What should we eat?
Now here’s a big question! What should we eat? I’m on the go whenever I’m not working and I’m hiking, trail running, backpacking… these are all things that require a lot of energy and therefore a lot of food.
Calories, carbs, fats, trans fats, protein, fiber, sodium…?! The list goes on of things in food to count and watch. Now I’m by no means a nutritionist, I am not a health professional nor do I claim to be. However, I am generally in pretty good shape and I can conquer a 16-mile hike in one day without feeling like I’m dying for days afterwards. My diet isn’t perfect either, there’s probably more food I should… or shouldn’t eat.
Back to the original question then, what to eat? Let’s begin with what not to eat:
Soda – Duh! There are waters that are carbonated with natural fruit flavor, they’re delicious and way the heck better for you. They come in a can and everything ;)
Prepackaged foods – To me this means TV dinners. Why? They’re packed with salt and very, very little actual nutrition. If I “have” to go this route (it’s been a long week and I’m exhausted!) then I will get a minimally processed, all natural meal from the organic section in the store.
Boxed foods – Same basic principal. These foods are packed with sodium and not much else.
Fast food – We’ve known this for years! How many of you still indulge in this nasty habit though? Fast food is typically the opitamy of what NOT to eat… I mean who else can make a salad unhealthy? Take a bunch of over-processed, nutrition-less junk and put in a meal, that to me describes fast food. Speaking for myself (which of course this whole post is), once I got away from this kind of food it now makes my stomach sick if I munch on a buddies fries or other grease laden food.
Deep fried food – I think we can all figure that one out.
White flour foods – White bread, tortillas, hamburger buns, hot dog buns, PASTA, etc. These are all things which are void of nutrition and when processed by our body do us no good.
Now, let’s talk about what we should eat:
Veggies – Yep, that’s right, you’re momma learned ya good when your were a wee one and she was telling to eat your vegetables. So we don’t all like all the veggies out there, I’m not a fan of eating food that tastes bad to me. You can’t get me touch a bell pepper but I sure do love me some broccoli! Find what you like in the veggie section, buy it and eat it. Even if it’s just carrots with ranch, ya the ranch is bad for you but you’re still eating the damn carrot right?
Less processed food – Whole milk instead of non-fat, regular cottage cheese instead of 2%, real cheese instead of american single slices, food made with real sugar instead of sweetener… Why? Well, the way I look at it, less processed foods are more natural. More natural is probably better than artificial, in my mind.
Whole grain – This can be bread, tortillas, crackers, buns, whatever. If I can get my hands on it in whole grain… I’ll do it. I prefer whole grain to “whole grain wheat”, there is a difference there.
Meat – Yep, I still think meat is pretty good for you. A big juicy steak may not be as good for my health as lean ground turkey but it’s a heck of a lot better than a fast food burger!
Fruit – Strawberries, bananas, apples, pears, oranges, plums, etc. There is sugar in fruit, this is a pretty well know thing… arguably making it “not good for you”. Ya right?! If the only way you’re getting sugar is through fruit I doubt you gonna be packing on many pounds and feeling sluggish!
Beans, lentils, quinoa, oatmeal, etc. – There is really a ton of good food out there for you, all you’ve got to do is start eating it!
Once you begin eating smarter you begin feeling better. Pretty simple right, give you’re body better crap and you won’t feel like crap all the time. It irks me a little bit tot hear someone that just when to Fast Food Town say “Gee, I sure do feel sluggish and cruddy everyday after lunch.” Well… I sure wonder why! Maybe it was that little gremlin that goes around punching people in the gut and slipping sleeping powder in your drink whenever you’re not looking.
How about some pictures now!
|Quinoa, cauliflower, broccoli, fried turkey patty and delicious cheese.|
|Meal on the cheapy cheap! Tiny steak, tiny scallops, small salad and mushrooms with a bit of spinach and cheese.|
|Meal eating out at work. Super delightful Cesar salad and black bean soup!|
|Quinoa, ground turkey fried up with onion and yummy spinach.|
Maybe this will inspire you to eat better, maybe not. What I can tell you is I feel a hell of a lot better since I began eating well! I still get to eat delicious food too.
If you have pics of some cool food I’d love to see them! Send ’em post ’em, whatever ya want. Towards the end of this hiking season I am considering making a post on trail food as well! Oooh, exciting!