Menu Suggestions, New Diet

Article by Diet Bites

Difficult to Lose, Temptation Wise

If one of your New Year's Resolutions was to lose the excess fat then you're either on Day three or four of your new plan - depending on whether you began on January the first or second.

Many individuals prefer to hold off until Day 2 because the first is generally a day filled with celebrations - and where celebratory events are involved, so is food more likely than not.

By now, all of the leftover foods from the holiday are probably gone or stored in the freezer - so the temptation is less, but now you're starting to have that gnawing feeling in the pit of your belly that just won't go away.

You probably are dealing with hunger pains as your tummy continues to shrink. After all, it's used to being filled with as much food as it can hold, day in and day out. Just a few days ago, you didn't care how much you stuffed into it - as your thoughts involved enjoying the special foods and fun surrounding those glorious holidays.

But now, it's time to get tough - to get down to business and to lose all that was gained - either amid the holidays, or over a period of time.

Losing the Fat....It's just SO hard!

On the first day or two of most reduction plans, we're ready to run once the gate is open.

And run we do - to healthier foods like cucumbers, celery, carrots, canned tuna, rice cakes, melba toast, reduced sodium cottage cheese, no fat butter sprays, skim milk and other skim dairy products, baked rather than fried chips, and lots of fresh fruits.

But at some point - we simply become burnt-out on the same foods day-in and day-out. We miss our full-blown soda, our fatty and rich butter and buttery spreads, our Ranch dressing, fried foods - as well as our decadent desserts.

Will we ever reach a point to where we can enjoy all that we want of our favorite foods again.

No.

Some will tell you that you can enjoy all the food and drink that you wish and still be thin.

That only holds true to individuals who climb the Alps in sub-zero weather, or to farmers that hand-plow their fields - or to blacksmiths who continue their trade in the modern day world.

If Georgette favors cheesecake and consumes an entire pie in a day - she'll need to burn a considerable number of calories in order to avoid a spike on the bathroom scales.

If she likes fried chicken smothered in country gravy with a side of fried okra and onion rings - served with sweet tea and tied into a nice bundle with the cheesecake, then she can expect a nice-size present in the area of stored fat in her near future.

The 'gift' of weight gain might not arrive directly; at times it takes a few days to register.

It's dependability is much like the postal system - one never knows when to expect delivery, but at some point it will arrive. Unfortunately....

On that note, let's climb to a happier place and take a look at a weight loss menu that even Cheesecake-Lovin' Georgette can live with, shall we?

A Spiffy, Healthy Menu

We left off on the previous page with Georgette who loves eating fatty foods yet who also has an intense desire to lose her extra pounds and to keep them off.

We have established that she enjoys cheesecake, fried foods, sweet tea and country gravy. Let's see if we can satisfy her cravings without taking the caloric values over the Edge of No Diet Return, shall we?

Daily Menu Suggestion

Breakfast Menu for Diet

Time to enjoy a serving (NOT A BOWL) of Honey Nut Cheerios and skim milk. Yes, she will place the whole grain cereal in a bowl along with the milk - but Georgette will only enjoy a SERVING - which is about 1 cup of the cereal and not an entire bowl.

Measuring Serving Sizes for Weight Loss

This is just one key to losing and maintaining a healthy size - measuring out food to equal recommended serving size. You won't need the measuring cups and spoons forever - just until you can 'eye' the portions accurately. You'll quickly get a good grip on what amount equals a cup, a Tablespoon, teaspoon and so forth.

Adding Healthy Selections From Food Groups, Like Natural Fruit

Georgette will also enjoy a sliced banana which she'll put into her cereal bowl. And let's add a cup of black coffee or tea to her meal. If the beverage isn't to her liking because it doesn't contain sugar, she can add a teaspoon along with a dash of creamer - but only a recommended serving size - not a cup of creamer or a cup of sugar. She can also opt to use sugar substitute.

Adding Whole Grain Selections at Breakfast

Let's also add another whole grain selection to her meal as her body requires a minimum of 6 servings from the Grain Group daily - otherwise, health can be compromised. It's essential while on a reduction plan to intake ample Food Group servings in order to avoid illness and risks to the body during this time.

