Many Americans have been struggling with weight issues for years. People may lose a few pounds by trying various diets, but only to gain a few extra pounds when resuming old eating patterns. As we get older we find that losing weight becomes much more difficult with our metabolisms slowing substantially. Being overweight brings on serious health risks such as diabetes, cancer and heart disease. It is important for us to make a real connection between what we eat and our overall health. Here are some eating tips that typically make a difference in weight loss and, of course, incorporating exercise into your daily routine helps significantly.
Eat a healthy breakfast every day. A healthy breakfast is one that consists of
Protein, fruit and whole grains. Avoid processed foods. Eating breakfast helps
prevent overeating later in the day. Try eating an egg sandwich with a piece of fruit or whole grain cereal with low fat or skim milk and a banana.
Drink more water. Most of us don’t drink enough water. Substitute water for sodas, juices, alcoholic drinks and even diet sodas. Substitute water for those high calorie drinks and you will begin to see the pounds melt away. I like to drink sparkling water when I crave a soda.
Fish is great for giving you those good omega-3 fatty acids that we all need and
is lower in calories. Stay away from eating processed meats like hot dogs and sausages. Eat fish two to three times per week and eat red meat once a week at most.
Whole grains are chock full of vitamins, minerals and high in fiber. Eat whole wheat bread, whole wheat pasta and brown rice. Stay away from refined grains such as white bread and white pasta.
Fruits & Vegetables
We need our fruits and vegetables. They are antioxidant rich foods that help in weight loss. Fresh produce contains water so we feel full and satisfied longer. Berries are great antioxidants.
Including low-fat dairy food into our diets is important. These foods are rich in calcium and vitamin D. Many of us are deficient in obtaining these bone building vitamins.
Just because the label says “diet” or “low-fat” or “fat-free” doesn’t mean that they are healthy for us or will promote weight loss. These foods are typically loaded with sugar and are highly processed which means empty calories. It would be better to eat a hand-full of nuts than to turn to these impostors.
As you know I am big on cooking at home. I rarely use processed foods and would rather cook my own meals. It takes time, money and energy, but in the end it’s worth it. When we eat out in restaurants we truly don’t know how our food is cooked. Chefs tend to put butter on “everything” and that’s why the meals taste good. Also, we tend to eat much larger portions when we go out for dinner. For certain stay away from fast food restaurants.
I am a visual person. It sounds ridiculous but the serving size for fruits and vegetables should be fist size. Look at your fist and get a visual of what a fruit/veggie serving size should be. A serving size of meat should be the size of a deck of cards and a serving size of fish should be the size of a checkbook. Eat smaller meals!
Eat slower. We should spend 30 minutes eating a meal. Eat at the table sitting down.
Read those food labels for calories and other nutrients. Scan the food labels for how many grams of sugar an item has. Just because a food item my say it is low in fat it just may have a high amount of sugar.
Snacking twice a day on healthy snacks helps from overeating later in the day. Healthy snacks are items such as fruit, carrots or a handful of nuts (not sugar coated candy type nuts). Don’t forget that water!
Believe it or not chewing gum can help keep that weight off. I like to nibble so when I get the urge to nibble I will pop a couple pieces of gum in my mouth.
Sleep at least 7 hours per night.
Join a gym and go at least 3 times a week. If you can’t make it to a gym then walk. Go for a walk after lunch or after dinner for 45 minutes to an hour. Incorporate lifting some free weights into your routine.
Foods To Avoid
Prepared Salad Dressings
Foods To Eat
Steel Cut Oats
High Fiber Cereal
Whole Wheat Pasta
Piece of Dark Chocolate
Whole Wheat Pretzels
Whole Wheat Bread
Oil & Vinegar Salad Dressing