Hey, how’s your New Year’s Goal going? Typically we always think of a New Year’s Resolution that has to do with our health – and actually, they say that is exactly what the majority of people do. And typically, by Feb 1st their new health goals were just a memory.
I’m still hanging in there with mine, and doing pretty good if I do say so myself!! And yes, one of my New Year’s Goals had to do with living a healthier lifestyle. So today I’m bringing you a quick diet trick that I read recently in Winter 2012 Prevention magazine.
Change your thinking and you’ll change your behavior. Hope you enjoy the following…
THINK ABSTRACTLY: When debating whether or not to indulge in that chocolate croissant, try envisioning the flaky pastry as a negative concept rather than a delicious treat.
Ohio State University researchers have found that associating foods with abstract ideas (identifying an apple as “longevity” and a candy bar as “energy crash,” for example) helps people resist temptation and opt for healthier choices.
Here we are again….deciding what new things we want to accomplish, and a lot of times the things we want to accomplish have to do with our diet.
One of the ideas I want to encourage you to do is to change how you look at the word “DIET” – start to think of it as not something you go on and off, but as a lifestyle change. And commit to figuring out how to change your current ‘diet’ to a healthier eating lifestyle, so there’s no more thinking of “…..I blew it, I’ll start over tomorrow….” STOP THAT THINKING. It doesn’t work – never has, never will.
Change is hard. And it’s easy to get discourage when you try and don’t get the results you were hoping for. But the reality is that just making the effort is, in fact, progress.
Change is not an event with an exact start and stop point: it’s a process.
Each step you make, even if it’s a relatively small step such as making the resolution to change, is still a step in the right direction, bringing you closer to your ultimate goal.
It’s also important to recognize that even if you take a few steps back, it’s not the end of the world. If viewed and used correctly, the missteps can serve as learning opportunities, helping you become better prepared for the next log of the trip!
So here’s to CHANGE and hoping you will have a new year full of new thinking for a healthier YOU.
So many people have seriously – and half kidding – have asked me if food can be addicting. And my answer is always a resounding YES! I know this is just a little over 7 minutes but when you’re wondering about how/where cravings begin, and how (food) addiction keeps you from losing weight, then you need to view this video. Our THINKING (in fighting the battle of the muffin top) is critical but the pathology of addiction is something that needs to be understood too – and I think this video does a nice job of it!
The research linking weight and meal frequency is fuzzy. A recent study suggests that it’s not the number of meals you eat that matters, but the total number of calories consumed. While both the overweight and normal-weight participants reported eating three meals a day, the thinner ones ate fewer calories even though they reported eating one more snack a day.
“Eating the right foods at the right time helps keep your blood sugar steady, but eating frequently is not a ticket to overeat,” says Sari Greaves, R.D., nutrition director at the Step Ahead Wellness Center in Bedminster, N.J.
Here’s the latest evidence for different meal plans:
Three Meals. It’s the magic number, according to a January 2011 review that found that eating one or two meals a day left people hungrier than eating three meals a day, even when they consumed the same number of calories.
Eating Less. Another study of 15 middle-aged adults compared eating three meals a day with just one large dinner. The breakfast, lunch, and dinner diet was linked to lower blood pressure, lower total and LDL (bad) cholesterol levels, and feeling fuller. But those who ate just one meal a day had higher HDL (good) cholesterol and better glucose levels. Researchers said there are benefits to fewer meals, but the key is to cut your overall calories.
Six Meals. Eating six meals a day on a regular schedule has been associated with lower overall calorie intake, and lower total and LDL cholesterol compared with an irregular meal plan of three to nine meals a day, according to British researchers.
Bottom Line. If you’re watching your waistline, research suggests that eating three meals a day, with a healthy snack thrown in, will curb hunger pangs. If you opt for smaller, more frequent meals (about 300 to 4– calories each), stick with those that are nutrient-dense, like lean meats, low-fat dairy, and produce. You can use a notebook as a food diary to keep tract of your calories.
If you don’t have much of an appetite, focus on larger meals that contain high-quality protein like egg whites, healthy fat like almond or peanut butter, and lower carbohydrates, such as Greek yogurt, to remain full longer.
A French proverb says “A good meal ought to begin with hunger.” Well, there is some truth to that. Make sure you’re not experiencing a craving (which is just an intense desire for some particular thing) before you convince yourself it’s time to eat.
True hunger is the gnawing, growling feeling that happens in your stomach, an indicator letting you know you are truly h-u-n-g-r-y. So make sure when you experience true hunger that you’re eating a good nutritional meal.
Training in mindful eating can help frequent restaurant-goers prevent weight gain, according to a recent study of 35 women who dined out an average of six times a week.
One group received weekly training on portions, hunger cues, and staying aware while eating; the other didn’t. After six weeks, the women in the mindful group cut their daily intake of food by about 300 calories and lost 4 pounds, on average. (information provided by Consumer Reports on Health, April 2012)
Just another reason why having a Diet Coach just might be so helpful!
Eat sweets for dessert only Reason: All of the above (see Days 1 – 6)
If you eat sweets on an empty stomach, there’s nothing to impede the sugar from racing directly into your blood stream – no fat, no soluble fiber, no protein, no vinegar. But if you confine sweets to the end of the meal, you have all of the built-in protection the preceding rules provide.
If you want to keep blood sugar on an even keel, avoid between-meal sweets at all costs – and when you do indulge, don’t eat more than you can hold in the cup of you hand. But a few bites of candy after a meal will have little effect on your blood sugar and insulin – and can be quite satisfying.
(Thanks to Dr. Rob Thompson, MD and March 2012 Prevention for providing information)
Have a glass of wine with dinner. Reason: Your liver won’t produce as much glucose.
Alcohol has unique sugar-blocking properties. Your liver normally converts some of the fat and protein in your blood to glucose, which adds to the glucose from the carbs you eat. But alcohol consumed with a meal temporarily halts your liver’s glucose production. A serving of any alcohol – beer, red or white wine, or a shot of hard liquor – will reduce the blood sugar load of a typical service of starch by approximately 25%.
That doesn’t mean you should have several drinks (especially if you have diabetes, as multiple drinks can cause hypoglycemia). Not only does alcohol contain calories, but it also delays the sensation of fullness, so you tend to overeat and pile on calories. Be especially mindful about avoiding cocktails that are made with sweetened mixers – yet another source of sugar.
Eat lightly cooked vegetables. Reason: You digest them more slowly.
Both fruits and vegetables contain soluble fiber. As a rule, though, vegetables make better sugar blockers, because they have more fiber and less sugar.
But don’t cook your vegetables to mush. Boiling vegetables until they’re limp and soggy saturates the soluble fiber, filling it with water so it can’t absorb the sugar and starch you want it to. Also, crisp vegetables are chunkier when they reach your stomach, and larger food particles take longer to digest, so you’ll feel full longer. Another tip: Roasted vegetables like cauliflower can often serves as a delicious starch substitute.