Thursday, April 24, 2008

Fast Food = Fat Food according to Denise Austin

It's no news that fast food is fattening, but is it one of the leading causes of childhood obesity? A study shows a startling connection between the amount of fast food kids are eating and the rise in child obesity.

Researchers from the Children's Hospital in Boston studied the lifestyle habits of some 6,200 children between the ages of 4 and 19 to determine what role, if any, fast food was playing in their weight. They were shocked to find that on any given day, one out of three children are eating a fast-food meal. That's a fivefold increase over statistics collected in a similar study during the 1970s!

The researchers also found that children today are eating fewer fruits, vegetables, and whole grains than in generations past, while taking in far more fat, sugar, and simple carbohydrates. The result? Those extra calories are adding up to an average gain of six pounds per child per year!

You can stop this trend starting with your child. First, limit the amount of fast food you and your child eat every week. Then, when you do visit a fast-food restaurant, encourage your child to choose healthier options, like apple slices over fries, milk over soda, and grilled chicken sandwiches over hamburgers and cheeseburgers. More and more fast-food restaurants are trying to smarten up their act by offering healthier choices, so encourage them by ordering fit food over fat food the next time you do drive thru!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

"Daily Dish" from South Beach

Grocery Shopping Secrets
If you're following the South Beach Diet, you're shopping for lots of fresh, nutritious foods. To get through the grocery store in a timely fashion, stick to the perimeter of the store — it's where you'll find fresh dairy, produce, meat, poultry, and fish. Most of the aisles in between have packaged goods, such as crackers, cookies, canned soups and vegetables, juices, etc. For more specific information on getting through the grocery store, check out our handy tips, below. (Unless noted, you can enjoy the following items on every Phase of The South Beach Diet.)

Produce. Load your cart with a variety of fresh, nutrient-dense, fiber-rich vegetables, like spinach, zucchini, broccoli, tomatoes, carrots (Phase 2), and peppers. Beginning in Phase 2, stock up on fresh fruits, too, including apples, oranges, mangoes, pomegranates, melons, and berries.
Dairy. There are many items to choose from in the dairy aisle. For instance, eggs, part-skim ricotta cheese, and low-fat cheese are all considered excellent lean protein choices on the South Beach Diet. Low-fat and fat-free milk count toward your daily dairy requirement (two servings per day on Phase 1; up to three per day thereafter), as do low-fat and nonfat plain yogurt and artificially sweetened low-fat and fat-free yogurt (beginning on Phase 2). You can also find unsweetened or artificially sweetened soy milk (choose only those containing 4 grams of fat or less per 8-ounce serving) in the dairy aisle.
Meats/Fish/Poultry. Focus your attention on lean cuts of beef and poultry, which include eye of round, ground beef (sirloin, lean, and extra-lean), tenderloin, top loin, and top round, as well as turkey and chicken breast, pork loin and pork tenderloin. Fish and shellfish are also good choices. Get to know your fishmonger — you should aim to eat fish four times a week. (Limit consumption of types of fish that contain high levels of methylmercury, including shark, swordfish, king mackerel, and tilefish.)
Frozen Foods. The frozen aisle offers quick-to-cook vegetables — perfect if you're up against the clock. You can also find soy-based meat alternatives in the freezer section. Look for those that contain less than 6 grams of fat per 2- to 3-ounce servings. If you have a sweet tooth, try frozen fudge bars with no added sugar.
Miscellaneous. Other foods to seek out from the middle of the store: nuts (avoid honey-roasted or sweetened varieties), canned light tuna fish, extra-virgin olive oil, sugar-free gelatin, vegetable juice cocktail or tomato juice, sugar-free diet sodas, and sugar-free drink mixes. Beginning in Phase 2, you can also stock up on whole-grain breads and crackers, brown rice, whole-wheat pasta, and low-sugar, high-fiber whole-grain cereals.

Monday, April 21, 2008

South Beach diet info

Daily Dish
Getting Started: Five Things to Remember
Whether you're getting ready to begin Phase 1 of the South Beach Diet or you've been following the plan for a while, truly learning the principles of this lifestyle — and incorporating them into your own meal plans and exercise routines — will help ensure your success. We've created this printable list for your reference. Hang it on your refrigerator for times when you'd like a reminder of the key elements and goals of the South Beach Diet. Then take a quick glance to refresh your memory.

The doctor-designed South Beach Diet focuses on selecting the right carbs (such as whole-grain breads, beans, and high-fiber fruits) and fats (like those from oily fish, nuts, and extra-virgin olive oil).
You don't have to count calories or measure out portion sizes. Instead, you'll eat satisfying portions of wholesome foods, like lean proteins, colorful veggies, delicious fruits, and low-fat dairy products.
The South Beach Diet is flexible and easily accommodates individual tastes and needs. You can substitute the suggested meals with other choices that you prefer, develop your own menus with your family's favorite meals, or plan meals using the easy tools available on The South Beach Diet Online. Just keep to the principles!
The South Beach Diet is a long-term lifestyle, not a fad diet. This weight-healthy plan teaches you to make healthier eating choices and encourages regular physical activity — lessons you can use for the long haul.
Weight loss is only one of the many benefits of the South Beach Diet. The program has been shown to help lower the risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes by lowering total cholesterol, reducing unhealthy triglycerides (another blood fat), and regulating blood sugar levels. By adopting this weight-healthy lifestyle, you'll be on your way to living a longer life!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Need to get back on track AGAIN!

Eating to Lose from SB Daily Dish
While it seems harmless — and possibly even beneficial to weight loss — to skip a meal or a snack from time to time, this common scenario may actually be setting your body up to gain weight. How is it possible to gain weight by NOT eating?

The first goal of the South Beach Diet® is to eliminate cravings. Skipping meals and snacks causes exaggerated swings in blood sugar, which may encourage these cravings to return. This may cause you to splurge on unhealthy foods, thus reversing your weight-loss progress.
Skipping too many meals can prompt your body to go into starvation mode. In order to conserve energy and resources, your metabolism will start to slow down, ultimately causing your weight loss to stall.
So what should you do if you're just not hungry? Don't fall into the common trap of mistaking your diminished cravings for diminished hunger. If you're following the eating plan correctly — eating regular meals and snacks throughout the day — you probably won't feel as ravenous as you did in the past because you've managed to preempt hunger. If you avoid feeling hungry, you will avoid overeating, and you will be able to achieve and maintain your desired weight.

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