Fat Loss For Life – Basic Guidelines
If you live in a modern, cosmopolitan city, chances are that you have one of those 21 St century Western lifestyles that includes a diet rich in processed foods and perhaps alcohol. This is not solely our fault – cultural habits as well as social expectations play a huge part in one’s culinary choices. However, considerable problems emerge when these processed foods outweigh the amount of natural foods in our diet. In most cases, this leads to inflammation, which is the main source of serious physical health conditions such as obesity, diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, as well as some mental health issues: depression, food addiction and anxiety being the most common ones.
What Are Whole Foods?
Whole foods are foods at their complete, natural form e.g. apples. Most would place minimally processed foods such as grains in the same category, however, strictly speaking, only foods that are eaten at their exact state as Mother Nature has created them, count as “whole foods”.
Whole Food vs Processed: The Benefits of a Whole Food Diet
Some of the foods we are eating today make our our appetite spiral out of control, like a runaway train with no brakes. When whole, natural, unprocessed foods dominate our diet, it puts natural brakes on our food intake. One of the reasons for this is that whole foods come with many nutrients, vitamins and fibre in them, most of which are lost in processing. By consuming a diet rich in whole foods we ensure our bodies are provided with everything it needs to function optimally and that includes keeping our energy levels on point.
There are obvious problems with high consumption of processed foods such weight gain, low energy, bad skin, and mood swings just to mention a few. Plus, this way of eating leads to a nutritionally starved body and that’s the reason why we are always hungry despite getting the calories in.
Another important aspect to bear in mind when consuming sugary processed foods regularly for example, is the impact it has on our hormones, being insulin one of the most affected ones. When we consume refined white sugar, found in confectionary and desserts our blood sugar levels raise rapidly and we hit rock bottom very quickly. As a consequence, we then need more to bring us back up again but then we hit the ground again. So is a vicious cycle!
But that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a dessert now and again or have some cookies with your coffee or tea! Just remember that if repeatedly done, sugar crashes can create the unhealthy habit of snacking on sugars and carbs, which could lead to gaining extra pounds.
But what about fruit? Fruit contains naturally occurring sugars. It’s rich in sugary carbs, but who has ever heard of someone getting fat because of apples? According to one of many studies (1), eating an apple causes a normal, gradual rise in blood sugar levels, which then goes back down to baseline without causing much change in the body. This is due to the high fibre content in apples which slows down the absorption of sugars. Hence the reason why they are considered low glycemic and suitable for diabetics. So if you fancy something sweet, eat some fruit instead of processed sweets such as chocolate bars. With that being said, a chocolate bar won’t harm if consumed in moderation. In the end, balance is key!
Protein, Protein, Protein!
We talked about the brakes natural foods put on our hunger. One of the most important macro-elements with brakes is protein. It fights hunger by making you feel fuller for longer than fat and carbohydrates. Therefore, it is crucial that we include it in every meal to make us feel more satisfied, so we end up eating less. Reducing our overall food intake while ensuring that we still get the amount of nutrients we need leads to numerous health benefits, such as lowering “bad” LDL cholesterol and stabilising blood pressure. A reduction in inflammation in the body relieves muscle & joint aches and pains, and in some cases it even causes pain to disappear. All of this can result in gradual, healthy fat loss. What’s not to like?
Undecided? Try “Whole 30”!
“It’s like pushing the reset button with your health, your habits, and your relationship with food” – says Melissa Hartwig, the author of the Whole 30 diet challenge, that helped to change the eating habits of many in America. How it works: No added sugar, no dairy, no grains, no junk food, no alcohol, no slip-ups and no excuses for 30 days! Also, as this is not only about weight loss, you are not allowed to step on the scales for the whole of 30 days. Sounds strict? It is. This is a great monthly challenge which serves to “reset” your habits as well as your tastebuds.
Furthermore, if you are looking for a healthy life plan that is satisfyingly tasty, that you can keep up for long as well as fit into your busy lifestyle, Bionic Bodies has the perfect solution for you! We create bespoke nutritional plans personalised to your goals – whether that is to help you shed those pounds faster and easier, gain more muscle mass, prepare for an event or simply healthy living and weight maintenance while enjoying your everyday meals – we are here to help. Get in touch by clicking on link below:
Study (1) from the University Department of Medicine & Chemical Pathology, Bristol