Ideas for low fat diet

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by Steely, Oct 9, 2011.

  1. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    I know what a FUN topic - LOL. Not.

    Anyway, I have joined a gym, and am devoting myself to low fat diet. My triglycerides are high, as well as cholesterol, and I am overweight -so it is time to do something!

    What recipes or ideas do you have for cooking things on a low fat diet???
  2. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    Don't kill all the fats - look for MUFAs, like cold pressed olive oil. Whole grain foods and low-fat dairy. Portion control and label reading are your friends. Join, it's free. Check out sites like
  3. keista

    keista New Member

    The only really good tip I have is for ground beef. When you brown ground beef to put in stuff like pasta sauce, instead of just draining the fat, wash it. I drain it, then dump it in a colander and rinse with hot water. You can "put back" any lost flavor by adding a beef bullion cube. I do this for my pasta sauces, and a beef, mushroom, barley soup I make.
  4. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    I have a web site stored where you can enter everything you eat and it breaks down the contents by fat, calories, carbs, sodium etc. Using it on a daily basis you can actually see what areas or recipes need improvement. Sadly, I only used it for about a week and then let it slide. on the other hand I think it is a wonderful free way to analyze your dietary intake. Let me know if you want it and I'll search and post. DDD
  5. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Ditto on the "no fat" warning... there are fat-soluble vitamins and minerals that are essential to health. Yes, moderate overall fat intake, drop all animal fat (including butter) and all hydrogenated or trans fats (includes MOST margerines). Becel is a healthy substitute for butter - ON BREAD - but not for cooking.

    Any recipe calling for melted butter - you can use olive oil, or canola oil.

    Many baking recipes, you can substitute half the fat with apple sauce - muffins, for example. The pectin in applesause has some of the same effect.

    Increase use of herbs and spices in cooking - onion, garlic, ginger, peppers (green, red, jalapeno, etc.), sage, thyme, etc.

    While you're at it - really watch your salt. Don't go "no salt" either - and do NOT use half-salt (bad taste) - just use less salt. We often cut the salt in half, and it still tastes good.

    Not everyone agrees, and not sure what diet specifically you're going on, but we found that several diets are based on the protein-carb-fat combo logic... and for us, its been a major energy boost. The basic theory is - eat all three at every meal or snack, moderate on protein, very moderate on fat, and skew the carbs away from grains, to veggies especially, plus some fruits. (i.e. less bread, pasta, potatoes... more cauliflower and cabbage and carrots and salads...)

    Don't take milk to SKIM - too lean - 1% is reasonable. At this level, a glass of milk has a good balance of protein, carb and fat!

    Really have to nibble? try roasted soy nuts.

    And you probably already know this, but... do not work out for two hours after eating, and do not eat for one hour after working out.

    Good luck!!!
  6. ctmom05

    ctmom05 Member

    Adding a little protein to my diet has helped a lot! I don't go nutz about it, but I often have a homemade breakfast shake with greek yougurt or cottage cheese in it, plus some fruit or other flavoring, plus a serving of dry milk powder(8 gr of protein in that).

    My friend swears by her Herbal Life shakes, made with their protein powder. I don't deny that it's a good product, but it costs a lot. Sometimes I use Carnation instant breakfast in my shake, which has a decent complement of nutrition. It does have sugar, so I use plain yougurt and non fat cottage cheese in my shakes.

    I also make myself walk some; not a lot - because that wouldn't work for me, but regularly; 1/2 mile to work.

    Good luck, let us know how you're doing, ok?
  7. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    OK - I am going to get a system. I have done the South Beach diet and it worked OK, but I am not sure about the fat intake in it. I guess I will take the links you gave me and create a diet of my own :)

    This gym that I joined has me inspired. They give you 4 personal training sessions free, and in them they create the "ideal" routine you need to lose weight. BUT! The really cool thing is that you are then assigned a thumb drive, and the thumb drive goes into each machine and tracks your workout. You then plug the thumb drive into a computer at the end of your workout and it tells you if you met your goals, how many calories you burned, etc. :) It sounds like an expensive gym, but it is not. It is just brand new, and I think this is the wave of the future. Which is cool!!!!
  8. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I know one thing...if they sent that Jillian whats her name from Worlds Biggest Loser, I would lose about 120 pounds in about 5 minutes flat because that annoying, condescending, witch would go flying off my porch so fast her head would spin!
  9. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    A few pitfalls to avoid, if you don't mind the advice.

