Celebrity chef, Emmanuel Stroobant, unveiled a day-to-day nutrition plan at J.P. Morgan’s Company Reception, to help participants in their preparation for the run. The specially designed meal plan features daily menus that are quick and easy for executives to prepare and incorporate into their busy schedules.
The aim of this program is to prepare you for the upcoming 5.6km marathon, but ultimately, a good nutrition plan can help lead to a much better lifestyle. A basic understanding of how food reacts in our bodies can help us to live a better life.
Eating the right food will help in performing better, not just only on the race track
but in the office or in life in general as well.
One size does not fit all:
Unfortunately, there is no miracle. We all have different tastes, different preferences
and different lifestyles. Do you prefer croissant and coffee or fish balls and noodles?
Do you like to cook, do you have an equipped kitchen, do you have time? Do you
have a house-helper? Are you single or do you have a family?
There are so many variables that it is very difficult to design a single program for
everyone. However, we have designed this program to address most situations, the
main one being to have a “busy executive lifestyle”.
Not what but how:
To start right, it is important to look at the good points, often it is not WHAT you eat,
but HOW you eat. Often, we have lunch in a hurry because we are busy, we skip
breakfast because we are late and we skip dinner but gobble a bag of chips at 11pm
because we are starving.
For 3 weeks (the time of this program) try to sleep a little earlier, watch less TV (it
can be recorded or just skipped) and Facebook will still be there tomorrow. As you
sleep earlier, you may realise you can wake up a little earlier and have a “real”
breakfast. It is in the name “break” fast!
Take 15 minutes to sit and eat SLOWLY your lunch, chewing, tasting the flavours,
feeling the textures and talking to someone (not texting) will change your
experience with food.
It is not what, it is how you eat.
How to order in restaurant:
This is the million dollar question: the classic situation where we have no choice but
entertain a client for lunch or dinner or both sometimes.
1. Become allergic! Chefs and restaurant managers are trained to deal with
allergies. They will rarely take someone seriously on a diet but will always be
very cautious with allergies. We respect “halal” requests, I am allergic to
butter or I am allergic to deep fried food (palm oil for example).
Most restaurants will be happy to entertain a request for specific ingredients; try a
pizza with tomato, basil, olive and ham but no cheese, it cuts half the calories! Not to mention that most “cheap” pizzas are made with “analogue cheese” or
lygomme! Interested to know what you really eat? Google “analogue cheese”.
2. Ask to have sauce or dressing separated. Ask to change the starch for a salad
or for vegetable. Skip dessert or just have a tea instead.
3. Eat SLOWLY and take your time.
Remember we said: “there is NO miracle”! There is a lot to cover:
1. The obvious; alcohol is not good for you. If there is no choice, I recommend
quality versus quantity!
2. Remember the “allergy” idea. Another option is “I am taking these “tablets”
and I cannot drink for 3 weeks!”
3. Drink PLENTY of water. This is an IMPORTANT ONE: Google “water therapy” or try http://www.knowledgebase-script.com an amazing concept that I truly recommend you to try during your 3 week program. My way to do it is to keep a bottle of water next to me, put my alarm clock 1-hour before normal waking time. Drink the water and go back to sleep.
4. Avoid caffeine. This one is hard for me and I still have an espresso in the
morning, but finishing a meal with a large cup of tea (green or herbal)
washes the fat covering the lining of your stomach, it eases the digestion and
facilitates the intake of micro-nutrient in your system. In other words, you
don’t feel hungry so fast.
5. Our brain does not distinguish the difference between “I am hungry” or “I am
thirsty”. Next time you feel hungry, try and drink a cup of tea or a large glass
of water first.
6. Wine is better than beer, beer is better than hard liquor, hard liquors are
better than hard liquor and mixer. But overall, abstaining from drinking has
changed my life and I recommend a trial to anyone who has the self-determination to achieve something important.
Don’t skip meals.
- Plan your meal.
- If you stock good food, you’ll eat good food.
- Eat plenty of fresh food (real food!).
- Eat organic when possible.
- Experiment, try & play, there must be healthy options that you’ll enjoy.
- Avoid red meat. The amount of toxins (injection of hormones, ammonia, antibiotics) end up in your body. There are many alternative sources of protein and truly you don’t need so much protein, short of being a professional bodybuilder.
- Surround yourself with positive/supportive people.
- Don’t eat too late (before bed time).
Motivation is key: for yourself, for your loved one? Being healthier will make you happier and will make them happier.
How to use this program: (Designed for Busy executive)
The program is designed to be used according to your taste. There is a lot of
information about the products/food style you can look for – either in restaurants
or to cook at home. There is no specific order for the meal plan, it is why I did a list
of breakfast, lunches and dinners. Most meals are balanced and the quantities are
indicative if you are new at cooking. Most recipes are done for 1 but can be doubled
or quadrupled if needed.
Most lunches can be done a day ahead and “packed” to the office. Most dinners take
less than 15 minutes to prepare. The program is only 3 weeks. I personally shop on
weekends and prepare on Sundays most of the week long lunches. I also discovered
that some recipes fit my taste better and there is nothing stopping to repeat and
repeat and repeat the same recipe. I am eating chia seed pudding for weeks for
breakfast! It takes 3 minute to prepare 1 week of breakfast!
Basic nutrition understanding:
In a nutshell:
There are 3 major groups of nutrients: carbohydrates, proteins and fats. We need all
of them. Carbohydrates (sugar) are often classified by their ability to be absorbed by
the body. The one that takes longer to be absorbed are better as they regulate the
blood sugar level, this is particularly important for the race.
Below is a list of basic carbohydrates. Below 50 means it takes longer time to be
absorbed (or low GI) and above 50 should be avoided. As your body recognises
carbohydrates, it sends a signal to your pancreas to release insulin. Insulin react
with fats as well, this is why desserts such as ice- cream or chips are not good for
you as they are high in both sugar and fat.
So try to avoid the combination fat + sugar. Fat is always looked at as “the big bad
wolf”. Fat is needed for our bodies to function (mainly for the brain). Try to stay
away from fat from meat (pork belly, chicken skin) but also deep fried items. Most
restaurants use the cheapest “vegetable” oil to deep fry (meaning a combination of
palm and coconut oil that has been chemically treated to last as long as possible).
Understanding why animal fat is bad can be explained in a very simple way: An
animal’s body temperature is often higher than humans (pigs are 39.5) and their
fats solidifies in a cooler environment (our arteries for instance).
Protein is often considered as the “needed” element. But according to USRDA Men
only need 1g of protein per KG of weight. Women 0.8g! So if you are 80Kg man, you
need 80g/day.A sample meal plan of how much protein you actually require:
2 eggs 25g 1 apple
Sandwich; 2 slices whole grain bread: 8g 1 no avocado: 4g 50g smoked salmon
10g 1Banana 1g
100g cooked potato: 2 g with 100g ground chicken: 21 g with cooked red bell
peppers, onions and 100g cooked kidney (red) beans: 24g. Total: 47g
Grand Total: 95g
JP Morgan Corporate Challenge