Diet: Fix The Basics First
There is too much information out there about when to eat, what to eat, should you count your macros, should you eat no carb, how much to eat, should you take supplements, and endless other questions…
Before you dive into any of these in detail, here are some basic points that should be addressed. If you are not taking care of one of the following, then reassess your diet before stressing yourself out over the perfect timing of your meals or what supplement to take.
1. Make sure you don’t have any nutrient deficiencies. What are nutrient deficiencies? Having low calcium, vitamin D, omega 3, or protein. There are many other vitamins and nutrients that should be accounted for but I will focus on a couple only. You can get yourself assessed by a dietitian or get a test in a clinic to figure out what your body is deficient in. Most of the time, you can be doing everything right and eating healthy but you still don’t feel good or are seeing results. It could be a deficiency somewhere that isn’t allowing your body to function the way it should. Most important and common deficiencies are the need to increase protein intake in your food and to take a fish oil supplement. Water is included in this list! Don’t let your body get dehydrated.
2. Control how much food you are eating without stressing over counting calories. Don’t jump into the stress of weighing and measuring all your food if you don’t even try to just control your portions. I posted a few weeks ago HERE about portion control and how you can use your hand to determine how much food to eat.
3. Understand your body type and what works best for you. We are all built differently. Some people have lean and muscular bodies without even trying that hard in their diet and exercise. Others might have a body that is long and thin and struggles to gain weight. And some people just have a slow metabolism where their bodies don’t tolerate carbohydrates very well. Depending on how your body responds to different food, you need to learn and listen to your body. Find an eating plan that works best for you and your activity level. There is no one size fits all. Here’s a great article explaining this topic in further detail: Body Type Eating.
4. Record and track your progress to see any changes and adjust if needed.
You need to follow all these point for a long time and be consistent before deciding something isn’t working. Then you can start to consider details such as the timing of your meals, what to eat post workout or taking any extra supplements.
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