There are a few principles which are widely accepted as having some relevance, for example:
* Cut or significantly reduce animal fats, simple carbohydrates and processed food.
* Add liberally or increase, fibre intake, complementary nutrients, and fluid especially water.
* Address special circumstances, medical conditions, allergic reactions, and significant lifestyle demands.
Let us now consider these in a little more detail.
Cut The Fat
Some contend that "fat", particularly animal fat is not a problem. It is however incontestable that fat is laden with calories and that excessive calorie intake is unhelpful. Therefore significantly reducing animal fat, if not completely eliminating it is smart.
All carbohydrate is not the same. Some simple carbohydrates encourage the body to produce an excess of insulin which in turn encourages cells to store fat. Sugars high on the Glycaemic Index (a measure of the effect of carbohydrates on blood sugar levels) contribute notably to this unwanted effect.
Sugar is a simple carbohydrate and deserves special mention. It has virtually no nutritional value and at best will give you a boost of short lasting energy. Go for more complex sugars or even honey. While honey may be regarded as a simple sugar it is known to possess other beneficial properties.
Cut Processed Food
Highly refined and processed foods are nutrient deficient. Many elements tend to be lost including fibre and vitamins. But the most critical consideration may be the undesirable ingredients like whiteners, emulsifiers, colourants, preservatives and so on.
Most western diets are deficient in fibre, evidenced by the high sales of laxatives. An adequate intake of fibre is important for general wellbeing and health of the digestive tract. Generous consumption of fibre, will ensure the absorption of toxins from stagnating putrefying waste is avoided.
Add Complimentary Nutrients
I know this idea is contentious. Mineral consumption is often inadequate to meet our needs, if solely derived from crops grown on mineral deficient soil.
Harvesting and storage methods mean available fruit and vegetable, scan only supply a fraction of health promoting phytochemicals, caretenoids and isoflavones once available. Please note that eating "organic" does not necessarily overcome the problem.
Many of us do not drink sufficient fluid, particularly water. Some fluids like alcoholic drinks dehydrate. Water is required for every bodily function, and is the most common body constituent. If the available amount is inadequate, our body hoards it. This is detrimental in that the flushing out of toxins through urine and sweat virtually stops, and the excretion of waste from the bowel slows
Exercise is beneficial on many counts. It improves circulation, helps maintain agility and strength, and speeds the passage of waste products.
It is important to ensure that anyone seeking to lose weight does so in a healthy way. If your body is being subjected to a noteworthy pressure or demand this must be taken into account. For example chronic or acute illness, mental pressure or abnormal workload.
If you haven't exercised for some time, you should be very careful about too much pounding the roads or working in the gym.
Too dramatic a reduction in food intake or calorie restriction, can cause the system to slow down and strive to retain weight rather than lose it.
While it is possible to identify general principles and some do's and don'ts, perhaps the most important thing to consider is that we are all different, with varying needs, abilities and aspirations. As I like to say, to anyone seeking help "one size does not fit all"
Let me put this another way. If the proposed dietary regime doesn't feel right for you, it probably is not and will be difficult for you to sustain a medium to long term commitment. It is critical to be committed. "Get your head right and your body will follow", encapsulates a truth, you as a prospective slimmer, would do well to bear in mind.
You therefore need choice but you need to be in control. it is difficult for anyone however knowledgeable, to be prescriptive in their approach. When you identify a strategy that feels right, go for it.
Consider some options, gain some further knowledge, identify strategies you can live with. When the choice is truly yours, it becomes easier to embrace an approach to weight control that can be comfortably integrated into your life.
John McBride's background has embraced healthcare, teaching and research. He he has worked on three continents and undertaken assignments for several major organizations. Now semi-retired he continues to promote healthy living and commend selected researched weight control strategies. See some options at: http://smartshoppe.eproduct-review.com
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