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Nutritional Guidance for Proper Dieting

As a certified nutritional physical therapist, I understand the importance of proper nutrition in maintaining overall health and wellness. Eating a well-balanced diet can not only provide the energy and nutrients your body needs but can also help manage and prevent chronic conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, and obesity. Here are some key guidelines for proper dieting:

 

  1. Focus on Whole Foods: Try to incorporate more whole foods into your diet, such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats. These foods are nutrient-dense and can help you feel full longer. Some examples include:

    1. Fruits: Apples, oranges, bananas, kiwi, and grapes.

    2. Vegetables: Leafy greens (spinach, kale, lettuce), broccoli, brussel sprouts, carrots, and sweet potatoes.

    3. Whole Grains: Oats, brown rice, quinoa, whole wheat bread, bulgur, and farro.

    4. Lean Proteins: Skinless chicken breast, skinless turkey breast, fish, eggs, tofu, legumes and lean cuts of beef.

  2. Limit Processed Foods: Processed foods, such as packaged snacks, sugary drinks, and fast food, are often high in calories, sugar, and unhealthy fats. These foods should be limited in your diet.

  3. Watch Portion Sizes: Even healthy foods can lead to weight gain if consumed in excess. Be mindful of portion sizes and aim to fill half your plate with fruits and vegetables, one-quarter with lean protein, and one-quarter with whole grains. This is closely related to the Mediterranean diet.

  4. Hydrate with Water: Staying hydrated is crucial for overall health. Limiting sugar drinks and alcohol is the first step. Some general guidances for water intake as it pertains to adults vs children are listed below:

    1. Adults should drink an average of 2.7-3.7 liters of water a day. This is about 9-13 cups. Keep in mind that some of the water can come from foods vs soley water.

    2. Children can be tough as they age and the amount of recommended water intake will vary. Generally, if you can get a child to drink at least 5 cups of water a day, you're doing well.

  5. Limit Added Sugars: Added sugars can contribute to weight gain and increase the risk of chronic diseases. Be mindful of added sugars in packaged foods and drinks and aim to limit your intake. Check the labels on the foods you buy at the grocery store to see how much sugar is added. You'll be surprised to see that some of those "healthy" drinks contain a boat load of sugar!

  6. Include Healthy Fats:

Healthy fats, such as those found in nuts, seeds, avocado, and olive oil, can provide important nutrients, and help you feel full longer. Aim to include these healthy fats in your diet.


7. Plan Ahead: Planning ahead can help you make healthier choices and avoid temptation. Prepare healthy snacks and meals in advance and keep healthy options on hand for when hunger strikes. Try to avoid grocery shopping on an empty stomach because the temptation is real! Personally, I keep a snack drawer where I have all my favorite (healthy) treats to eat throughout the day to keep myself at bay and help maintain my nutritional intake.

8. Seek Professional Guidance: As physical therapists, we cannot provide dietary recommendations for those struggling with a medical diagnosis. If you have specific dietary needs or concerns that affect a medical diagnosis, seek guidance from a registered dietitian.


By following these guidelines for proper dieting, you can optimize your overall health and wellness, manage chronic conditions, and maintain a healthy weight. Remember, small changes over time can lead to big improvements in your health and well-being!


At Hybrid Physical Therapy, we care about your health and wellness regardless of your injury. We strive to take care of the individual as a whole rather than just focus on a body part that was hurt. This includes making healthy choices with your diet. We want everyone to reach their goals and be healthy at the same time. If you’re looking for a facility that evaluates everyone holistically and effectively, give us a call today and we’ll help you Optimize Your Performance!




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