Top nutrition tips straight from the experts

Paleo? Gluten free? Raw food only? Good fats? Animal proteins? Sugar? What does it all mean and what should we actually be eating? 

Today, I’m excited to share with you some nutritional information addressing all of these topics, which I learned while attending IDEA BlogFest and IDEA World Fitness Convention in LA a couple of weekends ago. In case you missed my take on the whole experience at the biggest fitness industry event of the year, check out these posts to get caught up:

Soaking up nutritional information from three experts

While in LA, I attended three different nutrition sessions and heard many of the same points. I selected these particular sessions because nutrition is incredibly important when it comes to living a healthy lifestyle, and it’s something that I want to learn more about. I’ve never followed a diet with a “label,” but I do like to be armed with the knowledge of what’s out there. Nutrition is an area where most people need a little help. For instance, check out these staggering statistics …

  • Nearly 2/3 of Americans are overweight or obese.
  • 117 million Americans have preventable diseases that are linked to diet and inactivity.
  • Lifestyle and environment account for 90-95 percent of our most chronic illnesses.

Top nutrition tips straight from the experts at IDEA World via A Lady Goes WestAll of these eats are ones I enjoyed while in LA for the convention. How about that?

I attended “Nutrition in the News: The Truth Behind the Media Headlines” by Chris Mohr, a Registered Dietitian with a PhD, who is a consultant for some major brands and has been given a lot of press for his expertise. I attended a session by the very bubbly Cappie Geis, a Certified Clinical Nutritionist and author, who presented “Practical Strategies for Eating and Staying Lean for Life.” And I also listened to a presentation during BlogFest on “Busting the Top 5 Nutrition Myths” by my fellow blogger friend and music lover Melissa Burton, who is also a Registered Dietitian. 

The biggest takeaway from all of these sessions:

  • There is no one-size-fits-all diet.
  • The best diet out there is the one that works for you. One that you can maintain and stick with. One that leaves you feeling energized to live your life.
  • Nutrition matters. Use knowledge to educate others, not fear.
  • Limit your sugar consumption, people.
  • Eat more fruits and veggies. Just do it.
  • Eat breakfast every single day and make sure it includes at least 20-30 grams of protein.

Here’s a look at what I learned, presented in question and answer form … 

What’s the best diet out there we should follow to be healthy?

There are so many diets out there that people swear by, like Paleo, Gluten-free, Vegan, Vegetarian, South Beach, Mediterranean, Atkins, Raw, Intermittent Fasting, you name it. But which one is best? None of them, says Dr. Chris Mohr. It’s up to each individual person to decide which diet works best for them. Paleo, which encourages people to eat like our ancestors, avoiding legumes, starches, dairy, grains, sugars and processed foods, is awfully expensive, first of all. And it also requires cutting out things that are good for us, like grains. Some of Mohr’s favorite grains are freekah, quinoa and buckwheat, and he encourages people to eat them. As far as intermittent fasting, a diet in which you go for hours at a time without eating, well there is no scientific evidence to support its benefits either. Nor is there evidence that you should follow a gluten-free diet unless you have a true gluten intolerance. If you choose to avoid certain things because of your beliefs, that is totally up to you. But no single diet stands out as a clear winner when it comes down to science. And this was a point hit on by all three experts.

How much protein should we be eating and when?

Most people aren’t eating enough protein during the day, but they’re having too much protein at night for dinner. We should all aim for 20-30 grams of protein at every meal, evenly spaced throughout the day for maximum protein synthesis (muscle building in our bodies). This is something that both Mohr and Burton stressed. And there is no need to have more than 30 grams of protein at a time, because the extra protein after 20-30 grams does not facilitate additional muscle building at all. Basically, protein keeps us full and helps prevent muscle loss, which is a big deal as the population ages. 

What’s something that most people don’t know they’re in need of?

A good majority of people aren’t getting enough omega-3s, which are good-for-you fatty acids primarily found in fish, which have a host of healthy benefits like easing depression, combatting dementia and supporting anti-inflammation. While you can get some omega-3s from plants and seeds like walnuts, flax and chia seeds, that particular type doesn’t convert in the body as efficiently as omega-3s from animals. And yes, both wild and farm-raised fish have omega-3s, but it’s better to eat wild fish, rather than farmed, because farmed fish also have more of the not-as-good-for-you fatty acids, omega-6s, which we typically already have enough of. But of course, wild fish are more expensive, so do what you can.

