Thursday, November 29, 2007

5 Easy Tips To Eat Less



5 Easy Tips To Eat Less

Reducing your caloric intake can be a major challenge for most people. They envision it means a life of rice cakes and always suffering with a grumbling belly. But that doesn’t necessarily have to be true. You don’t need to turn your life upside down in order to start eating less. In fact, through employing these small adjustments to how you think about food, you might not even notice the reduction at all.

1. Eat Slower
Some people are ravenous eaters. When they see food in front of them, they just wolf it down at a 100 MPH. This might be the best way to overeat, though. When you are really forking the food down, your internal cues that tell you that you are full have trouble catching up. So you wind up with that thanksgiving dinner bloated feeling and a ton of food that will inevitably be converted into fat.

2. Don’t Eat Your Whole Meal While Eating Out
If you are out at a restaurant, don’t think you have to finish everything you order. In fact, it might even help to request a doggy bag along with your meal. When your order comes, you can just place half of it in the doggy bag. This tip can save you money as well. You get two restaurant meals for the price of one.

3. Stop Thinking You Have to Clean your Plate
The idea that it is a cardinal sin to leave food on your plate can be deep rooted for many people. It can bring about memories of childhood lectures on starving kids in China and ingratitude. But this kind of thinking is destructive in a country where the majority are overweight. If you don’t think you need to finish your meal, don’t finish it. Just wrap it up and save it for later, or if it’s a particularly unhealthy food, it might even be best to just throw it away entirely. Out of sight, out of mind.

4. Pay Close Attention to Your “Full” Cues
A lot of people just eat not because they are still hungry, but because it’s just “something to do.” It should be a no brainier if you’re trying to lose weight: if you’re not hungry, and it’s not time for a scheduled meal, don’t eat. But a lot of people just eat for entertainment. If that sounds like you, starting paying closer attention to when you don’t actually need food, and find some other way to entertain yourself. Read a book. Play your musical instrument. Play video games. You might even get entertained and get exercise at the same time by going for a hike. Just do what you can to keep yourself occupied so you don’t eat “just because.”

5. Avoid Alcohol at Parties
Alcohol doesn’t just encourage your body to store fat; it makes you make bad decisions. And at parties, where booze and fatty foods often mix, those bad decisions can often destroy your diet. Just lay off the hooch when you go out with friends, and you might embolden your willpower enough to say “no” when someone shoves a tray full of mini pizzas in front of your face.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Can I Drink And Diet? Of Course You Can

Can I Drink And Diet? Of Course You Can By: Rosie Peters

But. You knew there'd be a "but" didn't you? Let's get the hopeful, positive stuff over with before turning to the grim bits. Of course you can drink (alcohol) and diet. There is nothing to stop you having one or even two drinks a day if you want to. Red wine is actually promoted as a healthy drink in moderation, so you might want to have a glass with a meal.

If you are going to drink alcohol and successfully diet at the same time, you need to be very aware of how many calories as well as standard drinks you are consuming. Like everything related to sensible diet, the amount of alcohol you can safely consume in a day according to the health police is very very little.

The size the authorities measure a standard drink in can look a bit of a lame joke to a seasoned and thirsty drinker. However, that's the sad reality. If you intend to drink and diet, your alcohol consumption will be the square root of not very much at all.

If you keep off the booze through the week and let your guard down a bit for only one day on the weekend, it could work for you. You still can't make like an unrestrained Doberman in the butcher shop, but you can have a few drinks to unwind. Remember, it's like one cheat meal per week, have 2 or 3 drinks on one day on the weekend as a regular treat - if you can stick to it. If you don't have this discipline, your weight loss efforts will fail.

If you factor your (minimal) alcohol intake into your daily calorie count it is worth remembering that alcohol = empty calories. So the only benefits to gain from an alcoholic drink are those related to alcohol as a relaxant. But as a relaxant, alcohol takes away the desire to exercise, to eat well and to give a damn about your fatty bits.

If you really want a drink or two a day, carefully study a calorie counter guide. I've known girls to drink rum and diet coke in the misguided belief that the diet coke is saving them enough calories to justify the sugar saturated, calorie laden rum component. Similarly, gin and tonic has a sneaky number of calories but a lot of these are in the tonic water.

