5 Small Nutritional Tips That Pay Big Dividends (PART 4 of 5)

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This is part 4 in a 5-series nutritional blog post.  If you've missed the earlier 3 posts, here's the links to them:

Part 1 – Good Fats vs. Bad Fats

Part 2 – Quality of Meats

Part 3 – Refined Sugars

4. WHY CARBS ARE OUR FRIEND, NOT OUR ENEMY

Most people associate carbs with breads and pastas.  In fact, many people that follow new diets (nutrition plans) who cut back on breads and pastas say, " I don't eat carbs anymore.  They are bad for me”.  Really, though, we need carbs! Carbs can be good.  Carbs give us energy and carbs are in a lot of things other than breads and pastas.  It really comes down to the source of our carbs.  So lets talk a little about good carbs (complex carbs) and not so great carbs (simple carbs).

There are simple carbs (sugars, fruits, desserts, etc.) and complex carbs (vegetables, pseudo-grains, etc.).  Most of the carbs I ate during my Fit2Fat journey were simple carbs; Mac n cheese, Spaghetti-O’s, Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Mountain Dew, White Bread, White Pasta, Chips, Cookies, Crackers, etc.  Most of the carbs during my Fat2Fit stage were complex carbs and came from non-processed sources; zucchini, squash, kale, spinach, broccoli, asparagus, cauliflower, and (occasionally) brown rice, quinoa, whole wheat pasta and whole wheat bread.

On the subject of fruit, I thought I’d add in my two cents about this subject since they are high in sugar.  They also have a lot of phytonutrients that our bodies need.  Therefore, I do eat fruit because of this reason, but I limit the amount I eat because vegetables, even though they don’t taste as good, are more nutrient dense than most fruits with a lot less sugar and calories.

If the majority of your carbohydrates come from non-starchy vegetables, instead of processed foods and grains, you’re feeding your body a lot more nutrients per every calorie consumed.  This leads to better health and even weight loss….yes….weight loss by eating carbs (the good ones)!  You’ll also have more energy compared to eating a diet high in simple carbs, but low in nutrients. 

So change the way you think of carbs. If you’re hungry, increase the portion sizes of your veggies (carb up)…as long as they’re not fried! 😉

Recommendations for incorporating vegetables into your diet:

1). Make the Spinach Shake (loaded with spinach) or the Butterfinger Shake (also loaded with spinach)

2). Sautee your veggies in coconut oil and sprinkle with some sea salt

3). Mix your veggies in a large bowl with some olive oil and minced garlic and bake for 20-25 min.

4). Here's some of our delicious vegetable recipes:

 – Balsamic Glazed Brussel Sprouts

 – Red Cabbage Salad

 – Baked Broccoli

 – More Recipes

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