What, why and when to eat to stay healthy!

There are so many different opinions about what to eat, when to eat, how to eat, why to eat and countless variations of diets, weight reduction programs, vitamin supplements and so on.

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To complicate the issue, food not only is required for nourishment but accompanying our food choices are deep-seated feelings and memories. We use food for all types of celebrations but we also can use or abuse it to numb feelings, or escape – almost like a drug.

There is no need to create crazy “food rules” for yourself but I believe if we know more how it works biologically it can be easier to deal with the diet issue.

So WHAT, WHY and WHEN should we eat?

WHAT? If you ask me I´d say: A little bit of everything! Because we are biologically made to eat everything that is naturally out in nature – meet, fish, greens of all kinds, nuts, fruits and berries. This will give a variety of protein, fats and carbohydrates that is needed for a healthy body. A varied diet will also give the minerals, vitamins etc that we need without having to use supplements.

If I should give one specific advice on this issue it would be this: Eat a variety of 3 different colors of fruits and vegetables each day. Each color represents a specific antioxidant (that mends “broken” cells) and also they are also a good source of fibers that will enhance the function of your digestive system.

And if I should give one specific advice on what NOT to eat it is the refined products like white sugar, flour and what is made from that like white bread.

WHY? This must be the easiest question to answer. We have to eat to get energy – both for the body and for the mind. And not only for the energy but for the minerals, vitamins etc, especially those essential substances that we can’t produce internally in the body. If you want a healthy body you have to feed it with of good building material.

WHEN? The biology is very clear on this. Biology is built on consistency. I have set a very simple 3-2-1 rule to remember about food. Eat 3 main meals and 2 small snacks during the day to balance your blood sugar, keep your energy levels up and keep your cravings for sweets and junk food to a minimum. AND eat just 1 serving each meal.

Now I have given some facts and my thoughts about the biology ruling our need for food. I am sure many of you have lots of other ideas and I invite you to discuss and make comments below. What do you agree on and what other things do you see as important here?

I have dedicated a whole section to the diet issue in my book about stress because what, why and when you eat is affecting your stress levels too. Click here and read more about it and get your own copy.

To your success – and keep smiling!

Dr. Annika