Monday, September 24, 2012
When considering a diet, choose wisely
Your doctor says you need to lose weight, but there are so many diets out there — Atkins, Cabbage Diet, South Beach, even the Lemonade Diet — it’s so confusing!
Always check with your primary care doctor, but there is one diet that most health professionals agree is the most healthful.
It doesn’t skimp on nutrition or essential vitamins and minerals. My registered dietitian colleagues consistently recommend the “Mediterranean Diet” which focuses on a mainly plant-based diet featuring whole grains, whole fruits and vegetables, healthy oils, nuts, beans, fish and poultry.
Key components include:
• Using herbs and spices instead of salt to flavor foods
• Replacing butter with healthy fats such as olive oil and canola oil
• Limiting red meat to a few times a month
• Getting plenty of exercise.
Its anti-inflammatory, high-antioxidant benefits include a reduced risk of developing cardiovascular disease or metabolic syndrome, the precursor to diabetes.
It’s easy to follow — just keep portion control in mind. For example, eating whole grains doesn’t mean the whole loaf of whole wheat bread, just a slice.
Alice Facente is a community education nurse for the Backus Health System. To comment on this column or others, visit the Healthy Living blog at www.backushospital.org/backus-blogs or e-mail Ms. Facente or any of the Healthy Living columnists at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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