Wine is not the worst choice for a weight control diet and if you can bear a spritzer of half wine and half flat or fizzy water; you can double your drink, but limit your alcohol.

One 7 ounce beer is around 100 calories. That means for every "standard" beer you drink, you could walk briskly for 10-15 minutes to negate the calories consumed or go without 100 calories of some other, more nutritious food or drink.

It sounds quite feasible till the 3rd or 4th beer. After that, you will probably be making sly glances at the vending machine in the corner of the pub and checking through your loose change. Alcohol has an affinity for salty, fatty snack foods.

There is no fat in alcohol, but the sugar can be a killer for your diet. If you consume more sugar than your body needs, your clever body will plan to park it somewhere in case you need it later. While it is parked, it will convert to fat.
So if you drink even a moderate amount of alcohol while trying to lose weight, your body is likely to thank you by slapping lard deposits in all your bumpiest storage facilities.

It's up to you. You can lose weight and not give up alcohol in the process. You may not be able to. I've successfully lost a lot of weight using both strategies; moderation and total abstinence.

I have never kept weight off when I did not give up drinking. Drinking lowered my resistance to food cravings and I gave into them over time. Abstinence has meant that I always have my wits about me regarding my daily food choices and I am always motivated enough to exercise and enjoy my healthy lifestyle.

I do miss a good red or a cold beer, but for me the trade off is worth the sacrifice.

By: Rosie Peters

Sunday, November 25, 2007

The GFCF Diet and How it Helps People with Tourettes

The GFCF Diet and How it Helps People with Tourettes
by: Steve Driskill


Many people diet each and every year. Some diet for personal reasons, others diet in order to lose weight, others diet to lower their cholesterol levels. Diets are now being used to do everything from reduce acne, to control diabetes, and even help control some disorders such as ADHD and even Tourettes.

The diet that is being used to help control some of the symptoms of Tourettes is the Gluten-Free, Casein-Free or GFCF diet. This is certainly not the first diet to attempt to control the symptoms of Tourettes; the other major diet that has attempted this is called the Feingold diet. The GFCF diet removes milk and wheat from the food consumed, while the Feingold diet removes artificial colors, flavors and some of the preservatives found in foods.

Typically, the idea of the GFCF diets is not a treatment that is generally recommended by neurologists or pediatricians. Most doctors prefer to treat disorders and illnesses using more researched methods instead. There are many different diets that have been proven to provide benefits to those suffering from disorders and complications. It is refreshing to some who seek relief in any form they can find it.

Many parents are confused as to exactly what a diet has to do with the signs and symptoms of disorders, specifically behavioral disorders. Typically, the answers lie in the fact that it is generally sensitivity to the particular food that triggers the behavior. A better example that most people can understand is an allergy to fish, or even nuts. Many people exhibit significant allergic reactions to these foods up to the point where death is even possible for some.

While death is never a common symptom it is something that can easily exhibit the severity that food allergies can truly reach. This is the same example with dairy and wheat products in relation to Tourettes. It is suspected that an allergy to these foods produces a chemical reaction that causes a chemical to be released that the brain reads as a neurotransmitter and causes the presence of the tics associated with Tourettes.

Just as most food allergies are only experienced by a few, the symptoms of Tourettes are also only experienced by a few that can be linked to food sensitivities. Not everyone has the same reactions to all foods, however dairy and wheat products are being discovered to be a very sensitive food to many who are suffering from severe Tourettes symptoms. Studies have shown that some reactions to food products can even cause children to be hyper, and have some muscle spasms.

Some of the major indicators that diet has an effect on these disorders is that many who are suffering have been noted to have decreased levels of some nutrients such as omega-3 fatty acids, B vitamins, and even magnesium. It is suspected that the deficiencies in these nutrients is also a factor affecting the symptoms that are experienced by those with Tourettes who see an improvement in their symptoms after beginning a diet such as the GFCF.

Experts who suggest the diet methods suggest slowly eliminating foods from the diet one at a time, so that you can accurately pinpoint the food that triggers the symptoms to spike. They suggest omitting the food from the diet for 4-7 days per food item, and very carefully monitoring the behavior changes that occur due to the food being removed. Some experts suggest replacing the food after you think you have found the trigger food so that you can see if you achieve the same results more than once. This is a good way to check the results.

