Thursday, November 30, 2017

FEEL FANTASTIC INTRODUCTION


Feel Fantastic was published in 1996 by MacMillan Canada. Although it's over 20 years old, most of the content is relevant today. My book was the first time a dietitian appeared on a cereal box. Enjoy!

Do you wake up some days and feel fantastic? Or, more often, do you wake up without energy? Can you relate the negative feeling to overeating or over drinking? Have you wanted to make a change? These chapters will help motivate you to take control of your life: to change the way you eat; to do the things you’ve always want to do. Having renewed confidence and looking the way you’ve always wanted to look will be your final result. 

The book, Feel Fantastic, originally published in 1996, is based on my experiences as a dietitian in private practice for more than forty years and a fashion model for more than fifty years. As a mother of three and grandmother of ten, it's time to update this book as a blog.

My two Master of Science degrees will help form the basis of sound nutrition advice, and the successes of my clients will help you develop new strategies to feeling fantastic every day.

Why do you want to change?
• to lose weight to fit into clothes.
• to eat better due to a recent health scare.
• to quit smoking but afraid of weight gain.
• to be more active and increase energy.
• to look good and regain confidence.

Eating poorly need not control the rest of your life. You need to take control and make changes now. Your self-neglect must stop. It’s very simple. How can you treat others well if you’re feeling dreadful? Tell yourself you’ve had enough! Tell yourself you deserve to feel good about yourself all the time.

You may wonder what role a dietitian plays in these aspects of life. Eating habits encompass much more than just the amount and types of food that people choose to put into their mouths. Cultural factors, social pressures, biology, personality and family dynamics all exert influence on a person’s present and future choices for healthy eating. The total approach to good health means all aspects are interrelated.

I’ve always admired Europeans for their stylish sophistication and poise. They're not better looking nor wealthier than the US public. So what is it that makes them unique? It’s their attitude! This became apparent to me when my older son, Elon, went to Paris. He came back with a surprising observation: All the women are good-looking. He said “Actually if you look carefully, they aren't really so good looking, they just think they are. They walk proudly, dress with style and act as if they own the world.” Indeed, a strong sense of self-worth should be evident in your comportment. It will improve the way you deal with people as well as how you treat yourself. Make health and happiness a priority in your life.

This book will help you identify problem areas in your eating habits, activity, confidence and appearance. Based on the examples provided here, you will find accessible ways to make changes - logical and common sense ways that you may not have identified within yourself. If stress, smoking or alcohol consumption have stopped you from feeling your best, future chapters will help you refocus on making positive changes in these areas.

There are no earth-shattering solutions here; merely common sense strategies to help you change habits gradually and painlessly, to improve your quality of life.

Confusion and fear of eating foods caused by nutrition myths will be exposed. Expensive gimmicks in the diet industry will no longer exploit you.

You will set your goals and follow through on them. When your mind is ready for it, nothing can stop you. Enjoy learning about yourself and being in control of your future health and attitude.


Acknowledgments

1955 Family photo

I would like to thank the following people for their contribution: My mother, Wyn Haldeman, who painstakingly read each sentence aloud as only a mother could, painstaking for me, that is. 

My three children, Elon, Kimbal and Tosca who made sure the book was not too scientific - they cut out the boring parts; my creative sister, Lynne Haldeman, who gave me some fun ideas; my neurologist brother, Dr Scott Haldeman, who has always encouraged me to write a book. All my family above who have helped me to start and succeed at any venture I have attempted. A big THANK YOU!

And Macmillan Canada who, after hearing one of my presentations, asked me to write a book. “How do you know I can write?” I asked. They replied, “Just put into words what you say and do.” And that’s what I did.



Wednesday, November 29, 2017

CH 1: SENSIBLE EATING



It’s time for Back to Basics - science and common sense.

It seems we’re so steeped in nutrition information; we don’t have a starting point.


Here is a question from a reader. I’m sure many of you will identify with this problem.

“Everybody is talking about proteins, grains, carbohydrates, this fat and that fat, fiber foods etc. What is all this? I asked many coworkers and they have no idea which foods fall in what category! So why not make a list and put it on the fridge? List should include almost every kind of food available in a modern grocery store. Foods should be categorized, and information provided on amount of main ingredients in it. This would really help to understand your advice on nutrition you give to your readers. Let's not make nutrition the same as trying to understand how banks calculate mortgage payments.


This is a common problem. Now you know why registered dietitians have to study a minimum of five years at an accredited university before we can share information. We need to understand this scientific information and give it out in a clear form. I’ll work on lists for your fridge. I’ll summarize information I give in my talks where I keep my audiences spellbound, or maybe not:) Your coworkers will enjoy your sharing of nutrition information as well.To start, a few basic rules:

Foods contain six essential nutrients:
Carbohydrates
Proteins
Fats
Minerals
Vitamins
Water


Other nutrients such as phytochemicals and fiber are also considered important to the healthy functioning of our bodies. Only carbohydrates, proteins and fats supply calories. Calories are needed to keep your body alive and to supply energy so you can walk, run and sleep. Even when you’re sleeping, your body is still burning energy. Your heart is beating, digestion is continuing; you’re breathing, your brain is working (maybe too much), etc.
You’ll be pleased to know your body is easier to understand than mortgage payments (for us anyway); more like a bank account:

In a bank account: When money in > money out → savings


In the body:

When energy in > energy out → weight gain
And energy in < energy out → weight loss 

Also energy in = energy out → weight stable

Now we understand the shift of weight. But where do you find this energy?

From four sources (guess which three are essential):


CARBOHYDRATES: 4 calories per gram 





PROTEIN: 4 calories per gram


FAT: 9 calories per gram


ALCOHOL: 7 calories per gram


Some foods contain carbohydrates, proteins and fats, but are grouped according to their main source of energy. This, of course, adds to the confusion. Let me give you some examples:


Carbohydrates consist of starches and fiber (complex carbohydrates) and sugars (simple sugars). Starches are found in breads, potatoes, rice and cereals. There is usually some protein and sometimes fat in these foods, plus fiber, water, vitamins and minerals.


Fiber is only found in plant foods such as whole wheat breads, bran cereals, brown rice, fruits, vegetables and legumes. Look for the fiber content on packages.


Natural sugars are found in milk, vegetables and fruits. Don’t freak out when you find out that sugar is in milk or fruit. In this form they are called lactose or fructose respectively and that’s good.


Sugars are also more commonly known as table sugar (sucrose) in sweets, chocolates, cakes and pastries. They can come in various forms: such as syrup, sorbitol, glucose, etc. The endings: -ol or –ose are giveaways for sugars in food. 


Protein foods are meat, fish, chicken, eggs, cheese and milk. Some foods contain protein and carbohydrates, particularly legumes. These foods also contain a variety of vitamins, minerals and water. Some contain fat and others, such as legumes, contain fiber.

Fats are present in oils, margarines, spreads, butter, cream, bacon, avocado, olives, nuts and salad dressings. There are different types of fats.


