Why Our Diets Are Badly Failing Us and What We Can Do About It

Right now, there’s a good chance that your diet is woefully inadequate when it comes to ensuring you are in the best possible health. In fact, there’s a good chance that your diet may be killing you.

Lifestyle Rocks Diets Not…

And what is the culprit here? The answer is empty calories and processed foods.

Diets Suck

These days, a huge proportion of what we eat is ready prepared and ‘processed’. That means that it has spent a lot of time in a factory and thus bears little resemblance to what the ingredients originally looked like.

A good example is a bag of crisps, which doesn’t tend to have much “potato” left in it at all. Chocolate is made from a cocoa bean but the rest is purely processed. And ready-made lasagne will have had all the “goodness” fried out of it and a ton of salt, sugar and bad fats added to try and keep it preserved.

All this means that you’re getting calories from your diet – calories that will provide you with energy and make you gain weight – but no nutrition.

Why We Need Nutrition

It is a mistake to think of food as fuel. Calories are fuel and they happen to be in our food. But food is more than that.

Apart from also being a social event and a hobby, food should also be a source of raw materials. The saying that you ‘are what you eat’ is literally true and when you eat any meal, your body will break it down into its constituent parts and then reassemble those parts in order to build your muscle, create enzymes and hormones and even produce neurotransmitters (the chemicals that make our brain work).

When you don’t get these things, you’ll find yourself feeling considerably worse. If you don’t get enough vitamin C for example, then your immune system won’t be able to perform at its best and you’ll be much more likely to get ill. Worse, vitamin C is also crucial for helping you to produce serotonin. Take that away and your mood will plummet. It also helps us sleep!

Similarly, when you don’t get enough omega 3 fatty acid, it can cause inflammation – this makes your joints hurt, it creates brain fog and it can lead to illness.

A lack of amino acid will mean that your muscles are weaker and smaller. And it will result in your skin looking grey and your nails being brittle.

The short term issues are worthy of a lot of concern but more worrying still is what this does to your health in the long term. The damage here is cumulative and in the end, you will be more likely to suffer from a range of diseases.

What to do About It

The answer is to stop thinking of food as fuel and to instead think about the quality of the raw materials you’re putting into your system. Find ways to get more nutritious food in your diet -even if that means just adding a smoothie into your routine!

The Standard American Diet Dos and Don’ts

In America today, the typical diet that most Americans consume daily is very unhealthy. The rest of the world has a nickname for it, which is the SAD diet. This stands for the standard American diet, and the standard American diet is one of the most dangerous lifestyle choices that a person can make.

SAD

First of all, it is chock full of red meat and dairy, which are absolutely fabulous when it comes to clogging your arteries and causing hypertension in the body. This might not be so bad if the red meat was grass-fed, but unfortunately, many of the cows that are ingested in North America are treated with growth hormones and other chemicals that can leach into the meat and cause major problems in the human body. The meat is contaminated by carcinogenic chemicals that are distributed to the cows to try to keep them growing at an accelerated rate, as well as to keep them free from diseases that could spread among the other cattle.

Another issue with the standard American diet is processed foods. Processed foods are highly available in North America, and often considered a staple food for the daily diet. The issue with this is that these foods lack fiber and have a tendency to be excessively high in saturated fats and sugars. Not to mention, the highly dangerous salt content. The standard American diet consists of foods that make it difficult to lose weight, especially those processed foods which contain high fructose corn syrup.

High fructose corn syrup is something that should be avoided at all costs. It sticks in the body and makes it nearly impossible to lose weight. Not only that, but it is basically pure sugar and it packs on the pounds like nothing else.

If you want to indulge in a standard American diet, there are some decent things that you could do. Try to eat fruits and vegetables with every meal. Don’t allow yourself to skip a meal that doesn’t have something green or another color of the natural food rainbow in it. If you need to have your meat, unit lean, and try to find grass-fed beef to consume. Instead of eating white flour buns, look for whole flour alternatives. Whole-wheat has far more fiber and is much more nourishing for the body.

You want to be able to consume foods that are high in fiber, because not only do they help you feel full and digest things better so that you can eliminate the toxins from your body that cause you issues, but it also helps you to lose weight. Without fiber in your diet, you become fatter much faster, and it can become a very difficult trend to break out of.

As a rule, avoid the standard American diet if possible, but if you can’t, make sure that you are implementing changes that make it work for you. You’ll be glad you did, if not now, then in the future when you are not suffering from the same issues that other people who have lived off the standard American diet are dealing with.