One suggestion for those attempting to diagnose the food sensitivity themselves is to think back to early childhood days. If when your child was younger, they suffered sensitivities or allergies to specific foods then, it is recommended to cut those foods from the diet first since they may be the culprit of the problems now. This is not always effective, and does need to be done on a trial and error basis until the true food culprit is discovered. However, it should be noted, that no matter how much trial and error you do, you may not discover the food that causes your symptoms.

Not everyone who attempts the GFCF diet has success; however, it seems to be a very successful method that is perfectly natural. It is also a treatment method that does not involve heavy involvement from a doctor, which can mean medical bills are reduced. While it is possible to avoid the use of a doctor as much for those having luck with the GFCF diet they should still seek the advice of a doctor before beginning, or at the very least a nutritionist so that if problems occur they can be corrected quickly.

Remember that with any diet, there is likely to be some nutrients omitted that the body does need in order to be healthy. You must ensure that those missing nutrients are replaced in some form, whether by adding certain foods to your diet, or by the use of a nutritional supplement. Otherwise, you can run the risk of creating other symptoms that must then be treated.

While the GFCF diet is showing great promise in helping many who suffer from severe symptoms regain some control over their lives, it is not the perfect method that has been thoroughly tested. People should carefully do research to learn as much as possible before attempting this diet so that they know exactly what to do if a problem occurs and what results they should expect. It is also recommended that it not be attempted if you are unwilling or unable to track the symptoms with each food change to ensure you are able to accurately note the problem foods.

While care should be taken when attempting this method, there is, nothing that says it is unsuccessful or dangerous. Nevertheless, with any diet, it does have its risks that should be considered carefully before beginning. With proper planning, patience and a willingness to do the appropriate research, it is possible to greatly improve the quality of life of those who suffer from Tourettes.

A Diet Primer For Health Food And Vitamins

A Diet Primer For Health Food And Vitamins
by: Deborah Prosser

Quite often, we want to eat healthier but don’t know exactly how to start. Sometimes food you think might be good may in fact not be right for you, and vice-versa. This article looks at some simple diet changes you can start to make right away that will improve your overall health.

Whole Wheat Products

One of the simplest changes you can make is to start eating more whole grain foods instead of those made with white processed flour. Why is this? The whole grain variety has retained more of the nutrients and it breaks down much more slowly in you body. This avoids sudden spikes in your blood sugar level, which can lead to diabetes in the long run.

Heart Healthy Foods

Heart disease is one of the biggest health problems we face. Frequently caused by blood clots in you arteries, this can be alleviated by eating some of the right foods. Try eating things like oatmeal, blueberries, and soy products like tofu. Even a daily glass of red wine or some dark chocolate has been found to be good for your heart.

Drink More Water

We’ve often been told we should drink 8 glasses of water each day, but how many of us actually do? Drinking water is a great way to help you lose weight. Water helps the body metabolize stored fat. Water is also great for your skin – it helps to keep it clear and healthy-looking. Start drinking more water today!

Eat More Vegetables

Common vegetables like carrots, broccoli and spinach contain carotenoids, which are thought to protect against cancer. Vegetables generally provide excellent health food and vitamins essential to your well-being. A simple way to increase your intake is to serve more than one vegetable with your meals.

Fruits Are Fine!

Like vegetables, fruit is an excellent source of vitamins and other nutrients. Eating fruit can help you lose weight and also prevent illness. Apples, bananas and melons are particularly good for you. Try introducing some of these fruits at meal times. Bananas go well with your cereal in the morning, and fruit in general can make a great dessert at the end of your meals.

Fish Is Good For You

Cold water fish like salmon, mackerel and sardines contain omega-3 fats. These fats are essential but they cannot be produced by the body, and must be obtained from foods. Fish is also a good source of protein low in calories and saturated fat. Try a tuna sandwich next time you have lunch!

Spare the Meat

Red meat like beef is very popular in many of our diets, and it is high in protein and essential amino acids. However it can contain a lot of saturated fat. This doesn’t mean we have to give up this summertime BBQ favorite. Simply look for the lean cuts and stay away from the fatty ones like rib-eye.

