1.) Water. I put this as number one because it is obvious but not done enough and it is crucial. Everybody knows you need water but not enough people actually get the water they need. The bare minimum that should be in your diet is half your bodyweight in fluid ounces. Water helps hydrate the muscular system, lubricate joints, suppresses appetite, boosts performance, increase blood flow to the muscles, flushes out waster product/bacteria, and even prevents you being cranky! Much more benefits that aren’t listed also…
2.) Protein. This is another one that should be obvious but not many people are actually getting enough. Protein should be the majority of your diet, depending on your goals anywhere from 30-50%. Protein is needed to help recover and fuel your muscles, which allows you to train hard to get lean and build muscle. It is a staple in the diet that nobody should be without.
3.) Fish Oil. This supplement is a super food in a sense that it’s a must and should be taken daily. Fish oil can help with many things such as protein synthesis (by about 30%!), decreases protein breakdown, improved immune function, improved insulin sensitivity, improved nutrient delivery to cells, increased metabolic rate, reduced inflammation, reduced triglycerides levels, and improved brain health. All things important to the fit lifestyle.
4.) Vitamin D. This is mainly important for those of us who live in non-sunny areas, like Seattle. If you’re in Cali or somewhere with a lot of sun, you don’t need to stress it. But Vitamin-D is very important to take for optimal hormonal production and immune system function.
5.) Fiber. This is just to make sure your body is digesting foods properly, plus everybody needs a good pooping schedule in their lives. Veggies and berries are a great way to get this fiber in, shoot for around 30 grams per day and take a fiber supplement if needed to reach the goal.
6.) Greens. This means just about anything and everything that is green, and editable of course. Broccoli, green beans and spinach are my top 3 and I make sure to get some greens in each meal of the day. On top of what you eat, it would be a great idea to take a greens powder supplement.
7.) Vitamin-C. This is a great vitamin for a few reasons, not only does it keep away a cold but it can assist in fitness goals. Helps protect the immune system, hormone production, and also helps with high cortisol/adrenal fatigue.
8.) BCCA’s. Branched Chain Amino Acids are crucial in an athletic body’s diet, especially if your training fasted. BCCA’s help protein synthesis and helps avoid the break down of muscles and/or muscle loss.
9.) Coconut Oil. This is my most recommended oil to consume or for cooking. It helps burn fat, boosts thyroid function, increase metabolism, increase digestion, improve insulin sensitive, helps absorb fat-soluble vitamins, and boosts energy and endurance.
10.) Cayenne Pepper. This spice can benefit you more than you would think, not only does it help clear congested nasal passages, reduce pain and inflammation, help colon health, and prevent ulcers; but it is a natural thermogenic which can boost fat loss.
11.) Sweet Potatoes/Yams. These are my number one, go-to, carb sources. Potatoes are an excellent choice as your post workout carb not only because it provides you with a starch that is low on the GI track for recovery, but also because of its vitamin/mineral benefits. These benefits are many from fiber, vitamin-C and A, calcium, iron, magnesium, and potassium.