Dieting shouldn’t keep you from choosing the mouth-watering meals on the menu, it should guide you in a healthier direction, while still being able to enjoy a few treats. DECO looks into the most important meal of the day, superfoods and the common carb debate.
Let’s start with some motivation from the iconic Karl Lagerfeld:
Dieting is the only game where you win when you lose!
Being exposed to countless diets these days, we all know the typical rant of ‘eat more fruit and vegetables, drink 8 glasses of water daily, eat less salt, go to the gym, cut down on sugar’ and the best: ‘don’t skip breakfast, which is the most important meal’. Don’t eat this and don’t eat that. All we hear is what we shouldn’t do; well here is what you should do (and should eat).
Fitwatch explains that ‘eating healthy and exercising is important and may extend our longevity by quite a lot. More importantly, healthy lifestyle habits help improve the quality of our lives so that we live more completely and passionately than we would with poorer health.’
Here are a few weight loss friendly foods we can incorporate into our daily intake.
Quick Tip: Foods with low energy density tend to make people eat fewer calories, and most of these foods contain a lot of water, such as fruits and vegetables.
Breakfast – A Meal of Champions
Foods that are high in protein and fiber, are two nutrients that can lead to satiety, making us feel full, but it can also be overdone.
To eat is a necessity, but to eat intelligently is an art.
Breakfast ‘breaks the fast’ after a long night of sleep. The theory goes that skipping breakfast slows down your metabolism causing a decrease in the amount of calories you burn throughout the day. Eating a nutrient-dense breakfast actually helps with weight-loss and speeds up the body’s functionality from the get go. Fitday continues to explain the fact that lack of time and hunger plays a big role in eating breakfast regularly.
To combat a lack of time, pre-prepare some grab-and-go items such as hard boiled eggs, Greek yogurt cups, fresh fruit or pre-blended smoothies for a quick and easy solution to those hectic mornings.
What are Slimming Superfoods?
Superfoods not only prevent chronic diseases, keep your mind tuned in, build strong bones and improve eyesight, but they are also known to be the ultimate nutritional powerhouses for losing weight. Pure Wow sums it up well:
They’re classified as foods containing ‘super’ high levels of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Basically, all the stuff that’s really, really good for you.
NUTS AND SEEDS: (raw, unsalted) Almonds, Flaxseeds, Sesame seeds, Walnuts
FRUIT: Apples, Blueberries, Cherries, Grapefruit, Oranges, and Pomegranates
BEVERAGES: (unsweetened) Blueberry juice, Cherry juice, Green tea, Pomegranate juice, Vegetable juice
VEGETABLES: Arugula, Bell peppers, Broccoli, Cabbage, Carrots, Leeks, Onions, Romaine lettuce, Scallions, Shiitake mushrooms, Spinach, Tomatoes
HERBS AND SPICES: Basil, Black pepper, Cardamom, Chives, Cilantro, Cinnamon, Cloves, Garlic, Ginger, Parsley, Turmeric
FISH: Flounder, Salmon, Sole, Tilapia
OTHER: Egg whites, Yogurt (plain, nonfat)
What’s for Dinner?
Considering a healthy lunch or supper, the amazing food blogger and stylist, Renée Kemps, shares a favourite recipe: roasted vegetables and lental salad. Mix it up with feta and yogurt or garlic dressing for extra flavour. Talk about healthy and heartedly delicious – follow her to create this picture perfect dish at home.
The lentils are best when solely soaked (and not cooked) for at least 8 hours. They’ll keep their texture and bite. Don’t like it spicy? Leave the raw garlic out or sauté it first before adding it to your dressing.
Roasted Vegetables and Lentil Salad w/ Feta and Yogurt/Garlic Dressing
1 cup lentils
3 small carrots
1 big sweet potato
3 small beets
3.5 tbs coconut/olive oil
1/8 tsp chili powder
1 tsp honey
3 tbs yoghurt
1 clove garlic, grated
1 tbs cilantro, chopped
1/2 lemon, juice
2 handfuls arugula
handful cilantro, chopped
100 gr soft feta cheese
One day ahead, combine 1 cup lentils with 2 cups water and 1/2 tsp lemon juice. Leave to soak.
On the day itself, preheat oven to 200C.
Drizzle beets with 1 tbs oil, season with salt and pepper, pack in aluminium foil and roast for about 30 minutes until soft. Leave them to cool and cut each one in 4.
Cut carrots and sweet potato in slices. Mix carrots with honey and 1 tbs oil and sweet potato with 1 tbs oil and chili powder. Season both with salt and pepper. Spread out in a single layer on a baking sheet with parchment paper. Roast for about 20 minutes, turning halfway, until golden brown and crispy.
Make the dressing by mixing yoghurt, garlic, cilantro, lemon juice and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Drain lentils, rinse well. Mix arugula, roasted vegetables and lentils. Divide over plates. Crumble over the feta cheese and finish with some fresh cilantro.
Serve with yoghurt/garlic dressing and enjoy!
If you want to go the diet route, you’re probably still wondering which diet is best!? There will always be room for argument but according to Fitness Magazine, the simple solution, says Dr. Galland, is the Fat Resistance Diet:
Eat superfoods, such as apples, almonds, bell peppers, salmon, and egg whites, that act as natural forms of ibuprofen, helping to stop inflammation.
- 5:2 diet
- Dukan diet
- Paleo diet
- New Atkins diet
- Alkaline diet
- Cambridge diet
- South Beach diet
- Slimming World diet
- Slim-Fast diet
- LighterLife diet
- WeightWatchers diet
- Rosemary Conley diet
A super frustrating thing is knowing when to stop eating when your desire is to eat more, because you may still be hungry, or your eyes are being enticed by beautiful looking food. In a recent article on ‘know your body’s cues of hunger and satiety’, Darling Magazine explains how feeling satisfied is very important:
After eating and sustaining that hunger when you become full, that is the process of becoming satiated. Satiety reflects you being full.
What makes us full? Carbs make us feel full but also often bloated, depending on how how bodies react…
Wanting to cut out carbs? Think again…
Carbs are a source of energy. It forms part of three macronutrients (nutrients that form a large part of our diet), protein and fats being the other two. Dietitian Sian Porter comments on carbs as a whole. ‘Carbohydrates are such a broad category and people need to know that not all carbs are the same and it is the type and quantity of carbohydrate in our diet that is important.’ There are three types of carbohydrates; sugar, starch and fibre. You need them all in a sense. Don’t get wrapped into a food trend without knowing your facts!
Why do you need carbs? VS. Should I cut out carbs? Read up on the truth about carbs on NHS Choices.
Keep up the health craze and read more on HEALTHY FOOD WITH A BANG – RAW & ROXY VEGAN CAFÉ or enjoy the TOP PLACES TO BUY ORGANIC FRUIT AND VEG SUPERFOODS.
Inspired by minimalistic design, nature and the writings of Oscar Wilde and F. Scott Fitzgerald, ELLE Deco editorial intern, Franke pursues the world through languages and photography. Apart from content creating, assisting in sourcing and styling, she has a love for traveling to new places with new faces. Follow her on Twitter @FrankTheun or Instagram @FrankeTheunissen.