We know that most diets don’t work, and so do you. With two-thirds of the adults in the United States overweight, and one-third of those classified as “obese,” it’s clear that what Americans have been doing to control their weight just isn’t working. Most diets involve eliminating certain foods or whole food groups all together. Not only is this unhealthy, but it’s just plain unrealistic. Weighing and measuring your food may help you lose weight, but really isn’t practical as a long-term strategy. Many people return to their “normal” eating habits once they’ve reached their goals, and the weight just comes back.
Good nutrition is vital to successful weight loss and management, and for good health. Along with weight loss and management, other benefits of good nutrition are: improvement in cholesterol, reduction of blood pressure, and increase in overall energy. Many of us have tried one or more of the different fad diets or in the past have experienced the vicious cycle of unhealthy weight loss/weight regain. Some of the popular diets suggest eliminating certain food groups while others suggest taking mega-doses of vitamins. The fact is, this “yo-yo” cycle often leaves you discouraged and no closer to your weight loss goal. A good weight loss and management program incorporates sound nutrition practices and behavioral changes. To avoid the “yo-yo” cycles and ensure adequate nutrition, a balanced diet, and incorporation of proper nutrition is necessary in making a life long commitment to adopting a healthy lifestyle.
There are three principles of proper nutrition, which include variety, balance, and moderation. Adding a variety of foods to your diet is essential to ensure eating from the five major food groups. Remember, no one food supplies all the nutrients the body needs. A balanced diet supplies the nutrients and calories the body needs if eaten in appropriate amounts. Serving sizes differ for individual needs based on age, gender, and activity level. Many people believe they have to deprive themselves of their favorite foods, but choosing certain foods in moderation is key to successful long-term weight loss.
Here are some suggested healthy nutrition guidelines:
Read the Nutrition Facts Food Labels. Pay special attention to the fat, sodium, and carbohydrate content when shopping, especially if you have cardiovascular and/or diabetes risk factors.
Choose protein sources from plants and lean sources of meats. A good rule of thumb in selecting meats with less fat is to look for the words “round” or “loin” when shopping for beef, and the words “loin” or “leg” when shopping for pork or lamb. Remember, when shopping for poultry, white meat has less fat than dark meat.
Choose a diet rich in soluble fiber including oat bran, legumes, barley, and most fruits and vegetables. 20 to 35 grams of fiber daily are recommended.
Adopt healthy meal preparation techniques to reduce sodium, fat, and sugar.
Drink at least 8 -10, 8-oz. glasses of water each day.
Limit your consumption of alcohol. It provides empty calories.
Good nutrition takes practice and oftentimes some guidance from an experienced dietitian. There are certainly long term results when you improve your nutrition. Here is a partial list:
• Reduction in blood pressure
• Better control of your blood glucose for those with Type II Diabetes
• Improvement in your cholesterol, Low-density lipoprotein (LDL- bad cholesterol) and High-density lipoprotein (HDL-good cholesterol) and triglycerides
• Increase in energy
• Improvement in self–esteem
• Improvement in overall appearance
You deserve to do something good for yourself so start by improving your eating habits. Resolutions for a healthier you can be made at any time, and the sooner the better.
At Lifestyle Solutions, we thoroughly examine your individual lifestyle and any existing medical conditions, and then analyze this information and use it to formulate your unique treatment program. We’ll provide you with the proven tools needed to optimize your success.
When you join our physician supervised weight loss program, you’ll get your own Lifestyle Coach who will help you each step of the way. No matter what your goal is, we can help you achieve it. Our Lifestyle Coaches are specially trained to help you figure out what will work best for you. Whether it’s determining the best foods, developing great recipes to meet your needs, or cheering you up when you feel down, they are there for you so you never have to feel like you’re going through this process alone.