by Terri Mooney-Hooker, Administrative Coordinator
In today’s world, it seems we are focusing more on nutrition and health. Being a member of our Wellness Committee at MAX makes me more aware of how choosing healthful food choices and figuring out a healthy weight are so important to our well-being. However, they can also sometimes be a bit confusing. What does good nutrition mean? What is a good balance of fat, carbohydrates, and protein? How does one know what a good weight to maintain really looks like?
Here are few helpful tips to get you started:
Let’s start with good nutrition. That is the key to maintaining good mental and physical health. When you eat a balanced diet, it can affect the way you feel and how your body works. It is the interaction of nutrients and other substances in the food we eat that maintains our growth, reproduction, and overall health.
Here’s the skinny on nutrient-dense foods. Look for these “good” fats to include in your meal plan:
Avoid the “bad” fats:
- Trans fats
Carbohydrates can be either good or bad, and are either simple or complex. Here are some examples of both…
- Good Simple: Naturally present sugars – like in fruit or milk products.
- Bad Simple: High fructose corn syrup; added sugar in sodas, baked goods, etc.
- Good Complex: Starchy veggies, like potatoes, corn, whole grains, and beans.
- Bad Complex: Refined starches, found in cookies, cakes, French fries, etc.
When choosing protein, think lean. Lean meat will have visibly less fat and fewer calories. One serving should be 3oz.- about equal to the size of a deck of cards. Here are some helpful tips for choosing lean meats:
- Limit meat to 1 – 3 3oz. portions per week.
- Eat wild fish, especially salmon, whenever possible.
- Add beans and lentils.
- Other great sources of protein are tofu and other soy products, as well as eggs.
And don’t forget the fiber!
- Soluble fiber would include oat bran, oatmeal, fruits and vegetables.
- Insoluble fiber would include wheat bran, figs, raisins and nuts; all good for you!
Now, to assess your weight. Most of us don’t like to think about it, let alone look at it.
Here are some things to consider:
- Body Mass Index (BMI): it is formulated by weight and height to estimate body fat. Try this site to easily calculate: https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/educational/lose_wt/BMI/bmicalc.htm
- Weight circumference: measure your waist just after you breathe out to get an accurate measure. Men should measure less than 40 and for women, less than 35.
Just remember – baby steps in losing weight to achieve weight goals is best. ½ to 2 pounds per week is a healthy weight loss. A safe and maintainable rule of thumb would be to lose about 10% of your body weight over a 6 – 12 month period.
A combination of creating a healthy meal plan, lifestyle, and exercise, is the key to sustaining weight loss and staying healthy.
Cigna: “Together, all the way;” Healthier Eating for a healthier you.
Terri is the Administrative Coordinator at MAX. She performs all administrative duties, and helps out in other areas of the company when needed. Outside of the office, she enjoys spending time with her husband, her children, two cats, and her extended family and friends. She is huge movie goer and an avid animal lover.
Photo by balise42