The Very Basics of Nutrition
The subject of nutrition is vast and much too complex to be covered in such a limited format. This article will touch on the basics only and how nutrition and exercise are vital to our overall good health.
Nutrition in its basic form is the ingestion of nutrients to sustain life. These nutrients include water, vitamins, minerals proteins, fats and carbohydrates. It is important that you consume all the needed nutrients on a daily basis. It is well known that your performance, whether it be at the workplace, at home with the children or during a chosen sports activity will suffer if adequate nutrition is not maintained. How often have your heard someone say they felt or maybe yourself felt tired and sluggish. If you are not meeting your body’s nutritional requirements you will become fatigued and unable to meet the demands put on your body in your daily life.
Just what are we supposed to eat? There is a constant barrage of information coming at us each day about what to eat, when to eat, how much to eat. It is sometimes just too overwhelming to make sense of all the information that is provided through the media, the medical community, and now with the computer and the world wide web there is even more information at our fingertips.
If you are one of the millions of people trying to diet; then the information is even more prevalent. Billions of dollars are paid annually to a multitude of weight loss companies each ensuring they have the answer to your weight loss problems.
But the bottom line comes down to this. The only way to lose body fat is to be on a negative calorie diet. You must take in fewer calories than you would need to stay at the same weight. There are no secret formulas here. Your goal is to increase lean muscle tissue and lose body fat. This can only be done through a program of resistance training and a monitored nutritional program.
One of the biggest mistakes people make when they attempt to lose weight is to cut their calories dramatically. This does nothing other than slowing your basal metabolic rate. Your body requires a minimum number of calories just to exist. You cannot cut your caloric intake lower than this amount. The 800-1000 calorie per day diets that are so popular are dangerous. Your body cannot survive on so few calories, so what it does it slow is down your basic metabolic needs. It will then store much of the food you consume as fat in preparation for the “famine” to come.
This information is not new, but yet many people still insist on starving themselves in hopes to attain that “perfect body”.
Some nutrition tips to consider:
– Eat at least 5 times a day. This provides your body with a consistent and frequent supply of food. This will also maintain blood sugar and insulin levels, preventing those energy fluctuations so often felt over the course of your day.
– Ensure each meal is balanced with carbohydrates, proteins and fats. Limited saturated fats and use low glycemic index carbohydrates primarily.
– Eliminate junk food from your daily meal plans.
– Drink 8-10 glasses of water each day.
– Consume high fiber foods.
– Exercise with weights to increase your lean body weight.
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