Questions like “What do you recommend? What should people eat?” or “What exactly it is the proper diet?” can not be answered only with “eat less fat” or “exercise more” and “base your diet on low fat food like…”. This “do’s and don’ts” will direct you towards a plant-based diet. Although nutrition is a more complicated mater and it can not be solved in a few phrases, this can be a start.

Don’t eat:

Ground beef and other fatty meats are dangerous for both your health and weight. It is known that red meat is the largest source of fat and saturated fat and that saturated fat is the most important factor in heart disease. Ribs, bacon, and sausages are other fats that we should not eat.

Also don’t eat lean meat more than three times a week although it has less saturated fat.

Studies show that lean red meats may increase the risk of colon and possibly prostate cancer but not poultry or seafood which is healthier.

Don’t eat pizza or other cheese based meals because it is well known that almost any pizza, especially a cheese pizza will use up 40 percent of your saturated fat limit for the day.

The food industry causes our salt problem. More than 70 percent of the sodium we eat comes from processed foods. For a healthier life we should try changing a frozen dinner with our own steam broccoli or broiled fresh flounder in low-fat mayo, lemon juice, and dill. Don’t use the commercial salad dressing and try your own vinegar, fresh garlic, mustard, and olive oil.

Do not consume so many sweets. It can drag down a good diet and may cause other important health problems. Soft drinks give 160 calories at 12-ounce and no vitamins, minerals, fiber, or phytochemical. Other sweets like brownies or some cookies, cheesecake, pecan or cinnamon rolls, give you an entire meal’s worth of calories and fat. Fat-free or low-fat versions of sweets are healthier, but can not take the place of fruit, grain crackers, or other nutrient-packed foods.

Don’t overdo consuming alcoholic beverages. For women that drink often than three times a week the risk of breast cancer is greater and the death rate is higher.

Do eat:

Eating more plant foods and especially vegetables, may reduce the risk of cancers, including colon, lung, stomach, mouth, throat, esophagus, pancreas, and bladder. And it can help lower your risk of heart disease and stroke by decreasing the cholesterol level.

Also eating at least five to nine servings of fruits and vegetables is recommended by the National Cancer Institute. The risk of heart disease and stroke may be reduced mainly because fruits and vegetables contain photochemical, fiber, folic acid, and potassium.

Make your everyday fruits and vegetables handy for you. Keep a bag of peeled baby carrots on your desk. Peel a grapefruit, orange, or tangerine. Keep a bowl of fruit salad in the fridge. Make sure that you eat as much fruits and vegetables as possible.

Switch to fat-free milk, yogurt, ice cream, and cheese. Women especially don’t get enough calcium to diminish the risk of osteoporosis. You can eat ice cream or frozen yogurt only if it’s low-fat or fat-free. A daily cup of regular ice cream can jeopardize a healthy diet. Most dairy foods have calcium. But they can also be field with artery-clogging saturated fat.

Eat whole grains because they are more nutritious than refined grains, and they’re risk of colon cancer is lower.

Buy only light tubs or sprays margarine or butter because they are healthier. Butter’s field with saturated fat.

The spray butter and the light margarine have no more than six grams of fat or three grams of saturated fat per tablespoon. When it comes to cooking these varieties of butter and margarine may not serve it purpose and you should try the ordinary forms but not in normal quantities or change the regular butter whit olive or canola oil.

Make sure your body has enough vitamins and minerals for a proper development and a les painful ageing. Vitamins can’t repair a broken diet, but they may make a good diet better, especially if your body lacks in vitamins and minerals. The folic acid and vitamin D are especially important.

Ever wonder what’s really in that hamburger or what makes those Oreos so scrumptious? Chances are that there is a long list of processed ingredients that you can’t even pronounce. Everywhere in the world, processed foods are being sold and consumed by almost everyone. Little do they know about their hidden dangers. Recent studies suggest that processed foods may be more harmful than anyone ever expected. As these studies show, processed foods are linked to many common diseases as well as health issues. We need to change our eating habits and get the processed food industry to improve its standards.

By definition, processed foods are foods that are altered from their natural state to enhance their qualities. Processed foods were created to preserve, texturize, soften, sweeten, and do much more to natural foods. Most processing factories modify their products in those ways by canning, freezing, and a few other techniques. This makes processed foods fairly convenient for the consumer, so convenient, in fact, that, according to bodyecology.com, 90% of money spent on food by Americans is on processed foods, but this convenience doesn’t come without consequences.