There is much more we could say on the topic of health food and vitamins. But just by following these simple suggestions you will be well on you way to a healthier diet.

The many benefits you will see from increasing your intake of health food and vitamins include weight control, more energy and a reduced risk of chronic diseases like diabetes, heart disease and cancer.

Low Carb Diets

Low Carb Diets by: Jason Hulott1

One of the most well known of the low carb diets is the Atkins diet; however there are a large amount of diets which are based on low carbohydrates with just a few minor changes in them.

The low carb diet is based on the premise that if the diet doesn’t include many carbohydrates in it, then the body will produce less insulin resulting in the body using its fat and protein stores as its main source of energy, which then results in weight loss. The body has to lose body fat in order to lose weight successfully and by keeping the amount of carbs to a minimum, the body will turn to using fat as the main source of energy while encouraging the body to produce ketone bodies to give energy to parts of the body such as the brain.

The low carb diet involves the person increasing the amount of fat and protein they take in, in their daily diet, while at the same time cutting out almost all carbohydrates from the diet.

This means that foods that are barred from your diet include bread, pasta, alcohol and rice while increasing your intake of meat, cheese and butter in your daily diet.

Any low carb diet is extremely popular due to the fact that if it is followed properly then the person can lose a lot of weight quickly quite early in the diet, which of course gives great encouragement. However once the initial quick weight loss is over less weight will then be lost. One of the biggest down sides to the diet is the fact that many see the low carb diet as just sabotaging your own body by getting it to eat away at the fat stores. The reason behind this is that while your body eats away at the fat, it also eats away at precious muscle.

Another big fault with the diet is that it doesn’t allow for much fruit and veg to be included in the diet. Therefore many essential vitamins and minerals are lost and these of course are essential if the body is to remain fit and healthy. The kidneys are also thought to be put at risk if the diet is stuck with over along period of time, this is due to the large intake of protein in the low carb diet. They have also been linked to yo-yo dieting, which means that you will lose weight rapidly then regain it only to go back and the diet and continue in the cycle which is not good for your health.

If you are thinking of going on a low carb diet then it is essential that you look into it thoroughly beforehand and also the pros and cons associated with it, along with

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Good Eating Can Taste Good - Boofar Jones

Many people feel that there is a huge gap between good eating and eating food that tastes good. However, it is possible to eat meals and snacks that taste good and are good for you. The key to good eating is being aware of kind of food you eat and the kind of food you need to be eating.

If you are contemplating developing good eating habits, keep in mind that this doesn't mean that you cannot eat anything that tastes good again or that everything you eat has to fit the textbook definition of healthy. However, good eating does mean that you monitor how much food you eat and what kinds of foods you eat most of the time.

Although everyone experiences cravings, most people usually have indiscriminate hunger, meaning that what they eat is not as important as eating something. Various diet plans will ask you to ignore nutrition and good diet habits and avoid all carbohydrates, or say that fruits contain too much sugar to help you, but these diets are designed to work rapidly on a system that is out of balance. True good diet guidelines consider good diet habits and are balanced and can be maintained. When hunger strikes, you need to quell your hunger with a meal that is healthy overall and follows good diet guidelines. This allows you to have the occasional greasy hamburger or sugar-loaded desert while being reasonable about what you eat.

One way to keep things in balance and practice good diet guidelines is by making some homemade meals. Although making a meal at home sounds like a lot of work, it can be very rewarding and taste far better and provide better nutrition and good diet food than what you can get at a fast food restaurant. One cooking tool that has enabled many people to easily prepare healthy meals is the George Foreman Grill. The Foreman Grill makes it easy to cook things evenly since it is heated from two sides, and it is healthy because the excess grease is allowed to run off into a drip tray, removing it from your food.

If you have issues with restricting what you eat, an exercise routine may be something you should look into. When you exercise regularly and get into better shape, your metabolism increases and burns energy more quickly. A faster metabolism means that you can eat more without gaining weight. Fast metabolisms are what allow some people to eat everything in sight, but remain thin. A fast metabolism is also one way that farmers are able to eat a diet primarily composed of meat, potatoes, eggs, and whole milk without becoming obese.

Good eating is a major component of being healthy, but many people make good eating sound torturous and burdensome. However, good eating done right will eventually become a habit you like if you practice moderation.

