Debra Hollon, MS, RD, CDE, LDN
Senior Clinical Nutritionist
The American Society for Nutrition published a study showing any diet works as long as you stick with it. That last part is the most important. Any diet that reduces calories will help you lose weight, but only if you keep it up. Think about the fad diets out there that are built around eating one particular food exclusively, or cut out an entire food group. These kinds of diet plans restrict calories, but the variety of foods you can eat is very limited and there’s rarely any plan for long-term commitment. Considering this, how long can you really stick with it?
A healthy diet is one that emphasizes fruits and veggies, whole grains and low-fat dairy as well as lean protein like poultry and fish, beans and nuts. It’s also low in saturated fat, cholesterol and sodium. Whole grains and vegetables are both good sources of fiber which, in addition to keeping your digestive system healthy, helps fill you up so feel less hungry. Fish, nuts and seeds are sources of good fats that keep your heart healthy.
Now, we’ve said that the key to losing weight is reducing your calorie intake. But it’s not a good idea to do so by skipping meals—especially not breakfast. Going long periods without eating can actually make you so hungry that you overeat at your next meal. Instead, plan out small meals throughout the day; it will help control hunger and keep your blood sugar levels steady. And, breakfast really is the most important meal of the day: eating a good breakfast keeps you full throughout the morning so you’re less likely to overeat later.
When you reach your weight loss goals, your next challenge is to maintain it. For some this can be just as difficult as losing it, but many of the same strategies you used to lose the weight will help you keep it off long-term. Unfortunately there’s no one-size-fits-all plan for weight loss, but just remember that losing even a few pounds will help with managing your Diabetes. If you have questions about your weight, talk to your health care provider or a Registered Dietitian.
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