5 Nutrition Facts that will transform your body!
You’ve finally found it…
The nutrition article that’s going to take you to the body you’ve always wanted.
Looking at nutrition facts or starting a new diet can be tough. The first thing you’ll come across is counting calories, that’s not a bad place to start. However, we can say, after years of experience, calories are not the be all and end all of an amazing physique.
Anyone that says calorie balance is ALL that matters when it comes to weight loss, only understands basic nutrition. Beyond, we look at how your body uses nutrients and how foods and compounds can impact hormones and neurotransmitters. These things can dictate whether weight loss is easy, or a struggle.
Calorie counting is a simple method for tracking food intake, but there are more things you could be doing. These will not only to make nutrition better, but to also produce greater results day to day. We’ve identified 5 Nutrition Facts for beginners, broken down into easy to follow steps.
You may fall anywhere on this list, so if you’re at stage 1, don’t worry. In our experience that’s where most people are.
Nutrition Facts #1 – What should I eat?
Most things you read will tell you to count what you eat first. Regardless, it’s not the first thing we get our clients to do. Although in theory all calories are created equal, the way they react in the body means they’re definitely not. 2,000 calories from lean protein, healthy fats and colourful veggies is healthier than eating 2,000 calories from Mars bars daily.
First, focus on the quality of your food. Go without any sugars, fizzy drinks, treats, desserts and anything else that falls into that category. When your body has the nutrients it requires: the organs, muscles and other systems begin working at an optimal rate. Thus utilising more calories and nutrients. You’d rather your organs work at 100% with good food, instead of working at 40% because you’re feeding them junk.
Swap the sweets, snacks and fast food for home cooked meals, fresh fruits, vegetables and plenty of filtered water. You’ll be surprised at how many changes you will see just from making this one small change. Don’t even think about removing calories from your diet at this point, just eat until you’re full, but don’t binge!
Once stage 1 is complete, you can start looking into Stage 2.
Nutrition Facts #2 – How much should I eat?
By now, you’re eating healthy food with lots of variety, bright colours, lean proteins and healthy fats. You’ll have seen a lot of changes already. You should be feeling more energetic, lighter on your feet and be thinking a lot clearer throughout the day. Now though, we’re going to look at setting your daily calorie intake.
How many calories you eat will depend on a few things. Your age, height, weight, sex and activity level are all factors. I’ve included a FREE download below which shows you how to work it out. Workout your daily required calorie number and compare that to where you actually are for now and follow the instructions in the Download.
In a few weeks, you’ll be able to see how your body is reacting to the adjustments in the download. Look out for one of three things; have you put on weight, did you stay the same, or did you lose weight? If you’re weight has stayed the same or gone up, do you look better?
If you’re happy with the results you’re seeing, just keep doing what you’re doing and stay here for a while. If your weight has stayed the same and your main goal is fat loss, time to move to Stage 3.
Nutrition Facts #3 – Making Changes. Adjust Your Macros.
First off, what are macros? Macros is short for Macronutrients.
These are Proteins, Carbohydrates and Fats…
Each gram of these macronutrients has a different calorie value. One gram of protein and one gram of carbohydrate have 4 calories each. And 1 gram of fat has 9 calories. Knowing this, you can adjust the protein, carbs and fats you have daily while keeping the calories the same.
Here’s an example:
200g of Protein (800 cals) + 200g of Carbs (800 cals) + 45g of Fat (405 cals) = 2,005 Calories
140g of Protein (560 cals) + 100g of Carbs (400 cals) + 116g Fat (1,044 cals) = 2,004 Calories
That’s 1 calorie difference between the two days, but the total number of calories are coming from completely different macros. The difference of where calories come from, can make the difference between you putting on fat or losing it. Depending on other factors like insulin sensitivity and how your body processes nutrients.
When setting up your macros, you need to be sure to support to essential functions of the body. Because you’ll be exercising to support your weight/fat loss, you’ll also need to support recovery. Once you know how many calories you require daily, you need to portion them towards proteins, carbs and fats.
We like our clients that exercise frequently to have at least 2g of protein and 0.8g of fat per Kg of bodyweight. So for a Male weighing 100kg, this would mean 200g of protein and 80g of fat a day with the rest of his calories coming from carbohydrates. The reason we set the protein and fats first, is because they’re the only nutrients that are essential to human survival; this gives them priority.