    Skip the fat free dressings and things. Even many of the lowfat dressings can be a pitfall and other low fat versions of high fat products. It would be better to use a smaller amount of a full fat version because if you go fat free your body won't recognize satiety nearly as soon. Most people end up eating a lot more calories when they put fat free dressing, spreads, etc.... on their foods. It is safer to go with a good fat in smaller amounts because you do need certain types of fats and because they will trigger being full far earlier. With fat free items esp, you end up being hungrier again sooner.

    Don't fall for "light" "lite" etc.... It can refer to ANYTHING including just being a lighter color or not having as much in the bag.

    Get one of those pump bottles that you can use to spray any oil and change to healthy oils. If you are not allergic and like nuts, try using walnut, macadamia, almond and other oils when you cook. WIth the bottle (pampered chef sells a version - you pour the oil in to a certain level then pump the top up and down several times and then you can spray the oil like you could Pam or Baker's Joy) You can spray a pan very lightly but the oil will still pump up the flavor in your food and it will make it affordable to use a more expensive oil and avoid the various chemicals in Pam or whatever.

    Check out the various tofutti products. We LOVE their cream cheese though it costs more - it IS better than cream cheese. Their ice cream bars may or may not be low fat (I can't remember) but they are quite small and taste really decadent and indulgent. I think they were more healthy than reg ice cream sandwiches but it may have been the small size and use of real fruit, etc.....

    If you are making grilled cheese sandwiches, they are a LOt more diet friendly if you make them either by toasting the bread in the toaster and then microwaving it so the cheese melts or if you use a spray oil on teh pan lightly or one of those sandwich cooker thingies (looks like a waffle iron but is for making sandwiches) and don't put any butter or oil on the bread.

    Make sandwiches with tortillas or even that very thin sliced bread from pepperidge farms instead of regular bread. Also try Flat Out Flat wraps. I haven't looked at the reg version in a few years, but the light versions have 9 grams of fiber in each wrap. They are quite big and you can add a lot more veggies and things than you can with a reg tortilla. If you won't eat the whole pack in a week or so, put a couple of layers of wax paper between each wrap and put them in the freezer. Then you cna just pull out one when you need it. If you don't use at least 2 layers it wlll stick to the paper and be hard to separate with-o thawing it all.

    Check out the fat content in your mixes. It is more affordable and lower fat to make your own version of many mixes. Add spices to EVERYTHING - you won't miss the fat nearly as much as you would think. Even on a sandwich, adding some Mrs. Dash or a sprinkle of some spices you like can make it a lot more satisfying.

    Be careful with dried fruits. Many, like banana chips, are actually fried. They also pack a lot of calories. they can be high in nutrients, but read the label and follow serving sizes. If you like them, or dried veggies, consider using a dehydrator and making your own. It is pretty easy and you can make sure it is what you want and not what you don't.

    For a really DECADENT treat, one you will NOT know if low fat by the taste, mash up a banana and freeze it with an ice cream freezer or in a cup stirring every 15 min or so. No other ingredients needed to make a rich, creamy frozen treat.

    If you are a chocolate lover, don't cut it out of your diet. You will feel deprived. Go for small servings of chocolate you really like rather than a candy bar. I found dove dark promises to be a big re-inforcer for me. having one after a low fat meal could make me feel I had indulged but didn't have a big impact on my daily intake. Fnd recipes where you can use cocoa to make treats instead of chocolate. The side of the Hershey cocoa can will tell you how much fat and cocoa to substitute for each ounce of unsweetened chocolate. This lets you use good fats and to substitute applesauce or pureed prunes for some of the fat. Prunes are AMAZING as a substitute for fat in baking. It takes experimentation and you still have calories to watch for, but there are great recipes out there. Also, using oil instead of margarine or crisco type shortening will cut the bad fats way down.

