Losing weight with low calorie food
Can low calorie food help you lose weight? Low calorie food is food with a low caloric or energy content. Examples would be rice cakes, egg white omelettes, macaroons etc. These are foods which you can eat in vast quantities and you will never put on one ounce. However low calorie foods arent foods you can eat in the long term because they dont contain a balance of minerals, vitamins, proteins, fats and carbohydrates.
To lose weight we will try anything that might help us. Low calorie foods might look promising but they arent foods around which you can build a healthy diet and lifestyle. A more successful choice for achieving weight loss would foods which the body digests more slowly and releases their energy or calories more slowly. They must be foods which are complete in all essential nutrients ” carbohydrates, proteins and fats. They should take longer for the body to digest them than the highly processed or high GI foods we now are eating in increasing quantities.
Carbohydrates which are found in foods such as sugar, starches, grains, bread and pastas. Foods are high in fibre take more time and energy for the body to digest and extract their calories. They burn more calories in the digestion process because their nutrients are bound up with their fibre. Successful weight loss should be a balanced diet with the right proportions of each protein, carbohydrate and fat, but with our present food industry misleading us at every turn this is easier said than done.
Of great benefit to the dieter is an understanding of the GIycemic Index (GI). The GIycemic Index (GI) lists carbohydrates from 0 to 100 according to how quickly they raise your blood sugar levels after eating. Foods are rated high on the GI scale because they are rapidly digested and broken down into sugars and absorbed by the stomach and bowel. These foods cause rapid rises in blood sugar levels. Foods with a rating of low GI are digested and absorbed by the body more slowly, and so only produce gradual rises in blood sugar and insulin levels. These are foods such as wholegrain breads, brown rice and pasta. The evidence shows that they have major benefits for health and losing weight. Low GI diets improve both glucose and fat levels in the bloodstream of people with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. They assist weight control because they help control appetite and delay hunger. Low GI diets can also reduce the need for the body to produce so much and reduces or stops insulin resistance which is the cause of Type 2 Diabetes.
Now you may know that big spikes in insulin are caused by rapidly rises in blood sugar and insulin is released by the body to keep the blood sugar levels steady. Too much sugar in your blood stream puts stress on the heart and causes hyperactivity. Too little sugar and you become lethargic. Unfortunately much of our processed and snack foods contain massive quantities of sugar and it is these that cause the sugar spikes. When too much sugar hits the bloodstream the body over-produces insulin which converts the sugars into fat on your butt and stomach. It is so efficient that half an hour later your blood sugar drops rapidly and you suddenly feel hungry, lethargic and irritable. So of course you reach for the Twinkies or whatever. That starts up the whole vicious cycle all over again.
By selecting low GI foods you are choosing food that digests more slowly. This means your pancreas isn’t stressed through overproducing insulin to process all the excess sugar in your bloodstream. Now your muscles and organs get a steady flow of fuel so your energy levels stay high. You don’t feel hungry again as quickly and so you avoid binge eating because your energy levels dont fluctuate wildly. The result is that you become a more balanced person and a much happier one. You definitely become a happier person when the weight begins to drop off your butt, stomach and stomach. You will lose those horrible moods swings which characterize sugar spikes because your body is no longer so stressed. This is very common in children and adolescents and is one of the more overlooked effects of excess sugar in the diet.
Strangely carrots are rated as a high GI food because they contain quite a lot of natural sugars. Obviously none of us got fat eating carrots so there is one useful rule to apply in cases like carrots. Try to eat the sugars with the fiber they are found with. For example carrots are full of fiber which slows their digestion and also stops the sugar spike. Drink the apple juice from 3 apples by itself and your sugar levels will spike. Eat 3 apples and your sugar won’t spike. Do you see how it works? Orange juice is good for you because of all the Vitamin C and bioflavenoids. However it is also packed with sugar. Eat the oranges and you will get the Vitamin C and the sugar hit won’t happen. It is our habit of eating processed foods, both good and bad that is causing many of our problems.
You cant successfully live on low calorie foods if you are trying to lose weight. It is unhealthy as well as boring. Instead choose a diet that combines all the food groups in a balanced way. I found the easiest way for me was to find a weight loss program that used food as my ally in my weight loss efforts. Eating more low GI foods, getting the correct balance of proteins, fats and carbohydrates, and improving my eating patterns and strategies were all components of the weight loss program I used successfully.
Choosing a program that balances food and avoids the high GI foods in favour of low GI foods and a balance of fats and proteins is the key to weight loss. Low calorie food diets are unsustainable because they lack the essential nutrients for good health. Your goal should be a healthy lifestyle with a balanced diet, regular exercise and a healthy self image. Then you will be on the pathway to a satisfied and contented life.