“You are what you eat”!!

This has been a well-rehearsed phrase of many a personal trainer, but sometimes it does not seem to sink in. Food and drink are a necessity for a healthy life: to rebuild the cells of our body, to provide energy, and keep our body at the right temperature. It is essential to eat the right combination in order to keep from overheating, recover from injury, and to play the sport and live the life we enjoy at the varying levels and intensity.

Nutrition

Food is the source of nutrients necessary for our organs to function properly, there is “an” amount that a person needs to absorb every day and this varies with exercise. This is made up of a balance of fat, protein and carbohydrate. Protein breaks down into amino acid and is used to rebuild our cells, fats are used for insulation to keep us warm and as the attachment point for Oxygen in our red blood cells and carbohydrate breaks down into sugar and is converted into energy. Do we know exactly what we are eating? Everyone knows what fats are – and most people know what protein is – but did you know pretty much everything else IS carbohydrate – so if that is the case what are the good carbohydrates to eat to give us the energy that we need.

The problem with the human is it has become greedy and eats for satiable desire and sociability, we lavish each other with dinner parties and gifts of “treats” in the form of luxury food items – Chocolates. Many are not educated as to what the balance on our plates should look like and many people do not pay attention until they feel the need to lose weight.

Food should be moderated to keep you in shape and be consumed at the rate that it is needed, exercise should be used to keep your flexibility, strength and endurance up – your muscles strong and healthy and a good range of motion around your joints which equates to agility and fitness. Instead, exercise levels become determined in order to counteract the quantities of food and drink (=calories) consumed

Hydration

Hydration is necessary to keep the fluids of the body at the right consistency so that the pumps and filters (heart, liver, kidney etc) can move these fluids and filter them with ease. If the blood is too thick due to dehydration we put extra load on these organs. If we are dehydrated all the cells of the body are thirsty, making muscles less elastic because they are stiffer, making our eyes less responsive so worse sight, making our digestive system struggle because the food does not flow so easily – these are just a few issues that crop up. Fluids are also used to cool us down in the form of evaporation – we sweat and perspire films of water which evaporate keeping us cool, if we do not have enough fluid we will not seat and we will overheat. Overheating is very dangerous.

We clean grease off wood before we paint it with alcohol, so why would we drink it if we are concerned with our health and fitness? It is surely dehydrating us – in fact, it IS dehydrating us which is partly how we get to feel a bit fuzzy in the head!! Any fluid we put into our body that is not pH neutral or near as to water is in fact in need of dilution, so will by the nature of dilution dehydrate the cells.

In summary

Nutrition and hydration have become social events that should be looked at more from a rebuilding, replenishing angle.

If we took a more practice approach towards our food and drink, we would then get to our oals quicker – it is amazing that athletes spend so much time training fitness and technical skills – yet they are trhowing part of this away by not focusing 100% on the intake.

Looking one’s diet becomes emotional – we are brought up to reward with sweets and chocolate; we give treats to the dog when it comes and sits; we say thank you to our neighbour with a box of chocolates; we celebrate with a glass of champagne.

Which is quite odd because none of those things are healthy.

There are some fabulous films out there illustrating these points. Try the following for starters – Hungry for Change; Food Inc; The game changers; That sugar film

How do we move forwards?

We look at what you eat, we look at your goals and we give you suggestions of how you can make improvements, we are not going to just write you a diet plan or give you menus because this is not sustainable and is not the way to change your life.

We are going to ask you what you eat, what you like and what you dislike, we are going to find out how and why you make your choices, and then we are going to make suggestions, help you to make good choices, help you to see that you want to make the change as you realise eating badly is taking you away from your goals of where you want to be.

We work on nutrition gently and in the way that works best for you.

Latest from my blog in the Nutrition category:

  • Eating disorders in top-level sport
    Awesome Panorama episode tonight with Colin Jackson. Uncovering elite athletes and their eating disorders to achieve the goals of winning come
  • The Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar
    The Benefits of apple cider vinegar are many.  But the main reason for taking a table spoon before every meal is to realign the pH level of the gut.  ACV is alkali and as most of the common ailments are due to too much acidity this is an incredibly good way to neutralise this imbalance. …
  • Sugar Tax in South Africa….Already came into the UK in March …
    Awesome – finally a sugar tax …. and in South Africa – a country that produces sugar that is at risk for being accused of upsetting a national trade. Click here for more information Several interesting articles click here for more:   Britain is not doing so well on Sugar intake, but we have already …
  • Tom Hanks talks about how his weight gain led to Type 2 diabetes
    Thank goodness at last we have acknowledgement of the seriously bad effects of an unhealthy diet.  This is a simple correlation – too much high energy food (fats and sugars) leads to extra weight being carried …. we all know this …. we gain weight because we have eaten “energy” that has not been expended and …
  • War on Waste & good healthy eating
    Do you know how much food is wasted by our supermarkets? Imperfect – or are they – vegetables that are rejected by supermarkets because apparently the public won’t buy them.  Is this true?  Is this sense.  The people who get hurt and put out of business are the growers and the waste is astronomical and …