Now to further confuse this story. Is milk a protein, carbohydrate or fat? Milk contains protein (casein and whey), carbohydrate (lactose) and fat (saturated) or no fat (skim). Well, foods are grouped according to their main essential nutrient. In this case, dairy products are in their own group because they are our main source of calcium.


Confusion is easy as foods contain many nutrients and they overlap each other.


The best advice to you is to find a dietitian nearby on www.eatright.org.


Enjoy your food and worry less about nutrients!


REGISTERED DIETITIANS - THE EXPERTS





People don't understand the difference between Registered Dietitian-Nutritionists and Nutritionists.

Registered Dietitians are experts in nutrition. They are acknowledged professionals trained to advise you on diet, food and nutrition. They separate fact from fiction, plan nutritious and tasty meals, and help you translate the science of nutrition into healthy food choices. They have completed a minimum of four years of education in dietetics at an accredited university, plus one-year hospital internship. If you are not sure of your nutritionists qualifications, ask them if they are registered dietitians. A giveaway is the letters RD or RDN after their name. 

Dietitians determine your nutrient requirements, taking into consideration your age, sex, lifestyle and eating habits. Before making recommendations for improving your diet, they consider your usual eating pattern and work demands, as well as cultural and ethnic background. Dietitians offer practical ideas on planning menus, shopping for the best food values, and preparing good-tasting meals and snacks. They understand the importance of diet in the prevention and treatment of many disease conditions such as diabetes, cancer, hypertension and heart disease. Their nutritional advice can enhance the quality of life for infants, young children, adolescents, adults, pregnant women, athletes and seniors. 

They also motivate people to make changes, as poor planning, boredom, stress or a vacation can return you to your poor eating habits. Find a dietitian in your area on www.eatright.org.


Nutritionists do not need any qualifications. They could be a PhD in Nutritional Sciences (rarely), or just have a belief that isn't based on science nor common sense (most common). The latter creates fear of eating normal foods and often sell supplements, powders or products that have not been shown to have any benefits. However, they promise cures and miracles, so it's up to you to choose.


Good nutrition is important, not only for the obvious health benefits, but also for feeling good about you. When you plan meals and enjoy the foods you select, you become more active, feel better about yourself and make an effort to look good. You are in control because you are making good food choices. They are all linked. You know when you overeat you feel too sluggish to work out, you feel depressed about losing control and you don’t care about your appearance. Weight management means achieving the best weight possible in the context of overall health, mental and physical, and for the sake of appearance. 

Here is some temptation:)

SENSIBLE EATING

Are you tempted? Desserts are hard to resist, but do you need to try fad diets? I follow science and common sense, not hype and beliefs. Here's hoping my tips will help you enjoy your food and stay in good health.

THE KEY POINTS FOR OVEREATING 

REALITY CHECK! “Hello, I believe you can help me lose weight.” This is the opening line when someone called me for professional services. 

The answer is “For sure I can help you lose weight, and in a way that suits your lifestyle. Once we find the main obstacle that has been preventing weight loss, we can focus on it and follow a meal plan that will be easy to follow for the rest of your life. Well, not that easily, it does take persistence.” This is my philosophy because it’s the way I live. I love food, love eating, and the only way to maintain my weight is through constant vigilance. It doesn’t mean being obsessive; but being aware of eating foods that I like, and knowing the quantities my body can handle without gaining weight. These are the principles I apply to my clients’ concerns. Weight management means achieving the best weight possible in the context of overall health, mental and physical, and for the sake of appearance.

Good nutrition is important, not only for the obvious health benefits, but also for feeling good. When you plan meals and enjoy the foods you select, you become more active, feel better about yourself and make an effort to look good. You are in control because of making choices. They are all linked. You know when overeating you feel too sluggish to work out, feel depressed about losing control and don’t care about your appearance. 

Now, take time to determine what you want to change in your life. Do you want to change the types of foods you eat, food quantities, your activity level, confidence or all of the above? Keep reading. The following steps will help you implement these changes to improve your quality of life. The keys to sensible eating are simply awareness of what you are eating and moderation of food quantities you consume. With this knowledge, you’ll be able to enjoy eating with a good conscience.

WHY DO WE OVEREAT? 




Are there times when you reach for a certain food and say, “I shouldn’t be eating this,” then eat it anyway? If you’re like most of us, the answer is yes. The question is: Why do you eat it? It may be because it tastes good or because you don’t want to feel deprived. Perhaps that particular food gives you comfort when you’re under stress. Whatever the reason, you feel guilty after eating it. Is it so bad to eat this way occasionally? One “bad” meal will not ruin your good intentions. Ask yourself “Did I enjoy it?” If the answer is yes, don’t berate yourself. Carry on the next day as if nothing happened to destroy your faith in your self-control. 
How do you know when you’ve eaten too much? If you “feel stuffed” after a meal that’s too large or too high in fat, you’ll know you ate too much. Remember that feeling the next time you’re tempted. Say to yourself “I’ll have a smaller portion” or “This is not my favorite food. I’ll wait until something I really enjoy comes along.” It isn’t an effortless decision, but with repeated positive thoughts, it will become easier. This awareness needs to be part of your new lifestyle. 

When I had my practice, I was usually the first nutrition expert my clients had met. They often have a good knowledge of nutrition, with a little confusion creeping in. They know that healthy eating, changes in eating behavior and increased activity make them feel great. They’ve tried it in the past and can still remember that feeling. They also know that it’s difficult to make changes without continuous motivation. Dietitians can guide you in the right direction with weekly check-ins. It's easy to return to bad habits. Dietitians make these changes easier with kind reminders.


THE MOST COMMON OBSTACLES AND HOW TO DEAL WITH THEM

The many obstacles to making healthy food choices can be categorized under three main themes - eating when you’re not hungry, eating for emotional reasons and unplanned eating. You may identify with one or all three of these complaints at different times of the day or at different stages of your life. There are solutions:

1. EATING WHEN NOT HUNGRY 


“Do you eat when you’re hungry?” This is the first question I would ask clients who wanted to lose weight. Most of them would say, “I’m never hungry.” So why do they eat? There are so many reasons for eating - enjoyment, sharing a social occasion, and so on. If they only ate when they were hungry, they would reduce their chances of gaining weight.


2. EMOTIONAL EATING


LOSING CONTROL


Have you tried dieting (or rather, depriving yourself of food), succeeded in losing weight, then lost control and eaten everything in sight? Do you become unhappy with yourself and feel like a failure? Do you stop caring about yourself and become insecure? Disguising extra weight by wearing baggy clothes lowers self-esteem, making you unhappy and short-tempered with family, friends and colleagues.

Strict dieting is obviously not the solution to weight loss; eating sensibly is. How do you achieve this goal? Remember how good you feel when you do make healthy food choices and keep active. Decide that you want to have that good feeling every day. Ignore a bad day and aim for healthy food choices the next day. Listen to your body. Remember; don’t starve or deprive yourself - you’ll be setting yourself up for failure again. 

I love food and hate getting hungry, so I’m used to having great meals and snacks every day; great in taste, not great in size. Eating in moderation makes me feel comfortable and good about myself. When you are hungry, eat; when you are not, don’t! Focus on remembering the good feelings that come with sensible and healthy food choices. Have those feelings again and again. This is the only approach to adopt for long-term weight management.

