The Internet is filled with information and it’s so hard to figure out what to filter out and what to believe, especially when it comes to nutrition.
Luckily for you, I’m a certified nutrition and wellness consultant/counselor, and I’m here to give you an objective overview and definition of what it means to eat healthy.
1. It’s a series of choices.
Healthy eating hinges on the kind of choices you make with food.
You can choose to have dessert once a week, instead of having it every day. You can choose to eat fresh fruits and vegetables instead of drinking it in juices. You can choose to eat three meals a day, instead of skipping them, thinking that it’ll help you lose weight.
But hey, no one is perfect and we’ll slip when it comes to what we choose to eat. The thing about choices is that you can make a better choice so that your bad choice won’t do a lot of damage.
2. It’s figuring out what your body needs more of and replenishing it.
Food is fuel, but vitamins and minerals are equally important. They don’t have any calories, but they’re huge helpers in keeping your body healthy.
That’s why the problem with skipping meals and running on an empty stomach is that your body has no fuel to run. It’s like driving a car with the minimal amount of gas.
When you skip meals or go long periods without eating, your body uses parts of your other organs to survive or so that you can keep going. It’s literally eating itself, because there is no food for it to use as energy.
The great thing about vitamins and minerals is that your body can get plenty of it through food. But if you’re having meal replacements or not eating altogether, your body will be depleted of it and thus, damage your vital organs and can lead to death.
3. It’s choosing how much to eat, instead of eliminating food groups entirely.
Your body needs food from every food group! But it doesn’t need the same amount, which is why moderation is key.
Carbohydrates are known to be the societal enemy of healthy eating. But guess what? Your brain needs carbs to function properly and well. It’s more about the amount of carbs and what kinds of carbs that you eat, that will affect your body.
You can use the MyPlate tool to have a visualization of what your plate should look like, in regards to proportions with food. Your plate should be colorful!
4. It’s different for everyone because no one’s body is the same.
Every person’s body works differently. What works for one person may not work for another.
As a nutrition counselor, it’s vital to promote that healthy eating is different for everyone. That’s the reason for an initial consultation. If we had one diet that worked for everyone, that’d be great! But it doesn’t work that way.
It’s also different because we have different lifestyles. Some of us, like me, may be living in a busy city like New York, while others may be living in a suburban and overall relaxing city. A lot of factors play into nutrition and it’s important to consider all of them.