“…and I had some canned pineapple yesterday, so that is good, right?” my co-worker asked me talking about his weight loss journey. It occurred to me at the office, talking to various co-workers about nutrition. Many Americans trust in what companies advertise and it is my mission to educate people how to make healthy food choices and teach them how to read nutrition labels.
What’s obvious to me, isn’t for everyone else and I realized I wasn’t born with knowledge about nutrition and healthy lifestyle. The more I researched fitness and clean eating, the more I learned about what foods to avoid, what macros and micros are, and how to eat a balanced diet. Are you eating a healthy and balanced diet? Are you sure?
So here are the basics you need to know:
- Keep sugar to a minimum
- Choose whole grains
- Stay away from white bread, flour, and pasta
- Brown rice, whole grain pasta, oats, quinoa, couscous, barley, farro, bulgur are good grains
- Choose fresh or frozen vegetables and fruit
- Fruits contain sugar, try to limit it to 1-2 pieces a day when trying to lose weight
- Vegetables are classified as carbs
- Eat a lot of leafy greens
- Corn, peas, lentils, and beans are considered starchy (starches are carbohydrates)
- Limit white potatoes, they are starchy, sweet potatoes are a good choice
- Nuts and seeds are considered a fat but also contain carbs (and protein)
- Healthy oil choices include: Coconut, Grapeseed, Olive, Avocado
- Unflavored Greek yogurt & cottage cheese are good sources of protein
- When baking, use spelt flour or grind your own oat flour with a blender
- Rice cakes are a good carb source on the go
…and most canned fruit is loaded with added sugar, so stay away from that.
A good starting point is Jamie Eason’s Approved Food List. There is also a pdf online that you can download and hang up in your kitchen. I posted mine to the inside of my kitchen cabinet doors for a quick reference. Added bonus: The list also states portion sizes.