    Avoid even trying to go fat free completely. Your body NEEDS fat to use certain vitamins. You also need a certain amount of fat for healthy skin, hair, nails and the rest of you. That woman who pushed the fat free diet had some great tips and recipes, but it really messed up her health. those who really followed what she preached ended up with real problems esp with skin. Skin is the largest organ and the first line of defense against infection so keeping it healthy is important.

    If you run across books about The Zone Diet, try the recipes. This diet advocates a 40-30-30 ratio of carbs-proteins-fats in your diet. It can make a HUGE difference in how well your body works - you think better, feel better and your body works better. Years ago the people I worked with in a bank all decided to try it as a group project. Not only was it pretty easy to follow (even before they sold the various proteing bars), we ALL felt better, worked better together, had more energy and fewer health problems. I got my mom to follow it because she has a liver disease. Her liver problems are NOT supposed to be able to really heal, or so we were told. This specific disease is supposed to leave scarring and keep the liver from regenerating the way it normally would. After a year on the diet she was due to have another biopsy (reg test she has to have) of her liver. She got called in for an imaging study (not sure if cat scan or mri, was a few years ago) because the bipsy showed healthy new liver where before she had scar tissue. The ONLY changes she made were to follow this diet and to really work on lowering her stress. There were a LOT of patients who lowered stress but not ones who followed the eating plan. Now her docs have done some studies and this is regularly highly recommened to her doctor's patients and to those of other docs with patients with the same problem. i KNOW it sounds too good to be true. It is what I thought when we started and what her doctor thought. But there was NO other explanation for the healing of her liver. Her doctor wrote a journal article about it and has heard from other docs that their patients have gotten great results from following this.

    For me part of the reason I liked the diet was that it did NOT demand you skip small indulgences. It just wanted you to have enough protein with them to let your body process them. Half a snickers bar and 2 oz of lean deli meat CAN be a snack if the rest of the day you push for lower fat.

    I don't stick to it as well as I used to, but I try. In the morning my mom CANNOT eat. It makes her sick. She uses protein powder (NOT sugar free as she/we are allergic to artif sweeteners) mixed with coffee or grapefruit juice for her morning protein. with-o it she is a grumpy person, with it she can actually cope before 3 cups of coffee, which is a miracle to those who livedwith her before she did this)

    Do NOT cut things you really like totally out of your life. You will feel deprived and this will only lead down the path of over-indulging. Plan a smaller amount of the item and avoid that feeling. If you are going to a wedding and you really LOVE cake, if you tell yourself you can't have any you are FAR more prone to eating much more than a reasonable portion size. Then you will feel guilty and THAT leads to more emotional eating that is counter-productive.

    One thing you can do if you like sweets (my biggest problem) is to put them in portion packs when you buy them. Buy a bag of candy? read the label. Decide if their portion size is right for you then figure out what size is right if theirs isn't. Then put teh candy into how ever many baggies or containers to portion it out. One family friend has really struggled with ehr diet so Mom and I bought her favorite treat items and portioned them out. We got mini m&m's (baking aisle if you want a bag of them) and counted them out to make 50 calories. We did a lot of things, and made the portion wrapping look PRETTY. I wouldn't have done it for myself probably, but having them with a PRETTY label, looking all fancy (colored saran wrap or tissue paper around reg saran wrap, wrapped with twisty ends like a tootsie roll, then with pretty paper labels we made with the name of the item, number of calories, etc....) made her feel that the 50 calories of M&M's or werthers or gum drops or whatever were a true indulgence, something special. This let her feel she was "cheating" without feeling any guilt, made it easy to STOP at a portion size, seemed to really help with the "cheating" that was one of her biggest diet problems.

