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Nutrition
Table Of Contents
Just the Facts
About Protein
About Carbohydrates
About Fat:
Vitamins
Minerals
Healthy Food Seasonings
The “Hand Method” for Portion Control:
Breakfast – Start Your Day Right:
Have a Snack:
When to Eat:
Stay Hydrated:
Frequently Asked Questions:
Eight Points to Better Health
2
Just the Facts
N
utrition is as pivotal to attaining a fit, healthy body as exercise. The right
balance of the proper food fuels your body, feeds your muscles, and makes
your body more efficient. The more lean muscle you have, the more fat
you burn. It’s that simple.
In the following pages you’ll discover how to create delicious, satisfying,
wholesome meals to help maximize your results. You’ll find valuable tips to help
you make better decisions about your nutrition. There are menu suggestion for
creating entire meals and hearty snacks. And because nobody simply wants to be
told what to do, you’ll also learn why it’s all so important to your health and body.
And no chef required.
All foods are made up of three nutrients: PROTEIN, CARBOHYDRATES, and FAT. To
maintain a healthy diet, each meal should consist of the proper balance of protein,
carbohydrates and fat.
So how do you achieve balance? It’s easy – simply eat equal portions of each. For
instance, if you require 3 units of protein for every meal, then you’ll also need 3
units of carbohydrates and 3 units of fat for that meal as well.
Quick Tip: A “unit” represents the quantity, in
ounces, of a specific type of nutrient (i.e.
protein, carbohydrates, or fat). Units are used
to determine how much food a person needs
for their particular body type.
3
Later you’ll learn how to use the hand method to help you control your portions.
But for those of you who crave the science behind the method, a unit indicator is
given for each nutrient to determine the appropriate number of units (or ounces)
you should consume.
4
About Protein
C
onsuming the proper amount of protein is important because it helps to
maintain the body’s lean body mass. Always decide what type of protein
you are going to have with a meal first. Only then should you complete the
meal with carbohydrates and fat.
When considering proteins, one should think of lean proteins. If beef, make it grass
fed, free-range beef, which tends to come from a leaner, smaller cow. Try to avoid
beef that comes from corn fed cows. Also, strive for hormone and chemical-free
meats and chicken, as well as only the freshest cuts of fish available. For individuals
who prefer to obtain their protein source from plant products, chose food items
that contain soy or beans, both of which are high in plant proteins.
Female:
3 – 4 units / meal
Male:
4 -5 units / meal
Chicken, Turkey, Beef or Soy:
1 oz. per unit
Ground Meat, Fish, or Cheese:
1 ½ oz. per unit
5
1 oz. per unit:
Boca “Burger”
Chicken
Cornish Game Hen
Filet Mignon
Lamb
Pork
Pot Roast
Soy (Boca Burger)
Soy (Chicken Slices)
Soy (Deli Ham)
Soy (Ground Round)
Soy (Pepperoni)
Soy (Veggie Dog)
Tempe (3 Grain)
Tempe (Bacon)
Tempe (Garlic)
Tofu (Firm)
Tofu (Hickory Smoked)
Tofu (Italian)
Tofu (Mexican)
Tofu (Nuggets)
Tofu (Oriental)
Tofu (Savory Baked)
Tofu (Thai)
Turkey
Turkey Dog
Turkey Ham
Veal
American Cheese
Cheddar Cheese (Block)
Cheddar Cheese (Grated)
Cheddar Cheese (Shredded)
Goat Cheese
Mozzarella Cheese
Parmesan Cheese (Block)
Parmesan Cheese (Grated)
Parmesan Cheese (Shredded)
Provolone Cheese
Ricotta Cheese
Soy Cheese (Cheddar)
Soy Cheese (Herb)
Soy Cheese (Mozzarella)
Swiss Cheese
1 ½ oz. per unit:
Chicken Sausage
Crab
Halibut
Roughy
Salmon
Sea Bass
Shrimp
Swordfish
Tuna
Tuna, water packed
Turkey, Ground
White Fish
Feta Cheese
6
About Carbohydrates
C
arbohydrates are important because they give the body the energy it
needs to go from one meal to the next. All carbohydrates are broken
down by the body as sugar.
