What’s the perfect diet? Is it low carb? Vegetarian? Low sugar? Vegan? Paleo? Low fat? High fat? High fibre?
How many calories do we need? How many of these calories should be protein/carbohydrates/fat?
IS there such thing as the perfect diet? What exactly should I be eating?
I get asked these sorts of questions ALL the time. That’s fine, it’s my job, which I do because I love it and I’m passionate about eating well. But as to answering the above questions….
Is there the perfect diet? Yes, it’s a simple case of science, and science is exact, there are always answers, even if we are yet to discover them.
Will we ever know what the perfect diet is? No.
Watch this too: Why you need a personalised diet
Why not? Because what constitutes ‘perfect’ is different for everyone. Then for each person, what constitutes ‘perfect’ for them changes on a daily basis, depending on their weight, muscle/fat ratio, how much they’ve slept/rested/moved/exercised. What they are wearing, what they’ve eaten and drunk over the past day/week/month/lifetime. Their general current health and health history…heck even the weather changes a person’s requirements, and we know how unpredictable THAT is in the UK.
So what can we do? Unless you’re going to monitor EVERY variable, which I’m guessing you’re not, then we’re going to have to take the information we DO have, and go with that. THEN we have to look at what’s going on following those guidelines, and adjust accordingly.
To decide what you need, you have to determine your goals. Build muscle? Both adequate protein and carbohydrates, with an increase in calories, combined with weight and resistance exercise are what is needed. Want to lose weight? Eat fewer calories than you burn. Burn fat? Reduced calories and carbs along with resistance and weight training. Training for a marathon or taking part in other endurance sports? You’ll need fast absorbing carbohydrates to fuel your energy levels whilst training and competing. Want to boost your immunity and fight off illnesses? Tonnes of antioxidant rich fruit and veg. Suffering from inflammatory conditions such as arthritis or eczema? Healthy omega fats, which also are excellent for anything skin, hair and nails related. And as for calories, how long is a piece of string, but it’s safe to say that if you want to slim down you need to reduce calorie intake, and the opposite for weight or muscle gain.
Surely we have more info to go on than that?
I could go on, but most people already know much of this. What people are after is a concrete solution, a ‘fix’ for all they feel is wrong about their physical being. They want me to write them a mealplan and shopping list and for life to fall into place.
But it just doesn’t work like that. What works for some people won’t for others. It’s a case of finding out what works for you: try, asses, adjust, try, asses, adjust. Something wrong? Make changes. Feeling fab? Keep at it. We are all individual, and our individual selves are ever changing. Not a lot we can do about that, all you can do is move with the times and do what works for you right now. It’s not about being perfect, it’s about being great.