What are some general guidelines for good nutrition?

  • Eat real, whole foods.
  • Eat breakfast every single day, with at least 20 grams of protein.
  • Go for less rules with your diet, not more. Try not to put too many limits on yourself.
  • Half of your plate should always be filled with fruits and veggies.
  • Strive to eat two servings of fish per week for the omega-3s.
  • Put fruit on the counter in plain sight instead of packaged snack foods.
  • Eat protein at every meal, spaced out throughout the day.
  • Drink more water.
  • Snack with purpose, don’t just snack to snack. 

What are the upcoming hot areas in the nutrition space?

According to Mohr, there are a couple of big things getting attention. (1) Addressing inflammation: What foods are causing it and how can we get it to go away in our bodies. (2) Probiotics. There’s still much research to be done in this area. Mohr suggests instead of taking probiotics supplements, we should try to get good bacteria in our systems through eating fermented foods and yogurts. Mohr sang the praises of cottage cheese and Greek yogurt for this, which he also referenced as healthy snacks and breakfasts. (Surely not a problem for this dairy-loving gal!)

What are some easy ways to make healthy swaps in recipes?

Geis spent a lot of time offering up healthy and easy substitutions for cooking …

  • Instead of bread crumbs, use oat bran.
  • Add romaine lettuce to smoothies to get some greens, if you’re not a fan of spinach or kale. It provides less of a “veggie” taste.
  • Instead of using heavy whipping cream, use Greek yogurt mixed with a little milk.
  • Add puree of white beans to thicken sauces, because the beans can take on any flavor. And if you think your stomach can’t handle beans, try eating them more often to get used to the feeling.
  • Instead of a full cup of sugar, use 1/4 cup of sugar with 1 tablespoon of liquid stevia.
  • Add grated carrots to recipes with cheddar cheese, so you can use less cheese and still have texture.
  • Put cinnamon in your cereal, yogurt and coffee instead of extra sweetener, because cinnamon controls insulin.
  • Use baby food prunes in place of oil in recipes for extra moistness.
  • Use chili powder instead of salt to enhance flavor.

What’s the deal with sugar?

There are good sugars and bad sugars. Natural sugars found in fruits are good for us. Added and refined sugars incorporated into many of the packaged foods we buy are not all that good for us. However, most people are consuming far too much of the bad sugar each day and way more than people of the past. According to Burton, we really need to watch our sugar consumption. But it’s okay to eat a lot of fruit.

Are juice detoxes beneficial?

This one received a resounding no by all the experts. Your body naturally detoxes itself, and there is no scientific evidence to ever doing a juice detox. If you feel like you need a “cleanse” just drink a lot of water and eat healthy foods. Enough said.

How can fitness professionals help their clients with their nutrition?

Personal trainers and group fitness instructors are not legally allowed to prescribe diet or food plans for their clients without an additional nutrition certification. However, because exercise is only half of the wellness picture, we are allowed to talk about general best practices and what works for us when it comes to nutrition. The best thing we can share are our ideas for healthy and whole protein-filled breakfasts, lunches, dinners and snacks and refer our clients to a licensed nutrition professional for one-on-one advice and assistance. Most of all, we should strive to praise clients on what they’re doing right and not focus on the negative, so they don’t get discouraged. We should also teach people how to meal prep, carry around a water bottle and eat more fruits and veggies at every meal. 

Suffice to say, this is just scratching the the surface, and I feel like I want to attend another 10 of these sessions to learn even more about this important topic. 

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I’ll see you back here tomorrow for pictures of my food. Have a good one!

*Please note: I was given a complimentary ticket to IDEA BlogFest and the IDEA World Fitness Convention in exchange for speaking at the event and posting about it. I covered my travel and accommodations. Fair trade? I think so!

Questions of the day

Do you follow a particular diet?

What’s something you want to learn more about?

What’s your favorite healthy food?

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87 Comments

  1. Great info! I love reading about nutrition and then incorporating the things I learn into my diet in a way that works for me. By reading and trying out paleo I definitely learned to focus more on natural foods, protein, and less sugar. I don’t follow paleo 100% but its definitely helped me to shift the focus of my eating a bit.