Starchy carbohydrates like bread, pasta, rice, and potatoes break down into sugar
at a much more rapid pace, which causes them to be absorbed into the
bloodstream more quickly. This makes blood sugar levels rise quickly, which in
turn induces increased insulin production to balance the increased blood sugar
levels. The body does not have a good indicator of how much insulin to produce
to put you back in balance, so it generally produces too much, resulting in a sugar
low or crashes. This tends to happen an hour or two after a meal. You may find
yourself lacking energy or mental focus, even feeling tired or irritable.
WARNING: These sugar crashes can lead to additional snacking to bring sugar
levels back up.
7
Female:
3 – 4 units / meal
Male:
4 – 5 units / meal
HEALTH HINT: Avoid white flour and refined
sugar altogether.
Always have a vegetable (grilled, sautéed, or
steamed) with every meal.
If having a starch with a meal, make it whole
grain or whole wheat. The body will absorb
these much more slowly.
Enjoy a side salad with all the fixings with
every meal. It makes an average meal into
something nice.
8
Fruits:
Apple
Apple, Stewed
Applesauce
Apricots
Blackberries
Blueberries
Cantaloupe
Cherries
Grapefruit
Grapes
Honey Dew
Kiwi
Mango
Nectarine
Orange
Papaya
Peaches
Pear
Pineapple
Plum
Raisins
Raspberries
Strawberries
Tangerine
Watermelon
Vegetables:
Alfalfa Sprouts
Artichokes Hearts
Asparagus
Bean Sprouts
Bell Peppers, Green, Red or Yellow
Black Beans
Bok Choy
Broccoli
Butter Leaf
Cabbage
Cabbage, Green Red or White
Cannellini Beans
Capers
Cauliflower
Celery
Corn
Cucumbers
Eggplant
Endive
Fennel
Garbanzo Beans
Green Beans
Iceberg Lettuce
Jalapeno Peppers
Jicama
Kidney Beans
Lentils
Mushrooms
Mushrooms, Raw
Mushrooms, Shitake
Onions, Cooked
Onions, Raw
Pepperoncini Pepper
Pickles
Romaine Lettuce
Snow Peas
Spinach
Squash
Sun Dried Tomatoes
Sunflower Sprouts
Tomato, Cherry
Tomato, Cooked
Tomato, Raw
Vegetarian Chili
Zucchini
9
About Fat:
F
at gives your body the extra calories you need to maintain your lean body
mass. When fat is digested the body releases a hormone from the intestines,
nervous system and the brain called Cholecystokinin (CCK), which sends the
body the messages “I’m full,” “I’m satiated,” and “Stop eating.” Fat can also help
to slow down the absorption rate of sugar into the bloodstream.
Food Fact: Fat does not make you fat. Sugar
makes you fat.
Most processed foods are higher in carbohydrates, which break down as sugar in
the blood. If you do not burn all of the sugar out of your system, it will turn into fat
10
Food Fact: The first 15-25 minutes of
cardiovascular exercise are devoted to
burning excess sugar out of the body – not
fat.
When adding fat, a little goes a long way. Keep salad dressings to 2 tablespoons
per salad and snack fats to 1 teaspoon per snack. When cooking with fat, always
try to use extra virgin olive oil and limit to 1 teaspoon per serving.
Health Hint: Put olive oil in a clean spray
bottle. Just a couple of squirts will coat the
bottom of a sauté pan evenly
Peanut Butter
Butter
Chipotle Mayonnaise
Mayonnaise/Mustard
Nuts (such as almonds, sunflower seeds and walnuts)
Oil and Balsamic Dressing
Oil and Vinegar Dressing
Olives
11
Vitamins
Vitamin A
Beta Carotene
(can be converted to
Vitamin A in older
children and adults)
Vitamin B Group
(8 Vitamins)
Folate
(a B-group vitamin)
Vitamin B12
Vitamin C
Functions
Promotes healthy eyes,
skin and hair and also
maintains the mucous
membranes of the
nose, throat, lungs and
gut. Is important in the
body’s immune system.
