Monday, 24 May 2010

Some healthy brain washing

If most food adverts and film/tv product placements were to be believed the way to be slim, attractive and full of energy would be to live on a diet of chocolate biscuits, sugar laden breakfast cereals and fizzy diet drinks.

Sadly alot of people fall for this advertising and even the more intelligent viewer who knows it's nonsense can get lured into eating branded processed foods - even a nutritionist can succumb!

If I do ever find the 'rubbish' creeping back into my diet I turn to my antidote for junk food advertising: 'Slim 4 Life' by Jason Vale. This book is an easy, slightly trashy, read - the equivalent of Chick Lit for nutritionists! But it does a great job at brainwashing the reader into wanting to eat healthy food, sort of like the Alan Carr method but for junk food instead of cigarettes.

I don't agree with his approach 100 per cent, for example there is too much emphasis on juicing and the fruit only breakfast/food combining approach is not what I subscribe to. But he also makes some excellent points/observations - here are my favourites but you'll have to read the book to benefit from the brain washing:

The optimum diet for maximum health should be based in fruit and veg - these should form the bulk of your diet (rather than carbs as in the traditional food pyramid) and are the secret to lasting weight loss. Vegetable juices and fruit smoothies can be a useful way to up your intake.

Diets don't work - by this Jason means the traditional calorie restrictive diets and I totally agree. In the long-run these diets lead to a slow-down in metabolism and can also lead to binge eating/cravings as a consequence of the restrictive nature. The key to healthy sustainable weight loss is to focus on the quality of your food rather than the quantity and you don't have to feel deprived or be hungry to lose weight.

It is important to be physically active every day, but also important to enjoy exercising so spend some time thinking about what exercise/activities you enjoy and do those rather than getting bored on the treadmill.

Processed foods and refined sugars/carbohydrates can be addictive and so it's important to recognise these drug-like qualities and make it your goal to kick the habit.

It is important to eat when you have a 'real' hunger rather than a 'mental hunger'. If you eat for emotional reasons you will never feel satisfied and will over-eat.

Water intake is vital for good health - our body is mainly made up of water and it is essential for so many functions in the body. Drinking water, herb tea and eating lots of water-rich fruit and veg are all important for optimum health.

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