Tuesday, December 12

How to Choose Healthy Foods to Eat

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Modern dieting isn’t about following one set diet.  It’s completely about doing what you want, in a smart way.  Basically, you take delicious foods and set up meals in such a way that taste good to YOU while allowing you to shed the pounds.  Bear in mind, eating healthy is never the only factor to wellness and losing weight.  You should always combine any healthy diet with frequent exercise (I aim for 3-4 times per week, 30-60 minutes of exercise each session).  

Let’s take a look at some examples of healthy foods to eat to help structure your diet.  We’re not going to just list “fruit” and “vegetables” because everyone knows that these healthy foods should be a part of any diet.

Nuts – Although most nuts are fairly high in fat and calories, you should find a way to incorporate them into your diet.  They have a good amount of fiber and certain nuts (like walnuts) contain omega 3 fatty acids, which are healthy for your heart. Some studies suggest that a moderate amount of nuts each day will help with weight loss and can even help you keep the weight off.

Soy – Although high in fat, soy is a great source of protein, essential amino acids, calcium, and many other nutrients.  Often used as an alternative to meat for vegetarians (it’s the main ingredient of tofu), soy should be a part of your healthy diet.

Sweet potatoes – These are a tasty food due to their unique taste and potent antioxidant effects.  They are a great source of vitamin A, vitamin C, manganese, and fiber.  I love having something like sweet potatoes in my diet because they taste good but won’t add the weight like other foods do – just stay away from sweet potato fries!

Yogurt – This calcium-rich, smooth food is a enjoyed by many who are trying to lose weight.  If you’re eating unsweetened yogurt, feel free to add some granola to prepare some delicious yogurt.  Watch out for some yogurt that is high in fat and calories.

Fish – Fish, like soy, is also an awesome source of protein (especially for vegetarians who eat fish).  Beyond protein, many fish (like salmon) are rich in omega 3 fatty acids, which help you to lower cholesterol, and fight many cancers.  When you cook it in a great way (bake it instead of frying it!), fish makes for an excellent ,healthy treat.

As you can see with the above healthy foods, modern dieting isn’t about picking one strict set of rules (like “no carbs” or “no sweets”).  Moderation is key when it comes to some of the less healthy foods we love, but it’s important to include things that you like, in order for you to maintain your diet for a long time.  If you don’t love your diet, you will ultimately revert to your less healthy ways, and probably regain the weight you worked so hard to lose. 

Enjoy your food, but more importantly, enjoy life!

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