Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Diet and Nutrition Basics

Ok so you want to eat healthier, maybe gain a little muscle and lose a little fat? Then you've come to the right place. Your nutrition starts with what you buy at the store - and the age old food pyramid still comes into play.

Starting with your breakfast cereals: aim for something that has at least 5g's of fiber, and LESS than 8g's of sugar, 3g's of fat, 250mg of sodium.

When you buy bread you should always be getting be whole wheat bread. Skip white bread and anything with more than 2g's of fat per slice, especially muffins, pastries, etc.

You should of course be buying plenty of produce such as fruits and vegetables. Organic produce may be optimal as it will have fewer pesticides, also you can buy prepackaged salad if you want to make things easier. When considering the benefits of eating fruit vs. fruit juice, know that fruit juice can often be very sugary - yet many are still good for getting your fruit quota. Also be aware that you will not be getting as much fiber than if you had eaten real fruit.

Purchasing canned food can also be an excellent, convenient and cheap way to stock up on your fruits and vegetables. Be careful though because many can come with additives of sugar, salt, cream, etc. making it fattier than you realized. Canned fruits especially are very often packed in sugary corn syrup. Canned tuna is a perfect and cheap form of protein as well.

As far as meat goes: seafood and then chicken are going to be your best options. Fish contains a great amount of protein. The only thing is be aware of what types of fish you are eating as many are being over fished, or have other negative environmental impacts like farming. Good fish to eat, with minimal environment impact include albacore tuna, catfish, halibut, mahi mahi, rainbow trout and Pacific Salmon.

In my next post I'm going to try to hit up all the various supplements and debunk the mysteries around them!

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