THE DOs and DON'Ts of DIETINGConfused by all the dieting advice you get? Don't know where to start? You're not alone. Follow these simple dieting tips to make losing weight easier.
By John Casey
It may be comforting to know that while the world around may seem more complicated by the day, weight management remains surprisingly simple.
"Every calorie that comes in must be used up by your body or it may become fat," says Lola O'Rourke, RD, nutrition consultant based in Seattle and a spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association (ADA).
So keep it simple. Here are some easy, time-tested diet dos and don'ts that may help you do just that.
Do Stock Your Kitchen With Healthy Food
Don't Watch Too Much TV
"There are many possible reasons for this association, such as being exposed to more food commercials, having less time for exercise, and the like," says O'Rourke. "Most of the research has been done on children and adolescents, but it is reasonable to assume that the association will hold among adults.
In just one of these studies, public health experts examined the relationship between television watching, calorie intake, physical activity, and obesity in more than 4,000 American 8- to 16-year olds.
Nearly 50% of the children watched more than two
hours of television per day, with boys on average watching slightly less than girls.
Do Make Healthy Snacking Part of Your Plan
Healthy snacking can help you enjoy eating and keep you energized throughout the day.
Don't Fall Prey to Fad Diets
Promote miracle foods or formulas,
Any "yes" here means you're likely looking at a fad diet.
"It's easy for even very, very intelligent people to get caught up in the hype and fantasy around fads, be they diets or supplements," says Melinda Manore, PhD, RD, chairwoman of the department of food and nutrition at Oregon State University. "Avoid taking dietary advice from peers and neighbors. If you want to achieve weight loss, you should consult a certified health professional to develop a weight-loss plan.
Do Add Healthy Foods to Your Diet
Don't Be Afraid to Quit Smoking
On average, people who quit smoking gain only about 10 pounds, say experts at the National Institute of Diabetes & Digestive & Kidney Diseases. To avoid post-smoking weight gain after you quit, you need to become more physically active, improve your eating habits, and develop a treatment plan with your doctor before you stop.Jack Casey is a freelance writer in New York City.
Published Jan. 21, 2003.
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