In processed foods, most nutritional value is lost and replaced by other chemicals and ingredients that have little or no nutritional value, which can be damaging to your health. For example, according to consumeraffairs.com, high fructose corn syrup is a common sweetener added to processed foods and is extremely unhealthy. It increases your triglyceride levels—the level of fat in your blood—and LDL, the bad type of cholesterol. An average U.S. citizen will consume 68 pounds of high fructose corn syrup every year. 68 pounds. A seven-year study conducted on 200,000 people by the University of Hawaii found that those who eat large amounts of processed meats such as hot dogs and spam have a 67% higher risk of getting cancer than those who ate little or no processed meats.

Over 6000 chemicals are used in processed foods, some of which have unknown or untested results and require no government approval, but go in the category of the Food and Drug Administration’s “Generally Recognized as Safe” list. For example, reported side effects from monosodium glutamate, a common additive, are numbness, nausea, headache, and drowsiness, and yet, it is “generally recognized as safe.” Processed foods also contain trans fats that wreck the good and bad cholesterol balance, which in turn increases a person’s risk for heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. Because no one really knows what products have what effects, every time you sit down for a meal, you are taking a potential risk.

These are a few of the many reasons why we need to lessen our consumption of processed foods. Although there are a few healthy processed foods such as pasteurized milk or canned vegetables, there are too many chances to take with all those unhealthy processed foods. According to the Washington Post, large companies such as Hershey’s and General Mills are cutting back on the amount of sugar, trans fat, and high fructose corn syrup in their products, and many other companies are raising the bar for processed food health standards. But we can’t just sit around and wait, we need to start making healthier choices now. So the next time you take a bite out of a hamburger or eat a few Oreos, think about what you’re really eating and doing to your body. Think about it.

There is a growing trend in the world in which more and more people believe that if they consume only a certain amount of calories per day, they will lose weight. This plan, called counting calories, might not be as proven to work as we once thought it did.

Did you know that even in a highly controlled clinical situation, it is very difficult to accurately count calories? This is true. If someone says that they have eaten 3,125 calories that day, odds are good that they could have consumed anywhere from 2,000 to 4,000 calories! This is because the margin of error with this type of diet is very high, and it is nearly impossible for someone to accurately count calories well enough to make a difference in their diet.

What is also happening in our current diet culture is a sort of fast-food approach to dieting. People believe, and think, that eating less in one day will impact their health or body weight. Actually, this is a very erroneous thought process. In reality, the only way to lose weight in a way that will produce effective, long term results is to eat less over a longer period of time… such as a week, or even for a month.

You see, most people think to themselves that they will just forgo the burger and eat only a muffin instead. But if they give in and eat the burger, then they feel guilty because they have ruined their entire diet plan. This is because the plan was focused on that day, and because they have already consumed all the calories that they were not supposed to for the day, they lose hope, give up, and eat another burger!

You see, the key is to eat less over a longer period of time. For example, if you eat three square meals a day most of the time, then what if you only ate two small meals and one square meal a day instead for the period of a month? You would be consuming less, and would probably lose weight. Or, what if you have a bad habit of snacking and eating meals? So, for two months, you only eat meals and completely forgo snacking? You will consume less in the long run, meaning that weight loss will occur. But you can even go a step further, making weight loss something that happens much faster. This next step is called intermittent fasting, and it is a brand new way to think of dieting and weight loss.

Brad Pilon, who is the author of the book titled “Eat Stop Eat”, is a nutrition expert who believes that cutting calories in the long run is the only way to shed pounds. He has traveled the world, met famous athletes, and has been involved in sports, nutrition, and fitness his entire life. In his book Eat Stop Eat, Brad Pilon basically calls for people who want to lose weight to fast for two days a week (which means don’t eat anything, just drink liquids). On the other days, they are to eat square, balanced meals, work out, and keep active. Some have seen this intermittent fasting idea as sort of controversial and extreme. In fact, some have gone as far as to say that this type of diet would promote muscle loss. However, Brad has specially designed this diet with a purpose in mind. To lose weight over the course of a month instead of in the course of a day, and to promote a healthy weight loss program that really works with long-term effectiveness.

If you are tired of weight loss programs that don’t work, and if you are tired of feeling guilty for eating anything that is tasty, then you need to look into this diet. While the Eat Stop Eat diet might be more extreme than other diets you have attempted, there are two things to think about. First, has any other diet really worked for you? If not, then you obviously need to step it up to a more extreme program. Second, look at yourself in the mirror. Are you tired of not being in the shape you want to be in? Then it is time to do something about it, and that “something” just might be intermittent fasting for weight loss.  It is really not all that hard actually, and you will feel so much better about yourself knowing that you are doing something good for your body.

The opinion on an egg’s nutrition seems to always be in flux. It’s true that if you have really high cholesterol than you should probably cut back on your egg intake, but for healthy men and women, an egg a day can actually do more help for their hearts than harm. In fact, you’ve got a better chance of heart failure due to stress than due to eating a moderate amount of eggs.

