On the Weight Watchers Program you have the freedom to eat and track your favourite foods, and still achieve your weight-loss goals. But, according to a 20-year study published by the Harvard School of Public Health, certain foods are linked to a pattern of long-term weight gain or loss. So, what are the top foods to enjoy and limit?
Simply the best…
Remember being told to eat all those broccoli stalks and mushy peas on your plate when you were a kid? Your mum was right. There’s no end to the scientific research on the benefits of a diet high in vegetables for health and weight loss. You can add bulk to meals by piling your plate with 0 SmartPoints™ value vegies in a range of colours, including asparagus, squash, cauliflower and capsicum. The best part? You won’t need to go back for seconds because your appetite will be satisfied with a relatively small amount of kilojoules.
Thanks to their amazing health benefits, wholegrains have had their turn in the scientific spotlight in recent years. Eating two or three serves daily has been consistently reported to reduce the risk of developing chronic diseases (including cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes and certain cancers) by between 20 and 30 per cent. A diet high in wholegrains is also associated with a lower body mass index, waist circumference and risk of being overweight, which is great news for slimmers. To help stay on track, choose wholegrains for at least half of all your bread, cereal and grain serves.
Isn’t it great to know that the majority of fresh fruits are 0 SmartPoints™ value? In addition to being the perfect on-the-go snack, fruit is bursting with filling fibre, essential vitamins and minerals and potent antioxidants. Just like vegetables, fruit can also be added to meals to increase your overall satisfaction levels. Try pear or peach slices on breakfast cereal or berries with yoghurt and a sprinkle of pistachios for a delicious dessert.
Once a dieter’s foe, nuts are well and truly back on the bestseller list. When you’re craving a crunchy, savoury snack, ditch the chips and go for nuts instead. Packed with antioxidants, vitamins and essential fats, nuts also keep you feeling fuller for longer due to their protein content. Whenever possible, choose unsalted nuts, such as raw almonds, and add your own low-salt seasoning, for example, a sprinkling of the Moroccan spice ras el hanout.
Been avoiding dairy? Don’t. There’s a growing body of research pointing to the role of dairy products with an improvement in a variety of ‘health markers’ including better insulin resistance (a known risk factor for type 2 diabetes) and, for women, lower body weight, waist circumference and body mass index. So, include snacks of low-fat yoghurts and cheeses in your repertoire occasionally.