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REALISTIC DIETS "WEIGH-IN" WITH BEST RESULTS
seems to be a very bad word . . . at least according to most of the
current best-selling diet books. Some
suggest almost eliminating carbohydrates totally, while others restrict
their consumption to once or twice a day.
Others advocate combining certain
foods with carbs to lessen their “negative” effects.
There are those who suggest timing the consumption of carbs to a
specific period before or after the consumption of other foods.
At the other extreme, some diets encourage the over-consumption
of “dense” carbs that
require more calories to digest.
If all this
seems like a logistical nightmare requiring data books, timers and
complex meal schedules; there is a much easier way, according to Jill
Callejas, R.D., clinical nutritional manager at Marian Community
Hospital. “The key word
to remember is calories . . . the more we consume, the more we gain”,
she stressed. “Americans
are just consuming more calories than ever before and as a result weigh
more than ever.”
Some of the low
carbohydrate diets do encourage weight loss because fewer total calories
are usually consumed. For example two scrambled eggs and 2 slices of bacon
can have less calories than
a typical bakery bagel. However,
eating eggs and bacon every day is certainly not healthy and deprives
the body of other essential nutrients.
“When we consume fats, we do feel full,” relates Mrs.
are often less filling and leave the stomach faster.
They are also nutritious, especially those containing fiber.
However, there are many ways to eat more beneficial carbohydrates
with high fiber. Healthier
breakfast items can include whole wheat cereal and breads, or egg white
or egg substitutes with vegetables for a healthier alternative to empty
diets are based on at least one premise or philosophy to gain attention
and set it apart from the many other diet books on the market. “What
the authors of these various fad diets have managed to do is to take a
shred of truth and developed a theory or are proposing theories that are
untested or worse have been proven false,” outlined the registered
bio-chemical theories, or the theories of how the body processes
foods, are part of the course work for registered dietitians, yet
I am sometimes amazed at the theories forming the basis of some diets.
While many people are consuming too many carbohydrates in the
form of processed sweets and snack foods, there are very many valuable
carbohydrates providing valuable nutrients like fruits, grains and many
of many current diets is that those following the program are less
tired, have more energy . . . something we are all craving.
Carbohydrates provide the body with energy, so a very reduced
level would actually be tiring. What
people are often finding is that with weight loss comes new enthusiasm,
a healthier outlook and more positive self -image.
All of these factors contribute to a feeling of more energy.
dietary consideration is not to eliminate one particular food group but
rather focus on natural unprocessed foods.
Do the majority of your food shopping from the sides of the
grocery store. There you
will find the fresh products; fruits and vegetables, lean meats and
chicken as well as dairy products.
The processed foods are usually found up and down the isles.
It is not necessary to pick up a diet book to understand that
white flour and white sugar have very little nutritional value.
However, it is possible to make smarter selections among products
that usually contain these items by choosing more nutritional varieties
like those including whole grains and reduced amounts of sugar.
“Any diet you
find initially successful should be one you can follow for life, not
just for a few days or weeks” stressed the dietitian.
“Restriction only leads to over-indulgence.
It is not uncommon for those on low carb diets to crave fruit,
certainly a healthy food selection.
A healthy diet should focus on a balanced selection of food, with
an emphasis on fresh and natural foods.
The more processed a food item is, the more fillers and empty
calories it usually contains. A
total weight management plan is much easier to manage in combination
with regular exercise.
weight management program should be based on the U. S. Department of
Agriculture’s Food Guide Pyramid (to run with story)”, concluded
Mrs. Callejas. “Successful
weight loss and life-time control comes with positive changes in diet
and exercise habits.”
Jill Callejas is no longer employed by Marian Community Hospital, however, the information contained in this article is current.
© 2001 Marian Community Hospital, Carbondale, PA. All
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