Botsford HealthSource Magazine
The New Diet Math: More Food Equals Fewer Pounds
Eat More. Weight Less. Sound Too Good To Be True? It Isn't -- As long as you're eating more of the right foods. New research highlights exactly how you can pile your plate high but still shed pounds.
Some Foods Do More with Less
There’s still no magic diet pill that can melt fat. However, the latest studies show certain foods can fill your belly, curb cravings and cut your calorie count. For a new study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, researchers added extra pureed vegetables to some meals. Study participants ate 200 to 350 fewer calories without noticing a taste difference. They also boosted their daily nutrient intake from veggies. In addition, kids who were served a small bowl of vegetable soup before a pasta dish consumed fewer calories overall. The same group of researchers previously found similar results in adults.
Try it at Home Tonight
You can use these findings to give your favorite recipes a makeover, slashing calories without sacrificing satisfaction. Take macaroni and cheese, for instance. Here’s how you can transform this unhealthy classic:
- Choose whole wheat pasta instead of white, refined noodles.
- Use nonfat milk instead of whole milk, and light cream cheese instead of full-fat cheddar.
- Stir in cooked, pureed cauliflower, squash or carrots.
- Also add spinach, tomatoes or another favorite veggie.
Serve your redesigned casserole after a soup or salad. Choose a soup that’s broth-based, not creamy, and packs plenty of vegetables. Stack salads with a wide variety of colorful veggies, and avoid unnecessary extras like high-fat dressings, chunks of cheese or bacon bits. For the greatest weight loss and health gain, combine a lower- calorie diet with at least 30 to 60 minutes of exercise, four to six times per week.
GO NUTS FOR HEALTH!
Craving a crunchy snack? A few nuts may work. They have healthy fats, protein, fiber, magnesium, potassium and vitamin E.
A Wealth of Benefits
Research shows that nuts help prevent heart disease, stroke and diabetes. According to the Journal of Nutrition, nuts help lower LDL, or "bad", cholesterol. That's thanks to their heart-healthy monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. Nuts also fight oxidation and inflammation in the body, which ar risk factors for heart disease. In one study, after men added walnuts to their diet for eight weeks, their blood had more compounds that promote health blood vessels.
Unsalted, Small Amounts Best
The American Heart Association says a handful of unsalted nuts is a heart-healthy snack. But nuts have a lot of calories, so don't go overboard. A 1-ounce portion (about 1/3 cup) has between 160 and 200 calories. Here are some ideas to help you go a little nutty:
- Top hot or cold cereal with a tablespoon of sliced almonds.
- Sprinkle chopped pecans on a green salad.
- Coat fish with crushed pistachios and herbs, then bake.
- Make a pesto sauce for pasta. Blend 2 cups parsley, 2 cloves garlic, ¼ cup pine nuts, ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese and ½ cup olive oil in a blender.
- Sprinkle chopped, toasted hazelnuts on steamed green beans.
HINT: Toasting nuts brings out their flavor. Spread nuts in a single layer on a baking sheet. Toast in a 350 degree oven until golden brown, about seven to 15 minutes, depending on the type of nut.
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