women

Yes, you can eat all these and more in the new diet regime that’s taking America by storm

 “No thank you.” “No, I’m on a diet.” “No, I can’t eat that.” No. No. No. It’s all we seem to say; like some kind of twisted Diet Tourette’s, it’s our in-built, immediate response to anything remotely indulgent or sinful. But, according to new research, this martyred deprivation could be what sets us up for an inevitable bingeing fall… and weight gain. “If you look at cultures that maintain healthy weights, like the French or Italians, they have no guilt about eating desserts and full-fat cheeses,” says nutritional expert Michael Zemel. “The difference is, they’re not eating bowlfuls at a time. They have a sense of enjoyment about their food, so a little bit is enough.” And who isn’t in awe of Nigella Lawson: the Domestic Goddess indulges in the sights, smells and tastes of eating whatever she wants (even Twitpicing her meals to her 126,000 followers), yet she’s slimmed down apparently without deprivation. Now, you can have your cake and eat it with the Hedonist Diet – it’s what we’ve all been waiting for.

Description: “If you look at cultures that maintain healthy weights, like the French or Italians, they have no guilt about eating desserts and full-fat cheeses,”

“If you look at cultures that maintain healthy weights, like the French or Italians, they have no guilt about eating desserts and full-fat cheeses,”

Eat a ‘fatty’ breakfast

Bacon and eggs for breakfast has become to represent a heart attack on a plate. But prepared correctly, that meals can be the smartest way to kick off your day. According to a study published in the International Journal Of Obesity, mice who eat a fat-rich meal at the end of the day. A three-egg-whites-and-one-yolk omelette is preferred by nutritionists for its lack of saturated fats. And with 42 calories and 3g of fat, “one strip of bacon at breakfast isn’t going to make anyone overweight”, says weight-loss expect (and self-confessed bacon lover) Jana Klauer. Just avoid the toast, since carbs are converted to glucose, which gets used by the body first for fuel rather than the protein-rich eggs.

Power up with coffee

Description: “Caffeine enhances physical performance and endurance,”

“Caffeine enhances physical performance and endurance,”

Opt foe a skimmed latte with your breakfast omelette (see Eat A ‘Fatty’ Breakfast, above) and before you exercise and it could help to extend your workout time. “Caffeine enhances physical performance and endurance,” says Zemel. It not only mobilized fat to fuel you as you work up a sweat, but it also improves endurance, allowing you to work out longer. And there’s more good news: “Coffee is the number-one way people get antioxidants,” says nutritionist Keri Glassman. “It’s also not as dehydrating as previously thought, so it will count towards your daily fluid intake.”

Be a dairy queen

Dairy consumption seems to go hand in hand with weight loss. A study in Obesity, the official journal of The Obesity Society, showed that obese adults who ate a diet high in dairy lost significantly more weight and body fat than those who ate the same number of calories minus it. “Without enough calcium, your body releases a hormone that causes fat storage. Leucine (milk protein) helps burn fat and protect lean muscle,” says Zemel, who compiled part of the study. To keep fat levels to a minimum, replace cream with low-fat Greek yoghurt or crème fraiche in your cooking, and graze on crumbles of low-fat feta instead of cheddar or brie.

Eat what you actually like

Do you make your sandwiches with gluten-free spelt bread when what you really want is a crusty French baguette? Learn to relax: your dedication to healthy eating may make you feel like you need to ‘reward’ yourself with a treat or sugar binge. A recent study in the Journal Of Consumer Research found that people who ate a chocolate and raspberry protein bar described as “a new health bar” reported being hungrier afterwards than those who ate the same bar when it was described as “tasty and yummy.” The “heath bar” eaters were also hungrier than a third group of subject who didn’t eat the bar at all. It seems that when you are busy congratulating yourself on your virtuous eating, you may be neglecting your satisfaction – and end up elbow-deep in a bag of something that is ‘healthy’ but fattening – such as organic crisps, by bedtime. “Just because something says it’s organic, or low-fat, or anything else, doesn’t mean that you don’t have to account for it,” says Lisa R Young, author of The Portion Teller Plan (Broadway, $14.34) “Pick a food you like so that you will feel satisfied and won’t go looking for something more. If that happens to be peanuts, it’s obviously better to get a snack-size packet than a giant sharing pack, which contains much more than you need.”

Description: Eat what you actually like

Eat what you actually like

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