A well-balanced and nutritious diet is a key component to your fitness regime and is equally as important as exercise. From being an exercise novice to a seasoned gym-goer, everyone has become more conscious as to what goes into their food.
Co-founders of Under500, Fadi Ghaly and Mahmoud Bartawi, share their advice on maintaining a healthy diet.
Steak and Mushroom rice – 498 Calories
1. Eat the right amount of calories for how active you are
The first step to a healthy diet is being observant of what you eat. Most people assume that calories are bad for you, but they provide your body with energy. It is only when your calorie intake exceeds the amount of calories you burn, you gain weight. We need to make sure that when we consume calories, the fat, protein, and carbohydrates that we choose to eat are as micronutrient dense as possible.
A healthy option would be to replace processed carbohydrates that increase blood sugar and insulin, and shift to unrefined and unprocessed whole grains such as brown rice, whole wheat, quinoa and oats. Eating potatoes with their skins on not only gives you more fibre but leaves you feeling fuller for longer.
A few healthy options from Under500 include quinoa, whole grain pasta, brown rice and sweet potatoes that are baked instead of fried.
Chicken Burrito Bowl – 479 Calories
2. Eat lots of fruits and veggies
We must make sure the majority of our diet consists of a variety of fruit and vegetable options. This is easier to do than you think, from having vegetables raw and as a snack to preparing fruit and vegetable juices or smoothies; also remember to incorporate as many vegetables as you can into your meals.
Under500 has a great variety of vegetarian options such as Rainbow Quinoa, the Organic Lentil Salad, and the Chicken Burrito Bowl. Under500 also offers a well-balanced menu and great breakfast options with fruit such as granola and smoothies for a healthy kick-start in the morning.
Salmon and Quinoa – 441 Calories
3. Cut down on saturated fats and sugar
Although we must pay attention to the fats we consume, fats are a necessary component to our diet. It is important to have foods with unsaturated fats, such as fish, raw nuts and fruits like avocado, as saturated fats can increase cholesterol in our blood and heighten the risk of heart disease.
We need to be avoiding fatty foods such as hard cheese, cakes, cream and butter and instead opt for raw nuts, fish and avocado. The Under500 Grilled Salmon Avocado is a great low fat option to keep you light and active.
Egg Quinoa Tabouleh – 235 Calories
4. Eat regularly and in moderate portions
Keeping your portion sizes reasonable will help you enjoy a variety of different meals while having a balanced diet. Portion control and calorie counting can help you consume meals more frequently, and helps diminish overeating. Snacking can help you curb hunger and Under500 has some great power-packed breakfast options such as Steak and Eggs and Egg Quinoa Tabouleh.
Slimmed Down Brownie – 208 Calories
5. Get active
Just dieting alone will not help you achieve drastic goals and it is very important to accompany healthy eating with healthy living. This includes getting out, being more active, pushing yourself harder, and finally having an Under500 brownie to reward yourself after all your hard work.