Good health doesn’t come from just making one healthy change, like adding exercise to your schedule. It comes from making a number of changes and diet is one of those. My clients in Commack, NY know that it’s all about lifestyle with a healthy diet and a program of regular workouts being the top two changes to make a difference in both your health and your weight. You can’t out exercise a bad diet. If you’re eating a large order of fries, double burger with all the extras and milk shakes after you workout, you’ll be gaining weight, rather than losing it. When you consider a big burger with all the fixings or a 24 ounce shake has as many as 1000 calories, you’d have to workout an hour and a half to two hours to burn that many calories in a workout.
Not only do calories count, so does nutrition.
The early fitness guru, Jack LaLanne, who worked out the day before his death from pneumonia at age 96, said that “exercise is king and nutrition is queen. Put them together you’ve got a kingdom.” He was right. Whether you’re losing weight or getting healthy, what you eat makes a huge difference. LaLanne called the bloodstream the “River of Life” and said we pollute that river with junk foods that contain sugar, salt, artificial flavors and preservatives. If you want to be your healthiest, you need to closely monitor what you eat.
Start with the basics.
Eating healthy doesn’t have to be hard. You don’t have to be a nutritionist to begin the process. Start by eliminating processed foods, particularly those with sugar and bleached flour. Make your diet a colorful plate that begins with the basics, fruit, vegetables, healthy protein and healthy fat. You can eat all the above ground vegetables you want, particularly green leafy vegetables. Include mostly non starchy vegetables and go lightly on starchy ones like butternut squash, potatoes, corn, chickpeas and yams.
You have to eat enough healthy food to ensure you have all the calories you need for a good workout.
Cutting calories to a level of starvation is definitely not healthy. Your body not only needs the fuel, it needs the building blocks to create new cells. If you’re eating unhealthy foods, no matter how many calories they contain, you won’t have those building blocks to help burn calories or build muscle tissue. Good nutrition can help you reach peak performance and not burn out before your workout is finished.
- Your diet also affects your recovery rate. If you did everything right in the gym, but you’re sore or tired for days after your workout, or don’t get the results you want, it may be your diet.
- A healthy diet to help you lose weight and get adequate nutrition contains 30 percent of the calories from fat, 30 percent from protein and 40 percent from complex carbohydrates.
- Eating protein can help you feel fuller longer. Dietary fiber also helps fill you up and keeps your elimination tract healthier.
- It’s not all about what you eat. What you drink plays a big role in your health. Soft drinks, even diet sodas, play havoc on your health. Regular sodas add calories and flood your system with sugar, while low calorie drinks add chemicals that cause unhealthy changes in your diet.