Foods That Hinder/Help Your Health - (Stacia Naquin)

By: Stacia Naquin
By: Stacia Naquin

Even when we try to eat healthier, there are some mistakes we all make over and over. 6 foods are getting in the way of your progress. 6 more will help you reach your goals.

When we decide to get healthy, it can be a challenge (as Eric Lupher and I have been documenting in this blog). What can really help is to take a long hard look at your diet. That’s what we’ve been doing.

Today on 11News at 9am, Martha Rosenau a Registered Dietician with Peak Nutrition had some great tips for all of us who are trying to kick the nutrition up and the junk food OUT! Rosenau listed six foods that will hinder your progress and six foods that will help. “These are the common mistakes people make over and over,” said Rosenau. So, in case you missed the segment, here are her tips:

Foods That Hinder:

1) Air Food – These are poppable foods. They can often lead to mindless eating and tend to be low in nutrients. You might be watching TV or eating them at your desk… and you just keep popping them into your mouth. Before you know it, you’ve overindulged. Some examples would be: popcorn, rice cakes, etc.

2) Fear Foods – Another way to describe them might be “binge foods.” You know which foods have traditionally led to overconsumption, because they “call to you.” Rosenau advises not to keep them in the house if you know you won’t be able to adhere to portion sizes.

3) Super-Sized Packaging – Our food world is “super-sized.” Think about it - King Sized candy bars, Value packs of your favorite sugary soda… the next largest size for only 25-cents more. You may want a good deal on your meal, but it won’t be a good deal for your waist-line.

4) High Fat Desserts – They’re yummy, gooey and delicious and extremely high in calories and fat. Some examples would be: premium ice cream, chocolate/peanut butter mousse or pie, chocolate/caramel cheesecake, truffles, flourless chocolate cake. Tasty… yes. Healthy… no.

5) Deep Fried Foods – You know you’re not getting a healthy plate of food when you pile it with fried chicken, french fries and potato chips. But these deep fried favorites are a disaster for your diet. Rosenau also advises to watch out for deep-fried appetizers, like egg rolls and onion rings.

6) Eating Out/Drive-Thru Dining – The drive-thru is a double whammy… it’s convenient AND it’s tasty. But the ginormous portion sizes and caloric content will over-ride the convenience factor any day. Plan ahead and have something healthy on hand in your car, if you’re on the go.

So now that you know what NOT to eat. What DO you eat? Rosenau gave us some suggestions for that as well:

Foods That Help

1) Whole Grains – Breakfast cereal, hot cereal and brown rice all have one thing in common. They’re high in fiber. When you add more fiber to your meals, you’ll feel fuller, longer. That can help with mindless snacking between lunch and dinner.

2) Non-starchy vegetables – Rosenau brought in carrots, beats, greens and cauliflour to show the variety of vegetables you can eat to help you fill-up. She also suggests vegetable-based salads with light, low fat dressing. But you don’t have to just eat them raw. You can also stir fry them, using minimal oil.

3) Winter squash – When we think of seasonal produce, we often think of fruit, i.e. watermelon in the summer. But winter leads to excellent seasonal produce as well.  Butternut and acorn are two examples of winter squash. They’re filling, loaded with nutrients and can add up to a meatless dinner.

4) Lean meats and dairy – If you’re a meat eater, there are lots of ways to include it in your meals in a lean and healthy way. Skinless chicken breast is always a great choice, but if you’re chickened-out,  Rosenau suggest skinless fish, round roasts and Canadian bacon.

5) Fruit – Fruit packs a one-two healthy punch.  Not only is it a low fat addition to your meal, Rosenau says fruit also has its own high water content. That will help fill you up and for longer. She suggests it as a great choice for dessert.

6) Soups – Who doesn’t love comfort food in the winter? Soup is an excellent healthy choice, because it has high fiber and it’s water based, leaving you (once again) fuller, longer. But you have to choose the right kind of soup. Rosenau suggests bean, vegetable and broth-based soups. “Cream soup is too high in fat,” says Rosenau.

For more weight management tips from Martha Rosenau, RD, call her office anytime at 548-9859. Or you can attend her Weight Management class this Thursday, January 28th. She’ll be at the Whole Foods on North Academy from 6-7pm talking about strategies to reach and/or maintain a healthy weight for the rest of your life. The class costs $10. Sign up beforehand by calling 531-9999.

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