Basic Healthy Diet Tips

With dieting being the most used method of losing weight, it makes sense for any well respected weight loss website to include an article dedicated to some useful basic healthy diet tips. After all, you are here because you want to lose weight through diet and to do it as fast as is possible! So without further ado, here are some neat diet tips that will help you to lose weight faster and more successfully.

Low GI Carbs

low GI carbs oatmealThe glycemic index, or GI is used to measure the rate at which foods release their sugars into the bloodstream and the speed at which the body takes them up. High GI carbohydrates are those which release sugars into the bloodstream quickly to create a rush of energy which is quickly followed by a rapid release of insulin as the body's way of regulating the blood sugar.

This is bad for the body and causes a high proportion of the excess sugars to be stored as fat, if you are not immediately going to use them as in the case of a prolonged, strenuous workout or cardio-vascular exercise sessions. Even then, the body is often unable to use all the blood sugar excess fast enough and despite the workout, will still store a large proportion of those sugars as fat.

Foods containing high GI carbs to avoid include products made from refined while flour (white bread, pasta, cakes, donuts etc), most candy bars, dates, several breakfast cereals (including Rice Krispies, Cornflakes, Weetabix, Chherios etc), potatoes and parsnips, ice cream.

Low GI carbohydrates, on the other hand, release their sugars more slowly into the bloodstream, meaning there is no rapid insulin response and that allows the body to use more of those sugars for fuel which is burned and not stored. You can probably already see the benefits for losing weight here.

When you eat low GI carbs and combine that with exercise, you are going to burn the fuel before it gets turned to fat for storage, meaning you won't gain weight (unless you eat way to much).

Foods that are primarily made up of low GI carbs include oats (porridge), wholegrain flour (used in making wholemeal / wholegrain bread and pasta), brown rice, most (but not all) fruits such as cherries, most berries, plums, apples, pears, peaches, oranges, grapes, most vegetables but not potatoes or parsnips such as all legumes, brassicas (broccoli, cabbage, kale etc), carrots, asparagus, artichokes, salad crops (tomatoes, lettuce, celery, cucumber etc).

In a balanced diet, carbohydrates should make up about a third of your daily food intake.

High Protein

It is a good idea to ensure you get enough protein in your diet and this should also make up about a third of your total food intake in a balance diet. We need protein in our diet because this is what helps build muscles and muscles are what the body uses to burn fat!

That's right, build the muscle to burn the fat! Of course, just eating lots of protein rich food on its own will not do you a whole load of good because in order for muscles to build, they have to be used. The best way to do this is through hard manual work or prolonged exercise.

The more and harder you make your muscles work, the more fuel they will demand and you body must supply it. That fuel comes first from glucose (sugars) dissolved in your bloodstream, which comes from the carbohydrates as mentioned above.

When the blood sugar levels become depleted through prolonged muscle work, then the body switches to taking its supply from your store of fat, which is metabolized in your liver to produce more glucose to feed the muscles. The proteins that you consume are the building blocks for those muscles to grow.

They grow while you are actually at rest (during sleep) when they repair and are added to in bulk in preparation to work even harder the next day. This process also burns energy which the body must supply from blood sugar and them from its store of fat.

Foods high in proteins include egg whites (albumen), whey powder, lean red meat, poultry, peanuts, soy products, fish (especially oily fish such as sardines, mackerel, salmon etc), cottage cheese, non-fat yoghurt etc.


What's this? Why on earth would you want to include fats in your diet if you want to lose weight? I'll tell you.

Your body needs some fats to operate healthily but it is selective in what it needs and what it doesn't need. The bad fats that you need to avoid are the saturated fats and "trans" fats that are present in way too many foods, especially the processed variety.

Unsaturated fats come in two main groups, which are polyunsaturated, which should be had in small doses and monounsaturated which is much better. There are also the essential fatty acids that the body does need and these are grouped into omega 3, 6 and 9.

Healthy fats should also make up about a third or less of a balanced diet and can be obtained in the following forms:

Monounsaturated fats are best obtained from olive oil, which is the purest form and a major part of the popular Mediterranean diet, it also contains omega 9 fatty acids. Omega 3 and 6 is derived from oily fish such as tuna, sardines, mackerel, salmon etc and also from walnuts and flaxseed (and flaxseed oil).

Dietary Fiber

This is an important part of your daily diet and lack of it can cause a whole host of problems for your colon health as well as digestive problems. Fiber is what helps your body to fully digest the food you eat and aids the colon in its job of extracting the nutrients from food and eliminating the waste that is of no further use.

Lack of dietary fiber can cause excess, undigested food (especially red meat and other foods high in saturated fats) to lodge in the colon and not be removed. This can lead to knock-on health issues such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), has been linked with Crohn's disease and bowel cancer.

It is a startling statistic that the average American is walking around with seven pounds of undigested red meat in their colons!

Foods rich in dietary fiber are bran, oats, black beans, kidney beans, lima beans, lentils, brown rice. Other foods that contain decent levels of fiber are most fresh fruits and vegetables, wholemeal or wholegrain bread, whole wheat pasta, nuts (almonds, walnuts, brazil nuts, pistachios), chick peas, pumpkin seeds, flaxseed and sunflower seeds.


The upshot of all this information is that if you eat a balanced, healthy diet and combine it with some form of daily exercise, you should maintain a healthy weight and have no need of any advice on weight loss diets. But you're probably here because you want to lose weight fast through diet and this information is also of great value to you because it will help you to understand that what you eat ultimately dictates how you will look and feel.

So if you are intent on eating a load of processed, junk food and do no exercise, then you are going to become overweight and need to do something about it. That something is to change your diet in the first instance to a healthy one made up of primarily fresh ingredients.

Then you will have to also get some exercise in every day so that your body can make the best use of the food you are eating and build up some muscle strength and density to enable your body to burn more of the stored fats that you want to eliminate.