We are going full Marty McFly this week with a brief dip into my nutrition history.

The goal here is simple: To help you avoid the same mistakes that I made, making your nutrition journey more of a success a lot sooner. 

1/ Calories count and not to be aware of this is silly

I’ll save a long and more eloquent description of calories for another time.

I didn’t really pay enough attention to how much calories mattered until a good while after my masters.

How crazy is that?

The role of energy intake and calories was not really discussed as a driver of changes in body weight, disease-risk etc. As a result, I fell for a lot of terrible information within closed internet circles.

In fact, during some of my more productive years of training, had I been more aware of the role that calories actually played, I may have made it as a decent level athlete (sob, tiny violin playing..)

In short, the amount of energy we consume from food drives many of the major health outcomes that are most prevalent in our world.

On a smaller personal level for each of us, being aware of how much energy we consume and how that can fluctuate massively day to day, would be a massive win.

(Aside. That’s why I’m so hell-bent on getting integrous nutrition information out to people).

2/ ‘One food to rule them all, one food to break you’ ideology 

If you don’t know who’s telling the truth, it’s easy to get lost in the ground swell of a popular ideas. Throughout my college years (and likely before), I fell for a few of the ‘bad science’ concepts that were and still are pretty pervasive.

Food Source
Myth
Verdict

Bread (Grains)

'The singular root cause of obesity'

False

White Potatoes

'As a beige carbohydrate, they spike insulin, make you store fat'

False

Sugar

'You can quit sugar'

False
(reducing your added sugar intake is prudent)

Fat

'Eat more fat to burn more fat'

False
(eating more fat will indeed burn more fat but it won't be body fat)

Dairy

'Dairy is unhealthy'

False
(it's one of the more nutritious food sources available)

This is not a full list of the beliefs that contradict sound nutrition thinking but it’s a start.

My hope is to save everyone I work with, groups I talk to etc. all the time I wasted falling for what I mindlessly followed along with.

3/ Healthy eating shouldn’t take away from your quality of life

For the longest time as a teenager and into my early college years, I ate chicken, broccoli and rice/cous cous or sweet potato.

Yep, I was one of those people. I even once said ‘I don’t eat for taste, I eat for performance’.

How much of a bellend was I?

Now, I’m not picking at people who are dedicated but I had zero leeway with what I ate. This was all in the name of the progress that I definitely wasn’t making as well.

In professional sporting environments and those who make a living by performing at elite levels, a degree of ‘eating for performance’ is absolutely warranted. For a 19/20 year old who just uses the bench press and cable crossover, this is not the case.

The same goes for those who want to lose weight. They enter the process with a pre-conceived notion that it will be the most restrictive time of their lives. Falling off the wagon is MUCH more likely because of this unnecessary attitude.

For most people, the dietetic mantra of ‘all foods can fit’ is a message that needs to be heard. Each of us needs to know that a healthy pattern of eating IS COMPATIBLE with quality of life - health, social events and all.

This needs to be recognised and understood. Then the practise of it can follow.

Don't have this attitude toward food...

Just to recap...

  • 1
    Don’t make the same mistakes I did.
  • 2
    Calories matter. You don’t have to count them but you need to know how much they matter.
  • 3
    Don’t fall for the ‘one food to rule them all’ ideology. All foods can fit.
  • 4
    Habitual dietary quality is a sliding scale. As food is a great community building tool it shouldn’t detract from living but it absolutely shouldn’t drive you toward poorer health.

Want to kickstart you nutrition journey?

Why not download the guide to dropping weight without tracking or counting calories!
  • check
    Identify OTHER ways of eating better and losing weight that don't involve counting calories
  • check
    Learn about how to set them up and examples of what a day of eating can look like!
  • check
    ​​​​Make subtle daily changes without being overly restrictive to bring you closer to your goals

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