Provides the yellow
and orange colors in
fresh produce. A
powerful antioxidant, it
improves immunity.
Are needed for the
process that release
the energy in
carbohydrates, fats and
proteins consumed in
the diet. Also needed
for the nervous system,
formation of red blood
cells, healthy skin and
heart.
Essential for DNA
synthesis, protein
synthesis and red blood
cell production.
Works with folate.
Essential for the
functioning of all cells
and proteins, fat and
carbohydrate
metabolism as well as
healthy nerves.
Needed for healthy
skin, bones, cartilage
and teeth. Helps the
body to absorb iron
and has antioxidant
Deficiency Signs
Eye, skin and hair
problems, poor night
vision, impaired bone
growth and increased
susceptibility to
infections.
Good Sources
Eggs, dairy foods (but
not low- fat milk),
butter, margarine,
liver, kidneys, fish liver
oil.
Increased susceptibility
to infections. A
relatively low intake of
carotene from fresh
fruits and vegetables
may result in less
protection against
heart disease and
cancer.
Fatigue, nerve
problems, decreased
ability to cope with
stress, depression and
skin problems.
Yellow, green, orange,
and red vegetables and
fruit: carrots, English
spinach, mangoes,
pumpkin, apricots,
pawpaw, broccoli, red
capsicum (pepper),
tomatoes.
Anemia. A low intake
prior to conception and
during pregnancy can
increase the risk of
spinal tube defects in
the baby.
Anemia, nervous
system disorders
(tingling and weakness
in feet), depression,
poor memory.
Yeast, wholegrain
breads and cereals,
legumes, eggs, milk,
nuts, leafy green
vegetables, liver,
kidneys, meat, poultry,
fish, seafood, yeast
extract (such as
Vegemite), fortified
breakfast cereals.
Brewer’s yeast, wheat
germ, bran, leafy green
vegetables, avocadoes,
oats, liver, tomatoes,
oranges, melons.
Only found in animal
foods; dairy products,
organ meats, eggs, red
meat and seafood.
Vegans may need to
take a supplement
(consult your doctor).
Tissue breakdown, easy Fruit and vegetables;
bleeding and bruising,
capsicum (pepper),
fatigue.
guava, Brussels
sprouts, pawpaw, kiwi
fruit, melon, mangoes
12
effects, helps protect
against infection and
chronic diseases.
Vitamin D
Vitamin E
Vitamin K
Needed to absorb
calcium for healthy
bones and teeth.
Sunlight also helps the
body make its own
Vitamin D. Needed to
make hormones.
An antioxidant.
Needed for healthy
blood vessels and
tissues, including the
heart. Works with
other antioxidant
vitamins and minerals
to protect against
disease.
Needed for the normal
clotting of blood (i.e. to
stop bleeding wounds).
Essential for the
formation of protein
substances in the
bones and kidneys.
Muscle and bone
weakness. Rickets in
children. Osteomalacia
in adults.
and especially citrus
fruit, berries, broccoli,
pineapple and
cabbage.
Egg yolk, cheese,
margarine, milk,
vegetable oil, oily fish
(tuna, salmon, and
sardines), and liver.
Deficiency is rare.
Prevents normal
growth.
Egg yolks, nuts, seeds,
wholegrain cereals,
wheat germ, vegetable
oil and margarine,
meat, peanut butter.
Nose bleeds, excessive
bleeding.
Broccoli, lettuce,
cabbage, English
spinach, cauliflower,
legumes, liver.
13
Minerals
Minerals
Calcium
Iodine
Iron
Magnesium
Phosphorus
Potassium
Functions
Essential for strong
bones and teeth.
Regulates nerve and
muscle function and
may help reduce high
blood pressure.
Deficiency Signs
Rickets, osteoporosis,
osteomalacia, cramps,
muscle problems, high
blood pressure and
heart arrhythmias.
Good Sources
Dairy products,
almonds, brewer’s
yeast, dried figs,
salmon and its bones,
sardines, tahini,
calcium-enriched soy
milk and tofu.
Needed for thyroid
Goitre (enlarged
Iodized salt, kelp, clams
hormone production,
thyroid gland, swelling
(vongole), prawns
regulation of metabolic in the neck),
(shrimp), haddock,
rate, proper growth,
hypothyroidism,
oysters, salmon,
sex hormones, healthy bulging eyes, low libido, sardines, Cheddar,
skin, nails, hair and
brittle nails, fatigue,
pineapple, onions.
teeth.
weight gain,
constipation.
Needed to make
A relatively common
Red meats are the
hemoglobin – the
deficiency. Fatigue,
richest source – liver,
compound in red blood poor circulation,
chicken, turkey and
cells allowing them to
anemia, depression,
fish are not as rich,
carry oxygen and
less able to
Whole meal/grain
myoglobin – the
concentrate, decreased bread, legumes
oxygen-carrying
physical and mental
(including canned
compound in muscles.
performance.
beans and lentils),
dark-green-leafy
vegetables, eggs, nuts,
apricots, and sunflower
seeds.
Essential for the proper Weakness, fatigue,
Wholegrain cereal
function of nerves and anxiety, agitation,
products, wheat germ,
muscles, including the
confusion, muscle
brewer’s yeast,
heart. It also catalysis
tremors, cramps,
almonds, molasses,
many essential
convulsions and heart
seafood, kelp, leafy
enzymes and their
rhythm disturbances.
green vegetables, nuts,
reactions.
legumes.
Essential for healthy
Deficiency is rare.
Dairy products, eggs,
bones and teeth. Helps Anxiety, fatigue, muscle wholegrain, legumes,
nutrient absorption,
weakness, bone pains,
garlic, nuts, seeds.
energy production,
osteoporosis, rickets
nerve transmission,
andosteomalacia.
metabolism and
muscle contraction.
Essential for the
Fatigue, heart
Vegetables, fruit,
normal functioning of
disturbances, extreme
avocadoes, wholegrain
nerves and muscles
thirst. It is rare, but can cereal, seeds, dates,
14
Selenium
Sodium
Zinc
and promotes normal
blood pressure and
heartbeat. Works with
sodium to maintain the
body’s normal fluid
balance.
An antioxidant which
works together with
other antioxidants (e.g.
Vitamin E), to prevent
or inhibit the damaging
effect of antioxidants.
Needed for nerve and
muscle function and
for regulation the
balance of fluid in the
body.
occur with excessive
vomiting or diarrhea.
raisins, nuts, potatoes,
pulses.
Premature ageing,
muscle degeneration,
liver disease.
Butter, wheat germ,
barley, whole-wheat
bread, garlic, brazil
nuts, cider vinegar.
Deficiency is rare.
Dehydration, vomiting
and cramps.
Needed for healthy
eyes and skin and
improves immunity.
Essential for taste,
smell, appetite for
wound healing, normal
growth, reproduction
and development
Decreased fertility and
libido, poor sense of
taste and smell, poor
would healing, less
energy, less resistance
to infections.
Salt, yeast extract,
salted nuts, bread,
cheese, margarine,
some take-away food,
olives, celery, peas, leg
ham, sausage, bacon.
Red meat, eggs,
seafood, yeast, milk,
wholegrain cereal,
liver, cheese, yogurt,
leafy green vegetables,
chicken, oats, legumes.
15
Healthy Food Seasonings
BASIL – Basil is one of the most important culinary herbs. Sweet basil, the most
common type, is redolent of licorice and cloves. Basil is used in the south of France
to make pistou, its Italian cousin, pesto, is made just over the border. Used in
sauces, sandwiches, soups, and salads, basil is in top form when married to
tomatoes, as in the famous salad from the island of Capri – Insalata Caprese, made
with tomatoes, buffalo mozzarella, basil, and fruity olive oil.