EATING UNDER STRESS OR WHEN ANXIOUS


Do you have a high stress job? When tense, do you look for food, then gobble any food you can find without really tasting or enjoying it? Muffins, cookies, burgers, fries and chocolate bars are always nearby. These are 
empty calorie foods (high in calories with negligible essential nutrients).

High calorie foods makes you feel good for those few minutes, but then you get very angry for overindulging. You thinks you're the only person who is weak. You can be so disciplined at work but lose control with food intake. 

The solution is to have no unhealthy food nearby, pause for thirty seconds each time you're stressed and breathe deeply, take a thirty- minute walk, make a cup of tea, have a bubble bath and slow down. Then eat three apples before you can binge on fatty food. That will be difficult. You need to plan ahead. 


EATING FOR COMFORT

Food is a comfort. It was given to us as children whenever we hurt ourselves or when we cried. It’s only natural that we should turn to food when under stress.

Certain foods are “trigger” foods, they trigger a binging reaction; once we start on this item of food, we can’t stop. Be sure to keep trigger foods out of your reach - none in the home or office drawer. Have healthy foods nearby. Never, never spend your own money on foods that will sabotage your healthy habits.

If you’re feeling desperate, do something else that will make you feel better immediately - walk or run around the block. 

ALCOHOL TO SOLVE PROBLEMS 


Drinking does not make problems disappear; it only makes the person feel bad and tired emotionally and physically, which exacerbates their existing problem. 

One rule - drink only with family or friends. Slowly decrease to four ounces a night until it isn’t necessary to drink for stress reasons. Bad habits are formed by continuously practicing them; they can be stopped by continuously developing new, better habits. 

CLOSET EATER


If you eat high fat and/or high sugar foods on the sly and feel ashamed to admit it, you have a problem. To solve that, only eat these foods in front of someone, anyone, never on your own. This way, you won't feel deprived, because everything is available to you. Of course, healthy foods you can eat anytime or anywhere.

GUILT AND FOOD


Do you sit in your a job, all day long? On your breaks, do you buy donuts and cookies? Do you know these are not the right foods and feels guilty.

Now, don’t relate “guilt” to food. It brings your mood down. If you overeat, you feel stuffed and uncomfortable. This is a physical feeling of discomfort; not an emotional feeling. Take away the fear and guilt you associate with different foods. You must learn to enjoy the taste and pleasure of healthy eating. Be sure to have nutritious foods nearby, even if you overeat on them, the harm is minimal.

DIET AND DEPRIVATION


Is your “diet,” too strict ? Must you be perfect? Are you stressed and panicky at a party because the food might be “wrong?” 

This attitude must change! If you’re going to an event where the food choices are not necessarily “healthy,” choose half of what you would normally have and enjoy every mouthful. Make sure the food item is well prepared, tasty and fresh. If it’s not fabulous, leave it. 

I was at a meeting and there was a large assortment of cookies. I knew I couldn’t resist them so I chose the most decadent looking one, with chocolate and nuts. After one bite, I found it had no flavor. I hid the rest of the cookie under my napkin. It just wasn’t worth eating - very disappointing. Cookies are my weak spot, but they have to be fantastic. Cookies are not to be found in my home because I would eat them when I didn’t feel like them (if that’s possible). When out I allow myself one if my weight is under control. You need to discriminate, too. Save your appetite for your favorite foods in moderation, such as chips (10), nuts (2 tbsp) or chocolate-covered almonds (5).


WOMEN’S MONTHLY CRAVINGS

When her periods are coming, do you crave chocolate and starchy foods, then become cranky and irritable? Also bloated and uncomfortable? 


Periods are part of a woman’s life cycle and the changes every month have to be accepted, however, we can handle them better if we understand what is going on with our bodies. 

The premenstrual craving for starchy foods is not unusual. The theory is that fluctuations in estrogen levels cause an increased desire for carbohydrates. This in turn leads to an increase in fat intake as many high-carbohydrate foods are high in fat. Don’t resist your craving. At times like these choose one starchy food or one sweet item per day until the craving disappears. If you resist too much, you may binge at a later stage. 

The distention you feel is caused by the increase in starch or sugar in your diet. When these foods are digested and stored in the body, they need water in order to be stored. That leads to water retention and bloating. You’ll know because the rings on your fingers will be tight. You’ll also find you don’t urinate much during these days. Once the craving has disappeared, you urinate frequently because your body will want to rid itself of the stored water. Your bloated feeling goes away and you feel slimmer. Accept these symptoms and don’t worry about them.

During the premenstrual phase, you experience a decrease in endorphins, which precipitate happy moods. Do you want to improve your mood? Of course. The way to achieve that goal is with increased activity. Many women have noticed that when they eat better and are in a fixed workout routine, their mood swings and bloated feelings are decreased considerably. So keep up your activity, even if you’re feeling blah.

PMS Checklist

Pre-menstrual you need to:
• Relax.
• Be pleased your periods are regular.
• Keep active.
• Satisfy cravings with one high-fiber starch.
• Ignore bloating.
• Plan events that elevate your mood.


THE LOVE AFFAIR WITH FOOD


If you really love certain foods, and they make you feel good while you eat them, as well as afterwards, then that's fine. But if these foods are high in fat, and you feel terrible afterwards, you need to replace them with low-fat foods such as salads, breads and fruits, that you also love.

WEIGHT OBSESSION


Are you a perfectionist who checks your weight three times a day? That is very depressing. 

Continuous weighing has to stop! For many people, their weight often decides whether they’re going to have a good or bad day. Unfortunately, weight fluctuates from day to day without reason, so you can create many bad days for yourself. Stop now! You may need to weigh yourself once a week only. 


When you are maintaining your weight and feel confident, you can weigh yourself every day. This will keep you in check.

3. NO TIME TO PLAN MEALS

EATING ON THE RUN


If you know you're going to be very busy, plan ahead. It takes only five minutes to pack food and prepare the night before. 


LACK OF ENERGY

After a large, fatty lunch, you will lose energy in the afternoon and have difficulty staying awake. 

Tips: change lunch choices to lower-fat dishes; or eat half with plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables. 

Researchers have found that people over forty years of age tend to feel tired after a high-carbohydrate lunch. Just as women become sleepy, men become calm. This leads to decreased mental alertness. It would help to include protein foods in your lunch bag such as a sandwich containing tuna, cheese, egg, chicken, low-fat cold cuts or peanut butter.

In the evening, carbohydrate-rich dinners can enhance your calmness, preparing you for a restful night’s sleep. If you’re eating a high-protein supper, eat before 7 p.m. If you’re eating later, choose a pasta, rice, potato or bread dish. Even a small dessert would make you feel dozy.

Avoid alcohol at lunch to keep your energy up.


EATING WHEN TIRED


Working long, exhausting days? Looking for any food that is quick and easy to “inhale,” like chips, chocolates or cookies. The problem is, you're eating when not hungry. This will make you feel full, tired, then angry with yourself. 

