Health & Fitness
Friday May 13, 2011
Diet Is Not Necessary Die With A 'T'
"Lose 30 pounds in 30 days!" "Try the ab buster and lose inches fast!" "Lose up to 3lbs a day with just one pill!" Heard them one too many times? It has been drummed into our heads that the only way to lose weight is to be on the latest fad or yo-yo diet.
With so many products and weight-loss theories out there, you can't be blamed if you're confused. So how does one go about losing the extra pounds piled up, no thanks to that bag of potato chips, the late night roti canai supper or that extra servings of chocolate fudge ice-cream?
The only way to drop the kilos is the old fashion way – exercising and eating healthy. There is no other way around it. Rather than relying on yo-yo diets, healthy eating is a far better choice, where natural home grown produce are used.
Often times, we are caught up with everything around us except ourselves. We listen to new and fast ways to lose the weight, but how often do we stick to a diet? Humans are creatures of habits and usually we tend to consume the same food over and over again. When someone is overweight, it simply boils down to eating too much of the wrong food.
Healthy eating is a life-long commitment and it is an investment on your future. Before you start on any diet plan, here is something you should know – A well-balanced diet is one that on a regular basis includes foods that meet your body's requirements for the wide variety of nutrients needed to stay healthy.
Here are three simple tips to get you started on the right path:
Tip 1: Know what's good for you
Healthy eating is knowing what foods affects your health. It is universally recognised that foods high in saturated fat, animal fat, cholesterol, salt, sugar and refined carbohydrates but low in fibre are bad for your health and has been implicated numerous times in the development of several serious medical conditions. Many health and nutritional experts recommend a whole food diet based on foods consume in as natural a state as possible. Before dieting, it is useful to understand the various nutritional elements contained in food.
Tip 2: Eat healthy
Meeting nutritional needs is more important than counting calories. Eat a variety of food that includes all six food groups and all 45 essential nutrients. Look for foods that provide the nutrients needed for your body's growth rather than filling up on empty calories. The six essential nutrients are:
It forms important parts of muscle, bone, blood, enzymes, some hormones, and cell membranes. It also repair tissue, and regulate water and acid-base balance. Proteins help in our growth and supply us with energy.
Meat, fish, poultry, eggs, milk products, legumes, and nuts.
Carbohydrates supply energy to our cells in the brain, nervous system and blood. They also supply energy to our muscles during exercise.
Grains like breads and cereals, fruits, vegetables and milk.
Fats supple energy and insulate, support and cushion our organs. They also provide medium absorption of fat-soluble vitamins.
Major Sources: Saturated fats primarily from animal sources, palm and coconut oils, and hydrogenated vegetable fats. Unsaturated fats from grains, nuts, fish, and vegetables.
Vitamins promote specific chemical reactions within cells.
Major Sources: Fruits, vegetables, grains, meat and dairy products.
Minerals help regulate body functions, aid in the growth and maintenance of body tissues, and act as catalysts for the release of energy.
Major Sources: Minerals are found in most food groups.
Water makes up 50-70% of body weight, and provides for chemical reactions. It also transports chemicals, regulates temperature, and removes waste products.
Major Sources: Fruits, vegetables, and other liquids.
Plan A Well Balanced Diet
Aim for a diet that includes more fruits and vegetables. Fruits and vegetables are not only packed with the necessary vitamins, minerals but they also contain disease fighting plant nutrients called phytochemicals. Include in your diet low fat protein items like lean meat, poultry, seafoods, eggs, soy products, beans and nuts.
Dieting does not mean you can't go out for a good meal. If you're planing on eating out, opt for foods that are grilled rather than fried. Have sauces and condiments like cream cheese or butter on the side so you can regulate how much you include in your food.
Include whole grains in your meals whenever possible and limit your junk food intake. Whatever you do, do not skip your meals. Skipping meals during the day leads to overeating at night, which is not a healthy habit, particularly for those watching their weight.
The key to a good diet is to carve out some time to sit down and plan a menu of healthy foods.
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