New Year.....New You

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The day after New Years, weight loss advertisements begin. Each program promises results with convincing before and after photos of people, just like you. If you are constantly on one diet or another, then likely there was a breach in the plan and the goal was not met. With so many diet plans available, which one do you choose? Some plans require that the foods be purchased that contain the right ingredients to loose weight, and it probably does. Unfortunately the participants often times gain their weight back. Research has shown that those that teach lifestyle change are the most successful. Habits are difficult to change and require time, discipline, and patience. Of all the plans available, Weight Watchers has been the most successful in the long term weight managment. Being able to use regular food, the participant counts points throughout the day; and once those points are met, no more food should be consumed. This plan teaches one portions and choices that help lead to healthier lifestyle changes. There is also a variety of books and web searches that give valuable information about weight loss, strategies, and plans. Clean eating the newest term circulating in nutritional and social circles. While it seems simple, it requires much more planning. Clean eating teaches using fresh fruits and vegetables and discourages processed, sugary foods.

Several years ago, I learned the negative affects of sugar first hand. During lent, I gave up added sugars. What you need to know is I used to give sugar its own food group category. My sweet tooth has been with me my entire life and it was fed regularly. What I learned during lent, was how much sugar had a hold on me. The cravings were strong in the first days but I just keep telling myself it was only for a little while. In the end, I lost seven pounds! Weight loss wasn't my goal, but a nice side effect. Since then, I've been letting others know about weight gain associated with sugar consumption.

The overconsumption of sugar has led to an increase in the incidence of obesity, heart disease, and cancer. Research points to sugar, not fat as the problem ingredient added to our foods.  As a matter of fact, our bodies need fat to adequately use and store vitamins and minerals.   Personally, I use olive oil or coconut oil with most of my cooking.  As you look to make healthy choices this year, read your lables and sharpen your knives. The more hands-on, the healthier the outcome will be.

Health-bite:  curve the sweet tooth, loose the weight