The most common time to be tired is after lunch. Maybe that’s why many southern Europeans enjoy a relaxing lunch and a rest afterwards. Unfortunately, this doesn’t suit the American lifestyle of go, go, go. If you aren't hungry, you may be thirsty and dehydrated. Choose fresh fruit and drink water for instant energy.

EATING WHEN BORED


When you have time on your hands, you'll go to the fridge and cupboard, looking for something to eat. On weekends, you may snack all day. 

Boredom is such a common reason for overeating. Many of my clients have problems on the weekend, away from their busy schedules. This is when they say: "Well, what should I do now?" Then look for anything and finds stale cookies. Afterwards, they say, "Why did I eat them? I feel disappointed because I didn't even enjoy what I ate."

A solution: get out your low-fat cookbooks from former good intentions, find a delicious recipe with plenty of vegetables, write down the ingredients and walk briskly to the store. Come back, prepare the vegetables and enjoy a wonderful meal. Keep some cleaned sliced veggies in the fridge to snack on. You’ll be doing something positive for yourself and the end result will be a feeling of accomplishment. Remember to watch the portion sizes, and keep leftovers for the freezer.

Learn from my experience: “I have a tendency to gain weight easily, so limit myself to eating when hungry, not bored. In actual fact, I never allow myself to get bored. My days are well planned to fit in everything I want to do, even if it’s only taking it easy and reading/writing a book.”


SKIPPING MEALS

“I skip meals to lose weight but I don’t succeed” - Angela, a bank manager.

Angela doesn’t eat breakfast or lunch because she isn’t hungry and wants to lose weight. But once she gets home, she eats continuously from 5:00 p.m. until bedtime. She figures that if she doesn’t eat all day, she can eat a large amount in the evening and still lose weight. Instead, she isn’t losing weight and finds it hard to sleep because she’s so full.

The following are four reasons not to skip meals: 
1. Food is needed for energy during the day. 
2. Your body reacts when meals are skipped by lowering your metabolic rate so that it uses whatever food you give it more efficiently. It actually thinks it’s being starved, and refuses to use up any stored fat quickly. This is the direct opposite of what you want to happen for weight loss. 
3. When you overeat in the evening (to make up for the rest of the day), your total calorie intake could be much higher than if you had eaten sensibly during the day. 
4. If you starve yourself by skipping a meal, you can develop bad breath. The reason is that the body is burning up energy improperly and forming toxins (ketones) that are released through the lungs. These toxins produce a recognizable and unpleasant smell of acetone.

SHORT ON VEGETABLES


“I know I don’t get enough vegetables, but they’re such a nuisance to prepare” — Derek, an accountant.

Derek knows he should be eating plenty of vegetables but doesn’t know how to prepare them. He loves cooking but needs ideas.

Most people don’t eat enough vegetables. I told Derek to be creative and save recipes from magazines and newspapers until he has time to cook something new. Everyone loves cooked vegetables, stir-fried vegetables, vegetable soups and salads - we just don’t get around to preparing them. Canned vegetables are a great standby as they contain most of their original nutrients. When we do have the time to shop, we don’t think buying vegetables is a priority. It is. What I love to make is a large soup, including lentils and canned or soaked dried beans, and all my leftover vegetables from the week. I freeze the soup in one-portion containers for a quick lunch or late-afternoon snack. For interesting salads, use fresh lettuce, tomato and celery, then add canned peas, corn and tuna with a boiled egg for a quick lunch. (My daughter’s favorite meal). It won’t take you longer than six minutes. If you like stir-fries, use leftover meat or chicken and add frozen or canned vegetables. Quick foods can be healthy. For the office, pack a tasty sandwich with bean sprouts, lettuce and tomato or choose carefully from the fast food-outlets or deli.

MORE NUTRITIOUS VEGETABLES AND FRUITS


All vegetables are good for you. However, some are higher in the antioxidants, vitamin C and beta-carotene, than others. As you need to include —five to ten fruits and vegetables per day, choose from the following list first. Add other vegetables for variety, taste and texture. Note: Beta-carotene gives some of the following produce its orange color; in others it is masked by chlorophyll, a green color. So brightly colored vegetables give a good clue to good choices.

Juices from these fruits are also high in antioxidants but lower in fiber.

TREATS FOR THE KIDS - I DON’T THINK SO


“I buy treats for the kids but end up eating them myself” - Kay, a nurse.

I’ve done this in the past, especially when I’m hungry, so I know what Kay means. These treats could be fresh breads, cookies, cake, chocolate or chips. Kay finds that she usually buys the kind that she likes, not the kind the kids like.

The way to overcome this is to plan ahead. Don’t go near a shop if hungry. Grab a banana or eat a small container of yogurt so that by the time you get to the shop, the ravenous feeling is gone and you can think rationally before buying anything. Buy a treat that the kids like, not one you like. In order to encourage and maintain healthy food habits in the home, you should buy a single cookie at a time for each child. That way, they don’t learn to snack on fatty foods all the time. 

SABOTAGED WITH “TRIGGER” FOODS


“My friends and family sabotage my efforts” - Dawn, a lab technician.

Dawn has been making healthy choices, increasing her activity and feeling good. But when her family and friends come to visit her, they bring her a chocolate or pastry as a reward for losing weight. This upsets Dawn because the food is too tempting to resist; she eats the treat, which triggers her to continue eating all day. She feels miserable afterwards and wants to give up her healthy goals. How could she be so weak?

Very easily. I told Dawn to relax about it and not to make a big fuss. She can tell these well-intentioned people: “Thanks, I’m just not hungry.” That way, they cannot force her to eat anything. At a later stage, she’ll become more confident with her attitude towards healthy eating and will be able to handle a small piece of pastry without letting it trigger a binge reaction.

HIDDEN CALORIES = WEIGHT GAIN


“I eat healthily all the time. Why am I gaining weight?” - Frank, a computer consultant.

I took Frank’s dietary history and he was right. He was eating very well and exercising regularly. He made good food choices most of the time, ate a wide variety of foods and his serving sizes were right for his size and activity. As he was leaving the office, he told me, “I forgot to mention I drink fruit juice.” I asked him how much. He said five to six glasses a day!

What Frank didn’t know is that one-cup of orange juice equals two whole oranges in calorie value. I’m sure he would never be able to eat twelve oranges a day. He just wouldn’t have the time to peel them. Fruit juice is a quick way to get in calories without realizing it. If you are thirsty, drink water. If you want to drink fruit juice, remember that to lose weight, you should limit yourself to four fruit portions per day, equivalent to two cups of orange juice a day. In that case, rather eat the whole fruit to feel more satisfied. 

NIBBLIES


Although many women and men have the nibbling habit, they are unaware of how much they eat. One thing they have in common, they’d like to break the habit and here's how you do it.

Write down everything you eat everyday, and in this case focus on the nibbling. When you have to write down three chips, four crackers with dip, 1 Tbs. mashed potato, 1 oz. chicken, and so on, you can see that it adds up. A planned snack will take away the immediate hunger in the right way. You won’t have to nibble. You will also end up enjoying the meal much more. When clearing the dishes, do not nibble leftovers, no matter how small. It is best and more economical to pack away extra food for another meal or snack.


