8 Good Health Guidelines Reloaded!
8 Good Health Guidelines Reloaded!
For years, Weight Watchers has had their good health guidelines. Today, I’m reloading them and giving them an upgrade!! Here are my eight, ok well nine, good health guidelines!
- Eat every 2-3 Hours. Are you doing this – no matter what? This doesn’t mean that you need to eat a full meal every 2-3 hours, but you do need to eat 6-8 meals and snacks.
- Protein: Eat complete lean protein every time you eat. The amount of protein you will need depends on your current weight and body type. Try a mix of animal and vegetable proteins for a healthy diet.
- Fruits & Vegetables: Eat vegetables every time you eat. That’s right, in addition to a complete, lean protein source, you need to eat some vegetables every time you eat (every 2-3 hours, right?). You can toss in a piece of fruit here and there as well. But don’t skip the veggies.
- Carbs: Eat Carbs Only When You Deserve To. Well, not ALL carbs – eat fruits and veggies whenever you want. And if want to eat a carbohydrate that’s not a fruit or a vegetable (this includes things like simple sugars, rice, pasta, potatoes, bread, etc), you can – but you’ll need to save it until after you’ve exercised. Yes, these often heavily processed grains are dietary staples in North America, but heart disease, diabetes and cancer are medical staples – and there’s a relationship between the two! To stop heading down the heart disease highway, reward yourself for a good workout with a good carbohydrate meal right after (your body best tolerates these carbohydrates after exercise). For the rest of the day, eat your lean protein and a delicious selection of fruits and veggies.
- Fats: Learn to Love Healthy Fats. There are 3 types of fat – saturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated. Forget about that old “eating fat makes you fat” maxim. Eating all three kinds of fat in a healthy balance (about equal parts of each) can dramatically improve your health, and even help you lose fat. Your saturated fat should come from your animal products and you can even toss in some butter or coconut oil for cooking. Your monounsaturated fat should come from mixed nuts, olives, and olive oil. And your polyunsaturated fat should from flaxseed oil, fish oil, and mixed nuts.
- Water: Ditch the Calorie Containing Drinks and Drink at Least Six 8-ounce Glasses of Water Each Day. If this is hard for you, try flavoring your water with fruit or cucumber slices. Cups with measurements and/or built-in straws help too.
- Whole Foods: Focus on Whole Foods. Most of your dietary intake should come from whole foods. There are a few times where supplement drinks and shakes are useful. But most of the time, you’ll do best with whole, largely unprocessed foods.
- Have 10% Foods. I know you cringed at a few of the rules above. But here’s the thing: 100% nutritional discipline is never required for optimal progress. The difference, in results, between 90% adherence to your nutrition program and 100% adherence is negligible. So you can allow yourself “10% foods” – foods that break rules, but which you’ll allow yourself to eat (or drink, if it’s a beverage) 10% of the time. Just make sure you do the math and determine what 10% of the time really means. For example, if you’re eating 6 meals per day for 7 days of the week – that’s 42 meals. 10% of 42 is about 4. Therefore you’re allowed to “break the rules” on about 4 meals each week.
- BONUS: Exercise: Get a minimum of 30 minutes of exercise 3 times per week.