    1. Hi Lisa, That’s great. As all the experts agreed, you’ve got to find what works for you! I can see the focus on veggies and lean meats from Paleo being very beneficial. Have a wonderful day, lady!

  2. So much great information, Ashley! Thank you for sharing.

    Did any of the presenters speak on the whole #iifym diet? I’m super curious about that because I have trouble wrapping my brain around how that would ever work for my body.

    Happy Tuesday to you!

    1. Hi Courtney! No, that wasn’t discussed very much – but the focus was on eating REAL whole foods, so I figure they wouldn’t much agree with it. I know you want to hear more about that topic, and I do want to address it, let me try to find out more.

      1. No pressure! I just see so much about it and I see all these super fit, muscular, toned girls eating pop tarts and buckets of fro yo and I just don’t GET how that works????? Seriously though, no pressure. Just something I’ve been curious about.

  3. Enjoyed reading this, thank you! And such a great “healthy swaps in recipes” suggestion for me was “Instead of bread crumbs, use oat bran”. Absolutely brilliant!! I never thought of that and usually use wholemeal breadcrumbs. Next time I make a recipe that requires breadcrumbs I’m definitely trying this food swap! πŸ™‚

  4. Great info Ashley! I worry all the time about how problematic the obesity problem is and how much people struggle with their weight. I wish I could do more every day to influence that and inspire them to change as I have.

  5. Since I got back from blogfest, I’ve been watching a lot of food industry documentaries, and though I definitely was not blind to what was going on before, the statistics that they provide are just staggering. And then to walk through the airports this past weekend and see it for myself…

    1. Hi Susie! I’ve never really watched food documentaries, but I bet it can be eye opening … what’s your favorite one? Where should I start?

    1. Hi Bri! I know, so much information in just a couple of days. I loved it! I want to go back and do it all over again! Have a lovely day, lady! πŸ™‚

  6. As someone who spent her third year of med school living in the most obese part of the country, I loved this post to death! I had so many frustrations and dashed hopes when it came to getting kids to exercise and possibly-eat-healthier during my pediatric rotation! (Most of them actually wanted to, or were at least somewhat interested in finding out more, but their caretakers shot me down. ;_; ) I will keep fighting the good fight!

    1. Wow, Farrah! You keep fighting the good fight, indeed. That’s amazing that it would be the caretakers not interested in helping their kids learn healthy habits. Glad we’ve got people like you as medical professionals out there!

  7. Soooo true! I’m glad the presenters covered these topics because there’s so much misinformation out there – even from “specialists” in the field!

    My biggest gripe is how low-protein women are in general, and they use the wrong foods to fill up their “protein” sources (e.g., cheese and beans). If you aren’t vegetarian / vegan (which is a totally different ballgame), you’re likely taking in FAR too many carbs in an effort to get protein. The balance is so off in society as a whole in terms of carb intake. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not anti-carb by any means (as a bodybuilder, I know how beneficial and necessary they are), but I also know nutrient timing and portion control is – something greatly overlooked by most people.

    I’m also really happy they said a big NO to detoxing plans. I just wrote a blog post on this topic, actually… fad diets and detoxing are NOT the way to health and weight management!

    My bottom line – feed your body with healthy food in balance and it will function like it’s made to. You have vital organs to “cleanse” for a reason πŸ˜‰

    Sorry, end rant! Thanks for your post!

    1. Hi Ashleigh! Yes, clearly you are passionate about this topic and have some real-world experience to pull from. I was so glad to hear that cleanses are a major NO. And I was also glad to hear that the basic advice is to eat real food and have balance. Even the experts said that they eat sweets and junk sometimes, because they want to. But only SOMETIMES. Not all the time! πŸ™‚ I’ll need to check out your post too!

    2. Yes!!!! For example, I HAAAAAAAAAATE when someone says that nut butter is a good source of protein! Nut butter is a very good source of healthy fats and a great source of DELICIOUSNESS, but it is NOT a “good source” of protein. It’s not an awful one, but an average 32 gram, two tablespoon serving of nut butter is 190-210 calories and gives one 7-9 grams of protein. If I eat 200 calories of carrots I can practically get that much protein. I wouldn’t, because that would be ridiculous. As ridiculous as asserting to get my protein from nut butter.

