Weight Loss Is Wrong Goal In Dieting

Elizabeth S. Reames  |  1/31/2006 10:53:52 PM

News You Can Use For February 2006

Healthy eating is key to looking good, feeling great and being your best. Foods provide the essential nutrients and other compounds the body needs for good health.

Millions of Americans are on the latest fad diets to lose weight. The problem is, most of these diets don’t provide lasting results, according to LSU AgCenter nutritionist Dr. Beth Reames.

In addition, many of these diets can cause health problems or physical discomfort. Instead of focusing on weight loss, the key is to concentrate on eating healthfully and exercising regularly.

"A healthy eating plan will help you consume a variety of foods to get the nutrients your body needs and maintain a healthy weight," Reames says, adding, "Let your individual needs and preferences determine your personal food choices. Match your food choices to your lifestyle and individual requirements, choosing enough to achieve and maintain a healthy weight."

Plan meals and snacks using a variety of foods from the food groups, including Grains, Vegetables, Fruits, Milk and Meat & Beans.

Choose a variety of foods from each group based on flavor, texture and colors. Choosing the right balance of foods helps you get the right combination of nutrients.

"Look at the big picture when selecting foods," Reames advises, explaining, "It’s what you eat over several days, not just one meal or day that counts. You can enjoy all your favorite foods; just try eating them in moderate amounts."

It’s important to balance your food choices with your physical activities to achieve and maintain a healthy weight and lifestyle. Be sure to enjoy a variety of ways to stay active to feel your best.

There’s no need for expensive equipment or complicated fitness programs. Make a list of physical activities that fit into your lifestyle and schedule at least one every day.

Individual needs and preferences determine your personal food choices. Match your food choices to your lifestyle and individual requirements, choosing enough to achieve and maintain a healthy weight.

For additional information about eating healthfully using the Food Guide Pyramid, contact the LSU AgCenter Extension agent in your parish. For related nutrition information, click on the Family and Home link on the LSU AgCenter home page, at www.lsuagcenter.com.

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On the Internet: LSU AgCenter: www.lsuagcenter.com

Source: Beth Reames (225) 578-3929, or breames@agcenter.lsu.edu

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