Best Choices Healthy Diet
We recommend that you consult your physician before considering participation in this or any dietary plan, especially if you have serious health concerns. For instance, diabetics may need to limit or avoid sugary fruit, but may still benefit from other parts of the Best Choices Healthy Diet.
Obesity is the result of a perfect storm of factors beyond bad food choices, including changing lifestyles, less education, less exercise, and economic disparity, as well as economic and political deception, manipulation, and greed of the highest order.
What each of us still has is choice: the ability to choose what we eat, and perhaps most importantly, what we don’t eat.
We have studied the proven benefits of the Mediterranean Diet, the DASH Diet, and plant-based (vegan) whole foods diets. All have impressive histories of success in providing optimal nutrition and facilitating weight loss. Our Best Choices Healthy Diet combines the best of those three plans, with some additional guidelines. Our Best Diet Choices page is a simplified list of some of the good vs. bad choices.
But is that what will help people live healthy lives and control their weight—another diet plan? The reality is that most people want to be healthy and lose weight, but making sense of the confusing health and diet “facts” that seem to change every day is very difficult.
We all have individual reasons why we don’t make the best choices when it comes to health and weight control. The most common reason is misinformation. The powerful economic forces at play rely on creating a perception of healthy choices. Powerful food industries, pharmaceutical industries, and trade organizations depend on your continued misinformed choices. Restaurants and grocery stores are often complicit in promoting those poor choices.
Nearly all of the messages the typical person receives concerning good health is in the form of an advertisement for a food product or a drug with misleading, incomplete, or inaccurate health claims. Why? Because unhealthy food happens to be very profitable.
At Best Choices Healthy Diet, we reveal how our current disease and obesity crisis is both fully understandable and reversible.
We examine some of the barriers to this reversal and explain how we can make some profound changes in our diet and our behaviors to put us on the right track to good health and weight control.
Here are a few things we discuss in detail:
* What type of calories you consume does matter. Diets based solely on calorie restriction are extremely hard to maintain and often are detrimental to good health. While losing weight is almost always healthy, how you lose it really does matter.
* Some of our favorite foods, commonly thought to be essential to good health, are both unhealthy and unnecessary.
* On the other hand, some fats are especially healthy, including one that is a form of saturated fat. It is actually given to hospital patients in certain circumstances for its health benefits.
* Fresh fruit is always a best choice, but fruit juice and dried fruit are not. We’ll tell you why.
* All LDL cholesterol is not equal: one kind is particularly dangerous and is linked to sugar, not fatty food.
* Do you have high triglycerides? The solution is less sugar, not less fat.
And finally, we leave you with something you can do right now to improve your health and fight obesity—eliminate excess sugar from your diet. Restricting added sugar* in your diet is the single best choice you can make to improve your health and control weight. The fructose in sugar, not dietary fat, is most likely to produce the most dangerous fat in your body, the visceral fat that surrounds the vital organs.
The fructose in sugar is addictive and uniquely harmful to our health when consumed in larger quantities. Sugar is present, often in large quantities, in nearly all the packaged and processed food we eat. Sugar may be labeled as high-fructose corn syrup, evaporated cane juice, nectar, sucrose, honey, or a host of other products that are all forms of sugar.
Our recommended limit for daily added sugar* is similar to the American Heart Association limit. For women, that is 100 calories (6 teaspoons or 25 grams), and for men it’s 145 calories (9 teaspoons or 36 grams.). This is an upper limit, and you should strive to stay well below.
Moreover, with diabetes, the glucose in sugar is also a problem. It is imperative that diabetics follow their physician’s advice regarding sugar consumption.
You can start making better choices today; see our Best Diet Choices page.
* Added sugar is any sugar contained in or added to the foods and beverages we consume, other than that naturally found in fresh fruits and vegetables.