Read an Excerpt
365 Days of Healthy Eating from the American Dietetic Association
John Wiley & SonsISBN: 0-471-44221-6
Chapter One365 Days of Healthy Eating
January 1 Skip Resolutions, Make Plans!
Ever make New Year's resolutions with enthusiasm, only to break them after a few days? For a better chance of success, make plans-not just resolutions-for fitness, healthier eating, weight loss, or whatever's important for you.
Break your big goals (resolutions) into smaller, more specific goals.
List realistic changes that match your goals.
Specific Goals Realistic Changes
Walk 30 minutes each day. Walk 15 minutes during my lunch break.
Eat more vegetables. Eat salad with dinner.
Lose two pounds in January. Skip second helpings.
Be patient. Small steps add up over time.
Stick with it. If you waver from your plan, dump any guilt or feelings of failure. Start again where you left off. That's okay!
Take another look. Evaluate your progress every week or two. Update and change your plan if you need to.
Reward yourself-with a new CD or recreation activity, for example, not more food.
Take time today to think about your fit future. What's your...
Big goal: _____________________________________
Specific goals: _______________________________________
Realistic changes that may work for you; read through the book each day for ideas: ___________________________________
January 2 Get F.I.T.
Do you realize that a physically active lifestyle helps you get a deeper, more restful sleep? Gives you strength and stamina to do what matters most to you? Gives you some calorie leeway to enjoy another bite? May even extend your life?
With the holiday season over, now's a great time to see if your approach to active living passes the F.I.T. test and offers real benefits! Consider this:
F-requency. Within reason, the more often you do it, the greater the benefit.
I-ntensity. For cardiovascular fitness, fit in time for physical activity that gets your heart pumping. Check with your physician first if you haven't been physically active for a while or if you have a health problem.
T-ime. At least sixty minutes of moderate activity daily is a smart goal. Break it up into shorter segments if you need to.
January 3 The Cold (and Sniffles) Truth
Got the sniffles? Runny nose got you down? Too stuffed up to breathe easily or to taste a great meal? You likely have a common cold-too common during frosty winter days! That said, can any foods, nutrients, or supplements prevent it, or at least minimize your symptoms?
So far, dietary cure-all claims aren't backed by strong scientific evidence. Large doses of vitamin C won't prevent a cold, but its antihistamine effect may ease your breathing. Zinc and echinacea supplements may reduce symptoms, but they also may suppress, not improve, immunity. And lobelia, an herbal supplement, may cause harm, from breathing problems and rapid heartbeat to coma, even death!
To relieve cold's symptoms and hasten your recovery:
Take time to rest. Stay away from others if you can.
Drink plenty of fluids, including vitamin C-rich juice (even hot chicken soup). Fluids and warmth help loosen nasal mucous.
January 4 Weighing In on Dieting
Does January mark your renewed goal for a healthy weight? Great! For long-term success and good health along the way, take weight loss slow, steady, smart. A realistic, healthful goal? Most experts agree: 1/2 to 1 pound of weight loss per week.
To quickly judge a popular diet, check for these ill-fated qualities: promises of quick weight loss, little or no physical activity, rigid meal plans, odd amounts of food, or special food combinations. Diets with these qualities are often boring, dispiriting, even unhealthy. They probably won't work for long and may do harm.
Instead of "dieting," concentrate on smart eating and active living.
Watch your portions. If they're oversized, eat less. (See January 31.)
Eat more fruits, vegetables, and whole-grain foods. They tend to have fewer calories, yet plenty of nutrients. Eat fewer high-calorie, low-nutrient foods (such as soft drinks, candy, salad dressings, high-fat spreads).
Go easy on snacks. Pay attention to how much, how often, and how many snack calories by reading food labels.
Move more. Do something physically active today, even if it's just for fifteen minutes. Gradually increase your activity.
January 5 Peanut Lover?
Love peanuts? Then eat up. Dr. George Washington Carver (today's his birthday) discovered more than 300 ways to use peanuts!
A member of the dried bean family, not a tree nut, peanuts provide protein. And they're also packed with heart-healthy substances-among them folate, magnesium, good (monounsaturated) fats, and two plant substances called resveratrol and plant sterols-yet no cholesterol!
