McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

Opinion

August 21, 2013

Weight Control without Hunger Foods

Washington — My office subscribes to several research-based nutrition publications and one article from Communicating Food for Health caught my attention carrying the above title.

Calorie dense foods have a major effect on providing weight control. If you fill up on mostly fruits, vegetables, high-fiber carbs and cooked grains, you will fill up on fewer calories. However, if your diet consists of low-fiber, high-fat and high-sugar foods like pizza burgers, French fries, cinnamon rolls, candy bars, potato chips, cookies and many other American favorites the opposite effect is the result.

Think salads, fruit, low-fat pasta, low-fat stir fry, baked low-fat seafood and chicken, rice and oatmeal. It is still necessary to be aware of not stuffing yourself, but you do not need to go hungry and skip meals either. Eating more of the right stuff, and getting more exercise every day will get you to your weight goals over time and keep you there. MyPlate recommends that you use vegetables, fruits, nonfat dairy, high-fiber carbs, and lean proteins to be your mainstay every day.

So what is being left out? Research shows that the higher you go in calorie density, the more you need to eat to feel full. So foods like croissants and cookies are like a double whammy because you are eating foods that are high in calories and then you need to eat more of them to feel full.

More light and low-cal ideas include low-fat salads that are made up of greens, vegetables and vinegar. Beware of fatty additions like cheese, croutons, fried meat, fatty dressing, eggs and mayonnaise-dressed items.

Increase fresh and steamed veggies or fresh fruit that is your main snack or dessert staple. Consider baked potatoes and sweet potatoes but make sure the toppings are low in fat.

Visiting ChooseMyPlate.gov or learn about the DASH diet at www.nhlbi.nih.gov is also a great way to explore more ideas to control your weight without hunger foods. For more information in Pittsburg County, call 918-423-4120 or log onto www.oces.okstate.edu/pittsburg.

LaDell Emmons is the Extension Family and Consumer Sciences Educator for the Pittsburg County Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service. Contact her at ladell.emmons@okstate.edu.

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