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Archive for January 30th, 2013

Whereas the DASH diet ranked number one in 2012 as the healthiest diet, not far behind were other excellent diets. The TLC (Therapeutic Lifestyle Changes) diet ranked number two (See http://health.usnews.com/best-diet/tlc-diet). Developed by the National Institute of Health (NIH) and the American Heart Association, it claims to lower “bad” (LDL) cholesterol by eight to ten percent in six weeks. This diet sharply reduces dietary fat, especially saturated fat found primarily in meats, dairy (butter/cream), and fried foods. The diet encourages restricting foods high in cholesterol and increasing those high in fiber.

Three diets tied for third place, Mediterranean, Mayo Clinic, and Weight Watchers. While the DASH diet is well-known for lowering sodium in the diet and the TLC diet is low-fat, the Mediterranean diet is a balance of healthy foods without reducing any specific food or substance. This diet has no specific “plan” but emphasizes eating fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts and legumes; olive oil; herbs and spices; fish and seafood at least twice a week; poultry, eggs, cheese, and yogurt in moderation; and sweets and red meats only for special occasions. Those living around the Mediterranean Sea, for which the diet is named, tend to have more active lifestyles, control their weight, consume diets high in healthful foods as listed above, and eat less red meat, sugar, or saturated fat than Americans. See http://health.usnews.com/best-diet/mediterranean-diet.

The Mayo Clinic diet, also a balanced diet, advocates a two-phase program. Part one, referred to as “Lose It” phase, doesn’t count calories. Part two, “Live It,” involves learning the number of calories needed and where those calories come from. The aim of the diet is weight-loss, and participants should lose from six to ten pounds in two weeks. See http://health.usnews.com/best-diet/mayo-clinic-diet/recipes.

U. S News & World Report ranked Weight Watchers as number five among healthiest diets. Experts considered this diet easy to follow, safe, and nutritionally sound. Weight Watchers emphasizes group support. Foods include lots of fruits and vegetables, and it allows for occasional indulgences. Check http://health.usnews.com/best-diet/weight-watchers-diet for more information.

Although these best diets may contribute toward loss of weight, the news magazine also evaluated diets touted for weight-loss. Weight Watchers ranked number one in that category with Biggest Looser, Jenny Craig, and raw food diet tied at number two (See http://health.usnews.com/best-diet/best-weight-loss-diets ). Volumetrics came in fifth.

Now you have it. Many diets out there are healthy choices. Forget all the fad diets that may actually do harm and concentrate on wholesome foods to provide adequate nutrients and calories to become a healthier you.

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