TARRAGON – Though this herb is native to Siberia and western Asia, tarragon is
primarily used in France. It’s often added to white wine vinegar, lending sweet,
delicate licorice-like perfume and flavor. It pairs will with fish, omelets, and chicken
cooked with mustard, and it’s a crucial component of béarnaise sauce. Fresh
tarragon isn’t always easy to find, but when you get it, you’ll love the bittersweet,
peppery taste it imparts. Heat diminishes its flavor, so add tarragon toward the
end of cooking, or use it as a garnish. A little goes a long way.
THYME – Thyme comes in dozens of varieties, however, most cooks use French
thyme. Undoubtedly thyme is one of the most important herbs of the European
kitchen. What would a bouquet garni be without it? This congenial herb pairs well
with many other herbs – especially rosemary, parsley, sage, savory, and oregano.
Its earthiness is welcome with pork, lamb, duck, or goose, and it’s much beloved in
Cajun and Creole cooking. It’s also the primary component of Caribbean jerk
seasonings. Because the leaves are so small, they often don’t require chopping.
16
OREGANO – Oregano grows wild in the mountain of Italy and Greece; its Creek
name means “joy of the mountain”. The Greeks love oregano sprinkled on salads,
while the Italians shower it on pizza and slip it into tomato sauces. Add shopped
oregano to vinaigrette, or use it in poultry, game, or seafood dishes when you want
to take them in a Greek or Italian direction. Oregano and marjoram are so similar
in looks and flavor that they are often confused. Oregano, however, has a more
potent taste and aroma; marjoram is sweeter and more delicate.
PARSLEY – No refrigerator should be without parsley. It’s the workhorse of the
herb would and can go in just about every dish you cook. Parsley’s mild, grassy
flavor allows the flavors of other ingredients to come through. Curly parsley is less
assertive that its brother, flat-leaf parsley (often called Italian parsley). Flat-leaf
parsley is preferred for cooking, as it stands up better to heat and has more flavor,
while the more decorative curly parsley is used mostly for garnishing. Reach for
either when a dish needs a little burst of color. Sprinkle a little persillade, a mixture
of chopped parsley and garlic, on roasted lamb, grilled steaks, fish, chicken, and
vegetables as they do in France. Add lemon or orange zest and you gremotat, a
blend used in Milanese cooking, especially as a final garnish on osso buco.
ROSEMARY – I Latin, rosemary means “dew of the sea” – appropriate since it is
indigenous to the Mediterranean. Rosemary is one of the most aromatic and
pungent of all the herbs. Its needle like leave have pronounced lemon-pine flavor
that pairs will with roasted lamb, garlic, and olive oil. Rosemary is also a nice
addition to focaccia, tomato sauce, pizza, and pork, but because its flavor is strong,
use a light hand.
SAGE – Sage is native to the northern Mediterranean coast, where it’s used
frequently in cooking. Sage’s long, narrow leaves have a distinctively fuzzy texture
and musty flavor redolent of eucalyptus, cedar, lemon, and mint. Italians love it
with veal, while the French add it to stuffing, cured meats, sausages, and pork
dishes. Americans, of course, associate it with turkey and dressing. Use it with
discretion; it can overwhelm a dish.
17
CHIVES – Toss chives into a dish at the last minute, because heat destroys their
delicate onion flavor. Thinly slice them to maximize their taste, or use finely
snipped chives as a garnish. Chives are great in dips and quesadillas, and on baked
potatoes.
CILANTRO – Some call it cilantro, others call it coriander, or even Chinese parsley.
Whatever you call it, chances are you either love it or hate it. This native of
southern Europe and the Middle East has a pungent flavor, with a faint undertone
of anise. The leaves are often mistaken for flat-leaf parsley, so read the tag. One
of the most versatile herbs, cilantro adds distinctive flavor to salsas, soups, fish, and
chicken dishes.
DILL – Since ancient Roman times, dill has been a symbol of vitality. In the middles
Ages, it was thought to provide protection against witches and was used as an
ingredient in many magic potions. In the kitchen, its feathery leaves lend a fresh,
sharp flavor to all kinds of foods: gravlax, cottage cheese, cream cheese, goat
cheese, omelets, seafood (especially salmon), cold yogurt soups, potato salads, and
all kinds of cucumber dishes (including, of course pickles).