Let's review these energy values:

Calories in Breakfast Menu

GENERAL MILLS, HONEY NUT CHEERIOS - 1 cup = 118 kcals
Skim Milk, 1 cup = 83 kcals
Banana, one small = 80 kcals
Whole Grain Bread, 1 slice = 60 kcals
Tea, Coffee - assuming that creamer and a teaspoon of sugar were used = 50 kcals

Total Breakfast Calories = 391 kcals

Food Group Servings:  2 Grains, 1 Fruit, 1 Dairy

Let's see what in store for lunch, shall we?

Time for Lunch, Little Dieter

We left Georgette enjoying a hearty breakfast - and now it's time for the noon meal of the day.

Remember how much she enjoys fried foods? And country gravy? Fact is, she can still lose the excess weight and enjoy the foods that she loves. BUT - she much do such in a wise, controlled manner.

When things roll out of our control, the appetite can overtake our good senses and the result is almost-always a spike in numbers on the bathroom scales.

Fried Foods, Fatty Acid Consumption Health Concerns

As to enjoying fried foods, keep in mind that these tend to be rich in fatty acid (lipid) content.

The saturated, monounsaturated, polyunsaturated, Trans and cholesterol fatty acids contribute at-times negatively to our blood serum cholesterol levels and can impact heart health - also contributing to heart disease, diabetes and stroke another other health ills.

This is just one reason why they should be limited in our daily eating plan.

So....if they are to be limited then what reason should they be enjoyed?

Essential to Satisfy Personal Cravings

To satisfy personal cravings and to assist the individual in keeping on track with weight loss.

After all, the restricted plan will end at the point when the individual reaches that ideal recommended number for body size.

Essential to Control Portion Size & Daily Calories

After that - they must learn to control the amount of caloric values in their day or what was lost will quickly be regained.

It's unimaginable that anyone who loves fried foods won't ever touch them again in their lifetime - even after achieving their ideal weight.

Therefore, by managing them amid the healthier eating plan - they will learn to enjoy in moderation rather than in excess.

Happiness, Satisfaction is Key to Success

Remember the popular saying: "Happy wife, happy life"?

The same applies to losing the excess fat: "Happy foods, happy diet".

Keeping these elements in mind, let's see what is on the noon menu.

The Lunch Menu

Lunch Menu for Diet

1 fried and battered drumstick

1/4 cup of country gravy

1/2 cup of mashed potatoes prepared with margarine and whole milk; when prepared with skim milk and reduced fat margarine the caloric values can be lowered even more.

1 cup of canned or freshly cooked green beans - the snap variety

1/2 cup of boiled carrots

Salt and pepper can be added to the vegetables along with a teaspoon of reduced fat margarine to each - for 40 additional kcals.

Sweet Tea

1 cup of brewed tea with a teaspoon of sugar added. As a note, it might take our Georgette awhile to adjust to a reduction in sugar. Her taste buds are used to extra sweet tea.

Trimming Empty Sugar Calories for Weight Loss Results

With time, she can learn to like the less sweetened brew because where sugar is involved - it's like salt; the LESS used, the LESS wanted or craved.

I've seen many an individual go from excessively sweetened beverages to plain - with no added sweetness, so it can be done with a dedicated effort and a positive mind set. Part of this process involves getting in touch with your taste buds.

Using Your Sense of Taste to Lose Weight & Trim Unhealthy Elements From Your Daily Diet

We often ply our foods with salt, sugar and fats - and if we take time to pause and note the flavors we're tasting on our tongue we might think, 'Wow, this is too salty OR I can get by with a little less salt' OR with sugar, 'I didn't realize my coffee or tea was so sweet and I know I can use a little less'.

Sure - the tea isn't as sugary and may not taste divine as when served with such, but at some point the individual has to ask, "Do I want Sweet Tea more than I want to be at my recommended weight?"

We'll also add a slice of whole grain bread to the meal along with a cup of whole strawberries as dessert.

Let's review the caloric values of this menu.

Calories in Lunch Menu

Chicken, drumstick, meat and skin, cooked, flour battered = 120 kcals
Country Gravy - 1/4 cup
 = 47 kcals
Potatoes, mashed using whole milk and margarine, per 1/2 cup = 116 kcals
Green Beans, boiled, drained, 1 cup = 44 kcals
Carrots, boiled, drained = 55 kcals
Whole Grain Bread, 1 slice = 60 kcals
Strawberries, raw, 1 cup = 53 kcals
Tea, 1 teaspoon of sugar = 16 kcals
 

TOTAL CALORIES FOR LUNCH MENU = 495 kcals

Food Group Servings:  1 Grain, 1 Fruit, 1 Protein, 3 Vegetables

Our Breakfast Menu contains 391 calories - so we're up to 886 kcals.

