Portion control, counting calories, serving size, calorie burn, eat your vegetables and exercise are terms and phrases we constantly hear when wanting to be healthier. Americans probably have the worst eating habits the World has ever seen. It isn't because we lack food, conversely, it's because we have the easiest access to everything and anything imaginable to mankind to consume. If it isn't produced, grown or made here we make sure it gets here somehow, someway.
Consider accessibility to just our fast food purveyors and we can find 50 of them ready to serve us starting with Arby's and ending with Wendy's. No one will ever starve here or at least they shouldn't. If your day begins with a McDonald's Big Breakfast you've already consumed 75% of a 2,000 calorie per day diet. Going to grab a bite at Hardee's and reach for a 2/3 lb. Monster Thickburger with a chocolate shake your day's total touches on 1 pound of calories and that's without fries. Dinner might involve a DQ 6 piece honey hot glazed chicken strip basket, a large order of fries and a large peanut butter cookie dough Blizzard to wash it all down. Guess what that costs you? It's another pound plus worth of calories.
Okay, okay, stay calm, that's the extreme side of American culture and its nutritional values or lack thereof. We should know that consuming 3,500 calories is equal to one pound of weight in our diets wthout consideration to their source whether as carbohydrates, fats or as proteins. It is also important to know that an average daily diet may contain anywhere from 1,500 to 2,200 calories. Lastly, and the key to our nutritional knowledge is to remember the 4-4-9 rule wherein 1 gram of carbohydrate = 4 calories, 1 gram of protein = 4 calories & 1 gram of fat = 9 calories. If you want to make changes to your body this will be your first page to begin understanding its metabolic processes.
Those of you who are serious about saving muscle mass well into your senior years read on. The Sarcopenia I mentioned in today's title is not an old Italian recipe for an exotic pasta dish. It refers to the roughly 3% to 6% loss of muscle we may experience each decade due to aging and inactivity. The typical 180 pound male will lose 30% of his muscle from sarcopenia by age 65. It does not have to happen if we treat our bodies correctly. Small changes equal Big results and it begins in our 30's with diet consciousness and simple physical activity. Do you know anyone who has fallen recently? You know the older they are the more difficult it can be to recover physically and often mentally too. Haven't begun your fitness routine yet? It can begin right now and still have a huge effect on your strength and well being at ANY age! MUSCLE loss is generally the common attribute to these completely avoidable falls.
So what are we looking for in those nutrition fact labels we see everywhere? We would always like to see less saturated fats, lower sodium and higher fiber amounts. More importantly try to keep FAT (unsaturated) at within 20 to 35% of your daily caloric intake, CARBOHYDRATES can range between 45 and 65% of that calorie total and PROTEIN can represent anywhere from 15% to 40%. If you can commit to this as your general guideline you're going to be moving in the right direction.
When dieting don't eat Chili's 1,600 calorie Boss Burger!
It might add a glitch to your plan.