THE MOST COMMON OBSTACLES AND HOW TO DEAL WITH THEM 

The many obstacles to making healthy food choices can be categorized under three main themes - eating when you’re not hungry, eating for emotional reasons and unplanned eating. You may identify with some of these complaints at different times of the day or at different stages of your life.

“I’m never hungry”

“Do you eat when you’re hungry?” This is the first question I ask those clients who want to lose weight. Most of them say, “I’m never hungry.” So why do they eat? There are so many reasons for eating - for enjoyment, sharing a social occasion, and because the food is there. If they only ate when they were hungry, or if they at least tried to listen to their satiety cues, they would minimize their chances of gaining weight.

“I’m an emotional eater”

· LOSING CONTROL 
“I’ve lost control”
Strict dieting is obviously not the solution to weight loss. Eating sensibly is. But how do you achieve this goal? Remember how good you feel when you do make healthy food choices and keep active. Decide that you want to have that good feeling every day. Turn it around right away. Ignore a bad day and aim for healthy food choices the next day. Listen to your body. Remember; don’t starve or deprive yourself - you’ll be setting yourself up for failure again. 

· EATING UNDER STRESS “I eat under stress”

Pause for thirty seconds each time you are stressed and breathe deeply. You need to remember how you felt after you have eaten under stress last time - terrible. You need to conquer the habits that make you feel bad. It will give you a feeling of strength and control. 

· EATING FOR COMFORT “I felt sorry for myself as my body grew bigger and found sympathy in bags of Oreo cookies. No wonder I gained forty-five pounds.”

Food is a comfort. It was given to us as children whenever we hurt ourselves or when we cried. So it’s only natural that we should turn to food when we’re under stress. We regard certain foods as “trigger” foods, they trigger a binging reaction; once we start on this item of food, we can’t stop. Why not do something else that will make you feel better immediately? Walk or run around the block would work. But if you still feel low and reach for the Oreos, indulge in two cookies, not a whole bag. 

· CLOSET EATER “When no one is around, I sneak into the kitchen and finish off the meal and dessert.”

It is okay to eat all these foods, but you have to eat them in front of someone, anyone, never on your own. This way, you will not feel deprived, because everything will be available to you. You really can eat everything, but consume moderate portions. 

· GUILT AND FOOD “I feel guilty when I eat the wrong foods”

I hear this word guilty, all the time. Guilty of what? Of eating a food you know is not nutritious? This is yet another negative attitude. Don’t relate “guilt” to food. It brings your mood down. If you overeat, you feel stuffed and uncomfortable. This is a physical feeling of discomfort; don’t make it an emotional feeling, too. Take away the fear and guilt you associate with different foods. You must enjoy the taste and pleasure of healthy eating. This is a different way of thinking and one you must learn. 

· DIET AND DEPRIVATION “I feel deprived when I go on diet”

This attitude must change! If you’re going to a party or another event where the food choices are not necessarily “healthy,” choose half of what you would normally have and enjoy every mouthful. Make sure the food item is well prepared, tasty and fresh. Don’t waste your time on ordinary, boring foods. If you taste something and it’s not fabulous, leave it. 

· THE CLEAN-PLATE CLUB “As a child, I was always told to finish everything on my plate because people were starving all over the world”


You are an adult now and can take responsibility for your own attitude towards food. You must not use your body as a garbage can, finishing food that should be thrown away. If you belong to the “clean plate club,” there are two strategies you can follow. When cooking at home, either cook smaller portions, or dish up smaller portions and put the extra food away for a meal the next day. If you’re at a restaurant, share the salad and main course with your companion. “I don’t have time to plan” 



We were born in Canada and immigrated to South Africa. I grew up in a happy family with no tension nor pressure at meal times. Our only problem was, we were inclined to eat too much. This is not the same with every family.

With many of my clients, they told me that when growing up, their parents post-war mentality insisted that kids finish everything on their plates. Children grew up believing this, and suffering as a result. I called it the Clean Plate Syndrome. Now they’re adults, they still feel bad should they leave anything on their plate, even when full. 

Forget about your childhood experiences. You're an adult and can take responsibility for your own attitude towards food. If you belong to the “clean plate club,” there are two strategies you can follow. When cooking at home, either cook smaller portions, or dish up smaller portions and put the extra food away for a meal the next day. If you’re at a restaurant, share the salad and main course with your companion. If you feel stingy about sharing food, as if you can’t afford a complete meal, order an expensive glass of wine or leave a bigger tip to compensate.


EATING ON THE RUN "I always eat on the run”


This is where it’s important to know your schedule. If you make the tuna fish sandwich yourself, it can be low in fat (6.5 grams fat and 300 calories), but a bought one is loaded with high-fat mayonnaise (21 grams fat and 450 calories). I suggest you spend five minutes each evening planning for about tomorrow.




TRAVEL IN GOOD HEALTH

We need to look healthy and vital when traveling as professional speakers, business people and modeling jobs. In order to achieve this image, we have to control our eating habits and remain active despite often grueling travel schedules.

It’s a struggle to eat well and be active on the road. Plane delays, lost hotel reservations, boredom, fatigue, frustration, and stress can thwart our carefully planned eating and exercise goals. All this and we’re expected to ignore the wonderful, delicious foods thrust at us at banquets and luncheons. So what can we do to feel fantastic on a hectic schedule?

Let’s find out:

1. In the Air

The key to success is planning and moderation. If you travel first class, you’ll be tempted to overindulge as you are offered alcohol, snacks, heavy meals and decadent desserts. By the time you land, you are full, tired and are asking yourself “Why did I do that?” Too much food and rich food will drain your energy. Avoid or drink less alcohol, eat smaller portions and choose nutritious foods to maximize your vitality.

If you travel economy, even though everyone complains about the food, most still eat it because it’s there. Airplane meals are not necessarily low fat and the occasional high fat meal need not concern you. For frequent flyers, eat small portions or order a special meal 24 - 48 hours in advance, such as low-fat, low-calorie, or fruit platter options. Vegetarian doesn’t necessarily mean low fat, but there could be more vegetables.

2. Cure Jet Lag

If flying east on an overnight flight, try to sleep on the plane. Eating only high-carbohydrate foods (bread, rice, pastas, fruit and vegetables) before and after boarding should help you get some zzz’s. Carbohydrates stimulate release of sleep-inducing chemicals (neurotransmitters such as serotonin). Upon arrival, eat a protein-rich meal (meat, poultry, fish, cheese or egg), as protein stimulates release of other chemicals (such as norepinephrin) that promote alertness and wakefulness. Add coffee or tea for that extra perk.

For westward travel, reverse the protein-carbohydrate regimen. Eat protein-rich foods and coffee before and during your flight. Upon arrival, load up on high-carbohydrate foods and avoid caffeine --- unless, of course, you have to give a presentation when you arrive. In this case, drinking fluids can minimize jet lag. Drink one glass of water every hour and on trips over six hours, avoid alcohol and salty foods that dehydrate, such as nuts, pretzels and tomato juice.

