Unprocessed Weight Managing Diets
The common advice we keep hearing regarding those trying to lose weight or manage their weight is ‘that it is simply a matter of expending more calories than you consume’. From a healthy point of view this advice can be taken out of context and may eventually lead to serious health issues.
Complete body health improvement must be placed as priority before considering weight gain or weight loss. Adequate nutritional intake can assist in reducing the risk of innumerable health related issues such as obesity, diabetes, and probably the most alarming would surely be heart disease and cancer.
The correct approach to weight management is to consume unprocessed nutrient dense food sources while monitoring the consumption of processed foods and beverages. A decent diet plan will offer a balanced nutritional intake that reduces cholesterol, blood pressure, and contains enough calories not to encourage weight gain. An effective and decent diet plan will also assist in reducing the body age.
The human body requires the correct balance of nutrients to function efficiently:
Carbohydrates are the chief source of fuel in your diet. The body requires carbohydrates to develop glucose which may be used immediately, or stored in the body for later. However, an excess of glucose is stored as fat. The two types of carbohydrates are known as simple carbohydrates and complex carbohydrates. Sugar is a simple carbohydrate, where starches and fibres are complex carbohydrates. It is always recommended to consume complex carbohydrates.
Proteins are broken down in the digestive system to form amino acids, amino acids are the building blocks that your body requires to build, repair, and maintain cells, muscles and other tissues. Proteins are also involved in the creation of hormones. Just like carbohydrates, consuming an excess of protein will be stored as fat. The majority of protein is derived from animal sources and vegetable sources, and an excess of animal protein may cause high cholesterol levels due to its higher saturated fat content.
As strange as it may sound, healthy fats are absolutely required for numerous functions of the body. The healthy fats include: Monounsaturated fats that is found in foods such as avocados, almonds, cashews, peanuts and cooking oils made from plants or seeds such as olive, sunflower, soybean, canola, sesame and peanut oils - Polyunsaturated fats omega-3 that is found in sardines, tuna, salmon, blue mackerel, walnuts, linseeds, and chia seeds - Polyunsaturated fats omega-6 that is found in margarine, fish, tahini, sunflower and safflower oil, pine nuts, brazil nuts, flaxseed, sesame seeds, and chia seeds.
Consuming an excess of saturated fats will certainly lead to health problems. While unsaturated fat is healthy, if it undergoes any type of refinement process, it usually becomes saturated fat. Consuming large amounts of saturated fats is linked to an increased risk of high blood cholesterol levels, and heart disease. While these unhealthy fats are usually solid at room temperature, coconut oil is the exception as it contains medium-chain saturated fatty acids (MCFAs) which is a healthy form of saturated fat.
Vitamins are also absolutely required nutrients for various tasks of the body including regulating metabolism, and immune system support for disease prevention. To mention just a few, vitamins A, C, and E, also known as antioxidants assist with the prevention of coronary artery disease by reducing the build up of scale from occurring on artery walls. Vitamin B is required for normal cell growth and effective digestion and nervous system functions. Vitamin B3 in particular is required for the natural detoxification process of the body. Folic acid facilitates the production of red blood cells. Vitamin D assists with the absorption of calcium, while vitamin K is responsible for causing blood to clot in the case of a wound.
Trace Elements and Minerals:
Minerals such as chlorine assist in producing digestive juices, phosphorus along with calcium is responsible for building strong bones. These and many other trace elements and minerals are required for just about every minute function you can imagine for the human body. Salt also gets a mention here as it is a required nutrient, but far too many individuals over indulge. It is not advisable to consume more than 2400 milligrams of salt per day as it is detrimental to the functions of many organs and blood pressure. Remember, salt is already included in all processed foods.
This is all very light list of nutritional benefits, and does not even scratch the surface of the absolute nutritional requirements for the human body, but the purpose of this article is to highlight the importance of consuming varied sources of nutritionally dense food, and not to concern yourself with reducing calories. Put some healthy resolutions in place and aim to at least consume two and a half cups of vegetables and two cups of fruit each day. When making your selections for each day, be sure to choose from varied food sources. A rough guide is to purchase as many different colours as possible, as this will come close to selecting all five vegetable subgroups. Fibre rich fruits, vegetables and whole grains should be a regular part of your daily diet as well as potassium rich foods. Adequate nutrition is the foundation to gaining good health!