Weight loss: Diet changes to make to lose fat without cutting your favourite foods
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There are several diets available to help you to slim down and decrease the risk of obesity, which consequently decreases the risk of heart disease and other illnesses. Sometimes it can become slightly overwhelming. Therefore, Express.co.uk spoke to an expert about the simple ways you can improve your diet and to become healthier and lose weight.
Signe Svanfeldt is a nutritionist at Lifesum, a leading global nutrition app.
She said that the first thing to do when improving your diet is to make sure that you are consuming enough energy to get you through the day.
“People tend to think that if they just eat a minimal amount of calories, they’ll reach their goal sooner, but it’s really not that simple,” she explained.
“A steady, stable pace, where you ensure you get enough energy and nutrients, is key to improving your diet.”
Swapping some of your usual foods for healthier foods is the next step to think about.
However, Signe empahsised that this does not mean that you must exclude all your favourite foods.
She said: “You can be healthy but still eat your favourite foods, it’s all about moderation.
“When it comes to improved diet, it’s usually beneficial to include foods that have larger volumes, but are less energy dense,” he added.
“These foods tend to be rich in dietary fibre, minerals and vitamins.”
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Signe explained that dietary fibres make you full for longer, as well as having many health benefits such as preventing constipation and decreasing the risk of cardiovascular disease and bowel cancer.
Some diets will instruct you to cut out carbs from your meals, or to lower your carb intake, however Signe said that some carbs are in fact “great sources of dietary fibre and protein”.
She recommended swapping white pasta for wholegrain pasta, white bread for wholegrain bread, and white rice for brown rice.
Referring to the bread, she said: “Make sure to read the nutritional label ad aim for high fibre and low sodium and sugar content.”
Signe advised eating oatmeal instead of cereals for breakfast as it is filled with protein and dietary fibre, making you feel full for much longer than cereal.
Cereal also tend to have a high amount of added sugars.
Talking of sugar, Signe recommended eating low-fat yoghurt instead of fruit yoghurt as the latter contains high levels of sugar.
“It’s better to choose low-fat Greek yogurt with a high protein content, and top it with a fresh fruit or some nuts. Then you get more food for the same amount of energy,” she said.
One of the most important things to remember when attempting to improve your diet, according to Signe, is not to jump on the “diet bandwagon”.
“Starting a trendy strict diet that you heard worked miraculously for other people, might not work perfectly for you. Weight loss is highly individual, and just because something worked for one person, it doesn’t mean that it will be suitable for all,” she explained.
The nutritionist added: “Many people just want to reach their goal as soon as possible, and don’t pay attention to a sustainable long-term solution, which often results in extreme diets, followed by old routines appearing again. It’s better to find a long-term solution that you can incorporate into your daily lifestyle.”
Signe also recommended learning how to read nutritional labels on the back of food products, enabling you to track your calories, but more importantly, to choose nutritious foods.
“The food you consume should have high nutritional value, meaning a high content of dietary fibre, vitamins and minerals, but also protein, healthy fats, carbs and a low amount of added sugar, sodium and saturated fat,” Signe said.
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