Once you’ve made this change to your diet, you’ll probably start seeing changes in your appearance. The higher protein intake will mean more support for lean tissue and recovery from exercise. With the essential fats contributing to overall health, hormone production and energy levels.
Again, it’s important you stay here for a while and get used to this style of eating because it’ll help you set the foundation for the next stage. Get comfortable, let it become your natural way of eating and then make preparations to move onto Stage 4.
Nutrition Facts #4 – Eat More Today. Less Tomorrow.
This is a question that most diets and nutrition plans don’t address. Instead of following a set number of calories and going off on your merry way, it’s a better idea to eat an amount of food that matches the amount of work/training you do on any given day.
Whether you train 3 times a week or 12 times a week, you should adjust your calorie and macronutrient intake to match the amount of training sessions or intensity of workouts you have in a day. You don’t want to eat a large amount of calories and carbohydrates on a rest day when you’ll be sitting at home with your feet up.
Conversely, you don’t want to have the same amount of calories and macronutrients on a day when you have a heavy weight training session in the morning and an interval session in then evening. Compared with a day when you’ll just be going for a recovery swim and doing some yoga.
On days when you have more intense workouts, like weight training, or sprinting, you’ll have a higher need for calories. Not only will calories be higher on this sort of day because of the intense workouts, but you’ll also have a higher amount of carbohydrates to match your training needs.
Nutrition Facts; #5 – I’ll Eat This. You Eat That.
You don’t have the same body as everyone else, so don’t follow a one size fits all diet plan. When following a diet plan from a book or one you’ve found online, how many of them have given you a diet to follow depending on your body type or body fat levels? Probably none…
Different body types will not only dictate what training you’ll respond best to but will also dictate what type of diet works best for you. Someone who is naturally slim and lean, will respond better to a higher carbohydrate diet then someone who is short, broad and carrying extra body fat. So why pick a diet that’s made for the former, if you’re clearly the latter?
Even though your particular body type should respond better to a particular type of diet, it will only respond this way when you’re in great health. If you’ve been carrying extra body fat for years, all of the rules go out the window. In fact, the longer you’ve carried excess body fat for, the more systems in the body you will have negatively affected, meaning different measures need to be taken to get you into great shape.
Bonus Facts: Food intolerance and stress will be masking your results.
Everyone has some form of food intolerance. It may not be a full blown allergy and it may manifest in a way that you barely notice, such as a slightly elevated heart rate or a runny nose, but that small food intolerance is likely playing havoc with your fat loss results. Food intolerances cause the body a lot of stress and left unchecked can cause disruptions in sleep, lethargy, brain fog, elevated heart rate, digestive issues, hormonal issues as well as water retention and chronic inflammation.
Whether it’s digestive disorders, IBS, dysbiosis or increased food intolerances people often blow it off as ‘an upset tummy’, food poisoning or something that happens to everyone (bloating after eating bread for example). This way of thinking means that people do not usually address these issues and often go on living with these ailments for the rest of their lives.
Over the years, I’ve put many of my clients through an elimination diet to help them discover their food intolerances, take control of their health and rebuild their digestive systems so they can go on enjoying the food they love without pain, discomfort or nasty symptoms. Clients are often surprised at how many things in their diet have been causing them issues and it’s usually something they’ve been eating for years of eat very frequently. Once identified, it doesn’t mean you can never eat these things again, it just means that you remove them for a period of time while rebuilding your digestive system, so you can keep enjoying them in the future without issues.
My Elimination Diet, is a comprehensive way of identifying food intolerances and is considered the gold standard of food intolerance testing. It’s cheap, doesn’t require any tests and is something you can implement right away. You can learn more about it Here.
In addition to this, stress, whether it’s caused by food intolerances, relationships, work, overtraining, weather or other issues, generally has the same physiological effect in the body. You’ll be tired, unable to sleep properly leading to poor insulin sensitivity (which I spoke about earlier), blood sugar fluctuations, hormone mismanagement, possible adrenal fatigue which will all just lead to further stress.
Even though the elimination diet will help you tackle one form of stress, it’s up to you to take care of the rest. Making sure you’re sleeping enough, not getting too stressed at work and taking rest from the gym when your body needs it are very easy to do and your body will thank you for it.
So there you have my 5 Nutrition Facts and bonus fact to help you achieve the body you’ve always wanted. Remember to grab the download below to get yourself started and come back and comment if you have any questions.