Article 1 : Nutrition
- Andy Lark
*Note-Over the last decade I have learnt
from the best minds in the business and I quote them very so often in my
articles. I do not wish to plagiarize anyone's work or quotes.
If Exercise is the lock then Nutrition is
the key. One of the great coaches of our time had said that. With a massive
amount of information from the Internet, in magazines and impromptu gurus, it
has become relatively difficult to decipher the holy grail of nutrition. I do
not claim to be the end all be all of the fitness industry but over my years of
experience and certifications I have narrowed down the basics of good nutrition
relating to your training goal to a few key guidelines.
With the exponential growth in population
comes a demand for fast quickly grown food to supply the masses. Processed,
chemically laden & nutrient deficient foods have hit the shelves with
promises of Health & Happiness. The human genome hasn't evolved more than
0.02% which means our ability to digest and absorb nutrients from foods hasn't
really changed much. In order the achieve the best results with your Health
& Fitness you must ensure the keep the Basics Simple !!
Nutrient Dense Foods
Your cells crave good nutrition and cell
health is primary for good health. Supply your cells with the best raw
material, your health and fitness will reach its true potential. Many people
focus on the Macronutrients – Carbs, Fats & Protein, and very few focus on
the Micronutrients – Vitamins & Minerals. Along with a macronutrient
balance ensure your diet has an abundant amount of Vitamins and Minerals from
natural sources. Some great avenues of nourishment are:
A variety of Fruits, especially
thin skinned fruits like Berries, Pears, Apples, Peaches, etc
Multi coloured Vegetables,
especially Kale, Celery, Parsley, Carrots, Red Peppers & Chilly
Seasoning, Himalayan Pink Salt,
Black & Cayenne Pepper, Turmeric, Curcumin, Cinnamon.
*Ensure that the sources of Fruits and
Vegetables are clean and pure, free of insecticides & pesticides. Shopping
from your local farmers would be a great tip and trip.
Enough Protein – From Good Sources
Regardless of whether your goals are Fat
Loss, Maintenance, Muscle gain, Sports Specific or even Rehab the most
important nutrient to achieve your training goal is Protein. Many people
overlook the fact that the most important functions of protein are
Neurotransmitter production, Liver detoxification, used as raw materials in
RNA, DNA & Hormone production. Protein is also necessary for growth of new
cells or aka the building block or muscle. Hence, ensuring that we get an
adequate amount of ‘Complete’ protein in our diets is of paramount importance. I
will not dwell on Complete vs Incomplete Protein in this article (but stay
tuned for an article on that soon). Some great avenues for nourishment are:
Animal or Bird Protein (Hormone
Free, Organic, Grass or Grain respective of the source)
Fish (Wild Atlantic Salmon,
Orange Roughy, Cod, etc.)
your Fats from Good Sources
Media these days hypes up Fat Free
products, which is good in a way but it also changes the perception of the
public. For instance, fat is from eating a bag of Doritos is bad for you but
fat from Cheese (Real Cheese) is not bad – Notice I say ‘Real Cheese’ as many
people buy they're cheese from the local supermarket based on how cheap it is,
that isn't real cheese (Article to come). Did you know that the cell walls of
your cells are made up of Fat, and the type of fat will dictate the health of
your cells. Think about it, the more junk or cheap the fat is the unhealthier
the cell wall, reducing transportation of nutrients and toxins in and out of
them. Think good fats my friends, here are some excellent sources of good fats:
Wild Alaskan Salmon
Omega 3 Fish Oils
your Sugar Intake
Many of us don't realize but sugar is in
almost everything, from fruits to yogurt and yes Oatmeal is Sugar(or eventually
it does turn into sugar). Many of us don't realize but we are very insulin
resistant(the amount of sugar in our blood required to stimulate the release of
insulin is high) so the body can't
efficiently make use of the sugar it receives and our systems become toxic. A
very famous Strength and Conditioning Coach once said that it's not fat that
makes us fat but carbs that drives insulin that makes us fat !! Some key points
you can remember when preparing your meals for the day are:
Use good sources of
Carbs-Quinoa, Wild Rice, Thin Skinned Fruits
Avoid Processed Carbs-White
Polished Rice, Bread, Sugary Drinks labelled as Fruit Juices or High Energy
Do your research on the
Glycemic Index and choose your foods accordingly
& Understand the Food Labels
I have had countless people speak to me
misunderstanding the macronutrient content in many foods. For example: Yes, I
get enough protein because I eat Nuts. Now what they don't know is that nuts
are primarily Fat-Good Fat and the protein content in them is negligible.
Another example is: Yes, I eat Quinoa which is packed with protein. Now what
they don't realize is that Quinoa is primarily Carbohydrates-Complex Carbs. I
order to take in the amount of protein you would get from 1 chicken breast you
would need to eat about a cup and a half of Quinoa, which essentially means
your eating a heck of a lot of carbs along with the protein.
All foods have they're nutrition
content/macronutrient count on the back of the pack. The simple trick is to
read the Carbs, Protein, Fat content and whichever is the highest is what it's
most dense in. Make wise choices my friends.
recap everything we have talked about today:
Eat Natural Food that's are
packed with Vitamins, Minerals and Phytonutrients.
No matter what your goals,
ensure you are getting enough Protein in your diet.
Not all fats are bad, do your
research and reach for Fats from good sources.
Choose Naturally occurring good
sources of Carbs, because that's what's making you Fat
Read your Food Labels !!
Thanks for reading this, please look out
for my bids. I will definitely get you to your goals!!