Since I’ve received a lot of questions on how to maintain a healthy lifestyle, I decided to reveal the secrets of the Healthyvore “Food Pyramid.” My hope is that this will help you make, cook and dine on some pretty fantastic dishes and realize how easy healthy eating is, once you have the right tools.
Every time I eat I try to incorporate all four macronutrients: protein, carbohydrates, fat (yes, fat too, just the good type of fat) and water. However, I simplified it a little, just to make it easy to follow and maintain every day. We all know that if eating becomes too drastic or scientific, well…we just don’t stick to the program.
I divide carbs in two sections: fresh produce and whole grain. Here are some examples, but keep in mind this list is not exhaustive:
Produce: most fruits and vegetables.
Whole Grains: brown rice, quinoa, couscous, whole grain pasta, whole grain breads, whole oats.
As you might know by now, I am vegetarian and getting my daily dose of protein is extremely important. However, I recognize that not everyone (including my husband!) will enjoy being vegetarian as much as I do. Therefore I also included some meat based protein sources in the list. These are the ones I consider appropriate for a healthy diet, and the ones I cook at home for my family.
Here are some examples:
Plant and Dairy Protein: low fat yogurt, cheese (usually “white” such as feta, fresh mozzarella, cottage cheese), beans, chickpeas, lentils, low fat milk, eggs
Meat Protein: turkey, chicken, white fish (tilapia, trout, etc).
Some essential fats (the fat our body needs in order to keep an optimal health and performance level, such as omega-3s) we can only get through a proper diet. As with all macronutrients, the best way to get the necessary fat intake is through whole foods (aka avocado and olives versus danishes and croissants). Just remember that most of the protein sources also contain a significant amount of fat.
Whole Food Fat: avocado, flax oil, olives, olive oil, sunflower oil and most raw, unsalted, unsweetened nuts and seeds.
The best way to get hydrated. Period. Forget about soda, juices or energy drinks. Those are sugars not liquids. If you want to get hydrated water is the key.
What is your go to healthy food? Leave your thoughts and comments below.