We have developed a framework for eating well that is based on five core principles. Each of these principles will help provide you with the foundations for a well-balanced diet that can help you achieve any weight management or well-being goals as well as let you customize your diet to any lifestyle circumstances or personal preferences. Whenever you are about to choose what to eat, you quickly pause to consider how your foods are aligned with these principles and you should experiment with different food groups, serving sizes and ingredients to find your optimum balance for each principle.
Principle 1: Balance Your Macros. The macros in your food provide your body with energy as well as support specific roles to promote your health and well-being. However, each macro provides you with different functions. Protein is great for muscle repair; fats help your bodily functions to work smoothly, and carbs keep you feeling energized and focused. The goal for this first principle is to try and get a good balance between the three macros that enables you to hit your total energy needs for successful weight management goals whilst optimize your body functions.
Principle2: Ensure Proper Hydration. Most people are not drinking enough water each day and without enough your body just cannot function properly. We are continuously losing water through breathing, sweating and digestion and this quickly impacts your performance. You need to make sure you are getting sufficient liquids and that your body is properly hydrated.
Principle 3: Eat High Quality Fats and Carbs. Whilst all fats and carbs will provide you with energy and support body functions some will help you more than others. For example, foods that are high in the “bad’ fats like trans fats and cholesterol have been shown to lead to a higher risk of heart disease and “bad” carbs like processed, sugary foods can disrupt the body’s natural blood sugar regulation. It is important to try and eat “good” quality fats and carbs to ensure digestion, preventing hormone dysfunction and avoiding food cravings.
Principle 4: Boost Your Micro-Nutrients. Vitamins and minerals support the macros with a wide range of activities. Stress, poor dietary choices and other lifestyle issues will deplete your body of vital micronutrients and micronutrient deficiencies can prevent healthy functioning of your organs. The aim of this principles is to get you focused on eating foods with a high micronutrient density.
Principle 5: Find Your Friendly Foods. Finally, everyone is different! There is a complex relationship between how different foods impact your body, digestion, hormone, immune system, and mood. By identifying any food sensitivities that you have and eliminating those associated food groups and chemicals from your diet, you will promote a healthier digestive system.
If this is all new to you, then you will need to start consciously thinking about how your food choices align with these principles. But over time you’re eating decisions will start becoming habit and then routine and you will be incorporating these principles into your diet without even thinking. And once you are implementing these principles on a consistent basis, you will start to find you experience a healthier balance of eating, achieve your weight management goals and enjoy a healthier lifestyle. The more you know about food nutrition and science, the more likely you are to understand the implications of what you eat and start implementing these changes.