    Her daughter's saw how it helped and they got the portion info and that year for Mom's day they gave her another container of treats. Christmas the next year we used only red and green M&Ms and clear wrapping and made a wreath out of the portion packs, lol. Adding FUN into a diet doesn't have to include calories and can reduce cheating.

    PLAY with your food. For years my mom said I was the only person she knew who doodled with food color. We had hot dog octopi for dinner, or worms (thin long slivers of hot dogs dunked in boiling water until they curled up) or other fun looking food as a regular thing when my kids were growing up. I really love to cook for people and make it look pretty or fun or festive, so a lot of the time I took a bit of extra time and made healthy food, esp homemade food, look special. take the time to do this with your own food and even the most restrictive diet can be satisfying emotionally. Instead of just chopping carrots with a paring knife, get one of those crinkle cutters or a simple garnishing kit and make it look different. Draw faces with a couple of chocolate chips or choc syrup or jelly heated just a bit. get fun shapes of pasta and make spaghetti fun. Start a window garden of herbs then use it to garnish dishes. Check out sites like family fun for ways to inspire you (just be careful with their recipes as they can be AWFUL in terms of nutrition, or were as of the last issue I read maybe a year or so ago - kid friendly homemade mac and cheese with about a week's worth of fat in a single serving!) Be sure to check out their april edition with the april fool's meals. they do get clever with what they make and it can be inspiring. I am NOT saying to make the food look like that always, but let it trigger your imagination.

    When you go out to eat, if you are at a salad bar or buffet, pay attention to the colors of the food and how they are arranged. Add a bit of color here or there. If you use fruits/veggies, you add nutrients of course, but you also add eye appeal.

    Eating involves ALL of our senses, so pay attention and try to make food LOOK really nice when you can or at least look interesting. It really does help keep you from cheating. One tip is to put sauces, salad dressing, etc... into squeeze bottles like they use at subway to put ranch or mayo on sandwiches. the bottles are cheap, most dollar stores have a pack of them in red and yellow for ketchup and mustard. Use them to draw with your condiments, even with gravy. try putting a few lines of a colorful condiment on the plate and then putting the food on top.

    All of this can SOUND strange or fussy or even dumb. Considering one of the biggest problems with diet and esp lifestyle change is feeling deprived, doing things like this can chase away the deprived feeling. That means you have a far better chance of keeping to the changes and becoming much helathier!

    Remember FIBER. It will make you feel full faster and it helps keep your digestive tract working well. There are a LOT of high fiber foods, new bars, etc... with fiber, and fiber supplements in all sorts of forms. Splenda now has a line of sweetener packets with either fiber, antioxidanct or vit B. the B can give you an energy boost. Benefiber etc.. are great ways to increase fiber. They also sell fiber tablets in the laxative section. It is a bit of a misnomer, because while fiber CAN work as a laxative, it can also help end the other spectrum of that problem. If you have IBS it is esp important to get enough fiber. Mostly it is best to get your fiber from fruits, veggies and whole grains, but it isn't always do-able. If you find you have a real problem with the low fat diet leaving you feeling hungry an hour later, or find you are eating a lot more calories because your body is used to more fat and isn't adjusting, consider taking 1-2 fiber tablets 1/2 hr or so before you eat - ALWAYS with a full glass of water or other liquid. It won't be something you probably need forever, but it WILL make your body feel full faster and that will last longer. Walmart sells fiber pills that are made with methylcellulose which is much less likely to cause gas problems. Gas may be another problem, esp as you eat more broccoli, cauliflower and other cruciferous veggies and esp if you eat sweet potatoes (which are an awesome way to give yourself a sweet treat with a TON of nutrition - just use a bit of brown sugar or maple syrup and cinnamon/nutmeg/ginger/pumpkin pie spice to taste). So keep gas medications on hand and in your purse if you eat out. If you can take beano, it is worthwhile too because it can stop production of gas rather than just getting it out easier. If you haven't used beano, it can be amazing. But be sure to read the label, of course.