  8. Some great tips you learnt! I was planning on taking that session with Chris Mohr but after talking with him at the lunch we had he agreed I wouldn’t learn any more than I already know from it, already being a Dietitian.

    Some of those substitution ideas are great but one caution is that a lot of chili powder contains salt as the first ingredient so that may not be the best swap, or at least check your label first.

    1. Hi Jen! Dr. Mohr gave a great presentation, which was almost two-hours long, so it was full of information. Some of the best parts were when he did the Q and A of course. And thanks for the insight on chili powder. πŸ™‚

  9. Thank you for putting this information out there for your readers. As a group fitness instructor and dietitian, I get a tad frustrated when fitness professionals blur the line of giving nutritional advice. And I’ve had many participants share the advice their personal trainer had given them and it’s usually terrible advice. I’m glad to see the convention had true experts to educate the attendees. I like that they stressed one diet isn’t the “best” or appropriate for everyone. And I love that they all agreed that detoxing or cleanses are bogus. It’s something I preach all the time!

    1. Hi Julie! I’m sure you’ve heard your clients tell you they’ve been advised to do some of the strangest things in regards to diet and nutrition! It’s just better to listen to someone in the field for the real deal. You didn’t go to tons of schooling for nothing, right? πŸ™‚

  10. I have never followed an actual diet or eating plan, really, unless I was trying to lose weight. I do try to do all of the basics that you talked about- eating breakfast, eating fruits and veggies at every meal, and snacking purposefully. I cut out sugars and artificial sweeteners from my coffee, and just have milk in it. I also totally cut out artificial sweeteners years ago!

    1. Hi Julia! Nice work on eating healthy and cutting out the artificial stuff. Sounds like you have an awesome plan in place, lady! πŸ™‚

  11. Thanks for including me in this round up. I like how you presented the information you were given and how you tied it to what fitness professionals can do as nutrition guides.

    With regard to the swaps, I echo what Jen said above but I’d also watch the stevia (processed and unknown and unregulated manner which may also contain other additives) but often just reducing the amount of sugar in a recipe by 1/4 often doesn’t make a difference in taste (it might with consistency though).

    Also with regard to romaine lettuce in a smoothie, you’d need to use A LOT to have it contribute much nutrient power. Most of romaine’s benefits are in the fiber (lost through blending), the vitamins (with a 2c serving!) and the water content vs kale and spinach which are more nutrient dense vs water BUT don’t get me wrong, if someone enjoys romaine in a smoothie, go for it but just know that the nutrient benefits are not equivalent for other dark leafy greens.

    1. Hi Melissa! Thanks for all of your information in your presentation of course. When it comes to the healthy swap suggestions I mention above from another session, I know they aren’t perfect, but they are at least a step in the right direction for people who would otherwise make no steps that way at all. You know? So with the romaine, if you can’t stomach the kale/spinach taste, at least try adding that. But I see what you’re saying totally and appreciate your expert advice once again! I’d love to chat with you about nutrition for hours and hours and hours!!!

  12. These are great tips! I think the protein tidbit is really important.. I know so many people that slack on their protein intake!

    1. Hi Liz, Thanks! Glad you enjoyed this one. And yes, people are slacking in the protein, especially at breakfast! Happy Tuesday to you! πŸ™‚

    1. Hi Rachel! Thanks for saying hi! Glad you enjoyed these tips. And yes, I’ve always been a breakfast person too. How do people go without it?? Hope you have a wonderful day!!

  13. Those sound like great seminars! I especially love that they mentioned eating for inflammation and digestion (probiotics). I focus a lot on these two things with my own diet and often recommend eating for these to friends. So important to take care of our gut!

