Men's Articles

Missing Meals Is Not A Good Way To Drop Kilos

Research has repeatedly shown that people who eat at regular intervals, starting with breakfast, are better nourished, think more clearly and report fewer mood swings than those who eat erratically. Meat skippers are more prone to weight problems - probably because once they do eat, they eat too much of all the wrong stuff.

"People often think they can save calories by skipping meals, but if they kept food journals they'd find that they more than make up for those 'saved' calories at other times of the day," says James Hill, director of the Center for Human Nutrition at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center in Denver, and co-author of the Step Diet Book (Workman Publishing 2004).

Once meal skippers do eat, they find it difficult to stop, consuming way more calories than people who eat more frequently. Researchers at the National Weight Control Registry (NWCR), an ongoing research study based at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island, that monitors people who have successfully maintained a weight loss of more than 15kg for at least one year, report that spacing food evenly throughout the day is key to weight-loss success.

"Weight maintainers eat every four to five hours, regardless of whether it's a weekday, weekend or holiday," says Suzanne Phelan of the NWCR and assistant professor of psychiatry at Brown University.

Low Carb Diets Don't Flush Calories From The Body

Proponents of low-carb diets claim you can excrete fat fragments called ketones) in urine on this type of diet, essentially flushing calories out. But a recent study at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in Blacksburg found no correlation between urinary ketone levels and weight change in women on low-card diets

Obesity expert George Bray, of the Pennington Biomedical Research Center at Louisiana State University, explains that since card cutters restrict so many foods that are normally accompanied by fat, they end up slashing calories overall. The initial rapid weight loss some card cutters experience is caused by the body draining glycogen stores for energy With each gram of glycogen used, 3 grams of water are released, with the result being a rapid loss in weight due to increased urination, says George. After about 10-14 days, increased urination ends-and so does the rapid weight-loss phase.

Going Nuts

Great news for all Goober and Skippy fans. Despite the calories packed into peanut butter, you now have a good reason to indulge in your favorite snack every day. A study done by researchers at Brigham and Women's Hospital in the US have concluded that people who consume foods that are high in monounsaturated fats - such as olive oil, avocados and peanut butter - are more likely to lose weight and keep it off, compared to those who follow a more regimented, lower-fat diet. Packed with monounsaturated fats and vitamin E Peanut butter can also help you lower your risk of heart disease and stroke. Just stick to no more than six tablespoons of gooey goodness a day and you'll be on the right track.

Be A Body-Image Role Model

While genetics determine whether you have your mother's thighs or not, new research from Harvard Medical School in Cambridge, Massachusetts, shows you might even inherit the way she feels about them. According to the study, teenage girls whose mothers put a high premium on thinness were more likely to be preoccupied with their weight.

"Mothers are living role models;" says US body image specialist Adrienne Ressler "If you go on a crash diet because a party's coming up, you send a message to your daughter that that's a normal behavior." Instead, give her daily positive feedback that has nothing to do with her looks. Point out admirable traits in women of all sizes, such as "She has a great smile!" or "Her legs could run a marathon!" Good advice even if you're not a mother!

Portion-Control Checklist

Recognising what a healthy portion of anything looks like isn't easy. As a result, many women underestimate the number of calories they take in daily by more than 25 per cent, says US-based nutritionist Carrie Wiatt. Check out her top three tips for controlling serving sizes.

Downsize Your Dishes

You'll eat less if you use a dessert bowl for soup and a salad plate for your entree.

Make "Less Is More" Your Dining-Out Mantra

Order two appetisers instead of instead of an entree.

Snack Yourself Skinny

Have at least two a day, each containing about 150 calories and 3 fat grams. Try 3-4 whole-grain crackers with an ounce of low-fat cheese for a fill-you-up combination of protein and carbs.

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