Achieve Healthy Weight Loss on a Diet

By Clare Jamison

Healthy weight loss, Lose weight now note on scale

Healthy weight loss, Lose weight now—Alan Cleaver (Flickr.com)

We are constantly hearing about how people need to lose weight in a healthy way, but what exactly is considered healthy weight loss?

Weight loss is a topic that interests a lot of people these days. I have heard a couple of different answers from doctors, nutritionists and personal trainers, so I am not really sure what to believe.

I have always felt that if you are following a diet and exercise routine where you are taking in at least 1,400 to 1,600 calories per day and exercising for at least 30 to 60 minutes a day, regardless of how much weight you lose you are probably pretty healthy.

Not everyone feels this way, though. Some diet plans are absolutely strict about the weight loss food you are supposed to eat.

I had a doctor tell me that healthy weight loss is considered to be one to two pounds a week. He said that anything more than that is not really conducive to permanent weight loss. He said that dieting should adopted slowly and exercise should be done in moderation.

I took what he said to heart, and when I lost 70 pounds about 10 years ago, I did not lose more than two pounds a week, and if I saw myself starting to go over that amount, I would slow down on the workouts and dieting. Listening to my body was essential for my own healthy diet plan.

I gained about 50 of it back when I started a job where I was pretty sedentary and knew that I would have to take it back off again. Fortunately, even though the job was pretty sedentary, I was able to hire a personal trainer who informed me that I could lose as much as one percent of my body weight each week and that would be fine.

I was in the high 200′s at this point, so I knew that I could start out with about 2.75 pounds per week and would be fine. I was, and I have never had any health issues because of that.

On the other hand, the contestants on the popular reality show The Biggest Loser can lose 10 to 15 pounds per week and often do so.

It has to be healthy weight loss, otherwise the trainers on the show would say so, but one thing the show makes sure to emphasize is the fact that the contestants are under constant medical supervision and go through recovery periods after each workout, where they are iced down, receive massages and so forth to reduce any sort of trauma done to their bodies.

So what is considered healthy weight loss? I guess it just depends on who you ask. I would say that keeping it to a three or four pounds maximum each week would be acceptable, but somebody else might tell you to shoot for a lower amount.

Become a Healthy Eater and Surpercharge Your Body and Mind

By Spring Estep

One of the best things you can do do improve your overall health and well-being is to change your eating habits and become a healthy eater. Ultimately, being a healthy eater means becoming informed about what healthy eating really is so you can make smart choices.

It isn’t about analyzing food labels, calculating grams of fat, and calorie counting. Instead, healthy eating focuses on sensible eating which includes having healthy meals at least 3 times daily.

The truth is, most healthy eaters enjoy a wide assortment of foods, not restricting themselves to one specific food group.

Maintaining a healthy diet necessitates some flexibility…

Certainly, there are going to be times and occasions when you eat way too much, skip meals, or eat foods that are less good for you.

Even so, you would be wise to power your body routinely with the right amount of food to keep both your body and mind strong and alert.

Quite often, bad eating habits spill over into other areas of life.

When someone is struggling and unable to take control over their eating, they are also more likely to spin out of control with other aspects of life as well.

For example, they could wind up overspending, talking too much, staying up late too often; not really able to control much of anything they do.

By contrast, those concerned about taking care of their health tend to form all around good habits.

For one thing, a healthy eater is generally a good problem solver too. Most have learned to take care of themselves and make good decisions about their eating habits. They are invariably aware of what they eat, and know the effect that it’s going to have on their bodies.

If you have thought about making your own life much better, healthy eating is just the place to start.

It is best to remember that restricting food is more difficult than choosing to eat right. Make eating healthy a chosen lifestyle, something that you can do to supercharge your body and be at your best!

Healthy Eating for Kids: Getting Your Kids to Like Healthy Foods

By Antonia Sparks

Does healthy eating for kids mean that your children will not like what you prepare for them? I often hear parents say that they want to prepare wholesome food for their children that tastes great and is good for them, but just can’t find anything that actually fulfills both desires. I am here to say that you can.

The first thing that I like to suggest when people are looking at ways to provide healthy eating options for kids is to look at ways to prepare chicken.

Chicken is a great source of protein, but does not have the fat that beef or pork does. There are all kinds of way to grill, smoke and bake chicken that are quite savory, and I have yet to find a kid that does not like it when prepared right.

I personally like to grill my chicken and I have noticed that my children really love it that way.

