August 2018

Love Week: Eat Your Way to Beauty & Still Lose Weight

By Tanya Zuckerbrot

November, December, and January are filled with food-laden holiday feasts and high-calorie festive beverages. It’s no wonder every year we make the same New Year’s resolutions—“lose weight,” “eat better,” “get in shape.” Instead of waiting to make, and then probably ignore, those New Year’s resolutions, keep your looks—and your mood—their best with some easy nutrition tricks. And if you hit the New Year promising to drop some unwanted pounds, put my top 10 diet tips into practice now and keep that resolution all year long. Whether you’re prepping for love, have found it already, or just want to be the best you possible, you’ll look and feel ready to ring in the New Year.

Eating to Boost Your Mood
Serotonin improves your mood and feelings of satiety from eating.
Eat foods rich in Omega-3s, tryptophan, and antioxidants to increase serotonin.
• Omega-3 fatty acids: salmon, flax seeds, walnuts
• Tryptophan: red meat, dairy products, nuts, and turkey
• Antioxidants: fruits and vegetables

Selenium can help prevent bad moods.
Too little selenium can leave you more anxious, irritable, hostile, and depressed than people with normal levels of selenium. Pistachios, salmon, and shitake mushrooms can quickly get you out of this funk.

How to Grow Strong Nails by Eating Healthy
Calcium helps get rid of dry brittle nails that break easily.
Calcium-rich foods: yogurt, cottage cheese, eggs, broccoli, and kale
Keratin, the protein that makes up your nails, keeps them strong and moisturized.
Keratin-rich foods: white meat, cheese, strawberries, nuts
Zinc eliminates and prevents white spots on your nails.
Zinc-rich foods: red meat, poultry, legumes, nuts

Incorporate Healthy Skin Vitamins into Your Diet
• Vitamin B plays a huge part in protecting the skin, including helping to treat acne, and different types of vitamin B work in different ways. It helps to rid the body of toxins through antioxidant properties (thiamine); is essential for skin, hair, and nails (riboflavin); exfoliates the skin and helps with moisture retention (niacin); and treats sensitive skin (pantothenic acid).
• Vitamin C is not just good for warding off colds. Our bodies use vitamin C to produce sebum, an oily substance secreted by hair follicles that acts as a natural hair conditioner. Vitamin C helps skin, too—think fewer wrinkles and less skin dryness—along with reducing inflammation and puffiness under eyes. Strawberries have more vitamin C per serving than oranges or grapefruit.
• Omega-3 fatty acids are good for your heart and your mood, and also great for your skin. They help to maintain the natural oil that keeps your scalp and hair from drying out, and the moisture in your skin that gives it a healthy, youthful look. Good sources include fatty fish, such as salmon, tuna, and halibut, and certain nuts and seeds, such as walnuts and flaxseeds. Eat fish at least twice a week and boost your intake by sprinkling ground flaxseed into yogurt or using a little canola oil while cooking.
• Magnesium aids in the body’s absorption of calcium, helps to regulate blood pressure, and is essential to your body’s ability to make the collagen that keeps your skin elastic and youthful.
• Silica improves the condition of hair and nails, improves the texture and resilience of skin, and is needed to make strong, healthy bones and to keep your blood vessels elastic.

Top 10 Tips to Lose Weight—and Never Diet Again!

1. Set Realistic Diet Goals You’ll Keep
Remember, it’s a marathon, not a sprint.

2. Always Eat a Healthy Breakfast
Lose weight and keep it off more effectively.

3. Fill up on Fiber & Protein for Energy
Eat the most food with the fewest calories.

4. Eat Small Meals Frequently & Stay Full
Say goodbye to midnight snacking and overeating.

5. Dine Out the Smart Way & Snack First
Fill up before going out.

6. Dress for Success When Going Out
Wear fitted clothes to discourage overeating.

7. Stay Hydrated
Boost healthy digestion, metabolism, and energy.

8. Snack on Pistachios
Help curb hunger and slow rises in blood sugar levels.

9. Exercise
Increase metabolism by gaining muscle.

10. Eat Foods that Boost Metabolism
Think low-fat dairy, berries, high-fiber cereals, green tea, hot peppers, soy beans, citrus fruits, and cold-water fish like salmon, tuna, and sardines.

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Tanya Zuckerbrot, Health & Fitness Contributing Editor
Tanya Zuckerbrot is a Manhattan-based registered dietitian and the creator of the F-Factor Diet, an innovative nutritional program she founded in 1999. The F-Factor Diet: Discover the Secret to Permanent Weight Loss (Putnum, 2006) debuted in hardcover in January 2007. This common-sense plan, used successfully by hundreds of Tanya’s clients, provides tools for improved health . . . Read more of Tanya’s tips

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In Monday’s Final Love Week Email . . .
What is Love Week? Really, it’s 6 weekday emails, but Love Week just sounds catchier! Don’t miss our living contributing editor Eve Robinson’s stylish home décor picks to feather your nest. And if you missed the other Love Week emails, read Matchmaker Marni Galison’s Dating Do’s & Don’ts: How to Land Your Love Match, celebrity stylist Stacey Mayesh’s Love Week: What to Wear on a Date, celebrity makeup artist Sue Devitt’s Love Week Makeover: Ring in the New Year Radiantly, and wine expert Anu Karwa’s Love Week: How to Order Wine Like a Sommelier.

