A healthy diet is vital to a great exercise program. What you eat will make or break what you are trying to accomplish with even the most thought-out and perfectly executed fitness program. But contrary to what many people believe, fats should not be avoided when you are putting together your list of fitness foods. But let’s be clear, only healthy fats.
Here are five that if prepared the right way will deliver the goods:
1. Wild Salmon. Salmon is an excellent source of animal-based omega-3 fats, protein and antioxidants, which are all important for nutritional fitness. Due to the environmental contamination of many of the feeding grounds of fish we have to take into account the possible toxic contamination of these fish. This is especially true with farm raised salmon. Much of this contamination is concentrated in the skin and fat of the fish, so I would recommend under no circumstances should you eat this part of the fish. Wild Alaskan salmon is your best bet, and it should be part of every fitness diet.
2. Avocado. This fruit is rich in monounsaturated fat and is easily burned as energy. Many people when exercising turn to carbohydrates, but turn to sugar, which is where we gain our excess body fat. People generally eat way too many carbohydrates, and biologically although they are necessary our needs are met with very small amounts. And today’s western diet is heavy in carbs. If we cut back on carbs as we should, they should be replaced with high quality fat such as avocado. Additionally they are high in potassium and low in fructose.
3. Eggs. Particularly if the eggs are free-range, eggs contain healthful saturated fats and cholesterol. This along with the fact that it is a great source of protein makes it an excellent workout food. Another factor for their yield of health benefits is the way you cook your eggs. It is found that the more they are cooked the more antioxidant loss they will have.
4. Chicken. Again, as with almost all healthy natural foods, the way they are prepared will determine if you lose that nutritional value. Chicken breast is the leanest, but is loaded with high-quality protein and essential amino acids for muscle growth and maintenance. But it can only be the breast meat alone. Comparing the chicken breast meat alone when it is roasted versus the meat and skin when batter-fried, fat content goes up about six times. And it goes without saying that this isn’t the healthy fat we are after.
5. Coconut oil. Simple carbohydrates are normally what we use for instant energy, with as stated earlier too many unwanted side effects. Coconut oil is the richest source of healthy fatty acids called MCFSs that nature has to offer. Half the fat content in coconut oil is lauric acid, which has unique health promoting properties. Coconut oil is a much better quick-energy option than carbs or sugar.
People have had the false impression that if you eat fat it will turn into fat on your body. This may be true of the wrong kinds of fats, or convenient processed foods that are not really food in the truest sense. Consuming foods that are as close to their natural state as possible will yield the optimum health and fitness benefits.