By: Boofar Jones

South Beach Diet Program - Food List To Remember - Anthony Lee

South beach diet program aims for healthy and nutritious food intake while allowing you to gradually lose your weight. Unlike other meals plans carefully formulated in other diet programs, south beach diet meals plans are generally more flexible and convenient to make. They also allow you to occasionally indulge on your favorite foods, or can even make them a regular staple on your meals as long as you stick to their rules of using substitutes to restricted food kinds.

Foods that are allowed with the south beach diet meal plans are basically your everyday food. In the first phase, it is all about avoiding carbohydrate intakes, so the following food list should do with your meal plans:

- Skinless poultry

- Lean cuts of pork, veal, and beef

- All seafood

- Low-fat/non-fat dairy products

- Eggs

- Tofu

- Lunchmeats

- Canola, olive, and peanut oil,

- Spices and seasonings without sugar

- Legumes

- Sugar-free treats

- Low-glycemic vegetables

The concept behind the first phase is to change the diet you have gotten used to into one that contains only healthy and lean dishes. Frying is not allowed in this phase, instead must be replaced with broiling and baking.

The second phase is introduced with the following foods:

- Sweet potatoes

- Whole-grain cereals and breads

- Brown or wild rice

- Fresh fruits

- White or red wines

In the second phase, these foods are introduced because you have to achieve target weight. You have to remember foods containing high-sugar such as white potatoes, corn, corn, beets, and carrots are avoided. In addition, not all fresh fruits are qualified for this phase. You have to avoid raisins, pineapples, watermelon, and bananas. High-caloric foods like ice cream, cakes, cookies, and others will spoil your target to lose weight, so it is vital to avoid them into your diet.

In the third phase, this is when you would have the most flexible time to choose foods of your preference but ensure they still are considered as good and healthy eating habits. The concept in the third phase is for you to adopt the healthy habit of using meal plans that contain foods included in the first and second phases.

First and second phases are all about achieving the desired weight. After these phases, the third is all about maintaining that weight. When making south beach diet recipe meal plans on the third phase, you can be as flexible as you want. By mixing and matching foods in the first and second phases, you can get as creative as you want.

These three phases are designed for you to be as flexible as possible in such a way that you can switch phases once you have already achieved the desired weight target. Whatever it is south beach diet recipes will let you enjoy your meal plans that are healthy but are pleasurable at the same time.

By: Anthony Lee

Useful Diets To Lower Your Cholesterol Level - Dr John Anne

Cholesterol is produced in our liver. This is waxy, fatty substances that aids in strengthening cell walls, forming nerve sheaths, and producing hormones. However, excessive production of cholesterol is harmful to our body and eventually it is apparently fatal in most of the cases, because it heightens the risk of heart diseases and strokes. A healthy diet is known to reduce the risk of raising high blood cholesterol. So, you should always take a great care of your regular diet.

If you have a high cholesterol level, you should go through strict healthy diet to lower cholesterol along with medication. Research shows that a controlled diet increases the possibility to lower cholesterol level to a great extent. But it is not mandatory that if you follow a strict diet to lower cholesterol level in blood, it means that you are compromising with your taste. Rather the situation can be entirely different. You may experience an exciting healthy diet to lower cholesterol. Let us find how:

Eat breakfast rich in fiber

Prepare your breakfast by adding fruits, oatmeal as well as whole grain muffins. To make an effective preparation, you may count blindly on oat bran and rice bran, truly. Oat is especially effective because it contains soluble fiber. It particularly reduces low density lipoprotein (LDL), that is, the 'bad' cholesterol.

Soluble fiber is also available in kidney beans, apples, psyllium, pears, prunes, barely and brussels sprouts. It is always recommended that you should switch to wholegrain breads, muffins, waffles, pancakes, and bagels.

Soluble fiber works following a complex mechanism of reducing absorption of cholesterol in the intestines. The mechanism is based on the binding of bile and dietary cholesterol in the body so that it can be excreted from the system. Hence if you can add soluble fiber in your diet, it will definitely switch your regular diet to a healthy diet to lower cholesterol level in your body. If you can add 5-10gm of soluble fiber in your diet, it will certainly reduce LDL cholesterol to 5%. If you take a minimum of one and half cup of cooked oatmeal, it will give you 4.5gms of fiber. So positively it will enhance your body system by lowering your cholesterol level.