Top 10 Tips to Lose Weight—and Never Diet Again!

By Tanya Zuckerbrot

1.     Set Realistic Diet Goals

Write down where you would like to be with your weight in 1 month, 3 months, 6 months, and then 1 year. You gained the weight over months or even years, so always remember that you’re in this for the long haul. It’s a marathon, not a sprint. With this mindset, you will be able to create healthy habits that ultimately turn your “diet” into a truly healthy lifestyle.

2.     Eat a Healthy Breakfast

Eating breakfast every day is essential for jump-starting your metabolism and allowing you to burn calories more efficiently throughout the day. Breakfast eaters tend to lose weight and keep it off more effectively than people who skip breakfast. Tip: Start your day with foods rich in fiber and protein. Try a breakfast parfait with plain, fat-free Greek yogurt, berries, and high-fiber cereal (5 grams of fiber or more) sprinkled on top.

3.     Fill up on Fiber and Protein

Fiber and protein are the two nutrients that take the longest to digest. They’re perfect to keep your serum glucose levels consistent, and you’ll have improved energy throughout the day. And since fiber has no calories, and protein has only 4 calories per gram, you are guaranteed the least caloric intake with the most food intake. Tip: Women should aim for 25–35 grams of fiber per day; men should aim for 35–38 grams of fiber per day. Bulk up your salad with fiber from nonstarchy vegetables such as broccoli, carrots, cucumbers, beets, peppers, and tomatoes.

4.     Eat Small Meals Frequently

Eating small meals every 3–4 hours helps to stabilize blood sugar and keep energy levels consistent. And you won’t be ravenous at night, make poor food choices, or overeat. For lunch, have a big salad with vegetables and lean protein, and as a snack, have an apple with a piece of string cheese or peanut butter. These meals will keep you full throughout the day.

5.     Dine Out the Smart Way!

The old adage, “Don’t spoil your appetite,” is wrong! Spoil your appetite before a party or dining out. Have a small pre-dinner snack rich in fiber and protein. Filling up before going out to eat is one of the best ways to help you lose or maintain your weight. Going out on a full belly will allow you to make smart choices and eat less.

6.     Go Out Dressed for Success

When scouring your closet for the perfect dinner outfit, go for tailored, even a bit snug. It’s easier to overeat when wearing loose clothing such as sweats. Stick to fitted pants or a tight skirt to discourage you from eating too much. And when it comes to handbags, forgo any purse with a strap. Instead, grab a clutch. When you are holding a clutch in one hand and a cocktail in your other, there are no hands free to hold a plateful of pigs-in-a-blanket.

7.     Stay Hydrated

As the weather cools down, we typically sweat less and tend to forget to keep drinking. This is detrimental not only to our health and energy levels but to our waistlines and appearance. Water helps to rid the body of toxins and chemicals that may slow down your metabolism, decrease your energy levels, and lead to dull, dry skin and hair. Drink at least 8 glasses of water a day to promote healthy digestion, increase your metabolism, boost energy levels, and add radiance to your overall appearance.

8.     Snack on Pistachios

Pistachios help fight weight gain by slowing down rises in blood sugar levels and curbing hunger. Nut consumption in general is associated with a lower body mass index, but not with weight gain. Pistachios have a significant amount of protein and are among the highest-fiber nuts, so they slow digestion and keep you feeling fuller longer than low-protein, low-fiber snacks. You also get a lot of nuts in a 1-ounce serving, which helps psychologically: 49 pistachios, versus only 23 almonds or 18 cashews.

9. Exercise

Exercise is one of the most important factors in determining physical and mental health. Exercise plus a proper diet are the perfect combination for maintaining your ideal body weight. Not only will you burn energy, which will make room for glycogen, you will also increase your metabolism by gaining muscle. Muscle is a metabolically active tissue; it burns energy all day long, even after you’ve stopped working out.

10.  Eat Foods that Boost Metabolism

Many foods help increase metabolism, so make sure to incorporate them into your diet. The best metabolism-boosting foods include low-fat dairy, berries, high-fiber cereals, green tea, hot peppers, soy beans, citrus fruits, and cold-water fish like salmon, tuna, and sardines. Spicy foods are also a great way to add flavor to your foods without adding salt. They increase heart rate and body temperature, both of which raise the number of calories your body is burning. Also, cinnamon helps regulate blood sugar, which will prevent cravings.  Add extra spice to your favorite homemade dishes!

Tanya Zuckerbrot, Health & Fitness Contributing Editor
Tanya Zuckerbrot is a Manhattan-based registered dietitian and the creator of the F-Factor Diet, an innovative nutritional program she founded in 1999. The F-Factor Diet: Discover the Secret to Permanent Weight Loss (Putnum, 2006) debuted in hardcover in January 2007. This common-sense plan, used successfully by hundreds of Tanya’s clients, provides tools for improved health . . . Read more of Tanya’s tips