Blog

How to Spot a Fad Diet

Content credit: Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and Taylor Wolfram MS, RDN, LD
Photo credit: istock photo

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics teaches that “if a diet or product sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Steer clear of any diet plans, pills and products that make the following claims:

Rapid Weight Loss
If you lose weight quickly, you’ll lose muscle, bone and water. You also will be more likely to regain the pounds. Instead, focus on eating in a way that helps you feel nourished, satisfied and energized.

Quantities and Limitations
Ditch diets that limit most foods and promote unlimited quantities of specific foods, such as grapefruit and cabbage soup. It’s boring to eat the same thing over and over and hard to stick with monotonous plans. Avoid any diet that eliminates or severely restricts entire food groups or macronutrients, such as carbohydrates. Even if you take a multivitamin, you’ll still miss some critical nutrients.

Specific Food Combinations
There is no evidence that combining certain foods or eating foods at specific times of day will help with weight loss. Eating the “wrong” combinations of food doesn’t cause them to turn to fat immediately or to produce toxins in your intestines, as some plans claim.

Rigid Menus
Life is already complicated enough. Limiting food choices or following rigid meal plans can be an overwhelming, distasteful task. With any new diet, always ask yourself: “Can I eat this way for the rest of my life?” If the answer is no, the plan is not for you.

No Need to Exercise
Regular physical activity is essential for good health. The key to success is to find physical activities that you enjoy and then aim for 30 to 60 minutes of activity on most days of the week.”

Four Tips for Enjoying the Holidays Without Gaining Weight

Photo Credit: AdobeStock

Did you know Americans usually gain 1-2 pounds during the holidays? The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and Barbara Gordon RDN, LN talk about a few strategies to help you enjoy the holidays and avoid the weight gain!

“Tip #1: Don’t Skip Meals
Saving your appetite for a big holiday party or feast? Don’t. Skipping meals during the day may result in overeating. It is especially important to have breakfast, as research shows that those who eat this important morning meal tend to consume fewer calories throughout the day. Include lots of fiber by eating fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Fiber-rich foods are high in volume and will satisfy hunger, but are lower in calories.

Tip #2: Eat Small Portions
Holiday meals tend to be large, buffet-style and include second and third helpings. While one might not eat an entire cake, a common mistake is eating large portions of foods that are perceived as healthy. It’s important to include nutrient-rich foods in your diet, but also remember that these foods have calories as well and should be eaten in moderation. Using this approach at the holiday dinner table will allow you to maintain a healthful eating plan — one that can also include dessert.

Tip #3: Pick a Strategy to Avoid Overeating — and Use It!
There are many strategies to help you avoid overeating. Using a smaller plate, for instance, allows you to put less food on your plate and encourages proper portion sizes. Also, start by filling your plate with vegetables and salad before going to the entrees and desserts. Eating a salad before your meal can help you eat fewer calories overall. Eat slowly and savor every bite, and before you go back for seconds wait 10 minutes to see if you really still are hungry.

Tip #4: Keep Moving
Finally, after dinner, get some physical activity. This is a great time to go for a walk and catch up with family members, or play catch or a game of basketball with the kids.”