Healthy eating for kids can also be accomplished with tasty vegetable recipes.

You heard me right – vegetables!

I was very fortunate growing up that my mother made it a point to make our vegetables as interesting and flavorful as possible.

There are seasonings and spices that can make vegetables taste especially good. The thing that I have most often found is that when children are encouraged to eat their vegetables at an early age and informed about their health benefits, they are more likely to continue with good eating habits for life.

One of the big complaints that I often here when it comes to healthy eating for kids is that it is impossible to allow them to have the sweet things they like for dessert. This is also not true.

Such things as Jell-O, low-fat puddings and angel food cake provide children with the sweet taste they love and very little in the way of fat grams or calories. Granted, these do have sugars in them, and you want to watch out for that.

However, any desert can be given to children as long as it is done in moderation, and that really goes for all food.

Another major part of healthy eating for kids is to make sure you have an assortment of low fat dairy products on hand, including milk, yogurt and cheese. These are things children can include in their snacks and not have to worry about too much fat.

Healthy eating for kids does not have to be difficult, and there are many ways parents can go about accomplishing that objective. Teaching children good eating habits at a young age is critical to them making wiser choices as they get older.

 

Have a Quick Healthy Breakfast

By Clare Jamison

Millions of people run out the door each morning without eating breakfast, and they pay the price for it too. Those on diets wish to avoid the calories, but most skip this meal because they don’t have the time to make something or they simply don’t see the importance of eating when they first wake up.

Some people are simply not hungry right away and don’t want to force themselves to eat something. Whatever the case, eating a quick healthy breakfast is not as hard as you think, and is more important than you may realize.

Breakfast is fuel for your morning. Without eating a quick healthy breakfast you are faced with lagging mental facilities and a lagging body as well. You will not think quickly and on your feet without breakfast, and you may feel sleepy throughout the morning.

You may also have a big lunch because you are starving by that time, bogging down your digestive system so much that you may feel like napping at two in the afternoon. Productive workers and students, as well as moms at home, know this is not the way to go about the day if you want to get things done.

Those that are dieting and skipping a quick healthy breakfast are making a mistake for the very same reasons. Though you are not consuming calories then, you may end up consuming even more later on because your body is going to demand nourishment.

When you do not eat breakfast you are going to be doubly hungry and you are going to eat twice as much later. If you had taken just a few minutes to get something to eat in the morning you could have actually shaved calories off of your day. You will make up for missed breakfast later, and usually with poor food choices.

A quick healthy breakfast does not have to be complicated. One of the best things that you can have for breakfast is fruit. You can get canned fruit, but fresh fruit is the best option.

If you do not want to be standing around cutting up fruit in the morning, get things like grapes that you can just grab and pop into your mouth. Slice up the fruit that you love the night before and have it ready for the next morning. You can even make a fruit salad (no added sugars though) so that you can take it with you or have a quick bowl in the morning.

You can also go with things like protein shakes from a package or a bowl of high fiber cereal in the morning for a quick healthy breakfast. These things will fill you up easily and give you the mental and physical edge that you need in the morning no matter what you have coming up that day.

Some people like to make pancakes or waffles and freeze them, and then toss them in the toaster in the morning for a quick breakfast. This works well as these items freeze and thaw rather easily and taste good after freezing.

Whatever the case, there is no excuse for skipping this meal, which many consider the most important of the day.

The Key to Staying With Healthy Diet Plans

By Spring Estep

Over and over, we’re inundated with healthy diet lectures, from doctors, in magazine articles, nutritionists, diet coaches and the personal trainers. It reaches the point where you hope to never hear another word about a healthy diet plan, whether it makes sense or not. With so much unrelenting outside pressure, this good and well intentioned info begins to fall on psychologically deafened ears – too much information!

For the most part, healthy diet plans need not be grueling. Often it is just a matter of applying common sense.

However, we all know that, should we choose to ignore the facts, chances are good that we’ll pay for it down the road in poor health. The fact remains, we all know how to construct a personal healthy diet plan all on our own. You just need to know how to go about it.

Everyone has personal taste preferences. One of the problems with recipe books and the so-called healthy diet plans is that you may not like half of the ingredients called for in the recipes. This makes it hard to stick with the program.

One way to circumvent this problem is to start with the food pyramid. While you know that orange, red and yellow fruits and veggies are high in antioxidants necessary to good health, there are only a couple you truly enjoy.