    I wish I would have joined you for the nutrition one on Saturday instead of the HIIT. I was so tired I could barely workout and sitting to listen to the nutrition seminar would have been more beneficial at that point. I did come away with some good workout ideas πŸ™‚

    1. Hi Giselle! There were so many good sessions, obviously we’d end up missing a few that we wanted to attend. And I’ve always eaten a lot of foods with probiotics in them, because I like them. I would be interested in learning more about inflammation of course. Glad you’re already on top of these items and sharing your knowledge with your friends. πŸ™‚

  14. I love these tips… especially regarding protein intake. I definitely do not include enough at each meal. I have a very specific diet for my Crohn’s and being a vegetarian sometimes makes my options for protein a little difficult. But I do find smoothies packed with fruit, nut butters, spices ,and protein to start my day the best way to get the needed protein. I would love to hear more about natural vs. added sugars. I’ve been doing a bit of research and have started preparing a post on it as I’m intrigued to see if there is a limit of “too much fruit” in the summer because of all the sugars. Thanks so much for sharing all this : )

    1. Hi Jamie! Yes, you should check out Melissa’s blog I reference above and ask her all about sugar. She’s great. And I bet it’s tough to get enough protein being vegetarian. Do you eat eggs? Whole milk? Hmmm… at least you know what you can and cannot eat and are always paying attention to what is going on in your mouth. Happy Tuesday, lady!

  15. Everyone is so obsessed with fad diets, but I guess that isn’t anything new! I focus on eating as healthy, unprocessed and natural as I can, but I don’t ever avoid anything completely unless I don’t like it (in my case, pork). I don’t like restrictive diets. I believe in everything in moderation! Whenever I’d get it in my head that I needed to eat low carb one week, I would go crazy the next week with bad foods – its a vicious cycle so now I avoid that mentality all together. I also totally agree about the protein. I always strive to get protein in with every meal and snack.

    1. Hi Karen! Totally agree with you! When you tell yourself you CAN’T have something, you want it even more. That’s why balance and moderation were stressed so much by the experts. πŸ™‚

  16. Sounds like you went to some great sessions! Nutrition is so interesting, I know it was the key factor in me losing weight in college, and I just sigh when I see people thinking they can elliptical away the pounds, but not change anything else. AMEN about the juice cleanses! Jeez those things drive me nuts! Thank you for sharing πŸ™‚

  17. Ashley,
    This (yet another!!) great post! I love reading about nutrition. Thank you so much for sharing!
    I don’t follow any particular diet per se, but I am trying to avoid gluten on the advice of my doctor due to my under active thyroid. I also try not too eat dairy because it does not agree with my tummy, which is a huge bummer.

    1. Hi Heather! Well your doctor probably wouldn’t steer you in the wrong direction! Too bad about dairy! Glad you enjoyed this read, lady! πŸ™‚

  18. I like how there wasn’t a particular ‘lifestyle’ pushed upon everyone by the experts, and how they relayed their ideas in a balanced way. Everyone is so unique and different, and what is healthy for one may be unhealthful for another. I am also glad that the whole ‘juice detox’ phase is starting to go away, it never seemed like a good idea to me.

    1. Hi Niki! Nope, juice cleanses were all the rage, and I never did one. It’s just not for me. And yes, we are all unique and need to do what’s right for us as individuals.

  19. I love all the nutrition information presented at BlogFest and IDEAWorld. It’s refreshing to hear that no one was claiming a miracle cure in any of the sessions – I feel like I can sometimes be pessimistic about that kind of information since so much of what we see/hear focuses on a fad and not something that’s sustainable in the long run.

    1. That’s the best part, Ange — all of these experts were clear that there is no miracle. Just exercising and eating healthy much of the time. I’m skeptical of the fads too! That’s why I’ve never tried any of these diets.

  20. Great info girl! I don’t follow a diet but I try to just be aware of my eating habits….like adding in more fruits and veges and keeping cheat meals to a minimum. Nutrition is always so tough, I have no problem working out more but watching what I eat is hard!

    1. Ditto, Marielle! I always get my fitness in and eat healthy during the week, but tend to get into the sweets more than I should on the weekends heheh. πŸ™‚

  21. I LOVE this! If I could go back to school and learn anything, it would be nutrition! I am fascinated by food. I don’t follow a specific diet, I eat everything. I do try to eat a ton of veggies all day and protein at every meal. I also drink lots and lots of water. My favorite healthy food right now is purple kale – yum! I’m adding it to my eggs in the morning and that zucchini kale smoothie you have posted somewhere on your blog πŸ™‚

    1. How do I not know about purple kale? I must find some!! πŸ™‚ And you know I love a good zucchini smoothie, Melissa. Glad you’re enjoying it and getting plenty of nutrients! Happy Tuesday!

