Develop intelligent eating techniques (DIET)

Kettering Health Network is a faith-based, not-for-profit healthcare system. The network has eight hospitals: Grandview, Kettering, Sycamore, Southview, Greene Memorial, Fort Hamilton, Kettering Behavioral Health and Soin.

In an effort to lose weight or eat healthier, many people try diet after diet — often without success.

“If you’re trying to lose weight, I recommend you DIET: develop intelligent eating techniques,” advises Marta Wright, a registered dietician with Kettering Weight Loss Solutions in Kettering. “If we only change our eating temporarily, then we will only benefit from those changes temporarily.”

In 2015 the Dietary Guidelines for Americans were revised again. The Dietary Guidelines were established to help people make food choices that promote health and prevent chronic diseases. The guidelines encourage everyone to work toward a lifelong pattern of consuming nutrient-dense foods and beverages within caloric needs.

The Dietary Guidelines’ three key messages are:

• Eat for health and the long run.

• Start with shifts or small changes.

• Support healthy choices for everyone.

Wright says all food and drinks that we consume matter over time, as healthy eating can be flexible and adaptable to our preferences. “Choose healthy eating patterns to achieve and maintain a healthy body weight and reduce the risk of chronic disease,” she says.

How can we achieve this? “Focus on variety, nutrient density, and amounts,” Wright advises. “Managing calorie intake is fundamental to achieving and maintaining calorie balance. Limiting saturated fats, sodium and calories from added sugars is essential as you strive toward a life of health.”

Here’s how DIET can help you achieve a life of health:

Healthy eating limits saturated fats and trans fats. Foods that are high in saturated fats include butter, whole milk, meats that are not labeled as lean, and tropical oils such as coconut and palm oil. Saturated fats should be replaced with unsaturated fats like canola or olive oil. Eat more fish, lean meats, nuts, seeds, legumes, and make a shift to low-fat dairy products such as milk, yogurt, and cheese.

Healthy eating limits sodium, especially from processed foods. Foods such as pizza, pasta dishes, sauces and soups can be higher in sodium. Eat more fresh fruits and vegetables especially dark green, red and orange fruits and vegetables. Include green leafy salads with meals.

Healthy eating limits added sugars. These include sugars and syrups that are added to foods when they are processed. Also replace high-fat snacks and desserts with fruits and vegetables. Choose water and beverages without added sugar.

It’s all about balance and moderation. Small changes over time can add up to a healthier you. Every meal and snack is an opportunity to help prevent the onset of disease. A lifetime of healthy eating can help prevent diseases such as obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes. “Food is such a powerful tool and we all have the ability to make informed choices that can keep us healthy and accommodate our taste preferences, culture, traditions, and budget,” says Wright.

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