To lose weight, it is important to balance calories in and out. With less calorie intake, you eat fewer nutrients and this may lead to a problem: you do not get the nutrients your body needs. The solution is to prefer nutrient-dense food to food and beverages packed with empty calories like sodas. For an equal number of calories, you can get more vitamins and microelements essential to your health. Pay attention to the nutrient density of the food you buy.
Nutrient density is the amount of nutrients per unit of energy (calorie) you get from the given food. Eating nutrient-dense food is one of the healthiest ways of dieting: you get a lot of vitamins, minerals, fiber and save calories.
Nutrient-dense food includes
- Whole grains
- Lean meat
- Low-fat dairy
Whole, unprocessed foods are usually nutrient dense.
NUTRIENT DENSE FOOD & EMPTY CALORIE FOOD
Two products can have approximately the same number of calories, but the amount of nutrients and vitamins in them may differ greatly. If you compare a portion of baked potato to a portion of plain potato chips with equal calorie content (100 calories), you will find that baked potato contains twice the amount of dietary fiber: baked potato contains 1.61 g of fiber, while chips contain 0.75 g of fiber. In addition, baked potato has four times more vitamin C than chips (13.7 mg of vitamin C in baked potato and 3.4 mg in potato chips). Baked potato is more nutrient dense than plain potato chips.
Nutrient-dense food is the opposite of empty-calorie food. Sweets and soft drinks are very high in calories because of added sugars, while their nutrient density is very low. Such energy-dense food is not beneficial to your health.
CHOOSE NUTRIENT FOOD
To get all the nutrients your body needs and save calories, substitute nutrient-dense food for empty-calorie food. Fruit and vegetables are perfect nutrient-dense snacks as they are low in calories and packed with dietary fiber and vitamins. Eat apples between meals and a cup of strawberry instead of chips or popcorn in front of TV.
Nutrient-dense food contains more nutrients and generally fewer calories than energy-dense food. “They’re the foods that are loaded with the nutrients we need to thrive,” says Eileen Kennedy, dean of the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University, “Think about choosing a potato instead of potato chips, or a banana instead of a soda. Opt for a plate with lots of vegetables, and skip the dinner roll. Ignore the cake and go for the fruit.”
Make a wise choice. Do not use calorie content as the main criterion when buying food. Eat food high in nutrients. Nutrient-dense food includes, for the most part, dietary products: fish, fruit, vegetables, seafood. “If people choose foods based on nutrient density,” Kennedy says, “they will, essentially, be choosing foods based on quality.” You can make a perfect diet plan with nutrient-dense food. A diet based on the concept of nutrient density will help you lose weight and get all the nutrients your body needs for health.
Saturday, September 1, 2007
Junk food is a term describing food that is perceived to be unhealthy or having poor nutritional value, according to Food Standards Agency. The term is believed to have been coined by Michael Jacobson, director of the Center for Science in the Public Interest, in 1972. The term has since become common usage.
Junk food typically contains high levels of fat, salt, or sugar and numerous food additives such as monosodium glutamate and tartrazine; at the same time, it is lacking in proteins, vitamins and fiber, among others. It is popular with suppliers because it is relatively cheap to manufacture, has a long shelf life and may not require refrigeration. It is popular with consumers because it is easy to purchase, requires little or no preparation, is convenient to consume and has lots of flavor.
Consumption of junk food is associated with :
iii.)Type 2 diabetes,
v.)other diseases. There is also concern about the targeting of marketing JUNK FOOD at children.
What constitutes unhealthy food may be confusing and, according to critics, includes elements of class snobbery and moral judgement. For example, fast food such as hamburgers and french fries supplied by companies such as McDonald's, KFC and Pizza Hut are often perceived as junk food, whereas the same meals supplied by more up-market outlets such as Pizza Express or Nando's are not, despite often having the same or worse nutritional content. Other foods such as rice, roast potatoes and bread are not considered junk food despite having limited nutritional content. Similarly, breakfast cereals are often regarded as healthy but may have high levels of sugar, salt and fat.
Should a child start consuming junk food exclusively, as opposed to having a balanced diet, their intake of high-protein-vitamins-roughage diet would substantially decrease and intake of milk and healthy fruit juices would likely be replaced by soft drinks. This would potentially lead to a deficiency of calcium, since milk is rich in calcium. Calcium deficiency, in turn, results in weakening of bones (osteoporosis).
Some types of chips that are said to be "junk food" may actually be partially beneficial because they may contain polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats. It should also be understood that the detrimental effects of the empty calories may outweigh the benefits of the unsaturated fats. These foods tend to be high in sodium, which may contribute in causing hypertension (high blood pressure) in some people.
The term has become common usage amongst many different groups over the years, including opponents of fast food industries and companies.
AVOIDING JUNK FOODS
CHART TO AVOID JUNK FOOD
Empty calories, in casual dietary terminology, are calories present in high-energy foods with poor nutritional profiles, typically from processed carbohydrates or fats. An "empty calorie" has the same energy content of any other calorie but lacks accompanying micronutrients such as vitamins, minerals, or amino acids as well as fiber as found in whole grains but less so in white flour. Michael Jacobson, head of the Center for Science in the Public Interest, coined the term in 1972.
Generally, unnecessary calories are converted in the body to fat.
However, if calorie intake is limited for the sake of reducing weight, insufficient vitamin and mineral intake may lead to malnutrition. Dieticians recommend in every case that nutrient-dense food such as fruit and vegetables be substituted for empty-calorie food.
