It's no secret that we are
always looking for a quick fix when it comes to losing weight.
diets were the rage, now carbohydrates are public enemy #1 as millions of
Americans turn to low-carb lifestyles. But, is a low-carb diet the healthiest
way to eat and lose weight?
The American Council on Exercise (ACE), America's
non-profit fitness advocate, recommends a solid balance between eating
individual-sized portions of a wide variety of foods and regular exercise to
achieve optimal health benefits, including weight loss.
America is missing the point. The foundation of a healthy diet should be
based upon eating a wide variety of fruits, vegetables and whole grains.
Moderate amounts of low-fat protein sources and diary products should be
consumed as the next tier of a healthy diet. Finally, sweets, refined grains
and fats should be consumed sparingly.
"Individuals need to understand that healthy carbs such as vegetables,
fruits, beans and whole grains (eaten in proper amounts) are essential
components of a well-balanced diet," said Dr. Cedric Bryant, chief exercise
physiologist for the American Council on Exercise.
"The consumption of these
healthy carbs has been linked to a reduced risk of heart disease, certain
types of cancer and a number of other chronic ailments."
ACE offers user-friendly tips on how to eat sensible portions while
working your way toward your weight loss goal.
In addition to eating sensibly, begin a fitness program with exercises you
find comfortable and build as your body becomes accustomed to the activity
level. Don't start out too hard or too fast. Chances are you may injure
yourself or quit before you've done yourself much good.
- Use your hand -- One fist equals a medium-size piece of fruit and your
palm, minus fingers, equals three ounces of meat, fish or poultry.
- Thumb as your guide -- The length of your thumb equals one ounce of
meat or cheese and the tip of your thumb measures one tablespoon.
And remember, you can't lose weight overnight.
Set a realistic
weight-loss goal for yourself -- one to two pounds a week -- eat healthy and
get going on a program of regular physical activity ... you will be surprised
by what you accomplish.
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