The Five

Low-carb diets limit the intake of carbohydrates–a substance primarily found in sugary foods, bread, and pasta. Studies show that a diet low in carbohydrates can increase positive health markers and can lead to weight loss. 

While low-carb diets have been common for decades, many people still have questions about exactly what “low-carb” means. 

low carb

That’s why Fit Five Meals has put together this low-carb guide: 

What is “low-carb”? 

A low-carb diet means that you eat fewer carbohydrates and eat a higher portion of healthy protein and fat. Sugars and starches–those things you avoid on a low-carb diet–cause spikes in insulin levels. Sticking with proteins and natural fats helps to alleviate those spokes and increase your body’s ability to burn through stores of fat. 

About fat: on a low-carb diet you don’t have to be overly concerned with naturally occurring fats. Limiting sugars and doubling down on proteins and healthy fats can increase feelings of satiation and promote weight loss. 

Low-carb diets can make it easier to lose weight and help to control your blood sugar levels

What should/shouldn’t I eat? 

Low-carb diets are some of the simplest to follow. Instead of counting calories or tracking other nutritional numbers, the low-carb diet identifies one thing–carbohydrates–to avoid. 

Eat This

Meat and fish are great staples of a low-carb diet. Eggs, natural fats like butter, and vegetables–especially those grown above ground–help to fill out a low-carb grocery list while making it possible to get all the nutrients you need. 

Don’t Eat This

Sugars and starches. That’s it. Avoid breads, pasta, rice, beans, and potatoes. 

While eating a low-carb diet seems easy, finding foods that you enjoy to replace former staples can be tough. That’s where Fit Five Meals comes in. We’ve got delicious, pre-planned, and pre-made meals to fit your low-carb lifestyle. Want to know more? Here’s how it works. 

Habits are one of the best ways to change your life. Cultivating healthy habits like regular exercise and positive psychological change can be life-altering. We know that this holds true for what we fuel our bodies with as well with eating habits. 

Then why is it so hard to build healthy eating habits? 

eating habits

Habits, in general, are hard to break. That’s what makes the power of habitual activity so strong. When you’ve spent the better part of a lifetime constructing unhealthy eating habits, then making a positive change can be hard. But there are some ways to make the process easier. 

Here’s how to build healthy eating habits: 

Keep It Close

If you want to build healthy eating habits, then keeping healthy food close at hand is a great place to start. Make sure that you always have healthy options nearby. That makes it easier to reach for fruits, vegetables, or whole grains instead of something less satisfying. Focusing on adding healthy food to your diet frames the whole habit-building process in positive terms. It’s about what you are adding and less about what you might be taking away or eating less of. 

At home, be sure to stock whole foods on the counter, in the cabinets, and behind the refrigerator door. That way healthy options are almost always within arms reach. At work, you can use your office drawer or even your desktop as a storage space for whole foods for when you need them. 

A Family Affair

Accountability is one of the best tools for building habits. When it comes to healthy eating, planning to eat meals with someone else can make all the difference. If you live with other people–your partner, spouse, kids, or roommate–then make it a regular occurrence to eat together at the table. Live alone? No problem! Invite a friend over for dinner or take turns hosting one another regularly. 

Buy a Book

Buying a healthy recipe book is a great place to start. Most of the time you’ll be able to create grocery or shopping lists directly from the recipes themselves. This takes the guesswork out of grocery shopping and makes meal planning easier. For those building healthy eating habits for the first time, having a how-to manual can help ease the transition to more at-home cooking. 

Fit Five Meals makes it easy to build healthy eating habits by providing meals that fit your life. Each of our pre-portioned meals comes pre-cooked and ready to eat, complete with all the whole foods that help lay the groundwork for a healthy diet. 

Find out more!

When planning a path to better nutrition, charting the amount of sugar you intake can make a ton of difference and make sure you’re not consuming too much sugar. Sugar is an incredibly common addition to prepackaged and prepared foods, making it incredibly difficult to track exactly how much you might be eating every day. 

According to the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, the average American consumes 17 teaspoons of sugar every day. That’s 270 calories of extra sugar. 

