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What I Ate Today And Why

Call me nosey but I’m always fascinated to find out what people are eating, it often inspires me to make more positive changes within my own nutrition and offers some new, yummy ideas. Of course if it’s a trainer or nutritionist I’m even more intrigued to see how they implement the information they teach on a daily basis! I thought I would share with you what a typical menu looks like for me in the Fitter Food household, along with some details on why I make those choices. I’ve also shared my supplement regime.

1. Water Upon Waking

Keris Marsden HealthyThe first thing I do upon waking is rehydrate with 500ml of water, I usually add a pinch of sea salt or electrolytes drops. I sip this as I’m getting dressed and packing my bag for the day.

I tend to see a lot of people guilty of either not drinking enough water or overhydrating these days. We’re constantly informed about the importance of drinking more water but I’ve come across clients surviving on nothing but tea and coffee until the afternoon (caffeine is dehydrating) and some people chugging down 4 litres of water a day.

 

Remember: too much of anything is bad! Whilst dehydration will contribute towards fatigue as nutrients are unable to be moved around the body, over hydration may deplete your water soluble nutrients like B vitamins and vitamin C, not to mention have you trekking back and forth to the loo every 10 minutes.

The ideal is to simply sip (that’s sip not glug) water throughout the day. I suggest most people have a litre bottle or jug on their desk and aim to finish before dinner. Exercise and sweating will increase your need and you’ll need to add roughly an extra 500ml per hour of sweating.

Smoothies, soups, salad, vegetables, fruit and herbal teas are also contributing, so if you have a smoothie for breakfast you may not need as much. Most people benefit from drinking around 1.5-2.5 litres. Finally; try and sip your water away from meals to avoid diluting digestive enzymes and stomach acid, this will hinder digestion and can lead to bloating.

2. A Probiotic Shot

photo 4-3The science on probiotics is constantly evolving and one thing I’m certain of after working with hundreds of individuals, our gut health is as unique as our personality. Despite using tools like a comprehensive stool analysis or organic acids tests which assess the balance of bacteria in the gut, there is no one size fits all or magic probiotic solution to the problem. Probiotic therapy to a degree is experimentation.

Take the new soil based probiotic Prescript Assist for example, I’ve had clients say they feel awesome and their digestion and bowel movements improve. Others feel constipated and chronically bloated. The symptom offers more clues as to the underlying issues but there’s usually a degree of trial and improvement involved.

I personally found Symprove really helps me, I do the 12 week program a couple of times a year especially if we’ve been travelling. The wonderful gut geek and Naturopath Emma Mihill has also been giving Matt fermenting lessons so I’m hoping he’ll start knocking up batches of coconut water kefir for me soon too 🙂

3. A Decent Breakfast

Green Smoothie Lemon n LimeWow 500 words and we’re not even at breakfast yet! A pre-requisite for me is protein at breakfast. After years of eating cereals and finding myself in the biscuit tin mid-morning, I love how satiating the combination of fat and protein is first thing in the day. It stabilises blood sugar levels and I find my concentration levels are much greater. Furthermore, I’m a little prone to punishing my adrenal health, I love what I do and it’s easy to get carried away and find yourself all work and no play, consuming 30-40g of protein at breakfast has been shown to be beneficial for supporting adrenal function.

So today breakfast was a pimped green smoothie. I’ve just finished writing a Fitter Food guide to smashing smoothies (check it out here) as a lot of people are missing some vital ingredients that can really make a morning smoothie go the extra mile in hitting your health and fat loss goals.

I think smoothies are an awesome way to pack in a lot of nutrients first thing and of course they’re convenient. We have a NutriBullet and I put most of the ingredients in the cup the night before (except the fruit and veg) and leave it in the fridge so I just have to whizz it up before I walk out the door. I also recently read about an experiment suggesting that the rapid blending process can oxidise the ingredients in a smoothie, so whizzing up chilled water with either fresh lemon or lime juice or vitamin C then adding your fruit and vegetables after can help mitigate the damage.

Living in London, I’m conscious of the increased level of pollution I’m inhaling all day long so I’m supporting detoxification and antioxidant status as much as I can. My smoothie today included –

  • Handful of kale (estrogen metabolism, detox support, vitamin A, K, C)
  • Handful of redcurrants (soluble fibre, antioxidants)
  • 1 scoop of Vital Greens (antioxidants, detox support)
  • 1000mg buffered Vitamin C powder (antioxidants, detox support)
  • 1 dessertspoon coconut oil (essential fats for energy)
  • 2 tbsp collagen (support gut, joints and skin health)
  • Scoop of vanilla Sunwarrior protein powder (support lean body mass and adrenal function).
  • Water

I sometimes add an adaptogenic herbal formula called Terra Nova Rhodiola for adrenal health, rholdiola is awesome for improving stress resilience and buffering the effects of intense exercise.

A typical alternative to this is eggs scrambled in coconut oil with sliced banana, cinnamon and sea salt. I came up with this when adding some more carbohydrates back into my nutrition.

The cinnamon improves glucose uptake so it’s a winning combination, it may sound whacky but it always gets the thumbs up on our online plans too. I try not to eat eggs every day but it’s tough, firstly because I love em’ and secondly because eggs are a true multivitamin and I know if I’ve had one all bases are covered. The choline in eggs also supports liver detoxification (something all of us need daily) and is a vital component of brain health and cognitive function. I’m convinced I’m a little more intelligent since I started eating more eggs 🙂 Eggs are also essential for both men and women looking to conceive because of their nutrient density. I often suggest couples looking to start a family spend three months improving their health and nutrition so they have a more optimal nutrient status to pass on to their next generation. Cholesterol is a precursor to our reproductive hormones and fats are also essential during pregnancy for foetal brain development.

