For someone who loves food as much as I do, I am quite picky when it comes to what goes into my mouth. I have tried so many ways of eating however the one I have stuck to and would preach about is a diet of minimal to no processed or refined food and almost no sugar. This means I generally avoid carbs (even whole grains) and desserts but ramp up (almost excessively) on good fats.
It’s important not to be scared of fats. I’m talking of course about mono-unsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, like those contained in avocado, fatty fish (like salmon), nuts and seeds. There is a caveat however. When you have a diet low in processed and refined carbohydrates, eating saturated fat arguably isn’t all that bad for you. I often eat the fat from cuts of meat and skin from chicken. Provided the meat you are eating is organic and therefore pesticide-free, the fat of the animal is highly satiating and can be beneficial to your health.
There has been a debate raging recently that it is not actually fat that makes us fat – it is sugar. (See my previous post on quitting sugar for more info). If you are interested in finding out more about this, I would highly recommend reading David Gillespie’s book Sweet Poison (also recommended in a previous post), which argues that it is fructose, a specific element of sugar found in fruit and other sugary desserts and soft drinks, is the only element in the diet that inhibits our ability to feel full. As a result, the more fructose we consume, the more we eat, as our brain cannot communicate to our stomachs that we are full. By eating real food, fat included, this problem can be avoided and our bodies give a natural reaction following a meal that we are full and to stop eating.
I have found this way of eating to be highly beneficial. I used to be the biggest sweet tooth and after cutting down on the processed stuff and the white sugar, I remarkably no longer crave desserts. There are some traps however, such as sugars found in sauces and other things. I will write about these in a separate post.) For now though, if you are interested, try cutting out the obvious sugars in your diet. Cut back on or remove the sugar you put in your morning cup of coffee or tea, stop eating sugary cereals for breakfast and completely cut out all soft drink from your diet. Keep an eye out also for high levels of sugar in low fat, light or ‘lite’ dairy products. Extra sugar is more often than not added to compensate for the reduced fat. Choose full fat dairy at all times. See if your tastebuds change over time. You may be pleasantly surprised!