834 Nutrition


Jeff talks about the foods he eats to keep lean and fit.

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Todd: OK, Jeff, we're talking about being healthy and you mentioned the need for exercise and in particular you do yoga, but I think you always follow a very healthy diet. Is that true?

Jeff: Yes. It's true. People often ask me how do you get in shape? How do you stay in shape? What should I do? And they always say should I exercise, exercise, exercise and I always answer no. You can do a little bit of exercise but what really matters more is your diet: what you eat and how you eat. I think people don't realize that I think it's more important, your eating habits than your exercising habits.

Todd: Yeah, you know, earlier you were talking about discipline and I have very good discipline when it comes to work and to exercise. I exercise every day, but I have no discipline when it comes to eating. I eat terrible foods.

Jeff: The thing is though that a lot of people think that only the delicious food is the foods that's not healthy, but I think once you... it's like everything else, once you start doing something you can sort of become to enjoy and like more healthy food. Chips are good, but if you start eating vegetables, fruits, bananas, apples and oranges, your body will start to develop a taste for those, so that when you eat potato chips they're not as good as a nice fresh piece of fruit. It sounds strange but, yeah, your body begins to enjoy foods that are healthy.

Todd: Well, you are a very lean person, very fit, so what type of diet do you follow? What foods do you tend to eat?

Jeff: Lots of things that are not fried. That are not heavy in carbohydrates, like breads, and rices and things like this. Lighter food, fresh vegetables, fresh fruit, lots of fish. I tend to stay away from meat cause it's very heavy and pork. It's heavy. But lighter things. And I don't eat so much. I always eat so that I'm not full. I'm not stuffed. And then lots of good snacks, light snacks: peanuts and rice crackers or fruit or... Any junk food, I don't eat much junk food and I don't eat any thing that's fried and I also stay away from sauces, oils and butter and heavy salad dressings and things like that.

Todd: What about beverages?

Jeff: Of course you have to stay away from soda, in Canada we say pop. So you stay away from pop, but yeah, drink lots of water and drink lots of juice and you can become lean and mean, a lean, mean fighting machine.

Todd: So you're saying that if you follow this diet you will be a lean, mean fighting machine?

Jeff: That's what I'm saying: a lean, mean fighting machine.

Learn Vocabulary from the lesson

in particular

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You mentioned the need for exercise, and in particular, yoga.

Here the phrase 'in particular' is similar in meaning to 'specifically'.  Notice the following:

  1. Are you looking for something in particular?
  2. I need to improve my English - in particular, writing.

stay in shape

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People often ask me how I stay in shape.

To 'stay in shape' means to stay healthy by regular exercise.  Notice the following:

  1. How do you stay in such good shape?
  2. I go jogging to stay in shape.

terrible foods

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I have no discipline when it comes to eating because I eat terrible foods.

'Terrible foods' are unhealthy and usually high in fat.  Notice the following:

  1. My weight is all from the terrible food I eat.
  2. Terrible foods are unhealthy, but often delicious.

develop a taste for

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If you start eating vegetables and fruits, your body will start to develop a taste for those.

When we 'develop a taste' for something, that means we slowly begin to enjoy it.  Notice the following:

  1. I took me years to develop a taste for jazz music.
  2. It takes awhile to develop a taste for low-fat food.

lean mean fighting machine

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Drink lots of water and juice, and you can become a lean, mean fighting machine.

The phrase 'lean mean fighting machine' is an idiom for someone who is very fit and healthy.  Notice the following:

  1. He's a lean mean fighting machine!
  2. I'm healthy, but not exactly a lean mean fighting machine.
Answer the following questions about the interview.

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Vocabulary Challenge

Complete the sentences with the words below.
particular • stays in shape • terrible food
a taste for • lean mean
  1. They always eat a lot of at the fair.
  2. He by swimming every morning.
  3. After he joined the army he became a fighting machine.
  4. I like most fruit, but I love apples in .
  5. I don't think I will ever develop salty foods.