Did your diet make the cut?
Each year, over 45 million Americans go on a diet with hopes of achieving a healthier lifestyle. The U.S. News & World Report compared 40 popular diet plans to determine the best in nine categories, including the best diets for healthy eating, the best plant-based diets, and the best heart-healthy diets.
To calculate the rankings, U.S. News relied on a panel of the country's top nutritionists and physicians specializing in diabetes, heart health and weight loss. To win in their respective categories, diets had to be easy to follow, lead to short- and long-term weight loss, and help prevent cardiovascular disease and diabetes.
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"There is an established theme of what is considered healthy eating, but no single diet is the best for all of us," said expert panelist Dr. David Katz, director of the Yale University Prevention Research Center, in a press release from U.S. News "[These] rankings reliably address the expertise from diverse nutrition professionals in evaluating diets. Ultimately, a 'best' diet is one that can be adopted, managed and sustained over time.”
For the first time, the Mediterranean Diet ranked as a Best Diet Overall, tying for the number one spot with the DASH Diet (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension). The Med Diet was also named the number one easiest diet to follow because it has no set plan or tracking system—you’re simply encouraged to eat lots of produce, whole grains, beans, nuts, legumes, olive oil, fish, and other seafood. You can also have poultry, eggs, cheese, and yogurt in moderation, while limiting sweets and red meat.
“A big reason why the Mediterranean diet is so easy to follow and stick with is because it’s delicious, and not all that restrictive, and doesn’t focus heavily on portion sizes, but eating good-for-you ingredients in moderate amounts,” says Brierley Horton, MS, RD, Cooking Light’s food and nutrition director.
The Med Diet also focuses on the social side of eating—diet followers are encouraged to eat meals with others and drink few glasses of red wine each week (if they so choose.) The Mediterranean Diet also tied with the DASH Diet for number one in the Best Heart-Healthy Diets category and the Best Diets for Healthy Eating. The Med Diet was also named the best diet for Diabetes, and the number one Plant-Based Diet. Turns out, there’s good reason why it won so many accolades this year—research suggests the Mediterranean Diet boosts longevity and helps prevent a host of chronic diseases.
The DASH Diet aims to prevent and lower high blood pressure by consuming nutrients such as potassium, calcium, protein, and fiber. You don’t need to track each one—just make sure to eat lots of produce, whole grains, lean protein, and low-fat dairy and avoid fatty meats, saturated fats, full-fat dairy, excess salt, sugar-sweetened beverages, and sweets.
The DASH Diet also placed first in the Best Diets for Healthy Eating Category and was named the Best Heart-Healthy Diet. It was ranked number two in the Best Diets for Diabetes category.
Anti-Inflammatory Diet: 9 Recipes to Get You Started
Chronic inflammation may negatively affect some of your body's systems and organs, including your heart.
But some studies suggest that a diet rich in produce, whole grains, healthy fats, and fish—such as the Mediterranean Diet—can reduce the likelihood of chronic inflammation.
To help you choose some anti-inflammation foods, Consumer Reports' experts developed the nine recipes below—three each for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
They're all tasty and easy to prepare, so you won't spend hours in the kitchen making them. Each makes one serving, so increase the ingredients accordingly if you're cooking for more than one person.
No. 11 (tie): Vegetarian diet
Eliminating meat from your diet could help with both weight loss and heart health, according to the US News & World Report experts.
Some observational studies have shown that vegetarians tend to weigh less than people who eat meat, and other studies have linked vegetarianism with lower risk for heart disease and cancer.
Unlike veganism, which tied for 20th on this year's list, vegetarianism allows adherents to eat products like milk and eggs, which are good sources of protein and other nutrients.
Is Over-Dieting Ruining Your Workout Goals?
If you're not seeing results at the gym, it might be time to check in on your eating habits.
You may have heard that diet outweighs exercise when it comes to weight loss, but what happens when you go ham on reducing calories while upping it in the gym? I mean new year, new you, right? Think again. According to experts, over-dieting can be detrimental to goal-crushing while putting you at risk of being sidelined from “getting after it” altogether.