  22. Thanks so much for posting this!! There’s so much confusing and misinformation all over the Internet that it’s so easy to get sucked into trends that aren’t necessarily true or good for your body. I did a cleanse once and I was miserable abd a mean person the whole time..

    1. Hi Morgan! I bet! Our bodies like food, so it’s not good to avoid food! I bet I would be totally mean on a cleanse too hehehe! πŸ™‚

  23. Thank you so much for sharing! I hope to attend blogfest someday!! I especially enjoyed reading the part about the future of nutrition since I’m currently a student! πŸ™‚

  24. I really enjoyed reading this post because I am a registered dietitian and a lot of these tips resonated with me. I definitely think, from experience of working with patients, that any type of diet that centers around eliminating something is probably not going to be easy to maintain in the long run. That is why I’m not too fond of fad diets. And thank you so much for mentioning the “detox” juice cleanse!! πŸ™‚

  25. EVERY SINGLE DAYYYYY I SAY “there is no one size fits all” diet!!!! I hate diet books because they make everyone believe that there are!!! BAH HUM BUG!

    1. Everyone seems to think they’ve found the ONE thing that works, but really you have to find your OWN thing that works. πŸ™‚ Right, Gigi?

  26. I like your tips overall, but I must confess that the “daily breakfast” mantra is a pet peeve of mine. Conventional wisdom tells us to eat breakfast in the morning so that we presumably do not over eat later. Well, why not just be aware of what you eat and if you skip a meal, recognize it and make sure you don’t over compensate later? I feel like some well-meaning advice just enables people not to really educate themselves or to take responsibility for themselves. I remember a friend telling me how full she was from overindulging the night before, and because she was relating this while drinking a breakfast smoothie (made with fruit and peanut butter, so full of sugar and calories), I asked why she was drinking her smoothie, if she was still full. She responded, “you’re supposed to eat breakfast.” It’s that kind of blind, wholesale adoption of an idea that grinds my gears. I said, “okay, fine, but aren’t you also one of those ‘listen to your body’ people and isn’t your body telling you that you’re full?” (This was a very good friend, I hasten to add. I wouldn’t be snarky like this generally, I promise.) I don’t think your advice is meant to be interpreted in such a way whatsoever, but I think people oversimplify and take what are supposed to be “guidelines” and turn them into gospel.

    I also think that the 30 grams of protein a meal max contradicts a lot of legitimately conducted intermittent fasting studies and the fact that speed of protein synthesis changes with age, amount of muscle mass one has, etc. Again, I’m sure you just meant to throw a ballpark number out there that is a pretty sweet spot for most people, and I don’t dispute that it’s a good average. My (whiny and ranty) takeaway is probably just that I dislike how many people process even good information.

    Anyway, your blog is one of my favorites (and I didn’t think it could improve..but then you got Rudy! so cute!), and I thank you kindly for letting me express my views.

    1. Hi Julia! Of course, I took about 6 hours of lectures and boiled it down to less than 1,500 words, so some context is missing. A larger guy would need the 30 grams of protein, a smaller girl would need the 20 grams of protein. And I’m a breakfast person, I feel like having a good breakfast helps you get going faster in the day, so I believe that one. But OF COURSE, you have to listen to your body. Feel free to rant and express your views to me, because I love to learn from others. I know most people can’t be intuitive eaters, because the world has made us not know how to do that, so sometimes a few simple rules help. And thanks for saying you enjoy my blog and that you enjoy my Rudy. He went to the groomer today and he is a fluff-ball. I love him. πŸ™‚ hahaha! Have a fabulous day, and thanks for chiming in of course!

  27. I guess I follow a gluten-free diet, but it’s not really a diet. I consider it a lifestyle – I eat lots of healthy, whole foods (I have major fruit and yogurt obsessions. Also salmon.) But no wheat, nuts, avocadoes, or oranges. Because I’m allergic, and eating them is a health hazard! So I make up for it by baking my own treats and generally eating lots of fruit and veggies (and I mean LOTS) mostly in whole form because I’m not a big smoothie drinker, lots of dairy, fish, chicken, cheese (good cheese is a major weakness) and ice cream because I enjoy them, GF oats, quinoa…I guess I could list everything, but the point is I consider it just the way I eat and not a diet. I did that to myself (for no reason) for way too much of my young adulthood!

