Losing weight is challenging, so is eating healthy. There are a number of diet plans for healthy eating that vary from the food pyramid to the paleo diet. Eating what your ancestors ate is the basis for the paleo diet. By ancestors, it doesn’t mean grandma and grandpa, even if there are many greats in front of those two words. It goes back to early man in the paleolithic era that was 2.6 million to about 12,000 years ago. That was just before farming began. The foods in the diet don’t include grains, legumes or milk products, which were introduced later.
You can eat many different foods on the paleo diet, but will probably notice the ones you can’t eat more.
When grains are removed from the diet, it eliminates many of the favorites of American life. There’s no pizza, no yeast breads and no cookies or cakes. These are at the top of the list of American foods and often the ones most missed. They’re often the foods that cause you to pack on the pounds. When you eat paleo, you eat cleaner. There’s no processed oils or processed foods for that matter. Automatically, most people improve their eating patterns.
What you do eat on the paleo diet.
Enough of what you don’t eat, let’s look at what’s allowed. You can eat animal meat, with the diet encouraging “whole animal” approach. That includes bone marrow, organs and cartilage. Don’t worry, you don’t have to crunch that cartilage or suck out the bone marrow. Bone broth allows you to get all the nutrients without munching on the skeleton. Bone broth is made from stewing the bones in water with a bit of vinegar, onion, celery and carrot for a day or two. You then add the liquid to your meals or just drink the broth after all the nutrients are leached out of the bone. You can eat eggs or other animal products on the paleo diet, fruits and veggies, raw nuts and seeds and natural fats, like avocado or coconut oil.
Man didn’t invent fermented drink, but found it occurring naturally.
There’s a lot of debate as to whether early man went on a bender occasionally. If you’ve ever seen the YouTube video of elephants eating fermented fruit from under a tree or monkeys doing the same, you know they didn’t create it, but just happened upon it. Drunken elephants and monkeys aside, even though man probably imbibed occasionally in this era, unknowingly, it’s not allowed on the diet. In fact, many people find that when they give up their nightly wine or beer, the pounds seem to drop off.
- Exercising is an important part of the diet if you want to lose weight. Early man spent most of his time moving around, hunting for food and avoiding danger. They walked everywhere and had no labor saving devices. It doesn’t mean you should sell your car, just get more exercise.
- You can eat a modified form of the paleo diet by just eliminating processed foods.
- Get back to your roots when you go paleo. Spend more time outdoors, enjoying the fresh air.
- Don’t forget to drink adequate amounts of water and get a good night’s sleep. It not only helps you feel fuller and avoid sugary foods, it also helps you be healthier.
Healthy eating when you’re older can help stave off many of the illnesses that plague older people. It can help keep you feeling and looking better, too. Often it’s easier to grab snack food rather than make a healthy meal. Making food ahead and freezing it in portion sizes is one way to ensure you have something easy to make available. Cutting up veggies for snacks is another. The healthier you eat, the less you’ll have to worry about nutritional deficiencies and excess pounds.
There’s a high percentage of older individuals that suffer from Vitamin D deficiency.
Vitamin D comes from exposure to sunshine, but as you age, converting the ultraviolet rays that ultimately end up as natural vitamin D in our bodies, becomes more difficult and older people only convert about 30% of the amount they did when they were younger. Getting out in the sun is also more difficult for those over 70 in colder climates and even then, sunblocks are often used. Fat absorption and vitamin D is also less efficient, making it far harder to make up the shortage with food. A shortage of vitamin D can cause fragility fractures, muscle weakness and bone pain. You must be vigilant and consume a healthy diet to avoid this shortage. Even then supplementation may be necessary.
Eat well balanced meals.
