10 Foods That To Eat and Avoid

New research showed that eating excessive amounts of bacon and skipping nuts are related to deaths caused by heart diseases, stroke, and diabetes. It turns out that overeating or insufficient consumption of the 10 essential foods both contribute to such deaths.

Some of the good foods that people neglect to eat include nuts and seeds, seafood containing omega-3 fatty acids, fruits and vegetables, and whole grains.

Meanwhile, people normally consume in excessive amounts some prohibited foods, including salty foods, processed meats, such as bacon, bologna, and hot dogs; red meat, and sugary drinks.

The above mentioned research indicated that in 2012, 700,000 deaths were caused by heart, strokes, and diabetes. In addition, after a survey on eating habits of included participants, one study showed that most people do not eat the right amounts of recommended food.

These research only emphasize the previous campaigns on healthy eating. The only difference is the inclusion of more detailed data and analysis.

These new studies singled out food and nutrients due to the availability of related research regarding their association with various deaths considered. For instances, excessive salt intake has been linked with increased blood pressure, resulting in stressed arteries and heart. Meanwhile, the healthy fats contained in nuts work well in improving cholesterol levels. On the other hand, bacon and other processed meats comprise high levels of saturated fats which result in increased levels of LDL cholesterol.

Meanwhile, the Food and Drug Administration recently released guidelines regarding sodium reduction for processed food manufacturers. On the other hand, some cities in the US implemented laws increasing taxes on sugary taxes.

The following are some of the recommended consumption amounts for specific good foods:

  • 3 average-sized fruits

  • 2 cups of cooked or 4 cups of raw vegetables

  • Five 1-ounce servings of nuts/seeds per week

  • 2.5 daily servings of whole grains

  • 11% of daily calories in the form of polyunsaturated fats, which can be found in various vegetable oils

  • 8 ounces of seafood a week

On the other hand, recommended amounts of some “bad” food ingredients are as follows:

  • 1 serving per week of red meat

  • 0 serving of processed meat

  • 0 serving of sugary drinks

  • 2000 mg of salt per day

 

3 Best and Worst Diets For 2016

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It is a general misconception that all diet plans are healthy. In a compiled research findings, nutritionists mention that, Just because the diet plan uses fruits and vegetables doesnt mean it is a healthy plan.The idea of a balanced diet is that people get to consume as much vitamins and minerals from various food sources. This can only be accomplished when individuals eat a variety of food that includes fruits, vegetables, grains, healthy fat, nuts, seafood and lean meat.

Too much of everything is dangerous. One good example of this is the cabbage soup diet, which is one of the most popular rapid weight lost diets in the world. It’s eaten as the main food in the plan, along with other stuff like apple, grapefruit and sometimes vanilla ice cream. At the surface, the plan sure looks healthy, but it lacks all essential nutrients that make a person healthy. The American Heart Association warns that, “The Cabbage Soup Diet is ineffective and poses numerous adverse side effects.” LIVESTRONG.COM listed some of these adverse effects in the following categories:

  • Abdominal pain, Gas and Bloating

  • Fatigue, Hunger and Exhaustion

  • Electrolyte and Heart Problems

  • Weight Gain

How Expensive Is A Healthy Diet?

A healthy diet is not expensive. The most conventional one is balancing fruits and vegetables with some grains and protein-rich foods. That being said, not all nutritional diet plans are bad and just a fad. U.S. News & World Report, an American news weekly magazine founded in 1933 noted that, “If you want a program that works for the long run, you’ll need a lifestyle you can live with and like. That means a diet that’s nutritious and delicious, but one that will take a bit of planning and commitment from you. While staying lean is a big part of good health, weight lost doesn’t always equal health gained. That new diet that took inches off your waistline could be harming your health if it locks out or severely restricts entire food groups, relies on supplements with little scientific backing or clamps down on calories to an extreme.”

What makes a weight loss program expensive is paying money for a plan that is not effective or sustainable. If a person has to jump from one diet plan to another, that will cost him a lot of money without accomplishing so much of his weight loss goals. The worst part though is if these diet plans will have detrimental effects on health. Madelyn Fernstrom, the author The Real You Diet, and the founding director of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center said that, “People are so desperate to lose weight that it’s really weight loss at any cost.” Choosing a healthy diet plan is a critical decision that requires discernment and knowledge about diet and nutrition.