4. Lunch

photo 1-4I don’t tend to want or need a mid-morning snack so my next meal is typically lunch, where I usually make up a large a salad with fish or poultry and some leftover cold potatoes or rice and fermented vegetables.

I’ve written before that I aim to be largely pescetarian in the week, I’m usually busy and feel fish and poultry is much lighter on my digestive system, plus seafood offers more iodine and selenium to support thyroid health, hugely important for women, The cold (white) potatoes or rice offers a type of fibre known as resistant starch that forms when the carbohydrate is cooled (legumes like lentils also offer resistant starch).

Today was prawns, avocado and sweet potato with an apple cider vinegar and lemon vinaigrette. Apple cider vinegar is great for aiding digestion, if possible buy unpasturised (we use Biona). On our plans we encourage people to pimp a salad, no one likes eating leaves but there is so much you can add to spruce up your salad; grated carrot, fresh mint, olives, capers, sundried tomatoes, pesto, berries, seeds, nuts, lemon juice, fresh peas, parmesan shavings, roasted peppers…you get the picture.

A really easy way to boost the antioxidant status of your salad is to add herbs and spices, I sprinkle organic mixed herbs on all my salads, Matt also recently put together this awesome chicken, cumin and orange salad. I might follow this with a piece of seasonal fruit or a small handful of nuts.

5. An Afternoon Snack

Supplements detoxI’m a big fan of an afternoon snack as we experience a cortisol dip around 3-4pm. Cortisol is our get up and go hormone, it drops throughout the day and most of us really feel it late afternoon. Taking on a small snack around this time often makes most of feel human again. Plus many people have lunch at 12-1pm and then might not eat dinner until 7-8pm, that can be a 7-8 hour gap between meals which will send your blood sugar levels crashing and you get home feeling hangry (hungry and angry)!

My snack preference is always changing, sometimes it’s just a small meal if I’m at home such as a bowl of leftover dinner. Here are three typical snacks I might have:

1) I LOVE a cup of bone broth around this time, I call it a hug in a mug because it makes me feel so good. We’ve written more HERE about the benefits of bone broth consumption.

2) I sometimes have a Nutri Advanced Ultra Clear or UltraInflamx drink as a snack, the taste can take a bit of getting used too (especially InflamX – adding a banana and spinach helps) but I notice my energy levels are more consistent and my nails grow whenever I take it. Our energetic, stressful lifestyles and increased toxin exposure lead to an upregulated need for a number nutrients particularly vitamin A, B vitamins and amino acids that support detoxification like N-acetyl Cysteine and Glycine. These offer a nice dose of multi-nutrients and helps support optimal hormone balance, UltraInflamX is great for supporting inflammatory conditions and injuries too.

3) Totes Amazing Trail Mix! Matt laughs when I call it this but I love making up my own trail mix and using my research to make it medicinal. After reading Everything You Need to Know To Beat Cancer I’m still adding ingredients including organic dried blueberries, cacao nibs and sweet apricot kernals. I also put some Nakd Bits in my latest batch, an epic addition 🙂

 

6. Dinner Time

Mediteranean Fish n chipsPhew we’re almost done. So it won’t be any surprise to know dinner is a Fitter Food recipe of course, what did you expect…pizza 😉

I’m currently experimenting with new creations for our soon to released second book (whoop!), this picture is a Mediterranean style fish ‘n’ chips.

I always make sure I have a serving of starches in the evening as it helps lower cortisol and improve sleep health. I have covered this topic before here after I noticed my sleep was worse if I don’t have some carbohydrates in the evening, plus without the carbs I tend to overeat protein which then has me up peeing half the night.

After dinner I usually have a couple of squares of 85-90% dark chocolate with a peppermint or decaf green tea or a small bowel of berries. The key here is a ramekin dish, why? I put my serving in a bowl and then leave the kitchen. I’ve easily eaten a whole 100g bar watching TV and just not paying attention to how much I was eating, the solution is not to take the 100g bar to the sofa with you. The same goes for fruit, it’s easy to eat a whole tub of sweet cherries and not feel so great afterwards. I usually finish my day with a mug of magnesium powder before bed as magnesium is our calming mineral that aids relaxation, deep sleep and muscle recovery (from all the typing I do lol!), I’m loving Innate Response Magnesium 300 powder right now, especially as it tastes like Haribo 🙂

7. Training Days

In terms of a how my nutrition differs on a training day, I like to keep this simple and will take on free form amino’s pre-workout, I love Genetic Sustain 2.0 right now and then I usually add an extra meal post-workout. Sometimes I may use Ultraclear as my postworkout shake as it has a good carb to protein ratio or take on some Pulsin whey and a banana. I assess my hunger a little more on training days and may add another snack if my tummy is grumbling but I don’t eat bigger meals as this just increases the burden on my digestive system.

So that’s a summary of what I ate today and why. I hope you enjoyed a little insight into a day in the life of a Fitter Foodie. We’d love to hear how you plan your meals and what influences your choices, feel free to post on our Facebook page!