Sometimes, especially if you’re living alone and new to the concept, it’s difficult to eat healthy. You don’t feel like making a meal and live on junk food or you have digestive, a tight budget, dental or other problems that prevent you from eating certain foods. Each day you should have protein such as eggs, meat or fish, 5 to 6 ounces of grain products, 1.5 to 2 cups of fruit, 2 to 2.5 cups of vegetables and 3 cups of dairy. Mix up the colors of the fruits and veggies to ensure you get all the necessary nutrients. The best meal contains a rainbow of colors with green, red, purple and white on your plate.
Eat whole foods rather than fast foods or packaged foods.
It is hard to cook for one or two, so cooking ahead may be the answer. Making large pots of soup and freezing them or creating main dishes and putting the leftovers in individual meal freezer bags is one good answer. Just add a side salad, a cooked vegetable and some fresh fruit and you’ll have a nutritious meal. Don’t forget to take the time to create healthy snacks and have them ready in the refrigerator for those between meal or late night snacks.
- Don’t forget to add exercise to a healthy diet for the best results. Exercise can boost your energy, make you feel great and even help with digestion.
- Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water. Tea and coffee count as part of your liquid intake. Dehydration is more prevalent as you age and you tend to get dehydrated faster. It can lead to dizziness confusion rapid heart rate, lethargy, muscle weakness and cramps.
- If you’re overweight, you can lose weight by eating a healthy diet and exercise, while getting other benefits, too.
- Get together with a friend, particularly if you both live alone. Each of you can create three meals for a week and share them with the other. It not only saves time, it saves money, too. For added enjoyment, eat the meals together.
If you want to create the perfect menu for a teenager’s nutritional needs, you should include both more calories if the teen is active and healthier more nutrient packed foods. It’s a time when teens are starting to break away from the nest and make their own food choices. If you are the parent, you have little control over what your teen eats when he or she is out of the house, so teaching the teen a healthy way of eating is the best option.
The perfect menu that’s basic enough to use with all foods.
Rather than creating an actual menu, create an outline of what a good menu should be. Serving size is also extremely important. It’s also important not to skip meals. The healthy diet should have at least three meals and two snacks a day. It should contain five servings of fruits and vegetables, three and a half servings of daiy—such as milk or cheese, teens need 40 to 60 grams of protein daily. One hard boiled egg is approximately 6 grams and a 95% lean 4-ounce ground beef burger, grilled chicken breast or ¾ of Atlantic salmon are about 33 grams. 1/3 to 1/4th of the diet calories should come from healthy fat, such as avocados, nuts or fish. Three to four servings of grains is also important.
It’s not just food that makes a difference.
What you drink is also important. Not only are carbonated drinks filled with sugar, they also are slightly acidic due to the carbonation and can damage teeth. That destroys the teeth’s enamel and cause dental problems that don’t go away. Sticking with plain water is a good option. Teenager’s need about 9 to 14 cups of water a day based on average activity. Water not only helps lubricate joints, it also helps regulate the temperature of the body and cushion internal organs. It helps the complexion, weight loss, hair and has many other health and beauty benefits for teens.
It’s not that hard to create a healthy menu.
If you’re a teen, start helping to plan your daily food. Learn how to make smart choices when you’re out with your friends at a fast food restaurant. Your body won’t fall apart if you eat just one unhealthy meal, but the more healthy your diet, the better you’ll look and feel. When you start eating healthy, you’ll never have to diet again. Parents can help to identify the food groups and portion sizes when your teen is first starting a healthy menu.
- Regular exercise and an active lifestyle is also important for good health. Not only does exercise help you stay trim and slim, it also helps prevent or eliminate problems with acne by causing sweat that flushes the pores.
- Having a healthy snack for mid morning and afternoon can be a simple as a bag of grapes or cut veggies with dip. Make extra for friends, since almost everyone will want to have a nibble or two.
- It doesn’t have to be a big deal, since there’s lots of choices when you eat healthy. In fact, you don’t even have to tell friends, unless you want to share the great benefits.
- No matter what your age, what you eat makes a huge difference in complexion, weight and overall health. It can boost energy and even help improve your mood.