The Best and Worst Diet As Ranked By The U.S. News & World Report

U.S. News & World Report has ranked the existing 38 popular diets into best and worst based on safety and nutritional completeness. They ranked each diet with a “healthiness” score from 1, which is worst to 5, which is best. A panel of diet and nutrition experts has given the score. Andrea Giancoli, an RD serving as an expert panel said that, “The ones that get high scores in safety and in nutritional value they’re very similar to each other.”

3 Best Diets Overall

#1 DASH Diet – which requires a healthy 2000-calorie diet on a daily basis. It contains, “6-8 servings of grains; 4-5 each of veggies and fruit; 2-3 of fat-free or low-fat dairy; 6 or fewer of lean meat, poultry and fish, with one serving being equivalent to an ounce; 4-5 (a week) of nuts, seeds and legumes; 2-3 of fats and oils; and 5 or fewer (a week) of sweets.”

DASH Diet got an overall score of 4.1/5, 3.1/5 for weight loss, and 4.8/5 for health benefits.

#2 MIND Diet – which stands for Mediterranean Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay. It emphasizes on, “Eating from 10 brain-healthy food groups: green leafy vegetables in particular, all other vegetables, nuts, berries, beans, whole grains, fish, poultry, olive oil and wine.”

The MIND diet got an overall score of 4.0/5, 3.0/5 for weight loss, and 4.6/5 for health benefits.

#3 TLC Diet – or Therapeutic Lifestyle Changes Diet. It works by lowering LDL by maintaining the required 2,500 calorie/day. But for individuals who need to shed off some pounds, TLC work by targeting, “1,600 calories for men or 1,200 for women on a daily basis by cutting saturated fats and controlling dietary cholesterol among other processes.”

The TLC diet got an overall score of 4.0/5, 3.0/5 for weight loss, and 4.7/5 for health benefits.

3 Worst Diets Overall

#1 Paleo Diet

#2 Raw Food

#3 Macrobiotic Diet

#4 Fast Diet

#5 Dukan Diet

#6 Supercharged Hormone Diet

#7 Atkins

#8 Whole30 Diet

These 8 diets received a “healthiness” score below 3. The experts say that these diets are, “Simply too restrictive. The meat-heavy Paleo diet bans grains and dairy, so getting adequate calcium and vitamin D isn’t easy. Atkins, by severely curbing carbs, blows past recommended caps for total and saturated fat. Depending on your personal approach to the Raw Food Diet, you may shortchange yourself on calcium, vitamin B-12 and vitamin D; its restrictive cooking rules also could put you at risk for eating raw or undercooked ingredients.”

There is also the juice fast fad that you use a juicer. Is it bad? Maybe if you are trying to lose weight.

8 Healthy Ways To Balance Your Diet

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Nutritionists put a lot of emphasis in healthy eating, which means eating the right food, in right amount, at the right time. Unfortunately, the eating culture has changed and became complex with the influx of fad diets and popular diet plans that promise fast weight loss. Judy Penta, BS, a nutritionist and certified health counselor said, Fad diets are the parachute pants of nutrition. Usually, these diets are popular only for a short time a season or at most a few years then become unpopular or even laughable when the new fad comes along. But for savvy dieters, who are sometimes tempted to take on the easy route, they know that these diets arent sustainable, and that nothing could replace regular healthy meal plans.

For people who want to lose weight or maintain their current body figure without sacrificing healthy meals, dieticians suggest these 8 eating goals.

  1. Fruits and vegetables should make half the plate. Each plate served may contain various food on it, but it is advisable that half of the serving will be fruits and vegetables. Jennifer Neily, a registered dietician and the author of Eat Out, Eat Well, wrote, There is one area that I feel strongly about and will always tell peopleuntil I am presented science to disprove the benefitsto eat more vegetables and fruits. That I am extremely confident about! Despite the myriad of studies and research over the last 50 years on many nutrition topics, one thing has not changedeat more veggies and fruits. RDs suggest eating colorful fruits and vegetables like oranges, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, broccolis and dark-green leafy vegetables. These ones are rich with vitamins, minerals and fibers that are essential for the body.

