In part one, we talked about how your diet was your way of life. It is everything that sustains you and makes you whole. If you make changes to your diet, then you are making changes to your way of life.
We then discussed your current eating habits, how often you eat, where you get your food, and what type of foods you consume. Because in order to make changes for life, you need to know what your starting point is. It’s the only practical way of formulating a plan to reach your goal. If your present diet is not working for you, then you must determine why it isn’t.
We also talked about the results of eating foods that were high in sugar and fat and how an excessive amount of either of these could cause health problems. We even mentioned the high caloric value of many foods, because many of you depend on counting calories as a way to lose or even gain weight.
Now, unlike many of the other diets, my Fitness4Her diet is not primarily about calorie counting, but more what you eat and how much you consume. I believe portion control is a major factor in any women’s fitness plan and controlling your weight.
There are two problems with basing your diet on strict calorie-counting: 1) some find it difficult or dull, and dieters with the best of intentions often give up on calorie-counting after a few days; 2) it’s almost impossible to do with any great degree of accuracy.
For example, let’s say you decide to have a bowl of cold cereal for breakfast. The box of cereal says that it contains 110 calories per serving. But how much is a serving? You check the box and find that three quarters of a cup equals a serving. How many of you pour your cereal into a measuring cup before pouring it into the bowl?
You would need to go through the same procedure with the milk that you pour over the cereal, in order to calculate how many calories the milk is adding. If you decide to add a handful of raisins or a few strawberries or a banana to the cereal, you would need to get the calorie count on them, too. So in order to calculate our calories adequately, you would need to bring a calculator, measuring cups and spoons to the table along with your food.
You can see how this could get frustrating to say the least. By the time you come to an accurate, definitive calculation on your caloric intake for breakfast, it may be lunchtime. Then you’ll be doing it all over again.
For most of us, there isn’t enough time in the day to go through all these calculations. The only way we can do it is to make fairly broad estimates.
What we need to concentrate on is the type of foods that we eat. So much of what we put into our body is just junk food. Very little nutritional value and many times way too high in fats, sugar and salt.
Don’t think of yourself as having a weight problem or an eating problem. Think of the world of food as a field that you just haven’t mastered yet because, like most of us in America, you’ve been misled on the subject.
The standard American diet is a recipe for disaster. It’s high in processed foods, high in fat, high in saturated fat, high in sugar, high in sodium, high in simple carbohydrates (white flour, sweeteners), high in synthetic chemicals and preservatives, low in fiber, low in fresh and raw foods, low in nutrients.
In short, the standard diet is high in everything that should be low, and low in everything that should be high. It’s no wonder we have accelerating epidemics of obesity and diabetes in this country.
While the ingredients in processed foods tend to be inexpensive for their profit-oriented manufacturers, they can be extraordinarily costly for your health. That’s not the manufacturer’s problem, of course. It’s your problem — today and tomorrow, when the effects of an unhealthy lifestyle can sometimes catch up with you.
Do yourself a favor, save your health and money.
Ignore the advertising and the pervasive pressure to eat the wrong foods, and make a decision to eat the right ones. Healthy, wholesome, natural foods prepared in healthy ways are so much better for you and can change the way you look and feel. Maybe you’ll even try a few selections from our mouth-watering sample meals that you’ve never tasted before.
You are the one in control of your life. Everything that you eat, results from a decision that you have made. It is up to you to make the necessary changes that you want to live with.
You can make healthy choices about what you eat and still take pleasure in your food. Eating should be a celebratory time and never laden with guilt. Feelings of guilt will only make you feel disappointed in yourself. Keep in mind that food is not the problem; food is the answer. Your diet is your way of life; it is what sustains you and makes you whole.
Obesity can be avoided, or overcome, by an understanding of simple principles. These principles are the basis of the Fitness4Her Diet.
1. Eat often, but eat in small portions.
2. Don’t skip meals.
3. Don’t forget your fiber.
4. Eat plenty of protein, but get it from lean sources.
5. Within reason, eat as many servings of fresh fruits and vegetables as possible.
6. Reduce your intake of refined carbohydrates.
7. Reduce dietary fat generally, and particularly reduce unhealthy saturated fat.
8. Reduce your intake of salt.
9. Avoid alcohol.
10. Drink plenty of water.
11. Take a good multi-vitamin.
12. Counting calories … for those who must.
Be sure to read Explaining the Principles for an in-depth look into how these principles can work to end your diet woes. Logical and sensible, they are easy enough for anyone to follow and a key ingredient in achieving any women’s fitness goals!
Share your dieting tips with us and our readers by leaving a comment: