How to eat for health, weight loss and energy

When people go on a weight loss diet, they usually follow a plan of restricting calorie intake for a temporary period. This approach is often unsuccessful. Calorie restriction can result in lack of essential nutrients, low energy levels and frustration with the eating plan. It also doesn’t change eating habits, because it’s seen as a temporary behaviour change.  Usually, when it’s over the dieter goes back to her old eating habits. A better way is to eat for health. If you opt for a permanent change to healthier eating, you’ll improve your overall health, have more energy and be a healthy weight.

Why people who eat for health are generally a healthy weight

It’s much harder to become overweight on a healthy diet. One of the main problems with Western diets is that consumption of sugars and white complex carbs is too high. These foods digest very quickly, causing blood sugar highs. The excess sugar often ends up as fat deposits. The rapid drop in blood sugar then causes cravings for more sugar. Cutting sugars down to be in line with healthy guidelines and eating fibre-rich wholegrain rather than white carbs helps to avoid these problems.

Healthy eating guidelines also recommend that all meals should consist of a large proportion of complex carbs and vegetables, with smaller amounts of protein and fat.  The carbs and vegetables provide energy, fibre, vitamins and minerals and fill us up.  While they are essential, protein and fat are not needed in large amounts.  If you eat meals in these proportions, it should be easy to maintain a healthy weight.

See these posts for more on how to eat for health:

Choose low GI foods to help lose weight

An explanation of what glycemic index is and how understanding it can help in weight control.

Low glycemic diet tips

This one is a tips list on how to make your diet lower GI.

Reduce your sugar intake

Another tips list, this time on cutting down on sugar. Sugar is everywhere – even in foods that are marketed as “healthy” and savoury foods. Learn what to look out for and what the best choices are.

Healthy food plan eat more fruitThis article goes through all the recommendations for healthy eating, with a printable food log and guidelines for assessing your diet and making improvements.

Iron rich foods for a vegetarian dietThere are lots of health benefits to going meat-free, but also a few drawbacks. How to ensure you don’t miss out on important nutrients on a meat-free diet.

Easy ways to get 5 a dayFinally, another tips list, dealing specifically with the subject of “5 a day”. Why it’s important and easy ways to get your 5 a day in.

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To maintain a healthy weight, you need to have a healthy diet. Calorie restricting weight loss diets are only a temporary fix and don't solve the problem of bad eating habits. Eat for health and weight loss will follow. #healthydiet