My two biggest passions in life at Food and Fitness. I moved to Dubai 10 years ago and like many discovered the vast range of high quality restaurants and the Friday institution that is “Brunch.”
I come from a background of food and nutrition and am well informed on what I should and shouldn’t eat to keep my body functioning at its optimum level, but put me in-front of a new menu or an array of a beautiful brunch and the risk of me counteracting everything I practise on a day to day basis comes into question. With approximately 450 hotels serving brunch and a large range of restaurants the temptations for over indulgence are prevalent.
With current statistics showing that within the UAE population, that currently stands at 9.5 million with 80% expats. 70% of men and 67% of women aged 15 years and older are considered overweight. This in turn has led to a mounting tide of lifestyle disorders also known as Diseases of Affluence. The top 3 health problems in the UAE are: Obesity, Diabetes – predominantly Type 2 and cardiovascular disease.
Statistics from Gulf News The state of the UAE’s health 2016.
I think we all know the benefits of being healthy from improved energy levels enabling you to increase your productivity, good mental health, improved sleep and protecting yourself against illness but more importantly I would ask;
Why is being healthy important to you
Is it about improving your self-confidence, is it about wanting more energy so you can work full time and have time to give your best to your partner and family.
Is it about wanting to tick that 10KM run off your bucket list?
The link between feeling good and looking good is well proven. How we feel is so important and our core values are incredibly influential in the day to day food choices we make. It also appears that the more advanced a nation we become the worst our diets become.
Are we designed to consume dairy, artificial additives, refined or heavily processed foods that are unrecognisable from their original form or are we designed to consume Fruit and vegetables, meat, fish and seafood? Nuts, seeds and oils and small amounts of ancient grains and pulses? I would suggest the latter.
I feel very strongly that we should not “diet.” It’s a short term fix that is a constant cycle of elation and disappointment. My diet is part of a lifestyle I choose to adhere to every day, it’s a Food, Fitness and Wellbeing lifestyle that I have evolved to suit me. Our body tells us what we need, but as we have evolved as a species we have lost the ability to do this and so our choices and our tendency for over-indulgence are often in conflict.
How do we get back in tune with our bodies?
Use the balanced plate as a guide for all meals. It’s like a pie chart on a plate. The food groups are far more user friendly that nutrients as it easy to identify fruit and vegetables rather than a percentage of Fat, Protein, Carbohydrates, Vitamins and Minerals within a food. As a starting point your portion of meat, fish or beans should be the size of your palm. Once you have established this then all the other food groups are in ratio to this. It’s important to remember, we as humans need all food groups
Choose foods from the menu as close to their original form. I have yet to see a fish swimming along with a batter jacket!!
Trust your chef, they are experienced artists and know how to prepare food that is balanced in flavour and texture and seasoned to perfection. Avoid adding extra salt and sauces. Food is to be enjoyed, It should not be a reward and punishment relationship, let the chef use their experience to produce a meal that will be enjoyed.
I love food and want to try all that the UAE has to offer I really don’t believe you should have to go to a beautiful restaurant and order the side salad. This is not my idea of enjoyment and I would bet it is not yours either.
How can we stay healthy without worrying what to order?
Simple follow the same 3 steps for getting back in tune with your body.
To condition ourselves for success and function at am optimum level I embrace Food, Fitness and Well-being as a holistic approach. They are all interlinked and working on all elements will provide you with the best opportunity for success and empower you to be the very best version of yourself.
If you’d like to experience working with Food and Fitness by Louise and be Fit, Fabulous and Forty, visit my website www.foodandfitnessbylouise.
I am running an exclusive Small Group Food and Fitness Challenge commencing on
Sunday 23 September 2018.
Sign up below and receive the following completely FREE:
Easy to follow “To do” List with strategies you can begin implementing today to help you to fit back into your favourite outfit at 40+.
5 days of Food, Fitness and Well-being advice designed to support you to be the best version of you and Fit, Fabulous and Forty.
Need to know information about your Small Group Food and Fitness Challenge with details of times, locations, cost and what’s included.
Places are limited so booking is essential.