The Nitty Gritty
If you are reading this, you obviously care about your body. Nutrition is a LARGE part of proper care.
You hear “Food is fuel” often when people discuss nutrition, but it really is so much more. Think of the analogy of your body being a car and food is gas – that is too simplistic an explanation. Your car will not run just by putting gas in the tank. That gas has to be directed to DO something for results.
• Food is information and direction for your body:
Chemical bonds breakdown to create ATP (the real fuel)
They tell cells “Do this/Don’t do this”
Repair muscle, secrete hormones
Overall, many signals come from food
Micronutrients also come from food
Vitamins and minerals
Phytochemicals & Zoochemicals – these do not provide “fuel”
There are nutrients found only in plants and only in animals
They offer protection and aid in health
The best results from your diet come from the best nutrition.
• Whole foods
As little processed as possible
Few artificial additives or preservative
Little physical processing (steak vs sausage, whole fruit/veggie vs juice)
Intact on vitamins, minerals, water, fatty acids, amino acids, carbs, fiber and more
• Appropriate foods, in the appropriate frequencies in the appropriate portions
A diet is merely the kinds of food that a person, animal, or community habitually eats. Every one of us is on a “diet” but how and what you eat will be a directly reflected in your body, whether you want it to be or not! Your diet should be goal dependent and personal to YOU. What are your goals? Weight loss, more so, FAT loss? Build muscle? That is the starting point. Define what you want as a result and then define the steps to take to get you there. Once you have a plan, the discipline of repetition leads to habits and those habits become a part of your everyday life, getting you closer to your goals.
When you get into the nitty gritty of a diet, it comes down to macronutrients or macros (which equate to calories). Protein and fats are essential, carbs are non-essential, so your goals and current stats will dictate how those macronutrients are broken down to get you to your goal. Diet is simple, but it is not always easy. Many mental factors go along with eating for a goal, even if that goal is to maintain. So learning techniques for breaking and forming habits, learning about relationships with food and the “how’s” and “why’s” of reaching your goal is all a part of the journey. Addressing diet to improve yourself can be uncomfortable at times, but if you change nothing, nothing will change.
-Lisa Agens is a retired Dental Hygienist who, over the years of experience and further education, has become a Certified Nutritional Coach, starting her own company, Your Lean Life, LLC and helping people along their journey, learn what to do to reach their goals.
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