3. Eating on the Road

Once again, the key to success is planning and moderation. Never let yourself become too hungry. If you are famished, you’ll put any food into your mouth as quickly as possible. Keep nutritious snacks such as nuts and dried fruit in your hotel room and bag for emergencies. When I arrive at a hotel, I’ll help myself to an apple from the reception desk, order a whole-wheat roll and fruit from room service, or run to a store for yogurt and fruit. Have a snack before you head out to eat so you can take your time and decide what you really feel like eating otherwise you’ll finish the breadbasket before you’ve ordered your meal!

4. Keep the Energy Level High

Restaurant portions are often large. Ask for smaller portions or share a serving with a companion. When I’m traveling, I like to order a light meal such as a soup or salad with dressing on the side, a whole wheat roll with butter, and cafe au lait. I don’t deprive myself and I don’t expect my clients to either. If the restaurant has one of my favorite desserts, I’ll have it if someone will share it with me. Otherwise, I leave it.

What about buffets? Start by walking around the entire buffet selection. Decide to fill your plate only once and choose nutritious items, especially vegetables. If something fattening tempts you, just take a taste - often one or two bites is all you need to satisfy a craving for a high-fat food. For dessert, try fresh fruit and a scoop of ice cream. What a picture! No regrets or guilt feelings. The next time you go to a buffet, go with a different attitude. Put yourself in this picture. It’s worth it.

Hotels offer nutritious breakfasts consisting of bran-type cereals, low-fat milk, yogurt, boiled eggs, whole-wheat toast and fresh fruit - all good choices for keeping energy high. (Sausage, bacon, fried eggs and hashed browns will zap your energy.) For lunches and dinners, replace garlic bread with a whole-wheat roll, cream soup with a bouillon-based soup, a deluxe hamburger with a small hamburger, and fried chicken with a stir-fry.

5. Eating for Health

Support and boost your immune system by eating plenty of whole grain foods, legumes, fresh fruits and vegetables. Besides essential fiber, these foods also contain vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, which protect you from heart disease, cancer and diabetes. Taking supplements won’t do it. For example, a carrot contains fiber, vitamins and 60 chemicals (called carotenoids) that contribute to your overall health. A supplement might only have one such chemical - beta-carotene. Besides a carrot tastes much better, and is more satisfying to eat! Order a salad, vegetable soup or steamed vegetables at every lunch and dinner. If you are unable to find a variety of foods on your trip, and insist on taking a multivitamin supplement, make sure it contains no more than 100 percent of the Recommended Dietary Allowances.

A vegetarian diet has to include more whole grains, beans, nuts, fruits and vegetables to obtain all the essential nutrients. If you’re vegetarian, increase your plant consumption, but don’t replace meat with high-fat high-sugar foods such as doughnuts.

7. Move!

For instant, long-lasting energy, use every opportunity to be active. Use hotel gyms; stretch and do abdominal exercises in your room; walk the halls and stairs; or walk and explore the city. Feel the mood enhancing endorphins click in. The fresh air and exercise will help refuel your energy.

8. Don’t beat yourself up

One fat-full meal does not make or break a healthy lifestyle. Don’t feel guilty or let it upset you. The next day, resume your healthy routine. If you eat healthily 80 percent of the time, you will feel fantastic all of the time.

Adapted from The Feel Fantastic Formula for Speakers on the Road, Professional Speaker magazine, September 1997

6. Get enough rest
This can be a challenge for speakers with hectic schedules. Rest is essential for good health - especially for those of us on the road. Sleep deprivation can lead to raiding the hotel room refrigerator in search of instant energy. Instead, go for a walk, have a massage or manicure, take a nap, relax for ten minutes, order tea, or take a hot bath. If your energy is still low, have a healthful snack - a piece of fruit, a small salad, a whole-wheat roll. You will feel refreshed and ready to face the world again.
7. Move!
For instant, long-lasting energy, use every opportunity to be active. Use hotel gyms; stretch and do abdominal exercises in your room; walk the halls and stairs; or walk and explore the city. Feel the mood enhancing endorphins click in. The fresh air and exercise will help refuel your energy.
8. Don’t beat yourself up
One fat-full meal does not make or break a healthy lifestyle. Don’t feel guilty or let it upset you. The next day, resume your healthy routine. If you eat healthily 80 percent of the time, you will feel fantastic all of the time.
It’s a struggle to eat well and be active on the road. Delayed planes, holdovers, lost hotel reservations, boredom, fatigue, frustration, and stress can thwart our carefully planned eating and exercise goals. All this and we’re expected to ignore the wonderful, delicious foods thrust at us at banquets and luncheons. So what can we do to feel fantastic on a hectic schedule? Let’s find out:
1. In the Air
The key to success is planning and moderation. If you travel first class, you’ll be tempted to overindulge as you are offered alcohol, snacks, heavy meals and decadent desserts. By the time you land, you are full, tired and are asking yourself “Why did I do that?” Too much food and rich food will drain your energy. Drink less alcohol, eat smaller portions and choose lower fat foods to maximize your vitality.
If you travel coach, even though everyone complains about the food, most still eat it because it’s there. Airplane meals are not necessarily low fat and the occasional high fat meal need not concern you. For frequent flyers, again eat small portions or order a special meal 24 - 48 hours in advance, such as low-fat, low-calorie, or fruit platter options. Remember, vegetarian doesn’t necessarily mean low fat.
2. Cure Jet Lag
If flying east on an overnight flight, try to sleep on the plane. Eating only high-carbohydrate foods (bread, rice, pastas, fruit and vegetables) before and after boarding should help you get some zzz’s. Carbohydrates stimulate release of sleep-inducing chemicals (neurotransmitters such as serotonin). Upon arrival, eat a protein-rich meal (meat, poultry, fish, cheese and egg), because protein stimulates release of other chemicals (such as norepinephrin) that promote alertness and wakefulness. Add coffee or tea for that extra perk.
For westward travel, reverse the protein-carbohydrate regimen. Eat protein-rich foods and coffee before and during your flight. Upon arrival, load up on high-carbohydrate foods and avoid caffeine --- unless, of course, you have to give a presentation when you arrive. In this case, drinking fluids can minimize jet lag. Drink one glass of water every hour and on trips over six hours, avoid alcohol and salty foods that dehydrate, such as nuts, pretzels and tomato juice.
3. Eating on the Road
Once again, the key to success is planning and moderation. Never let yourself become too hungry. If you are famished, you’ll put any food into your mouth as quickly as possible. Keep nutritious snacks such as whole-wheat crackers or fruit in your hotel room, briefcase or purse for emergencies. When I arrive at a hotel, I’ll help myself to an apple from the reception desk, order a whole-wheat roll and fruit from room service, or run to a store for yogurt and fruit. Have a snack before you go out to eat so you can take your time and decide what you really feel like eating otherwise you’ll finish the breadbasket before you’ve ordered your meal!
4. Keep the Energy Level High
Restaurant portions are often large. Ask for smaller portions or share a serving with a companion. When I’m traveling, I like to order a light meal such as a spinach salad with goat cheese and dressing on the side, a glass of wine if I don’t need to be alert, a roll without butter, and coffee (decaffeinated if in the evening) with milk. Although goat cheese is high in fat, I love the taste and the portion is small. I don’t deprive myself and I don’t expect my clients to either. If the restaurant has one of my favorite desserts, I’ll have it if someone will share it with me. Otherwise, I leave it.
What about buffets? Start by strolling around and checking out the entire buffet selection. Decide to fill your plate only once and choose low fat items. If something fattening tempts you, just take a taste - often one or two bites is all you need to satisfy a craving for a high-fat food. For dessert, try fresh fruit and a scoop of ice cream. What a picture! No regrets or guilt feelings. The next time you go to a buffet, go with a different attitude. Put yourself in this picture. It’s worth it.
Hotels now offer nutritious breakfasts consisting of bran-type cereals, low-fat milk, yogurt, boiled eggs, whole-wheat toast and fresh fruit - all good choices for keeping energy high. (Sausage, bacon, fried eggs and hashed browns will zap your energy.) For lunches and dinners, replace garlic bread with a whole-wheat roll, cream soup with a bouillon-based soup, a deluxe hamburger with a small hamburger, and fried chicken with a stir-fry. Ask that food be prepared fat-free and served with gravies and sauces on the side.
5. Eating for Health
Support and boost your immune system by eating plenty of whole grain foods, legumes, fresh fruits and vegetables. Besides essential fiber, these foods also contain vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, which protect you from heart disease, cancer and diabetes. Just taking supplements won’t do it. For example, a carrot contains fiber, vitamins and 60 chemicals (called carotenoids) that contribute to your overall health. A supplement might only have one such chemical - beta-carotene. Besides a carrot tastes much better, and is more satisfying to eat! Order a salad, vegetable soup or steamed vegetables at every lunch and dinner. If you are unable to find a variety of foods on your trip, and insist on taking a multivitamin supplement, make sure it contains no more than 100 percent of the Recommended Dietary Allowances.
A vegetarian diet has to include more whole grains, beans, nuts, fruits and vegetables to get the same amount of nutrients as people who do eat meat, fish, chicken, milk and eggs. If you’re vegetarian, increase your plant consumption, but don’t replace meat with high-fat high-sugar foods such as doughnuts.
When choosing vegetables and fruits, look for color - the brighter the color, the more nutritious the food. For example, romaine lettuce has six times as much vitamin C, eight times as much beta-carotene and twice as much folacin (a B vitamin) as iceberg lettuce. And go for flavor. Evidence is mounting which supports the protective properties of garlic, thyme, oregano, celery, fennel, peppermint, flaxseed, ginger
AFTERNOON HUNGER “I am starved at 4 p.m.”

