Posted by Nutrition Coach Rachel
When selecting foods, it can feel like a lot to move through between meal planning, hitting the grocery store and meal prep time. Of course, over time we develop routines and favorite recipes that bring nutritious fulfillment that keep us moving on our goals. To guide a general idea, here are a few tips to support you:
1. Eat a variety of nutritious foods and beverages. Variety is the spice of life – and nutrition too. Be sure to eat from a mix of foods within each food group. For example, load up on several types of vegetables (think: dark green, red and orange, starchy types, legumes, and more).
Don’t forget to switch up your proteins too. Take a break from lean and red meat or poultry and nosh on fish, and plant protein like black beans and nut butters from time to time.
2. Eat and drink the right amounts for you. You know what they say: “Moderation is key.” And that could mean different things for different people. How many calories you need to eat depends on your age, sex, height, weight, and how active you are. There is no one way for everyone!
3. Aim for less than 10% of calories each day from saturated fats. Foods higher in saturated fats include butter, cheese, whole milk, fattier cuts of meat (such as beef ribs, sausage, and certain processed meats), poultry skin, and some oils. Tip: There are tons of delicious foods with saturated fats such as seafood, avocados, most nuts and olive oil.
4. Stick to foods and drinks with naturally-occurring sugars. Some foods and drinks have added sugars, syrups or other sweeteners from the production process. Unflavored milks, fruits and other foods are your best friend. Instead of soda or other sugary drinks, go with water and maybe add a splash of lemon or lime. Frozen berries and cucumber slices make for a lovely wellness boost. Limit sugary, overly processed desserts like cake, cookies, brownies, and cookies.
5. Eat more real ingredients (the less processed, the better). Try to eat food that’s as close to its natural state as possible. Meaning food that is generally unprocessed, free of chemical additives and rich in nutrients. Processed foods may be convenient but a diet based on real food can help you maintain good health. Real ingredients are low in sugar, heart healthy, better for the environment, high in fiber, and helps manage blood sugar.