MINT – Mint isn’t just a little sprig that garnishes your dessert plate. It is extremely
versatile and can be used in both sweet and savory dishes. In the Mediterranean,
mint is treasured as a companion to lamb, and is often used in fruit and vegetable
salads. Though there are many varieties, spearmint is preferred for cooking. You
can add it to a bevy of dishes and drinks – lamb, peas, carrots, ice cream, tea, mint
juleps, and mojitos. Spearmint’s bright green leaves are fuzzy, very different from
the darker stemmed, rounded leaves of peppermint.
18
The “Hand Method” for Portion Control:
Too many calories at one time, regardless of what kind, will cause the body to store
the excess as fat. The hand method is used to ensure you’re eating healthy portions
relative to your body size. Since you base your meal size on the size of your hand,
men will likely be eating larger portions than women. While this method is only an
approximation, it will help to keep your portion sizes reasonable. The hand method
also serves as a good gauge for how much to eat when dining out.
 Eat a salad the size of both hands put together.
 Eat meats and poultry the size and thickness of the center of your palm.
 Eat a handful of fruits and/or vegetables.
 Eat fish the thickness of the center of your palm, the length of your hand,
and the width of three of your fingers.
Breakfast – Start Your Day Right:
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. It is designed to get your
metabolism up and running. While many people use artificial stimulants like coffee
or soda, try using food for energy.
Most people have breakfast on the go and they forget the protein. Protein is an
essential building block and will start you off to a great day. So if you have vanilla
yogurt or oatmeal for breakfast, just add a scoop of protein powder. Or have a
hard-boiled egg.
Carb
Protein
Women
1 cup fruit
2 eggs, 1 cheese
Fat
1 tsp. olive oil
Men
1 ½ cups fruit
2 eggs, 1 cheese, 2
sausage links
1 tsp. olive oil
19
Have a Snack:
No matter how healthy a person eats blood-sugar levels eventually fall. Snacks
are a great way to help keep you in the “safe zone”.
Core meals, such as breakfast, lunch and dinner, are designed to give the body
energy and fuel for four to five hours. Secondary meals, or snacks, act as a buffer
zone to extend a mealtime by an hour or two. Snacks are also commonly used
before or after a workout.
Quick Tip: Have a small snack before
exercise.
Before you exercise, you have to give your body energy to burn, so enjoy a light
snack. Then replenish the lost nutrients by eating a meal within an hour after
exercise. The idea is to keep your system up and running throughout the day.
When to Eat:
If you eat often enough you won’t be hungry throughout the day, but it is also
important to wait until the right time to eat to allow your body a chance to burn
stored fat. This process generally starts 2 to 4 hours after a meal (depending on
the size of the meal), so as a general rule of thumb:
Eat ½ hour after waking.
Eat ½ hour before going to bed.
Eat every 3 to 5 hours throughout the day.
20
Stay Hydrated:
Drink plenty of water throughout your day; at least five 8 oz. glasses. Water helps
the body assimilate protein. It keeps the system flushed and helps to eliminate
bloating. Begin to drink water at least one hour before mealtime, and continue
throughout the meal. This will help to satisfy the pallet.
Quick Tip: False cravings can be curbed by
drinking water.
21
Frequently Asked Questions:
FAQ: Can I drink coffee and/or alcohol?
Answer: For the best results, reduce alcohol and coffee, or avoid them altogether.
Coffee can disrupt your natural hormonal balance, but it affects people
differently. Try to keep coffee consumption to a moderate level, one cup per day
in the morning. One alcoholic drink a day is perfectly acceptable. Wine is best,
while hard liquor and light beer are OK. Avoid sugar-filled mixed drinks and regular
beer altogether.
Quick Tip: When you have an alcoholic drink
with a meal, reduce your other carbohydrate
intake.
FAQ: Do I have to weigh and measure food?
