What does the expression already heard a thousand times mean: “For every lifestyle there is a correct diet” ? What does that mean about your life? Different lifestyles require different food paths.
The right food choices allow you to always be at your best whether you want to maintain your “status” or improve it.
We choose what we eat
Our diet reflects the kind of life we lead. Somehow it tells a part of our personal story, where we come from, our roots, but also where we want to go. We have ingrained habits since we were children. Tastes are already learned in the womb, but then they are refined with weaning and in the rest of life through our experiences. Food is not just food, it is nourishment, it keeps us “healthy”, active or it could make us ill … the choice is ours.
If you are sedentary you can still benefit from the right diet, we are not all sportsmen!
A sedentary lifestyle has its drawbacks which need to beconsider . The increased risk of exceeding calories and therefore being overweight or at risk of obesity. These conditions have an impact on health: the possibility of seeing increased values of “bad” cholesterol, triglycerides, blood pressure, blood sugar, just to name a few more common examples .
Surely you have to keep in mind that you will probably consume less in terms of energy than those who lead a more active life, so you will have to pay attention to the quantity, but above all the quality of what you eat! What to do then? Less carbohydrates, less condiments, less sauces, yes to seasonal fruit and vegetables and choose good sources of animal (lean!) and/or vegetable proteins.
One piece of advice remains to include small gestures such as:
- Try to take the stairsinstead of taking the elevator (if possible)
- Go to the nearby store on footinstead of by car
- Try to park within a few minutes’ walk of your home or office
The normally active person
Balance is the magic word for those who lead a normally active life: you are not sedentary and dedicate time to physical activity (twice a week) or for reasons of work or family management you are constantly on the move (not worth the time in the car !). Here too it is important not to exaggerate with the amount of food, especially baked goods, sandwiches and pizzas with which you often have lunch. It’s important to take time to eat, especially quality foods that support you in the day’s activities!
Breakfast, lunch or a snack are allies for good energy management. If you eat well you’ll end the day maybe tired, but not destroyed! Too much sugar at lunch could make you drowsy in the early afternoon. Instead, choosing a source of protein and vegetables accompanied by a portion of bread or cereal of your choice without heavy dressings could be a better alternative!
Skipping meals or eating candy bars or crackers in front of the computer is not lunch! How do you get to dinner? Are you hungry? Do you snack when you cook or while you wait to sit at the table?
We often resort to vitamin supplements because we feel weak, but we don’t think that a fruit could be the best choice: fibres, vitamins, mineral salts, water and energy expended to eat it!
Sports nutrition has a dual value , that of nourishing and that of being a “tool” to achieve a goal that is set at the beginning of the season.
The metabolism of an athletic person is different from that of a sedentary or normally active person. There are so many factors that affect metabolism , one of them is determined by your body composition .
Maintaining muscle mass, increasing it or changing the percentage of fat or lean mass to improve one’s performance or to be able to return to certain weights (for sports in which there are weight categories) has a cost in terms of energy expenditure to be balanced between training, rest and balanced nutrition ! Nothing is left to chance, every element counts to achieve the result for which we work so hard!
Where to start? Knowing your body composition, knowing your sport with respect to the energy systems that underlie it are the first things to evaluate. Then there are training, recovery and rest times.
Depending on the physical activity you do, the hours you dedicate to training and your goal, the type of diet and the timing in which you introduce the different nutrients change.