Late afternoon is a common time to be hungry. Recognize it as a real hunger, and not due to boredom, fatigue or stress. When you are hungry, you should eat. Plan to eat a filling snack before you’re starved, at about 3:30 p.m., and you’ll be ready to enjoy your meal at suppertime. Remember: do not go six hours without food or you’ll get too hungry. If you are the type of person who has trouble making the right afternoon choices, don’t let it get that far. Plan, plan, plan. 

The keys to sensible eating are simply awareness of what you are eating and moderation of food quantities you consume. With this knowledge, you’ll be able to enjoy any food you desire, knowing that your food choice is what you really want and that the quantities are right for you.


EATING UNCONSCIOUSLY

Eating unconsciously at night is a habit that needs to be broken. Many people eat 25 % of their calories after dinner. This is called Night Eating Syndrome. Others get up in the middle of the night and raid the fridge. 
Studies show that people with NES are 2.5 times more likely to be obese that those who don’t have the syndrome. For diabetics, nighttime eating can also cause very high blood sugar in the morning, which leads to serious complications. 



My recommendation - stop all eating after dinner. If you are starved, then try a piece of fruit (1/2 banana, 1 orange or 12 grapes) or one cup of milk or yogurt. This habit is hard to change. After three nights of forcibly stopping yourself, you can prevent this habit from returning forever! 

NEED TO FEEL FULL


Question: My problem is not just what I'm eating, but also the fact that I overeat. I seem to need to feel stuffed in order to be satisfied. I'd appreciate any suggestions on how to cut back on portion sizes or suggestions on what I could eat that would give me that full feeling.

Answer: This is a common problem. We want, like and need the full feeling, yet we have to stop eating before we get this feeling. This is tough. Here are some of the rules I follow to keep me in shape and I recommend to my audiences:

1. Keep boring foods at home. Be sure to stock up on fruits, vegetables and whole grain foods that are not quick and easy to swallow. A muffin slides down the gullet, without chewing, much quicker than a whole-wheat peanut butter sandwich. Then again, if you love peanut butter and feel good spreading it lightly on your bread, that is fine. If you scoop it out of the container in spoonfuls, you’re in trouble.

2. Know your food weaknesses and keep these foods out of sight. If someone leaves chips at my home, they would stay there until they go stale. If someone gives me a box of chocolates, I can inhale the entire contents in 20 minutes. Sweet foods go home with the guests.

3. Avoid trigger foods. Sometimes, having a small taste of a dessert or a few fries is easy, at other times impossible. They just make you want to finish and have more. Then you’ll continue to eat more and more of these trigger foods until you feel stuffed. Judge for yourself, it may be easier to avoid a taste altogether than try a small mouthful and lose control. Try fooling yourself with a skim milk cappuccino as a replacement for a dessert.

4. Enjoy a vegetable soup before the main course. This will start you feeling full and limit the amount of food on your plate.

5. When preparing meals, keep clean and cut carrots or celery sticks nearby to chew on. If you’re ravenous, you’ll start eating while you cook, and then eat without an appetite.

6. Be sure that vegetables take up half your plate. Make that an important rule. Vegetables are filling because of the fibre content. You won’t feel the need to overindulge on the higher calorie protein and starch dishes.

7. End the meal with a hot beverage. If you have a cup of tea or coffee, you will feel that the meal is finished.

8. If you’re an evening snacker, floss your teeth after dinner; you won't want to do that twice.

9. Go for a walk after your meal. Sitting around picking at leftovers will make you feel too stuffed to walk. You will feel much better about yourself and have plenty of energy.

Print these suggestions out, highlight the ones relating to you and try for three weeks. Soon your stomach will get used to smaller portions and you will feel stuffed sooner. Overindulging will lead to a stomachache, which will remind you to cut back.

Let me know if you have “feeling full” rules to share with readers.


WEIGHT LOSS TIPS


Once you realize you are responsible for eating well and being active, weight loss will be easier. Here are answers to some myths on weight loss.

• Make sure you eat regularly. Skipping meals makes you ravenous and you are more likely to reach for high fat snack foods when you finally eat.

• Are you snacking without counting? Snacks can add up your calories quickly and lead to excess rolls around the waist.

• Often my clients will ask me how to lose weight in those “trouble spots”, usually tummy and thighs. Unfortunately, when you lose weight, you lose it everywhere, not in specific areas.

• Is your weight going up this winter? It’s very common for people to gain weight during the cold months and winter holidays. Find a dietitian to help motivate you on http://www.eatright.org/.

