We all dream about attaining a toned, muscular physique, especially as the spring arrives and thoughts turn to summer beach days!
Incorporating superfoods into our lives can really help in the race to firm up our bodies as they are packed with nutrients we may be deficient in.
It all begins with a Balanced Diet
It would be nice if we could add a few superfoods for weight loss and energy into our diet and watch our body shape improve. However, nutrition doesn’t work like that. The fact that we are unhappy with the shape of our body in the first place points to a fundamental imbalance in how we have been eating.
We need to challenge the unhealthy eating habits we have been following up to now – and this is no mean feat!
It may be necessary to go back to basics by learning (or relearning) what our bodies need to be toned and healthy.
Every one of us needs the following six nutrients in our diets: carbohydrates, fats, protein, minerals, vitamins and water. Although recommended proportions may vary wildly depending on the information source, the following ranges are a good guide as they allow for variations in the type of diet:
- Carbohydrates 35 to 65 percent
- Protein 10 to 35 percent (aim towards the higher end if you are looking to lose weight)
- Fat 20 to 35 percent (again, aim lower to lose weight)
Vitamins and minerals all have their own recommended levels and you can refer to this NIH fact sheet for more details.
Once we have realigned our diet with the guidelines above we need to create a superfoods diet plan which incorporates the best superfood ingredients.
Which Superfoods Correlate with a Solid Body Shape?
So which superfoods can help us on our journey towards a fit, healthy and aesthetically pleasing body?
If we are increasing the amount of protein in our diet, adding wild salmon to our superfood meal plan is a wise move. Salmon contains about 20g of protein per 100g, comparable to other meats, with the added bonus of omega-3 fatty acids (which are also found in trout, herring and other oily fish). Omega-3 is an essential fatty acid which means that our bodies need to take it in via our food as we cannot otherwise manufacture it.
The humble egg is a superfood when it comes to protein. With 6-7g in every egg, these pack a considerable punch and also provide B12, riboflavin and folic acid.
A powerful way to control weight gain is to eat foods that will make you feel fuller for longer and provide a steady supply of energy throughout the day. This prevents us from reaching out for the empty calories found in many high sugar snacks. Superfoods such as sweet potato, iron-rich garbanzo beans and natural yogurt all fit the bill perfectly.
Superfoods with anti-inflammatory properties can also help you to shape up by aiding with muscle repair and staving off pain and fatigue. Blueberries and cherries are two fruits worth adding to your diet for their anti-inflammatory effects (combine them with your morning oatmeal for the ideal start to your day).
Additional Tips for a Healthy and Toned Body
Consuming the right superfoods for weight loss should be thought of as the foundation of creating a solid body shape. There is a lot more consideration needed if you are to really go to optimize results.
One aspect of nutrition which is often left out of health and nutrition articles is the effect of our individual relationship with food. This includes not only what we choose to eat but also when and even how we eat. We’ve covered the ‘what’ above but let’s also think about when we eat. For example, eating all of our carbs just after a heavy workout, when the body is demanding energy, is going to have a very different effect than piling them in before hitting the sack. As we sleep, our metabolism slows and more of those carbohydrates are likely to be packed away into storage as unsightly fat.
There is no point in consuming plentiful quantities of nutrients if we can’t absorb them. Unlocking the benefits of superfoods is made easier when you put thought into how you combine them. For example, to absorb the iron from superfoods like kale and spinach you need vitamin C. Adding tomatoes or even just a squirt or two of lemon juice to your salad can make a big difference to the bioavailability of iron in the diet. Another tip is to include some good fats when we are ingesting fat-soluble vitamins. For example, the body will be more able to benefit from the vitamin A and K in kale if you also take in some olive or coconut oil.
How Quality Supplementation can Fill in the Spaces
Since they are derived from whole foods rather than artificial chemicals, Greens Plus smoothies are a more natural source of nutrients than many of the supplements you will find on the market. All of our products contain a full list of ingredients to help you select those nutrients that are missing from your diet.
Greens Plus superfood drinks come in a range of different flavours and are suitable for most special diets (e.g. gluten-free, GMO-free, vegan, etc.) Although we reiterate that these are supplements and should never replace a balanced diet, superfood drinks have the ‘grab-and-go’ convenience of a cola or burger – perfect for topping up your nutrient levels.
So there you have it: by realigning your diet with basic nutritional good practice, introducing some carefully selected superfoods and supplementing with Greens Plus drinks you can go full steam ahead towards building that solid body shape you have your mind set on. See you at the beach!