Successful Diets

Imagine having an expert's help at the comfort of your home. Whether you have many pounds to lose or just need to lose 10 pounds- have diabetes, high blood pressure, or elevated cholesterol OR have other diet needs, this article can help you.

Successful Diet Guidelines…

There are about 40 different nutrients that have to be supplied continuously by the food we eat. It is impossible to get them unless your diet includes a large variety of foods. It may sound obvious, but it is amazing how easily we restrict the foods we eat to the ones we like best. To eat a variety of foods is most important when we need to reduce our caloric intake: when losing weight, or as we age. Since our caloric needs decrease steadily, the smaller the amount of food, the less likely it is that our body's nutrient needs will be met. This is why it is recommended that fat, sugar and alcohol (all low nutrient foods) be reduced in a weight loss plan.

Avoid Too Much Fat, Saturated Fat and Cholesterol.

A high consumption of these three elements has been associated with high blood cholesterol levels which in turn raise the risk of having heart disease. Genetic background plays a role in the way we use cholesterol , and other factors increase the risk of heart disease (smoking, high blood pressure, obesity), but a consensus has been reached among scientists about the wisdom of reducing fat, saturated fat and cholesterol in the diet of all Americans.

Alcoholic beverages are high in calories and low in nutrients.

Alcohol increases the incidence of serious diseases such as cirrhosis of the liver and the likelihood of birth defects. A "moderate" alcohol intake means no more than 1 glass of wine, 1 bottle of beer, or 1/2 oz of hard liquor per day.

Eat Foods with Adequate Starch and Fiber- Bulky starches are great "filler-uppers " with fewer calories than fats and help maintain a good control of weight. There is also evidence that a high fiber diet reduces the risk of diabetes, heart disease, chronic constipation, "irritable bowel" and perhaps, colon cancer.

Sugar and other sweeteners (honey, molasses, syrups, fructose, etc) provide calories, but few nutrients to the diet.

People with low calorie needs (those on weight reduction programs or older people) should be very careful about eating foods high in sugar. These include soft drinks, candies, cakes, and cookies. For all people, reducing sugar will help prevent the onset of dental cavities.

Avoid Too Much Salt.

Sodium is an element supplied in our diets by table salt (sodium chloride), as well as by flavor enhancers, baking soda, preservatives, canned foods, and many other foods. In populations where sodium is low, high blood pressure is rare.

By contrast, high blood pressure is common in populations where sodium intake is high. A low sodium diet helps people lower an elevated blood pressure. Most Americans consume an amount of sodium equivalent to 2 1/2 teaspoons of salt per day. This is much more than the body needs. Unfortunately much of this is "hidden " as part of a preservative or flavoring agent added to processed foods. The challenge is to learn to cook with less or no salt and to read labels carefully.

Are you looking for long term weight loss success?

Long-term weight loss or "maintenance" factors that have been identified by the professional community to demonstrate success are:

  • Regular Exercise
  • Social Support to maintain eating and exercise habits
  • Positive interpretation of lapses (Understanding that you do have control over your weight and while you have occasional lapses of success, weight loss is within your control.)
  • Viewing eating and exercise as permanent lifestyle habits rather then temporary measures.
  • Shown to be effective in producing "health-significant" losses -sustained for more than 1 year.

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