Everyone seems to be on a diet these days, each following a different strategy with their own tips and recommendations, adding to the confusion of which is the best plan to follow, what foods you should eat and what you need to avoid.
But the fact still remains that a balanced, high fibre, moderately low calorie, low fat diet is the best way to lose weight healthily.
So to sort out myth from scientific fact, here are a few general healthy eating tips for a healthy weight loss:
1. Eat your meals regularly and do not skip any meals, especially breakfast, since skipping meals will slow down your metabolism and make you overeat on the next meal.
2. Avoid eating on the go or in a hurry because it takes 20 minutes for your brain to determine if you’re full.
3. Keep a large bottle of water by your side to drink during the day.
4. Exercise for 60 minutes every day.
5. Go for variety! A well-balanced meal should include foods from all the essential food groups (bread and grains, vegetables, fruits, milk and dairy products, meat and legumes, and a small quantity of healthy fats).
6. Avoid foods that contain a lot of sugars and fat, since they are normally high in calories and low in nutrients.
7. Always start a meal with salad, vegetables of your choice or a bowl of soup. This will make you feel full sooner, reducing the chances of you overeating.
8. Have up to 3 fruits a day.
9. Make healthy food choices:
- Have broiled, grilled, roasted or steamed dishes, instead of fried food.
- Use lean meat like lean beef/veal, skinless chicken breast and fish fillets.
- Use non-fat or low-fat dairy products such as fat-free milk, low-fat yogurt or labneh.
- Choose white cheeses with not more than 25% fat. These include Akkawi, Double-crème, Hilwi, Baladi, Diet Halloum, Philadelphia light, and Singles fat-free cheese.
10. Go brown! Switch to whole wheat bread, toast, cereals or brown pasta and rice. They are higher in vitamins, minerals and fibre than their white counterparts.
11. Use oil sparingly, instead of butter or margarine.
12. Add more taste to your meals with calorie-free ingredients such as spices, herbs, vinegar, lemon juice, garlic and onions.
13. Eat at least 2 hours before you sleep.
For clarifications and personalized diets, it is best you consult a dietician who is more aware of your food habits and lifestyle to provide you with a plan that fits your unique needs.
Good to Remember:
Don’t be discouraged when you slip up and eat something out of your diet plan. Instead, return to your regimen and exercise a little more to burn the extra calories you’ve consumed!