Enjoy chopped peanuts in salads, on cereal, in baked goods, in smoothies. For a new way to enjoy peanuts, try this:
1 tablespoon flour 1 cup finely chopped, unsalted dry-roasted
1 teaspoon seasoned salt peanuts
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder 4 boneless, skinless chicken
1/4 teaspoon dried tarragon breasts
1/4 cup prepared mustard 2 tablespoons butter or vegetable
2 tablespoons honey oil
In a pan or shallow bowl, combine flour, seasoned salt, garlic powder, and tarragon; mix well. In a second pan, combine mustard and honey. Place peanuts in a third pan. Dip each chicken breast in flour mixture, then honey mustard, and finally in peanuts to coat. Heat butter in a 10- to 12-inch skillet; add chicken and cook over medium-low heat until internal temperature reaches 170°F and golden brown, 4 to 5 minutes per side. Makes 4 servings. Source: National Peanut Board
January 6 Supplements-S-age Advice
You don't need to buy out the supplement shelf. But you do need to take the right vitamin or mineral supplement for your age and unique health needs. Remember, food first! Then if you need a supplement, here's what health experts advise as a daily guideline, depending on your age:
20s, 30s, or 40s: folic acid (400 micrograms for women) if you're pregnant or capable of pregnancy, to avoid birth defects; perhaps calcium (up to about 1,000 milligrams, more-1,200 milligrams-for menopausal women) and perhaps iron (no more than 18 milligrams) if you're a woman with heavy menstrual flow.
50s: calcium (up to 1,200 milligrams for women and men) to protect against bone loss; and vitamin D (400 International Units, or I.U.). Vitamin D recommendations go up with age. Women: Stop any iron supplement now.
60s: calcium as noted for the 50s; vitamin D as noted for the 50s; and vitamin [B.sub.12] (up to 2.4 micrograms) to counteract possible changes in vitamin [B.sub.12] absorption.
70s: calcium as noted for the 50s; vitamin D (up to 600 I.U. or less if you drink milk); and vitamin [B.sub.12], as noted for the 50s.
To be supplement savvy:
Check the Supplement Facts on any you take so you don't overdo. A supplement with 100% Daily Value for these or any other nutrients is enough, unless your doctor gives different advice.
Make a personal note to ask your doctor about the right supplements for you. Note: Supplements may interact with any medication that you take.
January 7 Cook Savvy-Fat-Trimming Countdown
Ready to reduce your long-term risks for heart disease, cancer, and diabetes? Trimming fat from your food is a great step toward meeting that healthy-eating goal. Health experts advise 20 to 35 percent of calories from fat (44 to 78 fat grams for a 2,000-calorie daily eating plan). And keep saturated fat (including trans fatty acids) as low as possible.
When you cook today, try a "fat trimmer."
Pick flavorful oil. A little extra virgin olive, sesame, walnut, or herb-infused oil goes a long way.
Thicken creamy soup or stew with puréed, cooked root veggies, such as potatoes, sweet potatoes, parsnips, or turnips.
Buy nonstick pans-to sauté or stir-fry with less fat.
Oven bake "fried chicken." Coat chicken with yogurt, then roll in whole-wheat bread crumbs and herbs. Spray lightly with vegetable oil spray. Oven bake at 350°F in a nonstick pan.
Grill or broil, roast or bake, boil or stir-fry-all low-fat ways to cook!
Use a cheese with "character." Just a little Romano, blue, or Parmesan cheese delivers lots of flavor.
Go halfsies. Toss less butter, margarine, or oil with veggies, pasta, or rice. Ladle less dressing on salad.
Follow the 2/3-1/3 guideline: 2/3 of the plate with veggies, fruits, and grain foods. Fill the rest of the plate with meat, poultry, fish, or cheese.
January 8 The Eyes Have It
An old wives' tale proves true: carrots do help you see better.
It has long been known that carrots' beta carotene (which forms vitamin A) helps your eyes adjust to dim light. Cutting-edge research suggests that other antioxidants in plant-based foods may help protect your eyesight from cataracts and age-related macular degeneration.
Eating foods rich in antioxidant vitamins (beta carotene, vitamins C and E) may lower your risk for cataracts, a clouding of the eye's lens.
