I have tried every possible diet found on the internet, anything from keto to low fat, to paleo, to juice cleanses. Some of these diets are beneficial and can be life-changing to someone with health issues or if someone already tends to eat along with those guidelines. I won’t sit here and tell you I didn’t lose weight because I did. However, one thing I can tell you that all these fad diets had in common is that they all put me in a caloric deficit. I bet you’re reading this with the urge to roll your eyes, but I can guarantee you that your chosen ‘diet” is making you eat less than your usual habits. The secret to having an unrestricted diet where you can still feel the benefit of tracking your food and practicing awareness is to count your macronutrients. I won’t go too far into detail here however I would recommend that you shift gears from a dieting perspective to a tracking perspective (you get to eat pizza). With all that being said, there are still choices you will be facing every day, and here I will list my top 5 most chosen foods that you can catch me eating any day of the week. Along with my daily supplements, these foods provide me with energy, nutrients, gut health, and so much more.
Oh yes, the infamous chicken breast you see on the plate of any bodybuilder. Different parts of the chicken contain different amounts of protein and fat per gram. With a whopping 30grams of protein per 100grams of chicken, you get a very lean protein option that you can cook in countless ways. With vegetarian protein options, you have to consider the carbohydrate increase in exchange for higher protein content. One great protein option is tofu! About 8-9grams of protein per 100grams with only 2grams of carbs!
The whole grail of superfood complex carbs! Quinoa takes the body longer to break down, resulting in a slower spike in blood sugar (check out the glycemic index). It is packed with 8grams of protein per cup, micronutrients, 40grams of carbs, and keeps you full for longer.
This incredible vegetable is not only packed with 20grams of carbs per 100g of sweet potato, but it has got a significant source of vitamins, electrolytes, and fiber. This is a great lower carb option for those who like to save their carbs for treats or are taking a low carb approach.
You might be surprised to see this one on here. I mention cauliflower because it is SO versatile. This section will include a broader perspective on root vegetables. Cauliflower in particular is a great food for a few reasons. First, it is low in carbs and fats, and high inadequate in fiber with a sprinkle of protein! Another big reason this is here is because of what I call volume foods. Volume foods are often vegetables that take up space and have micronutrients but aren’t rich in macronutrients. These foods help a small meal look and feel bigger, helping you get satiated from a relatively small meal! One thing I love about cauliflower is that you can turn it into pizza. You read that correctly! Cauliflower can be turned into a dough with a few simple ingredients! You can mash it, turn it into rice, roast it, or season it up with some spices and almond flour to bake them into wings!
Another one that most people will tilt their heads when reading. Kimchi is a fermented mix of vegetables and spices that is absolutely loaded in probiotics, healthy bacteria, and other nutrients. Kimchi provides proper nutrients to support the health of our microbiome, or to put it simply, our gut. Our gut is a sacred place where foods get absorbed, nutrients get facilitated, and hormones get produced/stored (guess what: 90% of our serotonin gets produced in our digestive tract. Healthy gut= happiness). Now, these benefits are not limited to kimchi, many fermented products like sauerkraut and kombucha will have similar benefits depending on the ingredients!