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25 Time-Tested Truths For Healthy Eating

The Best Advice On Losing Weight and Staying Slim

1 Keep a food journal. Writing down what you eat as well as when you eat can clue you into patterns (emotional eating and late-night snacking). (Jan. 1986)2006update A slew of high-tech devices make food journaling fun. Make a photo food journal with a camera phone (myfoodphone.com).

2 Opt for preserves instead of high-fat spreads like butter or margarine. You'll consume fewer calories and fat. (July1988)

3 Eat breakfast to maximize your weight loss. Research shows that skipping this important meal may cause you to overeat later in the day. (Jan. 1990)

4 Dont allow your daily calorie intake to drop below 1,200 calories. This is the minimum your body needs simply to function. Severe calorie restriction wont help you sustain weight loss, because it actually slows down your metabolism, sending your body into starvation mode as it tries to conserve energy. (Feb. 1983)

5 Eat plenty of good-for-you whole grains. Despite misconceptions that carbohydrates are evil and fattening, not all carbs are bad for you. Whole grains and breads are satisfying, heart-healthy choices that keep you full so you don't overeat and put on pounds. (April 1993) note For healthy carb recipes, turn to Superfast Suppers (page 136).

The Best Advice On Preventing Disease

6 Get plenty of calcium to lower your risk of osteoporosis, which decreases bone mass and makes bones more fragile. (June 1985)
2006 UPDATE The RDA for women ages 1930 is 1,000 milligrams daily.

7 Eat fish for a stronger heart. Fatty,cold-water fish like salmon and sardines is a great source of cholesterol-lowering omega-3 fatty acids. (Feb.1987)
2006 UPDATE Fats that are polyunsaturated also found in soybeans, canola, walnut and flaxseed are being investigated for their ability to fight cancer.

8 Rethink bad food myths. Rumor has it you should avoid avocado due to its fat content. However, the fat is primarily monounsaturated, which helps lower your risk for developing heart disease. (June1995)

9 Choose foods with a fiber content of at least 2 grams per serving. This nutritional superstar protects you from heart disease, and its your No. 1 ally in weight loss. High-fiber foods are bulkier, making you feel fuller on fewer calories. (June2004)


The Best Advice On Food shopping

10 Be a label detective. Listing sugar in several different forms (dextrose and honey, to name just two) is a trick that manufacturers use to push it down the ingredients list. (Sept. 1981)2006update Beware of new pseudonyms for the sweet stuff, such as xylitol and mannitol.

11 At the supermarket, stick to the outer aisles, where you usually find produce and other fresh, healthy goods. Candy, chips, cookies and soda lurk in the middle aisles. (March1982)

12 Watch out for added sugars in yogurt. Some varieties contain more sugar than a candy bar (about 30 grams), and whole-milk yogurts are high in fat. Buy nonfat yogurt flavored with fresh fruit. (April 1994)

13 Check labels for partially hydrogenated oils. This signifies the presence of trans fat, a man-made fat that boosts cholesterol and heart-disease risk. (Jan. 1996)
2006 UPDATE Starting in January, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration required listing of trans fat on nutrition facts panels on packaged foods. Now,for the first time, consumers can tell how much dangerous trans fat is in the food they buy.

The Best Advice On Dining Out

14 Beware of salad extras. Request the dressing on the side, say no to croutons, and ask your server to go easy on the cheese. A fully loaded salad can use up your calorie allotment for an entire day! (Jan. 1984)

15 Don't drink calories. That fruity cocktail you order at the bar might contain more calories than your entree. A pina colada has about 250 calories, most of which are nutritionally empty. (Dec. 1999)

16 Eat slowly. It takes your stomach up to 20 minutes to register fullness, so if you slow down you'll likely eat less. Focus on the dining experience instead, and enjoy the company of your dinner companions. (Oct.1997)

17 Order soup. Start your meal with a broth-based soup. It will fill you up and keep you from overindulging on the main course. (Feb. 2003)


The Best Advice On Cooking Healthy

18 Steam vegetables. Boiling them breaks down the vitamins, which then leach into the water. (Jan.1989)

19 Substitute applesauce for oil in baked goods to save fat and calories. Swap 1 tablespoon applesauce for 1 tablespoon vegetable oil, and you'll slash 96 calories and 14 grams of fat. (Jan.1991)

20 Top a baked potato with nonfat yogurt instead of sour cream. You'll get a fraction of the calories, fat and saturated fat. (Jan.1992)

21 Pump up healthful dishes with exotic flavor boosters that have low or no fat. Try cooking with wasabi, pomegranate molasses or tandoori paste. (March 2001)

22 Don't toss citrus peels. They're potent sources of vitamins and phytochemicals. Grate orange or lemon peel on grilled fish, and add them to muffin and cookie recipes. (July 2002)

The Best Advice On Snacking

23 Go nuts! Although they've been given a bad rap for being calorie-dense and high in fat, nuts are a healthy snack. An ounce of peanuts contains 160 calories and 14 fat grams (most of the fat is the healthy unsaturated kind), more than 2 grams of fiber and a dose of the disease-fighting antioxidant vitamin E. (Feb.1998)

24 Got a yen for potato chips? Try another crunchy, salty and less-caloric food like pretzels. (April 2000)

25 Every Monday, bring five pieces of fresh fruit to work. You'll brighten up your desk and add more fiber to your diet with a daily apple, orange or banana. (May 2005)