    I hope that some of these ideas are helpful. A lot of the info about the fat free foods leading to eating more due to not feeling full etc.... came from a nutrition class and experiments we did for labwork. Of course use any/all ideas in whatever way helps YOU and ignore the rest.
  10. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Susie... I didn't mention Zone specifically - but that's the one we tried too. With 3 of us having various allergies, it got too complex to follow it to the letter - but it definitely makes a difference.
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2011
  11. flutterby

    flutterby Fly away!

    SparkPeople that ctmom mentioned is a great site - very comprehensive. You do want some of the good fats. Absolutely no - as in zero, zilch - trans fat. If a product has less than .5mg of trans fat, they can say something like zero or no trans fat on the product packaging. However, if the words "hydrogenated" or "partially hydrogenated" appear anywhere in the ingredients list is has trans fat. It only takes 2g of trans fat a day to triple your heart attack risk.
  12. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    I haven't read through all the responses but wanted to pass on some very helpful advice my kidney doctor gave to me. (I thought he was out of his nut at the time by the way)

    Portion control is a must. You wouldn't believe how small the actual portion sizes for the foods we eat actually are.

    Real butter is actually healthier for you than margarine. You still use it wisely, of course, and sparingly.

    Extra virgin olive oil will be your best friend. (and it takes good too)

    Take a good fish oil supplement each day. It helps get rid of the bad cholesterol. (I believe, but it's late.....I just know I was taking it for that)

    Pasta is not as fattening as people believe, it's what you're using with it and portion sizes.

    Now my doctor had me increase carbs (good carbs) and reduce animal protein but that's for the kidneys. I told him he was a loon I was gonna gain 50 lbs. I was wrong and he was right......I dropped weight like a rock.

    Don't think "diet". It's sure to sabotage you right from the starting gate. Think lifestyle change and healthier eating habits, cuz that's what it is, isn't it?

    Think about what you put into your mouth as in it's value to your body and energy level. Pop vs water = pop has sugar and usually caffiene while water has nothing but water that hydrates you. A candy bar vs an apple, ect.

    It won't hurt to have a "treat" now and again. If you drive past a favorite burger joint and the smell knocks you to your knees and you just gotta have one.....go get it. It will prevent you from turning your back on healthier eating altogether because it's just too "hard". Know what I mean??

    Be wary of processed "low fat" foods as they tend to be higher in calories. (he was right, can't tell you how many people I've seen gain weight eating that stuff) And calories will still get you in the end.

    Make sure you eat at least the 3 meals a day. Five small meals are preferred.........but honestly I've got all I can do to eat the 3 myself. It keeps the blood sugar from dropping and spiking and stops unwanted cravings.

    Eat foods high in fiber. Not only is it good for you, it helps you stay full longer.

    That said...........I've got to start paying better attention to what I'm eating and when and get back to this again the way I used to be. And I'm going to check out some of these links too while I'm at it.

    DDD I'd LOVE to have it if you can find it! :)
  13. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    She might be using the that I had mentioned. You put in your food, you can even put in custom food. You put in your basic lifestyle and whatever activities you did that day to get your calorie burn. Even stuff as mundane as vacuuming is in their activity list. You can set goals and calculate your BMI.
  14. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I completely agree with Lisa on portion control. That was teh reason Mom and I did the treat thing as a gift for my friend. Also on the whole smell of the burger place knocks you to your knees and you should eat it.

    One of the key ways to eat at restaurants with-o blowing your eating plan is to eat only 1/3 to 1/2 of everything you are served. PLAN on taking some home for the dog, kid, lunch the next day,etc.... My husband still says I am a cheap date because I eat about 1/4 to 1/2 of what I am served at most restaurants and take the rest home. He esp loves it as I often have no problem letting him have the leftovers. You can always ask if someone wants to split the meal if you don't want to take it home or it is impractical to do so.

