We are all capable of amazing things, but sometimes it can feel difficult to fulfil our full potential. Perhaps we’re going through a period of a lack of inspiration, or maybe we’re finding it difficult to love ourselves. It can be easy to compare ourselves to others, but we must instead remember our own definition of what our best self is. This image may change, but that’s all part of life, and it’s important to be flexible with ourselves. Read on for some tips on how great food and nutrition can help you to be your best self from the inside out.
Becoming your best self is a journey of self-discovery, it’s not a destination. There is no one definition of what being your best self is. It is something that only an individual can feel themselves, so only you know when you are living and feeling your best.
We’ve gathered some of our favourite foods for making you feel fantastic from within and making self-care part of every bite.
Your gut health has a surprisingly detrimental effect on your mental health as 90% of our serotonin is stored in the gastrointestinal tract.  Serotonin affects mood, appetite, memory, and sleep, and can help to keep viruses and harmful bacteria out. When we’re stressed or eating badly, our digestive system may get inflamed and subsequently affect our serotonin and mood. To keep your gut healthy eat a variety of natural foods, try to eat portions of gut-friendly foods like yoghurt, almonds, walnuts and pumpkin seeds and of course plenty of vegetables.
Fruits and vegetables
Studies have shown that there is a clear correlation between eating fruits and vegetables and feeling positive and happy, so try to make sure that at least half of your plate is filled with them. Make sure you’re getting a rainbow of natural colours in order to reap more nutritional benefits. Purple and blue foods like beetroot and aubergine can aid digestion, lower cholesterol, enhance your immune system and can fight inflammation. Red foods, like carrots and tomatoes, contain a nutrient that helps to fight heart issues, reduce inflammation and lower cholesterol. Green vegetables are a great source of iron, calcium and antioxidants, and can help to strengthen bones, improve blood pressure and improve cognitive function. Full of vitamins, minerals, fibre and antioxidants, fruits and vegetables can be fantastic in helping to keep you on top form and performing to your best.  The Pure Package are strong believers in plant food importance, which is why we fill your plates with vegetables first and include fruit in every snack to ensure you’re getting the benefits your body deserves.
Herbs and spices
Not only does utilizing herbs and spices in your cooking add great flavour and depth to your meals, but they are also packed with malady-fighting vitamins and minerals. They can help to lower blood sugar levels, improve brain function, lower cholesterol, and help the immune system. In fact, many herbs and spices contain more antioxidants than vegetables! At The Pure Package, herbs and spices are utilised in many of our dishes to help you achieve your daily antioxidant goals. With oregano being great for strengthening the immune system and regulating blood sugar, and peppermint improving heart health and having antibacterial properties, there’s an overabundance of benefits available from herbs and spices. 
Healthy fats are paramount to keeping our brain and heart healthy. Omega 3 fatty acids are fantastic for our cognitive health, as well as strengthening bones and reducing inflammation, while omega 6 can reduce the risk of heart disease by lowering our cholesterol levels. Including both in our diets can be excellent for keeping us feeling our best self each day. Wonderful sources of Omega 3 and 6 include avocadoes, olives, nuts and oily fish.
Limit added sugars
We all know sugar can be bad for our bodies, but it can also be detrimental to our mental health. Sugar can increase the risk of obesity, cardiovascular diseases and type-2 diabetes, but can also trigger sugar drops which can make you feel anxious, short-tempered and jittery. Controlling and reducing your sugar intake can have a large effect on the way you feel each day, and how well you are able to perform to your best.
Carbs and protein
Carbohydrates and protein are broken down into glucose which is important in supplying the muscles and brain with energy. If we don’t eat enough of the right type of carbs, or eat them too irregularly, we may start feeling tired and unable to concentrate. Eating lots of unrefined carbs like whole grains and fruits and vegetables can help us feel energized for longer, meaning we can do more of the things we want to do. We ensure everyone that orders The Pure Package receives the perfect amount of protein and carbs to suit their goals- for example, those on our training support plan will receive a balanced amount of protein, carbohydrates and fat to support their fitness needs.
Carbohydrates can also help the brain to receive more serotonin- our happy hormone. Serotonin is made using tryptophan- which is found in protein. This means that the more healthy, lean protein we eat, the more serotonin we are able to produce. Eating a range of proteins like lean meat, fish, low-fat cheese, eggs, and pulses can be a great way to increase our serotonin levels and keep us feeling our best.
Great sleep is an extremely important part of having a healthy and happy lifestyle, so it’s important to eat foods that can alleviate our sleep length and quality. Foods high in tryptophan- an amino acid that the body uses to make melanin (which helps to regulate our sleep cycle) and serotonin, such as turkey, milk, nuts and seeds, oats, and tinned tuna can be especially helpful in assisting us in achieving great sleep.
There are a number of different teas that can also be utilised to support good sleep. Chamomile tea has gentle sedative effects that can help to relax the muscles and induce sleep. Lavender tea is also great for relaxing the body and mind, but can also help increase sleep quality and reduce symptoms of anxiety, which can be beneficial to those experiencing sleep issues.
Selenium is a mineral found in the body which acts as an antioxidant in minimising symptoms of depression, lowering the risk of mental decline, and can even help to alleviate asthma symptoms. Selenium is found in Brazil nuts, lean meat, beans and legumes, and spinach. The recommended allowance for selenium is 55 micrograms a day for both men and women, so try to get this daily and you’re may begin to see the benefits.  
Vitamin D can be a fantastic way to help regulate moods and help with PMS and seasonal affective disorder (SAD). Vitamin D can be found in a range of foods, including fatty fish, egg yolks, and beef liver, but can also be obtained through supplements and sun exposure, just ensure you’re wearing an SPF on your skin, as sun damage can cause wrinkles, fine lines, and could lead to skin cancer.
Ensuring we treat our bodies well- fuelling them with all the nutrients they need and feeding them healthy foods, can help us to become the best healthy version of ourselves from within. We may not be able to stay completely healthy all of the time, but getting back into our healthy lifestyles is what makes us strong and enduring.
At The Pure Package, our mission is to help people become healthier and happier through a nutritionally balanced diet. If you’re looking to become healthier and improve your physical wellbeing, consider our meal programmes that have been carefully designed to give you all the essential vitamins, minerals and fats you need to function at your best. Our team of nutritionists are dedicated to helping you to achieve your health goals and supporting you through your diet to become the person you want to be. Whether that’s boosting your immunity, brainpower, nourishing your skin and hair, or achieving your weight-loss goals, why not book a consultation today and discover a tailored meal plan prepared and delivered just for you. This 2022, Eat better, feel better, be better.