“Your relationship with food can directly affect your ability to exercise — from reduced performance and endurance to minimized results,” says Elizabeth Kehoe, RDN, LDN, non-diet dietitian and co-founder of EKG Nutrition. “All too often, food is viewed as the antithesis to exercise since we have come to believe you must burn off all the calories you eat to lose weight and perform at your best.”
Spoiler alert: You need food to work out in the first place. “The food you eat provides the energy (in the form of calories) your body needs to perform at its best,” explains Kehoe. “Carbohydrates are your body’s preferred source of energy for exercise, so eating enough calories — particularly as carbohydrates — can improve performance and give you the energy you need to push through a workout.”
“Dieting can cause more problems than a few extra pounds would,” adds sports dietician and certified intuitive eating counselor Cindy Dallow, PhD, RD. For example, while many dieters may still able to work out, cutting calories too much can lead to fatigue — limiting the level of intensity required to create a strong, lean body composition. In short, lacking the tenacity in the gym — instead, simply going through the motions — doesn’t and will not equate to the physical transformation you’re looking for in the mirror.
Cutting too many calories come mealtime can also create a domino effect — increasing soreness and the risk for injury. “If a person is not getting the calories they need, then they will not utilize protein for muscle-building,” explains Dallow. Instead, the protein will be used to meet energy demands.
As you can imagine, the impact of over-dieting goes far beyond skin deep. “Over-dieting causes caloric and nutrient deficits, putting you at risk for low blood pressure, bone fractures, lightheadedness, nutrient deficiencies and more,” says Kehoe. Poor sleep, moodiness and anxiety are also noteworthy implications.
“All too often, we see clients who are aiming to lose weight by limiting calories and exercising to extremes, only to be frustrated when their weight plateaus,” says Kehoe. “It may sound counter-intuitive, but your body needs those calories to burn them. Without adequate calories, your body will go into starvation mode and hold onto each calorie you eat, causing your weight to remain stable.”
So how do you know if you’ve taken things too far? Listening to your how you feel during your workouts can keep you in check. Oh, and if you’re thinking of food all of the time? It’s probably your body’s way of telling you to up your portion sizes.
Lauren Seib is a pug mom, personal trainer, online coach and group fitness instructor based in Stamford, Conn. Her credentials include NASM CPT, Spinning(R), RYT 200 and Barre by exhale.
8 Healthy Scallop Recipes for Every Diet
Scallops are a wonderful option for all types of diets. Whether you’re counting calories, avoiding carbs, or looking to indulge in a decadent seafood feast, there is a scallop recipe that suits your needs. The high protein content makes these mollusks a satisfying meal, they are naturally low in fat, and they are absolutely delicious. On top of all that scallops only take a few minutes each to cook, so they are a great option for a fast weeknight meal. Check out the list of healthy scallop recipes below for eight ways to sear, grill, and serve up scallops!
This classic, simple recipe is a great starting point. It’s good for low-carb or low-calorie diets, plus It equips you with a few simple tricks that can help you get the perfect sear on the outside of a scallop every time. Protip: Start with chilled scallops and pat them dry! Get the recipe.
This dish gets its creamy qualities from coconut milk and a little ghee. Ancient man might not have eaten much butter, but when it comes to ghee most of the lactose has been removed and you’re left with a pure fat, so many people consider it paleo-friendly. If you’re avoiding butter just swap out the ghee for oil or lard, but don’t skip the saffron. Get the recipe.
Here’s a recipe perfect for those of you seeking a little more fiber. The barley makes this dish filling and satisfying, while the beets add a wonderful earthy flavor. Go light on the garlic sauce and this is a low-fat, high-protein dish! Get the recipe.
This Thai-inspired recipe has tons of bright flavors from citrus and sweet chile sauce. It’s a cinch to whip up quickly, so it would be a perfect idea for a low-carb, calorie-conscious weeknight dinner! Get the recipe.
The grill is really magical when it comes to preparing scallops: If it’s heated properly you can get a smoky char on the outside of the scallops while leaving the inside tender and juicy. Plus, you barely have to add any fat to aid in the cooking, just brush the scallops lightly with oil or butter to stop them from sticking. Get the recipe.
If you’re looking for a slightly different way to prepare scallops, consider this panko-crusted version. It’s much healthier than deep-frying them, but the topping of panko, pine nuts, Parmesan, and tarragon gets plenty crunchy under the broiler. This recipe is a great way to sate a craving for fattier fried foods. Get the recipe.
