diet and nutrition

Simple Diet & Nutrition Tips

Armed with some simple tips, you can make your dieting regime simpler and also potentially get better results. Read through and then pick up on the ones that appeal to you the most.

If you are thinking of dieting, then it's important to maintain the right nutritional balance of foods whilst reducing your total overall intake of calories. One problem with slimming is that quite a few diets are actually pretty unhealthy from a nutritional point of view. They either over-restrict the foods you can eat, or else emphasise one type of food to the exclusion of others.

How Do You Know What's Healthy?

The difficulty for most people is that they don't know enough about nutrition to know if a particular diet is healthy or not. If this applies to you, there are places you can turn for information. The first is your doctor. If you are considering starting a diet but are unsure of whether it is a healthy eating plan or not, you doctor will be able to answer many of your questions. They may even refer you to a nutritionist.

An alternative source is the Internet. There is a wide range of information available, but so much of it can be subjective and based on personal experience. The key is to look for unbiased information from a reputable source like the BBC, Guardian, Telegraph or sites like WebMD or Patient.co.uk.

Tip 1 - Drink Lots of Water

Drinking plenty of water is essential for good health. Additionally, as a dieter, water serves an additional purpose in that it can help fill you up (so you eat less), and it is a vital part of the process of fat metabolisation.

Tip 2 - Watch Your Snacks

When you get a chance to sit down and relax, whether that's during the day or in the evening, this is when the munchies can strike. Snacks are a major worry for most dieters.Professionals call it "Mindless Eating".

There's two approaches. Either stop yourself after a certain time, or change the routine when you would sit down and just snack. Alternatively, have a snack but choose something healthy like an apple, some celery or some carrots - all of which are low in calories and fill you up!

Tip 3 - Steer Clear of Processed Foods

Processed foods generally contain lots of added sugar or salt . As a general rule, the less processed foods you eat, the better. In addition, being processed many of the essential nutrients in the food are removed and preservatives have to be added to give it a shelf life.

Tip 4 - Eat More Meals, Smaller Portions

A growing issue is the size of people's portions. Also it is known that the body is better able to process and breakdown foods to extract the nutrients when we eat smaller and more often. This is also has the added bonus of reducing our appetite meaning we actually start to eat less when you look at the whole day. This tip does take some will power though to prevent you eating more, more often!

Tip 5 - Get Spicy!

Seriously spicy foods have been found to not only increase your metabolism, therefore making you burn more calories, but they also seem to fill you up for longer. So head for that Indian or Thai curry, but steer clear of all the creamy sauces and you'll keep the calories down.

Tip 6 - Healthy Foods on Hand

If you stock your fridge and freezer with healthy snacks and prepared foods like Ragu or Bolognese sauce then you have nutritious meals on hand. Likewise with snacks make sure you have lots of healthy options like celery, carrots, homemade flapjacks, popcorn (without the butter) and fruit.

Tip 7 - Vegetables in Season

Sometimes by simply choosing the same vegetables all the time when they are out of season you lose flavour as well as have to contend with tougher skins. This will make a massive difference in your enjoyment of vegetables and make for a more satisfying meal.

Tip 8 - Manage Those Portions

Seriously! A lot of weight issues revolve around the sheer quantity of food we are eating. Even the healthiest of foods becomes a potential calorie buster if you eat a portion that is twice as large as should be. Your stomach then gets used to the larger portions, encouraging you to eat more at every meal. So in a restaurant, simply order a child portion to keep the calorie intake completely under control.

Another great trick to reduce the amount you eat is to use smaller plates - which means you don't get as much on the plate in the first place!

Tip 9 - Get Active

Exercising increases your metabolism, burns calories and gets your body working for the day ahead. Don't be tempted to exercise in order to give yourself that treat, or to punish yourself - it is very negative.

Exercise will help you sleep, give you more energy, help you enjoy and start new sports and overall will be one of the best ways to manage your weight and feel better in yourself.

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