Foods often considered to contain mostly empty calories include:
i.)Sweets, Soft drinks, beverages with a low juice component, and other foods containing sugar.
ii.)Margarine or shortening
iii.)Butter, lard, and other highly-saturated fats.
Diet food (or dietetic food) refers to any food or drink whose recipe has been altered in some way to make it part of a body modification diet. Although the usual intention is weight loss and change in body type, sometimes the intention is to aid in gaining weight or muscle as in bodybuilding supplements.
In addition to Diet other words or phrases are used to identify and describe these foods including Light or Lite, Low Calorie, Low Fat, No Fat, Fat Free, No Sugar, Sugar free, and Zero Calorie. In some areas use of these terms may be regulated by law. For example in the U.S. a product labelled low fat must not contain more than 3 grams of fat per serving; and to be labelled fat free it must contain less than 0.5 grams of fat per serving.
Research shows that in order to lose weight safely and keep it off, you need to exercise. And even those who are not overweight benefit from an exercise or workout routine. But many people don't exercise regularly, which puts them at risk for heart disease, accidents or injuries, and other health concerns. There are many reasons people give why they don't exercise more. It's boring, it's too difficult, they don't have enough time or they'd rather be doing other things. Some people aren't sure how to exercise and they are uncomfortable going to a fitness center to work with a trainer. But with a good treadmill and a workout routine that fits your needs, exercise can be enjoyable, convenient and beneficial.
A treadmill is a perfect choice in exercise equipment for many people. It allows you to walk or run in the security and privacy of your own home. Unlike weightlifting or aerobics, you don't have to use your hands or move your body across the room. Typically, it requires less concentration than other types of workouts, especially if you have a treadmill that allows you to program in a variety of workout components, such as hills, speed changes, and adjustments to maintain a target heart rate.
The type of treadmill workout that is best for you depends on your overall fitness level, what you are trying to accomplish through your exercise routine, and what you enjoy doing. Continuous training is perhaps the most common type of treadmill routine. Essentially, it involves running at a set pace, usually for 20 to 45 minutes. This type of exercise workout is ideal for incorporating some fun activities into your treadmill workout. The majority of our suggestions below are aimed at those who are basically turning on the machine and walking or running until their time is up.
Those who prefer a more demanding workout or who are in training for marathons or other stamina events go with interval training. It consists of shorter bouts of activity performed in quick succession and at a higher intensity. Because this requires more effort and concentration, it may be difficult to let your mind wander or to focus on other activities. How much you have to concentrate depends on the individual but there are still some fun activities listed below that can be added to any treadmill workout.
One of the most important aspects of any exercise routine geared toward improving cardio strength is to be sure you are exercising in such a way that you achieve and maintain your target heart rate. Maximum heart rate is calculated by subtracting your age in years from 220. Most people agree that a good target heart rate zone is 60 to 80 percent of your maximum heart rate. Because this factor is so critical to healthy, productive exercise, many treadmills come with a heart rate monitor built in, often in the handrails that you hold onto when using the machine. But you can also purchase an inexpensive heart rate monitor from most large department stores, health stores or at hundreds of locations online.
How you choose to achieve your target heart rate, be it walking, jogging, continuous or interval training is up to you. But we have some suggestions to help you make exercise more fun and increase your chances of sticking with it and exercising regularly.
TREADMILL & MUSIC
Perhaps the most popular way to entertain yourself while using your treadmill is to listen to music. It can help you focus and give you something else to think about while enduring even the most strenuous parts of a workout. It is a good way to check out new music and expand your horizons. Or put in your favorite motivational music - the songs that really get you moving and shaking - and your 45-minute routine will whiz by. There are some treadmill music CDs that have been compiled specifically for those who need a little motivation in their treadmill exercise routine. Use headphones to avoid disturbing family members if necessary.
TREADMILL & READING
Maybe you prefer to lose yourself in a good story. Some people are able to read a print book or magazine while they exercise on their treadmills. Several companies sell book holders that attach to the treadmill and work well as long as you are not bouncing around so much that it is difficult to read the print. Many people listen to books or storytelling on tape or CDs. This is especially productive for those who don't have time to sit down with a good book or who fall asleep when trying to read in bed.
An alternative is listening to language tapes. This works especially well if you have a vacation planned. You can build your language skills and get in shape for that bikini, and the excitement of the pending trip helps motivate you to get on the treadmill. Place a fan nearby or get one that attaches to your machine and you can even imagine you are already there, enjoying the tropical breezes.
TREADMILL & WATCHING TV
Many people watch television while on the treadmill because they say it makes them feel less guilty about watching. A good movie can help you forget you are exercising, and you are probably not going to fill up with popcorn and treats if you watch while you're on the treadmill. You will probably have to break it up into several segments, but the anticipation to see the end of the movie makes you that much more eager to exercise. Also, by agreeing to exercise everyday when your favorite sitcom reruns, soap or reality TV show is on helps you stick to a regular workout schedule.
There are just some ideas to get you started and help make your treadmill workout more enjoyable and hence something you will look forward to and stick with. Maybe you get a headset and talk with a friend on the phone while you workout. Or better yet, set up dual treadmills side by side and make a date out of it. The possibilities are many and whatever keeps you exercising on a regular basis is a good thing. Half the fun can be experimenting to see what works best for you.