Is your mother’s – or your grandmother’s – nutritional advice holding you back from getting the results you want? Whether it’s the low-fat craze of the 1990s, or the grapefruit diet of the 1930s, there’s undoubtedly some old-school nutritional advice out there that you should ditch.
“Eating fat will make me fat.”
This bit of nutritional “wisdom” has been around for a long time, and for many, it’s just as common knowledge as the sun rises in the east.
But fat has an essential role in our diet, explains Shasonta Delmage, Precision Nutrition certified coach and a CrossFit coach in Bellingham, Washington.
Fat makes us feel full longer, is satisfying and even provides an endorphin rush, she says. Fats serve a purpose in our bodies, helping shuttle nutrients to our cells. (No, it doesn’t go right to your hips.)
More importantly, Shasonta explains, fat is just part of a bigger picture. We should be making sure to eat all the macro-nutrients – that’s carbs, proteins and fats – in each meal or snack.
An example of a snack that covers all the macro basis is a small handful of almonds (around 10) and a half-cup blueberries.
“I don’t need to eat.”
Ever tempted to just skip a meal? Or maybe simply run out of time to grab a bite between your last meeting of the day and getting to your TRX class?
You may think skipping meals is somehow virtuous, or at least is helping lose those five pounds, but it’s more than likely to backfire.
“If you don’t eat your body holds onto the fat you do have for survival,” Shasonta explains.
The exact opposite of what you want to have happen, right?
Your brain needs the food, too. You won’t think as clearly or sharply without proper fuel, which is the last thing you want whether you’re trying to outwit a wiley toddler or wow potential investors.
So make sure to have snacks on hand in case you get tight on time, and if you tend for forget to eat, set an alarm on your phone as a reminder.
And, Shasonta adds, always drink water.
“Gluten free is healthy.”
Products free of gluten aren’t inherently healthy.
The words “gluten free” on a box of cookies isn’t the stamp of approval to eat the whole box. (Sorry.)
This is sometimes called a “health halo” – that seductive aura of health shining down on an otherwise processed food.
Remember, sugar and other carbs can be culprits sabotaging your weight loss or causing you to feel fuzzy-headed.
The same can be said for many health claims – just because it’s free of this or made with that, doesn’t mean it’s an instant pass to eat as much as you want. Prepackaged kale chips chock full of preservatives or all-natural juice with oodles of sugar should still be on the “consume in moderation” list.
By afternoon, we’re tired and our willpower is shot, which is likely when any of these snacky foods sounds the best, Shasonta points out. Be prepared with healthy meals or snacks to power through the end of the day.
3 macro-complete snacks:
- 1 small banana (green tipped – it is naturally lower in sugar than an all-yellow banana) & 1 Tbsp. almond or peanut butter
- 2 oz. deli turkey slices, 1/4 c. blueberries, 5 almonds
- 1/2 c. baby carrots, 2 Tbsp. guacamole or avocado, 2 oz. chicken breast
“Measuring your food is a good thing,” Shasonta says. “After a couple weeks, you'll be able to eyeball it. Two ounces is less than the palm of a woman's hand.”
What old school nutritional advice are you ready to ditch? Make today the day you step into a new way of thinking – and eating!
Photo by Thought Catalog on Unsplash