Time to review Georgette's Dinner Menu.

The Dinner Menu

Supper for Diet

3 Ounces of Pan-Roasted Cod

1 cup of Whole Grain White Rice with teaspoon of reduced fat margarine

1 cup of reduced fat cottage cheese, lower sodium

2 cups of Spring Mix, 2 cherry tomatoes, slices of cucumber and 35 calories worth of either a reduced fruit-based salad dressing or a low cal version of dressing.

1 Large Hush Puppy or 1 Slice of Whole Grain Bread

Seltzer Water - it's fizzy, it's fun and it contains zero calories.

Desserts, We Can Use Healthier Ingredients & Reduce the Fat & Calories

Now, remember that cheesecake that Georgette enjoys so much? It's time to have a slice of Diet Bites reduced fat variety; the recipe is located here.

We're going to top the cheesecake with 1/2 cup of fresh blackberries, strawberries, raspberries or blueberries to add a fruit group serving for a tiny amount of energy values.

Adding Up the Calories for Weight Loss

How many calories did we rack-up?

Let's review and add the total.

Calories in Dinner Menu

Fish, cod cooked using dry heat - three ounces = 89 kcals
Rice with serving of light margarine - 1/2 cup = 115 kcals
Cheese, cottage, lowfat, 2% milkfat - 1/2 cup = 95 kcals

Salad, vegetable, tossed, with reduced fat fruit-based dressing = 100 kcals

Whole Grain Bread, 1 slice
= 60 kcals
Any dessert = 250 kcals

TOTAL CALORIES FOR SUPPER MENU = 709 kcals

Food Group Servings:  3 Grains, 1 Fruit, 1 Protein, 2 Vegetables, 2 Dairy

While this menu appears to be excessive in caloric values - keep in mind that if we subtract the dessert it will only equal about 450 kcals - which is a fantastic number to aim for when meal planning.

How Did We Do for the Day On Total Calories?

On this note, let's see how many calories are in the entire day's menus along with the Food Group Servings; did we meet the minimal requirements and did that piece of cheese pie take us over our daily set goal?

Adding Up the Total Daily Calories

Georgette has a set daily total of 1600 kcals for her weight loss plan. With our menus she has met her daily goal.

Calories in Day Menus

Breakfast = 391 kcals
Lunch = 495 kcals
Dinner = 709 kcals

GRAND TOTAL = 1,595 for a whole lot of healthy food!

In the process, she has enjoyed her fried chicken, her country gravy - and even a slice of her beloved cheese pie.

Take note that the dessert added about 250 kcals to her daily totals.

These would be best spent on healthier food choices - so this is to say that Georgette should only enjoy some of the higher fat and higher caloric-based foods and drinks occasionally rather than making them a part of every day dining.

These energy values could be spent on healthier choices housed within the Five Basic Food Groups - and which are more agreeable with the human body, thereby making the digestive process faster and cleaner for the metabolism.

When we introduce highly refined foods to the body, the metabolic rate is impacted as digestion requires a bit more processing time than when natural foods are involved.

Total Food Group Servings

So how did we do on the recommended Food Group servings? Actually - our menus for the day met all of the minimal daily requirements and exceeded the high-end recommendations in some groups. Take note that the recommendations by the USDA are  based on a standard 2000 kcal daily diet - and that Georgette's is set at 1600.

Here are the totals:

Food Group Servings Totals:  6 Grains, 3 Fruits, 2 Proteins, 5 Vegetables, 3 Dairy

The official recommendations:

Grain: 6-11, Proteins: 2-3, Vegetables: 3-5, Fruits: 2-4, Dairy: 2-3.

Take special note that while many advertisements focus on getting more protein in the daily eating plan - vegetables and fruits come in second only to grains. The human body that is of average size  and which requires 2000 kcals daily to support for optimum health requires only 2 servings of protein daily.

In Summary

If Georgette continues to consume 1600 kcals per day she will lose over 50 pounds of excess fat in about three months. She should continue adhering to this amount of energy values going forward in order to keep off the lost weight.

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