    1. Hi Alyssa, Wow! Sounds like you’ve got a good handle on your lifestyle (diet) and eats then. It’s great that you bake and make your own things to accommodate your allergies. I love that. Keep up the good work! πŸ™‚

  28. I have to admit that getting in 20g of protein first thing in the morning is difficult!

    I personally am not in favor of intermittent fasting, merely because I have really out of whack hunger cues. I’m rarely ever stomach -rumbly hungry, so I could go for hours without eating, and then feel exhausted at the end of the day, eat a ton, and not know why. I prevent the bonking and overeating by eating at regular intervals. And personally, I’ve found that I am able to function perfectly fine as an athlete on a vegetarian diet.

    My favorite healthy food(s) are broccoli, sweet potatoes, nut butters, and apples. I could live off them all day!

  29. Hi Ashley!

    We need post grooming puppy pics. Just saying.

    Love cinnamon. A sprinkle of cinnamon and a bit of honey in Greek yogurt is a staple for me. I have a bunch of chia seeds and never use them. I should probably get a few mason jars and try the overnight oats out.

    P.S. with launch week I’ve been teaming a few classes at 7:45pm so I definitely sympathize with eating dinner around 10pm.

    1. Hi Gen!! More puppy pics? For sure, I’m on it! And yes, oats in a mason jar just feels fancy!! And yes, totally late dinners when you teach at night. We can’t team teach at my gyms, but that is always fun! πŸ™‚

  30. I am so a believer of this!! And yay it looks like I’m doing all of these awesome tips! And I can tell, I’ve been feeling a lot better and get less cravings through the day. It’s crazy what our brains are like on sugar!! EEEK! Also great tips about the water bottle, it’s so important!

    1. Hi Sam! I know I get too much sugar in all of the things I eat, so I’d be interested in cutting back one day. Glad you enjoyed this one! πŸ™‚

  31. Oh boy, I could write a whole blogging series on this lol. Trying to keep it short-while I agree with some of what the panel said, I strongly disagree with some of their other points-especially the whole ‘must eat breakfast’ thing (I thought we were over this myth, but apparently not sigh….).

    For me-I’ve lost around 60lbs and have improved my health across the board, including going from a pre-diabetic to now having glucose numbers in the normal range, triglycerides in the 40s, fantastic blood pressure, etc etc etc and I did it by following a intermittent fasting protocol.. On top of that, I’ve been successfully maintaining the loss for over two years now. I could say a lot more about IF here, but I’ll save it for my own blog πŸ™‚ I do agree 100% with no one plan fits all though-my sister’s had fabulous results with Weight Watchers for example, while I’ve obviously done really well with IF.

    I agree with how awesome fish is and depending on where you shop it’s actually not that expensive-I get a pound of frozen, wild caught salmon for $4 at Aldi, and other kinds of wild caught fish for $5 or less. I eat fish 4-5 times a week.

    Lots of other points to address but yeah, I’ll leave it for my own blog πŸ™‚ But really? Breakfast is a ‘must’? Ok, I know what I’m blogging about next week lol!

    1. Hi Sara! First of all, congrats on your weight-loss, and maintaining it! That’s incredible. Of course, different things work for different people. I happen to love breakfast, so it’s easy for me to agree with that one. I’ve never tried IF, but I’m glad you’ve found something that works for you. That’s what it is all about! πŸ™‚

  32. I love everything about post! I think for a lot of consumers, it’s hard to figure out “what’s right and what’s wrong”, because there is so much (too much?) information out there. You did a great job of outlining the bottom lines: no diet the best diet, eat whole foods, limit sugar intake, etc. XOXO

    1. Hi Jess! There is so much info out there, so yes, it can be totally hard to decide what you need to believe. But the general guidelines of eating whole food and less sugar seem to be consensus. πŸ™‚

  33. Such an awesome post! I’m totally on board with “do what works for you”. Some people can eat zero protein for breakfast and make it to lunch, I know that I can’t! There is SOO much confusion out there, and you really need to know your truth. I love the tip about 1/4 c sugar + stevia – it might be tastier than all-stevia like I usually do. Can’t wait to try!

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