• During long winter months, if you find seasonal affective disorder (SAD) creeping up on you, you will need to fight the cravings for sweet and starchy foods. Call friends and make plans to be active together, keeping you committed to good health.

• Don't let your good sense leave you when faced with too-good-to-be-true claims. Even 100 years ago, claims of cure-alls and conspiracies to withhold conflicting evidence were recurrent scams.

• Losing excess weight may slow down metabolism temporarily. According to a recent study, your metabolic rate will return to normal once you reach your goal weight.

• If you feel like chocolate, buy a small piece of your favorite kind and enjoy. Chocolate cravings are common in 40% of females and 15% of males. Most of these people claimed that no other substance will stop their craving. We understand.

• Accept the fact you have to eat less if you lose weight. You need fewer calories to move a 160-pound body than a 220-pound body.

• Avoid fad diets. Those are scientifically untested eating plans that sharply restrict the kinds of food you eat while promising dramatic weight loss. Some have a link to a scientific fact, though they make claims that go way beyond the evidence.

• Some fad diets promise weight loss from the interaction of certain foods. This theory is a pure myth.

• Understand food labels on low fat foods: polydextrose, modified food starch, maltodextrins, xanthan gum and cellulose gel are carbohydrate-based fat replacers.

• Why are fat replacers necessary? They are used to contribute bulk, creaminess, thickening and stabilization that is normally supplied by fat itself.

• Understand food labels on low fat foods: Protein-based fat replacers are used in mayonnaise, salad dressings, baked goods and dairy products.

• Fat reduced peanut butter replaces fat with corn syrup solids. Calories are not necessarily lower.

• Place 10 tsp of sugar in a glass. That’s how much you’re consuming in a 12 oz can of soda. Now place 30 tsp of sugar in a glass. That’s how much you’re consuming in three 12 oz cans of soda.

• We know if you eat less and exercise more you lose weight. There is simply no reason to believe in metabolism boosters.

CHECKLIST TO HEALTHY EATING

Print out this checklist each week, check your score and try to improve each week. Keep smiling!

Score:  /12

1. Eat when hungry - not bored. Also, don’t postpone mealtimes when you’re ravenous. If you’re hungry at 4 PM, eat a hearty snack and a lighter dinner. Eating when you’re hungry will give you a good level of comfort.

2. Enjoy your foods. Do you eat foods just because they’re there or you’re in a hurry? Treat yourself. Eat foods that taste good and are nutritious. You’ll have a feeling of accomplishment afterwards.

3. Watch nibbles. Food is everywhere. If you’ve lost control and find yourself grazing all day, stop now! Wait at least two hours between your nibbles.

4. Try one new recipe each week. Spend a few minutes, once a week, finding a tasty dish in one of your healthy, low-fat cookbooks (yes, I know you have many gathering dust). Write out the shopping list, stocking up on herbs and spices. There are many hidden healthy ingredients in herbs and spices and their use allows you to lower your use of oils, butter and salt in a recipe.

5. A splash of color - add color (full of vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals) to your meal presentation with new and interesting vegetables and fruits. If you see a vegetable you don’t know, ask how to prepare it. Have you tried spaghetti squash? Yummy.

6. Eating out? Make better choices. Go to your favorite restaurant or try a new one. Some ethnic cuisines have great low fat choices - Japanese, Chinese, and Thai. Choose wisely from the menu. Smaller portions, plenty of vegetables, go for the baked potato or rice instead of fries, ask for salad with light dressing. Take home leftovers and enjoy tomorrow.

7. Sleep or relax when tired, don’t eat! Some people find themselves reaching to the kitchen rather than taking a nap, relaxing for ten minutes, or just slowing down. If you can spare an hour or more, take a yoga class. You will feel refreshed and ready to face the world again.

8. Walk when bored or stressed. Take a brisk 10 - 20 minute walk instead of eating. Take every opportunity to be active. Walk the halls and stairs of your home or walk to the store for a lovely piece of fruit. The fresh air and exercise will help refuel your energy.

9. Keep motivated. Read inspiring books and articles, mark a passage that relates to you. Temptation is all around you so you need to keep your goals in front of you.

10. Find supportive friends. Spend time with caring friends who encourage you to keep in good health. Avoid those who leave you depressed or anxious.

11. Set a good example. Encourage others at your home and office and influence them to follow healthy habits. They will appreciate your concern for them.

12. Plan an activity. Plan the five days you’ll be active. Include friends and family to keep you more committed.

Is there a problem I’ve missed? If so, add it to this checklist and keep focused on your health goals. It’s really worth it

CH 1: WEIGHT LOSS TIPS

WEIGHT LOSS TIPS


Once you realize you are responsible for eating well and being active, weight loss will be easier. Here are answers to some myths on weight loss.

• Make sure you eat regularly. Skipping meals makes you ravenous and you are more likely to reach for high fat snack foods when you finally eat.

• Are you snacking without counting? Snacks can add up your calories quickly and lead to excess rolls around the waist.

• Often my clients will ask me how to lose weight in those “trouble spots”, usually tummy and thighs. Unfortunately, when you lose weight, you lose it everywhere, not in specific areas.

• Is your weight going up this winter? It’s very common for people to gain weight during the cold months and winter holidays. Find a dietitian to help motivate you on http://www.eatright.org/.

• During long winter months, if you find seasonal affective disorder (SAD) creeping up on you, you will need to fight the cravings for sweet and starchy foods. Call friends and make plans to be active together, keeping you committed to good health.

• Don't let your good sense leave you when faced with too-good-to-be-true claims. Even 100 years ago, claims of cure-alls and conspiracies to withhold conflicting evidence were recurrent scams.

• Losing excess weight may slow down metabolism temporarily. According to a recent study, your metabolic rate will return to normal once you reach your goal weight.

• If you feel like chocolate, buy a small piece of your favorite kind and enjoy. Chocolate cravings are common in 40% of females and 15% of males. Most of these people claimed that no other substance will stop their craving. We understand.

• Accept the fact you have to eat less if you lose weight. You need fewer calories to move a 160-pound body than a 220-pound body.

• Avoid fad diets. Those are scientifically untested eating plans that sharply restrict the kinds of food you eat while promising dramatic weight loss. Some have a link to a scientific fact, though they make claims that go way beyond the evidence.

• Some fad diets promise weight loss from the interaction of certain foods. This theory is a pure myth.

• Understand food labels on low fat foods: polydextrose, modified food starch, maltodextrins, xanthan gum and cellulose gel are carbohydrate-based fat replacers.

• Why are fat replacers necessary? They are used to contribute bulk, creaminess, thickening and stabilization that is normally supplied by fat itself.

• Understand food labels on low fat foods: Protein-based fat replacers are used in mayonnaise, salad dressings, baked goods and dairy products.

• Fat reduced peanut butter replaces fat with corn syrup solids. Calories are not necessarily lower.

• Place 10 tsp of sugar in a glass. That’s how much you’re consuming in a 12 oz can of soda. Now place 30 tsp of sugar in a glass. That’s how much you’re consuming in three 12 oz cans of soda.

• We know if you eat less and exercise more you lose weight. There is simply no reason to believe in metabolism boosters.