Let’s talk Always Food vs Sometimes Food.
You can always choose what you want to eat, whether it’s deemed healthy or not, and with that said, we understand food gets labeled into good or bad categories. Trust us, we used to view food this way. To us, all desserts, chips, candies, etc were “bad for you” food. When we finally got around to eating those kinds of treats, we indulged way too much.
Over the years we have learned balance and everything in moderation. We preach, if you really want a cookie, now and then, have it – just don’t make it an every day thing. Food shouldn’t be labeled as bad or good, rather it should be “Always” food – which is food that’s good for you every day, and “Sometimes” food – those treats and sweets that are yummy but maybe not the most nutritious for you.
Always food is anything that provides healthy nutrients and benefits in order for your body to function at its best – think leafy greens, naturally grown fruit & berries, grains, lean protein, nuts & seeds; legumes/beans, and dairy with reduced fat or fat free options such as yogurt or milk.
To put it into even more simple terms, think of your food groups like this:
- Sweets & Treats: think any food or drink that’s high in fats, sugars or contains high amounts of salt. Examples: candies, desserts, chips, sugary drinks/coffees & alcohol
- Fats & Oils: think salad dressings, butter, olive oil, creams
- Dairy: think Milk, Yogurt & Cheese
- Protein: think meats, meat alternatives, Fish, Eggs, dry beans, nuts
- Fruits: think whole non processed fruits with natural sugar including berries
- Veggies: think anything green or leafy
- Grains: think rice, potatoes, cereals, pastas, breads and popcorn!
There are many different types of food you can eat from each category (our book provides a chart of how much to eat, by measuring the correct portions using your hand), but it’s learning how much to eat from each group.
Try to fill your diet with these types of foods everyday. Fats and sweets being towards the top of your food pyramid indicate this should be the smallest portion of your daily meals.
We’re not saying to have the doughnut or alcohol every day as part of your food group – while this is the part of the pyramid that includes sometimes foods – picture these food like a top hat that you take on and off. Try sticking to these “sometimes” foods once or twice a week, and make it one of your snacks or meals and not an all day extravaganza.
If you do have those days where you just binge on the “Sometimes” food all day, don’t beat yourself up about it. It happens to all of us! The next day don’t starve yourself, don’t go into excessively exercising, just pick up a normal routine I.e keep your meals healthy, drink lots of water, add tea to your diet to help with digestion, aim to exercise for 20 mins at minimum and an hour at maximum. If you can’t get to your workout depending on your schedule, then you can keep your meals lean, clean and green! Fill your diet with your “Always” food groups.
If you need more help figuring out how many servings you should be getting or information on just how much of these foods you should be eating per day, we added a link from the “My Plate Plan.
“The MyPlate Plan shows your food group targets – what and how much to eat within your calorie allowance. Your food plan is personalized, based on your age, sex, height, weight, and physical activity level.”