Updated: Jan 20

Feeling and looking good on the outside, comes from feeling good on the inside!

What makes a good grocery list for anyone? A list should contain foods that are fresh, are whole foods and which lend themself to supporting and nourishing the body, its needs and function for daily performance. For an athlete, these foods should support fuelling and recovery needs, as well as health (immune health, liver health, gut health, all of which become compromised from the pressures of high intense activity, physically and psychologically).

Rule of thumb, when shopping, and I am sure youv've heard this all your days - stick to the perimeter!!! Very rarely will you see me down an aisle. Most fresh produce, meat, seafood, nuts and seeds are on the perimeter of the grocery store. The aisles are there to test your willpower with bright packaging, marketing slogans and promise of a new healthier you if you consume this bar!

Eat with purpose! If your purpose is to eat to support your overall wellbeing, health, performance and recovery goals, you need to choose real, minimally processed foods. Highly processed foods are stripped of nutrients and loaded with chemicals, added salt, sugar and fat that will not serve you and your purpose. You need to think brightly coloured fruits and vegetables (loaded with vitamins, minerals, fibre, antioxidants), oily fish and lean meats (anti-inflammatory, muscle maintenance, omega 3), nuts and seeds.

Do you ever flip the food packaging around and look at the ingredients list (even those foods we think are better for us, are not necessarily good for us at all). BE CAREFUL, if you cannot pronounce it or there are more than 5 ingredients - ignore it.

We have become a nation that obsesses over grams of carbohydrates, protein, fat, calories - whilst this is necessary for high-performing athletes, the food consumed has to fill not only the health, performance and recovery needs, it has to nourish and support the body's cells and organs and regulate the body's functioning.

I am often asked, is it okay to buy frozen fruits and vegetables? Yes it is perfectly fine. Frozen fruits and vegetables retain their vitamins and minerals and there is no change to the carbohydrate, protein or fat content. In some cases, frozen foods have more vitamins and minerals compared to fresh because fresh foods lose vitamins and minerals over time while freezing preserves nutrients, although with that said, the nutrient content can significantly decrease depending on how you cook with them.

Okay, this rule is simple....we always need basics. Same applies when eating with a purpose. You know you're going to need good quality protein, whether plant-based, meat, poultry or sea food, fruit, vegetables, salad ingredients, nuts, seeds, nut butters, legumes, bread/wraps/oatcakes, cheese, dark chocolate etc.

Your list of staples will help you to eat better, eat balanced meals and eat for your purpose.

My typical basic grocery list looks like this:

  1. Chicken Thighs

  2. Chickpeas

  3. Salmon

  4. Avocado, Cherry Tomatoes on the Vine, Cucumber, Mixed Salad

  5. Oat Milk

  6. Cottage Cheese

  7. Greek Yoghurt

  8. Bananas

  9. Peppers

  10. Broccoli

Do not Grocery Shop Hungry - Do this and you will overbuy and not necessarily make the right decisions. Rotate your food choices - why? 1) stops you building an intolerance to specific foods. 2) Provides your body with a variety of nutrients.

PLAN YOUR MEALS! If you plan what you are going to eat for the week, you won't get caught short and make a detour for fast food or the wrong food. Batch cook, make sauces in advance or have at least 2-3 recipes you know you can turn to and whip up quickly.

Grab my recommended shopping list for athlete's here.

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