Healthy Snacking Tips

When you hear the word “snack” what do you think of?  For some, it means weight gain, unhealthy or just a something to avoid.  However, it should mean weight loss, healthy and something that everyone should fit into their diets.  With the rise of sugary and salty foods, it can be hard to choose healthy snacks.  But they can be avoided—and there are healthy ways to snack.

First of all, to avoid “over-snacking,” never go too long without eating.  This will ultimately cause you to overindulge in something you weren’t planning on eating that day—and chances are it’s not something healthy.  Your blood sugar drops when your body is starving so it begins to crave everything and anything.  Have a small snack in between meals (a good “snack time” is two hours after meals) to avoid this problem.

In order to get yourself to snack healthy, keep junk food out of eye sight.  Replace it with healthy food, such as fruit.  Put apples and bananas in a bowl on your counter or keep a carton of nuts on a shelf at work.  Making these small changes can significantly change your snacking habits.

The worst thing about snacks is that they often come in bags and boxes.  It becomes a problem because we eat while we are distracted; therefore we end up eating more than we had planned.  If you buy snacks that are packaged this way, take a serving size out, put it in a bowl or a plate and put the package away.  This will keep your serving sizes in check as well as your overall health.

Try to stay away from the “diet snacks” that are advertised so often these days.  Although they are low fat/low calorie, there is no way that they will keep you full for an adequate period of time.  You will find yourself reaching for more, possibly within minutes!  Instead, eat snacks that have the right combo of carbohydrates, protein and fat.  They will keep you satisfied and give you a boost of energy that you need to carry on your day.  Some examples of these kinds of snacks are:

  • A handful of dried fruit and nuts (i.e. raisins and almonds)
  • A fruit smoothie made with low-fat yogurt or milk
  • One tbsp peanut butter on whole-wheat crackers
  • Baby carrots dipped in hummus

It’s hard to believe, but the feeling of thirst is often mistaken for hunger.  This is a huge weight gain culprit that can easily be reversed.  Always remember to keep yourself hydrated by drinking water throughout the day.  Drink more when you sweat.  The more water you drink, the less you will want to snack.

Keep yourself away from snacks that contain trans fat.  Today, there are plenty of processed snacks out there.  The truth is that if it’s processed, it probably has trans fat.  Even just a little bit of trans fat can be harmful to your body, and it is recommended to not consume any at all.  The best way to avoid these snacks is by looking at food labels—if it has trans fat, don’t buy it!  Also, look in ingredient lists.  Manufacturers aren’t required to write “trans fat” on a food label if the food contains less than 5 grams of it.  Look for the words “hydrogenated oil” in the ingredient list to determine if there is even just a little trans fat in the food.

If you have a snack craving, but know you’re not hungry, go for a short (or long, if you feel like it!), brisk walk.  Studies show that doing so can curb cravings.  Also, don’t let your mind win.  Our minds tend to tell us that snacking will make us feel better or help us get something done, when in fact, this isn’t the case.  Listen to your body, instead of your mind no matter how good a snack sounds at a given time.

Keep in mind that healthy snacks should be staples in everyone’s diet—even if you’re trying to lose weight.    They help to keep our blood sugar in check and our stomachs from growling until meal time.  They help us meet vitamin and mineral goals and to keep us awake at work or school.  Never underestimate healthy snacks.

Brianna Elliott is a third year dietetics student and has grown a passion for nutrition through her years of studying.  In her spare time, you can find her running and spending time outdoors.  Brianna also spends her time slinging ink for ProbioticSmart.com – a leading internet supplier of Omega-Zyme – an enzyme supplement intended to be taken with snacks.

Losing Weight through Cleansing

Losing Weight through Cleansing

Build up of toxic wastes in the liver and Fatty tissue may impede weight loss. Toxin deposits can lead to weight gain by repressing traditional weight loss efforts. Purifying the body of these toxic wastes will not only make you slimmer, but fitter and healthier too.

For those that are not familiar with the concept of cleansing, it may seem confuting to traditional weight loss techniques. Cleansing is not about counting your calories or restricting your hunger, instead it affects the body in a diverse way. Cleansing involves eating the right foods and taking supplements to purify your body of the toxic wastes that get stored in different organs such as liver or in the fatty tissues.

The Pattern of Weight Gain and Loss:

The scheme of weight gain and loss is simple; the body stores excess calories in the form of fats and when there is a food deficit, this stored fat is mobilized to fulfill energy requirements. This means that the body weight depends upon

  • An individual’s particular metabolic rate
  • His/Her daily food consumption

According to the new holistic approach, weight gain does not occur due to the calories; instead, it is the result of toxic chemicals present in our environment and in our food. Things such as pesticides, preservatives, artificial colors, added sweeteners etc.

