Zone Nutrition December 08 2014
What is zone nutrition?
The Zone Diet was invented by Dr Barry Sears - you can view the zone website here. Essentially, the concept is that we should balance each of our meals by the three types of macronutrient (fuel types) that our body uses in different ways. These are carbohydrates, protein, and fats. The diet recommends that for most people, these macro-nutrients should by consumed as closely as possible to the ratio (by ENERGY content, not by weight):
- 40% carbohydrate
- 30% protein
- 30% fat
Generally, for most people, this translates (in comparison to a standard western diet) as:
- Protein more consistently throughout the day - with each meal
- Less low quality, and more high quality fats - AVOID certain fats hidden in some processed & packaged foods e.g. chips/ some crackers
- A little or a lot less carbohydrates, and make sure the carbs you eat, again, are high quality and provide other nutrition (found in any whole food).
The quality of foods consumed is also important. That is - we should seek whole foods as much as possible that provide plenty of miconutrients (vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, etc) and good healthy sources of protein and fats. Foods that are processed in undesirable ways should be avoided.
I have found these 2 concepts pretty much (along with awareness of food intolerance/ allergy) the most important pieces of nutritional knowledge in my toolkit.
This knowledge - when I use it consistently - hugely helps me in helping my energy levels to stay stable, mind focused, avoid afternoon slumps (including the feeling like I could just fall asleep at my desk or in a meeting!) and avoid that horrible, often slightly nauseous feeling that I associate with unstable blood sugar levels. Keeping the right balance makes me productive, and makes me want to exercise. It gives me stamina for endurance exercise, or for intense resistance training.
To find out more, I highly recommend you read Dr Sears' original book which launched his Zone movement. The book takes you through which foods are rich in what macronutrients, and which foods/ fats etc are best to avoid.
Many times it is not always possible to source and eat a balanced and healthy meal of vegetarian or quality animal protein, along with vegetables and healthy fats, etc. This is easier to achieve at dinner time (or lunch time if you are at home or have a wonderful local cafe serving these meals).
So, many of the foods and recipes you will find here on Vibrant Nutrition are intended to help you achieve a good balance of macro-nutrients (and plenty of micronutrients - vitamins and minerals) throughout your day in all your meal and snack intervals.
Nuzest Clean Lean Protein is a great addition to a balanced breakfast or makes a great afternoon boost as a key component of a smoothie/ shake.
Good Health Chia Seeds are a great vegetarian source of protein, and also contain healthy fats and fibre.
Many of our products are fantastic additions to your breakfast or afternoon smoothie, which can add a great protein boost to your day.
Mercola Cocoa Cassava Bars contain a moderate amount of protein, plenty of healthy fats and a moderate amount of carbohydrates. They won't give you a sugar high or drop like many other treat foods.
Mercola Whey Bars are high in protein and moderately high in quality fats, and make a great snack for when your protein requirements are higher, or to re-balance when you have eaten more carbs than optimal.