What should I eat if I want to lose weight, get bigger or generally feel healthier? This is a question that often gets asked and all though the answer can be complicated it can also be extremely simple. When giving nutritional guidance one of the first thing you must look at is what do your meals consist of. This may sound like an extremely obvious point but also it is a point that is overlooked a lot. One technique that is always eye opening and can give you real insight into your eating habits is to take pictures of your plate at major mealtimes (breakfast, lunch & dinner). What is your plate made up of, do you have a balance of the major food groups (protein, carbs, veggies and fats) and do you drink water with the meal?
Often people make some simple and correctable mistakes when it comes to their plates. Portion size is normally too large, the plate may consist of too much of one food group (carbs or fats most of the time) or they continue to eat even after feeling full. Below is a list of simple changes that can be made immediately to help:
1. If you're looking to lose weight, don’t overfill your plate and stop eating when you feel about 80% full.
2. When you look at your plate it should be very colourful. Pack as much veggies as you can onto your plate (no such thing as too much), increase lean protein if you feel you don’t have enough (will make you feel fuller) and earn your carbs.
3. Earning your carbs means to limit carbohydrate intake till after training or workout. Carbs are not the enemy and they will help with recovery and fuel your subsequent workouts.
4. Get fat from good sources (avocado’s, nuts, seeds) but don’t over do it. Remember cooking oil, salad dressings and certain condiments (ketchup, mayo or burger sauce) will count towards the fat intake.
5. Be creative and enjoy your meals and look forward to them. If your plates look great but you don’t enjoy eating it you will find this difficult to maintain.
6. Drink water with every meal or low sugar squash if you want to add a bit of sweetness.
Your plate should reflect what you’re trying to achieve. If you want to get bigger and stronger up the lean protein intake (advisable 1 gram of protein per kilogram of bodyweight). But do not neglect and take other food groups out of your diet.
We hope these small changes help with improving the colour of your plate.