  2. When eating grains, half of it should be whole grains. Eating too much refined grains are discouraged because they have less nutritional value and high sugar content. But for individuals who are not used to eating whole grain food, they could eat refined grains on minimal amount. When buying whole-grain food, look for ingredients that say, whole wheat,” bulgur,” “brown rice,” “”oatmeal,” buckwheat,” quinoa,“rolled oats, or “wild rice.

  3. Change to low-fat or fat-free milk. Both low-fat and non-fat milk have the same essential nutrients and amount of calcium as whole milk. However, they have less saturated fat and fewer calories.

  4. Include lean protein foods in the diet. This includes leaner cuts of chicken breast, turkey breast, ground beef thats made of 90% or higher lean meat, seafood, dry peas, seeds, nuts and eggs.

  5. Reduce sodium intake. Sodium is bad for the heart and it makes people bloat due to water retention, according to some health experts. When buying pre-packed food, it is essential to check the Nutrition Facts label to know how high or low the sodium content is in the food. Reduced sodium,” “low sodium, or no salt added,are the best choices to make.

  6. Replace sugary drinks with water. Water and plain tea dont have calories, but other drinks do. Sports drinks, sodas and energy drinks have very high calorie and sugar content, which jeopardizes health in the long run and make people fat.

  7. Add some seafood in the diet at least once or twice a week. Seafood have omega-3 fatty acid, which is good for the heart. They also give minerals and protein that fruits and vegetables dont. Some seafood to chomp on would be trout, tuna, salmon, mussels, crabs, and oysters.

  8. Reduce the intake of solid fats. Revolutionary dieticians would not advice to strictly avoid sweets like desserts, cookies and cakes that are made of butter and shortening, or processed foods like bacon and sausages, because it will only create cravings. Katherine Parker, an RD from California noted that, It is a human tendency to crave for things, especially for food, that they are restricted from eating. When the craving builds up, theres a high possibility that people give into the cravings, and when they do they eat more than they should eat to compensate for the time that they hadnt eaten the restrictedfood. Parker thinks that it is okay to eat foods that contain solid fats on rare occasion and in small serving, say maybe once a week or once in every 2 weeks.

Suggested Healthy Food Preparations

Fruits and Vegetables To-Go

  • When preparing go-to dishes, it is good to mix some vegetables in it. Boiled green leafy vegetable like spinach with olive oil will go well with pasta or tacos.

  • If fresh fruits and vegetables are not available, frozen or canned ones would do. However when buying canned vegetables, it is important to check the sodium content in the food. For canned fruits, it is essential to buy only those that are packed with 100% juice.

  • For children, it is good to add carrot sticks, 1 banana or 1 sliced apple in their lunch boxes.

Healthy Snacks

  • Fruits and vegetables always make the best snack. To prepare one at home, cut-up or slice fruits and vegetables into bite sizes and chill them in a food-grade container. Carrots, celery and cucumbers make a crunchy snack while oranges, apples and grapes will satisfy the sweet cravings.

  • Water is always the best drink to satisfy thirst. Adding 100% fruit juice or a slice of lemon will add flavor to the water.

  • For children, it is best to explain to them the difference between occasional snacks like cookies and cakes, and everyday snacks like fruits and vegetables.

Food with Less Salt, Fat and Sugar

  • Jennifer Neily mentioned that eating out with friends is an opportunity to binge on unhealthy food, especially if its a group order. This is okay when done occasionally; however, for individuals who eat out at least 3 times a week, they have to be careful with what they order. The Presidents Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition suggests to, Choose baked or grilled food instead of fried when you’re eating out and implement this at home, too. Make water and fat-free or low-fat milk your go-to drinks instead of soda or sweetened beverages.

  • Avoid adding salt to the food. The taste buds can be trained to taste the foods flavor without or with less salt.

  • When eating dessert, choose fruit salad or baked apple pies.