Hello everyone, Ash here
Thank you to everyone who replied and reached out with what they would like to read about in our emails regarding nutrition. As we expected, the responses were varied and showed just how individual nutrition and diet is to everyone!
First things first, before I carry on this email I have to stress that Sam and I are not qualified nutritionists. We have both studied nutrition as part of our personal training qualification but this qualification does not permit us to set official diet plans. What we can do is use our own knowledge and share own own stories with you about what nutrition and diet means to us. However, if you do require further support we always highly recommend arranging to see a qualified nutritionist or dietitian.
Members often ask me how they can eat more healthily. I think we have all asked ourselves this at some point or another and let me start by telling you this.... I LOVE cookies, crisps and pizza! Take me to a carvery and I will pile 15 roast potatoes on to my plate. Buffet? I'll have 3 plates, please!! Cookies? Not just 1, I'll have the whole pack! I love food and I will often finish what is on my plate, as well as my friend's too (I was once called the human dustbin ) Friends will often say "Oh, it's ok for you, you can eat what you want and not put on weight". I can see how it may look like this, and I will admit that I do believe some people are a bit more blessed with having a faster metabolism (although this does not necessarily make them healthier). Of course, I lead an active lifestyle and this helps massively. I exercise at least 5 times per week - because it keeps me fit in body AND mind - and my training is a mix of high intensity and strength, the best type of training for overall health and fitness.
I have followed many diets/lifestyles over the years - low carb, vegetarian, paleo, calorie restriction - but I find the best lifestyle for me is just to enjoy my food and make sensible choices the majority of the time! I am a big believer in the 80/20 rule. 80% of the time I am eating relatively healthily - lots of fruit and vegetables and a mix of everything else. I went vegan at the beginning of the year and will comment further on that later in the month. For me personally it is the best choice I made as I am eating even more vegetables and I have found removing dairy has given me more energy and certainly helped my digestive system work more efficiently!
The 80/20 rule works for me because 20% of the time I get to eat whatever I want without feeling guilty. This doesn't mean I go crazy (although, like everyone I do have those moments from time to time) but I mindfully enjoy my vegan ice cream, cookies or chips when I have my treat meals, knowing that I am able to do this because I am looking after my health most of the time. I understand that, compared to some, I am very lucky that I have always had a great relationship with food so if you take anything from today's email, take this - eat mindfully and enjoy everything on your plate. If you are making sensible choices 80% of the time then it will be very hard for the other 20% to have too much of a negative impact...
80/20 - it works for me
Have a wonderful weekend!
Sam and Ash
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