By Sharon Lewis

In this present age, information is accessible from anywhere at any time. How often have you turned on the evening news or checked a news feed only to find that a food, drink, or activity previously touted as good for you ends up debunked by science? Such instances that stand out are:

  • the consumption of eggs, and
  • the suggestion that a no-fat diet fights the risk of breast cancer.

Well, people limited their consumption of eggs or ate just the whites. Then, women were told that they could cut their risk of breast cancer by consuming a no-fat diet. It is now known that fat is an essential part of the diet, and eliminating it altogether has negative health consequences.

Scientific research, such as that performed at the University of California-San Franscisco’s Medical School, has verified over 30 healthy lifestyle habits and diet tips, which will be shared in this series of articles. Here are the first four:

1. Don’t Drink Sugar

Sugary beverages include soda, fruit juices, sweetened tea, and other artificial/sweetened beverages. These beverages are the primary source of added sugar to your diet and are the most fattening items that can be consumed. Studies have proven that the brain does not measure calories from liquid sugar the same way it does from solid carbohydrates. Therefore, you will consume more calories when consuming liquid sugar than when eating solid carbohydrates.

Some fruit juices are as bad as soda in this respect because they contain almost as much sugar. The antioxidants consumed from fruit juice are insufficient to overcome the negative effects of consuming the sugar. EAT fruit, don’t drink fruit.

Consuming sugary drinks, no matter what their source, is strongly associated with obesity, type-2 diabetes, heart disease, and other health issues.

2. Avoid Restrictive Diets

Dieting is often the first thought if one is carrying excess weight. A diet, in the sense of a temporary caloric restriction to lose weight, is ineffective. Many people yo-yo diet. This means they ‘diet’ to lose weight, then go back to their original eating habits, regain the weight, and start the process all over again. Unfortunately, a restrictive diet is the strongest predictor of future weight gain. An overly restrictive diet lowers metabolism, which makes it more difficult to lose weight. Restrictive diets can cause alterations to one’s hunger and “satisfaction” hormones, resulting in strong food cravings for foods that are high in calories and sugar.

3. Eat Whole Eggs

Over the years, people have gone back and forth on the issue of egg consumption. It is a myth that eggs are bad for you because of the amount of cholesterol they contain. Studies show that they have minimal effect on blood cholesterol levels in most people. Eggs are a good source of protein and nutrients.

4. Eat Lots of Fruits and Vegetables – Eat the Rainbow

Harvard University’s Health Publishing recommends eating at least five servings of fruit and vegetables. This ensures adequate consumption of fiber and other nutrients that may be lacking from the American diet. It sounds like a lot, but it is not that hard. Slice a banana on breakfast cereal or make a smoothie with frozen fruit, have a salad with lunch, or have sliced veggies as a snack, and then have one or two vegetables with dinner. The benefits will be a smaller waistline, better elimination, and weight loss without trying!

Being healthy should be a goal for everyone. Old habits die hard, so try to eliminate and replace one unhealthy habit with a healthy one. One step at a time! More evidence-based nutritional tips coming up in Part 2 of this series.

How do you feel about this article? Choose from the options below.
+1
0
+1
0
+1
0
+1
0
+1
0