The SKIED food list was replicated from the Bulletproof (BP) Diet Dietary Roadmap which is designed around achieving a bulletproof body. While I do not agree with everything in the BP dietary guidelines, I believe that there are important takeaways from it.
The main objective of the SKIED food list is to simplify the nutritional approach. By choosing whole foods, you know without a doubt you are getting quality stuff. Worry less about getting it 100% perfect.
To illustrate how I approach my own nutrition, I have compiled a food list guide that gives you a sense of what types of foods to pick based on my own research and experimentation. This is the second part to the Choose Your Wellness nutritional guidelines. For a more detailed start list, check out the SKIED nutrition manifesto.
The SKIED food list guide
Instead of choice overload, the strategy that works for me is choosing from a list of SKIED approved foods. As I prepare my meals, I mix and match combinations from this list. The purpose is to reduce any indecision from choice overload and eliminated the unnecessary foods in the house. It also saves a bit of money.
Similar to the BP guidelines, the SKIED food list uses colors as a guide. The definition of these are as follows:
- Green – The foods most widely accepted as healthy. Eat more of these.
- Yellow – The foods that are controversial. Be mindful of your choices.
- Red – The foods to avoid.
- This is the SKIED Lifestyle Diet.
- This guide serves as a simple guideline, not a definitive eat and do not eat list.
- This guide is designed to error on the side of caution when it comes to your health and nutritional choices.
- The Yellow foods are the ones that some people have problems with. Others may not. Determine for yourself.
- The Yellow foods are controversial with mixed research. I am not here to argue with you nor will I try to convince you otherwise. There are two sides to every argument. Do your own research and make your own choices.
I won’t pretend like I’m an expert nor do I care about showing off knowledge. My solution may not be the best way for you. I only aim to provide people with a quality strategy that worked for me to try in their own life for great results. If this is it, I have succeeded.
Go ahead, print off a copy and put it on your fridge!
Try adopting these priorities
First, pick a specific number of healthy foods (green) and only eat/buy those. Mix and match to make different healthy food combinations. Try the foods highlighted in green in the visual.
While it may not be practical to adopt everything on the list below, you have to start somewhere. Here are my 6 most basic dietary lifestyle tips:
- Pick healthy, whole food options and don’t stress about getting perfect calorie counts.
- Get at least one serving of vegetables every day. Try your hardest to get more.
- Pay close attention to hidden sugars in your food. Like what is in processed low-fat foods. This will be easy because you are eating foods with simple ingredients, right?
- Get less of your carbs from simple sugars and starchy carbohydrate sources
- Like bread, cereals, white pasta, flour, sugars, fruits
- Eat less “starchy” carbs around long periods of inactivity.
- In every solid/main meal, try to get more calories from fats, proteins, and vegetables vs. starchy/simple carbohydrates. Hell, do it for snacks too!
- If you are hungry within 4 hours after eating a meal, assuming that exercise and level of activity are not skewing this, you did not achieve the proper balance of macronutrients for your body. Make adjustments to your fats, proteins, and carbohydrates (more fibrous sources like vegetables) to reach your optimal metabolism.
My perspective on grains and dairy
Yes, I would personally recommend that everyone, even those without any perceived problems, try giving up dairy and grains for at least a couple weeks. Just try it. Then, add them back in and see how you feel. If you experience any stomach issues, or just feel off, it is probably a good sign you can live without them. Why not experiment with eating and not eating foods that help you find a better life without these problems?
I didn’t do this by choice at first because I didn’t have any perceived problems. When Michelle gave these up because of her stomach issues, I decided to make it easy and do it with her. I felt incredible without them. Despite already being healthy, I started to gain that physique I had always been looking for.
Allow me to give an example on why from a nutritional standpoint, milk does not make sense for everyone. It is recommended that we get 3 servings of dairy each day. In one serving alone, both 2% and skim milk has 12g of sugars. So, with your 3 servings of dairy, you would be drinking 36 grams of sugar. There are other foods that provide similar “nutritious” value without the sugar and fat.
And who knows, you might be in the 3/4 of the world who has problems digesting dairy.
When it comes to dairy and grains, there is not a magic answer that applies to everyone. The health effects vary greatly among individuals.
Food can heal and you have control. Give it a shot!
The list below highlights some of my guiding principles in my nutritional approach.