In addition to being low-fat, this simple seared scallop recipe incorporates some wilted spinach for added nutrient power. For those of you interested, the recipe includes the Weight Watchers points! Get the recipe.
If you aren’t interested in calorie counting at the moment, try indulging in this recipe for seared scallops with beurre blanc. It may be high in fat, but it’s still low-carb, not that you need to make any excuses. The stomach wants what the stomach wants. Get the recipe.
For more tips, tricks, and healthy recipes, check out our healthy living page.
7. Whole30 Diet
The Whole30 diet claims to help eliminate cravings, improve energy and sleep and promote weight loss, according to the Whole30 website. This diet involves eliminating added sugar, alcohol, grains, legumes, dairy, sulfites and baked goods for 30 days. Then, after the 30 days are up, participants can reintroduce certain food groups slowly, with the goal of identifying which foods make them feel better or worse.
Although the Whole30 diet isn't particularly unsafe, it is restrictive and requires high levels of commitment to actually "work," according to U.S. News & World Report. Closely following Whole30 requires daily planning and meal preparation in order to successfully identify which foods do and don't work for your body, and that level of commitment is too much for a lot of people.
Christopher Furlong/Getty Images Volumetrics prioritises foods like vegetables that are less calorie-dense.
Volumetrics is a diet developed by Penn State University nutrition professor Barbara Rolls. It splits foods into four categories based on calorie density.
Category one includes non-starchy fruits and veggies, soup, and nonfat milk. Category two has starchy fruits and veggies, cereal, low-fat meat, and legumes. Category three includes other meats, cheese, bread, salad dressing, ice cream, and cake. And category four has crackers, chips, chocolate candy, cookies, nuts, butter, and oil.
No foods are strictly off-limits, but dieters eat mainly foods in categories one and two, limit portion sizes of foods in category three, and minimise choices from category four.
This diet earned high scores for safety and nutrition and is one of the best diets for diabetes, according to the expert panel.
Volumetrics also made the top 10 diets last year, when it was tied for fifth place with the TLC Diet.
Keep up with the Kardashians all you want, but you might want to steer clear of their diet advice. Earlier in 2018, Kim Kardashian was criticized for advertising her use of Flat Tummy Co. appetite-suppressant lollipops. According to the brand, the candies contain an ingredient that staves off appetite — in other words, it helps you ignore your natural cue that your body needs to eat. These lollipops may or may not work they’re considered a dietary supplement, and therefore are not actually regulated by the Food and Drug Administration. But you know what definitely works to get rid of hunger? Eating food. And doing that is actually quite healthy, unlike relying on these products to avoid your appetite. Kim Kardashian was bashed online by other celebrities and many health experts for advertising a product that may promote disordered eating. You may want to (lolli) pop these in the trash.
Why can’t I lose weight?
Weight loss issue #1: You’re not in a calorie deficit
Ultimately, to lose weight you have to be in a calorie deficit. Shelli Epstein, personal trainer at F45 Mill Hill, explains that this “is when you eat less calories than your body expends.”
“We are all different and come in all different shapes and sizes, meaning we all burn and need to consume different amounts of calories in a day. If your body naturally burns ‘x’ number of calories a day, if you exercise or have an active job, your daily calorie expenditure will be higher.”
“If you eat less calories than your body exerts you are in a calorie deficit.”
But especially in these stressful and anxiety-inducing times, Shelli says that exercise should be “celebration of what your body can do. Not a punishment for what you ate!”
To help you get into a calorie deficit (and stay there), there are plenty of online calculators out there – such as this one by Precision Nutrition. Alternatively, for daily updates on your steps and calorie burning, as well as sleeping patterns, then a fitness tracker such as a FitBit might be more suitable.
Weight loss issue #2: You’re not integrating healthy eating with exercise
“One of the main reasons why many individuals struggle to lose weight is the fact that they do not integrate healthy eating and exercise into their lives in a way that is both healthy and sustainable, Personal Trainer Chloe Twist from Ori Gym says.
“While calorie intake is important to monitor when adjusting to a new nutrition plan, many people become obsessed with tracking every last calorie that they consume, and this can have a more damaging effect in the long run.
