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Nutritional Requirements this Summer

Our Eating Habits Change from One Season to the Next

If you are anything like me, you will notice as the days get longer, and the mercury starts to rise, you start craving less protein and fatty foods, and craving more sweet foods. This is perfectly normal, and I’ll explain why.

Our bodies are a bit like the seasons, moving through cycles. In one day our bodies can often move through four seasons, just like Melbourne weather! And by moving through the seasons, I’m referring to the ratio of protein, fat and carbohydrates that how body requires in order to run at its best. In the morning you might find that eating too high a ratio of carbs might throw your system out, yet by lunchtime a meal higher in carbs might work well for you. Just as after an intense workout you will crave more carbs than normal, as your body needs the extra carbs to replace glycogen used by the muscles. This change in our macronutrient requirements can also be witnessed from one season to the next. In winter our bodies crave good quality proteins and fats, and less carbs – meat casseroles, bone broths, etc. which helps keep our bodies warm. And conversely as the weather starts to warm up our bodies start asking for a higher percentage of carb-based foods.

It’s important to remain aware that no matter what time of year (or day for that matter) our bodies require all three macronutrients – protein, fat and carbohydrates. Ideally every meal we eat will contain all three.

As we move into this summer, here are some recommendations on how to eat true to your body, so you can maximise your energy levels, and stay healthy and happy during these awesome Melbourne months:

  • When our bodies start asking for more sweet foods – don’t mistake that for a sign to up your intake of processed sugars and refined carbohydrate foods (bread, pasta, biscuits). Over the summer we have access to an abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables – these are the carbs our bodies are asking for
  • Add some more fruit to your breakfast and lunchtime meals, but try to avoid sweet foods later in the day. If you are craving an after-dinner treat – a raw date and nut ball is a great option – the key is to eat your sweet with good quality protein and fat, so to minimise the effect on your blood sugar
  • Start exploring the numerous healthy sweet food options at your disposal, and avoid the highly refined/processed garbage that we see all too often. Fruit is an obvious one. Raw balls. Homemade ice cream with fresh fruit, nuts, lucuma and coconut cream. Look out for more ideas and recipes in the coming blogs
  • Add more vegetable-rich salads to your meals – use as many summer vegetables as possible, like tomatoes!
  • And don’t forget to get outside as much as you can – enjoy the sun – soak up the vitamin D – exercise OUTDOORS with your friends and family…join a beach volleyball team – or just lay in a sunny park and energise your body

Stay healthy and enjoy the sun!

 

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