How to Control Weight and Feel More Energy

Maintaining a healthy weight can help you feel more energetic and reduce your risk for certain health conditions. Eat well-rounded meals and snacks and avoid eating processed foods.

Try using a smaller plate to automatically eat less. Cornell’s Brian Wansink has shown that tricking yourself like this can cut 100-200 calories a day.

Healthy Fats

Fats provide energy, help your body absorb certain nutrients and are essential for cellular function. However, not all fats are created equal. Eating a diet high in unhealthy fats can contribute to weight gain, clogged arteries and an increased risk for some diseases. Healthy fats come from unprocessed whole foods and can improve mental health, increase satiety and lower cholesterol levels.

The two main types of healthy fats are monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. Monounsaturated fats contain one double bond in their fatty acid chains and are found in avocados, peanut butter and some vegetable oils. Polyunsaturated fats have multiple double bonds in their fatty acid chains and are found mainly in nuts, seeds and fish.

Unhealthy fats are found in fatty red meat, processed pork and poultry skin, full-fat dairy products, fried foods, cakes, cookies, pastries and many snack foods. Try to reduce these foods and replace them with healthier options, keeping portion sizes small — about an ounce of nuts or a teaspoon of oil.

Whole Grains

The latest research shows that incorporating whole grains into your diet can help you control your weight and improve your overall metabolic health. Grains are a rich source of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and carbohydrates, your body’s preferred energy source. However, not all grains are created equal. Look for ones that are labeled as whole grains and include the three key parts of a grain: bran, germ and endosperm.

Epidemiological studies consistently show that higher whole grain intake is associated with improved measures of body weight. Intervention studies have varied results, though a recent meta-analysis suggests that including whole grains in weight loss regimens involving caloric restriction may result in more effective weight loss and improved body composition compared to controls.

The soluble fiber found in whole grains helps to lower cholesterol and slows down digestion, helping you feel fuller longer. In addition, the insoluble fiber from grains may help prevent constipation, gallstones and hemorrhoids. Choose from a variety of options, such as brown rice, oatmeal, barley, wheat and quinoa.

Fruits and Vegetables

Fruits and vegetables are excellent sources of vitamins, minerals, and fibre. They are also relatively low in calories and provide a range of important health benefits, including lowering blood pressure, improving cardiovascular and kidney health, and fighting cancer.

Increasing fruits and vegetables in your diet may be as easy as adding them to breakfast, lunch or dinner. You can even try making your own salads, soups and stir fries or using them as fillings for sandwiches or as ingredients in sauces and minced meals.

It is recommended that you eat five servings of fruits and vegetables each day. A well-planned nutrition education programme can help you increase fruit and vegetable intakes. This is especially important for people who are overweight, as a diet higher in fruits and vegetables has been shown to reduce the risk of obesity and related diseases.

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