Monday, March 17, 2014

The hype of super foods

Being a martial artist and fitness trainer am often asked by those training what specific foods or super foods should they consume. Well my answer always had been eat a balanced diet. 

With the people all over the world getting ill often and many having a sedentary lifestyle, they tend to search for easier options than sweating out and making the body stronger and fitter by working out. This laziness is well exploited by certain people / businessmen by hyping up so called Super Foods. So lets look at if we really need them or not. 

This is my logical and realistic point of view, it is what makes common sense. The world has numerous countries and temperature zones all having varied weather patterns, soil, topography etc. The people living in different areas are also built or grow up with a body to suit the place and the kind of work they are meant to do. Similarly plants, vegetables, fruits and grains that grow in different areas are best needed for people in those areas. Even if you eat a food that is brimming with all the nutrients and minerals you may need, it is usually thrown out by the body and not absorbed completely as our body does not need huge quantities of them. The only way you benefit is by making your wallet lighter and a placebo effect of feeling healthier because you now ate some Magic Food.

I have been training for over 30 years now. Have never given much importance to any so called super food and in fact do not even consume any specific food often. I just maintain a balanced diet and try to eat all that I get locally. Now some may think that would make me unhealthy or unfit but if you do feel so you are welcome to come and train with me and you will see how fast you get winded before I even get warmed up. Nowadays there are so many so called super foods available all promising super health. I find it very amusing seeing people going out of the way to get them. I do not say these food items are not healthy or important, all I say is eat what you get locally and not what is hyped about. All greens have minerals and nutrients may be in varying percentages or traces. I have even found it funny that vegetarians and vegans feel they are weak or missing out on nutrients like creatine because they do not eat meat. Where as those who do keep loading their body with food that has creatine. I have been a non vegetarian most of my life have even tried being a pure vegetarian for 3 years, have even lived on only raw fruits and vegetables ( no rice, lentils or any cooked foods) for 6 months and now am Vegan too. Through all these different eating habits I have never felt weak or made sure I eat specific foods to compensate for lack of certain foods in a different eating preference. I feel if you are feeling that you need to compensate then there could be only two explanations - 1)- You miss what you can not eat now and are trying to get something that tastes as close to what you can not eat anymore, 2) - You are misguided and misled in to the unnecessary hype of super foods and feel you need them or will get weak or malnourished. Well both do not make sense. If you are craving something you can not eat then do not deprive yourself, eat it and stop eating it not because its is the latest thing to do but because you understand how it is not good for your body. If you are misled then well you just need to go and train and stop telling yourself you are weak. In our country the laborers who work for road construction and repair works are not even able to afford normal vegetables often. They end up eating rice and some spicy watery curry or dal with very little if any vegetables, yet they work daily for 8 - 10 hours under the hot sun and have well chiseled bodies that even regular gym goers and diet conscious people do not have. So are these laborers being over dosed with protein and other supplements by their employers or are they some sort of divine beings, who get tough and strong by virtually eating not even 1/4 of all that we eat. Well the answer is simple GO TRAIN. 




* Do consult a qualified trainer before embarking on a training program, excessive training could cause severe injuries, fatigue or even permanent damage to the body. Start slowly and build on it.   

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