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A modern healthy diet. Why is it different than it was 10 years ago?

When it comes to diet, many of us tend to get the wrong end of the stick. A sweet muesli bake for breakfast, fruit in the morning AND evening, spaghetti aglio e olio for lunch, dark bread and ham as a snack and a mushroom risotto for dinner. This really is not the right kind of diet that would help us slim down. Can you tell what’s wrong with it? And do you know why a diet that would help you shed those extra kilos ten years ago is not going to make any difference now?

2 pillars of a healthy lifestyle

Our day-to-day life has undergone major changes in the past 50 years and so have our ideas about a healthy lifestyle. As a result, we’re growing bigger despite the fact that nutritional advice constantly keeps evolving. The main culprit behind our expanding waistlines is therefore our diet. “In my view, the main issue with our modern-day eating habits is our hectic lifestyle and the stress associated with it. We don’t have time to prepare good-quality meals, we don’t eat regularly, sometimes we even go without food all day, just quickly grabbing something unhealthy and making up for all the skipped meals in the evening. No wonder our bodies start to make their own fat reserves for any future periods of deprivation,” explains our dietician Martina Dvořáková.

Don’t make the same mistake. I’m sure you’re well aware that losing weight and embarking on a healthy lifestyle require two things: a healthy diet and regular exercise. And it’s the healthy balanced diet that’s absolutely crucial. This is because losing weight and your ability to keep it off is up to 70% down to your diet. A healthy diet is based on the right proportion of macronutrients – protein, carbohydrates and fats.

“As recently as ten years ago, the recommended proportions of nutrients were 50% carbohydrates, 30% fats and 20% protein. However, this advice assumed a different lifestyle. People used to be much more active and so were able to burn the energy gained from carbohydrates more easily,” explains Martina Dvořáková. For that reason you would most likely have been ok even on the diet mentioned at the beginning of this article which, as I’m sure you’ve noticed, contains too many carbohydrates and lacks essential proteins, vegetables and healthy fats. When it comes to fats and protein, it’s recommended that you combine their animal and plant-based versions, preferably in a 1:1 ratio.

Why are we afraid of protein?

“When it comes to protein, most of my clients are worried that their muscles will bulk up too much after consuming protein. Speaking from experience, however, I know that to put on even a kilo of muscle mass requires sustained effort, so there’s absolutely no need to be afraid of protein. Actually, quite the opposite,” clarifies Martina. Your normal diet should contain 0.8 – 1.3g of protein per kilo of your ideal weight per day.

Another concern people tend to have with regard to protein is that too much protein might cause damage to their liver and kidneys. However, you can easily see that even when you’re on a protein diet the amount of protein you’ll be consuming isn’t by any means excessive. Your daily allowance will be about 90g. “The amount that would put your body under strain is anything over 2.8g of protein per kilo of the body weight per day. However, such amounts are usually only consumed by body builders as part of their competition training,” adds the dietician. It is actually the long-term poor lifestyle combined with excess weight or obesity that will cause your liver and kidneys (as well as other parts of the body) much more harm.

How to create a balanced diet?

“If you’ve decided to lose weight, reduce the amount of carbohydrates in your diet, particularly simple sugars. Healthy fats should remain at the same level as before and protein should be increased to at least an optimum level of 1.3g per kilo of your ideal weight per day. If you’re over 50, your daily protein intake can be further increased up to 1.5g/kilo/weight. Take inspiration from the Mediterranean lifestyle and diet that has for years been renowned for its focus on exercise and fresh food,” recommends our dietician Martina Dvořáková.

So what does it mean for your day-to-day eating? You will go for quality meat and fish and dairy products such as cottage cheese and cheese. You will include vegetables, nuts, seeds and avocado in your diet and will go easy on the side dishes. You will completely cut out sweets, ready meals and white bread and will be careful about the hidden sugars in fizzy drinks, flavoured yoghurts and salty snacks. If you find that you miss your side dishes, you will reach for wholemeal bread, couscous, bulgur wheat, brown rice or pulses, such as red lentils, beans or chickpeas.

You have just decided to make a change but are not sure how to go about it 

Why not start with a KetoDiet plan that already contains everything you need in right proportions and that will kick start your weight loss, boost your metabolism and will slowly guide you towards healthy eating? With the plan, you will get used to regular meals and staying sufficiently hydrated. Your life will also be enhanced by regular exercise which, as you already know, is responsible for the remaining 30% of the work towards a healthier and lighter body.

KetoDiet acts as an amazing springboard to the change in your eating habits. You will be having 5 protein-rich meals a day together with vegetables and healthy fats. Staying sufficiently hydrated is also important - you should aim for 2-3 litres of unsweetened drinks per day. This will help your body get rid of toxins released by the burning of fats. It won’t take long before you notice the difference. Just a few days into your diet plan and you will see the first signs of improvement. This will be great motivation to spur you on towards your goal - a perfect beach body, for example,” concludes Martina.

 

Author: Nikola Nevečeřalová

Photos: KetoDiet, Depositphotos

 

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