How our Body deals with Toxins:

Nature has gifted our body some intricate systems to wash out the metabolic waste products. These toxins are excreted through colon, liver, lungs, skin and kidneys. However, when exposed to large amounts of such chemicals on a regular basis (food additives, air and water pollution etc.), the body may not be able to detoxify them properly.

These undetoxified chemicals are deposited in different body organs, mainly the liver, or are quarantined in the adipose (fatty) tissue.

Why Dieting is not always effective:

According to the above-mentioned theory, the body isolates the uneliminated toxins in the form of fats; therefore, a quick weight loss diet that does not help the body get rid of these toxins would be of short-term benefit only.

Cleansing is essential for a stable weight loss, as with out it, any weight loss effort would result in mobilization of stored fat, releasing the isolated toxins into the blood circulation. This affects the body in a negative way causing headaches, dizzines, fatigue, lethargy and other undesired effects.

To maintain its physiology, the body tends to quarantine the uneliminated toxins in fats, re-acquiring the lost weight, once the dieting is over.

A slimmer forever body through cleansing:

To shed off the extra pound for good, one needs to cleanse the body of the harmful toxins. To achieve this, the following protocole would help.

Don’ts:

  • Avoid DIETS:

Not the good one’s though. However, common diet drinks and sugar free junk is loaded with artificial food additives that undermine your efforts for achieving a slimmer figure.

  • No WHITE:

Avoid white bread, white sugar, and white flour, as they are excessively refined and processed.

  • Avoid ARTIFICIAL:

The artificial sweeteners in low calorie diets are more harmful than refined sugars. Go for healthier sweeteners such as honey or maple syrup, which not only prevent weight gain but also aid the pancreas by maintaining blood sugar levels.

Dos:

  • Eat MORE:

Instead of slowing down your metabolism by eating less, speed it up with the help of natural, easily processed sugars, and the abundant supply of enzymes found in raw fruits and vegetables. A well-maintained metabolic rate helps in clearing up fats and stored toxins.

  • Eat NATURAL:

Go for organic fruits and vegetables. The non-organic variety contains pesticides that add up to the toxins in the body.

  • Add ANTIOXIDANTS:

Eat healthy. Use more antioxidants as they not only aid weight loss but also promote better health. Use lots of fresh lemons, berries, raw virgin olive oil, coconut oil and apple cider vinegar.

Bob Green’s the Best Life Diet

Bob Green’s the Best Life Diet

If you’re an Oprah Winfrey fan, then you must have heard about Bob Green, a diet guru who has earned a moniker for himself with his own diet plan called The Best Life Diet. Green helped Oprah lose weight and increase her health, and now he also wants to share his successful diet plan with you.

Green’s diet plan focuses more on a change of lifestyle compared to other diets that concentrates on weight loss. This diet is not just a trend. It speaks about an extensive weight loss program through more physical activities and a fresh outlook on food.

There’s no denying that we always want the easy way out in this “flabby” predicament. We look for quick fixes when we see ourselves in the mirror. However, there will never be a fast way to lose weight and keep the pounds from coming back. You might lose ten pounds, but, as soon as you go back to your old ways, a ten or more will sneak back onto your body.

Thus, Green concocted a stable weight-loss program will keep you from flip-flopping. The Best Life Diet will tell you how to eat the right food that will help you shed off those pounds and keep away from foods that won’t be helpful to you.

Step By Step Instructions

There are three phases to this diet. Phase One is not your average first phase. It is sure not easy and runs for four weeks. Here, you will be asked to replace your unfit eating habits with ones that stimulate weight loss in a healthy manner. Improving your dietary choices is the main concern in the course of Phase One.

For starters, you will be asked to eat three meals and a snack everyday. Eating two hours within bedtime is prohibited. Regular vitamin intake is also recommended to compensate for the nutrients you’re missing. Exercise is also encouraged in Phase One as well.

Let’s now move on to Phase Two, which is a bit stricter. Like the first phase, it also runs for four weeks. Here, the concept of emotional eating and bingeing are addresses. Phase Two takes into focus why we tend to eat poorly on one hand, and become overweight on the other.

Phase Two asks you to monitor your weight each week. If a specific amount of weight is not shedding off (say one or two pounds a week), then the issue might lie in the portion of food intake or lack of exercise.

Lastly, Phase Three speaks about maintenance. This is the most rewarding phase, literally and figuratively speaking. You have learned to get rid off unhealthy foods such as sodas, fried foods, processed snacks and other junk foods that may pose serious health risks and replaced them with a diet of whole grains, low fat dairy, lean meat and fish. You will now be allowed to eat not necessarily healthy foods like pizza, cake, cookies, etc.

The Best Life Diet can be accomplished by grabbing a copy of Green’s book, or online through a paid membership. The book offers detailed menu planning, recipes and tips on dealing with your transition to a healthier and energetic way of living.