Add walnuts and almonds to your diet

Walnuts contain high polyunsaturated fatty acid that aid in reducing blood cholesterol significantly. It also enhances blood circulation in the body by making the blood vessels more elastic. Almonds also play the same role and it shows result even within 4 weeks span.

If one-fifth amount of calories in the diet to lower cholesterol comes from walnut, it will certainly lower the cholesterol level in the blood more than 12 percent altogether.

Nuts are really useful and healthy for diet because only a handful of them truly suffice for optimum supplement of calories in our body. Instead of having diet full of saturated fats such as meats, cheese or croutons, it is always advisable to replace them with almonds or walnuts.

Have Fish with Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Research reveals that Eskimos have a lower degree of heart problems than any other individuals living at the same continent. It is shown in research data that Eskimos consume less saturated fat in their diets and depend on more omega-3 fatty acid based diet. This is usually found in fish whale as well as in seal meat. Apart from that, you can add salmon, mackerel, sardines, lake trout and albacore tuna in order to make an ideal diet to lower cholesterol.

Omega-3 fatty acid is well-recognized for its ability to lower triglyceride consumption in our system. It also helps protecting heart by reducing blood pressure and risk of blood clots.

Well, it is not that you can switch your diet to that of Eskimos, but certainly you can do something to feed you up with omega-3 fatty acid, so that you can take a real good care of your heart and health. You can easily find omega-3 fatty acid in walnuts, soybean oil and canola oil.

By: Dr John Anne

The Zone Diet Plan

The Zone Diet Plan
by Jef Dhan

In this article, we hope to share with you the many aspects that this important subject has to offer you.

The Zone is a "metabolic stately in which the body machinery at point efficiency," and that stately is formed by drinking a set ratio of carbohydrates, protein, and fat.

What is "The Zone"? It is when your body is working at optimal levels for import beating, or import maintenance. Incoming "The Zone" is achieved by drinking influence led food portions, with the 40-30-30 percent tally of carbohydrates, proteins and fats. Put basically, the Zone is a "metabolic stately in which the body machinery at point efficiency," and that stately is formed by drinking a set ratio of carbohydrates, protein, and fat.

"The Zone Diet" is a great low crab diet, for those people who command a lot of diet carry. While Dr Barry chair’s first available "penetrate The Zone" in 1995, he has also introduced the shared to many diet food, carry web sites, and more Zone diet books.

From here on out, we will give you tips on what can make this subject a little more helpful to you.

The In the Zone Diet Book chain includes: "Master the Zone", "The Soy Zone", "A Week In The Zone", "Zone Blocks", "opposing-Aging Zone", "Top 100 Zone Foods" and "Zone Recipes". All of these books promote a low carbohydrate diet where your food portions must have a ratio of 40% carbohydrates, 30% protein and 30% fat.

This portion influence assists with your body's insulin production, which allows for real fat burning. Portions in this low crab diet are managed through a "impede approach". One impede of carbohydrate is 9 grams, one protein impede is 7 grams, and a fat impede is between 1.5 and 3 grams.

The Zone contends that you can imagine twirling back encroaching middle disease, high blood anxiety, and diabetes. Another greatly-touted gain is better physical performance.

How The Zone diet machinery

The Zone's drinking plan is a combination of a small total of low-fat protein at every meal, fats, and carbohydrates in the form of structure-valuable vegetables and fruits. The plan establishes a ratio for which chars contends the body is genetically series med (that 40-30-30 character). And yes, we'll be thinner to wader.

Chars claims that the diet is based on his 15 days of seek in bio diet. While the book is thorough of victory stories, counting those of elite athletes, seek that validates his given claims isn't there. That doesn't mean that chars' theories are wound; it's just that no scientific proof has proven that his series machinery.

Chars base his idea on with diet to influence the body's production of the hormone insulin. Among insulin's many roles, it helps normalize storeroom of leftover energy as fat. The goal is to keep a tally between fat-storing insulin and the hormone glucagons, insulin's opposed, whose job it is to statement the stored glucose from the liver when it is wanted. Maintaining the remedy tally between the two is accomplished by study the range and given content of your meals. In other language, you must be wary of what you put on your plate. Chars suggests that we think of food not as "a obtain of calories but as an influence approach for hormones."