SKIED core principles
- Whole foods
- High Fat, mid protein, low-to-mid carbs (maintenance for me)
- 50-70% fats → 40% → 100g
- 20-30% protein → 40% → 110g
- 5-30% carbs → 20% → 50 – 70g
- Cyclical lifestyle based on activity – high and low carb days (i.e. 100-150g+ carbs vs. 50-70g of carbs)
- Heavy emphasis on Paleolithic techniques + anti-inflammatory foods
- Scrutinize food labels – simple ingredients
- Purposeful eating – optimize nutrient timing
- Low glycemic to reduce my acne
- Quality over quantity
- Healthy and cost effective food buying approaches
- Never count calories. Make calories count
- Mindfulness in indulgence
- Reducing risk of long-term exposure to highly consumed foods (i.e. vegetables, coffee, water, meats)
- Water quality is paramount
- Dinner together is non-negotiable
- Err on the side of health
- Built in flexibility
- Breakfast or death – mindfully sets your day up for success
- The Pareto principle: 80/20
- “Hunger, Energy, and Cravings (HEC) in check” – Jade Teta
- Not planning is planning to fail
- Eliminate all unnatural sugar sources
- High-quality whole foods
- Macronutrient balance – protein and quality fats in every meal
- No processed foods
- Read food labels
- Water quality is paramount
- Reduce or eliminate inflammatory foods
- Eat acne conscious foods (ex. anti-inflammatory, low-glycemic)
- Aim for the right fat balance – Omega-3: Omega-6 fats
- Use safe cooking techniques – low heat
- Choose grass-fed red meat
- Getting more antioxidants
- No dairy except occasional kefir or full-fat Grass-Fed yogurt
- Carbohydrates around more activity – especially fruits
- Understand the why and the how of foods
- Reduce risk of alcoholic drinks – go with spirits over beer
- High quality, natural, and organic wine and coffee (ask me about the guides I made for both)
My DO-NOT-EAT list
- Vegetable oils
- Grains (80/20)
- Processed food and oils
- Corn and Soy based products
- Typical meal
- Grass-Fed beef (GFB), wild caught fish, or locally sourced meat with:
- And/or carb (i.e. quinoa, sweet potato)
- Farm fresh brown Eggs
- Sweet potatoes/Yams
- Sea/Himalayan Salt – stop using shitty table salt
- Anti-inflammatory spices and herbs
- Grass-Fed butter (unsalted kerrygold)
- MCT oil – Viva Labs
- 100% Extra Virgin Olive oil (EVOO)
- Unrefined, virgin coconut oil
- Grass-Fed beef (GFB), wild caught fish, or locally sourced meat with:
- Gut health is vital to optimal health
- Clean eating first, then go off the path
- Skin conditions are almost always linked to gut health and inflammation
- Some people do well with grains, dairy, and gluten but generally speaking, research has showed they can encourage inflammation by leaky gut
- Vegetables for dinner carbs – except if close to a workout
- Build in flexibility – if eating a lot later eat less now
- Oils at smoke point are trans fats
- Don’t cook with extra virgin olive oil or butter – they are very sensitive
- Replace carbs with quality fats
- Low Glycemic – doesn’t spike blood sugar as much
- Lightly cook foods
- Fruits are still sugar – I eat in evening to avoid crashes
- Canned, preserved food has very low nutrient content
- Don’t trust healthy, low-fat, or low carb claims – read the food choice
- You should think twice and look into most processed “healthy” foods
- Eat more raw vegetables
- Eat more fermented foods
- Food has the power to heal many things (ex. sleep, mood, stress)
- Many factors influence weight loss and overall health – no two people are the same
- Elimination diets can but don’t often work
- Skin problems are related to gut health and systematic inflammation – which is directly influenced by the foods you eat
- Toxins such as heavy metals, pesticide residues, and others can build up in our systems over time. Exposure to these things is for real
- Omega-3:Omega-6 fatty acid balance can greatly influence inflammation
- Raw, natural chocolate is great for you – instead of running from your cravings, embrace it by having a little
- Farmers market every weekend. Load up.
- Distilled spirits > dry, white wine > red wine > beer
- High heat and open flame can affect the nutrient value of your food
- Low-heat, short duration with liquid for highest nutrient content
- Blend some veggies for sauce
- ALWAYS DIY salad dressings – Olive oil, balsamic vinaigrette, salt, pepper, and garlic. Mix. Eat.
- Always cook more than you need
- Meal prep in the beginning of each week – Chop vegetables you will need
- Ceramic/steel pans over Teflon
- Saturated fats are bad
- Low-fat is good
- All calories are equal
- Only a few people should avoid gluten and grains
- Eating fat makes you fat
- Eggs raise cholesterol in a bad way
- Vegetable oils such as corn and soybean oil are healthy
- Willpower alone will make you healthy
- You need to eat many small meals throughout the day
- You need to eat breakfast (although I don’t recommend skipping)
- A 3-5-day juice/detox only cleanse will fix your problems
- Carbohydrates should be the highest part of your diet
- Fruit is the exception of sugar
- Most fitness and health magazines (in my opinion)
- There are two sides to every health argument
- Follow your values but know the argument for both
This guide is meant to serve as a general outline and another approach to nutrition. These are all things I practice in my life and my views on how I live awesomely. If you are looking for a better way, try the SKIED way.
My nutritional why is built around enhancing all areas of my life and focuses on minimizing risk through quality, whole-food solutions. While not perfect, almost all the foods I eat have a purpose because I understand the impact our nutrition has on our mind and body.
Everything I do is based around wellness. The ultimate goal will always be to connect people to the best information that leads to better health.
In the coming nutrition articles, I will use examples and products from my own life to further illustrate the how to simplify your nutrition and build a strategy that works for you.
Start today by finding your food list. Tweet or share on Facebook if you think this information was valuable!