Burn Calories with Whole Foods

Many people believe that when it comes to dieting, you just have to make sure your calories in are less than your calories out. However, the types of calories you’re consuming make a difference too. A study published in Food & Nutrition Research found that eating a meal with whole foods allows your body to burn nearly 50% more calories than after eating a meal made with processed food. Whole foods require your body to use more energy to break down, resulting in more calories burned.*

Whole foods are foods that are unrefined and unprocessed and do not contain any added salt or fat. Unpolished grains, beans, fruits, vegetables and non-homogenized dairy products are examples of whole foods.

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*http://www.youcanwellness.com/wellness-news/study-shows-eating-whole-foods-vs-processed-foods-burns-more-calories/
Photo | Sonny Abesamis | Vegetables | Creative Commons Attribution License

Eat Less on Red Plates

In a recent study, 240 research participants were served popcorn on either red, white, or blue plates. Regardless of how much people said they were enjoying their snack, those who ate off of the red plates ate less. Researchers think that because the color red is associated with caution and stopping, people with these plates could have subconsciously curbed their intake.*

While these results are only suggestive, an important take-away from this study is that mindful eating matters. Other methods to eliminate overeating include paying attention to your portion sizes and cutting out distractions like the TV.

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*http://www.laweekly.com/squidink/2014/02/12/color-psychology-red-plates-make-you-eat-less
Photo | Erich Ferdinand | Seeds | Creative Commons Attribution License

Fish for Brain Power

Fish oil is widely considered a powerful potion that boosts fertility and weight loss, and lessens the effects of diabetes and depression. Most important, fish oil has been linked to preventing the development of Alzheimer’s. Participants of a university study reduced their risk of Alzheimer’s by 39% (and other forms of dementia by 47%) by eating fish 3 times a week.*

Seek out omega-3 fatty acids found in cold-water fatty fish like trout, mackerel, yellowfin tuna, salmon, and swordfish, as well as in eggs and milk. If you opt for fish-oil supplements instead and want to avoid the fishy breath that can linger afterwards, just store your supplements in the freezer, which helps to diminish their scent.

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*https://www.yahoo.com/health/fish-oil-boosts-brain-power-91965585587.html
Photo | Ralph Daily | Grilled Gulf Swordfish | Creative Commons Attribution License

Stay Away from Second Servings

For many of us, food serves as a source of comfort, which is why we go back for second servings. A recent study found that people consume 35% more when food is served at the dinner table rather than being kept in the kitchen, which makes second helpings not as easily accessible. If you’re psychologically keen on reaching for a second helping, consider serving yourself two half-portions instead.*

There are other tricks that can keep you from going back for more food, like eating slower. You might also try drinking more water, which aids in your digestion and also helps you to feel full.

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*http://www.fitday.com/fitness-articles/nutrition/healthy-eating/how-to-wean-yourself-from-second-helpings.html
Photo | Nic McPhee | Dagstuhl buffet | Creative Commons Attribution Share-alike license

Large Forks to Lose Weight

A recent study conducted by the University of Utah observed diners who ate with either a small or a large fork. Because the small fork made restaurant-goers feel like they had made less of a dent in their dishes, they kept going back for more, ultimately overeating. On the other hand, people who ate with large forks ended up eating less.*

Let’s use large forks as a way to eat less today! You can double this effort with another visual trick: eating off of a smaller plate. This will trick your brain into thinking that you’re eating a larger portion than you actually are.

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*http://healthland.time.com/2011/07/15/using-a-big-fork-may-help-you-eat-less/
Photo | Fork | Lainee Richards

Try This for Breakfast

Skipping meals, especially breakfast, is not a path to weight loss. In fact, if you skip breakfast you’re more likely to indulge in snacks or overeat during your next meal. Having a wholesome breakfast will not only help you stave off hunger, but it will give you more energy by recharging your brain and your body for the busy day ahead.*

There are nutritious and simple breakfast options available. Try scrambling eggs and topping them with avocado and fresh salsa to give your body some protein, healthy fat and veggies in one easy meal.

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*http://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/most-important-meal
Photo | Arvind Grover | Breakfast of Champions | Creative Commons Attribution Share-alike license

Prepare Your Pantry

When making the decision to lose weight, you have to do more than perfect your attitude – you have to prepare your environment too. A pantry and refrigerator filled with unhealthy junk food will warrant unwanted temptations no matter how determined you are. Prepare yourself for success by cleaning out your pantry and refrigerator and restock with healthier options like fruits and vegetables.*

The desire for snacks and treats can creep up when dieting. Prepare yourself with healthy options like keeping frozen grapes in your freezer; sweet grapes have an almost creamy consistency when frozen, yum!

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* http://ancestral-nutrition.com/kitchen-clean-out-7-steps-to-a-healthy-pantry-refrigerator/
Photo | “Kitchen Re-org 2010″ | Nickchick | Used under a Creative Commons Attribution Share-alike License

Lose Weight with Calcium

A University of Tennessee study concluded that participants who ate higher levels of calcium-rich foods lost an average of eleven pounds over a year. It’s believed that a when your brain detects a lack of calcium, it tries to compensate by upping food intake. In order to stifle this desire to eat more, it’s important to give your body the calcium it needs.*

The weight-loss study participants consumed 1200 mg of calcium a day. While supplements are available, there are plenty of calcium-rich foods that are natural fat-burners too; try sesame seeds, bok choy, kale, almonds and broccoli.

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*http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090312115053.htm
Photo | “Bok choy″ | jamonation | Used under a Creative Commons Attribution License

New Diet Philosophy

Start diet today“Don’t think of eating in terms of denying yourself; think in terms of nurturing yourself. Look at what you can add to your diet instead of what you need to take away.”
-Dayle Haddon

We dread necessary diets because we don’t want to deny ourselves certain foods. Make this process easier and more nutritious by focusing instead on adding healthy items that your diet is missing. Once you realize how great those nourishing additions make you feel, eliminating those bad foods will be a lot easier. Let’s add some more nurturing foods to our diets today!

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Photo | “Start diet today” by Alan Cleaver | Used under a Creative Commons Attribution License

Eat in Front of a Mirror to Lose Weight

1014Iowa State University surveyed 320 college students while individually offering them bagels and the options of no-fat, low-fat and regular cream cheese. The half of the participants that ate in front of a mirror proved to be 32% less likely to slather on fattening, regular cream cheese. Such insight suggests that if you’re trying to lose weight, sitting with a mirror in your eye line and checking your reflection could help.*

The habit of watching yourself in the mirror as you eat is meant to remind you that the purpose of eating is for nourishment above all else. Looking at yourself in the mirror while you eat can also help you to reflect on your personal standards and weight-loss goals.

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*http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jill-s-brown/desperate-to-lose-weight-_b_4347530.html
Photo | Food | ©Lainee Richards