As a Fitness Leader who is incredibly passionate about what I do, I have found that nutrition is still an enormous barrier for people who are looking to improve their health and performance. We have become a society that is perpetually over fed in calories and severely under nourished with nutrients. In the human body, we require certain amount of micro-nutrients to be the healthiest version of ourselves. This not only allows healthy cell production on every level, but also gives us abundant amounts of energy! When a persons body is receiving what it needs to thrive, you can’t help but notice. Their skin glows with vibrant colour, they have tremendous energy all of the time, they have shiny hair, clear white eyes and generally are smiling more often because they feel great. This all happens because they are healthier than their over fed, under nourished counterparts. How often have you just been drawn to someone simply because they had a good energy and looked healthy. More often than not would be my guess. That is because we are genetically programmed to be around others who represent health, long life and vitality. It is Mother Natures way of saying, ‘those who are healthy and strong will have a greater chance to carry their genetic makeup forward and move on to the next round’.
I believe the reason that we have become over fed and under nourished is caught somewhere between misinformation and/or too much information. We have the worlds knowledge at our fingertips so it has become very easy to learn about any subject at any time. So for fitness and nutrition, my clients are being bombarded by celebrity diets, ambiguous studies, and anecdotal evidence of what the latest trends can do for them. The disheartening fact is that unless you know just how credible the source of information is, or you don’t know why this study has been published, you just can’t trust it. We should be questioning everything we learn about. After all, we are responsible for the overall health of ourselves and our loved ones.
This articles intention is to help people understand what real nutrition is and where it comes from. Along the way, you will learn about the nature of the trap in the food industry and how it confuses people into believing what is and isn’t good for us. I also want to help health conscious-minded people learn how to differentiate between so-called, ‘health foods’ and foods that are actually healthy for us.
First and foremost, our bodies are continuously working 24/7/365. Even while you are asleep, your body is hard at work, preparing itself for the grind of the day ahead. Cells are constantly communicating with each other, giving/receiving orders from other cells, to do a specific task at a specific time. The human body is Mother Natures most perfectly designed, well-oiled machine. In order to keep this machine running smoothly, the body requires certain amounts of micro-nutrients each day so that it can keep you happy and healthy. Micro-nutrients are nutrients required by humans and other organisms that are responsible to create and sustain life and help to orchestrate a number of physiological functions. Some examples of these include, iron, chromium, selenium, manganese, magnesium, calcium, iodine, zinc, vitamins A, B, C, D, E, K. These are some, but not all of the micro-nutrients that your body requires in order to continue to be its healthiest. They are responsible for our overall health, our ability to procreate and our ability to fight disease. Sadly, most people are deficient in more than one of them. The problem with deficiencies is that they leave us much more susceptible to diseases like, cancer, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, Alzheimer’s Disease,
The word, ‘diet’, has become an interesting word of our modern day language. To most, it means the latest fad they have chosen in order to shed a few unwanted pounds. In fact, the original use of the word was meant to describe the kinds of food that a person, animal, or community habitually eats. Using the original word, diet, I would suggest a person should eat a diet high in micro-nutrients. The best sources of these micro-nutrients are fruits and vegetables! That’s right. Mother Nature has given us everything we need in order to be our healthiest. The other great news about eating a diet high in micro-nutrients is that they are generally very low in calories. So you eat to your hearts content in these nutrient-dense foods and not worry about over-eating! The ironic part of this is that the so-called health foods are usually much higher in calories and contain several unhealthy by-products like aspartame, high fructose corn syrup, MSG and many others.
In the next part of this series, I will talk more about why we over eat and make poor food choices. Often, it is not so much what you are eating, but what is eating you?