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Making Better Food Choices

By: Kristi Goode

Getting started on your nutrition journey can take a little time because there is so much conflicting information out there.

“What foods should I eat?” It’s a question I hear often.

Not because of the easy choices, but because of the ones that cause confusion. Foods that have been categorized as "bad" and then years later are now categorized as "good", make it feel impossible to make the best choice. Is it ok to eat eggs? Aren't the yolks full of fat? And what about potatoes? Aren't they high in carbohydrates? What about bacon? Doesn't it clog your arteries? These are just some of the questions that I'm asked in regards to "good" and "bad" foods. First of all, let me first explain my view on labeling foods because I do not label foods as "good" or "bad". I label foods as being more or less nutrient dense. By that I mean that some foods have more micronutrients that our bodies need (whole foods) while others are less nutrient dense and don't give our cells what they need to give us energy, such as more processed foods.

There are many charts and systems that have been put in place over the last several years that have helped to clear a bit of the confusion based upon working towards a whole foods approach to nutrition. I'm not going to give you a list of “good/approved” and “bad/off-limits” foods. Instead, I like to think of foods on a spectrum from “good” to “better” to “best”. Strategically improve your food choices based upon where you are right now to feel, move, and look better. I love using this gradual approach because it stands by one of my favorite sayings: Progress over perfection!

It's not a matter of how fast you can lose weight, it's a matter of how you can customize your intake for your individual lifestyle and taste. In return, creating a plan that is sustainable for you while slowly losing weight at the same time. Use this 3 step guide (in the photo) to answer the following questions. Keep in mind that their approach is "eat more, some, and less" where I use the "good, better, and best" approach (you get the idea). How can you create your own personal approach by using the good, better, and best continuum? How can you build or create a mindful menu of "good, better, and best" foods that are right for YOU? No questions asked!

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