“Most people find it far less demanding (and more effective) to get an initial idea of what their daily calorie intake should look like, and try to stick to that around 80% of the time, still allowing themselves a treat now and again.”
Weight loss issue #3: Stress-eating
Even as lockdown restrictions lift, we’ll still be in a pandemic. Much of our daily lives have completely changed and many of us are significantly more anxious than we were this time last year. It’s only natural that this might result in us taking comfort in food and drink.
In fact, a recent study almost half of the people surveyed had fallen back into unhealthy eating habits since the lockdown began. 47% had also fallen back into habits of exercising less, compared to pre-lockdown times.
Alexia Dempsey, Priory eating disorder dietician, says, “Certain foods stimulate the brain’s secretion of opiate-like, ‘feel-good’ chemicals such as serotonin which, in turn, drives cravings. With the pandemic posing several challenges for those who are struggling, lonely, anxious or bored, leaning on food to ‘self-soothe’ can become the norm.
“With many people not working, looking for work, or working much longer hours from home – there is a daily temptation to over-eat or drink because of the constant availability of food and alcohol, absence of structure and financial fears.”
“With emotional over-eating, an individual will use food as a distraction from the negative. The foods may include chocolate, crisps, sweets, foods that are considered to be a ‘treat’. People often report carbohydrate-based binges, which can be linked to increased serotonin, a chemical found to alleviate low mood and anxiety.
“It therefore makes sense that in times of stress, such as the unprecedented and uncertain times we are currently experiencing, we will also see a widespread increase in people craving these ‘feel good’ foods – which in turn can lead to negative feelings of guilt as well as lower self-esteem, and poorer health and wellbeing.”
How to stop stress-eating:
- Plan in advance: Meal planning can help so try to use shopping lists, and this will help you avoid making food choices based on emotion. Plan for ‘treats’ too.
- Hydrate: Being dehydrated can cause tiredness, sluggishness, poor concentration, irritability – and hunger. It’s easy for us to mistake dehydration for hunger.
- Scale up the fish: If you can fit some fish in, a couple of times a week, as your protein, you might also be boosting your mood.
- Keep moving: Even during lockdown we are encouraged to exercise. Exercise doesn’t need to be a run walking and getting some fresh air means you are getting a change of scene and this can help boost mood and overall health.
- Seek support: Overeating or emotional eating can be passing phase, or it can become highly distressing behaviour. If you are feeling worried about your eating, seek support from your GP or a registered specialist professional.
Alexia adds, “There is lots of talk of needing to lose weight in the wake of Covid-19 but diets don’t work because they rely on the restriction of foods that are both highly palatable and often considered a reward. If you plan some ‘treats’ into your week, you are much less likely to feel you are missing out.”
Weight loss issue #4: Not drinking enough water
Believe it or not, the amount of water you drink can really affect the amount of weight you lose – along with everything else. So if you’re wondering “why can’t I lose weight?”, be sure to pay attention to how much you’re drinking.
Research from 2018 revealed that drinking two glasses of water before a meal may temporarily suppress appetite, leading the person to eat less and still feel full.
Over the course of the day, personal trainer Shelli suggests drinking three to six litres of water, as it “increases metabolism and improves digestion”.
Weight loss issue #6: You’re not doing the right kind of exercise
“When it comes to weight loss, the best form of exercise that you can do in a technical sense is weight training.” Chloe says, “This is due to the fact that compound exercises such as deadlifts, squats, lunges, rows, overhead presses, etc. incorporate multiple muscle groups at once, and therefore burn more calories that one simple motion (such as running) does.”
“This is increased further when heavy weights are added, since this promotes muscle growth. More muscle mass equals greater fat burn, since muscle tissue burns more calories than fat tissue does when the body is in a resting state, so this is why many opt for weight training over long duration cardio which doesn’t necessarily lead to muscle growth.
“That being said, it really depends on the individual and how motivated they are by the exercise form that they have chosen.”
Weight loss issue #5: You’ve got a calorie ‘blind spot’
Many of us are eating unwanted calories without even knowing it. While a couple of spoons of ketchup isn’t going to rock the scales either way at the end of the day, it might be preventing you from going into a calorie deficit.
