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A diet that works

Wednesday, January 12th, 2011


Dietary advice may not sound like something you would get from your Plastic Surgeon, but it is a natural extension to what we do, which is lifestyle enhancement. One of the best lifestyle enhancements is to have the proper waist.

Food is one of the most powerful drugs around. It creates a hormonal response. Controlling this response is necessary to achieve proper health. “Diets,” intended to do this do not work. One of the main reasons for this is that our brain becomes accustomed to a specific taste. When you “go on a diet,” you still crave what you like and eventually revert to that taste. This results in the classic “yo-yo effect.” The trick to losing waist is to change what you like. Instead of dieting, make one little change each meal and each time you visit the store until your waist is <32 inches if you are female, or <35 inches if you are male.

An example of this is going from drinking sweet tea to drinking tea with no sweetener. Start by using ¼ to ½ tsp of sugar less, and drink your tea that way for several days. Then remove another ¼ to ½ tsp and drink it that way for a while. Continue this every several days until you are drinking unsweetened tea. Do not substitute a sweetener, as you will not change your taste. Do the same thing with foods. As an example, for pasta, switch some white pasta for half as much whole wheat and cook it a half minute less. Keep repeating this until you have half as much pasta that is all whole wheat and very al dente. You have changed the quality of the pasta by substituting whole wheat and by cooking it less. Both make it harder for the bowel to extract sugar. By doing so, your blood sugar will not rise to where you excrete insulin, which drives the sugar into the cells as fat. Additionally, you have cut your preferred portion in half. This changes both the quality and the quantity of your food. Doing either by itself will not achieve your goal.

Learn to recognize the proper proportion of the foods types and the proper portion size of each. For most people, Carbohydrates make up 70-80% of the calories in each meal. CARBOHYDRATES should constitute only 40 % of the calories. PROTEIN and FAT should each make up 30 % of the calories. It is the fat and protein that make you feel satiated. Therefore, you can feel satisfied with less.

Reduce Saturated fat (found in animal fat, and Dairy) and eat NO trans-fat. The low fat emphasis a few years ago actually made us fatter. Good fat is essential in our diets. When companies removed fat indiscriminately from products, they substituted sugar. This is absorbed rapidly from the GI tract, driven into the cell by insulin, and converted to fat.

Eating five (5) small meals a day (or three [3] meals and two [2] snacks) maintains a steadier metabolic rate along with drinking at least eight 8 oz. glasses of water to aid in efficient digestion. Generally a protein serving should be no larger than a pack of cards (3 ounces). The remainder of the center of the plate should be high fiber, low glycemic carbohydrates, and the proper fat. Avoid as much as possible any carbohydrate over eighty (80) on the Glycemic Index (available on the internet or in many diet books).

Eat non-processed food. The fresher and more colorful the better (more nutrition and antioxidants). Buy Groceries from along the outside walls. Do not go down the aisles except to buy staples, such as spices.

Use NO ADDED SALT and observe the amount in purchased foods. Gradually reduce your salt intake as you did your sugar.
If you want a dessert, choose less sweet ones with protein and fiber and reduce calories elsewhere. Instead of right after a meal, use it as a snack.
Once you are on a proper diet, exercise at least three (3) hours per week, including muscle building types of exercise. This further speeds loss of waist. If you are not on a proper diet, exercise will do you no good. The wrong diet, as mentioned, causes the body to absorb sugars rapidly. The secreted insulin not only drives the extra sugar into the cell, it blocks both glucagon and growth hormone that are released by exercise from pulling fat from the cell.

To find out more about how you can improve your lifestyle or your outer self, call the Center for Plastic Surgery for a consultation at 828-526-3783.