Answer: You certainly don’t have to do it forever, but weighing and measuring
your food is the best way to become familiar with portion sizes. Familiarity with
your personal portion sizes is especially helpful when eating out.
FAQ: Should I keep a food diary?
Answer: A food diary serves several purposes:
troubleshooting, and awareness.
familiarity, accountability,
Familiarity helps you to protect building meals, which encourages you to write
down specific quantities.
22
Accountability helps to make behavioral changes, because your food diary
documents your eating schedule and habits. Plan your meals ahead of time so
when you find yourself hungry, you will have a plan to reference instead of grabbing
whatever is easiest.
Troubleshooting allows you to make improvements in your diet. If you find you
are hungry to soon after a meal, you will need to look at the last meal you made
and alter it somehow.
Awareness means you’re conscious of your pattern of eating and recognize good
and bad habits so that you can make better choices about the food you eat. A food
diary makes these processes much easier
23
Eight Points to Better Health
1) To stay where you want to be, always know where you are. Keep a daily
record of everything you eat and your exercise habits. Monitor both routine
days (work days) and non-routine days (weekends). Review your record for
negative tendencies; highlight behaviors that could trigger a significant
weight gain if left unchecked, and then take action to fix these behaviors.
2) Stop “impulse” eating. If you find yourself eating between planned meals
and snacks, you are likely responding to something in your environment that
is triggering your eating behavior. These triggers include sights, smells and
sounds that call your attention to food even when you’re not hungry.
 Pick one place in your home and restrict all of your eating to this
location. Don’t do anything else, like watching TV or reading a book,
while eating. This will allow you to slow down and enjoy the pleasure
of eating, which in turn helps prevent over-eating.
 Remember, “out of sight is out of mind.” Put ingredients away and
package leftovers before you eat. Keep unhealthy foods in
unattractive or opaque containers. Keep healthy foods and snacks in
the front of the refrigerator or cupboard and push unhealthy choices
toward the back.
3) Don’t feed your emotions. If you find yourself craving food when you get
excited, sad, or upset, as yourself this, “What am I really hungry for?” When
you eat in response to emotional cues, we are often trying to feed some
unmet need. Identify these unmet needs and find healthier, non-food
related ways to satisfy them.
4) Distract yourself from cravings. Unexpected cravings will always find a
chance to sneak up on you. If you can focus on doing or thinking something
else, a craving will disappear in about 30 seconds. It won’t haunt you unless
you let it!
24
5) Plan, Practice, Act! Inconsistent health behaviors can usually be traced to 1
to 3 problems: the failure to anticipate pitfalls and detours on the road
ahead, the failure to plan strategies to cope with those challenges, or the
failure to take action when the challenge arrives. For instance, eating out in
restaurants or at social functions can be challenging for anyone. If you
anticipate and plan ahead, you will be better able to control your eating and
stay within your dietary parameters. Take time out on a regular basis to plan
ahead for these situations so you can do something besides reaching for
unfavorable foods when temptation strikes!
6) If you should fall off the horse, get back in the saddle fast. If you slip or fall
down, don’t use that as an excuse to give up. Get up, dust yourself off, and
plan some new strategies to use the next time you are in that same situation.
Take the time to appreciate what you’ve accomplished and the gains you’ve
made so far, and then examine what you were doing, thinking, and feeling
when you slipped up. Making a plan and being ready to use it puts you right
back in the saddle.
7) Reward yourself for keeping on track and reaching your goals. Set short
and long term goals, and reward yourself for reaching them. Do NOT use
food as a reward; this will only sabotage an otherwise well-conceived health
management regimen. Choose rewards to acknowledge your hard work and
achievements. Be creative and make this fun. Massages, makeovers, new
clothes, sporting goods, exercise equipment, and other things that support
your healthier lifestyle are all good choices. A spa vacation or health retreat
would be a great way to celebrate reaching your goal!
8) Set a reasonable pace. Too much of a good thing can backfire. Be motivated
and ambitious in your plans, but don’t overdo it. Slow, consistent progress
produces sustainable results. Be realistic with yourself and enjoy the
journey!
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