Nutrition, Wellness

The Power to Choose …

Power. Capacity. Rule.

What do these words have in common? They all convey the ability to do or act; the capability of doing or accomplishing something. These words describe people, societies, and governments alike. Bill Gates, the Freemasons, and US government – these three have power. They have the ability to act and are capable of accomplishing something.

But power is not limited to the wealthy or the governments. Ordinary people like you and me have power as well.

We have the power to choose to eat healthily.

Despite our being surrounded by convenience foods and other processed food-like items, we are capable of choosing fresh, whole foods to fuel our bodies. (I spoke more about this in my last blog Back to Basics.) It’s not complicated and doesn’t have to cost a fortune, either.

You may be wondering, “That’s great and all, but what does healthy eating look like on a daily basis??” I wish I could give you a concrete answer and formula to follow, but there are none. Each person’s diet (by “diet” I mean food common to the area/society/culture) is different, and certain food allergies may be present. What I can do is give some general guidelines and share my personal experiences.

The Power…

The fuel we get from food is in the form of calories, which are further broken down into macronutrients (fats, carbohydrates, proteins). Then there are the micronutrients (vitamins and minerals). A healthy diet will consist of a balance of macros and micros.

The generally agreed upon macro split for getting started on a healthy diet is 40c/40p/20f. That means each meal should be 40% carbs, 40% protein, and 20% fat. Let’s say you are sitting down to a breakfast of 500 calories, then your macros will be 200 grams of carbs, 200 grams of protein, and 100 grams of fat. That may look like this: an omelet using 1 whole egg and 2 egg whites, low-fat feta cheese, spinach, and oregano.

Another thing to keep in mind with your new way of eating is hydration. It is estimated that our bodies are made of 60% water. Water is important for proper functioning of the nervous system, for lubricating the joints, for temperature regulation, and for many other important bodily functions. We lose water through breathing, sweating, and digestion so it’s important to rehydrate. The accepted rule of thumb is to drink 1 oz of water per pound of bodyweight. So if you weigh 150 lbs, you should be drinking 150 oz of water. Be careful, though, not to drink the water too fast….that can cause hyponatremia (or water intoxication) where the electrolytes – especially sodium – in your body are diluted too much. The max amount of water to drink per hour is 33 oz.

To Choose….

Fresh food vs processed food.

Cokes – or sodas or pops, depending on where you live – vs water.

The power to choose is yours.

What do you choose?

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