If you hate sweet potatoes, but like apricots and yellow squash, look for recipes that include these and forget the sweet potatoes. Consult charts which list fruits and veggies high in fiber and choose those you like and will actually eat. A healthy diet plan is one which you embrace!

Every successful healthy diet means that you make every effort to cut back on sugar, salt, fats and refined processed foods. As possible, buy natural meats which contain no hormones or antibiotics. Fresh and frozen fruits and veggies are better than a canned product.

When you do eat meat, choose lean meats, poultry and fish. Eat smaller portions of meat and larger portions of fruits and veggies.

The old style American dinner plate  of the 1950s consisted of a big chunk of meat, a few tablespoons of veggies and a large baked potato, smothered in butter. No one today would try to argue that this style of eating healthy. Since we know better now, it’s time to come to the party of your own accord. You’ll avoid many health problems and live longer.

Simple carbs, such as white bread, quickly convert to sugar, raising your chances of gaining weight and risking diabetes, by exhausting your body’s ability to process insulin.

Instead of white rice, try brown or wild rice, or a mixture if a sudden switch is too much to bear. Go for whole grain breads and complex carbohydrates, which convert more slowly and don’t produce those sugar spikes.

When planning the dairy content of your customized healthy diet plan, make a gradual shift to low fat milk, sour cream and cheeses. If you normally drink whole milk, try a half and half mix of whole and 2%, until you adjust to the taste of the 2% milk. It won’t take long before you don’t even notice the difference.

Whole milk will eventually taste far too rich. If you haven’t tried soy milk, buy a quart and see what you think. Soy milk is packed with amino acids and is a much healthier choice than cow’s milk. Yogurt is another good choice in a healthy diet plan.

The real key to staying with healthy diet plans, is that you choose healthy foods you actually like!

Finding a Healthy Eating Plan for Weight Loss

By Spring Estep

If you truly want to lose weight and to stay healthy, you want to adopt and use a healthy eating plan for weight loss that you can follow but also that you can stay on for the duration.

If you have heard of the cabbage diet, the Atkins diet, the soup diet, or the HCG diet, you are probably looking for a way to lose weight that you can understand and follow.

While the idea of a simple plan that only includes a few things sounds ideal if you have a busy life and very little time for meal planning and preparation, it is not the way to go.  Most of the plans that feature just a few foods last no longer than a week or two. Everyone needs variety.

A healthy eating plan for weight loss is not as restricted as some of the plans mentioned above.

There is a diet that includes eating a cabbage soup each day. Not only does this not work, it can have some pretty unpleasant side effects for the dieter and those that spend time around the dieter.

This diet gets boring very quickly and most people cannot stay the side effects and also the boredom of eating the same thing each day. Instead, you want a plan that offers different foods each day and for each meal, as long as they are healthy choices.

You want something that includes meats, vegetables, fruits, dairy, and whole grains for a balanced diets. The best healthy eating plan for weight loss is going to have each of these things in almost each meal.

The Atkins diet is effective but is heavy on proteins and fats. It can work if you can do it, but some fall off it way to quickly and gain even more weight back if they go back to their old eating habits. Only do something like Atkins if you are committing for life, which we all know is hard to do. If Atkins and the like are not for you, there are other great options.

Some places plan your meals out for you. If you are not good at calorie counting, planning meals, and getting what you need from the grocery store without help, you may want to see if you can find a healthy eating plan for weight loss among one of these companies.

Places like Weight Watchers and Nutrasystem seem to be successful for those that no only understand the plan but commit to stick to it. Knowing the full details in advance is crucial so you can honestly decide if you can stay with it for the long run. That is the only way to enjoy dieting success.

Lastly, remember that you have the power to come up with your on healthy eating plan for weight loss.

You know what is good for you and what is bad for you, and if you have a computer with an Internet connection, you have a tool that can help you find out about things of which you are not sure. All the help you need is out there so you cannot make the excuse that you just did not know.

Come up with a plan that you can live with and plan out your menu and shopping list each week. You will soon be looking and feeling better without dreading that next bowl of cabbage soup that you really cannot stand to eat in the first place.

Make Heart Healthy Recipes for Your Party

By Gwyn Seabrooke

We all know that party buffets have delicious temptations for the dieter, diabetic and heart patient. Wouldn’t it be nice if you attended a party that filled the table with heart healthy foods tasty enough to please a crowd? Is this possible? Yes! Here we’ve got some ideas for entrees, side dishes and desserts you’ll be proud to serve and happy to eat.

