Are you looking for healthy nutrition?
Do you know what healthy nutrition is?
Can you see yourself making nutritious food choices that make you feel empowered and your body feel amazing?
Healthy nutrition is out there. You have to be willing to find it and make sure it is the best nutrition for your life. You need something that works for you, fits with your schedule and you are willing to commit to.
Trying to find the perfect “diet” is like looking for a four-leaf clover, a needle in a haystack or the fountain of youth! Not impossible but time consuming; and the information out there can be confusing and frustrating. And let’s face it, what works for someone else does not mean it will work for you.
Let’s take a quick look at a few of the most popular “diet” trends right now that are considered healthy nutrition:
Keto – Simply put, Ketosis is a natural metabolic process in the body. When your body does not get enough carbohydrates from food to burn energy, it starts to burn stored fat as energy. The Keto Diet is a very low carb diet (about 25 to 30 grams if you are consuming 2000 calories per day) that puts your body in Ketosis so that it uses fat stores for energy. Meals center around lean meats, healthy fats, higher fat dairy and low carb veggies (green leafy, tomatoes, squash, etc.).
Paleo – If a caveman didn’t eat it, then you shouldn’t either. Paleo encourages lean cuts of meat, fish, veggies, nuts and seeds. No calorie counting. Nothing processed, no grains, dairy, potatoes or salt. The diet claims that the body is mismatched to modern foods that have come into being in the past 10,000 years.
Whole30 – The focus of Whole30 is to help you determine which foods might be causing you inflammation in the body, food intolerances and hormonal imbalances. In our highly processed food world, Whole30 suggest that you can determine these issues by eating whole natural foods for 30 days. Those foods include fruits, veggies, lean cuts of meats, nuts, seeds and some healthy fats. It does include eggs (which can be a big issue for some). Once the 30 days is up, you can begin to add foods back in to see if they bother you.
The Mediterranean Diet – US News and World Report named this the best way to eat for 2018. This diet is based on consuming heart healthy foods such as veggies, fruit, lean proteins, seeds, nuts, healthy fats and oils, and whole grains. No processed foods here. It is suggested to limit red meats to a few times a month while eating chicken and fish at least twice per week. This diet has been shown to reduce LDL’s (low-density lipoprotein) in your cholesterol. This is the “bad” cholesterol that can build up in your blood.
Are you seeing the same common theme that I am?? Eating more veggies, lean meats and fish, healthy fats and whole grains = healthy nutrition. Common sense rules here. All of the above diets have the same main premise – eat more whole foods and consume less processed foods.
Having been through my own trial and error looking for healthy nutrition, I have adapted parts of all of these “diets” to suit my healthy lifestyle. YOU CAN TOO. During the past six years, I have tried several different ways to eat. It does take some patience but it is part of the learning process and you end up eating healthy nutritious foods you love that make your body feel good.
Here’s what I do for a healthy, balanced good life after 50:
Lots of veggies and fruit – at least 1 to 2 servings at every meal
Lean proteins – I do eat more chicken and fish. I eat very little pork because my digestive system does not really care for it. The beef I eat is organic and/or grass fed. Eggs – cage free. I could eat eggs, every single day!
Good carbs (but only if I have earned them through exercise) – rice, potatoes, quinoa, GF pasta(occasionally), and grits.
I limit the amount of flour and sugar I consume. A good rule of thumb for me is to plan in advance to have these. If I know I am going out to dinner over the weekend where I will have a glass of wine and dessert, I don’t eat any sugar during the week. I rarely eat flour but if I want a piece of toast on the weekend, I plan to have it and it is typically a really good bread like Dave’s Killer Bread with real butter toasted in the oven.
Healthy fats in the form of olive oil, coconut oil, real butter, avocados and nuts. I purchased unsalted mixed nuts, walnuts, pecans, etc. I splurge on butter – Kirkland’s Organic Butter or Kerry Gold.
Occasionally I eat something that is processed but I limit those to my favorites like plain Lay’s Potato Chips. Mind you, I portion them out and eat a serving not the whole bag!
What I don’t eat is dairy – no milk, yogurt or ice cream. This one is hard for me, especially because I love ice cream. I really have to limit the times I have it. It kills my digestive tract and I am typically miserable the morning after eating it (sorry, TMI). My only exception here is cheese because it does not seem to bother me. I also don’t eat Gluten. When I purchase items like pretzels or pasta, I choose the gluten free version.
I eat dark chocolate – a couple of times per week. I plan to have one or two pieces of good quality (or semi-good quality) dark chocolate.
I drink 80 ounces of water daily, drink a Green Smoothie most days, exercise regularly and get the right amount of sleep for me.
What works for me is variety and a willingness to try new things. I used to only eat raw broccoli but now, roasted is my favorite. My boys loved green beans growing up. I used to buy canned, drain off the liquid and cook them in chicken broth with olive oil and pepper. Now I roasted them in the oven with garlic and mushrooms. I used to go to bed at 10 PM, now it is 9:15 or 9:30 PM because I function better on 7 plus hours of sleep.
Healthy nutrition is not hard to find for yourself. You will have to endure some trial and error when working on finding what is right for you. But when you hit your sweet spot, your body will let you know. You will have more energy, cravings will disappear and you will feel better! Subscribe to my blog for more healthy nutrition ideas and For a Good Life After 50!