- by Dr Naveen Visweswaraiah
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- Apr 03 2017
8 Easy and Natural Food Habits for Weight Management
Weight Management is more than just reduction of weight, it means:1. Feeling energetic throughout the day2. Your medical condition does not interfere with your daily activities3. Quality of life is not compromisedManagement of weight can be done using many traditional and modern methods. Let's start discussing these methods one by one.1. Drinking water and clear liquids is the easiest and convenient tip available right in our own home kitchen. Our bodies are about 60 percent water. Each drop of this fluid works hard to promote proper blood circulation, food digestion and elimination, temperature regulation, and the flow of nutrients. A suggested study from Food & Nutrition Board at the Institute of Medicine says a healthy woman should intake 11 glasses (91 oz.) of water while a healthy man should intake 15 glasses (125 oz.) of water normally every day. This depends on person's age, body weight, activity level, environmental factors such as altitude and of course medical conditions.
Fresh fruit juice
can be an alternative but again they have sugar and have to be limited to a glass a day. Making a habit of drinking more water is beneficial but sometimes consuming plain water can be boring. We can make it interesting by making our own infused water. Fancy your water by adding slices of lemon, cucumber, grapefruit, and strawberry and give it a flavor of mint or basil. This will help keeping body hydrated and lessen your urge to have sugary soda. Soups also help in intake of water. Instead of biting veggies from soup you can also purée it and drink.
Fruits and Vegetable - Fruits like watermelon, cantaloupe, oranges, grapefruits, and strawberries have good quantity of water. According to University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, watermelon is made of 92 percent of water and 6 percent of sugar. Intake of such fruits will help in keeping you full without increasing calorie intake. Vegetables like cucumber and lettuce top the list of hydrated vegetables with 96 percent. Others are zucchini, radish, celery with 95 percent. Then comes tomatoes and green cabbage with 94 percent of water weight. Water quantity is high in cauliflower, red cabbage, spinach, fresh fenugreek leaves, carrots and broccoli.
A 2009 research study at the University of Aberdeen Medical School says reaching for a watermelon or cucumber after finishing an intense workout may hydrate your body twice as effectively as a glass of water. Substituting high-calorie food with water-based food will reduce in calorie intake. Research from Rush University Medical Center says eating four servings of fruits and five servings of vegetables may reduce your risk from cancer as well as many other diseases other than keeping your body hydrated.3. Green tea is a very good option to have more water intake. It is a zero calorie drink rich in antioxidants and flavonoids. It can boost the metabolism with other health benefits. The advantages of green tea include weight loss, regulation of blood sugar level thus helping control on diabetes, healthy teeth, mucous related problems, skin care, cholesterol management, prevention of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson's disease and even deadly cancer. Why saying no to a cup or two of green tea with so many benefits.
Protein-based diet helps to reduce weight. The word protein comes from Greek word proteios that means of prime importance. There are many nutrients that our body requires. They are protein, fat, carbohydrates known as macronutrients making most of our food weight. Remaining known, as micronutrients are vitamins, minerals, water. According to a research published in Nutrition Journal 2010 in BioMed Central, meal replacement diet plan of a fixed macronutrient composition yielded clinically weight loss of 93%. Since protein takes longer time to digest than carbohydrates, helping feel fuller for longer on fewer calories. Replacing a grain based breakfast with protein based diet helps eat fewer calories and lose more weight and body fat. The highest amount of proteins are present in animal sources and dairy products . They hold all the essential amino acids required to make new proteins in the body. Daily intake of all protein diet is not necessary and can be replaced by other macronutrients. Proteins are in adequate amount in meat, poultry, eggs, dairy products, seafood, sprouts, and legumes. Vegetarian diet has choices like milk, yogurt, paneer, and legumes. Some fruits and vegetables like avocados, dried figs, melon, nectarines, peas, spinach, kale mushrooms have high protein content.
Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA) products results in weight loss. CLA is produced naturally in digestive tract of cattle, buffalo, goat, sheep and to lesser degree in pigs, chicken and turkeys. This is also found in ghee, milk and other dairy products. But these products should come only from grass fed cattle. Research shows in human, CLA alone in combination with physical exercise reduces the percentage of fat while increasing the lean mass. This results in overall lower body fat for long term.6. Buttermilk is an excellent drink for lactose intolerant trying to loose weight. Lactose in milk is transformed to healthy lactobacillus bulgaricus or lactic acid bacteria turning it into buttermilk. This drink offers all essential nutrients like protein, calcium, potassium, magnesium, iron, phosphorus, zinc and sodium which helps in satisfying hunger while maintaining energy levels for people yearning to loose weight. This keeps them away from binge eating or eating junk. It can be taken along with other liquids or as a dietary product. Evidence based studies say that probiotics present in buttermilk helps in weight management. This drink also boosts immunity preventing body to fight against various diseases. According to International Research Journal of Pharmacy, buttermilk has 2.2 grams fat and only 99 calories whereas whole milk contains 8.9 grams of fat and 157 calories. The fat content and calories may change according to the different versions of buttermilk.
Cooking in Coconut Oil is the best alternative oil in our kitchen. The composition of this oil is made up of excessive amount of healthy medium chain saturated fatty acids that increases metabolism for immediate energy. Some of the benefits of coconut oil is it's easy to digest. Since it is processed by liver immediately and converted to energy, there is no body fat deposition if taken in moderation. Restricting carbohydrates and increasing coconut oil in the diet helps losing weight and revs up metabolism. This oil is also given to athletes and fitness trainer to sustain their energy levels without drugs and any other stimulant. Its anti-microbial and anti-fungal property makes it endearing cooking oil in our kitchen.8. Cutting down sugar and refined carbs. Reducing the intake of sugar in form of candies and desserts is not all. There is hidden sugar in refined flour or all purpose white flour, white rice, pasta sauce, canned soups, soda any kind, shakes, smoothies with added sugar coffee drinks. The Dietary Guidelines of Advisory Committee refers sugar as one of our major health concerns. The American Heart Association recommends about 100 calories from sugar for women and 150 calories from sugar for men that are from six to nine teaspoons. In its natural state, sugar is relatively harmless. Plenty of sugar is found in fruits, vegetables and dairy in the form of fructose or lactose. Adding sugar by processing to enhance flavor, texture or color causes problems. These should be avoided as far as possible. Slowly reduce sugar in your diet giving time to your taste buds to get adjusted & try to maintain this level. Reduce your taste levels to negligible or no sugar. Try to include more sweet fruits after your meals instead of eating sweets, cake etc. to satisfy your sweet tooth.In General - Eat healthy instead of dieting. Restrained eating or dieting may help loose weight temporarily but can bring back the food cravings ending up eating more. Nourishing the body instead of depriving it is the main goal to get a fitter, happier, healthier person. Tips are keeping healthy snacks at your reach. Roasted peanuts, roasted almonds, fruits and vegetables salad, fruit smoothie with no added sugar, low-fat granola bar or walnut granola bar, hard boiled eggs, whole grain sandwich legumes and lentils soaked and garlic and lemon juice can be good options.
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