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Total Body Wellness: The Facts about Food

Total Body Wellness: The Facts about Food
With all the talk out there about food, calories and dieting, read on to find the only thing you ever have to remember to lose or maintain your current weight.


Try and count the number of nutritional trends, diets and pieces of advice you've heard. We've had the food pyramid, George Foreman grills, grapefruit diets, Atkins turned South Beach, and we've started eating for our blood types, getting in the Zone and even looking to other countries from France to China.

 

Let me cut through the nutritional noise for you. The most important guideline you can follow is simple: To lose weight, you have to pay attention to the nutrient density of the food you eat. Sounds easy, right?

 

The biggest hurdle comes with the first step.

 

Step 1: Stop counting calories.

 

I know, that's difficult. We're a generation of women who've grown up with calorie counting taught to us as soon as we start shopping in the juniors section. It's interesting because when I tell my male clients to forget about calorie counting, it's not an issue. But with women, it's like the first time they've heard the world is round.

 

Let's say I have two clients, both on 2,000-calorie diets. One eats her 2,000 calories of lean meats, vegetables, good fats and complex carbohydrates. The other has a diet of (enter your favorite fast food joint here) and as many 100 calorie packs of cookies as her 2,000 calorie day can hold. Their bodies will not look the same, not even close. But how can that be if they are both eating the same number of calories?

 

Because counting calories does not mean fat loss.

 

Instead, it's monitoring the nutrient density of your foods that makes calorie counting obsolete. Here's why: When you're hungry, you're body's not just asking for any old food, it's looking for nutrients. Give it something nutrient dense and it's satisfied and you're full until the appropriate time to eat again. Give it fast food, sweets or refined white breads, and you'll feel full until your body quickly discovers it still hasn't gotten nutrients and it'll send the signal back out for more food. If you make another bad food decision, you'll end up in a junk-food eating cycle that doesn't end until your head hits the pillow.

 

So what does nutrient density mean? It means eating the proper foods: Fresh, organic vegetables; grass fed beef; free-range chicken; non-processed foods; essential fats like coconut oil; the best kinds of fruits you can eat like berries.

 

Eating like this naturally will cause weight loss, and you also will create wellness in your body. All heart disease is 90 percent preventable by changes in lifestyle, said Dr. Dean Ornish to the U.S. Senate Health Committee. Forget genetics and change what you're eating.

 

Creating wellness in yourself is a process, and reading this article today isn't going to take you from A right to Z. Over the coming months these columns will shed light on some advanced nutritional concepts. It's my goal to help our community get healthy, one step at a time. If you'd like to see that happen, spread the word. Send this article to your mom, sister, friend, co-worker, anyone who eats because your health is important, and becoming informed is the best step you can take.

Ashley Berlin -

Ashley Berlin is the health and fitness columnist for Cincy Chic and the owner of BEAT Personal Training in West Chester. Want more information about something you read here? Send her an e-mail at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .Read More >>


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