    I have a HUGE weakness for restaurant desserts. When we order a dessert I usually share it with husband and the kids. I will plan on sharing if we are celebrating so we each get a treat but not 1000 calories of treat. If I am alone I get the ice cream on the side if it is cobbler or pie and is hot, and then I take at least 2/3 home. Ice cream on the side means much lower chance of food poisoning esp as I often have 90 min drive home if we are in the city where most of the places I like to eat desserts from are.

    If you truly like to eat out, get some of the top secret recipes (TSR) cookbooks and some of the other versions of those recipes. the TSR low fat restaurant cookbook has some awesome recipes. The low fat version of Olive Garden's salad dressing is phenomenal!

    One way to get control of portion sizes is to write on the package in big letters how much a serving is (1/2 cup, 4 oz, whatever) with a sharpie so that you see it every time you look at the package and every time you get something out of the package. For things that you would eat mindlessly, say chips or oreos or cereal or whatever, portion them out. Use ziplocks or small airtight containers and portion them either when you bring them home or the first time you open the package. If you buy ice cream bars and would be strongly tempted to eat the entire box at once, try taking them out of the box and storing them hidden in teh freezer, scattered among other things. Then you must actively look for a second or third one, which takes time and could give you a chance to remember that you are cutting back. If you really like ice cream but want SMALL portions, esp if you like it covered in chocolate, check out the Dove Miniatures. They are 70 calorie really rich indulgence. They come in several assortments with either milk or dark chocolate coating. I LOVE top quality ice cream. I LOVE dove chocolate, esp dar, One of these was quite enough to make me feel like I had a real treat. 2 of them was a much bigger indulgence and really felt like it was a special treat - and was only 140 calories!!!

    Another important tool is to know what 1/2 cup or a tablespoon or 4 oz of something looks like. For meat a 4 oz serving is roughly the size of a deck of cards. For steak, roast, etc..., that is. Next time you get cereal, measure out the serving size and put it into the bowl. Pay attention to how far up the side it comes, an dif the bowl has a pattern, focus on where it hits the pattern or how close it is to a specific feature of the pattern. For oils, dressings, etc... start with figuring what a liquid teaspoon or tablespoon looks like. Using a liquid that is NOT an oil and maybe is a bit thicker than water, pour a teaspoon onto a plate. See where it spreads to, etc... It seems silly, but it will really help you have an idea how much you are using in the future.

    LOTS of people think they can pour an ounce accurately, or a teaspoon, etc.... Even expert bartenders have problems with this. Measure things out for a while until you have a handle on how much that measured amount looks like when added to food. Rachel Ray often says go x times around the pan. It isn't a bad way to do this, esp if you have an oil container that has a narrow mouth or you have it in a squeeze bottle.

    If you have a kitchen scale, use it. If you don't and want one, try asking on freecycle. They can be really really handy, esp as you get used to using a different portion size.

    Have you seen the "eat this, not that" books? I do NOT recommend one. I was given a copy of one of the restaurant versions and it was highly illogical. It DID let you know some of the worst choices in terms of calories and fats, but what was awful and horrible and the worst thing you could do on one page was the most recommended item on another. It has been a few weeks since I read it, but it was just strange to me to have a meal with X grams of fat and Y grams of carbs ben horrible at one place and the next place that same value for X and Y was the best meal ever seen. Esp since in quite a few cases I KNEW that there were lower calorie choice with lower fat and carbs than the book claimed (I know because I am a strange person and looked up the online nutrition info for the restaurants - yes, I know it was odd to do this but I like playing with numbers).

    Another important factor in diet changes is the glycemic index. It is part of the science behind the Zone diet. the GI tells you how a food item impacts blood sugar - does it give it a big spike and a crash? Slow and steady increase? This can help you feel fuller with less calories and it can cut back on the sugar crash and overeating because that.

