Weight Loss Dietary Guidelines
Target a healthy weight loss. Do not attempt to lose too much weight too fast. Rapid reduction in weight is undesirable. A loss of more than 2 to 3 kg per month is not warranted. The following guidelines will help you get a comprehensive idea on diet based weight loss.
- Balance the food you eat with enough physical activity.
- Eat only when hungry.
- Take small frequent meals.
- Make breakfast the largest and dinner the lightest meal of the day
- Don’t starve yourself and overeat subsequently. Be a nibbler, not a gourmet.
- Dine at least two hours before you go to bed.
- Stop eating when you are approximately three-fourth full as the satiety sensation comes few minutes after the meal.
- Start your meals with soups and salads.
- Do not eat impulsively.
- Keep sipping water all the time and do not wait to become thirsty.
- Choose whole grains, legumes, sprouts, beans over processed foods like breads, biscuits, jams, jellies.Whole grains and sprouts are laden with fiber which keeps the digestive system healthy and prevents digestive problems.
- Choose lean chicken, fish, and egg whites over meat and meat products.
- Long term deprivation, such as crash diets doesn’t work. Allow yourself the occasional guilt-free treat.
- Regular medical and body composition analysis is a must. This is of utmost importance to help set or modify the dietary goals.
- Take plenty of sugar free fluids and fiber rich foods. Ensure intake of adequate proteins.
- Make sure you consume only skim milk and milk products.
- Opt for whole grain foods and avoid processed refined flour based foods.
- Try to keep the total fat (oil, butter, cream) consumption to not more than 500g per person per month. (20-25 g /day which is equal to 3 teaspoons/ day/ person).
- Limit the total sugar consumption (not more than 20 g/day/person).
- Mix soya flour with wheat flour to get good quality protein and fiber.
- Oil should be your preferred cooking medium.
- When eating out avoid the greasy gravies and curries.
- Watch the portion size. Be conscious about the quantity of food you are eating each time.
- If you are a nibbler keep low calorie snacks, dried fruits or fruits handy.
- Drinks like fresh lime water, fresh vegetables juices, coconut water, buttermilk, ice tea make good beverages to keep you full periodically.
Weight loss is not about ‘going on a diet’. It’s about eating right and intelligently – always. It’s about investing a good whole hour in extensive exercising. If understood and done correctly one would never be able to get off it. It eventually would become a habit and you would start loving the way you are. And the rest would just fall in place.
- Ming Gopalan C, Rama Sastri B.V, Balasubramanian, S.C, Nutritive Value of Indian Foods, National Institute of Nutrition, Hyderabad, 2002.
- Dietary Guidelines for Indians – A Manual, Nutritive Value of Indian Foods, National Institute of Nutrition, Hyderabad, 2003.
- Mahtani R. The Ultimate Indian Diet Book, Macmillan India Ltd, 2005.