That might not seem like a lot, but sugar is packed with calories but lacks any form of nutrients to sustain proper health and nutrition. Cutting back on the amount of sugar you intake and adding foods packed with vitamins, minerals, and nutrients will revolutionalize your health and fitness goals. 

If you’re wondering whether or not you’re consuming too much sugar, here are a few signs you might want to watch your intake more closely: 

Cravings

Cravings are normal, but overwhelming cravings for sugar and sweet things could be an indication that you’re consuming too much sugar. The more sugar you eat, the more you crave. Sugar gives your system a burst of energy just before bottoming out, leaving your system craving more. That trigger response means you might want to find another alternative for your diet. 

Moodiness and Sluggishness

Everyone has natural cycles–periods where they feel slightly more energized and times when they might be more sluggish. What isn’t good is when these swings are a result of drastic changes in the amount of sugar in your system. After sugar causes a spike of insulin, there is an inevitable crash. Avoiding sugar will help your body naturally regulate and help to alleviate those huge swings in mood and energy. 

too much sugar

Cavities 

If you’ve seen an increase in the number of cavities in your mouth, there’s a good chance that sugar is to blame. Eating too much sugar throws off the natural ecosystem in our mouth and allows bad, cavity-causing bacteria to thrive. 

Weight Gain 

Since sugar has none of the nutrients, protein, and fibers that helps to sustain your body or give you the sensation of “feeling full”, it doesn’t feel you up. And since those empty calories aren’t giving you the nutrients you need, you might be eating more than usual. Coupled with the impact that sugar has on the insulin levels in your body, having a diet with too much sugar is a recipe for dramatic weight gain. 

Tracking the amount of sugar in your meals can be difficult. Fit Five Meals makes it easy! Each of our meals are crafted to provide you with the specific diet you’re looking for–and you’ll be able to see how much sugar you eat in each meal. 

Check our menu here!

Do you feel bombarded by a constant sense of nervousness or worry? If you do, you aren’t alone. 

Feelings of anxiety are common and often require medication or treatment to manage. In addition to or instead of medication, there are a host of strategies that can help reduce anxiety and lead to a more calm state of being. 

Even eating healthy foods can help reduce anxiety. The nutrients we put into our bodies are important for overall health, and not all foods are created equally. 

If you’re looking for foods that can help you reduce anxiety, here are a few: 

Green Tea

Green tea contains L-theanine, an amino acid that has been shown to have an overall positive impact on brain health and lead to a reduction in anxiety. Studies have even shown that drinking liquids rich in L-theanine can lower cortisol levels. Lowering cortisol or stress levels is a great way to reduce anxiety. 

reduce anxiety

Turmeric 

Turmeric contains curcumin, a compound linked to promoting brain health and preventing anxiety disorders. Curcumin helps by reducing inflammation and preventing brain damage to cells. 

Chamomile

Chamomile tea has long been respected as a way to relax and unwind. Its high levels of antioxidants reduce inflammation and might help to relieve feelings of nervousness or anxiety. One study showed that those who consumed chamomile extract for eight weeks saw a reduction in symptoms of depression and anxiety. 

Dark Chocolate 

Dark chocolate contains flavonols–antioxidants that support healthy brain function. By improving blood flow, particularly to the brain, flavonols help humans adapt to stressful situations, thereby reducing sensations frequently associated with anxiety. In one study, individuals who consumed dark chocolate twice a day for a period of two weeks showed decreased stress levels, including cortisol. Dark chocolate has also been shown to increase serotonin levels. 

The food we eat has a dramatic impact on our overall health. When it comes to anxiety reduction, general mental health, and overall brain function, eating a well-balanced diet is one of the best things you can do to improve your life. Fit Five Meals has meal options that are tailormade to support proper nutrition, making it easy to eat right.

Having a sharp mind helps to improve every aspect of your life. Memory, productivity, recall, and overall better mental performance will help you be a better parent, partner, and employee. On the other hand, feeling sluggish and mentally dull can wreak havoc on your wellbeing. 