Jam on porridge, full-fat mayonnaise with our chips and flavoured water are just some of the products that contain hidden calories that we might forget amount while we’re calorie counting. In fact, a recent study revealed that it’s one of the most common contributors to weight gain.
To find out if this is the case for you, try making a food diary for a week. Write down everything you eat, including snacks and all the ingredients in your food and this should tell you where the hidden calories are.
But this doesn’t mean you have to scrap the condiments and small treats in your diet. Learning about the best and the worst sauces for your diet can go a long way!
Weight loss issue #7: You’re trying to make too many changes too quickly
It’s important to focus on all the elements of eating healthier and having a healthier way of life as a way to lose weight, rather than having weight loss as the end goal. Slow and steady wins the race, the old saying goes – and the same applies to weight loss.
“Make gradual changes to your nutrition and your fitness.” Chloe says, “It can be easy to lose patience and want to get on a ‘health kick’ so that you can start losing weight as soon as possible, but if you want the changes that you’re making to last then you can’t incorporate them into your daily life all at once.
“Learn some new recipes, but also get creative on how you can make some of the meals you already enjoy healthier and more protein focused. Have a brainstorm on ways you can make healthy meals that are cheap and easy to prepare, as most of us don’t have the time to make a complex and nutritiously perfect meal each evening after work.”
Weight loss issue #8: You’re not eating enough
As important as a calorie deficit is for weight loss, it’s still important to make sure that you’re eating enough.
“You should never feel hungry when you are trying to lose weight and transform your overall fitness you should always feel full of energy.” Personal trainer Chloe suggests, “If you do find yourself feeling hungry, try adding some high protein, low-fat snacks into your diet alongside what you’re already eating, as it’s likely that you’ve underestimated the amount of calories that you need.”
If you are cutting meals to try and lose weight, then maybe a change of focus is needed. To keep up a healthy weight loss routine and see long-term results, rather than quick fixes that don’t last, Chloe says that the best thing to do is not to fixate on weight loss at all.
“This is something that many people advise, but it is true that doing so can derail your progress. You may find it much more helpful to take progress photos that you review each month, or have a certain set of clothes that you’re hoping to fit into that you try on every couple of months when you hit a fitness goal.”
“Weight fluctuates for a number of reasons, especially when you gain muscle mass from an improved diet and exercise routine, and it can be unhealthy to get wrapped up in what the scales are telling you when you are actually making progress in other areas.”
Weight loss issue #9: Your routine is off
It’s easy to slip out of weight loss habits if you break the routine. Over the pandemic, even the smallest thing can throw us off course. So it’s important to stick to a routine and if you miss one day, don’t think it’s the end of the world – but get back on it.
GP Dr Dawn Harper advises, “Try to eat your meals at regular times and drink plenty of fluid throughout the day. Going for a walk every lunchtime can be a great way to break up the day and give you a boost for the afternoon. Plus, you can make the most of the daylight.
“These are challenging times, so don’t be too hard on yourself if you don’t manage to stick to your goals. Dust yourself off and try again the next day – you’re doing a great job!”
Weight loss issue #10: You need to swap to healthier snacks
Much like hidden calories, there can be more calories, fat and salt in our 3pm snacks than we thought. Opting for healthy snacks is the way forwards, many of our experts say, instead of cutting them out altogether.
Orla Hugueniot, Public Health England nutritionist, says, “As we’re all at home more, it’s easy to reach for biscuits, cakes and chocolate throughout the day. Why not try veggie sticks, a piece of fruit, a small handful of nuts, popcorn, or malt loaf instead?”
Weight loss issue #11: You’re still drinking fizzy drinks, even diet ones
Diet Coke might say that it doesn’t have any calories on the tin, but that doesn’t mean it’s not packed with sugar-alternatives that are even worse.
PT Chloe says that cutting back on fizzy drinks is a sure fire way to add substance to a weight loss routine.
It’s not just because of the aspartame and sugar-replacements though, which have been proven to bind fat and make it harder to shed. A recent study has suggested that fizzy drinks can cause an increase in production of the hunger hormone ghrelin, which in turn increases weight gain.
The study took a group of male rats and fed them either a fizzy sugary drink, a flat sugary fizzy drink or tap water. They then found that the rats who regularly drank the fizzy, sugary drink gained more weight significantly quicker than the others because of this increase in hormone.