I’ve scanned the many heart healthy recipe books and magazines to get a sense of how they differ from ordinary cuisine. My impression was that, well, they didn’t sound too interesting and a little on the stingy side.

I decided to come up with some generic heart healthy recipes, where you might ‘mix and match’, swapping out a zucchini for broccoli, for example. Or, substituting wild rice for white and mushrooms for corn.

Most cooks have a good sense of color, texture and size, as well as intuitively knowing combinations of foods that taste good together. In terms of ingredients and a variety of food groups, what makes heart healthy recipes that are tasty and satisfying and even elegant?

Perhaps the first signature is that the dish is low in fat and sodium. Being low in fat or salt does not at all negate a resulting gourmet pleaser. Olive oil is the recommended healthy oil for cooking.

Next, use the freshest, top quality produce you can buy. Learn to use seasonings, both for salt and fat substitutes in the flavor arena. Use lean meats, fish, seafood and poultry.

When you shop for grains, pasta and breads, choose whole grain products, rich in fiber. Use 1% dairy products to keep the fat down.

For dessert, a fruit cup with sherbet and sprigs of mint make simple, heart healthy recipes that are just right after dinner. Following the basic shopping guidelines and with a little creative imagination, you can create the most amazing gourmet delights, ones your heart will love as well.

You’ll soon become a master of your own heart healthy recipes by just getting online and searching out sites with food and seasoning compatibility charts. For example, did you know that thyme makes a plain green bean taste like a whole new food?

Studying these charts can become fascinating when you begin to learn how these humble herbs and spices can enhance the taste of a particular food. You can also check the bookstores for books that match foods with seasonings.

You’ll benefit from purchasing (or checking out from the library) a good nutritional reference guide, a wealth of information on nutritive value of various foods. This helps you pair the right ingredients when creating heart healthy recipes on your own.

When you cook produce, steaming the veggies in a steam basket retains the maximum amount of nutrients, as well as delivering all of the fresh flavor with a good crunch.

There are several herbs which make perfect additions to heart healthy recipes:

1.Cayenne pepper may be used in its whole, fresh form or used in powdered form in a spicy blend to bring a little zip to a bland side of rice, or lightly sprinkled on a shrimp or crab Louie. Cayenne reduces both your blood pressure and pulse rate, as well as toning and strengthening the heart muscle. Good stuff!

2.Garlic is a powerfully valuable addition to any heart healthy recipes and is so versatile, it may be used in salads, to marinate meats or as a spread for breads. Garlic has some pretty impressive credentials: it reduces your blood pressure, LDLs and triglycerides, while increasing the HDLs. This superstar helps eliminate fats from your blood and promotes good circulation. Fresh slivers of garlic are best, but garlic packed in a jar may be more convenient. Use liberally to realize these many benefits.

3.Rosemary is a tonic for your heart, toning and strengthening the function of the heart, as well as helping to normalize blood pressure. Happily, it also makes a delicious garnish for poultry, beef and mild-flavored fish, such as snapper or tilapia. A sprig of fresh rosemary adds great flavor to roasted potatoes.

4.The common seasoning, celery seed, is one of the most effective ways to lower blood pressure, promoting good circulation and a healthy flow of blood to the heart. Celery seed is good in a rice stuffing for poultry. Cook the rice in chicken broth, adding celery seed, fresh parsley, sliced black olives and green onions. Not only is this good for your heart, but tastes wonderful with the poultry. Try adding celery seed to a potato salad, along with diced onions (which also reduce BP) and freshly snipped parsley.

5.Artichokes contain a substance known as cynarin, which helps control cholesterol levels, accomplished by suppressing the production of cholesterol in the liver. Cynarin works in much the same way as the statin drugs. In addition, cynarin flushes old deposits of cholesterol from the liver, ultimately resulting in the breakdown and flushing of fats. That’s not all: artichokes help reduce the LDLs and raise the HDLs. Steamed artichoke hearts make a great side dish, while marinated artichoke hearts dress up any salad or antipasto platter.

Now you know some of the foods which can be eaten separately or combined, in a myriad of ways, for tasty and heart healthy recipes.

You can create these dishes on the fly.  Start with a whole grain pasta or rice, top the rice with a seasoned meat or fish and serve a leafy green salad with garlic bread. The possibilities are almost endless. BTW, your guests probably won’t know these are heart healthy recipes – they taste and look too good!