Some General Tips
BURN FAT BY WHILE YOU REST
Every time you are physically active, you increase the rate at which energy is consumed, and heat is produced in your body. This is known as our metabolic rate. Most of our energy at rest is derived from fat. If we can increase our resting metabolism we can harness the most effective way to burn fat daily i.e. increase our resting metabolism.
As we get older our metabolism slows down; so if our diet and exercise levels remain the same, we will gain fat. This is compounded by our increasingly sedentary lifestyle.
How can we increase our metabolism? Eat smaller meals more often - eating increases our metabolism we should avoid long breaks between meals (< 3hrs) therefore avoid a drop in metabolism, due to the body entering an energy conserving (starvation) state. This is one of the reasons breakfast is an extremely important meal.
Increase Incidental Activity - After any activity the body has a residual elevation in metabolism, and therefore burns more Kilojoules @ rest. Take the stairs, walk or ride, park further away, cook dinner instead of dialing fat in. NB Whole body activities are best.
COMPLEX CARBS - NOT SO SIMPLE
Complex carb's are made up of two or more simple sugars linked together. We tend to think of them as being starchy, & have been told for many years that our diet should be based around these foods. E.g. (whole grains, fruit & vegetables) This is still true today; however carb's are more complex than we think.
It has been wrongly assumed that complex carb's are a long lasting source of energy because they are slowly digested. Cooked jasmine rice for example, is digested faster than pure glucose. The Glycemic index ranks carbohydrate dense foods in order of how rapidly they are absorbed. The food can be high (>70) Intermediate (55 - 70) or Low (<55) when compared with the reference food - Glucose (100). The lower the GI, the longer the supply of energy and greater the feeling of fullness. Remember we can eat over twice the amount of Carb's than we can Fat, and still consume less Kilojoules.
Unrefined whole grain foods, pasta, legumes, fruit & vegetables tend to have a Low GI & are a rich source of vitamins minerals and fibre. Eat mostly these.
Some Surprising GI's Soya Beans (14) Lentils (28) Two Fruits (38) Special-K (54) Basmati Rice (58) White Bread (70) Baked Potato (94) Roll-Ups (99) Glucose (100) Jasmine Rice (109)
EVERYBODY IS ON A DIET
When the "40-Something" generation of white collar workers, prepare for this winter's trip to the Gold Coast, will they invariably use a pre-planned 1 month all out dietary assault? Do they question whether this yearly ritual is either healthy or sustainable? After all, if it has taken 40+ years to get their current body shape; can they significantly change it in only a matter of weeks?
The answer is of course NO; not long term anyway.
Don't set yourself up for failure. If you eradicate certain foods from your diet (as some pre planned diets suggest) once you consume them again, you have failed. These foods will also become particularly more attractive as you ban them; therefore you are setting yourself up for failure.
Avoid the guilt.
A better way to tackle this is with a progressive approach. Everybody is on a diet; it is whatever you eat. Choose dietary modification over eradication. Many small changes over an extended period, will become habitual, and therefor be more sustainable.
1) - Increase activity levels to help balance the equation.
2) - Don't eat until you are full. Give the body a chance satiate.
3) - Drink water as default drink.
4) - Eat small meals slowly & often. Graze healthily.
5) - Shop well. Have healthy enjoyable food options on hand.
6) - Try a wide variety of foods; not always the same thing.
7) - Read the labels of favourite foods. Is their a better choice?
8) - Eat unrefined wholegrain foods. Include these in breakfast.
9) - Identify unhealthy eating triggers & look for alternatives.
10) - Choose low fat. Steam, Bake, Grill and Microwave foods.
If any or all of the above changes are incorporated gradually by stealth, then that will be a healthy change; and if you're not careful, may just be with you for life.
What you can't do to reduce the risk of being one of these statistics.
Change your Gender, [yes I know that technically with modern surgical techniques that .................Blah Blah Blah] Age or Family History. These factors are non modifiable; so if you are either male, over 40 or have a family history of heart disease then you should really take note of the following.
What you can do.
Stop, or reduce smoking; moderate saturated fats, salt & alcohol in the diet; increase activity levels; eat a variety of fruit & vegetables most days; drink water; check in with GP regularly; & look for low GI (Glycemic Index) food alternatives. Whilst you may be unable or unwilling to employ all of the above strategies, any of the above changes will have a positive impact.
ESTABLISHING GOOD EATING HABITS IN CHILDREN
Here are some tips to assist in building positive eating habits in your children. With the many eating disorders and childhood obesity at an all time high, these tips may be a useful tool.
Attempt to make eating a pleasant experience. Engage in agreeable conversation at mealtimes.
Avoid using this time for discipline as tense mealtimes may negatively influence children's eating habits in later life.
Formalise mealtimes, so that children are familiar with a daily routine.
Empower children by involving them in the meal planning process, this gives them some ownership of it and will encourage them to eat and enjoy.
Parents decide what to eat; children, using hunger as a cue, decide how much to eat. Don't force feed or use analogies of starving people in Africa to entice, con, or pressure children into cleaning their plate. Your eyes should not be bigger than their belly.
Use things other than desserts, soft drinks or sweets to reward children. eg. A fun activity.
Reduce unhealthy eating cues around the house. Chocolate, lolly jars, biscuit tins etc. should not be too accessible. (This may help parents too ! ! !)
Set a good example by eating a wide variety of healthy foods. Don't ask children to do things that you don't.
Once at school, choose low fat foods over fatty ones. NB:- Never restrict their calorie intake though; kids need lots of energy to grow & play. · Identify healthy treats that children enjoy through experimentation.
Feel free to inflate their self-esteem and feed their egos. This will not only reinforce the notion they are accepted, but will also help them feel loved. You may be better at implementing some of the above over others.
Remember that attempting any of the changes listed, may be helpful.