As quoted by Michael Pollan, bestselling author and huge source of influence in the world of health and food, we are living in the “the age of nutritionism”. There is a recent preoccupation with only eating food for it’s specific nutritional properties, function, or health claim – rather than simply just eating real food.
With the uprising epidemic of chronic diseases such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, etc., it is perfectly understandable why this diet mentality shift is taking place. People are beginning to realize that the food they are consuming is making them sick instead of giving them life.
The food and diet industries have taken advantage of this and have flooded the markets with books and products promoting weight loss and health claims, many of which are not founded by scientific evidence. It is easy to get lost in all the craze with so many different fad diets being introduced… paleo, low-carb, vegan, atkins, plant-based, ketogenic, gluten-free, carnivore, raw, the list goes on.
I am not here to tell you that these diets are good or bad. I’m here to de-clutter your brain, to give you the unbiased evidence-based facts, and to make things a little more simple when it comes to eating FOOD.
Create energy balance. Eat whole foods. Eat your veggies.
Simple, right? Not so much, let’s dig a little deeper into what this means.
Energy balance is achieved when the number of calories eaten is equal to the number of calories burned. Calories IN = Calories OUT. The time of day, type of food, or even nutritional properties do not affect your weight. Whatever “diet” you embark on, it will always come down to energy balance. Want to lose weight? Create a calorie deficit. This means burning more calories than you consume. Want to gain weight? Consume more calories than you use.
Eat whole foods. The more refined and processed a food is, the further it is from it’s natural state. Nature has a magical way of creating the perfect food. When you take away parts of it or change its composition, you are taking away from its perfect balance.
Eat your veggies. We all know this one. The USDA has been providing research founded, evidence based dietary guidance for over 100 years now, and even though much has changed over the years and new conflicting research surfaces constantly, one thing has not changed; vegetables are good for you. The USDA recommends eating AT LEAST 5 servings of vegetables per day.
These three facts are timeless. Take this bit of information and use it as your new platform to educate yourself on the facts, not the fads.
And one last tip from me, enjoy the foods you eat.
“Eat food, not too much, mostly plants.”- Michael Pollan
Samira Dilles, is a Certified Personal Trainer and Nutritionist at Saint Mary’s Fitness Center.
Our kNOw Fad Nutrition course which goes more in depth about the above principles runs from February 11-April 1, 2019. Contact our nutrition team at 775.770.3632 or firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more or to sign up!