Learning to make the right diet choices even when it comes to really simple and subtle stuff can be a great way to tweak your metabolism. This way you can help your body enjoy the benefits of all your other efforts (workouts included) without giving up on what you like or making any major changes. Even if you’re not looking to get precisely ripped but just maintain a healthy dose of activity or staying more or less in shape, by making the right diet choices you can make it all easier. Here is what you should choose whenever you have the option.
1. Low Fat Yogurt vs. Full Fat Yogurt (and Milk or Cheese)
Don’t join the bandwagon of people who think low fat is the better version when it comes to dairy products; the assumption couldn’t be further from the truth. In order to make those products taste decent with so much of their natural fat removed from them, producers usually load them up with sugar and artificial additives which are way worse for your diet and health. Anyway, when trying to achieve a leaner form, fats (especially good, natural fats) are not the problem, carbs are, so staying away from sugar but not from fat is one of the smartest diet choices around.
2. Whole Grains vs. Regular Grains
This is probably a dilemma with an easier to guess answer. Whole grains are obviously one of the ‘good’ diet choices every health news source reports on, and we’re happy to confirm siding with them too. Whenever you can, whether we’re talking about breads or pasta or rice or anything else up that alley, go for whole grains. They have the same amount of calories as their refined counterparts, but their energy (carbs) gets absorbed into your system much slower, reducing the sudden spikes in your blood sugar and keeping you satiated for longer.
3. Muffins vs. Cake
Muffins can be only a fake better option than any other form of cake, especially if bought from a store or bakery that loads them with sugar, trans fats and a glaze and so on. But if you read the ingredient list carefully and make sure you choose something not loaded with such hidden ingredients, muffins can indeed be a healthy snack option. Go for ones containing natural fruit and, if possible, whole grains.
4. Red Meat vs. White Meat
Meat is part of many dudes’ diets and we’re not about to advocate renouncing it. But there are better and worse diet choices in the meat department as well. You may hear that white meat is always preferable to red meat; while it’s true that red meat can hurt your health more, some diet choices involving red meat can be ok. Go for lean meats and from high quality sources, no matter if the meat is red or white; the protein intake will give you a nice metabolism boost. Still, if you consume both types (colors) of meat regularly, try to keep the red one at a 25% level and go for white in the rest of the time.
5. Fruit Juice vs. Soda
This last one doesn’t actually belong in the diet choices you should have and make, it’s more like a trick question. Whenever wondering what to choose between fruit juices and sodas, your answer should be none of the above. Yes, fruit juices (especially cold-pressed, natural ones) are widely regarded as a super-healthy option in any good diet, but the part often overlooked is how much sugar they actually contain. The human body isn’t meant to take on that much fruit sugar all at once, because you usually eat the entire fruit, with its fiber and everything else. Our advice is to just stay away from juices altogether (and no, diet soda is definitely not a better option) and just stick with plain water and unsweetened tea or coffee. It’s one of the best diet choices you can tweak.