Weight loss issue #12: Your daily activity levels aren’t high enough
Walking for weight loss is one of the simplest ways to kick your diet into action, by helping you bring together what you eat with exercise.
“When it comes to weight loss, focus on increasing energy expenditure.” Personal Trainer Elliott Upton from Ultimate Performance explains, “I f you want to lose weight , you need to increase your activity levels – and not just the 60 minutes you spend working out at the gym either. By this, we mean moving more and increasing the amount of activity you do during the whole day.
“So many people fall into the trap of thinking all they need to do is a quick hour session in the gym to lose weight . But if they’re sedentary for the other 23 hours in the day, their overall energy expenditure will still be pretty low. Your activity levels play a big part in whether you successfully lose weight or not.
“One of the biggest weight loss tools that everyone overlooks is something called ‘non-exercise activity thermogenesis’ (NEAT). Put simply, this is the energy you use doing day-to-day activities that aren’t exercise – things like shopping, cleaning, walking and even fidgeting at your desk. It can be a game-changer where weight loss is concerned.
“Depending on how active you are throughout the day, NEAT can account for anywhere between 15-50% of your total energy expenditure throughout the day – and can be the difference between you being in calorie maintenance or calorie deficit. We always advise clients to aim for 10,000 steps per day and build in activities like walking to work , taking the stairs and carrying the shopping home to their routine which boost the calorie burn far more than a quick session in the gym.
“You can track this easily with a fitness watch or step counter on your phone.”
Weight loss issue #13: You need to get more sleep
A lack of sleep has been associated with weight gain for years now. There’s many reasons behind it but one of the main ones is that a lack of sleep correlates to an increase in appetite.
When we’re hungry, the body releases two hormones called ghrelin and leptin. As noted with the previous study on rats, ghrelin promotes hunger but leptin also contributes to feeling full. Naturally throughout the day, these hormones increase and decrease. In turn, they signal the need to consume calories (ie. eat food).
When we don’t have enough sleep, the regulation of these hormones are significantly affected. This means that our appetite increases and we don’t feel as full as we normally would.
Several studies have also suggested that a lack of sleep can change our food preferences. Those who are deprived of sleep tend to choose foods that are high in calories and carbohydrates, which aren’t bad at all, but need to consumed in moderation.
Weight loss issue #14: You need to eat more protein
Founder of the Fast 800 diet, Dr Michael Mosley says that protein is essential for weight loss and not eating enough of it could be a reason why we’re not losing weight.
“This means regularly eating foods such as oily fish, seafood, chicken, red meat, eggs, tofu, beans, pulses, dairy and nuts.” He says, “These foods have been shown to curb carbohydrate cravings and will help you to feel fuller for longer. Eating enough protein is important. You should also try to restrict your intake of processed meats such as sausages, bacon and salami.
“Moderately increasing the amount of protein in your diet can help you to feel more satisfied after meals. What’s more, the time of day that you eat protein also matters.”
There’s plenty of evidence to back this up too!
“To test whether protein at the first meal of the day could help people to feel fuller for longer, a US-based study in 2014 divided volunteers into three groups.” Explains Dr Mosley, “One group ate a breakfast containing 35g of protein the second group ate breakfast containing 13g protein the third group, meanwhile, skipped breakfast altogether. Later on that morning, the volunteers were tested for levels of dopamine, the chemical that drives our reward circuits. They were also asked to rate the intensity of their pre-lunch food cravings.
“The results were clear: of all groups, the high-protein breakfast group recorded the highest dopamine levels and lowest pre-lunch food cravings.”
He also suggests that the time of day you eat protein could be a contributor to healthy weight loss.
“Eating protein at the first meal of the day helps you to feel fuller for longer because after a protein meal, levels of a chemical called tyrosine – a building-block for dopamine – rise inside the brain. By increasing its own dopamine supply as the next meal approaches, the brain experiences a much weaker dopamine hit from high-calorie food.
“This does not, of course, mean that you have to eat breakfast early in the day. For many, a midday ‘breakfast’ helps to extend the period of non-eating and so draws down the full benefits of fasting. But what it does mean is that when you do break your fast, eating a higher-protein meal will help to stave off sugar cravings later on.”