    I hope some of this helps.
  15. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    I'm hoping this is the right address! didn't underline itself! It is NAT which stands for Nutritional Analysis Tool. The University of Illinois is the originator. Let me know if you find it. It really really is neat.

    by the way I suggest that you try to remember that you can't radically change your life to get quick results. It's more of a slow changeover from what you are accustomed to and what you are comfortable doing. I have never known anyone who could go from sedentary living to full bore exercise and complete diet change. Think of it as improving your life slowly. I'm no perfect example, lol, but I changed one meal a day until I got used to it. Then I began making changes for another. I'm now doing fairly well with overall changes and I have lost the weight with five more pounds to go to goal. Breakfast was the starting point and was easy peasy. Fresh fruit and cereal replaced toast, bagels, donuts, etc. Once you decide what you like to eat that is healthy it saves alot of money, thought and time.

    Fingers crossed you find the site. If not...I'll try again. DDD
  16. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    DDD I found the site - thank you!! And to everyone else. I have everything written down, and I will slowly start to make the necessary changes to be healthy. My doctor wants to start me on hi tri-glyc medications and I am wanting to wait a month or 2 and see if I can lower these myself. We will see what she says.
  17. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Thanks for letting me know. I "should" start using it again myself. DDD
  18. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    It sounds like you have a really good plan. If you make changes and do not see a change in your weight, be sure they have checked your thyroid. Also be sure they have done the A1C test. It shows if you are heading into diabetes.

    One fairly easy way to increase your activity is to use a pedometer. You can usually find them inexpensively in Walmart, Target or even cheaper online. It doesn't have to be fancy or have bells and whistles of any kind. First wear one during a normal day - a day where you are not doing any exercise you wouldn't normally do. Start a notebook and write the date and how many steps were on the pedometer. Set a goal to do maybe 100 or 200 extra steps for a week, then increase that number the next week or so. Just keep track of the number of steps for the goal and the number from the pedometer.

    It sounds rather silly and like the increases are very small. But you will work up and it can help a lot. One of the reasons it is successful is that it isn't big and super challenging like running a mile every day. You can SEE the increase in activity in the notebook and it is a tangible reinforcer. It also is a small commitment done every day. This helps because you don't skip a day which takes you out of the routine and it doesn't take a lot of hard to find spare time to do.

    Not sure if you know this, but it is FAR better on your body to make slow lifestyle changes that you can stick to for the long term. father in law had a heart attack a few years ago. Before that his weight went up 20-25 pounds in the winter and went down about that much in the summer. We were all surprised to learn that this weight fluxuation is much harder on the heart than if he gained 10 pounds and kept it long term. I am not saying to not work to be a healthy weight and have a healthy lifestyle, just that the up and down weight thing that so many people do is very hard on the heart. So make changes slowly and make them for the long term.
  19. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    I have a couple of pennies to stick in here...

    Susie mentioned fiber. Some people don't like whole-grain breads - I think they taste better - and (as long as you read the label!) they can be better than white bread. Also, I LOVE oatmeal, and as a snack, about 1/2 a cup of stuff like rice or wheat Chex. Triscuits (lower salt) are my friend for the afternoon.

    Chew more slowly. Many people shovel it in and get eating over with. Savor each bite. You'll find you eat less, because your stomach gets the message to your brain. Some studies say it takes about 20 minutes... I like to read while I eat. TV will make you eat more (not me, because I'm not a TV watcher, but...). If you have music on, make it slow... Fast music is for exercising.

    If you can - stay AWAY from diet drinks. It is my personal opinion (and, to my surprise, recently has been backed up by some scientific studies) that the false sweet gives your brain the expectation of calories... And when they're not forthcoming, it starts demanding them. (Of course, like Susie and I and many others, fake sweetener makes us hurl... So.)

    When making sweet foods, you can always use less sugar than the recipe calls for. When I make brownies for husband, I use 1/2 the sugar. This weekend I made apple cinnamon bread - used a regular bread recipe, halved the milk because of the apple juice... And used NO sugar. Jett, husband and I ate a full loaf over the 3 days...
  20. keista

    keista New Member