Written by Laura Bahmann
In our last blog post ‘7 ways to support your immune system’, we highlighted the importance of eating a healthy, nutrient-dense diet to help you maintain good health and support a healthy immune system.
In this post, we will go into more detail about a variety of foods you should be eating as part of a balanced diet and leading a healthy lifestyle, particularly during the extraordinary circumstances of lockdown.
We include the following tips:
- Eat organic, grass-fed beef
- Choose pastured free-range eggs
- Enjoy lots of fresh fruits and vegetables high in micronutrients
- Stick to good, healthy oils (MCT oil)
- Increase your protein intake
Eat organic grass-fed beef
Grass-fed beef is one of the most nutrient-dense, high-quality meats. It contains up to six times more healthy omega-3 fatty acids as other meat sources, and is full of micronutrients.
Many people are taking advantage of their daily allowance of exercise during lockdown to go running. After physical activity - particularly cardio - it’s crucial to replace the electrolytes you’ve lost.
The great thing about grass-fed beef is that it contains all three essential electrolytes: sodium, potassium and magnesium.
One grass-fed beef steak contains 118 mg of sodium, 49 mg of magnesium and 732 mg of potassium, making it a perfect source of electrolytes if you’ve started going out for a run more often. 
Nutritional Value of 100g grass-fed strip steak:
- 25 g protein
- 23 mg omega–3 fatty acids
- 7 mg Vitamin B6 (70% DV)
- 35 mcg Vitamin B12 (2.7% mcg)
- 5 mg Calcium (2% DV)
- 2mg Iron (22% DV)
- 25 mg Magnesium (12% DV)
- 227 mg Phosphorus (45% DV)
- 85 mg Zinc (52% DV)
- 5 mcg Selenium (64% DV)
Choose pastured free-range eggs
Pastured free range eggs are the best, because the chickens can eat insects and plants and move freely in their natural environment. The nutrients they’re consuming will be transferred into their eggs, adding to their high nutritional value.
Compared to eggs from caged hens, free range eggs contain twice as many omega-3 fatty acids, seven times more pro-vitamin A beta carotene, three times more vitamin E, a third less cholesterol and a quarter less saturated fat.
Free range eggs also contain a small amount of other vitamins and minerals, including calcium, iron, potassium, zinc, manganese, vitamin E and folate. Nutritional value of one large egg:
- 77 kcal, 6g protein, 5g fat, 0g carbs
- Vitamin B2 (riboflavin): 15% of the RDA
- Vitamin B12: 9% of the RDA
- Vitamin B2 (riboflavin): 15% of the RDA
- Vitamin A: 6% of the RDA
- Vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid): 7% of the RDA
- Selenium: 22% of the RDA
- Also contains a small amount of other vitamins and minerals, including calcium, iron, potassium, zinc, manganese, vitamin E and folate
Enjoy a variety of fruit and vegetables
It is important to enjoy a diet full of fruits and vegetables that are rich in micronutrients, especially vitamin C.
Vitamin C is beneficial as an antioxidant, as well as helping to maintain good immune function.
The human body can’t produce or store vitamin C, so it’s important to consume it as part of a healthy diet or by taking a vitamin C supplement as necessary.
The current daily value (DV) for vitamin C is 90mg for adults and children aged 4 years and over .
The following foods are rich in vitamin C (per 100g) :
- yellow peppers 183 mg
- parsley 133 mg
- spinach 130 mg
- kale 120 mg
- kiwi 93 mg
- broccoli 89 mg
- lemons 77 mg
- lychee 72 mg
- papaya 62 mg
- strawberries 59 mg
- oranges 53 mg
Of course, it’s hard to squeeze all these different fruits and vegetables into your daily diet. So, if you’re looking for a quick and convenient way to supplement your diet, giving yourself a daily shot of vitamins and minerals, these nutrient-dense food supplements may interest you.
Organic Greens powdered drink formula contains a blend of some of the most nutrient-dense organic green "superfoods" available:
Organic kale, spinach, spirulina, wheatgrass, seagreens, chlorella and a probiotic.
Primal Reds powdered drink formula contains 13 nutrient-dense red "superfruits”, including:
Cranberry, montmorency cherry, goji berry, raspberry, acai, baobab, blueberry, guarana, papaya, strawberry, bilberry, purple carrot and hytolive.
Consume good, healthy oils (MCT oil)
Although fat is an important part of a balanced diet, it’s important to be aware of the type of fat you’re eating. Medium-Chain Triglycerides (MCTs)  contain medium-length chains of fats called triglycerides and are extracted from coconut oil. MCT oil is easily digested and has many positive health implications, especially when it comes to weight loss.
MCT oil increases the hormones peptide YY and leptin, and promotes a feeling of fullness, which can prevent you from overeating and thus help you to maintain a healthy weight.
The human body processes MCTs differently than Long Chain Triglycerides (LCT), using it as an instant source of energy. This can help to burn calories – a crucial part of losing weight - and means that your body doesn’t store as much fat in the body.
MCT oil can also help support gut health. It optimizes the growth of good bacteria, which are important for your immune system  and can help you to lose weight.
You can add MCT oil to your coffee for an energy boost
Increase your protein intake
Protein is one of the three important macronutrients, along with carbohydrates and fats. It has the highest impact on every cell in the human body.
It is especially important for building and repairing tissues, stabilizing normal hormone levels, increasing muscle tissue and building strong bones, healthy hair, nails, skin and blood cells.
A high-protein diet (about 1-1.6g protein per pound of body weight) has many health benefits: 
- Improved strength
- Better body composition
- Higher or retained muscle mass
- A reduced risk of type 2 diabetes (protein is very low on the glycemic index)
- Improved metabolism
- Potential weight loss
- Controlled appetite
- Better agility
- More resilient bones
- Improved balance
- Improved quality of life
At the time of writing, when much of the world is in lockdown, it’s advisable to increase your daily protein intake. Only eat the carbs you need (for example after a hard home workout session) and focus on eating good, healthy fats.
Ways to increase your daily protein intake:
- Eat your protein foods first; it increases the production of PYY, a gut hormone that makes you feel full and satisfied.
- Be aware of how much protein you eat, how much you need, and plan your meals accordingly.
- Eat a variety of different foods that are high in protein (organic meat, eggs, almonds, salmon, fish, tuna, chicken, turkey).
- Invest in a good protein powder supplement (such as Primal One) or add collagen to coffee, smoothies, and shakes for extra protein.