Lutein and zeaxanthin, found in the retina's macula, protect your eyes from sunlight and other environmental damage. Increase these carotenoids in your eyes by eating plenty of lutein- and zeaxanthin-rich foods.
Choose eye-catching foods to enjoy, starting today.
For beta carotene: yellow-orange fruits and vegetables, including carrots; dark-green vegetables
For lutein: green-leafy vegetables, kiwifruit, eggs
For zeaxanthin: citrus fruit, corn, green vegetables, winter squash, eggs
For vitamin C: citrus fruit, berries, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cantaloupe, green pepper, papaya, tomato
For vitamin E: almonds, corn oil, eggs, peanuts, spinach, sun-flower seeds
January 9 Ready-or Not?
Do you want to be and stay healthy? Want sound information to help you do the right thing? Good news: you're in the driver's seat!
Are you ready for healthful eating and active living? Check the statements that sound most like you:
I want to eat better and move more, but not now. Okay, but the sooner, the better for your health.
I think about smarter eating and being active, but don't know what to do. Great mind-set! Keep a diary to pinpoint what you need to change. Perhaps review it with a registered dietitian.
I want to make permanent changes for smarter eating and active living. For good health, make changes you enjoy and can sustain. Can you name one?
I feel successful only if I totally overhaul my eating and lifestyle. Think again; even little steps add up and make a difference. Take one small step today.
I know it's best to make change slowly, step by step. For most people, gradual change is more sustainable. For weight loss, a half pound per week usually succeeds best.
January 10 Fit for Cold Weather
Cold weather is no excuse to skip fitness routines and nestle in by the TV. A shift of seasons simply gives you different options.
In any weather, the same guideline applies: get 60 minutes of moderate activity every day if you can. In cold weather, try these outdoor activities:
Winter sports: cross-country or downhill skiing, skating, snow-shoeing
Active leisure: winter nature walks, snow hiking, sledding
Outdoor chores: snow shoveling, chopping firewood, dog walking
Too cold or windy? Go mall walking inside!
For safety's sake in cold, wintry weather, keep this in mind:
Cover up to stay warm. Your head, hands, and other exposed skin need to be covered. An uncovered head gives off a lot of body heat.
Layer your clothing. Several lightweight layers may keep you warmer than one or two heavier layers.
Stay dry. Moisture conducts cold air toward your skin and heat away. Wicking fabrics help you stay dry as you exercise in winter.
Stay hydrated. Although it may be cold outside, you still can sweat! Bring a water bottle.
January 11 Say OK to Oats
What's for breakfast on this cold, winter morning? How about instant oatmeal, crunchy oat cereal, or an oat bran muffin? No matter how you eat them, oats offer benefits beyond their hearty taste.
A good source of soluble fiber, oats are well known for their heart-healthy benefits, which include lowering blood cholesterol. What's more, the plant substances in oats may help control blood pressure, even body weight (since oatmeal helps you feel full longer). How much helps with cholesterol reduction? Three grams of soluble fiber a day from all your foods. One serving of these oat-based foods puts you one-third there: 1 cup ready-to-eat oat cereal, 1/2 cup cooked oatmeal, or 1/3 cup cooked oat bran. Add oatmeal to muffins, burgers, meatloaf, or stuffing, too.
Try this breakfast treat during National Oatmeal Month:
Peach Muesli with Berries
2 cups oats, uncooked 1/2 teaspoon vanilla 2 cups coarsely chopped peeled 1 cup fresh or thawed frozen blueberries fresh or thawed frozen peaches or raspberries 1 1/2 cups apple juice 8 ounces vanilla or peach nonfat yogurt In a large bowl, combine all ingredients except berries; mix well. Cover and refrigerate for 8 hours or overnight. Serve muesli cold topped with berries. May be stored, covered, in refrigerator for up to four days. Makes 4 servings (1 cup plus 1/4 cup berries). Source: Quaker Oats
January 12 Hunger Strikes? Snack Smart
Will you (or did you) enjoy a snack today? Fine, if you snack smart. Snack for the health of it.
Snack when you're really hungry, not just when you're bored or stressed.
Snack with your whole day's food intake in mind, not just as an add-on.
Excerpted from 365 Days of Healthy Eating from the American Dietetic Association Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.