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Beach Body By Memorial Day: Nutrition

By JILL REALE

UTICA, N.Y. (WKTV)- Getting your beach body  is not just about working out, it is also about what you consume and that starts in the produce aisle.

Whether you are trying to maintain your current weight or lose a few pounds, it comes down to how many calories you take in, compared to how many you burn. but exactly how many calories? It isn't a one size fits all formula, varies from person to person based on age, sex, lifestyle and metabolism. 

Matt Vasco, Nutritionist and Fitness Expert, says that " Rather than focusing on calories alone, the idea is to try to replace what calories you are eating currently, that may be non nutrient dense, with better choices. Wholesome foods, close to the earth, whole grains, colorful vegetables and a wide variety of protein choices."

But be careful about food labels when grocery shopping, as looks can be deceiving. Stay away from big, bold labels on the front that may say "no sugar added" or "light" or "fat free". It is all about the label on the back, the nutritional label. Make sure that you are purchasing an item with natural ingredients with no artificial flavors or processed foods. The good news is that technology can actual help you pick out healthy food options.

"Whether you use a fit pal or other applications, even on smart phones, where you can scan a bar code and get a calorie count and so forth and so on. So it doesn't have to be as tedious as you may think but it pays off big dividends," says Vasco.

Besides eating healthy food, it is also to eat often. "I am a big fan of five or six meals a day but they are small and for most people it is meals and snacks," states Vasco

And these meals or snacks include carbs, protein and fats, good fats. What exactly are good fats? Vasco explains that  "Good fats in our world are typically are and not limited to nuts, peanuts, peanut butter, avocado, olive oil, but then there are a number of others, depending on what people really like."

Many people think that dieting during the holidays is the hardest but it is actually the summer time due to numerous bar-b-ques and picnics. But don't worry, you will not lose that beach body by eating a hamburger.

Vasco actually encourages a cheat meal. "I think if you are smart and you have a good structured quality program throughout the week, and you have a barbecue on the weekend, you should be able to consume it in moderation without any guilt, without any feeling that you just disrupted your entire week's worth of effort.  We believe that results are obtained through a persistent, consistent, enthusiastic application of a program that works for you. "

If you are thinking of kick starting a healthy, well balanced diet, here are some tips for you:

-Eat 5 to 6 small meals or snacks a day

-Each meal around 300-400 calories

-Each snack around 150-200 calories

-Focus on lean protein (chicken, fish, turkey), fresh fruits and vegetables and whole grains

-Drink plenty of water, always have a water bottle handy

-Stick to 40% Lean Protein 40% Whole Grain Carbs 20% Good fats

-Eat half of your carb intake during breakfast

-Stay away from sugary and fruity alcoholic drinks

-Allow yourself one cheat meal a week

-Keep a Food Journal

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