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This Healthy Diet Won’t Fail

By By Drs. Michael Roizen & Mehmet Oz

This Healthy Diet Won’t Fail

Try this diet

Interested in getting into your pre-baby jeans? Noshing extra calories while nursing a baby? Fighting fat and just want to become and stay thin? For whatever reason you want to lose weight, you want a diet that won’t fail. We have the answer.

Tight Pants Problem
Most diets promise common sense solutions to tight-pants problems: Eat less; weigh less. Keep your mouth closed—you’ll keep the pounds off. Sweat like a sauna-dwelling sumo and you’ll wind up thinner than a sheet of paper. But if diets really worked that way, we wouldn’t be showing up on Google Earth. If it were really that easy, most diets wouldn’t fail.

Maybe most diets have it wrong. Should you simply tackle the corn chips, croissants and cheesecake with brute force? It’s you versus food in a lifetime heavyweight fight. But this fight is always fixed—and not in your favor.

When it comes to dieting, trying to whip fat with willpower is the food equivalent of holding your breath underwater. You can do it for a while, but no matter how psyched you get, at some point your body—your biology—forces you to the surface gasping for air.

So it goes with diets: At some point, your body forces you to gasp (or gulp) for food. No matter how hard you try not to eat, some hidden force deep inside is always prying your mouth back open, making it impossible for willpower to win.

Instead of sparring with your waistline, make your body your ally in the fat fight. It’s time to win with elegance, with smarts, and with healthy choices that become as automatic as a Simon Cowell barb.

Lose the Weight Forever
Science has just started to unlock the biological mysteries that explain why we store fat and gain weight. Having the medical evidence about food, appetite and satiety (satisfaction, that’s right!) means you can tackle your weight problem with the only weapon that works: Knowledge. You can reprogram your body so that you can keep off extra weight forever.

Work smarter, not harder. On our plan, you can expect to drop up to 2 inches from your waist (or a dress size) within 2 weeks. You’ll continue to see results steadily after that. You may be focused on the end goal, but we believe the path you choose to get there is what really determines whether you’ll make it or not.

Automatic Waist Management
Think of your waist management plan a little like the way you’d drive to work. Maybe the first day on a new job in a new city, you took the highway. But then you found out it was more clogged than Rapunzel’s shower drain. So you experimented with a few back roads, shortcuts and bypasses until you found the very best way to get to work. Now you don’t need a map; you do it automatically and don’t spend a single nanosecond worrying about what turn to take. It’s automatic—just the way your approach to eating should be.

When you’re starting out on this plan, you’ll experiment with different routes, get stuck in a few traffic jams, and maybe even get a little lost along the way. But if you stick with it and find the right course, you’ll automate your habits, regulate your body’s hormones, and make healthy eating the easiest trip you’ve ever made.

It will take some effort at the start to retrain your habits, palate and muscles, but this program is a lifelong eating, activity and behavior plan that will become as routine as going to the bathroom before bed.

Your Last Diet: The Plan
Get Active!
• Get a buddy: Hardly anyone accomplishes anything alone—so the first thing you need is a buddy. She or he can be a committed spouse or an exercise friend who has your back and cheers you on to great healthful food choices and will not sabotage your plan, no matter what.
• Walk: Your ultimate goal is 10,000 steps every day—NO EXCUSES! Your buddy can help you build up to 10,000 daily steps. Walking improves all of your body’s systems and builds the habit and motivation you need for ongoing success. It’s THE most important thing you can do to affect weight loss.
• Stretch: Do 3 to 5 minutes of stretching after your walk. While it keeps your muscles limber and flexible, which helps prevent injury, stretching also has a meditative element that helps you refocus and cope with cravings. Be gentle—‘no pain, no gain’ doesn’t apply here.

Eat For Life!
• Dump your fridge: Read the ingredient labels on everything in your kitchen cupboards, refrigerator, breadbox and everywhere else you stash food. TRASH any of the 5 Food Felons listed herein.
• Go food shopping: The first week, you’ll have a larger-than-normal shopping list because you’ll stock up on essentials as well as ingredients you’ll need for this week’s recipes. We want to turn your kitchen into a nutritional honor society so that it’s filled with good-for-your-waist foods that make it easy (and automatic!) to eat right.
• Map your meal strategy: Eat 3 main meals plus snacks, so you’re never hungry. No eating within 3 hours of bedtime. Consider dessert an every-other-day treat at most. By incorporating snacks, you avoid hunger emergencies, for which apples, almonds, walnuts and edamame (soybeans) are good choices.
• Automate 2 meals & 2 snacks each day: To help make eating automatic, pick at least 1 meal a day to alter and have the same few food choices every day for all other meals and snacks—alternate 1 or 2 breakfasts, 1 or 2 sets of snacks, and 1 or 2 lunches. Then, spice up dinnertime with varied and interesting meal choices.

Avoid The 5 Food Felons!
#1. & #2. Simple sugars & syrups: This includes brown sugar, dextrose, corn sweetener, fructose (as in high-fructose corn syrup), glucose, corn syrup, invert sugar, maltose, lactose, malt syrup, molasses, evaporated cane sugar, raw sugar, and sucrose. Keep a little table sugar, honey and maple syrup handy, because you’ll use them for recipes.
#3. Saturated fats: This includes most 4-legged animal fat, milk fat, butter or lard, 2-legged animal skin and tropical oils, such as palm and coconut.
#4. Trans fats: This includes partially hydrogenated fats, vegetable oil blends that are hydrogenated and many margarines and cooking blends.
#5. Enriched flours and all flours other than 100% whole grain or 100% whole wheat: This includes enriched white flour, semolina, durum wheat and any of the acronyms for flour that is not whole wheat—they should not be in your kitchen.

Eating for 1.1
Sure you need extra calories each day for a healthy pregnancy—but not so many to justify a daily trip to Ben & Jerry’s. Pregnancy is never a time to diet or try to lose weight. You only need a 10% increase in calories during your first trimester, hence 1.1, and it goes up from there.
Fuel up and calm your cravings with these healthy, juicy suggestions for taking in the extra needed calories each trimester. All calorie counts are approximate—measure and calculate your ingredients as you go.
1st Trimester: +100 Calories/day
• 2 Juicy peaches or 3 plums
• 8oz icy cold skim milk
• Hummus (3 tbsp) with water-packed celery
2nd Trimester: +250 Calories/day
• 1 whole wheat roll, 1oz hard cheese and grape tomatoes
• 2 string cheese and one cup frozen grapes
• Chocolate (extra dark, extra good!), dipped frozen banana
3rd Trimester: +300 Calories/day
• 6oz Plain Greek yogurt, 1/2 cup granola and 3/4 cup blueberries
• Tropical smoothie: Light yogurt, banana and pineapple (1/2 cup each); add water and ice to desired consistency
• Pita picnic: 1/2 pita, 2 tbsp hummus, chilled steamed veggies

Michael F. Roizen, MD, is chief wellness officer and chair of the Wellness Institute at the Cleveland Clinic. Mehmet C. Oz, MD, hosts the Dr. Oz show; he is also a professor and vice chairman of surgery, and director of the Cardiovascular Institute and Integrated Medical Center, at New York’s Presbyterian-Columbia University.


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