Over time, you will begin to understand how these concepts really come together if you choose to venture into this subject further.

By: Jef Dhan

5 Rules Of A Healthy And Effective Weight Loss - Hafizsteen

Like riding a bicycle, playing tennis, or singing at the Met, successful weight loss takes practice, sometimes a lot of practice. Nobody’s born knowing exactly a better way to go. In other words, to win at weight loss, you have to the rules. Translation: You have to know when you’re ready to lose weight, and once you’ve decided that, you have to know how to distinguish a healthful program from the merely okay or the truly awful.

The five rules listed below are a guide:
Rule #1: Be sure you actually need to lose weight

Your assignment if you choose to accept it, is to be certain that you really do need to lose weight. Assess you weight realistically, is it too high? Too low? Avoid the pitfall of trying to lose weight for the wrong reason. An eating disorder will make you feel fatter than you really are. On the other hand, if you are really a couple of pounds on the wrong side of the scale, and your doctor agrees that losing weight will improve your health, proceed to Rule #2

Rule #2: Don’t start a weight loss program until you’re ready

I mean really, really ready. Trying to lose weight is like trying to give up smoking. I know how you feel, and I sympathize. You’ve tried to lose weight before, and either didn’t make it or gained back everything you lost. So how do you know if you’re really ready this time. Just ask yourself this few simple questions:-

1) I want to lose weight because:-
a) My boyfriend/girlfriend/parents say I’ll look better.
b) My doctor says it will improve my health.
c) I think losing weight will improve my health. And I’ll look better

2) I am willing to try to lose weight right now because
a) I’ve lost my job, and dieting will keep me occupied
b) I broke with my boyfriend/girlfriend, and dieting will take my mind off my broken heart.
c) Things are pretty good, so I figure I have the energy to change my eating habits.

3) My goal is to lose…
a) Ten pounds the first week.
b) Ten pounds the first month
c) Ten pounds

4) My diet is …
a) Oranges three times a day, after all, they’re high in fiber and vitamin C
b) All fruit; nobody can just live on just one fruit, not even oranges
c) Fruit, veggies, grains, dairy foods, meat, fish, and poultry – only in measured portions, smaller than I usually eat.

5)After I lose weight…
a)My whole life will change
b) I’ll never eat ice cream again
c) I’ll continue an active, nutritious lifestyle.

And the correct answer to every question is of course (c). Why? Because it describes a decision based on what you want to do and what you can do, not on someone’s else opinion or on unrealistic assumptions about weight. Lose ten pounds in a week? Wave bye-bye to all your problems? Never eat ice cream again? Give me – and yourself – a break!

Rule #3: Pick a diet that provides all the essential nutrients

A very healthy diet, even one designed to take off pounds, provides a variety of different foods. Let’s take broccoli for example. Even though the vegetable is packed with anti cancer carotenoid pigments, plus vitamin A, vitamin C, the B vitamin folate, carbs, and dietary fiber, we cannot live by green florets alone.
Variety in food is important in weight loss. Food is meant to be enjoyed, even diet food. When your weight loss diet is interesting and tastes good, sticking to it is less of a chore. Besides, human beings are omnivores, which means that they have digestive tracts equipped to handle foods from plants and foods from animals. While vegetarianism may certainly be a healthful choice, maybe even a moral one for folks who do not want to consume animals, human bodies have the ability to metabolize and use all kids of food: meat, dairy, grains, fruits and veggies. Who are you to contradict Mother Nature by eating only one food?

Rule #4: Choose a diet with sensible goals

Obesity has become such an important health issue that oodles of reputable organizations, such as the American Heart Association, the American Diabetes Association, the American Dietic Associaton, not to mention all the relevant government agencies, are ready and willing to offer pretty much the same prescription: Eat less, eat a variety of foods, get the nutrients you need, step up your exercise, and take the time you need to lose pounds easily.
This advise is boring, no doubt about that. Boring or not, the simple truth is that like the tortoise in Aesop’s tale whose slow but steady pace left the jumpy hare in the dust, slow but steady weight loss is a sure winner over the long haul.