Weight loss issue #15: You’re drinking too much alcohol
Everything in moderation, personal trainer Chloe says. Drinking a bottle of wine in an evening certainly isn’t advised, with an average calories count of over 600 calories per bottle, and some of us might be drinking more than we think. Especially in lockdown, where sometimes the only difference between a work day and an evening is a beer at 6pm.
Hangovers are also a winner for making you want to eat unhealthily through the day, as we all know. Common hangover cures have been given over the years as fried food, sugary drinks and a day in bed. While some of these might be effective at shedding the headache and funny tummy, they’re not going help you lose weight.
However, the odd tipple or two a couple of days a week won’t hurt your diet.
It also plays into the idea of keeping up your routine and making sure you have long-term success. If you enjoy a beer, a glass of wine or a gin and tonic to celebrate the weekend for example, cutting this completely out of your diet could do more harm than good. You’re less likely to feel motivated to keep up your diet and probably will end up calling it quits before the end of the month.
Weight loss issue #16: You’re cutting out carbs
Diets like Atkins and the Dukan Diet call for carbs to be eliminated from our diets. But if you want to lose weight in the long-term, without cutting back on the foods you like then carbs need to be an essential part of your diet.
Personal trainer Elliott explains how this works. “ Eating a high-protein diet and resistance training will ensure we retain lean muscle during a transformation. The remaining split of your calories according to fat or carbohydrates doesn’t matter from a fat-loss perspective, so long as a deficit is in place, but there are some caveats.
“If you have someone who is very overweight, they will likely benefit from a low-carb diet to start because:
1. They will get a big motivational boost from seeing the scale drop quickly as water leaves the body,
2. It will improve their insulin sensitivity along with the other changes you make,
3. It’s an easy way to take a number of calories out of the diet and still leave them feeling energised .
4. It cuts out a lot of the low-quality, nutrient-poor, calorie-dense foods that likely contributed to the original weight gain in the first place, e.g. cookies, sweets, bread.”
Elliott says that carbohydrates can then be reintroduced back into the diet as and when needed for performances, as well as enjoyment, purposes.
“It’s always best to avoid highly-processed sources of carbs in your diet (bread, pasta, cereal and baked goods) and focus on green vegetables and carb sources with a lower glycemic load (like sweet potato).”
He says, “ Green vegetables are particularly good – firstly because they’re full of vitamins and minerals, but also because they’re very low calorie, so you can eat them in large quantities without pushing the calorie count up too high. The high fibre content of green vegetables like kale, spinach and broccoli aids digestion and helps keep you feeling fuller for longer.
“When it comes to reintroducing carbs back into your diet, we always advise adding in a small amount post-workout and also in the final meal of the day (yes, carbs in the evening! Carbs promote the production of serotonin in the brain, which aids sleep).”
Weight loss issue #17: You need to meal prep
“Successful and sustainable weight loss comes from keeping on top of your diet.” Elliott from Ultimate Performance says, “ If you’re already tracking your calories and macros, something that will pretty much guarantee success is preparing your meals for the day well in advance.
“By having your meals measured and prepared ready for the day means you’re less likely to be caught short without a healthy meal, where it’s likely you will grab the nearest convenience food which often won’t benefit your weight loss goals.”
7 Recipes for People With A Blood Type
Just in case you are interested in trying the Blood Type Diet, I’ve gathered some recipes, that would suit the standards for Type A, with as many beneficial foods as possible. Let us know if you feel better, lose weight or experience any other benefits from the diet that are worth mentioning. And don’t forget to start by getting Dr. Peter D’Adamo’s book!
1. Avocado Black Bean Burger
The secret to making this veggie burger, is adding the avocado right into the burger batter. Alexis, a registered dietitian from Hummusapien, says it makes the burger much more moist, creamy and almost cheesy-like.
If you’re going to abide by the Type A Blood Diet, there are a few simple things you should know. First, Score! This recipe includes five ingredients on the Type A beneficial foods list: flax, black beans, lemon, onion and garlic. The rest are things that are just fine to eat, except for the cayenne pepper, so you’ll have to omit that. Instead, you could try adding in some turmeric or cumin!
