A healthy weight is an important element of good health

Intro

A healthy weight is an important element of good health. How much you eat—and what you eat—play central roles in maintaining a healthy weight or losing weight. Exercise is the other key actor.

For years, low-fat diets were thought to be the best way to lose weight. A growing body of evidence shows that low-fat diets often don’t work, in part because these diets often replace fat with easily digested carbohydrates.

Hundreds of diets have been created, many promising fast and permanent weight loss. Remember the cabbage soup diet? The grapefruit diet? How about the Hollywood 48 Hour Miracle diet, the caveman diet, the Subway diet, the apple cider vinegar diet, and a host of forgettable celebrity diets?

The truth is, almost any diet will work if it helps you take in fewer calories. Diets do this in two main ways:

  • getting you to eat certain “good” foods and/or avoid “bad” ones
  • changing how you behave and the ways you think or feel about food

The best diet for losing weight is one that is good for all parts of your body, from your brain to your toes, and not just for your waistline. It is also one you can live with for a long time. In other words, a diet that offers plenty of good tasting and healthy choices, banishes few foods, and doesn’t require an extensive and expensive list of groceries or supplements.

One diet that fills the bill is a Mediterranean-type diet. Such a diet—and there are many variations—usually includes:

  • several servings of fruits and vegetables a day
  • whole-grain breads and cereals
  • healthy fats from nuts, seeds, and olive oil
  • lean protein from poultry, fish, and beans
  • limited amounts of red meat
  • moderate wine consumption with meals (no more than two glasses a day for men; no more than one a day for women

A Mediterranean-style diet is a flexible eating pattern. People who follow such diets tend to have lower rates of heart disease, diabetes, dementia, and other chronic conditions.

Top 7 reasons you have a headache

Migraine, tension, and cluster headaches can have many triggers. For example, stress can cause tight muscles in the shoulders and neck, which often leads to tension headaches; hunger can trigger a migraine or tension headache; and something in the environment may trigger a cluster headache. Understanding headache triggers can help people avoid headaches in the future. Keeping a diary to note the day, time, symptoms, and circumstances surrounding a headache may help; so can living a healthy lifestyle. (Locked)

Eating nuts: A strategy for weight control?

Increasing daily nut consumption is associated with weight control and warding off obesity, according to a Harvard study published online Sept. 23, 2019, by BMJ Nutrition, Prevention, and Health.

Tips to keep lost weight off in the New Year

Maintaining weight loss can be more challenging than losing it in the first place. This is the case because your body drives you to store more fat. Unless you address that underlying regulatory problem, you will likely regain the weight. Some common causes of the underlying metabolic problems are stress, poor sleep, or medication. (Locked)

Can I reverse prediabetes?

Prediabetes can be reversed in some cases through lifestyle changes, such as an improved diet, increased exercise, and modest weight loss of 5% to 7% of body weight. (Locked)

Six activities can help obese people lose weight and keep it off

A study found that for people with a family history of obesity or weight gain, the best activities for weight loss were, in order, jogging, mountain climbing, walking, power walking, dancing, and yoga.

Cutting 300 daily calories improves several health markers

Cutting about 300 calories a day can improve several health markers, such as total cholesterol, blood pressure, and chronic inflammation suggests a new study.

Artificial light at night may lead to weight gain

Exposure to artificial light during sleep promotes weight gain in women.

Body fat may predict aggressive prostate cancer

Scientists found that the accumulation of visceral fat (which lies deep in the abdomen) and thigh subcutaneous fat (which lies just under the skin) were both associated with a greater risk of developing advanced prostate cancer as well as dying from the disease.

Harnessing the power of high-intensity interval training

Interval training means adding brief bouts of strenuous exercise to a workout. Compared with moderate-intensity exercise, it not only saves time but may also help people lose weight and improve their heart health. Also known as high-intensity interval training, or HIIT, the practice may help people burn calories at a high rate after they stop exercising. It also seems to be especially effective in improving the body’s ability to use oxygen, known as cardiorespiratory fitness. (Locked)

Winning the weight battle after menopause

Changes in hormone levels just before and during menopause may cause women to gain weight and to store more weight around their middle, a risk factor for cardiovascular disease. Lifestyle changes can help, but they may not always be enough to make a difference. Some women may need to seek out assistance from a weight-loss professional. (Locked)

 

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