Friday, September 30, 2011

The fat in Your Basket


So you may already know that a healthy diet contains 30 percent fat or less, but how can you apply this guideline when grocery shopping?

Well, the choices you make at the grocery store are an integral part of your lifestyle.   And, like I mentioned previously, reading labels is the most helpful tool for determining the fat con¬tent of foods you see on the store shelves. However, food labeling practices have been inconsistent, leaving many consumers confused and frustrated.

The components of food labels are required to include the following:

  • Serving sizes that realistically reflect the amount an average person actually eats. Previously, a manufacturer could reduce the portion size to make a food qualify as low-calorie.
  •  The number of calories per gram of fat (including a breakdown specifically for saturated fat), carbohydrate and protein should be listed as well as the number of grams of fiber.
  •  The "% Daily Value" shows the consumer how this food fits into an overall healthy diet. For instance, one serving of this product provides 20% of the recommended fat intake for a 2,000 calorie diet.

And, at the bottom of the label are guidelines for what constitutes a healthy diet.

Of course, balance is the key to your decision-making. Sometimes even low-fat recipes may call for ingredients which are higher than the recommended 30 percent fat or a completed recipe may end up higher than 30 percent. Your goal is to shoot for an average of 30 percent fat over the course of the day or week.

Plan a weekly menu that is low in fat and build your shopping list around that menu. Once your menu is planned, head to the grocery store with a detailed list, naming specific items and amounts.

With a well-planned menu, detailed shopping list, calculator and some nutritional savvy, you can translate your new knowledge into a cart full of healthy food choices that will satisfy all the members of your family.

As always – Live Your Life Well,

John Aaron Villarreal
johnaaron-massage.com

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The content and information on this site is not intended to diagnose,
cure, treat or prevent disease. Please consult your physician
prior to starting any exercise or diet program.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Leaning Out with Labels


Last time I wrote about the importance of using a grocery list to help you avoid the temptation for less than nutritious foods while grocery shopping. Today, I want to mention the importance of using a simple tool like foods labels to help you make informed decisions on what your product actually contains.

Free:
Generally means that the food contains no (or negligible amounts of) fat, saturated fat, cholesterol, sodium, sugar or calories

Lean and extra lean:
This is a term used to describe an item that has limits on the fat content of certain meats, poultry, seafood and game meats

Light:
Marketing that uses the term "light" or "lite" mean that the products' calories have been reduced by at least a third or the fat by at least half from original product

Percent fat free:
This is easily the most confusing term of the lot. Describes the percentage of a food's weight that is fat free; now this term may ONLY be used on foods that are lowfat or fat free to begin with

Regardless of what you choose to put into your grocery cart, take some time to familiarize yourself with these terms and perhaps you will be able to improve your success rate for weight loss and healthy nutrition.

As always – Live Your Life Well,

John Aaron Villarreal
johnaaron-massage.com

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The content and information on this site is not intended to diagnose,

cure, treat or prevent disease. Please consult your physician
prior to starting any exercise or diet program.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Fight Fat at Your Grocery Store


My daughter likes to grocery shop with me. Actually, I think she just like the opportunity to be wheeled around a store that has an unbelievable amount of food all within arms-reach of her. In fact, if I am not careful, she has been known to toss a few “extras” into the cart without my noticing it. 

So, it’s a good thing I always compare what’s in my cart with what’s on my list. Not only can I be certain that I will have the supplies I need for my week, but I generally save money by not purchasing items I haven’t specifically planned for. It wasn’t until I noticed what was in the shopping carts of other fellow shoppers that made me feel good about this decision.

The next time you go grocery shopping find someone shopping with a list and compare carts with someone who doesn’t have a list. You may be surprised to see foods that are higher in fats, salts, sugars and processed preservatives in the one without a list. Why? Well, it’s because the store knows these products are appealing, easily sold and provides them with a pretty profit because of their low wholesale cost.

Instead of falling prey to less-than-worthy foods, consider the following tips to arm yourself with a strategy that will do your family and your waistline some good.

  • Walk past end-of-the-aisle displays or food samples - they're usually higher in fat. 
  •  Beware of products at eye level. High-fat, high-profit items are often placed here to encourage impulse buying. 
  •  Stick to the perimeter of the store. The outside aisles contain the healthiest items, such as breads, meats, dairy products, and fresh fruits and vegetables. 
  • Don't buy high-fat treats "for the kids."  If you want to wander, do so without guilt. 
  •  Check your supermarket for free nutrition pamphlets and services. Some grocery stores now have their own in-house nutrition expert.

Oh, there is one last thing. Don’t forget to take your grocery list! You’ll be glad you did. : )

As always – Live Your Life Well,

John Aaron Villarreal
johnaaron-massage.com

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The content and information on this site is not intended to diagnose,
cure, treat or prevent disease. Please consult your physician
prior to starting any exercise or diet program.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Converting Sabotage into Support


Sabotage: doesn’t it always seem to happen when you are trying to “be good” with your nutrition? “Just have one more bite,” they say. Well, when friends or family members are trying to tempt, tease or taunt you into doing things that you know are not in your best interest, awareness and assertiveness are your best coping tools.

Suppose whenever you visit your mother, she continually urges you to have seconds...

First, take a moment to evaluate what is going on between the two of you and how you feel about that. Next, decide for yourself whether you're actually still hungry enough to continue eating. If you're still hungry, then by all means, have more.

However, if you're not hungry, you can still hold your ground in a polite and respectful way. Instead of saying “yes” just to please your mother, let her know that you thought the meal tasted great, and you're too full to eat any more – “Perhaps I can take some home, instead?”

As always – Live Your Life Well,

John Aaron Villarreal
johnaaron-massage.com

Facebook / Twitter


The content and information on this site is not intended to diagnose,

cure, treat or prevent disease. Please consult your physician
prior to starting any exercise or diet program.