If you want to get the most out of your mind, here are the best foods to boost memory and productivity:  

Fish

Fatty fish is packed with omega-3 fatty acids. 60% of your brain is made up of fats and half of those are of the omega-3 fatty variety. As such, eating a healthy amount of salmon, trout, and sardines can boost brain health and improve learning, memory, and productivity. 

Blueberries

Deep-colored berries, like blueberries, are filled with plant compounds with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects. Antioxidants may delay brain aging and improve memory, making blueberries a great addition to your diet if you want to boost memory and productivity, keeping you operating at peak mental function for longer. 

productivity

Broccoli 

Like berries, broccoli is flush with antioxidants. Add to that a healthy dose of vitamin K–more than 100% of your recommended daily servings in a single serving of the vegetable–and you’ve got a recipe to protect the brain against damage thanks to its anti-inflammatory effects. 

Pumpkin Seeds

Pumpkin seeds are an excellent source of magnesium, iron, zinc, and copper. Each of these micronutrients are important for brain health and help improve brain function. 

Nuts 

Research has shown that eating nuts help improve heart function. Having a healthy heart goes a long way towards having a healthy brain. In fact, research has indicated that people who regularly eat nuts over the course of several years might have a sharper memory compared to those who don’t regularly eat nuts. Want to know the nut that packs the biggest punch? Walnuts. They are also filled with omega-3 fatty acids. 

Eggs

Eggs are a good source of several nutrients, including B6, B12, and choline. Choline is an important micronutrient that your brain uses to regulate mood and memory. Sadly, most people don’t get enough choline in their diet, but egg yolks are packed with it. Coupled with the B vitamins found in eggs, this makes for a delicious way to improve memory and productivity. 

Green Tea 

Green tea has been shown to improve alertness, performance, memory, and focus. Additionally, the amino acids found in green tea can reduce anxiety thereby further improving recall and attention. 

Looking for an easy way to get the nutrients you need to support healthy brain function? Fit Five Meals makes it fast, easy, and reliable by offering pre-made meals with all the nutrition that you need. 

Check out our menu!

Getting children–especially toddlers–to eat healthy food can feel like pulling teeth. Even so, it’s a common plight for parents. According to recent studies, potatoes–primarily in french-fry form–are the most common vegetable eaten by toddlers. It makes sense; 42% of kids between 15 months and two years eat fast food each day. 

If you want to encourage your toddler to eat healthy foods, here are four ways to try: 

1. Have a plan. 

As with any conquest, it’s best to have a battle plan. Approaching mealtime with intention will go a long way towards getting your toddler to eat or try healthier foods. Try planning out two or three days of meals at a time, including a balanced diet for each day. Shoot to have a protein, whole-grain carbohydrate, and one fruit or vegetable on the plate at mealtime. 

And don’t skimp on the snacks. Children need to eat every three to four hours. This includes three meals, two snacks, and plenty of fluids. Having a plan will give you the freedom to include certain food groups at certain times during the day and introduce new items from time to time. 

2. Introduce new foods slowly. 

Speaking of introducing new food items, make sure that new things are introduced slowly. Toddlers are naturally averse to new foods. When you want to introduce your toddler to something new, start small. Take broccoli for instance. Include one floret at mealtime, call it by a cute nickname, and see what happens. If new foods don’t catch on, try offering condiments with vegetables. Introducing foods slowly allows your toddler time to adjust and get comfortable with certain items without being overwhelmed. 

toddler

3. Make mornings count. 

Breakfast has been called “the most important meal of the day.” When it comes to getting a jumpstart on daily nutrition for your toddler, it just might be true. Most families don’t get enough fiber on a daily basis, so work some in during the first meal of the day. High-fiber cereals are a great way to make sure that each day starts off on the right foot. You can also go the extra mile and cook up whole-grain pancakes or waffles. 

4. Model a healthy relationship with food. 

Like many other things, when it comes to nutrition we learn to imitate our parents. Whether you realize it or not, your toddler will learn to interact with and approach food in a similar manner as you. By modeling a healthy relationship with food you’ll encourage your toddler to do the same. 

If you struggle with eating healthy foods yourself, then Fit Five Meals can help! With fresh food that fits your life, Fit Five Meals will help you model a healthy relationship with food while ensuring you get all the nutrients to operate at your best.