Rule #5: Pick a diet you can live with forever

If the thought of sticking with your weight loss program triggers pure panic – what? Asparagus and toast everyday for the next 40 years? – you have a pretty good clue that you have picked the wrong diet. However, if your reaction is, “Yeah, I guess I could learn to live with more veggies, more fruits, and fewer coconut cream cupcakes so long as I can have a Mc Burger or a fat free frozen yogurt once in a while.” that suggest that you’re on the right track. Remember, true weight control is a lifestyle change, and a healthy lifestyle can (and should) be a pleasurable lifelong commitment.

By: Hafizsteen

The Yo-yo Diet Syndrome

Being an owner of a swimwear store and website, I can't tell you how many times women storm out of the fitting room bemoaning how fat they perceive themselves to be. They state they will return in two weeks after they get rid of the ten pounds that stands between them and looking great in a swimsuit. And so begins the classic struggle that is played out a million times during any given day in America. The yo-yo diet syndrome that you can never beat. You can succeed at it ten times and lose at it eleven. It is a sad state of affairs that we are the fattest country on earth and it gets worse with each passing year. Not only adults, but the majority of children are also overweight due to inactivity and poor nutrition. The saddest part of it is that it contributes to failing health and quality of life in addition to the lost self-esteem from a negative body image.

We are set up to fail, time and time again, by ruthless marketing of fast food and poor nutritional choices by an industry answering only to their shareholders. There was the point in time when I too ranted about this relentless campaign to make Americans fatter and fatter. But the fault lies not with the companies trying to entice you, it rest solely of the shoulders of each and every person who strives to live health and maintain an optimum weight. We choose to be uneducated and illiterate about even the basics of nutrition and food choices, relying on a commercial to tell us what is healthy and what to put on the table tonight. I know many educated doctors and professionals who do not have a clue as to reading the nutritional ingredients on a package, much less understand the importance of the message. Nutrition has basic principles and they are the same for all of us. With rare, rare exception, the principles are universal no matter what country and what age or sex you are. There is a wealth of information available on the internet with the push of a button, yet we rather pour over gossip sheets and let TV do the work.

No article can even begin to address all of this critical information, but here is one that is right at the top of the list. The American-led concept of low/non-fat foods and sugar-free products. Some simple research will demonstrate that if trace back to the time these products were first introduced, that was the starting point of Americans getting more and more obese. The food industry will tell you that their dangerous additives such as aspartame are there to help people fight obesity. Maybe ask them the question as to why their additive started the problem. Study and study show that dieting adults who regularly use diet foods that are low/non-fat or sugar free consume 25% MORE calories per day than the person who consumes only the natural version. Impossible you may say, how can this be?

Very simple process at work here, the mind, through the barrage of advertising claiming their virtue, views foods with these labels as being so devoid of sugar or fat that you automatically consume more simply because of the label. When fat-free donuts were introduced, many people considered that an invitation to consume the entire box since that nasty fat was gone. Calories are calories and when in excess, they are converted to fat, especially with sugary carbs, like in the donut. Another point here, if a product has its fat removed, then the only way they can get it to the point where you tolerate the taste is to add sugar. Same from the other side, take out sugar, put in fat. They realize you must have taste or it will be so bland, the market won't bear it. A quick look at the caloric content will show not much difference in calories between the non-fat and regular. Sly manufacturers even adjust the serving size down a bit so it appears you are taking in less.

Here is the major point of this example. The sweetening additives, along with the depleted version of the product, fail to timely inform your brain that you are full. A strange concept but a healthy working body tells you when you have had enough, you are full, and it is time to stop. With the diet versions and additives, that signal appears only after you have consumed way too much. Hence, the 25% increase in calories between the two users. Of course, the food industry loves this. You pay much more for the diet version and eat more of it than the person eating the regular item. The normal fat, in say, a product like ice cream, serves the purpose of telling your body when it is full and enough is enough. At that point, you must make a conscious decision to overeat. With diet versions, you never get that valuable message until the damage is done. This is just one example of how you need to get smart about nutrition and take responsibility in getting a lifetime diet strategy that gets you the optimum weight you desire.
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