Monday, September 6, 2010

The new PC – portion control

At the risk of boring people who have been following my blog since the beginning, this week I’m covering portion sizes again. Portion control really is key to losing and/or maintaining your weight and staying healthy, so herewith healthy eating, weight loss guidelines.

Please think of this as an eating guide, rather than a diet. “Diet” implies something you will stop once
you reach your goal weight. For successful weight loss (i.e. to lose and keep weight off, once and for all) this is a style of eating you need to follow forever.

ALWAYS eat breakfast – fasting all night raises cortisol levels: high levels of cortisol encourage
fat storage. To control cortisol levels you need to raise insulin levels (insulin suppresses cortisol). To raise insulin levels, you need to eat.

To control blood sugar levels, try to keep to low GI foods. You can use cinnamon sprinkled on fruits and cereals. Cinnamon helps maintain blood sugar levels.

Try to eat dinner before 7.00pm – this may be difficult if you eat out.

There are basically six food groups: Fruits, vegetables, grains, meat and beans, milk and oils. I’ll cover fruits and vegetables today.

Fruits are carbohydrates.
The fruit group includes all fresh, frozen, canned and dried fruits and fruit juices. In general,
1 cup of fruit, or ½ cup of pure fruit juice (unsweetened) or ½ cup of dried fruit is considered to be 1 portion. I suggest you limit bananas to 2 per week, and dried fruit to 1 cup per week – purely because of the high sugar content. If you wish to set fruit salad in a sugar free jelly, slightly reduce the water used to make the jelly. Do NOT put pineapple in, it affects the set.
Recommended daily consumption: 2 – 3 portions of fruit (3 – 4 for men)

Vegetables are carbohydrates.
The vegetable group includes all fresh, frozen, canned and dried veg and veg juices. In general,
1 cup of raw or cooked veg or veg juice, or 2 cups of raw leafy greens (eg lettuce) equals
1 portion. Potatoes and sweet potatoes are NOT included in this group - these come under the grains group.
Recommended daily consumption: 3 - 5 portions of vegetables (5 – 8 for men)

On Wednesday, I’ll talk about the other four food groups.

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