the protein count of peas or other grains it still has some important nutrients, like Vitamin B3, Fiber and Vitamin C. If you get organic there will be a minimal amount of chemicals which will lead to beetter absoption of those nutrients. 
As for the fats in your diet like nuts and oils, please please please learn to add those to your diet. Nuts are a great source of long lasting energy, protein and nutrients. Each nut has it's own unique plus to it. walnuts are high in Omega-3 fats and Manganese to help the heart, cashews have Copper and also Mangenese, and almonds have also Mangenese, along with Vitamin E and Magnesium. Nuts as well contain Vitamins and Proteins and healthy fats. As for oils not only do most of them contain healthy fats and nutrients they are also a great weigh to mostion the skin, hair and body as well as cleanse the body. Make your own trail mix with nuts and grains add a little bit of maple and vanilla and you will have a delicious snack. 
The last food I will talk about is soy because of it's controversal appearance in the world today. Soy used to be considered one of the best if not the best vegetarian source of protein and should still be looked at in that way. Soybeans as I said took the negative route thanks to GMOs (genetically Modified Organisms), which means hormones and chemicals are added to the seed to modify the food so they are larger, last longer or grow in abundance but the truth is that it can cause the plant to lose it's nutrients and is contected to cancer. Today you will find organic and the best way to go is straight to the source. by organic soybeans, also known as Edamame. A cup is 130 calories and a great source of protein and energy. Another reason to have organic Edamame is for the women who have a lack of hormones themselves. Edamame naturally creates estrogene in the body. other choices aside from overly processed tofu is less processed soy products like tempe which can be a good option over meat. 

What does this all mean. Simply put it means what I fight for in the world of diets and nutrition. This means DROP THE DIET RULES!!! learn to listen to your body and eat the foods your body, your taste buds and your culture teaches your body. It's like in Millionairre Matchmaker where one of the guys would meditate before eating. He did this on a date which may be over the top but the whole point was to clear the mind and focus on what he was eating. If you read you mind and stomach telling you, you need meat don't be afraid to go for some chicken, or lean beef. If you feel as though you are in need of some quick sugar grab an apple or a banana and to keep your energy going for a run eat a delicious serving of pasta with a bolognese sauces with shaved almonds on top. and don't forget to grab a small bag of nuts for a snack at work. Now a days you can get those 100 calorie snack pack of nuts which is such a great way not to go overboard with eating nuts cause believe me I know if you have a big batch of nuts you can easily get through them quickly. If you want to be a vegetarian, vegan, or have a diet like the paleo diet or atkins diet or even the south beach diet do so. Putting yourself on a diet, using it as a guide like is a great way to keep control in your diet. It is also your way of keeping healthy and will give you pride in doing so. I do ask you though don't make assumptions that you have the same body as others or the same socie-economic abilities as others. I have a different diet here than I do in the states because here it is easier to go the route of a Meditarranean diet with veggies and oils but my body best source of absorbable proteins comes from meats so I have a serving of chicken, eggs, or red meat. red meat is something I eat about once a week so my iron levels stay balanced although if you want to be vegan or vegatarian kale, spinach and other dark green leafy veggies are decent sources of iron. how about economics in all of this. The truth is it can be more expensive to be on a Meditarranean diet because the protein is in nuts and fishes which can be expensive or being a vegan can be expensive because you rely on nuts tempe and other possibly costly products and some people due to costs see it difficult to buy organic so in that case they go for the typical cheaper grocery store brand. Although in the long run it can be more costly some people just don't have the money right at that time to buy all organic. 

Your diet should be your diet, it should change for what you crave, what is close buy and sold locally if possible and what you can afford. Educate yourself, go see a nutritionist or dietition (like myself) and make your own choices in what you eat and STOP listening to every fad there is. On a regular basis someone comes out with a crazy theory just to get their name out there and to be known. What they do say can be very true but it is only part of the truth.  So again Stop listening to everything and have your own diet plan. My don'ts for your diet: Don't eat chemicals you are unfamiliar and can cause harm and don't stress out about what not to eat and enjoy what you want to eat 

Till Next Time

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