The never ending pursuit to be slim and healthy has modern society subscribing to a plethora of diet fads, but is eating really as complex as we have been lead to believe? Below are some simple rules that can help you make sense of it all.

  1. Eat FOOD – Supermarket shelves are stocked with more then 17,000 new products every year, most of which are highly processed. The first trick to eating well is to avoid there industry novelties and choose real food.
  2. Eat foods that will rot – For food to spoil or rot it needs to be alive and contain nutrients, these nutrients attract our natural competitors also known as fungi and bacteria. Processed foods tend to have a longer shelf life because the nutrients have been removed to help preserve it. Although there are a few exceptions (honey will last hundreds of years) real food that is alive and full of nutrients will eventually die or “rot”.
  3. More ingredients = more processed – If packaged food contains more then five ingredients it is probably best to avoid, especially if you can not identify what most of them are.
  4. Mainly eat plants, especially the leaves – Plants have less kilojoules and contain many important building blocks for the human body including; fibre, omega 3 fatty acids and antioxidants. So replace some of the processed food and meat products you consume with fruit and vegetables.
  5. Eat a rainbow diet – Although an old wives tale it is completely true that having a good array of colours on your plate helps to achieve a balanced diet. The colours of many vegetables reflect the different antioxidant phytochemicals they contain including; flavonoids, cyanins, polphenols and carotenoids. Each help to keep you healthy in their own unique way.
  6. Quality over quantity – Choosing quality food may cost more but in all likely hood it will result in you valuing what you eat more. Quality foods will also generally satisfy your hunger much more efficiently, ensuring you are eating less and gaining more.
  7. If a sugar craving hits turn to nature – Eating sweet foods as they appear in nature (e.g. a juicy orange or delicious strawberry) will guarantee they are packaged with a dose of fibre which helps slow glucose absorption and gives you a sense of satiety before you have eaten too much.
  8. Choose whole grains – For the human body white flour is comparable to sugar and unless supplemented it contains none of the benefits of whole grains. It produces large spikes in glucose level which affects metabolism and creates an inflammatory response. Whole grains in contrast naturally contain fibre, vitamin B and healthy fats.
  9. Do NOT over eat – Adjusting your perspective on the quantity you consume can make a huge difference. Instead of asking yourself “Am I full?” ask “Is my hunger gone?” You should never aim to be 100% full, think more 75%.
  10. Everything in moderation, including moderation – It is important not to become stressed out thinking about all the food rules you must follow. Remember to keep it simple; eat real food, quality over quantity and stop eating before you are full. And on occasion throw the healthy rules out the window and indulge!
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