This series is about improving the standard of our health and wellness by becoming more mindful of our "inputs."
Part 1 covered the importance of the most essential compound for all of life- H2O. If you missed it, you can read it here.
Part 2 is all about the NomNoms, let’s dig in.
So, if you want to make the largest impact in your life- the key is to start with something really simple that you can do every day.
The topic of food and how to properly nourish our bodies SHOULD be simple by nature... unfortunately it has become needlessly complicated.
Many people obsess over obscure items while ignoring the most basic standards for eating that actually carry the most massive weight. I'm here to KISS. (No, not like that, this is what I mean- keep it simple stupid)
can be attained through proper nourishment and it doesn't have to be so goddamn hard and confusing.
Humans must eat every day- we know this for certain.
(not hard/not confusing)
..If the key to success is found in our daily routine and we know that we have to eat food every day- this seems like a pretty good starting point.
We also spend far more time eating than we do engaged in formal exercise, so naturally- how we fuel ourselves has a greater impact, not only on overall health; but packs the potential to set us up at an advantage or disadvantage for anything in life. (not groundbreaking either)
There are tens of thousands of books about diet and nutrition- very few are useful and almost all of them contradict one another. There is an extremely exorbitant amount of methods for us to gain more "knowledge" about nutrition.
The market for new weight loss diets, detoxes and fads grows every year because we repeatedly get into health and diet related trouble thanks to convenience, emotional instability, laziness and a host of other factors.
We gotta change our mindset because uncovering uncomfortable truths is far better than crashing around through life like a blind mole. We have to be completely honest with ourselves about where we’re at.
Look around, the results from following the masses are painfully apparent. Perhaps, for the first time in human civilization, entire nations of people are dying of ‘malnutrition’ (lack of adequate nutrition) in the presence of EXCESS food. No one just suddenly wakes up overweight. It is a process that accumulates based on frequent behaviors.
There is a reason that large food and beverage companies have clinical psychologists working for them:
So many of the ingredients in our pre-packaged food products have no business being in the human body. Our systems are simply not equipped to process science fiction “food-stuffs'' and these chemically engineered molecules we swallow are wreaking havoc on our natural biological process. These “foods” are more like drugs. In fact- refined sugars in particular may not be food at all. Technically, it should be listed as a “chemical additive.”
In 1973 the FDA and senate committee actually declared refined sugar as an anti-nutrient, which is defined as: “any substance with properties that are antagonistic (opposition) to nutrients, interfering in some way with metabolism.”
As a society we are addicted to this crap and the "food" companies know it. We are way too good to eat like this.
Listen, If it can sit on your shelf for an extended period of time- think about what it's going to do once it's inside of your stomach.
If you cannot pronounce nine of the five-syllable ingredients on the label- odds are, it's not the best option available. 5-methyl-hydrogenated-
The game is rigged against us. But, we can win.
Healthy habits START with nutrition. Therefore, proper nourishment is a LIFESTYLE- not a temporary rescue plan.
[This creates a ripple effect resulting in...]
The small change in how you nourish your body can and will lead to increased energy levels & elevated mood.
Here's a hypothetical:
Increased energy levels can improve the amount of effort you apply to your work, or even fuel you to get some physical fitness into your day that will trigger a rush of endorphins that will elevate your mood and cognitive function.
Thinking clearly will have you refueling to maximize your productivity and recovery. Being in a better mood undoubtedly makes you a more pleasant human to be around which leads to tiny changes.
Being more productive can change how your boss values you. With this value comes a small change in your work responsibilities and that leads to a change in salary. Little by little the ripple effect comes into play and can benefit many facets of your life.
(that's some easy math)
The flip side of the coin:
The effect of proper nourishment seems to have compounding benefits throughout our life. Attempting to out-train or out-live a bad diet creates an uphill battle leading to detriment in various forms. It's a negative feedback loop from hell really.
Consumption of junk food does not energize the human body properly. When the body is not fueled properly, it lacks sufficient energy to perform optimally, meaning that even IF you muster up the strength to train, the energy output will be less than ideal.
After training without being properly fueled, you won’t have that same rush of endorphins that puts you in a great mood, more than likely, you’ll experience the opposite. The body be pissed at what you just did to it and express its discontent through inflammation, headaches, sore muscles and sugar cravings just to name a few, triggering a nice cortisol overload.
[Just an FYI- cortisol is a stress hormone that affects our metabolism and mood. No bueno.]
Piss poor inputs while chasing high performing outputs is a recipe for disaster- I promise you.
Life isn't ideal at all times for anyone but, no matter what, we still have to eat. We're not trying to make things complicated- I believe that our strategies and plans around food should be designed for our most hectic days, not just the perfect ones. That is what makes it sustainable.
You cannot FEEL your way into better habits and you will not KNOW your way into any practice.
So our method is focused on becoming SUFFICIENT at developing the habits necessary to improve the way we nourish our bodies. We dive into this in our Tao of Nutrition course.
Here’s the HomeBodies take on a wholesome life: Tao of Nutrition
Prior proper planning for proper nutrition will help to avoid problems associated with the need for rushed convenience and instant gratification. Eating smarter is much easier when we aren't in a desperate, hangry & distressed state. Always keep your kitchen stocked with your baseline essentials to support your goals.
Every plate of food we eat, with a few exceptions, is built around a main protein source. We typically have animal protein, but this could be a plant-based source for you. For me personally, in order to maintain or potentially gain muscle- I focus on getting a gram of protein to match my body weight by the end of day.
We ALWAYS put at least one vegetable on our plate. It is usually cooked, but sometimes raw. Cooked veggies digest better, and the process of steaming and roasting vegetables allows us to bake in some flavor. Higher fiber foods such as squash really helps to keep you full longer to alleviate sweet tooth cravings.
“But, I don't like the way they taste.” That's likely due to the fact that your palette has been spoiled by artificial flavors found in processed food that were created in a lab. Your taste buds will adjust accordingly. Give it some time.
Spend more time shopping the perimeter of the grocery store and skip the center aisles where the highly processed food stuffs are. Aim to grab 5-10 different types of vegetables per shopping trip and get the most colorful ones to gain antioxidants. Consuming more vegetables will pack a noticeable punch of energy after eating them because of their high nutrient density.
Fat is the macro that can help fill in your caloric needs where protein and carbs fall short on the day. They can also help to make our food taste extremely good
Fat is satiating and will keep you feeling full longer and is essential for tissue repair and hormone health. (Examples: cottage cheese, avocado, eggs, almond butters, salmon, olive oil, etc.)
These tiny actions compound quite rapidly and before you know it you will become great at the process & not so concerned with the outcome.
That's when you have developed it into a ROUTINE aka LIFESTYLE.
EXTREME OWNERSHIP is when you realize that there are no GOOD or BAD foods. There are simply food choices that will support your goals & there are choices that will NOT support them.
Take the power back. Tap into your full potential by increasing the quality of your (fuel) inputs to improve the quality of your life(s) outputs.
Eat some protein and hydrate,
Nate & Remi