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Entries in Healthy Diet (4)

Wednesday
Mar072012

Small Portion Sizes Keep Manhattan Women Skinny

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- You’d think a woman married to an Italian chef would know a thing or two about staying in shape.  Eileen Daspin, wife of Cesare Casella, executive chef of Salumeria Rosi salumi and wine bar, writes: “I taste everything but eat almost nothing,” in her latest book The Manhattan Diet.

Daspin, a size 10, studied how Manhattan, a city of four-star restaurants, Magnolia Bakeries and Starbucks on every street corner, still had such skinny women.  After interviewing over 100 Manhattanites, Daspin discovered their secrets to staying thin.

What she found was that New York women were using the basic idea of portion control: they were indulging their cravings by only eating a small amount.

One of the women Daspin interviewed, Sarah Pilot, is a mother of two who says her secret is never to finish everything on her plate.  A size zero, she's always on the go: "That's what keeps New York women very thin. It's that we're always moving, we're with our children or we're with our friends or we're working," said Pilot.

Critics of the diet suggest that it promotes small amounts of unhealthy foods, but Daspin disagrees. "Most of the people I interviewed don't eat processed foods - they eat whole foods meaning things like this that don't have chemicals. And I was surprised a lot of women actually cook for themselves."  

She stresses the importance of eating small snacks like dried fruit or vegetables throughout the day.

"As a Manhattanite, someone who lives in New York, you always have to be somewhere, you're always running late, whether you're walking or whatever it is that you're doing, you're always moving," says Daspin.

Exercise and portion control are the keys to being a skinny New Yorker. "Really enjoy what you eat, but just eat less of it," she says.

Here are some helpful tips to get started:

  • Buy and eat small portions and use smaller plates.
  • Get competitive in exercise classes - bring a friend or try and compete with the person next to you.
  • Shop for groceries early and often (to ensure freshness).
  • Sneak in workouts.
  • Cheat once in a while with small desserts or a glass of wine.
  • Carry small snacks in your bag for on-the-go cravings.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Sunday
Oct232011

How to Lower Cholesterol Without Pills

Plustwentyseven/Digital Vison/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- A nutrient-poor diet filled with added sugars and unhealthy trans fats is known to cause high cholesterol, so it makes sense try and fix the problem with healthy food. Although 25 percent of adults over the age of 45 take cholesterol-lowering drugs called statins, which can sap your energy and cause problems for your sex life, research reveals that changes to your diet might actually do a better job—without the energy-sapping, sex-killing side effects.

The researchers, whose study appeared in the Journal of the American Medical Association, followed 345 people with high cholesterol who were placed on one of two vegetarian, low-cholesterol diets for six months. The first was a low-saturated-fat diet and participants were told simply to eat low-fat dairy and get more fruits and vegetables into their meals. The second group had help from nutritionists to incorporate specific cholesterol-lowering foods into their meals, including soy proteins, nuts, oats, peas, and beans. That group saw a drop in cholesterol three times higher than the group on the regular low-saturated-fat diet, and both diets proved to be at least as successful as early trials of statins.

If you've been battling high cholesterol, try some of these swaps for a tasty, low-cholesterol diet:

The low-fat group ate Raisin Bran cereal for breakfast, but the second group ate oat-bran cereal with strawberries and jam. For a seasonal twist, try this recipe for a Peachy Oat Breakfast and chase it down with a glass of soy milk, as those in the study did.

For a cholesterol-lowering hunger fix, grab another peach (or some cantaloupe, grapes, nectarines, or apricots—also in season now) and a handful of almonds when hunger strikes, and chase them down with another glass of soy milk. Or throw all your fruit, soy milk, and nuts, along with a little ice, into a blender to make an immunity-building smoothie.

For lunch, the low-cholesterol group downed sandwiches made with oat-bran bread, tofu slices, lettuce, tomato, and cucumber, accompanied by Spicy Black Bean Soup. The tofu slices provided the soy protein that proved so successful at lowering cholesterol, but if that doesn't tempt your palate, replace tofu with avocado, as in this Roasted Bell Pepper and Avocado Sandwich and have another glass of soy milk instead.

The healthy dieters had more almonds and fresh fruit in the afternoon, but with an added dose of psyllium, a form of soluble fiber made from ground up psyllium seeds. Psyllium may not be very appetizing, so to get your fill of fiber, try these Banana, Yogurt, and Walnut Muffins; the bananas and oatmeal both contain high levels of soluble fiber.

Dieters who shed the most cholesterol swapped pasta for pearled barley and an omelet for a tofu bake with ratatouille. To jazz up plain barley, make a Creamy Barley Risotto or add asparagus and cucumbers and top with a yogurt-dill dressing. Then add some tofu to this recipe for Easy Ratatouille. Just be sure your tofu is organic; nonorganic tofu has been found to contain high levels of cancer-causing hexane.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Sep152011

Michelle Obama Touts Healthier Chain-Restaurant Menus

Official White House Photo by Samantha Appleton(WASHINGTON) -- First lady Michelle Obama on Thursday praised a move by Darden Restaurants, the operator of Red Lobster, Olive Garden, LongHorn Steakhouse and Bahama Breeze to cut calories and sodium in its meals and offer healthier options for children, calling it a “breakthrough moment” for the restaurant industry.

“Darden is doing what no restaurant company has done before,” Obama said at an event at a Maryland Olive Garden. “They’re not just making their kids’ menus healthier so that parents have more choices and more control; they’re making changes across their full menu at every single one of their restaurants throughout the country.  They’re looking at all the food they serve, and they’re asking themselves one simple question:  How can we improve the health of American families?”

Working with the Partnership for a Healthier America, the nonprofit that oversees the first lady’s “Let’s Move!” initiative, Darden has committed to reducing calories and sodium in its meals by 10 percent in the next five years and by 20 percent in the next 10.

In addition, fruits and vegetables will become the default side option on kids’ menus, replacing the ever-present French fries. Sugary sodas will also be absent from the menus going forward. Instead, 1 percent milk will be the default beverage, with free refills. Menus will also be revamped to promote the healthier choices.

Noting that Americans spend half of their food dollars at sit-down or fast-food restaurants, Obama said she can sympathize with busy families who want to eat right but just don’t have the time.
But too often, she said, kids’ meals in particular are loaded with far too many calories.

“So the bottom line is that Darden is making the healthy choice the easy choice.  And they’re making it the delicious and fun choice, too,” she said.

Orlando-based Darden is the world’s largest full-service restaurant company and owns and operates more than 1,900 restaurants that generate more than $7.5 billion in annual sales.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Friday
Aug052011

Study Says It's Too Expensive for Americans to Eat Healthy 

BananaStock/Thinkstock(KING COUNTY, Washington)  -- The government had good intentions when it came up with MyPlate, the new nutritional guide to healthier eating -- but people can't feed their family with good intentions.

Researchers from the Department of Epidemiology and the School of Public Health at the University of Washington say the diet just isn’t practical from an economic standpoint, since only the financially well-off could afford to eat the suggested foods.

For instance, one of the suggested meals is made up of salmon, leafy greens and maybe some rice pilaf. These items are nutritious to be sure, but clearly out of the price range of most Americans.

All in all, the researchers say that just adding the recommended potassium for one year would inflate a food bill by nearly $400.

According to a survey conducted in King County, Washington, those who went out of their way to purchase the four nutrients of potassium, dietary fiber, vitamin D and calcium wound up spending the most, compared to others.

One nutrition expert estimates that 49 million Americans make their food decisions based on cost, and close to 15 percent of household can’t afford to eat the way they want to.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

 







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