Simple Ways to Plan, Enjoy, and Stick to a Healthy Diet
5-Day, Super-Simple Meal Plan For Blood Pressure and Weight Loss
That way, eating dinner will be a sensory treat in more ways than one. Try to remember exactly how bad you felt after the last time you ordered onion rings. On the other hand, when I eat real food, I feel good and get plenty of sleep. Many of us connect positive, nostalgic feelings with unhealthy foods.
A corn dog might conjure a childhood memory of a summer day at a carnival. Try to make equally affirmative connotations with good-for-you dishes. Always have fresh—and long-lasting—stuff in your refrigerator. Carrots, red cabbage, bell peppers, and romaine lettuce all last for up to a week. Save it for dinner.
If reducing the amount of meat you eat is your goal, treat the protein like a side dish. Tough advice, we know.
Everyone needs a little decadence now and then. Once, we were told that eating nutritiously simply required choosing from four basic groups meat, fish, and legumes; dairy; grains; vegetables and fruits. Today the model is different, but the math is just as easy to remember: High blood pressure, or hypertension, forces your heart to work harder to pump blood throughout your body.
According to the ADA, when your heart works harder, your risk for diabetic complications increases. Although there are many causes of hypertension, a high-sodium diet is most often to blame. Sodium attracts water and excess sodium increases blood volume -- that's what increases the pressure in your circulatory system.
Following a low-sodium diet can lower blood pressure in as little as 14 days. Sodium intake is limited to 1, mg per day; carbohydrates make up 55 percent of calories, 18 percent come from protein and 27 percent from fat. Saturated fat and dietary cholesterol are very limited, which helps control "bad" LDL cholesterol levels, another risk factor for cardiovascular disease. These nutritional guidelines fit perfectly with the University of Maryland Medical Center's general diabetic dietary guidelines -- that between 44 and 65 percent of your calories come from carbohydrates, between 12 and 20 percent from protein and between 25 and 35 percent from fat.
The DASH diet is a high-fiber diet that recommends a minimum intake of 30 g of fiber daily. Fiber helps slow digestion, regulating glucose and insulin production and providing satiety.
Fiber is an excellent weight-loss tool because it helps you feel full faster and longer, which may lead to a reduced caloric intake. Foods high in fiber include whole grains, legumes, vegetables and fruits. It's a low-sugar diet that limits added sugar to less than five per week. If you're following a 2,calorie diet, the DASH plan allows between six and eight servings of whole grains, four to five servings each of fruits and vegetables, three servings each of fat and dairy and 6 oz.
Servings of nuts, legumes and sweets are limited to less than five servings weekly.