First, I think it’s important to clarify what exactly I mean by ‘real food’ so that we’re all on the same page here.
Real food is whole single ingredient food. It's a shorthand term for minimally processed, whole, largely natural plants which have been grown in the soil, and animal products which are largely unaltered from their natural forms. An Apple is a ‘Real Food’ but an apple cereal bar is not. Fish fillets are real food, breaded and reformed chicken formed into the shape of a fish is not. Real foods are fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, meats, fish, dairy, unaltered whole grains and things made out of this list. This should be the focus of your nutrition approach.
Eating Real Food can improves nutrient status.
Unprocessed animal and plant foods contain the vitamins and minerals you need for optimal health. For instance, one cup (220 grams) of red bell peppers, broccoli or orange slices contains more than 100% of the Recommended Daily Intake (RDI) for vitamin C.
Eating your nutrients is much more effective than taking a pill.
Eating Real Food is a prime tool in weight management. Real Food has two clear advantages over other options when it comes to weight management. First, real foods such as lean meats, fruits, vegetables, unprocessed dairy and whole grains are far more filling per calorie. It’s very easy to gobble 1000 calories in chips, burgers, breaded meat products and sweets, but the same 1000 calories of homemade grilled chicken dippers marinated in something, homemade oven chips, peas and fresh tomatoes would make anyone feel full. Real Food has no hidden calories. An avocado is an avocado, you know exactly what is in it.
Real Food May Help Reduce Sugar Cravings.
A diet based on real food may also help reduce cravings for sweets, such as cake, cookies and candy. Once your body adjusts to eating whole, unprocessed foods, cravings for sugary foods could become infrequent and even disappear altogether. When you limit or avoid processed foods and high-sugar foods, eventually your taste buds adapt and learn to appreciate real food more
Real Food takes longer to digest.
Since real food takes longer to digest it maintains energy levels in a far more stable manner, avoiding mid-afternoon slumps, as well as reducing hunger pangs and cravings which generally result in snacking. It keeps your blood sugar level which is another key to weight loss success.
Eating Whole Foods helps promote digestive health.
Whole fruits, vegetables, grains, beans and pulses are all packed with fiber. Fiber plays a crucial role in your well being. Not only does a reasonable fiber intake mean that your bowel movements will be more comfortable and regular, it gives you the best possible chance of avoiding bowel cancer and other similar digestive disorders. It also helps to balance blood glucose which is a powerful tool in the fight against diabetes T2, and it even keeps you fuller longer so it slows digestion.
Eating Real Food Sets a Good Example.
In addition to improving your own health and well-being, eating real food can help the people you care about stay healthy as well. Leading by example can help encourage better eating habits for your family members. It’s also a good way to help your kids learn about good nutrition.