Eggs, which for years have gotten a bad rap for being unhealthy for your heart, can actually help prevent against coronary heart disease. Here’s how:

•    Eggs are packed with choline and betaine, two nutrients related to Vitamin B that lower high levels of homocysteine. Too much homocysteine can cause inflammation (read: heart attack), as well as increase your chances of stroke, Alzheimer’s, dementia, and peripheral vascular disease.
•    Eggs are full of healthy protein. A large egg provides about six grams of protein.
•    Eggs contain riboflavin, a nutrient which gives you energy.
•    Among the many vitamins and minerals packed into a single egg is Vitamin D, a vitamin that many people are deficient of (especially obese people or people with diabetes).
•    Some eggs have high levels of omega-3 fatty acids which is gaining popularity as one of the most heart-friendly nutrients out there.
•    Eggs are one of the most affordable forms of animal protein.
•    Eggs fill you up and taste delicious! And since they’re only about 75 calories each, it can easily be made a part of a healthy low fat, low calorie meal.

If you do have high cholesterol, or are trying to cut the fat in your diet, then you can still get most of the protein and nutrients from eating the egg white alone. All of the fat is in the yolk.

So next time someone threatens your egg intake, you just tell them that the new research on eggs shows that an egg a day keeps the doctor away!

Childhood obesity has become a worldwide epidemic. Did you know that 1 in 5 children are obese and 1 and 4 are considered overweight. Minority children suffer even higher rates of obesity. All of these statistics are very alarming and there are several contributing factors that have led to this epidemic. You should understand that childhood obesity affects children exactly like obesity affects adults. Both obese children and adults have a higher chance of developing hypertension, high cholesterol, low self-esteem, asthma, sleep apnea, type 2 diabetes and even some forms of cancer.

Here are some interesting facts about childhood obesity.

1. Both adults and children with lower education and income levels are more likely to become overweight or obese.

2. Children that have overweight or obese parents are more likely to be overweight or obese as well.

3. Children that were not breastfeed have higher risk of becoming obese children and adults.

4. Children watch about 10 to 20 food and drink commercials per day.

5. In the United States alone, food and beverage companies spend millions of dollars marketing their products to children. Unfortunately, many of these products are extremely high in sugar, fat and calories.

6. Obese children have a higher risk of dying prematurely than children of normal weight

7. Young female children that have physically inactive mothers are more likely to be sedentary and ultimately become overweight.

8. Statistics show that children and teens that spend more than 4 hours per day watching television or on computer are more likely to become overweight or obese.

In today’s economic times, most households have both parents working outside the home. Unfortunately this situation leaves children at home alone watching television or surfing the internet for hours where they are inundated with advertisement after advertisement for tasty but unhealthy treats and snacks. As these children begin to gain weight, some are ridiculed and bullied which can lead to depression and low self-esteem. With depression and low self-esteem, children can develop even more weight and health problems.

Parents of children that have a higher risk for obesity should be mindful of their child’s diet and exercise routine. These statistics do not mean a child is destined to become overweight or obese. It simply means that they have a higher chance. If both you and your child work hard and stay on top of your child’s diet, exercise and health, you can both break the cycle of obesity.

Many people chose not to take a multivitamin daily. Even though that is a personal choice, some people are simply unaware of the potential health benefits that most vitamins offer. For instance, vitamin D aids in the formation and in the maintenance of strong bones. Many people who don’t get enough vitamin D often suffer from muscular weakness and weak bones; therefore, it is important to be aware of the health benefits that each vitamin has to offer.

Vitamin D can be absorbed by your body in many different ways. First of all, you can gain vitamin D by consuming several foods, such as: fish, eggs, fortified milk, and cod liver oil. Vitamin D can also be absorbed through sun exposure. Many researchers state that just ten minutes in the sun daily provides a sufficient amount of vitamin D. Taking a multivitamin daily is yet another, more traditional way of obtaining an adequate amount of vitamin D.

Some of the benefits that vitamin D offers include: maintaining normal blood levels of calcium, aids in absorbing calcium, aids in maintaining strong bones, aids in the formation of strong bones. Recent studies also show that vitamin D may provide protection from osteoporosis, hypertension, cancer and several autoimmune diseases. People who are at a higher risk of suffering from a Vitamin D deficiency include elderly people, dark skinned people, and obese people.  However, even if you do not fit into one of those categories, you should still attempt to maintain an adequate vitamin D intake. For most people under the age of fifty, the adequate amount of vitamin D intake is 5 mcg (200 IU) daily. For individuals over the age of fifty, the adequate intake goes up to 10 mcg daily (400 IU) daily. If you are unsure what the proper vitamin D intake is for you, don’t hesitate to speak with your doctor. This is a very simple step which could aid in the maintenance and health of your bones.