This is a super simple recipe that makes a quick lunch or dinner anytime. Eat it on top a bed of spinach or with a slice of Manna bread!
2. Blueberry Pineapple Green Detox Smoothie
Smoothies are the way to go sometimes! They are a delicious and easy way to get a ton of nutrients all at once.
This Blueberry Pineapple smoothie has several foods on the Type A good list like spinach/kale, flax seeds, ginger, lemon and blueberries. ItÂ would be great for breakfast, a snack or even for lunch along with a handful of peanuts!
3. Pumpkin Seed Dried Cherry Trail Mix
This crunchy sweet and salty trail mix only calls for six simple ingredients, all with wonderful health benefits! Plus, while all of them are on the okay to eat for Type A’s list, two of them are especially beneficial to this blood type. Those include pumpkin seeds (pepitas) and dried cherries.
All you have to do is mix the nuts and seeds together with the pure, organic maple syrup and salt, spread it on a baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes. Mix in the cherries, and you’re done! Keep these crunchy munchies around the house and take a bag for on-the-go, and you’ll always have a healthy Type A Blood food ready for snacking!
4. 3-Ingredient Vegan Buckwheat Galettes
Recipes with few ingredients are the best. This recipe, from Whole New Mom, combines buckwheat flour, salt, water and an egg substitute (1 tbsp ground flaxseed Â and 3 tbsp water) together to make more of a crepe-like pancake or wrap.
They also make a fantastic snack, and they travel well too. If you’re not following the Type A Blood Diet, you could use a regular organic egg, but otherwise, the egg substitute works great. Besides, both buckwheat flour and flaxseeds are on the A+ list for Blood Type A.
Try them with some maple syrup, honey or add another A-food and lather on some peanut butter!
5. Healthy 1-Minute Blueberry Muffin
Can something so delectable really only take one minute? Yes, if you plan to use the microwave, that is. But, don’t worry, you can bake it in the oven for 12 minutes if you don’t like the idea of cooking things in the microwave!
Consider this recipe like a healthy bakery style treat that’s light, moist and fluffy – and will satisfy your muffin craving, too. Although the recipe calls for coconut flour, you’re better off using almond or rice flour to satisfy the Type A Food Diet.
Instead of granulated sweetener, which is okay for Type-A’s, I suggest pure maple syrup, simply because it’s a healthier choice. You’ll have to use the flax egg substitute and pumpkin for your mashed starch. For the dairy free milk of choice, Dr. D’Adamo says type A’s do best with soy products, but almond milk would work fine too.
Give it a whirl and see what you think… The flavor and texture is supposed to resemble a blueberry muffin you’d get at Starbucks. Enjoy!
6. Roasted Whole Artichokes
Artichokes are one of the best vegetables, according to Dr. D’Adamo, for Blood Type A’s. If you’re like me, you’ve probably had plenty of experiences with creamy, cheesy spinach and artichoke dips in your lifetime, but have you ever tried roasting a whole artichoke and eating it just like that? I can’t say that I have!
This is so easy to do and combines the simple flavors of lemon, olive oil and garlic – all of which are on the beneficial Type A Food List. Nicole from Pinch My Salt says these are delicious but next time she’d add more garlic because that was one of the best parts.
- Get Nicoles take on it from PinchMySalt.com, and check out this quick how-to-video to see how to prepare your artichokes!
7. Ginger Garlic Baked Salmon
This recipe includes salmon, ginger, garlic and soy sauce, which are all on the Type A good list. But, you will have to make a couple substitutions as well. The first substitution is for oyster sauce, since oysters are on the no-no list. Here, your best bet is to just use more soy sauce. You’ll also need to use olive oil, black current seed oil or flax oil instead of sesame oil, and avoid using the white pepper.
Other than that, you’re good to go! Enjoy your salmon on top a bed of rice with a side of steamed broccoli and you’ll have yourself tasty meal for the Blood Type A.
There are several ingredients used throughout these recipes that you can order from Natural Healthy Concepts with free shipping! That way, you know they’re high quality.
Here’s the list:
Leave a comment below and tell us what you think of this whole Blood Type Diet thing! Would you ever give it a try? If you’re not blood type A, stay tuned… we’ll be covering the other blood types soon!
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