The benefits of natural foods

September 20, 2019

If you’re looking to improve your overall well-being, help is at hand. Our nutritionist Lucy-Ann Prideaux is here to shed some light on what we mean by natural foods, and what foods you should be avoiding in order to stay healthy.

Let’s first understand the concept of “wholefoods” versus “fragmented” or processed foods. Processed foods have been stripped of one or more of their original elements, i.e. they are missing valuable nutrients, fibres or water.

Natural foods, or whole foods (fresh whole fruits, vegetables, whole grains, seeds, nuts, beans and legumes) have been provided for us by nature. They are the perfect foods for our bodies to thrive and survive on. We are, after all, part of nature, and as such are designed to thrive on natural foods. Whilst we can certainly exist on processed foods, we cannot (I believe) survive on these foods alone.

Natural food, as nature intended

Man-made/factory-made/synthetic foods or any foods, which have been highly sugared, salted and processed, are devoid of so many of the nutrients and life-giving substances needed for optimal health. Foods as close to their natural state, or as nature intended them to be consumed are, in contrast, rich in health-giving nutrients that sustain and energise us.

Fresh, raw fruits and vegetables are also full the “life-force” of nature, which along with vital vitamins, minerals and phyto-nutrients lead to a positive, natural state of physical and mental health and vibrancy.

Not so natural foods: what to avoid

The following highly processed foods lead to ill-health and disease, and to the accumulation of body fat and weight gain:

  • White flour-based products which have a high glycaemic index and load (High GI or High GL)
  • Refined grains, many commercial “boxed” cereals
  • Refined sugars and syrups
  • Sugary foods and drinks such as biscuits, pastries, cake, canned drinks, sports drinks and sports products
  • Foods that are high in both refined sugar and commercial fats and trans fats, like manufactured biscuits, many cereal and breakfast bars, processed protein and energy bars (unlike Trek bars), cakes, pastries, chocolate bars, sweets etc.

Doesn’t it make sense to move toward nature and simply eat natural foods, like Trek Protein Energy Bars?

Looking for healthy snacks?

If you’re after a snack made with natural ingredients why not try these protein bars from the Trek range:

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Why is Protein Important for Exercise?

Protein is a macronutrient. To put it simply, protein is one of the main nutrients that every person needs to maintain a healthy body. It helps to repair any internal or external damage, supports the immune system and contributes to an overall feeling of wellbeing.

What are Macronutrients?

When we consider the nutritional needs of the body in order to survive and function, we can broadly divide or define the diet into macronutrients (carbohydrate, protein and fat), and micronutrients (vitamins and minerals).

What are Micronutrients?

While macronutrients supply us with the necessary calories (energy) to move and function on a daily basis, micronutrients are the “spark plugs” that literally turn on the ignition, helping the body to effectively and efficiently utilise calories, and driving the many biochemical reactions that occur in our cells.